Thursday, January 13, 2005

Has it been that long?!!

Amazing! I can't believe it's been so long since my last update. WOW! I guess that old saying of "Time flies when you're having fun" applies here :-)

I've been stitching my little heart out - putting things into rotation and actually seeing things getting done this year.

My first update is Kustom Krafts "Fire & Ice". I'm stitching it on 18 ct. black aida, and although it really looks cool, black isn't the easiest to work on. I purchased a "tap" light and put that on my lap under the fabric, which makes it much easier to stitch on. Here's my last scan. It's the horse's left side of his face from about his eye down to the nostril:

Next update is L&L's "Angel Sampler". I've finally passed the half way point!!! Sadly the picture doesn't do justice to the colors of the threads and the fabric is a bit darker. It is really quite pretty in person.

Update #3: "Noah's Ark" by Heart's Delight. This was a kit I purchased when DS was a baby and was intended for his room- ummmm - he's 13 now. Guess I didn't make it. :-) Ah well, it's getting done anyway. It really is a cute design, and has been an easy stitch so far. There's a ton of back stitching, but as soon as I get the top x-stitching finished, I'm going to do a little of it. Will make it a lot less "painful".

Update #4 is Crossed Wing Collection's "Hummingbird Garden". I love this design and am looking forward to a finish this year! The thing I love about it the most, is watching the plants come to life - going from a bunch of green x's to a plant! It never ceases to amaze me when this happens!! I'm using 28ct. True Colors Sponged Backgrounds in lt. blue/white for the fabric:

#5 is my most recent updated WIP byt Pitter Patterns/House-mouse Designs. It's called "Appleseeds" and is from the "Appleseeds & Applesauce" leaflet. I'm stitching it on 14 ct. ecru aida. I love House-Mouse Designs, and this is one of the set of patterns that DH bought me for my birthday (so it is very special, as he NEVER buys me XS stuff!!!). This is another I'm planning for a finish for this year.

Right now, I'm working on a model, so there won't be any stitching on my own stuff until about Monday. I should have that back in the mail on Monday, and then back to my own stitching. It has been a really fun stitch, and I can't wait to get permission to post it, as it's a beautiful piece.

I'll have about a week's break, and another model should be here to work on. I'm looking forward to that one as well, as the description sounds neat and something I'm really going to enjoy stitching.

Well, must be off and making dinner - or everyone here will die of hunger if I'm 15 minutes late! LOL

Wednesday, January 05, 2005

Rotation Postings

Woohooo!!! We are finally getting snow!! There's only about an inch on the ground, but at this point, I'll be satisfied with anything. We didn't have really any snowfall to speak of yet - just a dusting a couple of times.
Time to fess up and post my total list of WIPS/UFO's. I have never listed these all before for anyone else to see except me, so I'm coming out of the closet and owning my excessiveness :-)

My WIPs/UFOs as of today:

Art Ventures – Old Sentinel
Breast Cancer fund – From the Heart Needle Roll
Cross Stitch & Country Crafts – North Woods Stocking
Crossed Wing Collection – Hummingbird Garden
Curtis Boehringer – Needlewoman’s Murder Mystery
Diane Arthurs – Happy Everything
DMC – The White Bindweed Fairy
Drawn Thread – Miniature Reversible Sampler
Hearts Delight – Noah’s Ark Kit
Hillside Samplings – Letter Snow! Letter Snow! Letter Snow!
House Mouse – Apple Seeds
Just Cross Stitch 2001 Ornament Issue – Cinnamon Bear
Just Nan – First Stitches
Just Nan – Last Stitches
Kustom Krafts – 4 Horses of Apocalypse
Kustom Krafts – Fire & Ice
Lavender & Lace – Angel Sampler
Lavender & Lace – Celtic Spring
Leisure Arts – Bunnies Galore
Leisure Arts – Noah’s Ark Baby Afghan
Magazine pull out – Hearts & Flowers
Marquoir Mystery Sampler – freebie SAL
New Stitches – Dimensions – A Bird For All Seasons
Pamela Kellogg – Cupid’s Garden Mystery SAL
Pamela Kellogg –Winterlude Kit
Pat Rogers – Hearts & Lace Sampler
Paula Vaughan - May
Pegasus – Pekingese – Dogs V. 4
The Silver Lining – Aymar’s Amber Rose
Sue Lentz – Grandmother’s Garden
Sue Lentz – Soft Terra Cotta Pillow
Sunset Jiffy – Fateful Night
Super Mario Party
Sweetheart Tree – Jan. Needle Roll
Sweetheart Tree – Teenie Tweenies – Spring Has Sprung
Teresa Wentzler – Stretch
Teresa Wentzler – Under the Evergreen
Wizzers – Birdhouse Wind chimes

I guess I'm not starting out the year too badly, because my list is 13 shorter than when I started this time last year. I'm hoping to knock at least 10 off the list this year, and maybe in about 5 years I won't have a huge list like this (yah, right! LOL) I must confess, there are times all I want to do is start new projects, and others, I just want to work on things that are already started and will avoid starting something new.

