Sunday, August 29, 2010

Another Finish and My New Favorite Scissors

Just a quick post as I need to gather up my things and head out to meet some friends.

During the weekend I finished my final BBD class piece from the Stitchville retreat. This Tulip House Sampler goes with the box finish that I posted last Monday. Here it is all finished and framed (I tried my hand at framing this one by myself!) Looks good don't you think?

I have some new favorite scissors - they are Dovos. I've never used Dovos before. The pair on the left was a recent gift from a very special friend. I snatched up the pair on the right at a yarn store that is clearancing out all of their needlework stash - they were 50% off. The pair on the left works great for hardanger; The long skinny blades are great for cutting threads close to the stitched threads. The pair on the right are great for everyday stitching; I like the larger holes for my fingers.

Hope you enjoy this beautiful Sunday and that have time for some stitching today!

Monday, August 23, 2010

Couple Final Finishes

My vacation has ended and I need to return to work today. I can't complain, I feel refreshed and rested! It was really nice to have a week at home; I accomplished many things around the house, enjoyed getting together with friends, and finished up some stitching projects. It was a good week!

Couple more finishes to share:

I finished thio Lizzie Kate design into a pillow; the stitching was done several months ago.

And, the finish that really makes me HAPPY - the box top for my BBD class project from the Stitchville / Blackbird Designs retreat in April. I'm including a picture to show you the inside of the box (although the inside was completed at the retreat.) I stitched the top piece on Saturday evening/Sunday morning and mounted it on the box Sunday night.

One last hot day in Minnesota and then things are going to cool down. Yippee! Hope you have a great day!

Saturday, August 21, 2010

A Pocketful of ... Finishes!

Still on vacation ... one more day to go. It's going to be so difficult returning to work on Monday!

I've been busy stitching and finishing. Here are some of my recent finishes!

First up - the LHN Pear Ornament. I finished the stitching on this back on January 17! It's stitched on 40 ct Iced Cappuccino and finished with a beaded edge using gold beads. It's dainty and cute!

Next - a "needle tweet" from Just Nan. The kit includes the beads and wool to finish, all you need to supply is the fabric and DMC fibers. This one is called Pinkie. So sweet...

This sweet little fishy fob just required finishing. Lori had stitched these for our "Under the Sea" retreat last week but ran out of time and wasn't able to finish them (she needed that time to cook and bake for us!) Going to put this little bugger to work on a scissors now...

This is one of the Essy's Friends designs that I stitched a long time ago - CURE tree from M Designs. I never finished it because I was somewhat intimidated by the finishing. Not anymore though - it's finished as a pin with a pretty ruched ribbon edge. The design and finishing supplies were part of a kit which is no longer available.

And last but not least, my big finish...I finished stitching the Birds and Berries Needlecase from the Silver Needle Blackbird Designs retreat. After putting the final stitches in it, I put the needleroll together and voila!

I didn't take a picture of the inside - it's finished with some delectable Blackbird Designs fabrics and has three pockets for holding stitching necessities!

That's it for me tonight. I'm heading back to my stitching chair to enjoy another evening filled with stitching!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Off to College

Happy Hump Day! I continue to enjoy my week off of work. Today I am busy washing linens and doing some general clean up. It seems like there's never an end to projects around the house!

Yesterday was somewhat bittersweet - we moved our daughter into her dorm room at college. She is attending a school that is about two hours south of where we live. It's really going to be different not having her home all the time.

Here she is getting ready to head out...

Oops, wrong photo -- the photo above is from when she was about 4 or 5 years old. She had her teddy bear all packed up in her backpack and was ready to head down the driveway on her tricycle.

Here's the right photo. All grown up now and somewhat moved into her tiny dorm room. They all loft the beds these days (I don't remember anyone doing that when I was in school! All I kept thinking was "what if you had to go to the bathroom real bad?")

Will miss having her at home but at the same time I know that she is embarking on a new adventure and some of the best days of her life!

