Jul 28, 2014

Changing directions

Good morning.  It's raining.  And chilly.  Except for very few warm days, this summer has been more like spring.  We may reach a record low tonight in the 40's.  Sweatshirts in July!
I adjusted Eszter's sampler and then decided to do the floral.  I may end up burning it if the finishing frustrates me and I would much rather set flame to a floral than a sampler.   The linen -what a bitch.  Very little of the design was completed and I had to remove it THREE times.  I really wish all my old pieces were clearly marked for count and color but they aren't.  The warp and weft on this large piece are two very different thicknesses in some spots and that's screwing with my eyes.  But the big pain is the count.  I need 30 or 32 for the design to fit properly and this looked like 32 so I tested on the edge.
Sixteen stitches for 32 count and it was 15 to the inch.  Good.  For the test, I didn't pay attention to the linen direction but when I cut the piece and started stitching, I did.  The selvage on the left.  Why was it looking short?  This is why.
Stitching the proper way was 17 stitches to the inch, not what I had planned or expected.  Big difference between 34? and 30 count when a certain size is needed.  The test area did not have any thick threads pushing the count so I thought it would be more accurate.  After realizing the problem, I went to an area of even threads and tested in my stitching direction, still 17.  I'm not starting over....or am I?  I could add stitches to the stems to extend the design and since this is a prototype for a finish, I think that's what I will do.  It shouldn't look out of proportion but I won't know for sure until I remove all the flowers and start the stems again.  Might be quicker to start over?  Either way, I'm not having fun.
Thank you for the well wishes on my fat knees.  The left is improving, the right much better.  Today I put on my waist high 40 compression stocking because my leg, ankle and foot were swelling terribly.  I had to put a piece of muslin beneath the brace so the velcro doesn't snag the stocking.  Never had knee problems so this all of a sudden gotcha buckling is a real shock. 
The sun was shining yesterday between the rain and I got a snap of the Squeak and Budman.  I'm getting to the point where I can stroke his back so by fall, I will probably be able to grab him.  Much prefer having him enter the carrier for food than trying to get him into it.  Either way, snip snip Squeaker.  Look at that belly on Bud.  When I see Missy, Nit, or Squeak coming, I put food out for them and Bud always intervenes and takes it, so I have to have a little dish for him.  I think I will try to get him into the house when they are eating but he's pretty strong and ornery too.
My sister stopped over and looked at my cupboards.  She looked puzzled and I knew what was coming next.  "Did you sand them and not paint the final coat?  Are these done?  You're not leaving them like this are you?".  Yes O Smart Ass I am.  "I can see why you didn't want to buy new cupboards.  You would have ruined them to look like this?"  This is the same person that asked why I would deliberately stain my stitching and not clean those gourds.  But I thanked her for this...

She follows many Weight Watcher recipes.  Her treat is one slice of bread (torn), 1/2 cup fat free milk, 1 egg, and 1 Tbsp sugar.  She uses that little Stone Wave cooker (she loves it) and in 4 minutes it's done.  I used 8 slices, 2 1/2 cups fat free milk, 5 eggs, 5 Tbsp sugar, 2 drops of vanilla, light sprinkling of cinnamon and one tiny shake of nutmeg in the milk.  Since I make several dishes that need only a hint of pure vanilla, I use an eyedropper.  375 for a half hour in a 7x12 dish.  Fabulous.  See those little sesame seeds?  The bread we use is this..
Wal-mat carries it and yes it is airy and light as all light breads are, but it's good.  And for PB&J and especially the bread pudding, very good.  So if you're a bread lover like me (I don't like the sour wheats) and crave the pudding, using this and fat free milk is a blessing when watching calories.  I used to make one with brioche and a quart of cream, but no more.  Don't even have the recipe any longer. 
Have a great start to your week.
Thanks for visiting.

