Monday, December 27, 2010

BC Reindeer Globe

I got this in the mail on Dec. 23, 2010. I've finished the top part and have only the red base to go. I like 18 ct linen over 2!

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

I saw some of my coral in the Smithsonian Reef!!!!

I took a cab at lunchtime today to the Museum of Natural History to 1) pick up a Penny Passport for a stocking stuffer, and 2) look for my pieces in the Community Reef.

One of my pieces of tube corals was easy to spot. They are attached to someone else's giant baby blue blob with a green Fun Fur scarf around their base. It looks great!! They are in the right hand side of the display nearest the corner of the glass. I am so delighted to be well displayed!!!!

I crocheted 40 pieces and probably only saw 8 of them. I found my Redskins colored corals at the tippy top of the red side. That must be 9 feet in the air! I also found a sea urchin (but I made 2), a sea snake, my tubes, and a sea anemone.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Great idea for 2011!

I wish I could claim credit for this fun idea for 2011, but credit goes here. The idea is to start one new project a day for the first 15 days of January 2011 and finish the projects by the end of the year. I know I could almost start more than 15 on the first! LOL I already have a couple of ideas in mind!

Maybe I could use this as an opportunity to start (and finish, yes, I know) a bunch of Shepherd's Bush designs I've had hanging around for a while. Heck, even if I started and finished 15 ornaments, I'd be ahead of this year!

So I'll post as I go. Wish me luck!

Tuesday, November 30, 2010


(requires shouting it from rooftops, but from the blog will have to suffice)

Not that we lack craft stores in this area. There's Joann's Fabrics, Michaels and A.C. Moore nearby, but NONE of them is a HOBBY LOBBY!!!!!

I just love Hobby Lobby. The last two vacations I took were in the vicinity of a Hobby Lobby. Coincidence? Why, yes. Yes, it was................not! teehee I like the mix of fabric, finished knick knacks, frames, mat board, ready-made frames, and cross stitch. Not to mention the wonderful Christmas area (ornaments, swags, ornaments, wreaths, ornaments). I saw a wonderful Santa-in-a-sleigh-with-a-reindeer glass (drats!) ornament. As long as I have goofy cats (and aren't they all?) I'm staying away from glass ornaments. Every year it's a bet on not whether the tree will be toppled by a cat(s), but how many times the tree will be toppled. (My guess is three times this year.)

But here's the funny part. The first HL I was in I spent over $300 in less than half an hour. The next two times were similar, but took longer to fill the cart and not quite as much spent. The last time was around $80. This time I walked around, browsed, picked up things and didn't buy ANYTHING. How bizarre is that?!

I do have to say that the guy behind the custom framing counter couldn't have been more bored if he tried. That was quite a bit off-putting. If (see, I'm already saying "if" instead of "when") I go to get something custom framed and I get attitude, I'll take my pieces to Joann's or Michaels who both do terrific framing jobs. AND I'll have to mention it to the manager.

But back to the important bit: there's a Hobby Lobby nearby!!!!! :)


Sunday, November 28, 2010

Other finishes

This Thomas Wool Whimsey is a recent finish by Heart in Hand. My buttonhole stitches are so much better than back in the late 1980's. I have the piece hanging in the living room and I'm the only who knows/notices that the buttonhole stitches are done backwards! I find it charming.

HIH Thomas Wool Whimsey Nov 2010

I also recently finished this Make-Do from Shakespeare's Peddler. I chose the bird color in this one.

Shakespeares Peddler Make-Do #2 - Singing

Hexagon scarf

I picked up Plymouth Yarn's Encore D.K. in 11 colors at Sea Needles in Bethany Beach. They were so helpful. I'd picked out two colorways: my usual brights and a muted mix. We chatted it out and I decided that since I usually go to the bright colors, the scarf in the muted colors would be a welcome change. She explained that having two really dark colors rather than one was a good choice for balance.

Here is what I finished while at the beach:

hexagon scarf first row Nov 26, 2010

It is a chain of 10 hexagons. The 3rd row is the joining row. I like this idea because once it's done, it's done! I didn't have a yarn needle with me and didn't remember to buy one at Sea Needles or Salty Yarns (or the Michaels I was near!) so all my ends still have to be woven in. I'll save that for a day when I'm too tired to stitch but want to move forward with my project.

This was fun, but time consuming. It occurred to me that if I stitched a bunch of hexagons with the first two steps done, it'd be quicker in the long run. So I've completed about 30 of the two-step hexs. Here's a photo of a few showing the 11 colors:

hexagon scarf showing 2 steps and colors

The inspirations for my scarf are the hexagon scarf and afghan at Garnet Hill. Googling this gave me a pattern for the scarf and a how-to for joining hexs while in progress.

I have a ton of Vanna White's yarn (Lion Brand) left over from the crochet reef project. I think I'll make a hexagon afghan out of that. I can combine the leftovers of this project in the afghan to enhance the mix. We'll see.

I decided that sewing the hexagons in a row then doing the next row on top and the next row on top of that is a good strategy.


Thanksgiving in Ocean City

What fun! We spent four days at the beach. Temperatures were in the low 70's (very warm for the last full week in November for this area). I didn't need a sweater and wished I'd worn short sleeves. In a touch of irony the reason I go to the beach off season is because I sunburn so easily. That was why I couldn't believe it that first night back at the hotel when looking in the mirror: I had a light sunburn! SIGH.

