Friday, 31 May 2013

Switching Over

Like many others in the blog world I have decided to make the switch to BlogLovin.  I have added a button to my sidebar as well so that you can continue following me. So here goes! 

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Wednesday, 29 May 2013

May's Ornament

I started this SAL with great hopes that it would aid me in completing my ornaments. Well, they're definitely getting stitched but the finishing is far from over! Once again this month I've not had the time to complete the final finishing. Oh well, maybe I can have a couple days of nothing but finishing near the end of the year and get them all done up at once.

This month I chose to go back to a Christmas ornament. I chose Threadwork Primitives Be Ye Merry. This particular design is charted with a border around it but for now I've chosen to leave it off. Otherwise the ornament was a lot bigger than I intended it to be. It was stitched on a mystery piece of linen using DMC floss. I'm thinking that perhaps I'll dye the whole thing with some tea or walnut stain.

I noticed that in this picture it looks like there is a flaw or discolouration in the bottom right of the picture just above the y in Merry. However in real life there is nothing. I think it might have had something to do with the camera flash when I took the pic.

I don't have a clue what I'll be stitching next month. Perhaps another Christmas theme. I love seeing what everyone else has done and getting ideas from your finishes. Now I'm off to stitch!

Saturday, 25 May 2013

May WIPocalypse

It may be May but from the temperature outside you'd never know it! Today is the perfect day for stitching.... overcast and cold. With any luck I'll have a few minutes to put needle to thread. 

I concentrated on 3 pieces this month one of which I can't show yet since it's for my ornament SAL.
The other two are both larger pieces and I'm happy to say that I had a finish with one!

Viktor & Irina are complete and aren't they sweet? I adore them and can't wait until I can get this framed and on my walls. I love the whimsy and fun of PSS designs, so much so that I moved from this one back to my PSS Fruit of the Spirit. When I last left this one I had only started the first house and wasn't finished stitched the bricking or roof on it.

Here's where is stands at the end of this month:

I love the colours in this design and as I get along further in it you'll see a lot more. However I didn't realize that there was a fair amount of over one stitching. I picked up on the robin but didn't notice the other birds, the flower and tiny strawberry,the star on the door, or the people in the house window who are stitched over one as well.
Don't you just love that little strawberry? Even stitching over one, PSS designs always make me smile!

I'm so proud of myself for getting these done and done fairly well too! You see, this fabric was marked as 32 ct but I now realize that it is actually 36 ct. This piece will be a little smaller when finished than what I expected. I'm stitching it with Vicky Clayton silks and since there is some confetti stitching, mainly on the bricks, I found that the silks were working their way out even when I'd run the threads through previous stitches. Has anyone else ever had this problem using silks?
Most of this stitching, including Viktor, was all done during the past week. Next I'm going to spend part of the day choosing a new start. I have some new birthday stash which arrived this week including Stacy Nash Summer Sampler (scroll down about halfway through the page),  BBD Agnes Platt's Strawberry Sampler and With Thy Needle & Thread Strawberry Hill Sampler.  I also won on ebay a discontinued pattern by The Goode Huswife called Sampler Farm. I could only find a link to this one through someone who had already stitched it. Then to further complicate the decision, I pulled out Midsummer Night Designs Garden Angels, Birds of a Feather Bitter Flower Sampler and Blackbird Designs Summer House. The latter is another design that it's difficult to find a pic of. 
What's a girl to do? I think I sense a theme here, lol! Do you have a favourite in the bunch?

The sun has just made an appearance so perhaps things will warm up after all!

Edited: I forgot one other choice of new start. It's by Shakespeare's Peddler and is called Weeds Make Haste. This is another favourite I've been debating over so we'll add it to the above list of choices.

Monday, 20 May 2013

A finish..... I think!

I think I finally have a finish on Viktor & Irina. I say think because I'm not sure about the lion's mane. After stitching it I realized that I had counted wrong and it wasn't wide enough. So I added the necessary additions on each side. Although I used the same colour of DMC, there appears to be a variation in the colour. The floss all came from the same skein and I'm not sure if part of it was somewhat faded or what. All I know is that the portion I added on either side of the mane appeared darker. My hubby thinks I'm crazy and says you can't see the difference but I definitely can depending on the light. I'm tempted to tear out the mane and restitch the entire thing which is why I've left off the lion's whiskers for now. What do you think? Should I restitch it or leave it as is? I'm really torn as to what to do. Once I make a decision, then I'll stitch on his whiskers.

Plum Street Samplers Viktor & Irina
stitched on 32 ct LSL Vintage Pearled Barley
using DMC floss

As you can see, I left those little flowers in the original pale peach colour. They are much more visible in real life. I've enjoyed working on this piece so much and I'm really going to miss it!
I have a few new pieces coming to me in the mail that I purchased with birthday money so I'll wait to start anything new until they arrive.

