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

Wednesday, October 18, 2017


Well hello there... it's been a while.
I'm afraid I've been spending the bulk of my time
on Instagram lately.
I've really been enjoying it because
there's no political squabbling,
no advertisements,
just photos.

But I'm here today to catch you up
with some recent finishes, so let's get started.

Despite the title of this post,
this is actually not a finish.
Here's where I was at with RipRo last time.

I made what I consider significant progress...
Only two corners to go!
This is Needle Delights Originals' Ripple Rotation II,
in case my nickname is confusing anyone.

I had a teeny start on Bittersweet September last time.

And here it is all finished...

Then I started and finished this little squirrel...
The wool in the background is what I used
for the backing of the pillow.
This is from Summer House Stitche Workes'
2016 Fragments in Time collection.

I finished piecing my lap quilt, and had to wait
almost two months to get it back from the
longarm quilter!
But here it is, all finished as of this afternoon.
The name of the design is Shadow Play
and it's from Plum Tree Quilts.
It was a workshop hosted by my quilt guild.

I used some large pieces of fabric
from my stash on the back.

And finally, I had a letter finish...

which was also a row/leaflet finish...
on the Prairie Schooler alphabet.

The piece as a whole is getting
a bit harder to photograph.

And I'm plugging right along with it,
so here is my start on the M...
I think the mermaid is kind of homely.
I debated giving her some lips,
but thought better of it.
This is Prairie Schooler we're talking about
after all and not Mirabilia!

I don't think I've forgotten anything.
For those of you who are Instagrammers
interested in visiting over there,
I'm @southpaw.stitch.
I'm not technically savvy enough
to put a button on my sidebar!

Hope you're having a delightful October.
Thanks, as always, for visiting!

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Auspicious August

Hey Blog Buddies,
Hope everyone's August went well.  
I was beginning to think I wouldn't get a post in this month, 
because I wanted to wait until I had another letter finish.  
But finally...

K is done!
I think the cat looks a bit nervous.
Maybe she's afraid that the birds
are going to start pecking at her ears.

I worked a bit on Rip-Ro, too.

Here's where I was last month.

And here it is now.

I had a good bit done on Forest last month.

And here it is now, all stitched.
I like the way the trees change color
when they overlap.

I made a couple of new starts, too.

I don't know if this will be
finished in time to be seasonally displayed, 
but at least I should have it for next year!

This has been in my stash pile for several years.
It finally called loudly enough for me to notice.

The Lake County Fair was in the middle of the month...

...and I did quite well.

This past weekend, I attended
Needlework Galleria with my friend Joyce.
It was held at the Embassy Suites Hotel
in St. Charles, Missouri.
There were close to 30 vendors,
mostly designers and some needlework shops,
and it took up the entire fourth floor of the hotel.
Since all the rooms were two-room suites,
the vendors set up their shops 
in the living room part of the
suite where they were staying.
I took this photo from the 12th floor where
our suite was, far from the madding crowd.
You can see the banners of some of the vendors
down on the fourth floor railing.

A tiny sample of goods from various shops.

I went a little nuts in the shop with all the fabric...
I got lots of nice 18- and 20-count evenweave,
good for over-one work!
Wait, am I planning on doing a lot of over-one work?!

I signed up for one class, the Round Robin.
Six vendors took turns presenting their small projects.  
Just what I need, six more projects!
But they're small...

Clockwise from top left, The Silver Needle's acorn stand-ups;
JBW's candy cane holder; Romyscreations' Christmas ornie;
J Design's Spooky Tin, Noteworthy Needle's
thimble holder (it's really small); and finally
Needle Bling's sampler pillow.

The Silver Needle is a needlework shop in Tulsa, OK.
They had a fabulous 2-suite shop jam packed 
with the most tantalizing stuff.
If you're ever near Tulsa, pay them a visit!

I have to give a shout out to Cathy from
Inspired Needle (my local LNS)
who puts on this incredible event year after year.
Thanks for all the hard work, Cathy.
It was well worth it.

That's it from here.
Thanks so much for visiting!

Monday, July 31, 2017

Slow Progress

Do you guys realize that the last "letter finish" (I) that I showed you on the Prairie Schooler alphabet was back in May?!  It seemed like J was taking a long time to finish--I did have to set it aside a couple of times for other projects with deadlines.  But, finally, here it is...

There is a lot of stitching on that pumpkin!

