Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Stitching Blogger's Question

What are your thoughts on craft and/or needlework shows? Have you been
to one or are you planning on going to one this year?

I have never been to a needlework show that is aimed at selling. I have been to a couple of needlework exhibitions, though. I likem they really a lot, so any different pieces, tastes. I will surely go again this year, when I visit my parents in Poland. The city I come from has a big tradition in textile industry and hosts a big cross-stitch exhibition every two years. I was going to enter my pieces into it, but decided egainst it, because I'm generally afraid to ship my finished pieces. I would be so sad if something happened to them. Well, maybe in two years I'll be able to travel myself or give the pieces to my Mom to enter.

I would like to attend a craft show, like Creative for example. I've never seen one and surely I would love it. Unfortunately they are all very far away from Berlin, but maybe I'll find a way to go next year. I'm afraid I would have problems to stay within any financial limit, though. So many temptations...

Tuesday, March 22, 2005

Spring is in the air

It seems that I managed to catch this head cold. I was sure yesterday that it was better, but woke up with a running nose today. It's not too bad yet, and I surely hope it won't get worse, there's so little time left until Easter.

DD is feeling much better and enjoying her first walks outside with her actually walking. She loves walking, but has a very strong opinion on the direction and hates being made to walk somewhere else LOL. She also hates being put in the stroller when she gets tired and screams her lungs out LOL. I hope it will get better with the time, but somehow I don't believe it that much. She's still very cute, though, she observes everything so intensely when she's walking. She noticed more and more. Yesterday we were watching ducks on the pond and she was so happy. If the weather keeps we are going to visit one of the zoos soon, I'm sure she'll love watching the animals. I am so ready for spring to be here, running noses to be over and to be spending more time outside.

My parents will be visiting for Easter. I hope it's going to be a good visit, but I have so much cleaning to do still before they come. I hate spring cleaning and I'm not feeling well, so maybe I'll just do it not very thoroughly. With all those still unsold cats and kittens it doesn't make much sense anyway. We got so sodetracked on this issue again and didn't put the ads in the newspapaers again and also the website hasn't been updated. I think that's the main reason for all the kittens still being there and I'm so ready for them to be gone. I adore kittens but several cat teenagers are really hard to survive LOL. I need to take care of this after Easter, the website needs to be done, the ads put in the papers and then we'll see if we can find new homes for the kitties.

Emotionally I am still on a roller coaster ride. Part of me is grieving the lost hope, another is getting used to the thought that the divorce is just a matter of time and a third is trying to move on. It's really not easy to take care of all of the everyday duties. I sort of feel - why bother? I know I still need to take care of things, because it matters one way or another, but it's difficult to motivate myself.

Thursday, March 17, 2005

Stitching Blogger's Question

On average, how many hours a week (7 days) do you think that you spend cross-stitching?

Because I am a SAHM, there's no actual difference between week days and weekend (unless I have to go to school on both Sat and Sun).

I usually stitch 0.5-1 hour during DD's nap and then again 2-3 hours in the evening, but not on all days. So let's count (7 x 0.5) + (5 x 2.5) = 3.5 + 12.5 = 16 hours a week. Sometimes it's even more actually, but I'm not always really effective, trying to surf and stitch in the same time. That's my main problem, I don't wish I had more time, but more ability to focus on what I'm actually doing.

Tuesday, March 15, 2005

Misc

I have survived the weekend at school, even though the weather was really yucky. I even managed to find some yarn for the crochet 63 squares afganan and I can't wait to start. I have to go to school on Apr 2nd and I will be picking up the yarn then. OK, I have to skip one lecture to manage, but who cares??

DD has been coughing recently. Not much, but still. If it's not away till Thursday I'll go to the doc with her (Wednesday is for healthy children). But I hope it'll be. I think it's because she completely undresses herself during the night and it's fairly cold here. I just don't know what to do to stop her from doing that.

On Friday we'll be seeing our future babysitter(s). I hope this time everything's going to work out and we'll find someone and we'll be able to go out from time to time. We'll see...

I have been stitching on Watergarden recently, but not making good progress. I should stitch more, I just don't feel like working diligently really. I guess it's the wetahre that gets meslightly depressed. I have been not sleeping well recently and wake up even more tired then when going to bed. I'm so ready for spring to come!!

I have started Gracious Era last week, but decided to wait and get some other fabbie for it. The Aida really isn't very pleasant, so it'll be best to get some Belfast instead. I pulled out Nature's Beauties instead, but somehow couldn't get into the rythm with it. Could it be that it was because of the 32ct Belfast?? I don't remember having such problems when I was stitching on this piece last year. Maybe I just need better light or something. I better find the solution before I get two more pieces on Belfast into my rotation so soon... I am going to come back to it this week again and try to finish the blach panther. I hope that any other animal is going to be more pleasurable.

Wednesday, March 09, 2005

Stitching Blogger's Question

Do you have a favorite designer (or designers)? If so, who is it and why is he or she your favorite?

Ohhhh... I have many!!!! I cannot really decide who is my absolutely favorite one, but I have a couple that I really like. There's no designer, though, whose work I completely adore, there are always designs I like much less. So my top list consists of:

1. Teresa Wetzler
The obvious one :) I like a lot of her designs. The colours are wonderful, the drawing amazing, the borders stunning. I have yet to start a big TW (yes, they do intimidate me), but I think it's going to happen soon :) I am going to start either The Enchanter or English Garden Sampler, they are my most favorite biggies. But TW for me are not only the biggies. I have just finished the begginer whitework ornament and I love it. I am crazy for Byzantine ornaments and like the cloisonne ones. The bookmars look really nice. The only thing I like less about her designs are faces. I have seen some recharted ones though and I think I will go with them, they look nicer.

2. Martina Weber
Another obvious favorite. I adore the mandala gardens and their symbolism. They are so refreshing, different. Sometimes I wish they were slightly less jeweled, a bit more muted, but I still adore them, especially the geographical series. I am going to stitch a couple of them, but no reason to rush. They are very expensive to kit up and I'm going to play with plain old DMC and some hand-dyed cotton or Vicki Clayton silks to kit up in the future. I just find 250+ USD just for threads and beads more than I would be willing to pay, even if I could afford it.

3. Jeanette Douglas
For Canada Journey samplers. They are so wonderful and they make me wish to visit Canada even more than before.

4. Cynthia Zettel (The Drawn Thread)
I like a number of her designs, some more than others. I like the old fashioned look, the muted colours, all the specialty stitches.

5. Michael Powell
Because his colourful, crazy buildings always manage to make me laugh.

6. Patricia Ann
Because like no other designer, she's developing exactly in the right direction :) I like her designs more and more with every single time she realeases something.

7. Sarah Wu (Dracolair)
I guess she doesn't need any comments. The most beautiful dragons I've ever seen in my life (sorry, TW). I just can't wait to see the last two, and I want to have all five stitched up and framed. I can't get rid of the impression that her dragons know something that we, mortals, will never be able to understand. I guess dragons do such things, simply.

I think I could go on and name a couple more whose work I really like, but it's enough for now, they are my favortites at the moment, but of course everything is subject to change.

Sunday, March 06, 2005

Butternut Road Catch the Wind

Finished in 2005

It's actually my third finish in 2005, but I gave two first pieces to my Mom and the pictures taken have been misplaced somehow. So I have to wait to show you the pictures till I see them again., or maybe I can ask Mom to scan them for me.

But coming back to my three little girls... I adore them! They're so charming! I started this picture in June 04 and finished in February 05, stitching on it mainly during my shortened rotation. It progresses so fast, that it has been a pleasure to watch.

Victoria Sampler Heirloom Christmas Sampler

Finished in 2004

Now this piece is wonderfully exlusive. Stitched with silkies and cotton perle and original beads and embellishments, it's definitely the piece I am most proud with. I wish there were more similar samplers, somehow I am not that fond of the rest of the Heirloom series.

Just Nan Flowers of Joy

Finished in 2004

This piece stitches really quickly. I modified quite lot. It's stitched on cream 28ct Meran with DMC floss and cream cotton perle. I ddn't use the original embellishments and stitched another flower in the middla band instead.

Chatelaine Watergarden

WIP Galore # 4

Another Guilty Free January start! I adore this piece and already can't wait getting back to it. It's one of my absolutely favorite pieces in m rotation. Mr Watergarden has my true love!!!

Butternut Road Celtic Banner

WIP Galore #3

I ahve started Celtic Banner as another piece in Guilty Free January. I have made very little progress as of yet, but I already know, that it's a very pleasant piece. I am going to shorten it ad won't stitch the alphabet. So basically the square will be the first element of the banner.

