Sunday, April 1, 2018

End of March Report

I know you are reaching for a drink to calm your hearts because this is the second post in two weeks... What can I say? Trying to be better! :)  I have a few finishes and/or FFO's plus a current WIP and a surprise to share from the last half of March. So... let's get on with it!

This is Kitty with Bird, a Britty Kitties design... There are a couple more in the pamphlet... I may do one more.

And of course, I flew through this cute one by LHN called Daisy Sampler... I will ponder how I am going to finish these two...

This is called Happy Bunny Bunny Day by The Trilogy... I just HAD to FFO it! My daughter is borrowing it at her house for Easter! Hopefully I get it back eventually! I know it is hard to see, but there is a little ladybug button at the bottom... Love it! I got this frame at WM, and it was sloppily painted grey which was fine. But then I did this piece and wanted a whitish frame... So I dry-brushed it with white paint...MUCH better for my project! I covered the burlap covered backboard in my fabric which really 'makes' it !

This is Snow Birds by CCN. This 'blue' fabric and also the grey one were difficult to stitch on. The dots are stiff/hard for the needle to get through... And on this one, they show through the white stitching (B5200)!! Grrrr... It will be made into an ornament for Christmas...later...

This is pretty Spectacular, if I say so myself!! It was a kit from LHN called... Welcome Spring. I originally pulled out a scrap of 36-count R&R Irish Creme, but the light colors were not showing up well on it. So, I decided to dye it! I wanted to do something purple... and this certainly fits the bill! Then, I found that it fit perfectly in this thrift store metal frame, which I had hubby paint for me with 'Paver Grey' Chalky Paint. And Voila... instant cuteness!

Then I did some finishing of older pieces that were languishing... I give the credit for this great ruffle finish to Priscilla . It is my first try doing a ruffle, and it wasn't that bad! This is LHN's Spring Sampler from many many years ago... I only stitched it a couple of years back tho... it was the last one to do of the series, which I think I started in 2007! So... I intend to finish the other three in the same fashion, using a coordinating ruffle! I will do that now, and have them ready when the seasons change! I used a Homespun green plaid for this one... And it is on the board magnetically. 

These two framed cuties are by Bent Creek, called 'Full Moon Rising' and 'Here Comes the Sun'. They fit pretty good in these two thrifty frames!

Finding something to display the Sheep Virtues in was not turning out very fruitful. Then I spotted this little wagon WAYYYY up on a wall in an Antique Store, painted an ugly green. Well, this is what I got the Paver Grey paint for... wanted a neutral color for it. It was supposed to be a very light Brown from the pictures online... but I had Hubby buy it and he did not bring his glasses. Sigh...  So, hubby painted it for me (it keeps him busy), and I made a tufted pillow for the inside because they needed a little propping... and voila! It works! Cuteness! At least I think so!! Of course I will change out the pillows every other month or so...

This is my newest WIP that I recently started. It is strange that it is called Blue Morpho and the colors are blue-green/teal... But that is fine for my tastes! It will take a while to finish... But I wanted to try doing a more complicated one... This was a gift from an IG friend in the UK. 

And... if you are still with me... Today is Easter. And I am gifting this cute little chart to a random follower! I found it at a thrift store, and it is not MY style because I dislike backstitching! But... if anyone would like to receive this, let me know in your comment below. Do NOT say anything about 'give away' or the like in the comments, cause I don't want lurkers invading our space! Just for my fellow stitchers! I shall use the generator on Wednesday, the 4th...

So, that's it for today... Thanks for reading my blog!



Friday, March 16, 2018

Let's Catch-up, shall we?

Well, a bit over two months since I last posted... getting better! I have wanted to post, but it is just not in the cards for me some days! Most days! Lots of interruptions...not to mention that I am so sluggish in the winter, when it is bad weather. All I want to do is stitch and watch Flosstube! Ha!

So, what follows are a few of my finishes since early January, including three gifts! They've all seen them, so I should be good!  And then, I did some of my own finishing... just a bit... Have SO much more to do! Next I share a couple of my current WIPs, tho... I have a pretty good case of startitis... so they may multiply. One piece I was stitching on, the thread barely showed... so a bit of dyeing is in the cards! Finally, a Blast From the Past to share with you!

Without further ado...on with the pictures!

