Tuesday, March 08, 2011

Finishes and More Finishes

Hello my lovelies...it's been a while hasn't it? It's been busy in my little corner of the world. Busy, busy...yet when I reflect at the end of the week, I can barely remember what kept me so busy. Anyone else relate?

Anywho...I've lots to share so you all might want to get a cup of tea and a snack. Don't get those crumbs in the keyboard though!

A while back, I was talking about finishing and how I actually got a couple of pieces finish-finished and off in the mail. Well, they've been happily received and now I can share. I shared this finish earlier. It's Blackbird Designs Bluebird stitched on a scrap of 32 count Lakeside with GAST Brethren Blue.
I made it up into a pinpillow. Very simple...filled with crushed walnut litter. I found a black safety pin lying about and thought it would be fitting and made simple pins. I bought terrible glue and those crystals were sliding. I am just hoping that they finally set. I backed it with some of my favorite blue batik shown below.
I mailed the pinpillow to my penpal Belen in France and I can only hope that it cheered her up. She recently celebrated her birthday and I felt a cause to make her something handmade. 2010 was an unkind year to her as well and unfortunate circumstances made her a widow way too young. She needed a little cheering. Blue is one of her favorite colors and she wrote me to tell me that she liked the gift and the goodie I included. I am so glad!

2010 was an unkind year. I am glad it's in my past but there was one outstanding piece of business leftover from last year...my blogiversary giveaway. I'm not sure what the mental hangup was. The finishing or the fact it was what I was stitching on when everything imploded. I'm not one to owe anyone anything though and I finally sat down and did the finishing. It was all I had to do. I am embarrassed that it took me so long to finish and send on but I am happy it's been passed onto it's new owner. Sharon won my giveaway many moons ago and she was happy with the gift and the goodies. I stilled the Shepherd's Bush 2009 scissor fob and included a pair of silver Ginghers. Here's the front.
And the back. It was charted to say "All Is Fine in 2009". Ummm...yea. So I changed it to say "Stitch and Be Happy" because that is true to a stitcher 100% of the time...well...outside of any major frogging.
I used the kit supplies and filled the fob with crushed walnut litter as well. It was my first time doing this finish with the ribbon and despite it being fiddly and poking myself with a beading needle multiple times, I am really happy with it! Now I need to stitch it for myself! Sharon posted photos of the goodies I sent here. I was in such a rush to send things off that I forgot to take photos of the goodies. I had a runner up winner for my blogiversary too and made good with Lisa and sent some non-stitched goodies off to her too. I am not doing that again. Next time, I will have the stitched goodie done *before* the drawing. Yeesh...guess that means I better get busy again and quick!

I also finished the first Blackbird Designs Bonus Pattern for my Anniversaries of the Heart! I know...I'm shocked myself. But that pre-stitching for my class drove me bananas and I needed something to keep me sane so I decided to get a head start.
I am SALing with Lisa and Sally. Their AotH projects look great! Here's how mine looks so far.
I am really enjoying this project. I don't seem to want to stop stitching on it but I am going to try and take a break from it for the rest of March so I can devote a little bit of time on my Mary Wigham and some smalls.

Now for the stitching that was driving me crazy! The pre-stitching for my class. The stitching itself didn't seem like a lot but it was very time consuming and fiddly...you really had to pay attention. My class was with Sandie Vanosdall of The Sweetheart Tree though the Bay Area Sampler Guild and the pre-stitching was for the M'Lady's Quadreille. I was hoping to be a super stitcher and finish all the stitching and backstitching before class but I only managed 1/2.
I had to frog a good portion because I found a counting error and had gotten sidetracked with my AotH. Sandie only wanted us to do the first side of the quadrille and all the outlining anyways so I was ahead. The class was nice and we covered specialty stitches I had never done before. Finishing this quadrille will be a challenge but seeing as I stitched the date...I had better get this done this year. We were also given Lady Dunmore's Sampler kit which I think is stunning and the main reason I signed up for this class. It has the same stitches as the quadrille so if I can master this quadrille, I can definitely tackle the sampler! Strangely enough, The Sweetheart Tree isn't really my usual thing but this really caught my eye.

