Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Hallelujah

I thought the iMac had died... but it didn't!!!!

When we got back from our Fourth of July weekend in PA, the Mac wouldn't turn on. It tried and tried. It would make the lovely little start-up noise but the screen would stay black. I thought it was kaput. I figured Jeremy would be on the phone with tech support all night long. I guess it just took a little persistence because after attempting to turn it on again a few more times yesterday it finally kicked on! I don't know how it happened but my bank account thanks you, Mac.

Now that I'm back up and fully operational I get to post my seventh TUSAL! Thanks to Daffycat, my ORT jar is filling up nicely.

You also get a little sneak peak at my progress on Mermaid's Folly. Her tail is growing... and so is my love of stitching this piece! Corny, I know, but it's true. I think what makes it so fun is that what you're stitching is actually the background. The foreground is the fabric. So you're stitching along, filling in a big block of black and then all of the sudden a flower begins to appear. Yep - I love it.

I hope your 4th was wonderful and filled with fireworks!

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Number Sixxxxxx

Here is the sixth installment of Daffy Cat's Totally Useless Stitch-a-long. Please don't mind the green growing on my porch :) The green is also growing in my ORT jar.
And I have some progress to report on Mermaid's Folly...

I can't stand how much I love stitching this chart! Whoop whoop!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

I Heart Pinterest and More Progress

Pinterest is my new favorite website. It's like a virtual scrapbook. Remember my Idea Book I posted back in 2009? I paged through all of my old magazines and clipped my favorite things - clothes, interiors, gifts, ideas, projects, recipes... Well Pinterest is just the same except everything is housed online as "pins" on your very own organized page. You can search, browse, or repin other peoples pins and even make friends and network. It's pretty fantastic. Take a look at my Pinterest page and see for yourself. If you'd like an invitation just leave me a comment with your email :)

Oh yeah, and check out the progress that I've made on Mermaid's Folly. I am just LOVING this project!

My dad is in the States for work this week and next so he'll be at our house over the Memorial Day holiday!! Hopefully there will be some warm weather activities, cookouts, and lots of cocktails :) What are your plans?

Friday, May 20, 2011

Trade-o-rama!

I completed my first trade this morning! I was able to trade 2 charts from my stash for Raise the Roof's "Hang Ten" button pack. I had ordered the Hang Ten chart and forgot to get the buttons to go along with it. This way I got them for free and someone else has 2 new charts to add to their stash. Thanks for the trade, Jacki!

If you're interested in trading, take a look at what else I've got in my For Trade set over on Flickr!

Thursday, May 19, 2011

New Stash, Some Progress, and Another New Start

Oh man, did I get some awesome mail yesterday or what?? Look at all these goodies. Starting from the top is "May I" (All Through The Night), "Gnomes in the Garden Row" (Bent Creek), "Fiesta Nicola Sabiel 1818" (Samplers Remembered), "Ruby Notes" (Kathy Schmitz), "Welcome Y'all" (Annalee Waite Designs), and "Hang Ten" (Raise the Roof). I bought them all from ABC Stitch Therapy during their 10 year anniversary sale. 20% off, baby! I can't wait to get crackin'.

There is also a little progress to report on Kitchen Blessings. As you can see, I finished the dark emerald portion of the border and am moving on to the lighter color. I plan on making this into a door hanger so I need to start planning that out. What you think - backing or no backing?

And I think you can recognize these...

They're boobs! Side note: boobs are fun to stitch :)

I just couldn't wait to finish up Kitchen Blessings before starting on this big ol' project. It's called Mermaid's Folly and comes from the Courtney Collection. It is a massive undertaking. The stitch count is 565 x 225. I decided to stitch it over 1 on 28ct linen. This brings the finished size down to something reasonable. The fabric is hand-dyed and so is the floss. I'm using the Week's Dye Works lovely color Kohl. It's basically black with some grey variation in it. It's really beautiful. I can't wait to show you some more progress!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Wanna Trade?