On the stitching front - I have a finish to share with you. Earlier this year, the Elegant Stitch offered this kit as a fundraiser for breast cancer awareness and research. The design is from LHN and it is called Remember Me. It's stitched on 30ct Mocha Linen from Weeks Dye Works with Crescent Colors Bella Rosa. Unfortunately, this was a limited edition item and the kits are now sold out!

Finally, I just got my BBD finish from a few weeks ago back from the framer. This is Evening Shades the Garden, Loose Feathers #3. I love it!

That's all for today. Hope to get some more finishing done in-between the laundry loads and other cleaning projects!

Saturday, August 14, 2010

All Good Things Come to an End

As the saying goes, "All good things must come to an end." It was a fun week at Joan's house. Our "Under the Sea" themed retreat ended today. I enjoyed spending Tuesday and Wednesday with my stitching buddies; on Thursday and Friday, I joined them in the evening after work.

Here are a few more pictures for you - first up - the four completed "A Token of Friendship" booklets. This is a design from With My Needle. Moving left to right: Cathy's, Joan's, Jill's, and Jackie's.

Two more books need to be finished yet. I'll try to post photos of those when they are finished. It was a lot of fun stitching these squares for each other throughout the year!

The other thing about this retreat that everyone looks forward to is putting together a little gift bag for each stitcher. Of course, the goal is to find things that are related to the theme. I shared my gift items with you on a previous post, but here are some of the others. You can see that this is a very creative bunch!

This first collection of items came from Jackie. She had taken a trip to Hawaii earlier this year and brought bags for all of us. They have sea turtles on them! Might I add, these will be really great bags for carting stitching projects around!

You can click on the photos to get a closer look at all the goodies, but here's a close up of the fish that jackie stitched for me. It's finished as a coaster!

Next up, Joan's gift. Joan always stitches themed pillow cases for us. This year we got a big one (for a normal sized bed pillow) and a smaller one to fit the pillow pictured. You will have to click on the photos for close ups. Joan's daughters got in the act; one daughter found the sea horse spreader, the other daughter found the fishy glass...

Joan stitched each of us a mermaid floss tag holder and adorned it with some hand made pins.

Lori gave each of us a project bag filled with goodies. Lots of fishy themed treats and other doo-dads. She stitched each of us a fishy fob but didn't have time to finish it because she was busy baking and cooking for the retreat. No worries though, we'll all have our fobs finished up in no time!

Finally, here's Jill's gift. Jill found some fishy fabric to adorn a project bag. As you saw in a previous post, Jill's mom crocheted us each a pair of fish slippers - I love them! Jill stitched an alphabet fish pinkeep(pattern from Carriage House Samplings), made a beaded needlecase (with a fish design), created a beaded fob that said "under the sea", and gave us each a fish scissors and fish shaped threadwinder. Wowzers, she was busy!

Here's a close up of the pinkeep and the beaded needle case:

I feel very fortunate to have been welcomed into this group of stitchers. It's fun getting together with them on Friday nights and I enjoyed getting together with them this week.

One more funny thing happened this week that I forgot to tell you about. On Tuesday, our friend Chris arrived to work on the friendship booklets. She brought with her a new Ott task light that she had just purchased at JoAnn's. Of course, after seeing it, we all had to have one too! Tuesday afternoon we made the trek to not one, but two JoAnn stores so that we could purchase five more of these lights! It runs on three AAA batteries and is quite bright. It's also very lightweight - will be a great light to take with when traveling.

Well, that concludes the retreat reports from this week. Since I've been gone most of the week, I think I better get busy and get some housecleaning and laundry done.

Until next time....Happy Stitching!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

A Token of Friendship

(Warning - picture intensive post!)

Yesterday was day two of the stitching extravaganza at Joan's house. I had to visit the dentist in the morning, so I was the last one to arrive. We spent much of the morning working on any project of our choosing.

Joan is working on Rose Garden from Blackbird Designs:

Lori is working on her LHN thread bed (Needle and Thread) - she finished the stitching!

Jill started a new project. Anyone want to take a gander at what project she is stitching?

