Thursday, December 30, 2010

Daffodil is halfway there!

Seems like I just started it!

Since the camera is defunct and the camera on the phone sucks badly, I scanned it instead. So you'll have to excuse the scan, it's a bit... erm... squished/skewed. But you get the idea. :)

Sabrina doesn't fit on the scanner, she's just too big. So she'll have to wait until I have a camera again to be shown off.

While I try to decide what to start for New Year's Day, I decided to work on Romantic Rose Garden for a couple days. I'm a little over half done it, I figure I'll at least get a little more done before then.

I really don't know what I want to start - I thought about starting Growth Rings, and that's a definite maybe, just not sure what colours I want to use yet. And I thought about starting Midnight in the Garden, but again, not totally sure what colours I like for it. Or maybe another Mirabilia... but which one? Just too much to ponder.

Ooooh, I almost forgot, I had a lovely large envelope arrive, just before Christmas!! I had treated myself to some stash - well not really treated, it's work related, but still fun!! All the threads arrived for the rest of the flower designs (save the last one as I'm still not decided on what it will be!!), all the newest colours of silks from Dinky Dyes, Gloriana and Belle Soie (lots of ooohing and ahhhing going on) and some 40 ct Weeks Dye Works linen. Gorgeous colours, excellent for samplers - and it's not a bad linen. Not nearly as flimsy as the 30 and 35 ct they do. It's not as heavy as say, Graziano, but it's on par for thickness with Zweigart. Not as slubby as Zweigart though and a bit more even. Maybe my New Year's start should be on one of those? Then I can really review it better. :) For colours, I got Angel Hair, Parchment and Linen, and all are wonderful.

And a review... Bohin Needles. One word - wonderful. They're no more expensive than any other brand, just a little more difficult to find. I got mine from Anita's Little Stitches and they work out to be about the same price as what I like to call the "crappy brands" like John James and/or DMC. I call those crappy because they are. They eyes break and have burrs that shred your floss, etc. I got some of each of the 24, 26 and 28. The 28's are a bit longer than the 28 in Piecemakers, and I do prefer the length of the Piecemaker. However, these needles do feel really nice. Not the slightest bit of tarnish and I've used the same needle to do half of Daffodil so a couple weeks of use. Even Piecemakers tarnish a little in that time. The eyes are large and easy to thread, and very smooth. No shredding here. Will I trade in my Piecemakers and switch to Bohin exclusively? Probably not. I'd be happy with either or. They're both really wonderful to use. If I see Piecemakers on sale, I always pick up a few, but I do like that I can get Bohin's in bulk. Given that I just bought 150 needles though, I think I'm pretty well set for a year (or two, or three). lol For anyone still using John James or DMC needles, I really urge you to try one of these (Bohin or Piecemaker). You really don't know what you're missing.

Today, I'm labeling "stash enhancement day" as I'm taking a trip into Brantford to get Nate's contacts and I just have to spend my GC from Country Accents. Need beads for Sabrina, not sure what else I'll get today, but I don't think it will be a problem. I can ALWAYS find something I need!! I might kit up one of the Pixie Couture designs - I have them all and I've been wanting to start one. Or maybe the Bliss Fairy, or Petal Fairy... though I have fabric for those already. Hmmmm.... I'll definitely report back on what I bought. :) I'm so excited!! I haven't been to visit Brenda in a month!!!

Ooooh, and just a little addendum... I have the absolute greatest boyfriend on the planet. He got me all the Dexter series on DVD for Christmas. Does he know me or what??? :D

Friday, December 24, 2010

The Christmas Rush... almost over for one more year. It's almost time to sit back, relax, and enjoy time with family and friends. Okay so maybe not relax, there's still cooking, and visiting, and, and, and... but I hope everyone has a wonderful holiday season!

One more day of work and then I get to enjoy 3 glorious days off. Mom and dad are hosting Christmas again this year, so I can de-stress and not have to worry about the turkey. Just dishes. lol

Happy Holidays everyone!!!!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

A new journey begins

Kirsten emailed me last week to tell me that My Mother's Garden II had arrived safe and sound in Australia. PHEW! So excited for February now!! I still have a few letters to finish charting over the next couple days to complete the companion alphabet, but I'll work on those while I take stitching breaks. :)

I'm slowly on the mend from the bronchitis that has plagued me these past few weeks. Everytime I start feeling better for a few days, all of a sudden the sore throat and cough return for a visit. But I'm feeling a whole lot better over all.