Last night I took the time to photograph all of my cross stitch and needlework stash that I'm ready to part with. I'm trying to keep my collection to one relatively small Rubbermaid container. Once that container is full it's time to weed. Now that's not to say I'm not open to a trade :) Take a look at my "For Trade" set on Flickr and let me know if you see anything that you like. If you see something, either send me an email through Flickr or kateandicecream at gmail dot com. Maybe we can arrange a little swap-eroo!

Here is quick peek at what I have to offer:

Happy searching!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

TUSAL #5 and some progress

Whoop whoop! Progress all around. I got some good strangs in my TUSAL jar this month. Just ask Daffycat what it's all about.

And I made more progress on my kitchen blessings project. It's been a little while so I'm posting 2 progress pictures.

Dig it!

Monday, April 4, 2011

TUSAL #4 and a New Start

Behold the fourth Totally Useless Stitch-a-Long photo! Check out Daffycat's blog for more info.

You'll notice all of the yellow threads on top. I started a new project last week. It's called Kitchen Blessings by Enchanting Lair. I changed the colors a bit. I'm using this lovely mustard color for the lettering and two different shades of emerald green for the border. I'm stitching on an 18ct oatmeal aida. Since I'm making this into a door hanger I went with a more hearty, rigid fabric. So far I am loving stitching this project.

Stay tuned for updates!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

This is where it's at!

No, really. See that little red house? Under the goose on the left and above the little pine trees? Ta-daaa! My house!

I finished Greeneframe's map of the Delmarva Peninsula a few days ago and am in love with it. I think I'll make it into a pillow for our teardrop. I just have to have to find a stash spot for it so my pup doesn't tear it to shreds when I'm not looking.

Hmmm, what fabric should I use...

Decisions. Decisions.

Monday, March 7, 2011

It's Been a While

... so here's a stitching update!

Last week I finished up a bookmark. I made this because I needed it and bought the pattern ages ago. Don't like it very much but it does the job :)

Pictured above is Whiter Shades of Pale, the new book from Stuff White People Like author Christian Lander. I bet I know who's going to be in the new new book... Charlie Sheen. Come on, what white person isn't completely obsessed with CS right now? Winning!

I also have a long awaited progress picture from my Delmarva Peninsula WIP. I've finished Delaware, the upper Shore, and most of the mid-Shore.

I am really loving stitching almost entirely in backstitch.

Well, I hope you all had a lovely weekend and aren't too soaking wet with all of the rain we got yesterday. Take care!

Friday, March 4, 2011

TUSAL #3

Here's the 3rd in the series. I just finished up a very colorful bookmark so my ORT jar is bright and shiny. Check out Daffycat's Totally Useless Stitch-a-long to find out more about the TUSAL!

Thursday, March 3, 2011

March Calendar

Celebrate National Craft Month with my monthly calendar, dressed up with a crafty theme. As always, feel free to use it. It's on my Flickr.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

How-To: Fabric Hearts Bookmark

I made this little fabric bookmark for Jeremy's Valentine's Day gift. (We're going very low tech this year.) It only took about 2 hours so it's totally do-able for quick after-work or afternoon project. Plus it's super cute so just make one, ok? :)

Materials: fabric (any colors), contrasting (or coordinating) thread, scissors, pinking shears, paper for your templates, stick pins, a needle, an iron, and a sewing machine.

First, cut six squares out of the fabric that you chose for your hearts. Stack three squares, all right side up.

Next, cut out a heart template. Take a small piece of paper approximately the size of the heart you'd like to make. Fold the paper in half. Draw half a heart shape on one side of the folded paper. Make sure that when you unfold the paper you'll have a whole heart not two halves! Cut out the heart template. Place it on top of the three squares and secure it with a stick pin.

Using your pinking shears to cut down on fray, cut around your heart template to make three identical fabric hearts.

Next, take your heart template and cut an even smaller heart out of the center. This will be the template for the small heart. Repeat the above steps for the small heart.