Jul 26, 2014

Here's what I'm thinking

Good day to you all.   I've decided to not start Sally until all the Velcro straps and loops are no longer part of my lap.  The brace comes mid-thigh and that size of linen would certainly be catching.
 For quite some time these little coin purses have been hanging around my supplies (JoAnn's and most craft stores). The frames can be purchased separately which would probably be the proper way to go, but these are cheap, fully lined, and the wimp's method.  All I have to do is stitch a design, hand sew it to the edges of the black fabric, or use a fusible to attach a small design leaving the black as a margin, or sew the side pouches straight for a square design.  This is the 6" x 5" size and it also came in red, I'm still searching for the khaki. 
 The free sampler from Eszter at sub-rosa ( design is here) is one of my favorite smalls and I think I can adapt it to fit.  I just love her designs and she offers so many really nice free charts.  Click on FREE in the label listing and also view her designs for purchase in the left column.  There is a translation button at the top and you need to email her for information.  For some reason, my computer gives me so much trouble and her pages take forever to load, then crash, then load, and then freeze.  But I persist!
I have another older free design from Gentle Arts that would also fit nicely with just a few extra stitches added to the center stem for height.  I would of course, much prefer the sampler and I think I'll sit outside with graph paper and see what I can do.  It would work as is on a higher count linen and sewing the pouch into a square, but we'll see.  I may change my mind and start something else.  My neck is really stiff and sore so stitching may not be very comfortable right now.  I need to stop at Pat Catan's - my local craft store - to see if they can order the khaki for me.  I'm not crazy about the shiny silver metal but even the individual frames are shiny and nice.  They would be easy to spray paint but I doubt it would stay on the clasp once it is opened and closed a few times.  I'll put up with the silver because the rest is assembled, but I'll also try sanding the metal and rubbing on a little paint to dull it.
That's it.  Ready to chew a few more Advil.  They laughed at me in the hospital about not being able to swallow pills. 
Squeak is still looking better and Budman is getting way too heavy.  Like his momma.  Instead of making several trips to the freezer for the chocolate and struggling on the stairs, I brought all of them up.  Was that sheer stupidity or what?
Enjoy your weekend - stay safe.
Thanks for visiting!

Jul 25, 2014

Nothing stops the tears quicker than

making a fool of yourself, and a face plant.   Thanks to all of you that shared your heartbreaking and sometimes uplifting pet stories.  With all the water loss from tears, I expected to drop a pound or two, but those damn frozen Easter chocolates may have replaced the water loss.  It all started when I went into the woods to our private little burial ground to make sure Baby wasn't disturbed by other critters.  And also because I'm a morbid idiot that can't stop crying once I start.  St. Judes' children started it all.  Anyway, on went my ugly green mud boots to the knee to prevent poison ivy and the brier scratches.  Unfortunately, one of them got caught under a downed limb and I went flying, face plant style, into the patch of leaves and ivy.  Except for a large bruise on my shin, I was fine.  Just annoyed at the crows - I swear that caw caw changed to haw haw.  Although my face was smeared with mascara, dirt, and tears, I stupidly walked down to the road crew that was motioning for me to come talk.  They were probably saying "let's see what that wacko wild woman is doing".  I don't have to remind you of the red boot incident and others, and thought I could explain to them about the boots and the face plant, a relatively common occurrence for being in the woods.  What I forgot about and didn't explain, was the fact that when I am painting, I wear my clothes inside out to prevent paint stains.   It was a brief conversation, and on my way back into the house, I reached into my pocket for a clean tissue.  Well guess what?  My pockets weren't there.  My shorts were on inside out with large white lined pockets hanging on the outside, and care instruction tags were flapping from my top.  They love coming down my road.  It gives them something to chuckle about for quite a while.
So move on to the evening and a visit to Sears to check the range we ordered.  My husband is a slow walker and I can outdistance him by a mile in the same amount of time.  I move baby.  My Crocs stuck to the granite floor and face plant #2. 
This time, I replicated an uncoordinated SuperMan move.  Not pretty.  Both my knees hit that granite first and took all the weight with the upper body landing on my shopping bag.  I broke my new Polarized glasses, and never felt pain like that before.  Well, the colonoscopy that I insisted on having without sedation may take the #1 spot.  Three very young good looking men stood there and said "you OK lady?"  Just what you want to see while sprawled on the floor moaning.   My mid back and neck were miserable but no where near the knee pain.  My overprotective husband was scared but eventually, I got up and tried to walk.  It was no SuperMan walk.  I asked if Sears insurance would cover any medical bills or tests IF I decided I needed them.  Well, sorry, no.  Really?  If someone falls on my property I have to pay their medical bills don't I?  Ice ice ice and Advil, but this morning, my knee had three fleshy golf balls and I could put no weight on that leg at all.  ER visit confirmed - yep, that's a lot of swelling!  No breaks, but I need to see an orthopedic for possible tendon or cartilage damage.  I'm hoping the damage is minimal and will not require any surgery.  That would stop the laughing for sure.  I can't help it. I keep laughing about it every time I picture myself airborne between the stoves.  So my leg has an immobilizer brace and I have a cane, chewing Advils.  The doc said it wasn't funny.  I said "you weren't there".  I told you before that I'm weird - I doubt many people laugh about a painful injury. And it does hurt.  Going down the stairs into the basement to retrieve the remaining chocolate is no picnic but worth the suffer.  After the ER we went to McD's for coffee.  Mark opened the door for me and I dropped the cane and assumed the Superman pose.  He cracked up.  It's not that I am forgetting about Baby, but sometimes, laughter is the best medicine. 
p.s. Just got a call from Sears about an injury report so they will take care of it I'm sure.

