stitching stash


I am so excited to join in Nicola’s celebration this year.  I have been a bad blogger.  And, my stitching has not been as frequent as I’d like because of work and family obligations this past year.  Things have slowed down, and I was already making plans for December’s stitching and 2013 goals, when I saw that Nicola has decided to spur her fellow needleworkers on in a magnificent way.  I’m just excited thinking about the progress updates that everyone will post.

I have three charts from The Scarlet Letter in my stash, and many more on my wish list.  [I need to add that all the photos here are from The Scarlet Letter website.]  The three charts I have are:

American Quaker Band Sampler

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Ann Harding 1821

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The Twigg Miniatures (kit)

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I may start one of the Twigg Miniatures just because they’re already kitted up!  But, I really love Ann Harding.  The simplicity of the American Quaker is calling me too. So, I’ll start one of the three very soon.  I have a few things I need to finish first.

And, of course, this gives me a wonderful reason to pick up a few more charts on my wish list. Here are the top charts on my wish list right now.  Of course, they change almost hourly as I drool over my list and the Scarlet Letter website.

Dorothy Walpole

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Margret Lawrance

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Anniken Christensen Simensen 1768

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My friend, Cheryl (who doesn’t blog), may likely join me in this endeavor this year.  This is the first on her list:

Helen Vertue 1812

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I’m a sucker for alphabets, houses, peacocks… the Margret Lawrance sampler is a newer one from Scarlet Letter.  I also would love to work on a variety of samplers from different countries, especially those countries where my family comes from.  So, that’s why I have the choices I do at the top of my list right now.

I also wanted to mention that I’m now helping out a bit with the Swan Sampler Guild’s newsletter.  If you’re not a member of a guild because there isn’t one in your area, the Swans are a great guild to join, because they are open to anyone in the world.  I’m having a great time getting to know more of the people involved in the guild, and we have some fun things happening.  Here’s a link to the latest newsletter: Swan Newsletter Q4 2012

I’m off to stitch a bit while I watch Harry Potter!  I’m starting to watch the movies again. It’s so fun to see them all so young, and I’ll finish them before the end of the month.  I think that will be a great help to my stitching too!

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I’ve been working hard on my office/stash room in order to better organize, and find a permanent place for things like a cutting table, or a sewing machine, etc. I’ve gotten a lot of inspiration from great internet posts like this: http://www.home-designing.com/2009/05/craft-room-home-studio-setup and this: http://www.sarahyoude.com/2009/06/the-craft-room.html (scroll down on the blog page).

And, I have an IKEA somewhat nearby. So, as part of my Christmas gift to myself, I have purchased a couple gallons of paint, two cabinets, and some IKEA gear to get the crafting side of my “studio” (as Spinster Stitcher would call it) up and running. Really, I’ve had the cabinets for almost a year now, awaiting some stashing organization. I’ll be starting small, but am excited. My goal is to have the room up and running before January 1. Here are some of the items I purchased on Saturday:

http://www.ikea.com/us/en/catalog/products/10192824

http://www.ikea.com/us/en/catalog/products/50103604

http://www.ikea.com/us/en/catalog/products/50081452

http://www.ikea.com/us/en/search/?query=bygel

I’ll post more later, and promise some pics of the work in progress. It’s a beast of a room, with large bookcases (filled) and an office space already set up. But, I’m culling through the junk and will hopefully have a much more organized, cheery place to work on the things I love most in 2011!

Ta, ta!

Yes!  March.  I can’t believe I haven’t posted since March.  Shame on me.  Well, I’m up late working and watching my computer tick, so I can put in a few words and hopefully a pic or two.  Not much on the stitching front, because I have a few things going, and not a lot of progress on any.  I started LHN’s Liberty Belles on July 5th.  I know.  It’s late, but it’s a little fun piece, and we actually ended up celebrating the holiday on Monday anyway.  Ribeyes, jumbo shrimp scampi, and potatoes, onions, and sweet potatoes in butter on the grill, lots of lemonade and a new piece to stitch on.  That was a nice day.