Now, find the fabric you'd like as the base of your bookmark. Fold the fabric right side to right side. Lay out your hearts on the fabric so you get an idea of how large you'd like your bookmark to be. There should be enough fabric all the way around your hearts (at least a 1/4 inch) for seams. (FYI: I left a 1/2 inch all the way around so, in addition to the seam allowance, my hearts had a little 1/4 inch border.) Cut out your bookmark panels.

Separate your two bookmark panels. Arrange your hearts on one fabric panel (the bookmark front) to your liking. Pin your hearts and, using your sewing machine, sew a straight line from the top of the panel to the bottom, vertically down the center of each heart, anchoring everything in place. (I'm sorry there is no picture of this step. To get an idea of what this looks like, jump two pictures ahead.)

Next, place the other fabric rectangle right side down on top of your bookmark front. Line up your edges and pin down the left, right and top sides. Sew, leaving the bottom open for turning.

Once the three sides are sewn, turn your bookmark inside out and press with a hot iron. Make sure to poke the corners out to get your bookmark as square as possible.

Turn the bottom of the bookmark inside a 1/4 inch and press, leaving a nice straight edge.

Blind stitch the bottom edges together. Click here for a blind stitch tutorial.

For added detail I zig-zag stitched around my completed bookmark in the same thread color as my center seam.

Enjoy endless (cute!) hours of reading!

Friday, February 4, 2011

February Calendar

Here is my February 2011 calendar. You can find it on my Flickr. Feel free to use it!

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Número Dos

Here is the second picture for Daffycat's Totally Useless Stitch-a-long. As you can see I've collected a few more threads since last time. It's still teeny tiny compared to others but, oh, how I love it.

Monday, January 31, 2011

A Fresh Start

So I'm tired of Mary Wigham already :) Plus I just had an itching to work on something new.

I started something that I've been holding on to for a while now. It's a design by a local woman named Renee Greene. She's the in-house designer extraordinaire at Salty Yarns in Ocean City, my closest LNS. When finished, it will be a map of the Delmarva Peninsula. For those of you who aren't familiar, Delmarva is a large peninsula on the East Coast of the US. It is made up of the entire state of Delaware, the Eastern Shore of Maryland, and the Eastern Shore of Virginia. Because it's separated from the rest of the US by the Chesapeake Bay it remains, for the most part, an environmentally protected and rural area - a fact Delmarva-ians are very proud of.

Believe it or not, I actually started this chart on Saturday night. I got a bunch of good stitching time on Sunday too and ended up finishing the outline of the map. It's worked in backstitch so it comes together pretty quickly. Place names, symbols, a map title, and a North arrow remain.

Stay tuned to see Delmarva come to life!

Monday, January 24, 2011

What a Nice Weekend

I've been a busy knitter. And I think I'm finally speeding up! I have 16 inches of scarf knitted so far. It's so soft and lovely - I can't wait to be finished. I'm going to make this scarf nice and long so I can wrap it around my head about a thousand times, right up to my eyeballs! Side note: it's been so cold out that my dog doesn't even want to go for a walk in the mornings. Brrrrrrr...

And, drum roll please...

I pulled out the ol' Mary Wigham Quaker sampler last night! After months and months of neglect (it may have even been a year+) I finished the white motif. I even stitched the initials and got started on the pink section. It's still not my favorite thing but I'll keep working on it.

I hope everyone had a lovely weekend. Yay for Monday being over!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

This may be totally useless...

... but I'm doing it anyway! And, of course, I'm late jumping on the bandwagon.

Daffycat has created this totally useless stitch-a-long - her words, not mine! Every New Moon of the year (dates of which can be found here) you're supposed to take a picture of that glass jar you throw all your leftover thread, floss, and yarn scraps into. The problem is I don't have one of these jars.

I finished up my delicious Claussen pickles this weekend and now I have a jar! It even has scraps in it!

The ORT (old ragged threads) jar

Monday, January 17, 2011

Getting Started on Those Goals

I have about 5 inches complete on my very first scarf! I'm using a blended grey and white wool. I'm knitting the whole thing. I figure I'll start easy. Maybe next time I'll throw in some fancy stitches :) And to tell you the truth, I though knitting would go a lot faster. Maybe it's just because I'm still getting used to it. I have to concentrate pretty hard to make sure I don't lose stitches.

