Friday, January 25, 2019

Snow & Sunshine here...but I'm thinking of snow

Yes, I finally finished "All Bundled Up" by Brenda Gervais and I'm thrilled with the outcome.  As I worked it I was questioning my choice of stitching this on 20 ct. over two.  But now that it's finished....I like it but  still feel that perhaps at 18" x 12"  it was a bit too large for a pillow and was thinking a banner of some sort, but Sara says pillow so that's what will happen, hopefully next week on my days off. 

 I picked WDW 20 ct. Blue Jeans as linen because I wanted the snowman to pop off the linen.  For him I used WDW Whitewash.  I used WDW Carrot for his nose which I stitched first with cross stitch and then satin stitched over that (by stitching it first and then putting satin stitch over that, it gives the nose more dimension, as it sits on top of the linen.  I also stitched the scarf first and then did a chain stitch over two stitched cross stitches to hopefully somewhat resemble knitting.  I used black beads for eyes, mouth and buttons.  I stitched the checks in DMC 950.  For the Bird I used WDW Garnet for the body and tail, CC Razzleberry for the bargello wing, DMC Black for the face and CC Ye Old Gold for the beak and the legs.  The shoes are WDW Chestnut.  The birds scarf is  CC Second Hand Rose with a turkey work fringe on the scarf and a brown bead for his eye.  Snowflakes are done using WDW Whitewash.  The vines and outline on the leaves is done in WDW Guacamole and the darker color on the leaves is WDW Moss.  The small flowers on the vines are done with WDW Red Pear and again stitched first and then satin stitched over that.  The larger flowers are done in WDW Garnet with a CC Ye Old Gold outline with the inside outline also done with Ye Old Gold and the center of the flower are French Knots done in Red Pear.   These larger pieces challenge me to use different stitches to get dimension and are fun because they normally stitch up quickly.  Now I am finished (I think even though we just got the Festive Fob-Winter Edition in which showcases snowmen) with January snow, and I am moving on to Valentines and February stitches.  I've managed to find several I want to do so I'm  off and stitching like crazy.  And getting ready for  Superbowl Sale and Nashville market.  While designers are in a frenzy to get designs done, Sara and I are in a frenzy trying to figure out what we are taking to stitch on.  So many things to choose from so we both end up with several projects with us.  Sara has been honing in on taking class projects and has managed to finish several.  I, on the other hand, have not finished one class project I've taken.  Perhaps I'll take one this year as I have one I've taken to 2 Nashville Markets and still have not worked on it.  Well I still have time to think about it.  Last weekend was Camp Wannastitch held in Ocean City by the EGA and we had volunteers on hand to help out.  Stasi Buhrman, who stood for 3 days and cut fabric, thank you angel from heaven as far as I concerned.  I sincerely hate standing on my feet all day doing that.  Stasi is also an expert at helping stitchers with choosing linen and fibers so she is definitely the volunteer you want to have.  Debbie Liming is helpful in finding things for people and suggestions, as well, on linen and fibers, Thanks Debbie, appreciated the assist.   Kathy took over on Salty Yarns register and assistance as well and then Sara was there to direct traffic.  Where was I?  As usual I sat in Sea Trader hoping I wouldn't have to get up, although I did get caught up in the frenzy when the lines got too long in Salty Yarns, stitchers came over to me to get them out of the shop in a timely fashion.  It's always a lot of fun for us when the shop is busy, makes time go by quickly and I love to see or hear about changes people have made in designs, or how they finished something.  Anyway, it was a great group of stitchers and we really appreciated seeing them.  January isn't exactly booming here in Ocean City so to have a busy weekend is a real blessing for us.  So a Big Thank You to Camp Wannastitch participants.  Hope to see you next year!  And a big Thank God you were here, to Stasi, Debbie and Kathy.  We are rushing towards the SuperBowl sales and have a few lists already from some stitchers, so if there is something you need, don't wait to come in and find it isn't here, just e-mail us, text us, phone us and let us get it in if we can, then you won't be disappointed.  But you need to do that ASAP as we are placing orders.  Remember, The sale pertains to instock items only.  The sale starts with 10% of anything under $24.99- 20% of $25.00 - 49.99 and 30% off anything over $50.00.  As usual the sale extends the entire weekend, so Friday, February 1, 2019 thru Monday, February 4, 2019,  the sale is on.   It pertains to anything in Salty Yarns, nothing is excluded.  As one stitcher announced, the best day is Sunday as we have a Superbowl food frenzy going on as well.

