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

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Stitch from Stash ... and Sparkly Stuff

Hey Blog Buddies,

Stitch from Stash

It's almost the end of the month, so it's time to give my Stitch from Stash report.  I spent $23.72--not great but still within the budget.  For that I got some DMC floss, a Tunisian crochet book (I want to learn how to do that this year), and I broke down and purchased a chart (YZ from the Prairie Schooler Alphabet series).  I was gifted DEF and then decided I needed the entire series--what can I say?

Sparkly Stuff

I did the February installment of the
Laura J. Perin Nordic Panel SAL.

It's the band on the bottom:  the gold half eyelets with the red zigzags running through.  This was all stitched in metallic ribbon.  You can't really tell in this photo, so I took a photo in direct sunlight, something I normally avoid:

The gold now looks like gold,
but the red zigzag still doesn't appear to be shiny.
Trust me, it is.
So far, this has been an easy SAL to keep up with.
The current installment only took a few hours.

Continuing on in our glitzy theme, I mentioned in an earlier post that I went to a workshop recently.  Workshops and classes are exempt from SFS rules if you don't let the projects become instant UFOs.  The ANG National Seminar is coming to Chicago this year, and our chapter did a pilot class with Libby Sturdy.  For those of you who may not know, a pilot class is a regular workshop, but involves giving a teacher/designer feedback on her instructions before he/she unveils a design.  Libby will be teaching these designs for the first time at the national seminar, and since the catalog listing all the classes came out last week, I can now show you what they are:

This is her Bejeweled Tree Trio, and we did the middle one and the one on the far right in class because they are the more challenging ones.  Well, no one actually finished them in class, but we started both of them.  (heheh)  Libby has hers finished off in a gorgeous triptych.  All of these trees are stitched entirely in Kreinik metallics, with a couple of cards of Neon Rays thrown in for good measure.  There are lots of beads and sequins to add even more glitz.  If you look closely, the "snow" in the background consists of white beads.

Here is my start on the tree farthest right:

Again, I took the photo in direct sunlight.  The yellow and purple on the ornaments are stitched in Neon Rays.  Neon Rays and I have an adversarial relationship, but we are learning to play nice with one another.  (It's rayon ribbon that frays if you look at it funny.)

However.  These are really fun and colorful trees, and the more I complete on this piece, the more I want to do, just because it gets cuter and cuter!  Would definitely recommend taking this class if you happen to be going to the ANG seminar this year.

I won't show you the middle tree yet because it's nothing but a mess of parked threads and "spaghetti" which is what almost all pieces look like at the end of a workshop.  The above piece is the one I'm giving my feedback on, and it needs to be completed first. 

So that's it from here.
Hope you got some stitching time in today.
Thanks, as always, for visiting and all your wonderful comments.

Sunday, February 23, 2014

February IHSW: Something Simple

Hey Blog Buddies,

It seems that I have been stitching things lately that range from the fiddly (lots of color changes) to the annoying (having to lay a lot of threads and/or using the dreaded Neon Rays).  So for this IHSW I decided to go with something simple:

What could be more simple than a Prairie Schooler ornament stitched in only one color?  I started and finished stitching this piece this weekend.  It looks like basically nothing now, but eventually it will become a "strawberry" ornament with candy cane stripes.  The chart is from Prairie Schooler's Christmas Strawberries book--so that makes two ornaments that I've stitched from that book.  One more, and I'll have them all finished into the strawberry ornaments that they are meant to be.

In other stitching news, I have a lovely new finish-finish...

 This is Little House Needleworks' Warm Winter Woolens,
stitched by me and finished by the talented Karen U.

It was finished as a box, and is sitting on my shelf as I type.

That's it for now:  short and sweet.

To see the other hermitters' progress,
click on over to Random Ramblings.

Hope you're keeping warm if you're
anywhere near the Midwest US.
Winter is just not letting go here.

Thanks for visiting!

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Giveaway Winner

Here is the moment you've been waiting for!  Late last month, as part of the Grow Your Blog Party hosted by Vicki at 2 Bags Full, I announced a giveaway on my Grow Your Blog post.  Anyone who commented on that post was eligible to win.  The prize was to be a little something handmade by me, which turned out to be...

...this hardanger bookmark.

The drawing was once again conducted by the
Giveaway Supervisor here at Southpaw Stitcher...
After instructing me to type each commenter's name
on a small piece of paper,
fold the papers and place them into a bowl,
she began the arduous task of choosing a name.
She even stepped on the winner's name
so that I wouldn't misplace it--
or so she told me later.
(There may have been a dab of
peanut butter at the bottom of that bowl.)

And the winner is...

Please send me your address information, Jayne,
so I can send the bookmark off to you!
That's it from here.
Thanks for visiting!

Monday, February 10, 2014

February Turtle Trot

Hey Blog Buddies,
It's time for a first progress report for my Turtle Trot SAL projects, so let's get right to it:

Winter Logs


The January Guild meeting was cancelled due to weather (sigh),
and the leader of this SAL suggested
that we just wait until the February meeting
to do the next two sections.
(We are doing an eighth at a time.)
I decided to do the piece that we would have normally done
now, and not have a double assignment later.

