August & September WIPocalypse

Hello everyone! I hope you’re well. WIPocalypse is the monthly check-in SAL hosted by Measi on her blog, and via the Facebook group – we welcome all enablers! Click on the icon to the right to learn more.

August Goals:

  • Complete the Year 5 Extra Credit homework (4/11 to go) LEFT ONE TASK INCOMPLETE
  • Complete Mermaid of Atlantis stitching (seriously possible if the weekly homework goes my way) NOT QUITE – BUT USED WHERE POSSIBLE
  • No Spend! NOPE – SPENT $10.40

September Goals:

  • Complete four EC NOPE, just two
  • Complete Mermaid of Atlantis (lined up for a few of the monthly Extra Credit) NOPE
  • Bead & FFO some Mill Hill ornies NOPE

All up, in August I didn’t stitch as much as in July. We finished the car & I spent a lot of time walking & listening to audio books rather than on my butt. Still happy with what I got done tho.

  • Fairy Idyll 231
  • Mermaid of Atlantis 435
  • Shakespeare’s Fairies 1957
  • Tapestry Cat 202
  • Stitchrovia Austen Quote 404
  • Coffee Quaker 1024
  • Jeanette Douglas 2012 Peace 417
  • Four Seasons in NZ 247
  • The Guardian 565
  • Erica Tui (new start) 506
  • MH Santa’s Sleighs 500
  • Un Ricarmo Per Rinascere 509
  • Reindeer Parade 213

That’s over 7410 stitches for the month.

In September I slowed right down (lots of reading & more time with Mum) and got in just over 6000 stitches.

  • Fairy Idyll 1353
  • Mermaid of Atlantis 868 (just beading to go now)
  • Fairy Tales, a new start 3141
  • Un Ricarmo Per Rinascere 321
  • Sampler House, a new start from Blackbird Designs 607

SFS: In August, I didn’t manage a no spend month (again) but it was just a few DMC & two charts at the Hospice shop. Turned out the person I picked them up for already had them, so if you’re into Paula Vaughan they are up on my @pauladestash IG account. I have ordered the new Mirabilia, Garden Prelude, but the bill hasn’t arrived yet so I can’t count it. With the ornie finish, I’m 30.85 in the black.

And then September turned to custard! I was given some money so went wild – $110.10 in 20 minutes at Ribbon Rose. Oops. Luckily I also sold Lady of the Flag for a reasonable (not eBay enormous) amount to a fellow stitcher, so that kept me in the black, at 26.92.

August Question: What do you have on your stitching bucket list? (for example, specific projects, designers, fibers, etc) I have two Chatelaine designs in my stash – but with a few large Mira’s on my WIP list either is a way away from starting.

September Question: What finishing style have you never tried but would love to do? More hand-finishing – Mase wants this Blackbird Designs stocking ASAP – so that’s on the list to knock off. Plus I’d like to take a framing course next year.

See you next week (hopefully!) or at the least, for the October WIPoclaypse.

WIP Wednesday #256

Hello everyone! Apologies for not posting last week – we had a lot going on at home. By the time I remembered about the WIP it was Friday… this week we have a Japanese billet with us for the week so it’s been an adventure! Sho is lovely, coming out of his shell & has a good sense of humour. We will miss him on Sunday when we put him on the plane home to his family.

Week 6 involved Professor Umbridge coming into power and we had to stitch on something that we really wanted to quit, like the students wanted to quit Hogwarts. I wanted to quit Coffee Quaker, as I simply got tired of the over-one. In the end, taking it everywhere, I managed 1024 stitches. I didn’t stitch on anything else this week tho.

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Week 7 was O.W.L.S exam week – ick! We had a choice of going for E (exceeds expectations) with 100 stitched on each of the 7 Core/3 Elective subjects for 2pts, or O (outstanding) with 200 stitches giving 5pts. I went overboard again, ignoring the monthly tasks that I hadn’t completed, and worked on getting all O levels. Luckily we had done some “subject” things earlier in the year, so it wasn’t so hard to match up WIPs and subjects.

I picked a Jeannette Douglas design to cover both Astronomy (the quaker star) and History of Magic (words) and got a start & finish with Peace. This is in the 2012 JCS Christmas edition (available on the CD at 123Stitch & other retailers).

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Using the Emma Congdon Austen quote, I covered Herbology (growing Hellebore roses) and Potions (Hellebore is an ingredient in several potions) – not a finish, but over halfway now.

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I used Mirabillia Shakespeare’s Fairies for two other Core subjects – Charms (they summoned fireflies to light their way), & Defence Against the Dark Arts (one wears a diadem, like what Voldemort used as a horcrux).

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The last Core was transfiguration, and as Professor McGonnigal is shown in both her forms in the first chapter of book one, the obvious choice was Tapestry Cat.

Electives – I ignored Arithmancy (would have had to use Coffee Quaker) and Divination (I’m with Hermione, that subject sucks) and chose Ancient Runes (completed all the lettering in Home*Stitch*Ness Four Seasons), Care of Magical Creatures (Mirabilia Mermaid of Atlantis) and Muggle Studies (I stitched the Mary Rose, the Tudor ship that’s in Mermaid of Atlantis as I’d been watching a doco about it while stitching Care).

Hope you all have a lovely week – I’ll be back for next week then it’s WIPoclaypse.

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!

April WIPocalypse

Hello everyone! I hope you’re well. WIPocalypse is the monthly check-in SAL hosted by Measi on her blog, and via the Facebook group – we welcome all enablers! Click on the icon to the right to learn more.