I told myself that I would work on Sabrina only until I had a few days off work to get a good start on Daffodil, since one day here or there wouldn't make much of a dent. Well that time has come. After I finish my morning coffee(s) and play a few rounds of Zuma Blitz on Facebook (which btw is extremely addictive!!), I'll be pulling all my materials and getting started on Daffodil, which is printing as I type.

I was sort of putting it off as well since I have materials on the way for several other models, and if they got here before I was ready to start, I'd have to make a decision. I suppose it's good they didn't get here yet, it saves me the confusion of having to choose which one!

Sabrina had a good run - I finished the top half of the chart, and have only the metallic, white and light blue left to do on the bottom half - and of course all the beads. It's a lot of stitches yet, but they're big blocks and will go quickly. I might even pick her back up as soon as I finish Daffodil instead of something different. I'm so pleased with how she's turned out so far.

I'll try to post some pictures of her next post, along with progress pictures of Daffodil - my camera is dead, but I suddenly remembered that my son's phone has a camera on it. We'll see how that goes. Saving up for a new camera after Christmas!!

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Waiting, waiting, always waiting...

I'm waiting with baited breath for my model to reach Australia... it was sent a week ago and of course I'm checking the tracking ten times a day. lol

After I finished it, I started a couple new pieces, but quickly tired of both. I think I was just burnt out to be honest, because they're both lovely, and both are normally something I'd really enjoy. I had started Rosewood Manor's Spring Quaker, and while it looks lovely (doing mine in Belle Soie on 40 ct Desert Sandstorm from Sassy's) I just wasn't feeling it. So then I started Ink Circles Turkish Delight and again, it looks lovely, but between the 55 ct Kingston linen (which isn't evenweave so the piece is slightly skewed and while it's okay for this one given it's not a square design, it still irks me a bit) and the SSR HDF threads I used which are a pretty colour but they're tangling and knotting like mad (I swear, something has changed in the past year, cause these aren't nearly as wonderful as I remember them being and they're really, really, really thin). So I put both away and figured I'd take a break from samplers for a while and pulled out Mirabilia's Sabrina that I had picked up at the LNS not so long ago. This was last Thursday. I'm almost done the top half of the chart already. Mind you the top half isn't as densely stitched, the bottom will take a little longer I imagine. I forgot how quickly these worked up!! Big blocks of colour, not a ton of counting, solid colours for the most part, so no having to follow dye patterns... I'm actually having a blast stitching her. I had intended to change her hair to dark brown, given she's supposed to be Audrey Hepburn, but I've been sick with bronchitis for the past couple weeks and just couldn't be bothered. lol Makes me kinda glad I kept collecting Mira's and Passione Ricamos these last few years even though I wasn't stitching them - now I just might finish a few of the dozens I have.

And if that wasn't strange enough - me stitching something other than samplers that is - I'm stitching it in DMC. I did convert the colours to NPI, but I really didn't want to order them and wait 2 weeks to start her so I just started (given I have tons of DMC here anyway). I know I would enjoy her more in NPI, but honestly, the DMC isn't driving me nuts yet. Suprised? I know I am. I think I just needed something totally different to combat the burn out. I'm giving her another week or so and then I'll be starting my next one, Daffodil, to get it ready for Nashville. By then I'm sure I'll be craving the feel of silks again. :D

While I'd love to post some pictures, at the moment I can't. My camera is suspiciously broken. It worked fine last I used it to take pics of the model for the Gift of Stitching piece, and the next day, Nate asks me if I had any problems with it (which of course I hadn't) so I'm guessing he dropped it and didn't want to admit it. The lens cover is all dented in and won't open or close so that would be the obvious answer. I don't know why he is so afraid to just say to me "mom, I dropped the camera, I'm sorry." I'd be upset, but I'd have a lot of respect for his honesty. This is annoying. I was planning on buying a new one after Christmas anyway, so it's not a tragedy so much as being a nuisance not having one for now.

And now off to work. Counting the hours until I can come home and stitch again. :)