I did have another small finish, too.
This is Victoria Sampler's Christmas Spools--
quick to make and easy to finish.
The trick here is finding a wooden spool,
although I have noticed that some needlework shops
are carrying large "new" wooden spools.
I happened to have an older spool in my stash.

Currently, I have three projects in my rotation:

Satsuma Street's Forest
This is what it looked like last time.

And here it is now.
This seems to be going slowly because
it's over one, on 25-count lugana.
Over-one is usually challenging for me,
but I had to do it in order
to get the size I wanted.
This piece could be complete the way it is,
but I plan to stitch the entire thing.
There are four additional trees on both sides.

The second rotation piece is my 
ANG chapter's challenge project...
Needle Delights Originals' Ripple Rotation II.
Here is what it looked like last time.

And here it is now.
This seems to be going slowly because her
"Log" series which I did recently
 relied on Caron's overdyed Watercolours
for the color changes.
Here, some of these small squares 
contain six or seven different colors!
And since I'm following the colors
as opposed to stitching square by square,
there is constant page flipping going on.
It makes my head hurt.

The third rotation piece is,
you guessed it, Prairie Schooler's K:
I think it's a little strange
that a bird was charted in the
"K is for Kitty" box,
but he was so cute that 
I didn't want to change him out for a cat.

That's it from here.
Hope you had a wonderful weekend.
Thanks for visiting!

Monday, July 3, 2017

A Plethora of Patriotic Pieces

How's your July been going so far?  A little while ago I started thinking about some of the patriotic charts that I've had in my stash for quite some time, and decided it was time that they were stitched.  So here are my Four for the Fourth.

Little House Needleworks' Old Glory.
You've seen this here recently; now it's totally finished.

Blackbird Designs' In Full Glory.

Prairie Schooler's Double Eagle Sampler
from Booklet No. 8, American Primitive.
You would never guess this design is from the 80's,
would you?
Their stuff is timeless.

And here's my little display.
The Liberty Bell is also from Prairie Schooler.
They fill up my rustic box nicely.
I won't need to do any more patriotic ones.
Well, maybe I could squeeze more in next year.

My fourth piece is canvaswork...

Independence Day
from (can you guess?)
Needle Delights Originals.
This will probably be put into a box top.

Along with all these,
I've been busy filling out my
Entry Form for the Lake County Fair.
I'm entering 13 pieces this year,
but might only have 11 or 12,
because one needs tweaking
and another one isn't finished yet.
But I've got a few weeks...
famous last words.
So that's what I'll be doing this month
(along with J).

For my US friends, have a happy and safe Fourth.
Have a groovy July, everyone.

Thanks, as always, for visiting.

Monday, June 26, 2017

Copper Illumination

How was your weekend?  We have had some gorgeous, cool (lower 70's), sunny weather here the past few days. I'm afraid we are using up our allotment of nice weather days.  But enough idle chit-chat.

As readers of this blog know, Copper Illumination, a silk and metal design by Kay Stanis, was my challenge piece for my ANG chapter.  It was due this past weekend, and I'm happy to report that I made the deadline.  Some of you will remember that if I finished this project by the deadline, I got a small prize.  If not, I would have to pay $10 into the chapter's treasury--the old carrot and stick approach.

I did have a bit of trouble tracing and stippling that flower onto the copper sheeting.  Can you tell that it's a tulip?  Maybe if I could have had three or four sheets of copper to perfect my technique, it might have turned out more to my liking.  The larger, filled-in areas are blackwork which is not usually a problem for me, but on canvas you have to watch where you carry your threads on the back so that they don't show through.

The hyacinths were constructed with two layers of beads to make them appear fuller.  The stems and leaves are made out of jaceron; I've also heard it called purl purl.  It's a tiny metal coil, and here it was attached to the canvas through its center like a bead.

In this area, jaceron was used for the main stem, and it was couched down with silk thread.  The smaller stems attached to the flowers are short strands of Kreinik, also couched down with silk.  The turquoise borders that you see, and there are many of them, were also finished with couched Kreinik, both on the inside and outside.  That was the last thing that needed to be done, and it seemed to take forever.  This wasn't my biggest WIP, but it lived up to being a challenge.  However.  It's done now!

And here's my little prize:  it's a magnetic needle minder.
And I got to keep my $10.

So after all the prizes were awarded
(and money paid in some cases), 
we chose projects for next year's challenge.
Every who wants to participate brings three WIPs;
they have to be a certain size
(the bigger the better),
not more than 50 percent completed
(the less the better)
and they have to be canvas projects.
The gentle ladies of the guild then vote
on which project the participant should finish.
Given their past voting record,
I thought I had them all figured out.

