Friday, July 07, 2017

Cabled Shoulder Bag

So I like to have a few projects going at once so I can switch between which I want to work on however feels natural and I had found this Cabled Shoulder Bag class on Annie's and thought it would be fun since it is the pattern plus help!  And boy am I glad I got it with help because it was a bit confusing how to do certain cables!
I love how it's really starting to shape up!  I have done a few more repeats of the pattern since this last photo but didn't get another photo yet but when I took the one below it was so cool to really see the cables forming!  It is a little bit harder of a technique to do but not too hard and now that I am used to it, it feels pretty easy. I'm to the point now where I could take the project with me somewhere and still reference the pattern but not have to lean on it or the video very much.  Which is always a nice point!

Thursday, July 06, 2017

What is it? Progress

Well I had a weird unfortunate thing happen I was happily stitching along and it was getting longer and longer and then I had an odd thing happen at the end of a row and I was like...what in the world so I counted stitches and they were off and I undid the row seeing what I had done that made the join funky for that row and redid it...only to recount and it still being off yet I fixed the issue!  OH boy then I had to undo that row again and count the previous that again...again...again...for about 10 inches or so!!! SCREAM  I had to go back so far to find a row with the proper stitch count!!!  I was only 1 stitch off for so much work!  Eventually I got the rows back in the proper stitch count and interestingly enough I believe it was the end of the row joining issue that clued me in that took away a stitch and I hadn't realized it probably was distracted or something when it happened.  I took a few days and didn't work on was so discouraging!  But then I was like you know you have to get back in the saddle at some point!  So I did and then made up all the lost progress and then some! 
After reaching the length needed I was able to continue on to finish the body of the piece!  Now is onto the additional details that really make it from What IS it? to OHHHHHHH COOL!  LOL ;-)

Friday, June 23, 2017

What is it???

SO I started a new project and this one is a gift for a friend!  But I haven't told anyone what it actually is yet as I share my progress photos!  What could it be?!?!?!?!  I'm really enjoying the fact that it looks pretty much nothing like what it is until the final details get added.  HAHA
For the most part this is a pretty easy pattern to follow but I did have some "beginner" trouble in the very beginning making me think I didn't understand the instructions so I drew out what I thought it said to do in diagram style...sure enough I fully understood...yet why did it seem my stitches were off???  Come to find out I was counting the slip stitch and working into it when I was supposed to skip it...ah well...which means until I figured that out I thought I was doing something wrong and now I realize I had taken out a stitch in the first row to get row 2's count right........I just left it since I don't think it's going to be detrimental.
However I had some serious trouble when it came to joining these 2 split sections together at the top!!!  The instructions are VERY UNCLEAR about how to do it.  I realize that it's a difficult thing to put into words so I wanted to write to the designer on Etsy to see if she could offer any additional help that might clarify for me because the below picture is what I read the instructions to tell me to do.  That results in a wonky what the heck that doesn't make sense.........
Well the designer wrote back said she couldn't see what was happening and couldn't help me and that anyone well versed in crochet knows it's a simple thing to do but it's difficult to explain.  SO I pulled myself up by the boot straps again checked on Ravelry to see photos of that section and just took an educated guess as to what in the heck is supposed to happen...and TaDA I give you I-guess-I'm-well-versed-enough-to-make-an-educated-guess...
After doing that up, in what I think the instructions are supposed to explain, I reread them and nope...I think they are garbled up in such a way that I wouldn't know to do what I actually ended up doing and I think I could explain it to others, which I did in the pattern notes on Ravelry JIC anyone else like me is trying to find what in the heck is supposed to happen there.  Vent Complete!  HAHA I guess it just kinda broke my heart since I love helping people so much and always try my best when someone asks.  But at the same time I get it, she's probably had a ton of crappy people being crappy and so it just seemed like I was yet one more person like that even though I tried really hard to not come across like that...I just wanted a tiny bit of clarification and wasn't accusing in any way I understand that it's hard to write things for everyone to understand and I know I'm at the beginner side of intermediate.  Ahh well.  I got passed it and I'm still grateful for the pattern at all and it really is well written overall and I'm happy with it.
And lookie it's getting long!!! Heehee! ;)

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Gray Shawl!

Well since I love this Shawl pattern so much I decided I needed one in gray!!! HAHA  And I just love how now the pattern is so memorized I don't have to think too hard to work on it so it's nice and relaxing!  I'm taking my time on it and just doing a little at a time whenever I just want to chill.  OH I saw a person on Ravelry had added a pretty edging to one and shared how they did it so I'm considering adding that to this one too!

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Starting a Doily!

