Friday, May 29, 2009

Look What I Found!

Guess what? It's Fabulous Friday again. I know...I missed last week. But I'm back now and ready with more cool needlework finds on Etsy.
This is one mouse you won't jump up on a chair and scream at! Precious mouse pincushion from Nancym4.

The elegance of this thread puller from anxious1 is stunning.
This turtle wall art quilt from CinfulArt is just so bright and cheerful it makes you smile.

It would almost be a shame to cover up these bobbins from NeoVamp with embroidery floss.

Well, there you have it. Now, LET'S GO SHOPPING!

Monday, May 25, 2009

Happy Memorial Day

I hope everyone is having a wonderful Memorial Day. Please remember to honor those who have sacrificed so much to make our country free and safe. It is such a privilege to live in a country where we are free to live, worship, speak, and prosper as we wish, but that freedom comes with a price. I want to personally thank all the brave men and women who serve in our armed services.

On a less serious note, unless you're a cross stitch addict, I'm still working on Grace Mason. The four-sided alphabet, numbers and dividing bands are my current focus. And I'm not a big fan of four-sided stitch. So the sooner I can move on, the better. Unfortunately, there's a lot of over one stuff near the bottom. Apparently, I've already done most of the fun stuff. Oh well.
I've also been working on my needlework accessory sets. Ever since I created that set for a friend, I've been kicking myself for not doing it all along. My only excuse is that I usually make scissor fobs one day, counting pins another day, etc. So the creative process wasn't coordinated. I guess that's the price I pay for being left-brained and organized. Anyway, I worked up eight sets this weekend. I'm still in the process of photographing them. The blue set and the lime green set I show last week are now available on my Etsy shop and I listed this teal, purple, and silver set today.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

I am a MORON!

You will not believe what I've done now.

We had to make a quick trip to my mom's house and I was looking at her collection of miniature samplers that I have stitched for her over the years. And lo and behold, there are two of the Beehive Sampler that I stitched this year! I stitched it for her in 2007. How dumb can I get?

The good news is now I'll have one. The bad news is I have to stitch her another one!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Stitching accesories in sets!

Well, I finally got a few color coordinated sets of scissor fob, large and small counting pins assembled and photographed. Each listing shows a photo of the set, but that they can be purchased individually or all together.

This is the only one I have actually listed so far, but you guys get a preview here of what is coming.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Just another day ...

Another day is almost gone and I'm still trying to figure out what I've accomplished. A lot of little things actually. Lester and I went for a longer walk than usual because apparently winter is back. At least it feels like it. Temps in the sixties in May is almost unheard of and that's what we're looking at all week. Ych.

I remembered to photograph Grace Mason. I'm working on the four-sided alphabet and numbers now. The numbers go up into the teens...kinda weird for a sampler. And miracle of miracles, no counting mistakes yesterday. Woohoo! I may have to have a party.

I also generated a new banner for the Etsy shop. Well, I had to because I sold the fob that was pictured in my old banner. And apparently it's really bad juju to show something in your banner that you don't have in your shop. Anyway, I used and it was pretty easy. I'm going to work on a new banner for the blog sometime soon. Maybe one with a little more color. Although I really like whitework.

I took pictures of a custom order of scissor fob, needlepoint counting pins, cross stitch counting pins and needle threader. I think I'm going to incorporate coordinating sets like this in my Etsy inventory.

So, after a little housework, a little Etsy work, a little Tweeting, and some blogging I'm ready to sit down and stitch. Oh wait, I have to fix dinner. Well, as usual, I won't get to stitch until after dinner.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Beehive Sampler Framed

Well, I finally painted the frame for the miniature Beehive sampler that I stitched for mom for Mother's Day. It's a completely handmade frame from poplar. The opening is 1.5"x2". I painted the top with a faux finish. The inner and outer edges are painted black. Of course, Mama loves it. Does she really have a choice? That makes five in her silk gauze miniature sampler collection.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Grace Mason is coming right along

Except for some unstitching last night, I feel like Grace Mason is moving right along. I even put in one of the "over one" birds last night. And let me tell you, doing that on 40 count is not a quickie. Doing a reproduction takes even more concentration, I think, because you have to reproduce all the mistakes or idiosyncracies of the original. For instance, the leaves on the fruit baskets are not symmetrical and neither are the horizontal parts of the vine. So you have to pay particular attention to exactly where you are on the chart. You cannot assume that the left side is the same as the right side.

Right now, I have to go paint the frame for my mom's "Beehive Sampler". I've procrastinated all week and she's going home tomorrow, so I guess I better get to it.

Friday, May 15, 2009


I just want to thank all of you who took the time to check out my blog today. I appreciate the comments and new followers. I hope you found something you like and will check out all the great Etsy shops you see here every Friday. I have discovered that we all find different things as we browse Etsy and so many people feature those great finds on their own blogs. Keep up the good work. I'll keep following you and discovering your favorite Etsy finds.

Now I must go stitch. I need to get in my "happy place", as my husband calls it.

It's Fabulous Friday Again!

Even though I've neglected my blog this week, I have been working on "Grace Mason" sampler and I'll have another update for you this weekend. My mom and sister have been here all week and we've had a good visit.

Naturally, I've had time to browse more Etsy shops and here are a few more great needlework items I found. You might want to check out other things in their shops too.

Scrap caddies are very handy for those who have a specific place or "nest" where they stitch. And I love the purples and greens in this one by nstitches4u.

Everybody needs a needlecase and thimble. Blue is my favorite color, but you should check out all of the goodies at rparishwoodworks.

