Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Jan 23/13

On my most recent vacation, I had a few long flights between home and Reno. I usually use this time to sleep and to mull things over in my life. This time I was struck by an idea for a cross stitch pattern that would represent the healing journey I have been on for the past few years. The key words "tree of life" in Google images came up with this beautiful image from this website:
I pulled this image up on my laptop and sat with my fabric, needle and thread to first do a quick out line in back stitches before filling in the tree with cross, half and quarter stitches. Then, I stitched hearts in different colours to represent the different phases of my life as I moved from someone who was so deeply marked by pain to someone who is joyful and positive. The end result, well almost end result as I not convinced that it is quite finished yet, is this little piece:
The picture is rather dark despite my attempts to adjust the settings on my camera, but you get the gist of what I was stitching. Any thoughts or suggestions are greatly welcomed.

Wednesday, January 02, 2013

Jan 2/13

Happy New Year!
So far this holiday season has been stellar in that I finally have managed to be relatively migraine-free and feel like a human being.

There has been some stitching going on. Unfortunately, I must have deleted the photo off my camera that I had of the piece. This piece is massive and has taken me forever to get anywhere with it in between finishing my brother's wedding piece and making Christmas ornaments.

This morning I am trying to find the nerve to go ice skating in these-17C temps. Brrrrr!

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Dec 23/12

Okay, the gifts are wrapped and some of them will be delivered this afternoon. All of my Christmas stitching is done, mailed, given out at work or in some of the gift bags at my feet. My poor little ort jar overflowed with all of the stitching and finishing so I emptied it but not before taking a photo. I don't know why I want to keep a record of my ort jars but I do so here is its most recent photo!
Stuffed tighter than a drum! Of course, I have immediately started to fill it again as I switch back to non-Christmas projects and look forward to new projects in 2013.

Merry Christmas, Happy New Year and Happy Stitching!

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Dec 19/12

The last of the 2012 ornaments! I am not sure what I did with the pattern but they are stitched on Irish Linen 28 count and done with the ever present mystery threads.

The snow is falling quickly today, making things feel more wintry and Christmas-like here. My outside tree ornaments are looking extra festive today. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to everyone!

Saturday, December 01, 2012

Dec 2/12

I was just about to start wrapping and addressing the ornaments made for my friends who live away when I realized that photos had not been taken of my recent handiwork. Eighteen ornaments have ended up finished and hanging on my privacy screen.

There are a few that have been in my stitched-but-not finished bag for a couple of years now. Others had the final stitches put into them a few weeks ago. I am surprised at how many I did have to finish when all was said and done because my usual summer start was greatly delayed by needing to stitch the wedding gift done for my brother's wedding.
Some have been stitched before but I enjoyed stitching them so much the first time that I did the patterns again. My kitchen table then turned into a finishing table as glue, batting, clothespins, scissors, felt and ribbon scattered across the table to come together as finished ornaments. Fortunately the cats who live with me now have no interest in craft supplies so I was able to leave every thing out on the table. There was one cat in the past who would have destroyed every thing she could get her paws on. She is the reason I own so many plastic tubs and containers to contain my craft supplies.

Now to finish wrapping the parcels for the mail and sorting out which co-worker gets which ornament. Then, I will consider making some order out of the craft supply chaos which I am also considering making worse as I have a handy coupon from Michaels for double Air Mile points.

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Sept 30/12

The wedding present for my brother and his wife has finally been picked up from the framing shop and given to them! They were married August 11/12 so I figure that I have done well to get it to them in the same year as it was unusually too hot to stitch this summer which threw off my expected finish date of mid-July. I was overwhelmed when the shop clerk unwrapped the piece for my approval before I paid. Having only a small sample piece of the frame and matte makes it hard to really see what the piece will look like when it is framed but the long and agonizing session of choosing the mattes and frame were well worth it.

The happy couple

 Close up view.
 Wreath of Roses
While that piece was away at the framer, I focused on stitching up some ornaments for the upcoming Christmas season.

 Peace on Earth
Debbie Booth of My Big Toe Designs
Just Cross Stitch July /Aug 2011
I have included the original picture so that you can see how I modified it because I made a fabric cutting boo-boo.

 Frosty Kiss
Patti Connor of SamSarah Design Studio
Just CrossStitch July/Aug 2011
I love the Frosty series of ornaments that have come out over the years and have stitched most them at least once. Instead of using the suggested threads for the random snowflakes, I used one of my DMC Pearlescent Effects E3747. They do not show well in the photos, but the stitches do catch the light.

 Santa in a Box
Susan Myers of Acorn House Designs
Just CrossStitch Nov/Dec 2010
Flipping through my pile of magazines looking for possible ornament designs, I came across these panels for the Santa in a Box. The snowman is outlined with a smyrna stitch and the tree is outlined with a rice stitch. The rice stitch was a new one to me!

In other news, there is a loaf of apple bread baking up in my breadmaker and I am about to fry up a mess of tomatoes and peppers from both my garden and the garden of my best friend to put on a pasta. The apples came from a wild growing apple tree down the road from me as I was too late to get the apples from my own trees. Now, what to do with all the carrots I harvested today?

Friday, September 21, 2012

Sept 21/12

The other day I drove 1.5 hours to the closest cross stitch shop to me with the intention of buying some fabric for stitching Christmas ornaments. Really all I wanted was a metre of a certain type of Lugana, but unfortunately they do not have a website and I did not want to do the purchase by email so I drove there. I also had the intention of going up to the commercial area of the city and buying a pair of running shoes as mine are starting to protest.

Funny how I ran out of money at the cross stitch store. Lookee! Lots of fabric stash:

I could not get a good photo of this particular piece but the colours were so lovely that I could not resist and another woman in the shop came over to tell me that she just loved the piece I had in my to-purchase pile.

Now to save up for my new running shoes......