On Saturday I also got a big load of stuff together to go to Good Will. It's still sitting in the back of my car because I couldn't find anywhere to drop it off this weekend. It will happen though! It feels good to get rid of unused things and give them to people who actually need them.

LEGOS!

We drove over to BWI Airport last week to pick up my car in long term parking (my momma was using it when she was home from New Zealand). We don't get over to that side of the world much - Baltimore, not NZ :) - so we made a pit stop at Arundel Mills Mall. We went to Books-a-Million and the Lego Store. I finally bought a kit!! I put it together a few nights ago...

Look! It's me and Jeremy!



Thursday, January 13, 2011

30 Things to Do Before I'm 31

Since it's now a week before my 30th birthday, I think it's a really good time for me to set some goals for the upcoming year. I've seen this on a few different blogs and think it's a great idea.

So here it goes... my 30 before 31:
  1. Exercise 4 times a day (*edit - a WEEK :) ... I'm not that hardcore*) - I got EA Sports Active for Christmas, hopefully I can keep it up!
  2. Find a job in Baltimore
  3. Make all homemade Christmas presents
  4. Get an iPhone
  5. Finish the teardrop
  6. Attend an out-of-state Tear Jerkers rally
  7. Buy more local produce
  8. Have a party at the house
  9. Knit my first scarf - in the works!
  10. Go to New Zealand
  11. Design a cross stitch chart
  12. Take a personal day off of work for myself and RELAX
  13. Complete my footware photo project
  14. Spend less time on the internet at work
  15. Install new AC in the house
  16. Insulate under the house
  17. Make an article of clothing for myself
  18. Buy a new "fancy" camera
  19. Make a rug
  20. Transfer childhood recordings to digital - I've been wanting to do this for years
  21. Learn 1 new craft
  22. Yarn bomb something
  23. Take a class at the Arts Center
  24. Learn to play the mandolin
  25. Learn to surf
  26. Rearrange the living room
  27. Simplify the house - downsize!
  28. Donate unused clothing and shoes to a charity - downsize!
  29. Grow a beautiful garden
  30. Don't stress over little things - focus on the positive and live a happier life
I think most of these goals are attainable. I can't wait to cross things off the list!

What are your goals for the new year?

Thursday, January 6, 2011

A Finish!

It's finished! It's finished! All You Can Eat is finished! Yaaaaaaaay!

Now it has to be framed and a spot has to be saved for it in the teardrop galley :) And the peasants rejoice.


It's on to knitting!

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

How-To: Postcard Calendar Journal

In the beginning of December I was looking at Design*Sponge and was smitten with this lovely calendar. Each day you write a little blurb about what you did - like a mini journal entry. This continues through the years and the life of the calendar. It seems like a real keepsake :)

On New Years Eve we were invited to a party and thought that this would make a perfect host/Christmas gift. It was pretty easy to make. You can make it too if you follow the tutorial here.

We bought most of the paper supplies at Walmart so we saved money there. We picked up the mega-index cards there - 2 packs of 100 - and the paper cutter. The date stamper and ink pad came from an office supply store (Walmart only had the self inking). The postcards (50 cents each) and enamel container ($6) came from a local antique store.

Jeremy cut all of the index cards in half with the paper cutter. He cut about 5 at a time, running the blade back and forth over the cards 2 or 3 times. The postcards didn't need to be cut. They were actually about a half inch smaller than the halved index cards.

When it was time to start stamping dates (remember, no year!), I began at Dec 31. That way I didn't have to reverse-sort every card in the set when I finished. That saved some time.

Also after I inked the stamp with the date, I put the index card on top of some scrap paper. Since I couldn't avoid inking the year on the stamp I just let that portion of the stamp hang over the right edge of the card. The scrap paper worked perfect for catching all of those "2011"s :)

The cards fit perfectly into the enamel container and were finished off with a little holiday ribbon.

See Ashley's full calendar tutorial on Design*Sponge.