Friday, March 31, 2017


How can it be Friday again?  How can it be the last day of March?  Does time change and just whiz by when you get older?  Evidently.

I finished up some stuff yesterday.  I put the top on By the Sea Mermaid Berry.

 I decided that since there is a sand dollar embroidered on the top, I'm not putting on a twisted cord.  It calls for special pins, maybe if I see them at Stitchville next week, I'll get them.

Then I finished up the little bunny.

He is very cute.  He seemed twice this size when I was stitching him.  But I love that he is little.  I had to alter the base a bit to fit, it was too big.

 I also cheated.  I used my sewing machine to sew him together.  That ear was a bear to turn inside out.

I went looking for Blackbird Designs in my curios and didn't find any.  I swear I've have stitched some.  Maybe they are in the unfinished drawer.  It will be fun to see what people bring to Spring Fling next week.  I should make my list for Stitchville!

Thursday, March 30, 2017

Chimney Beads

I put the closure on the top of Home Sweet Home.

Yes, I'm still plugging away on it.  The beads are supposed to look like chimneys.  Don't look too closely as the hedebo stitches are pretty bad.

 I was limited in the length of the left over roof thread (that's my excuse and I'm sticking to it!).
These are the boards that are left to attach.

Now I can turn my attention to the tray.  I stitched the outside of the tray together.  I had to use pliers.

I think it looks okay.  I also had to adjust the size just a bit to fit a little easier inside the box.

I put (glued) some of the lining in after I adjusted the size.  What's left to do is the tray dividing boards.

I'm not following directions and sort of making it up as I go along.  I have found that Elmer's glue works really well.

I have the smalls to do but I'm not in the mood to do them yet.
Luckily I got a photo of the crocuses open before the rain started.

It is supposed to rain all day.  I had to walk at the Y.  One week from today I will be in Minneapolis! And Stitchville!

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

A New Start

I rewarded myself for all my hard work on Home Sweet Home and the Wren with a new start.  I got this in the mail not too long ago.

I dug through my basket of fabrics and found some linen that would do and was the right count, 32.  This is easy stitching.

It's a bunny.
I think it will be fun to turn it into a stuffed bunny.

I love watching Cathy's Blog (With Needle and Thread) as she counts down to Spring Fling.  I wonder if I have any Blackbird Designs done.  I know I have made some of the monthly stockings (I think they are in with the Christmas ornaments) but I''ll have to go looking and see if I can find anything else.  I went to Dyeing to Stitch's retreat a few years ago when Barb and Alma were there.  I didn't have a class with them but they gave a very enjoyable talk and had some great ideas.  We don't know what the project will be yet.  Next week!!

Tuesday, March 28, 2017


It was a lovely day for walking outside.  The crocuses are starting to bloom.  Maybe it really is spring.

I had a question about what color I used for the skin of the mermaid.  Originally I used DMC 950 and it was too pale.  So I changed it to DMC 758.  I worked it on French Lace linen instead of the polka-dot.  I think the chart actually called for Weeks Pumpkin Patch which is a bit orangey.  But in the end it all worked out.

I have been working on the Wren.  I was really afraid of the needle lace.  I was worried that I couldn't make it look nice and neat.  It isn't perfect and I contemplated trying it again just to see if I could do it better that second time around.  I'm never good at doing a new stitch perfectly right off the bat.  I need some experience under my belt to get it right.  But so far it looks okay.

 This is going to be the back of the bird. The hole in the middle is where the thimble holder will go.  I remember worrying when I was working on The Owl and the Pussycat.  Each little part was challenging and I knew each part was not perfect.  But in the end it didn't matter.  Parts were covered up with other parts and hardly showed,  Each part was not the focus, it was just a tiny piece of the whole thing.  So I'm trying not to worry about it.  When I finish the needle lace, I'll re-evaluate whether to try again.  I'm learning some new stitches, that's for sure.

Monday, March 27, 2017

Mermaid Berry

I got the Erica Michaels Mermaid Berry mostly all done.  I stitched it all then went back and changed the color of the mermaid's skin.  It was too light against the linen.

  The assembly was easy, you just cut it out adding 1/2 an inch for seam allowance around the berry pattern and then sew it together.  I gathered up the top.

 I kind of wish I'd made it tighter, but it will do.  All that is left is to put the top on.  I cut out a circle of blue felt and a smaller circle of cream ultrsuede that goes on top but I still have to sew them on.

 I think it turned out cute.  I wonder if I should put a twisted cord on the very top?  I don't see one on the model.

I was able to walk outside today.  It was a wonderful 50 degrees. The bathrooms are clean.  I am getting excited about Spring Fling. It is at the end of next week.  I have to think about packing.
I'm going out to lunch today, fun!

Sunday, March 26, 2017

Raise the Roof

I've been plugging away at finishing the Home Sweet Home Etui.  I sewed the lining to the outside embroidered panels with help from some pliers.  So the roof is the next challenge.  I sewed the twisted cording around the edges of the two roof panels.

