Busy Sunday!

Surprise! Here I am again. And there’s only a little more than two months between posts this time, so I’m getting a little faster. :-)

I’ve been stitching regularly and have finished off a number of small projects recently, including these two:

PS Earth Laughs
Designer: Prairie Schooler
Pattern: Designer Series: Forget-Me-Nots

LDD freebie
Designer: La-D-Da
Pattern: Letters & Leaves
(freebie)

 

After finishing these two and two others (gifts I can’t show) rather quickly, I became curious about just how many pieces I had in my unfinished finishes boxes (yes, plural). You can see some of those in this picture and read about them here and here:

rolled-up-samplers

Turns out I have more than 50 pieces that are rolled up or stored, not forgotten exactly but certainly not ready for display either, so I decided to start chipping away at the pile. I managed to frame these today:

DT 12 Houses
Designer: Drawn Thread
Pattern: 12 Houses

SD Those Blooming Flowers
Designer: Sheepish Designs
Pattern: Those Bloomin’ Flowers

HTW Patience 1898
Designer: Hands To Work
Pattern: Patience 1898

BOAF Alphabet Sampler
Designer: Birds of a Feather
Pattern: Alphabet Sampler

Whew! I’m glad to have those finished, and it’s given me some motivation to finish even more. Only 46+ to go!

Now back to stitching. I think I’ve earned it, and besides, I have more room in those storage boxes now.

P.S. I’ve gathered together some patterns for sale and hope to update my sale blog soon. Stay tuned!

 

It’s positively laughable

. . . to think that anyone still reads this blog. I mean, my last post was nearly two years ago. And all of my good intentions to revive regular posts have fallen by the wayside.

That said, I’ve recently found a little free time to read blogs AND stitch, so while I won’t kid myself into thinking I will post frequently, I am “dropping by” to share my latest finish.

Calico Alphabet

Designer: Summer House Stitche Workes
Pattern: Calico Sampler Alphabet
(Stitched with one strand over two threads on 36-count linen using recommended colors with just a few substitutions to account for linen color)

Well, don’t sit by your computers waiting for my next post, but I will try to stop by again sooner rather than later.

 

 

Strawberry Season

The sun is shining, the breeze is soft and lovely, and these are growing at my house:

Design: Goode Huswife
Pattern: Dutch Strawberries
(Stitched with 1 thread over 2 threads using recommended Needlepoint Inc. silk floss on miscellaneous 40-count linen)

Yes, they may be wrinkly and poorly lit strawberries, but they’re thriving nonetheless. Don’t you love stitching time?

. . . and she’s back!

OK, I’m not going to kid myself that anyone still has my blog loaded in their Google Reader or that they’ll even notice that, after an extended absence, I’m updating my poor neglected blog. In my last post, I said I’d be back. I just didn’t mention that it would take eight months.

So what have I been up to? Honestly, pretty much everything but stitching, but in the past couple of months, that has started to change, so I finally have this to show you:

Designer: Carriage House Samplings
Pattern: Quaker Stocking

(Stitched with 1 strand of overdyed floss over 2 threads on 40-count Lakeside Linens Navy Bean fabric; replaced recommended colorway with Sampler Threads Black Crow and Crystal Lake, plus Weeks Dye Works Straw)

I stitched the A & B and opening motifs sometime around early March 2011, then by mid-March, my free time had evaporated, so it was August before I managed to add C and D. I think I managed to get to G before putting the project away till, oh, December.

When I picked it back up this spring, there was no stopping me. I plowed through H to Z, and, TA-DA! I finished it just yesterday.

Whew! That was a long year! But at least I have this to show for it:

Let’s take a closer look, shall we? Here’s the top:

And here’s the bottom:

Life isn’t quite what I would call normal yet, but I am finding somewhat regular stitching time again, which is nice.

[Happy sigh!]

So as soon as I finished the stocking, I started this last night:

. . . which may not look like much, but it already looks like this today:

Designer: Goode Huswife
Pattern: Dutch Strawberries
(Stitched on 40-count mystery linen, probably something from Lakeside Linens or R&R Reproductions using 1 strand of the recommended Needlepoint Inc. silk floss—YUM!—over 2 threads)

Now, I have absolutely no idea when I’ll finish this or when I’ll post again, but I’ll try not to make it another eight months.

[Tap, tap, tap] Is this thing on?

Well, I hope you’re sitting down, because I’m popping in here for a picture-less post in hopes of letting you know that I’m still around, though I use that term very loosely.

