Mar 31, 2015

The next small

Hi everyone.  Just a quick note to show the next project.  Do you remember when Connie sent me a bunch of older PS Santa charts?  She said to keep what I wanted, to share the rest, and several stitchers were thrilled to receive a chart they've been searching for.  She is the epitome of the stitching sisterhood.   Yesterday I received another envelope from her. 
There are some other things going on that I haven't mentioned and I really have no ambition or focus to delve into the chart stash.  What follows with linen choice is even worse.  So when I saw this 2011 design come out of the envelope, I felt relief because I love it, it's small, and there was a piece of linen hanging over the sofa arm that was the perfect size.  Thank you so much Connie.  For everything.  I will follow your example and offer the charts to others in a Pay it Forward giveaway after stitching is completed.
This linen was a gold color and rather than look for another piece in the color I would like, I got out the Rit and started playing.  Purple erases yellow, blue makes it green, a drop of red erases green, so it took three different dips to get a neutral brown.  I would rather do that when I find the correct size than cut a larger piece.  Not sure if it's 30 or 32.  I'm using two strands of floss for the design elements and one thread of black for the letters.  I also changed the key's color and will take out the watering can in the lower left and spread out the letters instead.
I made my posts on Primitive Stitchers and have no idea from there.  I see that some comments are answered but I don't know how, and not sure about the friends.  When I signed on several years ago, I received all these invites from people I don't know and when I emailed a few, found out that they never invited me.  Anyway, when my mind is not preoccupied, I will learn more.
Have a great day.
Thanks for visiting.

Mar 28, 2015

Spot's finish

  As you already know, my end finish is never what I planned. 

So here is the finished Spot, in a small bag to carry coins for maybe horse trading back in the day.  I dyed the finished piece, left it wrinkled, backed it with black wool and used black leather lacing to tie.  Spot was too good looking for me, not dark enough, not primitive enough, and once this popped into my head, I knew it would give me the look I wanted.  It's much darker than seen in this photo because of the flash.
I can hang it from a peg rack too, as soon as they are installed in the unfinished rooms.  The starkness of the black against the black wool is so nice.  Too bad I can't get a decent photo.  You can see from my hand how small it is.
Not sure what the next project will be.  I haven't done a sampler in a while and I don't know if I'm up for anything other than smalls.  We'll see.  

I've been checking Facebook pages and wanted to post on the Prim Stitchers page, but I am so confused!  I need to find a Facebook for Dummies tutorial. 
Hope your week - the last few days of March - will be a good one.
Thanks for visiting.

What is a sampler

Happy weekend to you.  We have a light dusting of snow this morning which makes me crabby.  Off to a good start.  The pain is much better though as long as I don't smack the huge shoe into the leg of a cabinet or the stair riser.
When I asked about the works so similar to Mary Antrim's, I received a reply from a sampler enthusiast who is also the owner of several featured in the current exhibit, stating there is a group of similar samplers all made in Burlington County NJ.  The Morven Museum in Princeton is showing 151 NJ schoolgirl samplers of 1726-1860 and ends tomorrow the 29th.  If you go to their website you can purchase a catalog from the exhibit under the shop tab.  In reading an article about the Antrim piece which was sold for the highest price on record for a needlework sampler ($1,070,500), I found there is another needlework scene that sold for a little more.  The Museum of Fine Arts in Boston purchased View of Boston Common by Hannah Otis (1732-1801), stitched around 1750 for $1,157,500 in 1996.  I wonder what the bid would be today, almost 20 years later.
The article said it's a huge piece embroidered in wool and silk on linen.  But it's not considered a sampler which is why Antrim is listed as the most expensive.
But Antrim's is also a scene, with some cross stitches in addition to lots of embroidery stitches.  What's the difference?  I always thought samplers were letters and verse.  So what determines classification of needlework?   Does it matter?  Since I don't plan on spending a million for a beautiful antique, no.  But that doesn't mean I'm not curious.  Even today, many charts are listed as samplers, but I see a design, not what I would consider a sampler.  So what is a sampler?  This crab wants to know.  I have books on them but I only look at the pictures!  Guess I should start reading.  Maybe that will be my goal this summer as I sit on my swing, if it ever warms up. 
Have a great weekend!

