Monday, December 30, 2013

A resolution completed....

Hi everyone!  Yes, it’s a wrap!!!! A Sampler Story is finished!! When I started out in January I hoped that I would be able to keep to my plan of two squares a month and, mostly I did.  The last few months, well, I did have times when it wasn’t really what I felt like stitching on but now, of course, I’m really pleased that I stuck with it!!  I put DS#2 to good use this afternoon and had him hold it up so I could get it all in the picture!!!!  I think it comes across a bit bigger than it is but the finished size is 18” x 12” stitched over two.

As I’d planned I personalised some of the squares.....

First up, was the family wedding in May when our daughter was married. 

I wanted to stitch the actual date as well as their initials and thought this square had the most room to do that.

My parents celebrated their 65th wedding anniversary in February so I wanted that to be commemorated.

In March DH and I celebrated our 30th wedding anniversary (don’t ask me where the years have gone, they’ve flown in!!!!).

I added our house number to this square instead of the number that was there.

My initials were in this square.

And finally, I put the final digit in the year!!!!

You do know, of course, I’m now going to go through that stage of missing working on it even though the last few months I wasn’t totally inspired by it?!?!?!?!?!

Thank you to everyone who has left comments, encouraged me to keep going and who has followed my progress throughout the year.  I am sure that without that I probably would have slackened off at some point and it would have ended up as a UFO!

I’ve my sights set on some new projects in 2014 though.  First up will be this one, this is my Jan 1st start and I’m really looking forward to it.  The Scarlet Letter's Mary Gail.  There are a number of us on Instagram who are going to be stitching this so, if you are on IG and would like to join us, you are more than welcome. 

I hope you all had a lovely Christmas, we did.  All that preparation in the weeks leading up to it and now, here we are, and it’s over and done with for another year!!!!  There'll be no big excitement here on New Year’s Eve, DH and I will likely spend a quiet evening in front of the tv!! We do have a family wedding to go too this weekend, our niece is getting married in Edinburgh on Saturday so on Friday we’ll be hopping on a plane and heading off until Sunday.  Looking forward to that and wondering how many men will be in kilts!!!! 

Until next time……

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Almost there......

Hi everyone!  A quick update before Christmas.  First of all, I received the loveliest package of goodies from my dear friend, Carol of Stitching Dreams.  Look what I found inside…..

I’ve loved this little PS design for ages, love it stitched on black but I tend to avoid stitching on black fabric so had never got round to stitching it.  Lo and behold, hasn’t Carol stitched it for me this year!! I’m so thrilled with it!  Also inside was this lovely fabric and ribbon

 and the perfect chart. One that I had never got round to adding to my stash and one that will definitely be stitched for Christmas 2014!!

Thank you, Carol, I loved everything!

Now on to ‘old faithful’!!!!!  The end is in sight for A Sampler Story and my ‘resolution’ to have it stitched in 2013.  I’m not quite finished yet, there is a little bit more to stitch on this last square….

but that shouldn’t take too long and then I want to add a little bit of personalization to some of the squares.

I reckon it’s safe to say that I’m on track to finish this by December 31st!  (let’s hope I’m not tempting fate now by saying that!!!!!).

Talk about last minute finishing!!!!  I stitched the BOAF Santas during this year with the intention of having them out on display this Christmas.  Well, of course, I finished the 4th one several months ago and then, you know how it is, I procrastinated on the finishing.  Yesterday, I finally finished them!!! I had been planning to finish them as little pillows and have them in a basket but after I’d stuffed them I had them sitting upright and took a second look at them and thought ‘I like them this way!’.  So, I’ve finished them as stand-ups!

And stitching of a slightly different nature!  My friend Margaret had bought herself and me a woolfelt Christmas kit last summer (and I’m talking 2012!!!!).  Well, neither of us had got round to making them but we decided that we needed to get our acts together and stitch them for this Christmas.  So, we’ve spent the last few Wednesday afternoons together and we’ve both got these to hang in our homes this Christmas!!! 

