Wednesday, December 31, 2008

2008 done, 2009 goals and plans

And another year of stitching ends.
Seems like it's been a productive year.

It ends with one quilt at the quilters, and the binding ready and waiting.
I've already forgotten what it looks like. Out of sight, out of mind.
The binding is black, so that doesn't help me much. I'll post a finished photo.
Ah, it's a stacked fabric pattern, and has really wide black borders to float the design.

The next quilt is already started. I am still ironing material, and cutting pieces, and I might have a third of the blocks for the center completed. I need 192 for the center, and another 100 for the borders.

I have several cross stitch designs waiting to be put into frames. I have the frames, just haven't gotten around to getting it done.

I still haven't gotten the back stitching done on the flowers from Silver Lining. I have other projects that I would rather start. They have fallen to the bottom of the list for another year.

I'm looking forward to starting the new Ink Circles design. I have the frame, just still waiting for the mailman to fill the mailbox. I'm sure it won't get started the day it comes, but I'll bet it gets started before the next day is over. My goal is to get it stitched and framed, and a photo of it up on the web. I'm very glad that I have completed the first two in the series, and enjoy them on the wall everyday.

I've enjoyed stitching this year again. I had let it go for a few years. The last time I was buying fabric to stitch on, they didn't have hand dyes. And the thread choices were DMC and Anchor.
It was nice to pick it back up again, find lots of new fabrics, threads and patterns.

I'm pretty happy with the patterns and fabrics that I've gotten this year, and I plan to just try to complete what I purchased this year. Most of the patterns that I have will all take more than a month to complete. I have 5 Long Dog designs to do or complete, and a couple of Mariska designs, and the Heaven and Earth design I have started, and another Heaven and Earth to do.
I have a couple of smaller thing, to break it up, but not much. I also have two of the Lavender and Lace angels of Winter and Autumn that I'd like to do. I did the Spring angel years ago.

And I also think that it would be nice to draw out a quaker pattern of my own. When I've tried to just draw something to fill in a space on a design, it doesn't seem to come naturally, so I'm sure that I'm no threat to the pattern makers of the world.

I'm looking forward to stitching this year, and I know already that I won't get it all done.

Quilt Test Blocks Illusion

Here's a quilt progress photo.
I made 2 sample blocks of each color to lay out as a color test, and in this photo, the color squares seem to float off of the floor.
It's a Judy Martin pattern, and it will be a twin size when completed.
I just thought that the floating blocks are a nice optical illusion.

Matter's Choice Progress

This will be my first finish for 2009, and is so dated.
I added the numbers and added the year date. It would have been nice to match the lettering style with the numbers, but I didn't want to add that much more time to this project.
I added the 'U', and would have matched it better, but the extra stitches would have landed in the same place as the 'T' next to it, so I decided to keep it simple. I omitted the two 'half hearts' on the bottom border. Added the little top flower to the plant to the left of the house.
I did make an effort to keep the fencing color changes the same. It sort of worked out.
I still think I prefer the variegated thread on more abstract designs.
I'm hoping that by the time it's framed it will look fine, but not be a favorite piece.
I think that I would have preferred it in dmc 902 or a dark blue, and all one color.

Friday, December 26, 2008

Matter's Choice Start

This is one day of working on Matter's Choice from Carriage House Samplings.
It's on 25 count black lugana, and stitched with DMC 111, one over one.
It was one of the new patterns that I got a few days ago.
I've wanted to try the dmc 111, but this is my first attempt with it. I think that it might not have been a good choice. I think that variegated color may work better with more abstract designs than letters or building and birds. Some of the other photos may look like dmc 111, but they are Weeks Dye Works - whiskey color. I think that I prefer the Weeks product, as the color changes are softer.
And I'm also trying to remember that I have to add the 'U' to the pattern.
I understand that actual old patterns left off letters occasionally, but it drives me crazy if I can easily fix it. There patterns that I love that I don't buy because the missing letters bother me, and I would have to redraw out the pattern and that would just take up more time than I'm willing to give to some patterns.
I thought Matter's Choice was just the same pattern twice, once with the alphabet, and once without, but I was pleasantly surprised to notice that there are two different patterns.
If nothing else I can look at this at a bit of a sample try of the dmc thread, and practice on stitching on black lugana again. I've got my order in for the new Ink Circles pattern. I'm just waiting for it to show up in my mailbox. When it does, everything else is going to fall to the side so that I can work on the new diamond design.

Paradigm Lost Progress

Here's a progress photo of Paradigm Lost from Long Dog.
I wanted to show that I'm using the alternative alphabet. I want to be sure that I can get all the letters in place before adding the rest of the smaller designs.
It's dated 2007, and still won't be completed till 2009 at the rate I'm going.
I'm sure that this is the pattern that I should have worked on instead of starting anything new, but it just wasn't the project that I wanted to work on.

St Reatham progress 48 hours

Here's another progress photo 48 hours after the last photo.
I've gotten to the point that I'm really just sick of this pattern or color at the moment, so I decided to take a slight break from it and start another small project.
I was pleased that the edges met, and I wasn't off a row or more. I still just seem to have so much to do on this to complete it, and although I'm happy with it, I'm just sick of looking at it.
At the very least I need to go back to do a different area of the design.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

St Reatham progress photo

Latest progress photo of St Reatham from Long Dog Samplers that was started Dec 4.
The photo has a bit of a shadow that's not really there. I've added a bit to the claw of the lower left griffin, and adjusted the side rabbit's foot, added a few stitches to correct a design above the key.
Mostly I'm praying that when I get to the top, that I'm on the correct pattern line. I know better than to do this, but I also know that my goal is to fix the large designs and fit them into the remaining spaces. I'm already really sick of this red, and would love to do a different project,
especially after getting some new patterns and fabric in the mail yesterday. I ordered the new Ink Circles pattern, fabric, and floss, and don't expect to see it till after January 1, but that will be the next project, and I know that I won't have this one done yet, no matter how many more hours I try to stitch between now and then.

Monday, December 15, 2008

St Reatham from Long Dog Samplers

Here is my progress on St Reatham from Long Dog Samplers.
This is my progress after one week of stitching.
It's done on 28 count Jobelan in a Lambswool color with 815 dmc thread.
Why 815? Because I had leftovers from doing the Quaker Christmas project. I'm still trying to use it up, and wear it out. This is what I had in the stash that seemed to work.
I wanted something masculine, and the red on white wasn't going to be masculine, but this wasn't too bad. I still have leftover red suede mat that I'm hoping to use, so again this color made sense to me. Rough numbers showed that matting it might make it a bit too big, but it's still an option.
Of course, deciding to start a new project at midnight on a Sunday night and trying to decide on fabric and colors at the time probably was my first bad idea, but I'm happy with the color and fabric.
So far, I've adjusted the reindeer bodies, and I know that I'm going to even out the spacing of the numbers that are missing. I'm not wild about the eyes on the griffins, they show less on the actual fabric.
I'm now working on the bottom row, and end of the alphabet. I try to start a pattern at the bottom right because I'm left handed. I enjoy Long Dog Patterns very much, and I'm always looking forward to seeing the next designs. This is my third design after Moulin Rouge, and Paridigm Lost. I'm still adding an alternative lower case alphabet to Paradigm Lost, but not steady enough to finish it at the moment.

Miss Mary Mack from La-D-Da

Miss Mary Mack from La-D-Da.
Done on 28 count African Daisy Jobelan, one over one, with black dmc thread.
I started it on 32 count, and messed up, and miscounted between the hair and the top border.
Removing black thread stained that lighter fabric so just starting over seemed like a nice option, so I went to the 28 count fabric.
I have always just liked this pattern, and so it was an easy project.
It always proves to me that when I'm sure that I've stitched enough years that I shouldn't still be making simple counting mistakes, that will be when I begin to make several counting mistakes.
I was happy with the end result, and still enjoyed the pattern.

Anything Is Possible from Blue Ribbon Designs

Anything Is Possible from Blue Ribbon Designs.
Done on 28 count jobelan in the African Daisy color with black dmc thread.
I altered the edge borders and mirrored the flower leaves.
Also seems like I adjusted the one flower on each side that wasn't symmetrical to the rest of the flowers, or maybe I adjusted the rest of the flowers to match the one that was symmetrical.
The photo washed it out, and it's a bit nicer in real life.

Needle Station by A Stitchers Hands

Needle Station from A Stitcher's Hands. Done on 28 count evenweave, one over one, with the DMC colors. Replaced the main color that is the dark "Needles" and center with something else.
I adjusted the "N" so that it appeared more like the other letters, as it was not a double row of stitches on the uprights of the letter. I moved the year date to the top, and put a simple heart at the bottom. I omitted the crowns at the sides of the design. Considered adding hearts there, but I have settled on just the blank area at the moment. I also decided against all the colors in the vees at the ends of the frames, again feeling that simpler was better, and just used the darkest of the flower colors. I was never too happy about the light green, but I didn't think that I could find anything else that I would like that would still provide the proper contrast between the greens that was needed, so I just followed that pattern choices.

Hat and Mittens

This was a quick project for the winter season.
It is framed in a 3 X 3, $1.50 Plexiglas holder that has a magnet on the back from the local craft supply store. Found that pattern on the internet, but I don't remember exactly where.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Framed Quaker Christmas Photo

Here's the final framed photo for Quaker Christmas from ByGone Stitches.

Red suede mat, 11 x 14 frame.

I thought I'd finish another old project, but I decided to start Mary Mack from La-D-Da.
I thought it looked like it would stitch up quickly, but the border with all the buttons is going to take longer than I thought. I'm doing it on 32 count, one over one, dmc black 310.
The finished size is suppose to be just over 4 inches square. I've always been attracted to the pattern, so I might as well just get it done, and enjoy it hanging on the wall.

Framed Fire Flower Photo

Here's the final framed photo for Fire Flower from Needlemania - Marc Davis.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Fire Flower By Needlemania - Marc Davis

Here's a photo of Fire Flower from Needlemania and Marc Davis.
It's done on 25 count black, one over one, with Weeks Dye Works 'Whiskey' thread.
Whiskey is a variegated thread. It's about 3.5 x 5.3 inches.
It took less that a packet of thread to complete.
It took me 3 days to stitch.

The frame is a cheap Wallyworld 6 x 8. The frame is something that I already had, but seems to be a nice size for the design. In the photo the frame is just laying on top of the fabric.

It will hang with the Ink Circles Triangles and Circles designs that are done with the same thread and fabric.

When I originally wanted the variegated DMC thread, it was not available in any local stores, but the Weeks Dye Works thread was. It was stretching my budget to buy the more expensive thread, and the first time that I'd used a fancier more expensive thread. I'm sure I'll die with lots of thread, but I won't die with fancy expensive thread. I'm using it all up.

I'm trying to live by - 'use it up, wear it out'.

And stitching this new project was a reward for completing three other projects from my past.
Now back to finishing up three other projects again, until I'm caught up.

And naturally, I changed something. The four corners had a bit more backstitching of points on the pattern. I liked it just fine without the extra corner stitching.

I know that there was a pattern correction on his web-site, and I'd printed it out knowing that I had the pattern. But when I couldn't find the correction sheet that I'd printed, I also couldn't find it out on the net anymore either. I didn't find the error when I stitched the pattern, but I just stitched the top half, flipped the frame 180 degrees, and stitched the top half again.
Weird, but I figured it would be symmetrical, with or without the error.

I do have to admit to having to tear out and restitch areas twice because I didn't count right.
Just when I think I'm beyond having that happen, it happens a couple of times, and I spend hours fixing my mistakes.

It was a very nice design, and I thought it was going to be the size of a piece of paper, and it's more the size of a postcard. That worked just fine for me, and I just needed and wanted a quick project. I'm glad to see that Marc Davis is getting more and more of his designs published.
I've been watching his website and blog for a while, and he's a very talented man.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Quaker Christmas - Stitching Completed

Finished stitching Quaker Christmas from ByGone Stitches.

It doesn't match the pattern. I changed parts of the two half vase designs that are on the bottom of the pattern. I changed the initials into the year, and I omitted where the year was to be placed. I reformed the numbers to not slant so much. I changed the 'Y' and 'J' in JOY, I moved in the three tulips in the vase on the right side so that they weren't so close to the edges of the box surrounding them. I corrected the motif to the left of the MERRY CHRISTMAS, because it was missing a row of stitches. If you add the row back in it still fits in the same area without moving anything else, but you have to allow for the extra row. I leveled out the O and E in NOEL.
I'm sure there are other things that I don't remember doing, but did just to please my eye.

I always knew that I didn't like the flowers in the vases, and would change them, but I waited way too late to try to change or adjust any letters or numbers. It was poor planning on my part. I think that I could have balanced my changes better, and that is all my fault.

I had originally started this design in green and had planned on using this same red for the lettering, and a gold like the pattern. But I wasn't happy with my choice for the green, and when I shifted my stitching somewhere in the pattern, I decided it would be less frustrating and quicker to just start over. I like the fact that it's a cheery red, and yet the red alone doesn't scream Christmas, and I can leave it hanging all year around. It just becomes a Quaker design.

It will get framed with a red suede mat and be finished soon, and a final photo will be posted.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Quaker Virtues - Finished and Framed

Here's a finished photo of Quaker Virtues, framed and finished.
It's in a 16 x 20 frame, and matted with a black suede mat. Done on 28 count, 1 over 1.

I omitted the lower case letters, by choice. I replaced a motif just to please my eye, and adjusted a motif, because I could see that it wasn't balance in the pattern, but I couldn't figure out exactly what was shifted in the pattern.

I counted what I considered to be pattern errors, and came up with a rough count of 82.
If there were 4 extra stitches in the motif design, it counted as 4.
That doesn't include the designs that I just decided to redraw before stitching, or any design that I replaced with a different design.

It is an amazing pattern, and saying it may have 82 errors, isn't saying that the pattern has lots of errors, or is a terrible pattern. I was amazed at how tightly the designer was able to keep the motifs and the design of the pattern. It's impressive, very impressive.
It was a pleasure to stitch it, and I'm looking forward to seeing more from the same designer in the future.

