Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Update on Celtic Noel

I nearly forgot!

I was working my way back up the dress and got bored so I decided to stitch her hands and face.

She is coming along well on the 25 count 2 over one. So easy to stitch on.

When I started her in March I had planned to have her finished long before Christmas. Obviously I missed most of the year, so that won't happen. I picked her back up after finishing Christmas Silhouette. She is an easy and fun stitch so far.

Happy Stitching Everyone!

Friday, December 9, 2016

So Happy To Be Back And Stitching.

After a couple of months of physical therapy I was finally allowed to stitch again, but only for 1/2 to 1 hour a day, about twice a week.

I'm told I have carpal tunnel on both sides, tennis elbow on both sides and tendonitis that just won't heal up on the right wrist. I'm also told it will never go away so long as I am working my present job. Not exactly what I wanted to hear but I was told about 6 months ago and have come to terms with it. I am better than I was, and am having less pain after months of physical therapy and several doses of steroids.

I have re-vamped the blog to a lighter feel that I quite like. I've waited a bit to post simply because my lap top died and I really don't enjoy working on this old desktop nearly as much,

Anywho, you won't be seeing as much progress as before obviously but I have been stitching for about two months, following the medical guidelines I was given. I even have a finish to show you!

To get things off to a new start I present to you Christmas Silhouette from Charting Creations.

 This was worked on a piece of 25 count DMC Magic Guide, 2 over one, half cross. The half cross saves a lot of stitches obviously and made it work up quite quickly and easily. It was a fun stitch. The chart is available here if you've a mind to stitch one up for yourself.

I finished this 2 or 3 weeks ago and have gone back to working on Celtic Noel. I'll post some updated pictures of that one soon. Possibly tomorrow when I have a bit more time.

I'd like to send out a heartfelt thank you to a few people who have been wonderfully supportive. First, my good friend Jessie, always such an amazing friend. Thank you to Laura, Rhonda and Denise, for all of the lovely updates and for checking in with me just to see how I'm getting on. It means a lot to have such a lovely bunch of friends.

I hope you all have time for stitching in this crazy busy Holiday Season.

Happy stitching everyone.


Wednesday, April 27, 2016

No Stitching, No fun

I felt I should update everyone.
I haven't done any stitching in over a month and don't expect to in the near future.
I'm seeing a doctor about getting help for what is probably carpal tunnel, or something else nerve related, in both arms. He is sending me to an orthopedic doctor, so hopefully I will know more soon.
I do have a thing or two I want to post about but I will do that another day.

Until then happy stitching everyone.

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Christmas In March

Yes, my Celtic Christmas from Lavender and Lace arrived.
Thanks to Nikki from Charting Creations for ordering it in special for me and getting it out so quickly. I'd tried to order from another source, who had been out of stock, back in December and was still waiting when Nikki offered to order it for me.
Since I'm doing so little stitching right now this is all I've worked on this month since kit week at the first of the month.
 I know many of you are familiar with the chart so all I'll do is describe the fabric, which is 25ct. Lugana in Vintage Country Mocha that I ordered from 123Stitch. The chart calls for 28 ct. so this was an experiment and I'm thrilled with it. I can see it so easily it is making stitching it a real pleasure. The coverage isn't ideal, but it is perfectly acceptable to me. Honestly it has been the only thing I've wanted to work on.
Since I always love seeing how other people's stitching grows I decided to try to remember to take pictures more often, so you can watch it grow along with me.

Here is my start on it. Forgive the glare on the first picture.
 Terrible picture as it looks nothing like this second picture, but the ones after are (mostly) right.

As I said, with being able to stitch so little right now, I've been working on nothing else.
I am thinking of trying to design a few ornaments for next Christmas. I like the idea of making them personal by making them up myself. I'll let you know if I get around to it, and share any results.

That is really all for now, I hope everyone is enjoying their stitching as much as I am.

Happy stitching everyone.

Friday, March 4, 2016

Because Stitching Just Aint Happening Right Now, but Stash is!!!

And yes, that is about to drive me crazy. I'm taking a break from it to see if that helps the ongoing problem with my wrist. Of course the wrist doesn't usually hurt when I stitch, just when I'm doing a certain job at work. Well, work isn't going away, and stitching isn't either, so I'm trying to work it out. With any luck the rest will help that problem and I can go back to being my normal stitching self. Meanwhile:
The start of kit week, and since I didn't want to miss the very first one I did a bit more on Celtic Cross, albeit with one hand again. Yes, that means very little progress, but well, what can you do?

