Sunday, December 9, 2012

Finally Tired of Smalls

I must be one of the most perverse stitchers on the planet.  At the very least, I must be among the more unpredictable ones.  After a month devoted to smalls, I decided I needed to work on something large and ambitious again.  But, do I pick up where I left off on the Woodland Angel Stocking? No, of course not!  Perhaps you are thinking that I resumed work on the Mystic Needlework Accessories Class Project that I had been working on in October? Not a chance!  Or could it be The English Band Sampler about which I was do enthusiastic just a month ago?  Wrong again.

What Midnight Moogies looked like at the start if the week.
No, I chose a UFO so old that it dates from a time when I was still stitching the occasional piece on Aida, Midnight Moogies from a very ancient Cross Stitch Gold magazine.  This was abandoned originally because I had oriented the fabric wrong way around when I first started stitching it and didn't notice it till a full quarter of the design was stitched.  The result:  I had to cut fabric from the top and bottom of the piece to sew onto the sides to get the proper width.  This meant that for a quarter of an inch wide strip down both sides my cross stitches have to penetrate not just the Aida but the seam allowance on the underside as well, making it a  real pain in the proverbial ass.  I suppose I could use a thimble to protect my finger but I have always found thimbles very clumsy tools ... they slow me down considerably.  And since age and cataracts have already  slowed
Midnight Moogies as it appeared before this day's stitching
me down somewhat, I fear if I use a thimble, I might actually start moving backward in time instead of forward.  Those are the negatives of this particular choice.  The positives do balance things out though.  The colors on this piece are so very cheerful, so eye-popping bright against the navy blue Aida that they compensate for the grey days of winter.  The pale watered down sunshine so typical of December can't compete with all this vibrancy.  And then the lines and graphic elements of the design are so very bold and strong.  It raises my spirits just to pick the darn thing up.  Do I wish I had started this piece on linen?  Sure!  Do I wish I hadn't made the stupid rookie mistake of orienting the fabric improperly?  Absolutely!  But still, I am going to enjoy working this piece as long as my arthritic thumb can stand the pressure of pushing through four layers of Aida.  I keep telling myself, "It's only till I finish the border.  It'll be smooth sailing after that."    Just a note about these photos: the fabric color is actually more of a navy blue than a bright navy blue.  I can't imagine why the photo shows it to be so bright.  It is an outdoor photo but the morning is bleak and overcast, threatening rain any minute.  I don't know where all the light is coming from!

For the past week I have been working on the black-stitched outlines of all the design elements and am nearly finished with that task.  I hope to finish all the black stitching [with the exception of the checkerboard] this weekend.  Once that is done, I will alternate between stitching lengths of the ever so boring black and white checkerboard border [through that pesky seam allowance] and stitching the vibrantly colored fill of the various design elements.  I wish I could claim that once the checkerboard is done, all the boring parts of this project will be past.  But, there is an outer frame of DMC 169 ten rows all around, rather like a stitched matte board.

Oh, and before my obsession with smalls petered out, I did finish up one more cardinal ornament.  This one has a lime green and grape colored scarf.  I have fabric enough for one more cardinal ornament which I may stitch during the Christmas vacation.  Please note the scale of these photos is quite different.  The stitched-so-far area of Midnight Moogies is approximately 16 inches square and the final project will be approximately 22 inches wide x 20 inches high whereas the width of the La-D-Da Christmas Cardinal is just under 4 inches.


Vickie said...

I find myself doing stitching projects I "shouldn't" be doing right now. Oh well!
I love that piece with the cats. =)

Karen said...

Well... that is being industrious! Great way to save the project. Love the brightness of the project on the fabric.... happy stitching....

Linda said...

Love the new bird. But, I am in love with your cat piece. It is gorgeous and you can't see where you had to seam the fabric. Great piece.


Dani - tkdchick said...

Way to persevere Ranae so many of us would of given up!

Like you after a lot of small, simple stuff I do crave big and complicated!

Jo who can't think of a clever nickname said...

I love your cat piece but there's no way I'd stitch 10 rows of border! I'd use a mat or attach ribbon or something!

I alternate between a small for daytime stitching and a larger more complex piece for evening when the boys are in bed.

Rachel S-H said...

It's looking really good, Riona.

rosey175 said...

o I'm so glad you picked this back up; it's fabulous! I love the bright colors and it looks wonderful!