Saturday, March 31, 2018

As we celebrate Easter and Passover, we can finally add Spring to that celebration....

I realize for the North East states, you may just get another dose of snow, but here in Ocean City we are done with it I'm sure, if today is any indication.  The sun is shining and temps are in the high 50's with a hint that it will get into the 60s this afternoon.  The ocean is just sparkling as if diamonds are floating on it.  There are a lot of people in town and many of them are riding bikes on the boardwalk.   Sara's busy cutting fabric and winding yarn, and I'm hiding in Sea Trader.  I just finished pricing the extensive final order from Lizzie Kate, which I've been working on for 2 weeks...but thankfully today I finished so that's why I'd hiding so I can take a break.  I had my final Easter finish...the Yellow Chick by Jim Shore, pictured  below:

As I did before, I stuffed the 2 sided ornament to give it some dimension and it's hanging in the shop, next to the first chick I finished.  When these are done no one guesses that they are stitched on perforated looks like it's done on linen or aida because you just don't think of stuffing perforated paper, plus you can't see any of the perforated paper.   While I can say this is not a one, two or even 3 day project for me, I love them when they are done.  They come as complete kits  which includes, perforated paper, beads, DMC and a hanger, although I changed this out to a white ribbon in place of the black.  The eyes are what is so adorable about these chicks.  Just too cute.  And now, I get to pick out new projects.  Whoppee!!!  I've already decided on Shepherd's Bush Spring Notes since I have done a few of these "Notes"  prior to now and they are a fun stitch, all the same size so you can buy one frame and swap them out to display them.  I really wanted to do La D Da's rabbit but not sure I'll get to that so that might have to wait until next Easter.  I'm having a bit of a difficult time picking out just one project at this point, just too many I want to do, not only from Nashville, but I have  loads of charts I want to stitch from prior years.  I may be a fast stitcher, but I'm pretty sure I won't live long enough  to get everything done...but I'm sure going to have fun trying.  

Monday, March 26, 2018

Look who finally joined the party!

Yes, while she is certainly not perfect, I'm distressed to say, but she was finally finished in time to celebrate Palm Sunday and Easter so I'm grateful for the small blessings.  Just like her boyfriend, she was stitched on 18 ct. white linen over 2 threads so she became a 9 count project, so certainly easy to see.  Her finished size is a tad bit smaller than her boyfriend, she's around 7 1/2 " tall and she's also a little wider, takes after me I think.   I used the DMC colors listed,  only I used  pearl cotton.  Her basket was suppose to have stitched flowers in it, but of course, I wanted Easter eggs in it so I just put them in there along with a bit of the grass as you would see in any Easter basket.  Then in her hand, I wanted something dimensional so I purchased many different silk flowers and these are the ones that made the cut.  (A bouquet of flowers tied with a ribbon is charted on the original chart.)  So I fashioned a bouquet, added a few green leaves, wrapped it all in silk ribbon and voila....she's done.  I also used small Mill Hill seed beads for eyes, and some pearl beads as the center of the flowers on her dress.  She was so much fun to work on, until she ran into  the drop of B-12 liquid and then it's been a red hot mess since.  There are several things that are wrong with her....but I simply finished as best I could and put her in the shop anyway.  She's just too cute.  Now we are almost ready for next weekend...I just have the Yellow Chick to complete and Easter will be done...and then I'll need a couple of Spring pieces and I'll be done, done, done and can start some summer stitching, and my favorite.....patriotic themed pieces.  We had a wonderful weekend with all the stitchers here for the Catherine Theron classes which were, of course, fabulous.  Thank you Catherine for the fun classes and beautiful projects.  Smyrna stitches are being made as I type.  And another thanks to all the stitchers who came to take the classes.  It's your support of our shop that keeps us going, so thank you so much.  And Judy who returned from her baby sitting duties to work Salty Yarns so Sara could take the class as well....thanks so much Judy.  This was a fun group of stitchers and it was so nice to see old friends and new friends and I had a fun weekend which was full of laughs and some new challenges ahead.  I went into the weekend with just one challenge and by the end of the weekend I was given another challenge, or did I issue the challenge....however it went down I've now got 2 projects that have to be completed by Jamboree.  But no worries, I've already started researching what I'm doing.  You other ladies better be getting prepared because I'm bringing my A game.  Have a great week, hopefully snow is over until next winter and the temperatures will rise.  I left home this morning thinking I just needed a shirt on and almost froze.  I thought they said it was going to warm, I'm pretty sure the needle went down not up....anyway, I'm ever hopeful. Have a great week!  Keep those needles moving.

