Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Stitching At the Beach!

I'm back from the beach - sand, surf, and stitching...what a combo! (I highly recommend it!). I am getting on the road again so I thought I would post a few quick pics with more to follow later.

After what seemed like a journey that took forever, my friend & I landed in Myrtle Beach airport late wednesday night!

I know it's a little goofy to take a pic in the airport, but hey, I live in the middle of the country where we are already looking at snow flurries! Palm trees are a very welcome sight!

This was the view on our way to breakfast the first morning.

I have a thing for piers...there is something so cool about the structure of them. I also always feel like I'm on an episode of CSI...the body is going to wash up here (I watch way too much TV I think!).

Hmmm...if I can't fish for them, they better not be fishing for me!

Oh yes - the retreat! One of the fun parts is all of the crazy exchanges they have! Here is a Halloween ornament exchange. During this one, you had to draw a card and follow the with the person 7 to your left & across the table, etc... One night we played a musical chairs kind of game! So much fun. I will share pics of exchange gifts next time!
 I did bring a New Release with me that retreaters got to see, even before shops & distributors! This is the start of the Family Tree series: ornaments based on one of my family members. Joyeux Noel is in honor of my sister-in-law and her family who make their home in Paris. We don't get to see them too often, but last Christmas we all gathered at my in-laws house to celebrate their 50th Anniversary. I had such a great time getting to know my sweet little nephews.
I will post some exchange pics next time, but now I must pack again to hit the airways to Houston. I am looking forward to working the Quilt Market floor for my friends at Just Another Button Co.
Happy Stitching! Cathy

Monday, October 14, 2013

To The Beach!

As I sit at my computer, it is rainy and dreary outside. It is not supposed to let up until Wednesday! I suppose I should be thankful that it is not the white stuff coming down.

What I am most thankful for is that this wednesday I am boarding a plane (cue "leavin' on a jet plane" music) bound for Myrtle Beach & the Cross Stitch Pals Retreat. I am looking forward to meeting fellow stitchers & showing off a few of my wares. I've got a special design for attendees, a couple of fun kits, and of course my small, but growing, catalog of designs. I will also have a New Release to premiere!

The list of to-do's does not seem to be shrinking, so I will keep this one short with a sneak peek photo. I hope to post some retreat pics along the way.

Once I'm back home I will pull a fast turnaround and head to Houston Quilt Market where I will, for a few days, be an official "buttoneer"! I scratched off "stand in the button room of the JABCo offices" from my bucket list a few summer's ago and now I am excited to go help out in their booth during Market.

Before I go's that sneak peek!

I almost forgot to mention - I am taking a selection of pre-drilled sunglasses and "cheaters" from Noteworthy Needle. Janis graciously allowed me to bring to some for you all to tryout and purchase. I stitched mine up in a quick evening.

Have a wonderful week & Happy Stitching!


Saturday, October 5, 2013

Finish It Friday...on Saturday!

My computer decided it didn't feel much like working yesterday! Thanks to my techie husband, he got me up & running again and I can leisurely look for a new laptop instead of runing pell-mell to the nearest Best Buy...

So my Finish it Friday is coming to you on Saturday! The actual title for this post is...

Even the Pros Make Mistakes!

Now, anyone who really knows me understands that I wince at the thought of being called a "pro" at anything...but DH reminded me that since I get paid to do what I do, then I was indeed a pro (or at least I hope that's where he was heading with that conversation!)

So your Finish it Friday session is a lesson on how to fix a goof. Sometimes, what you had in your head doesn't turn out quite the way you planned and instead of chucking the piece, you need to re-think, re-use & maybe even re-purpose. In other words...make lemonade!

Lots of pics here & I will do my best to explain!
So here's what I had: I flat finished an ornament on cardboard mounted to a fabric covered board then mounted to wool...cute right? Face it, the only thing that really looks good in this picture is my manicure. I not only did one of these, I did 2 of these & both got what I call the "butterfly effect"...thicker on the corners that the middle.
 There are several reasons for this. 1. I should have used a thicker mounting board for the needlework part so it wouldn't bend so easily. 2. I should have trimmed out my corners more when I laced it & then it wouldn't be so thick in the corners. 3.While knowing I should have trimmed the corners more, I didn't because this was stitched on a thicker even-weave which unraveled easily. With a little extra care, you can trim corners & lace even weave type fabrics...I just thought I would be able to get away with not doing it (apparently I didn't)
So here's what I did to fix it!
 I carefully undid the lacing, mounting glue, and acid free tape holding everything together.
I pressed, trimmed the edges, and saved the bows, hangers & wool that I had already used.
I sewed fabric to the bottom of the ornament (I had some of the fabric left that I had used for the 1st try on the ornaments)
Next, I added a little trim of the wool I had already used. I just trimmed a strip with my pinked rotary blade, placed a little tacking stitch on either side. I re-used the ribbon hanger from the original ornaments and grabbed fabric for the backside of these pillow style ornaments. With right sides together, I sewed pillow style (remember my tip from last time), clip corners, turn & stuff!
Here they are stuffed, & ready to go. I actually like them better this way! My customer loved them. I did let her in on my little secret about what happened and got her permission to blog about it. The only thing extra that I added were the little poinsettia buttons at the top.
I hope you either picked up some tip along the way or will add this type of finish to your repertoire.

I finally got a chance to put up some Fall & Halloween decorations. The Halloween tree is new for me this year. I didn't realize exactly how many Halloween ornaments I had!

I love this time of year. Today is our first real "Fall-like" day & it's already October 5. 20 years ago today, my oldest son was born. We celebrated a bit with him last night & will again today with him & some friends from his group home. I continue to be amazed at how much he has grown & matured since he moved into his new home 6 months ago (6 months feels like 6 years!) He is at a good place right now & I am so thankful for that. This past year has had a lot of changes for me both personal & proffesional. I have my husband and my boys to thank for their strength & support. I've practically worn out my Kelly Clarkson CD (What Doesn't Kill You...) Thank you for following this blog & I love reading your comments.
Happy Stitches,