Monday, 29 January 2007

Where has the fortnight gone?

Can't believe its been two weeks since my last post. Things have been busy and I haven't had time to stitch AND blog AND surf. So instead I've done some stitching. Not as much as wanted. I don't think things will get less busy any time soon so I just have to accept I won't be able to get as much done as I want.

As expected my last To Do list is not done!

*detached chain sampler for Take a Stitch Tuesday done
*complete herringbone band on lines page and couch another line down too for fabric book done
*prepare plan of action for green fields throw (City & Guilds assessment piece) VERY IMPORTANT not done!
*prepare white fabric for crazy quilt seam treatment page in fabric book not done

My new to do list
*prepare plan of action for green fields throw (City & Guilds assessment piece) VERY IMPORTANT
*think about how to create a dedicated work space for my stitching.
*cretan stitch sampler for Take a Stitch Tuesday
*Week 5 stitch sampler for Take a Stitch Tuesday

Black & White Fabric Book Progress...

I added some more stitches to the lines page of my fabric book. A herringbone band, another couched line, some loose blanket stitching and some whipped back stitch. I think I prefer it this way round now.

I'm now thinking of adding some detached chain stitches - just little ones....

Detached Chain Stitch Sampler

Detached chain stitch for Take a Stitch Tuesday! Better late than never.

My sketches

The sampler

I didn't have a lot of time to spend on this task but for the record it was finished before Tuesday 23rd! I didn't feel very inspired by it.

My thinking behind it:-
* I wanted to do a traditional sampler. Not my usual style. I'm not very precise with my stitching and recently I've been more intitutive. I did start out as a cross stitcher but I'm not anymore! So I wanted straight lines. I didn't have time to draw or chart anything in detail - spacing etc so I used this stripy fabric that was on top of my fabric pile.
* The thread was in my workbox - left over from the blanket stitch postcard.
* I concentrated on using the stitch rather than how the stitch looked in different threads.
* I didn't have a lot of time!

I particularly like:-
* the tulip shape of looping three chains around an elongated fastening stitch
* using the stitch as a filler. I found this quick to do (top row) as I wasn't bothered by the shape, size or direction of the loop. It reminds me of leaves.

Tuesday, 16 January 2007

Where has the week gone?

oh dear its Tuesday and I've just managed to log on tonight to catch up with stuff. That is, surf rather than stitch! My last To Do list is not quite done...

*blanket stitch postcard done
*investigate if blackwork can be done on the handpage of the fabric book. If so, pick pattern and start it waste canvas tacked on and pattern picked
*complete 4 more lines on lines page eerrr nope, but I do plan to add a Herringbone band
*prepare plan of action for green fields throw (City & Guilds assessment piece) eerrr nope
*defrost fridge freezer done

New To Do for rest of week:-

*detached chain sampler for Take a Stitch Tuesday
*complete herringbone band on lines page and couch another line down too for fabric book
*prepare plan of action for green fields throw (City & Guilds assessment piece) VERY IMPORTANT
*prepare white fabric for crazy quilt seam treatment page in fabric book

I won't specify when the week ends!

Take a Stitch Tuesday follow up

Some more ideas for Take a Stitch Tuesday inspired by the other participants:-
* processing the stitch like Purple Missus
* buttonhole bars like Carol and Barbara have done
* use the stitch to join bits together, a bit like Helen has done
* woven background fabrics like Helen has done. I have created a fabric before using woven fabric strips.... it looks sooooo different from Helen's technique!

* use the stitch to weave, like Allison Aller has done with buttonhole.
* use the stitch as a stencil or to print with like Susan has at TextileXplorations

Saturday, 13 January 2007

1" x 1" Art Squares Swap

I've seen this on a few blogs recently and I've finally found my way to the mother site. And there are lots of familiar names! This looks like such a good idea - a fab way to make and exchange art. How much work is involved, will there be another swap.... could I, dare I?

Buttonhole/Blanket Stitch Landscape Sample

I did it, with a few days to spare. My Buttonhole/blanket stitch landscape for Take A Stitch Tuesday challenge.

This was surprisingly easy to do as I had a box/baggie of stuff already prepared for making samples for my green fields throw (I will blog about this piece... eventually). However I did spend a little more time stitching it than I had planned, but I think it was worth it. And I didn't break any of my self imposed rules.

I especially liked using the stitch to attach fabric scraps to the base fabric. And using it to couch threads - both vertically and horizontally.

Again, thanks to Allison Aller for the inspiration.

And I managed to defrost the fridge freezer too!

Thursday, 11 January 2007

Start at the bottom

I really should remember to post my thoughts in reverse! Start at the bottom of this day's entry and read up.

Buttonhole/Blanket Stitch Samples

While I procrastinate over my blanket stitch landscape, I wanted to post some blanket stitch samples from my Black & White Fabric Book :-



with a straight stitch

just because it looks so cosy

Buttonhole/Blanket Stitch Sketches

Nothing very inspiring (apart from using the stitch as a 'hinge'). I am keen to use this stitch to create a landscape.

I plan to use blanket stitch to attach fabric and beads and use highly textured threads in the foreground to create depth. I think this stitch will lend itself very well to creating the shape and movement of fields.

