Father Christmas – A New Start

Thank you all again for helping me get started once again on this project. And thanks to Jennifer from Needlework Plus for finding and shipping over dyed threads that I can use for the background and the triangles down the right side of the design. We settled on Harvest Moon from GAST (Gentle Arts Sampler Threads) for the background and I really like it!

Several people suggested that I start in a more exciting place this time, rather than work on background forever. So I’m starting in the middle of the top with the hat on Father Christmas. Here’s a clip of the section I’ll be working on for a while.

Father Christmas - hat

And here is how far I’ve gotten after about 4 hours of work. Not much, but you can see the over dyed thread and the black triangles from the sides of the hat.

FatherC-New start

I’ve started to fill in a few of the other colors on the left part already and I know it will take a while to get this done. But it will be nice to have a recognizable part of the design done first. I think I got ahead of myself a little on the background though. I think the top point on the hat extends up to the top of the piece and I will have to rip out some stitches to make it fit. I think I’ll work up from the black triangles next Sunday when I get it out again and try to figure that out. The green line going up at the top is the center of the design.

Things are moving along very well now with just one strand of floss at a time. It’s going much faster and I don’t have any trouble filling in colors at all. It’s easy to see where they all go. Yeah!

Jim Wurth’s Hearts & Flowers – Finale

I had a photo that I took before I started the last 10 steps of this piece, but it got erased when the computer crashed a week ago. So here we are with the finale.

The zigzags were created by layering Grandeur, Frosty Rays, Kreinik braid, and Fyre Werks – each thread laid next to the last one. The rectangles around that are Gobelin with dark red Grandeur every other rectangle and then silver and dark red Kreinik braid for the rest of them. The last area around the tassels was done with laid Grandeur and Kreinik braid that were tacked down with stitches over two threads using Kreinik and Marlitt. The 48 Jessicas around the center now have 5 silver beads per Jessica. That was the last step.

HeartsFlowers-finale

So number 11 of this set of 12 dodecagons is complete. I didn’t notice until I was half done that THIS one was supposed to be stitched on black canvas. Since no canvas is visible now that it’s done, I don’t think that is a problem. Coronation is the last of the set – supposed to be stitched on red and will now be on black canvas. I’ll start on that one in a week or two.

 

A Quick Update

The computer is back after 5 days. Nerve-wracking, but everything is back except the photos I took the first two weeks of this month. They are on the blog so I can download them if I want. I didn’t do any design work those two weeks, so nothing lost there.

Along with the computer, we’ve been dealing with a cat health issue as well. Daisy will be 14 next month and we have to expect problems as she gets older. We discovered a large lump behind her right ear and took her to the vet, expecting a diagnosis of cancer. It seems to be a cyst of some sort. We’ll probably have it removed, but not right now. In doing a workup do discover what the lump was, we found out her thyroid is sky high. So we’re waiting for medication and a way to get it into her. She is finicky. We’ll be getting some sample treats from the vet to see what flavors she would willingly eat. Then a compounding pharmacy can put the medicine into those treats and we will hopefully have an easy solution. They can’t do the surgery until the thyroid is much, much lower. She acts fine, so it’s hard to tell exactly how she feels. So far, so good.

DaisyCondo

So we’ve been dealing with a few things over the last week. I haven’t done much of anything related to stitching, but will dive back in tomorrow and hopefully have something to show you in a few days.

Down Time

My computer crashed Saturday. We did all the right things and then told the computer to restore the computer from backup. Ummm, the backup was from 2011!!

Took the computer to the Apple Store today, and they got most of it straightened out but all the Apple applications still aren’t there. So we came home after 2 hours and we’re hoping they can figure out the rest by tomorrow. Then I’ll have to download a few apps and figure out I’ve done since the last backup. That was 3 weeks ago. Hope to be up again by the weekend.

Trying to breathe and not panic too much. This is the first time I’ve tried to do a post from my Mini iPad. See you soon, I hope.

Border Rug – Progress 12

I’m back to working on this a couple mornings a week now and making progress. I finished Band 5 and I’ve just started Band 6.

Band5-done

I’ll finish the light green diamonds across the middle and then turn the rug around to work on the other side. Once I have this much stitched, I can start the next steps. There will be more outlines before I actually stitch the fill-in stitches for the triangles along the edges and the diamonds themselves. I also need to work on the outer border on the other side.

Here is the whole rug so far.

Border-Prog12

When Band 6 is completed, it will be time to stitch the very large band for the center of the rug. Can’t wait for that one – it’s going to be very colorful!

Norfolk Diligence Sampler – Progress 5

And now for a project that is moving along delightfully!

This is on 40 linen over 2 threads. It’s my first time on 40 ct. and I’m finding it slow going but I’m not having any difficulty. Thank goodness for these good eyes. I’m working on Page 2 now and the bottom of the second band. Here is the first pansy all finished. I’ll continue across the row – two sets of stems and leaves and two more pansies.

Pansy

And here is the whole project so far. I had to scroll up a little so you don’t see all of the checkerboard section now.

NF Sampler-5

I’m really enjoying this and love the design.

Is there anyone out there who is working on this (or have completed it)? I have a question about the section with the verse to stitch. Thank you in advance.

Many thanks to cross stitchers

I’ve had quite a few comments and emails about my dilemma with Father Christmas and Cats. Thank you all for taking the time to advise me on my options.

Has anyone tried an overdye thread for these large backgrounds? I’m afraid of the striping of colors – that happens with needlepoint too. I’ve decided not to do this.

What about a colored canvas? I could stitch the rest of the design and not worry about stitching the background at all. I’m not sure I would like the look, but I’ve done small pieces without the background being stitched, so why do I have a hangup about it for a larger piece… I found a linen that is the exact color of one of the background colors, but it would cost me $57 to buy a large enough piece. I think I’ll pass on this one as well.

Several people said I could start over and use one strand of floss on 32 count even weave or linen. I like the idea and I would have to order the fabric, but this would enlarge the project quite a bit. On the 25 count, over one thread, it’s 14″ x 20″. If I do over 2 on 32 count, it would be 22″ X 31.5″. Way too big for me. On 40 count over two, it would be 17.5″ X 25″.

Currently, I have the mandala on 32 count linen, stitching over 2 threads. The sampler is 40 count linen, stitching over 2 threads. I think that’s enough linen to be working on at any one time. (I’m not counting any needlepoint projects that are also being worked on right now.)

I have another piece of Lugana the same size. I’ve played with using one strand over one thread on the margin of the current piece and it looks good. So I’m going to work on the grid this afternoon and start over on that. I’m also taking the advice of about 3 people and starting with Father Christmas himself. Then I can do a little of the background each time I work on the piece and eventually get it all done. ONE more thing I’m going to do. I’m not going to use so many colors for the background. I’m going to cut that in half, using one color for two different symbols. That should help eliminate constantly starting and ending threads.

Another person mentioned working across one row for a while so you always have an open row below where you are working. That way there would be no open little spaces to try and fill in later. I might try that too.

One more comment on all the other services available online – I love all my tech devices but I’m not into online services very much. There just isn’t enough time in the day with all my stitching, reading about 100 blogs, and reading books (not to mention occasional housework, etc.) to deal with Pinterest, Facebook, and Twitter. I know about Needlepoint Nation, etc. but I just don’t have the time. Remember, besides all the stitching I do from other designers, I also design my own small rugs and stitch them. I’m getting old and I have a million more things I want to design and stitch. So it’s just this blog and the website (which is terribly out of date too). That and two emails keep me more than busy……

Thank you all once again! Super people everywhere……