Monday, December 29, 2014

Happy Monday!

I have a confession to make. I was so excited to start one of the projects on my list (the mouse), that I started right away on it, and totally forgot about my Saturday SAL project. The past 3 days I managed to get in close to 11 hours of time on my little mousie. That estimate includes the time I spent gridding, too.

Some story on this, I only marked the center with my marker and started right away with stitching. I only got a few stitches in when I realized that I really will need the fabric gridded, rather than winging it. My very first horizontal line was, of course, one count off. Rather than try to fix it, I just drew in the correct line and will disregard the extra one. That explains the extra line on the fabric. I also didn't want to get too close with the marker to the few stitches that I had already done, which is why there are a couple tiny areas with no marker. It's barely noticeable, though.

Here he is so far:

I know, not much to look at right now. I also have no idea why I decided to complete one color in entirety first, but it just seemed like the thing to do. Because of the way I did this, though, I won't be able to keep track of my progress, stitch- and percentage-wise.
Also, the whole thing is actually a rectangle, but the outer corners were charted as white on white. To save my sanity and hours of unneeded stitching, I am skipping the outer white parts and only doing the oval.

Friday, December 26, 2014

Very Merry Christmas!

I had a good Christmas this year.
My husband and I looked through the house, and it does look like I accidentally threw away that fabric for the 99 beers project! I'm mad at myself over that one. My mom did owe me a little money, though, so I'm having her buy me another one rather than pay me back. I will hopefully have the replacement in about a week.
Here is the picture of the rest of my fabric stash, though!

Also, my mom doesn't cross stitch any longer. I think it bothers her wrist and her eyes. So... she gave me all of her threads!
Unfortunately, my niece had gotten ahold of it and dumped out all of the floss boxes into a pile, so they are no longer organized. Here is what I got, though! (Yes, this is one of those huge ice cream buckets, overflowing)

I have also finally completed page 2 of my ginormous Qingming project! Yay!

I will be moving on, now to another project for a while. To help me decide which one, I entered all my new and current projects into a randomizer that I downloaded onto my phone, and it chose...
Mouse Embroider!

Edit: Update! I found my beer fabric! Hoo-ray!

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Upcoming projects

My new fabric order has arrived! Woohoo!
I don't have a picture of the new stash yet, but I figured I would make a post about my planned projects in the mean time. I'll post a picture of the fabric awesomeness once I can get a picture (and once I can find a part of it that I may or may not have accidentally thrown away!).

Here are my planned projects:

Chinese Phoenix, Joan Elliott

Giza (kit), Dome

Kyoto (kit), Dome
I've actually started this one, just a little bit in the corner. I'll post more on it later when I have some real progress to show.

Cut Thru Rocket

Hangin' with my Peeps, Sue Hillis

Pillage and Plunder, Sue Hillis

Boo-gie Fever, Sue Hillis
(Yes, I like Sue Hillis designs!)

The Day of the Dragon
(I couldn't find a better picture than this one)

London Calling
from The World of Cross Stitching #193, 8/2012

Panda Row
Discovery of the New World

Mouse Embroider
(Not sure of the actual real name of this one)

Kasuga Shrine, Nara

Aquarium, Susan Bates
from Cross Stitch Gold

Zojoji Temple
Aim Right
(Not sure of the actual name on this one, either)
(This from a Polish? magazine, and since I do not understand the language, the actual name of this one is a mystery, as well)

And last, we have the one I am most excited about (and the one that I think I may have accidentally thrown away the fabric for). A buddy and I are going to both be working on this one together. We are going to do it slowly, and actually try to sample each of the beers. Each update on this will be after we have tried a beer and stitched it. We will post our thoughts on the beer itself and what we liked/didn't like. I can't wait!
99 by Ink Circles

This is my crazy list! I don't think I forgot anything (the actual list is at home, so this is all I could remember). There is one more project I am planning to make, but I don't have the fabric for it, yet, as it is a little pricier than regular fabric.

Sleepy Hollow

Monday, December 22, 2014

IHSW, December 2014

It was IHSW this weekend! The last one of the year! I'm just glad that it will be continued. I enjoy participating whenever I get a chance. 

This month I worked on... you guessed it! Qingming! I didn't quite make it through page 2 like I was wanting, but I got really close! I only work 2 days this week, then I'm off the rest of the week, so I'm sure I'll get page 2 done very soon.

Here is where I was last update:

Here I am now:

All I have remaining on page 2 is just that small section including and below that blue spot (43) in the middle-ish, and maybe a little more lavender to the left.

I have a question for you guys that actually read my updates. I seriously appreciate my readers and the comments that keep me motivated to keep going! My question is this, do you guys like shorter times between updates, or do you prefer a longer stretch but with more progress?
I know this is a personal preference, and I figured I would get an idea of what others like. 

Thursday, December 18, 2014

I set a goal for myself

I have had most of the week off from work, so I set a goal for myself to finish page 2 of Qingming by the end of this weekend. Sadly, I don't think I'm going to make it. I am certainly going to keep trying, though. I may forgo Candy Cane Christmas this week to push for the page finish.
I would probably already be done with page 2 if I hadn't started on page 3 already with those 2 columns on the left. Oh well. That just gives me a head start on 3 once I have 2 finished. 

Here is where I was as of my last update:

Here is where I am now:

On another note, for those in favor of my wild shopping spree, although my bank account doesn't thank you, you will be pleased to know that I did go ahead and buy a bunch of fabric. It should be here soon! I can't wait!

Monday, December 15, 2014

Another Saturday done!

I got to work on my Candy Cane Christmas again this past Saturday. It may not seem like much, but it seemed to take forever filling in that gingerbread woman!

