Monday, December 28, 2009

Ornament Finishes - 1982

No....that's not a mistake on the date that I finished these. That was the year my mom wanted to learn how to cross-stitch. Since I had done needlepoint before, she decided to wait for me to come home for the summer, and we went shopping together (back in those days it seems like there were cross-stitch stores on every other corner!).
Someone at one of the stores we went to recommended a kit with ornaments in it. Their logic was that (1) they were small enough that if we didn't like it we didn't have a big commitment and (2) they were easy to split up. So, I honestly don't remember which two I did and which two my mom did! But...I did stitch two of these! Sorry for the picture quality. They hang on the hanging light above my parents kitchen table every year (my mom doesn't want them to get lost on the tree), so I did the best I could!
Thanks for checking it out....little did I realize what an addiction this project would start!

Ornament Finishes - 2009

Here are the 8 ornaments I finished for Christmas. They were all gifts for family...siblings, parents, aunt, and my niece. I was okay with the finishing on these. Truly, I got lazy. They were supposed to be cut to follow the edges of the stitching, but I just didn't have the patience. So, instead I cut them within 2 squares of the widest and tallest sides, and then backed them with self-adhesive felt. The hangers are just wire twisted. The samples in the book had the wires twisted, etc, but.....again, no patience!! LOL

Thanks for checking out my blog!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Some Christmas finishes!

This one is "Hula Lulu" - I made it into a flatfold (although from this angle it looks like it could be a cube!) for a friend that we play bingo with every week. She decorates like CRAZY for Christmas, and her hubby is from Hawaii. So, I was trying to combine both of their personalities. I couldn't find a Christmas fabric that had that turquoise color in it, so I ended up with kind of a turquoise on turquoise floral. Not very Christmassy, but I think it will work!
This is my attempt at a creative finish - you can't really tell from the picture, but I made it into a "triptych" if you will (forgive my spelling! LOL). The three are connected by two ribbons (You can kind of see it between the snowmen) and then they're backed like you would a flatfold. The fabric I backed them with is kind of a royal blue with white snowflakes. This one is a hostess gift for my brother and sister-in-law who are having us over on Christmas.
Now the only remaining stitchy stuff I need to do is attach some beads onto my perforated paper ornaments and back them up with self stick felt. I need to get two of them done today so that Mike can mail them off tomorrow (pays to have a boyfriend who works in the mailroom at his company - saves me a trip to the post office!) The other six don't have to be finished until Christmas day! Hopefully I won't wait that long!
Thanks for checking it out!

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Productive Stitching Weekend

Well, here's my latest start...Lizzie Kate's ABC Lessons. Mike bought this one (and the Christmas ABC's one) for me for my birthday. It's a fun, easy stitch, which was a nice break after stitching on Frederick last week. This wasn't all done this weekend, it was a week's worth of stitching.

Yesterday was our So Cal Stitchers Group get together at a local "medium box" craft store. It's not a national chain, just a local chain with (I think) 3 stores. The location we go to has a nice classroom area, and you can rent a table for the day for $5. The tables are set up in kind of blocks of 4, and we can easily sit 8 around a block of 4. So....for $20, 8 of us can stitch the day away! We were there from 9 am to 6 pm with a short break for lunch. Everyone was stitching away, and we had a great time laughing, talking, and TRYING to count! LOL! I was working on my dollhouse project - I'm almost done with the kitchen, so maybe soon I'll have some pictures of another finished room.

Then this evening I watched a really cool episode of "Ace of Cakes" . I don't know if you're familiar, but it's the one with Duff Goldman (I know some people think he's obnoxious, but I think his bakery does awesome cakes). This particular episode (which I think will be on a couple of more times - the description says it's about a building being demolished, which is one of the other cakes in the episode). The cake I was interested in was a replica of a cross-stitched stocking! The woman the cake was being made for has stiched FIFTY THREE stockings for her family members. Her husband wanted to surprise her, so he brought pictures of her stocking to the bakery for them to make a replica. They made a stocking shaped cake, and the decorator actually piped individual little X's to make the pictures on the cake. It really was awesome, and it was neat to see an artist in another medium (cake decorating) have "respect" (for lack of a better word) for the technique of cross-stitching. She actually took fondant and put it over graph paper on top of a light box to get the squares for the X's. If you get a chance, check it out!!!

