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Monday, December 31, 2007

New Year's Eve

Happy New Years 2

First, I want to wish everyone a Happy and Safe New Year's Eve. I know our friends in Australia and New Zealand are already celebrating the New Year so Happy New Year those of you who have already changed calendars! I believe it's Summer there as well!

I started stitching this little ornament on Saturday:

Kitten Ornament

I don't know what I was thinking when I did that Feather Stitch. Instead of stopping at the seam, I just kept on going! Guess I was into it!

There's no mistakes with Crazy Quilting so although it looks a little funny to me, I already have a plan for making it less conspicuous.

I'm not sure if I'll do any stitching later or not. Scott and I are going to go see National Treasure the afternoon and then have an early dinner. When we get home, I may stitch or I may read. Not sure yet. It depends on what's on television! I'm not much of a party girl and midnight is way past my bedtime so the New Year for me, will come without much notice on my part!

Have a safe holiday everyone!

Saturday, December 29, 2007

A Quick Kitty & Me News Brief

Happy New Year 1

I didn't post yesterday because I was in a "mood". It was just the weather. I could physically and emotionally feel the storm coming and going through and it was just better that I didn't post. Basically, like my mom always says, if you don't have something nice to say, don't say anything.

The storm has passed and the driveway cleaned up so my mind is in a better place today. I did start on a little stitching project yesterday but it's a gift so I won't post a photo of it until a later date. This is a small project and I'll probably have it finished this afternoon and then I'll start something else. Haven't decided on what yet but I'll let you know when I know!

Just as a reminder, the 2008 Valentine Mystery Stitch-Along starts this coming Thursday, January 3rd. I don't mean to keep repeating myself here but I don't want anyone to miss out if they want to join in. I know there are still holiday festivities going on and I know there are holiday bills to deal with but I also know that January is one long, boring month and the Valentine Mystery will certainly be helping me get through it! No, I won't be stitching it but I sure do enjoy watching everyone else work on the project! Anyway, if you've been meaning to treat yourself to a fun project, you can find it here. There are also some new patterns there just released the other day so if you have time, you might want to check them out and think about your 2008 cross stitch projects!

As for my projects, I have a bunch of them planned but in no certain order for any of them. One of my first larger projects (and not large by any means) will be a new purse for myself. I have a vintage photo of a 1920's lady sewing on an antique sewing machine. Hmmmmm.......does that remind you of anything? Ha, ha, ha! Well, you know I had to do something with that! It's already sewn into a 9 inch block and it's at the top of my list for 2008. I just thought I'd do a couple of small things first to get back into the swing of my stitching routine.

I also joined in on Sharon B's Take It Further Challenge which will start on the 1st. That will be a fun project and I will most certainly need a sewing day next week! It's a year long project so expect me to do a lot of chattering about that.

I have an order for a purse with orange sunflowers so I want to get that one taken care of ASAP. I need to get up to Michaels and see if I can find some small orange sunflowers. Then there's my peacock quilt but I need a frame for the side panels. Yes, another good excuse to go to Michaels Craft Store! Twist my arm, ooooh, that hurt! Ha, ha, ha!

Oh and then there's the Valentine Purse that I sewed up with another 1920's lady on it dressed in pinks and then a lime green purse with a bright red cross stitched ladybug (one of my little designs) and of course, Comfort Cats and cellphone pouches and fish under the sea and my usual chatter. Then there's my crazy spontaneous ideas which you know will bug me until I do them......sigh!

I think 2008 will be an interesting year here at Kitty & Me. Be sure to tune in!

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Flowers & Hummingbirds

First, I wanted to share another photo of the Spring bulbs that Kim sent to me for Christmas:

Flowers from Kim

Are these beautiful or what?!!! I wish you could smell them. The scent is so strong, I can smell them here in my room which is off the kitchen. I have them in the Garden Window but I couldn't get the flash to go off so I set them on the countertop for the photo.

I've really enjoyed watching these grow and bloom and I'll feel a little sad when they're done. My husband promised me that as soon as he can get some pots of forced tulips, my Garden Window will be filled with those!

Another photo that I'd like to share with you today is the gift that I made for Kim for Christmas:

Hummingbird Pillow

Kim loves Hummingbirds as much as I do so I always think of her when I see one, be it a real one or an image of one. This image is from a CD collection of vintage images that I bought awhile back. I can't remember which one as I have several. Anyway, the moment I saw this little bird, I knew I had to make something for Kim with it!

