Monday, May 15, 2017

May's Gifted Gorgeousness

It's the 15th of May which means Memorial Day and the start of summer vacations here in the US is in two weeks.  I suppose the two days of temperatures in the 90s later this week are a warning test drive for the next few months.  The 15th also means that it's time for my Gifted Gorgeousness post.

Gifted Gorgeousness is hosted by Jo at Serendipitous Stitching and is a way for us to thank those that have given us stitching goodies or to show off pieces that we are giving as gifts or anything else we can shoehorn into the theme.  If you're interested in learning more, click here.  If that doesn't work, the icon in the left side bar should be clickable and take you right there.

Another huge thank you to Jo for the wonderful threads:

I have pinned the package up on my bulletin board and admire them whenever I look up.

I have spent most of my stitching time the last month working on A Glimpse of Santa a Christmas stocking for my niece-to-be.  I've decided to wait until it's finished before I go looking for all the sparkly bits that are supposed to be on it.  As of tonight, it looks like this:

No, I am not stitching it on its side, but for some reason Blogger is being stubborn and not letting me post it correctly.  Anyway, lots of white, beige and cream in this one so far.  I've gone in and done the light colored bits so I don't end up with dark fuzz on them due to stitching along side the darker bits.  I plan to start the tree on the right (bottom) side after I finish that one window pane and then I can do the backstitching around the window parts.  Lots more backstitching on the left (top) side for the wallpaper.  This is the third piece I've worked on that is backstitch heavy and I will be so glad to finish it.

The second piece I worked on is Carnations by Cross Stitch It.  This was one of the blocks from The Sampler Life SAL.  As it's a freebie from the designer, I am counting it as a gift.

This one is on its side too but it's not as noticeable.  I hope to finish off the blue and start filling in the flowers on Sunday when this comes out again. 

One last gift: 

No, it isn't stitched, but I had a great time putting it together.  DNiece and her fiance are very into board games so I sat down with a Scrabble game and started putting wedding/marriage/couple words together.  I bought a set of number tiles for the year and stole a couple tiles from an old game to finish up one word (If you're counting letters, there are too many Ps and Ts).  Thanks to DMom and DSister for the assistance with the frame and mats decision.  It was nice to have extra eyes and opinions as I am always nervous about my choices.

Back to the office tomorrow.  This is my short week but not sure how much stitching I will get in on Friday as I really need to do some yard work. 

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Not Much

Not much stitching to post about, but I do have two SAL check-ins so there is something to talk about.

First off - THANK YOU to Jo at Serendipitous Stitching.  The Hubs went to the mailbox the other day and said, "Whatever you ordered is here".  I was thoroughly confused because I hadn't ordered anything and said as much.  He said, "Well here's an envelope of something".     The first thing that caught my attention was the postage.  I didn't remember ordering anything and I definitely hadn't ordered anything from England.  Flipped it over and saw this .  Brain started to work a little and I remembered I'd talked with Jo about these threads and that I should check them out, but still didn't remember ordering.  It hit me then that Jo had made sure I tried them and had gifted me a skein or two.  Well I was right about the gifting but not the quantity.  She sent me a whole set!!.  This is the Halloween thread set - aren't they wonderful?  I had been leafing through my Halloween designs thinking I needed to stitch one or two of them and now I have a beautiful thread set to do it with.  Thank you again Jo.

Before I spend the day admiring the floss, I'd better move on to those SALs.  The first is WIPocalypse (my computer isn't letting me copy the badge, but you can see it there on the left).  Melissa at Measi's Musings hosts this SAL.  A very low stress, easy SAL it is too.  Just pick a few WIPs, stitch and post.  She even gives us questions each month just in case we can't think of anything. This month's is very appropriate to the SAL and is "What projects are in your UFO pile?".  My first thought was none as I expect to finish all my started pieces, but given that some of them are almost two decades old, I suppose they are technically unfinished objects.  The list of all my started pieces is on the right there.  I broke it down into Chatelaines, Other and HaEDs for no really good reason other than it made sense at the time.  The pieces that I am focusing on for WIPocalypse are in my Current Rotation list and the WIPocalypse Project List and 2017 Stitching Plan tab up top there.  In the last couple of weeks, I've only worked on two of the projects listed.  The first is Shakespearean Fantasy.   It went from here: 

to here:

Almost another column finish.  One more column and I'll have a page finish.  Moving along, but slowly.

