Confessions of a Floss Licker

Thursday, February 04, 2016

February 2016

Stitch from Stash was cancelled/closed.  I was pretty disappointed because I felt like I was doing a good job not spending/staying within budget.  I really wasn't in it for the prizes at the end of the month.  So now it is completely up to me to track my spending and stitching.  So here it is.
In January we went to an estate sale that advertised a "sewing crafter's dream" and it was mostly what I suspected.  There was a lot of fabric for someone who sewed clothes.  There were crochet hooks and knitting needles, most of which I didn't need.  However, I did find one Tunisian crochet hook so I grabbed that up.  There was also a lot of plastic bins with miscellaneous crafting stuff in them.  (Feathers, pony beads, sequins, etc.)  There was even some plastic canvas, but I found no cross stitch or even embroidery supplies except for one kit in which you were to put it on a piece of clothing.  Out in the garage were all the boxes of yarn and more crochet hooks.  DH found a hook for me in the brand that I am currently collecting and a size that I don't have.  It was marked $9 from a specialty store and I paid 50 cents for it.  All together I paid $5 for:  a jelly roll pan (for cakes) two crochet pattern books, two crochet hooks and two skeins of yarn.
As for my stitching, I really got into Guilt Free January this year.  I decided that it was time to go through my WIP list (Works In Progress) and clean it up a bit.  To start with I finished 4 old projects and was able to take them off the list.  Then one project was started by my daughter as a teenager.  If I pick up where she left off I would have to rip out the whole thing so it becomes a UFO (Un-Finished Object).  Another one became a UFO because I have no idea where to find the person it was meant for.  Another one needs to be restarted on different fabric.  Two others were started on (cheap) fabric.  The plan is to keep stitching on them as is.  When the fabric runs out, start on a new piece and finally hand sew the two together.  The other option would be to throw these away and start over again.  Since I have so many started I figure I can put those on the back burner and decide on that later.  In the mean time I have reclaimed the floss that was set aside for these two and put it back into my stash to use.
Now starting new projects is exciting!  To me it's actually more exciting than finishing a project.  So for GFJ 2016 I started 5 new projects.  Enchanted Mermaid by Mirabilia

Disneyland Map

Emerald Treasure by Lesa Steele

Mickey Self Portrait

Mickey & Walt heading to the Castle
Mermaid is coming along the best and all the Disney ones are rather large and going to take a long time.  Emerald Treasure is one I've had for a long time and have been wanting to start it for years.  Now it's just finding a place in the rotation.
I am now down to 34 on my WIP list!  I haven't been down this low in I don't know how long and I'm really excited!  It means I'm being a lot more discriminating in what I'm starting and having a bit more self control in how many I'm starting at any given time.  I'm also finishing some as I go along which is really helpful.
I have also changed my rotation a bit.  I'm trying out a system where I have two focus pieces that I can pick up (or not) every day.  (And one of those slots is empty right now.)  Then Monday thru Friday there is a specific one (different every day) that I must pick up and do something with.  Saturday and Sunday are "open" to anything I want to work on because weekend plans change and I may not be available to stitch at all.
Well, that brings everything up to date.  I will try to remember to post more often and hopefully with some pictures!

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Stitch from Stash October

Budget $25
Spent $27.17
Brought forward from last month $37.75
Total Available $35.58

I went shopping!  It was a treat to myself for three finishes.  (I'll get to the shopping in a little bit.)  One of the finishes was an old WIP.  I don't know that I started it in 2004 but that was the date printed on the bottom of the page of the freebie I got from the 'net.  It was from a French blog that apparently no longer exists.

I put it on a scrap of fabric I had left over after cutting it for something else.  I do not remember my intention of how I wanted to finish this, but I think I'll make it into a mini-pillow as it is a little too big for an ornament.

The next finish is new and only took me a couple of days.  Little Owl Sampler from the Just Cross Stitch Halloween issue.  I changed the colors a little because I kitted it with what I had in my stash.  I'm pretty happy how it turned out as I'm not really an owl person.  However, it has given me the idea to have a Halloween tree.

And last but not least is Dead in Red.  It is a gift for a friend.  I'm waiting until I frame it to take a nice pic.

And just to make up for the lack of pics in previous posts, here's something I recently finished.  I know I talk about model stitching a lot as it is a lot of what I stitch.  I can't show it in progress (ever) just when it's been finished and released.  This one is available at X's and Oh's.

