Friday, December 31, 2010

Farewell to 2010 - the Year of the SNOWMAN - and a Final TUSAL

Looking back at completed works - my list shows that this year I completed 12 snowmen.  A dozen Snowmen!!!!  yay!  This is my last one finished on the 29th.
Today I completed a scissor fob/ornament - taken from Martha's Sampler  Club Blog - the freebie chart I offered on the 1st Dec.

I still havea full WIP list - and will process that tomorrow and add it to the sidebar.

Today, in preparation for 2011 - the year of the SHEEP, I found some more snowmen charts that I wish I could have made the time to stitch.

My rule is that any new chart started in 2011, must be a Sheep Chart. The exception is WIP's, Halloween and Christmas, and any compassionate projects required. 

hmmm.... exceptions to rules...  that works for me.
So this afternoon, while the temperature outside zoomed to 40c, I gathered some aida and some floss and ferreted through the extra snowmen charts to find a few more that I could not live without.  I started:
  • Home Sweet Flaky Home - found in Stoney Creek Dec 07 issue
  • Snow Friends - Diane Arthurs chart - intended to be stitched as a triplet - not as a long strip
  • Winter Blues - a 2005 freebie from Stitchykitty
  • Sampler Winter - a 2008 freebie from Marika Belfiori's website
  • Winter Lineup - a chart from 2006 released by The Trilogy - Twisted Threads/Bent Creek/Heart in Hand
  • The Welcome Home Snowman - a small chart from Curtis Boehringer
  • The Design on the back cover - The End - another chart from Curtis Boehringer
Add those to the carry over WIP's for 2009 and I think I have a good start.
Tomorrow, New Year's Day - I start on my first Sheep Chart. I am infact, starting a Cy-Baaaa stitch-a-long with my friend Karen.  We are stitching something for the EWE Year!!  I'll post a pic tomorrow evening.

TUSAL - Time for me now to empty my decanter of all the threads collected for 2010 - ready to start afresh tomorrow morning - REMEMBER - THE NEXT NEW MOON FOR TUSAL IS JANUARY 4th.
What did/have/will you be doing with your 2010 TUSAL collection?

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Christmas 2010, Ornament Exchange, 2011 - Sheepy Stitching, TUSAL

Hello friends.
How wonderful was your Christmas Day?
Ours was a day full of family, food, wine, laughter and music.  My Dad spent a few days with us, visiting from Dimboola (a small country town in the Victorian Wimmera, halfway between Melbourne & Adelaide) and it was so good to have him here to share the day with us all.  I over-catered as usual, didn't have matching glasses, crockery, chairs or cutlery, but that didn't matter.  The weather was pleasant enough so that we didn't swelter or freeze and the wine was cold and the food was tasty!
Christmas Tablecloth motif for 2009 - adapted from the artwork of Peter Emmerich
I did manage to finish the square to symbolise Christmas 2009 - well, enough to fit on the table - I added the names yesterday and some backstitching - just now developing the photos, I see a small portion of her hair that needs fixing.  I'm not sure about the startled look she now has around the eyes, but without some sort of backstitching, her features fade.  I'll fix the hair today, but that will be enough time spent on that square.  (I chose the poor little matchgirl to symbolise the financial strain we were under at the time, having had to list the house on the market on the 15th Dec - the lit match symbolised hope for the future - and it was, as Martin started a job on 15th Jan, which meant the house could come off the market.  I don't ever want to go through another Christmas like that again!)I'll now be on the lookout for a suitable Santa to stitch to symbolise 2010
I must also credit the artist from whose artwork I have adapted for my tablecloth: Peter Emmerich - I thank him for allowing me to use his artwork for inspiration)
Here is also a picture of my Ornament Tree for this year - Harry doesn't want to contaminate the big tree with hand made ornaments (go figure!), so I have a smaller table top tree to hold my ornaments.  There peeking from the bottom, is the lovely snowman ornament received in my exchange from Pokua - wasn't she clever to choose a Snowman theme for me??
Sadly, not all the ladies in my exchange have received ornaments this year in time for Christmas, I suspect the abysmal weather has something to do with it, but also feel that the pixies in the Post Offices, in both the USA and Australia have been making mischief.  If I organise another ornament exchange - I may do it in August!!!!

Since my last post, I've managed to breeze past my 2nd blogaversary - in all the rush of Christmas it was sort of left behind - I just didn't have the time or the inspiration to post.  I will make up for that in the next week and give details of a giveaway - nothing big, but just a token to say 'Thank you' to my followers.

I'm not going to make up big lists of incomplete projects - just add to my WIP list.  I will keep track this year however, of all the patchworky projects and keep them separate from my cross-stitchy projects. I still like to think of myself as a cross-stitcher first.

