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.

Thursday, September 16, 2021

A little more

 Today's Tudor bit involved couching lizerine around each leaf. It was very fiddly, and that was just the outer edge.

After everything else on this piece of linen is stitched, all of this will be cut out and sewn to velvet. When that happens, the center vein of each leaf will be added.

This is not the only thing I've been working on, but seeing nun stitch after nun stitch after nun stitch is like watching grass grow or paint dry. When I finally get it all done and the stuff in the middle done, I'll take a picture.

Wednesday, September 15, 2021

Back to the Tudors

 Apparently I was inspired by my new Tudor book. I worked on attaching the gold plate to the leaves that will be appliquéd to velvet later.


I am experimenting with the coverage of the couching stitches over the gold plate. The top leaf has fairly heavy coverage, while the bottom one has very little. 

The problem is that the photo doesn't show how bright the plate actually is. In real life, it's very shiny and almost overwhelming.

In addition, all those raggedy-looking edges around the outside and up the center will be covered with another, very bright gold metallic thread. As a result, I'm leaning toward to heavier coverage with the couching threads to tone the plate down a bit.

I realize that Henry VIII and Elizabeth I were all about the bling, but there's already a lot of that on this project.  I think I'll set the frame across the room and see how it reacts in lamplight and early morning sun, then make a decision.


Tuesday, September 14, 2021

New book

There has been very little stitching for the last couple of days, and therefore I had very little to say. I did pull out a project from the stash that I want to start, and another that will be on the slate frame as soon as the Tudor project is done, but as far as actually stitching, nope, didn't happen.

But I did get a beautiful book today:

Sorry for the blurry photo and bad light-- it is a glorious book with paintings and reproductions of Tudor clothing and examples of actual Tudor garments. And it is now available in paperback, so it's much more affordable.

Tonight I'll settle down with a book rather than a needle.

 

Sunday, September 12, 2021

Best Laid Plans

I've said it before, and I'll say it again. I am not making plans.

And, of course, I had planned to finish the flowers on this part of Rebecah French today. I didn't. I got about half of them done:


 And that is because my sleep was interrupted last night, not once, but twice.

I'm going to be a cranky old lady, so if you're here for stitching, you can stop reading right now.

There is a young man in our neighborhood who is admirable in many, many ways--good student, hard worker--and his goal has been to save up enough money to buy a car he could drive during his senior year in high school. He has worked very hard to meet this goal, which was made even harder with Covid cutting off so many job opportunities for so long. This meant that he worked two jobs this summer.

And he bought a car. Actually, what he bought was a motorized, rolling vehicle to carry a major stereo system, with emphasis on bass speakers. And this thing rolled into the neighborhood at midnight last night. Dearly Beloved, who had taken his hearing aids out, thought it was thunder since the windows were rattling and he could feel the vibrations.

And then, the kid rolled out this morning at 6:30 to go to one of his jobs (gotta buy gas, you know), and apparently, he needed to wake himself up so he cranked up the stereo again. And this was quite the shock to the system on a quiet Sunday morning.

His parents have come to every door and apologized--it seems the stereo was a surprise to them as well--and we have been informed that this will not happen again. Dad mentioned that the title is in Dad's name, as is the insurance, so he has leverage.

Considering the bags under his eyes, we believe that Dad will carry through.

Saturday, September 11, 2021

The Boring Stuff

 Sometimes you have to get the boring stuff out of the way before you can do the fun stuff.

On the accessories for the Stitcher's Envelope, that's the Nun stitch.  All of them are outlined in Nun stitch.

I do not enjoy working Nun stitch.

On the scissors sheath, I stitched the design almost all the way, then did the Nun around it, then finished the design.  I've decided I'm going to work the Nun stitch first for the rest of the pieces. Otherwise, they won't get done in a timely manner, meaning any time soon, or perhaps even in this decade. Lesser things have derailed projects.

So, this is where I've started. And will continue. And I am liable to be cranky, so I beg forgiveness in advance.

Of course, tomorrow is Sampler Sunday, so I'll have an excuse to procrastinate schedule the other sections for later in the week.

Friday, September 10, 2021

A unicorn

 In one of the cross stitch groups I belong to, a unicorn is that chart or pattern or kit or design that is (usually) out of print or so rare that it's as elusive as a unicorn.

