2012 WIPocalypse update for March

I started drafting a post during the week, but it seems that the WP app doesn’t automatically store a draft … so I lost the whole thing.  And today I’m fighting a dreadful head cold that I’ve been struggling with since Sunday, so it will be a lot shorter than originally planned.  But there are few things to write about, so I’ll try to get to the point quickly …

First up, though, is my stitching update for the 2012 WIPocalypse challenge.  As seems to be the norm these days, I have had absolutely minimal stitching happening over the last month – I almost need to continually do a ‘before and after’ shot so you can actually see what the progress is … I’ve always been a prolific stitcher in the past, so this is something I’m just not used to.  Anyway, here are the two pieces that have seen slight progress since last month …

First up is Bent Creek’s Winter Snapperland – the entire progress consists of two whole snowflakes and the wording … I know, hardly worth blogging about really, but I guess two snowflakes and some words are still taking it closer to a finish at some stage!

Then the other UFO/WIP to be dragged back into daylight is Mirabilia’s Enchanted Mermaid – this poor love hasn’t seen daylight for an awfully long time … I can’t remember the last time I dragged her out to be worked on.  Anyway, she’s had a tiny bit of love in February and is getting closer to having her backstitching done on her face so she doesn’t look so dreadful (her cheek looks like it has a terrible skin disease!!).  I may also start beading as I go, which just may give me a kick in the pants to stitch on her some more.

UPDATED TO ADD:  Oops, I forgot that last month I also put the finishing stitches into Jardin Prive’s Christmas, and I hadn’t posted a piccie yet.  So, here you go, here is my first big finish for the year …

The next news is that I finally managed to catch up with my dear friend Alison to pick up my Christmas gift to myself – I basically gave Alison $100 to spend during her USA trip last year, along with a huge wishlist to choose from, and I picked it up last weekend.  It was a wonderful treat to see what goodies she managed to find, and I absolutely adore the choices she made … I can’t wait to start on the SB kits, they’re awesome!!  Thanks once again Alison, I really really appreciate you doing this for me, it was a really nice surprise!

The next piece of HUGE news is that I’m heading off on holiday … not just anywhere, but we’re off here:

Well, OK, truth be told we’re not off to see the Doncaster Rovers, but rather just the Doncaster part!!  It was very hard to find a website image that actually has the word “Doncaster” in it!! BUT more exciting for me, we’re also off to visit here, and I’m just ever so bursting with awe and excitement that I’ll be going back to visit my most favourite city in the entire world to date:

Mum’s youngest sister is basically going through her final fight with throat cancer, and Mum and I have decided to head over to spend some time with her, and my other family members, before it’s too late.  Being blunt, it’s much nicer to be able to visit when she’s alive and not to be flying over to attend a funeral.  Then after a few days visiting with our family, we’re off to fulfill one of my dreams to return to Paris once more.  I have cheap airline tickets from my employers in celebration of my 10 year anniversary with them, so we felt it was a good time to cash them in and make good use of them.  The downside is that we have had absolutely zero time to get spending money together so it will be very very budget with whatever is available on the credit cards … but very very fun!!  And it’s all happening one week tomorrow, all going well (we’ll be travelling standby so we just have to keep our fingers crossed!).

Initially I thought of taking one of the SB kits with me to start on holiday, but now I’m thinking I also may take two Parisian charts to start as well … the freebie “Souvenir de France” by Blackbird Designs, which is still available for download here

And the other choice is “Eiffel Quaker” by Jardin Prive, which is available for sale directly from the designer as a PDF here … ah decisions, decisions.   Plus I have an exchange that is due for posting while I’m away, so I’ll be kitting that to be stitched while I’m in the UK visiting with my Aunt.

The other news that I haven’t mentioned yet is that along with my trip to see my Aunt in the UK, we are travelling by train back south to London and apparently have to pass by my dear friend’s home … which means we get to spend a night with Nicki, Martin and their lovely furbabies – it’s going to be wonderful seeing Nicki again after so many years 🙂

WIPocalypse Update for February

We are currently experiencing a hideous turn in weather with grey skies and rain forecast for at least another month – I think it’s my fault because I’ve been stitching the last two weekends! This last Sunday is the first time in over 2 months that I’ve been driven by a burning desire to stitch … and it felt really good!

It also means some decent progress on two of my WIPs for this month’s WIPocalypse update. First up is Bent Creek’s Winter Snapperland … taking the progress up to about 40% completion.