Additional: I have finally seen another one of these completed, two months after I posted this photo. It was framed in a frame that was cut to follow the designs edge. One of the people commenting said that they thought that framing it that was was much nicer than just putting it in a rectangular frame, and cutting a mat with the extra angles. ( Like I did, I assumed. )

For the record. I paid $15 for the wooden frame, $5 for an entire sheet of suede mat that I have more than half left, and $6 for the glass. At the most I have $26 in total framing costs. If you can get a form fitted frame for that or less, good for you, but it's just not in my budget. I have too many things that I want to complete to pay a professional framer to frame every piece. If you can afford to do that, great, but I can't, and I'd rather frame 10 or more projects than just one.

If I had it to do over again, I wouldn't have done it in all black, but again, I can't afford to do it in any fancy expensive thread. I wouldn't use that material either. I'm still trying to just use up what I have, and I had enough black to do the complete pattern.

I posted photos here because the pattern photo was incomplete, and I really would have liked to have seen a completed design before I bought the pattern, but it wasn't available.
From the pattern cover photo, I expected it to be more square, and that was why I point out that it is shaped more like a table placemat. Again, it doesn't matter, and if you like the pattern, but it was a bit of a surprise to me as I stitched it. And I've pointed out what I have omitted and changed so you won't expect wonder why the pattern you ordered didn't look the same.

I like to view other people's projects to get ideas of what I like and what I don't.
We've all seen some interesting combinations while looking at photos of other people progress.

But try to be kind and remember that not every person can afford to professionally frame every project, and even the people stitching know that not every stitching choice that we make is a good one.

And I also know that the persons comment wasn't directed at my choices, or me personally.
It was me that just took it that way. ( I'll jump off my soapbox now...)

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Quaker Christmas Progress - None Since Last Time

Here is a photo of Quaker Christmas. It is my next project to finish.
I want to redesign the two motifs that are half planted pot designs at the bottom of the pattern.
At the moment, that's what's holding up any progress.
I have the mat sized and cut, and the 11 x 14 frame waiting for me to just finish stitching this pattern.

Last night I just really wanted to start a new design instead of finishing up any of the 'too many to count' started projects....
It was like just wanting candy, and knowing that you just really need to stay on your diet, but that candy just keeps calling from the kitchen...
Those other patterns just kept calling me... Start me... Stitch me...

Quaker Virtues - Stitching Completed

Here is a photo of Quaker Virtues with the stitching completed.
I corrected the design in the upper right angle design because there were mistakes in the pattern. I stitched the same idea of a design so that it would fit into the same space, but I may have added or lost a few stitches in doing that, so it's not an exact match for the pattern.
Actually there were several mistakes in the pattern that I've just corrected as I've stitched. I replaced one motif on the right bottom side. The original design has butterflies, but it wasn't balanced to my eye, so I changed it. I've chosen to omit all the lower case letters, just as a personal choice. If I felt that left a gap, I may have filled it in with a few stitches of something else. I may have changed a letter slightly to please my eye, like the capital G, but I don't count that as a pattern error.
This photo isn't an exact sample of what the pattern would look like if you stitched it, but it will give you a better idea than if you just have the Quaker Virtues pattern cover photo to go by...
I thought that this came out about the size of a table place mat.

Stitched on 28 count, one over one, with dmc black.
I am matting it with black suede into a 16 x 20 frame, and will take a final photo when it's done.
It was a very nice design, and a pleasure to stitch, and I'm looking forward to seeing future patterns from the same designer.....

Quaker Diamond - Finished Photo

Here is a final photo of Hillside Samplings - Quaker Diamond.
I cut my own mat, and was very pleased with the results.
I followed the pattern, but stitched it one over one on the corner motifs.
If you want to see it stitched one over two, there is another photo of it done that way in this blog.
I also made the b and d look more alike, lowered the middle of the e one row, made the m and n more equal, and shifted the y one row to the left or right because I miscounted...
Added a stitch at the f and t, added a stitch on the right corner to make a point...

The pattern calls for two colors, but I think that this looks just fine done in a single color.
Done on 32 count, one over one, Mulberry thread from Weeks Dye Works that matched the purple suede mat. The frame size is an 8 x 8 square, and the mat was cut 8 x 8.
The cut out is 5 3/4 from top to bottom, and 6 from side to side. The pattern itself is not square, and is slightly diamond shaped.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Latest Photo Of Twilight Pattern from HAED

Here is the latest photo of Twilight.
43,941 stitches completed.
9 pages completed.
Time for it to be set aside and I'll finish a few other stitching projects before it gets picked back up again. After all, I still have 31 pages more to finish before it's done...
I should figure out the total number of stitches in the pattern. Let me get that...
450 X 338 = 152,100

If you need a comparison, Ink Circles pattern, Cirques des Cercles, has 19,870 complete stitches.
At least mine does..., which shows I had way too much time on my hands that I know that trivia fact.
At least next time, it will be a photograph of something else completed or framed.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