Now this week I HAVE to start on family calendars. I make a calendar for my family every year for Christmas - actually I think I make 10 of them, because each one is a tad different than the others. I incorporate pictures each month of the family members who have occasions in that month, and put their occasion where it belongs on the calendar. It is a lot of work, but I love doing it. I think this is the 6th year I've done them! They actually take longer to print than they do to design! LOL

So....not sure how much stitching time I'll get this week. But...I'll be back!!!

Have a GREAT week! And thank you, as always, for your comments!
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Sunday, November 29, 2009

Frederick the Literate is started

Well, this week I started on Frederick the Literate. It was a Dimensions kit but I didn't like the aida (too stiff) and I didn't like the thread (too icky!). So....substituted some 28 count evenweave (not sure what kind) and re-did the floss with DMC and we're off to the races. This one will take a while, I'm sure. This is one week's progress. Stitching black on black is interesting, to say the least!!

Thanks for checking it out!
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Sunday, November 22, 2009

A new start

A quick blog update - I'm trying to get back on track with weekly blog updates and getting back into my rotation. Although this is a Christmas pattern, I'm not trying to get it done for this Christmas, and it's not a gift, so no rush on it.

I love this pattern - my sweetie bought me this one and the ABC Lessons one, both by Lizzie Kate. I started on this one first because Mike said he liked it better. Both patterns were sold as kits (well, almost kits - pattern and threads, but no fabric) so they came with the overdyed threads. I ran into a little issue along one edge (it's just on the edge, so it won't be a problem), but it let me know I need to be VERY careful. Where the edge of the fabric rubbed up against the red of the letter B, the edge picked up some red color. So - I'm being very careful to put paper towel around my fabric when I'm putting it away at the end of stitching time....hopefully that will keep it from happening on a more important part of the piece.

This week's project is Frederick the Literate. It will be challenging (stitching on black fabric) but I'm okay with that. My Ott Lite and I are good friends!!!

Thanks for checking it out - and, as always, thank you for your comments!!
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Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Stitching and something else!

I finished my "Stop and Stitch The Flowers". I'm happy with the way it turned out - the specialty stitches around the outside weren't too bad! Now that I've finished that, I was (notice the use of the word "was") down to one project at home and one project in my travel bag that I work on at work (that is too big to really be a travel project). So...I broke down and kitted up SIX more things! I went Friday to my LNS and bought fabric for 3, and the other 3 I had fabric for in my stash. So...some time in the near future I will be stitching "Stitching" by Hinzeit (sorry if I've spelled it wrong), the St. Patrick's Day equivalent of Stop and Stitch the Flowers (by Blue Ribbon Designs), Lizzie Kate's ABC Lessons, Lizzie Kate's Christmas ABC's, Frederick the Literate, and cute little Lizzie Kate design that is Santa and a Moose (we collect stuffed Mooses!).

Now for something non-stitching...some of you may recognize the image below as a screen shot from the game show Jeopardy: may be asking why I posted a Jeopardy question on my blog. Well, it's like this....I graduated from high school with the "David Cullen" mentioned in the question!!!! How awesome is that? He was a journalist for our school paper, and was always a great writer...and his book last year made it up to something like 7th on the New York Times bestsellers list! I just thought it was so awesome!!!!
Anyway - that's it from me for now - Thanks for checking out my blog!

Monday, November 9, 2009

Stop and Stitch the Flowers

Well...I'm almost done with this one. What's that you say? It looks finished? Well, it's not - it still gets three more rows of border on the outer edges. It calls for a "fly" stitch (which I've never done) that takes up two rows, and one more stitch of regular cross-stitches. I'm going to try the fly stitch, but if it annoys me too much, I'll just do cross-stitches (which is an option offered on the pattern.

Speaking of the pattern - it's called "Stop and Stitch the Flowers" and it's by Blue Ribbon Designs. I used the DMC conversions. The fabric is a light blue - I don't remember exactly what it was called, but it's a 28 count even weave (I think I have decided that even weaves are my favorite - I've done mostly 28 count, but I think I've seen 32 and maybe even 36, which I would like to try.

I have another similar Blue Ribbon Designs pattern for St. Patrick's Day. In my ideal world, I would have room to store multiple versions of this same pattern and change them out with the seasons - they have the St. Patty's one, a Christmas one, a Valentines one, and I think a couple of others. It's a fun stitch - I did kind of one block at a time. Well - I would outline a row of blocks, and then stitch each block individually.

Anyway - thanks for checking out my stitching! Love all the comments - nothing like feedback from other stitches to keep you motivated!
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Monday, November 2, 2009

Would you believe....

...another snowman???? I don't believe it!!!

