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05/19/10

  01:23:00 pm, by Airycat   , 282 words  
Categories: Needlework, Hand Embroidery, Blessings Stitched Fabric Book

Whose Masochistic Mind...

... came up with stitching pictures in itty bitty inchies?!?!? LOL I didn't realize how small they really were until I finally got started on the stitching. I am so glad I got new stitching glasses!

 

 

 

I only just got started and I made a rather shocking discovery. I don't really know how to embroider!! I looked at that first square and had no idea how to start it. I know how to cross stitch (counted), and I can usually follow directions in crewel kits. I can do running stitch and an OK satin stitch. Backstitch comes with the counted cross stitching. I'm pretty good at French knots. But... I don't think I know anything else. Soooo...

After finishing that one little square, I started pouring over Sharon b's Dictionary of Stitches for Hand Embroidery and Needlework. I think this little book will also have squares of sample/practice stitching in it. I knew there was a reason I wanted to do this project (other than artistically enumerating my blessings), and I've always considered it a sampler even in it's future book form. Maybe that's why I planned for way more than 100 squares -- not so inadvertent after all. I did know that I had not done a lot of embroidery. I was just surprised at how limited my knowledge of the variety of stitches was. My brain knows, but my fingers don't.

So that's where I stand. If there is a deadline on this project, I seriously doubt I will meet it. I promise myself it will not sit as an idle UFO, though.

I think I need to borrow my sister's stitch encyclopedia so I can have instructions with me as I stitch.

05/17/10

  12:15:00 am, by Airycat   , 492 words  
Categories: Chitchat

żOh, Where...

żOh where can my needles be? I'm totally frustrated abut them. I knew on Monday (5/3) that I would be going to Mexico on Wednesday (5/5). I had just gathered all my needles into a baggie with some fabric to make a needlecase and thought I'd throw the baggie into my tote bag and take with me. When I arrived in Mexico, I had no baggie, no needles other than the one on the cross stitch in progress. Now, back at home, I still can't find them. When I say my needles, I mean all my hand needles, every single last one of them (with the one exception). This means all my sewing needles of various sizes, all my quilting needles, all my embroidery needles and all my miscellaneous, craft, upholstery and needles and three crochet hooks!!

I was going to practice some of the stitches Sharon has showed us over on Pin Tangle. I have a project that requires beads and sequins to finally finish. While my fairy quilt is still in the machine state, it will require some hand embroidery. To say I'm frustrated is really an understatement. GAH!!!

Okay, I was getting frustrated just writing about it, so I went in search of some graphics to use on this blog. That took maybe 1.5- 2 hours. Then I made omelet burritos for dinner for the three of us (Kiddo is in Portland). After that I went and looked in my sewing area again. Nada. I looked around the kitchen (where I was packing my tote bag). Nada. HoneyBear gave me some cookies and I decided to come back in here (the Red Den) and finish this. This room is a disaster and, unfortunately, has been for some time. I was looking around trying to decide where to start cleaning it up when I noticed something under the pillow on the recliner. Beats me how it possibly got there since I haven't sat there since at least a week before I left, but there were my needles! Woohoo!!! TBTG! I am relieved, to say the least.

I managed to get a little work done on that cross stitch piece I had, though not as much as I would have liked. The danged ź stitches are a pain to stitch and my pattern shows them in a different color from the x stitches, so I often 'finish' a section having missed all the ź stitches and I had to go back and do them separately.

We saw a lot of lovely things there. I ended up getting a simple dress that is embroidered. It doesn't look that good on me since it's totally shapeless, but it's too pretty to be simply a nightgown (which is what it reminds me of). I think I will cut off the bottom part and turn the top into a shirt. I haven't decided what to do with the bottom, yet. Maybe make another shirt.

Here are some views of the embroidery:

05/14/10

  08:00:00 pm, by Airycat   , 290 words  
Categories: Needlework, Hand Embroidery, Blessings Stitched Fabric Book

I'm Back!

 

My sister and I had a wonderful week in Los Cabos, Mexico, just resting and soaking up sun (reflected). Despite 100 SPF lotion and staying under umbrellas as much as possible, I got a nice tan. We got a lot of photos and I also took a few short videos (some unintentional since my camera dial was loose and turned unexpectedly. I'll be posting those on the main blogs, soon.
I had intended to work on my Blessings inchies, but I lost my needles! I figure they have to be here in the house somewhere, because I couldn't find them on the first day there. Fortunately, my cross stitch project had a needle in it, so I did get some work done on that. Not a whole lot, though. I read four books, though!
Next time I post here I hope to have something to show.