I treated myself to a couple of new charts and the supplies at Salty Yarns. I bought yarn for a scarf I want to make at Sea Needles in Bethany Beach. I visited the Christmas Store in Rehobeth Beach and bought a few cat-proof ornies. Used my certificates at 2 separate restaurants. Found quite a few places serving a good breakfast (Decatur Diner in West Ocean City, Dough Roller and Dumser's). Went into a Marshall's for the first time since 1977! Bought a pink sweater and a copper covered Sugar Maple leaf (sold as an ornament, but I put it on a necklace like the ones I saw at the Sugarloaf Craft Festival last weekend). Have to add that I saved $90 by finding the leaf at Marshalls. The Spinning Wheel in Fenwick Island, DE was gone. I always found something there to purchase.

Thanksgiving dinner was at The Victorian Room at the Dunes Manor Hotel. Delicious! We knew it would be because we were there for Thanksgiving three years ago. They served a wonderful cinnamon muffin then and this time an orange (?) flavored corn muffin. Very tasty! The turkey, dressing and veggies were yummy!

The Winterfest of Lights was wonderful! Seems to be more on display this year. No lines to speak of because we went on Wednesday before Thanksgiving rather than the Friday after Thanksgiving (3 years ago). I like that the boardwalk tram takes everyone around the park at 123rd Street. The only negative was the flavor of the hot chocolate (without marshmallows). Yuck!

If I'd known beforehand, I'd have planned to go on the artist open house tour on Friday. I must remember to look up the work on John Donato of Bethany. Very whimsical.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Jesse dog tricks

Now to train my cats.....

Working like crazy on Lizzie Kate's ABC Halloween

I have the rest of the skeleton and three more rows to go to be done. I'm averaging about a row every 3 days. My plan is to send it to Jill Rensel in Ogden, UT, for mats. I can send it with The Mermaid and the Sea. When they get back I can frame them locally.

I was going through a box in my closet and came across a bunch of boring, old cross stitch charts. However, in amongst them, was a partially stitched SB ornament (wisemen) from one of the annual JCS ornament magazines. I even had the sterling silver charm with it! It is now in my soon-to-be-finished pile.

Next up is a Blackbird Loose Feathers design from a couple of years ago. Although I can't recall the name of it right now, it's the one with the three different fabrics that are sewn together after stitching and then embroidery is done over the seam.

Monday, September 27, 2010


I finished The Mermaid and the Sea on Saturday. HOORAY!!!!!!! On Sunday I remembered to run the threads under to neaten the back up. Here's a picture of it on the designer's blog.

I used a wonderful hand-dyed fabric from Crossed Wing. Sunflower Samplings (I think) was at one of the cross stitch festivals in Valley Forge, PA, and they had it framed and had used a beautiful, water-inspired fabric.

It's too big to scan in one piece so I'll have to do it in parts.


Monday, September 20, 2010

Mermaid and the Sea

ARRRRRGHHHH!!!! I'm still stitching on this never-ending piece! It takes so long to get one motif done. I still have Neptune's rock, the mermaid's rock, seaweed, the clam and my initials and the year to do. I want it done in time for Woodlawn, but I have to consider all the Christmas framing that will be submitted this time of year.

Monday, September 6, 2010

More hyperbolic planes, a bleached coral, and my winning reef

greenery coral leaves

hyperbolic planes round hyperbolic with edging

hyperbolic plane with edging

round hyperbolic plane round hyperbolic plane

close up of round hyperbolic plane

fuzzy hyperbolic plane

bleached coral bleached coral

bulky yarn hyperbolic plane bulky yarn sea slug

my small assembled coral reef My blue ribbon winning coral reef!

More crochet coral pictures

Here are some more pictures. All are hyperbolic planes.

sparkling yarn hyperbolic plane

patriotic hyperbolic plane

Red Heart girl camoflauge hyperbolic plane

Noro hyperbolic plane

another look Noro hyperbolic plane

boy camoflauge hyperbolic plane

hyperbolic plane with fancy edging


Some crochet coral reef pictures

I finally got around to taking pictures of my finishes for the Smithsonian Community Reef. Here are some of them, but first is a picture of me at the 2010 Folklife Festival helping demonstrate and teach crochet.

Smithsonian Folklife Festival 2010

hyperbolic plane Red Heart yarn Hyperbolic plane

two Lion Boucle yarns hyperbolic plane boucle hyperbolic plane

brain coral brain coral

corkscrews corkscrews

sea anemone top down view of sea anenome

Monday, August 30, 2010

Hoping my yarn order arrives today

Of course, I've been hoping it'd arrive "today" since the day I ordered it late last week! LOL It's Knitting Fever's Flounce in blue/brown/purple . It makes a very lacy looking scarf (2 skeins) and requires a special technique. I hope to receive the yarn and get the scarf knitted in time to enter it in the Damascus Community Fair next Thursday. So I really, really need it "today"! LOL


Monday, August 23, 2010

My crochet coral reef was a contender!

I'm so tickled! It won a first place ribbon and then they told me it was under consideration for a purple ribbon, too!!! I wish it had gotten it, but it was all made in single crochet and the piece that won used more complicated stitches.

I picked up my entries yesterday and I've disassembled the reef, tagged everything and put it all in big zipper bags. Just need to mail them off (after taking pictures, counting and scanning them!).