Jul 23, 2014


Thank you to everyone that offered to help with expenses and for your support and advice.  I am so touched by your caring and compassion. The Humane Society called this afternoon and set us up with another vet that would see him tomorrow to assess the baby, and do whatever would be best for him.  He purred and climbed my t-shirt, touching my face with those little paws, and took a little baby food from my finger.  He wanted to be in the house and held, unlike our other ferals, which had me puzzled.  I think he was part of a litter from a pet, not a stray, and they dumped the kittens when they thought they could survive on their own.  As with all idiots, they were wrong.  This evening, around 9 pm, he passed.  The baby is gone. 
And I will be too for a while.
Thank you all again so very much.
Comments are closed for now.

A baby on my doorstep

Hi.  Not a good day.  I've been seeing the St. Jude commercials which tear my heart out and have been boo-hooing a lot lately.  Well I'm really bawling now.  I came home this morning and went to the back to feed the deer before entering the house.  I looked at my patio door, and there was Budman lying on one side of the door, Nitzy on the other, and I kept looking and looking at what was between them.  Was there a fight that left a pile of hair?  No.  It was this.
A kitten that hasn't been weaned, is sneezing, coughing, and has eyes filled with pus, and a body filled with fleas.  Not good.  He is crying constantly, trying to curl up (or nurse) from the two boys and I am afraid they will hurt him.  So far they are hissing and swatting.  I called the shelter, they won't take him because he has a respiratory illness, and is not weaned. I have never once had an agency or even our shelter, take a stray, injured, or sick animal for me.  I called three other agencies and for one reason or another, will not take him.  I called the vet for euthanizing and they won't do it without an "exam" of $50 first and then the injection is $150.  Another will not treat unweaned kittens.  I know agencies are full, lack help, and certainly lack funds to help everyone, but I get so disgusted. 
 I don't know how much longer he will last, but we'll do everything we can to keep him comfortable.  I gave him baby food mixed with water but he didn't know what to do, he drank a little Catsip, but he kept choking or coughing.  We will do what we can for him and end his suffering if need be.  Yes I am an animal lover, but over the years I've had to accept that I can't save them all.  As selfish as it may be, I do not want to take in such a baby and try to treat him (if I can even find a vet that would) only to lose him anyway.  Nor do I want another cat with neighbors threatening to poison.  I hope his litter mates are not suffering.  He is so tiny.  But I am glad he ended up here so he won't be alone.

Jul 21, 2014

Heart and template

Chart and template are available in the FREE tab under the header photo.
Just right click and print.  The template will probably print a little smaller so you can save and open in Photo Gallery, print full page.  Problems?  Please let me know.

To hang --- or not.

