Tag Archives: cross stitch

Day 17 at home

Today is day 17 and I’m finding it difficult to stick with a schedule. I normally work from home so that’s not my problem. My kids are home all the time but they are older and do not require as much from me as they would if they were younger.  Last week I was supposed to be on vacation. But with everything going on with the stock market I worked for most of it.  I was able to get off early in the day and do various things but not nearly as much as I wanted to.  I’m okay with it. But life will be more hectic next week as we finish up one quarter and start another. So I need to figure out how I want things to be.

In the meantime, here’s what I’ve been working on:

Knitting – I’m still knitting on my morning socks and almost daily I’m able to knit a couple of rows on Ricky’s Weasley Sweater. But those pictures are no fun. Just a little bit longer and bigger than the last picture. I will try to take pics this week since the month is ending and I want to take end of Month pictures. My real knitting love is this hat:

Harriet’s Hat
3/29/2020

I ran out of the white yarn and luckily I have a friend who’s knitting the same hat with me. As soon as she is done, she will be dropping off (social distancing being kept) her leftover white.  In the meantime, I just love looking at it. I am still working on my mix wave cowl, water lily top, etc. Basically I’m doing my daily and weekly knitting. Mostly.

For cross stitch, since I finished Mama’s Bukid I started working on Titania by Mirabilia. I started this a long time ago – 2018 – and only did a bit on it. I hated working on it. Really hated it. I had never worked on linen before. Before this, I didn’t realize that there were different fabrics and every Flosstube I watched was talking about how great linen was. So I kitted this project up with linen and did not like it. I couldn’t see the holes and they were uneven. It was awful and sat in a box for 2 years. Every once in awhile early on I would take it out and try for a bit but it’s been in complete timeout this last year. This time I started working on it again and while I can’t say I love working on it, I am better at it and it is now doable.  I am loving what I’m seeing and it was my focus xstitch project for this week:

Titania
Mirabilia
3/29/2020

Here’s what it will grow up to be:

 

I finally finished this dress:

LAFS: Megan Dress

I’m not totally in love with it but it makes a great house dress. This is my second real dress but the first time with set in sleeve, gathers, my first time with darts, and a bunch of other things, I am really happy with how it turned out and how I can wear it. I plan to make skirts and other dresses one of these days.

On the quilting front: It’s harder to take pictures. I finished putting together this inner top –

2012 Southern CA
Quilt Run
Area One
Mystery quilt

I know the picture is not the finished top. It was harder to take a picture it because it is just too big.

2012 Southern CA
Quilt Run
Area One
Mystery quilt
3/29/2020

Here it is on my bed. I plan to do a small border – maybe about 5 inches all around.  I am loving it but put it away for now.

Here are some other things I’ve been working on here and there…

I bound a few mats that I had practiced quilting on the Q20. Here’s a table runner. I picked up the top at one of our guild’s treasure hunts for, quilted and bound it. Now it’s gracing my table.

More practice on the Q20

Fun stuff.

Hope you are doing well during this time. I’m up and down and tend to stay offline when I’m not doing so well.  I also try to remember that things are not so bad, people experience and survive much worse than being stuck at home with all the crafts, and I try to be very grateful for what I have and where I am.  It’s still hard and there are a lot of sad things going on. Stay strong, friends.

Love always,

Melanie

I’m alive and healthy

Just wanted to drop by and let you know, I’m okay and my family is okay.  I’m not part of a high risk category but my family and I are self-quarantining because we can. I work from home mostly and the 2-day a week job I was commuting to before was moved to virtual support which is what I do normally.  Today is day 11 for me and it’s helpful to take the dog on walks and say hello to the sun every day.  For awhile, it was raining and every time it stopped I would rush outside to breathe fresh air and take the dog out.  It’s no fun taking her out when it is raining.  I can say yesterday was a difficult day. It was my son’s 15th birthday and he was happy to stay in his room and play on his computer. The rest of us got on each other’s nerves. I isolated myself from the rest of the family in my office/craft room to avoid tensions rising higher.  Today is a much better day.

Since last I posted, I got this done!

Mama’s Bukid – Farmland 2
It’s finish!
3/22/2020

 

Hope you are staying safe and keeping your sanity!

Always,

Melanie

 

 

Cross Stitch: A Stitch in Time, an update

Last time I posted a picture here, was when I listed my 2020 Cross Stitch Goals.  Here is a picture from the beginning of the year.

This project is part of my rotation.  I switch projects every Sunday in this order: Mama’s Bukid, Gamer, Mama’s Bukid, A Stitch in Time.  Yes, I do Mama’s Bukid every other week because it’s my priority project and I want it done soon.  It’s also my longest xstitch project and I’m really sick of it.  So, the sooner I’m done with it, the sooner I can frame it and give it to my mother.  Anyway, I stitch a little bit every week night.  Lately, my week nights have been full of things that take up my time and I haven’t been able to spend as much time as I want so I do an hour or so here and there over the weekend.  Here’s where I finished at yesterday:

A Stitch in Time
2/23/2020

Because there is so much confetti, I’m only able to do about 55 stitches an hour.  It sounds like I’m a really slow stitcher but with color changes for every single box, there’s no way to do it but slow and steady.  It was difficult to do anything on this this week as I was overwhelmed with the complexity and how slow I am  at it.  But I persevered and was able to get 400 stitches done this week.  My goal was to do 1200 but it’s just not possible given the amount of time I’m able to devote to this project.  Some may say I have too many projects and that I should probably work on one project at a time but that’s just ridiculous!

