Saturday, February 27, 2010

sunrise stitching

Where did this week go? Somehow it zipped by but I haven't got much to show for it. I have been stitching up this old friend this week in the wee early hours. Have you all been noticing that sunrise peeking through a little earlier these days? love it!

Presently, I have in my possession both One Yard Wonders and I Love Patchwork. Between those two gems and the fantastic series of sewing projects for boys over on Made and Made by Rae I am itching to sew. I haven't had my machine out since early December and there are so very many things I would love to make. I don't even know where to begin - there are so many projects to try. I suppose I just need to pick one and go for it or nothing will get done at all. Do you all ever feel that way - like you just need a 'kickstart' project to get you started going again?

If I manage to get that machine humming again this week I'll be sure to share my successes or failures - whatever they turn out to be!

Monday, February 22, 2010

a free pattern just for you

My little Irish lass has finally made it to So September. When you see those little french knot shamrocks then I'm sure you will understand why I was compelled to stitch up a sample first before I just let her loose in the world - so much fun! Now it's your turn - find the free .pdf pattern right here! I had a ball with this one, I must admit. I kept the sample pretty basic - back stitches and french knots only. But I would love to do some fill stitches here and there too- her shoes, maybe her hair and that skirt would be fun too!
Even though this does have a St. Patrick's Day theme I think those shamrocks could be turned into flowers pretty easily to make it more of a Spring themed piece, don't you think? Just take out the stem, add another knot or two to them (right now they have three knots each) and stitch them up in pink or yellow and she could be sprinkling Springtime instead of luck.

Oh, one other note on this pattern. In the pattern itself I drew her with freckles but I just could not for the life of me get them to look right when I stitched them. My guess is that at this size (she is in a 6 inch hoop) it is more difficult than if she was stitched slightly larger. When I did it, it was hard to differentiate her eye from the freckles but in a larger size maybe different stitches could be used to make that distinction. Or maybe I just should have used other floss colors - I'm not sure. If anyone is able to solve this dilemma please share your secret!
Thanks everyone - happy stitching!

Friday, February 19, 2010

swap share 3 and a few survival tips

Back again with another swap stitchery. This one is for Aneela/Comfortstitching. Her theme was girls playing. I don't know exactly how I came up with this design. I guess I wanted to have some sort of critter in it and this is where I went from there. Hopfully it will fit in with the other designs okay and hopefully it's not too weird (a birthday party for a squirrel in the middle of the woods? is that too 'out there'?).

I decided I just have to stitch my St. Patrick's Day pattern so it's not ready just yet. I will shoot for this weekend though - promise!

Finally, I know everyone in colder climates is so tired of Winter and desperate for Spring to arrive so I am sharing some diversions to help make the last few stubborn weeks pass a little faster. I hope you will share some too!

1. We are having a 'last snow prediction' contest at our house. Everyone picks a date that they think will be closest to the very last snowfall of the season (I went with March 7th - wish me luck!). The person who is closest will be rewarded with a dessert of their choosing - ANY dessert. yum!

2. Buy or sew something for your Spring wardrobe. I bought shorts the other day!

3. Create a new Pandora station with your favorite warm weather songs. I have a station I have titled "Springtime in Cuba". It's chock full of fun old Latin flavored goodies. One can't help but be cheered by it.

4. Take a field trip to the local garden center. Smell the dirt. pick out seeds.

5. Cook up your very favorite Winter foods but vow that it will be the last time you make them this season! I just made this the other night, which I absolutely love, but I also love the idea that I won't have it again until October.


What are your ideas?

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

swap sharing 2

Okay, back to business after my diversion this past weekend (which proved to be quite entertaining by the way). Anyway. I JUST finished up this swap embroidery for fellow swapper, Rita. She chose a woodland theme which has so much fun potential. I have fallen pretty hard for Cathy Gaubert's patterns though and decided to stitch this one up for the swap.
The pattern also contains a lovely verse at the bottom but I left it out just because I didn't think there would be text included in the other woodland pieces. I hope Rita likes it, it was certainly a joy to stitch.
I should be finishing up another swap piece this week so I will have that to share as well.
I also have a FREE PATTERN in the works - yea! I don't know if I will have time to stitch up a sample - would that be okay? I hate to do that but the pattern has a St. Patrick's Day theme so, the sooner the better, right? If I wait until I have a chance to stitch it up it might be March 18th before it makes it's way here!

