Friday, October 30, 2009

What I did while I stalled

I am slightly stalled in my Ponza seacoast project as I need some threads from Edwardian Needle. I am going there on the 11th & really can't get there much before that. Sharon G made some excellent suggestions for threads, so before I move forward I have some shopping to do. I intend to do a little work on the border next week, & I've done as much of the sky as I think I can for now.

So, in the interim, I picked up another project from my stash. I love this! I think I got this at a trunk show at a cute little store in Southhampton, NY. I got most of the threads at Edwardian (Pam is a genius). Silk 'N Colors for the white petals (diamond pavilion) & the leaves (satin), some outrageous thread that I had never seen before for the orange border. Some Splendor (two shades) for the blue tent stitched background. Kreinik for outlining emphasis. And, of course---ribbons! I got the idea for the diamond pavilions from the canvas shown on the rear cover of the current Needlepoint Now. I like all my stitch selections.

I am going to try to do a few small pieces in the next week or so, as I wait to get to Edwardian. Have a great weekend!!


Tuesday, October 27, 2009

An Overused Word

As I was finishing this canvas, a survey was reported that Americans found this to be one of the most overused words in the language. Makes sense, then, that there's a canvas for it, right?

I originally saw this canvas, by Renaissance Designs, in black in Fireside Stitchery. My daughter loved it, but of course wanted it in pink. It was special ordered for her & came with threads & a stitch guide by Marina Ketterman (of Fireside). In theory it was hers to stitch, but since she wanted it for her newly painted room, you know who this got assigned to, right?

This was really fun to stitch. The background stitch really makes this canvas pop. It was done in a Sparkle Braid in a hearts darning pattern. The border is done with a Double Hungarian using Very Velvet & Waterlilies. There's a different stitch on each letter, and beads on some of them as well. I did change one or two things on the stitch guide. I find it hard to work Petite Velvet on 18 in any kind of smallish diagonal stitch, like Nobuko (which I find annoys me sometimes) or Diagonal Mosaic (which never does). The finishing touch, in my opinion, is the outline stitch around each letter in Kreinik braid.
I am continuing to work on my next Ponza canvas, which I am working up with Sharon G in the Shining Needle Society class. This class is such a terrific idea; the opportunity to work with the designer on a canvas--incredible.
I will need some more threads for the Ponza canvas, which necessitates a run to Edwardian Needle. I will probably just wait until my Tony M class on November 11 to get the balance of the threads; Sharon just gave me some excellent suggestions. So in the interim I have a little canvas I worked up (almost done, photo sometime this week). And I just got my package from the Shining Needle Society Baskets class--this looks like there are lots of stitches I will use here! This class starts on November 1. Also on November 1, the second to last stitch will be revealed for the ANG SOTM kimono. I will have plenty to do between now & my Edwardian visit.
For those of you concerned about my stitching sister, Linda is caught up in renovation hell. She is not happily handling the chaos & mess of this pains me to hear her misery! But I can't wait to see it done! I have restrained myself from visiting during construction. Every once in a while she gets in a little stitching. But she spends a lot of her day as the carpenter's assistant. I think they (and she) will be done with the bulk of the work in the next 2 weeks. I think even one thing out of place will drive her crazy though. My prescription: she needs at least two uninterrupted weeks in her sewing room after this is over.
Stitch away!

Saturday, October 24, 2009

A Completed Ponza Canvas

I finished the first of the Ponza canvases last weekend. Here you can see a close up of the rocks & foliage from the upper left side of the canvas.

I am very pleased with the way the whole canvas came out. Tony Minieri did a terrific job on the stitch guide. I saw Tony this week at the Techniques class that Linda & I are taking with Tony at The Edwardian Needle, & I brought this canvas along for him to see the finished item. I think Tony was happy with my work & proudly showed our class the canvas. He made sure to emphasize that Sharon G did this, & the other Ponza canvases from the photos I sent her from my home in Ponza. I did blush. ;)
I did not get to Ponza this year; I wish I did. This ocean scene is very representative of the beauty of the island, as are the other Sharon G canvases. Tonight I will start on the next of the Ponza scenes, a sunset. The link to that canvas is It is canvas DPW-02. I started my online class with Sharon through the Shining Needle Society on Wednesday of this past week. I love Sharon's work, & so I signed up for the year long class. I am already enjoying the class immensely.
BTW, I did break down & add the Fireside Vintage Ornaments Club. These were just too beautiful to resist, DESPITE the fact that I SWORE I had done more than enough Christmas ornaments for a while.
I actually finished another canvas this afternoon & will post a photo of that...perhaps tomorrow.

