As promised, I thought I’d share my 2017 finishes on the blog. I already shared Mermaid Fraktur here, which was my first big finish of the year. The next thing I decided to focus on was the Papillon Creations Mystery Sampler that was published in five parts in The Gift of Stitching magazine. I started this piece when it first came out and copied Carol’s choice of 32ct Sandcastle by Silkweaver with the called for Vikki Clayton HDF silks.
As I mentioned, I started this piece when it was first released in March of 2007. I completely fell in love with that beautiful red silk A. The colors were just so pretty and the specialty stitches gave it a fun texture. This piece has long been languishing though and the reason for that is because I could already tell I was going to run out of one of the silks. There is no worse feeling than knowing you’re going to run out of a thread that is no longer available. Vikki had long since closed down her thread dyeing business. But, I decided this piece had sat too long untouched and so I put it on my Year of WIPs list. And in March of this year I pulled it out of the closet to stitch on. I’d basically finished parts one and two and was mostly finished with part 3. This is what it looked like when I took “before” photos for my Year of WIPs album.
When I picked it up though, I just really wasn’t feeling the love. I was having a hard time actually wanting to stitch on it. In fact there were nights I just didn’t stitch because I didn’t want to stitch on this. But then I went to a stitchy meetup at my LNS and brought this with me, since it was already on the q-snaps and strangely enough dedicated time on this piece got me in the groove with it. So, I just kept going. And then the inevitable happened. I did, indeed, run out of one of the colors of silk. I posted my saga on Instagram and before I could even blink the sweetest stitcher offered to send me her spool of that color so that I could finish my piece! So, I worked around that color and kept going. And when it arrived a few days later, I was back in business. Sort of.
The silk I’d run out of is that blue/green/teal variegated of the peacock. And her skein was close but was more blue/teal with no green. But, at this point I was going to make lemonade out of lemons regardless and get this done. And of course the biggest motif in the whole piece was down in that bottom right corner (part 4) in Deep Sea. So, I fudged it. I pulled a green that was as close as I could get to the original and I interspersed that green with the teal/blue of the borrowed Deep Sea. And I think it looks fine. With everything going on in this piece, it doesn’t really catch your eye. So I’m pleased with that.
Part 5 of the pattern was the center, and the designer actually gave three different options for the center. One was for a marriage or anniversary, one for a birth announcement, and one was an alphabet with a big peacock in Deep Sea. When I started this piece I’d intended to stitch the peacock. But, by the time I was actively working on this in March I decided that it would be a great piece to commemorate our tenth wedding anniversary. I hadn’t stitched anything for the occasion, so this would be perfect. And, if I pushed hard, I could finish it in time to give to Eric on our eleventh anniversary in April. So, I decided to go for the anniversary choice for the center. And it’s kind of Adam & Eve-ish too, so that’s a bonus.
I did the personalizations – the years, the 10, our initials. And there were two cartouches on this piece that were charted with nothing in them. I decided to put an L in the top one (right above the peacock) and then at the bottom I had just enough room to put Texas – where we met and were married.
I finished it literally the day before our anniversary and then was in a panic about how to frame it. Square frames aren’t easy to come by and usually the biggest you can find them is album size (12 x 12″). I needed 15 x 15″ at least. But that evening when we were out shopping I spied a piece of pre-framed “art” at Garden Ridge that appeared to be the perfect size. So, the next morning while Eric was sleeping I slipped out of the house and went to purchase it. I popped out that “art” and had already laced and pinned my piece so I could pop it right in.
And I’m thrilled with how it looks. And I’m saddened by the fact that this piece literally took me ten years to finally finish it for what turned out to be a sum total of twenty stitching days once I picked it back up again. That’s right, twenty!!! UGH! So March 2007 to April 2017 and commemorating our ten year anniversary back in 2016. Which I wouldn’t have done if it hadn’t been sitting here unfinished. So, maybe it’s perfect timing. And thank goodness through the kindness of stitchers who are willing to bail a girl out when she runs out of silk!!
I’m so happy with how it looks and I’m happy to have it done finally. Happy ten years, my love. Here’s to another ten.
I’m grateful for ten years and the kindness of stitchers.