WIP Wednesday #255

Hello! It’s early evening for me, & I’m snuggled up, watching TV & stitching on this week’s #magicalstitches homework. The challenge is around Professor Umbridge becoming headmaster of Hogwarts, so we have to stitch on something we wanted to quit. Ouch.

Last week I chose the penalty challenge. We had to link our piece to how we would divert Umbridge & her squad from finding the Room of Requirement and the students who were studying in Hermione’s illegal Defense Against the Dark Arts club, or Dumbledore’s Army, as they became known.

I chose Shakespeare’s Fairies, making up how they were flitting around the castle, winding up Filch, Mrs Norris & encouraging Peeves to add to the chaos. I’ve just been marked so that story worked!

I’m now up to the wings & skin of the last fairy, and into the second page. Hooray!

And on a super cool note, Donovan is SOLD. One more bout of cleaning, lawn & garden maintenance and Si & I are done.

WIP Wednesday #253

Hey everyone! Hope you’ve had a good week.

Last week’s #magicalstitches revolved around Professor Umbridge. If you could match the options, it was 1000 stitches total or if you chose penalty stitches, 2000. Eep. But 200 stitches a night is usually achievable for me so I tried to match.

  1. The colour Pink – Fairy Idyll’s bedlinens
  2. Tea or Teacups – I found an Emma Congdon/Stitchrovia series of smalls. Originally in Cross Stitch Crazy, they’re now available on her Etsy store.
  3. Kittens – which had to be domestic cats, so Tapestry Cat came back into play.
  4. A pattern name that starts with one of the letters R.U.L.E.S – I chose Shakespeare’s Fairies
  5. A designers’ name that starts with one of the letters S.T.R.I.C.T – here I had a couple of options with Teresa Wentztler (TC or Guardian) or one of the Sandra Cozzolino designed Mill Hill Santas.

Halfway thru the week, it was confirmed that you could use the designer name or the company it was released with, and it suddenly dawned on me that hello, it’s Nora CORBETT and C is in strict. Insert facepalm mode. So as Fairy Idyll was in front of me at the time, I knocked out another block there.

Family wise it’s a bit odd. Out of mum’s day-to-day loop, so it was a shock to find out she’d been so ill she’d been prescribed antibiotics. We had the same conversation three times on Monday night when I took up her morphine allocation. Plus with the SIL constantly going on about money. Its super hard not to bite back, but that would achieve nothing. Our focus has always been to give Mum a good life, to show our gratitude physically as well as verbally e.g. the ramps we built so she could ignore steps & use her Zimmer, altering the height of her ensuite basin so she didn’t have to bend, organise car servicing etc…I couldn’t tell you how much money or time we’ve spent, but hello, it’s Mum.

Sorry for the downer end.

WIP Wednesday #251 & bonus book mini-review

Morning everyone! This time last week I was absorbing the fantastic Becoming by Michelle Obama (audible version, which has the bonus of being in her voice and so with her intonations and emphasis). It was great, for work and playtime and transit time. The only obvious problem is of course the book hangover that results from a great read. Regardless of your colour, creed, race, status or whatever – this one will have some lesson to take onboard, even if it’s just that what’s on someone’s surface isn’t necessarily true. Look to their actions, and be empathetic. Remember that person next to you in the supermarket queue also has problems and prejudices, and work to minimise yours in such a way that others are enabled. Or at least, not inconvenienced or damaged.

Right. Onto the lighter stuff. Last week was the first relating to The Order of the Phoenix. I worked on the actual challenge points:

  1. Boring neighbour – 300 on something that can get boring – I used Mermaid of Atlantis’ borders and you’d think that would be straight forward. EHHHH no. Not when you look at the chart and count the BS line as where a ten block finishes…and it actually doesn’t! I had to frog 70-odd silk stitches (carefully!) and their corresponding BS line as I was two rows out. I’ve now started on the filigree corner for an Extra Credit task.
  2. Unapproved Magic – 300 on a project that’s been suspended for 5 months or your oldest WIP – Teresa Wentzler’s Tapestry Cat certainly qualified, as I started this in Christmas 2006! I worked in the Greek key sections on that top right corner and got in 600 back stitches. Boring but necessary.
  3. Dementor Attack – 300 on a project that has no faces –a new start, the Mill Hill Princess Carriage. As per, I’m making one for me and one for Ms Lou. I managed to get in all the stitching to be at the beading point – 758 stitches at work/training/travel.

This week’s challenge is around the address of 12 Grimmauld Place, the Black house that lies semi-hidden in London & is the home of the Order of the Phoenix. The options were either 500 stitches on WIPs 1 & 2, or 1000 on WIP 12. I’ve gone for the first option so there will be another session on Fairy Idyll and Tapestry Cat, as I just couldn’t face Guardian. I may or may not get this out – we’re leaving on a combo work/play trip tomorrow and neither of these WIPs is something I can take with me, FI being on the floor stand and TC being a complicated blend of multiple threads (plus white evenweave, eep!). At least there are large blocks of colour on the Mirabilia.

Bonus shot is of a mural we found in Point Chevalier, another suburb of Auckland. Not sure who the men are, perhaps the composers? But I liked it anyway.

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Have a good week!

WIP Wednesday #249

Morning everyone!

Well, best laid plans and all that… to repeat from last week “This week’s challenge is two fold, and I am picking option one. You have to stitch 200 in the following categories: Air/Yellow, Water/Blue, Earth/Green, Fire/Red & Wood/Brown. I’m going to complete 1000 stitches (hopefully!) in The Guardian, as all the elements are present in this design.”

Famous last words. I did end up using Guardian for the Air portion, but that was stone cold last on my list. I started the portion I’d set aside and because it was a mix of the same threads for both full and half stitches, I simply couldn’t get my head around it early in the week. I ended up completing this on Sunday, when the house was empty of everyone but Zac & I.