Yep, those two pictures loaded up in reverse order, and I've no idea why. I'd already started this, after getting the kit, which you saw last time in this picture.
The kit is from Design Works and is on the nicest 14 ct. aida I've used in literally years. It is a fun easy stitch so far. I'm doing the back stitching as I go along so that I won't just toss it in a drawer to be done 'later'. Yeah, I really don't like doing back stitch. See, I lose track of where it goes and it looks all wonky if I don't work it as I go. I have deep respect for those who finish a massive piece and then go back once the crosses are done and back stitch the whole thing at once. This one is easy back stitch though, and isn't a trial to work at all. So happy I have this kit to start my Kit Week with!

Now on Valentines day my Sweetie and I went back to the fabric store where those kits were on clearance. I had a coupon, compared my favorite 6 charts and chose two of them. When I got to the counter my husband brought the other 4 up. I convinced him to put two of them back (I know right? But I was being all practical.)
This picture actually has one of the charts from before in the picture above. I must have grabbed it up with the others when I went to take the picture. I did not buy it again!
The wolf one is stamped, so we will see how that goes.
I made a tiny start on Kitty Litter, the kittens in a basket one, but I needed to wait and get supplies, baggies and a new ring, so put it aside until then. Which I have done, but now, with limited stitching the next few weeks, I will wait to work on it if I can.

This is what it looked like coming out of the package. I really love the way floss is separated out now. I can remember when it wasn't!
I told you it was a tiny start! I am following directions and began in the center.

I had a whole slew of pictures for you, Hearth of Gold saw a little tiny bit of work, and those I promised you from last time, but there was a glitch of some kind on my phone and they didn't send over to the computer like they usually do. I didn't know that and deleted them. Sigh.

I am anxiously awaiting Celtic Christmas, which should be here any day. I have everything ready for it and am on pins and needles. I kitted up the floss and beads and put everything in bags and on a ring in anticipation.

Next time, I'll share with you my adventures with my new serger! I am taking the Beginning Serger Class on Craftsy, which I will probably refer back to a 100 times, but it is a great class and I'm not nearly so intimidated as I originally was. It will certainly keep me busy on my off days while I'm not stitching very much.

Until next time, Happy Stitching!

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Kits And UFO Week!

Some people love cold weather, or so I'm told. Me? I just want to curl up in a ball and hibernate until Spring. Late Spring. Or early Summer. You'd think I'd be getting more stitching done, I usually do when it is cold. But this year, not so much. Mostly that is due to my schedule. I just don't have the kind of time I used to have for stitching. If I manage 3 hours a week then I've done very well indeed. What goes along with being busy? Getting tired, and I don't stitch when I'm too tired, not as rule, since I don't want to invite the frog for a visit.

More limited stitching time is something I've been in denial about for some time. I've decided to face it though and I am working out a scheme to make it work for me. Progress is a relative thing. I could honestly stitch for years without a finish and so long as I'm stitching and seeing bits of progress I am generally a happy stitcher.

One of the loveliest things about stitching is that it waits for you. I've got so many pieces started, and enough charts and kits in stash to keep me busy for a very long time. I'll just keep plugging away of course, but I've decided I need a boost for my kits. I like every kit I've bought over the years and I just acquired a few more during a clearance sale, so that is where I'm starting.

I hereby declare the first week of each month this year to be Kit Week! If I can manage only one hour or 10, the first week of each month I am going to work on one of my kits. Feel free to join in with a kit, a UFO, a crochet project, knitting, beading, sewing, quilting etc. Whatever you have that needs attention and doesn't get it very often. Have a new start every day of that week, or work on old favorites. Rediscover the love of your older projects! That is the plan at least. I invite you to join me, or make your own schedule for spending some time with something you enjoy working out. One day a month? Every other Sunday? Whatever works best for you.

I plan to begin on Tuesday, March 2nd. I've chosen that date because my first day off is always Tuesday and that seems like a good time for it.

My new kits, less than $20.00 US, were bought during a clearance sale. I had run into the fabric store for a small item and came out having spent my 20 dollars of mad money on these.

This was a quick phone picture. I will give you a better picture later, but at the moment it is cold in that room (no heat in there), so it will have to wait.

I started the little owl needlepoint one the same day I got it, then had to go to work. I plan to also start the Design Works Celtic Cross very soon.

