Sunday, January 04, 2015

Christmas 2014

Once again it's been much too long between posts, but I thought I would record a few things before my Christmas stuff gets packed away for a year.  Above is the iStitch 2014 Sew Advent.  I used the same fabric that I used for the 2013 version - 36 ct. Raw Edinburgh with HDF White silk and random red, green and brown silks.
I also finish-finished a Just Nan satin box from 1999 - it was almost done, and only took about an hour to complete - the poor thing had been languishing in my drawer for years!

Here is the adorable ornament my stitching buddy Carol S.  made for me.  Her work is so beautiful and the finishing is just perfect!  The ornament looked lovely on my tree.

I see that blogger is still up to its old tricks of turning photos sideways :-(  This is the ornament dear Marie P.   stitched for me.  This little angel is just as sweet as it can be and looks so nice nestled near a companion angel.
These are the ornaments I made this year.  I stitched and finished the Flora McSample stockings from 2013 (?).  The finishing came out okay - at least I learned quite a bit so that the next batch should be better.  The little ornament is a small freebie that I stitched with leftover fabric and silks.

2014 was a good year.  I finally made it to Christmas in Williamsburg, and had a great time.  I had to leave early, so I did not get to do everything I wanted to, but I plan to go again next year.  I roomed with another avid stitcher, Shelly, who did not complain too badly about my snoring - so we have plans to go together to Salty Yarns next June for some Betsy Morgan classes.

Not stitching related, but in September we spent a week in Munich - such a lovely city.  I really liked the people, the food, and the beer.  It was very easy to get around using the trains, and everything was sparkling clean.  I would jump at the chance to go back.

I have been working steadily on And They Sinned - I am almost done with Page 3, and still loving it.  I took a few of my things to be framed at Total Framing in Fairfax VA  and got to meet the famous Sheri Burkman, who is also a stitcher and framer extraordinaire.  Paulette Stewart at Plum Street Samplers is always raving about the shop and Sheri.  Their work is top notch - and I have found them to be much more affordable than other places in Maryland and Virginia.  

Well, at the risk of rambling on and on, I will close and return to my stitching.  Happy New Year, and may you have limitless stitching time!

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Before I get further behind.....


I thought I had better write some of this down, before I forget it!

I have been stitching, and I actually finished something!!!!!!!This is Lavender Blue, by Angie Designer.  I think I started this in 2010 (?) or so.  I used Lakeside Linens 36 ct Buttercreme and Hand Dyed Fibers.  This will really be pretty once it is pressed.  This designer does these pieces every year for free, but you have to show your completed part before she sends you the next one.  I am too easily distracted to do well with that :-)

 In March, we spent a week in Paris.  We rented two apartments near the Opera House.  DH was in meetings all day and DS and I visited museums and other attractions.  It is quite a challenge to keep up with a 18 YO boy!  They have unlimited energy.  We got to ride in a hot air balloon - what fun!  We stayed across the street from Annie Bouquet Tapisserie de France.  It is a lovely shop, mostly hand painted canvases - that's one expensive hobby that I don't need to start.  I also visited Les Brodeuses Parisiennes - so many pretty things, so hard to choose!

In May, I attended Celebrations, and got to spend some time with my stitching buddy Carol - we always have the best time.  I took several classes, too.  The kits are now safely residing in my stash - they haven't been touched since I got home.

This last weekend, I attended two classes by Betsy Morgan at Salty Yarns in Ocean City, MD.  What a fabulous weekend!  The ladies at Salty Yarns made the stitchers feel right at home - and they served up some of the best food you can imagine.  Betsy Morgan is a great teacher, and quite talented.  If you ever get a chance to take a class from her, or attend an event at Salty Yarns, I would highly recommend it!

We have had rain, rain and more rain here in Maryland this spring and summer.  The weeds are as high as an elephant's eye - I suppose we will look back fondly on this in August when it is hot and dry.

Bye for now, Margaret

Sunday, March 09, 2014

Wrinkles in Progress


This is an update on my active WIPs.  After I looked at my photos, I decided that the "W" should stand for Wrinkles - I stitch in hand, and am too lazy to iron my pieces just for a photo - so I hope no one is offended by the messiness...

First up is one of the first sampler charts I ever purchased:  It is the Time and Season Sampler by Moira Blackburn.  The price sticker is dated 2-99.  I am using 36 ct. Vintage Examplar linen and good old DMC.  The colors are a bit funky - they remind me of the colors that were popular back in the 80's and 90's - I waffle back and forth on whether I like them or not.  I estimate that I am almost 25% done with this one.

 And here is my progress on And They Sinned.  I am using the charted threads and 36 ct Autumn Fields linen. This is so much fun to stitch, with all the bright colors and little motifs.  I will not like it so much when I get to the massive amounts of green on the lower parts of the design.  I am almost done with Page 1 of 4.
 And this little charmer is Les Quatre Saisons by Isabell Mazabraud-Kerlan, using the charted threads and linen.  The chart is in the Summer 2011 issue of SANQ.

I am sorely tempted to start something new, but I am trying to wait until I finish at least one of these!  Once spring arrives, my stitching time will disappear in the flurry of yard work that has to be done.  I noticed that my Lenten roses are blooming; and buds on my camellias are getting fatter.  D*** deer ate all my buds from 3 of my camellias and the Gumpo azaleas planted nearby.  It's not enough that their ticks gave me Lyme disease; they have to add insult to injury by eating my flowers that are right up by my house!

Oh, I am now definitely jealous of my little brother - he just became a grandpa for the cutest little girl you've ever seen.  I can't wait to see Sophie, hopefully this summer.  I am hoping I get grandchildren before I get too old to enjoy them!

Well, that's it for today.  Off to watch more Netflix drama series.

