Thursday, January 31, 2013

Theme-A-Licious: Jardin January

 No new stitching tonight. My son was a very wriggly and fighting boy this morning when I dropped him off at daycare - to the point where I was physically carrying him against his will into the room which caused me to wrench my shoulder a bit, so stitching tonight wasn't very comfortable. Ah, the joys of the terrible two's...

But today is the last day of January (can you believe it?) and so here is this month's Theme-A-Licious Report! This month is Jardin January!

Jardin January

The holidays were a little stressful...let's relax in a nice garden. Work on any piece with flowers or gardens.

I made my mid-month report here. Since then, I've added progress to two pieces that fit in this theme. First is Beauty and the Beast Falling in Love, which I hadn't reported on mid-month:
As of 1/20/13
And the other piece is one I have reported on already and is my current rotation piece, Butterfly Rose Cross. Now granted, I haven't gotten to any of the flower portion of this picture yet, but I will eventually!
As of 1/30/13
Next month is Figural February:

Figural February

Who are the people in your neighborhood...your WIP neighborhood, that is? Give your people-populated projects some face time this month.
People-populated projects...hmmm...I really don't have a lot of those coming up in my rotation anytime soon...though nearly all of my projects I will likely touch in February can all be related to people...this may be a month I stretch the theme a bit because I don't particularly wish to get out of my rotation, but we'll see what happens!

Oh, before I forget, I did get some wonderful stitchy stash in the mail today from Hand Dyed Fabrics by Stephanie:
Fabric Heaven!
Hi, my name is Katy, and I'm a hand dyed fabric addict...aren't they gorgeous?!?

Until next time!

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

More Blue...

Lots more blue, though I'm almost done with this particular shade of blue in this column...
As of 1/30/13
What I would really like to do is finish up this column before I put this away in the rotation for a you think I can do it between now and Saturday night? I'm certainly going to try!

Tomorrow is the end of the month post for Theme-a-licious, so check back then!

Until next time!

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

I Swear There Are Four Colors...

Alright, I'm the first to admit that as much as I LOVE getting comments on my blog, I'm absolutely the worst person about responding to them, though I eagerly read every one when my email notification goes off, haha! I saw several comments expressing surprise at the fact that yes, there are four colors in the area I've worked on for Butterfly Rose Cross so far - three blues and one green. So tonight, I took a picture without the flash that (at least in my phone) appeared to show more distinction between the tell me:
As of 1/29/13
I can at least see two colors easily...the three blues are so close together and the green has maybe five or six stitches so far total that they're easy to overlook. What do you think, can you see the colors?

P.S. - the blue part on the bottom of the third color is a different color than the blue on the top part of the color...I promise!

Until next time!

Monday, January 28, 2013

Onto the Third Column!

Tonight I did not have as much stitching time, as I had a late meeting at work that led to drinks and appetizers afterwards, and the stitching bug has a hard time fighting through a margarita/sangria swirl, let me tell you! Haha!

I was able to finish the second column completely tonight, though, and moved onto the third column:
As of 1/28/13
I know it's hard to tell, but you're really looking at four colors in the columns thus far. This has actually been a very enjoyable mindless stitching of these colors in columns. I'm sure once I get to the actual cross and the non-background portions of this piece, I'll have to focus more intently, but it's been a very relaxing and enjoyable stitch thus far!

Until next time!

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Good Progress, Bad Picture

I've decided that I'm going to alternate every other week between a CJC and a non-CJC piece, and my CJC pieces will be done in the order in which they were started. Sunday is always the start of a new rotation week, so today I focused on my Crazy January Challenge piece Butterfly Rose Cross by Brigid Ashwood, a piece from Heaven and Earth Designs.

Here is where the piece stood when we last saw it:
Butterfly Rose Cross - Start of Rotation Week - Last Touched 1/1/13
Excuse the very poor quality of the picture, but here is where the piece stood after some work on it today:
As of 1/27/13
The colors are totally off in this picture, but if you look close, you can see some of the color differentiation in the stitches. All in all, despite the bad picture from my tablet (phone was dead and I need a better quality normal camera), I'm pleased with the work I did today! I made a lot of good progress. The second column should be done relatively quickly - hopefully tomorrow depending on what time I get home from a work function. And you can see I've already started the top of the third column! One page of this piece will count as a finish for the CJC, since HAED pieces are so huge. Wish me luck this week!

Until next time!

Saturday, January 26, 2013

January WIPocalypse and End of Rotation Week

When I got back into stitching last year, I found that many of the blogs I follow participated in a SAL called the WIPocalypse that was reported on each month during the full moon, playing on the idea of the Mayan apocalypse that was predicted in 2012 and everyone trying to finish their pieces in time. Clearly, the world didn't end, and neither did the SAL, which continued into this year! If you'd like more information about the WIPocalypse SAL, please head over to visit Measi's Musings for more information!

