We interrupt this cross stitching…

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To bring you a fun little crewel project!

I saw someone online had finished this little design and remembered I had it in my stash too! I had to make it up. Plus my eyes were tired the other night and I wanted to do something less taxing. This is 3 stitching sessions for me and one more tonight should finish it up. I’m not sure I’ll do the back which says “Seasons Greetings” or just put a blank back on it. Anyway it’s fun to get into crewel again!

Fully Finished June

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Many thanks again to Rachel for hosting the monthly “Fully Finished Gallery!” It is an opportunity to show off fully finished stitches and provides great motivation every month to keep things out of the “drawer of shame.” (that special drawer or box we all have of stitched pieces that never get that final touch!)

I finished up 4 small projects this month.

First up is Jump Into Spring from Jeannette Douglas. I bought the pink chenille for the trim as suggested but my whole family thought it was the wrong color. Now I’m waiting for some alternate choices. I am sharing it anyway and will put the trim on when I find a good match.

Next is the Chessie and Me “Out on a Limb” pin pillow. It is backed the the background fabric there in the picture. After I took the picture I added a rick rack trim. I stuffed it with shreds of linen and fabric. I like stuffing with fabric shreds because 1)I hate to throw away scraps of “very expensive” linen! I just can’t bring myself to do it! 2) It gives the pillow a bit more heft than poly fiber fill which is a little too soft and cushy for a pin pillow. 3) It gives the pillow a softer, longer lasting shape than walnut shells which settle and don’t always hold a firm shape. 4) sawdust is nice but messy! I have learned that the smaller shreds you can cut your scraps into, the better the results, otherwise the pin pillow looks like a tiny bag of laundry!

The knob on my nightstand matches!!

Next up is the GPA 2016 Christmas Ornament (now available as a PDF on her Etsy shop!) I finished it the same way as the Fuzzy Fox Snowflake I made last winter. The tassle is a hassle 🙂 but comes out so gorgeous I just had to make it.

Finally I have the With Thy Needle Pinball from the “Stitch In Time” set. I will probably not make the scissor/needle case thing. It is the same design with an alphabet next to it. I really love how this pinball came out and that’s what I bought the pattern for anyway.

What is a pinball? Very similar to a pin wheel or pin disc. You make 2 cardboard circles, but instead of stretching your stitching flat over it, you puff up your stitching so it is completely rounded out with stuffing. Do the same thing with a matching piece of linen in the other circle. Join the 2 half spheres together and then cover the join with trim. It wasn’t much harder than a pinwheel, though getting the shape round was tricky. After doing this one I am much less intimidated to make another as it is a beautiful and satisfying small finish.

Head back to Rachel’s to see more inspiring finishes!

Keeping it real: Two stories about frogs

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It isn’t easy stitching (with) green.

Why is it that small projects often give the most trouble? I have 2 lovely projects I was working on last week and both have given so much hassle. I think I’m not paying attention! I’ve been careless and it is wasting my time! Let me tell you about it!

Last month I showed my start on Betsy Morgan’s Satin and Silk Reticule. I got flustered with it because one of the threads was misnamed in the key and left off the materials list entirely. Thankfully it was noted correctly in the instructions themselves which proves the adage, “when in doubt, read the instructions!!”

I had the needed color in my stash and could proceed. It’s a pretty design. The threads are all Gloriana silks which I love to use. I got to use some of them twice as much as I planned, even.

I spent 2 hours on that floral band only to discover when the green vine was finished that I’d placed it down one stitch too far-fortunately I had not put in the satin stitch flowers yet. No solution presented itself so it was frogged and restitched. Now it is fixed and I can move on!

My other problem project is Jane Marshall. Oh Jane, how I am vexed with you. I stitched the lower case alphabet in the wrong color-I used green instead of blue! I stitched one border exactly copying the first border when it was supposed to be a different pattern. I stitched yet another border in the wrong color, yes, green instead of pink. You’d think this was my first project or that I’m just making up my own sampler! (I didn’t take any pictures when I found those mistakes I was so disgusted and now I wish I had so you could see how much had to be picked out!)

Now, I really like the model of this chart and I do not really want to make it into my own design. A little at a time I picked out and corrected mistakes. Here it is with all the corrections made and ready to move on.

I will not make any more color mistakes in this one. I have written out the color key for myself very clearly in the chart!!

Sometimes with a mistake I must redo it right away like with the reticule above. With other mistakes I need to put them aside and let the sting of my lost effort and time dissipate before I go back to it. I’m too frugal to totally throw away a project, but I’m also discovering another true adage: needlework doesn’t just take patience…it teaches patience!