Red Hair!

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I am so glad I got to start working on the mermaid’s red hair! The several different flesh colors of her body were starting to get really boring and hard to keep track of. The red is also made up of a bunch of different shades, and the pattern falls onto three separate pages, so it is a bit of a challenge to keep my place correctly. But I am having fun and can even watch a bit of TV while working on her.

XXX
Carrie


It’s A Start

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I finally got to sit down and make a start on the mermaid, and she is a lot of fun to work on! So far I have part of her body and the seashell bra done. My daughter thinks it is really funny looking!

It’s my birthday weekend, so I am taking time off from dishes and laundry and all the other things I normally have to do, and am going to sit on the couch and stitch, stitch, stitch!

XXX
Carrie


The Mermaid, at last!

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I am so excited to finally get to start on this gorgeous mermaid that has been on my “to-do” list for a year. I had a horrible time finding the right fabric for it. I didn’t want to use plain blue, but anything I found that was overdyed just didn’t seem right. I finally found this beautiful hand dyed Jobelan from Wichelt Imports. It is called Caribbean Blue (is that appropriate, or what?!) and is 28 count. However, when I did the needle test, it was actually 25 count. (The needle test involves putting a needle through a couple of the holes in the fabric, straight up and down, then measuring exactly one inch over and inserting another needle at that spot. Then you count the number of stitches from the one needle to the other.) I tried this in various spots in the fabric and ended up with 25 count each time. This means the design would end up being larger than it was supposed to. I double and triple checked my math and found that the fabric was still large enough, so I decided to use it. Here is a picture of the threads laid out on the fabric. My camera really can’t do the fabric justice; it is a much deeper greenish blue than the photo shows. I also took the picture before I ironed the fabric. I did end up ironing it before putting it on my scroll rods so that it wouldn’t need much ironing afterwards.

I really love the gingerbread houses but now that our snow is finally gone, the sun is out, and the tulips are about to bloom, I need a summery project!

XXX
Carrie



Christmas Cutie

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Yes, it is a dog!

This was another free cover kit with The World of Cross Stitching. I didn’t get much time to work on it while visiting my parents but it stitched up pretty quickly on a lazy weekend.

After finishing, I just wasn’t sure about the bottom portion where there is no backstitch. It looked unfinished to me. So I decided to see what it would look like in the card…

Yes, that bottom portion definitely needed backstitch. I had to kind of figure out where the stitches should go, since the chart didn’t include it and the rest of the design had the backstitch go on an angle, instead of following around each stitch. But I think what I did to it made it look so much better:

Now I just need to mount it into the card! I love how the hat uses silver metallic thread. You can’t really see it in the photo, but it is so shimmery and sparkly, and really sets off the entire design!

XXX
Carrie


What Is It?

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While going through some of my cross stitch magazines, I found this project tucked away between the pages. I had completely forgotten that I had started this while I was visiting my parents over Christmas break. Can you tell what it is going to be? Since it is another quick card project, I am going to finish this before working on the Gingerbread Houses again.

XXX
Carrie


Oops…!

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A new copy of The World of Cross Stitching  came in the mail, and it had this cute bird card kit with it. Because I get the issues a month late in the US, the card is too late to make for this Easter (it’s hard to see, but there are a few Easter eggs at the bottom of the card). It was so cute and looked like a fast stitch, though, so I decided to give it a go. I got this far and then went to bed…

And when I went to look at it this morning I realized how hilarious it looks. Those are leaves, I swear!

XXX
Carrie




Gingerbread House Sampler

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I have started a new project. I know, I know. I have several WIPs already. But the deer in the woods is just not fun to work on, and A Summer Ball is quite challenging (and huge). I wanted to work on something that I could complete in the next couple of months, and have fun working on at the same time. I chose this gingerbread houses wall hanging from issue 141 of Cross Stitch Gold magazine. This pattern was designed by Durene Jones, and is just so adorable. There is no backstitching, no fractionals, and only a handful of french knots. The entire chart is done in only 7 colors, and has large blocks of one color. I have not worked on it much yet, just a couple of hours over the weekend, and I already have a good portion of one of the houses done. Photos to come!

This was not one of the projects I had in my “to do” pile. I really did want to start on either the colorful butterflies or the red headed mermaid. But I didn’t have the right fabric for the mermaid, and this chart seemed so much easier than either of them. Bigger, possibly, but with a lot less color changes and counting. And although I am not a huge fan of gingerbread cookies or cutesy things like this in general, I just knew I had to make this wall hanging when I saw it! I especially adore the green pom pom trim at the bottom.

XXX
Carrie


Deer In The Woods

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After finishing my last project, I decided to tackle the Deer In The Woods again. I have not worked on this in almost a year, and it was started several years before that. The shades of green and brown are not only boring to stitch, but difficult. Yet I want to get this one over with so I can start on something new. In a few days time, I managed to complete the last of the trees and started on the grass.

