WIP Yesterday-Was-Wednesday #246

Morning everyone! We’ve had a good week, everything considered & the house being full of sick people. Yesterday I worked at home as there was a nationwide Teacher’s strike, and with some friends being teachers, I volunteered to host the monkeys. I did this last strike, which was only primary teachers, and while it was full-on, it was fun. I actually got thru my normal day’s volume by noon, surprisingly, so I’m hoping the same this week.

20190522_205845Last week’s goal was 400 stitches on Jenny’s Four Seasons of New Zealand (available in various incarnations on her homestitchness Etsy shop). I completed the snowflake, and all of the next block (the three mountains of the Central Plateau; Tongariro, Ngauruhoe and Ruapehu). The Maori legend that I grew up hearing goes something like this, with words by James Heremia:

In a time long ago, eight personified mountains were born from the landscape. There lived seven males — Tongariro, Taranaki, Ruapehu, Ngaruahoe, Tarawera, Tauhara and Patauaki — and one female, Pihanga. Their catch cry as children was “We will always be together, and nothing will ever separate us!”

 As millenia passed, the boy mountains grew into powerful male warriors while Pihanga blossomed into a comely fern-covered mist maiden, who each of them desired for a wife.

“Choose!” cried Tongariro “You must choose!”

“I cannot,” replied Pihanga. “I love you all equally.”

“Then we will battle, and the victor will be your husband,” declared Tongariro.

One by one, the mountains came up against Tongariro and one by one they were defeated. Finally, only Taranaki was left to face the powerful Tongariro. Their battle was spectacularly violent as each mountain was evenly matched.

The battle raged on for months until a burning Pihanga cried out “Stop!” as she lay close to death in her scorched and blackened cloak of fern. Rather than lose her, Taranaki conceded defeat — and so Pihanga became Tongariro’s wife.

As countless millenia passed, the landscape healed and the vanquished mountains moved away: Tarawera, Tauhara and Patuauki to the north and Ruapehu and Ngaruahoe to the south.

Many children were born to Tongariro and Pihanga including one, Panitahi, who looked very different to the others. Gossip and innuendo flowed across the landscape until Tongariro, suspicious of his friend Taranaki, decided to lay a trap.

Pretending to be asleep, he caught his friend and his wife in a tender embrace. Tongariro erupted in a gigantic rage that was heard around the world. Huge explosions tore the landscape apart. The crater formed from the largest explosion would eventually fill with water, becoming the lake we know today as Lake Taupo.

Remembering what happened to Pihanga during the previous battles, Taranaki chose not to engage with Tongariro, but retreated instead. Gathering up Panitahi, he fled heartbroken to the west, guided by the stone Te Toka Rauhoto Tapairu.

As he fled, he carved out a deep scar in the landscape.

On reaching the sea, Pouakai — one of five west coast mountains — spread out her arms to comfort Taranaki until the setting sun transfixed him to the spot. He has remained there to this day, with Panitahi at his side, and the guide stone who now resides at Puniho Pa, south of New Plymouth.

In time, Tongariro settled down and began to weep for his lost friend, his tears filling the scar in the landscape that today we know as the Whanganui River.

It is thought that one day the guide stone will release Taranaki to return to his true love, Pihanga.

True love really can move mountains. But for the moment, the mountains sleep.

This week, the challenge is either 200 stitches in designs that match the letters SPEW (society for the protection of elvish welfare) of which I could get 10 points – Shakespeare’s Fairies & a Wentzler design as I have nothing I can think of that is P or E – or I could get the same points for 300 stitches in a penalty. I’m going for the penalty, as again I’m time poor this week. The plan is to work on Mermaid of Atlantis, because she’s my “take anywhere” project and I’m loving how she is working out, especially now I’ve converted half the fish to GAST threads. I’ll continue those thru her tail.

Have a good week!

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May 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.

May Goals:

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

Thru May, with the upheaval at home (and having to tell Mase what is happening with Grandma) I have been very narrow-focussed on #magicalstitches work. Because of this, most of the extra credit Year 4 work is completed (9 of the 11 at the time of writing), every weekly task has been knocked off & I’m working on some Ultimate goals – thanks to my housemates, there’s at least 3 in Mermaid of Atlantis alone.

