Friday, August 1, 2008

Designer depression

Wow. One of my favorite designers is going mostly away from stitching. Jen Aikman of Dragon Dreams is going to really concentrate on her illustration work. Apparently, self-publishing all of her designs was more of a drain than a financial boon. Good luck to her, although that'll mean far fewer designs coming from her. She'll still sell her designs, but when her current stock runs out she'll sell them on I can deal with that. I just hope she is happier now and maybe then she'll get healthier. She's not in the best of health.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Exchange project finished

I finished my project for my latest exchange buddy. I'll be mailing it tomorrow and will be able to post pics when she emails that she got it. I'm really stoked about this one. I've been dying for an excuse to use both the designs I did and the finishing technique. In fact, it ended up being simple enough that I may end up doing one for myself. The thing that took the longest was waiting for the specialty threads I had to order.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Abby's announcement

I have a finish to brag about. It's a birth announcement for my absolutely adorable cousin. I just finished the framing today. It's a design from Sue Dreamer's 2 by 2 pamphlet, which I got on clearance at Wal*Mart. Since I had to use an 8x10 frame I "matted" it with ribbon I found at Michaels.

Now, I just have to finish stitching my exchange item and the mermaid (in two weeks - doable- barely). After that, it's back to the chameleon until he's done.

Saturday, May 3, 2008

My aunt is getting married in August. I wonder what I'll make them. He's a musician and she's a professor. I'm sure I can fiddle some design together. I just need to find a design for a bass...

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Fabric, Stash and Designing

It's on its way! I just got an email from Silkweaver that my fabric had been shipped. I'm doing a sitting Snoopy dance!

Also, the next piece of Papillon's freebie came and I'm almost done with the third installment. I now have it wrapped on a shiny, new scroll frame that I bought at AC Moore on Tuesday. I went there for a random thing and got two 50% of coupons, one for Tuesday and one for today. I used the Tuesday one on a set of American Dream scroll frames that has two sizes of sidebars and about five of the holders. I have How Does My garden Grow on one and Heaven and Earth Designs Story Storykeeper on the other. I still love my Q-Snaps, but I like the fact that I've finally found a set of scroll frames I can use. It's a no-basting system that uses velcro. The hardest part is trying to make sure the velcro is put on the fabric straight. I really like it for the long projects I have.

The baby blanket is the most vital, and the thing I've been ignoring. I just grabbed a baby bib, which I'm going to quickly stitch with one of the animals to give my cousin for the shower, with the promise of the blanket to be delivered in time for the baby. Drama Pricess is almost finished, a bit of backstitch left. I bought the fabric to finish Starbucks for my co-worker. It's going to be done as a flat-fold, since the fabric won't go into the mug all the way and I need something to accomodate the fact that I cut most of the excess fabric off to put it in the mug.

Oh, I got my order from Heaven and Earth Designs about a week ago. It was James Christensen's College of Magical Thinking, Kissing Frogsby Lee Anne Seed, Story Storykeeper by Selina Fenech and they accidentally sent me Spirit Storykeep by Lee Anne Seed. Actually, they sent that instead of Story and when I wanted to return it, they told me to keep it. It's very nice, so I had no problem doing so. ;p I think Mom will get it someday, since it's purple.

I finally finished and delivered the Flag and Golden Eagle pattern I promised a co-worker for her husband. I used a non-copyrighted (as far as I could tell) rippling flag picture and the standing Golden Eagle from a design by Joanne Aston in Cross Stitch Gold, issue 46. Yes, I transcribed every stitch. Oy! It turned out so nicely, I think I might make it for my brother for Christmas. It will have to displace one of the projects I wanted to make for myself, but he shows a surprising appreciation for my stitching. He's worth it. Just don't tell him I said that. ;p

My co-worker is going to be using a 14 count pattern I made her. I'm altering it and making it 16 count since I really dislike 14 count. They're both 10 by 8 and I'll turn it into a small wall hanging for him, rather than frame it. The scuttlebutt is that he's going back to Iraq in September, and I want him to be able to take it wherever he goes there. His third tour. *sigh*

So, my project list is currently:
1. Baby Bib (travel project)
2. Baby Blanket
3. Papillon Creations
4. Drama Princess (travel project) - Although, I might just finish it off today and stick with just the bib for work and bus.
5. Mermaid
6. Chameleon

Future projects:
1. Who Are These Kids? (travel project) - It's in my purse now, but the bib is delaying it. I figured if I finished Drama Princess at work, i'd still have something to do on the bus home.
2. Golden Eagle (after Chameleon is finally finished)

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Mystery and Finished photos

Well, I finished the bookmark last night. Then I did start the whitework freebie by Teresa Wentzler. I really hate Algerian eyelets. I always have and I think I always will. This morning as I was waking up I figured out a solution to something nagging me about the bookmark and quickly fixed it. It's all ready to be mailed once I get the guy's address in Iraq.

