Friday, April 30, 2010

Road Trip!

Yesterday my mother and I drove north to Corvallis, Oregon.
The green fields along Hwy 99N glowed beneath the leaden skies.

It was a grey day - threatening rain - but rarely doing so.

We got to Corvallis in time for lunch, so ate at New Morning Bakery - YUMMY! 

Then on to Friendship Crossing - just two doors down.  I think every Needlework shop should be located near a great bakery /deli!

I confess to spending 2 1/2 hours browsing and playing and finally buying!  I am thrilled to have purchased these older Blackbird Design Loose Feathers charts and fabric.  As they are all limited edition / timed released they are difficult to find after they've gone out of print.  

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Variegated Green - Do-Over!

Here it is again!  This time I used the recommended fabric, and the contrast with the floss was much more apparent. 

Design - Variegated Green
Designer - Earth Threads
Fabric - 28 count Cashel Dark Green Teal
Floss - Wildflowers - Bouquet
Started - 26 April 2010
Completed - 28 April 2010

Now I'm off to Corvallis to visit Friendship Crossing.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Chicks are Springy Too

This stitch is actually to honor a neighbor.  She just bought four young hen chicks and named them Meg, Jo, Amy, and Beth - too cute!  Here's wishing her great contentment with her flock, and lots of good, fresh eggs too.

Bitty Chick Sampler and Chick Candles from World Market

Design - Bitty Chick Sampler
Chart - Easter Trio
Designer - Twisted Threads
Fabric - 30 count R & R Irish Cream linen
Floss - Anchor and DMC 
Started - 25 April 2010
Completed - 26 April 2010

I continue to rave about prefinished pillows - but hey, if your stash is big enough, then you always have one that is a perfect match for your most recent stitch!

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Slow Poke - A Finish

Design - Slow Poke
Designer - Ewe & Eye & Friends
Fabric - 32 count Winter Sky Lakeside linens
The fabric called for was Amethysy - a much darker purple - I like my choice of a lighter blue/violet/grey color.
Floss - DMC & Anchor
Started - 23 April 2010
Completed - 25 April 2010 

A storm blew in yesterday afternoon with 50mph gusts of wind.  The Craft Room (on the 2nd story) always reminds me of a lighthouse during storms.  The wind howled around the corners and the rain slashed at the windows.  When the rain finally arrived (after the wind) it flat poured!  I think we received well over two inches from 7:00pm yesterday to 7:00am this morning. Now there is a period of calm, so I hurried out to refill the bird feeders.  Yesterday I counted about four dozen Band Tailed Pigeons at the feeders- yikes!   

Monday, April 26, 2010

Slow Poke

I am always amazed, that no matter what your interest - German Shepherds, Adam and Eve, U.S. Marine emblems - there appear to be numerous charts and kits to sew.  I messed with my stash a couple of days ago and found that I have easily a dozen or more Ladybug charts that I've either already stitched or have yet to stitch.  So here is another one - this one from Ewe and Eye and Friends - called Slow Poke.   

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Bee Skeps and Beehives

Bee skeps and beehives are everywhere this time of year - on my bedroom  window - in a cross stitch motif!  It looks to be a lovely day today - maybe I'll pot up some of the dozen or so sedums I bought yesterday.

Design - Beehive
Chart - Miniature Samplers II
Designer - Homespun Elegance
Fabric - 26 count White linen
Started - 23 April 2010
Completed - 23 April 2010

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Late April is Lavender...and Lilac...and Violet

I think it's time to honor another insect - bees this time! So I've kitted up a small bee skep sampler from Homespun Elegance.

This morning my mother, sister, and I went to the Lane County Farmers' Market.  I had a wonderful breakfast there - scrambled eggs with Dungeness Crab in a Mornay sauce with fresh potatoes and toast - all using ingredients and products from the market.  For dessert - pan au chocolate - Yummy!

Scenes from the Market

Lovely Lilacs

New Potatoes

Vibrant Iris

Friday, April 23, 2010

Ladybug, Ladybug Fly Away Home

Debbie Mumm Pincushion with Puntini Pins

In keeping with my Ladybug theme I thought I'd show off one of my pincushions.  The pincushion is a Debbie Mumm design and I bought the Puntini Pins about a year ago.

I did dash off a quick stitch yesterday, the set of five Ladybugs below, which I "finished off" with a pillow.  A fitting tribute for Earth Day!


Design - Ladybugs
Chart - A Tree for All Seasons - Spring
Designer - ThreadBear Creations
Fabric - 32 count Lambwool linen
Fiber - DMC Floss
Started - 22 April 2010
Completed - 22 April 2010

Thursday, April 22, 2010

From the Cross Stitch Archives - Ladybug Picnic

Design - "Ladybug Picnic"
Designer - Just My Imagination - Samsarah
Fabric - 19 count Antique White Cork
Started - 10 April 1999
Completed - 12 April 1999

I still haven't decided what to stitch next even though I've kitted up "Ladybug", so I thought for today's post I'd trawl through my completed projects and find one that fit my ongoing theme.  Once again for the "finished impaired" like me, there is nothing better than a prefinished pillow!  

