Jun 24, 2016

The last winner of the first offer

The second winner of the first giveaway which is the blue linen fox that was not chosen in the first drawing for the blue fox which had a brown fox added and confused everyone but obviously not Susan because she knew what she wanted and chose the brown which left the blue which brings us back to where we started.  .....  Random chose Heartland Stitcher.  I will be emailing you soon and when I remember where I put the fox so I wouldn't misplace it, I will pack it.   Thank you once again to everyone who participated in the great 65 giveaway. 
My brother still doesn't get it.  He wanted me to sell this heavy little stool that he painstakingly painted a great blue/teal for $5.  I was going to age it and then see if a local shop was interested.  Well, I got carried away and decided I better just pay him and keep it myself.  He can't believe what I did to it after his perfect paint job and still doesn't understand that chipped paint and rust sells easier than perfect paint.  It was really nice and could have been a great accent with a little edge aging but it's too late now.  Mine baby.  I'll give him $10 for it.
For those of you interested in seeing the tat brows, here they are.  They appear very exact and intense for the first few days and will soften within a week.  I will go back in 4 weeks for touch up or adjustment if needed.  From the middle out, I had six hairs at most.  This is a method called Soft-tap which is gentler than the traditional buzzing needle.  Some cosmetic artists make heavy diagonal lines to replicate hair and they look pretty phony.  Others do microhairs and a powdery fill look.  If you are interested, make sure you see photos of their work.  This method will fade entirely in about 5-6 years but last forever if you have them touched up every two years or less.  When mine start softening I will be able to see the details, right now the ink is pretty heavy.
  Hope everyone that is dealing with wicked weather is safe. 
Enjoy your weekend.

Jun 23, 2016

The simple sampler

Hello people.  How's your week going?  In a week it will be July!  I can't believe how fast the months are passing.  I know the 4th is coming up because I hear firecrackers/bombs all day and evening. 
I wanted to show you the progress on the simple sampler from Frances.  While working on the dividing bands, I happened to look more closely at the chart (doesn't happen often enough), and saw that some of the bands in the center are not black, they are the other neutral. 
The chart photo shows them stitched in black.  Now I'm not sure which is correct but it doesn't matter to me since I rarely stitch the reproductions as charted.  So I guess it's my decision, which I wasn't planning on.  Either would be nice but I'm leaning toward using the neutral, just to break up the black.  Hey!  I made a decision. 
Do you remember back in 2011 I mentioned having my eyebrows tattooed?  Well I finally got around to making the appointment with a permanent makeup artist.  Went today and they will be prominent for a few days to a week until the excess ink fades.  I already know I will have a touch up in a few weeks and am happy I did it.  I've heard so many sources say they go to her and are thrilled with their results so I knew she was good.  I have hardly any brows left and thinning more every year with two completely bare spots. The way I sweat from flashes makes it difficult to keep them penciled, now I can wipe away and the color will stay.  I really wanted the traditional permanent method but no one does it around here so I went with the cosmetic (Soft-tap) type which will need touched up every year or two as it fades.  I may even get the thin eyeliner.
I'll be wearing the 30 day event monitor and I'm thinking....those electrodes better have industrial strength sticky because I will sweat them right off, or short them out from moisture.
Sorry I didn't enter the names again yet so I will set a time which forces me to do it.
Friday night at 8pm! 
Thanks for visiting.

Jun 22, 2016

Going overboard

Greetings to you.  Susan chose the brown Fox so the original offer of the blue linen will be coming up. As I mentioned before, for some reason, maybe the rough linen, the floss seemed to get fuzzy in some areas and I'm not happy with the stitching.  But hey. It's free. I saved all the email entries and comments but will have to enter them into Random again.  IE shut down as it always does and then recovered Random's page, but the names weren't saved.  I hope to have them re-entered (minus Susan!) and another winner chosen in the next few days.  No need to enter your name again.
Maybe because it's new to me, but now I want to mount everything on that hornbook thingamabob hickey.  Procrastination worked out well this time because two samplers that were never finished the way I had planned are up next.  I don't want to use 3/4" thick wood for small pieces and we don't have access to 1/2" that is wider than 5 1/4". 
The craft store yielded two pieces that will work nicely.  The one for Martha (which requires at least a 6" wide base) was found hanging in the unfinished wood section as a sign on 3/8" pine.  Perfect.  We'll cut it down to width and have plenty in length for a longer handle. 
The other is Hannah which was to be sewn into a bag.  She is very small and will also be an easy cut from this breadboard. 

