Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Excuses, Excuses

I know, I know.  I haven't posted in a while, something like two weeks.  But I got sidelined with a cold, my first one in over three years.  That kind of threw me for a loop, and since it was a head cold, there was very little stitching going on.  Then I got busy doing who knows what and the next thing I know it's been two weeks since I paid any attention to the blog. 

Well, now I'm back, so no more excuses.  First and foremost, I'd like to welcome my new followers and thank all of my followers for their kind comments.  That must be every blogger's dream - to receive affirming comments.  So thank you!

The scrapbook is coming along, but slowly.  I have three more pages planned out in my head and am confident that I'll be finished well before my self-imposed deadline of December 15.  I'm not sure if I'm "into" scrapbooking, but I do know that the completed project will be something that my family will enjoy and treasure.  No photos right now, but I'll post some when I'm done so that you can admire my lovely work.

I did get a little framing done and it turned out good.  Just a simple, inexpensive store-bought frame and some foam core board and pins and here it is!
I'm glad that I was completely over that rotten cold in time to go to this month's Stitch Day, which was held last Saturday at Marti's house.  Marti was a great hostess, welcoming us into her home and providing a a delicious barbecue lunch.  Her husband made the barbecue, so he also gets a big "thank you".  Let's not forget Peggy's delicious dessert!  We also got to meet her adorable cats who were present throughout the day.  As usual, the day flew by, but I did get quite a bit of stitching done.
Lots of progress done on "Folk Eggs".  Do you think I'll have it finished and framed by Easter?  Ha ha.

I also want to mention that Marti has her own cross stitch design business and web page - Marti Harrington Design!  Way to go, Marti!  Looks good!

Some good news:  Bluebirds have decided to take up residence in the bluebird house that Mark made last summer!  We've been seeing them periodically for the past couple of weeks hanging around by the house, and last weekend, Mark braved a peek inside and saw nesting materials.  I just saw them again this morning, busily going in and out of the house.  I haven't been able to get a photo yet, but I'm determined to.

Have a fun Halloween!  I'll leave you with a fun Halloween finish that I did last year!

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Not Very Timely TUSAL

Oops, I'm a day late for this month's TUSAL.  That's all right.  At least I'm posting, unlike, ahem, last month when I didn't TUSAL at all.  I did make some stitching progress, and therefore Mr. Peanut has a few more fibers. 
Gotta Love Mr. Peanut
For those of you who have wondered, TUSAL stands for Totally Useless Stitch-A-Long, and is sponsored by Daffycat.

Blog Hop #10 - Love/Hate Thread Relationship

The answer to the latest Blog Hop question came to me very quickly.

What’s your absolute least-favorite thread to work with? 

But I really hate to say it.  It's a lovely product.  The colors are rich and beautiful and using this thread adds a special touch to stitching.   OK, here goes.  Don't hate me.  It's metallic thread!  Any kind, any brand!  It lures me in with its beauty, but then gets me so mad with its fraying and bunching up.  Ugh.  I've tried all of the suggested methods for making this stuff easier to use, but to no avail.  From shorter lengths, to Thread Heaven (which helps me enormously with other threads), to using a certain kind of needle.  None of it has worked well for me.  Yet, when used successfully, these threads look so pretty in the finished product.  I am open to any and all suggestions not mentioned above which will help me overcome my disdain for metallic thread.

Many thanks to Loretta for bringing up questions such as this one.  I can see how it can benefit our stitching community to voice our stitching problems and frustrations and possibly get advice on what to do to make our stitching woes go away!

Visit all the blogs in this round of the Stitching the Night Away Stitching Blogger Blog Hop:
Find the instructions on how to participate in this round by clicking here.

Stitching the Night Away Stitching Bloggers Blog Hop

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Some Of This, A Little Of That

Lots of craftiness going on around here lately.  In a post last year, I whined talked about how I couldn't get started putting together the scrapbook I wanted to make about our London trip.  Some scrapbooker friends advised me to organize my materials and decide exactly what I wanted to put into the book.  I did just that this week, and finally started scrapbooking.  It's looking good, but certainly not the professional look that my talented friends achieve in their scrapbooks.  But I like it and have given myself a finishing goal for this project -- December 15.  Plus, I'm really enjoying doing this!  Take a look at the creative "organization".
On the stitching front, progress was made on "Folk Eggs".  I stitched quite a bit on egg #7 while watching a particularly bad baseball game.  I must say that I love Prairie Schooler.
I think I'm in the framing mode.  During a little fit of organization I discovered that I have some cross stitch finishes that need framing or further finishing (like ornaments).  One of these is "Seasonal Sampler" and I already have the frame for it.  So just getting the supplies out to frame it might propel me to do just that!  Do you think?  I also need to get online to my favorite framing supplier and order some items to frame a couple of other things.
And finally, not crafty at all, is sweet Cosmo taking a morning nap on the big cat bed.  Not a care in the world.

Monday, October 1, 2012

Blog Hop Time: Must-Have Stitching Tools

The Blog Hop Question today is:

What are your must-have stitching tools and aides? Other than your trusty scissors, of course. Is there a problem you have had when stitching that you created your own solution for, or have you purchased a tool that helped?

I started off this post thinking "There's not a lot that I need for stitching.  Just fabric, floss, a chart and a needle."  Then I thought some more and realized that I do indeed use many tools to make stitching the fun experience that it should be.  For example, while stitching on black fabric as I'm doing right now, my Clover tweezers and sticky roller are the most helpful implements!  Guess why.  Yes, because of my dear cats and their ever present flying fur.  Black fabric is just the biggest magnet for cat hair!
Then there's my star detailer, which is so helpful for anchoring a tiny thread-end securely and neatly.  Great invention.  An Ott light is a big help when my eyes are tired, though I don't use one all of the time.  And I might be in the minority here, but I love my hoops, especially Darice tension hoops.

Because I'm a fan of scissors, I love the scissors holder that my husband, Mark, made for me.  It keeps my scissors at the ready and also protects the tips.  He's also made these for several of my stitching friends.  This is the one that I keep by my side, with my Gingher Emily scissors resting inside.
Zippered project bags are another thing that helps me with my favorite hobby.  They keep my stitching clean and organized. 

So, yes, I do require quite a few stitching tools!  Anything to make an enjoyable pastime even more enjoyable!

Visit all the blogs in this round of the Stitching the Night Away Stitching Blogger Blog Hop:
Find the instructions on how to participate in this round by clicking here.

Stitching the Night Away Stitching Bloggers Blog Hop