Monday, December 4, 2017

Crooked Rows Yield More Corn

A friend where I used to work had a farmer for a husband.  Since my own husband retired from a large manufacturer of heavy equipment (think yellow), he has worked for a farmer, too.  My friend and I to talking about what farmers must talk about when around the table at the local coffee shop.  Our list was growing, but the one that we got the most  amusement from was that they seemed to talk about farmers that couldn't plant straight.  I think that might not be an issue anymore since so many use GPS to plant.  However, I do think they have to make an adjustment at the ends of the rows.  But I wouldn't know for sure as I am not privileged to such secrets.  :-)  But one thing my friend did bring up.  She said that God loves a crooked row as much as a straight row.  And a crooked row yields more corn.  That is the origin for this piece that I designed a few years ago.  

Sunday, December 3, 2017

I Can Do All Things Through Christ

A few years ago, I designed and stitched this piece, I Can Do All Things Through Christ, for a friend's daughter, who was going through cancer treatments.  One for her and the model for me.  I learned an important lesson in stitching this piece.  I used Weeks Dye Works to stitch it.  I am also a fan of dampening thread to make it more manageable.  Weeks Dye Works ' label said it was colorfast by industry standards.  I am not sure what that means exactly because the dampened thread bled a little bit.  So from now on I make sure it is completely dry before beginning stitching.  I like the way that Weeks Dye Works fibers look when stitched, but I wish they were easier to handle when using them. 

Friday, December 1, 2017

ABC 123

I think this is the smallest piece that I've done.  I think it was designed to get you to try a specific brand of silk thread with a small investment of money.  I do remember that I loved stitching with this silk, but do not remember what brand it was.  I also thought the frame was about the smallest needlework frame that I've seen and you might think it wouldn't cost very much. But surprise, it cost way more than one would probably guess.  Great for someone to do in between longer projects, when one just feels the need to finish something.  Unfortunately, I do not know who designed this piece.  

I Believe - Mill Hill Design

About the year 2010, I beaded I Believe by Mill Hill.  It came in a kit that included perforated paper.  I have little trust in perforated paper lasting, so I used 28 count natural linen and stitched over 2 threads.  The frame is also available from Mill Hill.  I think it still is available in 2017, at least from some retailers and online.  This is one of my favorite Santas.  I just love their beaded designs.  

A Butterfly and Daisy from Crossed Wing Collection

I stitched this butterfly and daisy and placed it in a small porcelain jar sometime in the early 90s.  I don't remember the exact title of it, but I think it was designed by Crossed Wing Collection.  It was done with a Continental or Tent Stitch silk gauze.  My teacher for this class taught us to just do the design and not fill in the background.   I think now it would be customary to fill in the background.  Maybe it was the custom then, too, but the teacher didn't do it that way and the directions did not say to do it.  Perhaps they just didn't want to include the silk threads in the kit and this way just kept the cost down.  I wish that I knew.  I don't recall the name of the containers, but I think they were made in Great Britain and were a bit pricey.  

Thursday, November 30, 2017

A Gathering of Snowmen

Another piece, a pillow by Homespun Elegance, stitched by me in 1995.  Finally getting around to posting it.  Just tying to keep all my needlework in one place on the web. It might be still available from Homespun Elegance.  It is stitched on a pre-made pillow on with the stitching area made of Heatherfield.  Homespun Elegance has been one of my favorite designers for many years and I still love their designs.  A good design is a good design, regardless of when it was created.  

Dogs' Day Out

I finished stitching Dogs' Day Out by Crossed Wing Collection this week.  I loved the pattern. and loved stitching the dogs and sort of just put up with stitching the trees.  I loved how Crossed Wing Collection has a hand-dyed special fabric for this piece.  It is 28 count permin linen in Whispering Pine/April. 

 I did have a bit of trouble on staying with this project though and I finally realized why.  I know that lots of people love threads by Weeks Dye Works and I do love the way they look when the project is finished.  Unfortunately, I  find them troublesome to tame and get knots in the strands for no apparent reason, it seems weak to me, and I have had it break or fray on me for no apparent reason.  But I love the shading that it creates.  I wonder if there would be a better solution to my dilemma.  I looked forward to the parts that were stitched with DMC.  Maybe I am supposed to do something to make the Weeks Dye Works thread easier to handle.  I don't know.  If you can help me, I would appreciate it.  

The design has a number of half stitches.  And some back-stitching but the amount is not overwhelming.  

It did take me longer to stitch this piece than I anticipated.  Probably due to my frustration with the Weeks Dye Works threads.