Thursday, October 24, 2013

Some New Blog Opportunities for YOU....

I am currently hosting a couple of new blogs:
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
both Diane's new "Calendar Girls" series and Nikki's new "Frosty Forest" series have sign-ups going on for Stitch~A~Longs that will begin in December for each respective series.
 
Also, presently at Country Cottage Needleworks Showcase, there is an ornament finishing contest that any CCN Showcase member can participate in - details at the blog.
 
and....
at Little House Needleworks Showcase, there is sign-ups available for members for an ornament exchange for the upcoming holidays - details at the blog.
 
At the CCN Showcase blog we will be having our first "WIP-it Weekend" on November 1, 2, 3...go check out the details!
 
and...
At the LHN Showcase we will have our first "WIP-it Weekend" on November 15, 16, 17...go check out the details there too!
 
Remember...there is room for 100 members to each blog. If you are interested, and would be an active participant to the community there, please... take a look and consider membership!
 
 
 

Sunday, October 13, 2013

New Blog Open for Membership...

~ ~ Dear Friends ~ ~
 
I once was a member of a bulletin board of stitchers that held stitch~a~longs, contests, special stitch nights, some exchanges and just had general good fun stitching and posting about it together. I miss that interaction among like minded people. So....
 
You are cordially invited...
to join me and other members of our stitching community to the
Country Cottage Needleworks Showcase and Stitch~A~Long Place
 
I envision this blog to be one central address where I can host Stitch~A~Longs, contests, stitching nights, exchanges and various other fun activities all focused on one designer: Nikki Leeman of Country Cottage Needleworks
 
If you hop on over to the CCN Showcase and SAL Place, you will see a couple of wonderful opportunities already await those avid stitchers who love stitching Country Cottage Needleworks designs from time to time; or ALL the time :)
 
Information about the blog is located in the tabs at the top of the blog page. I am asking that only, avid, serious stitchers that will be participating members join us. I think it will be fun, fun, fun!
 
Don't you?! Why don't you join me, please?

Monday, October 07, 2013

Halloween...

 
~ ~ Ghoulish Greetings ~ ~
friends and stitching buddies, I hope you are enjoying a fiendishly, fallish, fun day :)
 
This past week...
our A/C went out. Of course it was during a hot and muggy upswing of Indiana weather (never fails). So in order to stay relatively cool, it forced me down in our basement. Our basement is "unfinished" but we have it sort of "homey" with a TV, couch and my sewing/craft space in the large central room. So it wasn't a hardship to be down there in my craft area.
 
Being down there...
I realized my patterns, works in progress, threads etc, needed a general "good" cleaning and organization effort. I had the time since our A/C was out and all I was doing was waiting on calls and visits from our repairman. So I got down to work organizing.
 
Six hours later...
I had gone through three Longaberger Picnic baskets that housed various works in progress that dated back to the 1990's ( for heaven's sake), I sorted and organized all my over-dyes, all my patterns, all my DMC threads, and came to one conclusion - I need to STOP the insanity!
 
So...
I realistically went through each WIP I had. Let's face it, our taste changes. Sometimes the things that we cannot live without one day, is not what we had in mind the next. D├ęcor changes, life changes...everything changes. I had to face facts, there were projects in there that I KNEW I was never going to stitch. 
 
So, I did it...
Yes I did! On some, I cut out the stitching part threw it away and saved the linen, others I cut out the stitching part to make ornaments and saved the linen and some yes...I just plain tossed. GASP! It was hard at the time, but to be honest, it was freeing and brought some measure of relief! I posted about this on Facebook and hit a real nerve with some of my stitching friends. I wonder what response I'll get now, from the general stitching public? No matter if you agree or disagree, it was a good thing for me. I'm sort of a cut and dry or black and white individual. It renews me to renew my life. Others aren't like that, and its OK ~ that's what makes the world go 'round.
 
I also became aware...
that there was no way on this green earth that I would ever be able to stitch everything I had in my stash in my lifetime. I also found out that I need to finish a project one at a time. If I get too many going at once, you might as well forget it, as there is always someone prettier waiting on the corner in a shop or store front. Ha ha! :)
 
Am I on the stash wagon...
oh, lets be real! No, but I am going to be more selective, more discerning on my choices. I mean, this is my only hobby, I do finish a lot of things that I start. I don't smoke, I don't drink, I don't buy a lot of clothing, we don't eat out a lot, I'm not a Starbuck fanatic, I'm not a huge jewelry nut or have collections of any other kind. So everyone is deserving of a guilty pleasure, right?! And, stitching/creating is mine ~ no harm, no foul. It's all good!
 