Friday, October 16, 2009

A Reply & A New Club or Two

Hi! There's been quite a bit of blogger silence from me lately. I have been furiously busy at work, & I finished a needlepoint project that I can't show you, as it's a surprise gift for someone. On the other hand, Ponza is finished, so I plan to post a photo of that this weekend.

I do have some news for you. After I posted the Painter's Windowbox canvas, I got quite a few inquiries as to the designer. I didn't know, as it was a canvas I picked up in the sale bin at Ridgewood Needlepoint. Fortunately, Eileen Aird, Ridgewood's owner recognized the canvas & the designer. It appears that Painter's Windowbox was designed by Jean Smith Designs. I contacted Jean & she told me: "DENISE - YES, THAT WINDOW BOX DESIGN IS MINE. IF WE HAVE THE RIGHT ONE, IT IS 8 INCHES SQUARE AND IS PART OF A SERIES. THEY HAVE BEEN DISCONTINUED FOR SOME TIME. I DO HAVE 4 WINDOW BOX DESIGNS NOW. THEY ARE 14 INCHES SQUARE ON 13 MESH."

Her web site is filled with lovely flower designs; go see for yourself:

And, last night, after a VERY long day, I got home to find a lovely newsletter from Fireside Stitchery. They have some new canvas clubs starting up. What's nice about Fireside is that you can just pick a few from a club if you'd like. You can find their new clubs here:

I am particularly eyeing a couple of those "Meowy Christmas" canvases & the Vintage Christmas Ornaments are just lovely.

It's not just Jane in Chilly Hollow who enables, you know ;)

xx Denise

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

What is better than needlepoint?

My daughter, Jen, is expecting her first child in February. Being a grandmother is better than needlepoint. We have known for a while about the baby but I did not want to announce our joyous news too soon. As you can imagine, we are all on cloud nine. I am looking for canvases to stitch. Jen is very particular about what she wants. She does not want any baby canvases. If a girl, she is looking for canvases with dresses, a monogram pillow, teddy bears. If a boy, she is looking for boy outfits, teddy bears and if I can persuade her maybe trucks and trains. The baby's room will not have a baby theme. She has made all her own bedding for the baby. The color scheme is green and cream. I will post pictures of her bedding as soon as I can get all my boxes of kitchen supplies out of the way.
I will be watching the baby once Jen goes back to work. Jen is a psychologist and works for a school district so she will be off from February 2010 until September 2010. So come next September I will have my precious grandchild. Jen has already registered the baby and me for Italian school. They accept children starting at 6 months. Our LNS want us to come and visit so they can all play with the baby. I will find out from the local library what if any story hours they have for a 6 - 7 month old, ans Jen also is also thinking about signing us up for baby yoga. I am going to be very busy. Looking forward to this new phase of my life.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Creche Arrived

The Creche arrived for my Nativity. Here is a picture of the Blessed Family in it. I had to take the picture on the floor since it was the only clear spot I could find in the house. Jen and I bought ordered this Creche from Lenox. Jen will probably keep hers but I am going to do the Kelly Clark backdrop Creche for the Nativity - so mine will be only temporary. I am very pleased with the workmanship on the Creche. If anyone is interested in ordering one, the order number is 086859, the price is $49.99 and I ordered it from Lenox (1-800-225-1779).
Progress on the kitchen is really coming along. Cabinets are being hung and hopefully will be done by tomorrow or Saturday. Crown molding cannot be put up until the electrician does the under cabinet lighting. I am extremely happy with my choice of cabinets. I am always afraid that what I choose will not look right but it all is working out fine.
Off to work on the Elephant. Progress is slow since I am cleaning up after the carpenter leaves and am just exhausted.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Progress Is Being Made