Now I will be searching for others that can be adapted to this finish because I always go overboard when I like something.  They don't look good now, but after seeing the foxes, I know they'll be great.  I think a dark red board would be ideal for Martha, but maybe that dark linen on a dark board will not be as nice as I expect. 
I didn't have much trouble with the mitered corners or mounting on the second fox, and did learn that you need a fusible interfacing or some sort of lining for the linen in addition to the cotton fleece.  The flat surface being wrapped around sharp corners is tricky and needs some protection.  If it would be stuffed with batting or fill and raised somewhat, that corner would not be the severe U turn to the back.  Using a cording around the stitchery would alleviate the miter but I like this bare look.
I need to catch up on blogs, haven't had much time but hope to this weekend depending on how much outside work I get done at Carole's.
Can you believe June will be over soon? 
Thanks for visiting.

Jun 21, 2016

The choice will be made by

Susan Cox.  She was one of 36 email entries added to the comment entries - 

I love reading your blog and hearing about your many "adventures"   it makes my day.  I used to cross stitch in my 20's but now my 60 year old eyes won't allow it.

Please enter me in your drawing.  Thank you!

Susan Cox

Thanks to everyone who entered the 65 year old's giveaway.  65 year old.  I am STILL going to check the age box 55-64 in those damn surveys.  They'll never know.  Depending on which color is chosen, the second Fox may be another giveaway and I would use the same entries.  We'll see.  I enjoyed this design, even though I haven't crawled out of the slump, but once completed I just don't know what to do/where to put these smalls.
If you look closely at the photo of the brown Fox, you'll see one top left leaf has an open space of two stitches and the right one has three spaces.  Saw it too late.  It should be three but since I can't remove, I decided to add.  The John James petite (size 26) needles are short enough to slip beneath and come back up, cannot do it with my regulars and the curved are too heavy. I use one strand and do the cross twice rather than use two threads.  This way, it locks the stitch better.  I leave a long tail beginning and ending and then run it beneath when finished.  So now they match.  It's not the first time I added one or more stitches after the piece was mounted and it won't be the last.
Susan, take a look and let me know which you would like, I will email you soon.
That's it folks.  My sister just called and told me that the new dentures we paid for three months ago, have cracked and split.  Is there anything made today by people who care about doing their job correctly?  Or has mediocre become the norm and striving to do better is not a goal?  Yes I am PO'd.
Thanks again everyone, will let you know what I decide.

Your decision

Here are both hornbooks.  I must say that the second one, on the brown linen, is much nicer.  The mounting went better than the first, the floss was new and not fuzzy, it just looks better.  But the decision is yours.  I used 935/3052 for the leaves instead of the charted 500/501.  There are errors in both and it ticks me off.  After this morning's post, I had to remove the bottom half of one side and stitch it all over again because the edge was off two and it was obvious once mounted.  There is still one other error.   Be back late this evening with the winner.


Jun 20, 2016

Looks like I will make it!

And that means it will be decision time for the winner.  I kept saying I would like this on dark brown and this 18th Century Brown was the darkest I had.  Birds of a Feather's Sparrow was the color I preferred but I don't like stitching on it so I set it aside. I am ASSUMING this will be finished for the drawing.  Not sure if it will be a hornbook or pillow.  I started Saturday and finished it this morning.
One last area to stitch and I wanted to show you how I sometimes work an image to help picture a finish.  I mentioned before about using the Paint program and all its little tweaks, here it is for color.  In one photo, I used the color of the grapes for the door, the other I manipulated the stitching and moved it for the brown.  Need to decide which I like better.
Yes I am a crazy crab.
Be back tomorrow!
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