Friday, December 31, 2010

Year End

This is where the year ends for my stitching. Still not much progress on the sampler.
I started a crochet project because I needed something that was easy to take with me if I was waiting or away from home. Trying to balance charts, and floss, and not lose my scissors, and also count stitches - I just can't manage to cross stitch anywhere else but at home.
I think that I also just love that total relaxation and exhale of stitching at home, with all the stitching stuff exactly where I like it.

So I started a crocheted pineapple table topper. It was a pattern from my grandmothers stuff, and her row counts and scratch marks when she completed rows are all over the pattern pages. I've stitched the pattern before, it was my first try at crocheting something from a real pattern, and not just granny square blocks. I remembered stitching it years ago, and enjoying it.
I had one extra stitch when I started the pineapple sections, but I thought that was still pretty good considering I really don't know how to crochet, and reading crochet patterns still feels like I need a translator. I'm pretty much self taught.
Above is the progress so far of the crocheted pineapple table topper.
The safety pin marks where my round begins and ends.
Here's a photo of the completed version. This one has been thru the washer and dryer, so it's smaller than it originally started. It's already been handy to look at this one to try to figure out parts of the pattern again.

I'm still planning on cross stitching in 2011. I know that it would be nice to make a list of what I completed this year, and what I have started that needs to be completed. The time that it would take me to make lists is time that I could be cross stitching, and that sounds like a better idea and a lot more fun. So off to stitch.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Little by Little

Little by little, and sometimes only a single thread, but I'm still trying to make progress on this sampler. Still don't have a clue about text, or whether to just omit it, and adjust the spacing.
I can stitch for a while yet and not have to decide.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

A Few More Stitches

Thanks for the suggestion - Haven't seen Gosford Park for a long time, I'll check to see if there is a good line
Austen works for me, but the only thing I've really seen is Pride and Prejudice versions.
Bridge Jones, Lost in Austen, then finally watched the British version, then finally read the book.... If I watched something else that was Austen, which I may have, I don't realize it's Austen. I avoided period movies for years. Watched lots of Cary Grant, Tony Curtis, then Buster Keaton, and Harold Lloyd. It's taken me years to get back to the classics. Then I started in with the Godfather series, then Upstairs Downstairs, and now Dark Shadows.

As for the current stitching progress. I pulled out the vine border. I figured if the red still showed, I'd change the colors to greens, and just restitch it. Most of it came out, and if I work it a little more, I don't think it will show, and I like the design just fine without that outer border.
Progress is still slow, but I'm still trying to keep at it.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Movie Lines...?

Still slow, but still enjoying stitching it.
Love the flowers on the vine along the sides.
Getting to spend a few hours stitching and watching Dark Shadows has become my very favorite time to relax. Had to re-watch the 23rd set again since I'd forgotten where I was in the story.
Watching the 24th of 26 sets now.

I keep trying to think of some movie line to substitute for this sampler text.
Has to be short. The only movie I think of when I see the woman standing next to the house is "Gone with the Wind". The line - 'I'll never go hungry again', just doesn't seem right.
Haven't seen 'Hush Hush Sweet Charlotte' for a while. Seems like she stood outside a grand house in a few scenes.
Any ideas for classic movies with a woman standing outside a grand house with a short classic line of dialog?

Friday, November 5, 2010

A Little More

A little more here and there.
At the moment there is just very little time in the day to stitch.
When I have found a few stitching moments, I've really been enjoying stitching this pattern.
Maybe because it's a little tree here, and a flower there. A couple of threads of this or that color, and time to switch to something else.

Wasn't real sure about that outside border..., and think that the pattern would hold up nicely without it. But I'm trying to follow the pattern, and figure I can always stitch it again with changes. Easy to say that about a pattern that I am enjoying stitching.

And even though I haven't had time to stitch, and it looks like it will stay that way for the next two months, I still have lots of ideas of stitching projects. So I may not get to stitch every day at the moment, but stitching ideas are still in my thoughts.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Oh So Slow

Not much more to show - only one day of actual stitching.
Did get to the local needlework shop, and bought Weeks - Mocha for the woman's hair.
It's also used on the bird, and on some abstract flying birds, all things that I haven't stitched yet.

And I noticed that the text is stitched over one according to the pattern directions.
Since I'm stitching the whole thing over one, I'm sure that will hang me up when I get to that section. Till then I can enjoy stitching other areas, and not even think about it.
I'll fuss with the text till I can figure something else out when I get to that section.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Start of Keep Me Sampler

Here's my first progress photo for the 'Keep Me Sampler' from Moira Blackburn.
I love her designs, and this is the first pattern of hers that I've stitched.