HAED's Twilight Pattern Progress Photo

Here is a photo to show my progress on "Twilight".
I have 7 pages completed and 2 in progress, pages 5 and 13.
The pattern is 8 pages across, and 5 pages down.
I've been stitching for hours on end just trying to get this section done, then I'll finish some of my other projects and then come back to this one again later. I would burn out looking at the same design for 40 pages. It was difficult to stay interested when I had 5 pages going at the same time, and hard to see any progress from day to day.
It's nice to stitch because it is different than anything else that I've stitched, but I'm glad this wasn't my first stitching project. I would feel defeated at this point.
As it is, I'm feeling like I should go back and finish the first page in the second row.
On the other hand, it will be a nice easy part to do as I get back into the feel of this design next time I return to stitch it again.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Hillside Samplings - Quaker Diamond

This is Hillside Samplings pattern - Quaker Diamond.
Both are done with Mulberry thread from Weeks Dye Works.
They both are done on the same fabric also, but I can't remember what it is at 3am....
The bottom one is completed and framed with a purple suede mat and black frame, and is at my mothers house.
It is stitched one over one in the center lettering, and one thread over two for the partial quaker blocks. I didn't know it when I cut the mat that the design is not square, so my mat is not a great fit to the design, but it didn't occur to me that was the problem at the time. I did my best, and you can see the result framed. Not great, not awful.
The top one is the same pattern again, but done one over one in the center letters, and then also one over one to make up the rest of the design. Instead of one large stitch over two threads, I took four small stitches to cover the same area as the large stitch.
It's done, but not matted or framed yet.
And I also only used one color, not two as the pattern recommends. I just seem to prefer Quaker designs in a single color. I associate Quaker with simple, and a single color plays into that for me.
It's just a personal preference.

Twilight - a closer view

Here is a closer view of the Twilight progress.
If you are wondering the size of a page, the empty box on the second row is a page. It's mostly sky and black background, so I did the woman's head. I think that the grid is 8 pages across, and 5 pages down. Don't quote me on that.
I am hoping to just finish stitching the pages that I have started, and then stop and go back and finish some of the other projects that I have started. I picked it up again as a distraction from my other projects, not as a project that I intended to finish anytime soon.
But I don't see that I will finish this anytime soon.
So far I have not made any major mistakes. I have shifted a stitch, but only one stitch, and only over one placement. And if you can look at her hair and know that I put one light blue stitch one stitch over from the correct location on the pattern, then good for you. I've done this maybe five times so far, and never in an area that mattered. In her hair, on the flowers on her purple skirt, in the brown cap. Not like I messed up and moved over her eye...
I'm happy with the fact that I haven't had any major mistakes so far.
It's a big project, I'm sure that I'll mess something up yet.

Sorry about not cropping the photos better. My computer is losing it's second drive, and my programs are split between drives. The photo cropping program isn't working at the moment.

Twilight pattern from HAED

Here is a photo of my progress on the "Twilight" design from HAED.
The grid shows that I'm not very far along. I am still trying to finish up her blue hair, the never ending blue hair...
I think that this photo shows only 3 pages complete. Two in the top row of sky, and one in the second row with the woman's head completed. I believe that I have 4 more pages that I have started at the moment.
I'll post a closer view.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

HAED Twilight

I've been working on the HAED design "Twilight" by James C Christensen.
I'm doing it one over one on a 25 count white lugana.
It is my first HAED design, and my biggest project to tackle...
I did purchase a second design, but I'm not silly enough to have two of these monsters going at the same time. But I loved the second pattern, so I got it, and the material to do it was cut from the same yardage.

I picked it up again to kill some time because my arm was swollen from finding weeds that don't seem to like me, and now I'm just trying to finish up the pages that I have started. I have 4 of the 40 pages done completely. I have 3 pages that I have partially done that I'm working on at the moment. I'm not sure that those are the right numbers, but I'm too tired to go look.

I'll try to post a photo of my progress on this at some point soon. It's far enough that it's starting to show the picture, and not just be background and sky.

The old woman's blue hair is crazy. Just so many colors in it. And her face is over three different pages, so that's playing with my head and slowing me down.

I haven't decided if it's better to stick to just the page I'm working on, or check the next page and catch those stitches too. Since the pages don't always break on the 10, then I'm worried about shifting my counts.

I'm trying to stitch a bit each day, to wind down if nothing else. But I don't want to stitch when I'm really tired and screw it up. If in doubt, I stitch background and sky...
It just goes so slowly to see any real progress.

But last week for a couple of days I did get 8 hours or more of stitching done on it each day.

But it was only to do while swollen, and that's mostly gone now, so I need to get back to the other designs that were all nearly finished.
And I also need to get back to a quilt design that got sidelined while I was stitching.

There is never enough hours in the day to do the things we enjoy.

Friday, September 5, 2008

Not Quite There Yet

It was a nice day today.

I finished the Quaker Diamond pattern last night. An unframed and framed photo should appear soon. Last time I did this same pattern, with the same thread, and same material, I seemed to think that the design was square, but just a diamond.

