February Finishing

Wow…February is halfway through already!  We have had a lot of grey days…not good for the psyche! Then my sister was seriously ill and nearly died. I am grateful she made it through and I still have her hopefully for a long time to come! The weather swings from pleasant to bitter cold and back again and again. I have been trying to get back to my daily walking routine with my DH, but I confess I am chicken on the bitter cold and windy days. So I worked on unfinished projects and did a couple of stitching projects of my own along with those of clients.

Here is another needleroll finish stitched by Southpaw Stitcher.  It is done the same as the one I did for myself (which was posted last time), except that she chose pink wool for the needle holder section of hers. I LOVE the pink!

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And here they are together…the two of them.  I am quite sure you have seen or will see more of these needlerolls somewhere on the internet. Our EGA chapter, Water Fall Glen, did this as a group project. Other EGA chapters did the same project.

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V.D.N. did this beautiful Christmas pillow by Brenda Gervais.  It is large…14 x 25 inches.  I love the script writing in this. It looks like it is painted on, but it is meticulously stitched!  We kept the finish very simple so as not to take away from the primitive style.

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Southpaw Stitcher did this exquisite needlepainted “Eastern Bluebird” designed by Tanja Berlin. She took an EGA class not long ago and already completed the stitching.  I am in serious awe of the absolutely gorgeous detail done by one single thread at a time! I didn’t want to return it to her after I finished it!

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And here is an owl pin done by J.DN.  She actually made two of them, but I forgot to take a photo of the second one before I returned them to her :((  He is backed with black wool and has a pin back.  The other one was backed in brown.  J.DN asked me to leave the edges “naked” so she could do some beading around the face! I think the beads will make a beautiful finish.

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Last post I showed you my own stitching and finish of “Merry One” by Plum Street Samplers.  Well here is “Merry Two” done with a slightly different finish. I can’t wait to see her Merry Three and perhaps Merry Four! It will make a delightful set. On this one I changed the colors of Santa’s robe, the snowman’s hat and nose, the flowers on the sled and I used a thicker chenille trim around the edge which I dyed with antiquing spray. I guess I am a traditionalist.  But I really like the way it turned out.

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And last but not least, over the Christmas holiday and cold January I managed to finish my Stacy Nash’s Primitive Drumroll Pinkeep and slipper with strawberry. I changed some of the colors on this pattern as well.  I added the rusty orange rather than what was called for.  And then made my strawberry orange too, rather than the traditional red. The drum is filled on the bottom third with sand, the center section with crushed walnut shells, and the top third with fiberfill. This really makes a super heavy free standing piece.  I am very happy with the end result.  [Edit:  I didn’t change the rust flowers, I made the chamomille ones WDW-dolphin blue instead…sorry…my mind is going!]

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I hope everyone has an especially lovely Valentine’s Day with those who are the special people in your life.     Amities …Averyclaire

New Photos for a New Year

Happy New Year to all! I hope all of you had a great Christmas and a super start to the New Year. Ours was a lot of fun spent with family and friends. We sure missed our Colorado family though. They did not make it here this year.

My finishing business was slow over the holiday so I managed to get some stitching and finishing done for myself. Then I worked on a list of unfinished projects I hope to do this year. I will save the list to show for my next post.

Here are a couple of finishes I did before Christmas.

P.B. did a beautiful circular pumpkin design and asked me to do a pincushion. This was a special Christmas gift for someone.

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Tinsmith’s Wife sent a stitched snow globe. She finds the loveliest patterns!

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Personally, I managed to finish my project from the Waterfall Glen EGA group.  It is a Catherine Theron “Winter Strawberries” needleroll.  The area that says “Scissors” and “Needles” is done over one on 32 count linen with variegated silk floss. The small pincushion in the center is also done over one. The edges and center lines between the strawberries are done in Palestrina knots. The inside is lined with Dupioni Silk.  The pattern called for linen needle pages and a scissor fob, but I chose not to do that.  No fob and wool for the needle pages.  It is about 8 inches long when opened and about 2.5 x 3.5 when closed. It was a project that I was not fond of after I began it, but it did turn out to be a quite nice small needleroll.

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Then I saw Plum Street Sampler’s pattern for “Merry One” and “Merry Two” and bought them up as soon as I could. They just caught my eye and I delighted in stitching Merry One right away. It is stitched over one on cream 25 ct. Irish Linen (which I sprayed with my antique spray).  It turned out about 4 x 6. The pattern came with white chenille trim, but I used some green that I had and I love the way it turned out!  Merry Two is completed, but not “finished” yet.  Here is my finish for Merry One.

