Friday, November 7, 2014

FIF and Catch-up

Stitched and waiting for inspiration
I did finish the stitching on this as hoped but I was sitting in the hospital that weekend with my husband (he’s ok) so I didn’t get it soaked in water until later. But it did work and it has been dried and then damp stretched. Great! Now the embroidery is on my design wall waiting for inspiration. I’m thinking I may want to fill in some of the areas with free-form stitching. I’m also considering making it the center of a quilt that will feature my scribbling stitching.
Speaking of scribbling, my use of scribbles for embroidery is somewhat humorous and not very “artsy” to me. I started scribbling as “art” work when I was a child. I picked it up again when I reached 60+ (is that called becoming like a child again?). Then this last time I was at the local hospital I walked a corridor and glanced at the art work on the wall. To my surprise I saw scribbles incorporated in collages. Suddenly I don’t feel silly using scribbles as a basis for my embroidery work anymore.
Hospital Collage Art Work using Scribbles

Now for some catching up, I’ve been busy making things for my new granddaughter Samantha! First while I was still at the hospital I started making a cupcake hat for her (she hadn’t arrived yet). 
Crochet Cupcake Hats
I started using a pattern I found on Repeat After Me and used it as a guide for the top part. For the bottom (the brown section) I decided to do my own style using a crochet ribbing stitch. And I eliminated the earflaps also. If I make another one I think I will make some more modifications. I finished three tops while at the hospital (since that was all I had with me to work with). Later the bottom was added to one. 
Then after she was born I made a receiving blanket using a method a quilting friend had shown me (I also watched a Youtube video  by Missouri Quilt Company that my friend recommended. Actually I watched it several times and the only thing I can say is the video says it will only take about 10 minutes and my feeling is that may be true after you have made a dozen or so. 
Cupcake Receiving Blanket
So since the fabric was cupcakes and I had already made the cupcake hat of course I had to continue the theme.
Cupcake Sleeping Beauty

Yes that is my sweet Miss Samantha!
And then I moved onto roses.
And then she needed some mittens to keep from scratching her face.
And of course a sweet little yoyo and button band for her head can next.
Some sweet stitching for Samantha
Plenty more ideas of things to make but for my finish it Friday I think I will try and complete the other two or three cupcake hats I started while sitting in the hospital.

Happy Catching Up and Finishing Friday!


Friday, October 17, 2014

FIF - Not a Total Finish but

So I don’t think I have anything to completely finish today but I am hoping to finish the stitching on this today so I can soak it in water and see if the printable sticky fabri-Solvy by Sulky really disappears. If it does then I can move onto the next step in my Boutis quilting project.
Bathing Elephant Scribble and Embroidery

Happy Finishing Friday!


Wednesday, October 15, 2014

WWW Check In

Just a quick peek at some of what I’ve been working on lately.
Bathing Elephant Original Scribble and Embroidery

First there is the scribble Bathing Elephant embroidery that I’m almost done doing the basic lines. After that I will soak it in water to see how the wash-out printer interfacing works.
Fabrics for Mystery Quilt

Then I’ve also been pulling fabrics to consider for the Bonnie Hunter's 2015 Mystery Quilt. I’ve never done a mystery quilt before so this should be interesting.
Homemade Libby's Pumpkin Cookies

Finally cookies wound up on my plate today. I was hoping to get my thee year old grandson involved with the baking but instead I had to go it alone. These are mainly for a stitching group I belong to. We meet tomorrow and it’s my turn to bring the snacks.

A little bit of straightening up has been happening along with cutting 5 inch fabric squares for a quilt for my grandson.

Happy Stitching (on Wednesday and every other day)!


Monday, October 13, 2014

Golf Tee to the Rescue!

What? A golf tee? But I don't golf!
Extra Long Golf Tee
Okay, I know you all think I’ve lost it but I was doing some work the other day with a small item that needed to be turned right side out and this is what happened. I turned the item and then needed something to push the corners out, etc. I just happened to have an extra long golf tee that was sent to me in an order of regular tees (these tees are used in my Needle Nabbers which by the way will be on sale in my shop until the end of the month. Need to clear the way for a new and improved design!).
Pink Needle Nabbers
I grabbed the extra long golf tee and it worked perfectly! Didn’t poke through the fabric, it was great.
Then I had to stuff the item (remember it’s small as in the pincushion for my Close at Hand wristpincushion).

Close At Hand Blue Pincus
How’s that two plugs! Well I again grabbed the golf tee and used the top where the golf ball sits to push the stuffing and the bottom to get the stuffing up into the corners.
.I also used it as a scoring tool on some card stock! Who knew such a simple item could be sew handy!