After all my whining about being tired of snowmen, I remembered I had one more kitted up to I had to do it - that gives me an even dozen snowmen that I've stitched!

The pattern is called "Hula Lula" and it's one of the Snowballz by CM Designs. I made it specifically for a friend who decorates big time for Christmas - and since her hubby is from Hawaii, it seemed like it fit. I was originally thinking I would stitch it over one and make it into an ornament - but after trying to do a line or two over one (on 28 count) I just realized I was not going to have the patience.'s too big for an ornament - it's going to become either a no-sew cube or a flat fold.

This one used DMC variations thread. I have to say, I don't consider myself a floss snob - in fact almost everything I stitch, I stitch with DMC threads. But I was not impressed with their variations threads. They just seemed kind of rough or something. But, I'm happy with the outcome, just not necessarily the process!

I also changed the grass skirt technique. The directions (I thought) were kind of silly. They told you to just take a length of thread, run it thru from the front, take one running stitch on the back, and then back out the front. I felt like it would pull right out! So, what I did instead was first I did a whole line of back stitching at the top of the grass skirt. Then I kind of did a loop start, at the end of each back stitch and left the two ends dangling. I'm happy with it, and they won't pull out. I don't know if my explanation makes sense.

Anyway - thanks for checking it out, and thanks for your comments!

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Been a good stitcher, but a bad blogger!!

Well, I've been away from my blog for a while (took even me by surprise when I realized it had been almost a month since I posted anything!).
Had some good excuses though....
First off - a weekend in Las Vegas

There's our hotel room - we stayed at Green Valley Ranch - it's actually in Henderson, not in Las Vegas, but we really don't mind having to drive to get places. We got a GREAT deal on our stay there ($78 total for three nights!), which made having to drive places even more palatable!

While we were there, I was finally able to connect with Rene, from my ILCS group. The last time I was there, we were going to try but we got our signals crossed on which weekend I was going to be there. But this time all was good - we met at Stitchers Paradise where I picked up a piece of fabric for a new project, and a couple of Hinzeit (forgive me if I've spelled that wrong) patterns (with charms). One is for me (Stitching) and one is for my nephew (Hockey). You don't see a ton of hockey patterns, so I was happy to see that one.

Rene was very kind - I was the lucky recipient of one of her cute little cupcakes. I'm not sure if the picture does it justice - but here it is.

And finally - probably the biggest thing that has kept me from updating my blog...I've been stitching like a wild woman on Christmas ornaments for my family. This morning I put the final stitch in the 8th ornament! So I'm done with my family ornaments. All that's left is some beads (in lieu of French knots) and the final finishing (I'll back them with felt and attach wires for hangers). I'll wait until closer to Christmas to do that because they're easier to store this way.

And one more quick thing - a number of people have asked where the dollhouse pattern came from (my last update). It's from the British magazine "Cross Stitch Gold". Unfortunately, my pages are torn out of the magazine, and I don't still have the magazine to tell you what issue. I THINK (emphasis on think) that it was from March/April 2008. The issue has an elephant on the front cover - not a wild elephant, one that has the beaded decorations like when they're used in ceremonies and stuff. Hope that helps!

Anyway - now I've had it up to my eyeballs with snowmen! So...who knows what I'll pick up next (maybe get back to my rotation - what a novel concept!!!).
Thanks for checking out my blog - I do appreciate it, and all of your comments!!!

Monday, September 28, 2009

Victorian Dollhouse Update

I was lucky enough to have a whole day of stitching time on Saturday - a group of us that used to be able to get together every other Friday evening had a full day outing to a local crafts store. There were a total of 10 of us there to talk and stitch...sometimes more talking than stitching, but it is just so much fun to get to meet up with other local stitchers.

I spent all my time working on my Victorian dollhouse. I've posted a picture, both of the full project and of the most recently completed room. This one is taking a while, but I typically work on it at lunch time at work (and I'm only working two days a week) or if I'm a stitching "get together". It needs a table etc.
Thanks for checking it out - I really appreciate all of your opinions and feedback!

Saturday, September 19, 2009

It's Raining Men....Hallelujah, it's Raining Men...

...well....maybe more appropriately it's SNOWING men!!! I've finished my third member of the Snowman Trio (a Stitchy Kitty pattern)....I finished stitching Milly today.

As mentioned, Milly is part of a trio.....she has friends (or maybe they're family members) Chilly and Willy!

