SAL Update

I have not stitched on my SAL project for this update.  I am still excited that I found a solution to the challenge of placement on the fabric and I will be stitching again this week.  Here is the picture from last week:img_9870

What I had been doing instead was getting ready for our yearly family backpacking trip.  We gathered all our packs and gear, inspected them (some repairs were necessary – good hand sewing skills come in handy!) and then purchasing the rest that we needed.

We backpacked in the back country of Yosemite and it was gorgeous!  There was really no one else there – we did encounter one family on the way out and one on the way back, but it was super easy to distance.  Here are a couple of photos from our trip:img_1698

This picture is actually at then end.  We went int and out of this trail head.  I couldn’t find the picture from the start of the trip where our smiles were much bigger and we didn’t look quite so tired!img_1704

This year I used hiking poles for the very first time and they made such a huge positive difference!img_1754

Chain Lakes on our first night.  Such a gorgeous place!img_1757

Morning time on the second day!  Right after this photo was taken, two of the kids jumped into the lake and swam out to the island in the middle.  Such a fun time!

I should have more to show at our next update.  This is such a fun group of stitchers to be working with.  We are from all over the world and touch base once (or more!) every three weeks to show progress on one of our projects.  I am so grateful to everyone!  Please take a look at the other talented stitchers participating and if you’d like to join us, please contact Avis at the link below.

AvisClaireGunCaroleSueConstanzeChristinaKathyMargaretCindyHeidiJackieSunnyHayleyMeganDeborahMary MargaretReneeCarmelaSharonDaisyAnneConnieAJJennyLauraCathieLindaHelen

July SAL Update

It’s time for an update on the Christmas Stocking I am stitching for my son.  I had discovered a pretty significant error when I started the second set of “windows” and started looking ahead to the toe part of the stocking.img_9761

That looks pretty good, right?  Well… when I started this project, I wanted to start in the top left hand corner instead of the center.  I like to go from left to right, top to bottom and lots of the color was the same in the beginning – to me it just made sense.  I counted, recounted, counted again.  Did some math.  Counted, recounted and did more math and was pretty certain everything was good to go.  Then I started the stitching.  Those of you who have been part of this SAL know this has been a very long term project for me.  I am not a quick stitcher, I am quite slow.  That does not bother me – I love stitching.  This project has gone on timeout and come out of timeout more times than I can count.  I have stitched and un-stitched.

Well…  this error is not something I can unstitch without scrapping the whole stocking and starting over.  The toe of the stocking is on the left of the stitching.  In other words, I am too close to the edge of the fabric on the left – WAY too close, 3 inches too close in fact.

Once I realized that, my stomach sank and I sat there looking at the stitching for awhile (probably longer than I want to admit) and then had a really, really good cry.  Then I set it on the table (not back in the bag where I keep it to be safe) and walked away.  I went out to garden, took a shower and made dinner.  All with that piece of stitching on the table.  My kids and husband knew something was wrong.  My youngest son (15), kept coming up to me and giving me a hug telling me that it would be ok and I would figure it out.

I left that stitching out all night on the table which is unheard of.  We have three cats and a dog.  I did not sleep well at all.  Then, I did have an idea.  Because I started close to the left hand side, I had quite a bit of “empty” fabric on the right side.  I decided to try something out (something I still don’t know if it will work right).  I measured, counted, did some math (we all know how that works for me).img_9762

And cut my fabric at the top right of the project.  A big enough piece to overlap on the left with enough to stitch the toe and have a margin.img_9763

Then I pinned it to the right section.  Pinning was not enough so…img_9776

I added basting stitches to hold everything in place all lined up.  That looks pretty easy, but it was really a bear and took HOURS.  Originally, the holes didn’t want to match so when I put the needle down from the top, I had to flip the fabric and make sure the needle went into the correct hole on the bottom.  And then I had to repeat the process again from back to front.  All in all, it seems to be working ok now.img_9870

Stitching on the double piece is still a little fiddly.  Even though it’s all lined up and held together with those basting stitches, I still have to flip and check to make sure I’m on target for almost every stitch.  It’s really SLOW going.  I am hopeful that this “patch” will work and wont’ look too wonky when it’s complete.  Only time will tell.

There are lots of more talented and creative stitchers who are a part of this group.  Please take a look at their projects if you get a chance:
AvisClaireGunCaroleSueConstanzeChristinaKathyMargaretCindyHeidiJackieSunnyHayleyMeganDeborahMary MargaretReneeCarmelaSharonDaisyAnneConnieAJJennyLauraCathieLindaHelen

June HQAL Update

It’s that time!  Time to update on how I’ve been doing on the project that I’ve chosen for my hand-quilt-a-long.  The project I’m working on is called Grandmother’s Flower Garden.  I have a few more “flowers” complete and at the end a question (I need some advice).img_9777

Number one flower.  I love these little cats and I’ve now used that fabric to patch a pair of my favorite gardening pants.img_9781

Number two flower.  As you can tell, I’ve deviated from flower fabrics.  I’m just sewing whatever makes me happy at the time.img_9779

Flower number three.  I love these bunnies so much!  I also used this one as a patch on the same pair of gardening pants even though there wasn’t a hole to mend.img_9783

Flower number four.img_9785

Flower number five almost complete.  I’m having a bit of a challenge with sewing the white fabric – it’s a little thicker than all the rest and my fingers hurt.  I’m sure they will toughen up as I keep sewing!

