Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Scissor Fob

I found this fob month ago. It was mostly stitched. I just needed to stitch beads and do the finishing. Which I did.

Totally forgot to share it here. Can't remember the designer.

But it's so cute. And those bees are so tiny.

Friday, December 22, 2017

More Finishes

 So this little cutie someone got lost and its threads got separated from the canvas. I found this sometime after we returned from my first trip to London back in 2010. There's more than one type of white thread stitched on this. And two different dye lots of one of them. All because I didn't write anything done. And seriously how the threads were no longer in the box with the canvas is beyond me. Anyway. It's off being made into a pillow and when it comes back to me, I will smile at it every day. Because I like the ambiguity of what the gap is. (I know what it is. But it could refer to so many things.)

And I feel safe posting this here even though it's a gift. A little stumpwork piece designed by Nancy Williams. I don't know how many years ago I took this class. I also have the white berries on blue silk version which has been stitched for years. When I find it again, I'll do the finishing and put it on my tree.

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Blogger Works Best..

Blogger works best for me on my computer. I have little control over it on my phone. Thus I hardly ever update. For which I am terribly sorry. I'm going to try to be better. (Once again.)

But here's the EGA Halloween plaid I did back in October. I used a version of 10/31/17 to establish the pattern. I never did make it into a spider, mostly because I finished it right at the end of the month. I do have several of the spider cupcake holders and toyed with the idea of a Christmas spider, but that's been put on hold this month. 

Here's a couple of freestyle bookmarks I did for our guild. By freestyle, I just took some threads, mostly pearl #5, and started stitching. I've got one more that I should find and finish. 


 And here's a big finish - Imari Collage by Debbie Stiehler. It's at the framers and I'm dying to get it back. Parts of this stitch were a complete pain in the ass. But it's so beautiful that I forgive Debbie for torturing her students. 

Things are good here in Virginia. The usual Christmas prep going on. And in case you think I'm only stitching on canvas, I've got a few things to show you that might surprise you. But that's going to have to wait for another day.
 

Thursday, October 26, 2017

Halloween Plaid

If you go visit the Embroiderers' Guild of America website and look under resources, you'll find some free projects. They are introducing a new one every month. Try this url:  https://www.egausa.org/index.php/resources/free-projects

This month it is a Halloween Plaid design by Mary Waldsmith of Owl Stitchery.

The photos show my plaid in progress and completed. I used 18ct canvas and four colors of pearl cotton. Now I need to make it into a spider.

It is a Halloween plaid because the count is 5 + 5 = 10 then 3, 1. 

Sunday, October 22, 2017

Hot off the Needles

This one has been hanging around nearly finished for about 4 or 5 years. There are 3 squares that are supposed to have buttons. And I'm not a huge button fan.

So I decided to use some beads and the witch's  hat got stitched. The other two squares were designed, gravestone and moon with bats, but I never got around to stitching the bats. I ditched the idea of beading the bats and just stitched that square. Phew.

This a design by Marilyn Owen and its in the ANG Chapter Project Book. The only way to get this is as a Chapter project (unless you find a used copy from someone.)

I'm holding on to my copy because I want to use bits of this piece again.

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Rookie Mistakes

Back in 2010 (was it that long ago?) DH and I took a trip to London. When I came home, I found this canvas which I just had to have as these signs are all over their version of the subway. I like the ambiguity of this saying. It could be refering to anything, not just the literal gap between the car and the station platform.

Now I wasn't doing a lot a painted canvas at the time and I acquired threads. I stitched the red and blue and the white inside the circle and started the white up in the corner and made my first rookie mistake. 

That's right. I didn't purchase enough of my background thread. We see this mistake all the time at the shop. Not enough background thread. Best case scenario, you held on to your tags. Now we have a sporting chance of matching dye lots.  

Worst case scenario, and here's where I made my second rookie mistake, my threads got separated from my canvas. No idea how this happened. I am usually so careful about this. 

I thought I had been using Pepper Pot and I had an older skein of Cloud which is their white. In retrospect, maybe it was Vineyard I was using. As I can see a difference between the upper right corner and a couple inches in. And then came the second difference between Pepper Pot Cloud then and Pepper Pot Cloud now. That's where the arrow is. 

I'm not going to let this bother me. When it's made into a pillow and your sitting across the room from it, you will only see white. Not three different whites. 

