Monday, April 30, 2012

Monday Update

No stitchy photos. 'Cause I'm bad that way. 

Here's a photo of one of the neighborhood cats. I was out taking pictures of the flowers around the cul-de-sac. Pretty baby!
And here's where we stitchers can find our best palette's - right outside our door. 

Purples to orange to white and plenty of greens!
I took 3 pieces to enter in the Woodlawn Needlework Show on Saturday. The show opens this year on May 12th. I'll be in Florida and will miss the opening. The really silly thing? I took Stars - not silly. But I still haven't taken a photo of Stars framed - now that's silly. It's out of my hands till mid-June and I don't have a photo of it. 

When I got Stars home from the framer, I finally unwrapped the whole piece and saw a tiny flaw. One of the laid stitches in the border had gotten pulled up away from its buddies. So I had to go back to the framer. They opened it up for me and I threaded a curved needle with a piece of Appleton crewel wool. One pass through and that errant thread was back where it belonged. Phew. 

I came home from retreat last week and on Monday developed quite the sore shoulder. The left one this time. It's usually the right. Heat and Advil made me feel better for a bit, but it didn't last. So I didn't stitch a bit on canvas this past week as I've been resting. I've done some work on two of my Quaker pieces because I work those in hand and don't have much upper body movement. (Yeah, like stitching is a workout...) Feeling much, much better. And I need to get back to my Kimono as I hardly did any of the April stitching. 

Which means my May goal will be to be caught up by the end of May. That seems reasonable. 

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

British Magazines

What can I say except that they are terrific? I was flipping through a couple this afternoon while picking up my copy of Stitch with the Embroiderers' Guild. And I saw an ad for Mason Cash's Knitannia collection being sold exclusively by Lakeland. What can I say? I want. Sigh.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Fabulous Retreat Weekend

Friday afternoon I got the car packed - suitcase for clothes, pillow, towel, etc. Bag for coffee cake, M & Ms, peanuts, wine, tea, sugar cubes. Bottled water. Two stitching bags for a friend who would be arriving straight from a business trip. Two stitching bags for me. Stand. Floor light. 

I will confess to packing 7 projects:  Molehill to Mountain, my Kimono, the Leaf Collage, and 4 Pam Darney samplers. 

I only worked on 3 projects. I brought the Kimono out of guilt because I'm behind for April and to share with a friend who is also stitching this. 

I brought the Leaf Collage to share with friend who had to leave that class early so we could go over what she missed. 

I brought 4 Guildhouse Samplers because I could. LOL 

I only worked on 2 because somehow I've misplaced the Q-snaps that really help when working on the area where two fabrics are joined together. Without them, I didn't even attempt working on that one. 

Did I make any progress? 


First, here's a photo of the house where we were staying. 

And here's what I worked on first. This was a class back in 2009. We showed these off in January 2010. I knew then that mine wasn't quite finished. That I wanted to do a little tweaking. I also knew that I needed to put it away for a while to let things percolate.
The class was a design your own diamond shaped Quaker. As this was my first time doing anything like this, I'm happy enough with it. Looking at it now, objectively after more Quaker stitching experience, I would completely change it. I guess I would say I learned a lot from this piece. Mostly about balance and design. And I still love the colors. 

Here's my Garden Gate sampler.
I stitched the columns and the gate. If you look at the gate, you can see the outline of the birds that are in front of it. At least I can. 

We all had a terrific time. Sign me up for next year! 

edit:  Sorry no photo update on Molehill to Mountain. Picture wasn't that great. And there's wasn't that much progress on it either. But I am really happy with how the Dallas Star square is turning out. 

Friday, April 20, 2012

Retreat Weekend

I have the best husband in the whole world. Because he's not giving me any grief for running off to do needlework things two weekends in a row! I love you, sweetie!

Today is the start of retreat weekend. I'm halfway to fully packed. My stitching stuff is laid out on the dining room table. I've got two bags for a friend who will be coming to us straight from a business trip. I've got a bag with some goodies for sharing. One last load of laundry is in the wash because I decided I wanted those jeans I wore yesterday. LOL - why do I always do this? And I need to run by a grocery real quick because we're out of eggs and butter. (I missed my normal Thursday afternoon shopping run because of my shuttle adventures.) 


After a ton of debate with myself and changing my mind multiple times, I'm packing 4 Pam Darney projects. They don't take up much room. One's nearly finished. Two are just started. One is halfway there. That's a lot of variety. 

Also - I wasn't going to pack my Kimono, but I'm falling behind so it's bumped the American Rose out of rotation. And I'm bringing my Molehill to Mountain. Again - I am woefully behind on this piece and the designer wants to see my progress. Indeed, I want to see my progress. We don't know how this one is going to turn out! Leaf Collage may sneak in at the last moment because I can share some info the friend who had to leave the class early. 

More stitching than I can possibly accomplish in one weekend. But for me the secret to success on these weekends is to keep rotating projects. Keeps me interested and excited. 

Have a terrific weekend all!

Thursday, April 19, 2012

What I Did Today

Today I joined the fandom of astronauts and space flight to watch the space shuttle, Discovery, roll right on up to the Enterprise. 

So totally cool!


Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Weekend of Leaf Collaging

So a 3 day class with Terry Dryden. Color me impressed! She's an excellent teacher. Well-prepared with impressive materials. Great pacing. Nearly an effortless learning experience. By which I mean, I came away from the class with a lot of knowledge without any suffering. 

Here's the piece of canvas we start with. The lines are pre-drawn and the transfers are in place. And the first thing we need to do is color parts of our canvas with Copic markers. You can see my first areas colored and I marked the rest to be colored with little marker dots.
Moving along with the coloring. We used three different colors for a total of six layers to get the effect we wanted. Because we all chose differing orders of application, no two canvases in class look exactly the same. 

This photo shows my piece with three layers done. 
Okay. I'm finished coloring except for the odd thread or two that I go back to later. 
What happens if you color in the wrong place? Not to worry. We'll be stitching over that later and we find out it doesn't show at all! Good thing. (Canvas belongs to Anonymous!)

Somehow my end of Day 1 photo disappeared while transferring to the computer. Here's my progress at the end of Day 2. We stitched and also practiced transferring another design to canvas. Hey, we get a bonus piece!
At the end of Day 3 this is where we are. We've stitched the gingko leaves in the middle box - a frightening prospect for some canvas workers whose surface embroidery days are back in the dark ages. But we all managed to make good progress and be happy with our results. 

Confession time. This piece is right up my alley color wise. I'm totally enamored. I'm afraid it's jumping to the top of the rotation list because I'm not going to be able to resist it. 

Thank you, Terry! I had a wonderful time. Learned a lot. And will have something beautiful to show for this experience. 

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Almost There

We are two/thirds finished with a three day class with Terry Dryden who is teaching her Leaf Collage. 

Fantastic class. Great teacher. Terrific job on her charts. I'm learning lots painlessly because we're having such fun. 

Updates with photos soon. Right now I'm just plain tired. And I need to finish the dishes. And fold some laundry. 

Thursday, April 12, 2012

The No Photo Posts

Again. My apologies for the lack of photos. But I'm currently lacking the ability to edit photos on my laptop. If it was just my computer, I'd fix that. But it isn't. So I don't.

But I wanted to give a quick shout out to Anna Goiser of Talliaferro who came and talked to the Washington DC Chapter of EGA yesterday. Anna's charming and funny and she led us through her process of how she creates her crewel pieces. From inspiration through many trips to the copy store to created design.