Thursday, December 1, 2011

Honey, They're Home!

My new framer had a nice surprise for me today. It's an overcast day, so I had to use flash and the colors are not quite as true as I'd like (esp. MTM) but I just could not wait to share!

Chatelaine's Medieval Towne Mandala: Mat is linen silk that reflects the light and so picks up all the turquios-y colors in the design. The frame and filet are from the mouldings created for the Biltmore restoration. Will hang in my office at home - the walls are a medium violet/lavender shade.

MTM framed 120111

MTM framed corner 120111

And Chatelaine's Hanging Gardens of Semiramis: Mat is suede. Will hang in the hall right outside my office at home.

Hanging Gardens framed 120111

Hanging Gardens framed corner 120111

And finally, Chatelaine's Medieval Times. No mat because I love this fabric so very much. Hard to see in this pic how well the reds pop on the fabric. This will either hang in my bedroom or my office. Need to see where I like it best.

Medieval Times framed 120111

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Yeah, I stitch.

And, here's the proof:

First a Happy Dance - Celtic Quilt, Block A4 by Chatelaine Designs

Celtic Quilt A4 Block finished 10/05/11

And a progress picture of Egypt Garden, also by Chatelaine Designs

Egypt Garden as of 10/05/11

Not so much progress on EG since last photo. Eh, whatever.

Actually, there hasn't been a whole lot of stitching the past few months due to Diva's senior volleyball season. That's winding down, so I'm starting to think about my stitching for the remainder of fall and winter.

I pretty much punted goals for this year. Just didn't happen. As a result, I've felt the lack of direction. Part of my problem is that Nativity Story Table Runner took so much longer to finish than I expected. I've also reached the portion of EG where I get bogged down. Feeling slightly burned out on it. This happened at the same stage when I stitched it before. I need to put it down for a while, but I feel guilty about it. I just need to finish the darn thing already.

There are so many things I want to start!!! Like yesterday. But, I have seven WIP slots, and that is still too many on an ongoing basis. At least for my comfort level.

I need ideas. So, I'm asking for opinions. My current WIPs:

- Egypt Garden by Chatelaine Designs (approx 60% complete)
- Evening in the Park by Chatelaine Designs (approx 60% complete) see a trend here? yeah, the 60% mark is where I tend to get bogged down in just about any BAP. And, I have to confess that I don't really love this design. I like it, and want to finish it. But, I'm not in love.
- Misty Morning Vineyard by Chatelaine Designs (less than 10% complete)
- Celtic Quilt by Chatelaine Designs (5 of 16 blocks complete)
- Elizabethan Sweete Bag by Chatelaine Designs ( 80% complete) Another project I like but no longer love. Hard to get motivated to finish as all that remains is one over one ON BLACK FABRIC.
- English Garden Sampler by Teresa Wentzler (less than 10% complete) I love this. But I hate the slow progress of the confetti stitches. Zaps my motivation. But, I do love the project and the fabric.
- Various Christmas Ornaments - I have several in various stages of completion. I will probably always have an ornament going as they are good travel projects. I just need to be better about actually finishing them.

Things I want to start sooner rather than later:

- I want to stitch the other three seasonal arbor designs by The Drawn Thread. I stitched Autumn Arbor earlier this year and loved it. Took me about 10 days of my stitching time.

- I want to stitch Halloween ornaments/smalls.

- Of course, there is my Stitching Bucket List. It is in need of some revision. But a bit of a moot point right now as I don't want another large or BAP project until I finish at least one more WIP.

So, stitching friends, please help me with ideas. I'm feeling like a sailboat in a calm sea.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

2011 Chatelaine Smalls Exchange - PHOTOS!!!!!!!!

I got a package from Australia!!! Wanna SEEEEE? Silly question. Of COURSE you do!

2011 Chatelaine Smalls Exchange

Yes, I'm a tease. But really, I got a Golden Ticket (apologies to Charlie in the Chocolate Factory)!

2011 Chatelaine Smalls Exchange

There are two, actually. The paper is so shiny. Makes my inner crow positively giddy. :D But, yes, I will open them. Look what Wendy sent me!

2011 Chatelaine Smalls Exchange

And look! There is stitching inside, too!
2011 Chatelaine Smalls Exchange 2011 Chatelaine Smalls Exchange

Excuse my not so stellar photography!

Now you HAVE to see the close up!

2011 Chatelaine Smalls Exchange

Isn't that needlebook to die for?! Wendy's stitching and finishing are just perfect! And, I love the extra goodies she included. A true Chatelaine stitcher, she included a skein of SNC Coastal Seaweed. How many Chatelaine's use that one? And, of course, the needles are much needed and appreciated. I went hunting an #28 just the other day.

The design is the Strawberry freebie recently released by Chatelaine Designs. So fresh and fun! I just love it! AND, I get to claim the honor of posting the first pictures to the Chatelaine BB for the exchange! BONUS!

Thank you SO much, Wendy. I already treasure this needlebook. :D

Sunday, July 24, 2011

HUGE Finish!!!!!

It is done. My daughters are already fighting over who gets it when I die. One had the nerve to ask me to stitch another so they would each have one. I laughed in her face. Told them I'm keeping it until I die, and then I won't care if they fight over it. LOL!

Nativity Story Table Runner - FINISHED 071911

I think if you click the photo, you can see a bigger size on flickr. For the record: By Blackberry Lane Designs. Stitched on Relic 32 ct Belfast Linen by Picture This Plus. Used DMC 780 and PTB PH01 as fibers. Stitched two over two. Finished runner measures 55.5 inches by 18.25 inches. Started January 2010 and completed July 19, 2011 (as part of my rotation; so not stitched exclusively). Oh, and it is COMPLETELY washable (as in the washing machine, washable - yes, I tested that theory).