Here's a close up of my 2 completed sides of the quadrille before any specialty stitches.
I will have to add this to the rotation for this year so I can complete it!

And finally...my TUSAL for the new moon. My jar is rapidly getting full. I guess I've been getting a ton of stitching done. Amazing how it never feels like enough. All the projects I want to do play like a slideshow in my head!
I have a new little friend to help me display my jar this month. Isn't she cute?!

Well, I better run. It's the Southland finale!

Until next time...

44 comments:

Patty C. said...

Lovely works displayed here - I also stitched that particular BBD - Beautiful :)

Lois said...

Lovely finishes and your AoTH piece is looking so nice. Love that class piece too. It will be stunning when it's completed.

Danielle said...

Wow! What great finishes! I just bought the new Blackbird Designs book A Stitcher's Journey. So many great projects in it. I love your new little friend next to your TUSAL jar!

Hazel said...

Gorgeous gifts and finishes. I am desperate to start Snow Garden but not sure whether to go ahead and get the rest of them or just do the one. Can't wait to see your quadrille finished up. x

Giovanna said...

Lovely, lovely stitching - the pincushions are marvellous. And the doll is just charming! Well done on all fronts.

Jackie said...

AotH is really coming along! I'm looking forward to seeing how the finished class piece looks. The pincushions are great and I'm sure the recipients are happy to have them.

Margaret said...

I love all your finishes! And the prestitching looks great! I hope the class is fun for you. I can tell the finished piece is going to be pretty!

Vonna said...

My goodness my head is spinning you've gotten so many lovely thing finished and stitched up!! WOW! They all are gorgeous Valerie and you sound so upbeat and happy in your post too :)
Hugs and love!

gracie said...

Oh I love the Sweetheart Tree piece, hope it will eventually be released for sale. It is looking relly nice..all of the pieces you re doing are coming along.

Siobhan said...

WOW!! You have been b-u-s-y! Everything looks fantastic. Your finishing looks great--you did a wonderful job!

Barbi said...

Wow Val!!! Lots of great finishes and stitching! And yes your little ort friend is very cute!!

Sally said...

All your stitching looks gorgeous Valerie. You're stitching up a storm on your AotH. Hoping to finish my Valentine Rose this weekend.

Love the SB fob. I missed out on getting this one from an ONS over here last year. I ordered it and they'd sold the last one over the weekend! Guess it was not meant to be so I got the 2010 one instead!

Rachel S said...

So many pretty things you've shown us! Love your progress on the Quadrille.

Catherine said...

Goodness! You have been busy!! Love all your stitches and your finishes look great! Let me know when you are working on Mary Whigham again - perhaps it is time to work on mine again too!

Dee said...

All the pretty little projects look great!

Congrats on all the finishes.

I agree -- 2010 wasn't so great. Hopefully when I look back at the end of 2011, it will have been better.

Chocolates4Breakfast (TerriBoog) said...

Do nice to read such a wonderful, newsy upbeat post! I agree about 2020. I believe that was the worst year of my life. So glad it is over. Here's hoping the bad stuff keeps its distance for both of us this year!
Your stitching is wonderful! Love the blue pin cushion and the SB fob is fabulous. Your AotH is gorgeos- love the bonus sampler. Good luck on finishing the ST piece. That is WAY beyond my skill level. Be well, Valerie!

Laura said...

Great finishes, Valerie. And your little TUSAL gal is too cute.

What is crushed walnut litter? I'm not familiar with that one.

Maggee said...

What a fun-filled post Val! Your finished finishes are just fine--love that word 'fiddly'... And the AoH piece is just lovely. I look forward to seeing more progress. Good luck on the class piece--looks like a lot of new things to learn. Hugs!

Carol R said...

Beautiful finishes Valerie - I saw the pretty scissor fob over on Sharon's blog! AoTH is looking good but my oh my I just love M'Lady's Quadrielle - how gorgeous is that?