I took two threads out of my linen to check for the crinkled warp, and they looked the same to me.  Maybe a different piece would be more noticeable.  It's not that I plan on doing it properly, I just wanted to see if I could tell.
And now for a story.  For some reason, I have a momma crow and 2 young hanging around my patio.  They haven't shut up in weeks.  All day.  Caw caw caw!  Right by the open windows and although I love crows with their goofy walk and even their call, it's getting on my nerves.  I don't know if I ever told this story so forgive me if I'm repeating.  Many years ago, I pulled into the drive thru at my bank.  The back of the building is where the cars get in line along with the parking lot.  Adjacent property is a vacant grassy area and a house farther down.  When I pulled in, I saw several crows milling around one that was flat to the ground, his right wing completely extended.  They were making a lot of noise and circling him.  I assumed he was hurt and the wing was broken.  No one else got out of their car, probably because they had better sense than I did.  I hunched over, slowly and quietly approached the bird from the back, feeling like I was in a covert operation but without a ghillie suit.  I got within two feet of him.  As I extended my arm to grab him, his head turned, he let out a blood curdling screech while pulling in his wing and took flight just missing my face.  Scared the crap out of me.  That's a big bird!!  I think my move was similar to one seen in Psy's Gangnam video. The damn bird was just airing his armpit.  I guess the others were squawking that break time was over and trying to get him to move.  The people at the drive thru tried not to laugh as I walked back to my car, but I knew.  I knew.  This is one of the bad things about having a bright color car that you keep for 10 years. 
People remember.
Have a great day.
Hope you like the heart.

Jul 20, 2014

I ♥ you

For you.....
a heart freebie.
Will post the chart and details Monday.

Jul 19, 2014

Is this really July?

Hi everyone.  How's your weekend starting?  Ours is dark, damp, raining, and some evenings I need a sweatshirt.  My aunt turned her furnace on a few days ago to take the chill out of the house.  Mid-July!!!  The brats have been staying in at night again.  Rarely do I see them during the day, but come 10:00, the are peeking in the door.  Budman of course never leaves.  Squeak was AWOL for a few days and ate a pile of food this morning.  He'll always be a very thin cat but there is much improvement.
Here's where I am on the heart and I hope to finish it today.  Very quick stitch.  I'm using the newly dyed linen and glad I am.  I'm not so sure that this is the one for Sally.  Sometimes the linen gets softer when wet, dyed, smacked, thrown into a dryer.  It still has body, not quite as stiff,  maybe just a little too soft for my coarse preference.  When I remove an error and the threads smoosh together and leave a space, it's too soft for me.  Best find out now before starting Sally.
As for the paint, I learned something else yesterday.  Different grades of the same brand of paint (Behr) use different bases and take tint differently.  The reason it did not match was because I used the Premier series and decided to use the Ultra for the final coat.  This Ultra series used three tints that were completely different than those in the Premier gallon. There was no way to get the same color unless they mixed the Premier base.  The Stix (water based) primer I am using over oil, was offered at Benjamin Moore's as the best for over oil.  At Sherwin Williams yesterday, I was told absolutely not.  You MUST use an oil base primer over oil and then you can coat with latex paint.  Two top quality dealers with different information.  Drives you nuts.  The Stix is sticking just fine.  I cut a straw to lay on the inside top of the door/drawer, stuck duct tape to the inside, folded it over for a tab, and this is how they will stay until the paint is cured so they don't stick to the frame. 

 I'll be staying in today, as will "others".  If you look closely you can see she is still giving me "the look" even through the smallest slit.  She loves the catnip cardboard and although a tiny little brat, she will knock the boys off it.
 My Budman is a happy camper.  I'm not.  Two horrific stories of abuse (child and animal) on the front page today.  Both will recover physically after extended hospital stays and surgery on the dog, and I hope the young boy responds well to counseling.  Unless the child dies, punishment around here is minimal for neglect and abuse, and this 24 pound 7 year old was a month away from that.  The mother and grandparents are charged, and the other 3 siblings are fine.  They are back at home.  Once again, no one checked on this child who was taken out of school.  If you are so inclined, a prayer for his healing.
I hope the heart design ends well and I can share it with you.
Until then, have a safe weekend.
Thanks for visiting.

Jul 17, 2014

Warping wefting weaving, oh my!