Life has been beyond busy, so I hope you’ll forgive me for my prolonged absence. In truth, I was so busy that I went from mid-March to the first week of August without placing a single stitch in a project and, worse yet, without playing with stash either. And as some of you may have noticed, I haven’t really been visiting or commenting on blogs.

So what gives?

My family is in the middle of a major life change: we’re moving. I’m not going to post all of the boring details here, but suffice it to say, there are a lot of details, so I haven’t been bored. Far from it. I think I’ve been in perpetual motion ever since we found out.

But don’t despair! I haven’t forsaken stitching for good, just temporarily. And I haven’t forsaken blogging for good; it just looks that way. And I haven’t forsaken my neighborhood (thanks for asking, Carol!), but now the builders have to move the project to a whole new location. Sheesh!

I’ll pop in when I can, and someday in the future, I hope to spend an entire day reading and commenting on your blogs, followed by another entire day (or many) doing nothing but stitching!! In the meantime, continue making incredible progress on your fabulous projects, and I’ll look forward to the day when I can rejoin you all.

Now, talk amongst yourselves, and while you’re in your happy chairs, put in a few extra stitches for me.

Thanks!

Is it Valentine’s Day yet?

OK, OK, I’m a bit behind the times. But considering that I started stitching this a day or two before Valentine’s Day, I finished it up pretty quickly. For me, that is.

Designer: Ruth Ann Russell, Just Cross Stitch magazine, Feb 2001 issue
Pattern: ABC, I Love Thee
(Stitched with 1 strand of Caron Waterlilies Cherry silk thread over one thread on 36-count white linen)

Around Valentine’s Day, I always get the urge to stitch something red, pink, or heart-shaped. And the timing couldn’t have been better after all of the brown I stitched on “I Wait for the Lord.”

When I went stash diving, I quickly put my hand on this pattern. Why? Well, because the very wonderful Barbara of Mainely Stitching went stash diving back in January and turned up a lovely collection of magazine patterns, which she blogged about here. Well, that sent me looking to see how many of those were hiding in the deep, dark recesses of my stash, and along the way I rediscovered some patterns I had forgotten about, including this one.

The model shows it on red linen, but since I had none (and wasn’t up to a red-fabric dyeing session), I decided to do red thread on white linen. Fortunately, this also accomplished my goal of stitching more red-on-white projects. (Spend some time cruising French needlework blogs, and you’ll understand.)

So this is the first entry in what I envision to be a primitive wooden tray filled to the brim with red-and-white smalls. Stay tuned here (for a very long time) and I’ll be sure to share pictures. Eventually. :-)

I’ve been holding out on you

For example, I haven’t told you I finished this, even though this picture was taken on Feb. 5:

Designer: Hands to Work
Pattern: I Wait for the Lord
(Stitched on R&R 40-count Crème Brûlée linen using recommended NPI silk floss)

I truly love this pattern. I just wish I had had better information about how many skeins of floss I would need. I stitched in an absolutely miserly fashion using the recommended number of strands of the recommended floss on the recommended linen count with only a little bit of frogging—which isn’t recommended at all :-) —and I think I needed approximately five or six skeins (I lost track). The instructions call for two.

As I recall, I bought three skeins “just in case” and ran out of those about halfway through the piece. (Keep that in mind if you plan to stitch this yourself!)

But all’s well that ends well, because I’m really happy with the finish.

And if I’m being truly honest, I really should tell you about this finish as well, which was also photographed on Feb. 5:

Designer: Blackbird Designs
Pattern: Christmas Ornament 2004
from the Just Cross Stitch 2004 ornament issue (Stitched on some basic linen count using some basic combination of overdyed threads that I had in my stash—Sorry, I’m too tired to remember or check.)

This is just a quick stitch started around Christmas that I didn’t finish till after the first of the year because of—what else?—a lack of floss. Honestly! To see my stash, it would appear that I would never run out of (1) floss, (2) fabric, or (3) patterns. Yet I never seem to have the right (1) floss, (2) fabric, or . . . well, actually I always have the right patterns. I just still need more. ;-)

I’ll try to check back soon. I’m nearly done with my next project. Mostly because it’s tiny. Like over one tiny.

See you soon!!

Notice anything different?

Last weekend, I had some stitching time in the car, followed by a very mild illness that found me resting in my stitching chair for a day and a half. (No worries. I’m fine now.)

And here’s the result . . .

