Saturday, January 21, 2023

Spring Flowers in a blizzard

 Progress on my Scenes of Country Life, or Rural Pursuits Casket

If a person was to have a look at my ort box, they would think there was massive progress on this tiny little casket... but not really! Everything is just so tiny...I really have to make grand efforts to scale down my threads in order for things to still look delicate like I want, and not huge and clunky


 It is somewhat disappointing how long it takes to stitch such a little thing. Maybe I'm just a super slow stitcher? I am working the flowers around the scenes now. Most are long and short stitch with either just one or two plies of Soie Ovale...or a micro fraction of a strand of Soie Perlee.  One must get inventive with the tools available...see Soie Perlee is made from flat filament silk like Ovale...it is a twist of three 'plies'...but if you look further once you get those apart, you will note that each of those three plies, is each made up of three plies...it can be maddening really.

 Here is a peek at what I have named the Devil's Tulip. I had to work four of them on the two panels I'm stitching now, and have another three I am very much not looking forward to doing on the front panel when I get that far... I have several sizes of gimp on my table to pick from, but sadly the smallest size that would have been perfect was not made in the colours I wanted to use...so I had to use a larger size, much too big for the scale of the flower but I used it anyways. There was a million starts and stops, they are really just an absolute nightmare to stitch.

After the Devil's work, I had to redeem my spirit with a couple of regular pretty little happy pink tulips


Last night I worked this little iris. I like it. It's tiny, fits under my thumb, and no, I don't think I have very large thumbs. I am saving all the foliage for last. I have one more iris to work today, I can't decide if it should be peaches or purples...I keep going back and forth. I have the corresponding friezes drawn on above each panel, so I am able to make sure the colours below will complement the colours that will sit above it. It's currently blizzarding in southern Colorado, for us, really the first measurable impactful snow other than a dusting, of this whole fall/winter season. I don't really care for snow anymore, it gives me great anxiety, so its the perfect day to concentrate on spring flowers and NOT look out the window
Happy Stitching!


Friday, December 30, 2022

Happy New Year!

 Details ....Matter!

I hope you had a wonderful Holiday season! My surgery went well and I am ready to bid adieu! to 2022 tomorrow. Life has been a rollercoaster for me this year, but it did not fling me off entirely, and I hope that I can now get on to happier times in 2023. I wish EVERYONE happier times in 2023. I think often of my friends in Ukraine~ Oleksii & his family in Kiev, and Marina in Kharkiv. Oleksii is a marvelous shoemaker, he can make you anything that will fit like a GLOVE~ he made my 17th c shoes for me. Marina is a dollmaker and sells on eBay, in this horrible wartime post from there can take about a month to reach the US, but the wait is well worth it, and they really need our support. It is horrific what they have to live thru each day, and I hope you will visit the links I have provided. 
One of my goals for 2022 was to finish my Scenes of Country Life casket. That did not happen by a longshot, but I am more than thrilled to be able to say it is a goal for this next year. I have managed a little work on it though, if you want to follow more closely, do check my Instagram, as it is easy to post daily pictures there of when I get something done!
Anyways, on to what I want to talk about today, and that is details. If you wish your work to come out neat and tidy in the end, it must start with neat and tidy lines in the beginning. I chose to work this casket all in flat work for a few reasons. While I really love the look of it, I absolutely hate satin stitch. This casket is smaller, so I figured it would be perfect...less stitching. Well truth be told, the simpler something is, the harder it is to hide mistakes. The smaller something is, the more challenging it is to execute well. I gave myself a double whammie and didn't even realize it. Everything about this casket is challenging, very challenging.
So, back to details....check out the grouping of leaves in the first photo. I have finished the satin stitching. 
 
Now check out the same with the addition of tiny veins being added. It makes so much of a difference!

These little scenes are tiny....2x3" roughly...for the entire scene. I am using near microscopic threads to work near microscopic motifs. Behind the head of this pencil, is a dove!

In the original 17th inspiration piece, the foul was a duck. When I was drawing out this panel, I really wanted a grouse here, as we hunted grouse a lot when I was growing up. But, the space was just too tiny. I certainly could have drawn in a grouse, but I wouldn't have been able to stitch it so that it resembled a grouse afterwards, so a dove it became. 

Flat silk work is usually the base layer of stitching on a stumpwork composition. All the fun bits then get stitched on over it. (Some folks skip this step altogether and do not work the shadow stitching depicted on 17th pieces.) The detached needlelace pieces and other fun bits can be used to cover up any areas that got out of hand, or we as a stitcher, just plain dont like. NOT SO if one is working a flat silk piece. It is not entirely satin stitch as I had first planned. I did want some interest and have given myself permission to use a select few stitches that are not satin stitch, but they still must all remain flat to the surface. If you study 17th c pieces, you will actually notice that background, even in a satin stitch piece, is many times long & short stitch. Above is my hunting panel after all the ground work has been finished. It still does not look finished though...


For a proper finish, there must be gimps applied! It is easy to go hog wild and want to put them everywhere, so one must pick and choose carefully. What do you want to accentuate or draw the eye to? That is where the gimp does its job best. I didn't want my strawberries to get lost in the hillock, so I chose a light pink gimp to line them with. They bring back memories of finding a sunny spot on the top of a mountain to eat lunch at after a morning of hunting...and picking the wild strawberries at my feet

Happy Stitching, & I wish Everyone a Happy & Blessed New Year



















Monday, November 28, 2022

Store Closing 11 Dec

 Closed for Shipping 11 Dec 2022

 I am having another surgery on 13 Dec, so I will be closing the ETSY store on 11 Dec. If you need something before Christmas, be sure to order before then. I have no idea how long it will be until I am able to drive/ship orders again. 
I hope you had a nice holiday weekend~ above is some native turkeys this weekend, trying to eat my clothespins that fell off the line...

