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.

Tuesday, June 22, 2021

This may take awhile

 I've started filling in the background around the strawberries.

Tent over one is going to take some time, and time is something I won't have for the next week.

I am taking an online course on Tudor Embroidery, which has just started, and I need to get my homework done. There is also a zoom class to attend either Friday evening or Saturday midday.

EGA meets tomorrow evening.

My old workplace, from which I just retired four weeks ago, has asked me to do some product evaluations and pattern proofing and a wee bit of design work.  

And we are going to visit the Big Kid and The Flash next week.

I wasn't quite ready to have a schedule again, but it looks like I have one, at least for the next week to ten days.

Monday, June 21, 2021

More strawberries

 I really had planned to put the stitcher's envelope down after finishing the bargello flap.  But the frame was sitting right by my chair yesterday, and before I knew it, I was stitching.

And it's another strawberry band.

I seem to be drawn to designs that have strawberries on them.  They must have appealed to the little girls who stitched samplers, and they appeal to contemporary designers who use those motifs and traditions in current works.

Whatever the reason, I stitch a lot of strawberries. And now I'll go finish the ones on this band.

BTW, the background of this band is solidly stitched in tent stitch over one. It's going to have a tapestry-like effect when it's done. This is going to be a perfect project for those days when I need to stitch but don't need to think.

And that may be today. Despite being retired, I've had a Monday already, and it isn't even noon yet! It appears that I am a klutz and should sit in my corner and stitch before I knock anything else over, or spill anything, or stub my toe again.

Saturday, June 19, 2021

Forty Five Years

 Dearly Beloved and I have been married 45 years. I'm not quite sure how that happened, but there it is. As Dearly Beloved put it in one of his less diplomatic moments, it just goes to show that we can survive anything.

I did get flowers, and we had a lovely lunch out.

(What I can't figure out is how I could possibly have been married for 45 years, since I couldn't be old enough for that. I also can't be old enough to have a 40-year-old child, but he claims that's his age.)

Yesterday, we went to visit Mother, who is having difficulty communicating since the last stroke, but otherwise seems happy. She was offered speech therapy and refused. Vehemently. At this point, anyone who can't figure out what she's saying is stupid--that word comes out loud and clear and she has no filters--so we do a lot of smiling and nodding.

All this means is that there has been very little stitching, but I did finish the bargello flap for the Stitcher's Envelope a few minutes ago.

I believe I'll work a little more on this tonight and then move to something else tomorrow.

Thursday, June 17, 2021

Coulda, shoulda, woulda

 I could have finished the Spring Roundels yesterday.

I should have finished the Spring Roundels yesterday.

I would have finished the Spring Roundels yesterday, but I hit the wall when it came to making yet more twisted cording. I have been making a LOT of twisted cord lately, and I could not face picking up the twister thing-y one more time.

But today, I hitched up the Granny panties, twisted cord, sewed it on, and another finishing project is complete!

I was overthinking and overanalyzing why it seems to take me so long to put things together. I mean, really, these are just three circles, and not huge. So I looked at each step.

I had to glue the padding to the shapes. But the shapes were already made--I didn't have to make my own templates and cut them out. And I didn't have to deal with interfacing.

I had to trim the excess padding away.

I had to trim the backing fabric into a circle.

I had to trim the embroidered linen into a circle.

I had to stitch gathering threads into backing fabric and linen.

I had to gather the fabrics around the templates.

I had to lace the fabrics to the templates, which serves to smooth out the edges and pull the fabrics neatly around the templates.

I had to sew an embroidered panel to a backing panel.

I had to make twisted cording.

I had to sew the twisted cording around the edges.

And, finally, I had to make little silk ribbon bows and attach them to the top.

Nonetheless, I coulda done this all in a day if I had just applied myself, but the Spring Roundels, designed by Barbara Jackson for Shining Needle Society, are completely completed.

On to the next project!

Tuesday, June 15, 2021

One more off the list

 Today I finished the other two pieces for the Golden Accessories set of smalls:

The scissors fob behaved itself and was no problem at all.  The pin keep on the right, though . . . this was the wild child.

You can't see it, but the sides are supposed to be ruched silk. They are actually sort of ruched silk. Ruching is not hard to do--you just stitch gathering stitches along the sides of a strip of silk, pull on them to gather the silk into lovely pleats, and sew them to the edges of whatever you need to sew them too.

This works beautifully unless the silk you're using frays like crazy, including while it's sitting by itself on the work surface without the touch of human hand--or any other hand, for that matter. 

I've only had one other cut of silk dupioni that raveled like this, and I swore if I ever ran into another, I'd use iron-on interfacing before I did anything else. However, the pieces I cut for the backing for each of the pieces didn't misbehave, just the long strip

So, I said, I'll cut another strip--I had enough to do that--and interface it. I have a supply of featherweight interfacing to use, so easy enough to cut a piece, iron it on, and go from there. 

Except . . .

Even though it was featherweight, it was just enough to keep the gathers from gathering--so back to the fraying and raveling piece. That sucker is sewn to the top and to the bottom, but those gathers are not evenly spaced and there are a couple of spots that got Fray Block applied. However, it is put together, and since it's just going to sit on display rather than being used, that's fine.

Now if I could just find the pins with the gold tops to stick into it, sort of like a voodoo doll, I'd be happy. I know they're somewhere in the stash, it's just a matter of digging in the right place.

In other news, I stitched the stems of the plants and leaves on this band for Hannah Thornbush. 

And I worked those weird undulating humps between each motif. I have no idea what they're supposed to be. Maybe Nessie is swimming along this band . . .

Monday, June 14, 2021

Flitting around again

 What can I say? I have the attention span of a gnat when it comes to working on projects.

Yesterday, I had decided to put together the Golden Accessories. They're small, I thought. They're simple to assemble, I thought. I should be able to whack them out in a day, I thought.

I should stop thinking.

I managed to get the needle book put together.

But when today dawned, I just couldn't bring myself to putting the next piece together.

And I pulled something completely different out of the stash.

Hannah Thornbush has been in time-out for a long, long time, but she's back in the current pile of projects as of today. I finally figured out where I was and deciphered a rather unclear symbol on the chart, and started filling in the next band.

What I think I'd like to do--subject to whim--is alternate completing this band with finishing the rest of the Golden Accessories. What will actually happen is as much a mystery to me as it is to everyone else.

Stay tuned. You'll find out when I do.

Saturday, June 12, 2021

Heckin' Big Strawberry

 I literally closed my eyes and grabbed a project bag from the pile of things that need to be put together, and this is what popped out. I have to admit I was relieved--after putting together the nine parts of Ode, I was hoping for something that wouldn't take so long.

And, obviously, it didn't.

As always, if I had it to do over, I'd do something different. For one thing, I'd interline with featherweight iron-on interfacing. This was worked on a loosely woven 28 count linen, and I fought fraying the whole time. I would also have figured out a way to salvage just enough of the felt used for the leaves to make a stem.

Nonetheless, there's another project finished, and that makes me VERY happy!