While we were away, I noticed the projects I’d picked up to bring had a bit of an oceanic theme going on as well:
The colours in this crocheted face washer matched the view nicely on that grey, blustery day 🙂
And then there were these mermaids. I put a few hours of stitching in – this is Mirabilia’s Mermaids of the Deep Blue. To be honest, I’m still in a little bit of shock that I actually cross-stitched. It’s been ages – I’d be willing to bet that most of my cross-stitch-y friends and readers have stopped following this blog, it’s been so long!
Blogtoberfest Day 6
Well. Our Easter break was… slightly more than we bargained for, since our car ended up in parts in my father-in-law’s front paddock for several days!
When we arrived on Thursday afternoon, we had planned to do a fairly simple strut replacement job before heading off camping. As soon as FIL got a look at the underneath of the car, it rapidly turned into a drive-shaft-rebuild-needed-asap job. One of the drive shafts turned out to be a bugger to detach, so we weren’t able to get them into the rebuild place before everything shutting down for the long weekend. Nevermind… we loaded our considerable cargo into a trailer and FIL’s car, and took off from Friday through Monday for a lovely few days of riverfront camping.
On Tuesday morning, we had the drive shafts rebuilt, then FIL and OtherHalf spent the afternoon getting the car back in working order. And here we are, back again. Chocolate-bloated and laden with half a ton (it seems) of dirty laundry, but back.
Here then, are some promised catch up pictures. First, the two pay-it-forward packages I didn’t show you earlier:
Next, the final UFO that I stitched on for the round robin. This is Tracey’s Royal Holiday. It was nice to finish on another Mirabilia design:
And that, boys and girls, marks the end of so-called ‘obligation‘ stitching for me. For the time being, anyway. I joined this round robin because I knew I would go through a bit of a stitching slump while Niamh was little, and I figured this would be a good way to spur me into doing a little bit, better than nothing at all. But I have to confess, I’m not sad to see then end of it. I was growing a bit resentful of the time spent stitching on other people’s work (though I will no doubt feel differently once my own UFO gets home, and I see first-hand how much has been worked on it). Each time as the deadline approached, I felt pressured to stitch, even though I didn’t necessarily feel like doing so. I have done very little other stitching for the whole year so far – I completed the Hardanger exchange, I’ve spent a couple of hours on Lilly, and just in this last week I’ve come very close to a finish on one of my smaller pieces (hopefully I’ll dance this weekend). But that’s all. So I’ve decided to opt out of any more exchanges or round robins for at least the rest of 2007. How much or how little stitching I will actually do, I can’t predict, but I just don’t want to feel the pressure of deadlines for a little while.
Last night’s marathon (for me) stitching session took Lizzie from here to here:
And now, her bags are packed and she’s leaving on a jet plane for America. Tracey, I hope you enjoy stitching on her 🙂
I have nothing more for you tonight – it’s tax night in our house (yeah, I know, we are really, really, really late!) so I’m off to join in the fun :giggle:
The last few mornings, while Finn has been watching a bit of ABCKids, and Niamh has been sleeping (or ‘notsleeping’, as the case sometimes is), I have been doing the dishes… folding the laundry… learning to pole dance… stitching, yay! I finished up my MiraBee this morning:
Also, I wanted to show off my new scissors. I won these in Jenna’s Great Scissor Giveaway 🙂 Aren’t they lovely? They are now elegantly attired in a scissor fob made for me by Ruth (Graciella) in an exchange on the TWBB a couple of years back. Thank you Jenna, that was such a wonderful thing to do!
I don’t really know how much I like the new Mirabilia mermaid. I’ll happily wait until seeing some WIPs before I decide completely, but she seems kind of… shapeless, to me. The colours and swirly bits look nice, I guess.
Anyway, it’s not like I need another addition to my wishlist! More stashy mail arrived yesterday – I was completely unable to resist the lure of a 60% off closing down sale at Stitched from the Heart. Along with some Antique White Quaker and Cashel to add to my dyeing stash, I picked up Teenie Tweenies Vintage Grapes and Baby bluebells fob and The Drawn Thread Autumn Arbor. I’m thinking it might be time for another trip to the Wagon soon 😳
I’ve truncated my blog feeds. Just in case you were wondering. You probably weren’t. It’s related to the Bitacle saga, reading about which has taken up too much of my evening. I have yet to make further moves to block Bitacle from my content, but I’m too tired to think about it right now.
And on a related note, I’m definitely now switching from my current feed reader (Sage) to Google Reader. I tried Google Reader only a couple of weeks ago, and wasn’t that happy with the interface, and it seemed a little buggy (not picking up updates from all my subscribed feeds, for example). But I had another look tonight, and it seems they’ve had a nice little makeover, which makes me happy.