I have several unicorns I'd love to find, and last week I found one:

Fenwick is a kit from Elsa Williams that is probably forty or fifty years old. I always loved the design, but never had the chance to buy it when Elsa Williams products were in existence. But--aha!--it appeared on the Bay of Evil, and I spent way too much for it, but it's now in my possession.

I've always said that if I'm meant to have something, it will eventually come my way--even if it takes decades to arrive!



Thursday, September 9, 2021

Lack of Industry

 Today was supposed to be a Tudor day.

After yesterday, I didn't feel like doing anything that required focus or concentration. Actually, I was thinking about being a slug, but I did pull out the Stitcher's Envelope. So the borders for the second half of the scissors sheath are done, and I started the nun stitch that will be part of the finishing.



 And then the mail arrived, and I have more temptation--temptation that I hope will be motivation to get some more of my WIP's and PhD's done before I start something new.

I discovered Nicki Franklin's The Stitchery through an article in Victoria Magazine an issue or so ago.  She offers lovely, small designs stitched in soft, faded colors. And one of the designs I found on her website was "No Rabbits Allowed", inspired by Beatrix Potter's Mr. MacGregor's Garden. My fingers moved of their own accord, and it was ordered.

I really planned to stitch my stash in retirement rather than add to it, but some things are just too enticing to avoid!



Wednesday, September 8, 2021

Industry

I have been very industrious today.

I constructed a banana pudding.

I balanced the checkbook and paid bills.

I dragged the vacuum cleaner around, then wafted the dust cloth.

And I put The Chinese Imperial Yellow Queen Stitch Needlecase, as reproduced by Joanne Harvey, together:

The inside has a pocket (obviously) and needle pages. The scissors and tape measure were included as part of the kit.

It is closed by wrapping a ribbon around the outside.

Wow, two finishes in two days. Maybe I'm on a roll. Doubtful, but possible!

 

Tuesday, September 7, 2021

Yippee- Ki-Yay

 I spent some time yesterday looking for a set of scroll bars to fit the linen for Stinkin' Cute. While I was rummaging around, I ran across the kit for the Queen's Miniature Portrait, designed by Amy Mitten. I had started it,  then it went into time-out when I got off track couching the ruff stitches.

I got back on track this morning, and now it's done.


And, it is with great relief that I wish to announce that the stitching for the Chinese Imperial Yellow Queen Stitch Needlecase is now complete.


This has been my travel project for years now. Once the pattern was in my head, I didn't need to refer to the chart or do much counting, so it was perfect for trips with little time for stitching or for stitching with a group. However, it's been in process for way too long, and it's past time to finish it.  Speaking of finishing, I believe I will go ahead and read over the construction directions rather than add this to the pile of things that need to be completed.

And, you ask, did I find scroll bars for Stinkin' Cute? 

I did.

They're attached to the linen on which I'm stitching the appliqué pieces for the Tudor class.

I suppose this means that I need to get those bits finished. And I will. In the next few weeks. Hopefully.


Monday, September 6, 2021

Stinkin Cute

 What a surprise! The Post Office delivered a package today! On a holiday!

And it was a new project from Jackie du Plessis. It's called "Stinkin' Cute" and it is. A teeny, tiny wooden basket:

And it will become this:

I am soooooooo excited--I may be upstairs before the afternoon is over, looking for the correct scroll frames.

After all, it's Labor Day, and that still means a beginning for me. When I was in elementary school, the first day of school was the Tuesday after Labor Day (and the last day was the Friday before Memorial Day). I still have a strong urge to buy a new binder, and notebook paper, and a box of pencils when this time of year rolls around, even though decades have passed since then.

I am trying to be disciplined and finish a few more Phd's (projects half done), but oh, I am being so tempted!

I have a feeling temptation will win.

Sunday, September 5, 2021

Vines and leaves

On this Sampler Sunday, I feel like I've been hacking into a jungle. There are a LOT of vines and leaves on this side of Rebecah French's sampler.


 I wish I could say I'm going to get the buds and flowers and bird stitched by bedtime tonight, but I don't think it's possible. Unless, of course, bedtime is close to sunrise tomorrow.

And that is entirely possible. After all, not only is tomorrow a holiday, but I'm retired. I don't have a schedule!

