Hello 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!
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
Initial Start of SF
Frog of SF
Hopefully with returning to work/school/other crap I will still feel stitchy most nights & achieve all these goals.
When I look back at my January post, I think “you plonker”. I was far too ambitious!
The rotation plans were loosely worked around the following:
- StitchMaynia’s monthly SAL e.g. Feb is “fandom” SOMETIMES
- StitchMaynia’s colour SAL (this is only on the 15th of each month). SOMETIMES
- The Never Ending Band Sampler. NOPE
- The Magazine SAL. NOPE
- The Round Robin piece, whatever it is and whenever it arrives. YEP
- Focus on a Finish – whatever needs completing from the above or a current WIP that is nearly there. Mermaids of the Deep will be high on that list. UH HUH, REALLY? FOCUS?
Going into 2017, I had the following starts (listed in age!!):
- TW Tapestry Cat (Dec 2006!) WORKED ON IN 2017
- Semco Toy Story Sampler (October 2013) STILL RESTING
- Nora Corbett Arezzo (March 2014) WORKED ON, FROGGED, WORKED SOME MORE, IN TIME OUT
- Mirabilia Persephone (May 2015) BARELY WORKED ON – JUST A COLOUR DAY
- Nora Corbett Blitzen (as part of my reindeer parade, Rudolph started in July 2015) FINISHED Blitzen, started Prancer
- Mirabilia Mermaids of the Deep Blue (December 2015) FINISHED
- Mirabilia Raven Queen (January 2016) NOPE, RESTED ALL YEAR
- Tamara Blackwork (September 2016) I THINK I WANT TO FROG THIS ENTIRELY
- Never Ending Band Sampler NOPE
- Lavender & Lace Celtic Winter (December 2016) A FEW STITCHES ONLY
While I got some new starts & finishes in 2017, most excitedly the Mirabilia Andromeda, I think that I will work on focus pieces for 2018, and dribble in the odd new start that I have kitted. I’ll ignore the SM & SFS themed SALs except where my focus piece matches the theme e.g. in the FB Teresa Wentzler group (also run by Mel!) January is animals, April is nature & both of those would match Tapestry Cat. I’m taking the two-monthly Jane Austen SAL and I’m going to mix & match different pieces to make a unique sampler of quotes & icons. More on this in the next update!
So my focus pieces for 2018 (given that I want to end in the black for SFS also) are in order of attention:
- Mirabilia Ashley’s Roses RR section (Dec 2018)
- Semco Toy Story Sampler (October 2013) – Zac will be 15 soon, & this needs to be done before then! But first I have to hunt it down…
- Mirabilia Fairy Idyll (September 2017) – Gail has loaned me the chart, & I want to return it in 2018
- TW Tapestry Cat (Dec 2006!) – because it deserves progress
- Mirabilia Persephone (May 2015) –because I want to get thru that skirt!
- Jane Austen SAL (December 2017) –because I want to keep up with the readings
I’m going to throw in a few Small & Medium pieces, along with the Mill Hill Santa kits that I already have (Ireland, Wales, Scotland, Barbados, Trinidad, Venice & Genoa, remembering that I do two of each of these)
- Lizzie*Kate Don’t Get Your Tinsel in a Tangle
- Lizzie*Kate Wise Men Still Seek Him
- Lizzie*Kate Coffee Time – Today’s Good Mood (already started)
- Fancy letter P (I forget the designer)
- Little House Needlework’s Bethlehem
- Plum St Sampler’s Patriotic Freebie
I’m going to try to limit my purchases also. Any planned stuff must come from a local supplier, no more overseas blitzes! I’m also pulling out of an international sales group (most participants wouldn’t post to NZ in any case) & removing myself from mailing lists. Wish me luck!
Just a quick note to let you know that Tapestry Cat has been re-charted and is now available at PatternsOnLine.com
via Tapestry Cat — TW’s Needlework Blog
This is my second-oldest WIP; I have the original kit edition! Maybe I should get it on the large frame as soon as I finish Persephone…and NOT start another Mira!
I’m getting back on track! I’ve stitched every night from Sunday thru to Tuesday and feel like I’ve achieved a level of nirvana.
TC has gone away again. There is just so much exciting stuff on the telly that I found I was constantly frogging as I want paying attention. However I did get over 1000 stitches in a very short space of time. Roll on summer and the cricket!
While I’m waiting on the next Mira RR piece to arrive, I’m working on Persephone. This is where I started again on Monday:
And this is last night:
Lots of counting and recounting (waterlillies are so expensive here) but I can stitch and watch New Zealand beat Australia AND Jamaica at the netball with minimal frogging!
I’m also now on instagram. Follow @paulainauckland if you want to see daily updates or those little bits of my life! X
February 4 – Topic: How do you overcome that feeling that you’re in a rut with a particular project?
Right. Onto the hard stuff already, Melissa? Meanie.
In all honesty, I don’t do rut treatments very well. In the past, they’ve just gone into the UFO pile (altho there is actually only four pieces in that pile). I tend to fad about a piece and LOVE IT SOOO MUCH that it has to be finished, right then & there. Mostly, my 2014 choices reflect that. I got a heap of stuff completed & only left two major starts unfinished. One, because it’s my “hospital” piece – Mirabilia’s Mediterranean Mermaid – & I only work on it when Mase is hospitalised. The other – for some reason I got discouraged with Stargazer. I think it’s her hands – they look so awkward.
However, for all that gloating, I didn’t touch Teresa Wentzler’s Tapestry Cat. At All. Not even to get it out of the storage container it lives in. I think it must be the perceived difficulty & fiddly bits – I love the image and the colours and the work I’ve done so far. I know that if I just pull it out, and start stitching, I’ll fall back in love with it – after all, that’s worked with Stargazer. She languished for about four months until I packed her, and only her, as my “entertainment” for our family holiday early in January. Since then, I’ve worked almost exclusively on her. I guess forcing myself on something makes me appreciate it. Like doing the dishes – a clean kitchen is a beautiful thing. Or laundry – folded piles & clothes on hangers almost make it worth the repetition.
Anyway. Regular blog readers (hey!!) have seen a few other things & today I have two more to share. First is Blackbird Designs freebie Souvenir de France. I had planned to stitch this for Si’s birthday (whenever he sees a shot of the Tower he comments “been there”. It’s very annoying sometimes) but now it’s intended for someone else. I need to finish it this weekend – this is at about 6 hours stitching so even with variegated thread (one stitch at a time) it’s a quick stitch. 25ct natural Lugana & DMC 99, in case you care. I’m thinking of maybe washing it in cold tea to age it a little – what do you think? Link to get the chart is here: http://blackbird-designs.blogspot.co.nz/2009/05/souvenir-de-france.html
Second is about three hours of lettering – I am not in love with lettering at the best of times – of the Joan Elliot SAL (26ct cream Linen, lettering changed to DMC 311 as black looks too harsh). I also need to have this done over the weekend. Then I need to suss something out for Si. Perhaps something English? Help!