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HAPPY VALENTINE’S DAY a little early.  With Valentine’s Day coming I did a couple of special stitched pieces.  I wanted a big red heart to remind me of the lovely big red heart candy valentine boxes that my dear husband gave me when we were dating.  I found this pattern and I “finished” it into a lacey big red heart in memory of that special time. I did it on 40 ct. Aztec Red over two.  It turned out to be about 5 x 7.

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I also found this cute pattern for a “Valentine stocking” and created it with a real red velvet backing. It was done on 36 ct. Lambswool over two sprayed with antique spray. Then I stuffed it with “Merci” chocolate candies. YUM YUM. It turned out to be about 2 x 7.

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It was such fun having time and energy to do some of my own stitching. It makes me want to resolve to do more this year!

I hope everyone out there finds LOTS of time to do whatever it is their heart desires for 2016.  For now, happy stitching!  Amities……Averyclaire

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas to everyone! I can remember in July saying…Christmas will be here in the blink of an eye!  And guess what?!  It is upon us and I am not sure how it got here so quickly. Like so many others out there I got that awful bronchial virus and have been sick for six weeks and then my DH got hit by a car while out walking last week. Luckily it was a small car moving not too fast so DH came out of it very well. But it seems like I have been in a fog since summer time. I hope my head clears by the New Year and that the New Year brings a round of good health to all!

For now I offer you a photo journey of the finishes that were completed recently.

C.J. created this lovely skate themed piece for a Christmas gift. It was fun turning it into an ornament for her.

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The Southpaw Stitcher spent a lot of time on this beautiful needlepoint scissor case. I really love all the fibers and colors! It is lined in purple wool and has a purple glass bead finish around the rim. Also you will notice that it is TWO-sided. How fun is that?!

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I belong to the Waterfall Glen Chapter of the Embroiderers Guild of America. For our annual Christmas party I made this project bag as my “grab bag” gift. I like to make my purses and bags with a light colored inside so things don’t get lost in the bottom. The stitching is taken from a portion of a pattern from Stacy Nash Primitives called “Summer Gathering Pinkeep Drum.” It was quick to stitch and looks lovely on the project bag.  K.B. was the lucky recipient and I know she will enjoy it!

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The Tinsmiths Wife sent me this beautiful stitched piece which was finished into a lovely round ornament to grace her tree.

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The Tinsmiths Wife also sent me this fun Christmas House piece. This year I have done a LOT of flat folds for my clients and this one is lovely.

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S.H. gave me this small “Joy” stitching to finish for a friend. Most of my clients have requested flat “mat board” style ornaments rather than pillow style ones, so I did this one in an oval for her.

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And last but not least was this perfect “Teacher” gift done for S.G.   Here is another “flat fold” that will aid the teacher in not having to find a place to hang it! And it can be packed away “flat” from time to time!

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And last but always FIRST with me, I share a photo of my immediate family who fills my heart at Christmas time and ALWAYS.   I LOVE YOU ALL!Family 2014

And now I must finish up my Christmas week preparations for a festive weekend. It will be gone before we blink! So everyone….Have a truly Blessed Christmas and a peace-filled New Year!

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year…..Averyclaire

Happy Holiday Finishes

I am honored to help so many of you with your stitching finishes. My small business has grown considerably and I humbly thank all of you who trust me with your precious work.

C.J. lovingly stitched Six Little Cardinals and some pretty red fabric with golden stars was added:

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V.DiN. beautifully rendered this special pillow, hung with wide silk ribbon and surrounded by twisted chenille trim, as a lovely gift:

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A.G stitched this lovely Santa with pastel reds and greens for a soft side to the traditional colors:

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The TinSmiths Wife stitched this peaceful Dove on a gorgeous unusual red fabric, adding the lovely turquoise beads and knots around the neck and requested a cupboard hanger.  I added some more knots to the trim:

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Then using the same beautiful red fabric The Tinsmiths Wife stitched a Star Was Born cupboard hanger:

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And last but not least the colors were changed from light to dark and this beautiful Pomegranate Sewing Tray from Stacy Nash Primitives was born:

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I hope to soon show a few more finishes before the Christmas week is upon us. Thank you again for your faith in me and allowing me to be creative with your pieces!

Wishing everyone a blessed Christmas season!   Amities, Averyclaire

Finishes for the Upcoming Seasons

Autumn is one of my favorite times of the year. Everyone is thinking ahead and stitching up some lovely things to cover all the coming celebrations. It has been a busy few weeks in my studio finishing up some beautiful and amazing stitching.

Carol J. now has a place to store her needles and pins with her new needle book.

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Becky M. chose a flatfold for a fun new spooky decoration for her home.

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The Tinsmith’s Wife is a Needlework Shop in Comfort, Texas specializing in Knit, Crochet, Cross-Stitch, and Needlepoint. They now have an Autumn Owl on display in their shop.

