Wednesday, 31 March 2021

March WIPocalypse

 Last month I was so close to the finish line on Heartstring Samplery Victoria's Garden that I just powered on through to finish it up in the first few days of March. I started this last May on my birthday and I was determined that it would be done before my special day rolled around again once more! 

This was such a sweet stitch although I must say that the border needed close attention. The child who stitched this originally was easily distracted and the border was never guaranteed to be the same number of stitches where you expected it to be. I love how she adapted when the corners would meet! 

After my finish I felt it was only right to begin something new. I know I should have returned to stitching my 1897 Schoolhouse Sampler piece but I was being drawn down a rabbit hole. Thirza Hudson 1825 is the sampler which dragged me down, lol!

There are a lot of stitchers out there on social media who have fallen for this sweet, little sampler. I've seen several finished already! Thirza is a design from Whilst Iris Naps and is available as a PDF download. As you can see, I'm also very close to a finish on this one. Only the border and the over one stitching remain. In taking this picture I discovered an error in counting so I have since spent some time frogging and restitched a portion of one of the trees. I should have the border complete in a few days but I'm not sure if I'll have enough silk floss to complete the over one. I'm thinking of removing that one letter and starting with a different silk. 

The sampler called for some R&R fabric which I didn't have and with the mail being what it is these days and linen supplies difficult to find, I chose to find an alternative from my stash. I'm stitching this on Lakeside Linen 40ct Vintage Chantilly Creme which has a very soft blush undertone to it. I'm using the suggested floss with one DMC substitute in addition to the silk floss for the over one. I started stitching with the called for floss for that but it just seemed too thick for the 40 ct and silk works so much better when doing over one on the higher counts particularly if it's a Tudor silk.

My plans in the coming month are to finish Thirza Hudson, get back to My Precious Jewel and possibly join in on a local SAL of Brenda Gervais' Winter Rose Manor. I have it kitted up but I'm on the fence as to whether or not to start it. There are a couple of other designs that I would prefer to start first. I'm just not in the mood to stitch Christmas either. I have two Blackbird Designs all ready to go in addition to The Scarlett House Little Deeds Sampler. Then I received my order from the Needlework Expo with Hannah Ann Wallace, 1850.  Oh my word, she's a beauty too! 

A lot of my stitching time has been replaced over the past six months with my efforts at a healthier lifestyle. I spend an hour or so every day walking. When the weather was too cold to walk or it snowed heavily I relied on a dance video to burn up those calories. We have returned to more healthy eating, including a lot of vegetarian meals, lots of beans, lentils, chickpeas and more chicken and fish with very little beef or pork. Over the course of those months I have lost a total of 55 pounds and I am now in remission from my diabetes and have been since November. In my case the pandemic has helped because we are not eating out and cook all our meals at home. Here's a before and after pic. 

Taken in September with my youngest sister

Taken in March

I intend to continue on the journey and lose more weight over the next few months hopefully. Shortly after the second pic was taken I decided to take the plunge and change my hair colour. My natural colour has quite a bit of gray and I decided to head in that direction. Here's the new look!

I hope everyone is remaining safe during these times. I know many of you in the US may have already had your vaccines but here in Canada the rollout is much slower. I figure it will be several weeks before I feel that needle. It can't come soon enough! See you next month!

Tuesday, 30 March 2021

March Smalls

 I've been trying to get this post up for a couple of days now. It seems I have issues uploading my photos from both my phone and my computer! It's been extremely frustrating trying to get anything done.

At this point I have one of my finishes that I can show you. This is one that I had already kitted up earlier in the year and put aside. Not knowing what I wanted to do this month I decided to go with the obvious. This design is from the 2017 series of Fragments in Time by Summer House Stitche Workes. It's number four in the series.

I've stitched a couple of others from this series previously and gifted them to friends but this little one will be made into a pin pillow for me. I don't have the entire series of eight designs. I think I just picked out the ones that appealed to me and ordered them but they do make great gifts!

Okay so I thinked I've worked out all the bugs with my photos and have managed to get them all where I want them. Amazing!

My second small finish for this month was done in anticipation of spring and the upcoming Easter weekend. Spring Rabbit and Cart is a design by Jenny Hoffman of Country Rustic Primitives. It's a sweet little finish and it also will be sewn into a pin pillow and added to my bowl of spring finishes on display.

I'll also share with you a few pics of my Easter/Spring displays.

Definitely more room to add a few more finishes. I really don't have a lot of Easter/Spring decor.

I'm not sure if I'll get a small finish stitched for next month. It's tax season and I start working on our taxes tomorrow morning. Plus I'm really into working on some lovely bigger designs right now. You'll see some pics on my WIPocalypse post in a day or two. See you then!

Monday, 1 March 2021

February WIPocalypse

 Besides a new start this month I've spent some quality time with a WIPocalypse that I started last year on my birthday in May. Heartstring Samplery's Victoria's Garden is a lovely reproduction design. I've really been enjoying my time spent with her.

As you can see, I'm in the final few days of stitching this beauty. Only the border remains and let me tell you, I'm having an interesting time with it. It met up but after stitching it I have decided that the child who originally stitched this was easily distracted, lol! You can't go on auto pilot when stitching this border. She added stitches, she dropped stitches and she improvised her corners just as many of us may have done throughout some of our own stitching. I am loving every stitch!

When I need a bit of a break from Victoria I turn to my new start, 1897 Schoolhouse Samplers My Precious Jewel - Ann Alice Townshend. Lianne Van Leyen is the brains behind 1897 Schoolhouse Samplers and is a personal friend of mine. She is passionate about reproducing the samplers in her collection, particularly the ragamuffins. Although I have several of her reproduction samplers in my stash this is the first I chose to spend any time with and it certainly won't be the last!

When I pulled the called for floss for this I realized that I didn't have many of them in my stash. With the pandemic and shipping times what they are, I didn't want to wait and so I have chosen to stitch this with silks from my stash. The majority are Belle Soie choices so far. I'm sort of converting as I go. 

I hope to continue with this one during March and I'm sure Victoria's Garden will be complete by the end of the coming week. I haven't decided which design is next but I have several in mind. 
I hope you are all staying safe and stitching your hearts out!