 
I haven't done much stitching wise, just a little on my casket to try and keep my mind busy. I have shared more pictures on my Instagram, the link is to the right. I really hate Soie Ovale as a fiber, as it sticks to everything, my hands included. So I wear gloves to stitch with it, because I really do LOVE the look of it when finished. The little scenes just glow and really look magical. 
What does NOT look magical is the hideous green rainbow hillock to the bottom left in the picture. I decided I was going to frog it out, and blast it I could not unpick those tiny stitches for anything. So I decided Id cut them out....nope. My farmer was not having it, so I left them in. Looks like a weird version of velvet or turkey stitch...I trimmed the pile down and now have a fuzzy green mossy looking hillock, I put a pic on the Instagram. I just have no capacity for things anymore, so if the stitches want to be there so bad, they're gonna stay, and hope I get to laugh about it later
Happy Stitching XOXOXO

Thursday, November 17, 2022

2022 Annual Ornament Kits are In Stock


 This years Skarlet Ladye kits are in stock and shipping now! All the preorders(thankyou so much!) have been sent, and I am in process of sending out the tracking numbers now. If you have ordered a kit and checked your email and do not see a tracking number yet, give me time to eat supper and I will be finishing up the rest of them ;)

If you have been considering ordering a kit, I have just 22 left in stock. You can learn more about them here                                       

    Happy Stitching!


Tuesday, November 08, 2022

Kitting Up

 2022 Skarlet Ladye

I have been kitting up Skarlet Ladye & getting them ready to ship~ just look at these colours on the skarlet silk ground. Soooooo beautiful!!! I have teased making an embroidered jacket from this silk...but my latest daydreams have been of a skarlet silk embroidered casket. 

Just. Imagine. That. for a moment...


I may just have to make it so. Here is a view of the embroidery of one of Skarlet Ladye's four panels. Its a super fun stitch and kits will be on their way soon! If you are interested in making up an ornament of your own, you can find out more info here .

Happy Stitching!

Wednesday, October 26, 2022

Holding On

Doing my Best 

This year. Golly. It just keeps kicking my tuccas. Just when I think hey, maybe I can get back to normal...whatever that is..or was...nope. here's something else. I'm trying. I really really am. That's all a person can do right? I don't look to what I want to do next year anymore. Not even next month. Heck not even tomorrow. I have been dealing with the absolute worst brutal pain I have ever had to endure in my entire life, and at this point, honestly speaking all I can do is count the time down to when I can take my next meds. I had posted this picture above on my Instagram on 11 October! Woo hoo...starting a new panel...yay!  meh. I worked a little of the hill...but wasn't too jazzed about it because I cant blasted SEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE. This stupid macular degeneration...my eyes are so wonky. I got new glasses, and thought they were great, but when it actually comes to stitching, I find I have to look to the side of what I want to focus on, in order to see it. It's very maddening.


Then I had to have a wisdom tooth pulled, things went south from there, and for the past how many 11 or 12 days all I can do is sit and twitch and writhe in pain. Thanks to a round of steroids, it is FINALLY starting to ease...enough that I was well enough to go get another endometrial biopsy yesterday.  While I was waiting to leave, pacing around, I decided to work this little tree. I have always loved the long french knot leaves on the original 17th c panels and wanted my tree to look like those. It doesn't. nothing new there LOL


One of the reasons it doesn't is because of the scale. It's too tiny. Could there be such a thing as too tiny? Ya, I think so. It's cute..but not how I wanted it to look. Am I going to take it out? HELL NO. The old me would have ripped the occasional thing out if I didn't like it. The me of now? Nope. She doesn't rip anything out, cause every stitch is its own little triumph. I don't really like the colours of the hillocks...don't really like this tree. But once everything else is on the panel, they will fit in just fine, and I will have this first ever long leg french knot hideous looking tree to compare with later ones I am going to make that will look better. I don't have time for ripping things out anymore.



It is easy to obsess and become hyper-focused on single elements as we stitch. Sometimes it's hard to envision the big picture...and that once all the glam is piled on, nobody is going to notice this hideous little tree...or a slight imperfection we ourselves pick out. I am going to take some sage advice from one of my children's role models growing up...and I'm going to  Just keep Swimming...Just keep Swimming.. until this casket carries me through to next year. Baby steps. I'll get there. YOU'LL get there.

Happy Stitching XOXO

Friday, October 07, 2022

2022 Heirloom Christmas Ornament Kit

 Skarlet Ladye is Available on Presale Now!

I am super excited to offer you this year's 17th c inspired embroidered ornament kit, Skarlet Ladye! Have a peek at the video above, she's really awesome. I said it before, and the more I have her out, this is absolutely my favorite of all the ornaments I have designed. You can click the tab at the top of the page to learn more about the kit and see exactly what is in it...or just click here.

Here is a look at some of the silks


There are 21 full spools of silks in this kit! There are 2 spools of metallic braids and a few other silks in lesser quantities on flat bobbins. Are you going to use alllllll of this silk on this ornament? Heck no! Some colours you may, but others you will have plenty left over to add to your stitching stash~ and these are glorious Au Ver a Soie silks in Ovale & Perlee. Lucious!!! With full spools, if you want to change the colours around, you should have enough of all to do so (except for the yellows).

Kits will ship in Mid November, or sooner if possible. 

And if you're wondering why I added the 17th c embroidered jacket tab to this post...well...I just may be planing on making a skarlet red embroidered jacket ;)

Happy Stitching!!