That is all 🙂
Before today turned nasty, I managed to catch about half an hour stitching time with Niamh asleep in the car as we waited to pick Finn up from kinder. This is where the MiraBee is at now – there’s not a lot of regular stitching to go, mostly beads:
Christine, your comment about crazy stash acquisition made me smile… since going off the Wagon Challenge at the end of ’05, I’ve been a bit crazy myself. I haven’t always fully confessed, but needless to say, I haven’t stuck to that ‘goal oriented’ plan I had 😳 My latest temptation was the SB&B Easter Sale, and I’m waiting on a couple of The Cat’s Whiskers charts, Enchanted Mermaid, a Drawn Thread chart and some mesh bags. I think that’s it!
Anyway, all guilt aside – first off today, a new fabric I dyed up recently. I adore this. It’s a fat quarter of 28-count Lugana, and I dyed it with Mirabilia’s Midsummers Night Dream in mind. I have just plugged it into the fabric viewer, and it does look lovely with that design, but there’s a number of other Mirabilias it looks great for too – oddly enough, Enchanted Mermaid is one of them. I never envisaged a purple for that design.
I have a bunch of other white fabric just waiting for inspiration to strike – 2 FQs of Quaker (my personal favourite), 3 FQs of Cashel, and 2 more of Lugana. I also have a piece of Belfast I dyed but hate the results of, so I’m going to try over-dyeing that to see what I can acheive. Hopefully, if I get a bunch of satisfactory fabrics out of this lot, my desire for stash expansion will subside a little!
Next is my newest start – yet another Mirabilia – Mermaids of the Deep Blue. I seem to be going through a very definite Mirabilia phase at the moment 🙂 I’d estimate there’s about 20 hours put into this so far, though I didn’t record times so far. There’s two weekends away worth of work in it, put it that way. I’m stitching this on hand-dyed Babbling Brook Jobelan – my first large piece on Jobelan, and I like it more than I thought I would, actually.
As I mentioned, DMC didn’t want to come to the party on the deep plummy-burgundy colours I had in mind. This is what happened instead:
Bear in mind this is my first conversion ever. Someone more experienced/talented than I might have been able to massage and blend the available colours to get closer than I have. But it seems to me there aren’t a good range of deeper shades in DMC. For perspective, the lightest pink here is DMC 3727. The darkest shade here is actually a Weeks dye works floss – ‘Bordeaux’, and is more what I had in mind for the mid-tones. The fabric is ‘Sapphire Sky’ Cashel by Silkweaver.
Putting aside the frustration of not being able to get exactly what I wanted, I am actually pretty happy with how it’s turning out. More ‘Rose Satin’ than ‘Burgundy Velvet’, but pretty all the same. I’m not at all sure whether I’m going to go with the original ‘blankie’ colours now or convert to greens as I had planned. She’s had her first ten hours anyway, so she’s going away for a little while, and I’ll cross that bridge next time I get to her.
So… put on your Critic’s cap and tell me what you honestly think so far 🙂
I finished up another ten hour slot on Petal Fairy last night. (Plus about 30 minutes to finish the brown I had started in her hair). If you need to remind yourself of what she looked like before, check here.
I’m enjoying doing this in 10 hour slots. So far she’s the only WIP I’ve started timing, but it’s working well for me. It’s probably the most structured my stitching will ever get though.
Thus far, this is the only stitching I’ve done for 2006, which is somewhat disappointing. (Summer + Studying != Lots of Stitching Time 🙁 *) Not sure what’s up next. I have numerous deadlines to meet in the coming 3 weeks :yuk:
In more chocolate-egg related news, Mum found me peppermint eggs today, whoohoo! Not Cadbury though. A slightly inferior brand, who I won’t embarrass by naming. Still good, but not as good, so I’m still pouty. I was slightly cheered when I Googled ‘Cadbury Peppermint Eggs’ and Million Stitches popped up #3 in the results :giggle: For the time being I am transferring my loyalties to Turkish Delight eggs. Mmmmmmm.
* For the programmatically challenged, ‘!=’ is ‘not equals’ 😉
I know there’s a bunch of stitchers out there who partake of ‘Guilt Free January’ – in which new starts are permitted without any feelings of guilt about the numbers of WIPs they may be neglecting. I think this is a fabulous idea. So much so, in fact, that I am going to be partaking of guilt free stitching from – oh, now, until whenever I so choose :giggle: Basically, my stitching time is going to be seriously curtailed for the next goodness-knows-how-long, as I slog through (a) this pregnancy, (b) the final unit in my Masters course, and then (c) sleep deprivation and all things newbabyish. So with that in mind, I’m going to enjoy what stitching I do get time for. And there is nothing I enjoy more than new starts! Not saying that’s all I’m going to do, of course. It would be lovely to even finish something once in a while. But given what I just spent on the framing of 2 pieces at the weekend (I’ve been too busy/ exhausted to do it myself), I can’t afford to finish too much anyway :giggle: So in honour of Guilt Free Me, please welcome the newest WIP to my portfolio – Mirabilia’s Petal Fairy. This is the first 10 hours of stitching – and the first time I’ve ever counted time (wonder how long that will last?!). She’s fun, and I will probably do some more on her over Christmas, I think.