Ever So Grateful

EverSoGrateful

 

Every so Grateful was one of the projects I had kitted up earlier this week and those colors and the design were just calling to me.   So far I haven’t done any of the blending of colors I had mentioned before because I like the way they are looking.   Had dyed floss can look so different when strands are pulled out of it and actually stitched.  What may look like a mucky grayish brown (the color I was to use for the alphabet which is called Wood Brown) looked more  brown in the pattern image than the floss did in the hank and I liked the darker brown look.  I pulled a favorite brown to substitute instead (Pecan Pie – both are GA colors) but decided to stitch a few stitches just to see how the Wood Brown looked.    AHA! it looks dark brown just like the color in the chart image – no real hint of the grayish I saw in the hank.   Excellent!

The vine and alphabet stitched up very quickly.

 

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Two More Projects Framed

Most of the day I have been going back and forth between a cleaning task and then go stitch for a little bit, go do another little cleaning task, stitch a bit, fold laundry, stitch a bit. steam clean the kitchen floor, stitch a bit. I had thought about sitting outside to stitch a bit but dang – the humidity is horrible and at 6 :30PM it’s still 90. I did go out just a bit ago to take some photos of the two projects that I finished the framing on today. I had to be quick about it tho because my camera lens kept steaming up because of the humidity.

friendship

The Friendship Tree stitching was finished mid March but I couldn’t decide which frame to use.  I had three different frames all about similar size one with ornate carving which was pretty but I think took away from the design, the 2nd I decided left a bit too much open space around the design so I think this one fits it very nicely.  This one will  be a gift.

The other one I finished is Catherine Dickenson1840 and I think this may be my most favorite finish to date.    Stitching  was started and finished in June.

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Kitted Projects

With every hobby/artistic outlet I have,  there seems to be a part or step to it that I don’t like doing but it’s one of those necessary steps in the process to accomplish what I want so although I don’t particularly care for it I do, of course, do it.

  • With quilting – it’s layering quilts.  Once I get them all ironed and laid out on the table to pin, I’m fine but I guess it’s more the thought of having to layer a quilt that holds me up.
  • With knitting – it’s blocking the pieces.  It doesn’t take long nor is it difficult, but it’s my least favorite part.
  • With weaving – it’s getting the loom warped.  Again, ,not difficult, I’d rather just be able to jump right in and weave.
  • And with cross stitching – it’s the pulling floss to get a project ready to work on.

This afternoon  between cleaning chores, I decided I wanted to kit a couple smaller projects which meant get the floss pulled and decide on fabric so they are  ready to go.  I still don’t plan to have a lot of projects all going at the same time, but since I’ll be going back to riding the bus in August to and from work, I may need a project to stitch on while riding the bus (many years ago I used to stitch on the bus and also during my lunch hour at work  – it’s amazing how much you can get stitched during that time.)  Also, I’m going to need a car project to work on shortly so went digging through the smaller charts I have in my pile that I wanted to make sooner rather than later.  Plus, I wanted these projects to be on larger count fabric – much better for car/bus stitching or stitching when visiting and not having my bright light to work under.   I pulled three of them.

FlyByNight

Fly By Night will be a great car project.  I plan to take this along on an upcoming 3 hr car ride.  Only one floss color and if I can outline the bird ahead of time, I can then just fill it in while riding along.  The fabric is 16Ct. PTP Moonglow Aida.  It’s a bit darker in my photo than in real life.  The called for floss is DMC 310  but I chose Gentle Arts Black Liorice as it may have a bit of shading in it and I think in that large bird a bit of shading will look nice.

The second chart, which I have been wanting to start ever since I got it (and apparently loved it so much I ordered 2 of it DUH!) I recently saw someone finish it on a Flosstube which again moved it to the top of my list, is Strawberry House.  I’ll be using 14 Ct. PTP Shale.  Of the 8 flosses called for, I think I’m using 2 or 3 of the called for.   The rest I didn’t have so substituted other colors.