In May, I’ve completed the following stitch numbers (honestly, these are helping me go wow, look what I can do!)

  • Floral Cat (stitching finish) 442 stitches
  • We’re All Mad biscornu (also a stitching finish) 831 stitches
  • Hello April (also a stitching finish) 511 stitches
  • Mermaid of Atlantis (new start) 2640 stitches
  • Four Seasons of NZ 659 stitches
  • The Guardian (new start!) 524 stitches
  • Shakespeare’s Fairies 130 stitches
  • Fairy Idyll 431 stitches
  • Raven Queen 371 stitches (& I hated them all)

At the time of posting, this is 6539 stitches for the month.

June Goals:

  • WIPocalypse One-A-Day with Coffee Quaker (also one of my remaining EC tasks of 500 stitches on a geometric)
  • Hello May & Hello June
  • Celtic Winter (the last EC task of 500 stitches)
  • Don’t spend!

Question of the Month: Where do you love to shop for stash? I facetiously answered this on FB as anywhere the staff are skilled at diverting my partner/children’s attention from my shopping. This is mostly true, however! Or I time it to visit Ribbon Rose when I have to go to our Panmure branches.

SFS is about to roll over once June is done. Currently I am $7.20 in the red; however by simply not buying anything in June I’ll finish in the positive! I do actually have enough calling to me in any case.

WIP Wednesday #244

20190513_134524Morning! Our week has been pretty good – MIL is back home (on oxygen permanently) but is more able to participate in family life, is great with her friends and we had a lovely Mother’s Day dinner (I cooked, but I left the cleaning J). Ms Louise chose flowers for both of us & did a lovely, slightly unconventional, job of it.

20190510_081046Mase had Book Week and on Friday, dressed as Calvin and Tiggr “dressed” as Hobbes. Yep, we’re all about the classics in our house! On the redeeming front, Zac is chosing to read & study To Kill a Mockingbird.

On stitching, I finished the second part of the biscornu but haven’t FFO’d it (insert chicken noises here). I did start another Mirabilia – Mermaid of Atlantis – and am planning to use this for most of the #magicalstitches extra credit challenges for the Goblet of Fire May/June months. I started with #2, as the shell chandelier/light was approved as something that might be at a fancy ball AND it was the middle of the top; now I’m working on task #1 (500 on something that could be found in the lake) with the fish, and I’m about 70 stitches off completing that challenge (I need to take an update photo), and combined with task #10 (200 stitches on a piece that has something that lays eggs) I’m working on the border, on the theory that fish lay eggs. That’s not quite at the half-way mark. Like a lot of people, I’m very motivated at the start of a piece!

This week’s challenge is WIP list based again – and as I have less than 20 WIPS, I’m allocated to option 2, 350 stitches each on WIP #1 & #7. Seven is actually the biscornu, so I have approval to jump the line to #8, which just so happens to be Raven Queen. Progress shots next week!

WIP Wednesday #242

Morning! Winter is here, despite Arya stabbing the Night King, and I’ve pulled out the bunny slippers. Don’t mock me – it’s actually self-preservation in my house. Something pink and fluffy isn’t likely to get nicked by one of my lovely children! Next winter I’ll be even safer, as everyone now wears a larger size than me (including Mase!).

Last week’s #magicalstitches challenges were to stitch 300 each on a tree/plant and 300 on a building. As I said before, I started the LHS conifer on Fairy Idyll and worked on the balustrade for Raven Queen. I also have a small finish which I can’t show, as it’s intended for a present.

This week is a short “week” before the new school year starts (this one is based on Goblet of Fire, and runs May-June). The challenge was to stitch on the smallest WIP in our posted list, with points per 100 stitches and extra for an FFO. Like many people, I didn’t include my Mill Hills and travel kit into the WIP list – I left it for anything of a decent size. Whoops! So instead of finishing maybe 4 things, I’ve been working on We’re All Mad Here and by 6pm tonight, I should have the majority of the front side completed. This is my progress, with 1065 stitches completed so far.

Anyway, 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 #241

Hello everyone! My resolve for May is to be not as inwardly focussed, so you should see a bit more of me. These last few months have been emotionally heavy, and with the MIL now having a hospice referral, it’s going to get a lot worse before healing starts. I still haven’t quite worked out how to present my WIP Wednesday, as my stitchy focus is #magicalstitches which runs Monday to Sunday, but we’ll see what happens.