Hi all.  When I was cutting into the linen yardage, I wondered which way the sampler should be positioned.  Should I measure the width out from the selvage so the length would be parallel to it?  That's what I always assumed.  But what about all those small pieces that give no hint of edge?  Since I have found only little information on this, it can't be important.  If it was, every instructional book and website would make mention of it but if they have, it is not easily found.  I did find one, in Shay Pendray's  Needleworker's Companion (Amazon).  In one small segment she talks about the direction of stitching and suggests that you should follow the grain (direction) of the canvas.  That means keeping the selvage edge on the sides, not top or bottom, claiming the stitch will lie flat with wide coverage.  If you don't see the selvage, pull one vertical and one horizontal thread from the linen.  One will be more crinkled - the warp thread.  So the crinkled linen threads should run top to bottom, and the smoother from side to side.  I also read that warps are harder to pull from fabric and weft pulls easily.   This is because the warps are tightly stretched and are the core foundation of the weave, while the weft is woven through with less tension.  Easy to remember - weft runs left.  The selvage runs the same as the warp, top to bottom and is created from the weft wrapping the edge to continue the weave.
  This is the way they used to cut yardage at my LNS years ago.  Most pieces included the selvage.
 Seems like the only way to do it.  So the 18" side on a 13 x 18 piece would run the same as the selvage, and that would be ideal. But a larger sampler requiring a fat quarter or long half would have the selvage edge to the top/bottom, not the side. This may be important for serious stitchers but I am the opposite.  Especially with smaller projects, I have no intention on checking the warpy wefts. I use whatever size fits the project and honestly, I don't know why I questioned it in the first place.  So I say get wild and stitch dangerously!  Grab that linen and turn it whichever way you would like.  You already knew this anyway.
And just so you don't think I make up paint stories, I went to the store for more this morning, same formula SAME formula.  This small board shows what I brought home compared to the finished frames and doors.

I am not crazy.  This is lighter, pinker, and the doors painted in this will NOT match. The label matches the other!!  I am out of Dove after this one.
My heart design is coming along nicely and I will start the stitch this evening.
Enjoy your day!
Thanks for visiting.

Jul 16, 2014

How to ruin a yard of linen

Good day folks.  Today we are going to learn how to ruin linen with dyeing.  We first start off with a yard of beautiful soft yellow called Golden Steak.  If you are a dull stitcher that likes the unbleached monotony, or muted dirty colors, you may not be happy with this.  Sitting in a drawer for years, it is time for action. 
Sally Fiske is a big girl and after counting the graph many times, I came up 340 x 317 approximate.  On 30 count, 21 x 23 stitched.  I have an unhealthy fear of cutting into a yard of linen, but this color didn't bother me as much.  So I did.  My unbleached rolls are saved from slashing once again. 
I cut a small piece off the yard for a Santa and tested it in a purplish bath.  Violet removes yellow but it's tricky.  It was good.  So I cut the 28 x 26 piece and dunked it.  This is how the linen mottled from dyeing, which has happened before, depending on the color and company.  I never figured out why, but think I have an answer now. 
This yard was pressed and without creases, yet the original fold lines dyed darker, even though they were not visible before dyeing.  I'm assuming that any prior crumpling may somehow break the fibers of the stiffer linens and they grab more dye.  Sound reasonable?  This dye bath was very concentrated and I think this definitely contributes.  A soak in less color may yield a better result than someone (who me?) who is always in a rush and wants a 1 second dip. 
 Regardless, the color is good, no longer yellow, and the mottling is barely noticeable when dried.  It will not be an issue because this design has little background showing, most is filled with letters.  Would it really matter if it showed?  Some linens are purposely mottled and irregular and this very slight pattern is insignificant in comparison.  It kind of looks like my legs.  You know, veins?  The more I peer above the laptop screen, I like it.  And every time I pass for another slice of salami wrapped in provolone, it's appealing.  So I have my fabric for Sally and I'm hesitating the start because of her size.  I plan on working up a simple small heart design to work on in an effort to stall Sally even longer. If it looks good, I will share it with you. 
I also need to ask you about selvage edges and which way is up, down, sideways, correct, and how to tell.  Next time. 
  I need to get back to the cupboards now.
Until then, Bud and I have a question.