The pictures don't really do them justice (wait....I don't mean that my stitching is that beautiful). I just meant the color of the fabric. It's really light blue - tried to make it look like the sky. Each of them will eventually be holding buttons - I think Chilly has snowflakes to hold, Willy has a cardinal and a bluebird, and Milly has hearts. I'm going to wait until closer to finishing time to attach them. My plan (although I've never done this before) is to try to make a tri-fold out of them. It's going to be a hostess gift for whichever of my siblings hosts our family Christmas get together. We shall see!!!
Now - I've also been working on perforated paper ornaments for my family - I need to make at least six - I may make eight in order to also give them to do of my friends. I've finished two of them - except for some beads because I HATE French knots. Here are the two I've finished....

They're going to get felt on the backs of them, and then wire hangers (I'm channeling Joan Crawford here, except instead of "NO WIRE HANGERS" I am using wire hangers!). When I get them all done, I'll share....

I'm feeling REALLY good - it's the middle of September and I've made quite a bit of progress on Christmas stitching already!!!

Thanks for checking out my blog, and thanks for all of your kind comments!!

Sunday, September 6, 2009

MawMaw's Quilt is FINISHED!

I've finished MawMaw's Quilt by M was a fun, challenging project. It's on 40 count linen, over 2, so it's the smallest stitching I've ever done. I used the fabric and floss the pattern called for, which means it was the first time I've used silk floss. I'm really pleased with how it turned out. I'm not sure how I'm going to finish it - most likely I'll frame it, but I'm not sure about mat colors or frame styles. Something kind of rustic, I'm thinking since it's a quilty design.

Now it's on to something new - probably some ornaments to get ready for Christmas. I also have a pattern of the famous "Las Vegas" sign that I think I'll work on...might make that one into an ornament as well for a friend of mine who (like me!) loves to go to Vegas!!!

Thanks for checking it out!!
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Sunday, August 23, 2009

Stop and Stitch the Flowers...

Another week, another bunch of squares on here. I made a couple of minor changes....the 7 seemed to have one stitch too many (it went lower than any other character) so I left one stitch off. The blue square that's up between the C and the D was supposed to have two shades of blue.....but the blues didn't look different enough to me so I replaced the lighter blue with white. The funny thing is that now that I see the picture, the two blues (which are in the flower between V & W) look different enough in the pictures, just not in real life! LOL Finally, the J looked too long and too narrow - again, it went higher in the square and lower in the square than other characters, so I fixed that and I also made the hook at the bottom of the J wider.

Anyway, that's been my project this week. Now I'll be stitching on MawMaw's Quilt this week. I think I only have another couple weeks left on it - I'm on the last diamond. Someone in one of stitching groups finished hers, and it looks really nice!

Hope you all had a good week - and lots of stitching time!!! Thanks for looking, and thanks for all your comments!
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Saturday, August 15, 2009

Angel of Cross Stitch Update

Well, I got the wing done on my Angel of Cross Stitch...normally I would switch out tomorrow, but since I was at a good stopping point, I decided to switch tonight. I've gone through and pulled the colors for the next section, but I'll just set it aside until it next comes up on the rotation.

It's coming along - I guess extra stitching time is the one benefit to only working two days a week! LOL

Thanks for checking it out - and thanks for your comments!!
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Friday, August 7, 2009

An early finish

Here's an unusual occurence for me - I have finished this one, and I'm not planning on giving it to my aunt until her birthday (here's a shock - her birthday is in March - bet you couldn't have figured that out!). It's pretty small - I don't remember the exact measurements, but I'm thinking it's like 4 x 8 or's hard to see in this picture, but it used some stitches I haven't done before, and a couple spots used perle cotton, which I also haven't used before. I think my aunt will enjoy it - she's my Godmother, and we're pretty close.

Thanks for checking out my blog!
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Sunday, August 2, 2009

MawMaw's Quilt

Well, here's my MawMaw's Quilt progress for the week...I am on the last section! (Well, that and finishing the border - big shock, me with border left!!!).

I'm really enjoying this piece. It's tiny (stitching it on 40 count linen, over 2, but still the tiniest I've ever done) but I love the colors and I love the pattern. So...even though it's slow going (or feels like slow going!) it's fun to stitch.