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Cross Stitch Fumble...Yet Another Start

Well I messed up big-time with my choice of linen for the "Variegated Green Sampler".  I began stitching last night, and after "A, B, & C" it was apparent that the color of the linen and the color of the Watercolors Bouquet fiber was not going to work.  My linen color was too close - not nearly enough contrast to the fiber and the letters literally disappeared into the fabric - ARRGG!!

I heaved a huge sigh, muttered under my breath, stopped stitching, and ordered the Teal fabric that was recommended.  So "Variegated Green Sampler" is now on hiatus...and

I've kitted up another Little House Needleworks buggy piece - Ladybug! As I am using the recommended fabric and fibers this should be a no-brainer!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Variegated Green - Plants and a Sampler

Tokyo Wood Fern and Pansy

Yesterday was "A Study in Green".  I went to Down to Earth and found these two cute small chicken terracotta pots.  I'll probably put small sedums of some sort in them.  

In the evening my mother, sister and I attended the monthly meeting of The Avid Gardeners.  Sean Hogan of Cistus Nursery was the speaker.  His topic was "Western Natives and Mediterranean Plants" - using plants best suited for the southern Willamette Valley - lots of new ideas...and plants.  The meeting ended with a raffle and I won the Tokyo Wood fern pictured above and the cool herb pack from Log House Plants pictured below. Log House Plants is a wholesale nursery specializing in unusual annuals and perennials.  The last couple of years they've also developed some real cool Grab and Go instant herb and vegetable gardens. They sell to garden centers in Oregon, Washington, and Idaho - so look for them!  Their website has lots of useful gardening information including a monthly Garden News Magazine.  

Italian Herb Pack from Log House Plants

The herbs in my instant Italian Garden include basil, variegated marjoram, oregano, Italian parsley, rosemary, mint, fennel, thyme, and sage. 
They smell so good!

And on to stitching, it too is variegated...When it comes to "The Next Project", I have A.D.D. - my eye always alights on the next shiny new thing!  In this case, continuing on my "Bird Kick" I've decided to stitch "Variegated Green Sampler" by Earth Threads.  The simplicity of this appeals to me - it uses just Wildflowers in "Bouquet" for the entire piece.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Dragonfly - A Finish

I got a little optimistic yesterday, thinking that I'd finish stitching this then.  Instead, it turned out to be a Monday afternoon finish.  The fabric is a lovely color and the the Crescent Colors flosses are Sherbets in cotton!  I went to my LNS earlier and picked up fabric and floss for my next start...but that will remain a mystery until...tomorrow!

Design - "Dragonfly"
Designer - Little House Needleworks
Fabric - 28 count Patina Lakeside linen
Fibers - Crescent Colors
Used almost 5 years of Blooming Crocus (the border color)
Started - 15 April 2010
Completed - 20 April 2010       

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Nature and Stitching

This morning was a perfect start to a Spring day.  The weather was glorious, the air clear and filled with the sound of the birds - Evening Grosbeaks, California Quail, and Mourning Doves.  As I filled up the bird feeders I was watched by the little fellow at the edge of the lavender.

I think he must be Brier Rabbit, as he sought shelter and safety in the Brier Patch! 

Within ten minutes or so, the feeders were teaming with Band-Tailed Pigeons - we have a flock of a couple of dozen - they are voracious - we have to fill the feeders daily to keep up with their appetites.

On the stitching front, "Dragonfly" is progressing nicely - I might even finish it up today. 

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Insect Time!

Amongst the many motifs I enjoy stitching, I have to mention bugs - specifically: Dragonflies, Bees, and Ladybugs.  This is a Little House Needleworks chart which included the five skeins of Crescent Colors floss.  Aren't the colors SPRING in a nutshell? 

Friday, April 16, 2010

Sassy Feline - A Finish

Design - "Sassy Feline"
Designer - Homespun Elegance
Fiber - WDW & DMC
Fabric - 28 count R & R Cafe Kona linen
Started - 14 April 2010
Completed - 15 April 2010

This chart came with a small frame - so for stitchers like me (finished impaired) - it's a great solution - instantly ready for display!  I'm really pleased with the finished product - very much like the colors and the unusual style.  It reminds me of a small rag rug.   

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Sassy Feline - A Start

I've chosen my next "stitch" - Sassy Feline by Homespun Elegance.  I found this chart on Ebay a couple of weeks ago.  The style reminds me of some of the cat charts by the Goode Huswife.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

The Chocolate Hare

Design - "The Chocolate Hare"
Designer - Ewe & Eye & Friends
Fiber - Anchor Floss
Fabric - 32 count Olive Green Belfast linen
Started - 26 March 2010
Completed - 13 April 2010

My mother thinks this bunny looks scared!  Perhaps he is - maybe there is a house cat creeping his direction.  I enjoyed stitching this design.  It had great use of color - no speciality stitches - even the border was interesting.