I'm trying to decide at the moment what I want to stitch on. I have all sorts of things sewn up and ready for my craziness but I just haven't been able to choose from them all. Maybe I'll figure it out later today.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

New Releases

I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas holiday! My birthday was very nice and Christmas Day was lovely as well. It was sunny yesterday and 40 degrees and ya'll know, I'll love that sunshine! And thankfully, today is more of the same.

Thank you to everyone who wished me a Happy Birthday and Merry Christmas. I just love it when my readers leave me messages! Thank you everyone!

My in-laws headed home first thing this morning. It was so nice to have them here and I miss them already. In fact, I wandered around the house after they left in a bit of a daze. I so enjoyed their company, I almost didn't know what to do with myself!

Anyway, I wanted to let you know that these designs are now available:

Hearts And Flowers Biscornus

Butterfly Fantasy Blue

Butterfly Fantasy Pink

Butterfly Fantasy Yellow

You can find them in my Etsy shop. The Redwork Cat designs will be available soon. I still have to do the graphic work on them.

Also, the 2008 Valentine Mystery Stitch-Along starts on January 3rd. That's a week from tomorrow. You can find in my shop as well.

For today, I have to run up town and pick up a few groceries and then this afternoon, I'll put our gifts away and then probably relax and read. I'll be back tomorrow with some of my usual chatter!

Monday, December 24, 2007

Happy Christmas!

Victorian Santa

I wanted to stop in and wish everyone a very Happy and Safe Christmas holiday. With my inlaws here, I doubt I'll have time to post tomorrow.

Some of you may know that today is my birthday! Yes, I'm a Christmas Eve baby! We'll all be heading over to my mom's house later today and then again tomorrow.

I'll be back on Wednesday. I'll release those Hearts & Flowers Biscornu designs as well as the Butterfly Fantasy designs. I know I have readers who are waiting for them.

It may take me a little while to get back to a stitching project, although I'll admit, I'm starting to miss my stitching and my regular routine. December feels like it's just going on and on. I know some of that is the weather. Yesterday, we had terrible sixty mile per hour winds, blowing snow, bitter cold temps and ya'll know what that does to me! This has really been an active Winter weather month. Despite never having been to Florida, I daydream constantly of having a Winter house there and the financial freedom for Scott and I just pack up our stuff, our cats and go. I'm seeing palm trees and orange groves in my mind and quite vividly at that!

So I may return with more tidbits about me. After the response I received (Thank you everyone!) the other day in regards to my personal beliefs, I will probably be more open and willing to share my personal self with my readers rather than hiding behind the facade of professionalism. After all, I'm a real person sitting here behind the keyboard.

So, I will end here and wish you all again, a very Happy Christmas! May no one end up with a
Sugar Rush from eating too many Christmas Cookies!

Hugs to you all!

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Reading Material & Cat Pattern

While out running my errands, I was trying to think of something interesting to talk about today. With my mind on the upcoming holiday and no stitching project going at the moment, I was at a loss!

I remembered that Susan asked me the other day what I was reading so I thought I'd talk about that.

Actually, I hesitated to mention it at first since my choice of reading material is considered to be rather controversial among the norm. I have been told in the past that my business could possibly suffer from my "crazy ideas and beliefs" and that it would be best to keep this sort of thing to myself. (Please apply the utmost sarcasm on my part in reference to that statement.)

After thinking about it and after all the years that I have been designing needlework, I do feel that my work now speaks for itself. I've openly mentioned before that I don't subscribe to any conventional religious belief but rather, I believe we create our own reality.

With all that said, and probably unnecessarily, I am reading The Seth Books by Jane Roberts. If you aren't familiar with The Seth Books, Jane Roberts was a channel (a type of medium) who was able to quiet her mind enough for a non-physical being who called himself Seth, to speak through her. So the books are actually written by Seth, through Jane Roberts and dictated to Jane's husband Rob. Seth's books are about the nature of reality.

Certainly, these are not the first books on this subject that I've read. I have dozens of books on the "Laws Of The Universe" and the nature of reality but I must tell you, Seth's books are rather advanced and certainly, the most fascinating reading I've ever done!

I wouldn't recommend them to someone who is new to this type of material. Well, certainly not until they've become familiar with the subject on a more basic level. For a newbie, I recommend The Abraham Books by Esther and Jerry Hicks. Abraham is group of non-physical beings. They call themselves, Abraham and they speak thought another channel named, Esther. And in this case as well, Esther's husband Jerry takes dictation. After the Abraham books have been read, the Seth books will be easier to comprehend.

So far, I've read The Nature Of Personal Reality, The Magical Approach and Seth Speaks. I finished Seth Speaks last night. I stopped at Borders this morning and bought The Seth Material. I can't wait to curl up on my sofa and dive in!

So that's a little bit of personal stuff about me. See, I told you you might find out some interesting little tid-bit about me!!!

Anyway, before I end for the day, I wanted to share this link with you courtesy of Pat Winter. Several of my readers have asked me if I would share my cat pattern and I've stated that I prefer to keep that pattern for my personal use. I checked out the link that Pat provided yesterday to the "Best Free Craft Articles" blog and here, I found a sweet little cat pattern. It's not at all like mine, but it is a cat and you can enlarge it a bit. It's near the bottom of the page so if you're on dial-up (like me) grab a cuppa while you're waiting for the page to load. It's well worth the wait!

Friday, December 21, 2007

A Touch Of Spring

Today, I thought I'd share a photo of the gift that Kim (my model stitcher) sent to me:

Spring Flowers From Kim Christmas 2007

Is there anything more beautiful than Spring flowers?! Kim knows that I just can't stand Winter. The only thing that really helps me get through the cold, dark, dreary days of December & January is the fact that Spring is the next season. And do I ever love Spring!

Well, Kim sent me this basket of gorgeous Spring bulbs and they're just now starting to open. In fact, I went into this kitchen this morning and I could smell them! I have them in my Garden Window and what a cheerful sight they are! And, they're purple! My favorite color. Thank you Kim! They are so beautiful! I will post another photo in a day or two when they open up a little more.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

2008 Projects

I mentioned yesterday that I doubt I'll have any stitching to share until after Christmas now. With my in-laws coming on Saturday, I just don't feel like starting on a project and then having to put it down. It's ok as sometimes it's good to take a break.

Sharon B. was recently discussing her philosophy on the "Slow Cloth". Basically, that would be the type of craft that one would take the time to plan out and orchestrate slowly with an emphasis on detail, technique and craftsmanship. Not necessarily something worked entirely by hand but not one of those "whip it in 5 minutes" type of craft projects. To read Sharon's post on this subject, please click here.

Sharon was wondering if we need a better definition for well-thought-out projects that take time to create. I do believe there is a place for the "whip it up" type of projects. It's not what I do or would want to do but I know there are people out there who don't have time or patience for anything but the simple craft project. I do feel that there needs to be a separation in this area rather than all craft projects being lumped into one catagory.

If you have any thoughts on this, feel free to leave a comment here or better yet, since is Sharon's discussion really, leave a comment on her blog.

I've been thinking a lot lately about Sharon's post on this subject and it's made me re-evaluate my own projects. Generally, I don't start something that I can't see myself finishing. I really don't have any UFO's so to speak. A couple of Works In Progress yes, but nothing that I can't bring myself to finish.

You may remember my antique crazy quilt that I bought over the Summer and intended to repair. I'll admit, after starting on it, I do prefer to just do my own CQ projects from scratch. It isn't as much fun to repair an old one but I still intend to do so. Perhaps just a little at a time to get it to the point of it being stable so it doesn't deteriorate any further.

The only other project that I have going is a "sane" patchwork quilt that I started a few years back and only work on in the Winter months. The quilt is done but I've been hand-quilting it and decided that that is just too boring for me. Thankfully, it's almost done and I hope to have it completed by the end of the Winter. From now on, when I get a bee in my bonnet to make a patchwork quilt, I will either tie it or I will machine quilt it.

I can see now that for the most part, my choice of stitching projects is based on what will hold my attention long enough to see it through to completion. For the most part, I choose small projects that I can do in a couple of weeks. It's not so much that I like to have a lot of finished projects to show for my time, but rather avoiding a feeling of being overwhelmed. I do get bored with projects that take more than a few weeks to finish.

It may come from my over-active sense of creativity. I always have a lot of ideas floating around in my head and although I don't keep a "visual journal" as many artists like to do, I do keep a list of the ideas that I really like and want to eventually create in a physical form.

I do have several projects planned for 2008. First is that I plan to partake in Sharon's Take It Further Challenge. This is a year long project where Sharon will post a concept for stitcher's to work with.

The challenge is to take the idea, develop it and push it towards a resolved design during that month. In other words you interpret the idea and apply it to fiber or paper.

Stitcher's can work in their normal medium, for example, in my case, I will be working in the CQ mode. I will be stitching each month on a different 9 inch block and when the year is over, I will assemble them into a quilt.

You may remember that I didn't stay with the TAST challenge. I fully intended to but at one point, I got busy with my work and couldn't keep up and then in other cases, I couldn't apply the weekly stitch to my current project. I also realized that learning new stitches just wasn't what I was interested in. I always go back to and use the basics. Those simple basic stitches that I learned as a child and I will honestly and openly tell you that I am absolutely ok with that! For me, crazy quilting isn't really about the stitches. It's about the over all composition and balance of a piece. And of course, it's about the embellisments!