Mar 26, 2015

Making an on the Spot decision

I stopped stitching at this point, haven't stained/aged him yet,
and now I see that I failed to complete the eye.
Then .... a Spot ornament finished with mini pom pom black fringe which needs to be ordered.
Or Spot as a pocket on a coverlet patterned bag, suede bag with fringe, or heavy canvas with leather straps.  If I choose the bag, I have several decisions within that decision. 

Spot on the lid of a paper mache box I will paint black and distress.
Spot on a Faye bag.
Spot on a padded fabric box lid.
I hope the pain subsides quicker than expected so I can start walking around.  Sitting with too much time to think can make a confused individual worse.

Mar 25, 2015

Spot reduction

Greetings folks.  Everyone doing well?  I'm sitting with a bag of frozen peas on my elevated foot.  No big deal.  It will hurt like hell for a few days and then get better, just as my oral surgery did.  He asked why I am doing two minor surgeries so close and I explained that my insurance is changing 4/3 and I've been too busy with Carole the last six months to schedule anything.  Cram it all in the last days!  Still a few more things to take care of next week.
Spot.  Spot spot spot.  Why do I want to stitch something and then can't wait until it's done?  Bored?  Maybe because it's not a sampler?  I don't know, but I am considering using Spot with a few motifs only.  I have enough linen to stitch the entire design and it's certainly no big deal, but I am already thinking of stopping and making a pillow.  Ornament.  Pinkeep.  Whatever the heck you call smalls that can hang with the best of them, lie in a bowl, play well with others, or be trapped in a frame.  Wouldn't this be nice with tiny pom pom trim?  I did the first cross left to right and will complete the stitches from top to bottom.  Even though it's 40 count, the tension of my stitching is visible in places.  Going in two directions corrects that for me.  I was considering Fraktur Friends on 40 over two but I can see that the black background would not be as tight and dense as I'd like.  Still haven't decided but something tells me I would end up stitching the friends only and not the other elements.  I'll be working on Spot today and tomorrow, supposed to stay off the foot for a week but that won't happen. 
The soapstone guy is finally coming out Friday to measure for the sink and counters.  After being exciting about starting the kitchen so long ago, between the lack of craftsman around here and Carole's situation, I really lost interest.  Mark thinks once the counters are in I will get with Dominic to finalize the details and regain interest.
Carole is having problems breathing again (in the morning) and she is complaining constantly, having no patience to heal and let the heart adjust.  Just like with my mom, you love them, care for them, but at times you just want to smack them!!  I would butterfly a flank steak, fill and roll with spinach, feta, pine nuts, bread crumbs (one of her favorites) and mom would eat like there was no tomorrow but never say it was good.  It was OK but I should have used more feta, seared it longer, tied it better, glazed it more.  Carole is the same.  I probably am too!  You see what drives you nuts in others, but when you step back and look at yourself from another's perspective, sometimes you're shocked. 
Might be what happened to Nitzy.  He thought he was being cool and another cat thought he was being a smart ass and cleaned his clock.
I was hoping for red, but they only had this style in black. 
Closing in on the end of March already.  Hard to believe that surgery was 4 weeks ago today. 
Hope your week is going well.
Thanks for visiting.

Mar 21, 2015

My first 40

Hello stitching buds.  Been busy with appointments, chores, and running back and forth to Carole's so I haven't picked up the needle much.  I'm still undecided on the fabric for Fraktur Friends and wanted to try 40 over one .... ain't going to happen.  Next I'll try black 32 over one but the silk gauze will probably be easier for me. 
The 40 count was purchased a while ago and I could not remember where it was.  Took me a day and a half to find it and now, I can't remember where I found it.  I think Spot would look better as a smaller piece so I decided to try the 40 over two since I had already invested so much time in the search.  With my cheap magnifiers, I can see the weave well enough to stitch and am surprised that it's not as difficult as I expected.  Really surprised.
When I searched Carriage House Samplings new website, I couldn't believe what I found.  I saw this design finished on a blog, it was taken down from Pinterest, and I Google'd and Oogle'd, Bing'd and Bang'd, Yahoo'd and Wahoo'd, never found it.  I searched "sisters of the heart cross stitch" and gave up after months with no results.  Well there it was. Carriage House Samplings design, still available through the new website.  Another design I missed from a while back.
Samplers are all I care to stitch (and Santas of course) but lately I'm drawn to a few smalls like these.  But will I display them?  
We missed the snow thank goodness, but made what will probably be the last soup of the season.  My dad's Harvest Soup.  Ground beef, carrots, celery, onion, potatoes, barley, bay leaves, diced tomatoes with juice, beef broth/water and Worcestershire sauce.  That sauce and the bay leaves really give a great flavor .
It's time for bed and more Advil.  Never had this much pain with other gum surgery and still can't open my mouth.  Healthy foods are all thick and bulky so I have no choice but to continue with thin chocolate bars and slices of cheese.  I found some really flat cookies that are my new favorite.  White chocolate macadamia nut.  Who knew? 
Enjoy your Sunday.