The grass is proving especially difficult, so after working on it a bit I decided to put it away again in order to work on A Summer Ball. In a couple of weeks I will go back to the deer and hopefully finish it up. Then I will finally allow myself to start on something new.

XXX
Carrie


A Tisket, A Tasket, Three Flowers in a Basket

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Last night my daughter wanted to read her new Owl Diaries book aloud to me. We sat on her bed and she read while I stitched. Occasionally, she would show me a funny picture from her story. I didn’t get a whole lot of stitching done (reading, although something she excels at, is not her favorite pastime) but I’m glad to have three flowers done as well as the start of the basket.

Unfortunately, I wasn’t paying very close attention to the pattern, and apparently the two small outside flowers are the reverse of the larger central one. The outside was supposed to be yellow, with the orange for the inside. Oops! Now I have to decide if I want to keep it as is, or rip out the two small flowers and start over. I definitely won’t do anything about it now, I will wait until it is completed to see how it looks, as well as see how much floss I have left over.

XXX
Carrie


One little flower

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One little flower peeking through after a nice and relaxing stitching session!

I ended up choosing 32 count linen, three shades of Weeks Dye Works floss, and one shade of DMC Color Variations (for the orange). I just didn’t have a suitable orange color in my stash of Weeks, and I wasn’t happy with any of my silk choices. I had the right shades, but none of them were variegated, they were all solid. I really wanted the orange to have the variations in it like the stitched sample had.

XXX
Carrie




The mouth!

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sugarskull2

I love how this is turning out. I just wish maybe I had used a higher count fabric, like 16 or even 18. It seems like there is an awful lot of white space, and I have a feeling that when this is done it is going to be huge. I hope the effect will be noticeable without having to stand several feet back.

XXX
Carrie




Happy Mother’s Day!

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I spent most of my Mother’s Day cross stitching, with the intent of finishing the Pyramids at last. Unfortunately, it wasn’t meant to be. Hopefully I will get time tomorrow to finish it up. My son especially was really delighted with how it is coming along, and is already asking what my next project is going to be. That’s a good question!

pyramids10

XXX
Carrie




Egypt!

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Well, this doesn’t look like much but it is progress. I am sort of working all over the place now – if the kids are occupied and the house is quiet, I work on areas with lots of counting. If I am watching TV I do areas of large blocks of color. Interestingly, I am listening to a new course I got called The History of Ancient Egypt by The Great Courses. It is presented by Dr. Bob Brier, a professor and Egyptologist who is really fun to learn from. I also just bought another course of his, which teaches you how to read hieroglyphs, but I definitely won’t be studying that while trying to stitch!

Yesterday I went through my collection of Egyptian patterns and have made a list of things I want to stitch. I have two patterns from Dennis Art Needlework which unfortunately don’t have photos to go with them – they are simply black and white charts (with full stitches only, no backstitch). One is called Mask of Tutankamen (I realize this is spelled wrong) and the other is of Nefertiti. I have already stitched a different pattern of Nefertiti, but this is more of a sideways portrait. I did a Google search and found these, which do appear to be the same as the charts I have:

dennis

Then of course there is the huge sampler featuring Tut in the middle, which I have already mentioned in a different post that I want to stitch some day:

egyptxs

I also desperately want to find issue #221 of New Stitches magazine so I can find the third portion of the Gods of Egypt chart.

godsegypt

A chart I didn’t even realize I had was by Stoney Creek from their book Landmarks Around the World. There is a chart of the Sphinx in this book, which I would love to stitch. It is not a terribly large pattern, but the drab colors look kind of daunting.

sphinx

Mary Hickmott’s New Stitches magazine also has an issue (number 81, from way back in 1999!) with a sampler of different world landmarks in it, including the Pyramids. I would love to stitch this one even though it is kind of similar to what I am stitching now. I just can’t get enough of Egypt! This chart is called Dawn of the New Millennium and features all sorts of world marvels such as Stonehenge and Monument Valley, but I am only interested in the pyramids. If you are interested in this issue, I do have copies left in my store: http://www.crossstitchers.com/shop/store.php?&view=NS81-135

NS81

And finally (well, this is not all of my Egyptian patterns, just the ones I REALLY want to stitch!) there is an Egyptian Sampler from Anchor that was in issue 241 of The World of Cross Stitching.

sampleranchor

Yes, that is a LOT of stitching to be done!

XXX
Carrie


Half way done!

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I have reached the halfway point for the Pyramids. I had to take the scroll frame out of the stand so that I could get access to more fabric. It kind of looks like a papyrus scroll! Counting today there are 8 days left of Spring Break. I am determined to make the most of this time and get in some serious stitching.

XXX
Carrie