In other news, I recently went to Orlando for a conference.  Whilst there I realized that Universal was having a “soft opening” of the new Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Islands of Adventure.  The park has now opened to the public, but I was able to sneak in one morning that I was there, with only 999 other crazy people.  While I hear that now, the waiting line to just get in is 9 hours.  Sheesh.  I have to say, as a big Harry Potter fan, they got this right.  It was just really fun, and the new ride is a blast.  I have tons of pictures, but here is a good one, with my friend Cheryl and I in front of the Hogwart’s Express.

Cheryl and Laura in front of the Hogwarts Express

Cheryl and Laura in front of the Hogwarts Express

Hogsmeade Snowpeople
Hogsmeade Snowpeople – Don’t they look great for being in 90 degree weather?
Hogsmeade Toward Hogwarts Castle

The Hogsmead skyline towards Hogwarts Castle

Owelry And Butterbeer

A View of the Owelry and the Butterbeer Keg

You can probably tell in the picture that I brought home a bit of loot.  The thing I forgot about was that my wands — being the long, thin, pointy things they are —  might cause a ruckus with airport security on the way home.  Yep, they caught sight of them in the Xray in my carry on, and had to search my bag.  But, what happened next was something I wish I’d had a video camera for.  They guy at the X-Ray pulled one out of the box, carefully looked it over, then raised it above a co-worker’s head, and with a flick of the wrist and swish of the wand, found out that it wasn’t really magical at all, and let me pass.  Funny stuff.  I did tell them that they would probably have lots more come through security in the next several months.  Luckily, the folks at Universal were smart enough not to make them sharp on the ends, or I would have lost a pricey investment in cast resin, I think.

And, I do have tickets to James Taylor and Carole King next week.   It’s been a long time since I’ve been willing to spend good money on a live performance.  In fact, I think it’s been since I got my iPod.  Who knew that lovely digital thing that contains most of my music collection would be enough to keep me in boogie heaven.  But, I couldn’t resist the option to see James and Carole together, and even splurged for seats on the floor.  I’ll let you know if it was worth it.

I have purchased a bit of stash.  My auntie Susan and I spent a day a couple of weeks ago in Ogden at Shepherd’s Bush and the Needlepoint Joint.  I picked up the last Blackbird Loose feather chart, linen and a thread conversion for The Goode Huswife’s “With My Needle” (already had the chart) at SB.  Teri was there, dressed in her usually cute jumper attire with a big felt flower brooch pinned on, and my Aunt went nuts.  She has decided she wants to be the queen of felted, knitted, and crocheted flower brooches in Boise, Idaho.  She decided this before we went to the Needlepoint Joint, where we found, some free knitted and crocheted headband charts, and a book called “100 Flowers to Knit and Crochet”.  I also picked up a chart of six knitted dishcloths, and a couple of skeins of mercerized cotton for the dishcloths in a neutral color.  I just love the little dish and face cloths that Staci at Snippets and Stash does.  Especially the neutral colored ones.  Okay, any of them are great!  And, I’ve wanted to knit some up for gifts.  We’ll see how much knitting I get done while the sun is shining so much.  I did see a wonderful knitted purple pig, that apparently is in a Rowan book that was not in stock… that saved me about another $30 I’m guessing.  Well, maybe not, when I order it online and feel compelled to make sure I buy enough to get free shipping.  I think it’s a plot.  After we shopped for stash, we picked up my cousin, and returned to Rooster’s for a great dinner.  It was a fun day.  I don’t often get to spend time with my favorite aunt.

Then, last week, after I spent all day at a meeting at the U, I stopped by a couple of shops on my way home just before they closed.  First, I had to pick up some new bamboo size 8 needles, because someone chewed on one of mine… while it was in the yarn still…  this boy-dog of mine has a yarn fetish.  Yarn and threads are the only thing he goes after to chew on.  Well, that, and jelly doughnuts, which is a story for another day.  After picking up my needles (and avoiding any more yarn purchases, which I’m proud that I did),  I did trek on over to The Craft Center.  While there, I picked up some threads for the BBD loose feathers piece.  I didn’t like the colors called for, and in fact, they don’t look much like the photo in my opinion. So, I did some switching.  And, I’ve decided I’m going to stitch the front and back of the pocket in a sampler form, with one on top of the other.  I also picked up the first two charts of Lizzie Kate’s Christmas Rules.  I’m not much of a big Lizzie Kate fan anymore, but I just can’t resist a few of her latest designs that say so much. 

