More Black Belt Stitching Wizard Stuff

Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Goals & SBQ

Well, its the end of the month which means its time for me to review what I hoped to do, and what I actually accomplished.

May Recap
Stitch TWRR - Yes
Stitch 1 Ornament - didn't quite make it
Finish Montreal Sampler - nope up to band 12
Work on Celesital Dragon on Mondays - nope
Work on Celtic Banner on Sundays - a little

June Goals
Stitch TWRR
Stitch 1 Ornament
Finish Montreal Sampler
Work on Celesital Dragon
Work on Celtic Banner

What a bummer of a stitching month. I got only one thing accomplished! I've almost got all of the cross stitching done on my ornament, but not quite. I'm hoping to finish it tomorrow.

Being Wednesday its time for the SBQ!

Q : Do you collect charts by one particular designer, yet have never stitched anything by that designer? If so, which designer and why do you collect the charts but have not yet stitched any of them?

A : LOL I collect a lot of charts. One designer I do have almost all of her charts and have not stitched one yet would be Dracolair. I love the designer's work she has fantastic dragons. Why have I not stitched any of them yet? A simple matter of time... then sometimes other designers works speak louder! Someday I'll stitch one!

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Coming up for Air

Well it was a very hard weekend for all of us. Todd's Aunt's funeral was yesterday and it was lovely and simple... also very emotional.

Between everything going on I didn't really get a weekend this past week and I've been quite exhausted! Scary to say I've barely stitched in over a week now. I think I've managed to put in a stitch or two here and there but no true stitching time. If I can get anything accomplished I'd like to get my ornament for May finished. But so far that's not happening because I have so much online stuff to catch up on.

Friday, Saturday a
nd Sunday was Needlearts 2006, and exhibition of needlework my guild puts on every two years. This year I was one of the organizing co-chairs. Friday was an incredibly long day with getting the show set up for 6pm when we opened to the public. I spent all day Saturday there as well, volunteering as a docent... and keeping an eye on my baby so to speak. I totally missed Sunday and the takedown of the show due to the wake. Anyhow the show was a roaring success with over 500 people coming (and paying) to see the show!

I have another guild related event to attend this weekend and that's Dickinson Days in Manotick at Watson's Mill. I'll be manning the OVGS booth with my friend Christin.

This week I'm just looking forward to a quiet week where I will be allowed to stitch!!! I feel like I'm getting little to nothing done this year when it comes to my stitching. I think I'm going to go back to practicing "La Technique" that is stitching one project at a time. I feel like I'm spending so little time on any one project that it'll take me years to finish what I've got on the go!!!

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Long Time No See... No Stitch

Well what a week its been... way too many days since my last post!

Its been a bit of a rollercoaster around here and I've been beyond "stupid busy" I've not picked my needle up since Saturday! Oh my gosh! I didn't realize it had been that many days. There have been many attempts to stitch but either I've had to go do something, or I've been sitting here with my eyes drooping. You know what happens to work you do when you're that tired... you just rip it out the next day!

Let's see what has happened? I didn't stitch as much as I anticipated over the long weekend. Friday night I slept 12 hours, took a 3 hour nap Saturday afternoon, and slept another 12 hours Monday night! So I must of been tired! Saturday afternoon I did get in a good couple of hours on Montreal Sampler I finished two more rows! Lets see... do I have a progress picture somewhere??? Yes there it is! I put in the snowflakes and the stone wall rows. Next is the biodome! when I can find the time! Sunday I pulled out Celtic Banner with good intentions! I did manage to put in one more row of alphabet. But in the afternoon I had a nice visit with Christin and her parents as they stopped here on their way into Ottawa to drop off Crhistin's entry to this weekend's Needlearts show at the RA Center in Ottawa.

Then on Sunday afternoon for some bizarre reason I felt like going through my unfinished bag of finished projects and see if I could find a project that would fit in one of two 8x10 frames I had sitting around. I decided that To Build A Castle by Dragon Dreams, a class piece I did years ago would fit the size and colour of one of the frames nicely. But it needed a bath first. I couldn't remember if I washed it or not in the past so it was better safe than sorry! Since I had to wait for it to soak, rinse and dry I decided to go out for a bit. I ran to the local Co-Op (well it used to be the co-op I think its now the Country Store) and picked up potato seeds for my veggie gardens. I also wanted to see if they had any Ovrus. They didn't, but told me they should have more come show season. Then it was time to go over to my parents for dinner. My brother was there and I decided after two years it was maybe time to be in the same room with him again. It really was a nice evening... I even packed up Celtic Banner to work on while I was there.... I left the chart at home arrrgh!