Saturday, September 4, 2021

Is that all there is?

 Yep, this is all there is today:


I have good reason. Baby Girl made a flying trip to bring me plastic bins she isn't using and to get a footstool I'm not using. She also raided my stretcher bar stash.

And then we went to lunch. And then she left. And I spent some time organizing stuff in the bins.

Organization is tiring work--good thing we have leftovers to warm up for supper tonight!

Friday, September 3, 2021

Oooh, Shiny!

 I finished adding the metal thread to the goldwork motif on the Tudor project today.

There are a couple of things I need to do. 

The first is to restitch the center. One thing I've learned from this class is that things on this silk blend velvet slip and slide, and the center sequin definitely slipped from where it was when I started.

The second is that I need to "groom" the gold purl on the petals. Many moons ago, I took classes from Michele Roberts at EGA and ANG National seminars, and that is where I learned about a tool called a mellore which helps you push real metal threads into submission. In looking at the photo, I can see several places that need to be tamed.

Meanwhile, after hunching over the slate frame most of the day, I definitely need to straighten out my back. Right now, I'm shaped like a C, and C does not stand for comfortable in this instance.

And then I may pick up a different project.

Another facet of retirement just occurred to me. Labor Day is Monday. In my working days, it would have been a day off. Because that gave me a three-day week-end, I used to plan to stitch on a special project since I'd have more time. Now that I'm retired, I can play with special projects any time.

Every day is a holiday!

Thursday, September 2, 2021

Still more to go

Because of my incredible inability to accurately determine how long any project will take, I still have the two rows of small diamonds on my needle case left to complete.


With my usual optimism, I thought I would be to the point of putting this thing together by now.

I was incorrect in my assumption.

And I wish I could let go of the habit of setting deadlines for myself. Even in retirement, I can't stop. I wonder how long it will take . . . 

Wednesday, September 1, 2021

Sampler September

 We were supposed to have our first sampler guild meeting since February, 2020, tonight.

Unfortunately,  the key to our meeting place didn't work and we couldn't get in--so the meeting was cancelled.

I suppose I should work on a sampler tonight, since this is Sampler September, but I am stitching on the yellow needle book again. When you get this close to getting something accomplished, it's hard to stop, and I am very, very close.


Since the big diamonds take so much more time to work than the little ones. I decided to knock them out first. I will be very, very happy to get them out of the way--this bright yellow is tiring on the eyes.

I'd much rather be at the guild meeting, though. It's been so, so long, and I'll be happy to see everyone again, masked or not.

Tuesday, August 31, 2021

Stalking the Mail Carrier

One of my favorite activities is tracking packages and stalking the mail carrier--just slightly like a mini-Christmas throughout the year.

And yesterday I got packages from two of my favorite places. 

Tricia Nguyen opened her online store,  and I have a piece of linen for one project and a piece of linen batiste for another. The newest Frostings box was ordered and will be shipped in October.

And this year's ornament from Rachael Kinnison arrived:


 As all the others in her series have been, this is exquisitely designed with the finest of materials and colors that sing to me.

But meanwhile, I am rummaging for stretcher bars, which Baby Girl needs for a project she's doing. As I have sufficient stretcher bars to build a small log cabin--maybe even a large log cabin--it doesn't make sense for her to buy more. The problem is finding stretcher bars that play well together. Not all of them do.

And I'm doing laundry, and I need to wave the dust cloth around, and it's time to declutter my corner of the living room, and there are bills I need to pay. In short, I'm adulting.

I'd rather stitch.

Monday, August 30, 2021

Sampler Sunday and Metallic Monday

I didn't get to sit down to stitch yesterday until after supper, but I was able to finish up the part I had started last week before I went to bed.


Then today, I worked on the goldwork motif on the Tudor class piece.


As usual, my back has told me it's time to do something else. With any luck, I may be able to do the flower tomorrow after my back unkinks.

Meanwhile, I think I'll go stalk the mail carrier. According to tracking, this should be a good mail day.

Saturday, August 28, 2021

Stubborn

 My father used to tell me that, if you have something between you and a thing you want, you just have to work around it, over it, or through it.

Then he would always add, "You're just stubborn enough to do it."

I'm not sure if that was a compliment or not.