This was fun to do.  I can see myself making more woolfelt kits this year (in fact, we’ve another one lined up to start to work on in January!) as I love how quick they are to make. Excuse the darkness of the picture!!!  Our days are so dull and dark at the moment.  It’s lovely to think that we’re now past the shortest day and, although it will take a while to notice, the days will be starting to lengthen.

And that’s about it from me this time.  Thanks for all your lovely comments last time round.  Wishing you and yours a lovely Christmas.  We will have a full house at Christmas, DS#1 and DS#2 arrive home at different times today, then on Tuesday our daughter and her DH will be home.  For everyone to be together in the same house now is a rare occurrence and one to be enjoyed.

Until next time……

Monday, December 2, 2013

Staying on track.....

Hi everyone!  Yes!  For the first time in a couple of months I managed to stitch the two squares in A Sampler Story that I’d planned too in November!  Now, I did cut it a little fine, finished the second square on Saturday, the last day of the month, but, it feels good that I stayed on track with it.

Here’s the second square…..

And a pic of both squares……

Look what happened though…..

I’d used this needle from the start and the longer it lasted the more I was hoping it would keep going until I put the final stitches in.  Not so!!  I had noticed it was getting a little worn and was trying to be extra careful with it but it reached its limit and was gone.  It made me wonder……do you try to keep using the same needle on the same project or is that just one of my somewhat weird quirks?!?!?!?!

And look!  This is the space left to stitch in ….

Two squares left to go, plus some personalisation to make this sampler unique to our family. 

Thanks for all your lovely comments on my finish of BN’s Lo How a Rose.  It hasn't made it to the framer as yet so will probably be going in January when I take A Sampler Story to be framed (yes, I'm doing all the positive talk about finishing it by the end of December!).

And one final picture, when Christmas starts to roll around (can you believe it’s December?!?!?!) I sometimes get a little sidetracked.  Last year I’d noticed button Christmas button trees popping up on Pinterest and here’s my first attempt at one!

I’ve got a couple of other sizes of the Styrofoam tree shapes and have more buttons ordered. I'm probably going to add a star or something on top but might wait until I've a couple more done and see how they look together. 

Well, I think that's about it for this time. Thanks for dropping by my little bit of the stitching blog world. I hope all is well with you and yours.  

Until next time.....

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Getting there.....

Hi everyone!  First up, a finish to report!!  I put the final stitches in BN’s Lo How a Rose a couple of weeks ago but then thought I’d wait until I’d a bit more progress on A Sampler Story.  Well, wouldn’t you know it, I dragged my heels on that one.  Talk about not being motivated (and what a time to start feeling like that when I’m so close to completing it!!!).  Back to Lo How a Rose for a moment though….

I stitched this on the suggested Antique White  but on 32ct Belfast linen but using a mix of the suggested overdyeds and DMC.

And here are a few close up pictures of the different parts….

Such a pretty piece to stitch. In the ideal world I’d have this framed and up on my walls for Christmas but as I haven’t managed to make it to the framer yet I think that boat has sailed but it will definitely be on the wall for next Christmas!

Now to Sampler Story.  Well, sure enough I hit a lull with this one and didn’t manage to finish this block…

until the end of the first week of November.  I have learnt my lesson though and haven’t put it to one side but plan on concentrating on it this next little while and not keep being distracted by all the lovely charts I’m itching to stitch.  Here’s where I’m too on the next square…..

and, here’s a final picture of it – look, only 3 more squares to stitch after this one!!  I’m determined not to fall by the wayside now it’s so close to the end of the year!

Finally, a picture of the Sunday Mystery Sampler from Plum Street Samplers that many of us our stitching these days……. 

Love how this one is turning out and with Sunday being the last part I can’t wait to see what we’ll be stitching! (Excuse the creases, didn't iron it before I took a pic!!!!)

As always thanks for the lovely comments you leave when you drop by.  I have been a bit of a hit and miss blogger for a big part of this year not just in posting but dropping by other blogs and leaving comments.  Seems like I have the greatest of intentions but then it doesn’t always happen!  Hope all is well with you and yours.