Monday was a long, cold, miserable day best spent inside stitching. Unfortunately that's not what I was doing! It was my 2nd annual Victoria Day Weekend Garden Center shopping frenzy with my friend Chrisanne, her mother and daughter. When they got here they brought me all kinds of goodies from their gardens that they were thinning out! Believe me my wee little acre out here in the country needs all the plants it can get! Quickly we got everything in the ground. It took us the whole day, we went to 5 garden centers! I found all th
e irises I was looking for! I wanted Edith Wolford, Superstition, Rock Star and Starship Enterprise (every Trekkie has to have that in their garden!) When these are in bloom I'll share photos with you! After all that walking in the cold I was so tired I was out like a light by 7pm!

Now one thing I did manage to do that was stitching related on Monday was finish stretching To Build a Castle! I think it looks fantastic in my little store bought frame! I've got it hanging in the bedroom right now where the walls are a little bare after I dropped off my entries for Needlearts on Monday.

Since I had planned to work on Celtic Banner this week and finish the alphabet (that was my goal), I don't really have a progress picture of that for you. However while I was working on it Sunday morning while I watched Coronation Street on the CBC Cuddles snuggled up with me while I stitched and I got this lovely picture of him to share with you. He rested his head on my knee while I was stitching.

This past week has not been a good week for stitching at all. Tuesday I was going to spend a quiet evening at home, put my new plants in the ground and stitch. But I received a phone call with some bad news. Todd's Aunt Linda had passed away from Cancer that morning. Though she was sick the news still came as a bit of a shock to me. That was followed with numerous phone calls and to make arrangements to be off of work for the funeral on Monday. Then there was a phone call from my Mother with some upsetting family stuff that is just best kept off of here. So it was not a good night. I didn't stitch at all.

Last night was a long night at TKD and I didn't get home until after 10pm. Needless to say it was another case of too tired to stitch.

Once again this evening I have not put needle and thread to fabric. A good part of my evening was spent trying to find something to wear to the funeral on Monday and the shoes for said outfit. I also had to go buy a couple of things I am responsible for bringing tomorrow to the RA Center while we set up for Needlearts 2006.

On the up side I had two fantastic phone calls this evening. The first from my friend Laurette who I met through Taekwon-Do we had a really nice chat! Got all caught up and have made some tetative future plans to spend some time together. The second was a message on my answering machine. About a week ago I did a google search for an old friend of mine from middle school (turning 30 must make you think about old friends!) found a website she did a few years ago with an e-mail address. I sent her an e-mail letting Jen know I wanted to get back in touch and gave her all my details, leaving the ball in her court. Well she called! We spoke on the phone for about an hour and a half catching up on 10 years and reminiscing! We've promised to keep in touch. So here it is almost midnight, I have a big day ahead of me and still needle and thread have yet to touch fabric in this house! I'll be lucky for any stitching time I'll find this weekend!

Saturday, May 20, 2006

Finally, Finished!

Wow this round robin took much longer than I expected! This is my contribution to Lynda's Teresa Wentzler Round Robin. I stitched one of the bookmarks from Teresa's Knotwork Bookmarks I the choice of which one to stitch was pretty easy as I didn't want to deviate too much from the palette of colours used up to this point. There was only one in the gold/mauve colour palette. Between being either so busy or so tired this piece took me two weeks to stitch! Whew, way too long! I was antsy to get this finished.

I'll be relieved to have this out in Monday's mail.

Hmmm I haven't decided what I'm going to work on for the rest of this long weekend. I could either work on Jeannette Douglas's Montreal Sampler or Butternut Road's Celtic Banner. Decisions, decisions. I will enjoy having the long weekend to relax and stitch.

Thursday, May 18, 2006


My blog hasn't been very exciting lately has it? Still not much has been happening on the stitching front. I'm busy, I'm tired, and I feel bleh a lot of the time.

Soooo I'll entertain you with the Stitching Blogger's Question of the Week...

Q: Lately, it seems that many stitching bloggers have experienced a loss of their stitching mojo. Have you ever lost your stitching mojo? If so, how did you get it back and how long did it take?

A : I have to say I don't think I loose my stitching mojo. When there's a lull in stitching its either because I'm what I call "stupid busy". Or I'm tired because I've been "stupid busy" I've pretty much been addicted to stitching when I "found stitching again" as an adult.