WIPocalypse this year has themes for each month, including designer, style of piece and colors, all except for this month. This is January's theme:

January 26 – Theme: Introduce yourself, your projects, and any goals you have for the year!

I don't think I'll necessarily always stick in the theme for the month because of how I work my rotation schedule, but this one I can handle!

So I think all of you know I'm Katy :-) For my WIPocalypse entries, I decided that all six of my holdovers from 2012 will be counted. I will report on whichever ones I worked on each month and show the progress from where they started at the beginning of 2013 and where they are each month. So without further ado, here are the pieces that I'm going to be reporting on for WIPocalypse for 2013:

Italian Vista by Dimensions Gold Collection - Started 7/19/12, last worked on 12/8/12:

European Bistro by Dimensions Gold Collection - Started 8/4/12, last worked on 12/1/12

Flames of Desire by Lee Ann Seed from Heaven and Earth Designs - Started 8/27/12, last worked on 12/15/12:

Christmas Countdown by Dimensions - Restarted 9/2/12, last worked on 12/22/12:

My Witch's Brew by Victoria Motto Sampler Shoppe - Started 11/18/12, last worked on 11/24/12:

And last but not least, the piece I've been working on this week - Beauty and the Beast Falling in Love by Thomas Kinkade from Candamar Designs Disney Dreams Collection - Started 9/9/12:
Beauty and the Beast Falling in Love - Start of Rotation Week
Because of the Crazy January Challenge, this piece is the only WIPocalypse piece that came up in rotation this month. Here now at the end of the rotation week, this is where this piece stands:
Beauty and the Beast Falling in Love - End of Rotation Week 1/26/13

I'm very happy with the progress!

So there is my WIPocalypse report and my End of Rotation Week report! Tomorrow starts a CJC rotation week. None of my CJC posts will be included in the WIPocalypse this year since they were all new starts, but you know me, I'll still post progress!

Until next time!

Friday, January 25, 2013

Just A Quick Post

It's been a super long work week with crazy stressful things at work, I had Girl Scouts tonight, and I'm beat, but I got some more sky and some green grass stitched tonight:
As of 1/25/13
Tomorrow is the last day of this piece for this rotation week, plus it's the first WIPocalypse post of 2013! Can't wait!

Until next time!

Thursday, January 24, 2013

And Even More Sky

Tonight found me still working on the colors of the sky in the blocks I was focusing on:
As of 1/24/13
I promise the fabric isn't as blue as it looks in this picture, it's actually completely white...but the thread colors aren't -too- far off...I'm loving how the sky is starting to come together!

Two more days on this piece in this rotation...I'll be sad to put it to the side, but I'm very proud of what I've done so far this week!

Until next time!

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

More Sky

I was very tired after the last long three days of work in my office that I only stitched a little bit of sky tonight:
As of 1/23/13
Sorry for it being a bit darker. I need to invest in a better camera than my phone, or really just take pictures during daylight! I love the sky, looks to me like the castle really is in front of the sky, providing a bit of perspective in the picture, but that's just me!

I also have to share my six year old daughter's portrait she painted of me at school in art class:
I personally think this looks great! Granted, she gave me green eyes (like what she has) rather than brown (which I have), but I am very proud of her! She has said for the last two years she wants to be an art teacher when she grows up, so you can be sure I'm keeping this in case she really does continue down that path as one of her early masterpieces! Proud mom moment!

Until next time!

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Pretty Sky

For this pattern, I am working in a combination of cross-country stitching and solid ten by ten blocks. It's cross country in that I take one color thread and I try to finishes the stitches throughout the piece in that color, but I determine my next color to work on by the ten by ten blocks of stitches. I am trying to keep it so that I build consecutively larger squares. The first square was by itself, then two by two, then three by three, and so on. The beauty of this process is that I can clearly see the image coming to life from the middle outward, but since I'm doing cross-country stitching as well, I'm not limiting myself to only working on a specific square at any one point. It helps bring more of the image to life that gets clarified once I focus on the stitches in a given square.

I finished the five by five square yesterday. I'm starting to work on the six by six square now, and that led to a lot of sky being worked on tonight:
As of 1/22/13
More of the lovely pinks and oranges seen in the sky at sunset are now visible, and I know I'll be working on more sky the next couple of days as well. I am already very pleased at the progress I've made so far and look forward to seeing what else I can get done the rest of this week!

Until next time!