Heritage Great Expectations

WIP Galore #2

I am stitching this picture for DH, who liked it very much. I have a little more than one page ready (out of six), so there's still quite a lot to do. It's a very enjoyable piece. As you see it's gridded every 20 stitches, but I decided gridding is not for me, so most probabely it's going to stay my only gridded one.

Michael Powell Venice Palace

WIP Galore #1

I have been stitching on this piece exclusively since Feb 7th. It's really very simple, so it's progressing wonderfully. I have been having so much fun with Venice Hearts that I gave m. Powell its own slot in ym rotation. I have one more Venice piece and then will move to Spanish Town Hill eventually.

Wednesday, March 02, 2005

Stitching Blogger's Question

Which do you prefer and why? "Old-fashioned" black and white symbol-only charts, charts with colored blocks, or charts with a combination of colored blocks and symbols?

I prefer black and white charts with big, clearly visible, esily distunguishable symbols. I hate it, when for example ! and | are very close to each other.

But I also like stitching smaller designs from mags that have a combination of colour and symbol. I don't make working copies then (I'm not taking great care of my mags, if they look used then at least I know I've stitched from them).

I hate charts with only colour shown. I have some DMC books that do that and I really hate it, when I have to think which of the 5 beige shades is this. This should be forbidden by law LOL. If I feel like making changes to the chart I will do them, but if I decide to follow the chart I want clear directions and clear charts.

Planning for March

Anneke, thank you so much for your kind comment. I wish I could just visit you or have you here. Can you imagine I have never been in Holland? It has been my wish for such a long time, but we never got to going there, but I still have big hopes that I will be visit and sooner rather than later. Flying withinh Europe has gotten cheaper and cheaper and there's simply no reason not to visit any more :)

I CHOOSE for March to be a much better month than February, I CHOOSE for it to be a very good month with lots of goals achieved and fun too.

I am still stitching on Michael Powell's Venice Palace and I think I am at 70% of the stitching done. It progresses so fast, that I haven't been tempted to start anything new, nor come back to my standard rotation. Maybe I will even finish it, before coming back to my normal rotation, whoch would b really good, as I would have one piece less to put into it. I got so deeply in love with this piece that I traded with someone leftover pieces from kits and I am getting leftovers of the Spanish Hill Town kit. I am so excited, I have already pulled out the Anchor floss I still have and made a list of floss I am still going to need to stitch it. Those kits are so unbelieveably expensive, at 45 British pounds, that I can't afford it new at the moment, not mentioning that they come with really ugly Aida that needs to be replaced. I have the two Venice Hearts kits bought new, so I guess it evens it out a bit.

I have also planned my next new start. It's going to be Gracious Era by Dimensions. DH loves this design and wants me to start it soon, so I surely will :) Then I have two other things calling at me - Jeanette Douglad Pacific Rim anf Patricia Ann Designs Twilight Star. I think I am going to start Pacific Rim as a part of the SAL on the Needle and Threads board, because I like such kind of unstructered, losse SAL. I think I am going to delay starting Sanctuary a bit more htough. I have already serged the fabby and pulled floss for it, but do not really feel like starting it at the moment. Also Dracolair's Dawn Awakening is going to wait until I have decided if I'm going to stitch it on the hand-dyed fabby I ordered for it or on plain whte which seems more appealing to me at the moment. But as I have enough new starts planned for the nearest future, I think I'm going to wait with those two a bit longer.

In March I would like to come back to my rotation, and stitch a couple of slots - at least Nature's Beauties, Hardanger tabletop and Great Expectations. Those have been really neglected in the last months and need some quality time.

I am also starting next round of ornie RR. Of course I'm not going to reveal my choice ;) I'm sure that the next round is going to be equally wonderful as the first one and I will be having lots and lots of fun with it. All the ornies from round 1 were beautiful and so will be the ones from the next one.

I am going to come back o my personal goals as well. I don't think I am going to achieve really a lot in March, but I'm going to try. I have to admit, though *blush* that I have to go back to my January post to see what I was actually going to work on now. OK, of course I remmeber the three main goals - weight loss, fighting procrastination and working on friendships. Oh, maybe thiose three are really more than enough for now :) I CHOOSE to work on those three this month.