Now that I'm no longer a rookie, but seasoned pro at painted canvas, I never make mistakes. LOL

Thursday, October 05, 2017

Bargello

Every time I add a color, the look completely changes. After the four shades of blue, comes raspberry pink.

And then, I'll do all over again 7 or 8 more times.

Wednesday, October 04, 2017

Reset

I need help. An intervention. I can't resist a new project.

It's bad, you know.

In the past two weeks I started two new projects, both from guild classes. Bought another one. And am ordering two more.

But. I. Can't. Stop.

Here's one of my new projects. We've been discussing this one for a while in our program committee meetings. Finally got it off the ground. It's a gentlemen's pocketbook. Our program chairs each stitched one. One on linen and one on congress cloth. We used the article from Piecework magazine (what issue and year, I don't remember) as our starting point.

I picked a light blue congress cloth from my stash and bought some Impressions which is a wool/silk blend. My bargello pattern is from Erica Wilson's bargello book and she called it Aurora Borealis. I've got four color families in four shades each. Easy to do after I set my first row.

This will take a while as it's 21 inches long. And each shade covers 1/6th of an inch. Glad it's only 6 1/2 inches wide.

That's the scoop on one new project. But I still need an intervention.

Friday, August 18, 2017

Thursday-Friday Round Up

I just finished a two day class with Laura Smith called Blue Ridge Harmony. This is a mixed media class involving lutradour, paint, heat tools, respirators, fabric, threads for both machine and hand stitching.

Let's just say way off the grid and out of my comfort zone.

But I thoroughly enjoyed learning new things. And thanks to Merchandise Night, I know own two books on machine embroidery.

Plus I scored some of my favorite older magazines.

And I made a beeline for Allison Cole like many people did. Bought three kits and two books. And will remember this seminar for the fabulous visit we had with Allison while waiting on line for lunch on Thursday. I didn't realize whose hair I was complimenting, then she turned around and we noticed her beautiful pin that she made before we ever saw her name tag. What a lovely person she is.

So one Moxie from a friend to get me through the day and I'm ready to face tomorrow.

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Wednesday - Holly Days

A day in which I learn how to do real or nue.

Kay Stanis is a fabulous teacher. Spent the morning doing the prep work - lacing our frame, transferring our pattern, and winding our Koma.

After lunch, it was a slow slog. I managed four rows. Will do better at home with proper lighting and magnification. My turns are terrible, but I will have lots of practice.

Tuesday

More shopping, including a trip to Weaverville to visit Sassy Jacks, a new needlework shop that opened this summer.

Easy to get to, filled with charts, threads, fabrics, and fun stuff! Very charming owner and helpful staff. And they share a wall with a quilt store.

Tuesday night was a mini-class, Summertime Swan. This will grow up to be a card case. Nice use of Rhodes and crescents to make a swan.

Sunday and Monday

Lunch at Woolworth's restored soda fountain shop! And shopping on Sunday. Then off to tour Biltmore on Monday where every inch is spotless and shiny. 

EGA Seminar Blue Ridge Rendezvous

Trip down to Asheville included a stop in Raleigh @ Needlepoint.com

A little retail therapy never hurts. Just threads for me.

Plus a lovely lunch at the Mediterranean cafe across the way.

Thursday, August 10, 2017

August FUN

Tomorrow is all about deadlines and packing.

I just finished two ornaments for the granddaughters. Off to the finisher they go. One deadline met.

Tomorrow I've got magazine deadlines to meet. Should be doable.

But also laundry and packing.

Because bestie and I leave for North Carolina early Saturday morning. We're heading to Asheville for the EGA Seminar.

We're excited! Time to challenge ourselves in classes and hang out with new friends and old friends who all love stitching!

Wednesday, August 02, 2017

Bunny Finish

Completely adorable Melissa Shirley bunny canvas. Driving a carrot car - ha!

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Floor Sighting

Slowly getting things sorted out in my studio. Found all kinds of interesting things including an uncashed paycheck (don't ask.)

I'm trying to make decisions about where things go. And I'd like to decide once and not have to revisit my decisions. Thus I'm taking my time.

First photo is old kitchen cabinets in my studio. Place for TV and DVD player. Blank wall space, too.

My desk which I love, love, love. I can sit here and just stare at the trees. It's big enough to spread out all the parts of a large project and reference materials. And have room leftover for other things.

My new short bookcases need organizing, but that's not a high priority. I've already identified multiple copies of two books.

My closet needs sorting. I really should write a list of all my WIPs. Kind of scary contemplating that.