I've really enjoyed stitching this so far. The poor woman has no hair at the moment. I think that the color called for looks green, and I'm not ready to give the woman green hair.

Stitching it on 28 count even weave, one over one. The pattern has some text at the bottom, and to be honest, I haven't looked yet to see if stitching the rest of the pattern over one will goof me up when I get to the text. Pattern calls for some Weeks and some DMC floss, and so far I'm using what the pattern calls for. If I get to the text and it's a problem, I'll just change that.

It should finish under 9 inches square.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

C30 Alphabet UFO

Here's the progress photo for the UFO that I was working on.
I rounded the corner, and added a couple of letters.
It's going to have to spend more time in the UFO pile because where I'm stitching, the light really isn't nice enough to relax while stitching on black.
Just as a note to myself, the last time I worked on this was June 2009.

Out of a random grab of floss, patterns, and fabric, I've found a nice project to work on while I'm here. It's always fun to start something new.
But I'm still learning that trick about finishing what I start...

Monday, October 11, 2010

Acknowledge Failure

Because it's nice to celebrate victories, it's also good to acknowledge failures.
So since I'm tossing this into the burn pile, I need a quick photo and to write why so I don't do the same thing in the future.
The plan was to use the same colors as Frederick for Frederika. Make the border diamonds match to tie them together. Stitch it on the same green lugana.
The plan was good, but somewhere things started slipping. The wing color wasn't going to pop. The leaf yellow, which is also the sun yellow, slips into the green. I laid out the bird floss, but when stitching the bird, the colors just are not working for me.
So it took about 12 days to get me this far, and I'd rather burn it than think 'yuck' with every stitch. It's not the pattern, it was my color translation that is the failure.

So I'm stitching on another UFO, and working on finishing the berry border on it.
And I didn't think - 'yuck' - while stitching at all today.

It seems like every lamp at my mothers house has 40 watt bulbs to stitch next to.
Finally found a 75 watt bulb, and I can stitch a little more.

Thursday, September 30, 2010

4 pages completed - Reptiles

4 of 15 pages completed for Reptiles pattern.
Can't seem to take a consistent photo. First they are too light, then too dark.

A trip to the dentist, and a pulled tooth slowed my usual stitching and blog posting.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Page 3 completed - Reptiles

Since Saturday is my other posting day, and I actually managed to finish another full page on Reptiles, here is the update photo.

Page 3 of 15 completed.

I'm really happy with the way this one is progressing, but all I can think about is color.
Going to try to finish that page in the top row.

St. Sylvestre - Framed

Long Dog Samplers -St. Sylvestre - finished and framed.
Frame from Michaels.
The photo in the other post shows this in the group of four all framed the same.

Group Of Four

Here's a quick photo with the group of four together.

Top Left - Ink Circles - Bramble and the Rose
Top Right - Ink Circles - Growth Rings
Bottom Left - Long Dog Samplers - St. Sylvestre
Bottom Right - Ink Circles - Quaker Floral Puzzle

All stitched one over one, on 25 count black lugana, with Weeks Dye Works Whiskey floss.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010


Since Wednesday is my usual day to post, and I'm trying to get back to a normal schedule, this is my post.

I haven't been able to finish another page on Reptiles, not even close, so no new photo.
Hoped to get St Sylvestre framed, but that didn't get done either.

Spending most of my time trying to figure out the computer, and also driving to appointments.
The driving makes me tired, so I just want to sleep by the time I get back home each day.
And after doing this schedule for two weeks, it changes just as my body was getting it all figured out.

So the stitching is falling to the side at the moment. At least until I can stay awake.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Page 2 completed

Page 2 of 15 completed.

Back on-line again, but totally confused with the programs that won't work on the new computer.

And no more Outlook Express?!?!?!?! Really??? What were they thinking?

Monday, September 13, 2010

Page 1 of 15

Page 1 of 15 completed for Escher's Reptiles. The magnet shows the pattern.
Starting this while the other design isn't finished seems odd. I'll still work on Drawing Hands a page here and there between projects, but not constantly. This one already has some depth and feeling, so stitching it will be more interesting.

Friday, September 10, 2010

St Sylvestre - Finished

Long Dog Samplers - St. Sylvestre - Finished.
Stitched one over one using Weeks Dye Works - Whiskey floss.
Used almost 24 yards of floss to complete.
Stitched on 25 count black lugana.
Second time stitching this pattern.
There is a mistake in the pattern on one of the border arrow points.
Only changes I made to the pattern was to correct the pattern error, and widen the all the smaller wheel arrows by adding stitches to make them balanced and symmetrical.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Completed page 7

Completed page 7 of 15.
I think that this pattern will be my least favorite to stitch. It just doesn't have the life in it, and I don't have a clue why some do and some don't. Part of me thinks I should stick with it and finish it, and part of me knows that the next fabric is already gridded out for another Escher design, and I could just move on.

On another note - my computer bit the dust completely. Guess I'll find out if I backed up the right files or not. I already know that I lost the pattern for my first sampler that I just stitched.
So glad that I was finished with it, and I guess it will be a one-of-a-kind after all.

The upside is that without the computer, I'm getting more stitching done.
Back working on St. Sylvestre, and should have it completed in just another day or two.

Up to episode 1054 on Dark Shadows. Less than 200 episodes left to watch.
It's been really enjoyable to stitch while mostly listening to it. Something happens every episode, and the cliffhangers are great, and keep me moving along in the series. I'm going to miss the characters at the end. Like reading a good book, and knowing once it's over - that they aren't coming back to tell you more new stories and adventures.

Completed pages 5 and 6

Completed pages 5 and 6 of 15.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

St. Sylvestre progress again

St. Sylvestre progress again.
Always love stitching the circle and arrow sections.
Just need to get done stitching this - especially since I have the frame already.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

First Sampler - Framed

First Sampler finished and framed.
Frame is 16 x 13 inches from Kohls - cost to frame $15.
From drawing it in January - to finished and framed by the end of August.
It really was a perfect frame for this piece.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

First Sampler - Finished

First Sampler - Finished.

Stitched with dmc 815 floss, one over one. Used 42 meters of floss.
Stitched on antique white jobelan 28 count.
Finished size - 13.75 x 11 inches.

Okay, for the confessional.

Calling it 'First Sampler' shows no imagination, but I have to call it something.
First implies Second. Since I'm pretty happy with the actual stitched version, I'm pretty sure that I'd give it another try.
The only point that I goofed was to not notice the missing 'I' in the top alphabet till after I stitched the 'H'. So the top alphabet could have been centered better, but unless you are really nitpicking, it's not real obvious that it's not perfectly centered.
I've always liked the red lions, and had already drawn them into the pattern when I re-watched the British version of Pride and Prejudice. When they all go to the first dance, the carriages are shown outside. The name of the place where the dance is held is 'The Red Lion'. Even though I've seen it several times, I didn't remember that.
Couldn't include a date on the sampler - it just didn't look right, or looked like a memorial.
My initials are in the center. Tried to fill in around them with more flowers and leaves and vines, but it looked too busy. I'm not thrilled with the initial area, but I do like the letter font, and maybe I could have done something different there, but the initials are simple, and they work.
I couldn't believe how many fussy little changes I made while stitching. Since the patterns was drawn out, I expected very few changes, and I was wrong. But each of the fussy little changes I made to my pattern made it just a little bit better.

Thanks to Susan for letting me bounce my ideas off of her. Having a fresh, honest opinion was helpful.

For my first shot at laying out an entire pattern, I'm very happy with the finished project.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

40 meters of floss

This is after 40 meters of floss.
And time to move the hoop again.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Move the Hoop

At least I can see the end now, sort of....
It was time to move the hoop, so a quick progress photo.

Back to watching Dark Shadows again, and past episode 900 today.
So I can see the end of that coming soon too, sort of...

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Page 4 completed

Page 4 of 15 completed.

Still doesn't have any life to it, other than the pencil.
Used the first 8 meters of white.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Page 3 Completed

Completed page 3 of 15.

With flash it's crazy bright, without the flash it's dark.

It still doesn't really look like anything. Can't decide whether to go up or left next.

Probably switching back to one of the UFOs to get a break from this.
But it would be nice to finish a couple of more pages - so I don't have a clue what I'm doing.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Second Page Completed

Page 2 of 15 for the pattern Drawing Hands completed last night.

Spent today on the phone with internet provider, trying to sort out my modem after a storm last night. It's working at half the speed that it should be, so there's still more to try and figure out.
I'd rather be stitching....

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Doesn't Look Like Much

It sure doesn't look like much, but it's the start of Escher's Drawing Hands.
Completed the first page of 15 pages, or 2500 stitches of 49000.
The corner of the sheet of paper.