Happy Stitching!

~Melanie

Cross Stitch: Mama’s Bukid, an update

Mama’s Bukid
2/15/2020

Here is where I’m at with Mama’s Bukid.  When I finish this set of columns, I will be finished with this project.  I’m so excited I can hardly stand it.  But I’m putting it away.  I can almost taste the finish that’s how close I am. I’ve been working on this project for a week and it’s not my favorite project. If I force myself to keep working on it, I will not pick it up at all.  I know myself.  So, I will work on “A Stitch in Time” this week and next week… I will stitch a bit more on this project and maybe, I’ll have a finish.  There’s a lot of full coverage as I get to the bottom of these columns and as a result, I’m not certain I’ll be able to finish in a week.  It may take another 2 weeks of stitching.  Either way, I’m okay with taking a break on this and moving onto one of my favorite stitchy projects.

 

How I cross stitch

I received a comment the other day in regards to my cross stitch post.  Her questions and comments prompted me to do a full post on how I cross stitch.  Hopefully this helps you.

Starting a new cross stitch project:  I learned to cross stitch by starting in the middle and working my way out.  When I finish each color, I would cut and bury each floss before starting a new one.  This works fine with small projects that are not full coverage pieces.  With larger pieces, I tend to start on the upper left.  I have to check the measurements multiple times to make sure the project will fit (especially if I didn’t buy a kit) and start in a good place with about 3″ from the edge of the fabric (assuming I have that much available).

For projects that are not full coverage, like Mama’s Bukid, I generally bury each floss when I’m done.  But as you can see in my picture, that is not always the case.

Mama’s Bukid
12/24/2019

When I get to a spot that has a bunch of changing colors, I like to do a stitch at a time because my floss lays better on the fabric.  When I do all of color A, and then color B, there may be stitches of color B that fall within the color A section and my floss will not lay nicely.  And it distorts some of the already stitched sections that it comes in contact with.  So, it just looks nicer to me when I do it this way.  So I may pull a floss through and “park” it in the next spot I have to stitch for that color and not actually stitch it until I get to that spot. This part mimics what I do for full coverage.

I am loving working on my full coverage pieces at the moment.

 

I’ve tried various methods.  Where there is a lot of floss, I was doing something called the “waste knot” method.  This is where I knot my floss and pull it down from front to back away from where I want to actually stitch my first stitch. At my first stitch, I pull it through back to front at the bottom left hole and do the stitch.  As I stitch, the floss in the back gets covered and when I get to the part where the knot is, I can clip it off because the floss is secured in the back by the stitches.  When I finished with a floss, I pulled it to the right and brought the needle from back to front.  Again, as I stitch those little boxes, it covers the floss and when I get to the floss that I finished I clip it.

Some of the floss above is mixed in with parked floss and I mark my pattern with which ones I’ve parked so I know which I can clip and which I need to stitch.  Anyway, it looks a mess and I couldn’t stand it so I do things a little differently now and as I move down the diagonal the rat’s nest will get cleaned up bit by bit.

I stitch a row at a time for 10 stitches and I stitch on the diagonal to avoid tension lines.  Instead of starting with the waste knot method, I use a modified pin stitch.  Search you tube for pin stitch tutorials and that will show you how to do that.  It makes it so that I do not the mess in the front to clip away later and the floss is secure right from the first stitch.  I am still parking but I do not park more than 20 stitches away.  I do not rely on my counting because the further away I go, the more likely it’s not in the correct spot.  When I finish a floss I still waste it away like I did before. The difference is that I’m not wasting away to the right of my piece, I’m wasting it to the bottom left so that as I’m working the diagonal, those wastes will get clipped away.  That way, the nest is not as much as it was.

There’s a new app called Pattern Keeper that has made full coverage pieces easier to stitch.  I love it.

Another resource is The Needlebugg Channel on YouTube.  Karen has been stitching for many years and has a lot of tips and tricks.  A lot of how I’m stitching now is based on what Karen has talked about on her channel.

I hope this helps and send me more questions if you come up with any.  I hope I was clear and if not, let me know.

Thanks,

Melanie

 

2020 Crafty Plans: Cross Stitch

Last year I didn’t finish any of my cross stitch goals but I made a lot of progress on everything. So I moved my projects over to this year and added new ones.  Because I’m crazy and I am loving my stitching right now.

Mama’s Bukid – Cross Stitch Priority Project #1

Mama’s Bukid
12/24/2019

My goal for December was to finish 2.5 columns and I only got halfway.  So I do not think I’ll be finishing this in February as I had intended.  I am struggling hard with finishing this project.  Part of it was that December had a lot of events and family and friend time.  All of it was wonderful and time well spent but my cross stitch time was hurt.  And I am totally unmotivated with this project.  I have had to force myself to work on this.  It is really hard but it’s so close to finishing that I can’t stop, it’s just taking me longer.

