Friday, February 27, 2009

Fireside's New Web Site

Fireside Stitchery, of Frazer, PA, has a new web site. Linda & I visited there last year in a fit of wanderlust. Their web site is neat and clean, and much easier to navigate than their old one.
Here's the link:

Oh, what am I working on? Still the ribbon initial canvas....just about done with the border. ---sigh----


Thursday, February 26, 2009

Homework Is Done

Well, I am almost on schedule. I have completed all the homework on the Ribbon Initial Class.
Tomorrow we will be doing the ribbon flowers and leaves on the initial. I completed the background, which is a darning pattern done over six under six, the outline of the initial, which is a stem stitch, and the border, which I changed to a Rhodes stitch in all four corners and the fern stitch in between. The ribbon work will really bring this piece to life. Will post a picture of the completed piece.

I am almost done with infant for my home study Nativity with Amy Bunger. Should have it done by the weekend. Then I have to do the first ornament in the All that Glitters club. This should really be fun to do. The beads and crystals are just amazing. I will post pictures of all my completed pieces.


Sunday, February 22, 2009

Witch's Hat

Here is a picture of Melissa Shirley's Small Witch's Hat, which my daughter, Jennifer, just finished stitching. When Jennifer purchased the hat from Bedecked and Beadazzled, Ruth was kind enough to make stitch suggestions and pick out the threads for her. Ruth had a finished Large Witch's Hat in her store and Jennifer just feel in love with it. So Jennifer will be sending it off to Ruth for finishing. When Jennifer gets the hat back, I will post another picture of the finished hat.
I am still working on the background for my ribbon initial class. Hoping to get it done by tomorrow and then will put in the stem stitches for the outline of the initial. Will post a picture of my progress.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Stitch is Finished

I just received my finished Stitch canvas back from Ruth Schmuff of Bedecked and Beadazzled.
I am so happy with the finishing. I cannot believe how great it came out. It is on a pink box that opens and I can store my sewing supplies in it. The feet of the box are the four spools of antique thread that my friend, Kathy gave to me. Ruth added the spools of thread on top of the box along with scissors, a needle threader and a pretty yellow pin cushion.

I have never been disappointed with anything I have sent to Ruth but I must say she really outdid herself this time.

I am so happy. Hope you like it as much as I do.


Ribbon Initial

Here is my latest project. As you can see, I have not progressed very far. I have in the top and botton borders and part of the background. You have to stitch over the initial with the background and then do the stem stitch for the initial. So before my next class, which is next Friday, I have to finish the background and do the stem stitch for the initial. At the class we will be doing the ribbon flowers on the initial. It should be very pretty when it is done. Will keep you posted.
I have a finishing surprise coming by UPS today. As soon as it arrives, I will take a picture and post it. I am so excited. I love surprises.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

My Latest Project

Here is the Kelly Clark Nativity with stitch guide by Amy Bunger. I have never enjoyed stitching a project as much as this one. The stitch guide is one of the best I have worked from. If you have never done a Home Study Course from Amy, I strongly recommend that you sign up for one. Her choice of threads and stitches are just totally amazing. I have finished the manger and am almost done with infant but have to put it down for awhile to work on the class that I am taking from our LNS.

As Denise informed you, I am taking the class and she is working from the stitch guide. We have changed the border already. We will be doing a rhodes stitch for the corners and fern stitch in between the rhodes. We found the stitch for this in Amy's Chapter on Borders in Amys's Cookbook for Stitchers. If I had the time, I would also change the background but time is of the essence. The background is a darning pattern, and it is a very quick stitch. Tomorrow, I will post a picture of the ribbon initial canvas.

My first All That Glitters Club canvas arrived. It is totally amazing. The threads, stitches and beads used are just mind blowing. I cannot wait to get started on this one. I will call Nancy of Needle House to ask permission to post pictures of my work before I post anything. I am hope to get started on the project next week.

As you can see, I am a little over my head but I am on time with the Nativity and will have my homework done for the ribbon initial before the next class.


A quick project to interrupt the Ribbon Initial Project


Linda & I are both working on the Ribbon Initial project from our LNS. Linda is taking the class, I am working from the stitch guide. Although we're sure the Ribbon Initial will be pretty once it's complete, we are currently both a little frustrated with this project, so to take a break from that project, I snuck in this Associated Talents heart (probably the Valentine's Day influence). It took me just one evening to do this cute little canvas, all from my stash (except for one card of baby blue Splendor, which I picked up at Rittenhouse Needlepoint on Saturday). I was excited to be able to refer to my new Suzy's Mini Stitches for some ideas for the stitches. All of it was worked in Splendor, with a few beads & a bit of Kreinik here & there.
I keep getting that little shadow on my canvas photos. Will need to consult my DH for his advice on that one.
Tonight I plan on doing one box in my flag and then back to the background of my Ribbon Initial.
I know that Linda has some updates for you on her projects and she has been furiously working on two of her clubs....stay tuned!

