Sunday, 24 June 2018

Hardanger Trio

I assembled the needle book of the Hardanger Trio last night.
I made twisted cord ties from the #5 perle cotton and two layers of felt for the needles.
The pocket fits a rather large pair of scissors. Closed, the needlebook measures 10cm (4") wide and 13.75cm (5.5") long. If you wanted to make it smaller, just use fabric with more thread count.
The pin cushion has the same Hardanger pattern as the large pocket.

The scissor fob is from the other set I'm working on. I'm not sure what I did with the one that goes with this set.
I stitched the felt rather than stitch a line on the fabric and whip stitch the felt to it. The other modification I did was to weave the bars rather than wrap them. I liked the look of them woven better.

I have the other needle book to complete now.

Our little stitching group is starting to do a search for another little project we can work on. 

Thursday, 21 June 2018

June TEG Meeting and Pot Luck

Last night was the last meeting of the year of the Trillium Embroidery Guild.
We had a meeting, determined officers and other positions for next year, voted on the embroidered pieces for the three prizes, had 'show and share', and ate goodies.

Our TATA (Trillium Annual Themed Award) theme this year was 'animals'. There are two categories:

Charted/Adapted pattern
and Original Design
Jennifer's design won the Technical Award. Her design incorporates many of her passions: cats, music, Star Trek. thread painting, embroidery, etc. It is so creative and beautiful.
Diane's punch needle and embroidered pillow won in the Original design category.
Jeanette's peacock piece "Zola and Maxine" won the award for the Charted/Adapted design. It is stitched over 1 thread on 32? count fabric.
Other entries included Bernie's sheep mounted on a badge.
Jennifer's painted thread Bee Eater designed by Trish Burr. Jen stitched this in one day at the last Elim retreat!
My 'Red Bird' punch needle piece designed by Karla Gerard and adapted to punch needle by Loretta Moore of 'Hooked On The Lake'.
Alda stitched the Red Macaw.
 This 'Heart of My Heart' piece is a Shepherd's Bush design.
Jen brought in a stitched piece of her beloved cat, Abby, from when Abby was a kitten.
She also brought in a kitty cat biscornu.
This is the back of it.
She finished up this one recently.
The detail on Marion's thread painted piece is exquisite.
Jeanette brought in her luggage tag made with embroidery stitch fabric.
It opens up to reveal the address or business card.
Alda shared this beautiful floral piece stitch on rather fine fabric.
Jen also shared this blackwork frame she stitched for this photo of Abby. The letters on the bottom are a 'kitty cat' font.
Jeanette shared her idea of using a decorative notepad with the magnetic closure for a needlecase. She took out the notepad and glued in several 'pages' of felt, cut to fit.
Our theme for next year was decided upon. It is 'smalls' - any small or miniaturized items such as needle cases, pin cushions, scissor fobs, etc.

I am always so inspired by my stitching friends.

Luggage Tags

A while back I made a couple of luggage tags for Jen1 and Jeanette who will be attending the Embroiderers' Association of Canada seminar in July.

Jen is a Trekkie. I've made several items for her from this yard of fabric and was able to fashion a luggage tag with some of the last scraps and some yellow fabric from my stash.
Inside is a vinyl window for a business or address card and is concealed by folding the piece in half and threading the loop through a buttonhole. The long loop attaches it to the suitcase.
For Jeanette, I used this fabric I'd had in my stash for a long time. It has embroidery stitch diagrams on it.
It was a big hit when she showed it off at her Toronto embroidery guild.

Here you can see her business card in the vinyl window.
I need to make a couple more for myself and some other special people.

Monday, 18 June 2018

New Project Bags

Jeanette loaned me a zipped project bag to deconstruct so I could recreate more for myself. It had been made for her by a stitching  buddy from the Toronto Embroidery Guild.
I figured out how to reconstruct it. Everything was in my stash, including the zipper and vinyl.

I had purchased the lining fabric on my trip last weekend.

I had also purchased some Star Trek themed fabric with one of my stitching buddies in mind.

I have a vast stash of Asian-themed fabric, mostly dark. But I found two companion fabrics, one of which was a bit lighter.
It's the same pattern, just a lighter colourway.
The finished bag is 30cm (12") by 35cm (14"). It can easily handle stitching patterns and all the materials. Or equipment - in this case, my punch needle stuff.
 And then can be zipped up, safely holding all the contents, easily visible through the vinyl window.
I had purchased the vinyl in a roll a couple of years ago and had used it for various projects. However, any thick plastic would do like the bags in which comforters, duvets, linens, etc. are bought. If they're a bit creased or wrinkled, they can be smoothed out with a warm iron and another piece of fabric in between. Do NOT use the iron directly on the vinyl.

Now that I have the pattern figured out, I'll be making a few with several of my stash fabrics. I'll just need to wait until fabric is on sale to pick up some more light-coloured lining fabric.

Saturday, 16 June 2018

Red Bird

I framed the Red Bird punch needle project this morning.

