My updates for January…

It’s taken me the week, but I finally have the photos to upload for my stitching updates for January. Aside from this pure hell of bronchitis that will not go away, I managed to get a decent amount of stitching done through the first half of the month. The latter half, not so much. A mix of conjunctivitis, strep, my bronchitis, a couple colds with both boys… there was no desire to touch my stitching and permanently etch the germs into things. (ick)

So I haven’t quite finished my full rotation as hoped for the month. I still am pleased with what I got done…

First… a not-quite-finished small. This is a little ornament that one of the women in my stitching group handed out a couple years ago as a little memory project from our annual trip down to New Jersey for shopping and stitching. I still need to do the finishing work, but the actual pattern stitching is now complete. This is stitched on antique white linen with DMC floss (815… I think).

The ornament is a pretty and slightly different shape.  I’m looking forward to getting it together once I stop hacking up a lung.  There’s ironing and interfacing involved, so I want to make sure I have a steady hand when I finish it!

The next piece wasn’t on my actual rotation, but I finished the ornament early in one of my library stitching mornings and needed something from the immediate stash to work on… so my Four Seasons of Mystic came out of the bag for a spin.  When I last left this, I had started the pumpkins on the top row of Autumn.  Thanks to the Patriots game and some other cozy afternoon football stitching, I managed to throw some more rows into this surprisingly quickly.

This has been a fun stitch, although I fell a bit out of favor with it after Dad died, since I’d taken it with me, and therefore reminded me of the  nowtrip down to Florida with him – the last real family vacation.  I seem to have some energy to keep going on it, so I’ll be adding this to my next rotation.  It may come to Stitcher’s Hideaway with me in three weeks… right back to where it started!  🙂  I only have the bottom half of Autumn and the Winter band to do, and it’s done.  So this is definitely getting to very do-able for this year.

Next, I did some backstitching on Floral Bellpull.  There really aren’t any exciting photos of it – it was mostly outlining a single square.  But a bit of progress is progress.  I was working on this piece when the cough got worse again, so I’m still on that leg of my rotation.  I have about three more hours of backstitching to go before I fulfill my ten hour rotation goal on it.

Finally, I have my New Year’s start for this year.  This is the only piece I’m allowing myself to start until I clear through several WIPs in my stash.  This is Alpha-Bits by Wild Hearts Designs.  I’m stitching it on antique white banding with Cherry Coffee thread by Nina’s Threads.  So far each letter plus its specified specialty stitch takes roughly two hours each.  I only stopped because I need to find my scroll bars to continue!  This will definitely be a fun stitch this year.  I will finish this as an actual bellpull when finished (as opposed to Floral Bellpull above, which will be framed).  This is another piece I may bring with me to Stitcher’s Hideaway… provided that my scroll bars announce themselves!

So what’s in store for February?  Lots of stitching, once I get healthy!  I’ll be participating in the Stitching Olympics, as I always do.  I will do a rotation relay, and I’m thinking of planning it as a one-project-per-day arrangement.  I need to do a little more thinking on it, though.  My best laid plans always seem to get thwarted due to the insanity at work.  So we shall see.  Any stitching will be good stitching.

I’ll be at Stitcher’s Hideaway in Sturbridge for three days/four nights.  The retreat is designed for up to five days – way too expensive for me, but I do manage to get three days in.  So Sunday through Tuesday are my selected days away.  I’ll head up Saturday night and come home Wednesday morning.  I’m looking forward to it and seeing folks that I really only see once per year.

That’s my update for the month… see you in a couple weeks with the actual Olympic plan of attack!

Happy February,

Mel.

 

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January 2018 WIPocalypse Check-in

WIPocalypse ButtonHappy New Year everyone!

So… apparently I don’t know Saturday from Sunday, and put the 27th down on the calendar for the check-in for January.  Whoops!  (blush)  This must be a side effect of having a preschooler!  The check-in should have been listed for the 28th, on a Sunday just like every month.  Apologies for the confusion!