April Goals:

  • Use Genoa & Wales for Extra Credit piece (500 stitches) NOPE – used Nantucket Rose instead
  • Complete first fairy in Shakespeare’s Fairies YEP
  • Stitch Hello April AND Hello May NOPE
  • Work on Coffee Quaker every day in April ALMOST

 

While I didn’t get to many goals (I’ve gone right off the Sandra Santas, surprisingly) I did hit nearly every April #magicalstitches challenge and got a lot of progress in on various pieces. There’s over 800 more in Nantucket Rose (and I reached the far side, so this is as wide as it gets) and 2800 plus in Shakespeare’s Fairies. I also started Cloudsfactory Labyrinth and the Mill Hill Celestial Sleigh. That one’s been a PITA as the kit was missing some items, so substitution city. First time I’ve ever been disappointed in a MH kit.

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May Goals:

  • Stitch Hello April AND Hello May AND Hello June
  • Continue working on Coffee Quaker daily
  • Finish the second fairy in Shakespeare’s Fairies
  • Knock off a couple more “ultimate” stitch challenges

 

April 28 – Talk to us about your longest-running WIP or UFO. Mine would be the Teresa Wentzler Tapestry Cat design. I brought it for myself as a Christmas present back in 2003, when I was working at Air New Zealand. I vastly underestimated the number of quarter stitches and back stitch, and while I own a lot of TW charts, I’ve only ever completed Misty, one of the Rocking Horses! I’ve also started Noah’s Ark, and stopped at the over one. Now that I’ve completed Arezzo over one, I think I will be able to press on with the Ark at least. TC? Well, he’s nearly done, probably only another 2500 stitches in him, and I’d estimate the border is about at the quarter-way mark. There’s a LOT of backstitch.

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SFS is still in the red, thanks to a market find. Oh, well. Hopefully some of the May challenges will lead to finishes so I can claim!

WIP Wednesday #240

20190202_195150.jpgHello everyone! I’ve been super busy this last fortnight, stitching, walking, reading, cleaning, running around after family members & I can’t wait to take a break! One highlight was a repeat dinner with the Harpur family, who brought Aurora with them. Two weeks ago she was the length of Simon’s forearm/hand – now look at her! She’s 5 weeks here.

I didn’t post last week as my pieces were all over the show as I worked away at the various #schoolofmagicalstitchesandliterature tasks. All up, this last fortnight has seen the start & finish of Hello March (500 for words), 200+ more stitches on Nantucket Rose (enabled), 600+ on Shakespeare’s Fairies (various challenges) and 700+ on Tapestry Cat (two challenges). I have just stitched more on TC in a week than I did in all of 2018. He nearly has a tail! This is a lot of stitching but with our national holiday, Waitangi Day, I got extra walking and stitching in. And market shopping. Nom nom on the Whitestone cheeses and Selash cured meats. And perfection at the Franked stall – imported, handcrafted items from Cambodia where there is a story behind the item, & it’s helping differently abled people.

I also finished my January Project Life pages. I’m choosing to do these in a 6*8 album as it’s more personal to me, not for the family. There’s some stuff that involves others (I asked Mase to fill in the Back to School card) but they won’t get this until I’m passed. Mase does look at it, but he knows if it’s hidden journaling, it’s private to me & he’s not to read it yet.

And on Sunday, Louise & I got up early and walked around the harbour on Tamaki Drive. We started at St Helliers, went up to Achilles Point & watched the sunrise and a cruise ship come into the harbour, picked up coffee at Mission Bay and eventually got collected at Royal Akarana Yacht Club. 7.2km in all of super-quality time with my girl.

Hope you all have a lovely week!

2019 & WIPocalypse Restarts

January 6 – Introduce yourself, your projects, and any goals you have for the year!

Well. This is my fifth year of WIpocalypse. It’s the most committed I’ve been to any SAL & I put that down to the pressure free, encouraging environment that Melissa hosts. If you’re a crafter, please join up either on your blog or via the Facebook group – we welcome all enablers!

If you’ve not read from my blog before, I’m in my mid-40’s, a working mum to four (ranging from 24-9) & partner. I am book-mad, often found stitching & listening to podcasts or audiobooks, and I wouldn’t mind winning Lotto so that I could stay home and stitch (but I’d have to remember to buy tickets first). We own our home near the base of Auckland’s Waitakere Ranges & can often be found working on it or a friends (my partner was an engineer, he’s bloody handy with a tool belt), walking on the beach or in one of the many beautiful parks Auckland boasts. I’ve been hand stitching since before I was 10, can’t knit an even scarf or crochet to save myself and don’t often pull my machine out (altho I brought a 1940’s Singer recently, purely on impulse as I love the look). I’m a whizz at curtains.

Goals for 2019 (I only have 9 WIPs right now & that’s about right for me) :

  • Finish SFS in the black
  • Complete & FFO the remaining monthly Hello There pieces (Mar-Nov)
  • Re-start Shakespeare’s Fairies & complete one fairy
  • Work on Tapestry Cat, Fairy Idyll, Arezzo, Four Season of NZ

Mini January Goals:

  • Finish Jardin Prive’s Eiffel Quaker COMPLETED
  • Mill Hill Golden Tannenbaum for my Small/Christmas All Year Round
  • Hello There March (& FFO)
  • 341 stitches in Shakespeare’s Fairies for the HP SAL

Hopefully with returning to work/school/other crap I will still feel stitchy most nights & achieve all these goals.