Here is where I was last:

And here is where I am now:

This weekend I also bought myself a plastic project keeper box to store this in when I'm not working on it. I love it so far. I may buy a couple more for my other projects so they don't get dirty/dusty while waiting for me to work on them.

On another note, it seems that everybody is in favor of my wild shopping spree. I have started making a list of the fabric I will need to buy. I may not buy it all in the same place, but I will post my stash once I get it (although it may not be until after the new year)!

Friday, December 12, 2014

Last peacock update for a couple weeks

I will not be in the office next week (taking most of the week off to use up vacation days), so I won't have any opportunity to work on the Peacock Tapestry.

Here is where I have left off, though:

I have completed 2 sides of the green!
I may post a picture later of what the back looks like. It almost appears like constellations, LOL.

On another note, I have a few more starts planned. So many things to make! My biggest problem is I have no fabric stash, so I will need to buy something for every single one. That's going to be a bit pricey. I may just suck it up and dig into my savings account and go hog wild buying things.
I haven't decided yet.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

I found a great picture!

I have found a great closeup picture of the section of Qingming that I am working on. I love having this picture so I know that mine is coming out the way it is supposed to, and now I can actually show people what this section will look like. Click on the picture to get an even closer look!

I have been working on this a lot this past week. Comparing the new picture with the last one, I can definitely see the sections that were done. Can you tell?

Last picture:

Latest progress:

I'm happy with my progress! I'll be even happier when I finish pages 2 and 3, and can move on to page 4 and work on buildings!

Monday, December 8, 2014

Saturday SAL update

In my endeavors to try and catch up on the Candy Cane Christmas project, I have gotten in some noticeable progress!
On Monday I finished up the second R and the candy cane. Tuesday provided the finish for the candy between the M and C. Then the rest of the progress was done Saturday!

Here I was when I last updated:

Here is where I am now:

Forgive the bad lighting in my pictures. It never fails, I'm usually in a rush to take a picture as I'm headed out the door, so I don't have time to get a better shot. You can still see the progress, though!

I was so worried about keeping up on this project, and somehow had it in my head that this would be completed by Christmas. I realize now, that this is not the case, so my freaking out has lessened. Although, if you count next Christmas, then we should be done by then... maybe...

Saturday, December 6, 2014

Friday update again!

I have picked up the Peacock Tapestry again! Yay! Not only that, but I have the border outline completed and I have been able to start another color!
Here is where I am so far:

I am going to be keeping this one at work to work on there, now that the pirate is done.

I have also picked up working on Qingming again. I couldn't resist! It feels so good to be stitching again after having done all the magnets. The change-up is exactly what I needed.
I am thoroughly enjoying stitching on Qingming right now. I just need to somehow come up with a stand or something for it. Having to hold that huge bolt of fabric on my lap while I work on it is getting annoying. Does anyone know of an inexpensive woodworker who can make custom pieces? I say custom because of not just the size of this thing, but the weight, as well. I think if I had something that would allow me to keep it rolled at the edges and scroll along with my progress, that would be best. I just have no idea where to start with something like that! I'll probably ask this same question several more times in the upcoming years as I work on this project.

Here is where I am on Qingming. Yes, I know that you really can't tell on the progress much for this one, since the design is printed on the fabric. Also, since the project is so large, even if I do 1000 stitches a day, it won't look like a lot. The progress is there, though, I promise! All the loose parked threads left out on this one were bothering me, so I went ahead and stitched those colors in first.

On another completely different note, I have figured out why I have been having sleeping issues lately. It turns out that this is one of the less common side effects of the medication I have been taking for my stomach problems. This knowledge won't help me sleep any better, but it does make me feel better knowing that I am not just going crazy! Once I am able to stop taking this medication, hopefully things will go back to normal.
I have made a change-up, though, to take the pill in the morning rather than in the evening. We'll see how well that does. 

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Missing my magnet mojo

I don't know if it is because I have been sick (I'm sure that it contributed a lot), but I seem to have lost my magnet mojo. I was going good there for a while, but things have fizzled. Now if only this stupid cold would fizzle out, I would be much happier.
I did buy the magnets to attach to the backs of all the ones that I made up to now, but I don't think I will make any more for a while.

Here is the pile of magnets that I ended up with. Not looking forward to all the gluing of magnets, though.

On another note, I have picked up cross stitching again. With my recent magnet push going, I have fallen behind on the Candy Cane Christmas Saturday SAL that I am working on with Miamina and Linda, so I actually worked on that one a little bit last night. I will post my progress on it after next weekend. I hope I am able to catch up (but if not, then I'll just be perpetually behind, I guess).

I actually like working on this with others. They are keeping me motivated to keep working on the project (the month of magnets aside). Once I catch up, I'll cut back to only Saturdays again and pick up something else. I think Qingming is the one calling me the loudest right now.

Monday, December 1, 2014

HAPs for 2015!

I am joining another SAL! Just what I need!
Starting in 2015, Crossed Stitches is hosting a new year HAP SAL. HAP is a new acronym (in case we didn't have enough)! It stands for Huge A** Project.
The rules are simple enough. The smallest dimension must be at least 300 stitches, and you have to have less than 50% completed when we start on Jan 1st, 2015.

Currently I am only working on 2 HAPs that fit this criteria.
  • San Francisco - 333 x 400
  • Qingming Festival - 280 x 8708
    • OK, I suppose technically this one doesn't quite count, as the smallest dimension is less than 300. However, considering the other side is over 8700, I think I can be forgiven this slight adjustment!
 I don't really expect to finish either of these next year (especially Qingming), but I certainly won't mind the progress!

Now, not only do we get a new, fun SAL to participate in, she is also having a drawing for participants at the end of the year! I can't wait to keep up with everyone's progress!