This morning I found another reef piece I'd started!! This one is in white and is for the bleached reef. I'm thinking about mailing the pieces tomorrow to the Smithsonian and I find another piece to finish. Gee whiz!! I'm going to have to stitch fast!! Maybe I'll send some of it off tomorrow and put this in the last batch. That'll give me all week to crochet on it.

Everything I entered in the fair (as well as the last fair) won a ribbon. Batting
.100 so far! The state fair (entries due tomorrow) is always hit or miss for me. No way of telling how things will do. I'm working on a mallard on perforated paper that will be a magnet. I need to finish putting the beads on at lunch today. Not a problem! :) I can make it into a magnet at home. It can go in the state fair and the community fair before being given away as a birthday gift.


Thursday, August 19, 2010

I Ordered Halloween Goodies!!!!

I just love Halloween so much! My favorite color while growing up was orange and it still holds a special place in my heart. What's more orange than Halloween?!?!?!

From The Strawberry Sampler (a wonderful shop!) I ordered a bunch of Halloween charts during their sale that started Friday the 13th and ended Monday. I have the Just Nan tin with the witch's hat from last year so I had to order Hagatha's orange hat and Hagatha's purple hat.

I love cats, too, so this was a must have Fraidy Felix. It'll go well with this one from last year.

Punkin' Spider is cool. Crazy Legs is a spider with a pumpkin on its back. both use memory thread (I think for the legs, etc).

Just Nan's Screamy Mimi is my favorite of the two.

I couldn't remember if I had this one, and it didn't indicate the designer. So why not get it?? LOL At least it was on sale!

I think Punkin' Crow has a great expression. Had to have it!

I also joined the Halloween Club at Pocket Full of Stitches. It starts January 2011 with Raymond Crawford's "A Halloween Night"; 9 canvases spelling out Halloween! I picture it attached to a beautiful rope so I can drape it.

My crochet coral reef got a first place!

I'm particularly thrilled because I don't usually enter anything in crochet. I need to submit the pieces to the Smithsonian Community Reef so I won't be able to enter it anywhere else. I'll barely have time to dismantle it!

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

My Redskins team color coral crochet piece

Check out my first contribution to the Smithsonian Community Coral Reef Project (SCCRP). I donated this on the day I demonstrated crochet at the SCCRP booth at the Folklife Festival this year. It was so much fun to make this piece in Redskins colors that I did another as well a bit larger.

Monday, August 2, 2010

This and that

On Saturday I saw the matinee of The Savannah Disputation. Very funny! We laughed starting at the first sentences through to the end. I highly recommend it!

I finished the second flavor of my knitted ice cream cone - strawberry. Rocky Road was the bottom scoop; strawberry the top scoop. I hope it gets a ribbon!

I finished the February bee-of-the-month with the heart wings. Just need to add the JABC heart buttons.

I bought Olga cross stitch chart by Plum Street Samplers. The cross stitch shop says there's a correction on the website: not meant to be done over one thread. Not like that was going to happen!! LOL I bought 28 count. I substituted WDW Kohl for the CC Blackbird since the shop's been out of it for the last couple of months. (At least the last couple of times I've been in the shop!)

The Simon & Schuster book package arrived on Friday with 3 books. I've started two of them: Sea Escape and Hollywood Savage. They are very different in style. I like both, but Hollywood Savage is harder to read since I don't care for the "voice" of the main character. I am interested in how he resolves his issues.

I finally found a pattern for the crayon box yarn I bought at the Waynesburg, PA sheep and fiber festival last May. It's a cool vest in a knitting magazine I picked up at Joann's yesterday. (I'd tell you which magazine, but I don't have it with me!) I bought two skeins of black fuzzy yarn at Joann's to be the accent. The vest is 1/2 stripes and 1/2 chevrons. It's made using several colors with the black in between, but the melted crayon box yarn gives a similar effect.

On Thursday I plan to enter the yo-yo egg, bird nest pin cushion and the crochet cornucopia at the first county fair.

Next week I have a needleroll, a sampler, a saying (chickens and motives), the February bee, knitted ice cream cone, crocheted coral reef (still to make) to enter. The bee still has to be framed, but I bought the frame, foam core and more pins yesterday.


Friday, July 30, 2010

Cats are a riot!

Saw this on I can has cheezburger: funny pictures - Caturday: Tragic Cat is Tragic
see more Lolcats and funny pictures

and this one:

funny pictures-cat in a box
see more Lolcats and funny pictures

and this one, too:

Monday, July 26, 2010

Beach Boys

What a great concert yesterday! But, then, they always do. John Stamos was with them (again!). Played guitar and drums. He also took pictures of the audience for his blog they said.

It was an early afternoon concern. A little more than half way through a big storm roared through. I was in the pavilion (thank goodness!), but we all knew when the deluge let loose when the folks on the lawn screamed! I guess it was cold water. The wind was very strong and blew water into the pavilion.

We were all standing to a particularly snappy tune series. I turned to look at the storm and was greeted by the wind blowing a fine mist of water onto us. Ah! Bliss! When I turned back to the stage EVERYONE in the audience had their backs to the stage (and the Beach Boys!), faces uplifted to the cooling wet wind.

Other than great singing and a solid 2 hour show the most interesting thing were the beach balls that people brought to the show. At one time there must have been 35 beach balls bouncing their way through the audience. Once it seemed like they were all airborn at the same time.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Crochet cornucopia finished

Hooray! Yesterday I finished stitching the eggplant and the cornucopia. Now I just have to enter it in the fair. :) I did the apple, pumpkin, squash, eggplant, corn and the cornucopia. Cross your fingers and wish me luch! The patterns are free on

I also finished stitching a needleroll in February and forgot all about it. If I can finish it in two weeks I can enter it, too, in the fair.

