In my part of the world we say you are a fool if your passion for a pursuit overcomes all practical sense. I am a stitching fool, and I stitch foolishness.

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Another two bite the dust

I've finished another two (very small) projects this week-end.

First up is one of Jackie du Plessis' small projects, Needles & Pin . . . ZZZ.  It fits into its own little box:

When you take it out of its box and turn it over, it has needle pages and a teeny-tiny pin cushion.

The other thing I finished is Three Laying Tools, which goes with the Stitcher's Christmas series.

There is a small snowflake charm that is supposed to hang on it. You will notice it is not on the tree. As I inserted the point of the smallest beading needle I could find into the hole, I was struck by an explosive sneeze and the snowflake flew across the room. We know not where. Not even Dearly Beloved, aka Eagle Eye, could locate it.

Oh, yes, explosive sneezing. I am afraid I have caught a cold. Rather than staying up past my Sunday night bedtime to watch Victoria tonight, I am going to drink a largish glass of OJ, take a pill, and go to bed in the vain hope that I will be completely over it by tomorrow.

Wednesday, January 11, 2017


Frances Burwell has the first four bands and part of the fifth stitched.

And the heart border around Cupid's Delight is finished.

And there are a couple more strands of gold worked into the background of Eve in the Garden, but since you can't really tell that much has changed, I didn't take a picture of that.

Meanwhile, Mary Balch has shown up.

I may have mentioned that we have issues with the UPS driver on our route. The man lies. He says that he leaves a delivery at the front door. He leaves it at somebody's front door, just not the one where it's supposed to go.

We live in a townhouse community. There is an apartment complex at the other end of the street. This time, he left the package in the office for the apartment complex. They called UPS to tell them that they did not have a resident with the name on the box and to please pick up the shipment--along with about a dozen other packages that did not belong to anyone living there. The driver did not do this. Luckily there was a very nice person working at the complex who went to the trouble to find phone numbers and contact information, and who called to let us know we had a package waiting there for us.

So Mary Balch finally arrived. I have opened the box, read the directions, and then had to lie down with a cold compress. I'm going to do a few other things before I embark on Mary's sampler.

At least I can embark on something tonight. I had an eye exam yesterday, which involved having my eyes dilated to the point that the whole world was fuzzy until this morning. I could not stitch. I could not read. I could watch TV, but even that was a little blurry. When all else fails, one can always do housework, so I was dusting until Dearly Beloved pointed out that I was missing about half the dust.  I suggested that perhaps he could follow behind and get what I missed. He was not inclined to do this. Anyway, the result was that I am now very eager to put a few threads into something--and that's exactly what I'm going to do.

Sunday, January 8, 2017


After Rebecah French went into time-out, I was a little out-of-sorts and cranky so I didn't stitch for a few days.  Or maybe I was out-of-sorts and cranky because I wasn't stitching. Anyway, I decided I needed to get my act in gear, and I sewed linen to scroll bars and sorted threads and ordered 30" scroll bars because out of all the scroll bars I own, I didn't own that size, and I started a handful of projects.


Frances Burwell
The Examplarery

When I was in Williamsburg in December, I saw Frances in one of the drawers in the textile gallery. Again. And every time I see her, I think to myself, she's in my stash, she's been aging in my stash for awhile, she needs to come out and play. Well, by golly, she's out. And we've started to play.

Cupid's Delight Sampler Accent
Periwinkle Promises' Events in Stitches

I'm getting a head start on February's project. There are a LOT of little red hearts to stitch.

Sally Munro
The Essamplaire

There's a SAL for Balch samplers on Facebook, and this is one of the samplers I'd like to stitch. I've always loved that family of samplers with their groups of partying people and houses and large floral surrounds, so this may be the impetus I need to get going on my own collection. I have Cynthia Burr and Sarah Tuel already waiting in the stash, and I'm anxiously awaiting the arrival of the Mary Balch sampler (assuming our UPS driver can manage to deliver it to the correct address--he has difficulties with doing his job accurately).

Pins and Needles . . . ZZZ
Jackie du Plessis

Another small from my collection of travel projects. I figured I was going to need a quick project amongst all the big samplers.

And speaking of big samplers . . .

Mary Lea
Hands Across the Sea, Attic's 2017 SAL

As much as I love this sampler, I was adamant that I absolutely was not going to do it. I told myself I have enough in the stash to last for another 300 years. I told myself that this is the year the I'm going to start stitching my casket from the Cabinet of Curiosities class. I told myself that this is a huge undertaking, even if it is all cross stitch. I told myself it didn't make any difference if the colors in it are colors that sing to me. I told myself all that and still succumbed because of the cat on one side of the house and the dog on the other. And that's when my will power went right out the window.

I have other things in the basket that are going to be started in the near future. And, no, I am not anticipating that all of this will be finished in 2017. I may be optimistic, but I'm not delusional.

And now it's time for a personal rant.

While the rest of the state enjoyed a beautiful snowfall, in my part of the county, we got virtually nothing. We were promised a Winter Wonderland. We got a Winter Wonder Dud.

