Sunday, August 29, 2010

New project

Well, in the end, it didn't take me all that long to decide what I would be stitching next. I have decided on my very first Prairie Schooler design that reads "A stitch in time". I thought it would be perfect to head up my blog. It's stitched on 32 count, and I completely forgot how small that is! I'm not having as much trouble with it as I initially thought I would though. The last time I worked on 32 count was 13 years ago, and my eyes were a touch better then!

I told myself that I was going to get everything organised last night to be able to start stitching today. It was quite late when I got off the phone to my mum, so intended to head to bed once I had done that. Well, it turns out that there were other ideas afoot... I had everything ready - threads sorted, material cut, centre found... And then as I was about to put it away, a little voice entered my head - "just a stitch or two to start won't hurt, will it?". I gave it some thought (for about a millisecond or two!) and thought that if I did a couple of stitches I could go to bed content in the knowledge that I had at least made a start. But we all know that I didn't stop at a couple of stitches, don't we? LOL I was still up stitching when hubby got up to go to work, at about 10.45pm, and only put it away at about 11.30pm.... Silly me! I've been tired all day because of that, but here's what I managed to get done:

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Hubby's stitching

I am very pleased that this week my husband picked up his stitching again! Woohoo! Admittedly, it was after a bit of teasing from myself and my stitchy friend Belinda (maybe even her hubby Adrian too) but I'm sure that doesn't matter, the point is that he started again. It has been a couple of years since he's stitched, probably. It's been so long that neither of us can remember. I got him hooked into cross stitch shortly after we got married - cunning plan! He had asked me to stitch an Egyptian design for him that he liked, and I agreed to. It was quite a complicated design (and still hasn't been done to this day...) Then he saw another couple of much simpler Egyptian designs so got them for me to do. One day I was stitching on another piece and we were discussing what I was going to stitch next. The Egyptian designs got mentioned and I jokingly told him that seeing as they were for him, he should be the one stitching them. To my surprise, he agreed! We decided it was best for him to start on a small design first to see if he liked it, and so we ordered a Snoopy design from Sew and So. Once he had begun stitching it, the bug took hold. He told me he now understood how I can sit and stitch all day and not realise how much time has passed. That, as they say, is history and was the beginning of his addiction.

Unfortunately, after a couple of years of doing really well at it, he developed carpal tunnel syndrome which made it very difficult to stitch. He had an operation on one wrist but it wasn't terribly successful. I think now he has come to live with it, and wants to try and do as much as he can, when his wrists allow. Work has also got in the way over the past couple of years, with promotion meaning that he hasn't had the time to do any stitching as he has had paperwork to do at home, and then been too tired to do anything else.

There was also a disaster with one of his kits, which had been left out for a while without being done, and the sun had got to it. It was black fabric, so ended up going a shade of red down one side. I think he learnt a painful lesson there, and it put him off stitching for a while. It was a stunning tiger design too. But, after some careful cajoling here and there, he's back into it! He decided that the only way he was going to get back into it was by starting a new design. So he went through his box of stash (one of my rules when he started stitching was that he was going to keep his hands off MY stash!) and decided on a design called Fish Quay by Derwentwater Designs.

This is how far he has got after 2 days (probably only a couple of hours worth) of stitching.

Lizzie*Kate finish

I finally did it! I finished stitching a design. *happy dance* I really enjoyed stitching with the specialist threads, and I think the button sets it off nicely. I love stitching Lizzie*Kate!

It's been so long since I have finished something, even longer since I have finished something I am going to be keeping myself - it's a great feeling. I'm thinking about getting it framed fairly soon too, rather than add it to the finished designs I have waiting to be framed. It almost feels like jumping the queue, but I'm itching to get this one up on the wall.

I now have to decide what I'm going to stitch next - such a lot to choose from too! I'll have some fun making that decision today.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Lizzie*Kate update

I feel as though I have made a lot of progress on this design over the past week or so. It feels like it won't be long before I am finishing it off either. It's been a while since I have had a finish, so it's a bit exciting!

I ended up fixing the mistake too - I decided on taking out the top row and moving it up, and stitching an extra row on the bottom of the oblong too. I think it looks ok, and if I had left it and moved the bottom up one, I think it would have looked too squashed.

