Mar 30, 2016

Phases of Hannah

Phase one was following the chart including missing stitches.
Phase two was filling in the motif stitches and changing the center heart to a dinky motif.
Final phase filled in the missing N and O, changed the top shape of the motifs, filled in the sides with pink, added to the center dinky.
Never be afraid to change what doesn't work ... or you don't like ... or stitches you hate ... or to colors that you prefer ... or from light linen to dark.
If the printer works, this will be the April box top ending before the over one.
I decided to not add Hannah's name since it's no longer what Hannah intended, and I plan on a small pillow for cupboard knob hanging and don't want it any larger.
I received an email from Barbara R with her method of over one.  I asked to share it with you and she has agreed to send photos of it, her WIP, and hopefully a few other pieces of her work.  She will be back next week so hopefully by next weekend I will have a post that may offer some help to those of us that dread and reject projects because of over one stitching.
Thanks for visiting ~ hope your week ends well.

Mar 28, 2016

The agony of one

How was your Easter?  Our turkey was the best we ever had.  From now on, fresh only, no "solutions" or additives.  Well worth the extra $$. 
Instead of candy, I always get my nephew's grandchildren new shoes for summer.  The 2 year old was happy, the 7 year old's didn't fit, and the 3 year old wouldn't put them on.  He always sticks that little tongue out when he first sees you and the doctor said he is autistic.  So now all three of them get a disability check.  I told their father that if the doctor feels they are autistic, he should be ordering some form of early therapy, or go get a second opinion.  My sister was worn out because these kids are ACTIVE!!  They will sit for a story but it better be short, especially on a warm sunny day.  A few of their games/toys are electronic but most are for outdoor.  Personally, I love the Stomp Rocket.
Now for the stitch slump.  When I have to force myself to pick up a needle, over one is the worst type of stitching.  Hannah has four lines of it and after one, I decided to stop.  Extremely difficult and tedious to remove it now.  Not sure if I will stitch the last line of the chart (her name) or just end it here with a single bottom band.  I added a little center motif in place of the queen stitch heart, filled in all the missing stitches, added a dookey after "heart" to extend the row.
With my neck and back causing numbness I didn't want to look down for any length of time, so I turned my Lacis hoop to the side and flipped it up so it's really high and close.  I never did order the smaller hoop for it but will.  I much prefer sitting on a smaller aid when needed than using a large floor stand.  Stitching in hand is my method but for the over one and because of my numbness, the flipped up hoop was necessary.

So many of you have no problem with over one but I do.  I never remember the rules and end up searching for the stitch I know I put in, but it disappeared.  As this article explains (here) I need to pay attention to the linen threads.  It is very important to see if the horizontal thread goes over, or under, the vertical.  Doing it wrong allows the floss thread to slip under the linen thread and disappear.  If I concentrate or pay attention, the over one stitches would not be so aggravating but I just don't have the ambition right now.  And, I just can't seem to remember things so a copy of these instructions should be inserted into my charts that call for over one.  Maybe I'll do that today.  I will still be listing some charts for sale, maybe Facebook, maybe Ebay, and I am undecided about selling some smalls.  I am tired of many and want to clean up the house, ridding it of clutter and "things", still loving Phoebe Troyer's home on Pinterest.  But I may be sorry and should probably pack them away for now.
My cousin Patty received the Jenny box and shed a tear, she misses her mom and also her sister who she admitted is now totally lost to her from the dementia.  It came the day she received her Medicare card.  Tough day, I know too well.  But she's relieved because her health care was costing her $998 a month and she doesn't work, only her husband in a medium income job. While my well off friend pays $100 for the top of the line plan because she lives off her own money, therefore, no W-2 or income which is what your cost is based on.
March is already ending this week.  Time flies when you're having fun getting older.
Have a great week!
Thanks for visiting.