I couldn’t help but do a close up of these hexis!!  Now onto my question:img_9786

That configuration of flowers looks a little odd.  Have I attached them strangely or do I just need to add another one in the middle right over the orange and purple flowers?

It would be good for you to know also that this will no longer be a quilt for the bed.  I knitted one right after my husband and I were married and that one is on our bed right now (almost 29 years later).  My husband is quite attached to it and does not want another one, he very much likes the one that is there.

I have decided that this will be a table covering (I’m open to someone telling me this isn’t a good idea)

And now the details of this HQAL:

This Hand Quilt Along is an opportunity for hand quilters and piecers to share and motivate one another. We post every three weeks, to show our progress and encourage one another.  If you have a hand quilting project and would like to join our group contact Kathy at the link below.

KathyMargaretTracyDebSusan,  Nanette,  EdithSharonKarrinGretchenKathiDaisyMonica and Sherrie

I’m also linking up with Kathy’s Quilts for Slow Stitch Sunday.

June SAL Update

It’s time for my SAL Update.  I belong to a group of stitchers online and participate in a stitch-a-long.  This stitch-a-long is different from most in that each member chooses their own project to work and posts updates every three weeks.  I’m working on a Christmas Stocking for one of my sons.  Here is where I was at the last update:

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5/31/20 – SAL Update.

And this is where I am now:

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6/21/20-SAL Update

I have been finding a little bit more time here and there to work on this and I’m quite pleased with my progress.  With a little bit of stitching time each day, I’m hoping to be done with this window pane by the next update.

If you have time, please take a look at the other stitch-a-long members and their progress (list below).

AvisClaireGunCaroleSueConstanzeChristinaKathyMargaretCindyHeidiJackieSunnyHayleyMeganDeborah, Mary MargaretRenee, CarmelaJocelynSharonDaisyAnne,  AJJennyLauraCathie, SherrieHelen

Slow Stitch Sunday

SIP hasn’t been all bad for me.  I’ve been getting together via zoom with friends and since they can’t really see what I’m doing, I’ve been knitting.  Usually there are two non-knitting groups I meet up with during the week for coffee.  I don’t bring my knitting because none of them knits and it just feels a little strange.  Now I’m knitting during these “coffees” and it’s great!  Once we can go back to normal, I will most likely bring my knitting again.

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Drachenfels by Melanie Berg

This is a super fun and easy knit.  I like the black and white color as well as the pop of blue now that I’m in the color stripes section.img_9662

I could be done soon if I were a monogamous crafter, but alas, I am not.  I bounce around between this project, a pair of socks, a cross stitch project, some hand quilting and of course gardening.  Today will bring a bike ride and hike with the family.  What will you be doing today?

I’m linking up with Kathy for Slow Stitch Sunday.

HQAL and Slow Stitch Sunday

Today it is time to update on my project for the Hand Quilt-A-Long.  I had chosen Grandmother’s Flower Garden and I am slowly plugging away at it.  For the past three weeks I have been working on putting all the green on the flowers that are attached to the main piece.

I don’t think anyone except me can tell how very many green pieces were added – even my husband, who sits right next to me on the couch while I’m working on this can’t see progress.  Oh, well.  I know I made progress because I ran out of prepared green hexis and now have to make more!  I continued working on another flower that I had previously cut pieces and sewn a few hexis together,img_9623

This is the project that I work on in the evenings after dinner.  The hubby and I like to watch a show or two and lately the kids have been joining us – so nice.

HQAL details:

This Hand Quilt Along is an opportunity for hand quilters and piecers to share and motivate one another. We post every three weeks, to show our progress and encourage one another.  If you have a hand quilting project and would like to join our group contact Kathy at the link below.

KathyMargaretTracyDebSusan,  Nanette,  EdithSharonKarrinGretchenKathi,  BellaDaisyMonica and Sherrie

I’m also sharing with Kathy’s Quilts for Slow Stitch Sunday.

Sal Update for May

Whew!  Another three weeks gone by – another three weeks in SIP.  The weather has been so nice here and I have been gardening on most days.  Sitting outside chatting with friends (over zoom) has become the norm.  My last SAL post showed progress up to this point:

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4/19/20 – SAL Update

And now I am here:

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5/31/20 – SAL Update.