The other project that I am planning on doing is my Peacock Quilt. It's all pieced but I can't remember when I did the piecing so I can't find the photo in my Flickr album. Anyway, back in the 80's, I stitched a peacock on black satin. It was a pre-stamped design and I never finished it into anything. I came across the stitched piece over the Summer and decided to make it a focal point with CQ worked on either side of it. I still have to pick up a frame that the CQ panels will fit on or I have to ask my husband to make one for me. I really dislike stitching without some sort of hoop or frame to hold onto.

Of course, in between the Take It Further Challenge project and the Peacock Quilt, I will be doing some more purses, some cellphone pouches and of course, more cats for the Comfort Doll Project.

Well, I guess that's quite a bit of rambling for one day. I'll end here and be back tomorrow with more one whatever pops into my head!


Wednesday, December 19, 2007

December News Brief

Well, whatever annoying little bug found it's way into my system, I'm glad to say that it is now on it's merry way. Elvis has left the building! Thank you to everyone who sent me their kind wishes.

I thought I would write up a simple news brief today. I don't expect to get much stitching done in the next week or so. My in-laws are coming up on Saturday and will stay until next Wednesday. I had thought about taking a "blog break" but honestly, I like blogging and I'm sure I have readers who actually enjoy and look forward to my ramblings! Just to warn you though, heaven only knows what I'll be chatting about this coming week. My thoughts are up for grabs here so you may read about some personal aspect of my life, or possibly some deep insights on creativity. I may find some interesting link to share with you and of course, it's possible (very) that I'll whine about the Winter weather. I guess it'll depend on my mood.

I was asked about release dates for the Butterfly Fantasy designs as well as the Hearts & Flowers Biscornu's:

Hearts And Flowers Biscornus

I will release those designs immediately after Christmas. Either on the 26th or the 27th. I didn't see any point in releasing the designs now as I'm sure everyone is getting ready for the holiday and in many cases, putting their stitching down for the time being.

I would like to mention that all the designs in my Etsy shop are exclusive to Etsy. They are only available through me. You will not find them in catalogs, other online shops or local needlework shops. When I started designing needlework (eons ago) I decided at the time that I wanted to design needlework. Not spend my time messing with print shops and distributors. That's why I started out working with magazines and manufacturers. My thoughts were, "let them take care of the printing and I can do what I enjoy doing".

A few months back, I was going to close down my Etsy shop but I was still getting requests for some of my previous designs and it occurred to me to just keep it and perhaps add a few new things to it. Also, since I'm back in the swing of doing mystery projects, it's a easy place for stitcher's to order and sign up for them.

If you decide to order any of my designs, what you will get is a large print, easy to read B/W symbol chart printed out from my pattern software and inkjet printer with a color image of the design. Nothing fancy. What you'll be stitching from is the same thing I stitch from. In my opinion, the design is the focal point. Not some fancy expensive commercially printed leaflet. I print them up one at a time as the orders come in.

I've also decided to add a few more of my stitched pieces to the shop as there are always ideas floating around in my head that I have to actually create in physical form (if I don't, it'll bug me) but they aren't necessarily items or designs that I would use myself. I love making cellphone pouches but in all honestly, I don't use them.

Well, my father just stopped by so I will continue with my ramblings tomorrow and news brief tomorrow.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

A Bit Under The Weather

I've been a bit under the weather with what I think is some annoying little flu bug. I don't know how I could have that since I got myself a flu shot back in October. It isn't the "flu from Hades" that I had a few years back but it's enough to slow me down a bit.

Yesterday I was so tired and my mind was terribly spacey. That seems to have passed but my back is achy today. I'm sure by tomorrow, the worst will have passed.

I have to run to WalMart for a few things and then I'll take it easy for a few hours and perhaps wrap gifts this afternoon.

I don't plan on any stitching today. I'll probably just read like I did yesterday. I just wanted to say hello and let you know that I'm here, just not quite up to par today.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Ocean Goddess Pouch

I got in some stitching time yesterday and finished up this little project:

Ocean Goddess Pouch

I really love doing seascapes but the funny thing is, I've never seen an ocean. I'm guessing some of my inspiration comes from what I see on television. We really don't watch much network TV. We prefer The Science Channel, The Learning Channel and The Discovery Channels. And of course, the big joke in my family, The Food Network. As you know, I don't cook!

There really is something peaceful about seashells and creating an ocean garden.

I'll get this sewn up on my next sewing day and add it to my Etsy shop.