Mar 25, 2016

the Ink Spots

Greetings folks.  I want to wish everyone a joyous Easter.  We won't be having our traditional breakfast and dinner this year.  The fresh turkey I bought for Thanksgiving is finally making its way out of the freezer and will be the first time ever, a bird will be gracing the Easter table.  Not happy about that, but it's easier than arguing with my sister.
My right arm and hand are numb again so stitching is hit and miss but I am plugging along.  A few more stitches and the four rows of over one begin.  There is a large center heart done in the queen that isn't stitched yet and I haven't decided if I will do it or change it.  R&R's reproductions are charted as the samplers are found including missing stitches.  I usually fill them in and did on the top of Hannah, but decided to follow the chart for the mid section.  What bothered me was the color I chose for green, 731, way too yellowish.  The entire sampler is my own choice and darker than the original.  I didn't want to go back and change it so I got my artist brushes out and inked it.  Yep.  Inked it.  Ranger archival ink pad.
It's not a great difference but the yellow is toned down considerably and just fine now.  In this photo, the 1234 and large motif on the left were inked.  Always looking for the easy end to a problem. 
Using the small flat brush on the raised thread is quite easy, very light touch.  By not holding the brush upright, having it horizontal, the bristles don't touch the linen.  I used a liner brush for a few. 
This looks better.  Still undecided as to filling in missing stitches, or leaving as is and aging when finished.  That's another reason I am not too concerned about inking over threads, I age pieces with spots anyway so if I happen to smudge the linen, (or make a chocolate fingerprint) it will not be noticed at all and contribute to the look.
The blue linen came out fabulous.  I ordered three dark pieces anyway, Gunmetal Dolphin and Charcoal.  Why?  I can get the shade I want myself!  But you never know for sure.  When I dye, I'm using scraps or linen that I do not like as samples.  The next piece I try may not come out the same and that's happened.  The sources and colors of my old linens are unknown so each could dye differently.
Staying home and chewing on Advil today, Mark is golfing (it's 38 degrees), maybe we will go out later for a few errands.  My printer that died again, may be running after my 4 day fix.  If it is, I will try to offer a few boxes for April but I'm not sure.  The new monster sized printer I purchased after the first death does not print the quality I want and it's sitting in the basement.  Just don't have the gumption to shop for another right now.

For Elaine - I can't reply to your comment or email you.  The pincushions are by Hands on Designs.  The series is called Block PartyBuzz, Java, Home, and Wool are the chart titles.  You can find all four here.
I won't be back until after Easter so I want to again wish you all a Happy Easter!!
Thanks for visiting.

Mar 24, 2016

Block Party

As usual, I am out of the loop.  While searching online for linen that I do NOT need, a series called Block Party from Hands on Designs showed up.  You've seen them?  What a cute cute cute idea and something different for those that have stitched it all.  Each side is different and each has 4 pins to spell the theme.  There will be 6 in the series and the chartpack comes with the little wool top piece for $10.  I've not seen any on blogs and even though my crippled fingers only bend to samplers, I think the idea is unique.


Note to Sandra - I can't contact you (no-reply) about the trees but they were all purchased several years ago and I check every year, but haven't seen them since.


Mar 23, 2016

I've got the blues

Rit's liquid denim blue mixed with pearl gray. Gray with a touch of denim on the left and denim with equal gray on the right.  Back to soaking for a darker shade.  Whatever is left will be poured into a glass quart jar and stored for future.  I think I'll try the denim full strength on another piece.
If I am absolutely sure of the count in my mess of mystery linens, I use a permanent marker in a corner rather than having a pin or staple invade the space beneath my nails.


Mar 20, 2016

Jenny finish



 Sale - originally I said to leave comments with email addresses but some of you can't, so instead, click (or top right column link) to send me your purchase request with item#.  Bunheads are through Paypal or check, charts will be through online gift certificate and I will send info when I ask for your mailing address and confirm sale.
Buns measure 2 1/2" x 3 1/2", all with the same dark blue print backing.  The bottom edge is glued, not hand sewn shut.  The set is $14 including shipping (US).
 Usually I just donate small charts and cards like these but thought I would show you first in case there is one you have wanted.  Samplers and a few other charts will be on EBay in the future.  All include US shipping and payment will be made to 123Stitch as a gift certificate.
1.  Prairie Schooler Amish Life  $4 SOLD
2.  Prairie Schooler Mary had a Little Lamb  $4
First item is $1 and the second is 50¢ for any of these four designs
3.  Bent Creek Pumpkin Patch   
4.  Heart in Hand Wee Santa 2002  SOLD 
5.  Cedar Hill Shaker Cat (the chart's winner never claimed it in the giveaway)  GONE
6.  Sigrid Designs Santa Mouse   

