Monday, January 14, 2019

Here's a SAL I can get behind!

So, the Ten Hour Stitcher (aka Rachel) proposed a SAL of sorts, dedicated to FINISHING.  Yes!  I can do this!  I NEED to do this, after starting an inventory of all the raw materials I've collected for this sort of thing.  I have boxes, baskets, jars, and ornaments all OVER my craft space, not to mention the wood cut-outs, 3-D findings, beads, charms, buttons, and fabrics I've stashed away for embellishing these things.  I thought a simple Google Doc spreadsheet would be a good thing - including a picture of each Thing, the approximate dimensions, location, and a space to add a picture of the Thing When Finished with Needlework.  Now granted, including decent pictures means the spreadsheet cells can be pretty large...but still, the document is currently 7 pages long and nowhere near complete.  Sigh.  It reminded me of this post, where I described my Crafty Brain running amok.  Of course it is wonderful to have the things I need on hand when I envision something....but it has gotten to the point where I can no longer FIND the thing I'm envisioning, and I'm not even sure if I did, in fact, acquire it at some point or if I'm just imagining things.  So now the Organized Librarian is pushing back against Crafty Brain just a bit, hoping to benefit both. 
If you click on my "finishing" post tag, you'll see some of the more recent results of my attempts to organize...the Spring basket, the triangular Santa tree, and the gingerbread house jar wrap.  All of those had been sitting around, just waiting for me to put them together.  (Now I'm left with the entirely different yet somewhat related dilemma of where to put the FFOs...)  I'm sure there are more pieces in my Bin of Accomplishment that might suit some of the things I've been inventorying!

If you are interested in the SAL, here is the link to the Fully Finished Gallery SAL.  (I'm going to tag my posts  "FFG SAL 2019.")  When I get some more free time, I'll include it in my "2019 SALs" box in the right-hand column.

Friday, January 11, 2019

Because it will come eventually...

This project has been on my work bench for a while.  It isn't perfect - basket wraps continue to befuddle me just a bit! - but I like the way it turned out anyway.
Lizzie Kate's "Spring-ily Boxer"
I didn't even try to make an exact fit with this one.  I used 2 ribbon ties, and put a few stitches where the corners met at the bottom (they don't meet at the top, because the basket circumference increases ever so slightly).

Monday, January 07, 2019

Trying the WIPocalypse AGAIN

If you look to the right, and scroll aaaaallll the waaaaaay down to the bottom of my list of post tags, you'll see that I've attempted the WIPocalypse SAL at least 3 times (2012, 2015, and 2018).  I think I may have started it another year or 2 in there, and then deleted the tags because my posting was embarrassingly sporadic.  But its a new year....so let's try this again!

INTRODUCTION
I'm Erin.  I've been stitching for about 30 years now, blogging for almost 15, and on Teh Interwebz for longer than that.  I'm a librarian, a wife, a mom, and a juvenile diabetic.  I love many nerdy things, including renaissance faires, Firefly, and Big Bang Theory.  My stitching tastes swing wildly from pop culture/geekdom quotes to Quakers and even "cutesy" pieces, and I have a weakness for Halloween and All Things Santa.   Besides stitching and collecting patterns, I also love to find nifty finishing ideas - I've put a mermaid sampler in a lighthouse, finished numerous pieces into box toppers, and modified all sorts of things into ornaments and display pieces.

So, what do I want to accomplish in 2019?  Hmmm.  I got crazy last year and did my own version of "May-nia," and kitted up/started several pieces that - ahem - aren't finished.  I'm easily distracted by small things, especially if I have envisioned the Perfect Finishing Project!  The big projects end up languishing.  I shall list them here, if only to shame myself into working on them.