Mar 18, 2015

You have my heart

Julie from My Primitive Heart was drawn as the winner.  Thank you everyone for participating in another giveaway.  This one was for my blogging anniversary but also for your friendship and caring that has helped me through the last six months.  I wish I could stitch something for everyone!
Again, thank you all.

The old bag

Me.  Not Spot.  It seems like this last year was a major difference in my movement, mental sharpness, and eyesight.  Aging isn't graceful if you attempt something you've always done, and instead make a herky-jerky movement while letting out a yelp.  My husband never had to help me up from a booth in a restaurant, but now he automatically gives me that special grip the aides showed us to use when getting mom out of a chair.  I used to be up and out at the car before he opened the door.  Now, I feel like I drank glue instead of coffee.  And what's with the grunt and yelps?  That's not polite.  But if no one objects to the young people next to us using obscenities I guess my yelps are acceptable.  Something tells me those yelps will soon be embellished with those other words.  My face plant last summer is catching up with my knees.  NEVER had any problems before.  Now my ankles are stiff and painful too.  My right hand can't even open a jar. What's happening?  Why so quick?  Geez.  It's bad enough that Menopause invaded my mental condition, moods, patience, mouth, emotions, and attitude, now arthritis is doing the same to the physical parts!  I mentioned before that I used to walk in 4" heels on ice and now I can only manage flats on dry pavement which is fine, but I'm walking like a caveman in Hush Puppies.  HUSH PUPPIES!!!!  The shoes I swore I would never wear.  Elastic waist pants.  What!!  Tell me it isn't so.  But it is.
OK.  Getting on track to what I had planned to post ...
I don't like the Spot sack I inked so I will start stitching.  The design would make a great bag to hang with my collection but I also like it framed, so I am not using osnaburg.  Linen will allow me to choose either finish.  My jaw is so swollen it hurts to look down so I'm not sure I can start it yet.  That's another thing - jowls!  They were already hanging lower than my earrings so this swelling is way down there.  Still can't open my mouth and most healthy food is large.  Chocolate is flat.  Choceur dark chocolate bar from Aldi's is the current indulgence.  And one more thing.  I answered an email this morning and mentioned that my husband says I am always right.  Now wait a minute.  If I'm always right, then he's always wrong, so does that mean he is wrong when he says I am always right?  Because if I am, then he is right, and I can't have that. 
Don't forget to leave your name for the heart drawing this evening.  I can't believe how many comments have NOT come through to my email, but I did get them all noted and ready to enter into Random.  Get with it Blogger.  Got glue in your joints???
Later dudettes.

Mar 17, 2015

Spot and me

Spot the Horse was inspired from an old feed sack.  Hmmm.  I thought of stitching it on osnaburg and making a sack.  But before I try, I'm still playing with the Frixion pens.  So.
Outlined with the pen on a large folded piece of osnaburg for a sack.  I think he's too large for the sack and will try a smaller version.
After ironing to remove the pen.
It needs some work, sanding to age, the tree and sun (or maybe not), but I sure am having fun with my new pens!!!