Will I manage before next Tuesday?

Herringbone Sketches and TAST sample book

I'm creating 6"x4" postcards for the Take a Stitch Tuesday challenge. I'm using a photo album to store them and my doodles.

This is how the album looks so far with the Herringbone samples as the first entry...

I've prepared some pages that I can doodle ideas in and then stitch into the album beside the 'completed' postcard.

These are my herringbone doodles

Wednesday, 10 January 2007

Where has the week gone?

Another post about my lack of progress!

Colds and teething (they're just about through!) has meant no stitching progress.

Crafty things I have done:-

*think about blanket stitch for Take A Stitch Tuesday. Its currently my favourite stitch, so I'm feeling the pressure (from myself) to produce something wow.
*look out some more fabrics from my stash. I don't have many prepared fabrics. Stuff I've coloured, distressed or made myself. Need to spend some time producing some fabrics and papers.

er... thats it. Oh dear. I haven't even defrosted the fridge freezer as planned!

So... A new achievable to do list for the rest of the week.

*blanket stitch postcard
*investigate if blackwork can be done on the handpage of the fabric book. If so, pick pattern and start it
*complete 4 more lines on lines page
*prepare plan of action for green fields throw (City & Guilds assessment piece)
*defrost fridge freezer

Monday, 8 January 2007

Take a Stitch Tuesday follow up

I've looked through some of the great herringbone photos in the Take a Stitch Tuesday Flickr group and as expected I've now got a new list of things to try...

* circles as seen here by snowprincipessa and here by Patricia T
* bands of wavy lines - like a landscape like this and this by cramzy
* stitching over holes, inspired by this by Hilmet
* use it to anchor fabrics e.g. scrim - like this one here by Allison Aller
* beads

(I hope I've done the links ok and I'm not stealing bandwidth or infringing copyright!)

I've also been considering how to include other design challenges into the stitch challenge. For example:-

* use a monochrome, analogous, complementary, split complementary, triadic or tetradic colour schemes. It appeals to my scientific side!
* try and convey the seasons or emotions with colour and the stitch
* try and represent an object or scene with one stitch
* stitch on a white background and then on a black background
* use a non fabric background...paper, plastic, wood, metal

Saturday, 6 January 2007

Black & White Fabric Book Progress...

I have managed to do some more stitching to the lines page. I've added the seed stitching and also some more blanket stitch (currently my favourite bit)

I've also photographed the applique page. I'm still not happy with the gingham (too much and its shiny!) but once I placed it next to the layered pocket page (as it will appear in the finished book) it doesn't look to bad. I'm also planning on attaching (in some manner) something to the circles. All a bit vague at the moment!

I do really like the 'applique' stitching - zig-zag, back stitch, blanket stitch. Also some of the circles are padded too add to the touchy feely experience.

Friday, 5 January 2007


Managed to get a couple of hours to mess about with the first Take A Stitch Tuesday challenge.

Herringbone stitch

I've set myself a few rules to curb my procrastination:-

1. Spend less than 15mins gathering together materials and researching the stitch
2. Use 6"x4" fabric but don't get hung up on the type of fabric!
3. If a stitch is sewn then blog it no matter how 'unfinished'
5. Don't spend any money!

I picked up my brown and cream box of stash (not my favourite colours but the first one at hand) and used a 28 count evenweave fabric (herringbone traditionally suits a counted thread technique - although I think I need to be less traditional in my approach!).

(click to enlarge)

I like :-
the random herringbone band with added seed stitch.
the layered bit (bottom left).
laying straight lines over the crosses
using a variegated thread

More things to try:-
beads! (can't believe I didn't use any)
circles - I like the neat way the stitch turns corners in the rectangle

I'll add my sketches later once I photograph them.

Resolutions 2007

Purple Missus asked if blogging my 'to do' lists helps me get more done. Well....

I'd like to think so, but not really as I just keep changing them and adding more to them. Hence the neverending lists...

I've always made lists and doodled stuff but never in the one place. So posting them here is very new to me and so far I've not completed one list. Maybe I should set a time frame too?

Mostly, I find that my lists clarify ideas and often generate even more.

I have found blogging very motivating and combined with my lists hopefully 2007 will be a productive year creatively. To that end these are my stitchery resolutions for 2007.

*try out at least 80% of Take a Stitch Tuesday and post the results in a timely manner. This equates to approximately 42 stitches.
*Complete all the pages of my fabric book and get it stitched together. Even more embellishment can be added then and the pockets filled. I don't think the book will ever be 'finished'.
*Complete my C&G certificate. This means finishing my throw and my self portrait and my book of samples. eek! I can see a huge to do list for this resolution. This needs to be done before May (if my tutor hasn't run out of patience).
*Take part in at least 2 swaps through the year. Maybe another ATC or a 6"x4" postcard.
* Blog at least 4 times a week. I don't have much free time and I'm learning to prioritise. Staring at Baby Girl is still top of the list! I want to document some of the projects I've done and also the projects I'm doing, so I've got plenty to write about.

Of course these are all subject to change at a whim.

DLT = Dave Lee Travis? quack quack oops
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