Flosstube Episode 28: La Cosa Nostra

Thank you so much for tuning in to the Cozyegg flosstube/podcast! In this episode I share my Stitch Maynia week 1 vlog.
And here’s part 2!

Show notes:

Week 1 of Stitch Maynia vlog:

  • Days 1 & 2 : New start Merry Wind Farm Hornbook freebie (Tudor Rose Sampler Guild SAL) – SNC Elephant & Castle on 40ct Weeks Tin Roof linen
  • Days 3 & 4: La Marquoir de Justine by Anne Pelletier Pauleau – Year of WIPs Challenge piece – my own conversion to AVAS, Gloriana, and Caron Soie Cristale on 40ct HDF linen coffee antiqued (started 2014)
  • Day 5: Colonial Garden by Plum Street Samplers – Year of WIPs Challenge piece – NPI on 40ct Lakeside Black Forest
  • Days 6 & 7: New start Mouline Rouge by Long Dog Samplers – Gloriana Poinsettia on 40ct Zweigart Antique White linen – bucket list piece

Haunted Dollhouse – here is my inspiration The Bloggess’s dollhouse and here’s a link to my Pinterest board

Here is a link to Spinster Stitcher’s blog and to the donation page.

I also mentioned Running Stitch’s flosstube video on Maynia and new starts.

Thanks so much for watching!

I am grateful for new starts and new projects.

My Sunday Sampler with Sylvia

ATS Bottom Close up

Once upon a time I decided it was finally time to stitch one of my “bucket list” samplers – And They Sinned by Examplar Dames.  I first saw this chart way back when it was first released in a Shepherd’s Bush newsletter and had to have it.  Then on New Year’s Day 2010, I began.  I had ordered 40 count Elegant Bean linen from Elegant Stitch and the called for GAST threads with one DMC for the people.  In March, my friend Sylvia decided to join me and we started our Sunday SAL.  Each Sunday we stitched on ATS and it steadily grew.  The chart is divided into four legal size pages, so I celebrated big milestones when I would get to “the fold” and when I would get to a new page.  I’ve posted a lot of progress photos in the time it took me to stitch my way to the bottom and you can take a walk down memory lane here, if you’re interested.

ATS Top

I remember when we were stitching on that cloud at the top.  I had seen so many people stall out at this part that I was determined to really push through it.  Sylvia was also gnashing her teeth and we bemoaned the neverending cloud.  I recall saying to her, “it could be worse, wait until we get to all that grass!”  Oh, truer words were never spoken.  LOL  I did have a lot of fun with this section though, even naming those two snakes at the top Fred & George and that blue snake between Adam and Eve, Nagini.  I worked that vine border as I went so that I wasn’t stuck doing it all at the end.  I also put this on scroll bars, and as luck would have it I had to roll my fabric approximately when I reached “the fold” or the next page in my chart.  The photo above is essentially page 1 of the chart.

ATS Angel

At the time I was stitching this section I saw someone outline the angel’s wings in gold rather than in the grey it called for and absolutely loved it.  So, I did mine the same.  I even briefly considered ripping out the backstitching on the angel’s wings above the cloud but decided that I liked them in grey.

ATS Center with Alphabet

I thought for sure that once I got to the alphabet section I would knock it out super quick.  Not.  The.  Case.  Somehow I lost all momentum when I got to this section.  And I will tell you that I somehow went through two and a half skeins of Cherry Bark (the color of the alphabet), which seems ridiculous since the chart only called for one and it was stitched on 35 count.  I am super frugal with my thread too, so I can’t begin to imagine how I went through so much of that color.  I had purchased all new threads for this piece so I was starting with full skeins.

ATS Middle

Once I got past the alphabet I picked up speed again on the section with the spies of Canaan.  The photo above basically shows page 2 of the chart.  I really loved this section.  It was possibly my favorite just because of all the colors – the pinks, purples, and those crazy birds with their topknots.  And I really loved what look like quilt stars throughout this piece.

ATS Spies of Canaan Close Up

And page three made me feel like I was in the home stretch.  The section with the lady and the lion was Sylvia’s favorite part of this piece.  I have to admit, I really love this section too.  And it felt like a HUGE milestone to get to the end of the vine.