The finishing was all done by hand using the antique hem stitch. While I've done the regular hem stitch on many occasions, I'd never worked with the antique version before. I really enjoyed it. However, the instructions in the pattern were kind sketchy. I had to find some instructions with diagrams on-line to be able to do it. Even then, I practiced on a scrap of linen first. Mitering the corners was a challenge, too. I'm really glad I practiced that first as I screwed it up the first two times I tried.

I'm damn happy to have this done and ready to grace my dining room table this Christmas!

After finishing one BAP in my rotation, I've given another BAP some love. Here's my most recent progress on Egypt Garden by Chatelaine Designs (stitched on Shortbread Belfast by Country Stitch). The pic doesn't show the light yellow of the fabric, but the fibers are pretty true to color.

Egypt Garden as of 072311

I'd been rotating the two projects for the past several months. Now I think I'm going to give EG a bit of a rest. Yes, I got bored. You know how frequently that happens with me. So, as a reward for such a big Happy Dance, I decided I deserved a new start. I've been wanting to stitch some smaller designs, you know, so I actually finish things. I chose Autumn Arbor by The Drawn Thread (stitched on Lemon Meringue 32ct Belfast by Country Stitch using silks as designed).

Autumn Arbor as of 072311

That's just one night's progress, so I think it will be a pretty quick stitch. At least, that's what I'm telling myself. LOL One thing I'm not sure makes me happy is that the design is stitched with one strand of floss over two threads. I get the delicate look, but I'm used to more coverage than that. Since I am using the silk accessory pack that came with the chart, I decided to stitch as designed so I'd be sure to have enough silk to finish it. I think maybe the look will grow on me.

I do have other stitching and finishes to share, but not yet. Last month, I stitched and finished a lovely piece for the Chatelaine Smalls Exchange. Since it won't be mailed until next week and it needs to be a secret until received by my partner, I can't show you that, yet. You'll have to wait. I also learned a wonderful new-to-me box finishing technique last month from Susan. That finish will be fodder for a future blog post.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

More Finishing

This past weekend, I finished two of the three pieces of Snow Queen's Slipper and Accessories by Carolina House Designs, the slipper itself and the fob. Just have the scissor sheath left to do.

Snow Queen Slipper and Fob 062211

I used the linen and fiber that came with the chart (32ct white linen and Gloriana Summer Sky is the fiber). I will probably give the set to my mother-in-law as either a birthday or Christmas gift this year. She's a stitcher, and she sews. So, I know she'll put them to use.

Thus far, my finishing frenzy seems to be working well. This coming weekend, I will be boxifying Teresa Wentzler's Elf and Flower. Should be an interesting adventure. I'm not making the box from scratch (though learning how is on my to-do list), and it's not a wooden box, either. It is a technique I've not done before. Stay tuned!

Monday, June 6, 2011

Mission Accomplished!

The first of the "Finish-it Fridays" was a success! My mission was to boxify Vintage Stitches. This is the Olde Colonial Box called for in the pattern. I pinned it using silk pins. And I used acid-free artist tape to secure the excess fabric on the back. I used corner points to mount it in place in the box and then created a dust cover on the back using brown craft paper (just like traditional framers use on the backs of their finished product).

Vintage Stitches boxified 060611

I actually took a half-decent photo. The colors are pretty true on my monitor. Project details: By Jeannette Douglas Designs. Stitched on 32 ct Limestone belfast linen by Country Stitch. All materials as charted. Stitching completed November 2008. Boxification completed June 2011.

I did have one glitch. Initially, I put the paper on the back having forgotten the corner points. I debated leaving them off as it seemed to be holding in place securely. Then one of my daughters decided to slam the lid down. Yeah, it moved out of place. So, I had to rip off the paper, insert the corner points, and re-do the paper backing. At least now, I know it isn't going anywhere.

No idea what this week's finishing project will be. You'll have to stay tuned!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Hello, World!

I'll spare you the excuses and promises. Life happened. It will happen again. Meanwhile, there will be blog posts. So, without further ado:

I have a finish to share! I stitched this earlier in the year for my cousin and her new husband as a wedding gift. The design is based on JBW Designs' Golden Hearts which I personalized with a random font I liked. I also changed all the colors to match the Mardi Gras theme of their wedding (awesomely fun reception, I might add). It's stitched on 32 ct. cream belfast linen (which was supposed to be 36 ct, but the LNS had it mislabeled, so I couldn't add all the personalization I wanted to). I laced it and mounted it in this box.

Wedding Gift for Cousin 21911

I have another finish and some WIP progress to share, too. But, I need fodder for other blog entries, so you don't get those today!

I'm also going to start a new venture soon. I have lots of projects laying around for which the stitching has been finished, but the project hasn't been "finished" (i.e. made into it's final form). There used to be a thread on The Wagon BB called "Finish-it Fridays" in which we would post about finishing plans for the weekend, and then come back with photos of what we accomplished. I found that thread very inspirational, and I'd like to revive that theme. I'm still working out the details, as well a compiling my list of projects to finish. But, Finish-it Fridays will be returning in some form in the not too distant future! Get ready to ornamentify and observe my attempts at boxification, among other endeavors.

As if I've not got enough on my plate, I am also hosting the Second Annual Chatelaine Smalls Exchange on the Chatelaine BB. Check it out, if you have an interest.