Also, I don't mean to sound redundant but being that it's Christmas time, I don't want anyone to miss out on this:

The 2008 Valentine Mystery Stitch-Along starts on January 3rd. It's always more fun to start from the beginning. You can order this here.

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Weekend Ramblings

First, I'd like to say thank you to everyone who left a comment about my antique sewing machine. I really enjoy reading your comments even though I don't always reply personally. Many times, if someone leaves me a question, I just answer here in case other readers were wondering the same thing. That's what I'll do now with a question. The question is:

What needle do I use for Kreinik #4 Braid? I usually use a tapestry needle when I use the #4 on CQ's. For X stitch, I use (I believe) a #14 X stitch needle. My suggestion is to fold the #4 Braid in 1/2, pinch the thread with your fingers as close to the top of that loop as possible and try pushing that through the needle. That usually works for me. The metallic threads can be a challenge to work with but the results are so totally worth the effort!

Back to my antique sewing machine, I can't tell you how many times since we brought it home, that I've sat on my cedar chest and just about brought myself to tears with gratitude for it. I've wanted one for a year and 1/2 now.

I saw an antique treadle machine at a flea market back in May of 2006. It wasn't a Singer, it was a rare European machine, only in fair condition but I was fascinated with it. I remember thinking that I would like to have one someday but that I would want to have a Singer and that I wanted one in very good condition. I didn't think about it much after that, until Spring of this year when my neighbor mentioned (out of the blue) to me that his girlfriend has one. Then I remembered that I wanted one and started thinking about it more and more. We kept looking at flea markets and antique shops and we really starting seeing them but most were in very rough condition. When this one came along, I knew the moment I saw it on Ebay that it was my machine. It was Pick-Up only but I just knew it was my machine when I saw that it was just over the border in Iowa. Just a 3 hour drive away! And thankfully, my husband was more than willing to drive to Iowa to pick it up.

When he said that he was going to strip it and refinish it for me, I think that blew my mind! I never expected that. It didn't even occur to me to ask him if he would refinish the cabinet. I was just happy to have one but he insisted. So yes, I look at it and quite often, I'm overwhelmed with a sense of gratitude. I'm just so thankful to have this beautiful antique machine.

I've sat there, looking at it, wondering about the women who originally owned it and what sort of things she made on it. Clothes? Quilts? I will never know but I hope that where ever she is now, that she knows her beautiful machine is so much loved and appreciated.

Ok, I don't get mushy too often but ya'll know I have a thing for "moldy oldy stuff" as my sister puts it! "You and that moldy oldy stuff" she always says! Yeah, I really do have an appreciation for old things. I just love them!

Anyway, I finished up my Blizzard purse yesterday (on my electric machine) so here is a photo of that:

Blizzard Purse

I had wanted some white foo-foo fringe for the bottom but I couldn't find any anywhere! I thought white would look like icicles. Instead, I had to settle for the aqua blue foo-foo fringe but it works nicely. I'll probably start using this one a few days before New Years.

I also thought you would enjoy this photo:

Lucy In Chair

This gorgeous little creature is our Lucy. She's 7 pounds of hair! Ha, ha, ha! Honestly, she is the sweetest, happiest little kitty you will ever meet. My husband rescued her back in 1999. She was only 8 months old at the time, filthy, matted, covered in weeds. Our vet literally had to shave her. We never would have gotten her brushed out.

Lucy worships the ground that Scott walks on. She looks at him like he's Zeus! She follows him everywhere and she talks to him constantly. And he absolutely adores her.

Anyway, I thought she looked so cute sleeping in the chair so I took a picture.

Last but not least, this is my little 2 foot Christmas tree:

Tree

I'm not huge on Christmas for the most part. My favorite holiday's are Thanksgiving and St. Patricks Day. Don't ask why for St. Pats Day. I have no idea. I think it's just because it's the beginning of Spring! Anyway, I didn't feel like putting up the big tree so I brought this one out. It's just enough to add a nice Christmas feeling to the Living Room without seeming overwhelming, esp. when it comes to putting it away!

Well, that's my post for the day. I know much of it is a bit off topic. I usually stay with my general needlework theme but I'm waiting for my husband to get home from work so I thought I'd just share a little bit of personal stuff with you today.

Friday, December 14, 2007

1916 Singer Model 66 Treadle Sewing Machine

I didn't do any stitching yesterday. I was so cold all day, from being out in the morning, that I grabbed a quilt and a book and curled up on my sofa and read all afternoon.

