Monday, April 07, 2014

Closing Out the Year

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I appreciate you all being patient while I play post catch up here.  This post though, as you can tell from the title, is the last of things I wanted to share with you from the end of 2013.  

I was very excited when Paulette announced she would be doing a Sunday Mystery SAL back in September.  She released a part each Sunday for nine Sundays, with the promise that we'd have a finished piece before Thanksgiving.  I stitched Mary's Sampler II, which was the more densely stitched of the two pieces.  Each week I took the opportunity to stitch the new part, while reflecting on the season ahead and what it means to me.  I chose to stitch mine on 40ct Vintage Light Examplar by Lakeside with mostly the called for GAST threads.  I had to change out the white to a brighter white so that it didn't blend into my linen.  I also opted not to use the called for Espresso Bean, instead choosing a warmer, lighter brown.  Mary I dressed in blue, using a Limited Edition GAST called Aquamarine.  I love how my little sampler turned out and I'm looking forward to having it framed for this Christmas. 

One of the things I wanted to accomplish over the holidays was to finally do the finishing on all of my ornaments and my two guild nametags.  I figured since I had three ornaments for exchanges to finish, I might as well finish my others too. 

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I've already shared the finished product of the ornament I stitched for the EGA exchange and the ornament for the Tudor Rose exchange.  I also managed to finish these two. 

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I'm not over the moon about how my Penny Angel turned out, but I think the pompom trim for the Dash Away All was a perfect choice.  

And since I had them out, I took a pic of all my stitched ornaments together.  You can see my Tulip Angel and Shepherd's Bush ornaments are still lacking their trim.  I realized later that there was one missing from this photo.  Isn't that always the case with family reunions?  ; )

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I had one final finish for the year I wanted to share.  The year before at the Tudor Rose party, Sylvia and I decided to do an ornament exchange between the two of us in 2013.  So, it was with great anticipation that I opened up the package from and saw this beauty. 

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She stitched this Monsterbubbles ornament changing the colors and the linen.  She uses some metallic silver thread as well as adding the gorgeous beaded edge so that the whole thing sparkles in the Christmas tree lights.  And I absolutely love it on the dark blue linen.  Such a stunner in person, my photo does it no justice.  

But, here comes the funny part.  Sylvia and I didn't discuss with each other what we were stitching and kept it a surprise until the packages were opened.  Here's what I stitched for her.

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The little Blackbird Designs' Souvenir stocking seemed like the perfect choice since we'd be seeing each other in Paris in the spring.  I stitched this on 40ct Vintage Light Examplar (the same fabric I used for Mary's Sampler) with the called for threads.  I backed it with this pretty pink fabric and used Swarovski bicones for the hanger.  I think we both had fun with the exchange and will definitely be doing it again this year.  

I also had a couple of gifts I wanted to share.  Back in 2010, Gloria of Milady's Needle was designing this piece and asked if she could use Romeo's information to personalize it.  I had completely forgotten she'd promised the model to me in return until she sent it along.  I've hung it in the hallway with the memorial sampler for my dad (John Reed will also hang here once it's framed, I'm sure).  It is a sweet reminder of my boy, and a very generous and heartfelt gift. 

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My sweet friend, Kim, also gifted me with this lovely Mary's Best floss keep from Country Stitches (WTN&T).  Isn't it pretty?  I've been lusting after one of these for a long while and now I have my very own! 

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I had really hoped to have my Kate Spain Christmas quilt finished in time for the holidays, but it didn't quite happen.  I ordered the backing fabric for it, that you can see in my Instagram photo here.  I could not pass up those cups of hot cocoa on that Icicle grey background.  Too too perfect.  I definitely want to get this one done this year finally so that I can snuggle underneath it while sipping Mexican hot chocolate (my favorite) and watching Serendipity (one of our favorite Christmas movies). 

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My finishes for the year were not as numerous as previous years, but I did get some more sewing in and I finished my dad's memorial sampler, which was the most important thing for me.

