Sunday, March 16, 2014

Stitching With Friends, Part One

Hello, friends!  I'm so ashamed to see that it's been 15 + months since my last post. So much has happened within my family during that time. And, for much of the time, my stitching mojo all but vanished. I will do another post with all the personal stuff. Today, I wanted to talk about stitching.
I guess my personal life settled down enough last fall to where I was feeling a strong need to to get back to doing the things that make me happy, namely stitching, knitting, sewing, reading, etc.

I have SO many projects literally screaming for attention. I am kind of back into my old rotation of a different project for each day of the week. I always refer to it as my stitching attention deficit disorder. I've tried working exclusively on one project at a time, but then I'm always wanting to work on something else, so this satisfies my need for variety. It's not the perfect solution, I have lots of days where I am just too tired to pick up a needle, or even turn the pages of a book. But, most days, I try to do a little something, which is better than nothing at all. Even a few new stitches is progress, right?
The title of this post seemed appropriate. It seems like a common "thread" pun intended...with my different projects is that I've either started them with a group of friends, or am stitching along with a friend. I have so many stitching friends that I've made through the years...many online friends that I've never even met, friends in my guild, friends through the local needlework shop. I am currently working on projects within each of these groups.
I currently have probably 12 projects that I'm actually working on. I won't drag out this post with all of them, just a picture and blurb about the ones that I'm doing with friends. I will share the others in a future post.
Without further ado, I will devote today's post to projects I'm working on with my online friends.
My first little project is a very sweet little mystery sampler that was presented in nine parts last fall by Paulette Stewart of Plum Street Samplers, called Mary's Sampler. To be exact, I am doing Mary's Sampler II, which was stitched on black fabric.  Because I had so much going on last fall, I kitted and started Mary, but never quite got going on her. So, she went on my 2014 "to be stitched" list. I work on her on Sundays, in the early afternoon , when the light is good. Stitching on the black can be quite tricky. Today is Sunday, so Mary and I will be getting together this afternoon, and I plan to finish parts 7&8, which will leave me two Sundays in March, and I plan to have her finished!  An actual's been a long time since I've had one. My good friend Sherri Berkman of Total Framing framed Paulette's Mary, and Sherri will be framing mine. I used the called for Lakeside Linens "Black  Forest", and all of the called for threads.
Here is Mary's Sampler:

Next up is Blackbird Designs' "Anniversaries of the Heart". I started this three or four years ago, I've lost track. I need to figure that out, it's going to bother me...
It is beautiful, beautiful, and broken into small, monthly blocks that should have been easily finished long ago. I think I get bogged down with it because it's one of those designs that you have to really pay attention to, with all the vines, and color changes, etc.  Not much mindless fill in while you watch tv on this one. My friend Vonna, The Twisted Stitcher, has started working on her Anniversaries again, as have I, so, I hope seeing her progress will keep me going. 
Here are several photos of my progress:
Entire piece so far.
January block
February block
Bonus block
March block
April block
May block
June block
July block, in progress
October block
Please excuse all the wrinkles and terrible photography!  And, some of the blocks have threads still hanging where I haven't done the personalizations. In this sampler, each block has spaces to add initials of loved ones, and important dates.  I'm going back and doing all of that at the end, I just wanted to get the "bones" in first. 
As if I really needed to get involved with another large project...some people in a Facebook stitching group started talking in late 2013 about starting a new sampler on January 1, 2014. As soon as I saw it, I knew I had to join the fun!  The sampler is Barbara Ana's "Two Snooty Parrots". The group has, I think, 300 or more members, around the world!  Members have made scissor fobs from parrot charms found at Hobby Lobby. Barbara Ana even designed two small free charts exclusively for group members, and a printed fabric we can purchase for making things like sewing bags. 
I have just about completed one of the free designs, which I will either make into a needle case, or an ornament to commemorate this fun time.
Here is my progress on the freebie:
Oh, and my scissor fob is in the picture.
Our group leader, Terri, who is very organized, divided the chart into monthly sections, to give us guidelines and goals for finishing within the year.  My childhood issue of coloring within the lines surfaced, and I decided I would have to complete the border first, just to make sure it matched when I got around to the other side.  Then, fill in the monthly sections later.  As you can see, I haven't gotten very far with my border.
The fabric I'm using is a beautiful linen by Picture This Plus, called Legacy. 36 count.
The last project I'm stitching with an online friend is Blackbird Designs' 2011 Loose Feathers  series, Summer, Autumn, and Winter, all stitched on one piece of linen...I think I used the called for R& R 30 count Irish Creme.  It's been a long time since I bought it....I am using all of the called for threads. I have been working on this since the charts came out, fairly regularly. I recently saw where my good friend Lois, of Needles, Pins and Stitching Things, had begun working on her sampler again after a hiatus.  So, we have decided to stitch along for moral support.
Here is mine:
And that, dear friends, is all I will share with you today. I will post my other projects, and family news in upcoming posts, and I promise it will be soon. 
Have a Happy Saint Patrick's Day, and for those who are expecting snow, as we are tonight, just remember the first day of Spring is just a few days away!
Until next time...