The second is A Glimpse of Santa.  While it wasn't technically a WIP at the beginning of the year, I had plans to stitch it and planning is part of the process so it is squeezed into the SAL.  No before photo, but it is now here:

I really do need to sit down and focus a bit more on this.  It's an easy stitch and I should much more finished than I do.

The second SAL is .  The Smalls SAL is hosted by Heather at the Stitching Lotus. It's a year long celebration of all those smaller pieces that we do.  We define what is small and WIP smalls count too.  I am focusing on finishing up The Sampler Life SAL for this SAL.  This month I finished Gold and Purple Corner from Scarlet Suen.

One more will finish this row.  I have six more pieces and the majority are not 50 X 50 as the rest have been.  I think I've worked out how to fit them into the piece so they don't look too out of place. 

I think my work schedule has settled down so I should be able to get back to my normal stitching schedule this week, but I think I've said that before, so please, nobody hold their breath for that.

Monday, April 17, 2017

April's Gifted Gorgeousness

Not an imaginative post title, but accurate.  Once a month, Jo at Serendipitous Stitching wants to see what we're stitching that was gifted to us, either whole or bits and pieces, or what we're stitching that is a gift or whatever we can shoehorn into the category of a gift.  She does this under the mantle of the Gifted Gorgeousness SAL.

I had dreams of massive amounts of stitching progress during my weeks working from home; however, last week was more famine than feast.  I was so much more tired after the surgery than I had anticipated that I was thrilled to stay awake until 9:00.  Because the surgery was laparoscopic and the incision was in my belly button, there is no visible evidence of me having had surgery; therefore, in my mind there was no surgery.  If I have to have surgery in the future, I'm going to ask for a big, ol' bandage so that it at least looks like I had something done and will maybe remember that I'm supposed to be taking it easy have to say I'm still trying to figure out how they got my gallbladder out through that tiny cut.

Back to Gifted Gorgeousness.  I have three Heaven and Earth Designs pieces that fit in the SAL, Shakespearean Fantasy, It's About Time, and Santa and the Mouse.  I don't have any progress to show since my last post, but the background of how these fit in the SAL is:  Shakespearean Fantasy's pattern was a gift from Pull the Other Thread; It's About Time's pattern was a gift from Kate at Needles and Haystacks; and, Santa and the Mouse is a retired freebie from HaED so I'm counting it as a gift.

I have two gifts for other people, Sentimental Heart from The Sweetheart Tree is a wedding gift for DNiece and  A Glimpse of Santa from Stoney Creek is a Christmas gift for DNiece-to-be and the fabric was a gift from The Hubs this past Christmas (he bought me a 10-yard bolt of 28-count antique white Monaco - okay I found it, bought it and gave it to him to wrap).  Here is Sentimental Heart again   and A Glimpse of Santa is here

My last SAL piece is Gold and Purple Corner from Scarlet Suen.  This is another freebie, this time from The Sample Life SAL:

Now that I am not quite so tired, I hope to get more evening stitching done this week.  

Monday, April 10, 2017

A start, a finish and other stuff

Another finish!  I am as shocked as you!  Sentimental Heart is now hanging on the "Admire Me" curtain and will be off to the framer sometime this week. 

It took a while to get the beads figured out on the modified areas, but I am happy with how it turned out.

With that finish, I have one commitment piece to go.  A Glimpse of Santa is one the frame now and looks like this:

Someday this will be a Christmas stocking.  The pattern is from the Stoney Creek Collection and is done on antique white 28-count Monaco with DMC.  There will be a few modifications for this one also as the pattern is so old (I just found it but the copyright is 2001) that most of the called for bits and bobs are no longer available.  I see some time at the jewelry/bead sections of the big box stores in my future and am looking forward to seeing what I can find.

I also got some time in on Santa and the Mouse and Shakespearean Fantasy this week.

Started his glove and did a bit of a curtain.

More black here, but I should be back into the greens when I pull it back out Friday evening.

And last for this week:

Gold and Purple Corner by Scarlet Suen for The Sampler Life SAL.  I have a couple more gold motifs to add and then onto the purple.  I am fairly confident I will finish this one this month. I do need to unroll this so I can get a photo of the whole thing and remind myself what it looks like.

I should pull It's About Time out and get a few stitches into it this evening, but I am beat.  I had some minor surgery last Wednesday.  Few days off work and, because of my killer commute, a couple weeks of telework just to be sure everything stays together and where it's supposed to be.  I had no trouble getting up and getting going this morning, but around 2:30 this afternoon my energy level fell through the floor and I almost fell asleep on my computer.  Granted the project I'm working on isn't the most exciting thing ever dreamed up, but it isn't something that normally puts me to sleep.  All that round about to say, I don't think I will be doing any stitching tonight.  But as I have two weeks of evenings ahead of me, I'm not going to be too upset about losing tonight.