2013 Finishes

2013 Finishes
Return to the Sea with Jane Austen
Kate Spain Christmas quilt top
 Hexy pincushion
Swoon mini quilt
Pinwheels mini quilt
John Reed 1844
Nightshade pillowcase
Sally Halloween costume
Kiss Kiss mini quilt
December ornament 
View From Above ornament
Souvenir of Paris ornament
Mary's Sampler II

It's nice to finally feel like I have some closure on 2013, although much delayed.  I can't wait to share what I've been up to in 2014 so far and my brain is zinging with new ideas all the time.  

I am grateful for weekends spent marathon-watching Game of Thrones.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Snow Day


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Thanks for all the compliments on my ornament in the last post.  I agree with you - the guild members are a talented group of stitchers!  As you know, I have been attending the Tudor Rose guild's annual holiday party since I became a member.  I decided this time that I would also attend the Greater Dallas EGA holiday party as well.  Having never been before, I thought it would be fun to attend.  Unfortunately, the holiday party had to be postponed a week due to the crazy ice storm we had in Dallas.  We did get snow as well, but underneath that snow was a solid sheet of ice.  Needless to say - we all opted to hibernate in our houses!!

But the city thawed and we were finally able to get together for our party.  You've seen the ornament I stitched for the Tudor Rose exchange, so here is the ornament I stitched for EGA. 

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If I'd been thinking clearly, I would have photographed my little Santa ornament in the snow!  Alas, I wasn't.  I've been mulling over stitching this ornament for a few years now.  It was actually one of the monthly sheep blankets for the Woolly Tyme club done by Homespun Elegance back in 2006.  I just always thought this was a sweet design and would be something that probably few have seen.  I just love his little Wisper beard that's all fuzzy.  I found this great pompom trim at JoAnn's that was a perfect choice for finishing him.  

One of the things I love about EGA is that  you have needleworkers of all kinds - cross-stitchers, needlepointers, beaders, etc.  One of the ladies brought her beaded Christmas trees to share.  You can see two of them in this photo - but she's actually finished like six of these things!  Aren't they awesome???

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The board members presented the outgoing President with this amazing gift.  They took a kit out of her stash (without her knowing) and they each stitched on it and then finished it.  Not only was she completely blown away by the beautiful piece - but the fact that it had come from her own stash - what a gift that is!  (Side note: if anyone would like to stitch something for me from my stash, shoot me an email.  LOL)  She had even bought these gorgeous Sajou Mother of Pearl scissors to go in the piece and quickly wen to retrieve them so that they could take their proper place!  I wish I'd gotten a photo of the outside of the piece, but it was just stunning!

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Now, on to the ornament exchange!  Here are closeups of a few I thought were eye-catching.  Loved the beaded edge and hanger on this sweet one. 

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A beaded ball with fringe.  My photo of this does it no justice. 

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This one had a lot of people's interest - it's a completely beaded three-dimensional star with a beautiful crystal in the center.  Loved this one so much!

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And here are some closeups of some of the fantastic ornaments together.  

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Look at the beaded cardinal - wowza!  So pretty!  I love the blackwork piece next to it as well. 

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And here they are all together.  I meant to get a closeup of the two wool ornaments - they were darling.  Again - I love how different they all are. 

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And this is the beautiful ornament I went home with.  Made by my sweet friend, Adrienne, I was thrilled I managed to hang on to it through the swapping! It's two-sided and entirely beaded.  She is such an amazing beader. 

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So there you have it - another fun holiday party and exchange.  I will definitely be attending the EGA party again.  

I am grateful for stepping outside my comfort zone.  

Sunday, March 02, 2014

The View Above


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The past few months it seems I've been stitching on a series of things that I couldn't share - but now they can be revealed!  In early December, I attended the annual Tudor Rose Sampler Guild holiday party.  I've enjoyed attending each year but always find that I'm down to the wire getting my ornament stitched and finished for the ornament exchange I participate in.  This year I had a hard time choosing what I wanted to stitch, but when I stumbled across this Little By Little angel called "The View Above", I knew it would be a good choice.  I thought it was a nice little nod to the Tulip Angel I stitched in 2009 for the exchange too.  She was a fun little stitch.  Finishing, on the other hand, ugh!  Twisted cording is my nemesis.  

