Saturday, February 27, 2021


 I worked hard on the Blackwell Roundel and made good progress.  I got all three acorns done. There were many parts to working them. First back stitch and eyelets. I haven't done three in a row eyelets before. Then felt padding. I am happy with how they turned out. 

I went on to work on the rose. I was watching a movie as I worked.  That kept me going. I knew that when I hit the beading I was getting to the end. 

Next are the rose leaves. I bet I can finish this this coming week. So now I get a break to work on something else.

I have been keeping track of the new offerings from the Needlework Expo that starts next Friday. I wrote out a wish list. I shouldn't order anything but whatever.

We have a sunny warm Saturday. It will be great to walk today!


Friday, February 26, 2021


 I had a great dinner out last night. Cashew Chicken, sweet potato fries and risotto with enough left over for tonight. Oh yes, DH and I shared a Lava cake for dessert. It was very good.

I have great stash. In this covid stay home time, I'm delighted when I can find what I'm looking for without having to order it. So yesterday my goal was to find some washers to weigh down the pear and make it more stable. So I went digging and found three of these.

I clipped some threads at the bottom of the pear and slipped in two washers. Then I sewed it up again. Voila!  I sewed up the top putting the stem in place. Done, done. 

I got happy mail yesterday. Three kits from Inspirations. Yes, the pile of them is getting high.
This is a kit from the latest issue of the magazine.

I wonder if I can make it look as nice as the photo. We'll see.

I read Inspirations' newsletter this morning and it featured the Blackwell Roundel.  I have to get back to that!


Thursday, February 25, 2021


 I just kept working on the pear yesterday. It is so almost done. I reread the directions out loud to myself until I felt like I knew what I was supposed to do.  The directions say to couch thread on the front and the back at the same time.  I tried it and it looked sloppy on both sides to me so I took it out and did my own thing. I wanted the top of the leaf to look nice and neat so I couched it without worrying about the back.

It's kinda blue.
I sewed a piece of felt to the back of the leaf.
I don't know what thread this is. It is just listed as 371 couching thread. I'm glad I got the kit. The thread was supposed to be couched with the variegated DMC but I didn't like that so I chose a green color to couch the threads.

The stem is made with felt dipped in hot soapy water and rubbed in the palm of your hand.  I hadn't done that before. I had to try rubbing it a few different directions before it looked like a stem.  Right now it is drying.

 Then I'll cut it to the right length and sew it into the top of the pear.  I want to put a button on the bottom of the pear and I'd like to put some weight in the bottom.

So that is the plan for today. Going out to eat tonight.  Lucky me!


Wednesday, February 24, 2021

Now What

 I finished stitching the pear!

Then I sewed the section to the pear but left an opening to turn it right side out.

I stuffed it a bit to see how it was going to look. 

I remembered the leaf still needed threads couched to it. I found the Passion for Needlework book and looked up what I needed to do. First I had to find the leaf pattern, make a copy of it and cut it out of the green felt.

I read the directions for the couching. But it doesn't make sense to me yet. Do I couch the front and the back? I'm going to read it out loud to myself and see if I get it. Sometimes my brain is a little foggy.

When I read the directions I was reminded that beads are scattered around the pear. Wouldn't it be great to get this all done? My granddaughter has seen my work on this so I would love to show her the finished product. That means finishing by Sunday.

Nice warm day again today! We'll go walking again. 


Tuesday, February 23, 2021

Last Section

 I'm working on the last section of the pear. I'd like to finish this project off. It's been laying around for a while. For the last section I had to decided what blackwork pattern to use and what colors it should be.  I'd already done all the blackwork patterns so I just wanted to pick a pattern that would b different than the patterns it would be next to on the pear. So I chose the pattern  and decided to do it in the opposite colors from when I did it before. The first time I did it was brownish motif with bright green x in the middle. Now I'm using bright green for the motif and will put a brownish x in the middle.

I could finish this soon, I think.

DH is off to the grocery store. The sun is shining and it is 38 degrees! We'll definitely go walking today.