Mar 16, 2015

Just stuff

Hey.  How you doing?  My periodontist is the greatest.  Quick quick quick.  No pain.  But now, I can barely open my jaw from the shots.  It's only happened twice in my life, but the needle actually hit the nerve and it feels like a crazy bone was hit and then electrocuted.  That takes a while to heal.  Good thing Doves are rather flat and I don't have to open wide. 
First off, the pen. 
Staples carries the Pilot brand Frixion pens in singles and multiples.  I got the 3 pack of black for $5.35 with this week's 15% off coupon.  I am a big couponer.  Drives my husband nuts.  It comes in various colors and I learned a little more about them.  The tip you see on the end is an eraser.  The ink is removed easily with it, or with heat.  If you remove it with heat from a hair dryer or iron, you can have it reappear if you put it in a cold spot, like the freezer.  It comes with the cap like I have, or a retractable version.  I'll be buying more in other colors too. 
For KathiQuilts - you asked me about the fabric but you're no-reply.  It's from JoAnn's, Legacy Studio CP42508 Winter Birds Berry Vine Words, also on Etsy.
Since Google is not transferring all comments to email, I will double check and make sure everyone is included in the giveaway through both sources.   And if I was to reply and haven't, please email me since I may not have received it.  If you're no-reply, I can't!
Nitzy was let out for a half hour last evening and came back covered in mud and some blood.  From what I could see, there are four bites on the head, one paw is bloodied, his back was bit, and I'm sure there are more.  He tore up my right wrist when I tried to clean him and drop a little peroxide on the wounds.  He will allow me to pet him only if he's in the right mood, but not pick him up. 
The little coon I'd mentioned a while back with the sad eyes and sweet face, has made it through the winter.  Very bad photo but it was dark outside. She appeared at the back door last night for the first time.  We were so glad!  We can hand feed her and she is really a sweet gentle soul.  Sunken eyes and hair loss, skinny and frail, eating a Fig Newton while I get food for her.  She dunks everything in the water dish and makes a mess.  We called her Bud for years until she one day brought the "kids" out to eat so we call her Budette now.  She's much smaller than the meaner aggressive males we have.
Lots of appointments this week and next, all is going well.
Spot The Horse is the next project and I will choose a linen tonight.  Did you see Carriage House Samplings' new website (here)?  She has everything including Spot and others that are new to me.  As for Fraktur Friends, I totally screwed up on size.  Not wanting to use the silk gauze, I thought I would do it on a high count linen, but that's over two, not one like the gauze.  So if I want the small size, I need to use the gauze because I could never do over one on 36 or 40 linen.  Damn.  Here's what I'm wondering.  Since gauze should be secured and I don't want to use a hoop or the up/down stab method of stitching, would it be a mistake to add a stabilizer to the back?  I think it's used for embroidery on fine fabrics or something (need to check Nancy Zieman's site).  If that would stabilize the gauze and I could stitch through it, a solution!  But before I ruin something I need to research.  Nancy's Notions is such a great resource for items not available locally and her blog (here) is full of goodies and hints.  I used to watch her show but it was taken off my cable line-up.
If you have experience with the stabilizer or gauze, I would appreciate some info.  You gals have taught me a lot over these years. 
That's it.  Need to get an ice pack on that jaw.
Have a wonderful day.

Mar 15, 2015

Your heart

Done.  Hope you like it!  I added my initial on the top far right.  It's a bare spot in the design that I thought looked better with a few stitches.  
The backing changed last minute to a fabric with an ivory background that I dyed to darken, with script that includes "thankful".  Fill is the Touch of Silk steam smashed.  Love that stuff.  Even after I steam the crap out of it, I can pull it apart and it fluffs right back.
Not sure if I like mine on the darker linen, or this one more.  Should I give you the choice?  We'll see.  And for the very first time, I used a Frixion pen.  Why didn't you tell me about this!!   I just bought new white and blue marking pencils because the others....well....lets just say they had a short life.  Never could I get a decent visible line for sewing.  When I stopped at the needle shop, there it was.  She told me how it worked, I bought the black, and I am thrilled.  Smooth and easy to see, touch it with an iron and it disappears.  At first, I forgot that.  Where the hell is my line?  The other side?  No.  I know I made one.  Then I remembered about the heat making it disappear and I just drew another outline.  I did this several times because it was just fun.  Like a kid with an Etch-a-Sketch.
So here's the rules.  Leave your comment if you want to be included in the drawing, initials or name for anonymous or no-reply.  That's it. 
 I will draw a name on Wednesday evening at 8 EST.