But a bit more...
discerning eyes, I'm going to have to have. As it is almost gluttony or hoarding levels that I have reached with my cross stitch stash :)
 
To make myself feel better...
because I did get a little depressed going through everything. (you know thinking I could have taken a 6 month European vacation with the money I had spent on cross stitch patterns and accoutrements!!)
:)
I pulled out a very old WIP that I had started in 2008. This was an all-inclusive kit that had been gifted to me from a blogging friend ~ Julie A. Sadly she no longer blogs, but I do keep in contact with her via Facebook and Pinterest.
 
May I present:
 
2008 Halloween Shop Hop Special Kit
Designed by: The Sunflower Seed
Stitched with DMC on 28 ct. Desert Sand Linen from Wichelt
(I really liked the feel and color of this linen!)
 
Halloween
 
The kit came with the orange ball fringe and I think you were supposed to make an ornament out of it, as it also came with a backing piece of orange swirly material and a length of orange ribbon. But I have another door in my house that was hollering for a little fall decoration, and I made another wall/door hanger.
 
Halloween 2
 
It turned out pretty cute and just perfect for the door I have it hanging on! Don't you just love those JABCO buttons? They really did jazz up the design and make it all sweet and interesting!
The patterned material is by Debbie Mumm and I found it a couple of years ago at Joann's. I loved it then and it was perfect for this finish!
 
All that organizing...
had me of course thinking about keeping things together and filed and perfect. So I made some of these Project Envelopes. I had seen a project sheet about a nook book cover at my Sewing Machine Store. And as I was organizing my craft room I kept thinking about it. When I got done I pulled out an old paper grocery sack. Drew a pattern, cut it out and there you go: homemade pattern! Before I knew it, I had made five and they work perfectly!
 
Here they are:
 
Project Envelopes
 
I can see more of these in my future! They are about 14 inches wide and about 12 inches tall. They have a Velcro closure and hold your pattern, fabric and threads...everything that is essential to your project and then store neatly away in your project bag/basket/box. Perfect! I have made a list of things I cannot live without stitching (all from my stash!) and they are all kitted up in my new envelopes and ready to go!
 
Well...
I have certainly been on a roll of late! If I didn't know any better I would think I'm about ready to give birth...ha ha! You know that last rush right before you go into labor? Well it seems I've had about 20 of those in the past month! Ha ha! :)  Now it is back to model stitching. Hopefully I won't be gone too long and come back with something to show you real soon!
 
Until next time...
I'll be keeping my hands to work and heart to God just like always! Join me!
 
Love in stitches,
 
Vonna  xxx

Wednesday, October 02, 2013

Stirring my cauldron...

~ ~ Fall Greetings ~ ~
to one and all on this fine day!

I've been busy again...
and came to share with you, my friends and fellow needleworkers. A couple of weeks ago, I was going through my blog list and went to visit Notforgotten Farm  and it's proprietress, Miss Lori,  to see what goodness she had been up to. I was pleasantly surprised to find that she had so generously prepared a "Happy Halloween" freebie for all of us! I got to reading and lo and behold that was not all she had prepared for us!

No...
in fact, she was challenging us to a finishing contest. Stitch the freebie design she provided and send a picture of your finish to be entered into a contest for a $50.00 gift certificate to her Etsy store!

Well...
I can never pass up a good challenge, so I started thinking right away, how would I stitch it, but ultimately how did I want to finish it?

So...
one sleepless night thinking and dreaming about finishes.

and many stitches later....I came up with a viable idea!

May I present...

"Happy Halloween"

freebie design by: Notforgotten Farm ~ Lori Brechlin
you may find the design: HERE
I stitched my design on: 40 ct. Sugared Coffee linen by Sassy's Fabbys
using Crescent Colours: Blackbird and Colonial Copper
 
 
Notforgotten Farm Halloween Freebie 1

and...
my sleepless night thinking about a finish turned in to this:


Notforgotten Farm Freebie 4

I stitched my design in two colors because...
I love bittersweet and the little vine around the two sides reminded me of bittersweet...and who can resist a big, round, orange jack? Not me!
Mounted on a sweet little paper mache witches' hat that I spray painted and dolled up with a black feather boa for a hat-band and a big orange bow and...


Notforgotten Farm Hallowen Freebie

A teeny tiny witches broom...
 that I made myself using things I found in our yard:
a slightly curved twig from our big old Oak tree and some Pompass grass fronds. The fronds, I hot glued and bound with black thread, then trimmed up the bottoms, to look like an old cornstalk broom. I can just imagine an old hag would use this to fly around on All Hallow's Eve Night!


And just a bit...
of that bittersweet I love, to jazz up the brim of the hat!

Then I propped it up...
right against our hearth by my Prairie Schooler "When Witches Go Riding"....

Notforgotten Farm Halloween Freebie 2

And...
me thinks that's a pretty effective display!

I hope you like it too...
and that it will get your finishing wheels grinding to join in the fun over at the Farm!

Until next time...
I'll be scaring up more trouble! While I keep my hands to work and my heart to God, just like always!

Love in stitches,
Vonna xxx