My sister and I had a wonderful week in Los Cabos, Mexico, just resting and soaking up sun (reflected). Despite 100 SPF lotion and staying under umbrellas as much as possible, I got a nice tan. We got a lot of photos and I also took a few short videos (some unintentional since my camera dial was loose and turned unexpectedly. I'll be posting those on the main blogs, soon.

I had intended to work on my Blessings inchies, but I lost my needles! I figure they have to be here in the house somewhere, because I couldn't find them on the first day there. Fortunately, my cross stitch project had a needle in it, so I did get some work done on that. Not a whole lot, though. I read four books, though!

Next time I post here I hope to have something to show.

 

05/03/10

  10:58:00 pm, by Airycat   , 157 words  
Categories: Needlework, Hand Embroidery, Blessings Stitched Fabric Book

A Few Notes

No stitching to show. I've had an infection that ran away with my get-up-and-go.

I put every blog listed on Amy's page into my Google reader (in a Counted Blessings folder) and will keep up (more or less) with them. I'll check her list periodically to see if anyone has been added. (So far I haven't been. &amp;#58;&amp;#112;)

I got invited for a week long getaway to Mexico with my sister! Woohoo! We're leaving tomorrow night and will get there Wednesday morning. We're bringing our stitching, but possibly not a computer. Even if we do bring the computer it'll be mostly to empty our cameras as we hope to take lots of pictures. We're also going to see if we can find some cool embellishments, and hopefully take in a little history. Mostly however, we plan to veg out and stitch and read. So-o-o-o... I won't be keeping up with anyone for the next week or so.

04/30/10

  10:58:00 pm, by Airycat   , 763 words  
Categories: Needlework, Hand Embroidery, Blessings Stitched Fabric Book

The Beginning

I'm still trying to figure out why I chose to do this not so little project. It's not as if I don't already have more than I can do as it is. I think I just like the idea of the subject. This is a tangible way to acknowledge how good my life is. A shout out to anyone who happens onto this blog (or Amy's blog*) to say it's a wonderful life. And not just now but in the future for anyone who see the finished project.

I may regret this later, but I have this wonderful fabric that called to me for this project.

 


Click for a larger image.

The weave is too small to do counted stitching on. I think this is cotton, but it's a two layered fabric, so I'm not sure.

I also decided to make this a sampler book instead of something else. I don't need any more pillows and have no more wall space to hang things. It will be a nice conversation piece on the coffee table. And it will give me some practice in fabric books as well as hand stitching.

I cut the strips today. I had done the math in my head, Dumb! Dumb! Dumb! I wanted four inchies to a page, so I made my pages 5" square. The fabric is in strips of five pages. I guess I could do only 4 inchies a page, but I have room for sixteen per page!! Duh! So now I decide to do two inch squares or a whole lot more Blessings. I'm actually drawn to the latter, but 400 is a whale of a lot of blessings. I think I could come up with that many, but I don't know that I could figure a way to stitch them.

 

I see only four strips. Hmmm... either I didn't pick them all up to photograph them or I did that math wrong, too!

There is a good reason to use larger squares. After hitting the mid century mark, my eyes are simply not as good as they used to be. I'm not nearly as nearsighted as I was, but now I'm also farsighted. I need glasses for both close up and far away. I have a range of about two to four feet between the two where I don't need glasses. And I need new glasses. I tried to do some cross stitch last night and all I got was cross! I did about ten stitches and had to redo them all... a couple more than once. I'm not going to do counted stitching for this, but I don't know that any other stitching will be any better. I plan to go get my glasses tomorrow, if I can, but I'm not 100% sure I can do that tomorrow and even then, how long does it take to get them after ordering? I will be leaving town for a week next Wednesday or Thursday. I'm hoping I get them fast, because I wanted to use that week away to work on this project and learning some other needlework.

The next thing was to draw my grids (either 4 or 16), I have a thing about using regular pencils. I was taught never to use pencils on fabric and it's just one of those things that stuck. I have one of those purple pens that washes off, but it turns out that it's too old. I can do some dots with it for marking ruler placement to cut, but it doesn't draw lines any more. That's as far as I got today.

Maybe tomorrow I will get some more accomplished.

Mostly I will probably use DMC thread. I don't have every color, but I have quite a bit.

 

Does anyone else keep their thread like this? I find it a lot easier to use than the little cards. I think the strands are about 15-18" (though I'm not sure). Whenever I need a new thread, I don't have to unwind, cut and separate. I just pull out as many threads as I need (one at a time) from the top of the braid and they are ready to use. I like the look of the braids, too.

I have some other threads and yarns that I may possibly use, too. And maybe some ribbon. I'm not sure about anything right now.

I do know what I want my first square to be, but I'll save that until I actually do it.

________________________________

* Amy is the one who started this project and is keeping track of everyone who is doing it with her.

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