I started on a doily for my little table beside my Crochet Nook!  In the first photo you can see the picture from the book above and my work below!  And next is where I left off last!  And OMG it's funny because it's like mini-crochet and it takes so much more focus and concentration to work!  I have to like zoom in my efforts and keeping proper tension and making sure things are even etc. it's just so much more intense!!! HAHA  But I think it's good because it forces me to focus on those things which will build up my skill!

Friday, June 09, 2017

Green Shawl Finished!

I finished up the Green Shawl I made for a friend!!!  There wasn't enough yarn left to do the single crochet edging all the way around 3 edges but since it's such a heavy weight yarn I figured the only edge that really needed it was the top salvage edge.  Plus this way the other edges look lightly scalloped which I love!  It's a nice cozy fuzzy shawl I love it!  Now I am wanting something similar for myself who knew variegated greens would go so well with stuff!

Thursday, June 08, 2017

Crochet Nook Show and Tell

I got a couple of things to make life prettier and a tad more organized in the little nook I do my crochet in!  I got a rectangular basket to put books and notions and things in.  And I wanted a little something to hold my hooks and things that I'm currently using so I don't have to fully put it away and get it out every single time I get up or sit down!  So looking around the craft store for something that would work I found a cute little bird planter and I thought hey this might actually work!!!  AND IT DOES I love it so much so cute and perfect! 

Next I ordered some pretty scissors that look antique which should come soon.  And I bought a Haviland Limoges Butter Pat, which is a tiny plate of my fave antique china that has a pretty pattern on it, so that I can put the little stitch markers on and maybe the needle for weaving in ends.  That should be arriving soon too.

I also plan on crocheting a pretty tissue box cover!  Something probably with a white base fabric and some gorgeous flowers on it.

Tuesday, June 06, 2017

Green Fuzzy Shawl

I wanted to make a shawl that was warmer for a friend and I had started with another pattern but realized after checking my gauge that I had bought the wrong size yarn for that project after all!!!  UGGG  So I frogged it and scoured to find a pattern that would use this yarn that I wanted to use...and ended up deciding to just make the shawl I just made but with this yarn.  It's one size bulkier than is called for but it really doesn't make much difference in size, just thickness of the stitches which makes it it worked out in the end!
This photo is during row 15 of 26 and the one below is row 20!  My measurements say another 6 inches added to the edge with the remaining rows and I love that it will be a nice big blankety shawl!  It's using the Buttercream Angel Hair yarn and the fuzz is so soft and warm.
OH BTW I scoured the Lion Brand website to see if I could find the pattern that the JoAnn's Class used and found an old one named Silver Shawl!!!  It's the same fact the pattern is written in a much better way than it's "modern" updated version for that class which was confusing in row 5!  I followed the original for this shawl to see the difference and it was just easier to read but is the same pattern!  The yarn, recommended gauge, and finished size is different in each pattern and the but that hardly matters it's gorgeous any way it ends up!

Friday, June 02, 2017

Shawl Complete!

Here it is! WOO I'm so proud of myself!  And now I'm like hey I could make a couple more of these for gifts in different colors! HAHA  I might be hooked!  Well this is fun and I'm going to enjoy exploring crochet!

Thursday, June 01, 2017

Crochet Shawl Almost Finished

Yesterday I completed Rows 16-22 though during class time I didn't get much done since we were talking so much! LOL  Ah well I seem to do best when I am sitting in my fave Ikea chair and can really devote my concentration!

AND here it is with all 26 Rows complete (below photo)!  Just needing it's edging and ends woven in!  Which I have already done just didn't get a photo yet and it's getting washed right now!  I'm hoping to get a finished picture wearing it tomorrow!  YAY so much fun!

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Crochet Class Shawl

Here's my progress from the class at JoAnn's I started yesterday!  Today will be day 2 of class.  I got the first 9 of 26 rows done there (above photo).  At first it was really difficult working with the 10mm Crochet Hook when I'm used to the 5mm!  But after a few rows I got the hang of it.

At home I added a bit more, I completed row 15 and started row16 (below photo)!  It's really taking shape!  I'm excited to get to wear it soon!  Now I don't think I'm going to finish it in class today but I guess we'll see how much gets done today, and it might get done tomorrow after all.  We'll see, even if it takes longer than expected this is still a very fast project which is really nice because it rewards you for your efforts as a beginner!  LOL

I also looked up how to create a center pull ball and wound a couple of skeins to make life easier!  OH that reminds me I did need to add in another skein last night!  That was a first for me I don't know if I've ever made it that far in the past...if I have I don't remember!  HAHA

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Starting A Crochet Throw

So I had bought some variegated yarn and a book of quick and easy stitches and planned to pick one and create a Throw!  The Stitch Pattern I choose was Treble Rhapsody from the book 100 Quick & Easy Crochet Stitches.  I figure why not dive in and make something bigger like that right off the bat!

