Tag Archive | Christmas Ornaments

Still in the land of the living

Sadly a number of shocking migraines and some late working hours have seen my stitching mojo fly out the window over the last month … yesterday, however, I decided to catch up on last week’s recorded TV shows (seeing as I didn’t switch the TV on at all during the week) and managed to put a few stitches into a commitment piece – I need to quickly get this one finished so I can get it framed for a birthday gift.  I managed to do a fair bit last Saturday just before I started getting a throw-up migraine, and after yesterday’s efforts I can almost see the end in sight.  There are still a bunch of bears to stitch on the left-hand side, but at least I’m about 2/3 finished now.  It’s the first time in ages that I’ve stitched something that requires such a lot of back-stitching … not my favourite part of stitching, but it sure does make those blobs of stitching look wonderful once it’s done, and I’m glad to have got the first 2/3 of back-stitching completed before tackling the last section of the design!  This is one of my Crazy January Challenge projects:

Here's how it looked back on 10 January

How it looked at the end of last weekend

How it looks now - a day in bed stitching in my PJs was worthwhile!

Last Monday I received an absolutely awesome ornie from my good friend Carol for our HoE Lizzie*Kate ornie exchange.  I love the reason why Carol chose to stitch this one, as moose are indigenous in NH this is a wonderful personalised ornie with a taste of Carol’s home.  I absolutely love it, and the stitching and finishing are as always perfect!  Thank again Carol for another fantabulous exchange that I will treasure! 😀  I apologise in advance for the quality of all the photos today, as they had to be taken with my iPhone thanks to a flat camera battery that I just keep forgetting to charge up!  Sadly moose ornie didn’t come up at all well on the iPhone 😦

My Lizzie*Kate ornie exchange received from Carol - I love it!

I also heard a while back that Joke had received the ornie I had sent to her – unfortunately I was late in posting, so I sent a little extra beaded scissor fob to apologise for the delay.  I can’t remember taking a photo of the fob I sent, but you can see it in Joke’s post if you want to see it.

Lizzie*Kate ornie exchange sent to Joke

The only other thing I have to share is a wonderful surprise parcel in the mail I received from Orna Willis – I’ve been a fan of Orna’s canvaswork designs for years now, and have been a follower on her blog  since she started it up.  Orna has recently been having giveaways of thread/embellishment packs for some of her followers (just chosen randomly from the list of followers), and I was surprised one day to see my name up in lights on the blog … I had won one of the giveaways.  I just had to take a photo of the way that everything was packaged up, aren’t they lovely in their own special little tin?  I should probably take a photo of the contents separately as there are lots of little treats hiding in that tin, but I’ll do that on the day that I take them out to put them away 🙂

And that probably covers all the stitching news that I have.  Nothing else has been happening really except for work, work, and more work – it’s been quite difficult trying to close off and start pieces of work for my current job while learning my new job one day a week, plus still attending many meetings and having to teach a work colleague aspects of my job.  Hopefully after next week I’ll start getting back into a normal routine of only one job, although sadly 2 hours travelling time each day will probably eat most of my week’s stitching time that I normally have … it just means that I’ll have to plan my weekends so I can at least get ‘some’ stitching in every weekend 🙂

One great thing about working in the city now, though, is that last Wednesday after work I wandered over to the city swimming pool and did a workout in the hydrotherapy pool.  My leg has been giving me a lot of pain lately so I knew I needed to make an effort to get those exercises happening again – and by the time I was ready to get on the train most of the peak hour people had gone home already … mind you, it meant not getting home until 9pm but what the heck, it felt good! 😉

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Stitching for stress relief

Last Sunday I managed to start getting a mini migraine in the afternoon … stressing out about my 2nd interview on Monday, I think – which means most of the plans I had on Sunday afternoon went down the drain … which is where my day’s baking went as well, ‘cos it was a total flop!  We were putting on morning tea for a work colleague who left on Tuesday (this is the one I had issues with last year, although we actually get on OK now – we’ll never be the closest of friends, but we had a working relationship that was OK).  Anyway, I have to say my baking Sunday/Monday was a total disaster … I think my head was too stressed out about my 2nd interview that I had on Monday – I felt physically sick during the interview, and I know I didn’t do my best in there, but it’s too late for that now, and the chips will just have to fall where they may.  I was supposed to hear something back by last Thursday, but so far no news either good or bad.