Sunday, February 14, 2010

celebrity crushes - revealed!

Happy Valentine's Day everybody! As promised, in honor of this holiday (a holiday that I admit, I have mixed feelings about - most of which are lukewarm at best) I am revealing my secret celebrity crushes. I'm going to start off right from the top by saying that I, of course, have no need to look farther than my very own home to find a devilishly handsome man. I was, in fact, lucky enough to meet and marry someone who is smart, funny, very manly and just a tiny bit crazy which is actually just how I like 'em.

That's why you won't be surprised when I say my first celebrity crush is on Joaquin Phoenix...
I'll watch anything he is in and I certainly won't let a little drug problem stop me from swooning. By the way, where is Joaquin these days anyway??
Crush number 2: Ray Lamontagne

This man can write a love song, let me tell ya. Once in a conversation with my sister about Ray I actually started blushing and giggling. It's bad folks, bad. The infatuation has been curbed somewhat by Ray's decision to allow one of his songs to be the soundtrack for an insurance commercial. Why Ray, why??? What a shame.
So there, my secret is out. So, like, you have to pinky swear to not tell them I like like them, okay?

Saturday, February 13, 2010

willing spring to arrive

Look everyone - it's Spring! No really, it's just a new embroidery pattern. I'm calling it "April Showers" as in "I'd like you to meet my friend, April Showers". Hey, I thought it was cute.
Anyway, here is how she came about. I was sketching ideas for one of my fellow swappers and came up with the basics of this one. Then I found out that another swap member was doing a similar design (great minds think alike you know) so I decided to go with something else (I'll be sharing that soon too). But little April kept shouting at me from the abandoned sketch pile saying "stitch me! stitch me!" She just would not be ignored. So, here she is.
Psst! Check out Aneela's great tutorial for those fill stitches!
My favorite part is that rainbow trim at the bottom of her dress but if I had to do it over again I might have chosen some different fabrics. Oh well, she may just get stitched a second time by me just for fun.
Tune in tomorrow as I will be revealing my celebrity crushes for Valentine's Day - anyone else want to play along??

Monday, February 8, 2010

i 'heart' this idea!

Are these fun or what? Did you all catch the tutorial for this over here? I thought these were so cute and even though I swear I didn't push the idea on Peter, he was pretty excited about it when I showed it to him. Something about all that gooey melty colored wax appealed to him I'm sure. It was super easy to do and I think they will be a big hit.

I also joined the creative bunch over at Magpie Patterns this week so do stop over and see some of the wonderful patterns available there. There is something for everyone - embroidery, sewing, knitting, and crochet. It's hard to not be inspired when you are there!

Friday, February 5, 2010

learning my colors and numbers

Sometimes when I am trying to figure out a color scheme for a project the easiest thing for me to so is to just start setting up these blocks of colors and see how the possibilities speak to me. This one yelled, "SPRING!" and my eyeballs are loving it! I swear it's coming people, (spring, that is) it always does so do not lose heart!

And this one I like though that lilac is a little outside of my normal range. My normal range usually includes about 5 colors tops though so it's good for me to experiment a little now and then. We'll see how bold I get.

And now to the numbers.

I just have to say in a non-crafting related moment that I am LOVING age 6! I have never parented anyone older than six but already I feel like this might be the best age ever. Parents of older kids please let me know if I'm correct here. Peter is so interested in so many things and just plain excited about life. He still adores his parents and teachers but is slowly branching out on his own as well. It is a joy to watch. Maybe I think these things because Peter has never been an 'easy' kid so in some ways it seems like we are finally getting the break we have been waiting for. But the reason doesn't really matter - it's just plain awesome. My next question is how can we keep him this age forever?

And sweet little Adam - heading toward age 2 and a half. What a weird age. I mean, it hardly gets any cuter than 2 1/2, right? This dear boy has better manners than anyone else in our house and when we are outside of our house - holy smokes - he draws people in like a magnet. (even I am shocked at this phenomenon and I am his mother). Oh but the trouble. *sigh*. This child can find it. I just installed our fourth, yes fourth refrigerator lock this week. Somehow the first three didn't stand up to Adam's determination. A few days ago when it got suspiciously quiet we found him in the basement! (our unfinished scary basement where power tools and paint thinner live). You see, he had figured out the child-proof doorknob. So, as for this age, I love it of course, but let's face it, it's no 6.

Back to crafting! Have a wonderful weekend everybody!