Saturday, June 30, 2012

Jordan Fairy Progress

I have not had as much time as I wanted for stitching this week. I made some time for myself last night, and I think everything is coming along nicely.  I decided to work on the J more than the Fairy at this point, and it is going smoothly.  

Here was what I accomplished Friday night:

And here's what I accomplished by Saturday night:

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Letter J Fairy

I have (re)started the Letter J by Nora Corbett. The Jordan fairy gave me trouble last time because I was using linen. It was the recommended linen and color, but working on linen drove me insane. I hated it, and it made working on her tedious.

Finally, I posted a question on a stitching forum on facebook, and everyone agreed that if I wasn't happy stitching her to offer her to someone else, and then work on fabric I liked.

Jocelyn Mattatall took Jordan, and I happily stitched some other projects. I needed to build back up the will to stitch Jordan. Added to that is the fact I really wanted to find the perfect fabric for Jordan not only because I want this to go as an heirloom piece to my daughter, also named Jordan, but because I wanted to use the same fabric for each of the letter fairies I stitch for each of my three daughters.

After a long deliberation, I decided to go with Stephanie Bishop's Spring Breeze 28 ct Lugana.  

At this point, I'm a bit worried because the wings are blending in with the fabric color, but the portion of the J is popping out. I am thoroughly enjoying this stitching now. I'm so happy with evenweave over linen!!

Friday, June 22, 2012

June June!

I really do love a quick stitch!  In just 15 hours, I had this little guy all done! I had posted an update yesterday thinking I would take a break, but I was so close to being done, that I just kept going. So here is the cute June Bug all completed:

 This is where I will put each month out for display in my house. I have this little shelf that you see when you walk into the house along with our wedding topper and a cross we received for our wedding.  It fits perfectly!
Now, on for a new WIP!

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Update on June

After getting through July - Sailing so quickly, I decided that I would go ahead and work on June Bug and try to get it done before the end of the month.  Again, these are some pretty quick pieces.  The pattern is by Stoney Creek as part of their current Pattern of the Month series being stitched on 28 ct evenweave in Antique White color using DMC floss.

Some backstitching is left to do along with a couple butterflies, and this will be done. 

* As a post-script, I actually finished this piece late tonight.  I will post the finish tomorrow when I can get daylight pictures.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

TUSAL - ORT Report

Well, I went with the date listed at the TUSAL site, so I waited until tonight to post my ORT Update.  As you can see, I have been busy - YAY!!! You can see the tropical summer colors of the Flip-Flop Welcome that I finished as well as the July Sailing finish.  If you look carefully, you can see the beginnings of the June bold red colors.  

It's been fun to watch the jar get more full as time goes on!

Sunday, June 17, 2012


It was time for the International Hermit and Stitch Weekend which 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."

This month, I had nothing but good intentions.  We got back from our beach vacation on Friday, and I started a new project.  Then, the entire weekend just got away from me.  In all fairness, it really wasn't my fault.  This particular weekend was not only Father's Day, but it also happened to be my birthday.

Now, I think that it was MY birthday, so I should have been able to sit and stitch and enjoy myself.  Apparently, I underestimated my friends and family - completely!! Places to go, people to see, and so many plans made on my behalf with very little input from me.  How did that happen??

So, as Sunday night draws to a close, I took a picture of the entire stitching that I completed since Friday night.  I am not impressed:

Friday, June 15, 2012

Stereotypes - Blog Hop #4

Stitching the Night Away Stitching Bloggers Blog Hop

Here is the prompt for this blog hop: Do you experience this same assumption from society in general that just because you’re being crafty you’re also driven by some unseen force to be in constant 1950s housewife mode? and then…. Who actually does the cooking and the cleaning in the household? I’d also really like to hear some words from the men in the crowd who stitch on this topic. What sort of societal reactions do you get and what ridiculously wrong assumptions do people make towards you when they see you working on needlework?

Oh-my-freaking-God! This is such a great post for this month! Hahahahaha! I am laughing so hard at it because we just had an encounter such as this - on a military base!!  OK, so you need some back-story since many of you are new to the Koehler Klan.

My husband is medically retired from the United States Marine Corps.  He is a rough and tough son-of-a-bitch when necessary, but overall, he is the sweetest, kindest, and most gentlemanly kind of guy that you will ever meet. Everyone who knows him and even his medical records always indicate that he is a "perfect gentleman."  He is completely mechanical, and he almost proposed immediately when I knew how to rotate the tires on my own car.  

I have always been the rough and tumble tomboy who preferred to play sports and play with Tonka than put on a dress and play with Barbie. I have been shooting pistols and rifles since I was little, and it was my ornery and tough WW1 AND WW2 Veteran grandfather who taught me to shoot, cuss, and stick up for myself.  I was so afraid that when I had children that I would totally suck at it because of my apparent lack of estrogen (no fear, I did just fine taking care of the girls). I'm not the touchy-feely, overly emotional chick, and I still prefer hanging out with the guys smoking a cigar and enjoying a snifter of Scotch or Bourbon over being in the kitchen with the wives.  There are times I love being in the kitchen, but it's usually because the hubby and I are cooking together.