 It is called Delft Rabbit Runner and is under animals, then farm animals.  Two others that I finished this year have not been released yet.  I will try to remember to keep looking for them and post when they're available.

And now, on to the shopping!  I was gifted with the pattern for Mickey's Self Portrait. 

It was originally a kit, but the pattern is intact.  Also, the face of Walt Disney is an iron-on and I received that part too.  All I needed at this point is fabric and floss.  So I got the fabric and what floss I could from my stash (amazing how many colors were used for this design!) and went to WalMart to start getting the rest as they're cheaper than Joann's.  I spent $4.63 at WalMart.  After that I only needed 7 more so I headed to Joann's as they have a better selection.  I picked up the 7 I needed plus an extra 310 (one can not have enough black floss) and the Just Cross Stitch Christmas Ornament Issue and spent $14.15.  Last but not least, I went to Hobby Lobby and picture frames were 1/2 off!  I got a 12" x 12" square black frame for Dead in Red for $5.39.  I call that a score!

My newest start is another gift for a friend.  I'm using this pattern:

And I'm modifying it.  I'm getting rid of the border, the "Robin Hood" is going to say simply "Archery".  The border underneath the words is going to be arrows end to end.  I'm keeping the top tree on the far left, the sun and clouds, and the three people.  (And I'm turning their pants into kilts!)  I've already charted it out and found a piece of fabric called "stormy sky" to put it on.  I need to get a few more skeins of floss, but I'm also thinking I can either steal some out of something already kitted that I'm not working on and replace that later or substitute for other colors that I actually have.

While looking up the image for the self-portrait (above) I came across the images of more Disney cross stitch that I would love to have.  In this case etsy is NOT my friend as there are too many tempting things on there and I don't have the funds for them!  But these are my favorites.
The boat scene with the lanterns and the castle in the background is my favorite scene from Tangled.

Princess and the Frog is next.  I love the fact that he has them both as people and the frogs are in the corner too.  (Thomas Kinkade paintings by the way.)

I'm not the biggest fan of Peter Pan, but I love how he incorporated a lot of the characters in the clouds, including the ship!  A very clever and talented man.

So there it is for October.  Going forward there will most likely be no spending unless I desperately need a few skeins of floss.  Most of any "spare" funds will be going toward Christmas.  I will try to post progress pics in the next two months and then it will be Guilt Free January!

Update:  My husband and I are hooked on yard sales and estate sales.   You just never know when you're going to come upon a treasure.  While reading the local paper on Sunday (18th) I noticed an estate sale that mentioned "sewing" so I convinced my husband to take a little trip.  I got 4 packages of pre-cut aida plus 5 other good sized pieces and a cross stitch afghan for $3!  Now, I haven't measured the pieces of fabric yet because it's aida and I generally only use that for ornaments that I give away.  And if it's pieces I'm going to cut apart it really doesn't matter what size it is to begin with.  I believe they are all 14 ct, and mostly white, antique white, cream/ivory and oatmeal with two of the pre-packaged ones being a light blue and gray.  Still, a bunch of ornament fabric and an afghan for $3 is a bargain.  Now if I can find a yard sale with a bunch of floss cheap I'd be all set!

Tuesday, September 01, 2015

Stitch from Stash September

Budget $25
Spent $35.25
Brought forward from last month $48
Total Available $37.75

It's been a rough couple of weeks.  It started off with a tree in front of the house falling into the street.  Then a few days later we left for "vacation".  My truck overheated, two days were majorly disappointing, I got a call that my Dad had a stroke (while we were in the Happiest Place on Earth), and we got hit (car accident) on the way home.  Once home there were lots of trips to the hospital.  (Dad is now home and doing really well!)
Plus I've been doing nothing but model stitching for months now to meet deadlines.  I'll be finished with this one within 10 days or so if I've calculated correctly.  So I decided to treat myself to a couple of charts.  I placed an order with Stitching Bits and Bobs for Little House Needleworks charts: Needleworker (which comes with Crescent Colors threads) and Robin Hood.  Hopefully soon I can start collecting their Hometown Holiday designs.
Update:  Thread score!  I was at an estate sale and came across a dozen skeins of thread wrapped together.  I paid $1 for it.  They are DMC and made in France.  The label says "A BRODER, Qualte speciale, DMC 18, 20 metres, Dollfus-Mieg & Cie, Mulhouse-Belfort-Paris".  I've sent an email to DMC to determine how old it is and how someone from the US obtained it.  I found something similar on the DMC UK website but their thread numbers go from 16 to 20.  I'll post here if I get any info.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Stitch from Stash August