Mar 14, 2015

Oh baby

Hello people.  I finished your heart and chose the backing fabric so it looks like the giveaway will start tomorrow.  I plan on stitching it as soon as I have a few Dove, and I promise to wash my hands after.
Continuing where I left off months ago of ridding the house of excess, I came across what I think was mine as an infant.  I also have a sheer dress with a silky underslip.  I don't know who crocheted this either.  The yarn is synthetic I'm sure, with a satin thread for sheen through it.  Isn't it sweet?   The white ribbon should be replaced with ecru.
I have no one who wants it and may take it to the antique store that sells vintage.   We were there today and husband found two original June Bug spinners, a Marathon, and two Lazy Ike wooden lures.  I came home with a green bucket that is the perfect size for a Christmas tree.  They have doilies, hankies, embroidered scarves, Victorian items, but this may not be something they want.
Hard to believe we were once that little, isn't it?  The arthritis in my right hand has been so bad the last few days that I can only fit two swollen fingers in the booty opening.
We had a very unpleasant incident the other evening.  One of the opossums was going into the cat condos which was OK since they are still inside.  When I let them out for a while, they were sitting there staring at the condo and I assumed the opossum was inside.  Wasn't expecting what I saw.  He was so bloody and weak.  His long pointed snout was partially gone from trying to forage through the icy snow for food, what was left was bloody and raw.  We couldn't get him to walk so Mark removed him from the box and ended his suffering.  We hate to do that, but when a critter is suffering, we just can't let it continue.  I'm sure there are others in the same situation after this horrendous winter.  So sad.
If all goes well and the heart makes it through the finishing process, I'll be back tomorrow with details.  Until then, stay safe, enjoy your day, help Mother Nature's children if you can.

Mar 12, 2015

Excuse me

Excuse me Bud!!!  Get your big dirty body off my laptop.  It's warming up and out you'll be going. My headaches and sniffles will stop.
Carole's appointment went well.  She is very disgusted and upset but I think after months of not being able to do ANYthing, she is expecting too much.  She will improve, I'm sure of it.  Nephew Chris was another mixup.  The test the doctor was referring to that needs prompt treatment was not the biopsy.  The office staff didn't realize orders for Pittsburgh were for a different test.  Drives us nuts.

Here's your heart!  Coming along nicely and I like the softer taupe thread on the lighter linen too.  The kit included a red check backing fabric and I could do that, but do you think it would be the best choice for the all taupe piece?  Taupe and red, yes.  I'll decide last minute as usual.  I hope to have it assembled and ready for the giveaway by Sunday.   Periodontal surgery first thing Monday morning so I'll be pouting all weekend.  Foot surgery the following week.  Hope the pain meds are chewable cause I can't swallow pills.
Enjoy the weekend!
Stay safe.

Mar 11, 2015

The heart decision

Hello stitching buds.  Hump day. 
 Fourteen years today we lost Dad.  Received sad news about a friend.  Received bad news about my nephew, Carole's son.  Obviously, someone got lab results mixed up as they did with mine years ago because after his illness over Christmas, they said all was negative.  Mine was malignant and after major surgery - whoops!  Didn't find any cancer - must have been a mixup.  This happens WAY too often around here.  We'll know more tomorrow but he has to get to Pittsburgh for a surgical procedure right away.  Carole is starting to have difficulty breathing again, but it's only 2 weeks out from surgery so she has to give it time.  Lots of time.  I think the cardioversions and Torsades episodes took a lot from her, and then it was the pacemaker, then the AV node ablation, then new leads and a different pacing unit, then the valve replacement.  I don't think she fully recovered from any of these before going into another.  The frustrating thing, the valve was the problem all along and the other procedures were not needed.  It will take time but we're confident she will be feeling so much better this summer.  Thank you Cleveland Clinic, doctors, and staff.
 Mark had a bad fall on the ice this week and went to the chiropractor this morning.  A box on the counter filled with chocolate covered pretzels was to raise funds for a therapy horse.  There were a lot of empty wrappers when he came out of treatment.  His head turned right to me.  What!  You know I go above and beyond to help animals - don't give me that look.
I did find Spot the Horse.  As for the heart giveaway, I dyed the flax Belfast to a slightly warmer shade, and am using the recommended floss color.  This one will be more of what Stacy designed it to be and will be the offer.  I love chenille on pieces - other than mine - so I will decide on its fate later.  I have difficulty sewing a smaller backing onto shapes, like a heart.  On square pieces, my corners are never right.  I need to practice more.  Thank you for your suggestions and help!  ..wait...  I just had a tremendously hot flash and a vision of the heart with chenille trim appeared.  Looked good.  See what I mean?  Nothing is ever in stone.  When I first saw my bright yellow car, I laughed at whoever would be fool enough to drive it.  Four hot flashes later, I became that fool.  The heat must soften my aversions.