If I am really diligent, I'll also start an acorn on the Blackwell Roundel.


Monday, February 22, 2021

Blackwell Roundel

 I have been working hard on the Blackwell Roundel. I got the eight rowan berries done which involved making an eyelet, split stitching around the berry, padding the berry, satin stitch over the berry and shading the berry. 

Next I started the four maple leaves which have lots of steps as well.

There are a few details left to do and then I'm on to the center of the rose. Looking forward to the point where I can put on the pearls, beads and pearl purl chips.

Right now I need a break. Lunch!


Saturday, February 20, 2021

Emie's Etui

 I have made some progress on the back of the etui. 

I'm on the last row before starting another section. I discovered a mistake in the pattern but when I saw that was how Betsy stitched it, I left it in. No big deal.

Next week promises much warmer weather.  Maybe the snow will melt enough that I can go walking outside. Walking outside preferable to walking back and forth in my living room.


Friday, February 19, 2021

Happy Mail

 Just what I needed, a new kit in the mail! I signed up for the collaboration between Me and My Stitches and Hands On Designs and the first of this years four kits came in the mail yesterday.

I liked the design so that's why I signed up Isn't that a cute tulip waxer? There are scissors and a sweet needleminder included. The backing fabric is also included. I added the linen and floss to my order. Would I like to start it? Of course. But I have to get the Blackwell Roundel done first. My nose is to the grindstone!


Thursday, February 18, 2021

Spotted Leather

 Here is where I am on the Blackwell Roundel.

I've padded some quince leaves with beige felt. See the gold spotted leather above them?

Now I am going to cut out the spotted leather to cover them.  It may be a stitching with pliers day depending on how hard it is to pierce this leather with a needle.

Jenny Adin Christie posted some photos of the Blackwell Roundel on Facebook this morning which motivated me to keep working before that beautiful box gets here.

I have ideas percolating in my head about what I want inside the top of my flat casket. I  want a bird that is stitched that plays music and is surrounded by mirrors. That may sound crazy but I think it is doable.


Wednesday, February 17, 2021

Full Coverage

 Someone asked where the rose pattern came from.  It is a Sandy Orton design that was in Just Cross Stitch January 1998.  That's a little hard to find and I think it was broken into two issues. But the design is available from Kooler Design Studio as a pdf.

Today is a cupcake day. It has been forever since I made cupcakes. We gave my granddaughter a cookbook for Christmas. She wanted to make the Root Beer Cupcakes recipe. She tried it but said the cocoa powder overpowered the root beer flavor. So I went looking for a better recipe. I  found two and decided to try the easiest one which uses a cake mix. So I made them this morning. 


I like how they taste.

I have been working on my latest "A". It is full coverage. I really enjoy working om it but it takes forever to see progress. 

I'm still working on the first page of the chart. It is fun to see it develop.

Minus 8 this morning. Yikes, it's cold. I'll stay cozy in my sewing room.


Monday, February 15, 2021

New Start

 Old business: Someone asked me about my Chocolate Haystacks recipe.  Here is my recipe written nearly 50 years ago by my dear Mother -in-law.

DH says they are addictive. 

The Blackwell Roundel box is on its way to me from the UK. 

I ordered it quite a while ago but the maker hurt himself and couldn't make the boxes for a while. So now I need to stitch the insert for the box.  But first I had to find it. Rabbit hole time! I found lots of interesting kits along the way and have a pile of things I want to work on. After about three days I found it. So the goal is to get it all stitched before the box gets here. 

I am making good progress. I got all the shadow work leaves stitched. 

I just realized that I have one more half-leaf to stitch.

So here I am today:

Working on the quinces, whatever they are. 
We didn't get as much snow as the weather forecasters were warning.  Thank goodness. DH has been out shoveling so he can go to the grocery store.

At least the sun is shining! 8 degrees (F) this morning.


Trying a Rose

 I stitch a rose to see how it would work out on a casket. 

