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I actually did my TAST sampler on Tuesday!
As soon as I saw this weeks stitch announcement, this is the picture that came to mind. I had recently seen a picture of rain someone (katiedaisy) new to the Northwest had done. I love the picture and it was certainly part of my inspiration. I didn't think about how to do mine long enough and it is not properly balanced, but I'm still happy with it. (It's not like I intend to hang it on the wall. It's a learning/practice sampler.) The border is variegated craft thread (about size 5 perle). The raindrops are two strands of variegated floss which match the craft thread, rather remarkable since it's not the same company. The umbrella is size 5 perle. The duck, except as otherwise noted, is size 8 perle. The daffodils are two strands of floss. I had thought of adding beads to some of the raindrops. The idea is still on hold, right now. I like it as it is. I also like how the variations of raindrop color go from light at the top to dark at the bottom. For the first length of thread it was accidental, but I made a point of keeping it that way for the rest of the raindrop stitches.
This was the devil to stitch. First I got it mixed up in my head and it was kind of inside out. Finally I drew it on the fabric (an evenweave cotton embroidery/cross stitch fabric). It still turned out a bit wonky. I don't mind the overlap of the stitches, but I'm not fond of the one on the left being so long and thin. The handle is stem stitch. (That's another raindrop in the same color caught in the "u" shape.)
I love my little duckie! I need to redo the feet (flystitch) because the thread I used was fragile and broke. (I don't know what it was. It was in my ort jar.) They don't look like feet right now! I'll probably use one or two strands of floss. I might also redo the bill (arrow stitch). It's not broken, but it's the same thread. The eye is a French knot in a single strand of floss. I'll post the updated photo tomorrow barring a major distraction.
I also like my daffodils. The second one, on the left, is much better than the first one, on the right. It's a clear example of figuring things out as I go. The stem and flower bracket are lazy daisy with a long catch stitch.
Sorry about the blurriness of the closeups. Evidently the original isn't as clear as I thought, although that looks OK to me.
To the right of this section of the sampler is a little pattern I'm doing just to do it. I'll show it when I'm done (tonight?). Then above these two panels I want to do some rows with the lazy daisy. For some reason, I don't immediately think of rows or seam treatments and I want to try and do more of that.
In an earlier TAST post, I said I wanted to do all my samplers the same size and make a long sampler band like Sharon B's. Ain't gonna happen!! I have discovered I like varying the size of the sampler as much as the fabric, stitches and threads. I really love doing these mostly free stitch samplers simply for the sake of doing them. With my studio being in such disarray at the moment, most of my specific projects are on hold. My studio journal is getting more action than my sewing machine and most of my hand work is these samplers.
02/16/12 EDIT: Here's the redone duckie.
I changed his feet from fly stitch to a detached chain with a long, angled catch stitch. This better represents webbed feet than the fly stitch, which is good for non-webbed feet.
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