This is 'A New Creation' by My Big Toe. I wasn't sure the colors would all work together, but in the end... I was pleasantly surprised. Birthday gift for my stitching buddy...she loves purple, so the frame was painted purple to top it off! (Hard to tell, but... it looked wonderful!)

Sideways view of the back, in purple too!

 Next was this stitched piece by All Through the Night called "Sew Happy". I had this piece in my stash for a couple of years. It was so FUN to stitch. It went to England, to my birthday twin Justine! Because it had to go a long ways, I did not want to make it a framed piece that could be smashed or such, so I made it a flat finish, to be used in a stand (which I also sent along!).

Use a simple ticking fabric for the back...

Here is a view of the trim I did around it... beaded dyed ric rac...

Here is the other one sent as a gift... This is another one by All Through the Night... I didn't even realize I had two by her! Called 'In the Berry Patch' and I sent it to my good friend in Wyoming, to cheer her because it was nothing but cold and snowy all the time... and we both longed for Spring!! Stitched on 32-count PTP 'Dwarf' which was a delight! And I used some of the called-for overdyeds and some DMC.

Unfortunately for me, I took pictures of this one with my phone before putting on the trim and sending it off! So, as is usual... they are sideways, even tho on my computer, after editing them... they are upright!!! Grrrr.... I ended up dying some chenille trim for it... It was quite pretty...wish I had a good picture of the entire finish!!

Again, I did a flatfold finish rather than frame it, due to possibilities of damage in transit.

This is a Country Cottage Needleworks piece called Birdhouse Sampler. One of those kits that came with the thread and buttons... all I had to pick out was the fabric, which was just a scrap with no name! Not sure what finish to do yet...

This is a Prairie Schooler called Winter Wind. Loved stitching this one. Have a finish in mind...

And this is Little House Needleworks Spring Band Sampler, with some changes made to the colors to brighten it up. Also have a finish in mind for this one! Stay tuned!

Then there was this one by CCN again, called Beach Day, because... I am pretty over this cold weather, and I love the beach! Having grown up four blocks from the Pacific Ocean, it is in my blood! I used a piece of 32-count Vintage Sand Belfast to do this one... tho you cannot really tell. And used the DMC conversion colors. I think I will frame it...

This is a new finish for me! I found these corrugated metal pieces at Walmart, in the picture frames department. I had seen finishes on these type of metal pieces at Priscilla's Blog, which by the way is a FABULOUS blog! Go visit it, after mine, of course!! Anyway, the chart is Forest Snowfall by Country Cottage Needleworks. I had a piece of grey linen, but I had seen others doing it on a nice mottled grey fabric... so.... I overdyed it! It turned out great--nice and stormy looking! I changed up the thread colors some... no telling what they were now! It is not exactly finished... but I cannot get winter embellishments right now!

So this is The Smallest Seed by Hands on Design... I wanted it to be very cheerful. The metal is a little smaller than the one above... it was a set of two at Walmart!

And because it is a nifty, interchangeable-type finish, I also finished this Victorian Motto piece to be on the corrugated metal. Again, will need a ribbon and some Christmas picks... stay tuned. 

And last finish to show ( I think!) is these Little House Needleworks Sheep Virtues. I followed Vonna's Finishing Tutorials  EXACTLY, and they turned out quite nice! The backing fabric is a thrift store find... a wool blazer cut into pieces!! My older sister gave me that idea years ago!! AND, it is the first time I did twisted cording! I am hyped... I can do it!!

 This is the current WIP that I have been stitching last two nights. It is Daisy Sampler by Country Cottage Needleworks. Using 32-count Patina linen, which is beautiful! And DMC threads...It's small...thinking of how to finish it still!

 And this is a piece by The Sampler Girl called Sense and Sensibility Sampler that I have been working on. I think about three more sessions and I should be finished! I joined a FB group called Jane Austen Reading and Stitch-A-Long, and it helps me stay on track to get these Jane Austen charts done! I might be off track from the 'schedule' but.... pfffft... they are getting done this year!

From the Stash Pile: For many years, once I discovered Quaker style stitches, I learned about Jan Houtman designs. I stitched a trio of his Biscornus years ago, for a BCA auction...but his charts were WAY to expensive because they were imported. Well, interestingly enough, this time around was not that bad, so I got it. The cover page is not showing the colors well, but it was stitched in two blues which brought it home for me! I am still pondering the exact colors, but I do think it will be blues. I have an Ink Circles design in the wings that will be shades of Aquamarine, so it will probably be more conventional blues. DMC 930 is one of my faves... We shall see...