Thanks for visiting!!

Jul 13, 2014

Organized stitching - the finale

Hi all.  Hope your weekend has been enjoyable.  This is the final mention of the two new boards I am so happy with and I'm sure you're happy you won't hear the word Magma anymore.  Last time!  I'm just so pleased with the portability and feel comfortable taking a project with me now, instead of worrying about loss or leaving something behind.
The Magma went with me to a doctor's office along with a project I am stitching for someone.  In a very large comfortable chair, I opened, laid the chart side on my lap, pocket side hanging on my crossed leg, and everything was right there.  SO nice.  My floss would sometimes catch on the Velcro because I didn't have it bagged.
When I returned home, I sat outside and did the same, and found the Magma works just as well with the pocket hanging to the side.  Or with the strap snapped fully open, perched on my legs when they are elevated.  The magnets that came with it (I already lost one) are very strong and my scissor snips are very secure.  Of all the pretty scissors, my arthritic fingers love these best.  I want to buy the small version for small charts, but I also have a plan to sew a few.
Lisa from The Inspired Stticher commented about turning the large LoRan upside down if the lip is bothering me.  I told her it was paint fumes that caused that mental blackout.  So I turned it upside down, added a strip of fabric secured with magnets to the back, and it's held on the stand perfectly.  Still may use the cookbook holder because it's wider and more stable.   Check out Lisa's Snooty Parrot progress.  First time I saw the parrot close and it's a great sampler.
 These magnet clips are in Staples and Walmart's office section.  I love them too for the double duty.
So that's the end of my yakking about my new helpers.  I haven't started  - what's her name? - yet because I need to finish this other project which should be done tonight.  I can picture the new sampler, but can't remember her name.  Or where I put her.  The heart design I asked about in a prior post is older and from Nash's From Me to Thee book.  Thanks for your help!!
We put a lot of white knuckle miles on to see countertop stone.  We walked in, saw the soapstone, and if I didn't melt from the hot flash the soapstone would have done it.  I had no idea that it looked that much better in person.  Leathered/antiqued/flamed finish on black granite is very nice too, but I can't get an apron sink.  Decisions decisions.  Chocolate chocolate.
Have a good one!
Thanks for visiting.
p.s.  Am I the only one who found 90% of comments in the Junk email folder?   I don't know if that is Blogger or my mail program but it's very annoying.

Jul 10, 2014

The big LoRan

Got my 12 x 18 LoRan magnetic board from Walmart online and thought I would show you.  I was going to have it cut in half, but changed my mind. 
This is great for viewing two pages of chart at once,
 or an open leaflet,
or having a side free for notes (some people change colors and don't follow instructions), a copy of the color symbols, or magnetic clips to hold floss, scissors, whatever.  I put a magnet inside a little denim pouch to hold glasses,  Lift 'n Snip, or other accessories. I don't care for the strip magnets and get packets of stronger ones in various shapes from hardware stores and love the big clips. I'm very pleased with the Magma and this LoRan for being more organized and having everything in view with quick access. It sure beats sitting on them or looking through sofa cushions.  Here's the only thing I don't like about it. 
This large board has a lip and it will fit in the LoRan stand, but a slight move and it's out.  It needs to be more secure if I will be taking items off of it.  Cutting that lip off would work, or bending it up so it fits in the stand's groove.

Or I can use my MIL's old cookbook stand.  Perfect.
That's it.  Another review of something you already knew about and either have or don't want.  I'm a wealth of unwanted information.