Budget $25
Spent $2
Balance $23
Brought forward from last month $25
Total Available $48
I did so well during the first half of the year that I'm doing my best to continue the trend!  I was in an exchange and wanted to send one of my own needleminders (that I make) so I went to Hobby Lobby to pick up a "charm" to make one with.  I did really good and only bought an extra pack of needles (which I found that I needed) and they were on sale.  Then we went to a couple of estate sales and I found a lovely off-white/cream/ecru LINEN tablecloth that I got for 50 cents!  For that price I could either decorate it as a tablecloth or I could cut it up for different projects.  I do have a tablecloth design that I've been wanting to do for my Mom.  We'll see what pops up after I'm done with the current model.
And speaking of that, I'm officially 1/3rd finished with the current one.  I'm 1/2 way through the second page and it's a pretty quick stitch so I'm pretty happy with how it's moving along.  After this one is done however, I'm going to be taking a break from model stitching for a couple of months and work on some of my own stuff.  I have a gift that needs finishing and maybe a Halloween design to get done too.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Stitch from Stash July

Budget $25
Spent $0
Balance $25
It's been a busy couple of months trying to get my vehicle fixed so I can get the smog check done so I can get it registered.  Any/all budget funds went to the registration fees. 
I did stitch a lot, mostly on models which doesn't count for this.  I was in an exchange and got that project finished and in the mail.  I'll be able to post a pic when it's been received.  I'm hoping to be able to post work on another project next week after I get this current model finished!

Monday, June 01, 2015

Stitch from Stash June

Budget $25
Spent $5
Balance $20

I know technically it was May but it was after reporting time so I'm counting this as June.  I couldn't resist the Joann's Memorial Day Sale and spent $5 on the 3/$.99 DMC.  I'm really trying hard not to spend at all but there's so much tempting stuff out there.  (Even when I have plenty to keep me busy at home.)  There are some charts on Etsy that I want to get too.  I'm trying my best to stay away from there as well as eBay.  On that note, I think I will go pick up the model that I'm working on...

Edited to add:  No more shopping, especially on Etsy.  Model is coming along well.  I have an exchange to work on, but will pick that up again starting July 1.

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

May Stitch from Stash

Month: May
Spent:  $0
Earned: $0
I'm trying to recall if I have done any shopping.  I know I have looked and intended to buy but I don't believe I've actually bought anything.
Stitching-wise, I finished the model!  I'm thrilled that it's on its way back to the designer.  I'm now enjoying my time rotating through a couple of different designs.  One is another model I've received.  This one is patriotic and great timing for the coming Memorial Day and 4th of July.  I'm hoping I'll be finished with it by then but who knows.  I'm doing well and not in a panic to finish it just yet.  Another one I'm working on is a gift.  It's for a friend who will know where it comes from and appreciate it.  The last two that I have in mind are my Mickey and Minnie balloon ride (it's in stained glass format) and Cypress Trees by Van Gogh.  Years ago, there was an emphasis on putting art in the facility where I work.  I plan on bringing that back by putting famous art (recreated by me) into my office.
As for any shopping plans, I have found a few things on Etsy that I want to get.  One of them is inexpensive and bogo, the other costs a little more and it's buy three get one.  These are the Disney by Kincaid paintings.  I really want the Tangled one that shows Rapunzel and Flynn in the boat with all the floating lights around them, with both the tower and castle in the background.  I also want the Princess and the Frog one and Beauty and the Beast.  (I already have Snow White.)  However, which would I get for free?  The side view of Sleeping Beauty's castle (Disneyland, however somewhat of a cartoon version) or the Aristocats?  Lady and the Tramp?  Not to mention that these are not small designs.  These are very much like HAED's.  I don't know that I would ever get them all stitched!  Which is why I'm abstaining from buying them all.  (Plus I was waiting for my paycheck and to see what is left after paying bills.  Maybe, if I can stand it, I'll push this off for 2 more paychecks so I can see what my merit increase is going to be and use that??)  The only other thing that I'll maybe succumb to is the DMC sale at Joann's during Memorial Day weekend.  They will be on sale 3/$.99.  (I remember when they would be on sale for 6/$.99!)  I am forever short on a few colors, no matter what design I try to kit up.  However, I'm pretty good at sticking to a budget of $5 when I buy floss.  That adventure will be on next month's blog.  Happy Stitching!