I will spend the next day or so - lining up all the sheep projects for 2011.  I'm sure at some point in the year, I will acquire a skein of whisper, and use it to fluff up a sheep.  I even have a sheepish quilt in mind for a project.  I found the cuddly sheep last weekend at a market - named him Shawn and nominated him as my muse for 2011

Don't forget T.U.S.A.L. - I'll post a list of dates on the T.U.S.A.L. page - starting on the New Moon - 4th January - but first I would suggest that we all show our TUSAL collections on New Year's Eve, before emptying and starting afresh from January 1st - 4 days worth of orts to show again on the 4th.

I look forward to catching up with all my bestest blogging buddies over the next few days, another addiction that has inspired and challenged me over the past couple of years.   Keep an eye out for my next giveaway to be announced really soon!

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Christmas Tablerunners finished for workmates today.

Here are the finished tablerunners for my workmates - I kept the pointy ends as I felt that was part of the charm of the original pattern.  It was a bit fiddly, but I managed to get both of them finished today.  They each are the same pieces, but by changing the colour placement changes the design totally.
I also made another teabag wallet this morning in 20 minutes for a friend that I went to meet this morning - I still managed to put the loop for the button on the wrong side, so now 3 of the 4 made open up back to front!!
I now have just a few days to finish stitching the panel on this year's Christmas Heirloom Tablecloth - I just know that I'll be stitching frantically on Christmas Eve (again!!)

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Another Christmas Gift Obsession - Teabag Wallet!!

Surfing the blogs late last night - looking for a saying to write on a card to give with a coaster/mug/teabag, I found this neat tutorial for a teabag wallet.  I can start a new project at 10:30pm.  I dragged out a selection of fabrics from my 'slightly bigger than a scrap' collection and followed the directions on this blog.
It was quite easy and importantly of all, the measurements were right.  Now if only I knew who drank more tea than coffee, I could make more of these before Christmas.  They are really quick and easy to make and do not require much in the way of pinning or ironing at all
  I might remember to put the ribbon on the other side, because it opens up backwards!

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Why is it that I obsess with making one thing over and over every Christmas???

A couple of years ago, it was Stitchery ornaments, then another year I made 51 cross-stitch ornaments, last year I made little apron ornaments and 42 sand filled doorstops (appreciated by all who received one)  
Earlier in my pre-Christmas frenzy of making small gifts, it was coasters.  All of a sudden, this past week, it appears to be table runners for work colleagues.
I've already shown you the one made in Christmas fabrics for the lovely lady who brings me bread.  This week, my boss (the bestest boss I've ever had) resigns, not only did I locate the most fitting corporate farewell gift (a movie poster about the Sunbury Pop Festival in 1972 - for a guy who's passion is the Australian Music Industry of the 1970's), but I've designed and finished a tablerunner for him.  
I am so stunned that it worked out so well.  I know that a tablerunner is not a great 'guy' present, but I know he'll appreciate the work that has gone into it. 

So therefore, what could I do this afternoon?  Make more dining room chair covers?  Finish stitching my Heirloom Christmas Tablecloth??  Finish a small snowman ornament??
No... Of course not.   I put pen to graph paper and design another tablerunner.  I play with the coloured pencils and come up with two colourways - perfect  - I have 2 other workmates that really deserve a more substantial present than coasters.....

I've put one together, it's a simple matter of chain piecing and stitiching in rows, but I've no idea how to finish off the edges - I've got to look at batting and backing choices.  I don't want to play with bias binding, but that may be the only option.  I'll sleep on it and finish it off during the week.

Anybody have any ideas how to finish the edges off???  Something simple???

Also - keep an eye out in the New Year - I've got a small gift almost ready - If you have a look on the side-bar - you'll see that I'm almost up to my 2nd blogaversary.   Let us all get over the Christmas excitement before I offer up a small stitchers gift.


Monday, December 6, 2010

NEW MOON - TIME FOR TUSAL - last one for 2010

........ or should we call 4th January 2011, the next new moon the last TUSAL???  After all, there are another 4 weeks of fibers to collect....  

I might actually call a New Years Eve TUSAL, with a follow up on 4th January to capture the first days of the New Year stitching.
Here is my December TUSAL in any case - very little added for the past month, as I've been mostly working with patchwork.  I still have my Christmas Tablecloth to finish - of course I can see myself (as in other years) frantically stitching it on Christmas Eve in order to have it finished in time!!

Show your TUSAL for 2010 - what do you do with the contents?  Do you fill Christmas ornaments?  Stuff pillows?  My orts from 2009 are sitting in a crystal bowl and I suspect the 2010 orts will join them.  I may use them to stuff Christmas ornaments with them next year.