Monday, February 20, 2017

Facebook made me do it

Like many other stitchers, I've joined a bunch of stitch-related groups over on the Book of Faces.  And when I saw this design posted several times over there...well....I had to have it.
This is from the September 2016 issue of "Cross Stitch Crazy," designed by Emma Congdon.  It is one of my favorite Tolkien quotes,so there was no way I could resist!  It isn't terribly big, and I'm hoping to have it finished for this month's Smalls check-in.  One of the finishes I saw had substituted a teeny dragon charm for the hot air balloon in the upper right of the design - I'm going to add a charm that says "follow your arrow."  Other than that, though, I'm stitching it as charted.

Monday, February 06, 2017

Minding my needles

I admit it, I've jumped on the needleminder band wagon.  :D

I don't have TOO many (yet!), but I can see that changing, as I've found a use for the one thing my husband gets in his Lootcrates that he doesn't usually want....lapel pins!!
I was pretty pleased.  I removed the big stick pin from the back with pliers, then sanded it down smooth with my Dremel.  I got my magnets at Hobby Lobby - I think they were the 1/2" diameter size craft magnets (silver, not the black ceramic ones) - and attached one using E6000 clear adhesive.  Easy peasy!  And suitably nerdy.  Since he gets both the general Lootcrate the Firefly-themed one, I was thinking about making more and possibly selling them on eBay or Etsy.

Monday, January 30, 2017

Another small finish and some progress

Last Monday I had a medical appointment in Rochester, NY, and after I was done with that, I Googled "cross stitch shops near me."  :D  And wouldn't you know it, I was only 5 minutes away from Golden Thread Needlearts!  They don't have a website that I can share.  But I did spend a happy hour wandering around, and left with a few items.  One of them was Bent Creek's "Cozy" - and here it is, completely finished.
I substituted for just about every color, I think.  And the finish is in an old coaster that I found in a bin of cast-off things here at the college last summer when people were cleaning out their offices.  (I have 3 more, so you might see more smalls finished this way!)

And here is an update on "Summer Sunset."
(Excuse the crummy indoor phone photo.)  I love this, although it is kind of slow going with all the color changes.

Friday, January 27, 2017

New Year, New Smalls SAL!

For my niece who loves orange:
"Tooth Fairy" from Oxmoor House's One-Hour Cross Stitch
colors changed!
This was just fun to stitch and put together.  The little fairy's tunic is a Six-Strand Sweet color - Pink Grapefruit, I think? - and the cord for hanging is a blend of pink and orange DMC.  The stitched piece is actually a pocket, and the orange border extends as the pocket lining (so little teeth won't get lost in thread ends/white fabric!).

I also have another surprise for the sweet girl who settled on orange as her favorite color after getting attached to the Staten Island Ferry as a toddler...I "rescued" these blocks from the thrift store and squared them up as best I could.  The top is currently at the longarm quilter's shop.
The blocks are a little wonky...there was no "fix" for the wavy seams (which are especially visible in the teal pieces)!  But I think it is kind of charming, all the same.  And I like imagining what its beginnings might have been.  It reminds me of those "easy quilt kits" the craft chains sell, and I can just see someone with few/no sewing skills thinking they could whip this together...and then getting increasingly frustrated as they realize those kits leave almost no room for error.  Finally the project ended up in the scrap pile, but they couldn't bring themselves to just throw it away.  Later - years, perhaps - they found it again, looked at it resignedly, and bundled it off to the thrift store.  And so my "Woodland Rescue" was born.

Thursday, January 19, 2017

To brighten a gloomy day

Yesterday I had to have a pesky cavity filled at my dentist's office...and then my exhaust pipe and muffler fell apart as I pulled out of the parking lot.  So it was quite a joy to be able to pick this up from my framer!
I'm sorry about the glare, but I wasn't in the mood to fuss with it last night.  This is "Dark Sorceress," by Claire Crompton, published in a book titled Magical Cross Stitch.  I finished the stitching last year, and finally got motivated to have it framed.  I LOVE it!!!  The mat and frame combination works perfectly - the gold scrolls in the frame accentuate the metallic flosses in the stitching, and the frame also has a touch of purple to it.  My framer, while he is not cheap, is awesome.

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Thank you, Oxmoor House

I'm still working on the Judith Kirby piece, but I took a step away to do a small project - my niece is rapidly approaching her first tooth fairy encounter, and my sister asked if I could make a little bag or other holder similar to what I made for my daughter.  Since I was anticipating this, I grabbed one of those hardcover books that were all the rage in the 1980s/90s, many published by Oxmoor House.  This one was "One-Hour Cross Stitch," and what do you know, it almost WAS a 1-hour project!  I'll probably finish this up tonight.  (My stitching time might have been extended by the fact that I'm using blending filament in the fairy's wings.)  Then I can show it off in my January Smalls SAL post...
I changed the colors around, because my niece's favorite color is orange!  I'm also debating changing the fairy's face - the pattern uses black for the eyes and mouth, but I'm wondering if blue eyes and dark pink lips might not look cute.  And maybe the fairy needs some hair?  I'll probably finish it is a pillow pocket, similar to the picture, only with different colors (and no lace trim!). 

Thursday, January 05, 2017

Not Planning for 2017

I was going to title this post something about my plans for the year, but my track record with plans isn't so great.  I have good intentions, it is true, but my follow-through rate is abysmal.  That said...

1) I'm going to do the Smalls SAL again.  I think I'm hooked on the sense of accomplishment!  And it has led me to try new finishing techniques - everything from box tops and ornaments to mounting pieces on/in various found objects, and even a bit of sewing.

2) I'm going to keep pawing through my WIP hiding places, and either finish things or toss them.  For example, I found this little guy the other day; I think he was started in about 2007?  (He was not tossed, I actually stitched a bit on him last night!)
Yeah.  And there are others, too.  I know my Me Myself and I Neighborhood RR piece is around here somewhere.

3) I will finish the Judith Kirby house I started on New Year's.

I think that's all I'm committing to at this point.  I keep pulling out various things - the gnome book from the 80s by Gloria & Pat, the "M" fairy from Mirabilia, a couple others - and I contemplate starting them, but I can change my mind every day!

Oh, and today I dropped off last year's New Year's finish - the Dark Sorceress - at the framer's.  It wasn't cheap (I use a local frame shop, and he is outstanding, but pricey), but I thought maybe it would be both a reward for all the stitching I did in 2016 and an incentive to finish another large frameable project or 2 in 2017...we shall see.