Since I don't have any stitching to share today, I thought you would enjoy seeing my antique sewing machine. In case you're visiting my blog for the first time, I've been wanting an antique treadle machine for quite awhile. I finally found one in very good condition about a month ago. My husband decided to refinish the cabinet for me. It still needs the new lock bezels and he wants to go over the gold paint on the stand with another coat but for the most part, it's done:

1916 Singer Model 66 Sewing Machine

The original finish on the cabinet was quite dark. My mom told me that it was typical in the "old days". Well, I prefer natural oak so after striping all the old dark finish off of this, Scott just sealed it with clear finish. The wood is Tiger Oak. It has the most beautiful grain!

Here's a close-up of the machine:

1916 Singer Model 66 Sewing Machine

It was quite dirty and dingy. Scott used Turtle Wax to clean and polish the outside. That sure brightened it up! This machine has what they call, the "Red Eye" decal. Be sure to click on the photo to go to my Flickr site where you can see a large version. The detail in the decals is so beautiful!

I took the machine to the Singer man and he took care of cleaning it up mechanically and re-aligning something on it. We have the new belt on as well so it's just about ready to go! Since my mom learned how to sew on one of these, she's going to come over and show me how to treadle. I'm really looking forward to playing! I sure hope I enjoy treadling after all the work my husband put into making this so nice for me!

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Ocean Goddess Pouch Continued.....

I started stitching on this little pouch yesterday:

Ocean Goddess Pouch

It looks a bit goofy at the moment but once I get some seashells and fish on here, I think you'll get the idea of what I'm going for!

If you're wondering how I did the embellishing around the face, I do it in layers. First, I did the SRE, then I added the beads and tiny shells and finally the star sequins.

The fancy yarn went on first, then the art doll face and then the embellishing around the face. The background fabric is one of my painted dryer sheets fused to a piece of muslin with Heat & Bond. Then I added some pulled silk cocoons and some Angelina Fiber.

I'd like to get this completed today but I need my husband to drill some holes in seashells for me.

I'm planning on doing some finishing tomorrow. I at least want to get my Blizzard purse sewn up.

You've probably noticed that I have a bit of routine when it comes to stitching and sewing. I like to have a pile of pre-sewn blocks all ready to stitch on so I'll take a day here and there and just sew up blocks.

When it comes to finishing, I usually wait until I have a few things and then do them all at once. For some reason, I only like to sew during the day. Evenings for me are for stitching or reading. I know that many of my readers wonder how I get so much stitching accomplished. I just always have something ready to stitch on and sitting out. I can't sit still doing nothing for very long. Stitching quiets my head so my project is always sitting on the coffee table ready to be worked on. I see it and I stitch.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Art Doll Faces

I finished this little one up last night:

Art Doll Pouch

What a fun project this was! The gold really brought that wild block together.

I've been wanting to do another seascape so I decided I would do a "Goddess Of The Sea" pouch next:

Ocean Goddess Pouch

I'll use another one of those Poly Clay faces that I made along with some little fish and shells. Stop by tomorrow for an update on that.

As for my antique sewing machine, it's all done now except for one tiny thing. My husband still has to put the new bezels on that go in the lock holes. There were several missing so we bought new ones. I'm hoping tomorrow to have a photo of it for you. Wait until you see it! It's gorgeous!

And, on a further happy note, the sun is out here! I'll admit, with the sun shining on the ice coated trees, it's very glittery outside at the moment. Although as much as I like glitter, I do prefer it on my stitching rather than my backyard trees! Thankfully, Mother Nature will have that taken care of in a few hours!

New Kitty & Me Designs Coming Soon......

Butterfly Fantasy Designs:

Butterfly Fantasy Blue

Butterfly Fantasy Pink

Butterfly Fantasy Yellow

Hearts & Flowers Biscornu's

Hearts And Flowers Biscornus

Also coming soon, REDWORK CATS!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Give Away

I have an extra copy of the December/2007 issue of The Cross Stitcher magazine. I did a pretty santa design for this issue!

The Cross Stitcher Magazine 12/07

I will gladly send it to the first person who posts a comment here telling me that they want it. US residents only please!

Monday, December 10, 2007

Playing With Poly Clay

I've never been very creative with Poly Clay. I love to play with it but despite project books and internet ideas, I've just never been able to come up with anything all that interesting.

I finally decided to buy some flexible molds for the enjoyment of doing something constructive with the clay. My creativity will be in the form of using what I made.

I did these over the weekend:

Poly Clay

The little art doll faces kind of look like aliens to me at the moment! Once I embellish them, they'll be really pretty!

I plan to do some SRE around them and then embellish them further with beads and sequins. I thought a few of those would be nice to send to Pat for the Comfort Doll project. I may use one on a cellphone pouch and a few pins might be nice too. The little flowers of course, will be for sewing onto CQ's.