I was wrong. And the mat that I cut was not right, but was very close, and I could not seem to quite put my finger on what I was doing wrong. Now I look at it and realize that the center design is not square, so why would the rest of the design be square. So this time in cutting the mat, I'll keep that in mind, but it will also mean that it takes me more thought to get it right. I don't cut mats often enough to be good and quick at it.

Shopped today and got a frame for it. Half price, but the store almost always is selling the frames for half off. So I'll have the stuff to complete the project as soon as I get the mat figured out.

Also shopped for a frame and mat for Quaker Christmas and Quaker Virtues.
The Quaker Christmas will be matted and put in an 11 x 14 frame. Haven't decided whether to mat it in a green mat, or a red or maroon suede mat. Depends on how close the reds are.
Found a black frame that I'm happy with, and it was also half price.

Shopped for suede mat scraps, that are normally $2 for the framers scraps. But the scraps were all too small for what I needed. There was one gray and two reds. Nice, but both not big enough, and the wrong colors.
So looked at their samples, and asked if they happened to have any of the black suede, knowing that it would either cost $35+ or it would be something that they would have to order.

She goes to the back and they have a piece, and she offers it to me for $5. It is a very large piece. I couldn't say SOLD, fast enough. And it was black core...
I asked if she has anymore scraps that she wanted to get rid of. She brought out a red and a teal, also each $5. Not sure if I have much for the teal, but it's a nice large piece, and I can stitch using thread to match the teal, not try to find the project that matches the teal mat...

I got a 16 x 20 frame for the Quaker Virtues. That will leave me about 3 inches on each side around the design for the mat, and I'm hoping to use the black suede, black core mat for it.
It's stitched in black. The frame is just a wood, but it's a nice frame, and was also half off.

I'll still need to get a couple of pieces of glass for the larger frames, but that I can get locally.
I got glass for the Paradigm Lost last week, so all I need to do is finish stitching that project too.

Progress, just nothing that shows here yet.

Friday, August 29, 2008

Just A Stitching Pause...

There has been a slight pause in my stitching while I've been trying to get a new car.
So much stress in trying to get everything done, that I've lost 10 pounds this week.
That's the only bonus from it all.
Mentally I'm exhausted.

I started a new small stitching project. Quaker Diamond.
Stitched with Weeks Dye Works - Mulberry Thread.
One over one on 32 count, with the parts that are suppose to have one over two done, still done one over one, but using 4 small stitches to be the same as one over two.
Did it for my mother, this ones for me.

Tried to finish up a bit more on Paradigm Lost.

Working on drawing out the last design on Quaker Virtues to find the mistakes that I can see are there. At least my version of her design will make sense for me to stitch. I can see that it's shifted a couple of places, and because it's the design on the corner angle, my eye can't see where the stitches need to be, or not be. Just re-drawing it will now, will let me just stitch it later instead of having to correct the pattern in my head while stitching.

Still want to change a couple of designs on the Quaker Christmas pattern. Just don't care for the flowers in the vases cut in half. Needs better flowers if nothing else to make it look better to my eye.

Just not enough hours in my day.
But things should be shifting back to normal now that I have a new car, and that ordeal is over.
I'm playing catch up for a few days with normal household things, and then I'll be back in front of the television and stitching again.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

St. Sylvestre from Long Dog Samplers

Here's a photo of St. Sylvestre from Long Dog Samplers. It's done on black lugana or jobelan, 25 or 28 count. It was done with Weeks Dye Works Whiskey colored thread which is variegated.
It's stitched one over one.
My mother liked the pattern and it's 'lacy' look, so it was a gift to her.
I added a stitch or two to the arrow points to make them true arrow points, and skipped the outline thread backstitching that ran along the inside and outside of the circle in the open areas.
The picture doesn't do the design justice, and it is a very pretty design, and it stitches pretty quickly. Didn't know whether to do all the fussy backstitching in the pattern itself because I wasn't sure if it would show anyway. I decided to followed that part of the pattern, and it does add to the texture and lace feel by adding those details.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Quaker Virtues Progress Photo #5

Still working on Quaker Virtues from Bygone Stitches.
I replaced the butterfly design in the bottom right side with a partial design from the Long Dog Scarlet Ribands pattern. I've also gone back and entered the numbers to the design, and swapped the 4 and the 8 in the upper right side. The numbers are all there, but I re-formed some of them slightly to be more pleasing to my eye. I re-formed the 'G'. The rabbit returned to the design, but not in the same location. It's going to take me a bit extra to get the last design on there, I can see that the last big design is a few stitches off here and there, so I want to figure it out before I start to stitch.
I'm ready to move on to another project, and hope to have this one completed yet this week.
At this point, I'm still intending to omit the lowercase letters completely.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Ink Circles - Cirque des Triangles - Triangles Pattern

Here is a photo of my Ink Circles - Cirque des Triangles completed and framed.
I used 25 count lugana black, one over one. I used Weeks Dye Works floss in the color Whiskey, which is variegated. The frame was from Michaels, right off the shelf, 11 x 14 I think.
It appears matted, but is not, just the border of the black fabric that it stitched on.
I also did the companion circles pattern, same fabric, same thread, same frame.
It really was a pleasure to cross stitch both of these designs.