Saturday, January 12, 2019

Productive few days off....

Well, I should say Thursday since I did nothing but stitch Tuesday and Wednesday and then Thursday decided to finish the stitching already finished.  First I was thrilled to remember where "Candy Cane Wishes" was....after Christmas it's always a crap shoot finding everything I put somewhere so this was an accomplishment.  Anyway,

Stitched on 40 ct. Lakeside Linen's Vintage River Willow using WDW, GA, and CC fibers.  These 5" x  3 1/2"X 2"paper mache oval box projects are so much fun and they are also fast so that's a double winner for me.  The finishing is also one of the easiest as well.  I used Lambswool rick rack for finishing.  Great project!  Then I moved on the Hands on Design's latest, "A Year of Celebration"., January.  This was such a hot design I really didn't think about stitching it initially for the shop because there seemed to be no need.  It sells itself.  But....I wanted to come up with a different way to display this design.  The chart shows a clip board which you make for it...which is fine, but I wanted something other than a clipboard, so I had to stitch it to see what I'd come up with.  Sara was fine with the clip board but when I discussed with her my thoughts, we walked around the shop and she picked up the white washed hornbook we had for another project and because it's a little wider than some of the other hornbooks and it is white, which is perfect for January I was on board.  Because I wanted to be able to use it for all the designs in the chart pack, I decided to atttach a button on the hornbook which I would be able to hang the monthly pieces on.  Then Sara mentioned using a small spool and attaching a specialty item on it which would match the stitched piece.  This is my finished project...

It's hard to see but I glued a small magnet to the hornbook, and then attached a white sparkly snowflake to a spool which I glued a magnet to, glued a small metal disc the size of the magnet I attached to the hornbook , so+  I can change the spool out each month with a different charm or button on it.  Then when I finished stitching I just attached a thin ribbon to it for a hanger.  These designs are quick projects, one or two days.  I did have to get in my embellishment fix, so I attached 4 white beads as showballs above the snowman.  While the models are done on one fabric, Dirty Belfast linen, I thought it needed to have color since I was using a white hornbook, so I used Picture This Plus Helix and then used the colors shown on the chart.  I will also use different colors of linen to match design for the entire series.  Fun, fast project.  To back the design I used a piece of Weeks Dye Works wool.   Since I was on a roll with finishing, I decided to try the needlepoint wine bag.  Normally I don't finish needlepoint myself, but with this small thin design I couldn't figure out why I couldn't do it and decided there was nothing wrong with trying.  So this is what I discovered, I could do it and so here it is.  Siunce it's needlepoint it was a fast stitch, two days, (tent stitch basically) and at the bottom I did the green sea grass in a satin stitch and then I went to my bead supplies and found the turquoise starfish which matched the rest of the colors beautifully.  I did a twisted cord using the blue and lime green silks and voila...done!

So now I'm back to stitching and boy do I have a lot to choose from.  I've started on 20 count over 2, stitching Brenda Gervais' latest snowman,  "All Bundled Up", and at the sametime I'm stitching "Festive Fobs-Valentine Edition", by Heartstring Samplery, Plum Street's , "Heritage Sampler and Noah's Christmas Ark", A Just Nan piece and Erica Michael's silk gauze strawberry and to just add to the mass stitch, "Halloween March"  which is an adorable needlepoint canvas by Ashley Dillon, and this is definitely not an easy, fast stitch, but I take turns stitching on everything at once so it will eventually get done.  But this is what I'm busy with, what are you working on.  Many of you post your stitching on facebook, which I love to see.  Always interesting to see the difference fabrics, different fibers make on a piece and then the finishing I'm amazed with.  So many creative stitchers out there...keep it up because you spur those of us watching to up our game.  Love it!  Have a great weekend and if snow is in your future hope you get to stay home and stitch.  