Friday, March 23, 2018

We've Been Busy....

The north easter' and the threat of snow might have slowed us down a bit, but Sara and I were busy stitching and finishing.  Amd with the Catherine Theron class this weekend, we had deadlines to meet.  First you see my version of Stacy Nash's "Whittaker", part of the Animal Cracker Series.  I love this series as I've mentioned before,  however my vision of Whittaker was a tad different than Stacy's.  I thought he would be fabulous not only as the small 3 1/2" high snowman, but as a larger model that I could display during the month of January (our snow display month) as well.  I didn't include the little pin keep the original is holding, but I still might add that.  And at the time of finishing I didn't even think about the pocket on the back for scissors and yet he could have one that would hold dressmakers shears.  But for now he's done and because it's so cold I decided to give him a knit cap (or a sock made into a cap).  I used beads for his eyes, teeth and buttons, and Weeks Dye Works for his scarf.  I purchased  orange polymer clay and made his nose,  and am thrilled with the finish.  I actually wanted to put ear muffs on him instead of the cap, but as it turns out the cap was a better look.  Thrilled to have another Animal Cracker done since she's come out with a lot more...I just can't keep the pace with this series.  Oh, I stitched him on 18 ct. linen over 2 threads and used Weeks Dye Works perle cotton for stitching.  

Then last night I finished the Short Stack Pin Cushion by Hands on Design,
Oh Say Can You Sea".  I stitched it in a couple of days after returning home from Nashville and loved the stitch.  Easy to do, fun to stitch, and quick.  I did use beads where Cathy had used white stitches for bubbles, but that was the only change I made.  Cathy also gives great finishing directions on her web site so take a look if you need to.  And then I added the new mini pin set from Jabco done for this piece.   

I adore the ornaments in Cuore e Batticuore.  There are 6 total, all of which are shown stitched on 35 ct. linen, however, as my initial intent was to stitch the girl bunny and the boy bunny in the car on the way to Nashville I decided to do them as standups on 18 ct. white linen.  The colors are DMC and I used the pearl cottons.  The girl bunny was done first, however, we had a little accident with my B-12 liquid and she had to be spot cleaned (you have to know I was not pleased).  Anyway, she will be done tonight when I get home, but he managed to stay away from the B-12 so he got finished into this stand up which is approx. 8.5" tall and about 6" wide.  On the chart the large carrot he is holding is stitched, but you know I love to embellish and I couldn't do a lot of embellishment so since I already had the orange polymer clay for Whittaker, I decided to make a carrot for this guy for him to hold.  The carrots in his basket are just cross stitched on the pattern but I then did satin stitch over that to give them puffiness.  Then I added grass in the basket by doing turkey work in green.  He was a fun stitch to do and if you have never worked on 18 ct. over 2 with pearl cotton, on my it works up fast and you don't even need magnification.  Fun times!

And now Sara's finishing....this is Glastonbury Gardens by Lauer Sauer.  We have taken it to Nashville in 2017 and 2018 to finish.  Sara has finished hers, and I'm right back where I was before Nashville.  But Sara did a fabulous job with hers.  The first picture is the front outside cover,

This is the back cover....that is a pocket for storing your stitching treasures...

And this is the inside.  The original design called for a ribbon which is artfully placed around the piece for closing, but Sara struggled to get this part done to her liking so we both decided a button closure was appropriate.  I'm so proud of Sara, she has finished about 3 of her class projects in the last 3 months.  It feels so nice to get something finished that has just been sitting in a pile for several years.  

