August 31, 2008

August 30 Alexandre SAL Progress

Yesterday was my SAL day on this project and I'm pleased with my progress. I recently bought some stronger cheaters and it's making it a lot easier to work on this project even when the lighting is not that great.

I also finally broke down and went to Lenscrafters and bought new glasses with progressive lenses. I got tired of having to take off my glasses at night to stitch and not being able to see the TV. I found two frames I liked and unfortunately had to settle for my 2nd choice because of sizing issues. The first pair wouldn't have been large enough for them to get good middle distance on the lenses. Sheesh those things are expensive! Thank goodness for some insurance coverage and my flexible spending account. Because of the progressive part, I was not able to leave with my glasses but I hope they will be in before the end of next week.

Today I've been working on my Nora Corbet Halloween Fairy. It feels funny to work on this project which is over two - it's huge! LOL Stay tuned for a photo later today or tomorrow.

August 29, 2008

Finally Friday

This has been an incredibly busy and stressful week and I can't say how glad I am that Friday has finally arrived. And it's a three day weekend - wahooo!

Yesterday's mail brought these great floss drops from Dora who got the HIH Halloween Sampler chart I recently finished. Thank you Dora for your kindness - I have just recently seen these on a blog and now I have my very own set! I appreciate your thoughtfulness.

Next up is my progress on the My Mark chart Grace - I'm judging again Lucy! LOL I somehow managed to get off in the sun rays part and so everything else is off too. Sigh.... to much on my mind I think or stitching while too tired. That said, I'm really liking this project - I love the contemporary look of a very old technique. It's a fast stitch too which is great!

And finally the rest of my supplies (with the exception of one Kreinik) have arrived for the Halloween fairy in the fall Cross Stitch and Needlework magazine. I'm hoping to put the first stitches into the design tonight. I'm going to be stitching mine on 32ct light mocha Belfast. And as you can see, I just had to get the Halloween special edition of Just Cross Stitch. While I wasn't wowed by all of the ornaments shown, there a several I hope to stitch as well as the Carriage House Samplings tombstone chart.

I'm off to get stitching! Hope you're enjoying your long weekend too!

August 26, 2008

Alexandre SAL Progress

Saturday's are my SAL day on this Alexandre project. Here is where I stopped on Saturday evening. I love working on this project! It's really hard to put down. I made an error on the left hand side in the border but chose to fudge the other side rather than rip out all that over one!

August 19, 2008

Stuff I wasn't going to buy...

Until I saw them that is! I know I'm not the only one that fell for these new PS charts and the Miribilia Halloween Fairy in the magazine shown. I've put in an order for the Kreinik and beads I need for the Halloween Fairy and pulled the DMC to start When Witches Go Riding. However, before I can start anything new for me, I needed to start a Christmas gift and I did that on Sunday. I bought this My Mark chart from the most recent online needlework show and I really like the contemporary look of the design. I am stitching it for someone I work with who is truly one of God's angels on earth. I think she will like it. I cut the fabric for over two on the 32ct Antique White it called for but then decided to stitch it over one. I just can't resist over one stitching!

August 17, 2008

A Nicely Productive Weekend

I know the weekend isn't over yet but so far it's been a very productive one for me. I went blueberry picking with my neighbor on Saturday and I finally finished up this BBD piece. I filled the pillow with the crushed walnut shells as the ladies at BBD recommended. Even though I was extremely careful, I ended up with lots of little bits on my floor and work table. The finishing instructions call for couching a 1 inch piece of ribbon to the perimeter of the piece but after three tries and not being happy with the look, I decided to leave that part off. I'm really happy with it just the way it is.

And today I completed the finishing on my little HIH Halloween Sampler. I think this turned out great as well although I had some trouble getting the bow on top to look like I wanted it to. Do you think I should just leave the ribbon off? I couldn't decide. I really like the backing fabric and need to get back to the quilt store to see if I can find any more of it. I think I bought it for an exchange last year so there might not be anything left. Now I have at least one more thing to put out when October 1st rolls around.
I'm giving away this HIH Halloween Sampler chart to the first person that comments that they would like it!

August 16, 2008

I'm so weak.....

I wasn't going to get involved in any more SALs but this Alexandre piece has been calling my name for months. I have been saving off the charts but had a terrible time deciding on threads to use. If you remember, I was going to use the Waterlilies Cherry Bark but didn't like the colors of the skeins I received. I was then going to use an SNC in Honeysuckle and had cut a piece of fabric but just never got started. Then the online group I belong to decided to start an SAL on the piece and I couldn't resist. Especially after I picked up this DMC Variations thread (#4130) at Micheal's. I had a piece of Desert Sand linen in my stash and got started last Saturday at my friend Nancy's stitch in. Here is my progress so far - I just can't seem to get a good close up photo but I'll work on it. My fabric is 32 count so it's going to be a bit smaller than the original design but I'm really happy with how it's looking - this is a great over one project!

