Needed to reorganize

 

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My office and threads got away from me last year and even though I DO NOT make New Year’s resolutions, I decided reorganization was needed. I spent some time thinking about how I wanted to do this and nothing jumped out at me, so I decided to just jump in and start.

I made some basic decisions: If a thread is discontinued, I was getting rid of them: Good-bye Marlitt; Rainbow Gallery has discontinued threads over the years and I still have them, good-bye discontinued threads.  I had a complete set of JP Coats and I don’t think they make it anymore and if they do, I never used it.  There are two exceptions to this rule: Orange Needle Necessities (now ThreadworX) Overdyed Rachel. ThreadworX does not produce this thread and I love it for carrots and carrot noses so I horded several skeins for my own personal use. And another Needle Necessities thread, an overdyed Madras in blues was perfect for my Peter Rabbit coats; so I horded it too. I have been to the ThreadworX website (http://threadworx.com/) and have noted a few choices to replace these threads. ThreadworX if you are reading this: would love a #5 perle cotton in Trick or Treat orange.

I also decided that if any of my DMC floss or perle cotton was cut I would get rid of it. If I use perle cotton for stitching a Temari ball, it cannot be precut because I use very long lengths when stitching Temari Balls. I did keep my Anchor perle cotton, although I have heard it had been discontinued (Anyone know anything about this?). And I do know that Colonial Needle (http://colonialneedle.com/) carries a full line of Finca floss and perle cotton thread (sizes: 3-5-8-12-16) in a great color range, so I’ll start adding that to my stash. 😉

My old threads are going to a friend who uses odds and end of threads and canvas to stitch hearts for a Hospice Home near her. A heart is placed on a patient’s door after they have passed away. This alerts staff and visitors to be respectful and quiet around this patient’s room. The family is then given the heart when they leave. If there are any threads she doesn’t want she will send them to a prison in Ohio that used them.

So I began. Then I had to decide if after I separated all the threads I was going to sort by number or color. I finally decided on using both and seeing if I prefer one method over the other. All the DMC is stored by number and I will continue to do this since I have a great color card. If I stored a thread by color then within that color I stores in numeric order. Watercolours overdyes I stored by number but others I stored by alpha name. I guess you just have to find a method that works best for YOU.

I also decided to wrap all my threads on large floss winder cards and so I ordered 1000 floss Keys and 200 Floss Pak bags from YarnTree (http://yarntree.com/) so I can start this process. I also purchased some storage containers from Hobby Lobby to store the floss keys. I have begun a slow wrapping process…as I need a new thread I will wrap it on large floss winder cards. I also use these floss winders for any thread that is skeined, even overdyes. This will be an ongoing process; otherwise I will not get anything else accomplished this year.
I finished my reorganization this week-end by labeling all the containers. I feel so accomplished. I have two boxes and a bag for my friend who stitches hearts. I got rid of 4 large sweater boxes from my closet and I still have a closet full of threads! And of course, we all know that when I go to stitch, I will not have all the right threads….Stitcher’s Law. 😉

I don’t know if this is the final reorganization or whether I’ll redo as I go, but it is sure a lot better than it was last year. And I am still looking for an answer to whether Anchor is doing away with their pearl cotton? I would love to hear from you on how you store your threads. Do you store by color by manufacturer, a combination? I think when we share , we learn and that’s what this is all about and having fun stitching of course.

Thank you for stopping by… I hope you find time to stitch today

ttfn…sue

P.S. Someone asked me this week what “ttfn” means.  So for those of you who don’t know it is from Winnie the Pooh; Tigger says it all the time. It means “ta-ta for now” or “ttfn”. Winnie the Pooh books were my favorite growing up and my grandmother used to say this to me. So if Carol Burnett can pull her earlobe for her grandmother, I can ttfn for mine. It just makes me smile and we need to smile and make the world a nicer place.

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Back to Mom & Me

I finished stitching the flowers and leaves and filled in the green leaf areas. I used an overdye for the leaf area and stitched one area at a time. I thought I would go from side to side across the entire piece but I did not like the look and so I frog stitched it out and tried one area at a time. I tried to get each area alike but when I was finished I think the two left are similar and the two right are similar…oh well, it is stitched.