I haven’t particularly touched a needle for the last few weeks, but this weekend I’ve made up for lost time – it’s all I’ve been in the mood for!   I’ve superglued my backside to my mattress, and sat up in bed with needle in hand and clearing old DVR recordings … it’s been really enjoyable.  Following are the results of my stitching efforts.

First up is a new WIP that I started a couple of weeks ago – it took me 4 whole nights just to stitch one pumpkin and the border, so this one has been sloooooow going – this is a 2nd hand chart so I don’t have the embellishment pack, and I can’t find my little black Mill Hill petite beads so this one’s now sitting in a pile waiting for them to turn up … I lost all motivation when I realised I couldn’t finish it quickly.  Never mind, it’ll get completed ‘one day’ …

P1050067

 

Next up is a piece that I stitched up slowly over the last week – an Indigo Rose freebie – not my usual style, but it was really enjoyable stitching it up.  I can’t say I was too thrilled stitching all the queen stitches (definitely not my favourite stitch), but eventually when I got into a rhythm with them it seemed to fly along (helped by watching Rescue Special Ops on TV to make the time go fast).

Indigo Rose-Four Little Strawberries
“Four Little Strawberries” freebie by Indigo Rose
stitched on 32ct Summer Khaki Belfast linen
with recommended DMC threads

Then there is this weekend’s productivity – three Christmas ornaments by Lizzie*Kate.  This is probably what has finally got me back into the swing of stitching again – it feels great, but I’m not sure how long it’ll last!

LizzieKate-Noel Tiny Tidings XIV
“Noel” by Lizzie*Kate
from the chart Tiny Tidings XIV
stitched on 32ct hand-dyed Belfast linen by Silkweaver ~ colour Golden Harvest
with recommended Weeks Dye Works threads and embellishment pack

LizzieKate-Mistletoe Tiny Tidings XIV
“Mistletoe” by Lizzie*Kate
from the chart Tiny Tidings XIV
stitched on 32ct hand-dyed Belfast linen by Silkweaver ~ colour Golden Harvest
with recommended Weeks Dye Works and DMC threads and embellishment pack
but substituted GAST Butternut Squash

LizzieKate-Christmas flip-it
“Christmas flip-it” by Lizzie*Kate
stitched on 32ct Summer Khaki Belfast linen
with recommended GAST threads except substituting DMC white for Whitewash
and using DMC 898 for bird beaks and legs instead of DMC 310

The rest of the weekend has been spent guzzling a bowl of Tiramisu that I made on Saturday night – I’ve been craving some for months, so I finally pulled my finger out and made a half-serving of it … and took a wee plate full down to my elderly neighbour yesterday.  I suppose all-in-all it’s been a productive weekend – not quite the productivity that I had planned for, but what my body and mind needed, I think 🙂

Snowman exchange received & another small finish

I heard from Marie that my snowman ornie arrived safe and sound and didn’t melt on the way to it’s new home.  Here is the ornie I sent to my partner Marie – I really really love this one, and definitely need to re-stitch it for myself, I just adore the colours used!:

LHN-All Dolled Up
“All Dolled Up!” by Little House Needleworks
stitched on 32ct hand-dyed Lugana by Countrystitch ~ colour Pipi or Haystack (can’t remember!!)
with recommended threads

Last weekend I managed a quick finish before succumbing to a shocking tummy virus that was followed by a serious throwing-up migraine … but a bucket-load of Hydralite (yuk) later, and I was back at work with my nose to the grindstone again on Tuesday.  Alas the tail end of my bug is still hanging on, but that just means I’m feeling tired and headachey, and nothing like the doom and gloom of last weekend!  It has meant, however, that I haven’t put a single stitch into anything since last weekend because I’ve been too tired … not sure if I’ll remedy that this weekend or not, but the day is young … um, kinda … who stole those last 3 hours of today and snuck them past me??? 😛