Sunday, May 14, 2006

Finishing Frenzy!!!

I'm sorry I've been pretty quiet lately. Its been an incredibly busy week for me, with many nights where I wasn't home until abut 10PM. Which of course means my stitching time has seriously suffered. I won't be working on Celtic Banner today like I should be. A lot of my stitching time this week was wasted when I discovered I was out one thread on a large part of the TWRR I'm working on. Arghhh!!!! Yesterday evening was spent sorting things out getting back on track. I will be working on it tonight, because its due to go out in the mail tomorrow. I don't think that will be happening! (it also got sent to me fairly late)

Well,I had a lot of finishing that had been piling up lately. Today was dreary, cold and wet... so what better day? Also deadlines also helped a little.

I got all caught up on my ornament finishing, 4 of them were in the "finishing bag".

Christmas Tree - Just Cross Stitch 2005 Ornament Issue

Golden Garland - Just Cross Stitch 2005 Ornament Issue

Joy Tree - Just Cross Stitch 2005 Ornament Issue

Santa Freebie - Parie Schooler... sorry about the bad pic!

While I was waiting for the iron to w
arm up to press all of my pieces and backing fabrics I finally finished stretching my first finished cross stitch piece! I originally had it framed at Costco for my Mum but over time I could see that the fabric was pulling away from the backing material. I was quite shocked to find that it was GLUED to a piece of cardboard! Also they had trimmed the excess fabric up to the edge of the cardboard. I had to sew on strips of muslin, and I'll have to mat this piece when I frame it to hide the muslin. Anyhow I thought I'd share my first HD ever with you!

Now I'll need to pick the right mats and frame and give it back to Mum.

One of my first true deadline finishing jobs was
Christin's nametag for guild. I finishhed this using my nametag instructions from my webpage. The same way in which I finished my own. Over the years I've done quite a bit of finishing for Christin. I kinda had no choice but to do it today since she gave it to me Friday night and our next Guild meeting is on Tuesday. I didn't do it yesterday because I was "recovering" from going to the INXS concert with Christin and Chrisanne. Its nice to have stitching buddies who are also your "concert buddies". The next concert the three of us are going to is Great Big Sea this summer during Bluesfest.

Finally, my last piece, my
pride and joy for today's work (and it was a full day 12PM-6PM). My Schwalm Neckpillow, the workshop I took through my guild at the end of April. I had finished all my stitching for the design that weekend the workshop was given. However I never got around to the finishing or the hemstitching... necessary something else new to me. This was my other deadline finishing job this weekend. This piece will be going in my guild's Needlearts 2006 show the last weekend in May. I've been one of the co-chairs heading the committee for the show for the last year. I still can't believe the show is almost here... its not this upcoming weekend but next weekend! Ack!!! I hope all goes well! You can get details for the show here at the OVGS website. This piece in particular will be going in the Education Exhibit, while I have 3 other pieces in the regular exhibition. I'll be pretty much living at the RA Center that weekend!

Wednesday, May 10, 2006


Q :When you stitch from a kit and use the supplied floss do you haveleftovers? If so, how much and what do you do with them? If not, do you usually have just enough or do you have to dig into your stash to finish?

A : I don't stitch from kits too often. I have several reasons why I tend to stay away from kits. I often don't like the fabric that is included. Frequently they give you aida which I'll swap out for a nice evenweave. Second is the quality of the threads supplied. Sometimes they're DMC and they're just fine, sometimes they're sub-standard threads that frey, knot and break easily. Third sometimes I've run out of floss, if they've provided DMC numbers I hit my stash and pull out some more. If they're not DMC numbers or any other recognizable brands then you have to sit around with your DMC floss card and try to make a match.

I shouldn't put down all kits. There have been times its included fabulous fabric and plenty of fibers... sometimes more than enough to finish the project. I have to say I'm not a stingy person when it comes to floss use, and I find nothing more satisfying than throwing out all the left over floss from a kit!

I've not stitched much in the last two days, I did get a wee bit more done on that TWRR. That's pretty much it.

Monday, May 08, 2006

Monday with TW... Its a Start

Its the Monday Stitch-A-Long over at the TWBB! Once again I was able to put everything else aside to participate. This is Lynaka's TWRR and its a pretty small start. She requested that we stitch either a band from a Teresa Wentzler border or a bookmark. For a change I've decided to stitch up one of the bookmarks, lying on its side. This is one of the designs from Knotwork Bookmarks I c2004. I think this will stitch up fairly quickly.