Friends who grew up in or live/lived in snowier climes do not understand why I become positively giddy at the thought of snow.

I think there may have been two, possibly three, significant snows in my childhood, and maybe four in my entire adulthood. By significant snows, I mean enough snow to make a whole snowman, not just his head. I mean enough snow for a snowball fight with more than seven snowballs--and that's for both sides. I mean enough snow that you can walk across your yard and see only white indentations and not muddy footprints.

What we got was ice and forty-three snowflakes. And then the sun came out and melted most of it. And what melted froze overnight when the temperatures dropped into the ten's. So now we have black ice and regular ice. And I don't care who you are or how skilled you are, you can't drive on this stuff. So we are stuck at home without anything pretty to look at.

And Dearly Beloved has a cold, and is definitely not, at the moment, pretty to look at.

Tuesday, January 3, 2017


I started outlining some of the motifs on Rebecah yesterday.

And I got just a wee bit irritated.

Baby Girl, who is keener of eye and steadier of hand than I am, traced the design onto the linen for me. She followed the sketch we were provided in every detail.

But that doesn't match the photograph showing where the outlining is worked. I know. I checked. Three times on one motif.

This is not the first time this has happened, and I am not particularly happy about it. However, after sleeping on it, and taking three deep breaths, I've decided this is going to be another adaptation rather than a reproduction,

I'm still putting Rebecah in time out for a couple of days.

Sunday, January 1, 2017

First Finish of 2017

This morning, I woke up early. While I was trying to decide whether to get up or roll over and go back to sleep, my mind wandered off to stitching things. My mind tends to wander off to considering stitching things under any circumstances, as you may have noticed. Anyway, I started counting up the number of projects I'd like to stitch in 2017.

I stopped counting at 63.

No matter how optimistic (or delusional) I can be about the speed at which I stitch or the amount of time I have to stitch, 63 is kind of a ridiculous number. Unless, of course, I quit my job, I stop sleeping, and I manage to talk Dearly Beloved into doing all the cooking and housework. So I decided to do what I've been doing for the last several years . . . just work on whatever strikes my fancy whenever my fancy is struck.

Therefore, this morning when I finally staggered out of bed and tottered downstairs, I pulled a kit from the basket and started to stitch. It was a gray, rainy, chilly day--not the best way to start a New Year, as far as I'm concerned--so we had decided to stay in. And if I'm staying in, I'm stitching.

Not only did I stitch, I also finished.

Wee Floral Hornbook Fob
Catherine Theron

One down, sixty-two to go.

Totally delusional . . . 

Saturday, December 31, 2016

How I Spent My Christmas Vacation

Once our family festivities ended, I planned to stitch and blog.

I stitched. I also did some stash diving, looking for projects I want to work in the coming year. I even finished the things I stitched this week that needed finish-finishing. But . . . I found that I wasn't spending much time online--so blogging fell by the wayside.

So to catch up on that, this is what I did this week:

From the left:

  • Winter Fun from Periwinkle Promises. I stitched the mini-sampler earlier this week but assembled it into a pin cushion the next day. The assembly took almost as long as the embroidery did.
  • Sheep May Safely Graze from Barbara Jackson, this year's SNS ornament. It didn't make it on the tree, but one of the beautiful days with bright sunshine we had mid-week gave me the daylight I wanted to work on 40 count. Now it's ready for next year.
  • Resting Pins and Needles, Jackie du Plessis mini-kit. It was so much fun to have a small small that stitched and assembled fairly quickly that I believe I need to do these more often. Since even my choices in smalls tend to be complicated and involved and large, it would be nice to have more frequent finishes, in amongst the gigundous things I tend to pick out.
Speaking of gigundous:

 Rebekah French now has all of her alphabets complete and only one more line on the attribution. The last bit of the attribution could have been stitched last night, but I thought I'd have an aneurysm at worst, a hissy fit at least, if I had to work one more letter or number over one thread. So I stopped. That was probably wise.

And, by golly, I got more background worked on Eve in the Garden. I am absolutely determined to work on this one evening a week until it's done. It may take all of 2017, but it's going to happen. I want to do some of the fun stuff, and I can't until I have the background worked.

And then there was the stash diving, where I decided on some projects I'd like to start for the New Year. But that is the topic for another day--like maybe tomorrow, if I can get my act together!

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

A Day of Stitching

After the Christmas hustle and bustle--Christmas Eve and Christmas Day seemed to whizz by so fast I'm still not sure they happened!--I wanted a day to kick back and relax.

That means a day with a needle in my hand.

And I wanted something new to work on.

And I wanted something that wasn't going to take a ginormous amount of time to completely stitch.

This is what I found:

Barbara Rakosnik offered several series of small samplers, one for each month of the year, awhile back. Baby Girl originally planned to stitch this series, but something else caught her eye so they've been aging in our mutual stash for quite some time. I ran across them while looking for something else, and I've decided to stitch one a month for 2017.

For once in my life, I'm working ahead!