Now I'm in the delightful position of trying to sort out just what I'll kit up and work on next.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

The Amazing Kathy Barrick

I am not a huge fan of pink daffs, but these - named "Passionale"- these are wonderful and over the last couple of three years are naturalizing very nicely  - in a wet, shady spot. They are described as "a Large Cupped Daffodil. One bloom per stem with white petals framing large, soft apricot-pink cups".


This is a rather grey, cool April day - and the energy level at Clos du Bois is "LOW"!  Back row: Padma and Parvati.  Front row: Solomon - no he is not particularly wise. 

I supposed by now everyone has heard that Kathy Barrick is retiring and will not be designing any longer.  For me it is a triple blow as she designed under the names The Goode HuswifeCarriage House Samplings, and Barrick Samplers. Yes not one, not two, but three of my favorite design names are to be no more.  

I did find that she is selling some Goode Huswife OOP charts and she also has an Etsy site for Carriage House Samplings charts.

Updated 04/15/2010 - Kathy is no longer selling charts from her Goode Huswife site.  She indicated that she would use her Goode Huswife Blog to update people when she is ready to sell once again. 

Other charts are available through Hoffman Distribution and your LNS.  I treated myself, because, when they are gone - they are gone!

Back row: Flowers of Lebanon, 1831 Pincushion, Eliza Sloan 1836, Three Crows, The Tree of Life
Front row: The Peacock Sampler, Carolina, Pennsylvania Beehive, Hooked Rabbit Pincushion, Pumpkins & Peacocks 

Monday, April 12, 2010

Fly by Night - Progress

I am stitching this on a 28 count linen, and after working in 32-40 counts, this is like reading a LARGE PRINT book!  The holes for the needle between the threads seem gee-normous.  Anyway it is coming along quickly and easily.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Spring In All Its Many Forms

Just last Thursday afternoon we had quite the little hailstorm.  It turned the ground white and was followed by about 30 minutes of snow!  While the snow did not stick, it was a bit disconcerting to have the temperature suddenly drop 15 degrees and the sky turn white!

This is a Gentle Arts limited edition floss pack called "Spring Bag", and aren't the colors Spring personified?  The names are great too - Confetti, May Flowers, Asparagus, Watermelon, Dogwood, and April Showers.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Chocolate Hare - Progress

I have been stitching along on this.  For a while, it looked more like a bird than a rabbit!  As I now spy a small, brown, brush bunny outside my window, I guess this is still a seasonal piece to stitch.  

Friday, April 9, 2010

..and Ebay called My Name

Yes, the Bay of Evil called my name - loudly!  Since I am such a looser at "finishing" my cross stitch projects, I fall back on the crutch of using seasonal or color appropriate tuck pillows.  This was a great deal!  Twelve 8" x 7" Pine Mountain pillows with 5" x 4" openings.  A great assortment of colors too.  

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Fly By Night - Kitted Up

Yes, I'm still working on "Chocolate Hare", and no, that did not stop me from kitting up "Fly by Night Sampler"!  As best I can tell, the designer, Crazy Folk, has just three charts to her name: "Fly by Night Sampler", "Crow's Feet Sampler", and "Tail Feathers Sampler".  All three are charming - I wish there were more!   

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Another Peacock

Design - "Seek Joy"
Designer - Notforgotten Farm
Fabric - 30 count R & R Candlelight linen
Fiber - DMC
Started - 4 April 2010
Completed - 4 April 2010

This was a quick "Road Trip" stitch.  The chart "Seek Joy" has several other sampler motifs, I decided to just stitch the peacock.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Peacock Bird - A Finish

Design - "Peacock Bird"
Designer - Ewe & Ewe & Friends
Fabric - 32 count R & R Light Chino 
Fiber - Anchor floss
Started - 29 March 2010
Completed - 30 March 2010

This proved to be a fast and run stitch.  The heart and the peacock's tail both used eyelet stitches.  I think this is a nice addition to my collection of peacock motifs!  I found a cross stitch blog specifically dedicated to peacock motifs!
It is called The Peacock Stitch-a-long.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Easter Rabbits

Tulips at the Lane County Farmers' Market 

I had to share this photo.  When my sister and I went to the Lane County Farmers' Market on Saturday, the floral vendors had extraordinary displays of cut materials for Easter bouquets.  This was my favorite - glorious!

Easter Rabbits - Design by Alexandrina

After church today, we took a road trip to the Coast and I brought along this project to stitch in the car.  The chart is a freebie from Alexandrina.  Again, I went out on a limb and chose the fabric and fibers.  I used 25 count Cream Belfast linen and Crescent Colors floss.  From left to right I stitched the bunnies with: Chocolate Cream Pie, Bunny Hunny, and Wisconsin Woods.
I think it turned out well - how can you go wrong with chocolate bunnies!?!?

Debbie Mumm Pincushion with Just Another Button Company Pins

Sunday, April 4, 2010

From the Cross Stitch Archives - Easter (3)

Wishing everyone a Joyous Easter!

Design - "Happy Hoppy Easter"
Designer - Lizzie Kate
Fabric - 25 count R & R Lemonade linen
Fibers - Gentle Arts Sampler threads 
Started - 4 March 1999
Completed -  3 April 1999

Bunny pillows from Shaker Workshop