Now, please remember that my hubby is the retired one.  I am still employed full-time and hoping to scrape a retirement together before I'm 90 years old.  So, it is my HUSBAND who is home cleaning, shopping, doing the laundry, picking up kids and all of that fun stuff while I am the one working.  We share the cooking here and sometimes we enjoy preparing the meal together - which will usually involve a dance or two around the kitchen together.   I have learned to cook very well (as is evidenced by the size of my posterior at this point), but that's about it where the crafty stuff ends. The hubby does manage the budget because, frankly, I hate math and dealing with numbers literally hurts my head - but we plan the budget and work together to make the ends meet. 

My ability to cross-stitch makes people think that I sew, knit and crochet as well.  I really wish I could do those things, but I utterly suck at them.  I have finally purchased a sewing machine so that I can do some finishes to my stitching projects as well as fix hems for my girls or sew a strap back on when the sisters start fighting.  It's never pretty when I sew, but it's always functional.

For the most part, we get some funny looks when I mention this arrangement, but usually, I am met with shrieks of "You're SO lucky!" or something similar.  My hubby will not only clean the clothes, but he folds them AND puts them away.  Because the Marines is a way of life for him, he also irons.  (Honestly, he hates the way I iron clothes, so he does it all since I apparently miss one or two very small wrinkles and I don't pleat the pants appropriately - which all works for me because I hate to iron!)

However, there are many times that we get the "Uh-huh" and the eyebrow raise with nods when we discuss the arrangement in our house.  There are so many people who think that we should have the "conventional" home such as was seen on Leave it to Beaver, and I often make the remarks that I do NOT vacuum with a perfectly ironed skirt and pearls on.

I'm looking forward to getting a glimpse of the others on the Blog Hop.  It should be fun and interesting for me to read!

Visit all the blogs in this round of the Stitching the Night Away Stitching Blogger Blog Hop:
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July is done in June

I am very happy to report that I finished my Month of July pattern while on vacation! The weather was very June-Gloomy, so that gave me lots of time for stitching.  This little one did not take me too much time - approximately 11 hours total. I added the seagull button and then mounted the piece and framed it in the custom frame, also by Stoney Creek.  

The Month of July progress

I was not able to post from my phone due to technical errors while I was on holiday, but I was busy stitching, and I made a note of my progress on my Family Site so I could note the pictures and the ideas at the time.

It's there you can see where I was and how things were going.  I will have the finish uploaded by the morning as soon as I have ironed it out and framed it.  I'm very excited!

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Flip-Flop Finish!

What a wonderful feeling it is to be finished! It's not just that I can move on to my next project but the pride at seeing it complete.  I took a moment to look it over and enjoy it before I emerged from my office to show the family.  This came out really well!

And now to have it sent out for framing. Once I get it back, I will update this page with the framed piece. Thanks to everyone who gave encouragement along the way!

Friday, June 8, 2012

A Bit of a Funk

There is nothing worse than Life making you feel blah and putting you in a funk.  This week has been one of those weeks, and I really wanted to be done with my Flip-Flops by now.

After three days of the funk, I finally decided to take action! I got out the next project I want to do, and I kitted it up.  Got everything ready to go, and suddenly, I was motivated again and not so....well, dare I say it....Bitchy.  My poor family has had to put up with my ickiness, and I feel horrible about it, but there seems to be no controlling it either. Work drove me insane, and I took it out on the people I love most.  {gasp} What a bitch I was.

However, this cute little pattern is on deck as the next piece I will do, and it's a cute one:

It's the Stoney Creek 2011-2012 Pattern of the Month Series, and this one is from April 2012 "July."  I'm totally ready to go, so now all I have to do is finish my Flip-Flops.  Each letter is taking approximately 2 hours to complete, but I'm so very close to being done.

That's right! Just one more letter and this baby is done! I am certain that I can get it done tomorrow night, and then I will have earned the ability to take my smaller pattern with me to the Beach when we leave.  

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Nearing the Finish

I am nearing the finish line on my Flip-Flops. I did not get a lot of stitching done over the weekend - I did make purchases and receive some stash, but life was just too busy to get anything done on my Flip-Flops.

A lot of time was "wasted" by my trying to change the pattern.  You see, I'm NOT a fan of blue. I know where my problem comes from: I grew up with everything blue - the house, the cars, the bathroom, the carpet throughout the house....everything was blue! I, personally love the color green, and I try to keep the family from suffering my fate, but I just couldn't stand looking at a blue Welcome on the bottom.

So, I picked a trio of greens and stitched the W. I didn't care for it at all - too dark. So, I frogged it out and tried another trio of greens; making sure to use the green that was in the pattern.  Now, the hubby didn't like it.  He even took an interest in this one, and we had a dialog about how he really preferred the blue for Welcome. I couldn't believe it! Sadly, though, he was right about it.  The blue really works with the pattern and gives you the "Ocean Feel" that the pattern elicits.