 I attached the pieces of cording that will hold the roof open.

 Then I began making the lining to the roof.  There are supposed to be some fabric covered elastic bands on the roof lining.  I had read that these were very difficult to do so I thought up something else.  I went diving in my bin of laces and ribbons (boy, does that need to be cleaned out!).  I came up with some old lace I bought somewhere and some 1/4 inch black ribbon.  I decided to put that across the lining panels instead of the elastic bands.  I think it looks pretty.

  I love the material I am lining the box with.

I read the directions on joining the roof to the main body of the house. You are supposed to ladder stitch the whole bottom edge.  I don't think I can do that and still have the roof open up.  I was thinking and thinking how I could attach the roof.  I thought of Betsy Morgan's Toy Box.  I really liked how Betsy attached the top lid on that.  So I got it out.

 Hmmm, I think I can use that idea.  But first I had to attach the cording to the roof panel.  I decided to just stabilize the roof panel with that same tacking kind of stitch used on the Toy Box.  Yes, I'm happy with that.  Now I am on to the other roof panel.

  Once I get the roof all done, all that is left (besides the smalls) is the tray that goes inside.  Progress!  I love that this project looks just like the book.

Too much rain today.  I had to walk at the Y again.  Luckily it was much quieter today.

Saturday, March 25, 2017


I got another order from The Silver Needle.  That is becoming my favorite shop to order from.  Especially since they send a few jelly beans with every order.  The way to a woman's heart is through - jelly beans!
I have a thing for Just Nan so I had to order the new things.  Who could resist a mouse and a house?

I got the fabric too.  I love that some of the notions are included with the chart.

Then there is a tiny biscornu.  Cute.

I got the little bird thing.  This will be easy to stitch up.

I'm already thinking of projects I want to take with me to Spring Fling.

I also got this one.

I think it would be cute just to do one bird.

I also got some stuff on Ebay.  I needed these bee hive charms for Home Sweet Home.  Ebay was easy and inexpensive for exactly what I wanted.

Then this was a good deal.  (Terry quit rolling your eyes!)

 I have been looking for a 6 inch Duchess embroidery hoop.  I love that there is no screw to get in the way and they are tight enough with the felt lining.  I also like how light they are to hold.  I found a good deal on a group of four hoops, two ovals (9 by 5) and two six inchers.  So I got them.  Now I'm done buying hoops.  I promise.

It was seriously raining this morning so I went to the Y to walk.  But I forgot that the walking track was closed today as there is a kids 3-on-3 basketball tournament going on.  Rats.  I decided to get as many steps in as I could until they threw me out.  Nobody threw me out so I was able to get my walking in but I am nearly deaf from the racket and I dodged quite a few kids and basketballs.
Now I can appreciate my quiet house.

Friday, March 24, 2017


Oh the trials and tribulations of putting together Home Sweet Home!  I put together the lining for HSH a while back.  I knew that the tray just barely fit in the lining.  There are still many pieces of the tray yet to be covered with fabric and inserted.

 So if the outside embroidered panels were too small (and they were), I would just have to make them bigger.  So that is what I did.  I took all of the outside pieces and unlaced them.  I cut new boards just one-eighth on an inch bigger, measured them next to the lining to make sure they fit and then re-laced them on the slightly larger board. I drew around the original board then added 1/8th inch to the top and side.
Taking the bottom off of the original board gave me the opportunity to sew on some button feet.  I forgot the buttons first time around.

 It was kind of a trick to lace the embroidered panels together.  I tried a curved needle.  That needle was too hard to use.  So I got out my trusty pliers to help me.  Now the outside is all sewn together.  I'm impressed, it looks good!

I can slip the lining in, no problem.

Now comes the fiddly stuff.  I made some cording to go around the roof panels.

 The pattern called for Armeniam knot stitch.  Nope.  I'm not doing that.  I could mess that up royally.  So I took all the roof thread I had left, cut it in two and made twisted cording.  I think it will work.  I have to sew it on.
I'm taking it slowly, a little bit at a time to put this all together.  The next major part is to sew the lining to the outside embroidered panels all around the top.
This side is my favorite.
I made myself sew all the embroidered panels together before I started the Wren.  Is that discipline or what?

Thursday, March 23, 2017

It's Here

The Wren kit arrived in the mail yesterday.  I was ready to hug my mailman!  It came beautifully packaged in a box, that is, a box in a box.  This is the photo on the front of the box.
 Oh joy!  Now I can make it.  The timing is perfect as I just finish stitching Home Sweet Home.

 There are so many little items packaged carefully and labeled.
 I was so fnscinated to see this bird form because it was made with a 3D printer.  The beak is a thread cutter.  How perfect!

 Aren't these the most beautifully perfect bird feet?

These are the instructions, a whole pamphlet.  The kit for the Mossy Hillock is here too.
I didn't start yet.  I made myself work on putting together Home Sweet Home.  I tell you all about that tomorrow.
I just love love love my Wren kit.