Stitched and Ditched

Circle of Friends – Mirabilia 28ct Ametrine Opalescent Lugana by Silkweaver. Started May 2010.

Japanese Maiden – The Gold Collection by Dimensions. Started January 2005.

Enchanting Geisha – The Gold Collection by Dimensions – She is currently out for the UFO RR on Yuku. You can see her progress here. These two will be truly stunning in matching frames on my wall. I really can’t wait! I didn’t post a picture because my wonderful RR stitchers have been doing all the work so they should be recognized! Started September 2010.

Mother Moon – Joan Elliott 32 ct. Opalescent Ocean Belfast Linen – This baby needs over a dozen spools of Kreinik. I may not be able to afford to finish her this year! lol Started August 2010.

Marilyn Monroe – Vervaco My birthday start for March 2008

Live, Learn, Love – Lizzie Kate 28ct. Lavendar Sparkle Opalescent Cashel linen. Started June 2010

Something Wicked La D Da 32 ct. French White linen – Started September 2010

Roberta’s Cats biscornu – 14ct cream Aida using Threadworx colors. Started May 2010.

Teresa Wentzler’s Needle Guardian on 28ct opalescent light blue Cashel. This was the first project where I made no substitutions for specialty threads. I was so lucky that my LNS had the Dinky Dyes silk in stock! This was my birthday start for March 2010.

Blessed Be – Enchanting Lair 16ct. Green Apple opalescent Aida by Silkweaver using my own colorways in DMC, Kreinik and Blending Filament (argh!).

She’s been tossed aside due to Filament Frustration. I started it about a year and a half ago so that isn’t so bad. I’ll get her finished by this Halloween. *fingers crossed* Started June 2009.

Each Dawn a New Day from The Gold Collection by Dimensions – So close! Needs a lot of confetti and back stitching! This was one of the kits I started somewhere around 2002 or 2003. Your guess is as good as mine.

Live, Learn, Love kit – I have no idea when I started this one!

Girl on Swing from Britain’s No.1 Cross Stitcher on 28ct. Jamaica Sunset opalescent Lugana by Silkweaver using my own colorway in DMC, Glisten Gloss, Kreinik, Mill Hill beads, DMC Metallics. Started April 2009.

Dragon’s Lullaby by Dragon Dreams on 32ct. Castle Sky Opalescent Belfast linen by Silkweaver using some Kreinik and Mill Hill bead substitutions from my stash. I started this one in April 2010.

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Where to begin?

So much has happened since my last blog that I don’t know where to start chronologically so I apologize for the rambling nature of this post.

I have a very long-haired cat with a thick, sticky undercoat. It is difficult to brush her sometimes and almost impossible to see her skin under her coat. A friend’s cat and my sister’s cats had fleas so when I happened to walk by the cat care section while shopping during lunch on Friday I grabbed some Hartz In Control Flea& Tick Drops manufactured by Hartz Mountain Corporation.

After working late on Friday and stopping at the grocery I finally arrived home and began to unload the car. I had so much to get done Friday night. The first “open to the public” meeting of the Rhode Island Stitchers group was meeting Saturday morning at a local library.

In between making mac n cheese from scratch I had signs to print out, an easel to put together (with shitty assembly instructions I might add), my cat’s new incline scratcher to assemble and my cross stitch bags to pack!

I started with the cat scratcher, then got the mac n cheese in the oven, read the flea drop directions and applied them to Sparrow and finally, plopped down in the middle of my living room floor so I could watch the Catherine Zeta-Jones Biography and put together the easel.

Maybe 10 minutes went by when Sparrow came to lay next to me. She shook her back leg a few times as she ambled over. I didn’t pay much attention to that until I saw the right side of her face jerk up and her ears started twitching.

I reached over to pet her in my usual spot – behind her head and above her shoulders – which was the same place I had put the flea medicine. My fingertips began to BURN. While I stared at my hand I glanced at the cat who was now drooling and twitching. I grabbed the medicine box and saw that I had to bathe the animal with lots of water if there was a reaction. Twenty minutes had gone by from the initial application.

Into the tub we went. The cat who fights me constantly with bathing and grooming did nothing but stand there calmly while I scrubbed the back of her neck with Dawn dishwashing liquid and rinsed her over and over and over again with warm water.

She was still twitching and shaking and was wetting herself in the tub. At this point it was around 10pm and I had tears streaming down my face while I told my bundle of fluff and stuff that I was trying to fix it. A second bath followed that first one when I still smelled the flea oil on her neck.

At midnight I climbed into bed with a shivering, twitching, drooling kitty. Her symptoms have slowed down considerably since Friday night. The fact that she has had  dose of cornstarch in her fur to blot up the oil and two more baths after that hasn’t hurt.

I am still watching her carefully. She is not her old self and obviously doesn’t feel well. She keeps coming over wanting me to scratch the back of her head where the medicine was. If I try to pet her anywhere else she hisses like it hurts her. I can scratch the medicine stop as hard as I want and it doesn’t seem to bother her. It makes me think that area is numb and the rest of her muscles are tender to the touch.

