Monday, 28 March 2011

Garden and Stitching

Spring is most definitely making herself felt. Our small garden has suddenly become a treat to see with buds bursting on the fruit trees and early flowering climbers are out as well. Must admit it makes me feel as though we live in the South of England when we really live in the North West. I have a soft spot for Pansies as they always look like 'Smiley Faces' bobbing in the light breeze. I have no idea what the name of this pansy is but I bought the original plant several years ago and since then it has gone through varying stages from looking lovely to a bit straggly but each year it comes up again a mass of flowers. I now have patches of this plant all over from where I have taken a piece off and planted it elsewhere and also from the myriad of baby plants it has had. I have other colours but this one just seems to be the one that really likes my soil.

My stitching has been coming along well again so my 'mojo' must be well charged. Last week I finished off the 'Country Cottage' part on 'Castles in the Air'. I did a mix of the speciality stitches and the straight cross stitch.

If I was starting this now I would have chosen greens with a greater shade difference between the two darker shades. One is 3362 rather like a moss green and the other is 937 which is a slightly 'yellower' green. When they were next to each other in the full skein they looked very different but now stitched up the difference is hard to see, particularly on the photos. But 'hey ho' you live and learn.
True to form just when I thought I was on my 'catch up' a new download arrived. I looked at the chart and must admit it took a while for me to realise what it was!! I quite surprised my self and have actually finished it

Again I have altered parts to suit me, this is from colours to stitches and also some positional adjustments. I gave the 'bunny' a small nose (1/4 stitch) as I thought it needed one and a lighter tail. I also changed the cross stitch eye to a french knot on both the bunny and the hedgehog. The full cross stitch to me didn't look right but as usual that's just my opinion.
I've just got one section to catch up now and that goes back a few downloads to No 17. It's a mermaid. Guess what I don't like it !! So this is a 'Watch This Spot' space at the moment.

I've done a little on my TLC Santa, not huge amounts but as this is my handbag stitch when grandchildren minding, I'm quite pleased. I must make the mustache for the one that all the cross stitch is completed on and then I can finish it off completely.

With Winter in Mind (Ho Ho Ho) I've been getting on with 'Warm Winter Wishes', my Waxing Moon Design. I was doing very well until I ran out of 'oatmeal' by Gentle Arts and also realised that I hadn't bought the 'Snowflake' Buttons by JABC.

This led me to a new discovery..... I have been given the name of a supplier, Mary Jane Collection . I haven't been to it in person but I do know someone who has. Apparently it's a bit in the wilds of Wales but they do post out to you. It could well be worth a visit to the web site, their prices seem very competitive.

Now to warm me up second African themed piece, Kuihugura (Looking Back) I enjoy doing these as the colours are blended into each other in the back ground so well that sometimes you can hardly see the difference when you are sewing it, but when you hold it up the subtle difference adds just that extra 'little something'.

Well I'm off now, back to 'Castles' to make some decisions.

Once again many thanks for popping in and leaving a comment if you've time. Until next time 'May your Mojo be with you.'

Sunday, 20 March 2011

Spring is in the Air

Hi there. This is a early blog. I've been at my sister's for the weekend so that I could attend a meeting in her vicinity. My DH goes on the golf course so he is hardly ever seen. Guess what he went with 'shorts' on. Hard frost and 'shorts'. He enjoyed himself so that is what it's all about. Thought I'd give you a shock!!!! I've got TWO finishes, yes Two. The first one is Munokoreria (The Dance Leader). I am turning her into a bell pull but am going to wait until I have finished all three so that I can hopefully get them all to looking similar. The next one of those I'm going to start has been put onto the frame by my DH but I have yet to put a thread in to it. It is called Kuihugura ( Looking Back). I'll possibly be starting it shortly.
My second finish my version of the Victorian Christmas Tree.
I've got another two to do of those yet but I may doodle along with something different for a while. I have to finish all of the ones done do far and put the hangers on. (I'm not too good at finishing anything off after I've done the stitching they just end up in a pile OOOOPs!!)

I've made a start on Waxing Moons 'Warm Wishes'. I took everything with me to my sister's. I had made doubly sure that all the threads were there and by some mysterious happenings my 'oatmeal' had decided it didn't want to come and had hidden itself away again with my other Gentle Arts threads . I turned my sisters lounge upside down looking for it as I was convinced I had it, this is the colour used for the snowman. All this to no avail it was still at home. Anyhow I worked round it and stuck to hats and scarf for a starter. I haven't used the Jobelan 'antique blue' as I had bought some 'Shaker' Grey-blue linen I decided to use this instead and am happy with the result. I think this could be a relatively quick stitch as well. I'll then have to find a frame. I was hoping that a Mill Hill frame would sort it but I think that they are just a little too small, I'll have to do some measuring.

Castles in the Air is coming along as well. I've finished 'The Folly' - even down to all the back stitching- and made a start on the 'Country Cottage'. I don't think there's really that much left of it to do, mainly the garden part and the white parts of the cottage. Fortunately there is still no fresh download from Papillon Designs so I may even manage a full catch up.( Now I've said that there will probably be a huge download in the next couple of days or so.)

The TLC Santas that I showed pics of last time I have yet to do any more with But for those of you who have never seen them before I bought mine at 'The Nimble Thimble' which I believe is the only UK Stockist. Chris from the TN will be at the NEC, Birmingham from the 24th-27th March. Apparently there are 25 of these little Santas as the designer does a new one every year, I'll put a link on that shows you the pictures again ofTLC Santas . The Nimble Thimble doesn't have a web site but I'll put the phone number the bottom of my post should you wish to contact them.