Since I've had quite a few finishes in the last week I'm itching to start a new project...however, before I do I'm going to try to finish Jim Shore's Yellow Chick.  Too cute for words.  But then look out....I'll be racing to start something new.  I've looked at Death by Cross stitch but since I'm 70 I'm not sure I'll live long enough.  Have a great weekend and get those needles moving.  There is so much stitching to be done.  

Sunday, March 18, 2018

Happy St. Patrick's Day to all.....

Sara and I were in the St. Patrick's Day spirit with green as our color of the day.  Sara has her usual hat on for the occasion, while I have the shamrock headband which made me look like the bigger idiot.......

There was a parade happening around lunchtime so we had plenty of time to play, however we're still dealing with Nashville so we couldn't take advantage of the time.  It's driving me crazy that I'm not stitching 24/7.  But I did get a model done....Here a Peep is finished, well almost but enough that I can display it for the weekend and then take it home and put the finishing touches on it.  

I love stitching these Brenda Gervais pieces.  They are small enough it's an easy 2 day stitch, and the finishing is easy once I get to it.  I did make a couple of changes (shocker I know) but I started it on the recommended fabric and my dye lots on fibers must have been different than hers because I couldn't even see the vine or the bird when I first stitched it, so I switched to a lighter fabric and was able to see everything.  I could of changed to darker fibers but changing just the fabric was easier.  The other change is the pom pom trim.  I chose to use Lady Dot's Sea Glass which is a darker shade  of the color of the dress just to give it more color.  Love the these oval boxes...Here's a Peep, There's a Peep is a winner for sure.  Since we've been back I've been working on the web site so I'm looking at each pattern I put on and I've found so many I've taken home.  I asked Sara why she didn't bring her stitching bag in anymore and she said, "I know I don't have time to stitch in the shop right now so I don't bother."  I told her I brought mine not to stitch but to load up with charts, kits, and supplies.  And I've managed to take stuff home everyday I've worked.  I'm not sure that's a good thing but I'm sure having fun.  O.K., not to change the subject, but a woman just came in and said, "Are you Open?"  WTH...the lights are on, the lit OPEN sign is in the window, and the door is unlocked which is how she got in, in the first place.  Am I open?  Well if I'm not I am sure going about being closed in the wrong way.  And yet, I must smile and act like that was a normal question, but when I'm tired and weary it's hard to be nice and polite.  Just give me an hour and I'll be almost decent.  Well,now it's the end of the day and I'm doing fine.  Stacy Stinson stopped by so we chatted a while and I caught up with all her goings on...she's had a tough week so keep her in your prayers and let's hope her luck takes a turn in a positive direction.  Anyway, it's time to close so I'm signing off and will talk to  you later.  Have a great night an I pray you get some stitching in.  

Saturday, March 10, 2018

We're back and in Market Hell....