Anyway, here is my other teeny finish from last weekend:

LizzieKate-Fall
“Fall” by Lizzie*Kate
stitched on a mystery 28ct Cashel linen – looks like a lambswool kinda colour in real life
with recommended WDW threads 

The rest of my non-stitching time has been spent doing some serious spending!  Over the last fortnight I’ve managed to join the iPhone revolution (still learning how to use it, although I did manage to create my own ringtone on the first night, which only took me almost 2 hours!) and replace my PC monitor with a beautiful new Samsung one – my old monitor is still technically working and while it’s not suiting my own needs anymore it’s much better than Mum’s existing one so it will be heading over the ocean with whoever travels first.  It was starting to drive me crazy when editing photos etc, so it was time to update.  My final splurge was to pick up a duvet cover in the half-price sales – I’ve been looking for a new one in darker colours for a while now (even dragged Mum through a few shops on the lookout during her recent visit), and popped over to the sales tables in Harvey Norman not expecting to see anything worthwhile … it’s now about to jump into the washing machine so I can get it ironed and on my bed for the rest of winter 😀

And on that note I suppose I should drag myself away from the PC seeing as I’ve already wasted the entire morning playing with my blog template, and start getting that laundry done … then I think I may just have time to pull out some finishing fabrics for a teeny spot of finishing tomorrow … maybe … if nothing sidetracks me in the meantime … 😉

HoE Snowman Exchange received & a small finish

Today I finally managed to get to my PO Box during opening hours so that I could pick up my post as well as pop my own parcel into the mail – I was very excited to see that as I sent off my own Snowman ornie exchange parcel, my very own squishy mail parcel was sitting in my PO Box.  My exchange partner this time round was Elisa, and she put together an exquisite ornie using a fantastic pattern (which has been on my wishlist for stitching for a while now), a great choice of fabric (never would I have thought of using yellow linen and I love it), and the perfect pom-pom edging … all-in-all yet another exchange received that I will treasure.  I have to say that after having a couple of exchanges ‘go wrong’ in the past, it’s been a distinct pleasure to be part of this group and having exchanges run smoothly for a change 🙂  Anyway, thanks again Elisa for a real treat in my mailbox!  If my exchange partner likes theirs even half as much as I like mine, I’d class it as a perfect exchange 😉

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The small finish I referred to in the title is a freebie from The Stitching Parlor, Inc.  I have to admit, I can’t say I’m totally in love with this design.  After wanting to stitch it for the longest time (it’s been kitted up with the fabric since having all my stash in storage when housesitting years ago), I’m really disappointed with the colours and the overall look – I was originally going to finish it off as a little gift for someone but now I really don’t know what on earth to do with it!

The Stitching Parlor-Proud Peacock freebie
“Proud Peacock” freebie by The Stitching Parlor, Inc
stitched on 28ct white Cashel linen
with recommended DMC threads

I now understand why KarenV changed the colours when she stitched it for me for an earlier birthday gift … I totally adore Karen’s version of this design, and kinda wish I hadn’t bothered to still stitch one myself – but on the positive side, I now have one kitted-up piece of fabric/chart that is off the “to be stitched” pile! I’ve copied another copy of KarenV’s version below so you can compare … Karen’s version is so, so very much better, I’m sure you’ll agree! 🙂

KarenV birthday gift Feb08 2

And on that note, I think it’s time to go back to getting a few more stitches into my extremely overdue PIFs that are currently in progress – I never ever received my PIF that I signed up for (nor ever heard from the person running it), but I still fully intend fulfilling my end of the bargain, albeit (the way I’m going) a year late!!!  Mind you, I have to admit to having second doubts about one piece … I guess I’ll wait until it’s finished before I decide whether to rethink my choices!

And now it’s time to go plug in disc one of Band of Brothers (from Quickflix) and chill out with needle in hand for a wee while before catching a few zzzzzz 🙂

No time to chat … but a few finishes completed!