Anyway, the party was fun, as usual.  This year instead of holding the party at a member's home, we held it at our usual meeting place.  Our Programs Chair printed off these delightful little caskets on cardstock as a party favor - they were a freebie on Tricia Nguyen's blog in December.  So cute!  I may color mine before I assemble it.  We'll see!

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I wanted to show a few of the ornaments that particularly caught my eye - you know I can't say no to a Blackbird Designs piece, right?

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I never think to stitch LHN ornaments until I see them and then I fall in love with the cute.  Love how this one was finished with that pretty (I think it may have been velveteen) red fabric and green cording (why can't my cording look like that???).  Excuse the random red ribbon peeking out from under there - once we tore open the wrapping there were bits everywhere!

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This was a sweet, simple design but look how cute with the chenille trim, gold jingle bells in the corners and red cording for the hanger.  (again, the red ribbon photobombs my pic)

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This one really caught my eye and the photo doesn't do it justice.  It's by The Primitive Hare and was in the 2013 JCS issue, I think.  

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And this sweet little one - a Jeannette Douglas design.  Look at the pretty beaded edge and the tiny little over one bird.  So so cute.  (and the red ribbon is now beginning to resemble some sort of sea monster tentacles).

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Here's a shot of all the ornaments together.  I meant to get closeups of some others, but it didn't happen.  I'm completely in love with that Stacy Nash Silent Night one.  And that Ewe & Eye & Friends down at the bottom reminded me that I went completely gaga over seeing these stitched up on a blog a while back and meant to stitch them...clearly that plan fell by the wayside.  

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And finally, here are the ornaments I came home with.  Bonus this year - I ended up with two!  They are the sweetest little things too.

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I hope you enjoyed seeing the ornaments - every year I'm amazed at how varied the ornaments are - both in choice and in finishing.  Even when we have so many stitchers choosing ornaments out of the same magazine, we never end up with two the same.  I always come away inspired and with a long list of new ornaments to stitch.  

I am grateful for sweet little reindeer and sheep and birds.  

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Social Media



I’m finally getting around to getting my blog claimed over on Bloglovin.  After Google Reader went by the wayside, I looked around for a new way to keep up with the blogs I love and so far am liking Bloglovin.  Please zoom on over and follow cozyegg so you never miss a post!

As always, you can find me on Instagram and Twitter under my username cozyegg.

Thanks for checking in and reading!


Friday, January 17, 2014

It's Friday, Y'all!


I'm back with some fun things to share with you today from when Eric and I went to the State Fair back in October.  You know seeing the Creative Arts and Textiles building is always high on my list and it's always fun to see the pieces people have entered.  I hope you enjoy getting to see some of the pieces I thought were "highlights". 

I'm always a sucker for a sparkly Chatelaine Designs piece, and this one is no exception.  This is one of her Christmas Mystery designs. 

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A little closer so you can see the detail.

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Sweet little mini quilt that looks like a Jo Morton.

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And the hooked rugs always get me.  I have two kits that I bought many years ago, and I really need to make it a priority to learn how to hook. 

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Pretty applique quilt.  I thought the border was interesting as well, with the dark fabric and then the triangle pieces.  It's kind of shame that they folded the sides in to display this piece, because I think that border probably changes the look of the quilt completely with the dark surround. 

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Cathedral Windows quilt - I'm always in awe of these due to the amount of time and skill they require.  This one is a more traditional looking quilt with the white background, whereas the one I showed you last year was done in very modern fabrics.  Interesting to see the comparison. 

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A little closer for detail.

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I love the texture created from the windows.  

