Besides catching up with TAST, finishing the piece for the fair ("The Taco Sampler") and taking nine finished pieces to the framer on Saturday, I did squeeze in some stitching as well this past week.
I managed to get the main part of the outer borders done for "Midnight Garden", as well as some of the black cross-stitched elements in the middle border:
Ready for blackwork!
I also put together a 12.5" block (12" finished) for the "Pink" category for the fair. It needs embellishment but the basic block is done:
And the basic block for the June Crazy Quilt Journal Project is ready to embellish as well:
I still need to kit out the June Bead Journal Project butterfly, the needlepoint background stitch journal for Janet Perry, and at least two "Roll Your Own" mandalas for that Tracy Horner SAL. Of course, kitting out isn't the same as stitching but my eyes seem to be improving daily and if I can do better than my latest stitching times, I should be able to do some catching up this next week!
Crested Chain Stitch:
I had trouble keeping the stitch straight and of the same width down the chain but at least I figured out how to do it (after frogging it three times!).
I could see using this as a crazy quilt seam treatment if I can ever get it even...
And in only two days! The Casey Buonaugurio design, "The Taco Sampler", on 32 ct pale yellow linen with DMC floss:
The major problem --- the white (Sour Cream and Onions) is too close in value to the linen to show up well.
I finally got in some stitching this week. My eyes sort of lose focus after a couple of hours, though and so I couldn't do long stretches of stitching. But the flashing and aching eye muscles appear to be a thing of the past (knock on wood).
Besides TAST and finishing my May butterfly (have to get cracking on kitting up the June one), I put in a few stitches on the borders of "Midnight Garden":
and started a piece for the fair's special category, "In the Kitchen". It's a Casey Buonaugurio Designs sampler called "Taco":
It's small, only 3 x 6, so it should be doable. The issue is the time to get it framed.
I got the fair booklet on Thursday and tried to assign what few finishes I had this year to categories --- not easy since there is no crazy quilting category this year, and there are no categories that work for speciality stitching/blackwork, etc. So I'm winging it a little with seven pieces, a;; of which require framing:
- "Kimono - Revisited as a needlepoint sampler. I plan on having it backed with a pale blue cotton that will prevent "Show through" of the mounting board through the congress cloth.
- "Red Thai Mandala" as a framed picture, 28 ct
- Michael Powell's "Home Sweet Home" as a 25 ct framed picture (it's really 27 ct but there is no 27 ct category and I want Red Thai Mandala in the 28 ct space)
- The "Charles" name badge in framed sampler 28 ct
- My Sumptuous Embroidery blue piece in framed stamped or embroidered (No category for hand embroidery anywhere else) - I'm going to get my monochromatic beige piece framed too but I think the blue one is the better of the two.
- "Birds of a Feather" in the framed picture 32 ct category
- the 8" block I did for Encrusted Crazy Quilting in the beading on fabric category.
If I get the Buonaugurio done in time to get is framed, that's eight, and, because they don't require framing, I maybe could knock out a set of ornaments (trouble is, I need to do three to make a set and that will probably limit me to plastic or paper, but I have a set of patterns that could work) and a 12-inch "pink" quilt block for another special category.
I figure of I load up the entries, I might get close to getting back the majority of my entrance fee. Registration starts July 1 and the pieces are to be handed in July 27... AAARGH!
Better late than never, I suppose, and the colors didn't work out quite like I had hoped ( was aiming for daffodils but the oranges didn't quite mesh), but here is my May butterfly:
This week's stitch took me a while to decipher but once I experimented with the double chain, I worked out what to do and here is my attempt at a Buttonholed Double Chain:
What I discovered is that a) you have to watch to be certain you don't twist the chain part and b) you really have to be careful you don't stitch it to your bedsheet!* LOL
*Yes, I do stitch in bed!
It won't be long before this serial-blooming garden gives up and there will only be daylilies and summer perennials. I think this is the last week of spring-like flowers, like these iris:
A few new clematis...
And a dogwood tree that bloomed AFTER it's leaves came out!
I did get in a couple of days of beading but it's hard to get remotivated after having laid off the needle for so long... My May butterfly is progressing but clearly won't be done in May!
The June Crazy quilt block is "built" but not stitched on, "Midnight Garden" hasn't been touched in a month, and that wall hanging I am trying to make is still untouched.
Registration for the fair is coming up soon and I don't have enough to make back my entry fee even if I won first prize on everything I enter! And what I do have done isn't framed yet...
So, let's leave you with a sign of summer flowers to come... the first of Husband's everblooming roses:
Here's my take on the Slipped Detached chain stitch --- three ways:
The garden continues to "serially" bloom --- one "new" plant after another. First of all, the Iris are now popping up all over:
And another tree peony is in bloom:
Allium, in various colors, has appeared in the front garden (that's the Asian lilac and the rhodies in the background...):
As has Evening Primrose (we used to admire these little pink flowers, and their darker cousins, the wine cups - which wont grow here, when we lived in Texas but up here, they become weeds and spread everywhere.):
But most impressive of all are the Clematis --- lots of different ones! And, would you believe, there are still at least two that haven't begun to bloom yet! Every vertical surface seems to have its own grouping of these gorgeous vines!
With my new glasses (fitted on Wednesday), and the left eye still bothering me a little, I decided to do something that didn't need a lot of "focus" --- I stitched up the last seven "base" blocks for Crazy Quilt Journal Project 2103:
And I plugged away at the May block so I could squeak it in under the wire:
Still have a May Bead Journal Project piece to stitch which, clearly, given the date, isn't likely to be done on time. And "Midnight Garden" sits idle as does the 2012 Color Palette/Crazy Quilt Journal/Bead Journal Project wall hanging and I have yet to start on the "Toll Your Own Mandala" being taught online by Tracy Horner of InkCircles. To say nothing of two more online classes I've signed up for that lurk in the near future: Janet Perry's background stitching and Linda Perrin's "Messy Beading"... Will I never learn?