And on a non-stitching note - had a really fun day today - my niece Stacey and her husband Paul (along with one of their daughters) have July birthdays, one of their sons has a birthday in June, and another daughter has her birthday in August. They have one more son who's the "odd man out" with a February birthday. So...we had a family get together at a local lake complete with picnic lunch, a rented party boat, swimming for the kids, and just all in all a lot of fun! Those of you who were following my blog last year at around this time might remember Anthony - he's the one with the June birthday. He spent his third birthday (last summer) in the hospital having surgery for kidney cancer (had a SEVEN pound tumor removed).'s now a year later. He got his porta-cath removed last month (that's the way they deliver chemo drugs) which is the real sign that he is done with all of his treatments, and can get on with his life! What a difference a year makes! He turned 4 in June, and he'll start pre-school this fall. We are all SO thrilled!!!

Anyway...that's it for now! Thanks for checking out my blog!
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Sunday, July 26, 2009

Sunday Update

Here's my progress on "Stop and Stitch the Flowers". It's a Blue Ribbon Designs pattern, and it's fun to stitch. I've been pretty much stitching one block at a time. I kind of do the green lines until I either finish a box or run out of the piece of floss, then I go back and fill in the blocks that I've finished. The reason for the empty boxes down the center is those overlap two pages of the pattern, and I just hadn't wanted to fool around with making a working copy and taping it together. I had to do that for the fow with the "5" and "6" in it, so I did the vertical ones too, just haven't stitched them yet. Obviously, there is a whole other right hand side to this pattern - it will be 10 boxes by 10 boxes when it's done. I really love all the different flowers all over this. The outer border will actually be wider too - it calls for either four rows of cross stitches or a row of cross stitches, a row of a specialty stitch (can't remember what it's called, but it's two rows wide) and then one more row of cross stitches. I'm going to play with the specialty stitch and see if I like it or not! LOL

Thanks for checking it out! Now it's on to MawMaw's Quilt for the week!
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Monday, July 20, 2009

Two out of three snowmen done

Well, I finished "Willy" the second of my three snowmen....still have "Milly" to do. The pattern is a "Stitchy Kitty" pattern called "Snowman Trio". The fabric is a little blue-er than the picture shows. The pattern also calls for buttons to get attached in the snowmen's arms. Chilly has a couple of snowflakes to hold on to, Willy is holding a cardinal and a bluebird, and Milly is holding a couple of hearts.

I think I'm going to create my own tri-fold out of these when they're done. My thinking is to mount each one individually on a piece of matboard or foam core (with some quilt batting) and then do three more pieces of matboard covered with quilt batting and fabric (I'm thinking of - if I can find it - white fabric with light blue snowflakes...if not, I'll find something with snowflakes or snowmen on it).

Then my thinking is to take one stitched piece and one fabric covered piece, and put them together with ribbons between them (like 1/3 of the way down from the top and a 1/3 of the way up from the bottom). If I do that with two of them (with the ribbons coming out of opposite sides on each) and then sandwich the ends of those ribbons between the third set, I think it will work as a tri-fold. (Notice - I said I THINK!) If anyone else has any brilliant ideas to contribute....please feel free to chime in!

Thanks for looking!
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Sunday, July 19, 2009

Angel of Cross Stitch Update is my latest progress on my Angel....slowly but surely I'm making progress. The part I'm working on right now shouldn't be too bad....not as many confetti stitches as some of the other parts. Just lots of shades of white and gray!!

Thanks for checking it out!
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Sunday, July 12, 2009

New Start

This is my new project that I started when I finished the heart. I wasn't going to bother to post a picture of it because I didn't think I'd have made enough progress to look like anything. It's just a little piece - it's only a little over 2 inches across and maybe 6 inches tall.

When all is said and done it's going to have quite a few specialty stitches in it - so far there are just some long stitches in the upper left hand corner in the middle of the flowers. And the border is stitched with some overdyed floss from Threadworx in a really pretty turquoise blue.

This is a Sweetheart Tree pattern all revolving around the month of March - my aunt (who is also my Godmother) was born in March and this is her birthday gift for next year.

Thanks for checking it out!
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Saturday, July 11, 2009

A finish!

This was a quick stitch - it's only about 5 x 7 (don't have the stitch count in front of me). All full stitches, a little bit of back stitching, and some beading. It calls for a bumble bee button (I bought one that's too big) on the yellow part (that looks kind of like a honeycomb). But....I'm okay without it. I think it's just fine! LOL

Thanks for checking it out!!
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Sunday, July 5, 2009

MawMaw's Quilt Update

Well, another week and I've finished off the one diamond in the lower right corner, along with the half one on the right hand side. I also started the top right hand corner.....that one should finish up pretty quickly the next time!

I really do like this pattern - although it does take a lot of focus for me - it's on 40 count linen, and just such teeny tiny stitches! LOL

Thanks for checking it out!
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