Ink Circles - Cirque des Cercles - Circles Pattern

Here is a photo of my Ink Circles - Cirque des Cercles completed and framed.
I used 25 count lugana black, one over one. I used Weeks Dye Works floss in the color Whiskey, which is a variegated thread.
The frame was from Michaels and was right off the shelf, 11 x 14 I think.
It appears matted, but is not, just the border of the black fabric that it was stitched on.
I also did the companion triangles pattern, same fabric, same thread, same frame.

And just to humor you, there are 19870 individual stitches in this pattern. At least the way that it looks above there are. I'm sure that I adjusted the pattern slightly when something didn't mirror the other side of the circle.

Both of the designs are framed behind glass, and so the photos don't do them justice.
I liked the version that Marc Davis did with the DMC thread, but that wasn't available to me, so tried the Whiskey instead, and I'm very happy with the results.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Quaker Virtues Progress Photo #4

Just a little bit more done. I think today is my two month mark, since I started it June 12.
Also the photo is taken with my new camera. It's laying across a pillow, so that's why it doesn't appear square.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Quaker Virtues Progress Photo #3

And one more week later.
I didn't get to work on it as much as I would have liked, but there is still progress compared to the photo from a week ago.
It was time to move the hoop, so a good time to take the photo.
Moved the C just slightly.
Still have a letter G to do next to the bird.
Still skipping the lower case alphabet and numbers.
Getting the center design stitched makes it seem much closer to being done.
Back to stitching the designs across the top next.

Not the best photos, but I still can't seem to find another photo of this design on the web that shows most of the design completed. I'm sure that there are others completed, I'm just not finding photos.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Quaker Virtues Progress #2

Here is this weeks progress on Quaker Virtues from Bygone Stitches.

I'm pleased with the progress, considering that I started it June 12.
Just a couple of days over 6 weeks, about 49 days now.

Glad to finally be far enough to get accurate measurements for a frame.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Ring Of Roses

This is Ring of Roses from The Silver Lining.

It's been a while, but I think that all this one needs is still just back stitching.
It really is a beautiful design.

This was also the reason for me to invest in a mat cutter that will cut ovals and circles.

Done one over one on 28 count even weave.

Sterling Silver

This is my progress on Sterling Silver from The Silver Lining.

I think that all it still needs is lots of back stitching.
So close, but still not done.


This is my progress on Broadway from The Silver Lining.

Still have just a few stitches to do, and backstitching yet.

Dimples Designs Eyes

These are the eye patterns from Dimples Designs.

They are all done on 28 count even weave, one over one.

And one of them is done twice. He's my favorite.

I do love these designs and wish that he had continued to do the series.

Mariners Compass Quilt Blocks

This is what happens at my house when you repaint a room and don't have anything to hang up on the walls.

I had taken a quilting class to learn to make paper pieced mariners compass blocks.
These are those blocks.
I'd never gotten around to making enough of them to have a quilt, so these were just sitting in the drawer.
So mom suggested that we frame them and put them up on the wall.
I thought that they would be boring to just have two rows of three, or four and two...
so I decided to set them on point to add more interest.

It's not every day that you have to know how to hang 6 square frames on point, and get it to all look balanced on the wall...

I know that I wouldn't have made more of these blocks. I didn't feel that they would hold up in a quilt top, so that this was a nice way to put them to use.

Gathering Of Roses

This is Gathering Of Roses from Told In A Garden.

I've changed the pattern so that is it just the girl, no text, no ring of roses around her.

There is a long story behind me completing this. My mother bought me this pattern, and material to do it, more than 15 years ago. At the time it was to be done on a linen. I hate stitching on linen, and prefer an even weave every time. But the store sample was on that linen, and it was beautiful, so I decided to try it. I got it about 90% done, but some where in the basket of flowers I was off, I don't know where I lost my place, but I knew that I had the choice to just finish it, and fake part of the basket design, and part of the flowers. It would have been something that I could have done, and I could have done it well enough to not be able to tell.

But I would always know that it was something that I had screwed up.

I kept it for years, not being able to complete it, not being able to throw it away.

A couple of years ago, I finally decided to throw it away. It would always be my mistake, I would always know. I decided to throw it away, and not look back.

This year I decided that I still really liked that pattern, and I did want to complete her. That I still wanted a picture of her in my home.
Got out an old piece of 25 count lugana in moss green, and stitched her one over one.