Here is a picture of my monogram canvas. Just a small amount is stitched in the right hand corner. I am back to working on the Elephant. I think he is going to be my favorite piece in the Nativity. He is so regal. I am still working on the background for the Elephant. Hopefully within the next day or two I get to stitch the Elephant himself.
Progress is coming along in the kitchen. All the demolition work is done. The electrical work is next before the walls are closed up. Cabinets are being delivered tomorrow. Hopefully, they will be able to start putting them in on Thursday. Granite is scheduled to be measured on Monday and appliances delivered shortly thereafter. I asked the Pete, the carpenter, if I would be done by Halloween. Hopefully yes was his answer. It is going to take me a good month to get my house back in order. Hoping to be able to get some of the heavy cleaning done during the down time of waiting for the granite.
I was able to talk my husband out of keeping the old cabinets. They are now out of the family room and on the deck waiting to be hauled away. One less mess to take care.
Off to do some paper work and then hopefully stitch.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Renovation Has Begun

As you can see from the pictures, renovation has begun. The first picture is my view from the sewing room into my family room. My DH has decided to keep all the old kitchen cabinets, now being put into the family room. With the encouragement of Pete, our carpenter, he decided to put some into the garage for storage/work table and some in the utility room for storage. Like I really want the old cabinets filling up the family room. The only good thing is that they have to be out before Thursday since the new cabinets are coming and they are going into the family room. The second picture is part of my living room. The living room is the furniture warehouse for the dining room, family room and of course the living room furniture. The dining room is going to be the warehouse for the new appliances and the family room for the new kitchen cabinets. Jen's bedroom is the warehouse for all the boxes from the kitchen cabinets, lamps, floral arrangements, etc. Needless to say I am in a complete mess. The only rooms that are untouched by this are my sewing room, our bedroom and the bathroom. I do not function well in disorder and am having a really hard time with this. I cannot even block the view from my sewing room since I have glass french doors separating it from the family room and have a clear view at the mess. I know that when this is all done and my life is back in order that I will be very happy but I have to get through this first.
Last night I was so exhausted from moving all the furniture (yes, I moved all the furniture myself) that I could not work on the Elephant. I need to be fully alert to stitch the Home Study Class from Amy and I knew that if I worked on the Elephant that I would be taking out more than I stitched. So I worked on my monogram pillow which is mostly basketweave. I will post a picture of it tomorrow. Hopefully, I will get to work on the Elephant today.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

I forgot to show you...

I forgot to show you my finished pillow of the Painter's Windowbox. I think it's quite pretty.

Last night, we went to dinner with some friends at a terrific local restaurant, Trevi. Excellent meal. As we were getting ready to go, I went looking for a shawl, but not a woolen one, as it has been damp & humid but not really either cold or hot. I found one---and I found this needlepoint purse that I forgot to show you as well.

You will note that there are two different canvases on the front of this evening bag. That's because they are mounted on a magnet, a very strong one, and there's a magnet inside the front flap of the purse as well. That way you can change the canvas on the front. I made this for my daughter & myself. I found this neat little purse at Fireside Stitchery. It isn't on their web site that I could find, but they had it on display, and my daughter, lover of all purses great & small, fell in love.

I think the canvases are Sharon G, one of my favorites. And of course the fact that they are small, and Fireside works up a stitch guide for you, makes them even more fun.

Going to sit outside and enjoy the last of the Indian Summer (sunshine today, thank goodness). I am working on a gift for a family member, and it's a surprise, so I can't show or tell you more--at least for a few months!

Then I will go back to Ponza...and Whatever...and my Tony Minieri SOTM kimono...and my flag.

And I can't wait for the Sharon G SNS class to begin.

Oh, and lastly. My Stitching Sister, Linda, is in the midst of chaos & soon will have dust too, as the kitchen demolition begins. I think she should just go into her sewing room & stay there for 3 weeks. I'll have sandwiches delivered.
PS: I apologize for the way these photos are laying out. Having great difficulty with Blogspot on this issue lately. Sorry :(