I'm really enjoying using the speciality threads now too. The effect is subtle but good. Just a little more time consuming, and I have to keep reminding myself to cross the stitches individually rather than doing a whole row at a time!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

A mistake or two

It seems that over the past couple of days, I have discovered a couple of mistakes... The first one I discovered was that I had miscounted my weight loss, and had actually lost 6.5lbs up to Wednesday, not 6lbs. Yippee! Then I weighed in and lost another 1.5lb making a total of 8lb in 4 weeks. Can't say I'm disappointed at that! :D In all, since the end of January, that makes almost one and a half stones - woohoo! :D

The other mistake, I discovered today. I have not counted correctly on my L*K design, but nothing disastrous. I am debating how to fix it up though (mistakes in my work is one of my pet peeves!) I have a one stitch gap between the border and the writing starting at the top, where there should be a gap of two. I am debating whether to a) decrease the gap at the bottom so that it's even or b) take out the row of stitching above the writing and move it up one, adding a row to the top and bottom of the rectangle on the left hand side... I just don't want it to look squashed if I take option a or out of place if I take option b... Decisions, decisions! I'll post an update picture soon too, as I have got as far as the word "please" :D

Monday, August 9, 2010

A new WIP

I think I've decided to give WTP a rest for a little while, until I summon the courage to sort out the mistake I have made on him. So, now I have another project that was previously started and ended up getting put to one side (as it is for me, and it was put aside to stitch for others as is always the case!) that I would like to finish. I did want to start on one of the charts I recently got at the show, but most of them required 32ct or 28ct (of which I had neither) and the only ones I did have material for were too large - I just wanted to do a small design. So, at about 9.30pm after texting my stitchy friend Belinda for most of the night, she convinced me to forget WTP and find another design. I looked everywhere for one that caught my fancy, and ended up settling on a Lizzie*Kate Giggle Boxer that reads "You can touch the dust but please don't write in it". I think it sums up this place very well! :P

I tried to be a bit fancy with the picture as I have noticed that on other blogs, people are very creative with their photography. Unfortunately, I am not a good photographer - I just have a "point and squirt" camera, but I am happy enough with it. This is the first project where I have used speciality threads (thanks Bek!) and it is taking a bit of getting used to, having to do the stitches one at a time. I'm sure the overall effect will be worth it in the end, but it just makes the stitching slower going, I think. I am looking forward to finishing a design that is just for me too, so I think I am going to enjoy this one!

Friday, August 6, 2010

Stitch and slim update

Well, there have been mixed results so far... The slimming is actually going better than the stitching at the moment, which was a total shock to me! I lost 2.5lb this week, making a total of 6lb in the past 3 weeks. It's not as fast as I would have done if I were going to a group, but I must say that I am pretty pleased with the results so far :D I think the thing I am most impressed about is that I am not snacking of an evening. By the time I get home from work and get Caitlyn organised and in bed though, it's about 8.00pm to 8.30pm before I am having dinner so I guess that eliminates the need for snacking. If I feel like I do need something before dinner, I am finding that I'll just grab an apple. It'd be even better if I could get one all to myself, but Buster the crazy Beagle just loves apples, so I have to share! LOL

Stitching wise, not much has happened. I have started ripping out the mistake on WTP, but I got a bit unenthusiastic about it and he's just been sitting there for about the past week. To be perfectly honest, I don't want to pick him up at the moment either, so I think I will be starting on another small project to make sure my stitchy bug stays alive and well. I haven't decided which one I will do yet, but most likely it'll be one of the charts that I picked up at the show - I'm itchin' to be stitchin' one of those!

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Craft and Qulit Fair

It's been over a week since I went to the Craft and Quilt Fair with Belinda and Cassie, so I thought I had better post about it! I have wanted to before now, but have just been so tired from work and this darn cold that I haven't mustered the enthusiasm... But here I am now :D

We all had a fab time at the show, and I am very happy that Belinda and I finally got to one together :D There were only a few cross stitch stalls, which is disappointing, but the old favourites were there, so that was good. We had a wonderful time looking at all the stash that we *could* have come away with, but all in all, I think we were fairly restrained. Cassie managed to find her very first cross stitch project, so I am looking forward to helping her on her way with that in the future, and Belinda bought some fabric for her birth sampler as well as a Mirabilia kit that she has wanted for ages. I bought just patterns: Lizzie*Kate, Prarie Schooler and Glory Bee, with a couple of them being on my wish list, so that was an added bonus. :D

I also saw a L*K design that read "Dogs leave paw prints on your heart" but when I went back to go and purchase it, someone had taken it (none of the ladies at the stall remember selling it, and they only had one copy). It's so disappointing to think that there are crafters around that would do something like that.

All in all, it was a fab day, and I can't wait to go again next year! :D