And one final (for now) use: use it to hold your fabric (like a stylus, I think there’s another word for this but I can’t think of it right now – lol!) as you are feeding it through your sewing machine.

Happy Stitching and Crafting (You never know what you’ll find around you house to use as a sewing/crafting tool!)


Saturday, October 11, 2014

Done and Done

Sorry I didn't post last night. The Love embroidery was completed and hanging on the wall but we had a storm blow in and so I didn't get it photographed and posted. The dozen Needle Nabbers were almost completed, just needed to glue the pot to the base. That was finished this morning and so now a dozen are ready for packaging.

Love Embroidery

A dozen Needle Nabbers

Friday, October 10, 2014


What I hope to finish today
Finish It Friday. I'm thinking this should be easy today. I plan to frame my Love embroidery in the oval hoop. Then I need to crochet two more doilies for my Needle Nabbers, starch all the doilies and then slip them on their flower pots and glue the pot to the painted disks. Oh yes and put the felt on the bottom of the disks. The Needle Nabbers will be packaged and sent to Hawaii for sale in a quilt shop just as soon as I can get new ink for my printer and print the insert and header cards that go with them. I may even get that done today!
The quilt blocks in the background are for the Wounded Warrior quilt I am assembling and I hope to get some additional squares ready for working on tomorrow. Saturday is my Sabbath and I like to work on “doing good”. I think making quilts for WW and others will count as “doing good”.

Happy Finishing Friday!


Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Hello there! WWW

Well I haven’t posted a WWW (What I’m Working on Wednesday) post in like forever – well not since May anyway. Does that mean I haven’t been working on anything? No of course not and if you’ve visited my Finish It Friday posts you know I’ve been doing a little bit anyway.
Okay so what have I been working on since May? Here’s a brief (I think) rundown of some of the works:
  1. The butterfly vest – all embroidery is finished. I just need to add some sequins, beads, and maybe a few more stitches, and then maybe line it.
  2. The monochromatic bird nest – some stitching has been done on the bird nest part but I haven’t worked on it in a while.
    Bird Nest Embroidery
  3. The summer hexagon wall hanging – the hexagons have been stitched together and now I’m working on adding some border half hexagons etc. Again I put it aside for a while. I’m debating my choice of fabric for the final round. I thought it looked like shiny, sparkly beach sand but now I’m not so sure. I plan to use the same fabric for binding.
    Summer Hexagon Wall Hanging
  4. The crazy quilt elephant block – a lot more detail has been added but I still have more to go. It gets picked up every now and again. I finally had to print out a copy of it and scratch some notes on it so I could remember what I planned to do to it.  Notice the upper left corner tie fabric. I couldn’t decide what to do on that seam allowance and so I tried to imitate the fabric. This is an idea I’ve been toying with, it isn’t perfect but it’s a great future reference.
    Elephant Crazy Quilt Block
  5. The crazy quilt blocks for “She Colored Everything Yellow” have also had a little detail added to them (well to one of them). Bullion loops, French knots, buttonhole stitch and more. I really need to get busy and give them some undivided attention.
    She Colored Everything Yellow Crazy Quilt Block
  6. Embroidery has really taken over my creative life lately. Can you tell? All of my Finishes have been of small embroidery.
  7. I’ve finished embroidering the Love sampler, just need to put it in the framing hoop and I’m done!
    Love Sampler Embroidery
  8. The scribble “Elephant Bathing” that I did when I was a teenager has taken on a new life as an embroidered piece. Right now I’m just using it to test out a product. I have a feeling I will be doing more than one or two pieces based on that scribble.
    Bathing Elephant Scribble
  9. In the mix is a scrappy quilt for our guild’s “wounded warrior project”. I agreed to do one that was all cut out from donated fabric. The pattern is Bonnie Hunter’s Pineapple Blossoms.
    Wounded Warrior Blocks in Process
  10. What there’s more? Yes indeed. I have been busy making little tiny crochet dresses to be used as favors when my granddaughter gets introduced to the world (well to friends and family of the mom). She’s due to arrive in two weeks! Her ‘met the baby’ party won’t be until December though.
    Mini Crochet Dresses
  11. Also crocheting some tiny doilies to finish off some already made needle “nabbers”. They just need to be added to the pots before they are glued onto a wood circle and little ladybug buttons need to be glued to the flowers. Then they are off to a quilt shop in Hawaii!
    Mini Crochet Doilies
  12. Okay I need to make this an even dozen. What else is there? Oh yeah that’s right, I worked on trying to make my daughter a sleep mask. Wasn’t too successful in that department. The first one was too small and the second one was too tight.
    Sleep Mask

Not to worry though there are more projects waiting in the queue!