So, today I finished the seeding on the Marigold from my Tudor class:

I finished another band of Queen stitches on the Imperial Yellow Needlebook (soooooo close to a finish!)


And I worked the tent-over-one background on the first half of the scissors sheath from the Stitcher's Envelope:


And now I'm going to pull out Rebecah French so I'll be ready for Sampler Sunday.


Friday, August 27, 2021

Bored, bored, bored

 Due to an unforeseen situation, we did not visit Mother today.

So, I thought, I'll have an unexpected day to stitch. 

This is as far as I got when I. Hit. The. Wall.

Seeding stitches is not the most stimulating embroidery to do, unless you're using it to create shading. This motif was not designed to do that, so it just means filling in the space with random stitches. Some of the people in the class are doing other things, which is probably making it much more interesting to do. I'm sticking with the brief as part of the learning experience and as much accuracy as you can get without the same materials.

This may have been an error in judgement, but I think it would look odd if I change now.

So, I put this aside and pulled out the yellow needle case worked all in Queen stitches.

I'm so close to finishing, but I do not believe I can work another yellow Queen stitch today. Or maybe tomorrow. 

So Stitcher's Envelope came out, and I'm to the point I need to work tent stitch around the ribbon design.

Couldn't face that either. And, once again, I'm so close to getting that project finished, so I really should push through.

So, what do you do when nothing appeals?

I generally start another project, but the whole purpose of the projects I've been working on is to get some things out of the basket and finished or finish-finished or both.

Today, I took a nap. 

Sigh.

Thursday, August 26, 2021

Tudor Thursday

More seed stitches, more chain stitches.


 There wasn't enough of the gold tambour thread in the kit to do all the chains, so I had to wait for an order to arrive. I'm very happy to get that part finished--and the rest of the seeding for the leaves and bud just took time to do.  I have more seeding to do on the flowers, and this motif will be done. We are supposed to stitch some silver plate down around the flower to mimic the look of cloth of silver.  I've decided that I like the way the shape of this and the goldwork motif mirror each other, so I'm leaving that step out.

Actually, I had planned to do this Tuesday, but as it turns out, I haven't picked up a needle for two days. 

Tuesday I had lunch planned with a friend. It was great to get together again and the conversation was lively. However, I went home with a headache (too much sodium or MSG--do they even still use MSG? but that's what it felt like--and a very hot walk to the car in the midday sun--the only spot available was about two states away). The upshot was that I spent the afternoon sipping cold water instead of stitching.

Then yesterday, Dearly Beloved took a tumble, which resulted in a trip to the doctor's and X-rays. He has a bruise in a very interesting place and the way he landed resulted in a sprained shoulder. He is stiff and sore, but is recovering--in fact, he insisted that I go to EGA last night. But again, no stitching.

Tomorrow we visit Mother. This social whirl . . . oh, well, I'll be back in my regular rut routine next week!


Monday, August 23, 2021

Marigold Monday

 I jumped out of bed this morning and worked on the Bacton Marigold motif from the Tudor class.

Actually, I lurched and staggered out of bed, got myself highly caffeinated, and stared at the instructions and piece-in-progress, trying to decide where to start for today's stitching.

Bacton won because it's probably the easiest, and that's about what I felt like this morning. There are days when you know you can defeat the most complicated and fiddliest stitch, and days when you do well to thread a needle.

So this is what I've done:


 The last three sets of chain stitches in the big flower are there, and you can see the seeding. Aside from the "curl" at the bottom of the stem, everything in the flower is filled with seed stitches. Little, tiny, minute seed stitches. Millions of little, tiny, minute seed stitches.

I've decided that my back will only allow me about three hours over the slate frame, so the current plan is to spend Monday and Tuesday mornings with Tudor until it's done. Then I'll do something else in the afternoons and evenings (maybe even some housework). I think that will result in a finish by the end of the year. Hopefully sooner, but I am finally beginning to realize that everything I stitch takes at least five times as much time as I estimated.

So maybe I will need to live to 1385 to get it all done.


Sunday, August 22, 2021

Sampler Sunday

When I was sorting out the projects by my chair, there were two samplers in the stack, and both of them have been in progress for years . . . maybe decades. I was afraid to look at the copyright dates. 