Jul 9, 2014

What's in my Magma

Hiya.  I'm putting a few smalls in my Magma for the hospital waiting room, and for when I feel like sitting outside on the swing for a while.  I don't like to take a larger piece with all the necessities out there for just a half hour so this will work nicely.  Never do I work on more than one project at a time, but when all I have to do is open a folder, the chart is already set up, my place marked, glasses and scissor snips at hand, pull out the fabric and I'm ready to go.  So easy.
 One of the projects I would like to put in there is this heart, but I have no idea where to find it.  It's simple enough that I could probably stitch one similar without a chart, but it's always better to have instructions, even if I don't follow them.  I know it's a Nash, but maybe it was from a club.  Do you join all the yearly stitching clubs?  I never have.  I fall in love with one of the designs and the others are always very nice, but not something I want to stitch.  Except for my first stitchings from Scarlet Letter, I don't like kits either.  I'm fussy about - you guessed it! - color.  Some linens I just do not care for in shade or hand.   
 I have a few other smalls for the folder and am still deciding on the main project, but I'm fairly sure it will be Sally Fiske from SL.  Bigger than recent projects but I'll give it a shot.  Maybe with smaller projects ongoing, I won't tire of it.  Ann Wragg is always in the running as is Lora Turner, but I need something larger for a grouping.  I may pull linen and thread this evening but I am so tired.  Standing and painting doors on the kitchen counter all day isn't strenuous but I guess I'm feeling my age.
The decision on the cabinets is to stick with the same color, have Benjamin Moore match it and mix a quart of Aura eggshell finish latex.  That will be the second and final coat and if there is no tackiness after curing, done!  If not, I will coat with the poly and deal with the yellow cast or try another brand.
Doctor, haircut, and bill pay today.  A little break from the brush.
Have a good one!
Thanks for visiting.

Jul 8, 2014

Answers to paint questions

Hello people.  Rather than reply to every email I thought I would post what I learned about painting cabinets previously coated with varnish or oil based coating.  First I will list the products you asked about.  Then I will bitch.

There are a lot of options for painting over oil base paint or varnish.
1. You can go with Benjamin Moore’s oil base Impervo (best self leveling on the market) over what you have with just a light scuffing.  If you’re going real light though, the oil eventually yellows. 
2. You can use Moore’s Advance which is water borne oil paint.  Tough as oil, easy as latex, great self leveling. Goes right over oil, no primer needed.  I found it too thin.
3. For light colors only, you could use latex Cabinet Coat which contains Stix and needs no priming over oil.  Not tacky or sticky and made for cabinets.
4. You can use Stix, tinted a little, and prime the cabinets with no sanding, followed with your latex choice.  I sanded because I wanted the wood showing.  
5. Benjamin Moore claims you can use their new latex Aura over oil if you lightly sand, no primer, or use a primer if you’d prefer.  There is also a deglosser that softens oil and you can paint over it. 

And yes the latex is tacky which I did not expect, but it's highly rated for durability.  The furniture pieces I used to make years ago NEVER dried tacky, but with all the regulations and changes to formulas with VOCs, it is now.  It's not like flypaper, but if something is set on it for any period of time, you will hear a snap when lifting it off the paint. The sticky snap.
Thinking that a clear coat would solve this, I emailed Rustoleum to make sure their water based polyurethane could be used over newly painted cabinets.  After a week, the reply came back that it could.  Good.  Love the product and the ultra smooth feel,  it's a clear coat armor for scrubbing, and provides a hard finish over the slightly tacky latex.   
 Yesterday - a week later -  I received another email from Rustoleum.  Seems the first responder didn't tell me everything I needed to know. First, you need to wait a week before applying over fresh paint.  Mine was next day.  Second, it makes it yellow/amber even though it is water based.  Great.  And it did.  The color has changed to a typical yellow based tan instead of the grayish putty that I worked so hard to formulate.  These photos look more like what was intended, and not as yellow as they are in person.  Too bad the first reply didn't mention this.
Now what?  Do the rest the same and have what I didn't want?  Repaint the polyurethaned ones and not have a protective clear coat?  Enter the dead paint can room and search for Aura in the darker shade I didn't want?  I talked to the BM guy this morning and he said the (latex) Aura would not remain tacky as do most latex and to expect 30 days for it to harden fully.  Forums have it 50/50 on the finish and my sample board is very smooth.  After setting a book on it overnight, this morning it snapped.  But has it cured long enough?  If this project was a sampler, it would have been burned long ago.  The cabinets are vertical surface and nothing will be set on them, the insides are not painted.  So it shouldn't be a problem and I may just leave it as paint with no sealer and hope tomato sauce comes off easily.  But if you are painting shelves with latex, count on sealing them with some sort of clear coat unless you like that snapping sound.
Painting my dark oak cabinets years ago was the best thing I ever did in the house.  It makes a huge difference and well worth the effort.  All I did was lightly hand sand and paint oil based Impervo over, they have held up great.  Caromal and Sloan's chalk paint will stick to anything, but must be waxed or sealed for cabinets.  Should I just choose a darker color and get the oil?  Choose a lighter color and get the Cabinet Coat?  Leave it alone and see how they hold up?  Paste car wax?  I will need a bag of Dove to contemplate.  Am I over thinking this?  Of course I am.  But I want to make sure the outcome will be good for a well used kitchen with a careless cook who uses a lot of spaghetti sauce, and never done again.
I hide the Dove in the basement and even though spiders scare me, if I encounter one, God help him.