A bit of fun on this next one. A dear friend and I decided we would try one of those kits we are always seeing that say the piece is big enough to go the length, or nearly so, of a sofa or couch.
We weren't expecting much and that is what we got, though actually it was more than expected in some ways.
So this is a really big picture.
See that floss up there? That is all there is, and it is ample, because I repeat, it is a really big picture with a tiny bit of cross stitching on the boat and the pink flowers. It is on 11 ct. Aida and we both have considered washing the thing and seeing if the colors wash out. My friend got both of these, shipped to us both in different states, for less than 20 dollars. She got them from Amazon and was going to order another and wash it to see if the colors would come out, as we both decided to keep ours and stitch them up, just as a friends thing, but they were no longer available. It is a nice Aida and you could never get a piece even a quarter this size for what she paid. This were ordered before the stash ban.

About that stash ban, it has obviously failed. I bought those kits at bargain prices. But the day before I bought a new release from Charting Creations, because I thought it would go really well with my other Charting Creations chart Family. I bought Love, just in time for Valentines.
 Charting Creations has a nice sale going through 2/14/2016 if you are interested, so now is the time to buy. Oh, and Nikki has very kindly ordered me the chart I've been waiting to come back in stock from an order I had made in December, so technically not stash ban breaking. It is Celtic Christmas, and I can't wait for it to come in. I also ordered some needles from Charting Creations, which is how I found out about the chart. They have fabulous prices on 25 packs of needles. I ordered the Permin needles, which I haven't tried before, but at $5.00 US I think I can't go too wrong with testing them.

Which reminds me. I have now tested 5 or 6 different types of needles and made notes for myself in my stitching notebook, so expect a future blog post on that!

I did do a bit of stitching, but very little. I decided to work across on White dragon and put in several hundred stitches on it, but once again, failed to take a picture and I'm not willing to go into a frigid room to dig it out just now.
I finished the second owl in the sal. I present to you Candy Cane Owl!
Isn't he adorable? I guess I haven't quite gotten over my Christmas Spirit.

I also did a hundred or so stitches on my HAED sal from last year, Hearth of Gold, but again, no picture. I put it aside until those needles come in, since I have gotten really spoiled to having my  needles pre-threaded and ready to go. It saves so much time and aggravation in heavy confetti areas!

Not feeling my best today, sort of coming down with the cold my husband has shared with me, so I am sure I am forgetting things I meant to share with you.
I will try to get pictures up of my stitching progress soon. 
Oh, and I increased the font size on the blog for easier reading.

Anywho, happy stitching until next time.

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

The Catching Up Blog Post.

Wow, there is so much going on in the stitching world. I've spent a good bit of my afternoon playing with my pets and catching up on Facebook and stitching blogs. I really do enjoy reading what other people are doing and seeing their great pictures.

Now, to catch up on things I've left out or run out of time for on the last few posts.
First up, I joined the Winter SAL on Facebook several months ago. It is for people who are stitching designs from certain companies, or using specialty floss or fabric from certain companies. They have all banded together. You get to learn about the products from their creators and they also offer discounts, advice and have little mini contests. It is so much fun and I have been introduced to new companies and products. I also won a little chart that I absolutely loved just by posting and I want to share that with you.

The chart is from KLT Charting, Blackwork Cat, and is available here
Now I've only done one small piece of blackwork in the past, and I really enjoyed it, but I knew this would be a little more challenging for me. So, this was a few months back, and yes, I started it. I loved it. In fact, I finished it!
I'll post pics below but I have to give the disclaimer that I didn't have the chart in front of me when I finished the tail. I had already frogged it, and knew the stitches to use so I just went ahead since it was the stitching I had with me and I wasn't going to let a little thing like not having the chart with me stop me. It still turned out beautifully, though not quite as charted.

I had so much fun doing this that I decided to take part in the Owl's sal from the same company. One owl, every two weeks until you have 12 of them. Each filled in differently. There is the option to put them on a branch but I haven't decided about that part yet. Here is a picture of my first started owl. I have to frog one of the eyes since it appears to be off by one stitch, so be warned, and it isn't finished yet. Yes, I am a slow stitcher. I've pulled him out of the qsnap to frog so he is a little wrinkly.

This is available here, and yes, there is still plenty of time to join.

I am still stitching mostly one handed, so all of this is taking mountains of time. Since I'm doing most of my stitching on my 3 off days progress can seem so slow. But it is fun and that is what matters.

I've had so many comments and posts about the Seasonal Tree's cross stitch kit that I went ahead and tested it out. Too large to stitch comfortably I went ahead and cut off the first panel. I will be framing them in 4 separate frames anyway, and this made it more convenient and just easy.

