Monday, July 30, 2007

Weekend Stitching Progress

So far the new rotation plan is coming along great. Friday was my free night, so I decided to get a jump on Alhambra Garden and worked on that both Friday night and on Saturday. I was able to finish filling in all the browns and greens, and now I think I have a clear direction where I'm going next with the piece (up to the left diagonal corner, I think).
I have to say I did not really enjoy stitching on Angel of Summer so much, but knowing I only had to work on it one day helped me buckle down and get some good progress in. I put off working on more of the greenery this time and did the browns that will become the bow under her wings. Will probably finish that next time and maybe do some more (blech!) greenery.
Since the next Mira RR piece still has not arrived (expecting it any day now), I will work on my Hardanger runner tonight, which is done in pinks and white. A nice break from all the brown and yellow tones I've been working on in these two pieces.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Inspiration - Rosewood Manor

After working so long on getting those blankets finished and then stitching for a month solid on the Mermaid to finish her in time for the fair, it felt really good to start something new.

Did I pick one of the pieces that have been on my to-do list for ages and ages. Oh, of course not - I had to start the fabulous piece I just bought on our get-together this past Saturday! What fun to work on.

I see that my digital camera has some sort of weird smudges on the lens or something, but I'm too lazy to retake the pic. I think this is still a pretty decent picture, you can see the detail pretty well. The linen is 32ct Moonglow Belfast and the design is all done in DMC - which I love. No extra expensive fibers to buy, which sometimes puts me off of large and lovely samplers. The linen is really soft and nice to work on too, and supposedly although it has a hand-dyed look, it is actually colorfast, meaning I can wash it when I'm done. Since this piece has a lot of thread changes, I'll likely not put it in my Q-snaps and up on my lapstand. I'll probably just keep moving around my little 6in. metal hoop, which means I'll want to wash and press it when I'm done!

It is all whole stitches and backstitches - no beads, no partial stitches, no specialty stitches. Don't get me wrong, I like all those things, but it is nice to have a piece that doesn't have all those things thrown in the mix of my rotation too! And with all the stopping and starting it is still challenging enough and still beautiful enough to hold my attention. Perfection!

Speaking of my rotation, with the major hurdles out of the way, I've decided to try something completely new with my rotation. Well, new to me - I know there are several other stitchers who already use this method, so I cannot really claim credit for coming up with it or anything. Since I have 6 large projects, I'm going to try to rotate nightly, with a "free" night on the 7th night of the week. I will put the projects I want to finish first on Sat. and Sun. since I get the most stitching time on the weekend. The problem I see that might come up with this method is that I might not see enough progress before having to move on in the rotation since on weeknights I often only get an hour of stitching time and if we have a busy weekend, Sat or Sun. might not be any better. I'm going to give it a go though, and if I find I'm getting frustrated not making enough progress I might do a week on this rotation and then a week on a "focus piece". We'll have to see. I'll suspend the rotation for any Round Robins that come in the mail as I am completely hopeless in that area - have to start it as soon as I open the package! So for now here is the new rotation:

Saturday: Alhambra Garden
Sunday: Angel of Summer
Monday: Hardanger table runner
Tuesday: Silkwood Manor
Wednesday: Mother's Tree
Thursday: Inspiration
Friday: "free" day

Monday, July 23, 2007

A Sweetheart Tree RR Happy Dance

This is Marjean's piece. I think the colors she picked are just gorgeous! I stitched portions of "Celtic Cross", "Windsor Rose", and a band sampler I cannot remember the name of just now. I think the whole piece looks just fantastic! Just one more section to stitch for this Round Robin and I'll be done with it.
So now that my mermaid is done and my RRs are caught up - tonight I get to start a new piece! Woo Hoo - I'm going to dive right into Rosewood Manor. Watch this space for a progress photo in a few days/week.

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Fair Judging and a Get-Together!