The three projects I brought were:

Ripple Rotation 2 by Needle Delights Originals.
Lots of color changes, but no weird threads
or weird stitches.

Here's what I've done so far.
This piece will measure 8" x 8".

Ho Ho Ho by Debbie Forney,
a 3-sided holiday stand-up decoration.
Lots of weird threads and weird stitches,
including dozens of bullion knots
on Santa's beard.

This is what I have done.
The piece will be about 12" high (without ornamentation)
and 15" around the base.

And finally I dug out this little piece.
It was a fundraiser for autism designed by Sue Reed
that I purchased about six years ago.
No weird threads, but some weird stitches.
It's probably not larger than 6" x 6".
It would make a good box top insert.

So the ladies voted, and they chose...

Ripple Rotation 2!
(hereinafter referred to as Rip-Ro)

And it wasn't even close!

What the...  what?!

What about Ho Ho Ho?!
It's larger, more complicated,
I have less overall completed on it,
and I was mentally geared up to do it.

Of course, if I had a project that
I have no interest in completing,
I wouldn't be taking it to the challenge.
There is certainly nothing preventing
me from finishing Ho Ho Ho.
And I would have done Rip-Ro anyway.

I'm not complaining.
It seems that I got off pretty easy this year.
They'll probably make up for it next year.

That's it for now.
Thanks for dropping by!

Monday, May 22, 2017

Nine Down, Eighteen to Go

Good Monday morning to you!  It's a beautiful, sunny day here (so far), so I took the opportunity to take a few photos outside, so that I can show you my latest stuff.  I'm not a "fancy" photographer--I just plop the items down on my front stoop and snap away.  My neighbors probably wonder about all my stoop shots, among other things (hehe).

So anyway, some of you may have guessed what I'm about to show you from the title of this post.  Yes, it's the Prairie Schooler alphabet.

The "I" was finally finished
at 6:40 this morning.
But it's not only a letter finish;
it's also a row finish 
and I'm done with the GHI leaflet, too!

Here's what it looks like so far.

And here's another smaller finish
that happened last night...

This is Little House Needleworks' Old Glory.
I did rip out those flower stems on the bottom
and use a darker shade.

Over the weekend, I took a workshop
with Tony Minieri that was hosted by
my ANG chapter.

Here is the model he brought to class.
It's called Austin Patch.

And here's my start.
The black canvas was slowing me down.
But.. a decent amount of stitching
for a 1.5 day workshop,
if I do say so myself.
On Day 2 I forgot my magnifier
and thought I'd really be in the soup.
But the two gals sitting at my end of the table
(neither of whom I knew, BTW)
each stepped up.
One offered an extra pair of reading glasses
and the other had an extra clip-on 
magnifier, which I wound up using.
Stitchers are the nicest people!

That's it for now.
Hope your day is going swimmingly.
Thanks for visiting!

Thursday, May 11, 2017


Hey Blog Buddies,

I have a quartet of finishes to share with you today.  Some are brand new and one is so old it's new again.

First up...
Needle Delights Originals' Spring Logs.
I finished this slightly ahead of 
my ANG chapter's SAL schedule.
The colors are more muted in real life.

Next is a trio of smalls
adorably finish-finished by Averyclaire.

Lizzie-Kate's A Bit of June.
I love the rick rack that is reminiscent of sea waves,
and the ship's wheel charm that she added.

Next up, a pair of birds from
Prairie Schooler's Nordic Holiday leaflet.
This was stitched a couple of years ago, 
misplaced for a while,
and just now finished.
I love the addition of the pine cones!
I added the stork scissors in the photo
to give a sense of the scale of the piece.

Finally, a canvaswork sock,
stitched on "soft" Congress cloth;
the design is from Lois Caron.
It's lined with tiny Christmas tree fabric,
and the back of the sock is a
gorgeous red velvet.
Photos do not do these pieces justice.

I like to celebrate my finishes with a new start,
and I was in the mood for a
small patriotic piece.
I knew I had several such charts,
so I started rummaging through my stash.
This is usually not a good thing,
since I tend to find so many things there
that I really want to get started on ASAP.
As I did this time.
I did find a few (but not all) of my
patriotic charts, and I started
Little House Needleworks' Old Glory.

I'm not too fond of the drastic
color changes in the green.
As of this writing,
I don't think that I'll rip it out,
but the stem of the plant in the large pot
will be a DMC solid color.

Well, that's it from here.
Hope your May is going well.
Thanks for visiting!