Saturday, August 30, 2008

Have you seen...

Have you seen the Hawaiian Garden mandala design from Chatelaine Designs? It is really outstanding. I could send you to the picture on the Chatelaine Designs site, but it really doesn't do justice to it at all. It is just a computer mock-up so you don't get to see the texture of the beautiful stitches or sparkle of the braids and beads. I recommend you see the pics on the Yuku forum - here. Look at the detail - the volcanoes, the pineapples, the beaches, the waterfalls - and it isn't even finished yet.

For those who don't have experience with Martina Weber's designs (Chatelaine Designs), Martina generally releases her designs online over a period of time. Some of her designs are "mysteries", you get a piece each month and you won't know what the final piece will look like until the last month. Other designs are "online classes" in which you can see pics of the complete piece but the design is released in parts over the months. You download each part in an Adobe Acrobat file and you use a password to open the file. She releases her designs in chartpacks to shops approximately a year after the online period is completed. Her designs are truly impressive - lots of different fibers, embellishments and details.

We carry a number of charts from Chatelaine Designs and we will be adding more as they are released. We'd also be happy to special order other designs if you are interested.

I highly recommend going to the Chatelaine bulletin board on Yuku (the link is in my 'Important Links'). The bulletin board has sections for each of the current mysteries or online classes. Under each of these is a topic showing current Works in Progress. There is also a general topic with a gallery of completed pieces. These pics are really stunning. The next time you are in need of inspiration, I highly recommend checking out the Chatelaine forum.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Feels like Fall

It feels like Fall. The nights have been going all the way down to the fifties. The days are in the seventies. Clear blue sky - all day. And no humidity. Some of the leaves are even beginning to change. Summer flew by.

I have lots of stitching going on but nothing that I can show yet. Right now all of my stitching is for a few upcoming exchanges.

The new Just Nan designs should arrive today. And, of course, that just adds to my new dilemma. - When we were finally able to get Mirabilia Designs again and lots of stitchers were re-invigorated and inspired to finish their Mirabilia WIPs, we all had a chance to see lots of newly finished pieces. While I have really liked a few of the smaller fairies/pixies that Nora Corbett has released in the few months, I don't really have a place for them in my home. I also really don't have any little girls for whom to stitch. But, in addition to the pixies, I really love a few of the Mirabilia mermaids. Now that I've seen more and more of them recently, I soooo want to stitch them - specifically Mermaid of Atlantis and Mermaids of the Deep Blue. How many people stitch large designs knowing that they have no place for the finished pieces? I still have Fairy Idyll only partially completed and I have no place for that either. Will these pieces be an excuse to re-decorate my office? Will this mean that I will just simply have to have a room dedicated to stitching? (I rather like that last idea). Am I just crazy?

Keep stitching!

Friday, August 15, 2008

New Designs

Yay! New designs!

Mirabilia Designs has released its first large design since being acquired by Wichelt Imports. Athena - Goddess of Wisdom is now available.

Lavender & Lace has also release a new design - Fallen Roses.

Keep an eye out for new Just Nan designs at the the end of the month - including Christmas designs as well as the next installment of the Over the Top and In the Tin series.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Pinkeep for Vonna


Vonna has received her pinkeep for the Make a Wish Exchange so I can post a pic of it now. Vonna wished for a flatfold or pinkeep in a patriotic or Americana designs. I stitched the Liberty Heart Freebie from Trail Creek Farm and finished it as a pinkeep.

Trail Creek Farm is the company that makes those adorable pillows in different shapes. Here's an example of one of the pillows that they make in the shape of a star. They have a large selection of others including a bunny, a carrot and even the placemat for one of JBW Design's pieces from last Christmas. These pillows are a great way to quickly finish off your stitched pieces. They even come with coordinating covered buttons.

I am continuing work on one of my exchange pieces and while it is coming along well, I am beginning to see the need for counting pins. Gridding this fabric really wouldn't have worked very well, but the counting for this design is a bit tougher than usual. Time to look into some of those pretty counting pins. I always thought they were pretty but I wasn't sure how much use I would get from them - now I can see how helpful they would be.

Keep enjoying these last days of Summer. For those who have already returned to school or who have already sent their kids back to school, Welcome Back!

Monday, August 11, 2008

Twinklings I

Here is one of of the ornaments I finished last week. This is Twinklings I from the Twinklings pack from Just Nan. This was a quick stitch and I love how easy it is to finish them off in a WhimZi frame.

The Cherry Blossoms Biscornu and fob from my last post are from The Sweetheart Tree. This year, Sandie is releasing biscornu kits that coordinate with some of her most popular scissor fob designs. Over time, she has said that she will release designs for various other stitching smalls to coordinate with these designs and create whole sets of stitching goodies.

I have some other stitching in the works but it is all for exchanges. I can't wait for one particular exchange to be sent and received. I am really enjoying stitching this piece and I can't wait to show a picture of it.

Must be off before the thunderstorm causes another power outage. Have a great week.

Friday, August 08, 2008

Wow! I can't believe its been over a month since my last post. Its been a really busy month too!

My family and I had a wonderful trip down south. We took the Auto Train from Virginia down to Florida and it was wonderful. It was far cheaper than flying for the three of us and that doesn't even count what it would cost to rent a minivan while staying down there. Even better, you can bring all of your stuff - whatever you can pack in your car stays in your car. No limitations on bags to check, bottles of liquids or gels or whatever. We were able to travel with all of the comforts that we usually have in the car, (games and snacks and such) plus I was able to bring a huge amount of the most popular stitching supplies for filling orders while we were away.

We had beautiful weather while we were away and we spent most of it outside and sightseeing so I didn't complete a whole lot of stitching. I am just now (a week later) finishing all of the laundry and cleaning. I'm not sure how long it will take to finish the garden. Apparently three weeks with lots of rain is just long enough to grow the strongest, heartiest weeds ever.

I did manage some stitching and I have packaged up a few items to mail out today for exchanges (no pics yet). I also finished my travel stitching project which came out nicely. I originally finished the Cherry Blossoms fob with the beaded edge, but I found that threads kept becoming caught on the beads. So I removed the beaded edge. I did finish it with the twisted cord and tassel.

I am waiting on some specialty threads for nearly all of my other Works in Progress. Hopefully I'll have some more pics of those once my braids and silks arrive.

Happy Summer everyone. Enjoy it while its here.