I had been watching some youtube videos of Meladora's Creations and they were really helpful to give me confidence seeing visually how patterns work out.  She also explained what the meaning of things like 12 plus 16 meant so that I was able to use this stitch pattern and make it the size I'd like!  I used the throw that is in my lap as a general size guide, I had the choice of making it just shy or a bit bigger and I was like...ehh this is pretty big I'll make it just a tad smaller!  LOL  Plus that means just a little bit less work!!! LOL LOL LOL

I finished 3 rows last night!  I had read through the entire pattern to make sure I understood and boy was it hard for me to decipher sometimes but I felt I got it...then I started and got a little stuck on this pattern's puff stitch it's kinda odd so I ended up looking up videos and saw how other puff stitches are made and then went back to this pattern's instructions of it's puff stitch and was able to work it out!  For some reason I had not seen the first "yo" guess is that my brain read it like "Yo, insert hook as indicated..."!!! LOL I can't be sure I might have just had first learning "tunnel vision" too!  BUT dag-nabbit if those darn abbreviations don't throw me off while reading!  Well I'm starting to read them as the words now but man it takes training my brain to do it like teaching kids sight words!!! HAHA!

Today I have my class at JoAnn's and I'm excited about it too!  So tomorrow I should have some of that project to show and tell!

Monday, May 29, 2017

Updates for 2017

Hi All!  It's been a long while since last blogging and I haven't done much since then, life is funny like that.  Well I went through another move and now I'm working on setting up my Art Studio again so that I can start working on Crazy Quilting again!  My plan at the moment is to start working on my Cream Crazy Quilt Throw again to get my feet wet with the creative process once again.  Other things just feel too overwhelming to think about so I figure why not pull that out and start adding embellishments as it feels right.  Get that creative flow going!

Another thing that I'm doing at the moment is starting to do Crochet once again!  I've tried off and on since I first learned as a kid and each time I would do a little and get stuck at some point with no help to be found!  Thank God this day and age has lots and LOTS of help online and with videos!  Just last night I had several of my questions finally answered while watching a few videos on YouTube!  YAY!  I also signed up for a beginner Shells Shawl class at JoAnn's this week so I should have one project done with some help soon!  The other day I sat down and got my crochet stuff out to refresh myself on all the basics.  I made a few swatches of each basic stitch just to work out questions and what not.  I'm impressed with myself that my crochet work is looking NICE!!!  I used to have such trouble with too tight tension and very uneven stitching but now I'm able to control it much better and my work looks really nice!  I think my years of embroidery and tatting have helped up my eye-hand coordination and crossed over to crochet!  I love when stuff like that happens!

Refresher complete! From Single Crochet up to Treble Crochet.

OH and P.S. Yup I have a cat now!!!  A Siberian which is allergy friendly so that I can now finally snuggle a cat and have no ill effects!!!  Isn't he cute!  His name is Percival and we call him Percy!  And he loves purring all the time, Purrrcival!  He thought the yarn was for him to play with!  I gotta keep a watch on that bugger or he will have a little too much fun!  HAHA

Monday, November 09, 2015

Future Artistic Endeavors

Found some inspiration at Michael's! The purple gem with the Mermaid Tail sparked an idea for a Mystical Mermaid Treasure themed piece with an ancient old world feel with some sunken treasure! I can't wait to get to work on it! Abalone and Tarnished Silver inspired color theme!

I want it to be visual story that as you gaze at it you can dream up a story!  So you won't be seeing the mermaid herself!  I want that part of it to be left to the viewer's imagination.  I love art that invites me to daydream and I hope that I will be able to create something like that in this piece!

I still have the Wandering Rose Memorial to finish and another Series that I have an idea for as well that is more about capturing the experience of specific types of wine and visually translating that.  My idea for that one is that as you gaze at it you are feel like yup that is exactly how Merlot or Chardonnay or Champagne tastes and is like with all the nuances!  Very subjective but I'm excited about that series as well as this new Mermaid one!

Saturday, November 07, 2015

Dry Erase Shadow Box for Hashing Out Ideas!

So while contemplating what to do next I was having a hard time visualizing what I actually wanted to do and nothing seemed like it would work out right and I was feeling upset at my lack of ability to doodle out and hash out ideas in a safe way that wouldn't affect the piece itself!  