I hope you were able to embrace the energy of the new year and get a great amount of stitching done.  I always find that the first couple months of the year are my most productive, so I try to embrace it as much as I can.  Yukky cold weather always seems to help – when I’m stuck inside, I stitch more.  I’ve made some good progress on things this month and look forward to getting my own check-in post up later today.  (I’m secretly hoping to finish an ornament today before I post so I can have my first complete finish for the year!)

The only issue, and I think that quite a few people seem to be having this in the States this winter, is the blasted illness bugs that are sweeping around.  I’m still dealing with the bronchitis that I caught at Christmas – now with additional bugs that Max has been bringing home from the Petri dish that is preschool.  I just started new medications on Friday for the cough, which are helping but are giving me some slight  tremors.  I know it’s temporary, so I’ll just ride it out.  I may just have to adjust my plans and stitch on something that’s a little easier for a while. (progress on unplanned pieces is still progress!)

Our first organized stitch-in of the year starts in just a couple of weeks… the Stitching Olympics!  This will be the third time WIPocalypse has one, and I’m sure you’ve found a similar stitch-a-long on several boards on Facebook or elsewhere.  As with any SAL, this is optional.  If it’s something that will throw your comfortable stitching pace off, don’t feel the need to do it.  If you’re looking for a challenge or some variety, though, I’ve found this to be a great way to give yourself a challenge.  The WIPocalypse version has three standard options, but if you have another idea or are doing one for another group you belong to that appeals to you more than these, please feel free to jump in with it instead (and if you want to recommend it as another option for 2020, let me know!).  This year’s South Korea Olympic options are:

  1. Rotation Relay – rotate through as many projects as you can during the Olympics (for those who like to work on a bunch of different pieces)
  2. Endurance Race –  stick to ONE piece for the Olympics, and see how far you can push that one piece toward finishing (for those one at a time stitchers, or anyone else who wants to do some serious focusing on a particular piece)
  3. Celebrate the Nations (stitch only in the colors of the Olympic rings on your WIP pieces, OR… your nation’s flag, OR… on some sort of piece that is reflective of where you live, eg. Americana pieces for US residents).

As a reminder, February’s posting date will be delayed until the 28th of the month specifically to accommodate the timing of the Closing Ceremonies and any stitching folks might do for the broadcast.  I know a lot of international stitchers likely have them shown live, but NBC here in the States will have everything on a delay for their prime time packaging on Sunday night, so we won’t see them until many hours after they actually conclude.

That’s all for this month.  Have a lovely February, and happy stitching everyone!

Melissa

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Important SAL Announcements…

Question of the Month – What SAL’s are you participating in this year? and If you are participating in the Olympic Stitching Challenge, what challenge are you accepting?  What are your goals?

Next posting date: February 28th, 2018

Topic(s) for next time: Gadgets!  Show us your favorite stitching gadgets!  and How did you do with Olympic Stitching, and what goals did you achieve?

Need the dates for upcoming check-ins?  Go here for all details!

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Please remember that this stitch-a-long is intended to be fun – so if you’re too busy to post, too busy/ill/etc. to stitch – no worries. Post when you can and share what you have going, even if you’ve only been able to toss a single stitch into it. If you miss a few months, not a problem – just jump back in when you’re back with us! It’s not a race or a competition – we’re all just here to cheer each other on with our progress.

Due to different browsing software, some bloggers have found it difficult to check-in with their posts. There are three different ways to check in:

    • Via Auto-link
    • Via comments (make sure you include your blog address!)
    • Via email – to measiwitch(at)gmail.com, only if the other two options are not working. Again- make sure you include your blog address! I’ll add it to the auto-link myself when I have a free moment.


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WIPocalypse Kickoff 2018!

WIPocalypse ButtonHappy New Year everyone!

I hope the first week of 2018 has treated you well.  I’m still dealing with my blasted bronchitis, but aside from the cough I’m feeling good.  We’ve had a wild weather week to kick off the new year. A bunch of snow (about 14 or 15 inches) arrived on Thursday in a genuine blizzard.  We’ve been sub-freezing since Christmas Day, and yesterday was the coldest day I can remember in the years I’ve lived here.  Growing up in Montana, I saw temps this low from time to time, but it’s not quite as common here (even if it does feel like it more often, thanks to the humidity coming off the ocean).

