I love it all: embroidery, canvaswork, quilting, crochet. So much to do, so little time.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

WIPocalypse 2012 - November Report

Hey Blog Buddies,

It's full moon time, and that means a WIPocalypse check-in--the penultimate one, I might add.  And the exciting news this month is that we have a finish-finish!  I started Shepherd's Bush Take Joy on Sunday evening and finish-finished her up late last night.

The finish-finishing was easy because
I had the perfect box for the piece.
Yes, that's a box and not a frame.
Photographing it was a little tricky
--even with a polarizing filter--
because of the glass on top.
Don't you just love the cute little sheep
standing on top of the basket?

I also made progress on my Circle Dance quilt
and Crabby All Year--click here for photos
if you haven't already seen them.

Only one more WIPocalypse update to go!
Where has the year gone?
Stephen King has an interesting hypothesis
about what happens to time in "The Langoliers"
but I digress.
I've had too much Chai tea this morning, I guess.

Hope your weekend was wonderful
with maybe a little time to stitch, too.

Thanks, as always, for visiting!

Monday, November 26, 2012

September is an Ugly Month

Hey Blog Buddies,

Hope you had a great weekend.  Between all the made-from-scratch leftovers that my friend Joyce sent with us on Thursday (yum!) and the stitching/sewing I got done, it was a good one for me.

First up, as you might expect from the title, is Crabby All Year's September.  Yes, it is ugly, but that's why I like it because all of Crabby's months are ugly in some form!

There was a lot of stitching with this one,
between the bag of leaves and the large pile of
(you guessed it) leaves.
I just placed the buttons on top
to pretty it up a bit and so that
you can see what the finished product
will look like.
I'm sure that there are parts of the world
where all the leaves fall off the trees in September,
but here in northern Illinois it's more like
late October/early November.
However, the ladies have something different planned
for those months.

While I was plugging away at September,
I was also busy cutting fabric for my quilt.
I finished that task, much to my surprise,
and thought I'd start out with sewing a small block.
The plan is to crease the two pieces down the middle,
line up the creases and pin.

The first two pieces:
sew the two curved sides together.
They suggest using the one-pin method,
but that didn't work for me.
I need three pins, one in the middle
and one on each end.
I'm acquainted with many people
who could whip this out in the blink of an eye.
I am not one of them.

But I did get a block finished:

Not really perfect, but kinda close.
For me, this is as good as it gets.
If all my blocks turn out like this,
I'll be a happy camper.

The  construction of the above block took a long time--
and a lot of stress.
I only had to rip out two seams.
My goal is one per day, until I reach seven.
Then, it's on to the larger pieces.

In the meantime, I plan to start another stitching project
from my 2012 list.
It's the hand embroidery that will keep me sane.

Until next time,
thanks for visiting!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012


I'm grateful for you, all the great folks
I've met through my blog.
To all my US friends, Happy Thanksgiving!
To my international friends,
Happy Thursday!

Thanks, as always, for visiting!

Monday, November 19, 2012

November IHSW: Assisi, Batiks and September

Hey Blog Buddies,

I had no finishes this time around--and I knew that would be the case going into the weekend--so I decided to do something a little zany for me:  three starts!  I'm feeling a little chatty today, so maybe you should get a "cuppa" or an energy drink before we embark on our journey...  ...Got everything you need?  Good, let's go!

As the year draws to a close, I keep glancing at the 2012 goals list on my sidebar.  Now I knew quite a while ago that I wouldn't be able to finish all the projects, but it would be nice to at least put a few stitches in all of them.  So that is the reason for the three starts.

First, I chose Christmas Elegance by Milady's Needle.  Here is what the pattern looks like:

I chose the top left version,
only I'm doing it in green silk.
The difference between the top and bottom versions
is that one is the negative image of the other.
In other words, the top trees have the background stitched
and the bottom trees are the opposite.
They call the top versions Assisi stitching.
Normally in Assisi the entire background is stitched
and the design is left blank.
That's true here only for the tree.

Since I was doing the design with one strand
on 40-count linen, I was somewhat concerned about coverage.
The directions suggested doing "Two-Sided Italian Cross Stitch"
for better coverage, and the stitch was even diagrammed.
The best way I can describe it is
a cross stitch with a back stitch on the left and bottom.
This makes for a very dense, chunky stitch,
even if you're using only one strand!

I did the border in regular cross stitch and
decided to do the potted tree in Two-Sided Italian Cross Stitch.
You would not believe how long it took me
to stitch the pot!
And no, ripping the pot out at this point
is not an option.
Ripping anything more than a couple of stitches of
Two-Sided Italian Cross Stitch is not an option!
I don't have a crystal ball,
but this little guy might not get finished
by the end of the year.

Next I decided to go for another challenge:
Elisa's Backporch Circle Dance quilting pattern.
Sewing curves (shudder).
Here is a photo of the pattern to refresh your memory.

I wasn't crazy about the fabric in this photo,
so I decided to start over with some very bright batik fabric instead.
Don't worry--I hadn't gotten far
and the above fabric was used to make
some very cute ort bags this summer.

No sewing yet, just cutting,
and only 12 pieces of each element cut.
I'll need to cut 40 total of each of the smaller elements,
and (ahem) 106 of each of the larger.
But it's a start--and I love the fabric!

The last is not technically a start
since I've been working on this project a good part of the year,
but it's a start on a month.
Yes, Crabby All Year is back after an extended absence!

You can tell this is September, right?  No?
Well you'll be able to recognize it soon,
because I plan to finish September
before I move onto anything else.

That wraps up my November IHSW.
To check out the other hermitters,
visit Joyce's blog here.

Hope you had a grand weekend,
and got some stitching in, too.
Thanks for visiting!

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

He's B-a-a-ck!

Hey Blog Buddies,

You may remember Quaker Cardinal, my rotund bird, that I finished stitching last month.  I gave him to Karen from our Guild (to finish-finish) at the October meeting and I got him back already!  I wasn't expecting her to do this so soon because this is obviously her busy time with lots of holiday ornies to do, etc.  It's kind of like Christmas in November...

The light isn't good today.
I'm not fond of using flash, so I took him outside.

The sun was trying to shine..

Karen, you are the Greatest. Finisher. Ever!

Thanks, everyone, for visiting!

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Craft Project: Finished!

Just Another Button Company's Lazy Turtle Pincushion

Have a great weekend!
Thanks for visiting!