Mum has been visiting over the last couple of weeks, so I’ve been avoiding the PC like the plague and we’ve been having a blast together as I’ve taken 2 1/2 weeks off work as well to make the most of our time together.  We’ve had a great time pottering around Sydney as well as spending a wonderful day a week ago with stitching friends (Alison, Amanda and Karen) as well as Alison’s lovely Mum June.  We’ve eaten lots of good food, drank good wines, and experienced new scenery.  Every single day has seen at least one fantastic highlight.

Unfortunately the start of the holiday was overshadowed by the news of Mum’s youngest sister being admitted to hospital for what appears to be the end stages of throat and lung cancer – we’re still awaiting for the final prognosis from the oncologist, but it didn’t seem very promising two weeks ago (we’ve had no news updates from the family since).  We have still managed to have an upbeat holiday, however, and appreciated all the time we’ve had to spend together 🙂

It’ll take a few posts to put together a mosaic of where we’ve been and what we’ve seen, so I’ll probably wait until after Mum’s gone home before spending that length of time at the PC … but in the meantime I’ll show the various stitching projects that have crossed the “finishing” line over the last couple of weeks:

Prairie Moon Designs-Merry Xmas

“Merry Xmas” by Prairie Moon Designs
Stitched on 32ct Thunderstorm Belfast linen
with recommended Belle Soie and NPI silks

Waxing Moon Designs-Halloween Short Stack
“Halloween Short Stack” by Waxing Moon Designs
Stitched on 28ct Misty Blue Cashel linen (I think!)
with a mix of recommended threads and DMC

Blackberry Lane Designs-Frosty Blue
“Frosty Blue” by Blueberry Lane Designs
(from the 2010 JCS Christmas Ornie issue)
Stitched on 32ct white opalescent Belfast linen
with recommended DMC threads and Mill Hill beads
(the fabric looks blue because I took the photo when it was laid on blue fabric oops!) 

Prairie Schooler-Spring freebie
Spring freebie by The Prairie Schooler
Stitched on 32ct Lambswool linen by Wichelt
with recommended DMC threads

The other finish I have is for a Snowman ornament exchange, so I can’t reveal that finish just yet – this one will be going in the mail any day now to it’s new home, but I’m definitely going to repeat stitch this one for myself!  Originally I was stitching Frosty Blue above for my exchange partner, until I saw my new choice stitched up by Amanda at our stitching GTG and I changed my mind and stitched that one up instead 🙂

And on that note I’d better sign off as Mum wants to go over to Coles so it’s time to put the walking shoes on and get some fresh air … I’ll catch up with more posts in a few days if not before 🙂

Quaker Christmas Exchange

I’ve heard from my very good friend Carol that she’s received the ornament that I sent, and likes it as much as I did … I really didn’t want to let this one leave home, so I’m definitely going to have to repeat stitch this one for myself.  I was really really nervous with the finishing of this one, but I just bit the bullet and stopped thinking it and just ‘did it’.  I just had enough thread in the skein to make some skinny cord and attach all the way around the ornie – and the end result is that it’s given me a bit of my finishing confidence back again, and hopefully that means that I’ll continue to push the envelope and tackle some more of those finishing jobs that I’ve been putting to one side because of losing confidence in myself!  Anyway, here’s the ornie in all it’s finished glory (the finishing isn’t perfect, but I’m still very pleased with it!):

Tokens & Trifles-Quaker Stocking
“Quaker Stocking” freebie by Tokens and Trifles
Stitched on 32ct hand-dyed Lugana by Countrystitch ~ colour Limestone
with Carrie’s Creation thread in Plymouth Red (stitching & cording)
(The chart is still available HERE)

I managed to clean out my PO Box this week, and had a wonderfully exquisite surprise hiding in there! I received my Christmas Quaker ornie from Gabriele this week (my first ever HoE exchange), and I totally ADORE it 😀 How could I not, Gabriele was very clever and stitched it in my absolutely favourite colour … blue. This one is too beautiful to just be displayed at Christmas, so this one will be on display the entire year round 😀

Thanks Gabi, for a really wonderful exchange 😀

Christmas Quaker Exchange received April 2011