Wednesday, July 28, 2010

A Finish and Some Works in Progress

A new blog post, shocking, huh? Always the unexpected around here. The Monkey Sampler
Midsummer Night Designs
28ct Sandcastle Lugana

According to my records I finished Midsummer Night's Monkey Sampler on July 21st.

This has been my take along project for a LOOOONNNNGGGG time. It was pretty much the only project I worked on while I was at my momma's since it's stitched on 28ct and I could see the holes in the fabric even in the poor lighting. That green yard just about did me in but I perservered and now it's finished! It always feels so good to put those last stitches in a project. Then again, it takes me forever to finish a project so a lot of life happens while all that stitching is being done. This project has been to Tennessee twice, once when I went home for my dad's memorial service and the second time most recently when I went to stay a week with my mother when she was released from the rehab center. She has COPD and had to learn how to breathe again, and also to learn how to live with her new best friend, her oxygen tank. This particular project has also seen a lot of time at Panera while I wait on kids to do whatever it is kids find to do at the mall for hours on end.

Liberty Sampler
Hester's Needle
32ct Natural (or maybe Raw) linen

My new take along project can be seen above, Hester's Needle's Liberty Sampler. I really thought I was farther along on this than I am. Let's keep our fingers crossed that there's a lot more quality Panera time in my future.
When I started this piece a few years ago I wasn't quite ready for the satin stitched band so I just did good old cross stitches. I debated frogging this band and stitching it as charted and then my sanity surfaced and I decided I liked the little Xs just fine thank you very much.

Rachael Holmes
Heartstring Samplery
32ct dyed by me linen(more aged actually)
A Potpourri of fiber from the stash

Heartstring Samplery's Rachael Holmes is seeing a lot of stitching time at the moment. This is a fun sampler and I got over myself and just pulled threads from the stash to see what would work with Beth's color palette. It's kind of liberating to pull out the handy dandy DMC color card, a fiber conversion lists and dig through the stash and find what works.

Black'd Skie
The Primitive Needle
40ct Vintage Pear
Pure Palette Silks

This is my progress on Black'd Skie. It's been a bit slow for me but it's due more to having the wrong magnification of readers, I was using 2.00 and that's just way too strong. I had misplaced my 1.50 and those 2.00's gave me a headache every single time I tried to stitch. So I found my 1.50 and now I'm back to happy headache free stitching.
I love the Pure Palette Silks. I am not an expert on silks, I rarely use them, but I really love stitching with these.

Halloween Queen
Notforgotten Farm
28 or 32ct fabric from the stash(it was unlabeled)

A few weeks ago I started a project that's been on my to do list for a year or two. Notforgotten Farm's Halloween Queen. I found a piece of linen in the stash and gave in to the urge and made a good start on the Halloween Queen.

In the Garden
La D Da
36 or 40ct Lambswool(that's a guess)

And another project seeing a lot of needle time, La D Da's In the Garden. This is another project I've had the chart for for ages and decided to see if I had a piece of fabric that would work and dug around in the old fabric drawer until I came upon this piece that I'm pretty sure is 40ct lambswool but it's possible it's 36ct. I did a floss toss and decided this could work. I had thought about using GAST but didn't have all five colors so decided to go with DMC.

Last week I made my first trip to Needle Delights, my LNS, in ages. It felt like coming home. I dropped off three pieces for framing, my Cape Cod Girls(changed to Gulf Coast Girls), Salem Remembered and my 13th Colony Bay. I ended up bringing my 13th Colony Bay home with me for a bath. I had no idea it was so dirty until Tonia put it under the light on the framing table. OMG! I wanted to throw up it was so dirty. I was extra, extra glad I stitched 13th Colony Bay with DMC because washing it was no problem and I was mortified at how dirty it was. I thought I had been careful, kept it tucked away in a baggie in a drawer but I did stitch on it forever and I stitch outside when it's nice. I enjoy stitching outside but this piece was definitely a wake up call that only DMC projects will be worked on while sitting on the porch or in the backyard from now on.

That's all the news from here at the moment. Hope everyone is managing to stay cool this summer because the air down here along the Gulf is a force to be reckoned with.

Sunday, July 04, 2010

Independence Day

Happy Independence Day to all USA readers of the blog! The spousal unit and I took an early morning drive east and found ourselves in the picturesque little hamlet of Seaside, Florida. It's a pretty little seaside town, aptly named. This is their post office and it made my heart sing when I saw it all decked out in it's Fourth of July finery. I don't have a lot of red, white and blue in my home but I do love 1776 and all that jazz. BUT this morning seeing this sweet little post office and all the people representing in their red, white and blue, I almost cried because what I saw in Seaside was what the American experience used to be. They must have had a parade at 8 a.m. We didn't know anything about it and just drove in that direction. It was small town America at it's absolute best. People were smiling, laughing, the bookstore and all the local businesses were open, this was like 8:30 on a Sunday, in the South, and it was pretty cool.
Below you can see a shot of the beach at Seaside. Their shoreline is a bit different than ours. They have the white sands but have left their dunes untouched even with the building of homes and businesses. They have worked hard to leave as much of the natural world untouched as possible and still build a thriving little tourist town around it. While I am not a huge supporter of planned communites because I do believe to each his own Seaside does it quite well, mixing in the planned neighborhood along with funky eateries and art shops. If we ever win the lottery we are moving here. That's about the only way we will ever get there but we love the 30A lifestyle.
A couple of weeks of ago my friend Pam and I went to an estate sale. She scored a stack of art books and on the cover of one titled Artist's Journal there was a painting I loved. The original artwork was by JoSonja in 1997. Since the art magazine was all about learning to copy the art inside the magazine I hope JoSonja doesn't mind that I begged the Spousal Unit to please paint me that painting. Since it's Uncle Sam and Mermaids it seemed quite appropriate. Also he painted it for me, not to sell or anything and the only copyright notice I found was not to mechanically copy or reprint the artwork so I hope his painting doesn't violate any copyrights.

This was the best picture I could get this morning. I think he did a pretty great job!
Last week I went to my momma's to check on her. She had been in a rehab facility learning how to cope with her COPD and when she came home she was a bit overwhelmed so I went home for a week. I had intended to rent a car for the trip because we have kind of old vehicles and it's a long drive. Unfortunately the line at Enterprise Rent-a-car was really long, so we went to lunch. Somehow over club sandwiches and fries we went from renting a car to buying a new one. We pulled into the Kia lot thinking to buy a Sorrento, we love that sock monkey, and then we saw Enik! Six hours later he was coming home with us and then two days later I drove him to Tennessee. I hate how much I love this car.

For your viewing pleasure:
I tried to add the video to my blog but couldn't make it work so a link it is.
Have a happy and safe 4th!