Sunday, July 19, 2020

At Least I've Gotten Some Stitching Done

I've been away from my blog for far too long, so it's good to be back with a post. I haven't slacked at all on my stitching though. The rotation is still going well and really seems to be working for me.

I participated in a "Christmas In July" exchange in a Facebook group. We were to stitch an ornament and send it to our exchange person during the month of July. I chose this little Blue Ribbon Designs piece that I found in the Just Cross Stitch ornaments issue 2019. It's called "Trimming The Tree".

I enjoyed stitching this and it's one that I would stitch again for me.

"Bluebird Garden" by Artful Offerings is nearing a finish!
I have a bit more to do on the pedestal and then the border, and that's it. I'm using the called for colors on 32 count Jobelan in a khaki color. Fabric names escape me and this is one of them.

"Salute To Abigail" by Blackbird Designs also received a few stitches.
I am SO happy with this project. It's being stitched on 32 count linen in the color Mink by R&R. I remembered a fabric name! Congrats to me. I did do a floss conversion from the called for silks, and I think it's a pretty good one!

Here's Plum Street Samplers "Clementine".
Clementine looks a lot like a cat I used to have. The threads are a mix of DMC and overdyeds, but mostly the called for. The fabric is ???? Jobelan, 32 count.

It seems like I've been working on "Tulip's Praise" by Gracewood Stitches, Kathy Bungard for a loooooong time.
It's just a big project. I'm maybe 2/3 of the way done. It's being stitched on 18 count Jobelan in antique white and I'm using all DMC, which is what it calls for.

My former "unicorn chart" is up next. This is "Easter Parade" by Blackbird Designs.
Isn't he the cutest rabbit? The fabric is 28 count Jubilee in the color "Northern Skies" by Sugar Maple Fabrics. I have never used Jubilee fabric before but I like it. It's pretty heavy, and reminds me a little of canvas. I chose it because I can't look at this fabric without thinking Easter!

And then we have an actual FFO! I finished stitching "Fragments In Time 2018" by Summer House Stitch Workes.
Then I finished it into a little pillow/pincushion! I'm very happy with the backing fabric because it goes so well with the design, AND it was in my fabric stash. I trimmed it with some chenille trim and filled it with crushed walnut shells, which is my filling of choice. This will be a gift.

I also did this.
When was the last time I planted flower seeds? This really brightens up my deck.

So that's all of the stitching for now. I am working on a non stitching project that I'll be back soon to tell you about. Until then, happy stitching!

Saturday, June 6, 2020

Stitchmaynia My Way

So Stitchmaynia 2020 is now in the books. For those who aren't familiar with this yearly stitching event, I'll explain. Stitchmaynia was created by a couple of stitchers (who I believe run the Stitchmaynia Facebook group) in 2015. Its purpose was to encourage stitchers to start a new project each day in May.

Now many of us stitchers love to start new projects. For me, though, 31 new projects is just too overwhelming. Last year I did WIPmaynia, where I worked on a different project each day. Other people also modified their Stitchmaynia plans to, for example, starting new projects on the first 15 days. This year I decided to do what I did back in 2018 -- start a new stitching project on the first of May, and then another one on each of the Mondays in May. Five new starts sounded perfectly reasonable to me.

My first new start on May 1st was "Gathering Basket" by Blackbird Designs. I chose 28 count Jubilee fabric in the color "Rendezvous" by Sugar Maple Fabrics and I'm stitching it in most of the called-for colors. I love this project and cannot wait to get back to it.
The first Monday project start was "American Coast", a kit by Chessie & Me. It came with 36 count linen and all of the threads, which happen to be silk. I didn't put a big dent into this start even though I stitched on it for several days. Cute project though.
The next Monday I started "Fragments In Time 2018" by Summer House Stitch Workes". By contrast to my previous Monday start, I made considerable progress on this! I would say that I have probably 75% of it done. No idea why. I'm stitching it on 32 count evenweave in a neutral beige color. I have a lot of unidentified fabric in my stash that I use even if I don't know the name of it. I'm using a combination of overdyeds and DMC for this one.
Monday #3 was time to start "Clementine" by Plum Street Samplers. Oh, that teeny-tiny start. I was working on another project at the time and was glad to get this much done! It's being stitched on another unidentified fabric, 32 count neutral and I changed many of the colors to what I had "in stock".
Finally, on the last Monday in May, my project choice was "Seasonal Bouquets" by The Sunflower Seed. I've had this pattern for a long time and have always intended to stitch it, so now was the time. I'm stepping out of my stitching comfort zone for this one, stitchy friends. That fabric you see is 40 count! I'm such a daredevil! The color is Desert Taupe and it's from Colours & Cotton. Really, though, the color is a pearl gray to me and a beautiful color to stitch the summer bouquet on. I'm using all of the recommended DMC threads. The pattern comes with little triangular buttons to sew onto the flower pots, but I don't know if they'll fit because I'm stitching it on such a small count fabric. It's fine either way.
Here's what I have decided about 40 count fabric. I think I can stitch on it comfortably in a light color, but probably not a darker color. That's fine. I really like the tiny stitches and the way this is coming out.