 In my browsing yesterday I found several antique samplers very similar to Mary Antrim.  So were these stitchers from the same area?  I'm too lazy for not into researching.

   I will work on your heart and be back when it's ready, taking a few days off the computer.
Hope your week ends even better than it started.
Thanks for visiting.

Mar 10, 2015

When you start getting into a hole...

do you dig yourself deeper?  Never ever have I done that.  But since the hotel and food bills from Cleveland, filling her heating oil tank, and all the other spending, I am continuing instead of slowing down.  I know the other expenditures were necessary, but now I'm just buying what I want for fun.  First time for this penny pincher, but that's OK.  I'm getting older and if it makes me happy, it's mine.  I ordered some other colors of linen, a few more charts, more cotton prints, and then I spotted this.

How did I miss this one?  From Carriage House Samplings titled Spot the Horse.  This photo is from Priscilla's Pocket where I found gorgeous frames like this one.  One good thing leads to another. You can visit them here.  The chart shows it on a darker fabric.  Either way - I had to have it.  I recently purchased Merry Wind Farms first release, Elena Tratman.  What a nice, large, easy to read, fun reproduction.  Not sure when I will start it, but I wanted it now.  Visit her blog to see and order Elena here.

While searching for a shop that still carried Spot, I also came across the piece hooked from Primitive Junky in October 2010.  The blog is here and you can visit her Etsy shop from the left column.  Makes me want to hook. 
So what am I doing today?  Shopping online of course.  
Hope your day is as much fun.
Thanks for visiting.

Mar 9, 2015

New Belfast

Hello hello hello.  Spent the day trying to locate new kitchen bar stools.  Geez.  I didn't realize what a nice looking bowback would cost.  I have two sources not far from us, both carry the same makers.  One could get Benner, similar in cost to the others, none of which I have the luxury of sitting in to see how they fit my growing rear.  That's a lot of $$$ to be spending on something you will use every day without seeing first.
Traveling another 10 miles or so would take me to the only needlework shop in the area.  Hit the gas baby.  I came home with 4 Belfast colors.  I really prefer 30 count but didn't want ivory which is all she had.  The first is Antique Copper, overdyed (is that what it's called?) bronze with a grayish blue.  I'm using the two darkest finishes I have to show the depth of color for those of you that are shopless.
The next is Vintage County Mocha which is stamped like an overdyed.  I don't care for these types with a lot of pattern to the dye, but you can also use the back side for a solid look.  The dark blue is Blue Spruce, all are 32 count Belfast.  I also got a piece of Flax and it's lighter than I thought.  Platinum was a very nice color, warmer than Flax, and the next trip to that area will include it.  

I still plan on dyeing a dark grayish blue but didn't want to pass up this shade.  The first thing I thought of was ..... remember this?  I wish I would have used a darker teal for the fabric, even this new blue.  As you can see, I have not finished it into a bag yet.
Changing the subject - I noticed how photos with linen get really crazy online so I resized in the Photo Gallery to the smallest size at 640 and I think it helps.
Now for the steam smash.  When I use batting, I don't need to smoosh it down because it has a low and even loft.  But whenever I use packaged fill, I overstuff and then press the back and front (with a pressing cloth) using a high steam setting on the iron.  It compacts the fill, makes it dense and reduces the loft.  This picture from an earlier post shows how it looks after a steam.  When I use the cheaper fill the steam and heat really compress it.  I'll try it with the Touch of Silk and see it if compresses as much.  I always use a fusible interfacing on the linen so I don't know how it would feel without it.
I have been watching this tiny raccoon and his little opossum buddy the last few days.  With the weather finally breaking from frigid temps, they are searching for food and looking like they are sick from the harsh winter.  My sister had baby raccoons way too late in the year and we wondered if they made it through these months.  Obviously, we had babies late in the fall too because he is very young.  I have been leaving cat food and bread for them along with corn.

Not sure if they are actually sick or starving, but neither are in good shape.  My sister is feeding another stray cat she has named Junior.  She seems to be doing well except for the pain from opening her chest, slowing gaining strength, and we'll be taking her to the doc Thursday.
That's all folks!
Have a great start to your week.

Mar 7, 2015

The little white line

Hello people.  Happy weekend to you.

