Monday, November 2, 2009

Rachel's Halloween SAL and other issues

First: Rachel [What Seems Like Mad On An Ordinary Day blog]suggested some of us do a Halloween SAL Saturday, choosing a Halloween project and stitching on it throughout the day. Well, here my photos of my chosen Halloween Day project, one of my current WIPs, Esmeralda's House by Brightneedle. Left: where I picked up the piece on Saturday morning. Right: After stitching for an hour and half before morning classes and for most of the afternoon, I got quite a bit done. The fact that there were only seven trick-or-treaters this rainy year as opposed to 50-60 last year may have had something to do with it. Lower Left: a close-up of my progress. I expect to have this piece finished by the end of the week.

Mystic Spooky Retreat: I haven't exhausted the topic of the Mystic Stitcher's Hideaway Spooky Retreat but since I don't have any interesting photos to go with the commentary, I think it best to direct all interested parties to to read Sue's Fun Report when she recovers enough to post it. It may be a little while since Sue's schedule is jam packed. Sue works full time at a university in addition to running 3 or 4 retreats every year ... and she runs them entirely: getting the venue, signing up the teacher, vetting the project, putting together fabulous goodie bags and door prizes [I can't even imagine what her contact list is like for that chore], arranging for catering, field trips, on-site LNS, and all the amenities that we take for granted right down to water and candy [low may it be spoken] in the stitching room. Now Sue takes pictures, lots and lots of pictures ... so I am sure you will get a great deal of pleasure from reading her report.
Okay, on to the Finishes and WIPs:

Finish #1: Monsterbubbles Ghouls Just Wanna Have Fun ... I plan to stitch a second one. That way I can give one to my daughter, Ange, and keep one for myself. This is the first piece I have stitched that called for Kreinik Cord. It was combined with one strand of GAST Clover pink to make the little ghost in the lower left corner. I am of two minds about this fiber. On the plus side: it is not nearly so delicate as blending filament and does not fray or break or seperate the way blending filament sometimes does ... and it does look lovely once stitched. On the minus side: being thicker/stiffer than blending filament, it does seem to kink every so often, making laying the fiber a bit tricky ... also, it doesn't travel through the linen at the same rate as the cotton floss it is paired with, making it necessary to pull each strand through the fabric seperately and it leaves a progressively shorter tail than the cotton in the needle as you stitch ... rather annoying, really. I have photographed Ghouls with the fabric I am planning to use for the finish ... it was meant to be an ornament ... but even stitched on 32 ct as called for, it is rather large at 4 5/8" x 4 7/8" ... so I am leaning toward finishing it as a mini wall hanging or bell pull. I could stitch the second one on 40ct though that would throw the Thread Gatherer Savoir Faire ribbon "hair" out of scale. Of course, I have some Thread Gatherer Chenille in a slightly different but still workable color way that would work with a 40ct fabric.

Finish #2: This one is both a cross-stitching and a sewing finish. Stitcher's Hideway Spooky Retreat Keepsake Halloween ornament. This was a quick stitch, as promised.
Finish #3: this time, it's a sewing finish. Here is my Prairie Schooler Partridge in a Pear Tree ornament from the JCS 2005 Christmas ornament issue.
WIP #1: The Brightneedle Ghoulies and Ghosties Etui. I tried shadow stitching an outline on only the left side of the capital F ... dreadful! Then I backstitched all around the letter ... even worse! I will simply have to bite the bullet and frog the letters done in the wrong color and re-stitch them. Like Scarlett in Gone With the Wind, I shall worry about that tomorrow. For today, I simply continued stitching the haunted house at the bottom. No photo here since there's been no progress since the last photo ... indeed, my decision to frog the letters will take me several steps backward.

WIP #2: See the Brightneedle Esmeralda's House pictured at the beginning of this post.

WIP #3: Although Rachel knows she is getting a pinecone ornament, she doesn't know what it looks like. So although I have started this and intend to focus on it this week, no photo will be posted till it is finished, sent and received.


Carol said...

It looks like you had a very successful stitching weekend, Riona! Esmerelda's House looks like such a fun one to watch appear on the fabric--really cute. Love the octagonal finish on the PS Partridge--I'll have to give that a try myself. Congratulations on all of your finishes :)

Rachel S said...

You made fantastic progress. Thank you for doing the SAL with me!

Daffycat said...

Seriously, it's no fair having three wonderful finishes at once. You're making the rest of us look bad! Congratulations!

Your WIP's look fab too!