And last but not least, wanted to share a framed piece that I gave my older sister many years ago. It is stitched on white aida, and each flower has beads in it! When I took it to the framers, I made sure they knew it was beaded. Unfortunately, when I picked it up, there were beads rolling around under the glass!! NOT happening! I had to wait longer, while they RE-DID it, at no charge to me of course! And last time I used them! But... I really like the sentiment... I wonder if my sister even has it on display? Sigh... I also wonder if this was the start of my intense dislike of backstitching???

That's it for now! We are all caught up! It's going to be cold for a week or two again, so I intend to do more finishing... If I get enough done, I will do another post.

Till next time, thanks for visiting!



Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Happy 2018! Apology... then Recap!

Where does the time go?? The last 6 weeks or so of last year.... FLEW by! And now it is already the 8th day of the New Year!?!? Yikes... I am not liking this.... So much I want to get done... yet time just passes quick as a wink! Sigh...

I went back through my emails, pictures, and box of 'to-be-finished' pieces and am going to piece together a picture of what I have been up to in my absences from blogland... I may forget stuff but maybe it will pop up later on... So, let's do it!

FIRST of all, I owe a HUGE apology to my Birthday Twin, Justine!! She sent me the lovely Birthday package (below) LAST YEAR and I cannot see where I ever acknowledged it! So... Justine, I LOVED my package! The February pillow will make me think of you always... and once I get that adorable Robin stitched... it will also bring a smile to my face, reminding me of you!

And tho I acknowledged the birthday package from Robin that arrived a bit earlier, I usually share on the blog... and had not! She made me a beautiful cushion with my initial, in my favorite color, plus sent along some notecards and birdie note papers! And of course, she sent a birdie Birthday card!!

And going a little further back, I came across this Britty Kitty Christmas ornament I made, intended to be gifted to my husband to put on our tree in 2016!!!! Sigh... Tho I do know that I had to hide it at first, so he wouldn't see it... but then it went to the finishing pile... instead of staying in my sights! It glitters!

Right after the New Year LAST YEAR, I took out this pattern from Erica Michaels called Winter Messenger, and stitched it right up! It was one of those designs that you stitch on gazillion count gauze... OR whatever fabric you want, which is what I did. I used a scrap of fabric in my stash... don't know what it was now... Maybe I will have it finish-finished before Winter is over this year... 

These next two were done mid-year... to see if I liked stitching with white any better... NOPE! But they are very cute, and hopefully... will be on Next Year's tree!

In the Summer, I stitched these two pieces that will be turned into pillows, tho not like the pictures. They were quick and fun to do! Now I have two of three sets done... One more for this year? It could happen!

 Now, this one came up in a previous post when I was considering frames... Well, I got inspired and went to Michael's and picked up some glossy green spray paint. And voila! I LOVE how this looks!! It just pops! Traditional Quaker design, in non-traditional colored thread, and quite the frame! Ha!

In December, I had some more finishing to do for my stitching buddy... Christmas presents for her sisters... Two were made into flat finishes to be put on a little easel...

This day, the weather outside was frightful... so I could not get a good picture. And the piece left a day or two later... so... this is as good as it gets! It was gorgeous!

Then, she stitched these Shepherd's Bush pieces and I made them into little pillows... Used Vonna's technique (      on stuffing it, for the first time. Still need a bit more practice towards getting those perfect corners... but I am getting there! She loved these and said the backs were really nice...Thanks Vonna!

The last piece I finished was a framed piece. I have done a LOT of lacing lately!! This is a really cute one! Probably Country Cottage Needleworks... Again, crappy weather makes crappy pictures...

And because she loved the finish I did for her sister when we went to PA, I did one for her Autumn finish... which she didn't get until early December... but... she liked it... It's one of those magnetic ones, like I showed in another post. Technique learned from Priscilla ( on her blog and Flosstube! And I am using it whenever I can! Makes finishing in the future easier... just swap out finished pieces...

This is a present for HER... We haven't had any time together since early December... we missed Christmas! The pattern was in the 2017 Christmas ornament issue of Just Cross Stitch. And I saw this finish on Flosstube somewhere!! (can't remember now...!!) The stitched piece is about 3 inches, the backing may be around 4, and the snowflake (found at Target) is probably 6 inches. Magnetized finish... 