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Sorry for the glare on the chart (I didn’t take out of plastic) – but the house looks white in the image but the floss called  for is Parchment – more dark Ecru (at least the one I have is) so I may go with a white shade instead but pulled both to put in my kit and decide later.  The roof is Onyx which I have but I didn’t really want a black roof and windows because to me they look more blueish in the image and that’s what I liked.  So I picked a blue for that and then picked colors similar in shade to the rest of the called for colors.

And the last one I kitted is Ever So Grateful.   I love Threadwork Primitives charts – such fun designs – and I was looking for something with a turkey on it and all the other charts I looked at by other designers I just wasn’t loving their turkeys but when I saw this one I had to have it.  And the color palette of fall colors are of course my favorite colors to work with in all all things.

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I had the called for turkey color and the color for the alphabet, but the orangey/yellow I didn’t have so I pulled both a yellowy-gold and a rusty orange and in the flowers I’ll make some flowers/petals all gold, some all rust and some with a strand of each held together.  The fabric is  14Ct. PTP Ale.

So they are all in a project bag ready to go and I can get the floss and charts and fabric put away again and then switch loads of laundry and see how close to being done my baked potato is so I can finish making the rest of dinner to go with it.  I’m starting to get hungry – especially since when I went outside to take the photos above, one of my neighbors in the next apt building over was outside grilling barbequed chicken and the delicious smell wafting over was torture.

Happy Friday – July 23, 2021

I need to get organized around here and get some stuff done – laundry is calling and other messes to take care of.  I’m on vacation so trying to plan all I want to get done.  But then – it is vacation so I wouldn’t want to throw myself into these tasks too quickly. 🙂

Speaking of unorganization – I haven’t gotten all of the charts adopted/needleminders adopted in the mail before starting vacation – too busy trying to get actual work done – so they will be delayed but will be put in the mail the beginning of August when I return to the office.   And speaking of chart adoptions – there are still several charts that were put up for adoption during the month of July  but the adoptees have not emailed me with their mailing address and I think there were 2 from June that were never claimed which will go back in rotation.  please please please do not put your mailing address in the blog comments.  My email address, as always, is on the front page of my blog under my photo so please send any address information to that email.

Last weekend I was at loose ends and couldn’t decide what new cross stitch project to start.  I don’t like having too many of them going at the same time, and all the ones I wanted to start were larger projects.  But, with the plan to start A Changed World on August 1 along with Judy and Jo, I didn’t want to start another large project and then have to switch to  A Changed World.     So I “cheated” and started early on A Changed World – it was sitting there all ready to go with fabric and floss pulled.  a changed world

I did confess my early start to both Judy and Jo.  🙂  We are all just going to work at our own pace anyway with no deadline to finish other than “someday” because we all have many other things, crafts, tasks, work to fit in to our days.  Here’s how far I am after a week of stitching on this.  One section nearly completed – just need to finish church windows and door.

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I’m using colors similar to the chart image but it’s charted for silks and DMC.  The only DMC I’m using is black and the rest are a mix of Weeks Dye Works (mostly Weeks), with a couple Gentle Arts Sampler Threads and Classic Colorworks mixed in.    And as I’ve gone along I’ve changed placement of a few colors – like the church door which was supposed to be  grayish color but it was too similar to the door frame color and steps so I decided my church door should be blue.  The windows will look like stained glass with several colors in them.   After those are done I’ll have to decide if I want to work on the section above or below the building row — decisions, decisions.

Sunday, July 18, 2021

Good morning – well technically morning since it’s 12:13 AM. 🙂 I was looking at something else on line and thought since I was sitting at the computer I’d do this post to answer a question I recently got regarding framing and to post the adoptees of last Sunday’s charts and needle minders.