Monday, January 21, 2013

More Progress

I was able to put some more time into Beauty and the Beast tonight:
As of 1/21/13

Adding the color to the tower of the castle definitely makes it look like there was a lot of progress tonight. I'm realizing as I'm stitching this that this piece is deceptively huge. No, it's not as big as some of my HAED's in size, but I'm only working on the first of four pages right now and I'm not even a quarter of the way done with that page...lots and lots of detail, but I'm loving every stitch. I'm especially enjoying seeing some of the village begin to come to life with rooftops and smoke stacks and shapes of the shading of the foliage around it.

I think that's my favorite part of large scale pieces like this. I love seeing details starting to emerge in ways I just don't feel I get in the same way with some samplers and more primitive pieces, but that's just me. That's the other beauty about this hobby. You can find a project to fit absolutely any taste. It's such a wonderful hobby and I treasure the few hours after a crazy day of work and kids where I get to just relax with my needle and thread!

Until next time!

Sunday, January 20, 2013

New Rotation Week - Beauty and the Beast

Today I started my rotation week by picking up Beauty and the Beast Falling in Love by Thomas Kinkade, and my daughter is thrilled! She loves this piece and it will eventually be for her, so she's very excited I'm working on it again.

As a recap, here is where we last left this piece:
Beauty and the Beast Falling in Love - Start of Rotation Week
It's been nearly three months since I worked on this piece due to other projects getting in the way, but now that the CJC starts are done, I don't anticipate starting any other new pieces this year so I hope I can get to this more often than every three months...we'll see what happens! I did get a few stitches in today, and here is where we stand now:

As of 1/20/13
We'll see how far we get this week! I will say, though, that this piece is making me value the times I use 28 and 32 count fabrics over 14 and 16 counts - partial stitches in lower count fabrics are not so much fun!

Until next time!

Saturday, January 19, 2013

End of Rotation Week

Well, I didn't get all the hair done on this page, but I got very close...there are lots of beads that will be going into her hair too, but that will be well at the end when all the stitching is done:
End of Rotation Week - 1/19/13
This wasn't a full rotation week, but I'm very proud of the progress made! Tomorrow, I start back to my real, official Sunday to Saturday rotation. I haven't done it since before my Christmas will be nice to get back in the routine!

Until next time!


Yay! It's International Hermit and Stitch Weekend, and I plan on getting a lot of stitching done! I worked a bit more on Rapunzel last night:
As of 1/18/13
Today is my last day to work on this piece until it's put away and my regular weekly rotation starts back up again. My goal today is to finish her hair on this page - let's see if I can do it before I switch out pieces!

Until next time!

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Lots of Hair!

I love the colors of Rapunzel's dress in this piece but for whatever reason, I an obsessed with working on her hair and I haven't touched the dress beyond the first day:
As of 1/17/13
The part of the dress I've done so far is the navy blue around the braid...part of me can't wait to get into more detail with the dress, but I love the different shades used to form the braid pattern in her hair...I think my focus is going to be on the hair on this page for the next two days to see how far I can get!

Until next time!

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Rapunzel, Rapunzel!

Let down your golden hair! I worked more on Rapunzel tonight and I have to say I'm just loving this piece. The fabric is divine, the finished pattern is beautiful, I love the colors, it's just really fun to stitch right now. Tonight I focused primarily on Rapunzel's golden hair, though I still have a lot to go!

As of 1/16/13
I do have to admit, though, that as much as I had fun working on this piece again tonight, I sat down tonight and thought first about what new piece I was going to start for the CJC and realized they were already all started, which was kind of disappointing! That was quickly erased, though, by the fun I had working on this piece tonight!

And I noticed I'm over 100 followers! Wow! Hello to all of my new followers! When I started this blog, I wasn't concerned about followers and didn't think I'd ever have too many, but I'm thrilled you're here and hope you like what you see! I may have to have a giveaway to celebrate....

Until next time!

Crazy January Challenge - Rapunzel

I did it! Fifteen starts in fifteen days! This is the last piece for the CJC - Rapunzel by Joan Elliott:

Just like the other two Joan Elliott pieces in my CJC collection, this one is also being stitched two over two on 28-count jobelan from Hand Dyed Fabrics by Stephanie, and this piece is being done on Isolde:

This picture is a 'little' bit more pink/purple than the fabric is, but it still does the fabric justice. I absolutely love it!

Now, typically I do my rotations from Sunday to Saturday, so this lucky piece, although it is the last one started, will be the one in my hoop the longest, as I will continue to work on this piece until my standard rotation starts up again on Sunday, so stay tuned!

Until next time!

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Theme-A-Licious - Jardin January Mid-Month Check In

This year I decided to take part in the Theme-A-Licious SAL, and today is the mid month check in for January! Because of how my rotation schedule works, I am planning on using this SAL to review pieces I work on each month and figure out what I've done to fit in the monthly theme. This month's theme is Jardin January:

Jardin January
The holidays were a little stressful...let's relax in a nice garden. Work on any piece with flowers or gardens.
So far this month, I've worked on the following pieces with flowers/gardens in the piece (even if I haven't gotten to that part of the piece yet!):

Butterfly Rose Cross by Heaven and Earth Designs (flowers are part of the piece, just haven't gotten to them!)

