Thursday, June 12, 2014

My First Sock!

Here it is!  My first sock!  It fits my husband like a glove, I mean, a sock!  He says he will actually wear it (soon to be them) (in the winter) because it doesn't bug his neuropathy plagued feet (like tight commercially made socks do), so that's cool.  I just took this pic out in the sun while sitting on a chair on the patio in 107F degrees.  Not exactly sock weather but we can use our imaginations.

I'm using Koigu KPM in dye code 2343 and size 3 dpns for a gauge of seven stitches per inch.  The pattern is the 7 Stitches per Inch sock from the book Getting Started Knitting Socks by Ann Budd.  I highly recommend this book for learning how to knit socks.

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

April Smalls SAL

This month I stitched a bunny from The Prairie Schooler Signs of Spring Book No. 163.  I used 32 ct French Lace linen and the suggested DMC threads.  He is such a cute little guy.  It's fun to work on something seasonally appropriate because I live in a two season location --  paradise and hotter than heck -- and kind of lose track of the four seasons if I'm not careful.  All I know is I treasure this time of year before it goes into the triple digits (Fahrenheit) for 5 or 6 months!

I hope everyone is having a lovely Spring!

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

March 2014 Smalls SAL

This month for my Smalls Stitch-a-Long project I stitched the "pyn log" from Abigail Colby's Work Basket Accessories by Primitive Traditions.  Abigail was a Quaker woman deeply dedicated to her family.  She lived a life of kindness, simplicity, intelligence, orderliness, diligence and piety.  Here are lovely sewing accessories from her work basket:

I stitched mine on Lakeside Linens 40 count vintage luna linen.  I used DMC thread as charted but these pretty items all also charted for Belle Soie and I think I might purchase some for future projects.

The letters are stitched over one!  It seems like my stitching is getting smaller and smaller!

I haven't made it up yet but when I do I think I'll try stuffing it with sawdust.  I was given several bags full free from Home Depot.  That was kind of them.

Monday, March 24, 2014

This month's IHSW

I re-started "Thirsty Hart" by Heartstring Samplery on a 40 count by Lakeside Linens in the color vintage homespun.  I like it so much better than my first attempt on 32 count.  I'm using one thread instead of two and I think the subtle variation in the dyes of the threads are easier to see.  As for stitching on 40 count -- well, that's not so easy to see but it's doable.

There has been an illness in my family and life has been topsy-turvy but I did make time to stitch a little this week end.  I love the idea of having this designated stitch-a-long.  It's a fixed appointment in an ever changing world.


Wednesday, February 26, 2014

2014 Smalls Stitch-a-Long

I discovered another fun new SAL in my recent blogging adventures HERE.  The idea is to stitch a small project every month.  Think of all the joy!  I have so many long term projects on the go that sometimes I feel a bit overwhelmed.  Little projects give a welcome feeling of quick satisfaction.

This month I stitched The Raven by Barbara Ana Designs.  I used 32 count natural linen instead of the suggested 40 count and stitched an optional border so that it would fit in a 6 inch square frame that is on its way from Etsy.  Unfortunately, the frame didn't quite arrive in time for this post.  I plan to tuck it somewhere in a shelf of books.  The project model is an adorable scissor fob on the higher count without a border and I may stitch that too in the future.

I had so much fun with these bright and cheerful colors!

Monday, February 24, 2014

My First International Hermit & Stitch Weekend

I've discovered some lovely blogs to follow lately.  I stumbled upon International Hermit and Stitch Weekend HERE and was instantly charmed.  The idea is simply, well, to stitch and then report about what was or was not accomplished over the weekend.  The "rules" are so laid back I relaxed just reading them.  The best part is that everyone who participates provides a link to their blog so that means I'll find even more pretty places to see.

I used this new event, that is, new to me, as an excuse for a new start:  "Thirsty Hart" by Heartstring Samplery. 

I'm using the suggested The Gentle Art and Weeks Dye Works flosses but I'm stitching this on 32 count linen, two strands of floss over two threads, instead of the suggested 40 count.  I'm thinking about starting over on 40 count since I'm not too far into it yet.  I'd use one strand of floss instead of two and I think the subtle variations in the colors of the floss would be easier to see.

I hope all my fellow stitchers had a lovely weekend too! 

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Victorian Ribbons

Purchasing this pattern was a rather marvelous experience:  it is designed by Pelin Tezer, who is Turkish;  I found it and purchased it online and downloaded it from a Swedish shop; and I accomplished this in my pajamas in the middle of the night in Arizona.  People with insomnia can buy all sorts of things from all over the world in the wee hours!

Victorian Ribbons by Pelin Tezer:

I'm stitching on 32 count sage Jobelan with the suggested DMC colors.  I usually stitch on linen so Jobelan is a new experience for me.  It's a cotton and rayon/modal blend that is very soft and drapes well.  I'm thinking I might finish this as a pillow and the Jobelan will work well if I do.  But first I'll need to get over my worries of the dog chewing it up or somebody spilling something on it after all that hard work!  Framing it and hanging it on the wall sounds so much safer.