Happy Stitching (on Wednesday and every other day)!


Friday, September 26, 2014

It's Friday!!!

And I should be working on a Finish It Friday item but the problem is I am not at a point of finishing anything today. I do have some items to move forward though, actually I have a lot of items that could do with some moving forward actions. So I’ll try and pick a few.
Scribble Love Embroidery

I have been working on another 15 minutes (or more) a day scribble embroidery that I could finish the embroidery on today and maybe even get it damp stretched but I don’t think I could get it framed and ready for hanging. I think I will at least get the hoop I plan to use for framing it painted. I decided I would like to use an oval hoop because I like the way it looks in the working oval hoop. And I think I will paint the hoop blue.
Student's needle nabbers

This week I had the opportunity to teach a group of ladies how to make my Needle Nabber flower. I sell these online in my Etsy shop and I have sold a number of them at a quilt shop on the Big Island of Hawaii. I think the shop is currently out of them. When I pulled out my supplies for the class I discovered I had a lot of these almost completed. I had totally forgotten how far along they were, I just need to paint the disks they sit on and make the crochet doilies to cover the disk. So since I’m painting today I will paint some disks for these. I also have an order for two more kits from one of the ladies in my class. I have the supplies but really need to improve on my written instructions. They were done in a hurry and I need to add more information to them and also add some photos of the different steps. So I think I have my work cut out for me. I’m watching my grandson this afternoon so I will plan to embroider or crochet while he is napping.

Happy Finishing Friday!


Friday, September 12, 2014

Now That Feels Good!

Finished the kid's block with only a little un-stitching, re-stitching. 

Frogs and Ladybugs block finished

And I even finished the black and white one! This one I'm not sure about though so I may make another one, I have time - lol.

Black and White Block Done
But I must say it does feel good to have them done 4 and 1/2 weeks ahead of time rather than months behind!

Happy that I finished my FIF today!

Staying On Top

Finish It Friday is in process!

Some of you know I belong to a quilt guild near where I live. One of the activities for this group is a monthly block exchange.  You only participate if you choose to and I almost didn't choose to this year. Every one in the exchange receives instructions for a block to be produced and hopefully turned in at the next meeting. At the end of the year there is a drawing and you receive a particular set of blocks to use as you see fit. I say hopefully because I am almost always sadly behind. Why? Mainly because I procrastinate and only start it the night before or even the day of the meeting when it is due. And I underestimate the time it will take me to make an acceptable block. (I tend to do a lot of un-stitching and re-stitching.) So this month I caught up.

These blocks were turned in last month:
Spring Block
Brown Road to California
These blocks were turned in this month:
Gold Block

Green Block

Red White and Blue Block
So I have a block due the second Tuesday of next month (well actually I have two blocks due but not because I'm behind). We are doing two blocks for next month in order to have all twelve months complete with our December meeting which is when the names are drawn and blocks assigned. 
I started selecting the material and cutting the pieces for one of the blocks and considered the fabric for the second one. One is for a child's quilt bright, colorful and fun. The second one is the same pattern done in black and white fabric. My Finish It Friday will be the child's one and maybe the black and white one. 

Here's my start:
Frogs and Ladybugs Block

Black and White Fabrics
Stay tuned for my finish!

And yes I know there is a mistake in the red, white, and blue one! I fixed it before I turned it in. It always pays to double check your work - lol. I just forgot to take a photo of the corrected block before I turned it in.

Looking forward to finishing these today!

Friday, September 5, 2014

And Done!

Stitched - check
Blue Marker Removed - check
Dried - check
Damp Stretched - check
Hoop Sanded - check
Hoop Painted - check
Embroidery in hoop and glued - check
Excess Fabric Removed - check
Hang on Wall - check
Planning Next one - check.

I'm thinking I might have embroidered with blue thread along the first running stitch following the scribble. See the previous post to see what it looked like with the blue marker still showing. Had considered using a blue thread along that line but decided to leave that for another scribble. 

Gonna Try

I've been working on this black and white scribble as my 15 minutes a day embroidery project.
Black on White Scribble Embroidery 

I'm experimenting with the scribble and embroidery hoping to get some finished as samples for an article I want to write.

So as I was stitching today I realized I only have a little more to do and then I'm ready for washing out the blue, damp stretching, and then mounting in a hoop.

I think I can do this today so I'm making it my Finish It Friday project.

