Thursday, June 21, 2012

Grace Bridges Start and June TUSAL

This past weekend I decided on a new start.  There are so many beautiful samplers in my stash waiting to be stitched so it was a hard choice but I finally picked Grace Bridges by Stacy Nash as my next start.  It was nice to have a weekend that wasn't chock full of plans for once so I was able to get the vine in and the alphabet started before the work week began.  The alphabet hs gone fairly quickly and last night I stayed up past my bedtime to get the dividing line in.  I knew that I'd dread picking it back up if I didn't!  I have one more alphabet and Grace's name and then I get to the fun part of this sampler with the peacocks, flowers and that cool gold house!  I am using the conversion to silk threads put together by Attic Needlework and am stitching this on 36 ct. Lakeside Vintage Examplar.  I don't think I realized how big this was going to be but I love the sampler and it's going to look great in my bedroom when it's finished! 

IMG_0474I'm also a couple days late on the June TUSAL so here's my jar snuggled in with the dog and cat treats (I love these treat jars)!  Sorry for the poor snap of the TUSAL jar itself but you get the idea.  Each month after I take the picture I push the threads down farther in the jar.  I figured I'd need to do this to get a full year in one jar but it's not really a great way to show progress because I suspect that it looks the same each month.  Oh well. 

We're six months into the TUSAL challenge but it's not too late to join in, go to Daffycat's blog to get the scoop and join in! 

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Mary Ann Blackburn Finish

Well, I took the above picture a little over a week ago.  I had planned to do a progress post of Mary Ann Blackburn by Blackbird designs and then life just got in the way and I've been busy.  So, I'm posting it today even though on Tuesday I finished Mary Ann! 

I love both of the above pictures!  I stitched Mary Ann Blackburn on a beautiful cut of 40 count Sheep's Straw Linen with the called for GAST/WDW/CC Cotton overdyed threads.  I love how the piece is nice with lots of warm browns in the first photo and then how it just pops with the reds in the finished version.  I wasn't sure if I was going to like the CC Used Brick which is what was called for as the red in the piece and had thought about switching to WDW Brick.  But, I do love how it turned out so now all I have to do is pick a frame and get her up on my wall! 

While she waits for me to pick a frame, she's sitting on my craft room table which is literally covered with projects needing finishing or framing.  I had cleaned out the closet in this room over the past couple weekends to make better use of the space for stash organizing and that included cleaning off the table.  I love the look of all these pieces piled up but would really rather see them all up on my walls or finished as smalls.  So, I'd better get busy!  At least I was able to get the box painted for Spring Song! 

IMG_0465I had a helper while pressing Mary Ann for photography today too, miss Kitty loves sleeping in my craft room, who can blame her??   

I have seen several Dutch Beauty finishes of late and most recently Paulette's gorgeous finish!  I am in LOVE with this piece but I have no idea how Paulette had the patience to stitch this with 2 strands on 32 count linen.  LOL!  I added this to my stash a couple months ago and have been trying to pick a linen so I could start it, I'd love for it to be huge but I really prefer stitching with 1 strand now so I have a dilemma.  I've been thinking a nice 35 or 36 count linen would preserve some of the size while allowing me to stitch with one strand and my friend Katrina and I did a floss toss and loved R&R Sheep's straw.  I was all set to commit to 35 count Sheep's straw when I found these...

Two WIP's!!!  Yikes!  I thought I had just one, a drawn thread sampler that just needs the cross stitch portion done.  This is "A Very Fine Sampler" by Birds of a Feather (top) and "Betsy" by Sheepish Designs (bottom).  I started both of these in the last year or two on different colors of 35 cout R&R and set both aside because the linen was crunchy.  Now, don't get me wrong, R&R makes a beautiful linen, I think I just prefer the 40 count.  I stitched on the top piece a bit last night to see how it felt and it wasn't bad and both pieces went into my dryer with a dryer sheet to try to soften them up.  It seems to have helped a bit.  So, maybe I'll go with a 40 count Sheep's Straw?  I'd consider another manufacturer of linen, like Lakeside or Weeks but in 35 or 36 count I need larger than a half yard cut. 

So, now I find myself with Mary Ann Blackburn done, two WIP's to work on and no clear answer to Dutch Beauty.  Sigh.  Maybe I'll just go start something new...  :)