ATS The Lady and the Lion

And that brings us to the last section, otherwise affectionately known as “the neverending grass”.  Sylvia and I looked and looked at as many stitchers’ And They Sinned as possible trying to determine how we wanted to stitch the grass.  There are people who left the grass off completely, just stitching the animals on a bare background.  While I can understand why they opted not to stitch 8 million green stitches, when you look at the piece as a whole it really needs (in my opinion) the grass at the bottom to anchor it.  It needs that visual weight at the bottom.  We also saw one person who left that whole section off completely.  The chart is written for you to alternate two colors of green on the diagonal.  I didn’t love that look.  I think finally Sylvia saw on the Hand-Dyed Fiber board that someone had alternated the greens every two stitches and stitched everything in half stitches.  One row was stitched ///// and then the next row stitched like this \\\\\.  Loved the effect.  Doing half stitches makes it a bit airier so that your animals really stand out, and by alternating the angle of the stitches and the two colors it gives it a nice visual texture.  So so so glad we discovered this option!

ATS Bottom Section

I made several changes in this section.  The first change you’ll notice is that the big peacock at the top left of the grass ended up a different color.  He was charted to be red and I stitched him that way.  But then when I stitched the big flowering bush to the right I didn’t like having so much red right in the same section.  So I ripped it out and restitched him in teal and blue.

I also added my two boys in amongst the other animals.  Here is Thutmose with his gold eyes and little white spot under his chin.

ATS Grass Section with Thutmose

Here is Ramses with his green eyes being a cat “loaf” as he often does.

ATS Grass Section with Ramses

And I spent a very long time working on the pond.  I used the variegation of the thread to maximum effect and stitched in swirls rather than straight across in horizontal stripes.  I love how it turned out, even if it did take a long time to do.

ATS Pond

And then finally, I was at the end.  I personalized it just as Sylvia did hers, to commemorate our Sunday stitching.  Sylvia actually finished hers well before I did, but continued to cheer me on until I reached the finish line.  My ATS was started on January 1, 2010 and finished it during the Tudor Rose Sampler Guild meeting on August 4, 2015.
ATS Full

Stitching And They Sinned was definitely a labor of love.  And there were long periods where I didn’t work on it at all.  But, I am so pleased to have it finished and so thrilled to have finally gotten around to taking photos so that I could share it with you here on the blog, although I did share it in episode 8 of the podcast/flosstube and you can watch it here.

I am grateful for Sampler Sundays. 

Episode 3: Reaching My Goal


Show Notes:

Finishes:

  1. Faith pincushion – ornament in the Just Cross-stitch Ornament 2014 issue by Nikyscreations.  Stitched with GAST threads (my own conversion and color changes) on 32 count Vintage Pearled Barley by Lakeside Linens.  Finished into a pillow with Juliana Horner’s ModBox fabric
  2. Hazel Hedgehog mini quilt: Hazel Hedgehog quilt pattern is by Elizabeth Hartman.  Fabrics used are Tula Pink Acacia, Tula Pink Moonshine, Carolyn Friedlander Architextures, Michael Miller Grand Bazaar.
  3. Garter stitch cowl – gifted yarn, believe I cast on 24 stitches and pretty much knit until I got close to the end of my skein of yarn.  I joined the two ends to make a cowl.

WIPs:

  1. And They Sinned – by Examplar Dames.  Stitching on 40ct Elegant Bean with the called for GAST threads.
  2. Colonial Garden – by Plum Street Samplers.  Stitching on 40ct Black Forest linen by Lakeside Linens with the called for NPI silks.
  3. “Willow Block” – from Village of Hawk Run Hollow by Carriage House Samplings.  Stitching on 40ct Flax with DMC
  4. Washcloth/Dishcloth – using of the Dirty-Girl Washcloths patterns from the book The Chicks with Sticks Guide to Knitting.  Knitting with Lily Sugar’n Cream Naturals (100% cotton, worsted, in the Earth Ombre colorway and US 7 needles.

