Sunday, September 29, 2013

An Untangled Web

So, one of the less flattering pics I've ever posted is about to be revealed. This is my experiment on 25 count and with half cross stitch. It was coming along on it's SAL Friday and I was feeling OK about it until I realized everything was one stitch off. Then I had to frog. Yuck to frogging, and the smaller the count the bigger the yuck to unpicking it.
So SK Spider Queen after stitching and then unpicking.

Never let it be said I am unwilling to show my boo-boos! Rarely has a stitching blog posted an uglier pic of stitching than this one.

On a brighter note, I also was working on my Blue and White Sampler during the week. This chart is from the Fall 1987 issue of Needlecraft Ideas, A Better Homes and Gardens magazine. I'm pretty happy with the way it is coming along and how easy it is to pick up and put down when you are busy.



Hopefully next week will show more progress on this and on SK the Spider Queen. With any luck she will look a bit more presentable.

Until next time Happy (frogless) Stitching!
Karen


Sunday, September 22, 2013

Test Stitching Experiments and a Small Update.

If you saw my last blog post then you know I am playing with some 25 ct. DMC Magic Guide that was very kindly sent to me by Lesli. I've even tried stitching on a frame and I know I'm not supposed to do that. In the past I've tried going back to a frame and put myself out of stitching for anywhere from a few days to a few weeks because of the pain. But I tried it again for part of the 25 count and will keep trying in all likelihood because for me, my stitching looks much better on a frame.

I'm also experimenting with just plain half cross stitch on this project. Hey, in for a penny in for a pound!

First about the fabric. It is sort of soft but not too much, and sort of nubby, but not too much. I find I like the feel of it and it is easy to stitch, given its count and my eyesight. I can see very little showthrough in my stitching doing 2 over 1 half cross but in the extreme zoom photo's your about to see I definitely see a lot of show through which isn't visible at all to the naked eye. I might try 3 over 1 in the future but I think that would make for some very tight stitching in the confetti areas.

Anywho...



If you click on the photos you can see them in all their glory, the good and the bad. This is the first 750 or so stitches of SK The Spider Queen from Heaven and Earth Designs. I wasn't too sure I'd love working with these colors but I do. The open spaces are threads that I didn't have and that weren't available locally so they will have to wait until I place an order.

The Magic guide throws me off by having the gridding! How dumb is that? I do grid but I grid every 10 block and this is every 20 so I'm having to adjust and it is harder than it sounds. This chart is only 75 stitches wide btw. Some I stitched on frame as I said, and the rest I stitched in hand, all in half cross stitches. Normally I wouldn't mix them up that way but this is a test piece and that is how test stitching goes for me. I'm too slow a stitcher to do big sections of both and then decide.

I plan to try some other 25 ct. fabrics as soon as I can afford them. DMC doesn't sell the magic guide in the US so it would be expensive for me to buy if I get too attached to it. Do you have any recommendations on 25 ct.? I generally prefer natural fabrics.

Now to my other stitching this week.
I continued on with the Blue and White Sampler and actually had some stitching time. Not a lot of it but more than I have been having. I had to frog one little area twice and so drew in some grid lines and that is when I realized the chart itself, when it moves from one page to the next, doesn't have evenly numbered grid lines. They start over on the next page! So I wasn't just being dense but really, who does that?

Here is an update picture.
Last time:




And the progress:

Excuse the wrinkles, but I do stitch in hand.

Happy Stitching until next time my friends!

Monday, September 16, 2013

Feels like Autumn Stitching

A little stitch here, a little stitch there and slowly you start to see progress.
Well, that is the theory anyway.

The weather feels wonderful here right now. Not too cool and not too warm. The puppies are loving it and so am I. This is my favorite time of year I think. I'm not a winter loving girl but I do love the opening show for it.

I have been working stitching into my schedule when I can.
First up is QS Mystic Garden from the HAED BB SAL. Warning! Not a lot of progress but enough to make me feel as if I worked on it.

Before:




And After:



Enough to satisfy for the moment.

I also pulled out my Blue and White Sampler yesterday. You may remember that I mentioned getting this one half way finished many years ago and then it was lost in a move or something so I re-started. And then didn't touch it again for months. Sigh.
So before:
And after:


I really do love this one so hopefully it will see more time in the near future.

The 25 ct. experiments continue and I am trying to give it a good chance with half cross 2 over one. It can be a challenge for eyes that will be 50 years old in two weeks! I was diagnosed with tiny cataracts in both eyes in January of this year so I am pleasantly surprised to be able to work this count at all. I forgot to take a picture of that so next time I will try to remember. There isn't much to see yet anyway. I've gotten so used to counting over blocks it sometimes throws me off a little. How sad is that?

So just for fun I thought I'd show you these. In the picture below you see my first ever needlepoint attempts. Both are from more years ago than I care to think about. These were made when I was in my scale miniatures phase. I do not recommend learning to needlepoint in 1 inch = 1 foot. I only still have them because they were learning pieces and not good enough to actually use (I'd probably use them now though) in a miniature setting.
The dime is for scale.
The little carpet was done on either 22 or 28 mesh, can't remember, and the shell was meant to be the seat for a chair. It was done on either 48 or 58 silk canvas with a beading needle and one strand of floss. Note the distortion from using half cross stitch. I will have to see if I can find one of the mini afghans I crocheted back then, they were adorable, also made with 1strand of embroidery floss.

Well, I'm looking at another hugely busy week and will get back with you all as soon as I have something fun to show.

Happy stitching everyone!





Monday, September 2, 2013

IF I COULD PUT TIME IN A BOTTLE!

I still wouldn't have any, but if someone else figures out how I'd be first in line to buy it.
House projects, puppies, plumbing problems and pneumonia along with a full time job have kept me hopping and given me little to no stitching time. Not enough time for sleeping either! I even multitask when I'm checking facebook!

I did manage a few stitches on Phuan the past 2 Fridays, and by a few I mean maybe 30 to 50 stitches each time. Loved it.

 





I'm contemplating a major project in the next year or so. There is pretty much no way it will ever fit on 18 ct. so I'm experimenting with smaller counts. 28 count is a no go. Lesli sent me a piece of 25 ct. DMC Magic Guide)(Thank you Lesli) and I am playing with it now. It looks better on the frame, what doesn't? but I'm not sure I'll be able to continue on frame because of my neck problems and my in hand stitching with it looks lumpy. On frame is ok with 2 over 1 half crosses  but my tension needs work.

I've been 'sneaking' in a little crochet, just to see if I could. So long as I don't do it for more than 5 minutes at a time it has been ok, anything over that and the pain starts. Knitting is still out of the question.

Pattern sale. I shouldn't have spent the money but I had planned it in advanced that when Simplicity patterns went on sale I'd pick up two of their retro patterns. Ran in yesterday on the way home from the hardware store and picked up these two.




Unfortunately my obsession with maxi dresses ended up in two others, one picked by my DH and one by me.




Can you guess who picked which pattern?

The sewing room/stitching room that was supposed to be set up this weekend is only 1/4 done due to multiple unforeseen  circumstances but I did manage to carve out enough space to sit and stitch so while practicing on the 25ct. I'm starting this, which you may recall was an RAK back in May of this year.



I've been longing to stitch her in any case.

Happy Holiday and Happy stitching 'till next time.
Karen