August 14, 2008

Halloween Finish

Thanks everyone for your kind comments on my birthday stitching. It was definitely a push to get everything out and I've still got some back ordered items that have to come in and go out but everyone seemed happy with what I sent.

Right after my commitment stitching was finally over with, I picked up this little piece again and finally finished it. It's been done almost two weeks and I think I've finally decided how to finish it - a cube using Joanie's excellent directions. Maybe I will get to that over the weekend!

August 8, 2008

Birthday Gifts Sent

I can finally share some photos of the exchange gifts I sent for July birthdays as they have all arrived at their destinations. This is the scissor fob I made for Carol who shares my birthday with me. This was a pattern I purchased from Creative Poppy - there is a biscornu to stitch as well but I didn't have time to stitch it.

Next up is a piece I finished into a pillow - it was on the cover of the July issue of The Gift of Stitching and I new it was the perfect piece to stitch for Dane who loves the sea and was there on holiday for her birthday. I didn't used the threads called for but dug through my Weeks Dye Works and made substitutions that I think turned out pretty well. I really liked this little design and plan to stitch it for myself one of these days.

And finally I sent a thread keeper to my friend Jodi who was gracious enough to overlook the fact that the I at the end of her name is one stitch above the other letters in her name. I didn't notice it until I had completely put the piece together and turned it over to stitch the side opening closed. Sigh.... I was in a hurry.

August 3, 2008

One last birthday gift

I have one last birthday gift to share - this magnificent bouquet was given to me by one of my bosses and I brought it home to enjoy over the weekend. Isn't it lovely? There is also a magnificent lily on the other side and the whole thing smells delicious. Whatever the green things are hanging down on either side of the vase make me think of the memorial urns sometimes shown in memorial samplers don't you think? LOL

I've also managed to get quite a bit more done on this little Halloween chart. In fact, I think I will be able to show you the finished piece tomorrow as I've made a lot more progress since I took this photo yesterday afternoon. We've had really rainy weather for most of the weekend so I've been doing a lot of reading and stitching.

August 2, 2008

Drew, you are my hero!

My BIL Andrew is a 7 year Hodgkins survivor. This morning he started his 7th Pan Mass Challenge ride to raise money for The Jimmy Fund/Dana Farber Cancer Center. He is my hero. While undergoing treatment, a good friend who had been riding the challenge in honor of his sister, inspired Andy to set this as a personal goal to focus on during treatments. He vowed he would be well enough to ride the next year and he has been riding ever since. Sometimes it's hard to remember those many months of treatments and how scared we were and other days it's like yesterday. I am so proud of his fund raising efforts on behalf of The Jimmy Fund and cancer awareness. 100% of the funding raised in this two day bike ride goes directly to cancer research. Feel free to donate through the PMC's site! The goal this year is to raise $34 million.

I was able to see you on TV this morning Pecos as you started off. I wish I were there to cheer you on in person! I love you, Rosie.

August 1, 2008

Birthday Goodness

Carol and I share the exact same birthday - how cool is that? Both born the same day and both loving all things stitching related - and we even lived in the same state at one point. Hmmmm..... talk about planets aligning! It looks like Carol had as fabulous a day as I had. I couldn't post last night because we were having a tremendous lightning and thunderstorm so the PC was off and I didn't get home from a birthday celebration dinner until 10pm.

As you can see, I was thoroughly spoiled by some wonderful friends! This group of packages turned into fabulous stitched items that I'm am so thrilled by I can't stand it! Thank you dear friends for your kindness.

I opened the packages in the order they arrived and Carol's was first. Carol stitched me one of the fabulous floss tags I've been seeing around blogland lately and it is so neat! It's one of my favorite Brightneedle patterns. She included two skeins of DMC variegated thread which I've been using quite a bit lately. Thank you Carol! I love my little tag. I'm going to have to figure out how to make one of these soon.

Next up was a great package from Dane in Germany. Dane stitched me a German design that I absolutely love - the colors are so perfect for my house! And I love how it's finished - I'm going to have to copy this technique. I love the little beaded edging. Dane included a wonderful skein of Tentakulum threads - my first ever! And she sent a great German chart by Stiken & Staunen called Sea which I'm going to love stitching.

And last but by no means least was a wonderful box from my friend Jodi in Wisconsin. Jodi had already given be a couple of birthday goodies when I saw her in February but she managed to spoil me again with a fabulous stitched design finished into a piece perfect for one of the fabulous stands her dad makes at Bloom Woodworks. Isn't it neat? I love how these stands work. At first I couldn't figure out what the wooden stick piece as for until the base was unwrapped and I put two and two together. I thought it was a strange new tool for knitting because Jodi also sent along two glorious skeins of yarn. LOL Jodi also included two gorgeous necklaces - one in the shape of a heart with my birthstone in it and a gorgeous 1928 piece with garnet colored stones.

Thank you all for making this a lovely birthday!