In a move that probably surprises no-one, I pulled out Mermaid of Atlantis. I completed 225 stitches in the Waterlillies Umbria & Espresso threads, the 212 stitches in her fins for water; then 226 stitches in DMC 470/avocado green for that option.

For Fire/Red, all I could think of is one of the globes in Shakespeare’s Fairies, so I did 222 stitches in one of those. Found an error in the grey, boo hoo, so I did waste a bit of time trying to re-work so I didn’t have to frog. That was a fail, as it was much easier to pull out those 12 stitches!

This week is the last week that the stitch challenge applies to Goblet of Fire. I am picking Option one, as I can see pieces that fit into most of these.

  1. Harry & Cedric touch the Cup at the same time – 200 on items that are touching. Shakespeare’s Fairies are holding hands…
  2. Voldemort attacks – 200 in grey or black. SF#2’s dress is grey…
  3. Cedric dies – 100 on a tombstone or graveyard scene. I have nothing here!
  4. Harry parents appear to help him – 200 on a piece you’ve had help with. Again, SF as I needed help to find the OOP chart…
  5. Mad Eye Moody & deceit – 200 on an ingredient in Polyjuice potion. SF again, as I used this in the Polyjuice task back in February.
  6. Harry donated his winnings to Fred & George for their joke shop – 100 on something that makes you laugh…think I’ll use Cloudsfactory Labyrinth

Bonus shot of Mase the Ace – he’s fully into the Toy Car restoration. If you’re wondering, he’s cleaning the rear grill with a damp blush brush. Works a treat.

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WIP Wednesday #248

Morning everyone! Outside of stitching, this week has been fairly busy, with time spent learning to restore the Toy Car – I have the carpets looking like new, & the vinyl looks pretty sweet too. The carpet is just elbow grease – a good vacuum, then I used liquid laundry cleaner in my pet shampoo Bissell and went to town. Takes about an hour all up for each piece but worth it. I did that on the kitchen floor, easy to clean after! Currently half the lounge floor is covered in a fugly blanket & the interior trim parts – one wash & two applications of the vinyl restoration liquid, applied in circles with a blush brush. Don’t mock, I saw it on a YouTube video about restoring a MR2 & it works. I didn’t buy the cheapest brush but then again I’m not having to re-do the work after picking out nylon bristles either. Tonight I’ll be attacking the parts of the dash that remained in the car and the door interior cards. Then we’re up to installing the new sound-proofing and speakers etc. These photos have posted in reverse order, whoops.

All that, plus normal house/work/kid stuff meant I only just scraped in my stitch homework. Until Sunday afternoon I thought I’d only get about 400 stitches in, but I kept plugging away with two particular colours and while I was waiting on a report to download Monday morning, I finished. Woot! Now to knock out the last 470-odd for the Ultimate stitch I was working on.

This week’s challenge is two fold, and I am picking option one. You have to stitch 200 in the following categories: Air/Yellow, Water/Blue, Earth/Green, Fire/Red & Wood/Brown. I’m going to complete 1000 stitches (hopefully!) in The Guardian, as all the elements are present in this design.

Have a good week!

WIP Wednesday #247

Morning everyone! First things first – happy birthday to my Melbournite brother Rob x

Last week’s challenge was up to 1000 stitches on something that involved collecting a dragon egg. I chose my Teresa Wentzler kit, The Guardian, & I was so happy to see the cliffs emerge. The softer, distant cliffs are half-stitch, so I ended up with over 650 of those (226 “real” stitches) while the nearer cliff is full cross using the same blends. I do wonder if TW would use the same blends now that DMC has expanded so much more than it was in 2000 (the copyright date for this kit)?

This week’s challenge is one point for every 100 stitches, again up to 1000, on your favourite WIP. I’m breaking away from one of the Ultimate challenges to use Mermaid of Atlantis. I do love how this is working up. The 28ct Lugana fabric is a mystery one (I can’t find the label, eep, but I think it’s a Silkweaver) but I love the mottled effect.

Have a good week!

05/06 WIP (short weeks confuse me) #247

Morning everyone! Its post a three-day-weekend (Happy Birthday Your Majesty) and I didn’t get as much stitching done as I would have hoped – we spent most of the weekend cleaning my MIL’s old house and prepping it for sale – with my SIL conspicuously absent. With over three quarters of the house and outside done, our little family is walking away. Done with the frustration around the no-show, and demands, and oh-I’m-a-victim mentality. It’s very, very toxic.

Onto the good stuff – most of us are well. Now that we can focus on our house, I’m sure the environment will improve (it’s hard to be positive and rest when all you can see is things left undone). M & Z are doing well at school; B actually went to his course for a couple of days (motivation is lacking in this one) but picked up an extra day of work) & L is looking to move back home (eep! But at least she cooks).

20190603_152052.jpgSo over Friday/Saturday/Sunday, I would have been lucky to put in 100 stitches on Mermaid of Atlantis. I had knocked out the 300 for the penalty homework but was also hoping to complete another Ultimate challenge but I only achieved that binge-watching Midsomer Murders yesterday afternoon. I ended up frogging the GAST that I had intended to carry over to her tail and am going back to the charted colours. It was just too bright, and too hard to control the light-over-scales effect.

This week’s challenge is to collect the dragon egg (the first task in Goblet). We could choose any piece, as long as we could make up a story about how it ties in. Mine is super simple! I’m using The Guardian, by Theresa Wentzler, which has a golden dragon guarding a castle. Because as any Anne McCaffrey reader knows, before you get a dragon egg, you need a golden dragon queen! Don’t even think of the chicken/egg question Elizabeth!! There’s a point for every 100 stitches, up to 10 points. I intend to get them all.