The question was do I stitch a sort of basting line around the edge of my piece where I want it to end and line that up when putting it on the foam core board and also do I pin it, lace it, both? The answer to all that is No. So far all the things I’ve framed I have not laced; I did start to partially pin one of the first ones and decided I didn’t like that and it made it much more difficult to get even. I’ve not done anything special to get it lined up — perhaps it comes for all my years of quilting and eyeballing those seam allowances, but for me I have found it easy to line things up without doing any real prep work. Now, I am stitching on Aida cloth and I think Aida cloth would be a whole lot easier to line up straight than linen fabric with twice as many threads that would be easy to get off kilter.

What I do is put double-sided sticky tape along the edge of all four sides of the foam core on the back. Next lay the stitching right side up over the foam core side that does not have the tape , pop it in the frame, and then start tugging on the edges to get it centered. When I think I’m close to where I want it to be just eyeballing it, I count the stitches from the edge of the stitching to the edge of the frame to make sure I have the same number of stitches on each side and top and bottom, tugging a bit here or there to get it to line up right and make sure the frame edge follows straight along the same line in the Aida cloth. Once I think I have it where I want it, I start on one edge and peel the paper off the tape and smooth the fabric down over the tape – check it to make sure it is correct (you can pull it back off the tape and reposition). When I’m happy with one side, I do the opposite side. Repeat the process for the other two edges. If I have a lot of extra fabric, I’ll trim it off, sometimes running a second line of tape about 1-1/2″ outside the first line and press the fabric to it. No muss, no fuss and pretty quick to do.

Now on to the adoptees of last week’s charts and needle minders. There were two charts from Farmhouse Christmas.

The adoptee for Grandpa’s Pickup is Quilter 44; for Horsin’ Around it is Lori Campbell.

The adoptee for the Orange Big Top needle minder shown below is Shirley Marvin and the TV w/ clown needle minder is Helene.

Congratulations ladies! Send me a private email with your mailing address and I’ll get those in the mail to you.

needle keepers

Blackbird Designs

I first came across Blackbird Designs many years ago in the quilting world.  Lovely quilting books, stunning Blackbird fabrics – I still have bits and pieces of those Blackbird fabrics in my stash.  I did a quilt look (ETA – okay not a quilt look but a quick look thru photos) 🙂  to see if I had any photos of those early quilts but so far haven’t found any.  Little did I know that I’d be drawn back to their designs in a different format nearly 20 years later.

I mention Blackbird Designs because now I am loving their designs since returning to cross stitch after over a 20 year hiatus from cross stitching.  But I also mention it  because one of the two-person design team that makes up Blackbird Designs, Barb Adams, has sadly passed away earlier this month.  A great loss for those who personally knew her, but also for the quilting and cross stitching communities at large.

One of the Flosstubes I watch – my favorite – is Brenda and the Serial Starter (Brenda and Laura).  They started several months ago a Blackbird Design Weekend Stitch Along which is the first weekend of every month, many cross stitchers stitch on their Blackbird Designs projects that weekend and share with a hashtag what they are working on  (I don’t do Instagram, etc so haven’t seen all the many projects being worked on but I know there have been a lot of stitchers joining in.)  I’ve been a bit lax with my #BBDWeekendSAL projects – I did do this one, called Spell of the Moon,  which is still waiting to be finished into a pin pillow.

SpellOfTheMoon

So recent events have me thinking about Blackbird Designs in general and looking thru my books and patterns and trying to decide which of their designs to start on next.  There’s a couple I’m leaning towards  – I do especially love their “black bird designs” as in blackbirds or crows.  This one I’ve been wanting to start.

midnight ride

 

It’s called Midnight ride.  Another one – that is stitched into a strawberry shape but could also be made just as a regular rectangular piece (which I think is the way I would go) is from the Winds of Autumn Book – upper left corner of book cover.

windsofautumn

Not a great image of it but they don’t have a separate photograph in the book of the entire image not made into a strawberry so I can’t show it to you, but the bird has lovely designs on it’s body and there’s a house, pumpkin, acorns and vines.