Rumor has it that it’s going to be going well above freezing for my birthday on Thursday.  I am so ready.  50 degrees F will feel like t-shirt weather!  Best present I can look forward to!

My husband called upstairs a few minutes ago… “Isn’t the WIPocalypse on the last Sunday of the month now?!?”  I had to explain to him that yes, it was… but this is the kickoff post for 2018.  So introduce yourself, your projects, your stitchy hopes and dreams for the year.  I know a lot of people are continuing with it from last year.  There’s also been a huge surge of folks on the Facebook group.  It’s doubled (literally!) in the last month. Several folks have decided to start stitching blogs.  I’m going to make some extra effort to make sure to visit everyone who checks in, and I hope that you can find the time to do the same!

As a reminder, so you can start thinking about next month and whether you will be participating… we’ll be doing the Stitching Olympics again for the Winter Olympics in South Korea.  There are three formal events you can participate in (either individually or a combo of the three).  If you have an idea for another event, do it and let me know… we’ll add it for Tokyo in 2020, if we’re all still here!  🙂

  1. Rotation Relay – rotate through as many projects as you can during the Olympics (for those who like to work on a bunch of different pieces)
  2. Endurance Race –  stick to ONE piece for the Olympics, and see how far you can push that one piece toward finishing (for those one at a time stitchers, or anyone else who wants to do some serious focusing on a particular piece)
  3. Celebrate the Nations (stitch only in the colors of the Olympic rings on your WIP pieces, OR… your nation’s flag, OR… on some sort of piece that is reflective of where you live, eg. Americana pieces for US residents).

So without further adieu… here’s to 2018.  I hope that you make great progress on your stitching goals for the year, and that you enjoy every stitch you put into a piece.

Happy stitching everyone!

Melissa

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Important SAL Announcements…

Question of the Month – Introduce yourself, your projects, and any goals you have for the year!

Next posting date: January 27, 2018

Topic for next time: What SAL’s are you participating in this year? and If you are participating in the Olympic Stitching Challenge, what challenge are you accepting?  What are your goals?

**2018 Dates and Topics are posted!  Go here for all details!**

*~~~~*~~~~~~*

Please remember that this stitch-a-long is intended to be fun – so if you’re too busy to post, too busy/ill/etc. to stitch – no worries. Post when you can and share what you have going, even if you’ve only been able to toss a single stitch into it. If you miss a few months, not a problem – just jump back in when you’re back with us! It’s not a race or a competition – we’re all just here to cheer each other on with our progress.

Due to different browsing software, some bloggers have found it difficult to check-in with their posts. There are three different ways to check in:

    • Via Auto-link
    • Via comments (make sure you include your blog address!)
    • Via email – to measiwitch(at)gmail.com, only if the other two options are not working. Again- make sure you include your blog address! I’ll add it to the auto-link myself when I have a free moment.


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Stitching Hopes for 2018

This is the year.

I keep telling myself that.  This is the year.  I will make some really good progress on my WIPs.  Here I am, running the WIPocalypse, and I do struggle to complete things.  Nothing made that more evident than when I went through my stash in November and itemized everything that I currently know about.  It was definitely an eye opener.  47 projects in some form of progress.  Another 89 that are kitted in some form… whether just with charms, or with floss and fabric combinations.  Holy heck, I have a bit of a stash problem.

A few different things have merged together to get me here.  The first is having a little one.  I was plugging right along on a lot of stitching with a strong rotation and good progress.  And then in 2013, we had Max.  As having a baby will do, especially the first baby, the stitching just stalled.  Everything about daily life completely changed, and most of my avenues for stitching dried up: my commute changed (so no more stitching on the train.  this was a major blow to my production), my free time at home was eliminated, my energy to focus was gone.  Huge problem.  I have completed a few projects here and there, but I’ve had to gear back to one-at-a-time stitching, and I learned years ago that it’s not my style.  I like variety.  I like to stitch on several different things to keep it fresh and have the feeling that I’m experiencing a bunch of different styles and designers at the same time.  Having to do only one project at a time slowed me down and bogged me down.  And of course, there’s a catch to me getting bogged down – I’m a Big-Ass-Project (BAP) stitcher.  I love big pieces.  So I don’t get as many finishes.  And right now, there’s a whole lot of BAPs piled up.