I got her done in a very short time period. Less than a month, less than a couple of weeks, or even less than one week, I really don't remember. All I do remember is that she had waited so long for me to just begin again, and that I had wasted so much time before I began her again, and that waiting and wondering what I should do was a waste of energy.

And now when I see her hanging on the wall smiling, that's what she represents to me.
That sometimes you just need to toss the past and move on. You can't spend too much time trying to fix all the little things along the way, and if you find yourself doing that, then you may need to just toss it, and begin again.

And it was my first try at cutting a circle with a mat cutter. It takes a bit of practice and patience, but I think it looks much nicer than a square cut mat.

Paradigm Lost Progress

This is my progress on Paradigm Lost from Long Dog Samplers

Done as a companion to Mouline Rouge in the same dmc 930 on 28 count even weave.

I don't care for the font of the lower case letters in the design area, so I'm considering using the lowers case letters from the Mouline Rouge pattern, or just omitting them completely.

Companion Quaker Christmas Tree Sampler

This is Companion Quaker Christmas Tree Sampler from Carriage House Samplings.

Done at the same time to be a companion piece to the Quaker Christmas Sampler by the same company. Also done one over one on 28 count moss / celadon lugana.

I left off the stars on the sides of the tree and completed the stars at the tree base.
I also trimmed the 'x' so it didn't look so much like back to back 'c' to my eye.

Quaker Christmas Samplers

This is one design, of the pair of designs from Quaker Christmas Samplers by Carriage House Samplings pattern.

Done on a 28 count lugana moss / celadon.

These were the colors that I had attempted to do the Quaker Christmas pattern.
I decided that using two colors is just too busy for my eye, or it doesn't have that 'simple quaker' feel of just using a single color. I like that pattern, but it just loses that 'quaker' feeling for me.

Pansies from the Tea Garden Pattern

These are the Pansies part of the Tea Garden Pattern from Lavender and Lace. The one on the left is done on 28 count even weave, and the one on the right is done on 25 count moss green lugana. Both are done one over one.

Quaker Sampler In Red

Here is my completed Quaker Sampler In Red from The Stitching Parlor.

I changed the letters of the initials to just the year.
I've also done this pattern a second time with Weeks Dye Works thread in the Mulberry color.
It matched the purple suede mat closer than any dmc color that I could find.

Mouline Rouge

Here's my completed Mouline Rouge by Long Dog Samplers.

Done one over one with dmc 930 on 28 count even weave.

I did this pattern twice, once for me, once for my mother, both exactly the same except for the initials. Dmc 930 because it's one of the colors in my bedroom curtains.

It took 6 skeins of thread to complete it, and slightly more thread the second time, but still less than 1 more skein. Don't know why.

I shifted the 'h' and the 'r', or swapped their locations, they just seemed to fit better, and not look as crowded in the space.

Quaker Christmas Progress

Here's my progress on Quaker Christmas from ByGone Stitches so far.

Actually I started it once before in green, and doing the letters in red.
I started in the middle, and some where managed to shift the pattern a few stitches.
After that I could tell that I would end up just fighting the pattern the rest of the design.
I decided that I'd rather restart and enjoy stitching it, so I tossed it into the trash and started over. I also preferred the red for the overall design over the dmc green that didn't feel very much like Christmas.

Stitching it one over one on 28 count jobelan with dmc 815.

I'd like to change a couple of the designs on the pattern and replace them with different designs.
I've adjusted a few things like the three tulips so that they weren't so close to the edges of the box surrounding them.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Quaker Virtues Progress

I'm starting this because I was looking for a completed photo of the "Quaker Virtues" pattern from ByGone Stitches.
I could only find the pattern cover that was incomplete and one other person that wasn't too far along.

So here's a photo of mine so far, done one over one, on 28 count Raspberry jobelan, using just plain dmc 310 black.
I'm on my 6th skein of thread.
I seem to prefer quaker designs done in a single color, so it's just my personal preference for my stitching this design. I started it June 12, so this is my progress at almost 6 weeks.

And as the blog says, I don't really like the inconsistency of the small alphabet letters, so I've decided to omit them from this pattern. It's a personal choice, and I may change my mind and go back to add the letters using a different font letters, or small icons. At the moment, I don't miss them, or notice gaps and spaces in the pattern.

And let me just say, I like a design that mirrors an image. If it's one way on the left, it should be the same on the right side, or top to bottom. I won't call it a mistake in the pattern, because I believe it may have been the designers intention to not make it symmetrical, but I do try to correct those as I do the pattern so that it is more pleasing to my eye.

I am enjoying stitching this pattern, and I think that the design is really nice.

I'm hoping to post more photos of other designs that I've completed. Sometimes I'm just searching the web for ideas and seeing different color combinations gives me ideas of both things I'd like to try, and things I don't like. I'm borrowing a camera, and getting pictures that don't have a large "flash" dot in the middle of the stitching has been my challenge.