Monday, December 3, 2012

Back From the Framer's

I haven't posted for a very long time.  I thought some images of my newly framed pieces would make a great subject to get me back in circulation!

First, is "Wild Garden" by Blackbird Designs. 

This came as a kit, packaged in a little tin.  I kept the date that was charted, 1920, changed the initials to those of my grandma Gladys Stewart, who would have been 13 years old that year, and would have loved this sampler.  She taught me how to sew and knit, and I inherited her love of needlework and pretty things.

Next is my Mystery Sampler, by With Thy Needle and Thread.   I only wish you could see this in person, the frame is absolutely magnificent with this piece.

Next is Cape Cod's Girls, by Primitive Needle.  I love the way this turned out!  I couldn't see the splotches in the linen as I was stitching, but the frame really brings them out. 

Next is my alphabet sampler, by Carriage House Samplings.  I stitched all of the individual letters on one piece of linen, and used Kathy's 2 additional blocks at the bottom, and her border.  It is wonderful, the frame is perfect. 

Last, but not least, is Village of Hawk Run Hollow.  I have no words for this one.  I am verklempt!  Tears....

Thanks for looking!  I have a couple of show and tell occasions this week, then get the happy job of deciding  where to hang them!

Hope you have a great week!  I'll try to not stay away so long!

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Happy Easter!

Hope you've had a wonderful Easter Sunday!  My 2 oldest kids weren't home for Easter, so my husband, son and I went to Cracker Barrel for a mid-afternoon meal, seemed silly to go to a  lot of trouble cooking for just the 3 of us.  It was nice, and we had a lot of fun.  Not our normal Easter Sunday, but enjoyable.  The rest of the day, I've spent watching movies, stitching, and doing a little laundry.  And, I'm off again tomorrow!

My sweet little tree is dressed in her Easter finery, and brings a smile to all who see her. 
Have a wonderful week!

Friday, March 16, 2012

It's Not Nice to Fool With Mother Nature

Remember that old margarine commercial?  I've remembered that quote, and like to throw it around every now and then.

Even though there is still technically almost a week of winter left, as far as Mother Nature is concerned, it's spring.

I was fortunate enough to have a day off from work today to get outside with my husband, my dog, and 1 of my cats-my cats are indoor cats, but my Maine Coon, Bob, is allowed outside with supervision.  My husband and I did a little yard clean-up, burned some brush and leaves, and I took a few pictures of some beauty spots in my yard.  As you'll see, Lucy is camera-shy, and turns her head every time she sees me about to take a picture!  Bob is a little more hammy.  And, I'm not advertising for ADT alarms, just sharing my daffys!

Hope you're enjoying your day, and have a wonderful weekend!