The next thing that happened was some binge purchasing.  Post-natal depression that led into general depression, pain from losing several people in the last 18 months, stress at work… everything led to me doing some out-of-control purchases and my stash has exploded.  Some people buy clothes.  Some people buy jewelry.  I tend to buy stitchy stash – and in person.  It’s not even online!  I’m surprisingly well-behaved on that front.  My biggest problem has come from attending retreats.   Some of these things I’ve bought have been projects from others that they were looking to unload, fully kitted.  So they’re now added to the list.

The last was adopting stash from Sandy, one of the members of my stitching circle, who passed away a few months ago.  Over the last couple months, Sandy’s stash has been looked through and divided.  There were quite a few projects in some stage of completion, and a few of them have come to me.  So they’re also added to this list.

So here I am… arrived to where I have a stash and a half, and holy heck there’s a lot here to stitch.

I have no specific plans.  No specific “I must finish X amount of pieces” goals.  I just really, really, really want to push some projects forward and whittle this list down.  This list only includes things that have physical stitches in the fabric.  I’ll start addressing the kitted stuff once this list goes down a bit.

In alphabetical order by designer:

  • Vajke Per Week 2017 – Atelier Soed Idee
  • Deep Blue Sea – Chatelaine (Mystery from 2012)
  • Cowboy Cats – Creative Accents
  • Cats on a Staircase – Donna Kooler
  • Apache Wedding Blessing – Donna Kooler
  • Elemental Dragons – Dragon Dreams (Fire and Spirit are complete)
  • Snowball Fight – Dragon Dreams
  • Four Seasons of Mystic – Jeannette Douglas
  • Down the Danube – Jeannette Douglas (adopted from Sandy)
  • Witches Wheel – Glendon Place
  • Bless This Hive – Hardcorestitchcorps
  • Muse of the Midnight Sun – Heaven and Earth Designs (HAED)
  • Book of Ink Circles (BoINK) – Ink Circles
  • Strawberry Zipper Pouch – It’s Fine-ally Finished
  • Smoky Mountain Cats – Janlynn
  • Never Ending Band Sampler – Kitty and Me Designs
  • Earth Angel – Lavender & Lace
  • In the Arms of an Angel – Lavender & Lace
  • Band Sampler 2011 – (Multiple stitchers… round robin)
  • Witchy Washy – Raise the Roof
  • Red Ornament – Rebecca Dorrie
  • Dear Rine Borduren 2017 – Rine (via Facebook)
  • Quaker Compass – Rosewood Manor
  • To have a Child – Rosewood Manor
  • I Love New England – Sampler Needlework
  • Freedom – Seba Designs
  • Celestial Medley – Stitch with Sudberry
  • Bag Ladies – Sunset
  • You Were Hatched – Teresa Wentzler
  • Celestial Dragon – Teresa Wentzler
  • Millennium – Teresa Wentzler
  • Magical Night – Teresa Wentzler
  • Floral Bellpull – Teresa Wentzler
  • Noah’s Ark – Teresa Wentzler
  • Egyptian Sampler – Teresa Wentzler
  • Castle (Black Fabric) – Teresa Wentzler
  • Fantasy Tryptych – Teresa Wentzler
  • Birdhouse Bellpull – Teresa Wentzler (adopted from Sandy)
  • Alpha-Bits Sampler – Wild Heart Designs (New Year’s Start 2018)
  • Astrology Sampler – Witches Stitches

Some WIPs that have become UFOs due to weirdness

  • Hugs and Kisses – Blue Ribbon Designs (entire project has gone missing)
  • Shakespeare’s Fairies – Mirabilia (entire project has gone missing)
  • Nantucket Sampler – Medeiros Needlework (chart has gone wandering)
  • Legends of the Dragons – Teresa Wentzler/Dragon Dreams/Black Swan (entire project has gone missing)

I have a lot of work ahead of me.  Especially on that Wentzler pile.  I admit… I have a wee bit of a Wentzler problem!