It stitches up easily, and just fine. The needles that came with it seemed too 'tight' in the 11 count holes so I switched to my usual size 26 and it is a breeze to work. The floss is really nice, no problems there. I did take it out of the qsnap and start stitching it in hand. I'm still a little too sore to do much of that, but again, it stitched up a treat that way. I really like how easy it is. Just pick your color and go. I could cross country on this if I've a mind to. No worries about losing count since there is no counting. You may have to click on the picture to see the actual stitching. I think the business in the heavily stitched areas could be a problem later, with so many color's in front of me like that, but I will let you know. For the moment I am completely happy with the kit.

But I am missing some of my confetti filled larger projects and plan to get out one of those wips soon.

I hope you are all having a wonderful time with your stitching. It is in the 20's here, so I am going to end this and go curl up under an afghan and watch tv or possibly even stitch!

Happy stitching everyone

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

The After Holiday, Holiday Post

Because I have a lot of pictures of great stash and fun stuff!
First is a surprise RAK I received. Thank you Renee, I love it to pieces. Another Charting Creations chart that I just fell in love with. I can't wait to stitch on this one, but I will wait. I plan to start it around March. I want to find some special threads, or possibly special fabric for it. The chart is available here if you are interested in seeing a much better representation of it than the quick phone picture from my computer screen below.

I love the swirling lines and the hearts and obviously, Family.

I had planned, for this blog post, to tell you all about how I'm planning to stitch from my stash and not buy new stash that I really don't need. I still plan all that but it doesn't sound bad at all when you see the rest of the blog post!

My SS gift. I was overwhelmed with my Secret Santa package. It weighed a ton and my SS, as we said in my youth, went off. I love it. Last year's SS package was the same. I can see I am dealing with some seriously professional Secret Santa shoppers here! Merlin even got a pressie!

The cloth is 18 count aida, and a whopping big piece of it. I'd show you a pic but it is on my phone, and my husband has it with him right now at work. Whopping Big. Someone knows me very well.

Husband and I bought each other a gift and had planned to split any money left after our other shopping to each pick out our own 'gift'. But then Dean had to go to the vet and that was the end of that for awhile. We both worked a lot of overtime though, and the week after Christmas found we had enough money to go ahead and have a little fun. Not as much as originally intended but enough to have fun with.
I got myself this. Please note that there was an amazing sale on at Hancock Fabrics that day, and while we were driving out there they sent a 25% off of total purchase to my phone. I promise I only went in to get 2 or 3 skeins of sparkly floss for an idea I have for when I start my crazy quilt.
So a late Christmas gift that I got to pick out myself. I've been wanting the stocking collection for years. I'd still love to have the first collection, but it isn't as if I need it!

And lastly, I've had a bunch of these on my wish list for ages. A friend of mine received 5 or 6 of these as a gift from her son and new daughter in law last year and I've been fascinated since then. Hers were brought back from China when her son went there with his bride to spend time with her grandparents. Mine came from Amazon. Here is a link if you are interested.  Be warned that another seller on there has it for twice the price. It is Prime eligible.

I have been hesitant to buy a Chinese cross stitch kit. I've heard both wonderful and bad things about them. I've also seen for myself that some of them are blatant rip-off's of copyrighted works. I decided that I wouldn't ever try one, until I realized they have a small selection on Amazon. I am thinking and hoping that Amazon would yank anything that was copyright protected as soon as they became aware of it, and that this should make it a reasonably safe place to purchase from.

It shipped from Amazon, and even with the Holiday was here in about 3 days.
Now for the pictures of the kit that I took.

This Kit is huge. 120 X 57 cm, or 47.2 X 22.4 in. But isn't nearly as big as some I have seen on Facebook. It is 11 count aida and the cloth is very nice. A little stiff, but not so stiff that you can't stitch on it (Remember Frederick?).
My right wrist is hurting this week so I'm not stitching much, if any this week, but I've played with the floss and it too is really nice. I am going to thread up a needle (it comes with 2) and do a few left handed stitches to test it out, but it feels great in hand and looks lovely. As you can see it also lists the colors in a DMC conversion and they appear to be very close, and even spot on, on the few I checked out. I love the cards by the way, I really dislike the ones with holes but this you can take the hole bunch out and put them back in an instant, no tying off or anything. Really like that.

I have some stitchy news and pics to share with you next time. This has gotten long and picture heavy so I will save that for a later post.

Happy Stitching everyone!