Yes, it looks like Nashville Market exploded inside Salty Yarns...but let's start back at the beginning.  We arrived back home from Nashville Market on Tuesday around 4:30p.m.  I was so exhausted I went home and took a nap.  But by 8:30 p.m. I was up and ready to stitch.  I was very disappointed that I got very little stitching in while in Nashville.  As you know I had grand ideas about all the stitching I was going to do, but in reality I got nothing done because I spent all my time shopping for the store or pricing and putting in inventory what we purchased that day.  Sara also brought her computer and her label maker so we were both entering inventory (thank God for the cloud) and printing tickets, but I was still up until 1:30a.m. and then back up around 5:00 a.m. to continue until it was time to shop again.  I withstood the pace Friday night when we shopped for the 3 full hours (so many were open Friday night unlike years past).  Then Saturday we went the whole day from 9 a.m. until around 5 p.m. (I was dragging my big behind down the aisles I can tell you by 5 p.m.) and again ticketing and entering inventory until the wee hours.  And then Sunday we started at 9 a.m., but I couldn't keep the pace so after lunch I went up to the room to continue labeling and entering inventory.  Sara pressed on until the show closed around 4 p.m.  For the first time ever, we were so busy in the room we missed dinner on Saturday night and lunch a couple of days.  I'm too old for this crap.  But it was fun seeing the new pieces and projects and it was a good show.  We found many things which excited us and of course, my Must Have projects which beckoned me nightly but I just  get to it as the pricing of merchandise was so necessary before we arrived home.  It was also great seeing the designers.  We had dinner Thursday night with Ann and Pat from R & R Reproductions and Beth from Heartstring Samplery, who will be teaching at the Jamboree in October, so that gave us a fun start to the activities.  Ann and Pat always have tips, etc. to give us so it's not only fun, but helpful.  They also always have a spot on their sofa for me to sit down during the market...thanks Ladies, much appreciated.  They even put a sign stating that it's Sally's seat but then somegne had the audacity to steal the sign.  On Saturday,  I decided to move things along faster by doing some of the buying on my own.  First room, Stacy the new elephant, Humphrey and Henrietta, the chicken...too cute.  I'm so far behind on the series it's embarrassing, but I'll get there sooner rather than later.  With me it's not about the stitching, but it's the finishing.  I have had Clementine done since last fall, just haven't put it together as well as Whittaker, the snowman who was finished right after Christmas, but the finishing is holding that model up.  But I'm ever hopeful.  We also picked up her "Handful of Posies" pin disk kit.  In fact, we have had great luck so far picking up some of the exclusives and limited editions.  We hit La D Da first since she had a limited number of her exclusive scissor block...and we were amazed she had enough for us to get 10 of them.  So that was exciting.  It's so difficult to see some of the exclusives before Nashville and then get here and it's impossible to get any.  But that has not been the case so far, but today is another day and I'm sure there will be something sold out.  Anyway, we also got several of the waxers from Stacy...oh, my they are spectacular.    Anyway, after breaking the bank in that room I joined Sara and said perhaps it was better if I wasn't left along to shop as I tend to over indulge.  Although get Sara in Picture Plus or R & R Reproductions and she over indulges in fabric every time.  But since I didn't have to ticket the fabric by the end of the weekend I didn't even care.  Anyway, after getting home I took Wednesday and Thursday as me days and just stitched.  I did get Hands on Design's, "Oh Say Can You See" finished (well the stitching not the finishing) and I finished one of the rabbit stand up's (again the stitching not the finishing,) and the knitting project, which I was able to work on in the car. was the one thing that I really worked on and managed to get 154 rows (82 stitched per row) done before getting home.  The first night in Nashville before we shopped, we worked on our class project, a Lauren Sauer project, and I got a pocket stitched on, looks a little wonky so I'm taking it back off and redoing it.  I left the 3 dimensional pockets home (by mistake) and got bored before putting the other pocket on.  Sara had to finish some stitching before she started on her pockets, and left my room with the stitched pocket sitting in the lid of her ice bucket.  I told her I didn't think that was a good idea and she said it would be fine, she didn't want to put it in her stitching bag because she had already ironed it.  She left, called me in about 5 minutes when she was back in her room and informed me I was correct in telling her it wasn't safe, because between my room, the ice machine and her room she had lost the stitched pocket.  She retraced her steps several times and it was missing.  I told her we would ask tomorrow if anyone had found it and turned it in because I couldn't imagine what anyone would do with just the pocket.  On Sunday, she stopped by Yarn Tree and asked if anyone had turned it in and unbelievably there it was.  So the lesson here is do as your mother says!  Thanks to whichever stitcher found and turned it in and to Yarn Tree for their efforts in trying to find who lost it.  We left the hotel on Monday and proceeded home, stopping overnight and Tuesday here we were.  Yesterday, Friday, I arrived with the loaded van back at the shop.  So Sara spent the day putting new stuff out while I finished pricing a couple of bags which still were not in inventory or ticketed.  Today will be a day of  trying to get the rest of the stuff out so we can start to play with it.  We also need to thank Judy and Elaine who held down the fort while we shopped.  It's always good to know the shop is being cared for when we are away.  I'll start getting things up on the internet today as well...but we all know that takes time for me as I get tired of working with the computer so I can only do so much at a time.  But I'll do my best.  But I will tell you I found several new projects at this market, so I'm excited to show them to you.  But I have to get dressed and get to the shop to do it so I'm going now and hope that your day is as much fun as mine will be...going through Nashville Market shopping.  Have a good day and hope your needle sees linen or aida and floss today.