Jackie is staying on task with her Friendship book:

Me, well, I decided I better work on the Birds and Berries Needlecase from the Silver Needle retreat:

Just before lunch, a little visitor arrived - Joan's new grandson - what a little cutie pie he is! He babbled at us the entire visit and then it was time to go home he fell asleep in his Grandma's arms. I'm not sure that there will be any stitching in his future (only that done by his Grandma.) Here's a picture of the proud Grandma and her little guy.

After lunch, Jackie, Jill, and I decided to tackle the Friendship booklets again. Jill had to help Jackie and I along. It took me the rest of the afternoon and evening, but I went home with a finished booklet! Pictures really don't do this piece justice (of course I'm not the best at staging photos either!) But here are a couple of photos to give you some idea as to what the finished product looks like.

Ackworth Friendship Book
With My Needle

36ct Linen (I think it is Flax!)
Threadworx Fiber #10051

Jill and Joan are working at finishing their books this morning, and Jackie will finish hers soon too. Lori may take a bit longer finishing hers, but she will get it done! We're busy planning our next project now!

Here's a fun photo for the day. We took a picture of us all wearing our fish slippers! Jill's mom has always crocheted or knitted a pair of slippers for each stitcher, and finds a pattern that fits with the theme. Jill's mom crocheted these last year as soon as she knew what this year's theme was going to be. Those of you who read Jill's blog know that her mom passed away earlier this year. It was extra special to receive a pair of her mom's slippers this year.

The girls will be gathering again today for more stitching. Unfortunately, I have to head into work now, but I'll rejoin them later this evening. Will be anxious to hear what shenanigans they were up to today!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Let the Stitching Begin....

I took two days off of work to spend the time stitching with friends. We are all gathered at Mama Joan's house and our theme this year is "Under the Sea." Our stitching extravaganza started yesterday and will continue through Saturday. While I was off of work yesterday and today, tomorrow, I have to go back to work. :(

Each year we assemble gift bags for each other; we try to locate things that fit with the theme. Here is what I collected for the girls:

The bottom tray is like a three-part snack dish - it has "sea characters" on it (octopus, turtle, fish, etc.) Has anyone tried these smore flavored goldfish? In the middle section, a quilted pincushion that I made using fishy fabric, a mermaid scissor fob, and some threads (CC Shrimp Cocktail and CC Deep Blue Sea). On the right, some fish shaped soaps (need to keep my stitching buds smelling good, right?)

Here's a closer look at the fobs that I made - everyone has their special color! The "mermaid" is taken from a Country Cottage Needleworks pattern.

And here's a closer look at the quilted pincushions using fishy fabric:

I will post pictures of the gifts that the other girls brought after retreat.

Our task yesterday was to complete the "A Token of Friendship" booklets that we had been stitching for each other all year. We really underestimated the time that it would take to finish these books. Here's the group hard at work:

As of this morning, I have all of my blocks basted to the skirtex and all but two blocks have the lining fabric basted on the back. Today, I will continue with the assembly!

More updates on our retreat to follow in the next few days.

Before I go...check out the cute LHN ornament that I received from Joan from the LHN exchange a small group of us did. Isn't it sweet? The beaded edging is really cool! Thanks Joan!

Gotta run -- the girls are waiting for me!

Saturday, August 07, 2010

More to Share

Thanks to those who stopped by and visited my last post. It warms the heart to read your comments. I have a few more finishes to share with you!

Last month, I stitched Lizzie Kate's summer fob, but didn't have time to do the finishing -- here it is:

Now I better dig out the spring fob and get that one finished too!

I also participated in an exchange recently, the theme was LHN. I stitched and finished this little ornament and pincushion/mason jar cover for Marie. Both are stitched on 40ct Iced Cappucino using the called for fibers.

Liberty and Justice
Little House Needleworks
40 ct Iced Cappucino

I've been cleacing the house today and digging around in my stitching stash today. Looking forward to relaxing in the stithcing chair tonight!