Hope to be back later with the finished product but I do have a lot of things on my To-Do List for today.
Only a little more stitching needed
Happy Finishing! - Rose

Monday, August 11, 2014

And Now For the Rest of the Story:

Or how this piece evolved.
Scribble Leftover Embroidery

If you read my blog you may have read this post or this one. When working on a project I will cut off a working length of floss and then separate each strand and combine the number of strands I want to use – usually 2 or three (floss normally has six strands). I then slip the unused strands through the hole on the thread bobbin.
Cut floss on bobbin hole

This works fine until I am finished with that color on that project. I’ve tried putting these leftover threads on carbone rings but I wound up with several rings hanging around and the thread not being used. 
Leftover floss on carbone ring

I then considered leaving the extra threads looped on the bobbin and just wrapped around it. That was okay until I finally got around to putting all of my (well most of it) floss on bobbins and storing them in plastic boxes. Organization here I come! Oh happy day! But the extra thread didn’t work well in the boxes so it was back to the drawing board.
Cut floss wrapped around bobbin

Then it came to me! Use it up! Of course! But how? If you’ve seen any of my embroidery work you probably know I love to use scribbles. They are the perfect use it up solution! I can happily mix colors and since it is all abstract I can pretty much do whatever I want on them. It would also be a good way to see how colors work together – or don’t. And these would be the perfect spot to use up all of my “I don’t know what brand or color number this thread is” floss. Or I can try out or practice stitches on them. Or I can do all of the above.
So that’s how this piece got started.
Working embroidery scribble

First I grabbed a piece of fabric and a marker and scribbled. I used a hoop I planned to use for framing to be sure the scribble would fit inside.
Then I did a backstitch and a Rose’s illegal backstitch following the lines of the scribble with black floss. I had thread left over from the butterfly vest project which I’m almost finished with. (I’m just adding some glow-in-the-dark thread, a few sequins and some beads and then I’ll be ready to line it.) 

So I started with that thread and one of the inside sections of the scribble working an uneven running stitch (I’m not too good at keeping my stitches even – lol). When I ran out of one thread I started another. I decided to stick with just straight stitches on this scribble. Once that section was full of running stitches 
I went to another section and did an almost satin stitch leaving gaps in between each row. (I drew addition lines with my blue marking pen just for guidance.) 

Next I went to the smaller inside section and started using a scattered seed stitch changing colors as I went. I noticed the effect I was getting with the different combinations of color. I will definitely use this technique in other projects!
Seed scatter stitch
While I was working on this someone mentioned the scribble looked like and onion and an eggplant. So I decided to use a concentration of purple for the rest of the scribble to enhance the “eggplant look”. I did dip into my collection of unknown threads for this part. 
I needed another type of straight stitch to use and I wanted to use something I had not done before. I thought about my long desire to learn the short and long stitch. I’ve checked it out before but for some reason the directions in my stitch books just didn’t clue me in (it was more my lack of really concentrating on the instructions that jammed me up). So I picked up my favorite book, The left-handed embroiderer’s companion by Yvette Stanton, (she has it for right handed people also). Flipped to the page for the stitch and saw what to do. Mainly because she used a different color for each row and she shows several rows being done. 
Wonderful! I started out at the top narrow end and worked a few rows. I was delighted! This is definitely going to be one of my favorite filler stitches. I was so happy with it I had a hard time putting it down after working for fifteen minutes (this was one of my fifteen minutes a day projects).

Gap in the stitching
 (click on image to see it better)
Due to the irregular shape of the scribble I had to do some fiddling with it and probably should have started in the middle of each row and work my way to each side but this wasn’t aimed for perfection, this was a learning work. I did wind up with a few noticeable gaps but it was easy enough to go back and fill them in. 

Towards the end I decided to try switching to another shade of purple and then a third one. That worked out fairly well also. This was definitely a worthwhile project not only for using up leftover thread but also for trying something different.
Changing shades of purple on eggplant
Oh and one more thing. Here’s a picture of the back of my work. 
Back of embroidery work
Now I don’t often show the back since I’m not a stickler for no knots or that the back should be as nice as the front. I don’t use the juicy fat knots I was taught as a child but I do knot my thread with a simple overhand knot pulled tight and clipped close to the knot. And I do knot at the end also. But anyway notice on the back of this piece the double line of black running stitches? This was caused by my “illegal backstitch”. And I like the look of it so I took a photo just to have it to remind myself that I would like to try that look on one of my scribbles rather than a solid black one.

You may need to click on the photo to enlarge it in order to see the details.

Happy creative stitching with leftovers!