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Our Most Recent Excellent Adventure

Today Linda & I went on an road trip to visit my daughter Ashley at school in Philadelphia. Since we try never to miss an opportunity to add to our stash, Linda astutely noted that the most recent issue of Needlepoint Now had an advertisment for a new store in Philly---so off we went! Fortunately, my daughter loves to stitch as well so she was happy to join us.

Our new favorite destination is Rittenhouse Needlepoint, situate on Chestnut Street in Center City in Philly. It is a lovely store, bright and sunny and well lit. There are tables to sit for instruction, comfy couches and chairs to sit amd stitch, and as store owners Steven & Russell say, have some coffee and conversation. This is the link to their web site: Their web site is evolving, and in addition to all of the many, many talented needlepoint designers, they have access to a local artist who paints many of the pretty canvases seen in their store (apparently in a flash, according to Russell!).

The store only opened a few months ago, and has many unique canvases and lovely threads. They are open lots and lots of hours, and have all kinds of neat things going on almost every night after the store is closed. Once a month they even have a non-needlepoint related lecture where you can listen & sit & stitch! What a fun idea!

I purchased a lovely canvas brick cover that has an image of (what has to be) my kitten Mia; I didn't know she did modeling! Linda & I acquired some tools we were always thought about, including a tray for our System 4 Needlepoint stands. As we were getting ready to go, Steven told us about a new silk & wool thread that works beautifully on 13 gauge canvas without pilling. I need to explore that further. A few other things snuck their way into the Rittenhouse bag as well......;)

UPDATE: That thread is Planet Earth silk.

After shopping, we went down to the Italian District where some of Ashley's friends joined us for lunch. We took Ashley back to school, and on our ride back to NY, Linda & I planned our next trip down to visit this new fun location--and my daughter! to work on the initial canvas. D

PS: The mantle is done, I am waiting for some embellishments to arrive to add before I show you the completed project. Patience.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Two Sophisticated Socks Done

I have completed the January and February Sophisticated Socks. They were a very quick and easy project. The thread selection is really what makes them pop. I have March to stitch but it will have to wait awhile.

Last week I signed up for Amy Bunger's Nativity Home Study Course. The first canvas arrived on Thursday and everything else is on hold until I get this stitched. My daughter and I are both doing the Nativity and we want to get the first three pieces stitched by the beginning May. We have our first canvas already started, Baby Jesus. Mary will arrive in March and Joseph in April. Provided there are no bumps in the road we should reach our deadline. The reason for the deadline is that we want to give the finishing to Amy and we will be going down to Memphis in the middle of May for a class with Amy.

I already have one small bump. On Friday, I start an Initial Ribbon class at my LNS. Jennifer, my daughter, has a small bump also. She is going to Italy for 10 days in April. I am confident that we will reach our goal. Jen is a fast stitcher and I will just have to find more time in the day to stitch.

I will keep you posted on our progress.


Monday, February 2, 2009

Feel Like I've Built a House

Here's a photo of the current progress on my mantle canvas. I apologize for the shadow in the upper right hand corner, I think that was caused by the flash bouncing off the magnifier off to the side.
For this section, the actual fireplace itself, I completely ignored the stitch guide which accompanied this canvas.

Hopefully, you can see that there are quite a few stitches here intended to simulate an architectural effect. I spent a lot of time researching what I was trying to achieve. First of all, we don't have a fireplace in our home, which worked to both my advantage and disadvantage. The advantage was, I had no idea what my real fireplace might look like, and just how much detail there might be. On the other hand, I could be putting in way more detail than ever could exist in real life. What I was trying to demonstrate was a beautiful, carved wooden mantle, with lots of detailed woodworking. Some of the stitches I used here were the Quick Stitch (from my Stitches for Effect books, Robertson & Howren), various gobelin variations (made up on my own), elongated tent & reverse elongated tent (from 176 Stitches to Unlock Creativity, Snyder & Hardin), and Triangular Rhodes & Rectangular Rhodes, again from the Stitches for Effect series, Roberston & Howren). There is also a cashmere variation for the floor; my inspiration was Amy's Cookbook for Stitchers. I spent time looking through all my books, and my old Needlepoint Now Magazines, searching for ideas that would work. I hope it all works. Certainly, should I ever GET a fireplace, I have plenty of thoughts about the woodwork!

I have now started on the inside of the fireplace, where the fire is. Here, I find myself going back to the stitch guide. Now that I have (hopefully) conquered my cold (with the help of a lot of sleep this past weekend and modern medicine), I think I will be done with this canvas soon, so you can see the completed work.

Later, D