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Up close I am not impressed with the flower area but as you get some distance to the piece I do like the look and since I have a finishing idea in mind (more about this later) I think it will be fine. And anyway as my friend says, “If your close enough to my piece to see my mistakes; you are too close.” So if you are going to be this close to the piece you are too close.

After I finished the flowers I went back and filled in the bunnies and since I had the white thread out I got carried away and stitched the bunny tails in Turkey work. Mom’s tail has longer loops than baby bunny. I thought at first I would trim and brush Mom’s tail but I like the different lengths and think I will leave them both loopy. I probably should have waited until I finished the back ground but, oh well…

I have started the background and am using ThreadworX’s floss. I am puddling the stitches, I really like this technique for overdyes. Puddling keeps thread from developing a striped effect like you can get when you stitch horizontally, vertically or diagonally. The only thing I have found that I have to watch is making sure I don’t develop huge areas of one color. Some overdyes have a tendency to have larger areas of one color than another and if not careful you can develop large areas of one color. Helpful hint: cut out large areas of one color.

Last fall I showed you how to stitch the puddle method with a continuous uncut overdyed thread, like Watercolours (https://sudukc.wordpress.com/2013/10/01/overdye-puddle-stitching/). With ThreadworX it is a slightly bit different because these threads are cut into given OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAlengths of thread. When you open a skein of ThreadworX’s and lay it out there will be an “A” end and a  “B” end and it may appear the same as an overdye that has been cut from an uncut overdyed thread (like Watercolours). The difference is that ThreadworX’s threads are consistently similar where Watercolours may vary a bit as the skein is used because of the dying method.

14-04-25 Mom & Me background stitch aWhen I puddle stitch I randomly pull ply and stitch. I do keep “A” ends together and “B” Ends together; if you don’t then you will get a blended effect and that is another way to stitch with overdyes. For my purposes in this design I am keeping the “A”  ends and “B”  ends together in the needle…BUT I am randomly deciding which ends (“A”  or “B” ) goes into the needle.

14-04-25 Mom & Me background stitch cExample: With one strand of thread, using 2 ply in the needle to stitch, there are three stitching lengths in a thread  per strand: 2 ply A-B, 2 ply A-B, 2 ply A-B (Oh I knew those math classes in school were for something…remember those teachers that said you would use these principles in life?). I divide these threads and place them in three needles 2 ply A-B, 2 ply A-B AND 2 ply B-A. (it could have been any combination…remember that math week on variables…this is an applied use and for all you math geeks out there…it is 5 choices.)  Then I pick a needle stitch with this needle, then I randomly pick another needle and last the final needle (and this variable greatly increases but I missed that day in math class.). I have no idea which is which (well I do but I don’t pay any attention and just stitch). I continue to do this throughout the piece. And I also vary the placement of the stitches so a pattern does not develop.

14-04-25 Mom & Me background stitch bOkay, Math class is over and I need to get back to stitching the background. For this background I chose a four way continental stitched over 2 threads…I wanted an open background that would allow the painted background to interact with the thread. I didn’t want to lay every thread and so I borrowed a technique from Cross Stitcher’s, “Railroading.” Railroading is where you place the needle between two plies as you return the needle to the OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAback of the canvas. I have Cross Stitch friends who can do this with any amount of even plies (2-4-6) but I can only do it successfully with two ply and usually on longer stitches. You can see the technique in the picture.

Hopefully next week will have it finished and then need to decide if I am tackling the finishing or sending it to my trusty finisher…Part of me wants to learn to do this and another part of me says you traded that sewing machine for a laptop and stitching. How many of you tackle your own finishing?

