What with one thing and another, this week’s stitching went incredibly slowly. I’ve been so busy I’ve barely been able to hear myself think so I did what I could when I could. It didn’t help that I picked a piece that was extremely shaded either. I’m not cut out for this nonsense anymore.
Since I barely finished my square on Wednesday night, I obviously missed my post last Monday but since I’ve been in North Carolina since Thursday I didn’t have anything new to post today anyway. So!
Amanda’s square is apparently part of a pattern that she had of a gazebo and I have to say, I’d love to see the entire thing. Even after knowing her all this time I still have no idea how she does this so fast. Dark magic perhaps?
This is the pattern I (possibly unwisely) chose. It looks pretty now but I was tearing my hair out over it last week. For one thing, our kitchen light went out and it was hard to differentiate the tones. For another, I had to do the whole “one stitch at a time” nonsense for several colors. To top it off, this was my second larger square so it took longer anyway.
There’s only one piece left for me, the long border-like piece at the top, and my work will be done. Amanda has one more small square and her border piece. Then it’ll be done and I can roll it up and completely forget to frame it. Hooray!
I didn’t get much done this week again but I’m not as upset about it. For one thing, I had so much craziness in my life and for another, it was time to work on one of my bigger squares.
I found some old cross stitch pattern books in my storage space and I hadn’t even opened one of them since I flipped through it when I got it. There were a lot of smaller patterns in it and I picked the pattern I wanted. Then things happened like Clair Brett’s super-fun Facebook party and I kept putting it off so I ended up having to go with a smaller design that utilizes negative space. At least that’s what I keep telling myself. Yes, I have fallen victim to the lure of the empty canvas.
Amanda’s square was the cute little mouse up there, and I can’t even begin to express how adorable I think it is. The little dress and the Christmas lights are just too much. She’s still got two tiny squares to go and I’m looking forward to seeing what she comes up with. I dropped the piece off with her yesterday morning but haven’t seen it yet so she may be finishing it on lunch.
This is the pattern I ended up using. It should have been two more stitches on either side but there was an error when I made the grid so it came out like this. It’s still even on each side, though, so I’m happy with it. This week I fully intend to use the other pattern for my next big square and then it’s time for the long border rectangle. I can’t wait to share the finished piece with you! I’m planning on framing it if possible and hanging it up in case Amanda ends up getting the park ranger job and moving to the back end of nowhere. She wants to do a Joan Elliott themed one so I guess we could mail it to one another in that case but that would be a huge pain. It would be worth it for friendship, though. It also gives me a way to relax between my two jobs (three if you include writing, which I totally do), and it doesn’t hurt my hands as much as gripping a crochet hook. On to week 7!
Well, this week was kind of a bust.
Thanks to the fact that I was staring a deadline square in the face plus trying to finish Absence of Intellect, the sampler barely moved at all this week. A billion more important things kept coming up and I spent days repeating my mantra: I’ll work on it a little later. As soon as I finish [x, y, z] I’ll work on the penguin.
After the exhausting rush to finish the snail after the triathlon last week, I dropped the sampler off in Amanda’s mailbox and was rewarded on Tuesday with this cute little snowman. She used a lot of negative space in this one and while it is adorable, I can’t bring myself to do the same. I like things that are filled in, so it looks almost quilty.
This is my little penguin. I intended to try and create a little toast and jam pattern because I couldn’t find any tiny ones, but it was easier said than done and everything started rushing in at me so I gave up and went with the cute little penguin. He looks easy enough but I was up until 1:30 finishing him after getting all my ducks in a row for next week’s release of Search for Sam. Not sure what kind of little creature I’m doing next but the sampler is drawing to a close and Amanda’s turn to pick the theme is next. I’m excited but worried. She’s talking 18 count and I’m terrified.
Amanda is a stitching demon, and it seems that she’s rubbing off on me because we put another four squares.
The Art Deco flower is one of hers, and I love the way it came out! The ladybugs and snail are mine, and there are a couple of stitches I’m not happy with in the ladybugs. It was late when I finished them, though, so I didn’t want to tear everything out and start over again, especially since Amanda was so anxious to get it back. She did this cute little variegated duck as her second square and I really like the way it looks.
I did figure out this week how Amanda gets these squares done so fast. When I look really closely at the stitches, I noticed that they aren’t all in the same direction. My first cross stitch piece was the same way and it did go a lot faster, but when it comes to crafts I tend to follow the rules once I learn them. Hence why I was sitting in the parking lot of a city park madly trying to finish the snailio.
I’m excited to get the piece back again, most likely on Tuesday. I still haven’t done that damn budgie but I’ve got a really cute toast and jam idea for the next square!
More cross stitching fun with my friend Amanda! We were totally flying through the thread this week and we ended up making it through four squares.
After I ended the last week with the strawberry, Amanda drew on her true nature and made a martini. I followed up with a little garden scene, which included a watering can that doesn’t really look like a watering can. It’s hard working tiny.
Unlike me, Amanda likes using metallic thread so she got ambitious and finished her second large square with an ocean sunset surrounded by metallic blue thread that this picture doesn’t do justice. I got it back on Saturday and decided to get ambitious myself…with an apple.
Honestly, my intent was to do a little budgie but for some reason I ended up doing an apple. To try and jazz it up, I put a background on it and now it looks like some really agrarian country’s flag. Tomorrow I’ll return the piece to Amanda and probably get it back Wednesday morning. This time I’m definitely doing the budgie. Or maybe a wine bottle.
The sampler I’m doing with my friend is going well! I finished my square last weekend and gave it back to her on Monday. This time it was a little duck with a wreath. The bow is hard to see against the purple so I’ve learned an important lesson for next time.
Amanda is a ridiculously fast cross stitcher and I gave it back on Monday then picked it up on Tuesday with an absolutely gorgeous Art Deco motif. It then took me three days to finish my next square, a watermelon slice on gingham. I’m a little disappointed in the gingham because it seems too subtle but looking at it from a distance makes a difference. Another lesson learned.
This sampler has been a lot of fun so far, and I’m looking forward to seeing what she does next. I’ll keep you updated!
Like a lot of people who enjoy crafty hobbies, I have accumulated quite a stockpile of supplies over the years. One of the things I had lovingly and meticulously purchased and catalogued was embroidery floss.
This isn’t even all of it. There are a number of colors missing, along with my finished pieces and my fave pattern book, leading me to believe that somewhere in the pile of stuff at my dad’s house or in my storage space is my big project box. When it gets cooler I’ll look for it. Pinky promise.
For reasons I can’t remember, I felt like doing a little cross stitching again. I used to be fairly good at it and enjoyed large, complex patterns. I was trying to decide whether or not to start up again when I saw my friend Joelle of Sparkle J Designs was doing an embroidery round robin and I thought it would be fun to do it too. Unfortunately I only have one local friend who does needlework, but she and I decided to just pass one back and forth.
I spent several days making a grid and let’s be honest, mistakes were made. It’s been almost five years since I cross stitched so I’m going easy on myself. But the finished project will be equally split between the two of us and that’s what matters. There’s no theme to this one but we aren’t counting it out for next time.
The little tulips were my first contribution and Amanda countered with a cozy tea and book motif. I think this is going to look really nice when we finish! I’ll post progress pics on Mondays so you can follow along. I also just bought the cutest pattern for $3 and can’t wait to make it.
I forgot how much I enjoyed doing cross stitch. It’s very relaxing and I like being able to sort of paint with thread colors. I’m hoping to work up to another big piece but that’ll be if I can find my pattern book.
See you next Monday with what may or may not be a tiny duck…