I didn't have the called for silk mori so I substituted with Vikki Clayton silks. I wanted the rose to be more red than pink.  So first I had to back stitch the rose sections then fill them with satin stitch. Having made Jenny Adin Christie kits, I knew that to have a nice edge you must do split stitch around each section.  I did one section with split stitch and the rest not.  It is kind of a pain to do as it takes a while. I found that the satin stitch over the split stitch looks so much better and smoother. I was pretty happy with the colors I choose although the coverage seemed skimpy on the stems. The size is good to fit a casket. I didn't have the Japan thread called for which outlines the sections of the rose. So I went stash digging to find a thread that would do. I found some gold wire to couch around the sections. I was able to find some Krenik Japan thread #1 available on Amazon.  Some of the stems have that thread couched under them.

So now I know what colors I want and what method to use. I also know this will take some time to get these done.

Tomorrow I will show you my new start.


Saturday, February 13, 2021

Happy Mail

 For Christmas DH got me a subscription to Guiliana Ricama magazine from Italy.  I had seen one of their magazines and liked it so I got a subscription.  They send two magazines at a time to save money on postage. This is one of the magazines that I got in the mail yesterday.

Here is the table of contents:

There is an article on Bandera stitching.  I went on a needlework tour of Italy and one of our classes was Bandera stitching.  

I haven't finished the project - yet. Special fabric is used and you get a lot of practice using long and short stitch.
Another one of our tour classes was making a table runner like this.
This s how far I got.

This is a good magazine. It is in English so I can read it. It even has an article on the New South Wales Embroidery Guild. I bet my Australian friends are in that guild.

Friday, February 12, 2021

Banana Flips

 I've been cooking.  First I made Chocolate Haystack cookies, a family favorite. 

Then I made a recipe I found on the internet. I loved banana flips but they aren't around anymore. I went looking for a recipe for them. You can find just about anything on the internet. So I found a recipe that sounded like it would work. I had to have DH get some ingredients at the grocery store and the banana extract had to be ordered from Amazon. So I tried the recipe. 

I was successful! The taste is good. The filling is a little grainy as you use just plain sugar in it. Maybe it will be less grainy by the time the cake part cools. Of course I had to try a corner and it is good.

I finished the fifth section of the pear and sewed it to the other four sections. it is starting to look like a pear.  Only one more section to go. 

The other side:


Thursday, February 11, 2021

Back from the Rabbit Hole

 I was able to finish what I started yesterday.  The is the finished Needlework Nibble from Thistle Threads.

It as interesting to work with some new stumpwork threads. It's not perfect but it is done.

Then I am almost finished with the fifth section (of six) for the pear.

I tried using an interesting thread from Jenny Adin Christie but didn't like how it was looking. so I switched back to the called for thread to fill up the center of the motif.

Then I found the chart I had been looking for in the first place yesterday. I'm going to try out the design and see how I like it for a casket. Stay tuned!


Wednesday, February 10, 2021

How to go Down a Rabbit Hole

 Okay so I finished the band that goes around Emie's Etui by Betsy Morgan.

So what to work on next?  I decided I would try to find a chart that I bought some years ago. So I went looking. It is Sandy Orton's Le Gardin sampler.  I want to do the rose row for an area on my caskets. It is from a magazine.  I thought it was from an old Needleworker magazine. So I looked at all my issues of Needleworker. Nope, no Le Gardin. So then I googled it.  The sampler is available from Kooler Design Studio but I know I have it somewhere. I found out that the sampler came from a Just Cross Stitch magazine January 1998. So I went looking for that. No luck. Then I saw an Inspirations magazine that wasn't with my other Inspirations.  I sat down to look through it and found a Margaret Light design that I always meant to do.  I have the ticking material it is stitched on. 

I found the ticking and decided to trace the design on it. I have a handy-dandy light pad.

So I transferred the design.

Then I had another design I wanted to transfer since I had the light pad out and plugged in.

So now I have two more things I can start. No wonder I can't get anything done!