Needless to say poor kitty cat has gotten tuna, catnip, treats and snuggles all weekend. I truly hated leaving for work this morning and leaving her unattended for the day.

*sigh* on to happier things!

The first meet-up of the Rhode Islander Stitchers, technically consisting of four facebook friends, was held August 1st at a local Panera Bread. It was the first “real life” meeting for all of us and thankfully we hit it off! Talk about being relieved! My Mom and I have been talking about finding, or starting, a cross stitch group for at least the past five years. There are knitting groups galore but they aren’t exactly warm and fuzzy with you if you don’t knit!

Thankfully I found a like minded stitching sister in Melissa who whipped up a group on facebook faster than you could say….well, whatever you want to say, but it was fast! After I realized that it would be me, my Mom, Melissa and Anne at our meet-up I knew we had to infect more people to our stitching ways.

I booked some space at the local library and hung up flyers and posted on Craigslist. This past Saturday was our first “public welcome” and I must say it was a smashing success. Everyone pitched in to make it a really fun morning. Snacks and drinks were provided and there was lots of stop in traffic.

I put a finished cross stitch piece on the previously-mentioned-pain-in-the-ass-to-put-together-easel in the hallway of the library with a note inviting people to stop in. From the looks of things we may have gone from the core group of four to maybe 13 or 14 people! whoop! I did mention to Melissa that while I enjoyed sticking our stitchy needle to infect the masses I also enjoy our small group dynamic too much to give it up. She agreed (yay!) and we made plans to have small get togethers for stitching as well as the larger groups where we could take turns teaching.

I am so thankful for this little community of stitchers. Things aren’t the easiest right now and they are my little beacon of light.  My stitchy bug has returned with a fervor and I have just started my Lizzie Kate Love Snippett and am almost done with my Hope for a Cure blackwork mandala for my Mom. I picked a medium raspberry (for breast cancer) DMC and am using a light lavendar opalescent linen.

More catching up later but at least this is a start!

Stash Dash

I picked up Circle of Friends by Mirabilia when it was first released but I truly hated the suggested fabric for it. The brown tone was much too dark for my tastes.

The design is quite large (146w x 238h) and the piece of fabric needed would be expensive due to the size of the stitching and the space required for framing.

I had a rather large piece of 28ct Lugana that was given to me. The color was a peachy yellow pinky color. I know it was a Silkweaver fabric so it was probably Sparkling Sundown Reflections. It was a pretty fabric and my floss toss looked nice on the fabric so I decided to go for it.

What a mistake!

The goddess on the far left matches the fabric too closely. There is no definition between the fabric and the flesh tone. All in all, the color was too light for the project. There was no “pop” of the colors.  I guess those design artists really do know what they are doing. 🙂

I put the project aside for a few months. I had NO desire to work on it. The joy of seeing each stitch come to life on the fabric was ruined. The fabric made the design look cheap – 1980’s chic pastels. I knew I could not continue the project on that fabric BUT I still did not like the artist’s original fabric!!

Picky, aren’t I?

I decided I had only one option. I had to go to my favorite cross stitch shop ABC Stitch Therapy in New Hampshire. I made a weekend of it since I had use of my company’s condo in the White Mountains. During that first weekend in May I was blessed with lovely weather for my three hour drive. There was no traffic and no problems. It was a true treat!!

Once I got to the shop I went straight to the fabric executing floss tosses on various fabrics. After a half dozen options I settled on a length of 28ct Lugana dyed by Silkweaver called Ametrine.

I felt the goddesses would look divine on this! It has a rich brown and gold overall tone (so hard to tell on a digital photo) with purples and blues. Gorgeous! And it really does look like an actually piece of ametrine!

Happy with my new piece of fabric I had to resign myself to the fact that I would have to redo all the stitches I had previously done. It was worth it! What was the point in finishing a piece I could no longer stand. Putting the stitches in the new fabric felt wonderful! I have done a little more work on this since the photo but I have put aside my stitching until I finished my home decor revamp!

The colors really do pop on the fabric and there are some wonderful bursts of blue and purple that will be viewable when framed.

I am happy I made the decision to start over. I figured since I was already at the stitchy shop and had used a tank of gas to get there I should really shop around. I really had to twist my own arm to browse the store!

I just had to pick up Something Wicked by La D Da to whip up for this Halloween.

I also decided I had waited long enough to buy Holly from the Pixie Couture Collection by Nora Corbett. I already had the perfect creamy Belfast opalescent linen but I made sure to pick up the beads and Kreniks there too.

This little Lizzie Kate sweetie was sentimental enough to get me to spend $6 for such a tiny pattern. I grabbed the DMC for this one too since I knew I didn’t have those color in my bobbin boxes.

Another piece of hand dyed fabric from New Zealand made my stash dash complete and I can’t wait to do another one someday soon!!!