I thought that stitching all that white on white would drive me crazy, but when you pointed out that stitching black on black might be worse, it made me laugh, and I had to agree. Stitching black on black would be a bigger nightmare for me.

This pattern called for 40 meters of white, or 5 skeins of dmc, and so my teeth are clenching thinking about all those white stitches. The past patterns have been accurate, so I expect it will use most of that 40 meters.

I gridded the fabric for this pattern and also the next Escher pattern out of the same 17 x 28 - 25 count lugana. So about $4 each for fabric since I could split the fabric down the middle.
As a reminder to myself - stitched the grid with Coats and Clark black quilting thread.
It's heavier than regular thread, and doesn't bleed onto the fabric.

It took about 3 days to do the first 300 stitches, and try to find that stitching groove again.
I still haven't found that groove yet, but it's getting better.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Ewe Alone - Finished

Sheepish Designs - Ewe Alone - Finished.
Stitched on African Daisy jobelan 28 count with DMC floss, one over one.
Finished size is 3 3/4 x 4 5/8 inches.

Changes - Omitted border, alphabet is suppose to be blue not green, changed pot from brown to red, changed the center of large blue flower to lighter blue instead of the cream of the sheep.
Omitted some of the flower stitches, and changed a few flower colors that just didn't seem right.

If I was going to stitch it again, consider other colors for the birds, and maybe the flower buds.
Slightly lighter grass so the sheep can pop just a little more.
Maybe my floss colors are just off because some of the floss is old.

It is really lovely stitched on yellow, but this photo doesn't show that because of the camera flash.
I'm saying I might change this or that, but it was fun to stitch.
Just changing a few things, it could have a different look to the same pattern.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Rounded The Corner

Rounded the top corner.
It WILL fit into the frame that I bought for it. Hooray!
It will have under an inch on each side as a spacing, so it will be perfect for the frame. Now I just have to finish designing it and stitching it.

At this point I've used exactly 32 meters of floss.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Painfully Slow

It just seems like it is painfully slow progress at this point.
I did add the icons at the end of the alphabet above the big number.
The empty spot is for my initials, but it seems like it needs something more than just the initials, so that part isn't settled yet. Need to just stitch the parts that aren't changing.
Guess I need to finish stitching that "X" too... oops!

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Simple and Beautiful

When the local grocery store is selling roses for $6 a dozen, I needed roses.
( That 12th rose is hiding behind another rose. )
Sometimes you just have to treat yourself to something simple and beautiful.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Just Keep Stitching

It's starting to look like an alphabet sampler finally.
There will be something at both ends of the long alphabet above the big numbers - what I had in the design looked too heavy.

This is just over 24 meters of floss.
Five alphabets and two number sets completed.

It measures exactly 14 inches from side to side. Stitched one over one.
Works in the frame from side to side, but still don't know about top to bottom yet.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Time to move the hoop

Progress photo while I move the hoop to the next area.
Still 90 degrees in the house at midnight.
Nearly to the left hand side, and the other corner.
I still don't think I'm halfway yet.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Total So Far

Total So Far -
16 meters of dmc floss
2 completed alphabets
2 competed number sets.

It's not going very quickly. Slow and steady.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Filling it in

Filling in my sampler. Stitching the side border helped to define the side.
Only one completed alphabet of at least nine alphabets - still a long way to go.

Bought a frame for this project, so I'm committing to the finished size.
I hope that the frame will fit, but I have to finish stitching two sides to know for sure.

Long Dog Samplers - Do Bears - Framed

Long Dog Samplers - Do Bears - Framed.

11 x 11 inch frame from Kohls - $12.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Progress on Sampler

After 3 days of stitching, it's coming right along.
This is the first 8 meters of dmc floss.
Making lots of little changes as I stitch.
Still hard to see what it will look like overall, especially when I'm not done drawing it yet.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

More Progress and a New Start

More progress on St. Sylvestre.
The photo before this has two different wheel arrows, because I changed the pattern on one side, and not the other. This photo has that mess cleaned up, and also a pattern error fixed. I'm sure I didn't even notice the pattern error the first time I stitched it. ( Pattern error is on page 1 - left side arrow swirl )
Actually I'm stitching it upside down, so I'm stitching pages 1 and 2 even if it looks like 3 and 4, and that only adds to my confusing descriptions.

Just had to start stitching my alphabet sampler.
My thought is that if all those little girls had to make samplers, then I could too.
So it's my learning sampler. Those first few stitches were scary. The leaf border is going to take forever to stitch, but I love the leaf border.
What I'm sure I will learn from this is about spacing, but after a few stitches, especially in red on white, there's no changing it. I'm sure I could have tightened up the design overall, but learning where to tighten and still keep it all in balance is part of the trick.