So, there you have it.  It’s a long post I know, but lots can happen in four months!  Whew.  I’d better make this a habit, or call it a quarterly newsletter or something other than a blog, don’t you think?  The good thing about this big post though, is that I can see I’ve been really blessed to have good family, friends, and fun the past four months.

Well, life is busy.  Better get back to my computering.  I’m also really grateful to be employed in a job that I love!  Hope that the few of you who read this are having a great summer also.

Just a quick commercial message for the Blackbird Design’s book “Honeysuckle Manor”.  Many of you have raved about this one, and I knew I would pick it up eventually.

When I looked at it on Saturday, I was holding the last copy in the shop at the time.  It was even a copy that had been reserved for one of the staff members, but the owner told me I could actually have that copy, if I wanted, and she would order another for the staff member.  Wow.  An opportunity to plop down $25 more bucks.  I didn’t pass it up.

You shouldn’t either!  It’s full of beautiful projects.  Of course, I loved them so much, that I bought the threads for the two samplers on the spot, along with a beautiful piece of vintage Lakeside Linen Autumn Gold that I think will work well for the Margaret Harris sampler.  Unfortunately, I forgot about the chart error I had read about on the BBD blog, and I purchased the wrong color  of Belle Soie for the house, etc. instead of Vanilla Pudding.   I’ll have to remedy that next week.  Hmmm, so my little trip to pick up a few cotton threads, cost me over a hundred bucks.  Sheesh.  I need to get some self control!  But, this is the only item I’ve purchased from market.  Of course, I do have a bunch of stash items I’ve picked up recently, but they’ve been on my list of things to buy for a while.  I’ll have to share more about those, when I get my package from Elegant Stitch.

I also have a piece of LL Bittersweet (32 count) that I believe will be perfect for Hannah Lovina Joslin’s sampler.   We’ll see!  I’m dying to start it.  But, first, I need to finish a few pieces!  I do have a finish to share, and have made good progress on another.

I finished Homespun Elegance’s “Home is Where You Hang Your Needlework”.  This was fun to do.  I had put it away for a bit, worried I was running out of the Espresso silk.  I picked it up on Saturday, and forged ahead.  I finished it with one complete strand of Espresso silk left.

Homespun Elegance

Please forgive the lighting, but I had to use a flash this morning.   I stitched this on LL Meadow Rue.

I didn’t get a good picture of my BBD My Quaker House, which is about 70% complete, but trust me, I like it!  I hope to finish it sometime this weekend.

Well, new adventures are starting with Spring coming, and other events.  There will be plenty to show and tell in the coming weeks. That’s all I’ll say about that.

Have a great day, and make time for creativity!

Hello everyone!  I just had to pop in and say I’m so amazed at the speed with which Kathy from Carriage House Samplings got some charts into the mail for me.  I ordered them on the 15th or so from her Etsy store, and knowing it was just before market I wasn’t expecting them for a bit.  WAH-LAH, they arrived today.  A week.  And there was market in there.  Way to go Kathy!  I ordered “Sampler Folk”, “An American Landscape”, and “Plain and Fancy”.

Now, to contrast, I ordered some back issues of Just Cross Stitch and SANQ directly from Hoffman Media last October. 🙂  Got a confirmation of my order, but my card was never charged, and the magazines never came.  I tried again last week, with just one magazine.  I got the usual confirmation.  Luckily, this time I received a notice that it had been shipped.  So, I took a chance and ordered the rest of the magazines I was hoping to get last Fall.  I got the confirmation again, and received the charge confirmation this morning.  So, hopefully, they are winging their way toward me now.  I’ve just been in the mood to enhance my stash with some oldies but goodies.  But, mainly, these charts from Kathy have been on my wish list for some time.  And, I’ve just been so enticed by everyone’s blog entries about “This is the Day” in the JCS Jan/Feb 2009 issue.  I’ve really wanted to have that one for future stitching.  I also love Katrina‘s conversion!

