Fun Stuff!

Work has been whining for attention for a couple of weeks, so I haven’t been too crafty lately. But I did manage a couple of small finishes – and one of them is even from my 10 Project Challenge!

French Knot Bunny

This is the french knot bunny I have been working on for…over a year. But it’s finally done, and I am very happy with how it came out. I bound it like a rug using cotton yarn for the cording. I will make it into a pin, and I am thinking of using polymer clay for the backing to keep it stiff and to embed the pin into – why the heck not? I’m sure I will find out why this isn’t a great idea when I am nearly done with it and it falls to pieces, but for now I think it will work like magic.

Hedwig four-patch

This is a small I couldn’t resist working on, in honor of the final Harry Potter book. It is a design from The Sampler Girl. Very cute! I will be taking a finishing class with the EGA soon, so I thought I could have some fun finishing this piece.

I also attended the vendor fair of the American Sewing Guild and got some great stuff (all of which I desperately needed, of course). First, at a vintage button booth, I found this:

vintage button

It’s got some funky old lion on it, and I will make something cool with it once inspiration strikes. I also spoke with the women who run The Fiber Goddess website. They have made a cord making tool that is really easy to use. They also stock gorgeous fiber packs, here are the two I purchased:

fibers

These are various ribbons, yarns and threads that can be corded into necklaces (or used to embellish rughooking, or to edge a small needlework piece). So I’ll be experimenting with my new cording tool, and maybe I’ll bust apart those strings of beads I got at Cost Plus awhile back…

And last but not least, here is my little owl:

pewter owl

He is a pin cushion (you can just see the blue fuzzy part on his back). The USA importer of these pewter collectibles is Carol Ahles. (Unfortunately they need to renew their domain name). They had the most gorgeous chatelaines and reproduction Victorian sewing tools – I think my little owl will the the first of my collection, heh heh. I shall name him…Hedwig.

Fifth Place?

Yes I’m bummed about that! I got a fifth place at the California State Fair for my Wiley & Paloma rug. I know of other rugs entered that were truly excellent, but I was hoping for a 2nd or 3rd, at least.

What bugs me the most is that I agree with the judge’s comments…I’ve never been happy with the clump of flowers over the bunnies’ heads. She thought they are too bright. What burns me is that the biggest problem with the rug is the design of it…isn’t that what I do for a living!?

SBQ

This week’s SBQ:

What do you love to do that many people hate? What do you hate to do, but do anyway?

I love doing french knots, which many people don’t like. I have never had a problem with them, and I enjoy using them as “paint” to fill in areas – they are a great way to make teeny, tiny rugs. If you use two strands of floss you can even tweed and get great shading. Those are fun projects to work on as an antidote to working with a chart – it’s like filling in a coloring book page.

I also enjoy binding my rugs, which many people really don’t like! It is boring, true, but I find it meditative, and it signals that the rug is done. Many of my rugs are a year-long project, so I enjoy this final work as a way to study the rug, think about the good or bad aspects of it, and send it out into the world.

What do I hate to do but do anyway…I am not a fan of gridding fabric. It takes a long time, and I am paranoid that I will miscount, and therefore doom my project before I even start it! But, it can be a lifesaver in keeping a project on track, even if I am eyeing it suspiciously the whole time.

I can’t think of anything else I really dislike, although I still feel like a stitching newbie so I’m sure I’ll discover more along the way!

Crafty Sunday

We had our family barbeque yesterday, and by some major stroke of luck the temperature went from the 100s it has been all week to the high 80s. Everyone had fun, caught up with each other’s lives, and enjoyed the day. Yay!

Today I am crafty girl! I am listening to a marathon Craftcast podcast, hanging out in my craft room, and prepping the linen for the Beginning Drawn Thread Sampler GCC (group correspondence course) that I am doing with my Cyberstitchers EGA guild. Here are the visuals:

craftroom

This is my craftroom (and also the dog bedroom – note the dog bed under the sewing machine table, that is the most coveted one.) The table is a smoked glass top with bookshelf legs from Ikea, and it is awesome. It looks like every square inch of it is covered, but that is OK since I am thick in the middle of some serious crafting. I did clear off the chocolate wrappers, but otherwise this is a candid shot. It is fabulous to have a space dedicated to crafting, where I can leave projects out to work on as I get the chance. As long as they are not too interesting to dog noses. I did lose a folder of magazine clippings to a bored Ridley, but that was quite alright – it was a wise edit on her part.

Here is the DTS linen:

I know, bfd, it’s gridded linen on a frame, but this is two hours worth of work, and it’s the kick-off for this fun project, so it’s worth note! I’m excited to start stitching this as it is definitely stretching my skill level.

Back in the Swing…or not

So, I was out of town the first week of June, DH was gone a couple of weeks ago, my in-laws are in town for a few weeks…yep, it’s summer, and I haven’t been able to get my stitching rhythm back all month!

It’s all been good stuff, and it’s fun to have a break in the routine. On Saturday we are having a bbq here, which means an intensive week of making the house and backyard presentable. But, that seems to be the only way we get it done – under a deadline. You will note that I didn’t mention the 4th…that’s because we have no plans! We are always caught out on the 4th, and the town celebration (held on the 3rd) we used to go to with friends has been cancelled – it got too big for the location, so they have to figure out where to hold it in the future.

So, as much as I wish Wednesday would be a day of crafting, I have a feeling it is going to be a day of changing out the bunny rug in the kitchen. The kitchen has gone from smelling faintly like a barn (not too bad, really) to smelling like the great ape house at the zoo (that ain’t good). Technically the buns are litterbox trained, but with three of them in there, there is always a pissing contest, and I mean that quite literally.

Speaking of the bunnies, I need to update their stories – I started on that and then trailed off, so I will try to post more shortly.

Happy Independence Day, everyone!