Sunday, January 6, 2019

Sara is off to Jamaica and I'm left holding down the fort for a week....UGH!

Luckily Kathy is here working Salty Yarns so I can work and play in Sea Trader.  With Sara gone I was able to stock up on necessary items like fabric, for projects to be done first, as well as any patterns I want.  I have been working on projects started in 2018 and one that I started about 4 years ago and struggle with since it's 40 ct. gauze, but I'm determined so make myself stitch on it for about 1 hr each day.  Eventually it will be done...I pray!  I started a patriotic piece last year knowing I wouldn't get it done for a while, but I've also picked it up and I work on it each day as well.  Fortunately most of it is over 2, so this shouldn't be too bad, but I'm so used to working on smalls anything that takes over 2 days becomes tedious.  But I'm determined.   I also finished a needlepoint project, Point to Point's Seahorse Wine Bag.  Two days, stitching was finished, but it's going to take forever for me to finish it.  I loved stitching it though and have now picked out a much bigger project that I've been waiting for 3 years to start...let's hope it doesn't take me another 3 years to get it finished.  I had the good sense to purchase a stitch guide with it so it shouldn't be a problem.  With cross stitch I can often tell just by looking at a project what stitches I want to use other than regular cross stitch, but for some reason I don't have that ability with needlepoint.  So until I develop that ability, stitch guides are a must.  Although I used a stitch guide with my last needlepoint Easter Egg last year, but in the end didn't like some of the stitches so I changed them, but it was the stitch guide that kick started the project.  I did decide last week I would do the monthly series from Hands on Design, " A Year of Celebration" and did finish that in 2 days so I'm thrilled but now to finish.  I am not that fond of the clipboard finishing although I do want to use one display piece for all the designs since I will only display them one at a time, and Sara found the perfect hornbook for me to use.  And with some additions to it I should be able to hang a different design each month on it.  We'll see..I plan on finishing January this coming week.  I also finished another Festive Fob from Heartstring Samplery-Harvest Edition.  I love these pieces, however, I was tested with this one.  My fault, Beth did not design this series for me, but as small designs to be used for fobs, etc.  But she displays then on a chart all together and when I saw the chart I realized you could stitch them as they are shown as one piece and they make the cutest mini samplers.  As I said, I've done the Beekeeping Edition, the Seaside Edition and now the Harvest Edition.

I did encounter a problem with this one, as I said, because Beth turned the floral piece next to the turkey sideways on the chart (keep in mind she designed these pieces to be used on smalls so it doesn't matter for that how it's put in the chart, but if you are doing small samplers you don't want one motif to be turned sideways.  So I took one motif out and used it on the scissor fob, and then turned the floral piece so it's sitting properly on my sampler and I did add 2018 down the side next to the floral piece just to fill in space.  And to be  honest, I did stitch a different squirrel as I wasn't fond of the primitive squirrel Beth used.  This is the first time I've done that as I have loved most elements Beth has used on the rest of her Festive Fobs....And as with all of these mini samplers, I added a mini charm in the empty space beside the this case a mini acorn.  There are around 11 of these Festive Little Fob patterns and I'm on track to stitch every one of them.  Great designs and fun, fast projects.  .Since February is right around the corner, I've decided to do the Valentine Edition.  Let the fun begin.   I've also got a Brenda Gervais Snowman to start...picked the fabric today..using 20 ct. over 2 so it's going to be one of the big pillows....such fun to do.