Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Meeting Day

It was that time again today - EGA meeting and time to stretch my non-counting mental muscles. Today was stumpwork. A basic, beginner's piece. Which is good. 

I'm back. I just went to my photos to see if I had a picture of this piece, but I don't. At least not on my computer. 

Let's talk about this counted/non-counted thing for a while. I've got friends who only stitch painted canvas. And I've got friends who only do counted cross stitch. And I've got plenty a friends who do a little of this and little of that. We all seem to develop some preferences. As a matter of fact, I've got quite a collection of crewel pieces for when the mood strikes me, which it hasn't for quite some time. Right now, I seem stuck between the worlds of counted canvas and samplers. 

Both of which involve counting. Either holes or threads. (Let's face it. I've got some friends who struggle when they move off the linen and onto canvas. I don't seem to have a problem.)

So when you give me fabric with a drawing and say have at it, I have that moment of panic. What to do? And slowly I start to remember. Chain stitch, fly stitch, buttonhole stitch. 

Like this beauty which I can hardly believe my mother still has hanging in her living room:

Yes. I stitched this back in 1985. It definitely was a kit. Probably Paragon. It's not small either - 14" x 20." Kudos to Mom for still hanging this. I'd have burned it by now. But that's just me. All kinds of crewel goodness going on here. But I think it's the steps that I despise. Get rid of them  and I might still like this, though that gold is rather bright. 

In a short amount of time after this piece, I discovered counted cross stitch. We were stationed in Germany where supplies were rare. But I managed to stitch this Boston lighthouse as gift in maybe 1986? 1987 at the latest. This is my second or third cross stitch piece. My memory is kind of fuzzy on this score. I know I stitched a large colorful duck right around this time, too. Everything I did then was for giving away.

It's small - 18ct in a 4" x 6" frame. I stitched it from a copy of a copy. Did not know any better in those days. Patterns, fabric, thread were all in short supply until we took matters into our hands and opened a cross stitch shop inside of our crafts consignment shop.

Can I still straddle the counted and non-counted worlds? Yup. But I'd still like to be stitching on Stars. Right now.


C in DC said...

Thank you for creating the XS section in the consignment shop. ~8 years later in England, our shop had a similar set up. It had DMC floss, CharlesCraft fabric, and framing supplies (that I remember) and the book store there was where I bought my first The CrossStitcher magazine.

The Chilly Hollow Needlepoint Adventure said...

Stars is addicting, even for me and I have both feet (and arms) in the painted canvas court. So pull it out and stitch on it already!

Lee said...

Nice pics, Donna!