(Click to enlarge)

The side borders are finished, so you can see that I don’t really have all that much left to do on this one. And seeing so much progress on this piece after it languished for so long makes me want to stitch even more. Well, that and all the inspirational progress pictures posted by the Crazy January Challenge participants, some of who hadn’t blogged in ages!! (Hi, ’Chelle! Did I mention how happy I am to see you stitching and blogging again?)

Anyway, I decided that I’ll try to stitch a little each day, even if it’s only for 15 minutes or for one length of thread. Now don’t you think that’s a good New Year’s resolution to make? (Yeah, I know. I’m preaching to the choir, aren’t I?)

I doubt I can post as often, but I do hope to shake the dust off of this sleepy little blog and share some progress now and then.

And who knows? Maybe I’ll even go for broke and do some finish-finishing, too!!!

(Whoops, I think I got a little carried away with that last one. Excuse me. I have to go lie down now . . . )

Moving right along

. . . on my Hands to Work “I Wait for the Lord” project, that is. I’m happy to report that I managed to locate a perfect match to my dye lot challenge, so here’s the BEFORE:

And here’s the AFTER:

I love this piece, and I’m very happy to be moving on it again. Keep your fingers crossed that I have enough floss to finish it now. (Am I the only one who stitches faster when I think I’m going to run out of floss? . . . As if that would help somehow. Sheesh!)

I also love all of the posts of the Crazy January Challenge I’ve been seeing. The only downfall is that I see TONS of patterns I want to do, which means I’ve simply got to figure out a way to find more stitching time . . .

And, evidently, more blogging time, seeing how my last post was two months ago.

(Thanks for stopping by. You’re a dedicated bunch if you’re still visiting this blog after such a dry spell. I’ll see if I can’t do a little bit better in 2011.)

I keep meaning to show you these

Well, your largely absent blogger friend is back with a pitiful amount of stitching progress. As I indicated in the title, I have good intentions. But that’s about all I have.

So here goes (almost) nothing . . .

First, progress on this:

Designer: Hands to Work
Pattern: I Wait for the Lord

(Stitched on R&R 40-count Crème Brûlée linen using recommended NPI silk floss)

And I’d probably have had this finished by now (work with me here) if it hadn’t been for a little, itty bitty floss issue, which developed a bit like this:

  • Pattern calls for two skeins of NPI 953; I buy three, just to be safe.
  • A quarter of the way in, despite miserly stitching, NO frogging, and stitching on the recommended count using the recommended strands, I’m running out!
  • Quick call to my LNS, and two more skeins arrive via USPS . . . during major home remodeling project (this fact may explain subsequent events in this story).
  • Skeins of floss? What skeins of floss? Now, where did I put those? (More like, Where did SOMEONE ELSE put them?)
  • Massive search. No luck. Still hopeful.
  • Many massive searches later, still no luck. No longer hopeful.
  • Call LNS (again). Order two more skeins (again).
  • Two more skeins arrive via USPS. (Yay!)
  • New skeins are definitely from a different dye lot. (Boo!)
  • About now, shades of my “Johnny Appleseed” dye lot nightmares begin to haunt me, but I shake it off.
  • I am now convinced that the missing skeins MUST be the right dye lot.
  • Many additional massive searches, still no luck, perhaps because I’m searching the SAME PLACES I’VE ALREADY LOOKED.

(What’s that quote about doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results?)

  • Resigned, I call LNS where original skeins were purchased (fingers crossed). Learn they now only have skeins from dye lot that I’m avoiding using (shoulders sag).

All of a sudden, it seems incredibly ironic that I ran out after stitching these two words:

[sigh]

So, Dear Readers, if anyone out there in Blogland has three skeins of NPI 953 that are NOT Lot 4, I’d love to hear from you. I have no idea which dye lot matches mine, but I can guarantee that it *isn’t* Lot 4.

So what’s a frustrated stitcher to do? Why, start a new project, of course!

Bought this book along with my WRONG DYE LOT floss:

So far, I’ve stitched this one:

And I’m working on my second one:

And yes, they’re tiny. Stitching on 32 count using one strand over one thread.

And yes, I have every intention of stitching the third one and finishing them all into adorably tiny and beautifully finish-finished ornaments that I can proudly display for all to see.

And we all know about my good intentions now, don’t we?

[sigh]

Addendum: On top of losing the floss, I’ve now lost my best Dovo scissors. Yep, they were there one night and gone the next, despite the lack of major construction in my household. Trouble is, I’m positively fastidious about where I put my scissors, so this one’s a total head-scratcher.

But don’t worry, I plan to do a massive search soon . . .

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