The Statue of Liberty and lettering I got from a book called 2001 Cross Stitch Designs, published by Better Homes and Gardens in 2004. I've had it about two years now. The pattern called for french knots for the Lady's eyes, but there was no way I was adding them, so I altered some of the backstitch a bit. I also used some different colors than asked for: a different backstitch thread and the colors for the lamps. I couldn't put my hands on the others and wasn't about to go out and buy new skeins for about 150 stitches worth altogether.

Also, just for giggles, here's a WIP photo of the Papillon Creations monthly freebie. It's going to be long, which I didn't notice when I printed it off. I was about to start it on a smaller piece of fabric when I realized it and scrambled about trying to find a big enough piece. I hope this one works, because I have a sneaking suspicion I miscounted when I was figuring out how much room I needed to leave for finishing. The last installment should be made available in December, so it's going to be a while before it's all done.

I'm using 25 count cream fabric from somewhere? with DMC Variegated and Variations threads: Yellow 190, Red 115, Blue 4030, Purple 52, Pale Green 94, Dark Green 92. It wants beads too, so the last time I was at Michael's I grabbed some of the seed beads on sale. I'll add what looks nice where at the end.

I imagine I'm going to make a hanging out of it. I'll find some nice Summery fabric for the backing at Wal-Mart and make use of my nifty sewing machine which I haven't been able to use at all yet. Grandma will be gone for a week soon, though, so I'll get a chance to use it then.

Friday, February 22, 2008

Current projects

My current projects:

1. Chameleon
2. Mermaid
3. Baby Afghan
4. Specialty Stitch Freebie (How Does Your Garden Grow?) from Papillon Creations

1. Dolly Mamas Drama Queen (white and backstitch is all that's left)

1. Statue of Liberty bookmark (need to stitch "We Hold These Truths" tonight)
2. random Blackwork biscornus to use up the rest of the pieces I'd cut for the Christmas biscornus

The large projects are my "at-homes". The medium and small projects are my travel projects. Drama Queen is taking me a heck of a lot longer than I thought it would. I really hate stitching white on white fabric. But if I actually get those stitches done, I only have the backstitch left. Then I can cycle in the Dolly Mama I want to make for Mom.

I might cycle in a TW freebie after I finish the bookmark. I'm going to have to do it a few times before I attempt this one. I still can't get over my fears to progress to actually cutting my fabric! I think the Papillon sampler will help, though. I'm enjoying the specialty stitches. Hmm. Maybe I'll do a few biscornu using the Papillon and TW specialty stitches.

Ooh, shiny. Looking for links for the Dolly Mamas I found another one I want for myself (after I finish Domestically Challenged, I guess).

Now I just have to get off the computer and start stitching the lettering so I can mail the bookmark with the book tomorrow. Oh, the bookmark is going to a soldier in Iraq I'm mailing a book to via Paperback Swap.

Thursday, February 7, 2008

First Finishes of 2008!

Okay, I have been working on Dolly Mamas' Drama Queen for my niece, Chameleon for my nephew and a restart of Joan Elliott's Mermaid for the daughter of the lady who gives Grandma her showers. Theoretically, I'm going to be paid for the Mermaid.

In between those three projects, so I don't feel too homicidal toward them I did these:

Imbolc Ornie for my little Norfolk Pine. I know it's upside down, but I started stitching it together wrong, so I just went with it. Thankfully, the Gods don't mind a little screw-up now and then. I'm adapting quilting templates from one of my grandmother's extremely old catalogs for cross-stitch motifs. This one is rather fitting for the season, I think, called Tulip Basket. The nickel is there to give it scale. There's no stuffing. It's too small.

Peacock Bookmark, adapted from a freebie by Papillon Creations. Yesterday afternoon, I just needed something quick, easy and completely different from everything I've been working on lately, so I grabbed my binder of printed freebies and found "The Peacock" by Papillon Creations. The peacock was small enough to stitch on one of the bookmarks I have laying about, so I figured "What the heck?" I adapted the border to fit the way I wanted and tried to create an alphabet in the style of the lettering on the pattern to turn it into an alphabet sampler. I like the way it turned out. I'm even keeping it for myself. It took me about a day to do since I finished it a few hours ago. Oh, and joy, I finally finished off a bobbin. One more down, about 75 to go before I'm officially bobbin-free. The colors of the picture are lighter than reality. The flash wiped them out a bit.

If you click the pistures, it takes you to a larger picture that shows them all of much better.