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.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Stressed? STRESSED?????

I'm a wee bit stressed out at the moment.

Months ago, I signed up for a workshop with Betsy Morgan, which is scheduled for Friday and Saturday.

Then, the Big Kid announced that he would like to bring the family for a visit this same week-end so he could compete in an archery contest at the Renaissance Faire. This is not a problem, since he will, of course, bring The Flash with him. They wouldn't arrive until late Friday afternoon and would be attending the Ren Faire all day Saturday, so I could go to my workshop guilt-free, mostly.

And then we were discussing the holidays, and, as usual, everyone except me has to work either on them or the day after them. It occurred to me that we could have an early Thanksgiving and have The Saint bring Mother up and we'd feast on Sunday, so we could finally have all four generations in the same place at the same time.

This was all before I had to deal with having water damage repaired and mold and mildew preventers showing up and half the living room uninhabitable, at least at the moment. It also occurred to me that The Flash is most definitely going to bring his crossbow that shoots marshmallows and his giant plush shark (which, admittedly, we bought for him). He will most definitely be warned by his parents not to discharge the crossbow or swing the shark in the house. He will most definitely "accidentally" do one or both of those things because he is a five-year-old boy and these things happen.  Therefore, I most definitely need to do a whole lot more kidproofing than I started out to do.

At the same time, Dearly Beloved came down with a cold/viral/sinus thing. He is much better but I have been mainlining orange juice to avoid getting it.

And I have to go to work every day.

Normally I stitch for stress relief but this is all I've been able to accomplish this week on In the Mood.

Just that wee corner that wraps around the square. That's it, and it wasn't entirely without stress. It's another section where the chart and the stitched model don't quite match, so I had to make some decisions and do some reverse stitching to make the motifs fit the space.

And it just occurred to me that Friday is November 1 and there is blogging to be done every day in November.

I think I'm going to bed. After some more orange juice, of course.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Domestic Disaster

We are in the midst of dealing with some water damage, unfortunately in the corner where I have my nest. Since yesterday, I've been dragging out everything, spraying with lysol, wiping down, throwing away, photocopying directions in a couple of notebooks that are past saving, laying things out in the sun, putting other things in the freezer--this is not a lot of fun and all because the neighbors who share a wall in this townhouse community didn't get a problem with a shower repaired. They are taking care of the expenses of restoration, but it has certainly thrown my original week-end plans into turmoil.

There is always a silver lining. While emptying out the wicker trunk that was housing some of my  (ahem) long term projects-in-waiting, I found a number of treasures that have reinspired me and jump started the mojo. Interestingly enough, most of them are canvas. I think I'm going to wander through them for awhile. The first one I'll work on, though, will be In the Mood Blue--I'm over halfway through with it.

While my nest is torn up, I'm going to have to work on one project at a time until the repairs are done.  There won't be room to have more than that until the living room is back to its original state. This ought to be interesting for someone with intense stitcher's ADD. I'll let you know how that goes. And this may be the impetus I need to really work on having a useable stitching room where I can keep all my goodies around me.

Of course, when I was talking about this last night, Dearly Beloved wanted to know if there would be a chair for him, since he doesn't want to hang out by himself downstairs while I'm upstairs stitching away.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Back in the Saddle again

Or, I've started stitching again . . .just a little . . . for short periods of time, but I have accomplished the following:

the next part of the framework for Buttons a Bounty

the design for one side of a small etui 

the design for one side of a pin keep to go into the etui

The picture of the side of the etui and the pin keep are from a workshop taught by Cissy Smith of Gentle Pursuits Designs for our EGA chapter.  

I seem to be in a fall-ish mood in my needlework at the moment and I think it's wishful thinking. We seem to have jumped from late summer to winter overnight.  Three days ago I was driving along the highway, thinking that you couldn't tell it was late October since so few of the trees had even started to change color--everything was still green. This morning I woke up to 32 degrees. That's freezing, folks--which meant I had to pull the wool coat out of the closet before I was quite ready. I was looking forward to  enjoying crisp mornings and sunny afternoons and fall colors, not wondering where my gloves went since last winter!

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Seriously. . .

OK, still not stitching . . .decided to watch "Reign" which is supposed to be about Mary Stuart, Queen of Scots and her life in France.

Simply from the commercials, I knew that any resemblance to historical record was going to be superficial at best, since Mary went to the French court as a wee tiny child and not as a teen-ager. But I thought that at least there would be glorious costumes that would, perhaps, be inspirational.

They just showed Mary's ladies-in-waiting getting ready for a state dinner.

They're putting on make-up and wearing prom dresses.