Friday, July 16, 2010

3.6 Earthquake in Maryland this morning!!!

We don't get earthquakes in Maryland. Having said that in 2008 we had a 2.something and ~1996 we had a 2.something. I didn't feel either of those. Now I can cross this off my bucket list! I also never need to experience it again....ever.

I was dreaming and was incorporating the shaking into my dream until it woke me up. I thought it was the result of a truck going by on the highway. However, I live on a court and there is no highway anywhere nearby. (You can tell I was starting to wake up as the logic kicked in! LOL) I've always heard that animals can sense these things in advance and, with six kitties in the house, you'd think at least ONE of them would've had the decency to indicate impending doom. Nope. Nada. Nothing. Damn cats.

I told my Maine Coon when he finally sauntered by that he's no Lassie! He just blinked at me. :)

My radio alarm goes off just before 6 am. I've been wide awake since 5 am. I'm going to regret missing the hour of sleep later today, for sure.

I'm hoping that any aftershocks are so mild that they aren't felt.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Noro Taiko coral reef piece done

This is a wonderfully dyed (although sometimes scratchy to use) yarn. It's a silk and wool blend with some nylon and other stuff in it. I made it into a hyperbolic plane (n=1).

I used color 18 (unnamed!) that is blue with purples, pinks and greens. Very ocean-y IMHO. I hope this piece will scan since it's not too tall.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Errors on Hinzeit Halloween Sprouts chart

I hate it when there are errors in the color key and I hate it when there errors in the chart. So I doubly hate the Halloween Sprouts chart!!! In the witch section, the out line of the witch is with a symbol that is not on the key. I have assumed (and by looking at the picture of the finished piece on the cover) that it is black. So I used black.

I am stitching these as individual pieces so they can be made into ornaments for a Halloween tree. When I finished with the witch I started the skeleton. The chart is wrong! The bottom bone starts one space too far down on the stick. DEEP SIGH. I changed my stitching to keep the spacing even. I had stitched the candy corn around the edge of the witch and was going to do that with all the motifs. HA! With the stitch count off, the candy corn won't fit evenly. CRAP! I'm leaving it off. The candy corn doesn't fit evenly around the spider motif either so these both have that in common.

Today I decided to see if Hinzeit had these errors in their corrections section. No, they don't. I debated whether to bother to mention these and decided I would help future stitchers out by letting the designer know. Guess what? No contact info on her website! I've decided to post the errors here. Maybe she'll find them; maybe she won't. I don't care. I will think twice before buying another of her charts. I'll think three times before actually stitching one.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Volunteering at Folklife Festival was wonderful!!

I was so thrilled to be demonstrating how to crochet a piece for the community coral reef for the Smithsonian and teaching folks how to crochet yesterday. Even under the tent it was H.O.T.!!! Temps in the high 90s. Humid. But a breeze (blowing in a major severe thunderstorm it turned out). I made it back to shelter just as the advance raindrops fell. Whew!! What a deluge! But it didn't last long, thank goodness.

Late last night I realized I hadn't been crocheting. Guess it's because I was crocheting all day at the Festival! LOL

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Smithsonian Coral Reef project

That's all I'm working on now is the Smithsonian Coral Reef project. This is the community satellite reef I've written about before.

I like to use Red Heart yarn (the Super Saver size is great). So many nice colors and color combinations. I've liked the pink camo color and wished I had a little girl to use the yarn for. Now I've got a piece of coral in it! :) I'm going to bring this piece to the Folklife Festival when I'm demonstrating/teaching crochet at the coral reef table. I don't care how many people handle it; it's acrylic and will wash well!

I'd like to start something while I'm there so I'll probably work on one of the basic hyperbolic planes. At home, I think I'll move on to some of the other coral shapes. I want to make more of a neat-o brain coral. I have one piece done and I think it'll look great in a cluster so I need more.

I think I'll probably get back to stitching in September!

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Smithsonian Institution's Community Coral Reef Project

I am so enamored of this! I read about the crochet coral reef project on Stitch DC's blog. I attended a demonstration of crocheting hyperbolic planes at the Museum of Natural History in DC last Saturday. I immediately signed up to attend the lecture and workshop being held there this coming Sunday from noon to 4 pm. I'm so excited by this!!

Crocheting is the only way to easily demonstrate the mathematical concept of the hyperbolic plane. I'll let you Google it and let the experts describe the whole thing, but the bottom line is once you've completed one it looks like a piece of coral! How cool is that?!

I did a smallish one to test it out by chaining 18 stitches. Then single crochet in 3chains and 2 single crochet in the next chain. Repeat this stitch pattern until you're happy! My piece is about 4 inches deep. It grows exponentially and in doing so creates all sorts of ruffles and flourishes. Very pretty!

I am currently working on one in turquoise Red Heart Super Saver yarn. This yarn is perfect because it looks nice and has a great stiffness that enhances the coral appearance. This piece started with a chain 3, slip to join, then do 11 single crochet in the circle. My increase pattern is to single crochet in two chains, then do 2 single crochets in the next chain. It developed most unusually with it looking like a flower tube at first. Finally after 30 or so rounds, it began to flair and is now very curly and lettuce-y looking. I plan to stitch on it until the entire skein is used up. Probably a total of 200 yards (I'd already used some.)