7.  Scattered Seed Queen Esther   $5 SOLD
8.  La-D-Da littles A Bird in Hand  $1  SOLD
9.  Cedar Hill Country (quilt designs)  $1 or 50¢ with another  SOLD
10. Niky's Primitive Christmas  $2  SOLD

11. Tina Woltman Jingle Bird  $2  SOLD
12. Cedar Hill Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep  $1 or 50¢ with another

Mar 19, 2016


that everything happens for a reason and I couldn't wait to show you.  What a difference using the black based print and lighter poms makes in Patty's gift.  Love it!!  So glad the lighter fabric was flawed.
But when we are frogging half of a sampler over and over and over, I don't see the reason for that.  I thought that process would teach me patience but instead, I learned several different ways to bend a needle. 
This is Scorched Linen mini poms from the Dame. The other black print fabric that I thought was a warm brown, turned out to be a grayish taupe in daylight and I didn't like it.  I am only using light fleece for the padding and think I can handle sewing the poms on by hand.  Her 65th is the first week in April and I can mail next week. 
The sale starts tomorrow and I want to say a few things.  No, I do not think I have such valuable in-demand items that I need to announce a "sale date".  I just want to give everyone a chance to see the items and I try to choose an accommodating time, to be fair.  Yes, I know I sometimes sell too cheaply, but I'm cheap which makes it harder to ask for higher prices.  I fail to account for postage many times, thinking it's still 19¢.  I chose a gift certificate (easily ordered online in $1 increments) from 123Stitch instead of the 35¢ Paypal fee + 49¢ postage leaving me 18¢.  So I get a couple bucks to spend on things I will never stitch and you get a chart for cheap.  Hope there's something you can use.
We went to JCP today looking for shoes for my great nephew's kids and husband found a fabulous winter jacket for $6.97 after discounts.  He loves it.  It's a great time to buy coats for really cheap that can be donated to homeless shelters and kids' programs.
Yesterday, my husband got a hankering for tuna casserole that we haven't had in years.  We came from shopping and started throwing it together, anxiously awaiting its removal from the oven.  Well, it was lousy.  Didn't taste like tuna casserole at all.  Probably because we forgot to add the tuna.

Mar 17, 2016

Two steps forward, one step back

Hello hello.  I found the perfect color and print to cover the Jenny box.  The black print looked great but the black poms wouldn't show up. I chose this box with the looser lid allowing it to close over the fabric covered bottom, carefully measured (that only happens once in a decade), covered, sized and cut the pom poms, and then I looked at this photo.  Fabric flaws.  The red lines show four in a small area.
 Now I see them clearly in daylight which I missed when working late in the evening.  I am tired of spending over $10 a yard for quality cotton fabric and finding small flaws that you don't notice in store.  Even though it matches, I may switch to the black print and forget the poms.  I have two more of these boxes and will try again.  Not sure what I'm doing with April's boxes because my printer that does the labels is not working.  Again.  Maybe they will be fabric covered!
And using my favorite DMC colors is yielding this progress on Hannah.  The empty space after M is in the design.
Also progress on the kitchen exhaust.  The vent pipes are in, outside wall cap installed, the fan should be hooked up later today.  I decided to bundle projects in order to get someone out here.  The more I add to the list, maybe they will be more willing to work here.  I don't know if the determination of job size is based on $$$ or time. But.  The two contractors that were to replace our windows and siding - gone.  Closed after many years.  Not good.
Ran into Macy's this morning to grab my favorite stretchy pants.  Karen Scott has lots of capris but these are the stretch knit blend that hold their shape forever (here), also come in a shorter skimmer. My mom, aunt, sister, and I all tried to get a few pair before they sold out in store which happens quickly.  The comfort and stretch are great, they wash and dry nicely, come in petite, women's and misses.  Love them!  Got a few tops to match too.  Since the backside has continued to increase, the stretch is crucial.  I refuse to move up another size and these adapt to weight gains and losses, the latter of which is greatly anticipated but highly unlikely.  I really wanted to slim down by my fast approaching 65th,
but all is increasing.  Even my mini pad has moved up to the next level.
Have a good one!!