Wednesday, July 05, 2017

Transformation

I didn't mean to be away for so long from my blog.

Apologies. Those who don't see me on Facebook, I'm fine. Everything is going smoothly.

The days I thought about writing and didn't, started to add up and then weeks and weeks passed.

I'll try to update everything.

First, here's what I'm trying to accomplish this month. A studio makeover.

I'm starting with removing the wall unit I rescued from the Scarlet Thread when the store closed. It started off living in our basement bar. Then my son and I moved it upstairs when I claimed my daughter's room for my own purposes. It'll take me about 20 trips to get this downstairs. Right now it's in pieces at the top of the stairs. Then on to the curb for pick up tomorrow.

So where did everything go that was in my  room? Into the guest room. Looks like a huge mess, but it really isn't. Next week I should have the new furniture arranged. And I can see how my new setup works.

It's all planned out on graph paper. Lol

Monday, May 22, 2017

Weekend Workshop

How to have a fun weekend? Have a needlepoint workshop with friends and colleagues.

And because I knew I was giving up weekend time with my honey, he and I went off adventuring on Friday. We visited the Green Valley Book Fair in Mt. Crawford for the first time. And yes I found beading books that I couldn't pass by. My stitching library has reached alarming proportions. But I just can't seem to help myself.

Then we drove a little further south to Verona and the Factory Antique Mall. I could have gone nuts in here, but restrained myself to one pickle dish for a friend and one bowl for me.

And because it had been a long time since breakfast at the Virginia Kitchen in the morning, we finally took a break for food. Back up to Harrisonburg for a lovely German meal at the Black Forest. German restaurants always start us to reminiscing about our three years in Hanau. Beer, schnitzel, and memories.

Which set me up for two days with Ann Strite-Kurz. Our ANG chapter had picked Br-rrr-rdbath for our workshop. We had some pre-work to do to create our wonderful circle. And we started our day with making a pedestal for our birdbath.

I've included photos of Ann's piece and my progress at the end of day one. We had two delightful days contemplating this Charley Harper design that Ann created twenty plus years ago. His work is so timeless. I'd love to write more but it's time to get to work!

Tuesday, May 09, 2017

Bunny Finish

One splendid pink bunny driving a carrot car. I had so much fun stitching this that I will go back and purchase one or two more of this series from Melissa Shirley Designs. 

 

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Stitching and Flying

I flew to Europe working on a 13ct ornament. Nothing exciting. Just basketweave.

But then I started this Melissa Shirley bunny driving a carrot car. Too cute. I have everything I need in one gallon size plastic bag. Canvas mounted on bars. Appropriate magnet. A Walker bag with my threads. A Trish Vine fabric tray to contain my orts and threads and scissors. Just making it up as I go along. The only thing I don't have is my Bunka brush to fuzz up my bunny.

No problems at all flying international with my little scissors.

More progress coming as we cross the  Atlantic.

Monday, April 10, 2017

Last Night

We are about to go to our last dinner in Venice. Tomorrow we arise, have breakfast, and get on a boat to Marco Polo International.

It's been grand. And I mean grand. I've got a thousand photos on my large camera and three hundred more here on my phone. I have memories of games and hugs and kisses to last me until I see my little girls again.

Arrivederci.

Monday, April 03, 2017

Trip

We are fortunate to have two wonderful granddaughters and we are in the middle of our first visit with the littler bug. She's six months old and loves to smile. And jump. And roll. And the older bug hasn't forgotten us at all in the year and a half they've been gone. She's as brilliant as the sun.

Which brings us to Italy.

Where I've seen some interesting needlework in interesting places. But those photos aren't on my phone so we'll have to wait. Meanwhile enjoy the scenery.

Friday, March 17, 2017

Bracelet with Bling

One more off to the finisher. This is an Ann Wheat bracelet with her stitch guide. I used my own threads and followed the stitches for the most part.

I originally intended to finish this myself until I saw a leather backed bracelet. Love that. So off it goes.

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Ornaments

Two ornaments back from the finisher. One is an ANG Chapter Project Book of a poinsettia on congress cloth that we first painted. Design by Joni Stephenson. I added the blue. It's all laid fillings so I learned a lot.

The other one is a painted design by Mile High Princess called Nasal Congestion. Stitches and threads are all mine.

And if the photo shows up, it's Pierre. A French snowman from the Princess and Me. Stitch slightly modified.