I'm so into this idea and being a part of the Smithsonian's community reef that I volunteered to demonstrate/teach hyperbolic crochet at their table in the Ocean tent at this year's Folklife Festival. The exhibit will open in October of this year and I can't wait to see and it (and see if I can spot my creations within the reef!!).

To demonstrate a skill at the Folklife Festival has been a lifelong dream, but so unrealistic as to be unattainable. It was ridiculous to put it on my bucket list. After all, I don't earn my living as a folk artist or come from a foreign country where I am a folk artist. It was a dream. But now I can put it on my list and check it off in two weeks! I hope it's not scalding hot on the Mall, but I won't even care. :) :) :)

Monday, May 31, 2010

Bent Creek monthly swirls, gloom, sings, etc

Here is my progress on Time Flies using Bent Creek charts:

Bent Creek Time Flies April part of May   May 31 2010

Bent Creek Time Flies July thru Dec May 31 2010

I originally thought I'd be finished in 2007 so I'd stitched the date on the left. In 2009 I picked it up again and corrected the date. Now you see it's just 20xx. I'm not even going to commit to finishing it this decade!! LOL

LHN Two Roosters

I saw this great saying online and immediately had to stitch it. After charting it out with graph paper and an alphabet found online, I used fibers and fabric I had on hand. I decided to follow Blackbird Designs' lead by changing the color of some of the words just to add interest to the piece. I found the perfect Little House Needleworks chart at my LNS and finished this piece on my mini vacation. Wahoo!!!

Chickens motives questioned LHN Two Roosters May 18 2010

Recent finish: Barb's RR

I used this snowflake
Peppermint snowflake on Barb's RR May 17 2010

on Barb's RR. Here's the top part of Barb's RR:

Barb's snowflake RR May 17 2010

It says: Like snowflakes friends come in all shapes and sizes. We decided to stitch her flakes so that they looked unique. I did the peppermints snowflake, another did one all in green DMC 524 as that is her favorite DMC color.

Monday, May 24, 2010

I went on a mini vacation

First stop was Johnstown, PA, for the Flood Museum and to ride the incline. Got a regional cookbook (I'm such a sucker for those things!) at the museum. We rode the incline and had lunch at the Grill at the top. Delicious! I'd have my birthday dinners here if it wasn't 3-1/2 hours away!! LOL

Saturday was set aside for the Sheep & Fiber Festival in Waynesburg, PA (just south of Pittsburgh). It was quaint. I liked that the trotters were being put through their paces (get it?? trotters and pacers?? LOL!) at the track at the fair grounds. I'm used to the Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival so I expected more. That's not to say I didn't find any yarn! I bought some alpaca from the booth I first saw at Christmas in the Woods in Ohio last October. It's a Shaker Festival in Columbiana, Ohio. I've been twice and loved it both times. I should figure out how to fly in and drive back laden with goodies!

Back to the fiber festival. In one enclosed barn were three teams working on their sheep-to-shawl entries. In the other barn (yes, only two barns) were the yarn vendors. I was there less than an hour. At the Maryland show we were there four hours and saw about half of it (too hot).

Anyway, the owner of the booth next to the alpaca lady was very helpful with her ideas and comments that I felt compelled to visit her booth. Boy, was I ever glad I did!! Lots of great yarn in great colors and this spectacular find: melted crayon box handspun yarn! This was a MUST HAVE. No, I haven't figured out what to do with it, but who needs to know that before purchasing such luscious yarn? I bought the tee shirt and we left to go to lunch.

The melted crayon lady told me that over 100,000 people attended the Maryland sheep festival and were turned away when the parking lot got filled on Saturday! Yowza! I knew it was crowded, but didn't realize it was that crowded.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

"I dream of a world..." progress

The stitching of the words is done. One chicken is done. Need to add the other chicken. I took a page from Blackbird Designs and stitched a couple of words in color rather than 3371. I like it! Now to get offline, resume watching the Eureka marathon, and finish that second chicken!

Monday, May 3, 2010

I dream of a world...

I saw this on a t-shirt:

I dream of a world where chickens can cross the road without having their motives questioned.

This MUST be done in cross stitch! I've already charted it out, but need to decide on placement. I bought Little House Needleworks' "Two Roosters" to use. Should the roosters be looking outward or inward? I bought the DMC and putty linen at The Stitching Post yesterday. I'm ready to roll! :)


Monday, April 26, 2010

Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival is this Saturday!

I already have two t-shirts and the large tote bag. I can't stand waiting in that long line! LOL I keep urging them to have more colors available, but I might as well talk to the wall. Their service is spectacular though!

I have my patterns ready to go. My bag and suntan lotion are ready to go. Now I just need my checkbook and a visor!

I'm currently knitting a loooooooong cat scarf I found on Ravelry. Although the pattern shows it finished in black and white I am using Red Heart's Fall and Hunter Green. The contrast is good. I'd tried double knitting back in the 1980's when I worked for a yarn shop. It was interesting, but I never did anything with it. Now I'm doing this scarf and I'm liking it. Not enough at the moment to knit my own loooooooong cat scarf though! LOL (Of course, I bought yarn to do my own: dark purple and light purple for the good contrast.)