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The shop also has a new basket tag encouraging everyone to be “Thankful.”

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and a lovely new Shepherd’s Bush ornament in anticipation for Christmas to come.

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Judy B. is celebrating “Friends” this season with special gifts.

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Nancy H. has another pillow similar to her Halloween one…this one for Christmas which will look lovely in her home. It’s not a small pillow…maybe about 11×16 inches. Love the soft colors she chose.

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Carol J. found two of her three kings and decided to have them finished for the holiday this year. They now have a luscious deep forest green velvet back!

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Becky M. stitched up two lovely Christmas ornaments…a “peaceful” angel and a cheery cardinal.

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Anne L. was lucky enough to purchase the chart for the new Prairie Schooler Christmas “reindeer.” We will all surely miss Prairie Schooler designs!

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And last but not least Southpaw Stitcher quickly stitched this fun and lovely Blackbird Design and requested a “box” finish. I think I need to find a box a make one for myself! Love this one.

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Thank you to everyone for your trust in me to create lovely things from your beautiful stitching!

More finishes to post soon. I have so busy in my studio there has been little time for me to stitch anything for myself! However, I did have a LOT of fun this month in showing my finished quilt at my quilt and needlework meetings and telling the story behind it. I haven’t had a quilt to show for a LONG, LONG time!

Amities, Averyclaire

New Tutorial and More Finishes

FREE TUTORIAL

A Facebook group that I belong to, had a SAL (stitch-a-long) over the past couple of months.  ProjectBagLg-1We were not allowed to post it to the Facebook page until August 1.  In June while I was away on vacation I stitched the piece and made it into a project bag for myself.  Several people wanted to know where I got the pattern for the project bag.  To my knowledge there isn’t one.  SO…I created a free tutorial for everyone to enjoy.  If you are an experience sewer, it should be easy.  If you do not sew, you can order one with or without your needlework through my finishing service.  I am happy to teach others finishing and do custom work for those who do not wish to do their own.  So ABOVE there is a link to my new tutorial.

NEW FINISHES

From The Workbasket comes this standup pattern for “Quaker Cardinal.”   Finished with handmade , hand sewn cording, and cream wool backing, he sits regally amidst the Native American influence of dream catchers.  Did you know that according to the legend of the dream catcher that Native Americans believe the air is filled with both good and bad dreams.  Dream catchers were hung in the tepee or lodge and on an infant’s cradle board.  Good dreams are said to pass through the center hole of the sleeping person.  Bad dreams are trapped in the web and perish with the light of dawn!

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This is an unknown punch needle pattern is from an unknown designer. Evidently it has been a long time in someone’s drawer! But it is now finished with a black wool covered backing with handmade and hand sewn cording. The little hen and chicks will look quite sassy on a door knob or a wall.

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My days have also been filled with hand quilting on my huge irish chain quilt, making binding for it, as it will soon be done (HAPPY DANCE SOON TO COME), plodding long on a wool and fabric wall hanging for my guest room. No photos until is done! And my knees can attest to lots of weeding in the garden!

Enjoy the rest of the summer!     Amities, Averyclaire

Sweet Liberty

Here is another new finish called “Sweet Liberty.” The pattern is free from our generous friend, Marly, at Samplers and Santas.   I love stitching on 36 count cream linen.  Then I created a cuffed, lined sack so I could fill it with some dried flowers.  Don’t you just love the red, gold and blue eucalyptus that I found?  I made it with a long handle so it could be hung on a door knob or nail on the fence!  It looks SUPER against the weathered wood of my backyard fence.   ALAS, I must keep it in the house because we are having TOO much rain these days. But when it can’t be outside, I think it looks just as nice on my red front door!

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More to come soon. THANKS SO MUCH for stopping by!  I am honored that you take the time to look at my photos and read my musings.

Amities, Averyclaire

New Business and Some Old Finishes

NEW BUSINESS: Just recently I began a small finishing business for your projects. There is a new page which you can look at on the top of my blog called Finishing Services and another for Finishing Estimates.

Here are a few items I finished in the past couple of weeks.

An elegant Needlepoint Ornament for The Southpaw Stitcher which is dressed with a red velvet backing.

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Briar Rabbit looks quite handsome finished as a flat-fold with his regal gold cording.

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The small project bag I made (6″ x 7.5″) can hold threads and small items for stitching. The inside is a pretty as the outside. This bag and the next larger one are both lined and interfaced with a stabilizer.

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The larger red paisley project bag (11.5″ x 13.5″) will hold most size patterns and stitching in progress. I love the charms I found for the zipper pull. The needlework is antiqued with instant antique spray. These project bags can be made any size and can be made with your needlework on the front or plain. I plan to make several for myself!

