Monday, June 14, 2010

How's Your Summer Going? Mine is going and going...

I thought we were going to take the summer off. Between ballet camps, violin lessons, pool parties, and trying to keep two little girls, one man and 4 animals from destroying my house, I have been busy! I am amazed that I have made this much progress on my summer stitching! Today has been a stay-at-home-day; it is amazing that a stay-at-home, homeschooling mom has to set aside days to stay home! I have spent the day schooling and sorting socks (yes, some of the schooling happened on my bed while I was sorting the socks.)

Princess Ozma says hello. Here she is taking a break from tinkling all over my house!!!.The garden is looking pretty parched today. Some of the flowers with thicker petals still have their heads up.

The vegetable garden is so far doing well. I absolutely cannot wait to try these 'Jaune Flamme' tomatoes.
Tomatoes are one of my favorite parts of summer - right up there with children wearing themselves out in the pool!

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Tuesday, June 8, 2010

How Ratty Neat Are Your Stitches?

I have had a bit of trouble with Miss Sarah Harriet Stephenson. I fell in love with the look of the sampler as photographed, but the charted colors are very different in some cases. I was so excited to stitch with DMC 505! I had never seen this color before. Beautiful as it is, it looks nothing like the photo. I have seen other photos online that do seem to match 505, but I fell in love with the cover photo! So there has been a lot of this...
I love the bright yellow and green fill for the leaves, but I cannot seem to make the stitches look neat when I use light and bright colors. I know to use a short thread, let it unwind, and "railroad," but it still looks lumpy. What are your best tips for non-lumpy, non-ratty stitching?

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Saturday, June 5, 2010

Get Ready to Drool...

My husband ran his first triathlon this morning. He was #58 out of 856 participants!
While he was running, I was spending time with my adorable nieces and planning a mad dash into my LNS. It is not "local" enough to go very often, but I am so thankful to have one within driving distance. I crashed the Saturday stitch-in at The Stitch Store. While the owner, Terri, was leading the gift game, this lovely lady was cutting my fabric. When I mentioned that I was taking a few pictures for my blog, she introduced herself to me as DaisyGirl!
Terri herself.
I did not have nearly enough time to browse the wonderful selection, and I had my children coming in to use the restroom and tell me to hurry because, "Daddy doesn't look happy."

I picked up two Sampler & Antique Needlework Quarterly issues that Terri had ordered for me.
Doesn't the cover design look like it would fit perfectly with a Jane Austen theme?

I have decided to start stitching this tonight. I need a little break from "Mary, Queen of Scots," and I think this will look great on my red & green/Scottish sampler wall.
I might have swiped this BBD pattern and threads from my mom...I got the fabric for it today. I would love to finish it this summer.

Well, I need to go get stitching! I hope Brit Coms will be on this evening!

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Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Guest Post - Michele's Mom

Hi, everyone. I'm Michele's mom, and she invited me to guest post on her blog. (Don't worry, I, Michele, will be nearby to keep her honest!) Many years ago, I picked up my first x-stitch pattern and have been "hooked" ever since. Michele and her siblings learned to x-stitch as children (to keep us quiet while she stitched), but she has become the star stitcher in the family, and I am very proud of her accomplishments. (She is also the "star stash raider.") (I come by that honestly. I recognized more than one of my patterns as I was rummaging through hers this weekend.) It's always fun to see what she's working on and to share links to new patterns we find. We are pretty much out of control when we get to go to a x-stitch shop together which, unfortunately, is rare (I am available this weekend if you are buying.).

Samplers were my favorites from the beginning and still are. As you can see from the photo, patriotic themes are also a favorite. This Alma Lynn Uncle Sam has been a work in progress forever. I put aside x-stitch for several years after it was started and have worked on it off and on since my stitching resumed a few years ago. My new goal is to finish it before July 4th. Keep your fingers crossed! (Mom loves Uncles Sam and Santa Claus. In fact, I don't think she can always tell them apart, at least she tries to tell me the Santas that she forgot to put away at Christmas are actually Uncle Sams!)

Below is the Quaker Sampler WIP, worked on lambswool in 930, 931, 932, and a darker blue for the letters. As you can see, I'm fond of big projects, but am making an effort to choose smaller ones that I might actually finish.

The Santa Bell Pull below is a joint venture with Michele. After years of collecting the Prairie Schooler Santa patterns, Michele decided we should probably do something with them. What a novel idea! I was pretty happy just to have them. So, she got the project started with Santa #1, then passed it on to me for Santas 2 & 3, then she will finish with Santa #4. Christmas is the goal for this one (notice I didn't designate a year, Michele). (Actually, I think we had designated 2007.)

And finally, the Noah's Ark Sampler. This one has been a WIP for so long, I can't remember when it was started. I do remember working on it while traveling to and from one of our family vacations when my children were still young enough to fight over who sat in what seat and who got to sit with the dog.

So, thank you, Michele, for inviting me to post on your blog and for sharing my love of x-stitch. That more than makes up for you not wanting to play basketball (I had a stomach ache, Mom!) or to play with paper dolls. And, thanks, to all of you who share your beautiful work and glimpses of your lives through your blogs.

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