I also have a CD of Just CrossStitch Christmas Ornaments from 1997 – 2013 – the magazine would put out special issues each Christmas from all different designers and back in the late 90’s I always bought every issue (which I ended up getting rid of when I quit cross stitching around 2000-2001.   I know there are several Blackbird ornament designs in those issues and actually bought the CD because of one specific Blackbird Design Christmas ornament (of a black bird) I had seen finished on a flosstube and the only place the chart was still available was on the CD.  So today, since I had to pull the printer out for something else, I may go thru that CD and see if there are any charts I need to print before putting the printer away.

One of the quilt designs I know I made (and gave away) was from this book – which was a four part book series to make christmas quilts.

christmas memories

 My favorite parts were the santa hat and the string of lights. And a pattern I love (but its 10 years or older now) that I’d love to have and would likely have me pulling out my sewing machine to get started on it right away is  Midnight Silhouette.  I don’t know why I love it so much but I do so if you know of a source, let me know.  You could help me get my quilting mojo back! 🙂

cat

I may need to content myself with stitching Midnight Watch, a cross stitch chart clearly based on the quilt design.

One Gorgeous Frame!

I am over the moon with this frame. It’s even more gorgeous in person that it looked on my computer screen. And it’s a very substantial frame – it is 1-1/2″ wide from back to front – looks sort of like two frames set on top of each other.

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I can’t wait to see this project framed in this frame.  It’s going to be beautiful.

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As to what I’ve been busy stitching on this week – well still doing my “Christmas in July” stitching.   I finished off the three Quaker sleds stitching.   I started the North Pole Sled Co – that is obviously for the largest size sled.  I finished off Santa and his elf last night and got part of the blue background started.  This will be an easy one to pick up and put down since it’s all just background fill that needs to be done.  I’m enjoying stitching these much more using only two threads rather than the pattern called for three strands.  Three strands was just more difficult to stitch – making it harder to pull the thread thru the holes since it was so dense.

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And this week I also started and finished the three Saltbox Houses sled designs.

saltbox sleds

It may be time to pull out the sled and sled finishing box to get these fully finished.

Quaker Sleds

I decided to start on the Quaker Sleds designs (see yesterday’s blog post for image of chart front) late yesterday afternoon and these are going much more quickly than the other sled designs I have stitched. They are only 3 or four colors in them so they go much more quickly than others than have lots of color changes. I love how they are looking and although these will be gifted, I may need to make another set to put on sleds for me later on. The charts say to use 3 strands of floss on the 14 ct perforated paper, which I did on the previous ones I made but I made these with just 2 strands and it worked out well and has good coverage so I think I’ll use 2 stands from now on.

New Charts

I was cleaning out the gift card basket – all those gift cards you get and never really use the full balance on.  So I went on line on all of them, checked the balances and wrote them on the back.  I often get Visa gift cards and there was one that I thought I had used and never did  BONUS!! (always good to check balance on line before tossing the gift card!).  So I put the remaining balances to use and ordered a few more charts for sleds that I had not seen before (or were out of stock when I did see them) and a couple other charts that caught my fancy.  Here are the sled charts.

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These two charts above  I got from Kitten Stitcher (Shakespeare’s Peddler).     I love the Blue Bird Sampler – everying about it except the colors.  Too 80’s mauve look to me so I’d definitely change some colors.   Although the Sisters Sampler uses similar colors it’s in smaller motifs so not as overpowering.    The Sisters sampler I had to order when I saw it – the quote on it and the flowers below and of course that border- the border may  drive me crazy when stitching it  but I love it.

Here’s a close up of the Bronte quote on the Sisters Sampler.

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You can’t go wrong with a Scarlett House chart.  The one on the left has what I’ve heard referred to as a “ghost” alphabet – the colors that are used for some of the letters are light in shade so it sort of blends in to the background.  I don’t like that look – if I’m going to stitch it I’m going to make sure it shows up so I’d definitely tweak the colors in that.