Friday, April 23, 2010

New Cross Eyed Cricket designs

I like the America circular one, Summer, and Ps & Qs. That'll keep me busy! LOL Now to wait for a good sale. I ordered from the April Online Needlework Show from Cecilia's Sampler. I liked Sassy Cat from Tapis-Tree the best. I need to stitch more and shop less! ;)

Kathryn Alexander kits

I googled the designer of the color on color scarf (Kathryn Alexander) and WOW! she has some fantastic designs out there AND some of them are kitted. Her new Doo Dad scarf looks like it'd be fun to knit and I like that she made the socks into a glove (well, someone did!). I'm too big for the jacket (blocks and stripes with doo dad edges), but maybe that's a good reward for me when I can fit it.

I-Cords and the Color on color scarf

I-cords are easy-peasy to knit, but there are so many of them and you change colors as you go up the cord! Who would have imagined! I still have about a dozen to do and then I can sew up the first fair isle section. Technically, I should have sewed up the fair isle section prior to starting the garter band with I-cord edging.

I ordered another skein of each color that called for one skein. Now I feel very comfortable about my amounts. This makes it easier to do the I-cords since I was hesitating to take a strand from a color without knowing how much I'd need of that color later on. I've already run out of one color and it is used later.

Maybe I need to have one of those techno-gadgets with me so I can google the scarf pattern out of a book to see if the comments are favorable BEFORE I buy the book. LOL

I finally did some cross stitch this month! The Bent Creek sheep "Life is Good". I just have to finish the sheep and it's ready for framing.


Tuesday, April 13, 2010

My Woodlawn entry

Hooray! Here's my second place win at Woodlawn 2010. I liked the change in the display arrangements. Could see things much, much better. This biscornu was a freebie from Aury's blog.

Aury biscornu 2nd place at Woodlawn 2010


All Creatures Great and Small

Here's a pic of a finish I don't think I shared when it got done. It is all blackwork. It's by Homespun Sampler on Sandstone 28 ct fabric.

Homespun Sampler All Creatures Great and Small


Color on color scarf progress pics

Here is the first main block. It is made of 10 colors.

color on color scarf first big section April 7 2010

Here it is a few days later (today) after the fair isle portion is done.

color on color scarf fair isle Apr 13 2010

All the ends are driving me batty!!! I'm going to hate weaving them all in.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Gauge?? Who does a gauge???

Okay, I'll admit it. When I'm making a scarf I don't worry about the gauge. Not an excuse; just the way it is. However, I am very particular that I use the size needle called for in the pattern.......except for the other day. I was going gangbusters on the color-on-color scarf and was about to start the fair isle (section 11). HA! The parts I'd done looked awful! I'd found out when getting ready to bind off section 10 "with the larger needle" (a size 7), that I'D BEEN USING THE SIZE 7 THE WHOLE TIME!!!!!!!!! Drats. So I did what I normally would not do, I started that section over with the size 5's I was supposed to have been using and bound off with the 7's.

I didn't know frogs came this big.

Turned out I made several other "pattern modifications" with the net result that last night I ripped out the whole thing. At least I keep the baggies with the yarn I've used separate from the baggies with the yarn yet to use. I baggied (is that a verb??) everything up and started fresh. Yes, I triple checked that I was using the size 5's. Looks much, much better!

Friday, April 2, 2010

Color-on-color scarf

This scarf is wonderful! Lots of great colors and fascinating to knit. It's from the book Scarf Style by Pam Allen (Interweave Press). Color blocks, fair isle, I-cord, buttons, and all made from a needlepoint wool: Paternayan Yarns! I found the kit at Strings of Purls in Omaha, Nebraska (other sites had it as well), but I liked her web page. Best of all, she had it in stock.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

The New World: James Towne kit ordered

I saw this at Woodlawn and it reminded me that I meant to buy the chart. Turns out it's a kit which is even better! It can be seen at the designer's website She also designed a map of Texas (no picture) and Great Lakes (under classes). She might have done one for Maine as well, but I'm not sure of what I read about that (I think under scheduled events; she's teaching a class).

It seems that the kit includes a brush and paints to enhance the stitching with brown on the land and blue for the water.

What I thought was three cupcakes in the lower right of the design at Woodlawn is actually the three ships that brought the settlers to Jamestown, VA. Cupcakes! What a hoot!!


Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Freebies from Cricket

Another mitten and carrot! Tee hee!

(and you thought you were done!)

Tunisian crochet

Easy to do....once I figured out what the instructions were trying to say. The cover design for "Interweave Crochet Winter 2009" is drop dead gorgeous! I decided to try out the design with scrap yarn before investing tons of dollars into something I didn't like to do. The triangles that start the piece didn't look anything like the picture on the cover. I know how to do Entrelac when knitting so the basic concept was known to me. I just wasn't getting it. I must have read the instructions 97 times! Finally I tried something a little different, and, voila! It worked!

It worked better than I thought because now instead of doing the ruana, I want to just do a scarf. I'll have more fun and it'll cost considerably less. It also gives me something to look for at the Sheep and Wool Festival on May 1-2.

Instructions for Tunisian crochet and links to sites that sell the special hooks were found here.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Mystery tree knitter

This is known as "yarn bombing". What a delight! My cross stitching group has several knitters and crocheters and is planning to "yarn bomb" the county fair (one person is superintendent of one of the buildings and wants us to decorate her building this way).

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Woodlawn entry scores!