Before I baked them, I brushed on some Pearl-Ex power which is made by Jacquard. That gives them that very metallic look. I still have to glaze these which I'll do today and hopefully, I might be stitching with one of them later!

Saturday, December 08, 2007

The Blizzard Is Done!

Well, almost. I'll sew this up sometime this coming week:

Blizzard Purse

Is this glittery or what?!!!! It sparkles so much, that it really is almost blinding in the light! And that's what I wanted. I'll post another photo when I get it sewn together.

I haven't decided for sure on my next project. I have a couple more purse blocks all ready to stitch on, a few cellphone pouches and a couple of Valentine projects. I just have to pick one.

And Scott said that my antique sewing machine is almost ready. He expects to have it completely done by the end of the weekend. I'm so looking forward to treadling! As soon as it's ready, I'll post a photo of it. He's done such a great job on refinishing the cabinet and cleaning up the machine. It's gorgeous! I expect you'll get to see in the next couple of days!

Friday, December 07, 2007

More Snow!

And not just on this purse! But I'll spare you my whining today! Ha, ha, ha!!!

Yes, I did a lot of beading on this yesterday:

Blizzard Purse

The silver snowflake at the bottom right is a pin that I bought at a flea market back in November.

Scott drilled some extra holes in my big blue snowflake so that will be going on today along with more beads and more sequins.

It isn't quite blinding yet, but it's getting there!

My post tomorrow will be a little later in the day. Scott and I are planning on finishing up our Christmas shopping. We just have a little left to do. I will post an update on this purse tomorrow though, just check in a little later than normal.

Pearl Harbor Day - Ginger's Diary

I post this link every year on Pearl Harbor Day. Ginger was a 17 year old girl living at Hickam Field, Hawaii in December of 1941. Here you will find her account of the events of her life leading up to the bombing as well as an account of the actual event itself through the eyes of this teenage girl. It's a fascinating and interesting view of the historical "Day Of Infamy".

Ginger's Diary

Thursday, December 06, 2007

The Blizzard Continues

I had quite a few hours to stitch on this yesterday:

Blizzard Purse

It's really looking glittery! But it isn't blinding yet! Ha, ha, ha! It needs more sequins!

Ironically, they're calling for more snow here tonight. Oooh, I just can't wait to clean off the driveway again! NOT! Oh well, I do have more stitching time in the Winter. It's just too cold to sit outside. When the temps are in the upper 30's & 40's, I like to sit on the front porch for a little while in the afternoon. The sun (when we have it) is bright out there on the porch. Right now, it's too cold. At least Spring is the next season! I should probably be making a purse with palm trees and coconuts on it!

Don't forget, the 2008 Valentine Mystery Stitch-Along starts on January 3rd. I know it's hard to think of Valentine's Day at Christmastime but since we start right after the New Year, I had to plan ahead! You can find more information here.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Blizzard Purse

We woke up to 6 inches of snow this morning. I'll spare you the disaster photos! Honestly, is there a rock somewhere with some written law on it that says it HAS to snow in Northern Illinois in December? The news people mentioned this morning that they thought it was so pretty outside. Excuse me? Pretty is 80 degrees and sunny! This is a sloppy mess!

I can't say that I don't like snowflakes. I just prefer artistic renditions of them as opposed to having them in my reality:

Blizzard Purse

I guess in some ways, this purse is kind of a poetic joke! It's no secret that I'm intolerant of Winter. The snow, the cold and the extra hours of darkness get to me. By the end of January, I usually have cabin fever so bad, I can't stand myself! I thought it would help to have a special purse just for that month. Calling it "The Blizzard Purse" is my sense of humor trying to make light of what I find to be the most annoying and inconvenient time of year. I will have a Winter house in Florida some day!

So on to what I did here. I used a combination of Carol Samples "Dream A Seam" Templates as well as my Waste Canvas technique.

The seam at the top between the two pieces of lace was one of Carols Templates. Once I had that stitched, I lined up a piece of waste canvas over the top to do the Fan Stitches. I have this thing about perfect fans!

Anyway, I used another of Carols templates for the Cretan Stitch and then I free-handed the Lazy Daisy stitches. The Buttonhole stitches were done with the templates and then the snowflakes and the fans at the bottom were done with Waste Canvas.

I really want to experiment more with the templates but that will come in time. For now, I'm doing my best to focus on anything but the weather. If you're interested in the Dream A Seam Templates, you can find them at Evening Star Designs.

I've been collecting snowflake sequins and buttons. I also have some flower appliques that resemble snowflakes so I plan to pull those out later and dye them in shades of blue. I'll probably add glitter to them too. I want this purse to be so sparkley that it's blinding to look at in the sun! If we ever see that again!