So, now, my fingers are searching the internet for other treasures.  Older treasures really…charts that I’ve wanted for a while.  I’m still looking for the I’m-never-going-to-find-it Birds of a Feather “Friendship Sampler”.  Anyway, I need more stash like I need a hole in my head.  Really.  What am I thinking?  I have two cabinets I bought to put all my stash in that I have yet to put together.  I think this is a cry for help.  Really.  Okay…not really.  So, are there any market must-haves for you?  I’ve thought of picking up the Little House Needleworks mattress thing.  But then I thought, what in the world will I do with that?  I’d rather have a nice sampler in my stash that will go on my wall or someone else’s someday I guess.  I’m sure I’ll pick up a couple of the Blackbird Designs charts someday, but not right now. 

I WILL pick up the chart for Elizabeth Savilles that Terri has just finished.  I absolutely love this.  Terri, it’s beautiful!  And, by the way, I just totally identify with your ski story!  I’ve done that more than once on dry land, when I’ve hiked up a hill that I just can’t seem to get back down!  But I digress…  I’m waiting to see if Attic Needlework has the chart for ‘Liz it in stock…  And wonder if they have the OWS threads there to be able to do a conversion for me, or if I should just use the OWS.  I love those colors too, so I don’t have to change them really.  It just begs to be done for one of my nieces.

That said, I’m about to enter the season that will really restrict my stitching time, so I’ll be putting most of this away, and continuing to concentrate on just a few pieces.  But, I vow I will spend at least a few hours every Sunday, and hopefully some time in the evening a couple days a week. 

I’m interested though in whether any of you have found any items from market that you just have to have, whether sooner or later!  Thanks for your comments.  I know my little ole’ blog isn’t the most fun or interesting, but it’s fun to know that some of my fellow stitchers are out there and listening!  I just love this art of ours… for the art that it is, and for the way it brings us all together.

I hope you’ve all had a great day!

Wow, it’s been a while since I put a lovely post out in the blogosphere… I have stitched a bit, had a wonderful holiday break from work in December, and have been back to the daily routine for a while now, like the rest of you.  I started a new piece on New Year’s Day… didn’t really need to (does ANYONE need to?) because I have soooo  many WIP’s.  But, I couldn’t help myself.  I started “Holy Moses” by Silver Creek Samplers over one on 28 count antique ivory linen using the DMC with a few cotton overdyes.  I was only able to work on it two nights in January, but I’ve made some progress lately.  It is slow-going though, and I’ve reverted to a couple of the WIPs listed below for some variety.

And, I spent a great portion of my holiday break enjoying time with family, playing on my new Wii (love that thing), and watching movies that I’ve never seen before, that I’ve always wanted to watch.  For instance, I finally watched “A Man for All Seasons”.  Loved it.  I also saw “Miss Potter”.  Loved it.  I’ve been really busy with work, and I’m teaching a class this semester as well, so that keeps me on campus six days a week.  But, I’ve tried to take at least a few hours a week to stitch and watch a movie.  And, now the Olympics are on!  I’m excited to see all the athletes compete, but I’m especially excited to see the women’s skeleton races.  Noelle Pikus-Pace is from my neck of the woods.  I’ve only been able to spend a bit of time with her, many years ago when I was a YW camp leader.  She joined us on a day hike, which was very eventful.  And, she came over to our part of the camp for our week-long camping event.  She was a lot of fun to have there, and based on what I learned of her personality then, I’m not surprised that she likes to throw herself on a little board and glide FAST down an ice-covered track! 

I also did a bit of organizing and tossing out over the holiday and since.  Can you believe it!  I can see part of the floor in my home office.  And the parts I can’t see are only stacked half as high as they were.  I purchased two new cabinets that will occupy part of the space, and hold….. drum roll please…. STASH.  Stitching and now knitting, some quilting fabric, some other projects, art supplies for finishing.  And, as the King of Siam would say in “The King and I”: Etcetera, etcetera, etcetera.

So, there is more organization and clearing out in my future.  The Deseret Industries is my friend (our local charity shop) because they like my clutter, especially when I get a hankering to clear some of it out!