Jul 7, 2014


Hiya.  Starting to sand the Satin Impervo oil paint from 20 years ago off the existing cabinets.  My goodness that paint held up to abuse.  Originally, I lightly hand sanded the finished oak with a scrubby pad and went right over it with Benjamin Moore oil Impervo.  No priming needed, and it still looks new.
 I wanted to change to latex so I am sanding (which isn't necessary) using Stix primer (which will even stick to glass) and then my latex.  I didn't use the Cabinet Coat because at the time, the first three color choices were too dark and it can't be mixed past a certain level of tint.  Putting it on as a pastel first coat, no sanding or priming, then using another latex paint in the final color for the second coat would have worked well.  Thought about it too late. I use a hand orbital with 120 grit and it cuts through the paint quickly - almost too quick - might change to 180 grit. This allows me to expose the wood edge for aging, reduce the paint buildup, and insure a superior bond.  If I didn't want to change the color, all I would have had to do is sand and seal for a different look.  This is the same door after a quick sand.  I know you don't care but I'm excited to finally get moving toward completion after those months of paint samples. Many second thoughts about not staying with Impervo (which also comes in latex) but the color just wasn't coming out right.  The Rustoleum water based polyurethane is working like a charm as a clear finish and will be an extra layer of protection - again, not needed, but I would rather put more effort into the project and ensure easy cleaning.  The oil base would take much longer to dry before recoating and handling which is another reason I chose latex.  Smart ass husband said - "are you kidding me?  You've been at this for months and a day extra for drying would bother you?"  He doesn't understand that all that time was taken because of paint colors, not actual progress.  His statement -
 Women -put them all in a bag and shake them and they all come out the same. 
Mine -
 Men - put them all in a bag and shake them and they can't find their way out.

Jul 6, 2014

Show and tell

Good day all.  I want to show off my gifts from Ann. 
 Not only did I receive a good quantity of fabric I could never find locally, she included an old fabric covered book,
a primitive pincushion, strawberry, and old quilt square,
another pincushion, old wool, another strawberry and quilt square, and a piece of linsey woolsey for the lining of my first wallet.  Yes, she is getting me more and more interested in stitched wallets.  Thank you so much Ann, I treasure your stitchery and am thrilled with the fabrics.
 I found a few more pewter pieces and adore this little teapot.  The other is a large pitcher, doesn't look very old but I like the patina.
  Several emails from anonymous commenters have been going into spam and not showing in the post.  Some contain questions that I can't answer because you are...well....anonymous.  Still more have been changed to no-reply that weren't before.  Anyway, I had two questions about the planter shown in the photo with Bud.
This was mom's planter, chipped, broken, and glued back with E6000.  These are two clay pots that she painted white.  The large one on the bottom is just turned upside down, and the top pot sets on it.   I probably should glue or caulk the two together but I've used them separately some years.  Mary, I can't reply to you ~ Bud and Nitzy ("the boys") are father and son.  Nitzy is 3 and they think Bud may be around 6.
And for all I do for them, the trips to the outlet for bread, the 50# sacks of corn, the special licking blocks for nutrition, you would think I deserve better than this.  The little devils are so comical and not afraid of me.  Momma stares at the house waiting for food and when I go out, they scamper around as if asking me to play with them.  The bold one comes within three feet of me.
Stuffed cabbage for dinner, apple pie for dessert. 
Hope your week starts with a smile,
thanks for visiting.
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