Until next time…..

Friday, October 25, 2013

A finish, an almost finish and a finish down the road....

Hi everyone!  Time for a chat about what’s been going on with my needle and thread lately.  I am at least going to have one seasonal finish this autumn!  Since my last blog post I finished this older freebie by With Thy Needle & Thread (you can find it here). 

Stitched on fabric from my stash and the suggested colours but my interpretation of which colour went where.  Now if I could just ‘finish finish’ this one……could be that it will be next autumn before I can actually display it as ‘something’ not just a stitched piece!

Next up, another seasonal piece, Ghoul Tidings from Paulette at Plum Street Samplers which is in the JCS Halloween issue this year. 

I’m using the suggested colours and a fabric from my stash, no idea what colour it is, but I like how it is working with the suggested threads and I’m pleased to be using something from my stash that has been waiting to be used for a number of years.

There has been some dilly-dallying this month with A Sampler Story with only the first of two planned blocks for this month completed to date.  When I finally got down to it I had fun with Adam and Eve. 

Next week the whole focus will be stitching the second square for the month.  After that I’ll only have four more squares to complete!!!!

I hope I’m not getting ahead of myself in saying that another finish could be right around the corner.  I’ve now had several Wednesdays, the SAL day on IG for BN’s Lo How a Rose sampler, where I really feel like I’m making progress.  After Wednesday’s stitching this is how the piece was looking…….

 I feel a bit like I’m tempting fate saying that I’m only going to need one more Wednesday to complete this but, fingers crossed!   

Like many of us, I’ve been enjoying the Sunday Mystery Sampler over at Plum Street Samplers.  I love that there are only a couple of motifs to stitch each Sunday so it really is a piece that is easy to keep up with. 

I’m stitching Mary’s Sampler II using the suggested Vintage Examplar but in 32ct and the suggested colours.

And that’s about it from my corner of the stitching world!  Thanks for all your lovely comments last time round, I may be blogging a number of years now but finding that someone has taken time to leave a comment never gets old.  Hope all is well with you and yours and that you have a lovely weekend!

Until next time…. 

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

A man, his dog and other things........

Hi everyone!  Given that we are more than a few days into October I know I could always pretend that I just didn’t get round to posting my September progress on ‘old faithful’ and leave it at that.  But no, having a need to tell it as it is I have to say that I didn’t manage to complete my two planned squares for September.  The second one was only finished a couple of days ago and, given that’s the first time I haven’t kept to my ‘plan’ it’s not really an issue.  Life happened and also, it’s a bit of a case of too many fingers in too many stitching pies at the moment so I’ve had a moment of clarity on that score and I’m going to try and be ‘good’ and not start anything more in the meantime!!!!

And in talking about ‘old faithful’ here is said square that I finally stitched….

And, here are the two September squares…….

DS#2 was home for the weekend and I put him to good use - got him to hold the whole piece up as I thought you might all like to see how it’s looking so far.  Can you believe I’ve only 6 squares left?!?!!  The only hint I’m going to give about the next square I’m due to stitch is that those of you who love stitching Adam and Eve pieces will like this square!  Okay, that’s a pretty broad hint, you’ll all know what the next square is about!!!

Aside from my moment of clarity about juggling too many projects this happened….

Oh yes, the classic slicing the top of your finger on a food processor blade!!  That curtailed my stitching for a few days.  The ironic thing was as I was washing it I’m saying to myself ‘watch you don’t cut yourself’ and then, lo and behold, in a split second the damage was done!!!  All healed now and stitching has resumed.

It did curtail my stitching on BN’s Lo How a Rose for the Wednesday SAL on Instagram but by the next Wednesday I was up and running again and here’s a progress pic..... 

Plus a pic of my overall progress...

I have indeed started Paulette’s Ghoul Tidings from the JCS Halloween issue.  What a fun piece.  I’m really not into stitching with orange but there is something about this time of year that makes me want to stitch this colour!  Fabric for this is from my stash – will say by the texture that it’s R&R but no idea the colour other than it’s a sort of brown/grey – and I’m using the suggested threads (just went with what I had in my stash so it’s a mix of DMC and overdyeds).