Here's to a successful Stitchmaynia, done my way. These five new starts brings my WIP total to 23 and that's about all I can handle comfortably. I need to get some finishes in! Actually I do have a finish that I have not shown here, so I'll save that for next time. I hope you enjoyed seeing these new starts! Happy Stitching!

Thursday, May 7, 2020

April Stitching Wrap-Up

Here's what I want to know: Just where did April go? How could it fly by so quickly? I must have had my nose in my stitching the entire time because I have no idea.

I do know that I've done a lot of stitching. Oh, and cleaning and going through stuff in my house. I think a lot of people are doing that. I've seen questions online about where to take donated items right now. I even cleaned out my laundry room. I planted flower seeds and am attempting to "root" romaine lettuce. I'm watching old episodes of Project Runway and Top Chef.

But back to the stitching. I found an old project that I totally forgot about. It's the Tortoise and The Hare by Prairie Schooler. I don't know what happened there, if it just got misplaced or what. But it's a cute design and I had enough done that I was interested enough in continuing it.
Plus, the colors are so pretty! I'm stitching this on 20 count white Jobelan, with DMC in the called-for colors.

I worked on one of my favorite WIPs, Bluebird Garden by Artful Offerings.
The entire body of the bird is finished. Now I just have to stitch his pedestal and the rest of the flowers. Oh, and the border.

Just for fun, I decided to start something. This is Turkey Bay by Plum Street Samplers.
 I originally saw this on the wall at Dyeing To Stitch in Virginia Beach, VA. It was stitched one over one on 25 count fabric, and I just loved the way it looked and instantly purchased the chart! I'm stitching it two over one on 20 count evenweave. I was happy with my progress after only two days of work.

How about a finish?! I finished stitching Little House Needleworks Sampler Month July.This chart came in a pack of two charts, July and August, and included the floss for both projects.
It was stitched on a 28 count mystery linen in a neutral color. I know exactly how I would like to finished this, so stay tuned! The "August" chart will be a start in the near future.

I framed my Barn Cats finish.
This Prairie Schooler finish is so cute, and I found the perfect frame for it in my stash.

And last but not least is my birthday start. Yes, I had a birthday last week and decided on a major start.
It's Cardinal Points by Long Dog Samplers. I'm stitching it on white Edinburgh 36 count linen, 2 over two in the called for Gentle Art threads. It doesn't look like much, but I'm really happy with my start.

So now on to Stitchmaynia. I'm doing my own version. I started a new project on May 1st, and then will start a new one on each Monday in May. I'll include those in my next post. I'll also continue working on a WIP rotation in between starts, so I'll also be doing WIPmaynia. It keeps it interesting and fun.

I hope you're getting in some stitching and enjoying the process as much as I am. It's good to have something to focus on, especially right now. I hope you're doing well, and you come back to visit my blog again!

Saturday, April 4, 2020

Sheltering & Stitching

It's hard to believe how much everything has changed since my last post. Just like all of you, we're doing everything we need to do to stay safe. The only place I've been to in the past two weeks is the grocery store. Because I qualify for the "senior hour" at our Kroger, I'm taking advantage of it. It's like that show Supermarket Sweep except I'm not knocking stuff off the shelves. I go in there armed with a good list of what I need and then I go through the store as efficiently and quickly as I can. No more leisurely shopping, looking at what's new, and accepting a sample of something delicious. It's a whole different world.

I feel lucky to have our hobby of cross stitch. I never get tired of it because I have different projects to work on. So as you can imagine, I've put in quite a few stitches in the past weeks!