{Sigh} Now I frogged the W again for the third time, and I went with the original pattern - blue it is! I loved that the hubby gave input on the piece and not just because I plan to have it framed and hung over the front door, but it was nice for him to actually get involved in what I was doing.  What a treat!

Here was the work that I accomplished (without showing the green attempts):

I have also decided that I will not be stitching the multi-colored bar at the bottom of the design. I just don't like it. The hubby didn't have an opinion one way or the other about it, so he was fine with my decision, and now I just have to see how fast I can save the money for framing the piece. 

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Compulsive Shopping AKA Stitcher's Stash

What is it about a Stitcher's need for Stash??  I have seen threads on Facebook groups that have discussed this, yet I found myself this morning ordering yet another kit that I have no idea when I'm going to have time to stitch it.  

I saw this great series on a group, and I suddenly HAD to have it! The work of Nora Corbett is amazing!! I have started collecting her work, and I have tried to stick with what I want for myself or my girls, but this is the Easter Fairy that I will add to the New Year's, Valentine and Halloween Fairy.  There is still the Thanksgiving and Christmas that I need to add, but my contact just doesn't have the kits yet. And the worst part is, I won't stop until I have them all!

I have seasonal items in all different shapes and sizes, but I don't think I have enough wall space for them all each season.  Hmmmmm. Where am I going to put all of them when I actually make them?! What is making me HAVE to HAVE them?! Mill Hill made a Seasonal Welcome Banner and I have them all - sitting in a bin waiting to be stitched. I also have all of the patterns for the Cricket Seasonal Series. 

June 1st found me purchasing the next installment of the Pattern of the Month through Stoney Creek:

Again, another series that I simply MUST own. Why?! With the free pattern comes the purchase of the frame and button accessories that make the pattern so cute.  These aren't so large, but again, there is a lack of wall space in my house.

I am hoping that once I complete the purchases of the Nora Corbett Limited Edition kits and the Stoney Creek Month patterns that I will find the end of this monthly purchase obsession.  However, there are other things that come up that I just have to have. I get that I purchase anything flip-flop or sunflower related, but then I'm faced with the problem that I only have SO much wall space or places to put things.

There's really no answer for this - it's all rhetorical, and I know that I'm in good company.  There are women who are obsessed with purchasing shoes, purses, or clothing.  I don't have those issues which is good since my closet isn't large enough at ALL.  And I haven't even touched on the amount of hand-dyed fabrics I have stocked up on in order to be prepared to make all of these lovely patterns.

I sincerely hope to actually make all of the patterns that I have and that my house will look tastefully decorated for each season. I also hope that as I have this large amount of stash that one day my need to continue purchasing will end.  At this rate, my daughters will each have a lifetime of things to do.  

As a post-script, I had just finished clicking "Update" to this post, and my postman arrived.  Fun! I received two Mirabilia patterns that I ordered: Three for Tea and Lady of the Flag along with a FOB that I really loved with "Keep Calm and Stitch On" which I wanted to use for my threader - which I can never find in my bag when I need it right away.

 I will be using the Blue Dress Conversion on the Three for Tea since this wonderfully represents my girls.  The FOB was perfect for me, and it helps that I was able to custom order mine for the colors that I wanted.  Thank you Kathy at Designs by Lisa!

Friday, June 1, 2012

Blog Hop - Planning

Stitching the Night Away Stitching Bloggers Blog Hop

This Blog Hop prompt is: Do you set stitching goals for yourself and how do you plan them out? (Weekly, monthly, annually?) What are your current stitching goals (if you don’t mind sharing)? In addition to setting goals for yourself, do you have a special reward that you reserve for when you reach a stitching goal?

I am a planner by nature. My entire life is organized into various compartments, calendars, organizers, etc. My crafting room is organized, and I can typically find everything I need or want at any given time.  When it comes to stitching - I am the same way.  I determine which project I would like to work on next, kit it up, and then start.  

Now, once I start a project, I try to keep in mind how long it should take me.  However, I work a full-time job, have a husband who shares some other interests with me (traveling, shooting, etc.), 3 girls that live at home, 3 step-sons whose lives are currently combusting, and friends.  This means that there are many times that life just gets in the way of my ability to stitch.  I will "plan" to stitch each day if possible, but I allow myself the ability to be too tired or busy.  So long as I can get to my project each week, I am usually happy.

Currently, I am over half-way done with my current project: The Flip-Flop Welcome. My current plans are to spend this afternoon stitching until my children return home on their last day of school, and then listen to them regale me with their final tales of these grades.  I then hope to spend some time over the weekend stitching - but it's usually after the girls have gone to bed.

The reward to myself is seeing a job well done.  I enjoy giving the gift or framing my piece to keep, and then I look forward to choosing and kitting up the next project.  Kitting a project is always a great time for me, and it seems to be its own reward to me for finishing the previous project.

Visit all the blogs in this round of the Stitching the Night Away Stitching Blogger Blog Hop:
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