Wednesday, 28 February 2018

February WIPocalypse

February was a pretty good stitching month. I didn't really think I'd done all that much but when you look back at the end of the month it's surprising the amount that you've accomplished. We've been spending a lot of time watching the Olympics and I've been stitching during that time so that was helpful.

First I managed to finish up Blackbird Designs Evergreen.

This was a sweet stitch which moved along fairly quickly. The pattern called for the trees to be stitched in the same brown as the lettering however I wanted green trees so I substituted with Gentle Art Piney Woods. I'm pleased with how it turned out.

Next up I pulled Plum Street Samplers Pomegranate Santa from out of my WIPs pile. When I first saw this design I knew I wanted to stitch it. I love Paulette's style and was really drawn to this one. However it seems that while I'm stitching it it doesn't hold my interest for long and then I'm on the hunt for something else to do. I'm hoping to persevere with this one and get it completed this year.
Here's a before pic from 2017 and a pic of where I am now. The colour of the linen in the first pic is more true to the actual colour. When I took the second photo the lighting was pretty lousy.

When I tired of Pomegranate Santa I turned to another WIP from 2017, Threadwork Primitives Quaker Friends. I was moving well on this one when I ran out of floss. I knew I had another skein but as is often the case, the dye lot was completely different. I decided I wasn't going to place an order for just one skein of floss so I put it aside until my next online order. Meanwhile I was speaking with a friend who asked what I was working on. I told her the story and she offered to send me a skein of the floss I needed. Fortunately hers was a good match and I don't think you can tell where I left off and where I started again.

It's been awhile since I worked on a quaker stitch and I'm having so much fun with this one that I'm going to have to find another one soon to take its place when I'm finished with it. Any suggestions?

Last week my hubby and I were headed into the neighbouring village when I saw a large bird with a great, white wingspan cross the road in front of us and land on a nearby telephone pole. "Snowy owl!", I cried. Sure enough it was indeed a snowy, one of the first in we've seen in three years. Unfortunately my cell phone doesn't take as great a picture as my camera which of course was at home!

The recent milder weather has brought a few visitors to the feeder which I haven't seen since the fall.
A goldfinch and a slate coloured junco made an appearance most recently.

It won't be long before the brilliant yellow is more widespread on that finch!

Now I'll leave you with a pic of three of my favourite people..... my son Jeff and granddaughters Summer and Oceanne. I miss these three and can't wait until better weather allows me to travel to see them.

Saturday, 24 February 2018

February Smalls

February is coming to a close and hopefully winter won't be far behind! I've had enough of the ups and downs in temps this year which have played havoc with my sinuses. Spring can't come soon enough!
 I had hoped to stitch some Valentine pieces this month but after looking at my collection I decided that I had plenty and what I could really use was some small winter finishes. I managed to accomplish just the one but it's a cute one!
This is Merry Winter by Country Rustic Primitives.

I chose the year 1981 since that was the year of my first born's birth and it occurred in January. That was a Merry Winter indeed!

The second small I completed was a carry over from 2017. I had originally started to stitch it as a small pillow for a friend but found another design I liked better. This little stitch then fell to the side, half finished. I decided to pick it up and finish it off since it was a quick little piece. I have found a small storage box which I think will be just perfect for displaying this on. Until I get it completed I've laid the finished piece on top of the box so you get the idea. It will be a perfect fit when it's finished. This is Blackbird Designs Summer Stars, taken from their book, A Stitcher's Journey.

While visiting a friend last Sunday she pointed out the piece I had stitched for her several years ago. I knew that she had gotten it framed but I had never seen it since. It made me so happy to see it gracing her wall.
This is My Big Toe Designs Cast All Your Cares.

Today I will be sorting through my stash in search of a few new smalls to get started on in March. I always find something I'd forgotten that I had when I do this. I think I have too much stash, lol!

Saturday, 27 January 2018

WIPocalypse 2018 - January post

Happy New Year and welcome to WIPocalypse. If you haven't already joined us, head on over to Measi's Musings to check out how to join in all the fun! 
Currently I'm enrolled in  just two SALs, WIPocalypse and the Smalls SAL. I haven't yet decided whether or not I'll participate in the Olympic stitching challenge. I love staying put and watching the Olympics but quite often I get caught up in watching and it interferes with my stitching. I've been known to frog a significant amount in the past after watching an event while stitching. I'll decide by next month's post whether or not I'm participating.