I worked on "Holiday Cheer" by Sugar Stitches (on Etsy). It's the first chart in the 2019 Christmas Club.
I'm stitching it on the called-for fabric, 32 count linen in the color Gingerbread which looks a little more gingerbread-y in real life. These charts are going to make cute little ornaments.

"Tulip's Praise" by Gracewood Stitches got a few stitches.
It's always nice to see more progress on this big project. The fabric is 18 count Jobelan in off white.

Given the weird circumstances, I've given myself the license to start anything I want. I figure that would be a good treat. So I started "Easter Parade" by Blackbird Designs.
This was my "unicorn chart" for a long time and I was delighted when Blackbird Designs re-released it! I'm stitching it in the called-for colors, but the fabric is a bit of a departure. It's 28 count Jubilee fabric in the color Northern Skies. When I saw the fabric for the first time, I immediately thought "Easter!". 

"Barn Cats" by Prairie Schooler was the next project I worked on. I started a SAL, but didn't have many takers to join me. I do understand that Barn Cats isn't everyone's cup of tea! But I love it and started and finished it in record time.
He's so cute! I stitched it on 28 count mystery linen in a beige color and used all Victorian Motto threads. Today I found a frame in my framing supplies that is going to be perfect for him. So the next time I post, I should have an FFO to show.

I had another start and finish in March!
This sweet little free chart came from the blog La Comtesse & Le Point De Croix and you can find it HERE. While you're there, take some time to look at the beautiful work she does, both in her stitching and her finishing. There are a lot more cute free charts in her blog too. I stitched this one on 25 count natural linen one over one using Victorian Motto floss.

I plan to keep stitching away for the duration of our shelter in place. I am so optimistic that this will be over before we know it and slowly, slowly we will get back to normal. I hope that you are well and stay well. See you soon!

Saturday, March 7, 2020

Stitching Update

My rotation has kept rotating right along since I posted last. I restarted Country Cottage Needleworks' "Frosty Forest" in a way that I like a little better. I'm omitting one of the designs and an stitching it on one piece of fabric in two rows of four. Here's my start.
It's being stitched on 32 count Silvery Moon Lugana.

I also had a new start. Yes, I want to start everything. These Little House Needleworks charts have been calling to me for a while.
Each chart pack contains two month charts plus the floss. I've had these for a long time and thought that it was about time I stitched them. I started with July because I'm pretty sure I'll have it done before July. That's the theory anyway. I'm stitching this one on 28 count natural linen.

Next, I worked on "Berry Heart" by UB Designs.
I'm ok with stitching Christmas in March. In fact, I'm ok with stitching Christmas all year round. The trees are mostly done and I've started the vine which makes up the actual heart. The fabric is 28 count Sandcastle Jobelan.

"Salute To Abigail" by Blackbird Designs was up next.
I'm so happy with the way this one is looking. It does look a little washed out in this photo, but you can see the color variations. I'm stitching it on 32 count R & R linen in the color Mink.

More Christmas! Little House Needleworks' Farmhouse Christmas "Grandpa's Pick-up" is a fun stitch.
This is number three in the series. It's being stitched on 30 count linen, but I don't know the color name. I ordered all of the charts complete with the floss and linen.

I finished and FFO'd "Believe" by Dimensions! That makes two FFO's in two months. Let's see if I can keep that up. Never mind.
I used a frame that I bought at Joann's right after Christmas in their sale section. It had a wooden board that was imprinted with something Christmas-y, but I bought it mainly for the framing options. The piece itself is laced onto mat board. I covered a piece of foam core board with fabric and then put the stitched piece directly on that. A little red trim and then it was done!

I'm also working on an afghan. I've just completed blocks 5 and 6. That's out of 30 blocks, so I have a long way to go.
I'm enjoying this project and learning new crochet stitches in the process.

So not bad for a few weeks of stitching! Just a reminder. I have a Flosstube channel called CraftyCat Stitcher, which you can find HERE.  I have fun making these videos, just as I enjoy posting on my blog. I know that some people enjoy the blog more and some prefer to watch the videos. Either way, I hope that you come back to visit. And thank you for all of your kind comments!

Monday, February 17, 2020

Lots Of Stitching & A Finish! And An FFO!

After a pretty good few weeks of stitching, I have a couple of accomplishments! My WIP rotation is going well and I was able to put stitches into several projects.