Saturday, April 1, 2017


April, huh? Well, happy April everyone.  I'm not sure where the last two weeks have gone or what I've been doing.  I know one thing I haven't been doing is blogging or reading blogs.  Some stitching has been happening but not a lot.  Despite the lack of stitching I do have two SALs, WIPocalypse and Smalls SAL, to post about.

WIPocalypse is hosted by Melissa at Measi's Musings and focuses on finishing up those WIPs that we have hanging around.  I have a list of pieces that I would like to finish or make progress on up top in the "WIPocalypse Project List and 2017 Stitching Plan" tab.  Right now I am focusing on wedding gifts, but I do have several other pieces going on too.

The first on my list is It's About Time.  Not a lot of progress on this one since my last post, but as of today, it's here:

Next is Shakespearean Fantasy.  I finished another column and am slowly working my way to a page finish.

And the last one for this month is Sentimental Heart

All that is left is a bit of stitching below the date, the vine frame and lots of beading.  If I can get myself focused I should make good progress this weekend.

The next SAL is  Smalls SAL.  The Smalls SAL is hosted by Heather at Stitching Lotus and focuses on smalls.  Small is defined by you, so no special patterns to buy or find.  I am currently finishing up The Sampler Life SAL pieces as my smalls and they are mostly 50X50 stitches. This month's finish is from Golden Circle Designs:

I also started my next block.  More on that one in a later blog post.

Sentimental Heart is on the frame this weekend with a bit of time out for the new small, so hopefully there will be lots of progress to show next time.

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

March's Gifted Gorgeousness

I'm sure I mentioned that we recently had 80 F temperatures here in central Virginia.  WELL, we are paying for it in spades.  If you're on the East Coast of the US you know what I am talking about, if you're not, there is a major storm moving up the coast with lots of snow, ridiculously cold temperatures and strong winds.  In other words, it's a good ol' Nor'easter and we should have had it in January or February, not the middle of March. We missed the snow at my house, but when I got up this morning, there was a coating of ice on everything.  They called a 3-hour delay into work or unscheduled telework.  As that kind of delay doesn't fit in the train schedules even on a good day, I teleworked again today.  It was nice to be inside and warm (except for that 10 minutes at lunch when I went out to fill the bird feeders).

DSon lives in Vermont and his last text to me was that he can't remember a storm like this one. At the time it had been snowing several hours and he had 7" with up to 20" predicted (just got another text and there is just under 12" right now). Before it got too bad, he went out and made

Yep, snow angles.  He figured this was so much better than getting snow down the back of his jacket and besides as you can probably tell, there wasn't that much snow at the time, so falling into it would have meant a painful thunk on the frozen ground.  

Any way, onto stitching and March's Gifted Gorgeousness.  Jo at Serendipitous Stitching hosts this SAL to give us a way to say thank you to everyone that has gifted us stitching goodness or to show off pieces that we are doing as gifts or anything you can shoehorn into the term "gift".  The link will take you to the Gifted Gorgeousness page where you can find all the information you need to participate.  While you're there, click around Jo has a wonderful blog and lots of beautiful stitching.

I actually have quite a lot to show so this will be picture heavy.  First up is Santa and the Mouse.  This is a retired freebie from Heaven and Earth Designs.  It's taken from a Scott Gustafson work.

I finished two columns and another 300 or so stitches into the new one.  As this was a freebie, I count it as a gift from the company/designer.

Also from Heaven and Earth Designs is Shakespearean Fantasy.  This one is an adaptation of a James C. Christensen work.  

I have almost finished another column.  I should be able to finish the last couple of blocks and maybe start a new column on Friday.  The pattern for this piece was a gift from Pull the Other Thread.

And my last HaED is It's About Time by Ciro Marchetti.  

I got another 100 stitch block done.  Don't know what is going on with the lines, they don't show on the piece. Oh well.  The pattern for this one was gifted to me by Kate at Needles and Haystacks.  If you haven't seen any of her stitching you need to check out her blog.  She does the most amazing redesigns and her stitching is gorgeous.  Oh and she's started designing too.

This piece is a gift to DNiece and her husband (well he will be when they open the gift).  It's Sentimental Hearts from The Sweetheart Tree with one modification so far:

It's a craptastic photo as usual.  The area where the saying is was lengthened a bit and the saying replaced an alphabet.  I am going to replace a section a little further down with their names and the date of the wedding. Lots of beads, paillettes and heart beads finish it.  Mostly DMC, but some perle coton and one Needle Necessities that was converted to a ThreadworX color.

