Wednesday, 30 July 2014

July Smalls

I forgot all about posting my smalls stitch for this month! I just happened to pass by my calendar a few minutes ago and wondered what I had marked on today's date. Had I missed an appointment? No, but I missed posting my smalls finish. Just enough time left in the day to get it up here!

I stitched two smalls during this past month. Liberty Dwells Here... by Sub Rosa Designs can be seen here for those who haven't already seen this finish. Of course this was in honour of Canada Day and will hopefully grace my decor next year.

The second small was just finished last week and is called Summer Pinkeep by Jenny Hoffman of Country Rustic Primitives.

This one will indeed become a pinkeep as it has been named just as soon as I catch up. I'm just starting to get back to my sewing following my hip surgery. It's not using the machine that bothered me but instead the standing while I cut and pieced material together.
I have a lot of catching up to do judging by the number of finished pieces residing in my drawer!
I did however manage to get two pieces done up which I stitched a number of years ago. These are going to be given as gifts. The first as a birthday gift and the second as a thank you gift.

Both of these pillows are stuffed with walnut shavings, crushed walnut shells and some dried lavender. They smell heavenly!

I really do enjoy stitching these small finishes and now I'm on the hunt for next month's projects.

Friday, 25 July 2014

July Stitching From Stash

Summer continues to fly by at a very rapid pace. Ever notice how long it takes for winter to be overwith compared to summer, lol?
Until last week we hadn't had too many very hot and humid days so I have been spending lots of my free time stitching in my gazebo.

Two finishes to show for this past month. The first is in honour of Canada Day and is one of my purchases for this month. Some of you may have seen this on my last post as it was my Smalls SAL commitment for June. It's a lovely e-pattern by Sub Rosa which I altered by adding a Canadian flag and the button. The e-pattern deducted $7 from this month's budget. My excuse? There are very few patterns out there for Canadian patriotic stitches!

My second finish is the one I have been working at through most of June. I loved every minute of this one and almost hated putting it down!
This is Heartstring Samplery The Strawberry Bower Sampler from The Strawberry Collection leaflet.

Besides these two I have been working on this month's Smalls SAL pattern. It's also an e-pattern which I had in my stash. I'm hoping this will be complete in time for next Wednesday's post!

Unfortunately I don't have a pic of my second start yet since there isn't enough to show you yet. I started on Carriage House Samplings Pumpkin Farm which I am stitching for a friend. This one has been in my stash for some time now so I'm glad to be finally bringing it to life.

As for my spending this month, the grand total was the $7 mentioned above! I did order my fabric from Picture This Plus today at their Christmas in July sale but if you remember I'm using the money my Mom gifted me with following my surgery. So I behaved rather well this month I think! Sort of..... I did purchase some antiques during a local antique fest to use for stitching finishes. I know these don't count but they are stitching related! You'll just have to wait and see how I end up using these beauties. 

As for next month it's hard to tell. I've already seen some lovely new releases out there. Help!!

Saturday, 12 July 2014

July Supermoon WIPocalypse

I'm sure you've heard by now that tonight's full moon is known as a supermoon. It's the first of 3 that occur this summer. The moon hasn't taken on any extraordinary powers to merit this name. What does take place is that the moon is closer to Earth in its elliptical orbit and so it will appear larger than usual. That said, it has no bearing on our stitching so let's forge ahead and get down to business!

Since last month's post I have had one finish and two new starts. I'm sure you know which one is my finish since I was so close to the end of my stitching at June's WIPocalypse. Some of you will have already seen this in last month's Stitching From Stash post. Here is Primitive Betty Live, Laugh, Love.

Once I'd finished the stitching on this I tried my hand at dyeing the fabric with walnut crystals. I followed the recipe included with the pattern which call for walnut crystals, cinnamon, cloves and vanilla. I used a sponge brush to apply the mixture and dried it in the oven at a low temp. It turned out not too badly for my first attempt although it is much darker than appears in this photo. It doesn't smell too badly either! 

Following this finish I dug through my stash and looked at my list of projects that I had listed to complete for this year's WIPocalypse. Heartstring Samplery's The Strawberry Collection jumped out at me as we were just starting to see our sweet local strawberries appearing on roadside stands. I chose to stitch the Strawberry Bower Sampler from this collection. Here are some progress photos.

I'm using Picture This Plus Mello as my fabric for this and I love how the sampler looks on the fabric. Those plump little berries are such pretty colours too! I have to say that I have been enjoying this one so much that I haven't concentrated on much else until this week. 
With Canada Day having just been celebrated I pulled out this sweet little design which will be perfect to add to my patriotic decor next year.
This is by Sub Rosa Designs and is called Where Liberty Dwells...
It is also being stitched on a Picture This Plus fabric however in this case I'm using Sand.

I'm going to be altering the original design a bit for this one and replacing the charted initials. You'll have to wait until later to see what I've decided on.

That's about it for stitching this month. I've been quite busy now that I'm becoming more mobile. Lots of physio appts. for sure. I can't believe how tired I am afterwards! I'm also taking the time to reread Diana Gabaldon's Outlander which is premiering in August as a weekly series on Showcase here in Canada. It is highly anticipated by a large fan following and it has been way too many years since I first read this so I wanted to familiarize myself once more with the story and its characters. 

I also received an email this past week detailing some of the panels which have been received for the Torah Stitch By Stitch which I participated in. Here is the link to the photos. Mine is #31 in the list. Some panels have been stitched with borders and others have chosen not to embellish. It's obvious that there are a lot of fabulous stitchers out there who volunteered their time and talent.

That's it for this month. I hope you are all enjoying your summer or winter if you happen to be on the other side of the globe!   

Friday, 4 July 2014

Happy Independance Day!

Happy 4th of July to all my family and friends in the U.S.! Growing up in Windsor, ON on the border of Detroit, MI we shared our country's celebration together during Freedom Festival. The tradition continues to this day. However you celebrate, I hope it's a great one!

Tuesday, 1 July 2014

147 Years Old

Happy Birthday Canada!

May all my family and friends enjoy a very Happy Canada Day! We are so blessed to live in this wonderful country so celebrate!

Wednesday, 25 June 2014

June Smalls SAL

As promised, here's a pic of my smalls finish for this month. It is a freebie from Lori Brechlin of NotForgotten Farm and is just perfect to ring in summer.

I'm not able to use my sewing machine yet since my surgery but I originally thought I would finish this as a pincushion. However I have since had a second thought that might work out and would not require any sewing. If I go ahead with this idea I'll post a picture of the finish.

Speaking of summer, my favourite winged visitors have returned to our neighbourhood. That's right, the Cedar Waxwings are back and are busy removing all of the berries from my neighbour's tree. We have a perfect vantage point for taking pictures from our yard and I love watching the little thieves (they do look like that, don't they?) as they clean off the branches.

What is your problem? Are you watching me?
It's promising to be a beautiful summer week's end here and I hope that you all get in a little time with the needle soon!

Tuesday, 24 June 2014

June's Stitching From Stash

June just seems to be flying by! I figured that the month would drag since I can't get out my during my hip recuperation. Today is definitely one of those days due to non-stop rain which has curtailed even my walks. However for the most part the days are passing by quickly. 
I've spent the majority of my stitching time between two projects. One is now complete and the second one is my new start which is replacing it. My finish for this month is Primitive Betty's Live, Laugh, Love. 

I decided to try dyeing my own fabric once I'd finished the stitching. I used Primitive Betty's recipe using walnut crystals, vanilla, cloves and cinnamon. I painted the stain on using a foam brush and then dried the fabric in the oven. I'm pretty pleased with the results. It turned out much darker than it appears in the picture and I would have liked it a tad lighter but overall I achieved the effect that I wanted. I feel much more comfortable in trying this again.

Having finished this I dug through my stash looking for something summery to stitch. Strawberry season often signals the start of summer in this region especially this year with all the delayed growth. I knew that I had several charts which involved strawberries and here is what I finally decided upon.

This is Heartstring Samplery Strawberry Bower Sampler from The Strawberry Collection leaflet. If you follow the link it is the sampler at the bottom of the collection. I'm stitching it on some Picture This Plus Mello which I had in my stash. I also had all the required floss with the exception of one and for that I have made a substitution. This is such a fun stitch and I wish it was hanging on my wall already!

I completed a third small project for my Smalls SAL which I will post tomorrow with a pic.

I finally broke down and used the  $25 123 Gift Certificate which my youngest son gave me for my birthday. I ended up paying out of pocket for some of the shipping which fortunately doesn't count towards this month's purchases. The charts arrived last week and it's a good thing I'd already started the Strawberry Bower piece or I might have gone straight to work on Stacy Nash Miss Baxter's House (top left). Thanks Chris for such a great gift!

Unfortunately my clicky finger didn't stop. In fact, ordering these charts only served to make me want more and I ended up ordering a few more additions.

These are Stacy Nash Three Sisters Pinkeep and Heartstring Samplery Land of Liberty. I am the eldest of three sisters so I just knew I had to stitch that particular one. The total of these two still keeps me under my June commitment. The two charts were $12 and $10 so $22 spent from my $25 allowance. However in a moment of weakness I also ordered Plum Street Samplers The Pink House Sampler and the necessary floss I required. That moment of weakness only came about after Mel announced that we had an extra $50 bonus to spend this month. The total for this item came to $31.54. Subtract the remaining $3 left in June's budget and you will see that I spent $28.54 out of the allotted $50 bonus. Hopefully I'll be able to control that clicky finger next month!

Since I am recuperating from my hip replacement, my mother wanted to send me a gift. She lives 900 km away and is unable to visit me. At first she thought of flowers but after hearing that I had already received 3 arrangements she decided to gift me with some money to use towards a purchase of my choice. We talked and it was decided that I would use her money to purchase some fabric for my stash. Over the years my tastes have changed and I am using a lot of neutral colours now for all the samplers and primitive pieces I'm stitching. My own stash is dwindling when it comes to neutral colours. Her gift has only just arrived and I will be saving it for my favourite fabric sale which is coming up later in July. Thanks Mom!

During the first couple of weeks of my recuperation I spent many hours in my recliner stitching. It's just about the only chair in the house that is the right height and is comfortable for me. Clarisse often would sit beside the chair and keep me company. Here is where I found her when I went to reach into my stitching bag for some items. I guess she was craving some attention!

This past Thursday I made a trip into Ottawa for a checkup with my surgeon. He's pleased with my progress but I will be using my walker slightly longer than planned on. It seems some of my muscles had started to atrophy before the surgery because I was no longer walking as much. Subsequently it will take a little longer for them to come back up to snuff.
After my appt. I stopped in to visit my youngest son Chris who I knew was heading to Montebello for a rock concert. I get to see Chris often enough but the person I don't get to see as much is my eldest, Jeff, who was accompanying him. Jeff is on the left and Chris on the right.

It was great to catch up with them even if only for a short while. Jeff will be returning our way in late July, bringing his girls with him for a few days. That about covers things for now. Don't forget, I'll be posting my Smalls finish for this month tomorrow. See you then!