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Another mini quilt, but opposite end of the spectrum from the one earlier.  I love the fabrics and colors in this - especially the grey background and binding.  It makes the stars really pop.  Hard to see in this photo, but the quilting was done in multi-colored or variegated thread. 

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The miniatures are always fun to look at too.  I love these little individual scenes, and I totally cannot resist miniature desserts!!

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A little closer...look at the yule log way down at the bottom.  Too cute!!

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Another hooked rug. 

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This quilt I thought was interesting because of the shapes.  It reminds me of "tongues" like you'd see in a penny rug, but I don't think I've ever seen a quilt like this before. 

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Mini Dresdens!  It's amazing the effect when you take a bunch of these and assemble them together.  

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Closer...

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I am so in love with this tiger.  It's so different from the usual sheep you see in hooked rugs.  I seriously want this in my house.  Someone come make it for me!

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Beautiful jewel tones in this rug. 

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Now, I have to admit that I totally don't get these entries.  There's always a ton of "stuff" that have been entered and often with ribbons, but I don't get what the point is.  The pieces are interesting, I'll give you that, but why enter something you pulled out of your attic or bought at a antique shop?  If anyone knows, I'd love to be enlightened!  But, I took this photo because I thought the old Oz books were cool - brought back some memories. 

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Fun frame for this BOAF piece.  I love how it brings out the blue in the stitching. 

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I wish I'd gotten a better photo of this one - very pretty sampler.  No idea what sampler it is though.
 
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This piece was stitched by one of the ladies in my guild and won Best in Show.  This is the second year in a row that we've had a member with that honor.  This is all Blackwork.  And let me tell you, it is gorgeous in person.  Plus it makes me think of the Boleyn girls, so I love it.  And you can't really tell here, but this is a big piece!!

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This was a fun hooked rug.  I really love this and of course, since it's depicting a Dallas landmark, it makes it even better.  Beautiful rail fence pattern in the background. 

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Of course these HAED-type pieces are amazing to look at.  I started one HAED years ago and I think I managed to stitch about a 40x40 stitch area and called it quits.  I absolutely applaud anyone that can finish one of these because they are not easy - mainly I think because it's really impossible to see what you're stitching because it's usually such a small area it just looks like pixelated color until you get a good chunk of it done - then the image starts to form.  

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Here's a closer look.

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Another beautiful sampler - this looks like a Moira Blackburn to me, but not sure if it is.  Beautiful stitching.

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Another miniature - look at the moose head on the wall.  

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Look at the little dog!  And the tiny jars and mirror.  Amazing!

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Love this applique quilt.  Looks like this is all done in batiks, which gives it those pretty jewel tone colors.

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Check out this painted Halloween box.  Most of the Halloween stuff doesn't interest me usually because it's usually too cutesy for me, but this I love. 

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As you can see, the whole thing is painted, not just the top.  So fun.  Wonder what the inside looks like??

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And this was a little blast from the past for me.  This is a Just Nan piece that was a limited edition piece for The Silver Needle years ago (like maybe 10??).  Mine's still in the original packaging, never stitched.  And it may or may not be accompanied in the box by like four other limited edition pieces.  Maybe. 

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It really is a super cute piece.  It's a little ort box, with the attached felt pumpkin pincushion.  I swear, put the words "limited edition" on something and I'm all "SOLD"!  Maybe after I learn rug hooking I'll start working on some of this stuff that's in my "archives".   

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And finally, one last quilt.  I think this is such a fun, bright quilt.  The fabric is all vegetable/fruit fabric.  How fun is that.  And what drew me to it as well was that when I went up to my LNS a couple of years ago to spend the morning cutting my fabric for my Kiss Kiss quilt, there was a woman there working on a quilt with this same fruit/veggie fabric.  No idea if this is hers or not, but it was so fun watching her work with those fabrics. 

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See how fun?

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So there you have it.  Another year at the fair.  I hope you guys enjoy seeing these photos.  Like I said, I love wandering through the exhibit every year and every year it's different.  

I am grateful for the end of a hard week.