You may have noticed that I can get distracted easily, and for some reason, I can be distracted from big projects more easily than smaller ones. But, I think I can manage to work on a sampler one day a week.

The alliteration appealed to me, so Sampler Sunday it is.

Thus far this afternoon, I managed to get the stems and leaves on part of Rebecah French stitched.



I think I'm going to work on the flowers and buds after supper tonight. This is all surface work rather than counted, so I'm still dealing with a sharp needle and the potential for leaving DNA in the project. The box of Band-Aids is by the chair, just in case.

The plan for tomorrow and Tuesday is to work on the Tudor class motifs, then I'll decide how much of a schedule I want to set up for the rest of the week.

As any plans I've ever tried last about two weeks, we'll see how long this works out.


 

Saturday, August 21, 2021

A few stitches

I did get a few stitches in during a very busy day:

There was the farmers' market this morning, then my online Tudor embroidery class midday, then I went to help set up for the dinner after class for Jackie and the students from the Ode to Jane Austen class she taught today.

The dinner was lovely, and I got to spend some time with people I've met at Salty Yarns, but never had a chance to really sit down with. Finally being able to hang out with other stitchers is wonderful, even though we're being careful.

I'm so ready for life to get to normal again. I just wish the hold-outs would get vaccinated and continue to mask so we can.


 

Friday, August 20, 2021

Back in the Saddle Again

I took a day off from stitching so I could figure out what I really wanted to work on, and it helped. What I figured out is that I want to continue working on all the stuff by my chair, but I want to change the emphasis a little until I see some headway. I even worked out something of a schedule for my week when I don't have other commitments.

So of course, next week, I have several commitments.

Anyway, I'm going to try it out for a bit and see if it works.

And I have stitched just a wee bit this afternoon:


This will become the scissors sheath that goes with the Stitcher's Envelope.

I did have inspiration to thread up my needle again. Jackie du Plessis is in town to teach Ode to my sampler guild, and I went to help set up the room for the class. I've missed going to sampler guild so much, and it was so good to see people from that group again, and I came home ready to go--which, of course meant that I had phone calls from The Saint and the Big Kid's Wife and Baby Girl.

But, hey, I stitched between conversations and will stitch again tonight! That's a win.

Wednesday, August 18, 2021

Stick a fork in me

 I'm done.

I realized I should have used two different colors in my needle for the leaves I stitched yesterday--I missed it in the video (which is why I really need written directions as well as pictures, moving or otherwise). I am absolutely not going to take it out, but it removed all my motivation to continue working on this project today.

So then I decided to stitch my name on the flap of the Stitcher's Envelope.

And I misspelled my maiden name as I was stitching. I transposed two letters because I was watching Lord of the Rings while stitching instead of paying attention to my chart. That will have to come out.

So I think I'll go straighten up my corner and decide if I should take up another pastime.

P.S. I decided I had to fix my name, so I ripped and restitched. Then I wondered why it looked so skimpy compared to the alphabet on the back panel.

Well, duh. I was supposed to stitch it with two strands rather than one.

I am not going to re-restitch.

PPS. When I pulled out all the stuff around my corner, I found I have four projects ready to assemble, and three more that only need a little more work to be ready to put together.

I am now going to bed. The thought of all that assembling has worn me out. And tomorrow is another day--which hopefully, will be better for my stitching.



Tuesday, August 17, 2021

Little leaves

 I've spent the entire afternoon stitching tiny green leaves.

Just three of them.


In my defense, they are worked with filament silk and solidly stitched, so each one took awhile. It didn't help that I must have stabbed myself with the sharp needle forty-leven times. However, there was no DNA left on the fabric or the embroidery, so I'm counting that as a win.

However, tonight I am going to work on something that has a blunt point. Dearly Beloved will be happy with that, since every time I stick myself, I jump and use inappropriate language (although when you stick yourself with a sharp implement, I think it's highly appropriate to express your displeasure). Apparently I startle him when I do this.

So tonight, I'll work on something else.

Or let my sore fingers have a chance to rest.


Sunday, August 15, 2021

A marigold

The outlining for the marigold is done.

When I was transferring the pattern, I had a problem with my pen that I've never had on any other fabric. The ink blotched and ran a little. I think it may be the ribbed silk fabric that caused it, but the stitching didn't cover everything.