I started out with "No Bees No Honey" by Birds Of A Feather.
Getting to the wording was a big deal. All that's left inside the box are the initial box and the date box. Then will be the outer wording and another border. So I can see a finish in this project's near future! The fabric is 20 count Jobelan in off white. All DMC threads.

"Quaker Diamonds" by Rosewood Manor was next.
Starting in the center with that biggest diamond makes it seem like I'm getting nothing done. But really, this section is a major area of the design. This is being stitched on 30 count linen in the color Flax. I'm stitching this with Gentle Arts threads instead of the called for silks.

The next project I worked on is a real cutie. It's "Small Animal Sampler" by Bobbie G Designs.
This design is perfect on 28 count black Jobelan. Again, I'm using all DMC in the called for colors.

I spent a few days stitching on "Rainbow Row" by CW Designs.
I am determined to get this page done, backstitching and all, before I go on to the next page. I'm using 32 count white Jobelan and the called for DMC for this. This is as close to full coverage as I want to get!

Last Saturday was a stitching meet-up nearby. I'm happy to report that I had an actual finish at the meet-up!
This is "Believe" by Dimensions. Sorry that I didn't iron it, but I was so excited to have an actual finish! This was a kit and I used the threads in it, but switched out the fabric for 28 count Jobelan in the color Lambswool. I'm in the process of deciding how to FFO it.

And now for the FFO! I had finished stitching "A Bluebird's Salute" by Luminous Fiber Arts and wanted to finish it in order to display it for patriotic holidays. I've always wanted to learn how to make a flat fold, and this seemed to be the right time. So I went to The Twisted Stitcher's tutorial "Finishing - A Simple Flatfold With Vonna, The Twisted Stitcher" and followed it step by step.

I used fabric and trim that I already had in my stash. This was a fun process and I am so happy with the way it turned out. I would definitely do another flat fold. Just go to Vonna's tutorial to find out how and give it a try yourself!

Thank you for visiting today! I'll be back with more stitching progress, so please stop by again.

Sunday, January 26, 2020

Stitching Rotation Explanation

January has been a very good stitching month. I've been rotating my projects with great results. With 15 WIPs going on right now, the rotation is the best way to manage them all. I read someone's comment (not on this blog) that a rotation was too confining. The way I rotate couldn't be farther from that definition! Let me explain how I do it. I stitch on a project for about three days, then choose another one. Stitch on that one for three days, then go on to another. That's it. Not complicated or confining at all! And guess what. If I want to go back to the first project next, then I do that. Oh, and if I want to stitch on something for four days, I can! Wow, I'm such a rebel.

Stitching is supposed to be fun, and a rotation is just a way to get a little stitching in on all of your projects. Make up your own rotation "rules". My "three days" time frame is just my own thing. Yours could be one day or two - or a week.

So what is the result of all of this rotating? Just look!

I worked on "Tulip's Praise" by Gracewood Stitches.
Yes, it's a huge project, but I'm now on the top row of tulips. It's stitched on 18 count evenweave in white or off white. Maybe a finish this year?

"Angel of Divinity Stocking" by Dimensions was up next.
I got a lot done on the back half of the lamb. Lots of light, pale colors in there! This is a kit and is being stitched on 18 count white aida.

I worked quite a bit on "Bluebird's Salute" by Luminous Fiber Arts at my last stitch day. Then I was really motivated to finish it!
So I have a finish! I know how I'm going to FFO it and will be able to show that in my next post. The fabric is 28 count white Jobelan.

I picked up Linen and Threads Mystery Sampler 2017. Yes, I know it's 2020.
I like this project a lot but am going to be so glad to get to the February portion. I'm stitching this on 32 count white Jobelan with my own DMC color combination.

I got a little framing done.
This is "The Light Upon The Lawn" by Blackbird Designs, and I finished stitching it late last year. I put it into this thrift store frame. Wasn't sure I was going to like the light frame color and thought about painting it, but I really like it! It's very nice to get something totally finished and ready to hang.

So January was a good month for stitching. There are a few days left. Let's see how much more progress I can make. How is your January going? Cold? Snowy? Maybe you need a dose of spring. These daffodils bloomed just before it was going to freeze so we cut them and brought them in.
It was a way to bring a little spring into the house when there's still about two more months of winter. These are just early daffodils. They always come up when winter is in full swing.

Thanks for visiting today! Happy stitching!