My Woodlawn entry received a second place! WAHOO!!! :) I have plans to attend later in the month, hopefully next weekend.

Of course, going to In Stitches and Wendy's are on the agenda. We like to grab lunch at Wendy's and watch planes at National Airport (never will I call it by its "new" name) from nearby Gravelly Point. Usually we can see the cherry blossoms from across the Potomac and that just adds to the lovely day.

The design was a freebie on this wonderful blog:
She has lots of freebies and her Quaker animal series is darling.

Friday, March 5, 2010

One yo-yo Easter egg done!

I finally added the yo-yos to the styrofoam egg! The pink one is done. :) I'll probably take a picture of them all when they are all done - probably not by this Easter! LOL I also want to make the yo-yo bunny to go with the eggs.

I was starting to not like the egg as I was putting on the circles, but I kept on going. I'm glad I did because I LOVE the finished product. If it'll scan, I'll add the picture later.

Sunday, February 28, 2010

Ancient oldie finished

In August 1995 I purchased the tiny kitted design and Sudberry House ring box for it to go into. It is of a Violet Wreath and is in bright purples and greens. I've always liked it and found it again recently. Fifteen years waiting in my stash pile to be stitched is not actually as long as some (alright, quite a few) other pieces, but is certainly a respectable time.

I think what made this the right time to stitch is the premium I have now on wall space. This little box will be a breeze to finish, meaning no additional cost and no wall space required when done. :)

I received an email that one of my Nashville purchases was shipped yesterday! WAHOO!! I'm looking forward to seeing which pieces I ordered from this shop. ;)

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Nashville is over let the shopping begin!

I pre-ordered two or three things from Nashville. I remember a pumpkin in 3-D and a Lizzie Kate fob. The others?? I'll remember when the package arrives! LOL LOL

Oooo! Another email has arrived with more Nashville finds. This one is from The Attic. They always find the most interesting things. I want to read what Elegant Stitch has to say, too.

The link worked!!!!!! WAHOOOO!!! Now how did that happen?? LOL

Sunday, February 21, 2010

The 12 Meowy Days of Christmas

I almost forgot I signed up for this automatic! It arrived on Friday, but I didn't open it or start it until Saturday. Had to call the shop twice because of missing threads. They were aware and will get in touch with everyone about the solution.

Here's a link to them all.

I hope this works. It never does. sigh. Here's the URL:

The selling point for this to me other than the cat theme is the fish shape of the ornaments. How clever is that?!

More finishes

I was looking through a box of cross stitch and found a freebie pattern from The MonkeyWorks for Miniature Egg. Attached to it was the pre-finished aida oval. I got this as a freebie from Nordic Needle goodness knows how long ago. But it was at least since the year 2000 based on the copyright date of the design. LOL

I chose a bunch of spring colors and just stitched. Here it is (even if spring is still a dream away). I started it last night and finished it an hour later (or less!).

MonkeyWorks freebie Miniature Egg finished Feb 20 2010

This morning, inspired by last night's finish, I picked up the Sweetheart Sampler stocking by Blackbird Designs. And finished it while watching The CBS Sunday Morning Show. Here it is:

Blackbird Feb Sweetheart Sampler Feb 21 2010

Next up is the Spring Wreath stocking, using GASTs Avocado and Clover. Very spring-y, indeed.

Sunday, February 14, 2010


I finished the stitching yesterday. Just in time for Valentine's Day! Yippee! I plan to finish it as a needleroll.

Columbine Designs Valentine Needleroll Feb 13 2010

I'm telling you though, the instructions were AWFUL!! I still have 3 or 4 more needlerolls by this designer (Columbine Designs) left to stitch. Hopefully, they all have the same directions so I'll have a heads up on that. I'm almost afraid to look! But worth it. The designs are lovely.

Gotta love the penny and the dime charms!! So realistic! And the lips for the borders.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Infinity Scarf

A friend went to DC Stitch and bought yarn to make their Infinity Scarf. She bought a couple of skeins of Alp Light in beautiful autumn shades. She used about 1-1/2 skeins for her scarf and it's lovely. Using the verbal instructions she got from the shop, I used a heavier yarn and made one for myself. It was huge!!! It was literally double the length it should've been. (Note to self: Gauge is important!)

Although I hate the idea of ripping out, a few days later I bit the bullet and ripped out the entire scarf. Yesterday I cast on half the amount of stitches and hoped for the best. This morning I stitched the last 1-1/2" and bound it off. Drum roll, please! It worked! It was the perfect length. It's supposed to be a circle and go around your next twice. YEA!!!! Cue the Happy Dance!

On size 10-1/2, 29" circular needles I cast on 150 stitches and knit in the round for 8". Bind off. Wrap around neck twice and enjoy! By the way: my gauge was 2-1/2 stitches per inch. :)

The Stitch DC website has an Infinity Scarf pattern that's a bit different and uses a much lighter weight yarn. It's gorgeous!

MORE SNOW!!!!!!!

Blizzard conditions. At least another 10" of snow on top of the 30" from the other day. Gusting winds up to 50 mph. SIGH. The snow is so deep the birds can practically stand on the snow drift and eat out of the feeder!!!

I'm guessing they're going to close work again tomorrow. Thank goodness Monday is the President's Day holiday. We'll need it to get dug out!

Sunday, February 7, 2010

More stockings finished

I finished these in January 2010. They go fairly quickly.