So, I am going to do something that I've never done before. I'm going to get my white gel pen and very carefully mark over the blotches to see if I can cover them.

I'm very glad this is a learning piece since I have done some things on this I've never done before and hope to never do again!

Reading over this, it occurs to me that I have used the word "never" quite a few times. Wonder what that means . . . 

 

Saturday, August 14, 2021

Another motif

 I started on the next-to-last motif in the Tudor class I'm taking.



So far, I've outlined all the greenery but I still have to outline the marigolds. This motif is based on one from the Bacton altar cloth, which was probably embroidered at some point during Elizabeth I's reign.

I have not finished the gold work rose. Because this class is taught primarily on videos, which will be available for only a limited time, I've decided to do enough on each motif so that I would know how to complete it, then move on to the next. That way, I think I'll be able to get the whole project completed even if the videos aren't accessible.

And, since I have the attention span of a gnat, I need to be able to zip from one project to another. I haven't done as much of that as usual, and it's starting to tell.

Thursday, August 12, 2021

A little break

 My back and I needed to take a break from leaning over the slate frame, so I took a day off from the Tudor class.

So I decided to restitch the border from Gardenesque that I had to rip out, and then I completed the outline.  Today, I wound a vine around part of it.


I also cleaned away as much of the white paint on the gold work motif on the Tudor project as I could.


At the moment, I believe I'm going to move on to the next motif. I know what to do with this one, but I still have two motifs to stitch and only a couple of weeks left in the course. If I'm going to finish the class,  I need to get a move on.

But after this, no more deadlines!

Tuesday, August 10, 2021

And this is where I was when my back said enough!

 

I am inclined to take the veins on that lower leaf out and redo them, but I think I'm going to sleep on it and look at it again tomorrow.

Actually, I think I got a lot done considering that I work up about every two hours last night. This does not make for the most competent stitcher. This makes for a drowsy stitcher who probably should have taken a nap this afternoon. 

Monday, August 9, 2021

a little more progress

 I've made a little more progress on the gold work motif from the Tudor class.



I had planned to be past this point yesterday, but my frame stand had issues. It's had issues before--the knob on the top of the screw that holds one of the arms came off.

This happened with this frame before. I emailed the person who sold them, and she sent me a replacement. She also said not to screw the screw in tightly.

Now please explain to me how you can work with a frame when the arms are not stable? Anyway, everything has worked fine until yesterday, when the second knob came off. The seller has retired, so replacements are not available.

Dearly Beloved to the rescue. He rummaged around in his stash and located a nut that would screw on the bolt that holds the arm of the frame AND hold the arm stable. But, by the time he found one and puttered around with the frame, I was out of the mood.

So today I finished the section of stitching I wanted to do and started removing some of the excess water color that I had to use to mark the pattern on the velvet. Right now, I'm waiting for the velvet to dry to go any further. I think I am going to need to go back over it to get the rest of the paint removed, so I may not be able to stitch much on this section for another day or so, at least until everything dries.

I think I might go ahead and work on the next motif--or go back to Elizabeth's portrait--or work on the Queen stitch needle case--or put a few stitches in either Rebecah French or Hannah Thornbush--or replace the stitches I ripped out in Gardenesque.

Or start something completely different.

Saturday, August 7, 2021

More gold

 Today's task in the Tudor class was to finish couching the gold thread in the places the gold thread needed to be couched.

Not only has it been couched, the tails of the gold thread have been plunged to the back of the work and  were sewn to the back.  I am relieved to have that done. It is a pain to get those thick threads through the velvet and the closely woven muslin backing it. I was muttering under my breath quite a bit during the process.

But here it is as of today:


I have no idea why the gold looks white, other than the light when I took this photo was reflecting, or looked especially bright against the black velvet.

On to the next step . . . 

Friday, August 6, 2021

More Tudoring

I decided I really need to get back to my online Tudor class, so I started couching gold thread to the gold work flower.

I'm a little concerned about dealing with the watercolor when the gold is all applied, but I haven't gotten to that point yet. I've decided not to think about it. I imagine it's going to take some time before I have to think about it, so I'm just going to avoid thinking about it.

Until the middle of the night, when I wake up and think about it.


 

Thursday, August 5, 2021

A little progress is better than none

 And a little progress is all I've made.