Th whole thing looks like this:

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5/31/20

Slowly, but surely!  Please take a look at all the other beautiful projects done by others taking part in this SAL:

AvisClaireGunCaroleSueConstanzeChristinaKathyMargaretCindyHeidiJackieSunnyHayleyMeganDeborah, Mary MargaretRenee, CarmelaJocelynSharonDaisyAnne,AJJennyLauraCathieLindaSherrieHelen

I’m also taking part in Kathy’s Slow Stitch Sunday.

May HQAL Update

I find hand work of any kind right now to be such a relaxing balm to my soul.  I have been distracted from my HQAL project, Grandmother’s Flower Garden, by some knitting, crochet, cross stitch and of course gardening.  Yesterday I knew I was going to need to update on the progress for my HQAL, so I put a little time into it and realize again how much I enjoy it.img_9490

Before SIP, I was at a Walmart in Santa Barbara (we were visiting my daughter).  Both my younger daughters were with me and they fell in love with this fabric.  Both of them said it was perfect for my garden quilt.img_9491

They also found these two.  I know I have been making this quilt out of scraps, but since the girls picked these fabrics and were so excited, I decided to use them.  They have been cut but not made into flowers yet.img_9505-1

I have been adding the green hexis around and between all the flowers.  I really like the scrappy way all the different greens look.

This Hand Quilt Along is an opportunity for hand quilters and piecers to share and motivate one another. We post every three weeks, to show our progress and encourage one another.  If you have a hand quilting project and would like to join our group contact Kathy at the link below.

KathyMargaretTracyDebSusan,  Nanette,  EdithSharonKarrinGretchenKathi,  BellaDaisy, Monica and Sherrie

Also sharing with Kathy’s Quilts for Slow Stitch Sunday.

April SAL Update

A SAL is a stitch-a-long.  This particular one is super fun because everyone has a different project that they are working and post about it every three weeks.  If you’d like to join us, please contact AVIS at the link below the post.

AND a big welcome to Sherrie!  I can’t wait to hop over to her blog to see what she’s been up to.

Whew!!  That was a quick three weeks!  It is still shelter in place where we live – you are not supposed to leave your home unless you are going on an essential errand or walking the dog.  Our dog now runs away when she sees us get the leash.  There are four kids at home — walking the dog has become one of the coveted chores!

I did not get all that much done on the Candy Cane Christmas Stocking.  This is where I was last update:

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3/29/20 – SAL close up Update

And this is where I am now:

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4/19/20 – SAL Update

I’ve been scattered lately, not really able to concentrate on any one thing.  I’m like a pin ball, bouncing from one activity to another.  I have lots of unfinished things:  weeding (done in patches), gardening (also done in patches), different areas of organization in our home (lots started, nothing finished).  I read somewhere about a syndrome called IGAD – I Got All Day.  I think in some ways I am experiencing that.  Each day is open and free, one very similar to the next, it is a very strange feeling.  I have never had my days look like this.  I’ve always been working, studying, raising kids, running a business, keeping things running smoothly in the home.  I’ve never experienced long swaths of time like this.  On the plus side, we are walking as a family at least once a day, playing board and card games at every meal (we eat them all together now), do puzzles and have lots of movie nights.  The time together as a family has been really nice.  OK… now that I’ve gotten that off my chest, I just watched a YouTube video on how to grow ginger from fresh ginger you buy at the store.  I have some here and I’m off to plant it!

Please take a look at the other stitchers in this group.  There are so many fantastic things going on:

AvisClaireGunCaroleSueConstanzeChristinaKathyMargaretCindyHeidiJackieSunnyHayleyMeganDeborah, Mary MargaretRenee, CarmelaJocelynSharonDaisyAnneConnieAJJennyLauraCathieLindaSherrie

I’m also sharing with Kathy’s Quilts for Slow Stitch Sunday.

HQAL & Slow Stitch Sunday

I belong to a group called the Hand Quilt-A-Long run by Kathy.   We are to pick a project that we want to make progress and then update every three weeks.  This is my three week check-in on the Grandmother’s Flower Garden.img_9282

I finished the bee one from last week.  This still makes me so happy to look at!  As I sit here typing this up, it’s raining outside and our area is still practicing social distancing.  The flower above makes me think of spring, walking outside with friends, gathering for coffee and seeing my knitting and embroidery groups in person.  The thing I’m missing most right now… seeing my oldest daughter.  She lives in an apartment in another city.  We talk frequently, but don’t get to see each other (except on FaceTime)… I miss physically seeing her – and hugging her.  Hopefully soon!

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I sewed up another one.  This one still needs the white hexis attached.img_9284

And started this little cutie!  I had started out making these only with flower fabrics, but seem to have branched out a little bit!

Please take some time to see what the other stitchers in our group are stitching:

KathyMargaretEmmaTracyDebSusan,  Nanette,  EdithSharonKarrinGretchenKathi,  BellaDaisy

I’m also linking up with Slow Stitch Sunday.