#sewmystash2015:

  1. Tula Pink Anchors Aweigh quilt in Tula Pink Salt Water fabric
  2. Five Yard quilt in Tula Pink Birds & the Bees and Denyse Schmidt Chicopee fabrics

Stash Enhancement:

  1. Tula Pink Apothecary Jars in the Vapor colorway of her Nightshade line
  2. Tula Pink Tortoiseshell in the Coral colorway of her Salt Water line
  3. Cotton & Steel Sarah Watts Mystery Food in the Navy colorway of her Tokyo Train Ride line; cotton lawn
  4. CrowsToes nail polish – Bifrost from the 9 Realms Collection“The Bifrost is the rainbow bridge that connects Asgard and Midgard”.

Reading:

  1. Finished Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell
  2. Currently reading The Fallen Angel by Daniel Silva

If you’re going to DFW Fiber Fest this weekend, let me know!

I am grateful for things blooming and birds chirping – it must be spring!

Justine

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Today I wanted to share a stitch along I started back in February with my friend, Sylvia.  We wanted to choose something to start while we were in Paris as a remembrance of our trip.  After looking at a few options, we decided to go with Le Marquoir de Justine.  Sylvia had some lovely 40ct HDF linen that she aged for us.  The chart calls for NPIs, but I decided to do my own conversion, using some overdyes, but I of course wanted to use silk.  Sylvia converted hers to HDF silks and you can see my floss toss above using a combination of AVAS, Gloriana, and Soie Cristale.  
We took our first stitches on the first night in our little rented apartment in Paris, although I have to admit that most nights I had just enough energy to fall into bed.  We did, however, have some time to stitch on the train back to Germany from Paris.  And yes, I was even attempting to put my hoop to good use!
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In Germany we were able to spend a bit more time with Justine.  Here’s a look at our progress.  
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And, as coincidence would have it, if we positioned our two samplers together they completed that entire left border!  Too funny.  

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Of course, our time together came to an end and I’ve been working a bit here and there on Justine.  You can see of course that no two photos of this fabric look the same.  The top two photos are the most accurate.  I also treated myself to some Eiffel Tower scissors from Sajou while we were in Paris.  How could I not?
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And lest you think I have given up matching my nail polish to my stitching…
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And yes, you’re not seeing things, I originally stitched the word “agée” in red, but then ripped it out and restitched it in the pale yellow.  What I’ve found is that the chart I have is not the most accurate.  So, there have been a few spots where I’ve gone by the photo rather than how it’s charted.  But, she is a beautiful sampler and I absolutely adore stitching on her.  I’ve gotten a bit more done since this last photo, so I’ll have to post an updated progress photo soon.  

If you’re wondering what the entire sampler looks like, please take a look.  She really is a beauty!

I am grateful for adventures with my PIC.

Stars in Her Crown

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The Tudor Rose Sampler Guild invited Paulette of Plum Street Samplers to come and teach a workshop for us and we commissioned her to design a sampler.   I’ve been counting down the days and anxiously awaiting Paulette’s arrival in Dallas for our class.  Saturday was the big day, and true to form Paulette’s attention to detail was evident in every piece.  The kit was beautifully packaged and opening it brought gasps of joy from every person in the room. 
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The kit included a glorious array of silks, Lakeside linen, Weeks wool, a Sudberry frame, crushed walnut shells and other little bits for finishing the smalls as well as a fun little lip balm.  Everything was beautifully presented.
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Paulette also set up an amazing trunk show for our members – and seeing her pieces in person was a treat.  Absolutely gorgeous pieces – and several of them just got bumped up to the top of my To Stitch list.  
And here is the gorgeous sampler Paulette designed for us.  It’s called The Crowned Bird Sampler.  Love love love it!  I cannot wait to get started on this beauty. 
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Paulette spent some time talking about her inspiration for the piece and some of the things she included and why. 
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Look at the red bird!
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And Victoria Beckham move over, this lady’s fascinator puts hers to shame!  What a perfectly dressed couple – particularly for a  workshop taking place on Derby Day!
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And here are the smalls – a miniature sewing tray and strawberry.  
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Here’s my little bitty start on the sewing tray.  Paulette’s pieces are always so fun to stitch and it was such a good day filled with friends, stitching, laughter, good food and beautifully designed pieces. 
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Thank you so much, Paulette, for designing such a special sampler for us.  Your visit was much too short although I’m sure Tilly-Roux the Yorkie was glad to have you back home!
I am grateful for a wonderful weekend with a wonderful lady. 

