Confessions of a Floss Licker

Thursday, May 11, 2017

May 2017

I didn't realize how long it's been since my last post!  But I guess since I have so few followers this is more for me than anything else.
I last spoke about a model that I was working on.  I can't see where it has been published on the website so I will suffice it to say that I finished it and returned it to the designer.  I received another model in December.  Unfortunately, I still have it as it is actually a large piece and FULL of confetti.  It has been a long arduous trip already and I'm not exactly 1/2 way done with it yet!  So far the designer has been amazing and not bugging me about it.  I AM doing my best to pick it up and stitch on it regularly, but the going is rather slow.
 I have done little more on Mermaid since I last posted.  Same with the Mickey and Minnie balloon ride.  I was trying to get Christmas gifts finished and with the model being so difficult it's been hard to pick them back up again.
The Christmas ornament exchange didn't happen so I believe I finished that ornament for myself.  I also finished the ship in a bottle.
Shopping has been the same - very minimal.  Yard/estate sales have been ok so far this year.  We went to Stitches West and I bought a needle minder.  The rest was yarn. (no scissors!)
I finished 2 mermaid tails for the girls for Christmas.  I finished my daughter's sometime in January?  And I made a blanket for my son-in-law.  Now I'm working on gloves for DH and a shawl for myself.

Thursday, October 27, 2016

October 2016

As usual, my determination fails for me trying to post here regularly.  It has been a busy year, but that's really no excuse.  I just need to put it on my calendar and make time like I have to do with other things.
I waited a long time to get the first model of the year.  During that time I tried a new rotation but that fell apart.
I stitched a wedding sampler for my niece that turned out just perfectly!  I used the wedding colors and I got it framed in time to take to the wedding.  But I took it back home with me because they were headed out shortly after for their honeymoon.  I mailed it to them within the month and it arrived safely.  Now I'm just waiting for her to find a place to hang it in the house and send me a picture of it.
I'm on the second model of the year and I'm nearly done with the center/main part of it.  I have two more rows to go before getting started on the border.  If I'm lucky I'll be able to get a lot of stitching done this weekend and get a good part knocked out of what remains.

I've gotten this far on Mermaid and stopped.  I thought I had what I wanted for beads and such but the "charm" I had wasn't a "bead" and I had to look for something else to support my vision of what I want this to look like when she's done.  Also, there's a TON of beading on this and beading is not exactly my favorite thing.
Here is my Mickey and Minnie balloon ride.  In this pic I have finished the first 3 pages of the chart.  Yes, it's huge!  It has a total of 16 pages.  I am still working on this one, slowly.
I have finally started a Christmas ornament for an exchange that I participate in regularly, and I only have about a week to get it done before I have to mail it out.  Thankfully ornaments are small and this one is not solidly stitched so I should be on time.
And last but not least I started a little kit I picked up.  It's a ship in a bottle for DH.  I don't normally do kits but it was small and cute.  I think I'm about halfway done.  There's a bit of confetti in the sails so it's slowing me down.  I just need to make myself pick it up again and work on it.  Part of the problem is that it's white on white.
As for shopping, I mentioned last time that Stitch from Stash closed down.  I haven't been keeping track of my spending but I know it has been pretty small.  Most of my stash has been obtained from garage/estate sales.  I had one where I found a set of q-snaps and a couple others where I found some floss.  All in small quantities of course.  The rest has been floss obtained from Joann's either on sale or with coupons.  I picked up the JCS Halloween issue at our new WalMart.  The Ornament issue was sent by a friend.  Other than those I haven't gotten any new charts in some time.
On the crochet front:  I am making mermaid tails for my daughter and granddaughters for Christmas.  I have one done and two to go.  I need to buy the yarn to do the colors I want for GD#1 and I need to find the yarn I already bought to start for my daughter.  I also need to dig through my yarn stash to find my scraps to make one for GD#1's birthday.  Apparently she was a bit jealous when her sister got one for her birthday (that my daughter asked me to make).  I don't mind.  I love crocheting and making blankets!

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!