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The one on the left  right I love – it will go very well with the insert for the metal tray I made (below) which has similar colors and motifs to it.

coverlet berry tray

Lastly, these two.  Plum Street designs are another favorite and I think that the Turkey one needs to be stitched soon.  I love how they use star designs (similar to quilt pattern stars) in so many of  their charts.  And yes, those are very long legged turkeys. And of course that one has acorn motifs in it – another favorite thing of mine.

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So since I’m doing my own “Christmas in July” stitching, I’ll continue working on the holly leaves border on my Farmhouse Christmas – I got two sides of the border stitched last night and that’s a whole lot of leaves!  And I will likely start on another sled design tonight.

On to today’s chart adoption info and a couple other goodies for adoption.   Last week’s Peace Be To This House chart will be adopted by Susan (Susan good luck with your move and I agree it will be the perfect thing to stitch for a new home).   The bonus adoption set patterns posted on the 4th of July (5 Farmhouse Christmas charts) will be adopted by Kristie.  Congratulations Kristie.  My email address is on my blog under my photo so Susan and Kristie send me a private email with your addresses and I’ll get those in the mail.

Today’s charts for adoption are the last two Farmhouse Christmas charts which I just finished stitching – Grandpa’s Pick Up and Horsin’ Around.  If you want to see what they look like – scroll down two posts on the blog where I show what I had stitched and they are in the bottom row – and yes clearly the ones with the pick-up and horse on them. 🙂

Also, when I got my Kitten Stitcher order I ordered a couple “random” needle minders.  She picks from her supply so you don’t know what the image will be on them – I’ve always loved grab bag type things and the ones I have received are so fun.

Here’s part of my collection of them.  I’ve gotten others that are missing from this photo but they were given away to friends and I can’t find where I put the typewriter one that I’m gifting to a friend but it’s around here somewhere.  The lady in the long cream colored dress was one in  the latest order I got along with the Orange Big Top bottle top and the TV with the clown (I don’t recognize the clown but maybe it was on someone’s local shows from the past or could just be a random clown image.)

needle keepers

I also love the cards these come on – I punch holes in them and put them on my floss rings with the name of the chart the floss rings are for (in case I get messy and mix them up).   So I will be offering the Orange Big Top and TV needle minders for adoption also (minus the cards they come on because I’m keeping those. 🙂

So you know the drill but here it is again.  Remember  (1) you must have a US mailing address, (2) you must leave a comment on this blog post with the specific key word(s) for each item you wish to adopt in your comment to let me know you are interested  in actually adopting the chart(s) and or needle minder(s) (and not just leaving a random comment with those words in it but not really wanting to adopt them – yes that has happened in the past), and (3) you must check back on next Sunday’s post to see if you have been chosen and if  so, then send me a PRIVATE email at the email address listed below my photo on the blog with your mailing address (do not post your address in the comments please).   If you are interested in the Grandpa’s  Pick-up chart put “Grandpa” in your comment;  Horsin’ Around chart put “Horse”;  Orange Big Top needle minder put “Orange” and TV needle minder put “Clown.”

Two more projects framed

One project is mine to keep and one  will be a birthday gift later this year.

doglessons - Copy

After I got this framed I realized I hadn’t put my initials or year on it.  I moved on to the next project and never remembered to go back and do that.  Oh well – it will have a label on back.  The one above is Dog Lessons For People.

And this is Sit and Stitch.

easychair - Copy

Have I said how much I like my new framing point driver — well yes I did just a few days ago when I was framing other stuff, but it makes the framing so much easier.   I have now tested out the rigid points and the flexible points.  The point driver I got came with 50 points of each kind to try out.  The flexible went into the frame I was doing just as easily as the rigid points.  My thinking is I’ll save the flexible points for frames where I might be putting a seasonal thing in them and maybe I might want to reuse that same frame for a different season if I have things to switch out. Right now I don’t  have any in frames I plan to switch out so I’ll save the rest of the flexible ones and have placed an order for more rigid ones since I’ve used up my supply of those.

What I really need to do is figure out what kind of hanging hardware I want to buy so I can get all the stitcheries that are framed up on the wall one of these days.