Tuesday, May 31, 2011

A Much-Needed Break

Quilting on Memorial Day

I was thrilled to be able to take a vacation day on Friday of last week. It's the first vacation day I've had since Christmas. And let me tell you, the four-day weekend (due to the holiday yesterday), was much needed and much appreciated! I got a ton of stuff done that I'd meant to do the weekend before. Othello was very sick that weekend though, so I only ventured away from him a couple of times. But he seems to be better now, so I took advantage of that and my extra time and did a ton of things!

Just to give you an idea what I was up to this weekend, I enrolled in a basic jewelry making class with a gift certificate a friend had given me for my birthday a while back. I'm really looking forward to my class and I think it will be fun. I'd love to learn more about beading and jewelry making!

I also decided to make use of a little bit of the bonus I got at work and I went up to the quilt shop to buy backing fabric for a little patriotic table top quilt I have. I thought I'd chat with my quilter while I was there about possibly dropping it off with her for quilting. Unfortunately, my quilter has taken a two-year hiatus, but I was directed to another quilter who works out of the shop. She took a look and said she'd be able to get it quilted before 4th of July for sure. So, I left it with her. I got a call the next day and she'd finished it! So, I picked up my little quilt and got to work on cutting, pressing and machine-sewing on my binding (as you can see above). All I need to do now is hand-sew down the binding and attach a label and it is done! Woohoo! And it was fun working on this yesterday (Memorial Day), so I had to tweet a photo of it from my phone.

And since we're talking about being productive, I did also finish my Stacy Nash sewing roll. It's ready to be finished and then aged.

IMG_1306

Part of my errands that I ran over the weekend included taking one of my pieces to be framed (also using a little bit of my bonus). I think I picked out a great frame and I'm anxious to see how it looks. So excited!

Of course, I couldn't leave empty-handed. I was sucked in by seeing a WIP of the With thy Needle & Thread Mystery Sampler. I had to have it! So, I came home with the Confederate Grey fabric in 40ct as well as the first chart. I made a little bitty start on it and I'm just loving the colors! I am using the called for Weeks threads, luckily I had them in my stash.

IMG_1303

I spent a good part of the weekend learning more about Lightroom and working on taking photos with a new set up (plus learning how to edit them in Lightroom). Big learning curve, but I'll get there eventually.

And then of course, on Sunday (and actually last night too), I worked on And They Sinned. I was so happy to finish this little motif last night that an Instagram photo was in order.

Grape Cluster - ATS


So, busy weekend. But I also had time to relax, sleep in a little bit, spend some quality time with Eric, see my parents, read a little bit, and stitch with Othello on my lap. You can't beat that! I actually have several more things to show, but I'll save those for another post. This is what happens when I fall behind on my posting!

I am grateful for four-day weekends!

Monday, May 16, 2011

Quite Dashing

IMG_1297



Dash Away All
The Sampler Girl
DMC on 32ct Dirty Linen
Finished 4/16/11



I've been working on stitching ornaments here and there this year. I had intended to do one a month, but you know how that goes. This is my third ornament for the year. It wasn't even on my to-stitch list, but after I saw a finished one at a guild meeting I remembered I had this pattern in my stash! I immediately went home and found my chart, and then pulled fabric and fibers from my stash. It's such a cute, simple piece and I'm glad I was reminded I had it. After I finished it, I needed to get a little star button to add to it and I just finally made it over to my LNS last week. Not sure how I'm going to finish him yet, but I'm so glad I stitched him. Thanks, Katherine, for being my inspiration!!

I've also been stitching along on my Stacy Nash piece I showed you in my last post. It's coming along slowly. I love the pale palette.


IMG_1295



I went to book club on Friday night and we had a lovely discussion about The Hare with Amber Eyes. I've posted my latest book reviews over on the other blog, if you're interested. I had intended to spend the rest of the weekend stitching, but it didn't happen. Too many other things going on! Maybe tonight I can get my needle out.



I am grateful for Eric for being immensely patient with me while teaching me Lightroom and for all of his help last night, and most of all for refusing to allow me to post really crappy photos even though I was willing to settle for what I had. Thanks, sweetie!

Monday, May 09, 2011

That's How I Roll

IMG_1241


A momentous occasion last week...I was far enough along on ATS that I was able to roll the fabric. It's coming along (slower than I'd like, but still coming along). It's amazing how long it takes to stitch all those scattered little motifs, but at least each one feels like a small victory. And they are fun. I love that blue butterfly and the red tulip. And wow - all the birds! I am very very close to being ready to start on the tree, Adam & Eve and the angel (aka "the good parts"). I love how colorful this piece is and it makes me happy to discover each new motif and pull out new threads. I'd been asked in the comments what fabric I'm stitching this on...it's 40ct Elegant Bean (from Elegant Stitch). It's a great neutral fabric and the colors really pop on it. I am stitching with the charted GAST threads. But, I'm moving along toward the bottom of page 1 and loving every minute of it.


My current travel project is Emily's Sewing Roll from the Stacy Nash workshop I took in March. This one is a good piece to take to guild because I can talk and stitch at the same time. Plus, it's not very big, so that makes it an ideal travel project too. Although, what does not make it an ideal travel project is that inevitably someone says "you're not done with that yet?". Ha ha...no I'm not. Would you buy the excuse that I'm savoring it? You've seen me eat chocolate, so youknow I don't savor anything, huh? Yeah, ok...so I'm not done with it yet. But, it's a sweet little piece, no?


IMG_1252


I have also been stitching on Dorothy's Garden. And may I remind you that it's all over one? On 32 count? Yeah...so what if I can't finish a Stacy Nash piece. Look at this...


IMG_1247


I've been building that dreaded house. And it's looking pretty good, I might add. Once I get all that grey outlining done, I'll still have to fill it in with white. I figure I'll work along on the house until I get bored and then I can stitch on the border a bit to break up all the grey and white.


And I've spent the past couple of weekends learning Lightroom, and I think it's going to be great for photo editing, exporting, cataloging, etc. Eric's been very patient teaching me and I'm really looking forward to learning more of the functionality. So far, I like it a lot better than Photoshop. So now not only am I learning how to shoot in manual modes, but I'm also learning how to do my editing in completely different software - my brain is full!


I've also been reading quite a bit. I read Jennifer Donnelly's A Northern Light, Pioneer Woman's Black Heels to Tractor Wheels, and Edmund de Waal's The Hare with the Amber Eyes. I'll be posting up reviews of all of these on the other blog soon, if you're interested.


Ok, that's it for me today. I'm hoping to get back to working on my AOTH soon - I've been so inspired by both Katrina's and Siobhan's finishes on theirs. I can't wait to work on mine again! Until next time!


I am grateful for a husband who understands.