Autumn Pumpkin Patch


I love this design,
but it is very labor- and time-intensive.
Still hoping to get it finished
by May-June.

Tangerine Twist


Seems I'm doing a lot of canvaswork this year!

Cool Cardinal


Without his crest, the cardinal
looks more like a fat, red vulture!
The top photo most accurately depicts the linen color.



I was only able to stitch 1.2 bottles!
It didn't help that I had to rip out half of the first bottle
and the bottom part of the outline of the second
because I miscounted and they were too long.



Yes! I'm getting some momentum going here!
My plan of stitching a little on this piece every day
seems to be working!
I'm usually the first up in the morning,
so I've been working on this in the quiet hour before breakfast,
which is good because I need all my concentration for it.
There was a large swath of white block stitching
 in Mr's muzzle this month,
so I may not have quite as much progress to show next month.

I might have overstated in my last post
when I mentioned "ten active WIPs"
because, as you can see, I've only worked on 
six this past month.
The other four are still officially UFOs.
Maybe I'll pick up one of them next month.  Maybe.

I'm itching to finish one of the above pieces
sooner rather than later.
The only two that have any chance of being finished soon
are Cool Cardinal and Tangerine Twist.
Cool Cardinal just has the bird's crest
and a moderate amount of backstitching on the bird.
And 80 large snowflakes.  Yes, I've counted!
Tangerine Twist has only one more square to stitch.
And 240 beads of assorted shapes and sizes need to be attached,
 to be chosen however I decide--no instructions on that.
Any guesses as to which of these
will get finished first?

I went into The City this past weekend
for a needlepoint workshop (more on that in another post),
so I'll leave you with this...
 This is a very common sight in Chicago's neighborhoods.
Lots of folks may not have a garage or, at best,
only a one-car garage, so they have to park in the street.
They have to shovel their car out before they can drive anywhere,
so they reserve that nicely shoveled-out spot
with anything they can get their hands on.
I saw plastic crates and buckets and even a wooden reindeer
this weekend, but lawn chairs or folding chairs
are by far the most common.
It's not really legal and "Mayor Rahm" 
has told people to stop doing this (yeah right),
but the overwhelming consensus at the workshop was
that no one would have the nerve
to move those items and park in those spots!
This doesn't happen in the suburbs, to my knowledge,
just in the city.
Is this strictly a Chicago phenomenon,
or does it happen where you live (if you experience snow)?
BTW, more snow is predicted for this week.

Well, that's it from here.
To see other Turtle Trot progress,
visit Claudette at BAP Attack for all the links.
Thanks for visiting!

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

A New Start

Hey Blog Buddies,

First, I'd like to welcome all my new followers from the Grow Your Blog party--glad you're here.  That was so much fun!  There were so many new blogs to check out that I am still making my way through them.
Regarding the title of this post:  oh no, not another new start?  Yes, it's true.  It's not enough that I have ten active WIPs in my rotation this year (several of them BAPs) but I have started a new Stitch-a-Long.  It's the Nordic Needle Canvaswork Club, and Laura J. Perin has designed one of her long panels for it...

How cute is this?
I debated long and hard about this one,
because I really didn't want any more new projects.
But I liked it so much that I ordered it
at the end of December. 
Each month I'll receive
a chart and instructions to do
a piece of the panel.

This is the January piece--all finished!
All the multi-colored stars were done in 
Watercolours "Passion." 
It didn't take me long to do at all.

I don't have the February piece yet,
but from a glance at the photo of the model,
it looks like it will feature 
a lot of the gold metallic ribbon.

I've also been working diligently on my
regular rotation--believe it or not,
but I'm going to save those photos
for the Turtle Trot check-in
coming next week.

I do have an ornament to show you,
that I couldn't before
because it was a gift.

 This is one of the Lizzie*Kate Jingles patterns.
It was such a modest little design
that I felt it should be tarted up
with some fabric and rick rack.

Finally, I finished stitching
LHN's Home of a Needleworker
some time last summer
and I purchased a really nice frame for it
shortly thereafter,
but it took me until last week
to actually get myself in gear
and frame it.

Now it's hanging on my wall
instead of languishing in a bag
on my desk.

Finally, I have a snow picture for you.
It's of our backyard.
 Is it pretty?  Uh... no.

 When we get several inches of snow,
I have to go out and shovel paths in the yard.
Because we have a dog.
And I don't have snowshoes.
And you just can't leave all that "stuff"
laying there between the layers of snow
until the April or May (the way things are going) melt-off!
Well, you could, but eewwww!
There's more snow predicted for tonight,
so you'll know what I'll be doing tomorrow.
And even more snow is predicted for
this coming weekend, along with very cold temps.
90 percent of what I had planned in January
was cancelled--along with everyone else's events in this area.
And February is shaping up to be
more of same.
Enough already!!
(rant over--I've been very cranky lately)

On the bright side,
guess my WIPs will continue to get
lots and lots of love.

That's it from here.
Thanks for visiting!