I had a thought, what if I could put it behind a shadow box and draw and how could that come about and so I thought just some 1 by 2 wood and some plexiglass would work and my Hubby has the skills to be able to make such a thing!!!
So I told him about it and he built my idea for a plexiglass shadow box to use to doodle out ideas over my current piece using dry erase markers!

You could probably use any shadow box to do this or use a cheep frame taken apart from a discount store.

I love what I doodled and finally have an idea I feel more confident about trying to bring to realization!

Thursday, November 05, 2015

Wandering Rose Memorial: Gold Scalloping Chain Stitch

I added a gold scalloping chain stitch on the light gold moire in the corner.  It's very imperfect but I think further embellishment will fix that later on.  I might be ready to move on to the next stage of embellishment and add some Silk Ribbon Embroidery!

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Wandering Rose Memorial: Little Yellow Zigzag Stitch

Today I added a little yellow Zigzag Stitch!  Not sure if I all out love it but we'll see what I think as I move on and get to the further embellishing stage.

Monday, October 26, 2015

Wandering Rose Memorial: Tiny Vining Feather Stitch

Today I added a tiny vining Feather Stitch in a fine gold silk thread!

I totally skipped a week of work!  That's the trouble sometimes with trying to start a habit sometimes you fall off the wagon.  But as long as you get back to it as soon as possible, it should be okay.  Last week was pretty busy, and I honestly felt a little blocked as well, but if I'd prioritized a bit better I could have still worked on it a tiny bit each day.  Well at least it's Monday again and I've got mission accomplished for today!  LOL

Friday, October 16, 2015

Wandering Rose Memorial: Little Yellow Feather Stitch

Today I did a little seam to make me happy again. It's a light yellow feather stitch! 
My plan of doing a little bit every day to start building consistency is paying off with almost all the seams in the seam layer done! It's my least favorite layer, I much prefer silk ribbon and beading layers! LOL But first things first! One step at a time!

I'm going to take a break for the weekends, but my goal will be to do a little bit each workday as possible.  I want to build that habit as an Artist to help me with my further ventures down the road!

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Wandering Rose Memorial: Gold Herringbone Stitch

Not sure if I like today's addition of the gold herringbone stitch. It may come out later on. We'll see.

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Wandering Rose Memorial: Swirlies!

So I'm trying to start building consistency of working on something every day.  Today I added some back stitched dark green swirlies in silk thread!  I plan on playing with them later on.  I know it seems extreme with the dark against the light but hopefully with later layering it will be balanced out...that is what I do!  I keep balancing the composition as I go!

Lately I also have been thinking about my dream to be an Artist.  And I know technically I already am one and I realize that now.  It's been hard for me to acknowledge that to myself feeling like I'm not a real artist.  But now I am going to start working on heading towards building a portfolio of work that could be considered fine art and be in a gallery.  I still feel like at this point people will totally laugh at me for thinking I might even have a slight chance to do that eventually.  But I think I can do it.  My media is different than traditional artists and I don't totally fit within the Crazy Quilting world for art quilts either.  I still think what I do is just as valid as anyone else, it's just different.  Right now I need to look into copyright issues that could come up with fabrics and materials I use and start working on pieces that are completely free of that issue.  When only working privately for myself and gifts it didn't really matter as much.  With the goal of being a Fine Artist it's important that I create with that in mind.  Also to create things that are the heart and soul of what I do but done in a way that I can allow to leave my possession.  So much of my current work could never leave my hands...including this Memorial Piece!  It has too much meaning for me personally.  So I need to work on things that are meaningful to me but I can let go of.  I also don't need to do this for income, my ultimate goal is *just* to create fine art!  It will only be icing on top of the cake to one day be sold.  If it never happens then I will be just as content having built up a portfolio of art!

I'm now acknowledging that what I do is art, it has emotion in it and people connect with it on an emotional level.  I always have a larger goal of showing people things that bring them enjoyment, maybe tickle a desire to find more details within it to enjoy.  It is meant to be framed on the wall, and has no use for it other than to bring enjoyment to the viewer!  It may be that I use pieced fabric as my "canvas" and I use forms of needle art, other objects, and textiles as my "paint" but it is art.  I'm not sure what genre it belongs in.  I don't think it's even fully crazy quilting because I don't finish it in a traditional way or create quilts.  So this is what I'm trying to hash out right now at the beginning of this new journey in my life!

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Wandering Rose Memorial: Fearless Freehand

Almost a year later and I added a new seam treatment detail freehand inspired by the way she fearlessly created beautiful things without fear of imperfections!

