Tuesday, May 29, 2012

I hate the bugger!

There has been a picture of a frog that has gone around the stitching forums that I frequent.  This picture is exactly what I think of every time I have to remove any and all stitching.

This is a fabulous rendition of the frog giving you the finger while you rip out hard work that you had done. What a total little shit this froggie is.

Ripping out backstitching is the worst thing to me! It got to the point that I was starting to pull out stitches, so I had to put it down, back away, and then go back to the piece to try again.  What a pain in the ass, but I finally got the sections fixed, and I resumed my backstitching.

Because of Memorial Day, I did not get anything done yesterday, and today did not see great progress because of the frogging.  However, two more flip-flops are outlined.

The last flip-flops will take some additional time as the yellow stripes are outlined in purple, and then I will be able to backstitch the rest.  So close to being done, but I'm still afraid I won't make the end of the month deadline I gave myself.  

Sunday, May 27, 2012


I am always amazed at how well a piece turns out once I start the backstitching and detail work.  I usually leave it for very last, but the Flip-Flops themselves are done, so I wanted to get them detailed before working on the "Welcome."  What a difference!

The beach looks more real now, but the difference in the one flip-flop really stands out.
 I took a close-up photograph of the two yellow flip-flops, and it looks like the left one is out of focus rather than just "not detailed."  I love this!!
I will spend tomorrow with my family and our friends, so I probably won't get all of the backstitching done, but I can feel the end of this one getting really close.  I can't wait to see it all together!

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Getting there....

The flip-flops are moving right along. I did not think that this last pair would be so difficult, but it does take quite a bit of pattern and creativity to get it done. I've also noticed that my eyes are struggling and my neck hurts after working on these a while, however, I managed to get a lot accomplished today.

What I hate is the back of this design. With the last pattern, it is very difficult to make it "pretty" like I prefer to do. 
 I have always tried to keep the backs as clean as possible. The red and orange flip-flops are clean, but the yellow is a wreck.
 You can clearly see that I work hard to ensure that there is continuity in my stitching, and I do my best to never tie off in a different color.
But it is just impossible to do with this yellow flip-flop.  The grid pattern on these is difficult and requires much more detail and time than I first saw when looking at the pattern.  

At the end of the day, I had completed quite a bit of stitching.  Once this last flip-flop is complete, I will only have the WELCOME and pattern at the bottom to finish.  

Friday, May 25, 2012

Friday - Begin!

It's Friday night, and I happily spent it working on my Flip-Flops.  This week was not pleasant, and I'm not looking forward to the next two, but at least I have my stitching to keep me semi-sane.

I decided to work on the water from left to right. The yellow and green flip-flops are quite time consuming, so I figured I would work on some solid colors for the total R & R. 

Looking good! (And I do say so myself.)

Monday, May 21, 2012

May IHSW Completed

The weekend has come to a close, and I have taken the update pictures for the International Hermit & Stitch Weekend.  I will admit that I only stitched Friday night and most of Saturday because by Saturday night, I was starting to make a LOT of mistakes.  I really hate frogging, so I put the stitching to the side and focused on baking.  

As a reminder, to learn about IHSW, click here.  My Flip-Flops are coming along nicely! I really am enjoying this project.  I was disappointed to learn that I reversed the sand colors on my pattern when I strung my floss, so rather than a light sand with a dark highlight, I have exactly the opposite.  I am not about to start over, but it is a warning to others who have this pattern that mine doesn't match the pattern.  It's still really nice though.

I'm working on the last set of flip-flops, and then I will work on the rest of the ocean before starting the "Welcome" and the bottom border.  So far, I have 12 hours devoted to this fun stitch.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

May's ORT

Well, I managed to get some stitching done since learning about the Totally Useless Stitch-A-Long, and I even bought a cute little jar to hold them in. Part of me wants to stop stitching until there's no thread left so I would have more to show, but I so hate to waste.  

Remember to click on the link to the right to join in the fun!  Until the next New Moon....

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Stand Storage

I'm not going to post my WIP until after the weekend's event, but I have seen it discussed on some of the forums about how many people do not like a stand's size.  I will admit that it is difficult at times, and when I have a party, I move my stand into my office so nothing is damaged.  I would hate to have to kill a former friend for ruining a stitching WIP.  However, once I'm done, I simply protect the WIP with a pillow case (best suggestion I ever received!), and then I move it to the wall out of everyone's way.
Typically, I will have the one large project going that requires the stand, and if I'm going to travel, I will kit up something small that I can throw in my purse.  The pillowcase was a fabulous idea - I live in the desert.  There is no way to keep the dirt and dust at bay unless we spend the money for double paned windows, and even THEN, it's not 100%.  At some point, I would have to open a door.  So, the pillow case keeps the dust off the fabric, keeps the sun from fading the floss, and not even the dog's hairs are on my WIPs. 