Thank you for stopping by today and I hope you have time to stitch everyday! ttfn…sue

Bunnies

Monday, I went to see my finisher. She finished my new Easter pillow and two eggs. The pillow is so-o-o cute (so are the eggs…but bunnies first)!

 easter-bunny-9-pme1            easter-bunny-9b-pme1easter-egg-9a1

 

 

 My pillow is a Princess and Me canvas Peter Rabbit (E107). It has been discontinued but Princess and Me (http://www.princessandme.com/ ) offered to fill orders if anyone would like one. I used Peluche for his ears, overdyed Rachel/Flair for carrot, and Cast-on Bullions in an overdye for carrot tops. I have a mini stitch guide I sent to Princess and Me but I will share with anyone who has the canvas also. I guess trust is an important word here.

easter-bunny-8a-brenda-s2  I also spent the last few days trying to track down and/or request permission from the designers for my other needlepoint canvases, but no luck except for one. Brenda Stofft (http://www.brendastofftdesigns.com/ ) gave me permission to show her cute bunny. He is an old canvas but Brenda has some great new canvases too. I like my two sided bunny, so easter-bunny-8b-brenda-s2every time I walk past my collection cabinet I turn him…gotta see both sides! He also has Cast-on Bullions for carrot tops and an uncut Turkey Tufting tail.

You will notice most of these bunnies have the same blue for their clothing and if the carrot is stitched, it will usually be an overdye. Before Elaine Warner of Needle Necessities passed away I bought oodles of overdyed orange for my carrots and Madras blues (#809) for the coat. I contacted ThreadworX (http://threadworx.com/index.php) to see if maybe they were planning to re-issue but have not heard back from them. I guess I can use floss but will have to look for other threads for carrots.

 

easter-bunny-7The first little guy is about 5-6 inches tall and I thought he was a Rosalie Peters but they tell me he is not. I finished him myself because if you look at the base you can see the denim…I finish the bunnies in blue jeans with old blue jean fabric. I have been recycling before it was fashionable.

 

easter-bunny-2The next guy is one of my favorites; he is about 8-10 inches tall. I like my Random stitching of his face; it almost made him too realistic. I also like the sweater, it is a Vandyke Stitch worked horizontally and back and forth from left to right with overdyed perle cotton. This is another canvas I do not know the designer.

 

easter-bunny-6And the last of the canvases I have finished myself is the little guy with sunglasses. I must have stitched him for one of my grandsons because he has AJ on his jeans pocket and that is what I call my third grandson. AJ must have had influence in the choosing of threads. This canvas was from Susan Treglown and I believe the artist was Susan Hayes. I think this was a monthly design and this little guy was March.

 

easter-bunny-1The Tall Hare (Ewe and Eye and friends) I bought from a needlepoint shop, Two the Point (http://www.twothepointneedlearts.com/). I think originally you were to stitch the outlines and then fill in the rest, but the shop chose to just do the outlines. I think he is too cute and I like the finishing. The finisher added the basket with stitching supplies…one of the few rabbits I have without a carrot, just stitching stuff!

 

easter-bunny-10This is a Heart in Hand (http://www.heartinhand.com/ ) design, Wool Whimsy: Harriet. It came as a complete kit except for the box . The box is a Treasure box with the 3 ½ inch opening from Romancing the Past (http://www.romancingthepast-lowery.com/index.htm) . I don’t know if you can still get the all walnut box or not.

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This rabbit was a gift, I think he is maybe a Mosey and Me cross stitch but am not sure. If anyone knows the origin of these bunnies, please let me know and I will give them credit here too.

 

 

easter-bunny-5 The lop eared bunny egg is my design. I stitched it in mostly perle cotton and floss to make sure it worked. At first I didn’t like it much but now I think he is cute. I really like his Bargello cheeks.

 

 

easter-bunny-3-nddl-treas1And last but not least, my favorite is Peter Rabbit from Needle Treasures. When I worked at Two the Point every Grandmother I knew bought and stitched this kit. I never liked the threads in the kit but one day I thought about using Epic threads and my own stitches and viola Peter came to life. He is one of the two pieces I feel like I did an excellent job on the Random Stitching (aka: Long & Short). I taught him one time at the shop and have a stitch guide for him. This kit is sometimes available on ebay.

Tomorrow the eggs…I don’t have as many eggs stitched but there is always next year.

ttfn…sue

P.S. My Dulle(s)/tulips just arrived from Teleflora (http://www.teleflora.com/flowers/bouquet/telefloras-peter-rabbit-bouquet-229184p.asp) …in their Peter Rabbit jar. The card said: 2Me 4Me from Me.

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