So, here are some 2010 stitching and other goals that I am already working to accomplish:

– Track the projects I have (COUNT the WIPS – ouch!).

– Clean out the stash a bit!

– Complete 1/2 of Holy Moses by Dec 31.

– Stitch each LHN ornament as I receive it (I’ve finished the first one, and am half-way through the second… so I’m a bit behind on this one already!)

– Finish stitching on: LDD’s All Our Troubles, BBD’s ‘Tis the Season and Quaker House, and DT’s The Riddle.

-Frame, finish, or giveaway all completed pieces!

– Lose twenty pounds and keep it off (I’m already over half-way there!).

– Plant another big garden, probably expanding this year.

– Finish a few household projects that need that final touch before they’re really finished. (I got behind a few years ago when I was doing so much homework!)

– Get my genealogy files organized and start verifying information we have in our records.

Since I made these goals in January, and it’s now the middle of February (can you believe it?), I’ll report that I’m doing okay on most of them.  Here are some photos of some WIPS, and two ornaments I finished for friends for Christmas.  They turned out so cute, I was sorely tempted to keep them and buy my friends something!  I sttiched these Prairie Schooler bits from the chart “Let It Snow”, using DMC and Mocha Belfast linen, with a great backing fabric from the Roman Holiday fabric collection, which was a plaid brown, red and white (you can barely see it in the second pic), with a mini pom pom trim I found that looked perfect, if I do say so myself.  They almost looked vintage.

Edited this post to show this great plaid fabric!

And, here’s the WIPs:

BBD Quaker House

BBD ‘Tis the Season

 I did have an opportunity last weekend and this weekend to do a bit of shopping.  Of course a portion was dedicated to a bit of stash enhancement.  I picked up some items from The Craft Center.  I couldn’t resist the BBD July stocking chart.  I eventually hope to stitch all of them, but this one was calling my name that day, and I picked up a great BBD Loose Feather chart, with the linen and threads.  They also had some charts on clearance for $2.  Wow.  I didn’t have the Prairie Schooler chart, and the DT chart came with the thread.  Couldn’t resist that deal!  Then, we went to two knitting shops in the Salt Lake City area.  First, The Wool Cabin, where I picked up the Noro yarns and some turbo needles in sizes I didn’t have.  And, then Black Sheep Wool, where I picked up the Mission Falls wool and the Rowan yarn (green) for some headbands for the nieces. 

Yarn Stash Enhancement!

This past Saturday, I found some steal-deals on some shoes (the sensible, ugly kind… for that’s the only kind I wear) and picked up four pairs of pants at $10 each!  Do any of you love Keens?  I’ve discovered that my feet really love them.  I love bargains especially when they help to increase what I can wear to work.  Okay, the pants are mostly casual corduroys, which won’t necessarily work when I have lots of meetings, but they’ll do on less busy days and Fridays and they’ll stretch the life of the other items I do have.  And, the best thing about the 13 pounds I’ve lost is that I have found more to wear in my closet!  Bonus!

That’s it for today friends.  Stay safe and happy.

Okay, on this Valentine’s Day, I’ll just start by saying that my iTunes is shuffling and began with Frank Sinatra singing “Moonlight Serenade”, then moved onto James Taylor singing “My Romance”.  Sheesh.  Can’t a single girl enjoy a quiet Valentine’s Day with something like Aretha singing R-E-S-P-E-C-T?  Oh, and now the thing’s moved to Lionel Richie and “Truly”.  Wow.  I know it’s all my fault that these things are on my iTunes.  I really do.  And, I’ve loved these songs for years which is why I have them.  But, the Apple gods must be playing a joke though and picking these things all in a row. Or someone’s telling me I’m a hopeless romantic hidden beneath the thick skin of a Cupid cynic.

Lest I offend any of you who are celebrating this day of greeting-card days with your soul-mate (or said stand-in until you find him/her), please know I fully support you and am extremely happy that you are!  And, that I’ve had a most wonderful day myself and do NOT long for gooey, mushy stuff.  I did quite enjoy lunch with my brother-in-law, sister and their three daughters.  My great BIL wanted to take us to lunch for Valentine’s Day!  Great guy.  Did I say he’s a great brother-in-law?

