Saturday, January 22, 2011

First 2011 Monsters of the Midway!

Hi all - I finished off a WIP I started sometime last year.  I had put it away because I made a mistake on one of the vines - stitched all the way from bottom to top and realized I had made a mistake at the bottom.  SO....I had to tear all that out.  I figured I would start the vine from the top the second time to avoid that mistake and I made yet ANOTHER  mistake and had to frog it a second time.  Grrrr!  Finally I decided the over-dyed floss was the problem (cursed you know) - I didn't like the colors in it much anyway so I substituted some DMC and it was smooth sailing from there on out.  Sometimes those overdyes don't have a good color transition, know what I mean?  This one had mostly ugly greenish-brown it seemed with an abrupt change to a nicer light green but there wasn't much of it.  I'm much happier with the green DMC's I chose.  Here she is - I changed her dress color, her hair to light brown and her eyes to blue to match you-know-who.....and I made her project a sampler rather than a rooster like the pattern has.

Little House Needleworks - "My Needle's Work"
stitched on LL Vintage Buttercream with Crescent Colours & DMC

I always keep a big 'wish list' on and when I need things to round up an order to get free shipping I will look for something with a good price. I recently picked up this book called "Tiaras" by Geoffrey Munn.  I love historic jewelry especially that connected with royalty.  This book was only $11.00 and such a treat for the eyes.   Evidently there was an exhibit at the V&A museum in London which I only wished I could have seen.  Feast your eyes on some of these lovelies!  Every woman should have a tiara....sigh.......

I recently bought a small gift for someone from the Stitchery catalog that I keep getting in the mail.  They keep trying to get me to order something and I finally did.  In order to make it worth my while to pay a shipping cost I picked up some of these beaded Mill Hill Santa kits and this Angel of Stitching pattern. The kits come with perforated paper but I may stitch them on linen instead.  I just think they are cute.

I have to hurry with this as I'm headed over to a sew day with my quilting buddies.  Should be fun as I haven't sewed since my surgery in October.   Sunday we'll be parked in front of the big-screen TV with our friends and munchies watching the epic Monsters of the Midway vs The Pack.  We are Bears fans .....not sure if we can beat our arch-enemy the Packers this time but it's exciting just the same. I'll have our Bears flag flying in front of the house - GO BEARS!!


See you back here soon I hope!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

A little bit of everything.........

Hello readers and Happy New Year!  For being only 11 days into the year I can't believe how busy I've been.   We started a bathroom remodeling project on Jan 3rd and it's just been crazy.  Things are going well I'm happy to report but it makes for long days - luckily my job lets me telecommute from home when I need to otherwise I don't know how we would do this. Someone must be home to keep an eye on everything.  Since I have 2 dogs of course I have to corral them in one part of the house as they don't like strangers, try to do my job, answer contractor questions, supervise, etc.   It seems that every evening there is something that needs deciding, or an errand or something to get ready for the next day.   We started getting estimates last September so it's been awhile getting to this point. I had to wait until I had recovered enough from my surgery before having the remodeling company come in and get started.   We should be done in about a month.  Here's a photo of my old master bathroom after the tearout - we had a lot of what they call  'cultured marble' which the builders out here like to use and it really needed replacing.  We're doing our share to stimulate the economy I guess!

I have been able to squeeze in a little stitching this week.  I found a UFO I started last year sometime and pulled it out as I should be able to finish it fairly quickly.  I'm actually a little further along as I took this photo a day or two ago. 
"My Needle's Work" by Little House Needleworks

I did get down to my LNS the week after Christmas.  I lunched with a good friend I hadn't seen in awhile then we visited the LNS and a quilt shop too - a great way to spend a day off.  My framed Plymouth Sampler was ready to pick up and photos are just below.  I am really happy with it!  I couldn't find just the right color frame when I was dropping it off for framing, but my LNS has a very talented employee who paints unfinished frames so she custom-painted this one to go with the sampler colors.  Isn't it great??  I always get museum glass on my framing  - love it but it sure makes it difficult to photograph.

I also picked up a little stash LOL. I have been gradually picking up all the LHN "Dear Diary" series - like I need more LHN patterns!  I could stitch exclusively on LHN and Prairie Schooler projects for 5 years with as many as I have in my stash. I just can't stop buying them!  I also picked up 3 different Shakespeare Peddler's patterns, fibers, ornament cuts of linen and some other bits and pieces.  I am accumulating the supplies for the Sarah Woodham sampler which I hope to start sometime in the next few months.

As I look at the year ahead I'm not making any particular stitching or quilting goals - I'm going to just do as much as I can.  I really feel overwhelmed with my crafting stash - I love it but I have more than I can ever do in my remaining lifetime I'm sure. Over the past 2 years I got my quilting UFO list down considerably - I used to have about 25 projects outstanding and I am now down to THREE! My new rule is I'm not starting any new quilts unless one comes off the WIP/UFO list.  I wish I could say the same for my stitching though.  I did get a lot of framing done last year and finished up some UFO's but I still have like 12 or 13 WIP's.  That is way too many for me - it stresses me out. I would love to be down to under 5 some day but it seems like a faraway dream.   Here's a few shots from my craft room - here are some of my 38 bins of quilting fabric and various quilting projects kitted up and other "stuff".........

and here is my stitching WIP basket..........

plus other stitching projects kitted up and waiting anxiously to be started..........

While I wasn't able to stitch back in December I re-inventoried all my cross-stitch patterns. I do keep them all in a spreadsheet but over the last few years I knew I hadn't recorded all of them and really needed to go through it all to see what I have. I'm not saying this to brag....and I'm older than a lot of you so I've been buying longer (LOL) but I have over 600 patterns on my spreadsheet! It really doesn't seem like I have that many - I have 2 file drawers full of hanging folders by designer.  Plus...many of these are booklets or patterns which have multiple designs in them. OMG!!!!  At the rate I'm finishing things this will be about 60 more years of stitching! That would mean I'd be about 115 ......let's not even go there.............

I started buying Gail Wilson doll kits about 5 years ago. I have always loved her primtive/historical dolls and accessories - if you've ever seen any in person they are lovely but they are a lot of very detailed work.  A local quilt shop used to carry kits so I got started buying them there, then I eventually started buying directly from the designer's website and subscribing to her email newsletters. (always dangerous...who can resist a sale??)

I'm glad I bought when I did as the designer has cut her business back a bit and many of these are now discontinued. I really MUST get started on some of these or the paints are all going to dry up. She's got a new pattern out for a Jane Austen doll - she does online classes so hope I can manage that sometime in the future.  You can see the doll if you scroll down a bit on this page. (   You can see why I'm stressed - so much to do and so little time!   I need to quit sleeping I guess!

Thanks for stopping in friends - I love hearing from you and hope to be a more frequent blogger this year!