And finally another piece that was a freebie:

This is the block from Golden Circle Designs for The Sampler Life SAL.  22 designers donated squares to the SAL, so like the HaED's freebie, I am counting it as a gift.  I am aiming for a finish this month, but it seems to have taken forever to get it just this far.

Friday, March 3, 2017

More than a bit late this time

Once again, I had post ideas running through my head and photos downloaded and all I had to do was sit down and put it all here.  It just didn't happen (obviously).  No reason other than time got away from me again.  So without further ado, here is:

Smalls SAL,  Heather at Stitching Lotus hosts this SAL.  No strange rules or special patterns to purchase for this SAL.  Just stitch a small  and post your finishes on the last Friday of each month.  Simple right?  The rules are simple, actually finishing something has been the challenge for me, but I finally had a finish in February. You've seen it before but as it took me sooooo long to finish it I am showing it off again.

The more I look at it, the more it looks like it's been sucking lemons or forgot to put its dentures back but something just looks off about the mouth.  I think I'll stop looking at it too hard and just move onto the next small. 

Not close to a finish, but a little more progress.  You can really see where I frogged in this picture.  I need to invest in a lint roller to get all those bits of frog fuzz off the piece.

The second SAL I am late for is WIPocalypse.  Melissa at Measi's Musings hosts this SAL.  Not only does this SAL help me focus on finishing up those pesky WIPs, but Melissa provides prompts for us in the event we can't figure out what to blog about.  This month's is:  What is your favorite stitch other than the standard cross stitch?  That is easy.  I love doing Rhodes stitch in all its variations.  Squares, circles, rectangles, hearts - the more the merrier.  This will take you to a site that has instructions on square, heart and a few variations on the Rhodes stitch.  I like it because it adds a bit of texture to a piece without being too bulky that and I LOVED doing string art pieces when I was a kid and it seems to have stuck.

I had progress on three of the projects on my WIPocalypse list this month.

First It's About Time went from here:

to here:

It's only 200 stitches, but it was a hard won 200 stitches.

Shakespearean Fantasy was here  at last month's check in.  Today, it's here:    I had more progress on this one than I thought as there is a column finish and about 400 stitches into a new one.

Santa and the Mouse went from here  to here 
I finished two columns and got a bit of a start on the next one.  I'm still not completely settled in with this one.  I am not used to starting in the center and I feel all discombobulated.  

And Sentimental Heart looked like this in January  and today it looks like this  While I like doing Rhodes stitch, those little spiderweb roses are a very close second.  I finally, finally, finally, have the wording changes all figured out and drafted.  I should get to them this weekend. So all that muttering and swearing you hear on the wind is me.

I am not sure how much stitching I will get done in the foreseeable future like so much stitching has been getting done anyway as my telework schedule was changed from Thursday and Friday to Friday and Monday.  Same number of days but not the same amount of time.  I can stay up later on Thursday knowing I don't have to get up at 4:00 Friday morning.  Unfortunately, I do have to get up at 4:00 on Tuesday morning, so it's an early night on Monday.  I think I'm going to lose two or three hours of stitching time while this is going on.  I'm very happy to pass along my knowledge but ugh. Oh well, at least they didn't take the telework day away.

Monday, February 20, 2017

A Bit Late

I am a bit late for theGifted Gorgeousness check-in.  Gifted Gorgeousness is hosted by Jo at Serendipitous Stitching and is a way for us to thank someone for gifting us stitching bits and bobs or for showing things we are going to gift, or whatever we can squeeze into the spirit of the SAL.

For all the stitching I have done since my last post, I will have to make most of it my check-in. The patterns for Shakespearean Fantasy and It's About Time were both gifted to me so they fit in perfectly.

This  is my start on the Golden Circle Designs pattern for The Sampler Life SAL.  As it is a freebie, I count it as a gift from the designer.  I was a bit further along, but it seems as though I can't count and was one off, so had to rip a lot out.

I also had a bit of progress on Sentimental Hearts

Another fan, a few more roses and I have made a decision on the wording, so now to figure out how to make it fit.  This is a wedding present for my DNiece, so another easy fit for the SAL.

Unfortunately, I have nothing else to show for this week.  I feel like I am sliding into a slump.  As long as I'm progressing on Sentimental Hearts I won't be too hard on myself about it, and maybe the progress will snap the slump before it really grabs hold.