All in all, it's been the best solution for me. I'm a two-handed stitcher, so the stand allows me to stitch the way that's natural and also allows me to stitch faster.  Having to hold a hoop or even just the fabric in hand keeps me from using both hands like I enjoy.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Flip-Flop WIP Progress

Well, tomorrow will kick off the International Hermit Stitching, so I thought I had better get an updated progress of my Flip-flop WIP to make it easier to tell how much I actually get done over the weekend.  I am truly enjoying working on this piece.  After my horribly failed attempt at linen, I am really glad that I tried an evenweave.

This is being done on 28 ct Jobelan hand-dyed in Queen Anne's Lace over 2 using DMC Floss:

IHSW -Signed Up!

Once again, I am learning from others. There has been this little widget off to the side of some people's blogs, but I never bothered to take a look at it.  

This morning, I was perusing a couple of those blogs, and I saw what the little guy meant.  Thank you to Maud for putting it so well (I have totally plagerized your site):

Coming back this Friday night is the International Hermit and Stitch Weekend (IHSW),organized by Joyce at Random Ramblings.

What's all this hermit and crab thingy about you ask? Well, in Joyce's words: ''International Hermit and Stitch Weekend takes place every 3rd weekend of each month. In our very busy and hectic lives, IHSW is a chance for us to squirrel some time away for ourselves and "Hermit and Stitch." It is a time set aside to take care of us and our love for stitching.''

For more info, click on the little crab button on the right, and to sign up click here.

I have informed the hubby that now I have "reasons" for stitching this weekend.  He laughed at me (lovingly, of course), and agreed that I should be able to enjoy my weekend with some much needed stitching time.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Needle Minders

OK, I have seen these gadgets on others' photos for some time, so I went to a couple of websites to see what the heck they are about: Needleminders.  I really liked the look of the Hibiscus - only because I couldn't find a Plumeria one.

However, the information that I find for these just says to lay your needle on it.  Um, is it magnetic? does it hold the needle? If my piece falls to the ground, am I still going to lose the needle?  How do these work and are they worth the money??

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Using a Stand

So the prompt for this Blog Hop was: Do you use a stand when you stitch? If so, tell us about it and share pictures if you’ve got them. If not, would you like to try using a stand? Do you have any tips or tricks around using a stand versus not using a stand?

I stitched "in hand" for many, many years, and I was always careful to keep the fabric clean, but keeping it from getting creases was a pain in the butt. I had seen stands, but I didn't like the cost or the ability to use them, but given that I'm a two-handed stitcher, I wanted to get a stand so I could utilize this wonderful gift and stitch even faster.  

While attending the Creative Arts and Textile Show in Riverside, CA back in 2002, I came across a stand that I loved!! It was simple, easy to use and had the extender bars included in the price.  So armed with my saved-up pennies, I made the purchase, and I have never - EVER - regretted it since.

Last month, I actually had one of my daughters take a picture of me using the stand since I had never seen myself using it before.  It was kind of cool to see the amount of space that my hobby takes up in the living room while I stitch.  The stand just makes everything easier and better for me.  The fabrics stay smooth other than from the scroll rod - but that will be hidden by the frame anyway - and I use a pillow case to put my stitching in when I'm not using it.  It's very, very important for me to use the pillow case because I live in the desert, and I hate the copious amount of dust and dirt that infiltrates my domain.  

This is me using the stand.  As you can see, my stitching spot is quite busy.  It's great we have the huge sectional - otherwise the kids would be sitting on the floor while I worked!  I did make an addition to my area to include an Ott Lite to help with my old age eyes.

Did I mention that I love my Stand?!

Visit all the blogs in this round of the Stitching the Night Away Stitching Blogger Blog Hop:
Find the instructions on how to participate in this round by clicking here.

Sunday, May 13, 2012


Welcome to my new Blog! This is going to focus specifically on my crafts - specifically, my cross-stitching.  I figured it was time to showcase what I was making and discuss my WIPs and Finishes.

This will also be where I do not change the backgrounds with the seasons or highlight the family craziness - unless it has to do with my creations.

Feel free to Follow Me or to just browse once I get everything uploaded.  I will still be creating my Family Blog as well, so if you enjoy reading what my kids are up to, feel free to check it out as well.