Skipped TWO whole days of stitching over the weekend.
Redesigning the other sampler is a nightmare, because there are so many errors in the original pattern.

Friday, July 9, 2010

St Sylvestre - progress continues

Quick update on Friday, so I can skip posting on Saturday.
This is 10 yards of floss so far. This is the second time I'm stitching this pattern.
I still love stitching the arrow bars and arcs.

I have the frame ready and waiting, so I'd like to finish this.
But the Sheepish Design looks like it might be easy to finish too.

Running out of Dark Shadows to watch. Watching the first 209 episodes at the moment, and have seen 150 of those now. Ah - Life without cable tv.

MC Escher - Hand with Reflecting Globe - Framed

Hand with Reflecting Globe from Cross Stitch Collectibles and MC Escher - Framed.

Cost to frame - $14 for the 11 x 13 frame from Kohls and $1 for the black suede, black core mat.
$15 total.

Not a great photo, but it took 24 photos to get one without a flash on the glass.
Hooray - they are finished and framed.

MC Escher - Portrait of an Engineer - Framed

Portrait of an Engineer from Cross Stitch Collectibles and MC Escher - Framed.

Cost to frame - $14 for the 11 x 13 inch frame from Kohls, and $1 for the black suede, black core mat. $15 total.

He's still my favorite.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

MC Escher - Mosaic - Framed

Mosaic from Cross Stitch Collectibles and MC Escher - Framed.

Cost to frame - more than usual, because I needed a piece of black suede mat.
So I paid a crazy $10 for the frame sized mat, and $14 for the 11 x 13 inch frame from Kohls.
$24 total. Ouch. Well, the cross stitch pattern was free, maybe it averages out.

AMAP - Alphabet Hornbook Noir - Framed

A Mon Ami Pierre - Alphabet Hornbook Noir - Finished and Framed.

From the final stitches with the needle in the morning, to fully framed before dark.
Cost to frame $7. Frame from Gordmans.

Alphabet Hornbook Noir - Finished

A Mon Ami Pierre's Alphabet Hornbook Noir - Finished.

Stitched on 28 count antique white jobelan, one over one with Weeks Dye Works - Strawberry Fields floss. Used approximately 9 yards of 6 strand floss.
Finished size is 5 1/2 square.

Changes? Little stitches here and there, nothing really worth mentioning.

Started drawing out letter "D" sampler from Gigi.
I've always wanted to add more letter 'd' or 'D' of random fonts to the pattern.
Also add 'D' words or motifs.
So yesterday I drew a Duesenberg automobile motif for the pattern.
( I'll bet you could read every stitching blog, and I'm the only person drawing out a Duesenberg motif for a sampler. )
I recently started listening to a couple of french mp3's and the titles to those songs will work and be part of the design.
Anything that I can add that makes it more personal - the better.
So words like 'for Donatella' ( who's Donatella??? ) and 'Welcome' will be omitted from my version.
Long way to go before the first stitch.
D is a large design - stitch count is 450 x 352.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Alphabet Hornbook Noir - Start

Start of AMAP - Alphabet Hornbook Noir.
Stitched with leftover Strawberry Fields floss, on scrap of 28 count antique white jobelan.
Started out with 20 yards of floss. Hope that will be more than enough.
I never have a clue how much floss something will take.

I didn't think I'd like this combination of fabric and floss. But I'm trying to use it up, and wear it out. But the more I've stitch it, it's taking on a very feminine soft feeling.
I suppose it's all the pink and flowers.

This should fit into one of the 7 inch frames that I bought this week.

Willow Tree Sampler - Framed

Framed and finished Willow Tree Sampler from Barrick Samplers.
First personalized tribute sampler to a woman that I never met.
$5.00 5 x 7 frame from Target.

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

BOAF - Alphabet Sampler - Framed

Alphabet Sampler from Birds of a Feather - Framed.
Fit nicely in a $5. - 5 x 7 frame from Target.

Shopped for frames yesterday, but didn't find much.

Started stitching a HAED. Took 3 days to grid the material for the pattern.
Not sure if I'm going to stitch it or not. I'm trying a corner design to get a sense of the scale.
It's 56 pages, and I'm working on 4 pages as a test. Will post a photo - but at the moment, it's just random stitches, and doesn't look like anything.

At the moment I have three WIP with all the floss out, and it feels like chaos.