Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Finishes, WIPs & Wild Ideas

Hi,  friends! I bet you were wondering if I was going to return, huh? I have to admit it is rather hard to find time to sit down and write these blog posts, especially this time of year. If you have followed me on Instagram you know that my "canning factory" has been going strong. Canning our homegrown foods has  become a passion for me. It is so satisfying to see those beautiful jars lined up at the end of the season, I can't even begin to express my contentment. I'll attach a photo so maybe you'll get a sense of my enjoyment. Nice, right?!


OK, now onto stitching! First I want to talk about something I like to call the "Santa Situation". About a year ago I was browsing Pinterest and saw where someone had stitched all of annual  Prairie Schooler Santa's on one piece of fabric and made a wall hanging out of it. Me-oh-my was that a beauty! I thought about it a long time & decided maybe , just maybe I could give it a whirl. So...that began my mission to collect all the annual Santa patterns. I had a few already, made a list and checked it twice for the ones I needed. It really wasn't that hard to acquire them all! I was surprised. I may have paid a little too much for them in the beginning, unknowingly. I don't regret it though, and I am thrilled to have them all.
The next step was to find a big piece of fabric to fit them all. I chose a 32 lambswool at Michaels. I don't remember the dimensions but it was huge. By my calculations they would all fit! Well.....after stitching the first & second  Santa it didn't take long to figure out the fabric was not going to hold all 32 of them. Bummer! Shortly I  realized that when I measured I was not taking into consideration stitching over 2 threads. Wahhhh! Anyway...I let the project sit for a good while. To cut or not to cut was the new Santa situation. If I kept stitching I could fit most of them but darn it....I want them all on it. So eventually I cut the 2 Santa's off. I will be finishing them into ornaments in the coming days, so stay tuned! So I'm on another quest for a large piece of fabric to hold all 32 Santa's. I might get the same 32 lambswool (because they were beautiful on it) but just stitch over 1. That's an idea!

Ok, onto recent finishes. I recently finished Pumpkins by The Scarlett House. My first time using 40 count fabric, I have to say ....I absolutely LOVE the look of 40 count. Yes it was a little difficult, especially the over 1's but totally worth it. A cheap pair of readers from WalMart helped tremendously!

Another finish was Fancey Blackett, Tea for Two by Pineberry Lane. What an adorable pattern. It was stitched on 32 Examplar using 1 over 1. There is such a delicate look to it, I just love it! I'm yet to get a full finish on it though. There's never enough time is there ladies?!
The last finish I want to show off is my mom's birthday gift, the Sunflower Santa by The Prairie Schooler. I finished it into a pillow ornament with the new -ish (to me anyway!)finishing technique that came with my last Pineberry Lane pattern. I will make a post soon & show all steps of this process if anyone is interested. I am over the moon for this finished Santa. In fact, I need to make one for myself now. Mom really liked it too!
I'm also doing a SAL with my friend Michelle right now. It is the Needleworker chart by Little House Needleworks. It is turning out really pretty, I just love the script!
Another Wip is Blackbird Inn by Little House Needleworks. I want this one hanging in my kitchen. I think it is just darling!
The 3rd and last Wip I want to show you is my favorite BUT my least favorite to work on. It is Chalk Squared  by Hands on Design. The most beautiful pattern ever! And the colors! Gorgeous! But the dark fabric.....ugh. I chose a 32 charcoal gray linen. It surely will be a beauty when finished. I'm done with the center piece (except buttons) and ready to start the floral  months. Exciting!

Thanks everyone for stopping by today! Sure hope I can get this to load with all the photos! Ha! (Newbie problems!)

I hope you all have a Wonderful week!!