I have restrained myself from starting BBD’s Witch No More although will admit to having it kitted up and ready to go!!!  Also, I’d a nice mail day last week when this order turned up (and yes, I’m champing at the bit to start Yuletide Welcome but self-control is winning at the moment!!!!).  As ever, in the Christmas Ornament issue there are a number that I would love to stitch – whether I get round to it or not is another matter!!!! 

And that is what’s been happening around here lately!  Hope all is well with you and yours!

Until next time…..

Friday, September 20, 2013

Stitching, stash and seasonal WIP's

Hi everyone!  It’s one of those autumnal mornings, dull and cloudy but with the promise of turning into a nice day later on.  Life has been busy.  Family home for weekends, a family wedding last weekend in Scotland, Glasgow to be precise, that was a lot of fun.  Lots of men in kilts and a very happy young couple who seemed to really enjoy their day.  Then this week we’ve had a painter/decorator in to re-do two of the bedrooms. Much needed I have to say.  This morning I’ll be heading out to look at flooring for one of the bedrooms.  What a difference a coat of paint makes and new wallpaper in one of the rooms. 

Well, let me start off with my progress on BN’s Lo How a Rose that I’m stitching along with several other ladies on Instagram.  I am loving this one and being very strict with myself that I only stitch it on a Wednesday!  (Yes, this non-rotation girl has suddenly gone from one extreme to another and is doing a balancing act with all the WIP’s she has going on – so far, so good!!!).  I’m stitching this on the suggested 32ct antique white and using a mix of the suggested colours – overdyeds and DMC.  The lighting is so dull this morning that I feel like it's making my pictures look a little washed out!

For those of you interested in tracking this one down the book is Better Homes and Gardens, A Cross-Stitch Christmas, Celebrations in Stitches, ISBN 069621363-X.   I bought my copy on Amazon Marketplace for next to nothing and, as far as I know, you can still pick it up relatively easily at the moment.

Next up is ‘old faithful’….. one more block stitched.  It has been stitched for a few weeks and suddenly here it is, the end of September coming into sight so I need to get busy and stitch the second block for this month!  This square is meant to be personalized with initials under the birds but I’m leaving that until the end.

Several of us have started stitching Fall projects on a Friday on Instagram. It’s another one of those ‘stitch something Fall/autumn related, your choice’ although several of us are stitching the freebie that was offered by With Thy Needle and Thread several years ago - you can find it here.  This is my progress so far

I’m stitching this one on some 32ct from my fabric stash, I think it’s something like Antique Ivory.   I’ve dabbled with the suggested colours slightly and I’m using an older Needle Necessities thread, called Woodland Fantasy, for the border. I’m pretty certain it’s still available through Threadworx but they’ve changed the name and I’m not sure what it’s called now.  I love the colours in this one going from greens to golds to browns. 

Note, this one isn’t finished but since I received the JCS Halloween issue last week I’ve been itching to start this one from Paulette of Plum Street Samplers and I can resist no longer and plan to start today. 

I did some stash-diving through my fabric and came up with what’s behind the magazine. It is showing up a little more brown in the picture than it is in ‘real life’ but the colours seem to pop off it and I’m going to give it a go.  Another fabric that I didn’t label so can’t share what it is other than it has the feel of an R&R!  Again, I’m using a mix of the suggested overdyeds and DMC, just going with what I had in my stash. 

I'll not talk about the new BBD booklet, Sisters, which arrived this week.  All I'll say is that I love each project is this booklet and I've the feeling that I could be adding another WIP into the mix shortly because I really don't know that I will be able to resist starting Witch No More!!!!  BBD have outdone themselves at Market this year, all their new releases are ones that I look at and think 'have to stitch'!!!!

And that’s what I’ve been up to lately!!!  Hope all is well with you and yours – enjoy the upcoming weekend!

Until next time……

Monday, September 2, 2013

Another week rolls around.....

