Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Modified and Finished

Hot off the scroll frame last night, this is "Sharing" from Stitching with Sudberry Samplers II, leaflet no. 26, by Donna Vermillion Giampa.  I made several changes, which I mentioned in my previous post, but now you can see all of the Quaker motif and the Rhodes heart that I used to replace the stitched clock face.  I also stitched the birds at the top with the variegated blue from the motif -- I cut a section of the floss that was all blue, with none of the gray variegation. 
This isn't my typical style, but I really like it!  Now I'm envisioning a sampler wall in my kitchen, perhaps.....

Monday, July 18, 2016

Making modifications

A couple months ago, I wrote this post about some changes I wanted to try with a pattern designed to be a clock face.  Then I started stitching other things....but earlier this month, I finally pulled this out again and got started.  Here's what I came up with -
The Quaker motif came from a pamphlet of old German patterns that a coworker gave me - she lived in Europe when her husband was stationed there with the military many decades ago, and her stash was very interesting as a result!  I'm stitching the motif with GAST Otter Creek.  On a side note, my LNS decided to get rid of all the GAST they had.  :(  The owner told me that "no one ever buys it, only the Weeks and the Crescent Colors sell."  So all the GAST was $1/skein, and I impulsively loaded up!  I also made some color changes - I used 3371 instead of 310 black, mixed an over-dye (Six-Strand Sweets "Fruit Punch") with the darkest pink in the lady's dress to soften it a bit, and changed the greens from DMC 890 and 730 to 3345 and 469.  Oh, and the middle band on the flower basket is done in satin stitch instead of crosses.

Hmmmm, I may have made a LOT of changes here....but so far I like it!

Sunday, July 17, 2016


I was at my parents' place over the weekend, and my mother sent this back with me.
This cute little design was something I stitched over a decade ago - not sure anymore of the pattern name or designer.  But I do know that it was a chartpack that came with the little gnome button.  And that little gnome is the reason the piece came back to me....so, because he is rather "3-D," my mother decided to have it framed without glass years ago.  But the framer evidently used poor quality materials - that mat was originally dark green!  And you can see that the mat core has yellowed, indicating that it is NOT acid-free (the fabric was always yellow, so there doesn't seem to be any damage there yet).  :(  Now Mom wants me to check with the local frame shop and see if they can re-frame it, possibly in some sort of shadow box.

Thursday, July 07, 2016

What's it Worth?

Following along on a message board post about what people do with finished cross stitch pieces, and it got me wondering.  I have box full of "finished" pieces that are not framed or able to be displayed at this point....why don't I sell them?  A common answer on the message board was that "no one wants to pay what they are worth."  Now, I'm no economist, but it seems to me that something is only "worth" what someone is willing to pay.  Therefore it is the buyer, not the seller, who ultimately determines the worth of an item, is it not?

I would never expect to make a living selling the products of my hobby.  I learned this decades ago when I assembled and sold a dollhouse kit - I was thrilled to have received $150 for the little house, until my dad asked me to calculate how much my materials cost AND how many hours I'd spent working on it.  I was paid a fraction of a penny per hour!  But I didn't do it with that in mind.  And I don't stitch for profit, either.  I pick designs I like, and the process of creating them makes me happy.  Sometimes I have a specific project or recipient in mind, sometimes I don't.  Sometimes I love a project enough to save it until there is money to frame it or I am inspired to try a different finishing technique, sometimes it goes into the box never to be seen again.  What is worse -- that someone pay a few bucks for it and possibly frame it/finish it themselves to enjoy, or that it stay in a box where no one sees it?  And I've seen such collections of unfinished pieces (cross stitch, needlepoint, quilt tops, etc.) go in the trash pile after there were no bidders at estate auctions....

I don't have a good answer to those questions, but I do wish people would think about such things before looking down their noses at those of us who decide to part with finished needlework.

Thursday, June 30, 2016

June Smalls SAL

Earlier this week we returned from a trip to Iowa, visiting DH's family...and look what hitched a ride in my airplane carry-on!
Little Straw Bonnet Girl
This is an old freebie from Designs by Gloria & Pat, creators of some terribly kitschy designs (including, I believe, the Precious Moments patterns that I have vowed never to stitch).  But she was cute, and reminded me of the quilt blocks my Gram used to make, so I kitted her up - in 2 colors, actually - and stitched my way through 4 flights and a layover.  I'm thinking of doing 2 more and making a wallhanging or pillow for my mom, who has 3 granddaughters.

Thursday, June 16, 2016

A question!

Related to my latest finish - it is stitched on 32-ct. linen.  I started out stitching with 2 strands of floss, but quickly decided that I didn't like the bulky look that I was getting, and switched to one strand. Then last night I started another pattern on 32-ct. linen, and again found that 2 strands of floss just wasn't making me happy.  Now, I know so much about stitching is a matter of personal preference - "thread goes through needle, needle goes through fabric" being the only real "rule"! - but I just wondered what my readers might think/prefer.  I also wonder if it has something to do with the fabric - I've stitched over-2 with 2 strands of floss on 32-ct. evenweave without a problem, it seems to be just the linen that lends itself to the more delicate look of one strand.

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

I Feel Like Dory Talking to Whales...

(for those familiar with the little fish voiced by Ellen DeGeneres in "Finding Nemo")...but "Mermaid Spoken Here" is finished!
"Mermaid Spoken Here"
White Lyon Needleart Designs
stitched on 32-ct. Zweigart Ice Blue Belfast linen using Thread Gatherer and HDF silks (many substitutions made)

I really love this one!  My mermaid obsession is showing, isn't it?  But now I'm off to try and pick something  that I can finish before the end of the month for the Smalls SAL - we have a bit of traveling to do as well, so portability will be a plus.