Monday, March 25, 2013

One down, three to go...

    I know it seems like it took forever (to me too) to get it finished but I FINALLY got my 'end of the month' birthday piece finished yesterday!!!  It took me a whole week to put in the last band but I was really excited to put in those last stitches. I can't show a picture of it yet but I will be happy to expound on its journey after my friend receives it.
   Now, its on to the charity stitching.  I have been stitching off and on for a number of years now with a group of  ladies on Yahoo.  The site can be found here: American Soldier Memorial project.  The goal is to stitch a memorial sampler for the families of every service member who gave their lives in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan since those wars began. It is a daunting task since there have been so many and I sometimes find it overwhelming. But then my husband reminds me of what a noble cause he thinks it is and I buck up and get back to work. .
   There is no 'official' memorial sampler so we choose things we feel would be appropriate and try to turn them into something the families would feel honors their loved one. I have a couple I like to use. The first is this one:

The flag is from a Liz Navikas design and the verse is taken from a Glendon Place design that actually is a memorial sampler that I've stitched before. Below the verse, the info on the soldier is stitched.
    The other sampler I really like a lot is one by the Cricket Collection which is also a memorial sampler. It is called Red, White and Blue and I find the verse to be very appropriate.

click here to view larger image of Red, White & Blue (chart)

I currently have 2 names and once I have the names I like to get them out a quickly as possible. Lucky for me I have 2 almost ready to go.  One is finished except for the personalization and the other needs just a little more work than that. I hope to have them framed and shipped to the families by the middle of next month.
  The other piece of charity stitching I need to get done is a Habitat for Humanity sampler.  Our EGA chapter stitches these for the group working here in Williamsburg.  Our Outreach chair was just informed that there will be a 'building blast' soon and they are aiming for 12 houses! That, of course, means that we need to have 12 samplers ready.  I am not a huge fan of the design and I resisted stitching one for a long time but since it is such a worthy cause, I do make one or two for them periodically.  We all need to do our part, right?
  Well, I'm off to work.  The sooner I get these finished, the sooner I can get back to my regular rotation.  Frances and Ann are feeling very neglected!!!

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Digging Deep into the Past

 Lord help me,  I am still working on the birthday piece I am trying to finish by the end of the month.  I am starting to get a little bit panicky about it since I still have quite a bit to do and the time is getting shorter and shorter. I can not, of course post a picture of my progress on this piece but I thought I might show you what I have stitched for her in the past instead.
  I first meet Tommye in the early '90s  when I moved to the Atlanta area and she was my local shop owner. We got to know each other during our weekly stitch group meetings which were held in her shop.  There was a group of about 8 of us that came to stitch together consistently and I believe it was Tommye's BIG birthday of that time that got us stitching for each others' birthdays.  Over the years, some of us have moved away and others have moved on to other things but a few of us still stitch for each other for our birthdays each year.
  I am an organization freak and list maker from way back.  I make a list at the end of each year of the stitching goals I want to achieve for the coming year.  It is always so much fun to sit with my list and go through my stash making plans for my friends' upcoming birthdays.  Tommye and I tend to have the same taste in stitching projects so I find her very easy to stitch for and I tend to choose something with a bit more than cross-stitch in it since we both like that so much.

  As you know, I started this blog in part to keep track of my stitching since I have been terrible about photographing my pieces for posterity.  I was only able to find a few things on my computer, and a couple of these pictures where taken by her and sent to me later since I didn't take a picture myself,  but this will give you an idea of the kinds of things we stitch for each other.

Darlene O' Steen/Needle's Prayse
don't remember the name
This is the one I use for my profile picture.
Eileen Bennett/Sampler house
Bands of Pearl
Stitched for 2012

Diane Jourdan/Sampler Cove
Sampler 101

I wasn't sure about the colors on this one but she says she loves it!
  Well, that's about all for now.  I really need to get back to work on this year's sampler.  Hopefully, I will have it finished by the end of next week so I can a) get it to her on time,  b) be able to post a picture of it, and c) have something else to post about so you don't get bored and quit visiting me!! 
  Hope to see you back here soon,  Laura

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Working my fingers to the bone

  I've been stitching like a crazy fool but mostly on the piece that no one can see until the end of the month!! I am loving it and am going to have a hard time giving it up but I think the recipient will be pleased with it.  It's a lot of work but will be well worth it in the end!
  I took a break from the mystery piece for a couple of days and worked for a while on Frances Pool.  I had stitch group at my house on Wednesday and was shocked and amazed at how little I got accomplished stitching-wise during that period.  We start at 10 am and continued until 3 pm and I only got the tail of the bird in! (Of course the fact that we had someone visiting so we had to take the sampler tour of the whole house. And that we also had to have show and tell with all of my WIPs of which there are a mighty many didn't help with the whole time thing!!)  So I continued to work on it for the next couple of days and managed to make some progress.  Here is where I am now...

I have fiddled with the colors a little more to suit my fancy but I am just to the point now that repro or not, I have the like the darned thing when its done!!
   I also got Ann Grimshaw back from the framers this week.  I love it, the framer loves it, my stitch group ladies love it, I think we have a consensus.  We all love it!!!  We all agree it is the wide black frame with the dental molding that really makes it pop. And everyone agrees she needs to be showcased somewhere that I will be able to see her ALL THE TIME, especially while I stitch.

I haven't decided where to hang it yet so right now it is propped up against the wall on the table in the corner of my dining room.
  I actually have several pieces that are framed and need to be hung but since I totally stink at arranging the pictures on the wall, I usually wait a really long time to get it done and then just have my friends help me do it.   Tommye is supposed to be coming to visit in June and I may just wait for her to help me.   I put her to work at this task last time she visited and she did a really good job.
  Well I better get back to work if I want to get that piece finished on time!  Laura