Monica




******BE LOUD, Let your Colorshow******
                     The Avett Brothers


Friday, August 12, 2016

Introduction

Hi,  everyone! I can't believe it has taken me this long to start a blog. I always have so much to say and I'm happy to now have a platform for my ramblings. ;)
First, let me introduce myself! I'm Monica and I am a wife and mother of 3. This year I will be celebrating 16 years of marriage to my husband, Chad. Our children are Devin (22), McKinley(15), and Isaac(12).
I am starting this blog mostly to share my stitching projects. I am head over heels in love with my stitching and would talk about it non stop if I could. I will try my best to exercise some restraint. Ha, ha. Just kidding, that is not happening. ;)
I started stitching at age 17 and I think what drew me in was the beautiful rainbow rows of floss in my local Wal-Mart. Such eye candy! I bought a few kits and off I went to teach myself to cross stitch. I don't remember how it went in the beginning but my sister has a vivid memory of me with a huge knotted pile of floss and some not so nice words to go with it. I guess I figured things out by Christmas because I can remember gifting several people with my crafts. One of my first projects was a cockatiel stitched on a sweatshirt for my Grandmother. I had also stitched her name above it. I know it sounds a little weird, right? It really isn't because Grandma was a bird lover. She had several birds over the years who were a great joy to her. She wore the sweatshirt frequently and I was thrilled! When Grandma passed, I found the sweatshirt when we were cleaning out her house. I had to have it, yes indeed. My plans were to post a photo but lo & behold, my basement is once again a complete wreck and I am unable to find the tote it is in. I assure you, it will make an appearance once it's located.

Chad and I were married in 2000 and I did have a few stray projects lying around but was not serious about the craft anymore. Enjoying my new married life and starting a family were top priorities. It did not take long for my stitching to fall by the wayside. ....Fast forward to 2014 and joining Instagram!! Woot woot!! I am loving that Instagram! The first stitching that drew me in was the subversive things I had been seeing. There is some very funny stuff out there! I started a few projects... some funny, some naughty and I got a lot of laughs out of those. But let's be serious for second, they are only funny for so long. And some of the things I am seeing now days are down right rude. I am now lamenting over the time I wasted stitching these things. For gosh sakes I could have worked up some beautiful stitcheries in all that time!!
Anyway, I'll move on. :)

If you have followed me on Instagram you  know that I'm a Prairie Schooler loving fool. Most of you already know how fabulous their charts are but think of my sadness when I realized they were retiring a mere 7 months after I discovered them! Can't you hear my tiny sobs! Since, I have been collecting their patterns and have big plans for some of them(which i will happily tell you about in a later post!). I'm also thrilled they are reprinting some of the ones I missed out on while I was in the diaper changing era! Yeah!
Other favorite designers of mine are Little House Needleworks, Country Cottage Needleworks, Barbara Ana, Blackbird Designs, Plum Street Samplers, Threadwork Primitives, The Scarlett House  and most recently Pineberry Lane. The list really does go on & on.

Since joinging IG and connecting with other stitchers, I have spent countless hours ogling (& drooling) over their work. There are so many of you inspiring me these days!  I have slowly learned the stitchers lingo as well. I now know what a Wip, FFO, UFO, LNS, frog, 1/1, 2/2, 2/1, & RAK (Thanks to my dear friend Michelle!) are. There is even this intriguing thing   called Flosstube! What the what?! I have no idea how those ladies muster the courage to do those videos, I can't even stand listening to my own voice on a recording. Truth!  I've already grown leaps and bounds in my 2 1/2 years since coming back to stitching. Starting with an 11 ct. Aida to working 1 over 1 on 40 ct. Linen. I've even tea dyed a few pieces of fabric and loved the results. And the best part is, I have so many years in front of me! The last thing I want  to mention is how I've noticed the stitching community on IG is so supportive, caring, encouraging, friendly & kind to one another. That makes my heart happy and I am proud to be part of it.

I am so excited to see where my stitching journey takes me. I am even more thrilled to have your company along the way. Thank you so much, from the bottom of my heart, for your friendships. 

Until next time,
Monica