The Fair judging on Friday was a lot of fun like it always is. I really enjoy seeing what everyone else enters and the people watching is a lot of fun too. Maybe I'm just weird, but I find it mildly entertaining to watch some of the people who take the whole competition thing way too seriously. For example, one woman who I've seen there every year I've gone plopped herself next to me and began to comment on everyone else's piece and whether she agreed or disagreed with the judges about everything. Thing she announced to me that she had been coming 14 years and had over 100 ribbons. Wish I'd had a cookie for her. ;) Every year this same woman gets upset over some piece of hers that doesn't place (even though she usually has 5 or 6 that do) and says in a huff she isn't entering next year, yet she always does.... Like I said, she is entertaining though. Best of show went to a fabulous Brazillion needlwork piece, very well done and a great piece - well deserved.

Waiting for Ships did win the blue ribbon in her size category, so I was thrilled with that. I also entered Cottage Garden Fairy which did not place. However after the judge announced the winners she held her up and went on for about 10 min. about how the workmanship was excellent and there was technically nothing wrong with it, but something was just off somehow, she couldn't explain what and that is why she didn't place it. I was fine with the decision as the pieces that did place were all wonderful and deserved to win ribbons, but I wanted to hide under my chair when she was talking about my piece and how it was "wrong". I think it might have been the green fabric, which goes really well in my bedroom with soft blue walls that sort of soften the fabric color, but I can see where it is a bit more jarring out of that context. I also entered the Baby Afghan that is shown in the pics in one of the posts below, but didn't really expect it to place because of the simplicity of the design and I was right.

On Saturday, I went to my first-ever get-together! It was so much fun. I met up with Melissa (MissyCor), Susan (SusaninIndiana), and Kelly (marrissasmom). Susan has a great recap on her blog, so I won't repeat all that she said, but I also returned home very tired, but thrilled to have had the chance to meet these great ladies. Hoping we get a chance to do it again real soon.

I got some nice stash too, most notable Rosewood Manor's Inspiration. I also purchased the special hand-dyed fabric for it - so now I'm committed to starting it! :) I have finished quite a few things lately, so I think I can allow myself this new start. I've also been meaning to start Mirabilia's Stone Roses for ages, so I may just start them both in the next month or so.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Waiting for Ships Happy Dance!

I finished the beading at 9:30pm, the framing at 11:30p and turned into the fair for entry today at 12:30p (on my lunch hour). I just managed to finish her. I'm not totally happy with the frame she is in, but since there was no time for a professional framing job, I had to find a ready-made frame to put her in and this was the best I could do in this size (10 x 16). I actually ended up taking apart a framed print that I bought in this frame and using that as the frame. Even though I wasn't really interested in the print, the $20 I paid for this was way cheaper than a professional framing job. I might have to change out the frame someday though - I really wanted a dark frame to match her hair - we'll see.
So the fair judging is on Friday and Saturday I'm going to my first ever get-together! I'm really looking forward to both - I need some stitching boost now since stitching only on that mermaid for so long sort of sucked out my stitching mojo. Those two things will be just what I need to get it back!

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Baby Afghan Pics

Finally got pics taken of the finished baby afghan! Here it is. :) The pics aren't as high quality as I'd like cause the camera is set on the medium quality setting rather than the high quality setting and I haven't taken the time to go through the menu and change that yet - but you get the idea.

Monday, July 02, 2007

More WfS

Another scanned image as I'm meeting with resistance from DH on buying the new camera. I may end up buying a used one on ebay cause I really hate being without one, and I can get the same camera that I had for about $30 with shipping. (It was not a high end model and a few years out of date, so...)

Anyway, here is my progress on Waiting for Ships. I am trying to finish it in time for the fair - have to drop off entries on July 19 and I'm starting to worry I won't have time to finish and frame her. I am already planning on framing her myself, so time at the framers isn't really an issue. I'm going to keep plugging though, even if I don't make the fair at least I'll have a happy dance sometime in the near future.

Is it bad that having some extra stitching time in on this factored heavily into my decision to take tomorrow off from work?