Wow - I feel better. Enough fessing up for now :-)

Monday, January 03, 2005

First Finish for 2005 and Updated WIP

Ohhh, pooh! It appears that the QOTW will no longer be. Jennie has received some "snarky" comments and I can imagine that it just isn't worth the hassel any more. Nasty comments on something when you've been sacrificing time to keep it going, and really pull you down and make you not want to do it any more. I don't think people understand how much time it takes to organize and run things. sigh....

uh-oh! My WIP totals went up a bit :-) I've added 2 mystery samplers and a small kit by Pamela Kellogg to my rotation. I love Mystery samplers and joined in on Pam's "Cupid's Garden" before I got the model assignment. The other one, is Curtis Boehringer's "Needlewoman's Murder Mystery". I've had that in stash for a couple of years, and decided this year would be the year to do it. So, to force my hand, I got the fabric and put about 150 stitches in it. The Alter Echo Sampler has been posted, and as much as I want to do this one, I'll have to wait. It looks really neat, and the coolest part is, the verse has been charted in both French and English this time! I've decided on the fabric already. I dug though my stash and picked a lilac fiddler's cloth type aida. Actually it was about the only fabric I had that was large enough for it.

My first FO of 2005 was a must stitch as soon as I saw it. It comes from World of Cross Stitching Magazine #84 and was done on white aida.

Now if only DH would take a hint or two from it :-9

I also finished part 2 of Marquoir Story

I now have part 3 printed out for the next time it comes up in my rotation. It's a fun stitch an may be bumped up in front of some other pieces.

Saturday, January 01, 2005

Happy New Year!

I hope that everyone had a lovely beginning to this new year. It is a time of reflection and new hope for our family. Everyone has gone over their goals from last year, and are amazed at how much they have accomplished! I have the kids write down what they would like to do for the new year, and then on New Year's Day we compare the list with what they succeeding in doing. It's amazing how satisfied they are with those accomplishments. I don't get the negative, "I didn't get it all done" but "Wow! I did more than I thought I would when I wrote down this list." I love hearing that! :-)

I had a few stitching accomplishments and was pleased with what I got done. I was challenged by DH that I couldn't go a year w/o purchasing patterns - and I did it! There were a couple that I did buy, but because they were gifts to do for others, he allowed them and said they didn't count. My automatic mailings didn't count either - which was my PV, and JCS Ornie issue. With that being said, here's what my stitching accomplishments were:

I finished 51 projects. Now, mind you, most weren't very large - so that's not a huge amount really. Out of those 51, 16 came off my WIP/UFO box, 2 were from patterns purchased in '04 for gifts, and 23 were from freebies. The rest came from my stash (which totaled 10). Of those 51, I finished off/framed 21 of them, and finished/framed 5 that were stitched more than a year ago and in my pile of things to be framed, sewn, etc.

This year will be a year for finishing things. So many need framed or made into pillows, etc. I purchased Judy O's book on finishing ornaments, and hope it's as good as what others say. I have framed ornies before, like on x-mas eve, but to me they look kinda cheap, next to the ornaments that are in the JCS mag. I'm hoping that I can get good results like that. Speaking of xmas eve finishes, here's a picture of those:

I guess they're ok, but they just don't say "WOW!" when I look at them. KWIM?

One other accomplishment is, my PV collection is now completed. I ordered the last leaflet and it's on it's way!!! It still amazes me that I have the whole collection now. YIPEE!

On another note, my model should be here soon, then there won't be any great pic postings for a couple of months until it's done. I'm really looking forward to this new model. The designer I'm dealing with is such a sweetheart and seems like someone I'm really going to enjoy working with.

I love modelstitching, but it does have a dark side to it. First, you can really overextend yourself, and set yourself up for burnout. The other thing is the integrity of those you are working for. I've worked for 3 places that I ended up not getting what was agreed upon.

I worked for a very popular needlework shop that so many talk about, and the owner kept sending me more and more to do. I was just constantly stitching for her, and sending them back much earlier than she set the due date for. She loved it, and promised to pay in stash. She did at first, and then I started getting the "it's late going out" and "I sent it on such and such a date, hmmmm - must have got lost, will send another one out". Well that same one kept getting lost and after 4 times of that story, I got wise, and packed all her stuff back up - some finished some not, and off they went with a "not so nice" letter. Nothing was ever acknowledged and I never received compensation for more than $400 worth of work.

I worked for a very large and well know company that paid pretty well. They sent me an ornie to stitch and wanted it yesterday, so I called them (long distance - of course), and asked how they wanted it. Over night, so the day after I got it, I sent it overnight to them - and got my check back with just the amount for the ornament, and no reimbursement for postage. I called to find out why, and they said they don't give reimbursements for postage - although it was agreed upon during the phone call when it was to be send overnight. They said that modelstitchers should eat that cost and take it off their taxes. That ornie cost me over $15 to stitch for them after the amount they sent me for the job!!!

The last one, I really did on my own. I worked for a LNS, and was so thrilled to be able to have my pieces out where I could see them displayed. I was to get store credit for the job, and her prices were the going rates - couldn't ask for a better job because the owner was a sweetheart. I was banking my store credit for a very nice item - an ott light and floor stand. I had tried a few times to cash in, and the workers there said they didn't know how to handle it, so I should wait for the owner to show. After a time of not seeing the owner, and never getting an answer when she was coming in, I got a letter in the mail stating the store was closing, because the owner had cancer. I didn't go to the big sale to cash my credit in, because I just couldn't. It broke my heart to hear such sad news. So I just let it go.

However, with that all being said, I've worked for some very wonderful designers! Some became good friends, some kept very professional, but still a joy to work for. Modelstitching is not a job to get rich off of, but at the same time, can be so very fun and satisfying.

Again, wishing everyone the best new year yet! May it be filled with joy and many wonderful blessings.