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OLD FINISHES: An old FINISH from my PhD list (projects half done) (and number two monkey on my back) is my 101 x 101 inch red and white quilt. HAPPY DANCE!! If you recall on one of my previous posts I showed this quilt stuffed under my home sewing machine. I managed to quilt around all the blocks and sashing, then I did the quilting in the sashing and cornerstones. At this point I began to free-motion quilt the blocks…DISASTER!!! The quilt was simply TOO heavy, TOO bulky, and just plain TOO big for me and it broke my sewing machine. So I found a long-arm quilter who agreed to finish it even though I had it half done. Finishing the 404 inches of hand sewn binding was quite satisfying. I was able to check it off my PhD list without all the nightmares trying to stuff it into my machine. I will NEVER attempt to free-motion another LARGE quilt on my home machine. To be perfectly honest, I think I am sorry I participated in this block of the month.  It turned out to be very expensive and now I really don’t like it.  C’est la vie!  Although it fits my full size guest bed nicely (draping way down like a “bedspread”) and it even fits my king size bed (albeit it could be somewhat wider). It will be good for a change of decor from my other quilts.

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My number one monkey the King Sized Red/Green/White Triple Irish Chain is making steady progress. There are only one and half rows left plus one of the four borders to go. My Friday quilt friends haven’t been here for most of June due to vacations or commitments for all of us, but I did do a LOT of quilting on my own to speed up the progress. WHOO HOO…the end is in sight, literally!

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Happy Summer…keep cool while stitching! Amities, Averyclaire

Hello Summer!

It always seems like Summer to me when Memorial Day is over.  Time for sunshine, warm/hot days, swimming, garden flowers in bloom, kids out of school, ice cream (lots of it), and long lazy walks.

A day late, but in the mood for a “patriotic summer” I completed a few smalls. The first one is a free design by Barbara Ana and retrieved from the “files” of the Facebook page group entitled “Star Spangled Stitchers.”  I made some small alterations to the pattern, added the red stitching along the border, and stitched it on 35ct. Abecedarian linen.

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This next one is called Flag and Liberty designed by Glory Bee (also a freebie from www.glorybeestitch.com). This one is done on 28ct. white Lugana. I did choose my own DMC colors.

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A few weeks ago I did another patriotic small called Itty Bitty America by Twisted Threads.  It was done on 25ct. Dublin Linen over one thread using the called for colors.  The cording was made by me using three skeins of the same red/white/blue flosses.  That was a real trick trying to make cording using three colors!

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Along with the patriotic pieces, I did a “summer” one. It is called Itty Bitty Bee by Twisted Threads, but it is not so itty bitty. I did not do it over one. It is done on cream colored 32 ct. linen over two threads. I love bee embroideries and decided I should have some of my own. Voila!

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Getting back to my PHds (projects half done), during the last month I did manage to finish my Lily of the Valley Collage (designer is Laura J. Perrin).  This was one of my first canvas pieces in many years.   It was a challenge for me, since I have done only old-fashioned tent stitch needlepoint.  I love Lilies of the Valley and this is already framed with a lovely white-washed frame and is hanging in my bedroom.  The colors are not quite as true as they should be…I am experimenting photographing with my IPhone.

 

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Next I had framed my long ago finished Eiffel Tower cross-stitch. This is a pattern from Le Jardin Prive.   The DMC colours were done with three different shades of blue.   The navy blue frame and mat is absolutely gorgeous with it.   And the slightly sanded edges that show the light colored wood underneath, bring out the cream colored background.  It is SO HARD to photograph with glass covering the pieces, but it did not turn out too bad especially since it is done with an IPhone!

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Well that’s it for now. I still have a lot of work on unfinished items, but the big king sized quilt is coming along, not so the red and white one, nor the pink rose pin cushion. I must get busy!       Amities, Averyclaire

Les Muguets Day (May 1st)

I wish all of you much happiness on Les Muguets Day (even though I am a little late). In France May 1st is the fest of Les Muguets. One gives a bouquet of Lily of the Valley to one’s friends. I made this bouquet for a friend of mine. It is a free pattern from Ellen Maurer-Stroh. It was done on 32 ct. lamb’s wool linen with DMC threads.    The little pillow turned out to be about 4″x4″.  My friend really enjoyed receiving it. I love having small little seasonal decorations for the home. Don’t you? And all the small cross-stitch patterns are perfect for quick completion and almost instant gratification.

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I DID finish my needlepoint Lily of the Valley Collage, but it is not framed yet, so I will save that one for the next post.

Thanks for always visiting.   Amities, Averyclaire

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