This year my stitching if off to a good start. Besides the Smalls finish which I posted yesterday I've managed to complete one of my WIP from 2017 as well as begin a new start. I lost interest in a lot of my starts last year and I really want to finish them off. Any new starts I'm trying to limit to ones which I already have in my stash although I know I'll slip up at some point, lol! 

Evergreen by Blackbird designs is one of those charts which I've had waiting in my stash for several years now. I'm stitching it on 32ct Winter Brew. I fully intended to use the called for floss but my dye lot is such that most of the floss was a darker brown than that used in the original. I didn't like the look of the brown trees so I swapped them out for Gentle Art Piney Woods. This one is moving fairly quickly so I'm hoping it will be finished by next week.

Heartstring Samplery Sing We Then Merrily is one which I started last November. I started off well enough but progress slowed down as I got more involved in holiday activities and preparations. I picked it up again last week and finished it off in just a few days.

The weather has been up and down over the past several weeks and there have been some days when it's just better to stay indoors and stitch. That has helped in catching up with my WIPs but it sure isn't helping in getting back to my walking routine. There has just been too much cold and ice to get back to a regular schedule yet. As soon as a mild day arrives though I'm out and about again. I hate being housebound for too long!

Now to decide which WIP to bring out next! See you next time.

Friday, 26 January 2018

Smalls SAL 2018 - January

Welcome to my first Smalls SAL post for 2018. If you've not heard of this SAL, follow my link  to the sign up post at Stitching Lotus. It's a great motivation to get some small stitching projects completed and we would love to have you join us!

My first small of the year is a sweet little design by Teresa Murgida of Primitive Acorns and it's called Wild Mistletoe. You would think I'd be tired of stitching Christmas ornaments at this point but I often prefer to do them throughout the year when there is not as much pressure to get them completed in a certain time frame. This particular design is one which I think I will leave out all winter, once it's finished that is. It will be a pillow finish for my bowl displays.

The fabric I used is by Dames of the Needle and the colour is Sweeny Red. I just love it and already have another larger design in mind for the remainder.

Hope to see you next month! 

Sunday, 7 January 2018

WIPocalypse 2018 Intro

So we're at the start of another year with all its promise which leads us all to the hope of another year of great stitching. I'm so pleased to see that so many new members are joining us on our journey. For those of you who don't know me, my name is Lynn, I'm from Canada and I've been stitching for almost 40 years. Wow, I can't believe that but it's true! 

My stitching has waxed and waned over the years as other priorities emerged but I've always returned to it as it has soothed my stress and left me with lovely family heirlooms. My goals have started to slow down over the past couple of years. When I first retired from my job as a medical lab technologist I went at full speed just enjoying the fact that I could stitch whenever and wherever I wanted. Now though I get restless sitting for too long so I'm learning to shorten my list of goals.

I've listed my goals on the WIPocalypse 2018 page on my blog. Just follow the link and you'll find them all there. Now for me to head to your blogs and see what you've planned for this year! 

Sunday, 31 December 2017

December Smalls and December WIPocalypse

Most of December's stitching was accomplished in the first few days and the last few days of the month. Early in the month I came down with a bout of vertigo due to a sinus infection which meant that stitching was out of the question. I'm feeling much better now but I'm still unable to lie down with my head flat without feeling off balance. So I continue to elevate my head with 2 pillows for sleeping. I'm just starting to feel like picking up my needle again. Thank goodness that of my stitching gifts the actual stitching was complete and only the final finishing remained. That took place in the last few days before Christmas. 

Here are my name trees which have now been gifted with resounding success.....Robert, Chris and Violet!

These were designed by Helga Mandl. In addition I completed the final finishing on a design I had stitched a couple of years ago by The Primitive Hare called I Believe in Christmas. I did an easel finish and gifted this to a close friend, Trish.

I also managed to squeeze in one final small finish for 2017. This is a sweet little design by Diane Williams of Little House Needleworks called Potted Poinsettia.

For my December WIPocalypse I managed to finish off a piece which I started early in the year or it might even have been last December. This is Joy by SubRosa Designs.