Here is where I am so far:

 A couple of close-ups:


Thursday, February 6, 2014

Dutch Beauty Progress

I worked on this for about a week and that's as far as my short attention span will stretch this time.  It's funny how I love a set of colors together and a pattern until all of I sudden I don't.  I start to get a fidgety feeling.  I'll put a project away and work on something else and then the next time I pull it out I'm in love all over again.  The brain is interesting.  I'm glad I'm not on a schedule so I'm free to work on whatever pleases my eye.  That's the wonderful difference between a hobby and work or school!

Here's where I am overall:

The booklet says the peacock symbolizes royalty and a chivalrous appearance.  Ah, I love chivalry!

The heraldic lion represents the unity and power of the Dutch:

Two lions guard a tree of life with birds representing fertility because they scatter seeds:

Now I'll tuck this away while I work on another project that catches my eye.

Happy stitching to all my old and new friends!

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Dutch Beauty

Last year in a fit of ambition I started Dutch Beauty.  Then I got really sick and didn't feel like stitching at all.  Surgery and some awful meds fixed me up.  I've drawn the line under illness and have decided this is going to be a great year!

Dutch Beauty was made around 1790 in the Low Countries and contains 68 wonderful creatures.  It's charted by Permin of Copenhagen.  The booklet explains the symbolic meaning of the motifs and I think they're so interesting.

I'm stitching on 32 count cream Belfast over 2  using the suggested DMC threads.  The finished size is going to be about 40 x 25 inches!  I must say I'm intimidated but I've seen pictures of this completed and it's glorious in its size.  I'm going to proceed one stitch at a time and move on to other things (no shortage there) when I grow weary.

An "aerial" view (I had to stand on a bench):

I'm working from top right to bottom in columns because I stitch in hand and this way allows me to fold what I'm not working on into my lap where it can compete for space with my dog.

The windmill is a symbol for energy and life.  The bridegroom offers a gift.

The rooster symbolizes wakefulness.  Perfect for me.

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Warm Winter Woolens

A couple of week-ends ago I watched the U.S. Figure Skating Championships so I would be familiar with who my country is sending to the Olympics in Sochi next month.  All of a sudden I was hit with winter fever and had to stitch this little sheep all snuggled up in a ski sweater.  I live in warm and sunny Arizona therefore cold and snowy winters are just a fantasy.  Now I'm really in the mood and I'm looking forward to the winter games!

Here is my start:

Halfway through:

Finished and framed:

This is Warm Winter Woolens by Little House Needleworks stitched on 32 count Lambswool linen using Crescent Colours hand dyed threads.

Friday, January 24, 2014

Grow Your Blog

Welcome to new friends coming over from the 2 Bags Full Blog Party!

I started my blog when my husband was diagnosed with cancer.  I was so upset I couldn't sleep, which has never been my strong suit anyway.  So I made a space about pretty things that make me happy during all those hours I should have been sleeping.  I'm thrilled to tell you he's doing well and I'm still happily blogging, mostly about stitching.  I'm still not a "good" sleeper so I get plenty of stitching done.

I'm looking forward to making new blogging friends and finding your blogs to follow.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

We Love Dogs All Done


This was fun but I don't think I'll be stitching on dark linen again anytime soon because, after a while, my eyes would start to go all blurry.

I love the fancy frame I found for it, or maybe I should say "them" -- my very own dog pack.


Wednesday, January 8, 2014

By The Bay Needleart 2012 Fall Stitch A Long

Well, I'm only a year and a season late!  I missed out on the mystery stitch-a-long over at Donna's blog but the adorable pattern she so generously provides is here.

I stitched this on 36 count sand Edinborough linen with the suggested threads including the gorgeous Weeks Dye Works autumn leaves.  I had so much fun making 3D pumpkins with the Rhodes stitch.

Every so often I like to take a break and stitch something small from beginning to end and this was just the ticket.

I found a subtle nautical themed 5 by 7 inch frame that wasn't over the top, just some rope looped in the corners, as I don't have a nautical themed decorating scheme.  I love it!

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Cross Stitch Antique Style Samplers by Jane Greenoff

Although I love books and have a rather large collection of them, I own relatively few books about cross stitch.  I have a hard time finding books that capture my fancy.  A lovely exception is Cross Stitch Antique Style Samplers by Jane Greenoff.

The basics of cross stitch are covered and an interesting, albeit brief history of samplers is included and then many pretty projects are offered by antique sampler theme.  There are house, alphabet, map, darning, spot motif, red, Berlin Woolwork, Victorian sentiments, and band sampler patterns.  I love how most of them are broken down into smaller related projects of perhaps just a motif or two as well.

The first projects to catch my eye were the red samplers.

My first cross stitch project was made from this book.  It's fun to see how my stitching has evolved.

I think the next project I will choose from this book will be the sampler on the cover.  Ah, it's only finding the time that is difficult!

If you're interested in learning about antique samplers or stitching a charming project, I highly recommend this pretty book.