Spring is Coming

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I really don’t know where the time goes!  March is here and the trees are blooming and we’ve had a few really beautiful days.  Of course this time of year, I’m drawn to brighter colors and I’m really loving my new found focus on the projects I have in progress.  Earlier this week was the monthly guild meeting and I took a couple of things to work on (not that I put a single stitch in).  I’ve been working on some Tula Pink Prince Charming hexies as you can see.  I’ve also been hard at work on my John Reed sampler.  My pretty stitching wallets from Sylvia come with me wherever I go too!
Here’s a closer look at John Reed.  I’m loving the AVAS silks on the 40ct Confederate Grey.  I’ve finished page 1 and I’m moving along on the adjacent pages.  I’m stitching this for my dad, as his memorial sampler, so I’d like to have it finished by June (his birthday).  It’s a bit washed out in this photo due to the bright sunshine I had coming in the window.  The photo from guild night is more accurate colorwise.    
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I’ve also been spending Sundays on ATS.  Nothing much exciting going on – but I’m on the last row of alphabet finally.  I’ll be glad to get back to the motifs at the bottom of page 2.  
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In quilting news, since I finished my Kate Spain Christmas quilt top, I decided to get back to my Tula Pink Kiss Kiss quilt.  You may recall I started this on my birthday last year?  A couple of weekends ago, I pulled out all my fabric and finished all the cutting for the quilt top.  Now everything’s ready for piecing.  I can’t wait.  This is going to be gorgeous!
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And look! an older Tula Pink line, Plume.  I’ll have to find something special to do with this. 
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 And along those same lines, remember back in October when I got to meet Tula herself?  I pre-ordered her new Hex on the Beach kit.  I got a call at the beginning of January that it had come in and I rushed right over to pick it up!  After seeing Laurie and Margaret’s progress on their Hex on the Beach hexies, I couldn’t resist any longer.  So, I have a sneaky suspicion I’ll be showing you progress on this soon too!
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And tomorrow I am heading out to the Dallas Quilt Show with a friend to see what trouble we can get into get inspired by all the pretty fabric and quilts. I’ll be sure to share what I find there!
(P.S. – if you’d like to take a look at my February in photos, you can check out my other blog.)
I am grateful for a good book, a pretty mani and bursts of happy colors. 

Of Angels and Acorns

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On Tuesday night before guild, I met a couple of friends for dinner. After we ate, they presented me with a secret project they’d been working on since my dad died. They started with Ghoul by Plum Street Samplers, which I love, and charted out a part of the poem that was read at my dad’s funeral. They put his name and birth and death years on the piece along with each of their initials. 
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And if that wasn’t enough, they also sent it to Jill Rensel to be framed. 
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I just can’t get over it. What a huge surprise and such a thoughtful thing to do. I took it to my mom’s yesterday to show her and she got just as choked up as I did. Thank you my sweet friends, it really means the world to me to have a memorial sampler for him. 
I did decide a few months ago that I wanted to start something new on my dad’s birthday, that is coming up on Tuesday. I used a little bit of my bonus check to purchase the AVAS silks and the Weeks Confederate Grey linen. I’ll be sharing my start with you soon as well as which sampler it is. But, I am so grateful to some friends of mine who helped me out by bringing lots of fabric for me to do floss tosses on until I settled on the one I liked. The chart called for ivory or cream linen, but I really wanted something a little more interesting. 
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It’s time for another WIPocalypse post. They time sure flies. And I haven’t gotten a whole lot of stitching done lately, but I’ve put a little bit more in my Quaker Pincushion. And for those who asked that thread is Caron Wildflowers in Tanzanite. Gorgeous, yes? 
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And Isabella’s gotten a bit farther as well. Although I think it’s taken me over a week to get what I have done on that wreath. 
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And you might be wondering why I haven’t done any stitching? Well, let me introduce Thutmose 
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and Ramses. 
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They are 14 weeks old and are brothers. Eric and I adopted them last weekend. Since my first boys had all Shakespeare names, I thought these guys needed Egyptian pharoah names. Although lately Eric has been calling them “Monkey See” and “Monkey Do”. They are treasures and have really brightened up our home and our hearts. 
I am grateful for a new beginning to our lives.