Good morning everyone!  Another Monday rolls around and this is the one that feels as though we’re leaving summer behind with all schools having now started their new year.  My three are long past this stage but with a husband who works in education there is still that feeling of starting off again.

For a change, no progress pics on A Sampler Story. That one I’m planning on picking up again later on today now that we’re into a new month. Instead, I’ve enjoyed a week of stitching on Sheepish Designs Simple Elegance….

I feel like this one is really coming together and hopefully, I’ll have a finish to report by the end of the month.  There is some filling in coming up. These two sheep need some grass to lie on and eat!

I don’t feel like I’ve been too successful at making progress in the SAL for BN’s Lo How a Rose over on Instagram.  Somehow my Wednesdays turned into busier days and stitching was a little limited (and I was the one who suggested Wednesday for stitching!!).  Hopefully that should change from here on in and my needle can go a little bit faster.  I’m stitching this one on 32ct Antique White Belfast linen and using a mix of the suggested overdyeds and DMC.

And, if I needed any proof that the seasons were changing.  Going outside this morning, I saw this in our garden…..

I don’t remember the leaves having started to change last week, this week a completely different story!!

Hope all is well with you and yours. If they’re starting school, or starting back to school, I hope they settle in well!

Until next time…..

Friday, August 23, 2013

Stitching update (aka when you can't think of a interesting blog post title!!!)

Good Friday morning everyone!  Time for an update before we hit another weekend. Life’s been busy, a trip to England which was a lot of fun, seeing our daughter and son-in-law for a couple of days and then on to see son #2 for a few days before heading home.

Right, let’s chat about stitching!  First up, the on-going Sampler Story.  I completed the second square for this month yesterday.  I'm actually quite chuffed that I've finished these two squares and there’s still some time to the end of the month. Any mermaid lovers out there?  You might like this square!

I enjoyed stitching this one, it seemed like quite a change from the other squares so far which added to the enjoyment.

Here’s a pic of the two completed squares for this month…

Next up is a finish to report!  Jingle all the Way by The Scarlett House. I’ve been working on this one on Sundays on Instagram so it feels like it’s taken me a while.

Love how the words and snowflakes pop off the fabric, I'm happy with how it turned out and I love how splodgy the fabric is but, it didn’t convince me that stitching on dark fabric was something I enjoyed! I stitched this on the suggested PTP Swamp fabric but used 32ct instead of 36ct and used a couple of Belle Soie silks that were already in my stash – Vanilla Pudding and Red Fox.

Next up is a progress pic of BN’s Lo How a Rose that I'm stitching in a SAL on Instagram on Wednesdays.  This week I feel like I finally made some good progress. We've all started in different spots and it is fun seeing how our pieces are growing.

Stitching this on the suggested antique white in 32ct and using a mix of the suggested overdyeds and DMC.

I celebrated a birthday last week and wanted to share the lovely package of goodies that arrived from dear Carol over at Stitching Dreams.  Many of you know, and are friends with Carol, and know what a sweet friend she is.  If you’re not familiar with her blog click here and you’ll discover for yourself what a lovely person she is.

When I unwrapped everything look at the lovely pillow I found inside…

then a pic of everything…...

Carol has the most amazing knack of knowing exactly what you would like to stitch.  Having seen this Stacey Nash chart on several blogs it was one that I had on my ‘must add to my stash and stitch’ list.  I love this chart.  I’d love to say that I’ll have it stitched by this Christmas but I think a more realistic view is that I will have started it but will be looking at a finish for next Christmas!!!  I love the little extras she included, the rusty bells and the perfect sticky notepad for me – I more than need one that will remind what I need to do!!!  Thank you Carol, you are a dear friend and I love what you sent - one of those packages that made me smile for the rest of the day!

So, that is what’s going on in my corner of the stitching world.  Hope all is well with you and yours and that you enjoy the upcoming weekend. I do appreciate you all dropping by my blog and leaving comments. I've been very remiss at keeping up-to-date and commenting on other blogs but I'm hoping to improve over the coming weeks.

Until next time…..