Whenever I had some spare time today I worked on the heart.  Not happy.  I usually don't use a lighter back and don't know if that is the problem or if I screwed up somewhere.  This is the back of the heart, using the ivory background Old Script, and a beautiful fabric for a pocket.  But I am seeing this light fabric from the front and it's bugging me.
See the light outline on the side and humps?  Not that much, but enough to bug me!  The pocket fabric isn't noticeable.  If I was keeping it, I would let it go or stain the light fabric, but because it will be a gift, I'm not satisfied.  I know.  You think I'm too particular.  Keep in mind I beat, deliberately create holes, break linen threads, clip floss, stain, and sand other pieces.  But this is special.  Stitched in the Clinic under stress, but calmed by the gesture of friends.
I already pinked the seams close and hate to take it apart, but I may.  This is what I planned to offer for my blogging anniversary and your friendship.  It really helped me through these last months. Because of the generosity of many in offering this chart to me that I so love, I want to share it, and will stitch another for myself.  Maybe it's best to keep this one rather than disassemble it and offer the second. Stitch the gift on the lighter linen as Stacy intended?  I'll think about it this evening. 
I remembered Carol's (Stitching Dreams) post of finishing tips and decided to try the one thing that I do differently.  We both interface, pink, and steam smash, but I use quilt batting and she uses Touch of Silk fill.  So I bought a bag today at JoAnn's half price sale.  What a difference.  It can loft with such soft volume and not crush, or be packed so tightly, and it doesn't melt when steam smashing.  I never thought there would be a difference between bagged fill, but there definitely is.  Thanks Carol!  It's what I used in the heart and am very pleased with it.  See?  I'm not a crabass about everything. 
Enjoy your Sunday!
Thanks for visiting.

Mar 6, 2015

Going to the dark side

Greetings!  I'm sorry for those of you that were hit once again with this ridiculous winter weather.  We were north of the snow and had a sunny day for the trip to the Clinic, sunny today, but below zero again last night.  The parking structure was huge, completely filled, and after driving in circles until on the edge of vertigo, we parked on the roof, farthest from the elevator, in bitter wind.  She is home and we are still making adjustments to her house for comfort, like getting a full tank of oil since her supply ran out and the house is 48 degrees.  Yes, my sister is a great planner and thinker.  This is why most of the tasks we need to do for her are unexpected.
The dark side.  Much darker than my unbleached.
I did a basic finish on the blue bird, with one thick and one medium layer of quilt batting.  I just love this 1" stuff.  I bevel the edges slightly, sometimes put a little bit of loose fill into the corners, but it makes such a smooth finish.  No lumps or having to move fill around.  Fusible interfacing on both front and back.
I have more of the this color, it's close to my favorite dark Rook, and I am on a kick to use dark colors.  Really.  Big hard kick.  I will attempt dyeing a grayish blue next, starting with a cream piece and also trying an unbleached. 
Dorothy Allen from R&R Reproductions (you can call or order at Dyeing 2 Stitch) has always been one of my favorites and I'm loving the dark side!

Need to get dressed and get over to Carole's.
Have a great day!
Thanks for visiting.

Mar 4, 2015

Coming home

Good day to all.  Carole has improved enough to send her home.  What a difference out of ICU.  She is weak but will get stronger every day, now that she can walk without gasping for air.  Amazing.   Mark and I will make the trip tomorrow and stop at a Whole Foods market we saw on the way home Monday.  Never been to one before, and we saw other shops to visit also.  Thank goodness the freezing rain is over but other areas in the Northeast are going to get hammered again.  I hope this is the end.  Can't imagine what they are dealing with.  And of course, I worry about the starving and buried animals in that amount of snow.
I ordered more raw/natural Belfast and was surprised that it's not easy to find in all shops.   I ordered two pieces and she said they are from different bolts and one is darker.  I wish there was more consistency with linen colors.   One of my favorite pieces of fabric was a gift from a stitching friend, 18th Century Rook, on little Dorothy.  I purchased several pieces online and not one was even close to the odd bronzy green that I loved.  My latest came in as this, which I dislike and will never use.  Not as scratchy and rough, much softer and finer, not for me.   Don't you just love that Dorothy Allen sampler? 
As for the Fraktur Friends, not sure if I will use the tent stitch on silk gauze or cross stitch on linen.  I never used a hoop and understand that it's the method for gauze.  We'll see.
We're off to get groceries and fill the fridge for Carole since she won't be driving for a while. 
Have a great day!! 
Thanks for visiting.
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