Despite my desire to work on Jeannette Douglas's Montreal Sampler, I'll be focusing on this TWRR instead. When RR's come in I like to get them stitched up and back out in the mail!

Get Stuffed Canada Post!!!!

Sometimes I really hate the postal system!!!!

Today after work I went up to the General Store to mail the latest round in the Ornament RR I'm in. The only difference this time is that the envelope a bubble envelope the same size as a sheet of paper had supplies for two different ornaments, not just one. The envelope was fat but not heavy.

Normally I only send one ornament at a time and it is thin enough to go letter post. From Canada to the U.K. that usually runs me about 8 bucks. Like I said this time it was fat. To send two ornaments it cost me 30 BUCKS!!!!

Absolutely freakin' INSANE. How do they get off charging 3o dollars for an envelope with a couple of pieces of fabric and some thread!!!!

AAAARRRRGHHH! I sent it anyhow, because I had to. It might of been cheaper to re-package them and sent them separately.


Sunday, May 07, 2006

Progress Pictures!

Well I've been slowly plugging away at Jeannette Douglas's Montreal Sampler all week I've almost finished all of page one of the chart. I think I'm up to row 10 or 11.

Today was Celtic Banner day and I was a very good girl and worked on that too!!! I got a ocuple more rows of alphabet done!

Tomorrow is Teresa Wentzler SAL day and I'll be starting the next
round in a TWRR.

Wednesday, May 03, 2006


Weellll I've got a headache tonight, it could possibly elevate to migraine status ... if it wants to. For the first time in four weeks I trained at Taekwon-Do. That was nice, well see how my foot feels tomorrow.

Last night I finished row 3 on Montreal Sampler by Jeannette Douglas and made good progress on row 4. If I'm lucky, with what little time tonight I might finish row 4.

I had a question from Liz on my last post : Q - Must confess that I haven't heard of Jeannette Douglas, not sure if she is available in England. The picture that you have posted of something is really gorgeous, is that a JD design?

Gosh Liz, I'm not sure if JD is available for purchase in the UK or not, but you could easily order her designs online from North American Shops. Here's a link to her website for you to check out her awesome designs. Yes the picture I posted is JD's Montreal Sampler.

Now time for SBQ...
Q :Do you or have you stitched with over-dyed threads? (Weeks Dye Works,The Gentle Art Sampler Threads, Six Strand Sweets, etc.) If so, what is your opinion concerning them? If not, why not?

A : Oh baby, yeah I use over-dyed threads! They're getting harder and harder to avoid these days, so many designers are making use of them. Having stitched Chatelaines and Jeannette Douglas Designs I've worked a lot with them and many of their designs are exclusively overdyed threads. Sometimes if a design needs a little pizazz I'll add in some overdyed threads. I think by now I've used most of the threads on the market.

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

A New Start & May Goals

Sorry I haven't blogged in DAYS! I've not been feeling too well then I was just plain exhausted Sunday, Monday & Tuesday. All day today I've been fighting to keep my eyes open at work! So that's why I haven't blogged. Now onto the fun stuff!

Oooops I was bad, I got to start a new project over the weekend. I was very lucky and got to attend a class from Jeannette Douglas! She was teaching a special piece, Montreal Sampler. This will go fantastically next my Ottawa Sampler! I suppose I should also stitch that Toronto Sampler I bought years ago!!

I also had a weak stash moment! I bought from Jeannette the chart, fabric, fiber pack and charm pack for My Stitching Treasures! Jeannette showed us what she was working on for the inside of the box for My Stitching Treasures. I didn't buy the box.... yet I think I'll leave that for Todd to get me for Christmas! I also picked up the kits for her Hope, Love, and Joy Christmas Ornaments!

I'm not as far along with design as I'd like to be because of how tired I've been. I've been so tired its been "dangerous" to stitch, especially one of senate's designs. Sunday night I took out Celtic Banner to attempt to work on it. I got
5 stitches into it and put it away too tired to stitch.

I think tonight I'll have the energy to work on it!

Gosh when I went to Christin's Blog I realized it was time to review last month's goals and state this month's... So here we go :

April Recap :
  • Finish Great Bear Model - Done and in the mail!
  • Stitch two ornaments - Done (one a disaster!)
  • Start Dragon Dreams model - Done and in the mail!

I kept things pretty low-key and achiveable for April

May Goals :

  • Finish Montreal Sampler
  • Stitch band on TWRR
  • Stitch one ornament
  • Celestial Dragon on Mondays
  • Celtic Banner on Sundays