My “one a day” piece for April has been Coffee Quaker. Five motifs are now complete and I could be as much as 1/6th thru. No rush on this one anyway. Plus it’s over one.

20190420_123721.jpgLast week there were two challenges in #magicalstitches. One was “select a part” & for myself, rather than visit ten stores in Hogsmeade and do 100 stitches/short story on what I “brought”, I chose to visit one shop. I’m focusing on the huge boring-ish blocks of colour in Shakespeare’s Fairies, as it’s harder to go off track while life distracts me. I made up some story that I was poor, as my Muggle parents were intimidated at Gringots and asked for 10 knuts instead of galleons, and put in 1022 stitches in at Gladrags Wizardwear.

20190419_195233.jpgThere was also a Full Moon pop-up (for Remus Lupin). 30 stitches on dark (side of the moon), 30 on light (the side we see) and 30 on animal. I ended up doing 143 overall (instead of leaving threads hanging) on the Cloudsfactory We’re All Mad Here biscornu. That cat is creepy.

This week I’m stitching the nominated option, no penalty stitches. 300 on a tree/plant for the Whomping Willow, and 300 on a building for the Secret Room. I’m done already there with a start to the conifer in Fairy Idyll, and working on the column/balustrade for Raven Queen.

One thing to be said for this – it’s quite creative in the themes fitting into the book, I’m definitely varying what I am working on and I think that right now, there’s just the one WIP I haven’t pulled out to fit a challenge. I’m not beating myself up for that, and if I don’t get to a challenge target, that’s OK to. I’m enjoying what I am working on!

March WIPocalypse

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a visit to Homestead Framers…

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.

March Goals

  • Bead & FFO Genoa Santa’s NOPE
  • Complete stitching on Wales Santa’s NOPE
  • Stitch & FFO Hello There April NOPE
  • Complete & FFO Kiwi 10 Cents FINISHED
  • Complete first fairy in Shakespeare’s Fairies ALMOST!
  • Work on Arezzo FINISHED

With most of my stitching working around the School of Magical Stitches group challenges, I haven’t worked on Shakespeare’s Fairies as much as I would have hoped in Feb. But, I have several starts, two finishes (one of which I am so, so stoked to get done), dropped three off to the framers & there are a few closer to a finish. Bonus points given that one of my “homework” pieces will double as my SIL’s present, as she loves cats.

Arezzo doubled as both my WIPocalypse “stitch every day” piece and for 1000 stitches of an Ultimate Challenge. I worked on her for 24 of the 25 days (the 25th was the day I finished) & honestly, don’t know why I didn’t finish her sooner. She’s so pretty & delicate that I am considering which Mira I will stitch over one next! But as I started Coffee Quaker over one, that won’t be for a while.

April Goals:

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

Question of the month: What newer designers and product creators (fabric or floss dyeing, etc) out there have you discovered and recommend? I do recommend (new to me, anyway) Sirious Stitches & KiwiXCrossing designers, purely for the ease of their patterns (both are Etsy); and for fabric I always recommend Catherine at Countrystitch Fabrics – her shop is not new, but the range is ever expanding, the website is fantastic, service is great AND if you want to get an idea of the fabric/design combo, she’s listed on the Fabric Viewer website.

When it comes to Stitch From Stash, I’m a little bit in the red. This would fix with no spend/no finishes in April, but I got a wee bonus so had a binge. Mani di Donna’s Blue Quaker Sewing Basket, Mirabilia’s Mermaid of Atlantis (plus Waterlillies threads) and two Mill Hill kits, the Celestial Sleigh and Princess Carriage. I’ll show pictures as I work on them.

Mar-19
Country Stitch Fabrics Cloudburst -18.11
Country Stitch Fabrics Bourbon -17.39
Floral Cat (Etsy) -5.25
Spotlight DMC*12 -22.80
Spotlight Lugana FQ -15.00
123Stitch Binge -97.76
SamSarah Need to Read 4.42
KiwiXCrossing 10 Cent 13.92
Arezzo Conversion (over one) 32.44
Rollover + Budget $107.01
Total Available Budget -$18.52