And next is Jardin Prive’s Christmas … taking the progress up to about 70% completion (I’m hoping to see this one finished by the end of the month – although that’s only if the stitching bug stays!)

Other than that nothing else to write about really – still working hard and still loving my new car … Same old, same old really … Except for one thing, that one of my resolutions for this year was to treat Sydney as if I was on holiday. When I was younger I would go traveling all the time on my own and eat out at restaurants etc on my own, either taking a book to read or my trip diary to write. I have missed out a lot over the last few years by not going to places because I don’t have people around me that share same interests – or I have made assumptions that way. This year I am putting my confident traveling mind back in place and going to things on my own if I really want to go 🙂

My first experience was about 2 weeks ago when I bought a ticket to see Ronan Keating in concert, along with Sharon Corr as support act … Oh boy am I glad I did, it was a superb night out!! Then next week I’m taking myself off to see Love Never Dies, the sequel to Phantom of the Opera … Watch out world the confident Anne is slowly returning!!!

Later in the year I also have tickets to see the Australian Chamber Orchestra perform a baroque concert but Mum is flying over to join me for that one 🙂 Who knows what else the year will bring? Whatever it is I’m definitely open to all possibilities 😀

And on that note, it’s time to sign off for the day and I’m off to put another strand of thread into another WIP … wow, maybe we’ll starting getting snow in Sydney!! 😛

WIPocalypse update

It seems that the first update post is due tomorrow, but it’s unlikely I’ll have much time when I get home from work – instead I’ve taken a quick photo tonight in advance … I didn’t get a huge deal of stitching done tonight, but it’s an awful lot more than I’ve done over the last month in total!!

Hopefully this will be finished by the end of next weekend … if I manage to stay home much … because this coming weekend I’ll be picking up this little beauty as my HUGE treat to myself at the start of 2012!  This has been my dream car for quite a number of years now, and finally I’m biting the bullet and getting rid of that old stupid burgundy lemon that I detest and putting myself into further debt to buy this little dream.  The only thing that isn’t my dream part is that it’s the hatchback version instead of the sedan, but in fact I’ve been tossing up whether to get a hatchback recently anyway …

We went to a car sales yard just to get an idea of prices when I was visiting friends on the other side of Sydney last weekend.  When we were asked what we were looking for, I said “not negotiable is Mazda, and a preference of a Mazda 3 or smaller” – when asked whether I have a preference for auto or manual, I said I didn’t really care, although I prefer a manual to drive … he said “sorry, but we only have one car on the lot at the moment as a used car – which is that BLUE Mazda 3 hatchback over there, which is a manual” … after about an hour or so dickering around and having a general chat about finance etc, I ended up signing a contract and I’ll be picking it up this coming Friday.  The only changes I made to it were having iPod connectivity installed and have protection sprayed on the upholstery and paintwork etc … as I intend this car to be with me for many many years, I want it to continue looking good for as long as possible, so hopefully that will prove to be a good investment.

And on that note, I suppose I really should sign off for the night and get some sleep – I spent the day cleaning out our garage so that I don’t have to park it in the driveway, so I’m a little bit tired … I only managed to get some stitching done because the update deadline for the WIPocalypse was tomorrow!!

2012 WIPocalypse

Time to drag out all those WIP/UFO photos from the archives and dust them off ready for the 2012 WIPocalypse.  I’m not entirely sure which ones I want to focus on with 100% certainly, although I’ve listed my top 5 at the top of the list … but I reserve the right to change my mind on a whim!!

These are all projects that have been started prior to 2012 commencing – a couple won’t take long to finish off, but others will take substantially longer.  The first series of piccies has got some of the actual chart designs shown as well as the progress to date, but the 2nd set of piccies is purely WIP progress only.  Details of the actual designs themselves follow in a list format, with approximate percentage of completion done.

List of current WIPs/UFOs awaiting attack during the WIPocalypse:

  • Christmas Tree Quilt ornament – Handblessings Patterns (40% completed)
  • Tiger Reflections – Dimensions (15% completed)
  • With My Needle – The Goode Huswife (10% completed)
  • Winter Snapperland – Bent Creek (1% completed)
  • Christmas – Jardin Prive (25% completed)
  • Halloween Fob – The Sweetheart Tree (45% completed)
  • Flight of the Bumblebees – Ruth Schmuff (5% completed)
  • Egyptian Garden Mandala – Chatelaine (25% completed)
  • Enchanted Mermaid -Mirabilia (5% completed)
  • Crimson Fire Sampler – The Victoria Sampler (5% completed)
  • Raphael’s Raspberries – Forget-Me-Nots in Stitches (5% completed)
  • Schwalmwork Pinkeep – Moss Creek Designs (5% completed)
  • Gracie stumpwork – EGA (35% completed)
  • Mystery Sampler design – Debbie Draper (30% completed)
  • Hussif – Monica Hunt (95% completed)
  • Sailors Valentine – CA Wells (85% completed)
  • Stumpwork Needlework Accessories (thimble pip) – Jane Nicholas (80% completed)
  • Cottage Etui – CA Wells (75% completed)
  • Nature’s Resting Place – Stoney Creek (70% completed)
  • Mediterranean Village Scene (70% completed)
  • Dragonfly stumpwork – Jane Nicholas (70% completed)
  • Honesty & Heartsease – Jane Nicholas (70% completed)
  • Apricot Elegance – Cindy Valentine (65% completed)
  • Berry Delightful Bag (60% completed)
  • Beaded Fish #1 (50% completed)
  • Beaded Fish #2 (50% completed)
  • Pyramid Etui – CA Wells (50% completed)
  • Wool hotwater bottle cover (50% completed)
  • Summer Fruits pincushion (40% completed)
  • Oriental Poppy stumpwork – Jane Nicholas (40% completed)
  • Pomegranates and Beetle stumpwork – Jane Nicholas (35% completed)
  • Noah’s Ark – Teresa Wentzler (35% completed)
  • Wool beehive needlebook (35% completed)
  • English Garden Sampler – Teresa Wentzler (15% completed)
  • Goldwork Pea (15% completed)
  • Le Jardin Silk Sampler – JCS magazine (10% completed)
  • Longstitch frogs (5% completed)
  • Hussif – Martha Schmidt (5% completed)
  • Macaw – Ross Originals (5% completed)
  • Topiary Tree bookmark – Textile Heritage (5% completed)

There will be other items being stitched during the year as well, namely more Christmas ornaments and gifts, but they will be stitched on a whim 😀

Where did the time go???

First of all Happy New Year everyone!!  I hope you all (if there’s still anyone out there) had a lovely Christmas and New Year, and that 2012 is treating you well so far!!

I don’t honestly know where the last 2 months have gone, but I do know that it is my record for non-blogging – I have ended up having a true blogging break, although it was never intended, so I have neglected both the updating of my blog as well as the reading of your blogs!  Since I came home for the Rugby World Cup final (go the All Blacks!!!) work has been hectic, my social life has been more active, and my stitching has pretty much been non-existent.  I have barely lifted a needle over the last month or so, and the month prior to that very little stitching was done either.  But there was just enough activity to see one old WIP finished …

Drawn Thread-Joyeux Noel
“Joyeux Noel” by The Drawn Thread
Stitched on 36ct hand-dyed Edinburgh linen by Silkweaver ~ colour Golden Harvest
with a mix of recommended and substituted threads

Then I managed to squeeze in one last finish for 2011 – and a nice simple design that would normally be completed in a day of stitching took me about two weeks!!

Les Grilles de Maryse-The Red Noel
“The Red Noel Ornament” by Maryse Dupont of Les grilles de Maryse
stitched on mystery 32ct hand-dyed linen
with Threadworx thread

I managed to put a few more stitches into my Goode Huswife design that I started as part of the 2011 Crazy January Challenge … it no longer looks like a gherkin, but still not much closer to a finish!  Pretty much how the entire January Challenge went for me last year – with my change in jobs, and 3 hours commuting each day, it meant my stitching time was very minimal … and I’m certainly not going to be signing up for any major challenges this year knowing this is something that will not be changing!

I did manage, however, to put a few more stitches into another of my Crazy January Challenge pieces, although yet again very far from being close to finished.

This year I am signing up for a challenge, but one that I can easily fit in with my new “hardly any time for stitching” lifestyle – I’m joining in with Measi’s 2012 WIPocalypse challenge.  Seeing as you just have to show progress with your WIPs on a monthly basis, I figure that even I should be able to do that!  Well, I’ll be giving it a go anyway!!  As I also want to remove the pressure from what pieces to work on, I have decided to list all my outstanding WIPs and UFOs and my goal is to just work on them this year with a couple of new starts/Christmas ornaments during the year as well to keep me motivated.  It means the remainder of my unfinished pieces from the 2011 January challenge will be leading the list … plus I have plenty of old UFOs already listed in my sidebar to keep them company!!  When I get my act together, I’ll upload the full list into a new post.

In the meantime, here is my pitiful display of stitching finishes for 2011: