Tuesday, 23 September 2008

A First!

Up until now I've been stitching all these lovely ornaments but have yet to finish them up for displaying. So on Saturday I attempted my first pillow ornie. I used my just finished Stone & Thread Snowflake Mitten for the task. I don't have a sewing machine and don't do a lot of hand sewing so I was a bit nervous but it was a cinch! All I have to do now is practise my blind stitch. I really don't think mine was all that blind. However I was pleased with the results.

I'm afraid I really don't have much to show for the two weeks that have passed. I sort of lost my stitching mojo and it's only just returned. I spent most of my free time reading which has sort of taken a back seat to my stitching lately. Maybe it's all those cool nights we've had recently which have made me want to hunker down with a good book. In any case I've only got a small amount of progress on my Witches Garden and Peace Tree.

I've really got to get back to spending some time on Cirque. I've put Holey Sheet on the back burner for now. I ran into a small snag. Two of the DMC alternates listed on the chart do not exist. It obviously has to be a misprint. I've managed to figure out the one colour and for the other I've ordered the overdyed floss. In the meantime I've found a chart for my October ornie and got it all kitted up. It's a really cute design by Angie Williams from the JCS December 2007 issue and is called Jingle All The Way. With any luck I'll put in my first stitches tonight.

One of my favourite online shops which I use is 1-2-3 Stitch. I'll often enter their monthly draws for a free chart if I'm interested in the particular pattern. So in August I entered the draw and to my surprise my name was one of the 20 lucky winners which was drawn! I received my winning pattern last week. Follow the link to see Plum Pudding Needleart Stitched With Love.
I love it!

One of the main reasons I have less stitching time now is that choir rehearsals have resumed. Last year I only participated in one, choosing to sit out of the other for the year. This year though, I thought I'd give it another go, at least until Christmas so that means I'm out 2 evenings . This definitely cuts into my stitching time but I also find that singing is a release for me and I'm much happier for it.

I just came back from a short break during which I opened my mail and it looks like Holey Sheet is back in business. My threads were among the many pieces in today's mail. Much better than all those ad flyers!

Monday, 8 September 2008

An ornie finished

It's not much but I'm really pleased that I managed to finish it off this week with everything else that was going on. It was a quick stitch and all that remains is to finish it off as a small pillow. I've found some fabric in my stash that will work, now all I have to do is find the time! Easier said than done.

Although it was a short work week following the holiday, it marked the start of the new year for so many things. My boys are all gone and finished school now but the start of the school year marks another round of students for us in the lab. We are affiliated with the local community college and med lab students are placed with us for the third year of their training . They spend the entire school year working alongside us in the clinical setting, applying hands on what they've learned in theory. This year we have a small group of only three.

September marks a return to choir for both DH and myself. I'd bowed out of the community choir last year, only singing in our church choir. This year however I decided to return just until after the Christmas season. After all, I've got pull with the director! I don't fancy commuting in the winter weather for the second session. I think I'm all commuted ( I think I've invented a new word!) out.

The last two weeks around here have had some of the nicest and warmest days of the summer. Too bad I didn't book my holidays during that time. I've enjoyed sitting outside after work and stitching. The days though sure aren't lasting as long. It's already dark now by 8.

I put in some time on my Witches Garden but didn't get very far thanks to a short visit from the frogs. Of all things, I was trying to stitch the frog in the pattern! It's my own fault since I was trying to get things done without the use of my Ott lite which I'd left at home. The quarter stitches were my downfall.

My new start is Peace Tree, which I'm doing on an opalescent jazlyn. The picture doesn't do it justice. It's really quite a pretty colour. I'd hoped to be able to stitch on this one at work, etc. but I'm finding that with all the sparkles in it, it's difficult to see the holes. The fabric tends to be a bit fuzzy which isn't helping.