Wedding Sampler by Carolyn Manning

Tuscan Greeting by Dimensions (another where I haven't gotten to the tranquil garden part yet, but it fits!)

Winter Flowers Ornament by Turquoise Graphics and Designs

Fall Fairy by Dimensions Gold Collection

Garden of Joy Ornament by Turquoise Graphics and Designs

Sweet Pea Fairy by Joan Elliott

Butterfly Fairy by Joan Elliott (perhaps no flowers or gardens in the piece, per se, but where else would you find a Butterfly Fairy?)

Wow! I didn't realize how many from the Crazy January Challenge would fit this theme! Based on my rotation schedule, I should have one more addition to this list plus an update on one already on this list by the time we have our final check in on January 31st! How did you do on the theme this month?

Come back later tonight for the update to my final new start for the Crazy January Challenge! Just need to put the kids in bed so I can start stitching!

Until next time!

Monday, January 14, 2013

Crazy January Challenge - Butterfly Fairy

Can you believe that this is the next to last day of the Crazy January Challenge? Well, at least this phase of it - fifteen starts in fifteen days is only the beginning, after all! I have decided about 95% for sure, though, that I'll be doing the ultimate challenge next year - 31 starts in 31 days...I have all year to start collecting fabrics and threads and patterns, so I think I can certainly start now to be ready by next year, especially if I add 2-3 to the list each month to work on collecting everything for...but I'm getting ahead of myself, haha!

For Day Fourteen, I selected another Joan Elliott piece. This one is from her book, Fairy Enchantment and is called Butterfly Fairy:

Like the Joan Elliott piece I started yesterday and the one I'll start tomorrow, I'm also stitching this one on a fabric from Hand Dyed Fabrics by Stephanie, this time two over two in 28 count jobelan in Lady of the Lake:

Not as much stitching as I did yesterday, but that's what happens during the work week. I try to get in two hours of stitching in the evening during the work week after evening chores and the kids are in bed if I can...weekends provide me more time to stitching. Darn that whole job thing and needing a paycheck to pay for my growing stitchy stash!

Until next time!

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Crazy January Challenge - Weekend Edition

Tonight is a two for one! I didn't get a chance to post my minimal progress from yesterday's new start, so tonight I'm sharing both Day Twelve and Day Thirteen!

For Day Twelve, I selected St. Peter's by John Clayton International by Heritage Stitchcraft. Adding to the Italian theme of my pieces shouldn't surprise any of my followers who have seen my work on Italian Vista or European Bistro, but this piece has a personal connection. When my husband and I were sophomores in college in the fall of 1999, we spent a semester in Rome with half of our class, and we also went back for a week in 2005 before we got pregnant with our first child. I absolutely adore Rome and would love to retire there, and St. Peter's Cathedral is my favorite place in the city. We are Roman Catholic, so of course St. Peter's has a religious significance for me, but it's just an amazingly gorgeous and inspirational place, regardless of your faith. It is humbling to walk into that Cathedral and see the work that was done by human hands, and I've actually walked to the top of the dome twice (an amazing feat for someone with an extreme fear of heights), and the view of Rome is breathtaking. So when I saw this piece, I knew I had to stitch it:

For a variety of reasons, including Girl Scout cookie season starting and going out to see Les Miserables (LOVED IT!), I didn't get much done yesterday:

But any progress is progress, right? I'll supplement this mini progress with a few other of my favorite pictures of the real St. Peter's. Forgive the scanned pictures from 1999 - no digital cameras when I went to Rome in college!\
View of the Dome from the gardens of Vatican Museum - 1999
The Dome! 1999

View of Rome from the Dome - 1999
The Dome again - 2005
Me in front of the dome - 2005
Both the Sistine Chapel Ceiling and The Last Judgement pieces from HAED are in my "To Do Someday" pile...they may be additions for the 2014 CJC!

For today's project, I had a couple of firsts! My first Joan Elliott piece as well as my first time to work on the beautiful fabric from Hand Dyed Fabrics by Stephanie. Day Thirteen's project is Sweet Pea Fairy by Joan Elliott:

And here is today's progress:

I'm stitching this two over two on beautiful jobelan in Fairy Dance and my picture hardly does the fabric justice. I absolutely adore the colors already and working on the piece today was a pleasure. I have two more Joan Elliott pieces on Stephanie's fabrics to round out the CJC. If they're anything like this one, it's going to be a true pleasure to wrap up these first fifteen days of January!

Until next time!