How Now Red Cow

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As you can see I’ve been working on Isabella some more. I finally got the cow all filled in and went back to do some more leaves. She’s really coming along. 
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I really am absolutely in love with this sampler. I’m not sure what it is that’s keeping my attention with her right now, but she truly is so much fun. And especially that I’m on to the fun stuff at the bottom, I’m looking forward to adding in some other colors – like that blue! 
The other day, I got a text from a friend. She says to me “what are your two favorite colors that are complimentary?” Well, I’m sure she thought this was a simple question and would require only a second for me to respond. But I was stumped. I thought and thought and thought and then had to respond and say “I’m sorry, I take color very seriously. My answer would depend on what you’re talking about. Are you talking about colors to wear, colors to decorate with, colors to stitch with? I need more info.” I’m sure about this point she wanted to throw her phone across the room. So, she finally came out with it and said she wanted to send me some thread to stitch one of the Jeannette Douglas Quaker Pincushions with. You would think at that point I could have named two colors and we’d be off to the races. But no…the poor woman finally had to send me a photo of some thread and say “PICK TWO!” So I picked two. Actually, I picked three, but she finagled two out of me. 
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I ended up with Tanzanite and Dark Shadows. OMG so in love with the Tanzanite. Can it get any lovelier than that? So, thank you my sweet friend, and I apologize for being an enormous pain in the ass. (I just hope she doesn’t send me a text that says “what’s your favorite movie?”)
Anyway, aside from annoying the living daylights out of my friends, I have also been stitching on And They Sinned.  I’m almost done with the fruit basket and then will move on to the two peacocks on either side of it.  Can’t wait.  
Hope you all have a wonderful Memorial Day weekend.  I am planning on visiting the National Cemetery on Monday to go and see my dad.  His headstone should be there now, so I’ll get to see it for the first time.  
I am grateful for time with friends.

Cow Tipping

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Thanks so much for all of your kind words about Othello.  We’ve sure been missing him.  I’ve spent the week trying to get sort of readjusted to having an “empty nest” so to speak.  And I’ve tried to get back to my stitching as well.  One thing that has been brightening my days is my new project bag out of Tula Pink fabric, thanks to Sylvia.  I’m absolutely in love with the button she found for this and although Sylvia said she made this one big enough to carry around Dutch Beauty in, Isabella’s been enjoying being in there for now!
And speaking of Isabella…I am way overdue for my May WIPocalypse update.
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 I’ve finished off all the letters and numbers at the top and you can see the very tippy top of the cow that I’ve started.  I’m so excited to get to the cow!  
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I’ve been working along on my leaves too, a length of thread at a time.  That seems to be working well for keeping me from getting overwhelmed at all the leaves.  She’s been such a fun stitch so far, and I have really needed something to take my mind off everything.

Hope you’re all having a Happy Mother’s Day, whether you’re spending it with your mother, your children or your furry ones.

I am grateful for good memories.

Isabella

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Since finishing my Rabbit Box at Easter, I decided that I would work on something else that’s been calling my name. You may remember Isabella Johnstone?  I’m stitching her with the called for Belle Soies on 40ct Vintage Lentil.  And I’ve really been enjoying her (despite having to rip out her entire right hand side border and restitch it).  And I’m excited to finally be getting into some colors other than red and green!

You can see I’ve gotten my leaves stitched almost all the way down the right side.  I’ve been stitching a length of Attic Tea on the leaves, then I work on the middle.  Then back to the leaves.  That seems to be breaking up the leaves enough that they’re not driving me bonkers!

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She’s a sweet little sampler, and I just love the size of her on 40ct, not very big at all.  And I’ve been enjoying her so much I think I will just continue to stick with her for now.  Today is And They Sinned SAL day, so I’ll be working on it later.  I can’t wait to get out of the grass at the top of page 2 and into something more fun.

And I had to share a little gift that Sylvia picked up for me at the Paris needlework show.  Isn’t it fun?

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I love the little strawberry!

Well, I’m off to see what I can get accomplished with the remainder of my weekend.  I hope you all enjoy yours as well!

I am grateful for some time to relax, and getting to read and stitch!