  1. Modern Folk Embroidery's "Secret Sky" Quaker.  Huge, even on the 36-ct. linen that I'm using.  I'm using a variegated DMC floss, so that kept the price down, but I've yet to roll the scroll bars despite starting it in May of last year.  I'd like to finish a solid chunk or 2 of that.
  2. Ink Circles "Turrets and Town."  I'm about...1/2? 2/3?.... done with this one.  
  3. Marbek/Serendipity Designs' "Seaside Angel."  I went so far as to order a special background fabric for this one - "Sky, Sea, Sand" from Sunny Dyes - and made a bit of progress.  Then I discovered I was missing some metallics, put it away while I waited for my LNS to order them, and never got back to it.
  4. Much to my embarrassment, I discovered Told In A Garden's "Family Treasure III" band sampler hidden in my grandmother's old desk in the spare bedroom.  Ack.  I started that in 2015.  I got creative and replaced a band of hearts that I didn't like (the more I looked at them, the more it looked like 1985) with lazy daisies, and then burned out and tucked it out of sight.  Time to buckle down on that one...
  5. Small project - I promised my niece a tooth fairy pillow.  She wants one like the one I made her sister, only in different colors.  It should be easy enough, since the pattern is from a "One-Hour Cross Stitch" book...it is just the fiddly finishing that I need to be in the mood to do.
  6. Other small projects as they call to me....
  7. And one final thing - I have a mission to finish at least one or 2 of the many mermaid-themed patterns in my stash before Celebration of Needlework at the end of May.  To that end, I've started Plum Street Samplers' "Cape Cod Keeps" as one large(r) piece instead of 2 small pillows.  I've changed almost all of the colors, and modified the design a bit...
    The large seaweed flowers to the left of the whale just made everything seem too crowded, so I left them out altogether (which is also helpful from the floss conservation standpoint, because I'm not sure I have enough of the green over-dye that I'm using!).  This is not the greatest picture - it was taken last night under my stitching lamp and with my phone - but I'm posting it now just to keep me honest!!  
  8. Oh, and I dabble in quilting from time to time, too.  My attempts are laughable, but made with love, so you never know what might show up here...I started a superhero quilt for my husband some time ago, and that's still in pieces on my basement table....
So that's about it for now.  I hope you'll all check in on me from time to time, and I'll try to do the same and cheer everyone on.  (I also have to confess to being a less-than-perfect blog follower -work and parenting and all that, you know.)

Thursday, January 03, 2019

..aaaand we're off!

Here is what I started at midnight (or thereabout) on New Year's Eve...
Plum Street Samplers' "Cape Cod Keeps," on 32-ct. antique white linen (a freebie from Needleworker's Delight at a Celebrations dinner).  I've substituted for almost all of the colors, either because I didn't have the dyed flosses called for or because when I pulled the ones I DID have, they didn't look like the picture.
I hope this turns out well as one long, horizontal piece - I like the idea that the mermaid and the whale are "talking" to each other.  LOL

Also, I've briefly considered making 2019 "The Year of Mermaids," because my stash of mermaid/ocean-themed patterns is sort of crazy.  I've gone so far as to seriously contemplate putting together a mermaid collection (patterns, some finishing trims, a book of mermaid lore, and other doo-dads) for the silent auction at Celebrations of Needlework this year.  The more things I finish, the more patterns I'll be able to part with in the auction basket!  I even made this little fob and needleminder set to include, with glass beads I ordered from an Etsy seller.
The fob just tickles my fancy!  I'm not sure about including the minder, though...I've seen some people on Facebook and other places complaining about the size/strength of minder magnets, and I'm also worried that it could crack if someone really let it "thwack" together.  :/

Monday, December 31, 2018

2018 Wrap-Up

Only one hour until the the year is done, so I don't think I'll be finishing anything else....leaving my total finished pieces for the year at a modest 21.  Most of them were small, the largest being Moonflower's "May You Believe." (And I never even took or shared a picture!)  I participated in the Smalls SAL for a while, but kept forgetting the check-ins after mid-year or so.  And I always SAY I'm doing the WIPocalypse SAL, and then fail miserably.  Maybe 2019 will be different?

I also had a few bouts of Finishing Frenzy, resulting in several new fully-finished creations.  I am most pleased with the "Red St. Nicklaus" tree finish, as well as the many wee boxes and ornaments!

And here is my ort jar, about to be emptied.
Now she's ready for another year of stitching, and I hope you all are, too.  I've not made any stitching plans for 2019 yet, beyond starting a new little piece tonight (Plum Street Samplers' "Cape Cod Keeps").  And as I've said before, may your year be floss-filled and frog-free!

Friday, December 28, 2018

A little bit of finishing

A quick trip to the consignment store yielded this little gem of a box...


...so I promptly purchased it (for 20% off!), deconstructed it, and added a little Ink Circles piece I finished a few years ago.  I'm digging through my fabric stash to see if I have something that coordinates to line the box, but I really love the look of the top.

Sunday, December 23, 2018

Finished Before Christmas!

I found this pattern in an old book from the thrift store... it is called "Christmas Eve" by Fanci That.  I used beads for the snowflakes, and a hand-dyed brown for the reindeer.  It isn't framed yet, I just set this one around it to see if I liked it!
Now there are cookies to bake and presents to wrap, so if I don't post again before Tuesday, Merry Christmas to all of you who celebrate!