And these cupcake pincushions from cocoaChenille are just so sweet you can taste them!

And of course, I have a soft spot in my heart for hardanger. This needlebook by rolanddesigns is beautiful and functional.

Monday, May 11, 2009

I just can't seem to find enough time.

Well, it's been a busy weekend. Mama and my sister, K., arrived Saturday afternoon for a visit. They'll probably be here about a week, unless I turn into the hostess from hell. My husband and I have lived alone for 27 years and I am not used to extra people in my house, so it doesn't take to long for me to get grumpy. I admit it's my problem, but all I ask is 30 minutes of quiet in the morning so I can get at least one cup of coffee in me. I do NOT talk before my morning coffee.

I may not be the greatest entertaining hostess in the world, but I can cook. So that's what I do. We smoked a Boston butt (cut of pork shoulder) and made Lexington style barbeque. We had potatoes, cole slaw--that I never make enough of, according to my mother,steamed squash, and strawberry shortcake for Mother's Day dinner. I baked several fattening goodies before they got here and I'll be baking a chocolate cake tomorrow. Man, I feel fatter already.

Even with all the Mother's Day weekend activities and my mom and sister visiting, I managed to find a few hours to devote to Grace Mason. Actually, it calms my nerves. Although doing all the curly-ques on the letters in double-running is quite time consuming, I really enjoy it. I just love illuminated alphabets which probably explains my fascination with Scottish samplers. Most of the ones I've seen have the illuminated alphabet.

I feel like it's going really slowly, but that's probably because I've been so busy with the scissor fobs and perfecting my beaded needle threader. I just have trouble manipulating such a small piece of wire and a couple of beads. Anyway, I haven't been stitching much during the day...just at night while I'm watching TV. But it's starting to take shape adn before you know it, I'll be starting a new project. Quit laughing...I can hear you.

Friday, May 8, 2009

Fabulous Friday

I'm starting a new feature called Fabulous Friday. I've decided to show you some of my stitching related discoveries on Etsy. So check them out and you might find treasures of your own.

This wooden needlecase by daystar07 is truly a work of art.

I can't believe anyone could part with this incredible hardanger table runner by Norwegianneedle.

And I love samplers in this traditional style pillow by bethanderson .

The elegance of this wooden pincushion by Nadelwerk is striking.

Imagine how organized your stitching nest would be with this Etui by sparetimecrafts.

You will be the envy of all your stitching friends when you pull out this beautiful needlebook by tickledpinkandblue.

I wouldn't advise eating this donut pincushion by adoreneko even though it looks good enough.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Rainy Days and Productivity

It is a gloomy day outside so I'm going to need extra caffeine today. Or maybe a nap. Lester and I went for an early walk to avoid the heat. It's a good thing because now it's dark and I just heard thunder.

Anyway, it's not like I have nothing to do. My mom and one of my sisters are coming to visit, so I really need to clean. I'm a member of the Housework is Evil group on Facebook so you can guess how high cleaning is on my to-do list. I'll probably find a way to go play with my beads by rationalizing that it's business related.

Speaking of which, I made a prototype beaded needle threader yesterday. I took it to stitch group last night and got rave reviews. Apparently, I'm the only person in the world who doesn't mind threading a needle. So I guess I'll be adding it to my inventory. But they are so tiny to work with that I have trouble manipulating them easily. So my friend, Donna, suggested that I use a vise/clamp that fly fishermen use to tie flies. Say that fast three times! I may have to check that out. Anyone out there have any advice?

I also finished my model for the Beginning Cross Stitch on Linen class that I'll be teaching at Angelwing Needlearts (my LNS). Hopefully, I'll be able to convince somebody that stitching on linen is easier than they think. Most people come to realize that the holes are larger than the ones on Aida, but it's a big psychological hurdle to overcome. They find it hard to believe that the only way I will ever stitch on Aida again is under threat of torture. In fact, my preferred thread count is 36 or 40 count! But I will admit that a good light is essential. And don't assume that I have eagle eyes. I'm basically as blind as a bat. I wear bifocal contact lenses and uses readers when I stitch. But I'll do just about anything to stitch. As I've said before, I need to stitch to maintain some semblance of sanity.

Having said that I'll sign off now and do something productive...Wait, gotta go get Lester. He's outside chasing the lightening!

Monday, May 4, 2009

In my house, photography is like taking out the's not my job. But it's very important when you are selling something on-line. So, over the last few months I've been working on improving my picture taking skills. I've learned a lot from other Etsy artists and last week I order a photo light tent. Mine is actually a cube and it diffuses the light from the three 100 watt daylight bulbs that I set up around it. There are no shadows and I can take a clear, bright picture of my scissor fob or counting pins.
It has made a huge difference and hopefully, these improved photos will be more attractive to people who visit my shop. Let me know what you think.
I've also been working on "Grace Mason". I love this piece and I look forward to every hour I get to spend on it. I finally have something done other than the border. Woohoo!

And now I have to interrupt GM again to work up a model for my "Beginning Stitching on Linen" class at my LNS. But that won't take more than a evening or so.

I STILL haven't made the frame for my silk gauze "Beehive Sampler" for Mother's Day. I really don't like sticking my fingers that close to a power mitre saw. The frame is going to be about 2" x 2.5". And then I have to paint it and put a faux finish on it. I guess I better move that task to the top of my to do list. Spending a few days away from home really messes with my so-called schedule. I feel like I'm a month behind.

Here's my newest scissor fob.