And my buddy and I both stitched this piece... in two colorways. She did the traditional, called-for colors... And we had agreed on a flat finish... But then I went thrifting and found a metal tray, used some of that fabulous green spray paint, finished as a flat finish, edged in bright Christmas red lace, and magnetized it! Voila! I really really LOVE this one!

So, when I finish MINE, I will used the SECOND metal tray I found, and do the same finish for me! Trying to decide what color lace to use... but the tray will be painted white, so leaning towards the purple... Unless I find PURPLE paint!! :)  Then I will use either the white or pink lace! Stay tuned!

I showed my progress on this Lizzie Kate piece in a previous post... but now, here is a shot of the finished piece! I finished it before I did the Joy piece... mid December-ish... Thinking about how to finish it...later. I do really like it!

This came up after seeing it everywhere... so we both stitched it. Mine has my 'personalization' on it... I only did one row of Gingerbread men, at the top, and did not embellish them. They look fine, and I just don't like all that... Still pondering their finishes...

 Last I have a few WIPs... This is by Hands On Designs... Called The Smallest Seed. I got it thru Casa Cenina to support ongoing Earthquake relief in Italy last year. It is a nice piece... easy on the eyes. Using a piece of light yellow Lugana, either 25 or 28, two over two...

And this is a small start of a design by The Sampler Girl that I purchased MANY years ago... It is called Sense and Sensibility, and is a quote from the Jane Austen book of the same name. I have joined a FB group that is going to be reading her books, and stitching designs pertaining to Jane Austen, all year long. Should be fun...

I have another WIP going along that is called Forest Snowfall by Country Cottage Needleworks. I am going to be finished probably by tomorrow... But only after I frog out a couple of parts that just don't please me. First of all, through no one's fault, I find that the dye lot of the thread for the house color I purchased does NOT match the one pictured. Throws everything off, but I am NOT ripping out all that stitching. I have learned to like it. However, the same goes for the roof color, and that carries over to the door... which really looks awful... so frogging that out. And the window panes look ugly too... called for two threads... I am going to try just one... Hopefully I can make this piece look good, cause it is going to be a gift for a friend doing me a favor!

I think that is all I have for stitching. Since we have been stuck inside because of over a foot of snow, I changed the house from Christmas to Winter this week...Thought I would share some pictures...

I got this ornament, and the next one, AFTER Christmas... but since they are sort of for Winter, they go perfectly!

And my dear friend that moved to Tennessee gave me these Snow Babies before she left. Her friend, that I also knew, made them! They are such a delight to see every year!

This year, I did not do a 'theme' tree with only gold and purple ornaments or silver and purple. This year, I decorated with everything else... from stitched ornies to ones from when the kids were little. And while digging around in the boxes, I came across this ceramic piece. My parents made this... We had a ceramic kiln in our basement, and my parents made all kinds of pieces. They had many molds, and poured liquid clay (?) into the mold, heated (fired) it, took it out and painted it, fired it again, and put a finish on it before firing for the last time. This winter vase is just lovely. The gold is 24-karat gold... that I remember!! And on the bottom they put their 'trademark' name: Mickit... which was a combination of my older siblings' names. Next year, I will find some type of greenery to put in it!

And here is a fun Snowmen display... Except for the Cardinal on the mantle, ALL were thrift store finds!  The two Hallmark pieces on the ends still sing and dance! My grandkids grew up with the one on the right! I have a short video of Olivia dancing to the song it plays! Everyone was laughing and enjoying that! The Snowman quilt was also a thrift store find... I think I paid no more than $4.00!

If you got this far, thanks for sticking with me! I will try to be better about posting. But... I can't promise any regularity! My life is a roller coaster, with many twists and turns. Next weekend, my stitching buddy and I are going on a little stitching getaway to a Williamsburg timeshare. Can't wait! Then the following week, on Friday, my husband is having surgery on his nose for a more serious patch of skin cancer. First he is with the surgeon, then we have to go straight to a plastic surgeon to fix it up... Never done this before, and kinda nervous. Then there is recovery time... So, maybe lots of stitching or finishing or both will be done! It could happen!

Well, I have run out of steam, so will close for now!