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!