Following the finish of my ornament I got started on another small project. I get carried away when I see all the fall and Halloween decor hitting the stores. Since autumn is my favourite season, these tend to be some of my favourite stitches. I dug into my stash and pulled out one I've had for awhile. I wanted something fun and this one fits the bill. It's Poppy Kreations Holey Sheet.

The pattern calls for several overdyed floss but when doing something this small I prefer to stick with the DMC. I ran into a stumbling block though. My local shops don't carry 2 of the required colours. Then when I started looking elsewhere I ran into the same problem. I suspect that perhaps these 2 colours are no longer in use. Which means I have to seek out the overdyed after all or find some substitutions.
During my search I discovered a soon-to-be new release from Dinky Dyes called Ghosts and Goblins. I just love this funky cat!

Sunday after church, DH and I headed to one of my favourite haunts which is the local market. Ottawa is famous for its Byward Market but a much smaller version called the Parkdale Market is where we choose to shop. It too is full of local produce and flowers. Right now is one of the best times to go as far as I'm concerned. Loads of tomatoes, peppers, apples, and still some berries too. It won't be long before the pumpkins make an appearance. Since Bob is often in this area he's able to make a pit stop here whenever we need to stock up. Just as we arrived there were trucks unloading beautiful huge pots of mums. I couldn't resist, the colours were incredible and after all they were only $10! I'm back in Ottawa this Thursday so I'm thinking of picking up another one. I'd like to put them in the garden if possible before the frost.
Bob has headed into Ottawa for a meeting this evening so I'm parking myself in my comfy chair to put up my feet and stitch. Have a great week everyone!

Monday, 1 September 2008

No better medicine...

Than stitching all weekend! That's what I was doing this weekend on Lake Ontario at Kathy's lovely home which by the way, has a most spectacular view. The weather couldn't have been more beautiful and I had an awesome time!! I met some incredible ladies and visited with friends such as Rebecca, Beatrice, Christin, Kathy and Dani. A good number of the ladies belong to Ann's Thursday stitchers. I was finally able to meet Ann and visit her incredible shop, Knowledge and Needles. Of course, I couldn't
walk out empty handed, instead carrying one of her lovely green bags with assorted floss, needles and a couple new patterns. The green bags so I'm told, have to be hidden by certain stitchers who frequent Ann's. It seems that some hubbies recognize these particular bags and know exactly where their spouses have been and as a result major damage to their wallets most probably has occured! In any case, Ann's shop is lovely and I hope to pay a repeat visit.
I was also very pleased to meet Beatrice's mother, Adriana, who's stitching I have admired on Beatrice's blog on several occasions.

Below are some pictures from the weekend. I can't take all the credit. Dani used my camera and took the group shot for me.

Ann, Kathy and Nan checking
out Kathy's biscornu given to
her by Dani .

On the right is Nan, Judy, and Barb with Beatrice and Christin in the background.

Angie and I pictured on the left and Ann the right.

The group and one of Rebecca with Lake Ontario in the background.

Numerous other pictures of the weekend can be found on both Dani's and Beatrice's blog within the next few days.

Thank you so much Kathy, I really needed that getaway!

Unfortunately I wasn't able to spend the entire weekend with the gang. With much reluctance I had to take my leave Sunday after lunch and head home where I had a date that evening with one of my best friends, Michelle. She has just finished celebrating her 50th birthday and in honour of the occasion I was taking her to see the play Wicked which BTW is fantastic. However in the brief time spent at Kathy's I did manage to get a fair amount accomplished. I worked primarily on my Witches Garden as well as my mitten ornament for my September ornament.

Cirque made a brief appearance as well as a new start, M designs Peace Tree which I'll have a picture of for my next post.

Now, since the weekend continues with beautiful weather (where was that earlier in the summer?), I'm off to prepare for a boat ride with DH and friends on the St. Lawrence this afternoon.

Happy, sunny stitching everyone! Enjoy what remains of the last holiday weekend of summer. I'll leave you all with this beautiful sunset photo taken on Kathy's deck on Saturday evening.