So of course, the first step is pulling out a few of these for an initial rotation.  I’ve decided to go back to basics.  10 hours per project, and then rotate.  I have a rough name for each slot in my rotation, just to keep in mind that I need a variety of projects in here.  One thing I’ve always done with my rotation is hold one slot open for backstitching.  Always, always, always.  It guarantees I get some of the never-ending backstitching done, and really focus on it.  10 hours of backstitching can work wonders on a piece.

Here’s my first rotation for the year.  This should get me until the Stitching Olympics next month.  It includes a piece that’s nearly done (the ornament), and my Wentzler that’s closest to being done (Floral Bellpull).

Rotation #1 2018

  1. (general stitching) Alpha Bits Sampler – Wild Hearts Designs – currently working
  2. (backstitching slot) Floral Bellpull – Teresa Wentzler
  3. (smaller projects) Red Ornament – Rebecca Dorrie
  4. (Wentzler general) Noah’s Ark – Teresa Wentzler
  5. (general stitching) Deep Blue Sea – Chatelaine
  6. (general stitching) Muse of the Midnight Sun – HAED

Aside from Stitch from Stash on Facebook, I have not joined any formal stitch-a-longs (SALs) this year beyond the WIPocalypse.  I don’t want to stretch myself too far to get away from what I want to do.  If it’s a SAL that happens to fit with what I’m doing, such as the International Hermit and Stitch Weekend, then great… I’ll do it.  But the goal this year is to just stitch, make progress, and hopefully leave 2018 with a list that’s a bit smaller.

 

*crosses fingers*

 

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December 2017 WIPocalypse Check-in!

WIPocalypse ButtonHi everyone,

This year went waaaaaaay too fast!  The final day of the year always is a little weird to me.  Since I’m in US Eastern time, it’s always a little odd to me how I will see comments and posts from friends in overseas lands all day that are in an entirely different year.  A day is just a day, of course… but the turning of the year just seems to have a little weirdness about it to me.

In any case, I wish you and your loved ones a safe and Happy New Year!  I hope that your celebrations tonight are good ones, no matter how quiet or how boisterous they are.

I will be spending it quietly at home.  It’s obnoxiously cold outside, and I’m dealing with a cranky case of bronchitis… so I’m just going to cool it.  I’m hoping I can just do some stitching, have some tea, and watch whatever festivities are on the TV tonight.  I need to get a good sense of what I’m going to do for a first rotation, too… so today I’m going to do some scribbling and figure out something that works.  I’m doing a WIP-only 2018 (and cutting myself off from purchases) until I get this pile whittled down!  With the losses and stress of the last couple of years, I did a bit too much binge shopping.  That needs to be nipped.  WIPocalypse all year is probably the best thing for me.

Since it’s a little different than in years past… we will have an off-schedule post on January 7th (next weekend) for you to introduce your projects for next year.  If you’re combining that into your post this week, feel free to just double-link it here and next weekend.  🙂  Postings will go back to the normal schedule at the end of January.  You’ll find a link to dates and additional info in the SAL announcements below.

I will stop here… time to seek out a cup of tea to start the morning.  Happy Stitching to all of you!

 

 

Melissa

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Important SAL Announcements…

Question of the Month – Recap your accomplishments for the year!  (Your finishes, your final before/after photos, etc.)

Next posting date: January 7, 2018

Topic for next time: Introduce yourself, your projects, and any goals you have for the year!

**2018 Dates and Topics are now posted!  Go here for all details!**

*~~~~*~~~~~~*

Please remember that this stitch-a-long is intended to be fun – so if you’re too busy to post, too busy/ill/etc. to stitch – no worries. Post when you can and share what you have going, even if you’ve only been able to toss a single stitch into it. If you miss a few months, not a problem – just jump back in when you’re back with us! It’s not a race or a competition – we’re all just here to cheer each other on with our progress.

Due to different browsing software, some bloggers have found it difficult to check-in with their posts. There are three different ways to check in:

    • Via Auto-link
    • Via comments (make sure you include your blog address!)
    • Via email – to measiwitch(at)gmail.com, only if the other two options are not working. Again- make sure you include your blog address! I’ll add it to the auto-link myself when I have a free moment.


Facebook Comments