I love the bright colours, the sunflowers, and cardinal. The Valdani threads are beautiful. I found a website that shows how to variegate plain threads by dipping half the skein in coffee to make it a shade darker. I will be experimenting with DMC Perle cotton threads.

Cunningham Is Blocked

The baby blanket is off the wires.

Friday, 15 June 2018


I finished the Cunningham blanket. It's a free Berroco design, easily modified for any size. I did about 25" of the inner lace part before starting the 3" garter stitch border. On the blocking wires, it measures 31" on each side. As the yarn is DK weight (heavy for a baby blanket IMHO), I made it small-ish. Hopefully useful in a car seat or pram.
I used Smart yarn by Sandnesgarn - 100% superwash wool. I did add a bit of hair conditioner in the rinse water to soften it up even more. It will have a nice drape.

The pinhole centre cast-on was a great idea.
I still have buttons to sew on the little sweater and may knit up a little hat or headband to go with it.

Tuesday, 12 June 2018

A Week Later...

I have had a lot going on since the last post and I haven't taken may photos - ergo the lack of posting.

Last week Jen1, Barb, Jeanette and I met at Jen's for a crafty day. It was loads of fun and we got everyone on board with the Hardanger project. Our next day together will be in two weeks.

I got my scissor fob put together, weighting it with a penny. Jeanette explained that when it's weighted, if it falls, the fob falls first, then the scissors. Thus the scissors won't be dulled as they'll fall last being pulled by the handle. I have to assemble the needle case so will have a good look at the instructions before I do that.

On Friday, Scooter came out from The Big City. We picked him up at the GO station and immediately headed to Kingston to catch the Wolfe Island Ferry for the first part of our Finger Lakes trip.
In line to board the ferry
The ferry is free and only takes 20 minutes.
Scooter and me
It was a beautiful day.
We're the 'big glasses' people!
The sky was practically cloudless. Here, I'm looking back at Kingston.
Once on the island, we drove across it to Alexandria Point (a 12 minute drive) where we could take the next ferry - a 10 minute ride - to Cape Vincent NY. It's a privately-owned ferry that can hold 4 - 6 vehicles and cost us $20 CAD ($17 US).

Once there, we had lunch at waterside at Captain Jack's, then drove along the shore to Sackets Harbor, a town that was involved in the War of 1812. Skip and Scooter are history buffs so enjoyed looking at old cannons, battlefields, and touring the historical centre.

The next day, drove to Peterboro NY to attend the Civil War reenactment weekend. On the way we stopped at A Stitcher's Garden in Lafayette NY, along the Old Erie Canal. I purchased some small pieces of fabrics for stitching small items.

When we arrived in Peterboro, there was no evidence of the Civil War reenactment that had been held on that weekend for the last 25 years. When Skip inquired about it at a local business, he was informed that it was cancelled. Instead, there was a fundraising chicken dinner at the old fire hall. We soothed our disappointment by eating chicken, potatoes, and pasta salad until we were stuffed and then drove on to the fibre festival at Bouckville.

In the first tent I found the woman who was selling the little charms that I like to use for zipper pulls on some of my knitting projects. I bought 25 of them. On close inspection, I noted that the ring joining the two pieces is one of those double jump rings - making it very sturday. The vendor told me her daughter makes them.
There were about 7 big tents, live music, some food vendors (but not the deep-fried artichoke folks this year), plenty of port-a-potties, free demonstrations, and scheduled fibre-themed classes. We watched a longwool sheep being shorn.

In one of the tents, babydoll sheep were on display. They were only 8 weeks old and very cute.
The next day we ventured down to Skaneateles (pron. ska-nee-AT-las), where Skip and I have visited several times before. We walked out the jetty and looked back at the town.
There are two lovely, waterfront parks. This one looks up the west side of Lake Skaneateles.
There's a bandshell at one side of the park
and a beautiful, war memorial at the opposite end, honouring men and women who perished fighting in several wars/

The historic Sherwood Inn faces the park.
There are several cute shops. This one had pillows and tea towels that had been printed, then embroidered.
Many of the shops on the main street had very cute planters.

We met birding friends from Texas for lunch. They live near Auburn NY this time of year. After lunch we went to their farm to tour their 1800's farmhouse and out-buildings. After a couple of relaxing hours, we made our way back to Watertown for the night. Yesterday we made it the rest of the way home.

I've been stitching more of the scissor fobs for possible gifts or sale. On the baby blanket that I've been knitting, I'm almost finished the mitered, garter-stitch border. My progress came to a screeching halt when the cable broke away from the needle. I got the stitches picked up and set it aside for another time.

Although the Civil War plans didn't pan out, and Scooter and Skip never made it to a golf course or driving range, it was a great weekend away. We shopped, ate, did easy driving, stayed in nice hotels, visited friends, a stitchery shop, a couple of fabric stores, a fibre festival and enjoyed beautiful weather.