Blackbird March Quaker Fragments finish Jan 2010 Quaker Fragments

Blackbird May Lily of the Valley Jan 2010 Lily of the Valley

Blackbird Oct Colorful Cosmos Jan 2010 Colorful Cosmos

This is my commemorative for the 24" of snow we got on December 19, 2009. It's a freebie from Lizzie Kate.

LK Let it Snow  Dec 2009

The snow has stopped. The sun is out.

The dig out has begun! We got appoximately 30" of snow over the last 2 days. We like to remove snow from the car window so the sun can shine in and melt the snow with the greenhouse effect. That leaves us free to shovel everything else!

Here is my finish commemorating the blizzard. It'll be finished as a needleroll...eventually!

Blizzard needleroll Feb 7 2010

Friday, February 5, 2010

The snowpocalypse has begun!!!!

It's beautiful outside now with 2" of snow on the ground. Tomorrow morning it could be as deep as 24" and by tomorrow evening we could easily get 30"+!! I went to Michaels this morning to get the floss for 3 projects. (Like running low of projects to stitch will be a problem for me this decade!) But I like to be prepared. :)

I've started Generosity by Drawn Thread. This has been on my to-do list since it was released. I hope to have this (and a couple of other things) finished by the time the roads are clear enough to move around -- or by St. Patrick's Day, whichever comes first. ;)

I'm thinking of starting The 12 Days of Christmas by Just Nan. At 2" x 2" they should be quick to stitch. Maybe I should do all the snowman designs I have by Lizzie Kate and Shepherd's Bush!

Stay safe and may your Super Bowl team win!

Friday, January 29, 2010

What's with the owls???

Have you noticed how many owl patterns there are lately? What's up with that?? At they have a pre-order on Outrageous Owls by Glendon Place. Cute, cute, cute! I might have to get this.

An order I placed Christmas Eve is still waiting for the Star Sapphire linen. Now, it's not like I don't have a thousand things to stitch, but I do like to have everything IMMEDIATELY!!!! ;)

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Free cute quilt patterns: baskets or snowmen

I saw someone making the basket quilt and it's darling! I'm printing out the patterns "just in case" I decide to stitch it one day. I can quilt, I just don't quilt. Too busy trying to keep up with my cross stitch! LOL

Monday, January 18, 2010

Yo-Yo Easter Eggs

The stitching group I belong to is going to make yo-yo eggs. I want to put mine in an Easter basket with green fabric "grass". When ordering the styrofoam eggs I found a pattern for a yo-yo bunny and another pattern for a yo-yo cat (I love cats!). I think the Easter basket with the yo-yo eggs (aqua, pink, purple and green or yellow) will look pretty with the yo-yo bunny.

I found the greatest gadget thanks to Google! It's the Olfa Circle Cutter with ratchet handle. I bought it at Joann Fabrics (hooray for Joann's!). It took a little bit to get in the groove, but it took only a couple of hours to cut out 62 circles in 3 sizes for each of the 3 colors. Since the group is talking about starting this next Sunday, I had to do something to get a head start!

Here are some of the fabric circles I've cut out:
yo-yo circles Jan 18 2010

This morning while watching Models of the Runway I finished 4 of the yo-yos.
yo-yo finished Jan 18 2010

Not bad, if I do say so myself! I remember making a small yo-yo quilt at summer camp when I was 12 or 13 years old (more than a few years ago!!). LOL I guess it's like riding a bike and the skill is not really forgotten.

Playing catch-up

I was having problems with computer memory for a while, but now that's resolved and I can post pictures again of my stitching!

This is the Shepherd's Bush "A Christmas Pin Cushion" that I finished in December 2009 and will finish as an ornament:
SB Christmas Cheer pin cushion Dec 2009

This was a little kit in the December (?) Cross Stitcher Magazine. Cute as a button!
Cross Stitcher magazine 2009 reindeer kit

Although I started this project YEARS ago, I only completed day one and barely started day two. In December I finished days two through five and started day six.
PS 12 Days partridge PS 12 Days turtle doves

PS 12 Days French hens PS 12 Days calling birds

PS 12 Days golden rings

For my birthday my friend gave me two Blackbird stocking kits I'd not seen before. She had attended a retreat in Virginia Beach this past October and picked them up there. The one on the left is To Light the Way. The one on the right is Sea Side Beauty.

Blackbird Harvest of Friendship To Light the Way Dec 2009 Blackbird Harvest of Friendship Sea Side Beauty Dec 2009

I decided to stitch all of these as one of my stitching goals for 2010. I've been doing well since there's a lot of variety to choose from. I'm trying to mix stitching ones I like a lot with ones I don't care for as much. (I'm not telling which are which!!) :)

I started Auld Lang Syne on January 1, 2010, and finished it on January 2nd. It's from the January book.

Blackbird January Auld Lang Syne Jan 2 2010

Next up was New Arrival from the June book. No babies in my house so the stork has no baby either.

Blackbird June New Arrival Jan 2010

Purple is one of my favorite colors so February's Violet (from the February book) was up next.

Blackbird Feb February's Violet Jan 2 2010

I wasn't sure I liked this one and was not looking forward to stitching the umbrella, but it's much prettier in person and the umbrella wasn't too bad to stitch.

Blackbird  April Showers Jan 2010

I'm currently working on Quaker Fragments from the March book. I like the design, but was a little leery about the colors. Again, this works up much prettier than I thought it would.

Blackbird March Quaker Fragments