She has her pearl headdress, and the overstitching for her ruff is started, and that is all she's getting today.

I had to go to the dentist midday.

I now have a headache.

I don't fear the dentist. I don't enjoy going to see the dentist, but I don't fear the dentist. However, his hygienist does such a thorough job, I always feel as if every tooth in my head has been pulled out, scrubbed and polished, and stuck back in. And by the time she's through, I inevitably have a pounding headache.

So, rather than continue and create a problem, I believe I will watch another episode of the Great British Baking Show and relax.

Wednesday, August 4, 2021

Such a good mail day!

 I didn't think that I'd have any stitching news to report today, since I'm doing some product testing for my former employer.

And then the mail came!

Betsy Morgan's Willing Hands 2, published by Inspirations, hit the mailbox today.

Baby Girl and I went through the photos of the projects as soon as they were released, and we have ordered a bunch of kits from Inspirations.  With the worldwide shortage of materials, we know it's going to be some time before they arrive, but here are the ones I plan to stitch:


One of my very favorite designs from Betsy: Holbein Hexagon Etui--It's blue and uses double running, which, despite all of my wailing and moaning and gnashing of teeth when I have to do it, is one of my favorite stitches. 


Cardinal Pocket--Cardinals are my favorite birds so I have to do this one.


Betsy designed the Virgin Queen's Stitching Pocket as a companion for her Virgin Queen Etui. I've stitched it, Baby Girl has the kit from the previous book--we both had to have this one.


I already had the kit for the Tasmanian Needle Tidy, since it was going to be the last class I took from Betsy at Salty Yarns in 2020. We all know what happened to 2020, but it makes me happy to see the design featured in the book.

I ordered a couple of other kits for Baby Girl, the Goose box shown on the front and the Gathering for Winter Etui--so between us, we'll have lots of Betsy's projects to stitch for a little longer.

I need at least another 24 hours in the day.

And no more temptation for the next few months until my stitching budget recovers.






Tuesday, August 3, 2021

Progress Report

 Well, she's not finished yet, but she has acquired quite a disapproving look:

The next step is to outline the entire thing, black outline over the black tent stitch, followed by attaching seed beads, followed by couching an outline over the ruff, followed by more beads, followed by finish-finishing. At this point, my eyes and hands have yelled, "Enough!" and I should listen. 

I believe the evening stitching will involve something worked on 28 count linen with no counting. In other words, I'm back to Queen stitch on the bright yellow needle case.

But now, the dishwasher should be unloaded, and we should really decide what form tonight's chicken breast will take. The last few days, we've acted like we were in college again--hamburgers, tacos, and pizza--and it's time to get back to balanced meals, for at least one night.

Especially since my arthritic joints have been reminding me that I'm not of college age any longer.

Monday, August 2, 2021

Life gets in the way

 I truly thought I would have this teeny portrait finished and finish-finished by today, but life got in the way.

I had a meeting this morning, and a doctor's appointment this afternoon, and things I had to do at home yesterday. And all those things kept me from stitching.

But I have accomplished this much:

It's teeny. That's a size 28 needle above her, if you want a way to determine the size. However, it is tent over one on 40 count linen, so there are a lot of stitches in that small space.

Hopefully tomorrow will see her all done--unless, of course, life gets in the way again.

Saturday, July 31, 2021

Lovely Mail Day

 It was quite a lovely mail day.

The most recent project in the Queen's Attire series from Amy Mitten arrived. It is quite likely I will start working on this as soon as I hit publish.


And I treated myself to a needle minder from Rachael Kinnison, who also creates the beautiful annual Christmas ornaments. You can find information on both at her website: https://ladysrepositorymuseum.blogspot.com

And why am I not continuing with the border for the piece of Gardenesque,  you ask?

This is where it currently stands:


You will notice that it is missing all the border stitches I showed you yesterday. That is because I spent yesterday evening removing them, and that is because I counted incorrectly at the very beginning, which threw the border off by two stitches. You'd wouldn't think two threads could possibly make that much difference. It did. So it had to come out.

When I told Baby Girl that I was taking out backstitches worked over one thread on 36 count linen, she said she recommended burning the piece to ashes.

While tempted, this is a kit and I don't have any extra linen to replace it, so it had to be ripped.

And that is why I'm probably going to start something new tonight.