Friday, July 27, 2012

Needles Required!!

Someone once told me  " There are only 2 rules to needleart.  1) The thread must go through the needle and 2) The needle must go through the fabric.  Everything else is a suggestion".  I never forgot these words of wisdom.  I only have one thing to add - You MUST have the right needle!

I was so excited to get away last weekend.  We went up north to my parent's cottage,  I love it there.  I had all my stitching projects packed, but nothing worked out as planned.  First I wanted to finishing my Palm Tree sampler, but I lost my needle. I had others with me of course, but none were as fine or finer than a tapestry #28.  To petit point on a 32ct silk gauze, the tapestry #28 is the best.  Why I only had the one with me I have no idea;  I always have spare needles packed just in case.  So, next on my list was my "Stitching for a Cure" needlepoint pillow, but I couldn't work with the wool for too long.  I generally avoid wool in the summer, because my hands start to sweat and then the rest of me overheats.  I worked on it on and off, because I want to finish the pillow and display it in the shop to help raise more money for our Cancer drive.  The full amount of all donations will go towards the Credit Valley Hospital's Cancer Centre Phase III.   So then, I worked on my next Stitch-A-Long;  a pulled thread 15 sided biscornu.  With this too, I didn't get far.  Once I started stitching the design I quickly realized that it was not working out as I had envisioned it in my mind.  So this too got tucked back into my bag.

But all was not lost.  The weather was great,  I swam in the lake every day and played cards in the afternoon.

This past week I managed to fix my sampler, finish it and stretch it.
I love it!  It looks great!   The Caron Collection Waterlilies I choose is  perfect for this tree.  I should have the chart available for sale within the next few weeks.

 I also managed to give my biscornu a rethink.  I'm very excited with the new plan and will share the outcome with you next week.  If everything works out this time, it will be even better!

Have a great weekend.

Friday, July 20, 2012

This is how my sampler looks today.  I'm so pleased with it so far.   I was hoping to have had it finished this week, but life got in the way.  I don't know what it is about summer; although the days are longer, it feels like we have less time.

Simular to my previous tree samplers the palm leaf is faintly visible in the background, and all the images indicate products from or items we associate with each tree.  Oh my!! I only just realized  I forgot to include the year.  Well, I guess I'm back to ripping - it's too much to restitch and I'm so anxious to get started on my next Stitch A-Long  (SAL)project.

Over the past two weeks, I've had a great time playing with fabric and thread colour options for my next SAL

I've been playing with design ideas for another SAL for quite some time, and once I had it straight in my mind I couldn't wait to get started with choosing fabric and thread colours.  So, over the past two weeks I've been doing just that.  Playing with fibres and threads sooths my soul.  When choosing thread colours for this kind of project I start by picking a variegated silk and then coordinating the other threads and fabric colour to it, but this time I wanted to select a colour very different from my usual.  The result, I realized, is that I love them all.
 This will be a pulled thread project so I selected a variegated Wildflowers (stronger than silk) by the Caron Collection.  And although initally they were out of my comfort zone, by the time I matched the solid thread colours and fabric, they looked fabulous. 
These 4 colour combinations were my favourite.  I have to choose one, or stitch it more than once.

Friday, July 13, 2012

In the stitching mood !!!

Two weeks ago I finished my "Palm Tree" Sampler design.  As I looked through all our hand-dyed silk threads in the shop,  I was really taken with "Savannah" by the Caron Collection.  However, we only had it in in the Watercolor fibre, and as all  my Tree Samplers have been stitched using 2 strands of a hand-dyed silk in the continental stitch on 32ct silk gauze I wanted this colour in Waterlilies.  So I had to patiently (not) wait for the silk thread.  It finally arrived in the shop on Friday, and over the weekend I have been unstoppable.  This is about two evenings worth of stitching but it took me almost three days, as much was ripped out & restitched.  If I had had another piece of silk gauze at home I would have been done by now.  Stitching anew would have been so much faster than ripping half of it out and restitching.  The stitches on 32ct count over 1 are so small that I needed to proceed slowly with caution, so not to cut the gauze.  But I'm so pleased with the results, and once the background is added it will look great, just like the rest.
 These are the Oak Tree, Maple Tree, Cocoa Tree, and Eastern Hemlock

While I was waiting for the silk to arrive I continued stitching on the background for my "Stitch for a Cure" needlepoint cushion.  But this will now be on hold until I finish the Palm Tree sampler.

Stitching background can be just as theraputic as counting from a chart.  While filling in the background I was mulling over ideas and fine tuning the design for another SAL project for my blog, and in the shop I  spent much of my free time playing with fabric and thread colours (one of my passions).  The SAL will be another 15 sided biscornu.  I'm very excited, in my mind it's awesome.  I'll start stitching once the Palm Tree sampler is finished.

Stay tuned for photos of this new SAL's fabric and fibre selections in my next post.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Happy 4th of July

In celebration of Independance Day I wanted to share this pattern with all my American friends.

I had designed this Stars & Stripes Pin for a Make-It & Take-It workshop I ran one year at the Stitching Jubilee in Lancaster, PA

The pin is stitched in the Continental / Tent stitch with 3 strands on a 22ct. canvas.  If cross stitched 1 over 1 on 22ct Hardanger fabric the finished design size will be the same.  Click here for the pattern and fringe instructions.

At the time I was lucky to find these red & white stiped beads, and with 13 blue stars they were perfect for the beaded fringe.  I still have some of these kits remaining.  The kits include the Chart with Finishing Instructions, Petit Point Instructions, 22ct Cordova (petit point) canvas, Anchor Threads & Nymo Beading Thread, Red & white striped beads, Blue Star beads, Matt board & red felt, Bar Pin, and Needles.
If anyone is interested in purchasing a kit, please email me at the shop,
Have a great day !!!