Gamer Nouveau – Cross Stitch Project priority #2

My goal for 2019 was to finish 6 pages but I only got 2.5 pages done.  I will work on this one week a month until Bukid is done and then I can work on this two weeks a month.  I hope that this year I will be able to get 6 pages done. There are a ton of pages and I do want to get this done sooner rather than later. I started using a new app called Pattern Keeper and it has changed my stitchy life.  It has taken a lot of the struggles I’ve had working on full coverage pieces. I’m currently at 20% completed on this project.

And because I like big projects (or BAPs – Big A$$ Projects), the new cross stitch project – priority #3 is a HAED (Heaven And Earth Design) which is a full coverage piece also.  Here’s my current spot:

And here’s what it will grow up to be:

Each of those gridlines marks a page and I’m still only on page 2. I do not have a goal for this year other than working on it each month.

I’m also working on a smaller project: A kiss for Snowman

This is only about 6″ square but I’m not enjoying this project at all. I only work on it when I’m travelling. On my personal retreats I may take this with me to do some stitching.  Hopefully, this will be done soon and I can start a new small project.  I am currently in love with full coverage projects and I’ve got another one started but I rarely work on it.  I do have a lot of projects kitted up and I plan to start another 2 or 3 over the course of this year.  But, the 4 projects shown above are my top priority projects for now.

Happy new year!

Melanie

Mama’s Bukid, A Cross Stitch

This project was started in April of 2016. And at some point, I calculated how long it would take to finish this, it was like 15 years (I’m making up numbers but it was a big number).  And that was ridiculous.  I think a normal non-crafty person would probably just hide it in a bag and toss it.  But I decided to work on it more and after some time, those 15 years were cut in half to 8 years.  Then as I saw progress and started loving on it, I worked on it daily and had monthly, weekly and daily goals to finish. Next thing I know, it’s now become a real possibility to get this project finished this year!  I know…. My 15 year project could be finished this year, 3 years after starting.  On Friday night I finished page 6 which is the bottom page for this section.

1/18/2019
Finished column 13 and 14 of page 2 and 6 which means pages 2 and 6 are finished!

I unrolled the project because it’s a monumental time and it is about 20 inches long!  And, it’s about 60% complete.

1/18/2019
Finished page 6! and I’m 60% done. 

 

So how will I finish the remaining 40% this year? I have so many columns on pages 3/7 and then on pages 4/8 (which are partial pages).  So, I need to complete 2 columns per month in order to finish this project.  That’s really pushing myself and while this has been a focus project in the cross stitch part of my crafty life I haven’t regularly completed 2 columns per month. Sometimes I do it and sometimes I do not do it.  But this year, I’m going to really try hard to get this done. I broke it down to daily stitches of doing 1 box and 2 lines per day.  And when the 2 columns are done, I will move onto Gamer.

Happy Sunday, friends!

xoxo,

Melanie

 

 

 

Cross Stitch, an October update

“Mama’s Bukid” …

Here’s where I was last time:

Here’s where it is now:

10/31/18
Almost finished column 11…

Gamer Nouveau

Here’s what it looked like last time:

Gamer Nouveau
Page 5, Column 2
10/11/18

Gamer Nouveau
Page 5, Column 2
10/11/18

Here’s what it looks like now…

I’m through column 4 of page 5. I am working on column 5 and I’m more than halfway through a page finish.

 

Happy Stitching!

~Melanie

 

 

Cross Stitch, an update – 10/11/2018

“Mama’s Bukid” …

Here’s where I was last time:

Mama’s Bukid
8/31/2018

Here’s where it is now:

 

Gamer Nouveau

Here’s what it looked like last time:

Gamer Nouveau
8/31/2018

Gamer Nouveau
8/31/2018

Here’s what it looks like now…

Gamer Nouveau
Page 5, Column 2
10/11/18

Gamer Nouveau
Page 5, Column 2
10/11/18

Happy Stitching!

~Melanie

 

 

Cross Stitch, an update – August, 2018

Progress… When I look at these close up every day, I can see I’m making progress but it doesn’t feel like much.  But when I step away and look at it from a distance I get excited about what is coming alive under my hands.  Then when I take weekly pics, it’s even more exciting because the progress is very obvious and I’m amazed at how much I got done over a week.  That is even more obvious when I look at the monthly pics.  My last updated pics on this blog for both Mama’s Bukid and Gamer were from July 31.  Here are the pics from the end of August.  They are amazing and beautiful!  I ❤ it so much right now.

“Mama’s Bukid” …

Here’s where I was last time:

Mama’s Bukid
July 31, 2018

Here’s where it is now:

Mama’s Bukid
8/31/2018

 

Gamer Nouveau

Here’s what it looked like last time:

Gamer Nouveau
7/31/2018

Here’s what it looks like now…

Gamer Nouveau
8/31/2018

Gamer Nouveau
8/31/2018

My next goal for September is to finish row 8 and 9 for Mama’s Bukid and to finish pages 3 and 4 for Gamer.

Happy Sunday!

Happy Stitching!

~Melanie