Mar 15, 2016

Hannah my Way

Next project is Hannah Way with lots of changes in the stitches.  The colors are whatever I want since it's not charted for DMC, and I'm using my own dye on 32 count. And I don't care.  I am really forcing myself now and thinking the end of stitching is near.
Lots of noise and sawdust today while I play with cardboard making templates for ideas.  So far, I've come up with five viable options and can't make up my mind, but think it will be similar to this with a pegboard beneath the cabinet.
These are the items I purchased at Vintage Folk the other day.

 And here's someone who enjoys chasing her tail on my chair.
I plan to work on the box lid tonight so wish me luck.  I really can't see how there would be a problem but you know how that goes. 
Made my rootin tootin bean salad yesterday and will try staying away from sweets for at least a few days.  Gained a few more pounds once again.  We purchased a bottle of Ken's light Raspberry Walnut Vinaigrette and honestly, I could drink it.  Saw a recipe on Pinterest using this and the taste is so fabulous, I don't want it mixed with other flavors.  Guzzled from the bottle or on lettuce, maybe chicken breasts will be as far as I go.
Have a great week!!
Thanks for visiting.

Mar 13, 2016


Sometimes it takes me a while to produce solutions, but I am happy to wait for the best answer. This should have been realized much sooner after all the samplers I have stitched. 
Family initials.  I was still having a problem with the date and wanted this to be very personal, so Patty's initials along with her sister's are now with her mom's name.  Perfect!  Since she is losing her sister to dementia, I think having them all together in this piece was the right decision.  I removed the two bottom branches and added the W for Wadsworth.
 I don't know if I mentioned this, but Patty's cousin and her husband were killed in an accident near Nest Lake Bridge, a half mile from Patty's home in February.  They had a fender denter, weren't injured, left their car and were both struck and killed by another motorist.  Patty did not tell her sister because Sandy's type of dementia distorts perception.  This is not Alzheimer's, and although Sandy can't function and has lost her language skills, she still has some recognition. 
So now the finishing begins and I hope it goes well.  I think using either black mini or petite pom pom trim along the edge would be nice and look better without the black stitched border, but if I don't use the poms, will probably add it.  For such a small box, the smaller pom would be better???  I also have chenille (the miracle fuzz to hide wonky edges) if the poms give me trouble.  I plan on running a basting line and pulling to gather over a round board.  I'll check Vonna's site for info too. 
I hope she likes this, I think she will.

Mar 12, 2016


Big word.  And important.  I am wondering why I thought the date of Aunt Jenny's passing would be appropriate on the pin tuffet.  Is it?  Date of birth instead?  I don't know how Patty would feel so I may just extend the vine and add another flower of some sort.  The date looks very nice and I prefer it, and would use Jenny's birth year if I choose that option.  I changed the colors, you knew I would, but mainly because the ivory thread was not visible on the linen.
This is how I scientifically check to see how the project will fit on a 4" round mache box.  Perfect.  I haven't decided if I will stitch the round border, but either way 32 count fits nicely.  Almost every craft store has the little 4" boxes and the tuffet can be inserted into the lip of the lid, attached to the lid's top, or with a Sudberry shaker pincushion box (here).  It think 36 or 40 count would be required with Sudberry.  This is a chart from 2009 so you probably already know all this.
This quick project would make a great personalized gift if their name or initials would fit.  Could even transpose the name and date for a little more space, adjusting or leaving off the gold outer edge pattern. 
I visited a brand new primitive/antique shop in downtown Sharon today named Vintage Folk.  Bought a few items and was happy to see a Golden Doodle puppy there.  Lots of kissing and puppy breath!  The owner is very nice.  Her Facebook page is here.
Are these two practicing yoga?
Have a nice weekend everyone.
Thanks for visiting.

Mar 10, 2016

On a rainy day...