And speaking of snowflakes, I must tell you, I'm addicted to designing Biscornu's! I haven't stitched a-one yet but I absolutely love doing designs for them. I just finished a set of 4 Biscornu designs with snowflakes, each one in a different pastel color. I'll have those ready soon. In the meantime, I have to clean up the driveway. Argggggg........

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

More Finishes

I am all caught up on finishing now! I sewed up this little custom cellphone pouch yesterday:

Black Neck Pouch

I love making these! And those little crocheted beaded fringes that my mom makes for me are the perfect finishing touch!

I also finished up this tote bag for my mother in law for her birthday which ironically, is the same day as mine, Christmas Eve:

Car Tote Bag

Heaven help me though, I don't know what I was thinking when I decided to use Panne Velvet on the back and as borders. It's stretchy fabric and although I used some iron-on interfacing on the back of it, it still wanted to shift on me and it made me insane! My personal preference is Velveteen. The only colors I can find it in are black, emerald green and cranberry. Do they make it in brown? If any one comes across some brown Velveteen, would you please pick some up for me? I will pay for the fabric and the postage!

Anyway, those are my photos for the day. I did start on the Blizzard purse but I didn't get very far on that so I'll post an update on it tomorrow.

Comfort Dolls By Mom

Well, my mom has been quite busy making Comfort Dolls!

Moms Pocket Babies

She had them packed up so nicely in this box, I didn't want to take it all apart but there are actually 2 layers of these little Pocket Babies in here! I think mom said she did 25 all together!

She also made this little doll:

Moms Embroidered Comfort Doll

My photo is a bit fuzzy. This little doll is crayon tinted, embroidered, it has lace on it and beads and then mom made that pretty little bag for her! Again, I didn't want to take it apart but I thought you would like to see these.

I've already been to the Post Office today so these are now on their way to Pat. Also, I mailed off all orders today. We're supposed to get some snow later so I thought I'd better get my orders out now in case I can't get into town tomorrow.

Monday, December 03, 2007

New Projects

I was asked to do a custom cellphone pouch in black fabrics. I sewed this up the block on Saturday and I stitched it up yesterday:

Butterfly Pouch

Yes, I got a lot done yesterday despite running to Michaels and WalMart. I actually started on this pouch at 3:30 a.m. My rude neighbors felt that 3:30 in the morning would be a good time to ride their snowmobiles up and down my street. Scott and I decided to overlook it this time because it was the first snow of the season but if there's a next time, I will be calling the police!

Anyway, so I have it all stitched now and will do with machine & hand finishing today.

My next CQ project will be a purse:

Winter Purse

Ya'll know how much I love Winter.....NOT! Actually, Winter wouldn't be so bad if it wasn't cold and it didn't snow. And if I didn't have rude neighbors with snowmobiles! Ha, ha, ha!

Well, I thought a special purse just for the month of January would be something nice to help get me through the wicked month.

The blue snowflake is an acrylic ornament I found at Hobby Lobby. I can sew that on but I think I'll need Scott to drill a few extra holes in it for me.

Also, look closely at the lace. Do you notice anything interesting? I want this to be so glittery that it's almost blinding to look at in the sunlight. Just like real snow! I painted on some fabric glue with a small paintbrush and then I sprinkled on some very fine glitter. Is that too cool or what?!!!

So after I do some more finishing on my sewing machine today, I want to start on this.

I'm also wanting to pull out my vintage iron-on transfers and stitch some things from those and I'm wanting to pull out my box of Poly-Clay and play with that. Geez! Too bad I have to take the time to sleep at night. Maybe the snowmobiles aren't such a bad thing after all! No one can accuse me of not having ambition!

BTW - if anyone is looking for the 2008 Valentine Mystery Stitch-Along Project, you can find it here. It starts on January 3rd. I gave this one a lot of lead-time due to the Christmas Holiday.

Sunday, December 02, 2007

Crazy Quilt Cat Dolls

I'm running a bit late today! Scott and I went out for breakfast this morning and then stopped at Michaels and (heaven help me) WalMart!

Anyway, here are the latest 3 cat dolls:

Cat Dolls 3

If you're interested in adopting one, you can find them here.

Saturday, December 01, 2007

Purple Cat Doll

Yesterday was a "sewing marathon" day! I pieced a dozen cat dolls and did the finishing on a project for Kim, my model stitcher. When I finished up with that, I completed the stitching on the Purple Cat Doll:

Cat Doll Purple

Today will be another marathon sewing day! I want to do the finishing on these last 3 cat dolls and then I plan to do some more foundation piecing. Stop by tomorrow to see the finished cat dolls!
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