I’m now listening to Queen Latifah singing “I Know Where I’ve Been”.  Better.  And a bit ironic after that last tirade, don’t you think?  Okay, maybe you’d think so if you knew more about my life.  Which I’m not going to share on a blog.  Not while I’m sane.  But, I will say that if you think of the princess looking for a prince by kissing a lot of frogs, you’d be really close to knowing a bit more about it. 😉

So, yesterday we had a great time with Cathy B, running around to all the great stitchy spots along the Wasatch Front.  We started at the Craft Center, where my friend Cheryl and I met up with Cathy B, Alice, Lynn, and Brenda.  They had the Homespun Elegance chart in for “Home is Where You Hang Your Needlework”.  I picked that up and after everyone had completed their shopping there, we headed up to the Shrine… the Bush… the place where “the rock stars of stitching” live.  At least that’s what Cathy calls them. And, I quite agree.  Tina and Teri were extremely gracious as always.  It’s so fun to look around and see what they’ve done with new releases.  And, you know even though I make it up there every few months or so, I had neglected some of their shelves with “long lost” designs for a while.  Cathy was immediately drawn to the Mary Garry section… and thanks to her attention to that area, I was able to pick up two charts that are just great.  They are “Friends in the Garden” and “The Ice-Skating Party”.

I was a bit sad that they didn’t have market releases out yet.  But, that was actually fine, and Mr. Pocketbook was grateful he wasn’t punished like he was expecting to be.  I also picked up the remaining supplies for Mary Peacock, which I had purchased the chart for the previous week.  Cathy had her camera there, and she may get to post some pics, but I have some too.  Of course, we were all looking at Cathy’s camera and not mine…here are Tina, Cathy B, and Teri:

Tina, Cathy B, and Teri

And, from left to right: Cheryl, Laura (me), Cathy B, Lynn, Alice, and Brenda:

Cheryl, Laura (me), Cathy B, Lynn, Alice, Brenda

After our shopping at the Bush, we headed over to Rooster’s for lunch.  Great food and great company.  Cathy, amazing person that she is, presented us all with a valentine… in our cards were hardanger hearts!  Wow.  She even had one there for Cheryl, who was kind of a last minute addition to the group.  How nice and thoughtful of Cathy to do that.  And the hearts are beautiful.

 Then, we went next door to the Needlepoint Joint.  Since I’ve started knitting it was hard for me to make it through the main part of the store and into the next section where their stitchy stuff is.  At one point, I said out loud “I’ll have to get me a sheep.”  I just love yarn.  I contained myself by thinking about the yarn I already have and the three projects that are on the needles.  But, when I caught up to the others in the stitchy section, I was happy to find an old copy of Fine Lines, which has the “Women of the Mayflower” chart in it from Sarah Ullman of Olde Willow Stitchery.  I only have a few copies of this magazine… and they’re mainly just the charts I liked.  I never was able to find this one.  Needlepoint Joint in Ogden has about four more copies if you’re looking.  And, about three other issues were there too.

After perusing some more there, Cheryl and I took Cathy to the airport.  It was a really fun day, and I especially loved the time we had getting to know Cathy.  What a sweet person!  I hope you enjoyed your time in Utah, Cathy.  We had a great time!

Okay, I don’t have any stitching progress to show, because I’ve been finishing an exchange.  But, that’s done, so I just need to wait until Tuesday to put it in the mail.  It’s a tiny bit late for mailing, but not anything that a reasonable amount of postage can’t cure.  I think.

Oh, and if you’re wondering, I’m now listening to David Benoit & Russ Freeman…  love this stuff.  I do have the ability to control this iTunes/iPod thing right?  (In the time it took me to post the pics for this along came Michael Buble singing “Call Me Irresponsible”, and the smooth talent of Marc Antoine.  I’m now enjoying the timeless Ella singing “Miss Otis Regrets”.  Love it.)

Happy day to everyone!  Take some time to stitch and listen to some fun tunes… or whatever relaxes you.

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