Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Santa Martini needlepoint by CBK

This is one of the canvases from the 4 classes I took at the Columbus market. Nothing quite like coming back from a trip with four more UFOs (UnFinished Objects).

The class, taught by the delightful SuZy Murphy, was called "Santa in a Martini Glass". The canvas was provided by CBK Needlepoint.

This was a breeze to stitch and will look great finished as a stand-up for our bar.

Since stitch guides are just that, guides, I made a couple of changes to SuZy's stitch guide.

SuZy stitched her glass with Water 'n Ice from Rainbow Gallery, which gave the glass a frosted effect. I decided to stay with the bright holiday colors and stitched my glass with Petite Frosty Rays to match the painted canvas. The base of the glass is painted a bright royal blue. Although I have seen martini glasses that are painted exactly that way, I had to agree with SuZy that no matter what thread you pull in blue, the base just screams "look at me first...and second...and third."

The second change I made was to use a darning stitch from Brenda Hart's book "Stitches for the Millennium". Appropriately enough, it's a martini glass pattern. I chose to stitch Lemon Drops instead o Appletiniis in honor of my stitching friend Linda B.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

"Mine" needlepoint design by Sandra Gilmore

After finishing two Christmas stockings in record time, I decided to get into the Halloween spirit.

"Mine" by Sandra Gilmore of Once in a Blue Moon designed this very cute canvas that had been languishing in my stash for a couple of years.  I had started the Jacquard stitch for the sky and then left it as a UFO (UnFinished Object) for over a year.  I was inspired to pick it up again when we had the Patty Paints trunk show in Florida.  I purchased two of her sparkly pumpkins with the idea of having 3 coordinating pillows made.

I had intended to leave the tent stitches in between the Jacquard blank, but I don't know how exposed canvas holds together over time. I first tried a Kreinik #16 for the tent stitches, but the color was wrong and the braid too fat.  I had a Neon Rays that was a good color, but the thought of stitching that much with the slippery devil of a ribbon took all the fun out of that section of canvas.  I settled on Treasure Braid, taking two stitches over the exposed star areas.  I liked the richer shade and its lower profile.  I haven't decided whether or not to add star buttons or to leave it as is.

The cat's eyes (and the pumpkin's) are Kreinik glow-in-the-dark braid with 005HL for the black slits.  Her nose and gray outline are tent stitched with Very Velvet.  I love the stitch I used for the cat's fur.  I found it on a blog "Melita Stitches 4 Fun."  It is shown, with permission by David McCaskill, in her blog about her sunflower canvas.  I had toyed with the idea of using a different stitch for each section of the cat, but I love the overall pattern I got from using just this one stitch with black Silk & Ivory.

The pumpkin was not painted with a glittery finish, so I used Gold Rush 14 to tie it to the sparkly canvases by Patty Paints.  I used the Nobuko stitch for the main body, but I didn't love stitching it (the Gold Rush was hard to pull through) and I think I could have chosen something that would look better.  However, these camvases are just for fun and I could hear my friend Linda using her favorite line when I want to rip something out--"What are you NUTS???"

Next up:  the purple polka dot pumpkin.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Evelyn's stocking finished!

Evelyn's stocking just came back from the finisher and it looks great!

Here are some of the stitches I used:

Jump through loop is the fur on Santa's coat.

Woven stitch for the stocking hanging on the mantel.

The mantel and surround are stitched with Spring using the Basket Weave on Top stitch:

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Evelyn's stocking part 4

The nutcracker is tent stitched with cross stitches for the buttons and an elongated Smyrna cross for the belt buckle.  His beard and hair are French knots on a stalk.

The garland is stitched entirely in French knots using Tone on Tone Vineyard Silk in Landscape.  The berries are also French knots using a red #16 Kreinik braid.

I was taught a long time ago that white-white stocking tops usually draw your eye first, a bad thing when the stocking should be the focus.  I used Natural Silk & Ivory and the Nobuko stitch for the cuff.  The name and the area around it are basketweave.  Trying to carry a specialty stitch with its compensating stitches into small areas results in a mess, so the area around “Evelyn” is just plain basketweave.

Next week - stitches I used on this project.

Now on to the new project--I’m thinking Halloween.