I'm hoping to take in my Shakespeare's Peddler Magic Garden Sampler to have it framed in the next few weeks. I really want to hang this one in my home soon. It's a lovely summer design. 
I'm afraid I really haven't done any other stitching lately. I'm busy cleaning up the yard and house right now. My boys will be coming out next weekend to weed and plant my front garden for me which will be a big help. 

In the meantime I'm spending a lot of my free time reading. It's been too long since I've picked up a book. In the past two weeks I've finished off two Tess Gerritsen novels, The Keepsake and The Bone Garden. Both were excellent. This weekend I picked up Dan Brown's new release Inferno thanks to a gift certificate from my youngest son for Mother's Day. I'm just getting started at it and it's already grabbed me.
I'm stitching away at my May ornament for the SAL now and enjoying being out in the gazebo once more. Clarisse is enjoying it too!

Sunday, 12 May 2013

Mother's Day Greetings

To all the Moms out there..... Enjoy your special day, you deserve it!

Friday, 10 May 2013

Spring TUSAL

It's TUSAL time once more and this month I have a smaller amount than usual. Too many spring activities have cut my stitching time in half. So I only have one little jar of orts instead of my usual two.

There's an assortment of green, black, white and red orts from my current PS Viktor & Irina as well as from my spring ornament I stitched last month. Not a whole lot going on. 
My orts are sitting on a garden ledge next to my latest birdhouse which my DH hung in our tree shortly after this picture was taken.

Instead of stitching, I have been busy cleaning out our gazebo (my preferred stitching spot!) and cleaning up the garden. I'm not able to do a lot of gardening these days due to my need for a hip replacement. My hubby hates gardening so I made an arrangement with my two younger sons. Besides Mother's Day this weekend my birthday takes place on the Saturday. I know the boys are short on cash at this time so I asked if they would be agreeable to do some gardening for me instead of buying me gifts. They both thought it was a great idea and so they will be out later in the month to do my weeding and plant my flowers for me. This is the best gift they could possibly give me!

It's a little too early to plant here. Although the temperatures have been quite pleasant lately, we could still get frost yet. The weatherman says it's getting colder this weekend and dropping down near 0 again at night! I've gone ahead and bought some hanging baskets which I will place in the gazebo at night to protect them from the frost. I was rearranging the baskets in my yard and placed this one on the bird bath to get it out of my way. Then I decided it looked rather nice there so I just might remove the hanger and leave it there.

What do you think? 
The birds didn't use the bath last year. All they did was use it for a toilet!
Here's a couple of pics of the other baskets I picked up.

I also found this adorable planter which I going to fill with either petunias or pansies and place on my front step.

I was also thrilled to see my parrot tulips open this year. I planted them two years ago and they were gorgeous. Then last year I had leaves and no blooms. This year they were back in all their glory. The leaves are even scalloped, similar to the way the blooms are feathered. I wonder if perhaps they only flower every other year?

So that's what's filling my hours lately. Soon I'll be finished and able to sit outdoors and enjoy the view. I've been out in the gazebo stitching on a couple mornings and there's one other whose enjoying it as much as I am.

She keeps me company! If the weather allows I fully intend to sit out there all day on my birthday and stitch the day away. Mother's Day may be a repeat, lol!

Enjoy the upcoming weekend and to all the mothers, I wish you a very Happy Mother's Day!

Thursday, 9 May 2013

Long overdue

I can't believe it's been two weeks since my last post! This one is definitely long overdue. There has been lots going on in our household lately what with birthdays, spring cleaning, gardening, concerts, etc. and I haven't had much time for either stitching or blogging. 
I have managed to start an ornament for my monthly SAL but I'm unable to post a pic at this point in time. I also did a little more stitching on Victor and Irina. Here's my progress up until now.

Viktor looks a little cross at this point but I'm sure he'll look more stately once I add his whiskers!

I mentioned a few posts back that after visiting the Quilt of Belonging I had stopped by a quilt show with my friends. It's usually held in the venue where the Quilt of Belonging was on display so this year they resorted to a church for the showing. I expected to see the quilts on display in the church hall but I certainly didn't expect to see them displayed in the church itself. See for yourself how they displayed them!

I love how the quilts were draped over the pews! They looked so beautiful. I've only take a few pictures but there was actually another row of quilts on either side as well as antique quilts displayed in the transept. Amazing!!

The quilts on the clothesline in this one are actual little quilts!
Now for a few quilts in the hall:

I also promised some more pics of the Quilt of Belonging.








Sri Lanka

Once again, more blocks from the First Nations:

Labrador Inuit


 I think that the First Nation blocks are some of my favourites. The skills shown are amazing and I love how many of them tell a story of their culture.

That's about it for now. I'll leave you with a few pics of my grands, taken on a recent visit to celebrate my oldest granddaughter's eigth birthday. Happy Birthday Océanne!