I used a light pink swiss made cotton thread that was in my stash and used chain stitch in wavy lines.  When I first set out I thought they were going to inter-cross, but as I worked it ended up wanting to be parallel wavy lines.  No matter it's still overall like the idea I had in mind when setting out and taking the risk to just do something and not be paralyzed by fear.  I just kept remembering how she would be so fearless when creating!  She made such beautiful things all the time and fear of not doing well didn't seem to stop her!  I can see the imperfections in my waves but you know what?  There are no straight lines in nature, there really is beauty in imperfection.  I'm trying to embrace this more and more and take risks.  I want to just flow more!

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Wandering Rose Memorial: Perfection in Imperfection

I added a couple more seam treatments yesterday.  I'm not embellishing them more yet but I want to keep getting more seams stitched to really have a solid base layer to embellish over.

I used to have so much trouble with this step, I know I have a tendency to over-think it all and end up getting stuck because I want it to be perfect.  Wendy taught me a lot about the beauty in imperfection.  She would simply find an idea she loved and put it on the block and it always turned out so beautiful!  She completed whole quilts for her kids that were not perfect but were so stunningly beautiful!  I always admired how she simply did stuff and didn't over think it like I do.  If she had been stuck on perfection the quilts would never have been finished.  Sometimes when I see beautiful work I purposely notice the imperfections that create a whole of beauty and let it soak into my heart, that there is proof after proof that there is beauty in imperfection.  Sometimes it's the imperfections that add interest to things that give it a special unique beauty that can't be replicated.

So I'm doing my best to go with the flow, to find a stitch I like and go with what feels right and not over plan it but just do it.  To trust my creative instincts because they usually steer me right, and if not I can always do it over.  Without taking risks we aren't truly living.

I really appreciate each comment left for me, thank you to everyone who is supporting me in this.  Thank you for caring and reading what I write, it means a lot to me.

First I chose a Chevron Stitch and picked a red wool thread and I threaded the needle and just put it in place and eyeballed the placement and spacing.  It's not perfect, but there's something wonderful about it not being absolutely perfect.  Proof that a human made it, and people are imperfect yet beautiful too.

The second one I chose was a combination stitch, a chained feather stitch.  I liked the feeling of tiny rose buds this one gives and I used a fine light pink silk thread.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Wandering Rose Memorial: Applique Quote

 I really wanted to add the quote "Always remember you're braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, smarter than you think, and twice as beautiful as you'd ever imagine." because I really strongly feel that it summed Wendy up so well of who she is and what she would want each person to know about themselves that I just had to figure out a way to incorporate it.

I used Microsoft Word to get the Font and Shape and printed it out.  Above is the test print.  Below is the final print onto fabric.
I tried different fabrics and settled on this printed cotton.  I also had to change the type to bold so that enough ink would transfer to the fabric.  I loved this rose print, it's perfect for this!  And it was the last bit of this fabric that I have in my stash so I was really happy it printed perfect onto it since there's always a risk involved with this method of transfer.

The method I used was to simply print it on paper first and then tape a piece of fabric over the print and re-feed and print it onto the fabric.  I then iron it and give it a shot of steam to help set the ink on the fabric.

Here it is after I appliqued it into place, I plan on embroidering around it later on.  I want to work on more seam treatments before I embroider around it though.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Wandering Rose Memorial: Starting Work

Okay here's how the block was left off as way back in 2009.  I guess looking back through old posts I never blogged the last progress I had made which was adding some Turkish Oya up in the right hand top corner.  As well as a few more seam treatments over there too.  Also I had finished the rose garland and added some silk cut out leaves to the center.  I started on some dangling leafy vines at the base of some lace and never finished it up.  I remember Wendy seeing those additions and loving them!  I really miss her!
So today I finished up the last leafy/vine dangle, not sure what to call them, LOL!  I also started thinking over what seam treatments to add next.  I want to make sure I get the depth of layering in this piece so I'm going to focus on getting more seam treatments in before I start adding motifs and such.
It's nice to be embroidering again, I've always loved it and always will.  Even if I pause for a time here and there I know I will always, always come back to it again.  It was very soothing to be focused on stitching.  Also I can feel my creativity brimming with inspiration and I've always loved using CQ as an outlet for that.  I'm always creative in some way.  The last year I've been on a journey to a healthy weight and along the way I've found that I'm a FOODIE!  LOL  And I enjoy creating new things to eat that support a healthy weight and are really yummy!  I even have a food blog!  It's neat how creativity can translate into so many areas of life.  I know that might seem random but I figured it might be nice to update you all to my life right now too.

I believe my CQ has taken a backseat for a while since I was needing to be more active and this tends to be a more sedentary activity.  I'm better able to balance things now so I believe that I can reintegrate this part of my life too.