Have I chosen the next project?  Yesterday it was an outside one and today I can barely open my hand or set down my right foot.  Arthritis seems to be affecting one side of me, the left is still working fine.
First I chose the Jenny Bean Pin Tuffet.  Plan is to size it for a 4" box top and make it for my cousin in MN that took care of her mom during Alzheimer's, and is now watching her sister and only sibling rapidly succumb to frontotemporal dementia.  Their mom's (my mom's sister) name was Jenny and I would change the year to her birth (or passing) and leave off the B. I will do this small fairly quick so I also looked for another sampler. 
As is the norm, I am still drawn to these two but hesitate because of the over one areas.  So it's down to three. 
Hannah Way has over one but is a small piece so I can handle it.  This is done in seven step cross (ain't gonna happen) which creates a padded look and is totally reversible.  There are Queens involved too but they won't be leaving the palace for this project.
1739 is very primitive and I would change the colors.  Ann Stone is a good looking sampler with a few different elements that would be fun.

Not sure which it will be, but I'll be thinking about the choice while barking orders for the exhaust fan installation. 
Enjoy your day.
Thanks for visiting.

Mar 9, 2016

Rabbit Folk

Remember these little pieces that I played with?  Finally stuffed them and I no longer want them.  Will be offering them this weekend along with a few charts on the For Sale tab.  They're from PS #19 Rabbit Folk stitched on 18 Aida.  I have to decide if I want to bother or not and may just pitch the charts (not the PS) and donate these guys.  Most of the charts are smalls, older, and not worth the postage but I may let you decide.
 Today I am definitely choosing a project.  Sampler for sure, no rabbits.
Hope your day is as warm and sunny as mine!!

Mar 8, 2016

Where there's a will, there's a wool

Greetings to all on this warm sunny day in PA.  Hope you're doing well.
Working on this lion wallet has not been fun to say the least.  My impatience makes me think I can skip over everything to learn and just do it.  No I can't.
 I received another package from Ann, this one containing glorious wool that she uses for her spectacular wallets.  I can see why.  What a difference in the look when replicating an early piece. 
Here's my pitiful attempt, single strand wool in the insert compared to double DMC.  Hard to see difference on the screen but it's huge.  It's embarrassing to show my wonky tents but this morning I walked into one of those concrete poles in Walmart while browsing office supplies, so how much worse can this photo be?  No one was around so it was certainly not as bad as the JCP mannequin incident.  We don't speak of that one.
This blue piece on 30 count is tent over one with four cross stitches beneath.  You all know I have a tension problem and when I yanked on the needle, I broke the wool thread.  Yes they all break easily if you yank hard enough unless they are a blend. 
It's a little too thick for the full cross I think and I'm anxious to get my new chart from Merry Wind Farm which I believe is done in wool.  Lillian Davidson.  I spotted the over one stitching on this right away but love it, so it's the latest stash addition.  Even though I really don't feel like stitching.
I want to thank you for the heads up on the cell phone/bra issue.  I had forgotten about the list of things to steer clear of (including some GPS units) that we studied over a year ago.  Although Carole said that the new phone doesn't fit in her bra like her old flip phone, she was once again embellishing to make a point because she didn't like the new one. When I called to question her after your comments, she claimed she never said that.  That is very typical of her.  As an example, when I checked Verizon policies and told her that she could exchange the new phone for another, she started yelling about signing a contract and there is a $100 charge for restocking.  No, there is a $35 charge to return a product within 14 days.  To exchange, there is no charge.  Go do it and get the damn flip phone.  Phone calls telling me I am wrong continued throughout the day.  So I printed out their policy and had her take it to the Verizon store, where they were as nice as could be, and exchanged the smartassphone for a flipthisphone.  She made up the $100 charge, the contract for that phone, and a few other things just so she wouldn't have to go back there and to prove she knows more.  She does this quite often.  Her cell phone is carried in her right pants pocket, not her bra as before, and she uses her right side when talking.  Glad she remembers this since she is totally dependent on that pacemaker. And I thank you again for bringing it to my attention.  It just occurred to me that her breast cancer was on the same side as where she kept the phone for years.  Coincidence I guess.
Thanks for visiting!
Enjoy your day.
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