I stitched this with a Gloriana silk called Winter Woods. I love how the variegation turned out! I'm on the look now for a box on which I can display it.This will be my final finish for 2017. 

In addition, I managed a small bit of time on Heartstring Samplery Sing We Then Merrily. I'm hoping to complete this one in early January, ready for next Christmas.

A few days before Christmas I picked up a piece of my stitching from 2016 which I had framed for display this winter. This is by With Thy Needle & Thread and is called Paper Snowflakes.

The frame on this complements another piece by the same designer which my husband framed for me a couple of Christmas' ago, Heaven & Nature Sing.

So another year is coming to an end and 2018 looms on the horizon with all its promises and possibilities. Looking over my WIPocalypse list I'm pretty pleased with what I accomplished this year. I completed 4 of my original list and started 2 others. In addition I stitched 18 other pieces not on the original list. That's usually how it goes though. I always change my mind and start something other than what I originally chose. Here's a link to the page with pics of all this year's finishes.

Tuesday, 28 November 2017

November WIPocalypse and a Find

November's overcast weather has encouraged me to stay indoors and stitch more. At the beginning of the month I started stitching on some Christmas name trees which will be finished as ornaments and gifted. You can see them on my previous post. When I'd finished with them I felt the urge to start on a new, larger Christmas piece. However, after browsing through my stash, I'd narrowed things down to 3 or 4 charts but I couldn't make up my mind. In the meantime I picked up my recent Halloween stitch by The Primitive Needle, Annie Hyssop's Harvest Moon. Here's where I am at this point.

With Halloween done and over with I just wasn't feeling it for this piece so I dug through my charts and decided to go with Plum Street Samplers Yuletide Welcome. I spent the morning stitching the windows for the house and once again my mood changed. The piece was larger than I wanted to work on at this time and I was looking for something with more of the reds and greens. I knew exactly what I was needing to start......Heartstring Samplery Sing We Then Merrily

I love working on this one and put it down only recently to start another Christmas ornament for a friend. I can't stay away from it for long though and I plan to pick it up again tomorrow. That's it on the stitching front for this month.

Saturday I made a trip into Ottawa to attend our church bazaar. I wasn't looking for anything in particular and was actually browsing through the books when I noticed something. That thing was what appeared to be a set of transfer ware plates. My friend Gwen was just pricing them. I picked one up to have a look and on the reverse was a stamp from Colonial Pottery in the UK and the words Togo which I now know is the pattern name. I looked up and Gwen had priced them at $5 for the four. "Sold!", I said. 

Now I have admired transfer ware in the past but never had any of pieces of my own. Most comes in a blue, red or brown colour but these plates are a teal green. 

I Googled Colonial Pottery when I returned home and found out that Togo referred to this particular pattern and that it was circa 1890! I couldn't believe my luck. Not only did I purchase some beautiful transfer ware but a pattern that is quite old and quite rare.
With the exception of one plate, they are in very good shape with some minimal ware on the gold plated edging. The fourth plate has a small chip but it is on the reverse of the plate. It also has a small spot which appears darker and looks almost like a tiny burn mark. It is such a small area though that it is difficult to notice and not something I am worried about. I was just thrilled with my purchase! I love the roses on it. Perhaps someday I'll stumble across more of this particular pattern.

Today I spent the afternoon putting together an outdoor winter planter. I did this for the first time last winter and I had hung on to some of my materials such as the birch logs and pine cones. I picked up some greenery at the local grocer and set about to tackle this again. When I'd finished it looked like something was missing. I wasn't happy with some of the cedar and pine which just weren't draping the way I wanted them to.

 I hopped into the car and went searching for some incense cedar which I had spotted earlier but neglected to buy. I also found some boxwood and added a bundle of it to my purchase. The incense cedar was perfect! It drapes so nicely and smells wonderful. I added a bit of the boxwood to the back of the arrangement, watered everything and pulled the planter out of the garage and settled it in front of the house. As I was doing this the snow began to fall and before I knew it I was in the middle of a snow squall! Things settled down a bit later but the snow fell softly for a couple of hours. Here's a pic of my arrangement in the morning light.

See you all next month and happy stitching!