While at my sister's I went down to collect 'My Family is like Fudge' now fully framed by once again the Nimble Thimble. I'm pleased with it and am glad I bought the hand made frame from 'Poppy Creations for it, I've just got to make up my mind on where I'm going to hang it.

I promised last time that I'd show you some pics of 'Spring' appearing in our garden. Unfortunately I'm not good enough with the camera to catch the pair of Blackbirds or the Robins but honestly they are there.

We had been hoping to go to our eldest granddaughter's presentation of her Guide Baden-Powell Award today but sadly it was for parents only. Regardless of that her granddad and I are immensely proud of her.
Well that's it for now, thanks for popping in again many thanks for your kind comments. See you all next time . Until them 'May the Stitching stay with you'.

Nimble Thimble Details:[ Nimble Thimble, LLangedwyn Mills, Llangedwyn, POWYS 01691780088

Friday, 11 March 2011

Busy ,Busy, Busy.

Not had a great deal of stitching time this last couple of weeks despite not having to go midweek grandchildren minding. Instead my DH and I went out tropical fish searching. We keep saying we're only looking and keep coming back with something else. Also we've been garden tidying !!! Our small garden has looked pretty awful for weeks but finally daffodils and crocus have decided to pop their heads up to cheer us up. I'll take a pic next time only today it's pouring down.
Although not mid week minding I was there instead at the weekend. This was while my son and his wife went to see the 'Blues Brother Show' followed by a 40th birthday. This meant they stayed at my home whilst I stayed at theirs. Did I draw the short straw?? Early Saturday evening my grandson was making biscuits for the Scout troop AGM and his twin sister then made some buns, chocolate of course, she likes to experiment and puts half a 'Rolo' in the bun, They turn out well, she always calls them her 'Surprise Buns' because you never can be sure what she has tried in the middle.
I was up with the larks on the Sunday to deliver my two granddaughters to the dress rehearsal of the show that they were that day in the City theatre (Dress rehearsal 9.30am first performance 14.00, 2nd performance 19.00) Then it was a return journey to the village to take and watch my grandson at his away football match for 10.00. The match didn't start until 11.00 and we were at the pitch before the home team were out of bed!!(Well seemed like it!) I don't usually watch football but being the 'stand in' supporter I watched. It was a lovely sunny day but with a cold wind (I'd forgotten my coat I usually do my sport supporting in) so I got more than a bit on the chilly side. The youngsters scored a few goals and were extremely pleased with themselves when I looked up to see my son and his wife walking round the pitch. They'd left my house earlier than I thought they would and traveled to watch. The final score was 15 - 3. my grandsons team had won in style and he had scored one of the goals. He was delighted as his normal place is a defender but as their score rose they let him have a go 'up front'. He was even more thrilled yesterday to see his name in the paper in the 'results section' for the junior leagues. So yet another exciting sporting week ended. This weekend I think I've got the watch junior hockey straw!! By the way the Dance Show was very good, on the long side though, but the girls had thoroughly enjoyed themselves and their brother managed to sleep through the finale. Don't know how. Must be a 'Boy thing'.

The stitching hasn't been totally ignored. I have made some good progress on my WIPS. I thought you may like to see these Christmas ornaments there are a little different to ones I have seen before. They are by TLC Designs. Vancouver,BC Canada. I haven't seen all the range but there are about 22/23 of them.

The first one is Santa V11, I did this one a while ago and had totally forgotten about him, he still needs his mustache making and putting on then finishing off.

I have Santa 11 in my bag and have started to take it out when waiting places such as the doctors the other day and today the dentist. It gives you something else to concentrate on in the waiting rooms!!

Depending on how they look when I finally get round to finishing them off completely will determine whether or not I get anymore of them. They are about 3" in height and simply padded with a couple of cotton wool balls, so simple to make up.
I have just found this site that shows all
TLC Designs Santas It's called Buttoned Up. Now I can have a good look at the different patterns and decide if I will do any more of them.

Still with Christmas in mind another of the Festival of Trees that I am adapting slightly to suit what I have available in the bead box. This is the fourth one, the Victorian Tree, two completed, the one I started second is on hold at the moment, can't quite remember why though. It'll come back to me, probably something to do with bead shades.

My Dance Leader I am enjoying doing. It's my feet up in the evening stitching. The colours are lovely and it grows quite quickly. There is all the outline on the dress to back-stitch and it's colour changes as the skirt changes shade. The back-ground shading is quite subtle as it is done in a combination of two thread half stitch and one thread half stitch along side the actual colour variations.

I keep looking on Papillon Designs with trepidation in case there's another download while I am still on my catch up stint. Although I have altered it here and there to suit me, download 16 is now complete. I'm holding back on D.17 as I'm not too sure that I like it so I've jumped to D.19 which I think is rather like a 'Folly' that was often constructed in the grounds of some of the grand homes of the 'Landed Gentry' of the UK. I'm don't know haw many more downloads there will be as this started somewhere about April/May in 2009. I shall be continuing my efforts to get it up to date before starting any other larger pieces. I know some of you out there have put it on one side and it may never come out again but for me I feel as though too much time and effort has been put into it not to get it all finished and as I have 'personalised' parts it does make it more special.
Here is D 16

This how far I've got on D 19

This pic is just to show how it all appears on it as a whole.

Wish me luck with my catching up I'm almost there.
Now it's off for an early meal as I am back grand children minding as there parents are off to an evening Wedding Do and I have 4 of my grandchildren to keep an eye on. 2 girls from one son and 2 boys from my other son. The other 2 are out at Scouts. All I can say is thank goodness for Wii Machines!!!!!

Thanks for calling in and spending a while. Your comments as usual are much appreciated. Until next time Enjoy your stitching and ' May your MOJO be with you'