Seriously.  Eye liner. Prom dresses.

Not a single, solitary garment that looks anything like the 16th century.

I can only hope this thing is cancelled immediately if not sooner.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Parallel worlds . . .

Last night I had a very weird dream. I dreamed I was stitching with a very strange needle with a wooden handle.

I woke up, thought about it for a minute, and realized it was a tambour needle. Huh, I said, and rolled over and went back to sleep.

Then I was cruising the innerwebs and Mary Corbet posted about tambour embroidery today.

(Cue Twilight Zone music.)

Was this a sign I should shake off the loss of mojo by taking up tambour?

Uh . . . .no.

I had a very dear friend who used to sweep me up and carry me off into all sorts of esoteric forms of embroidery, and she decided we should try tambour embroidery. We did. Neither of us felt it was something we really needed to pursue. Therefore, I continue to look for something else to shake me out of the doldrums.

Monday, October 14, 2013

Still looking . . .

Mojo has yet to surface.

I've just decided to let it ride for awhile. I've done all the things I usually do to jump start, and I'm still not feeling it.

I've surfed the web.

I've played in the stash.

I've looked at my books.

I've tried working a few stitches just to get going.

I've indulged in some retail therapy.

Tonight I think I'm going to go through all the stuff piled up by my chair. The Flash is coming for a visit in a couple of weeks, and I need to move my toys so he'll have room to play with his. Something may jump up and wave its hands and beg me to stitch it. If not, I have other things I need to do to get ready for The Royal Visit.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Where, oh where has my mojo gone . . .

Oh where, oh where could it be?

It isn't in my corner of the living room.

It isn't in the stash room.

It isn't anywhere in the nooks and crannies where needlework is squirreled away in this house.

I'm going to try to sit quietly and see if I can catch a glimpse of it and entice it back.

Or set a bear trap for it.

(Apparently I am not alone. Over on the site where those of us involved in the Cabinet of Curiosities class hang out, several people have been suffering from severe loss of mojo. Could it possibly be contagious? Whatever is causing it, I wish it would stop. Or someone would develop an inoculation.)

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Back to linen again

While I'm waiting for the correct shade of gold thread to arrive so I can finish In the Mood, I've gone back to linen.

Since the finishing portion of Jackie du Plessis' Buttons a'Bounty class will start soon, it occurred to me that perhaps I should get the stitching portion of the class completed.

Originally I had planned to stitch all the framework in green first, then go back and fill in leaves and acorns, but the colors in the overdyed threads looked so luscious, I decided to stitch a strand of each in to see how they look on the linen.

They glow.

I'm not usually a brown/green/gold/rust kind of person. I tend to go for pastels and soft tones. But I may be changing my mind, at least as far as this design goes.

I did run into one problem on the acorn body, which you can see if you look at the top and middle acorns on the left. While working the pattern on the bottoms of those acorns, I ran into very thick threads in the linen. VERY thick threads. 

On the top one, I went back with a sharp needle and a strand of thread and simply worked a backstitch through the thread, which resulted in a slightly different, darker line down the acorn. On the other, I haven't done anything yet.  I'm thinking the slightly darker line looks better than the thick white line, but I'm open to suggestions or opinions.

Anyway, I'm going to stitch on this today and see if I can feel "fall-ish."  It's hard when the temps are running close to ninety here.

Then again, I could be in the upper Midwest, where fall decided not to hang around and the weather went directly to January and blizzards.

I think I'll enjoy the heat. Maybe not the humidity, but at least it's not frozen.

Friday, October 4, 2013

And where did the week go?

All I can say is that it didn't go quickly.

This week trudged along slowly. Veeeeeeeerrrrrrrrrrrryyyyyyyyy slowly.

It did occur to me that perhaps it is because I have had a needle in my hand . . . well . . .not at all.

There were some major domestic requirements that had to be handled.

There were over 200 pages in the last lesson of Part I of the Cabinet of Curiosities to download and print out and file away.

There was a Carolinas Sampler Guild meeting to prepare for--and due to an unfortunate accident befalling one of our members before the meeting, it was much more exciting (?) than planned. (She is OK and in good spirits, but we had a few scary moments. I'm very glad we have medical people who are members of our guild.)

Aside from CSG, it was not completely without a needlework-related event. I was thrilled to be able to obtain the kits for two of Debbie Stiehler's designs and they arrived this week.

It has been all I could do to keep myself from diving into the stretcher bar box, but I am firmly committed to completing a couple of projects before I allow myself to start either of these. And maybe while I'm working on something else, I can make up my mind which one to start first.

Do not suggest that I get them both going at the same time.

That thought has already crossed my mind.