Sadie said...

Love all of your stitching and finishing Valerie :-) My last blogoversary gift is way overdue, seeing you get yours out has made me determined to do mine. Thanks for the kick up the backside! :-)

Valerie said...

Wonderful finishes, Valerie ! I know the recipients are ore than pleased!

AotH is such a lovely piece. I look forward to keeping up with your progress. I hope to start mine this spring/summer!

Christina said...

Brethren blue is such a pretty colour. It matches the batik backing fabric you used so well.
The Shepherd's Bush scissor fob is so cute - I'd forgotten how much I love SB designs. I haven't stitched one in AGES. I really must treat myself to a pair of those Gingher scissors. I'm still using the pair of small scissors I bought for about 50p in Ikea!!!

Ranae said...

Pretty finishes made great gifts, they are lucky to have such little beauties.
The class piece is looking awesome

Daffycat said...

My word, your ORT jar is filling fast!

Believe me, that blogoversary gift was worth waiting for. You spoiled me rotten with that fob, scissors and all those yummy goodies, Valerie! I treasure all of it. Thank you so much!

Karen said...

Such cute finishes and WIPS.

happy stitching....

mainely stitching said...

Oh my GOSH you've been busy and productive - and what gorgeous finishes!! :D

Myra said...

Lovely finishes - love the blue, but that quadrille is going to be gorgeous!

Natalia said...

Valerie, I love your finishes, specially the little fob. I love that fabric... And what a generous giveaway !!!

Sylvia said...

Lovely finishes, and I bet once you get the stitching done for your class it will be gorgeous.

staci said...

Gorgeous finishes Valerie! I hope 2011 has been kinder to you so far!

Carol said...

Your BBD pin pillow for Belen turned out beautifully, Valerie--such a thoughtful gift. I'm sure your friendship brings her a lot of comfort. I saw Sharon's gift on her blog and just loved it--you did a great job (and better a bit late than never, right?).

Your class piece is going to be incredible--glad you're enjoying the specialty stitches. They add so much to a finish.

I do hope 2011 is a happier year for you :) Enjoy your weekend!

Katrina said...

Love all your finishes and what a sweeet gift for your pen pal. Isn't AotH the funnest piece, I love it.

I do like that Sweetheart Tree piece, can't wait to see it finished.

Blu said...

Both the pincushion and the fob look great!
What a cute friend your TUSAL jar has.

Melanie said...

Such lovely finishes!! Everything looks fantastic.
I can't believe we are almost halfway done with March. Where *is* this year going???

Michelle said...

Everything is wonderful! What great gifts you stitched. I need to stitch that BBD Bluebird for myself someday. And love your Anniversaries finish. I am still working along on Valentine Rose. And my pre-stitching is killing me too. No fun and I can't wait for it to be done with. Your class piece is gorgeous!

Beth said...

I am loving your stitching and am glad that even if you are very busy, you are taking time to stitch. It is very healthy - imho!

Littlebit said...

Such pretty finishes, Valerie. Your BBD Bluebird is just beautiful. And what a sweet thing you did for your friend.

Pointed Stitcher said...

Wow,you have been one busy lady :)

Dani - tkdchick said...

You're right, you have been busy! What wonderful finshing and stitcing.

Suzanne said...

Lovely finishes and great progress on your stitching. What a wonderful package you sent to Sharon.

Jo said...

Lovely stitching - I'll be interested to see the Sweetheart Tree project develop

Pumpkin said...

Adorable finishes Valerie! I'm glad they were well received :o)

Your finish is beautiful and you're really coming along nicely with this project.

Oh, I do like this class you're taking. Looks like this will be a fun finish :o)

Julie said...

Sweet gifts, the SB scissor fob is gorgeous

Meari said...

Your finishes turned out really cute. I'm sure the new owners love them. Where do you get crushed walnut shells?

I *almost* bought one of the quadrilles at Welcome Stitchery last weekend!