-Happy stitching!  Margaret

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Enough snow already!

I love a good snow day as much as the next person - especially if I don't have to get out in it, but seriously this is ridiculous!  Fortunately DH is a hardy Mid-western stock, and ventures out regardless of the weather - perhaps he just can't face the idea of being cabin bound with me if I don't have milk for my coffee!  This is my house after the first wave of snow last Wednesday night - we received another 4-5 inches in the next few days.  It's beautiful today - the white is a nice contrast to the blue sky.

Here is the fearless Labrador  - Emie loves the snow, despite finding it difficult to plow through!

One great thing about the snow is that I had a chance to finish my Valentine smalls for this year - this is a chart I found in my freebie notebook - I can't provide proper credit to the designer, but it is a very cute design.

This is Garden of Love by Citrouille's Designs.  This was a project from the 2013 Year of Smalls blog.  The fibers are Belle Soie and the fabric is a 36 ct Shale from PTP.  The linen has a lavender cast to it - it's sweet in real life.

My ornament for February is Tis the Season, a kit by Shepherd's Bush.  The ribbon and beads came in the kit, with instructions to do a wonky trim.  After I got the hang of it, it is really easy to do and is a perfect finish for this project.

And the last pic for today is my stitching helper Athena - this is the reason my twisted cords have extra fuzz!

I have been enjoying the updates on the new releases at Nashville - I wish I could have one of everything.  This is a banner year for new designs.

Until next time, happy stitching!  Margaret

Sunday, February 09, 2014

Ornaments galore!

I've started off the New Year working on ornaments.  This year I am determined to finish a few as I go, rather than have a bunch of stitched fronts to deal with in December.  So far, so  good!

Here's Peace on Earth by Barbara Jackson, which she taught as an online class through the Shining Needle Society.  I messed up the original linen, so I substituted a piece of Attic Lace by Lakeside.  It is a charming piece!
This is Peace on Earth from the 2013 JCS ornament issue.  I used the recommended threads.  It looks a bit wonky in the picture - sorry.

Also from the 2013 JCS ornament issue, here is Merry Christmas by MBT.  I used the recommended threads.  This is my first shot at rusched ribbon, using a tutorial from Vonna's (Twisted Stitcher) web site.  Not too bad, if I do say so myself.

And this is a bonus chart that came with Lizzie Kate's Christmas Mystery Sampler.  It's on a piece of Dubloon linen - I really like how this turned out.

Well there you have January's production.  I am working on a Valentine small; and another ornament for February.  I also put a few stitches in some samplers, but not much progress to show.
I also am drooling over the classes at Celebrations this year.   I am adding to my planned stitching indulgent trips by taking classes at Salty Yarns in June and finally going to Christmas in Williamsburg.
Oh, and in between, I can't forget the trips to Missouri to annoy see the Boy Wonder.  We will be spending St. Patrick's Day weekend there  - they have a big party weekend.  I haven't been in many years, but I wouldn't miss this one for the world.
Until next time, happy stitching, Margaret

Wednesday, January 01, 2014

Happy New Year!!!!


I hope everyone had a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

To start off 2014 with a clean slate, I am posting pics of the ornaments that I added to my collection this year.

First up, is a charmer from my stitching buddy Carol S.   She has a better picture posted on her blog, as well as other great pictures so you should check it out.  We have been friends for several years, so I am getting quite a collection of ornaments that she has stitched for me.

And next up is another cutie from my friend Marie.  She also has some great stitching projects to check out.   I am lucky to have such talented friends!

And from the talented hands of the ornament fairy aka Claudia, here are my Christmas presents to me!  Claudia is amazing - our tastes are very similar and she managed to finish all of these and get them back to me well before Christmas.

I participated in the Advent SAL that Carol at iStitch designed and hosted.  I even managed to finish stitching this on time - there is a first time for everything.


We are having a quiet New Years Day.  I  have a big pot of Hoppin john (black eyed peas) on the stove and made a bread pudding this afternoon.  I would have greens also, but I have been sick for two or three days, and didn't see to it that we bought greens.  The superstition is that on New Years Day you eat black eyed  peas for luck and greens so that you'll have a lot of money in the coming year.  I guess we won't find a money tree this year.

Over the last two days, I read John Grisham's Sycamore Row.  I loved the book - it is set in Mississippi and mentions some counties, towns and communities that I remember.  I read it on my new Samsung tablet, which replaced my Nook this year.  The tablet is much easier for my eyes.

Hope everyone has a safe and prosperous new year!  Margaret

Sunday, December 01, 2013

Football weekend stitching!

 Hiya,  I stitched the O Tannebaum ornament from the 2013 JCS Ornament issue while waiting for/watching the much-anticipated Alabama/Auburn football game.  It was a sad day for the Crimson Tide - but at least I have this charming ornament.  I used the pretty blue fabric called for in the design - but my picture does not capture the loveliness of this piece.

I also finished up on my Antique Evergreens by Elizabeth Designs.  This piece is just charming - it was a very enjoyable stitch - quick and easy.  There are two others in this series - Antique Flowers and Antique Birds (?) - I may work on them soon.

We had a lovely Thanksgiving - great turkey, homemade cranberry sauce with pears and ginger, sage and sausage cornbread dressing, gravy, green beans with spiced pecans, sweet potato casserole, homemade rolls - and saving the best for last - Karo pecan pie and sweet potato pie.  The pie recipes are the ones that I remember from childhood - they have only improved with age.

My DS headed back to Missouri  S&T this morning - after spending about four days catching up on his sleep.  He will return home in mid-December after finals - so once again I am counting the days.

So, now I'm off to watch the Chiefs - my DH grew up in Kansas City and is a loyal Chiefs fan.

Happy stitching, everyone!