Friday, May 30, 2014

It's All A Process



I am basically an in box/out box kind of person. A list maker & a list scratcher-off-er. How did I end up in a business where everything is a process?

My husband's favorite line for me is "It's all a process dear." Year's ago when I opened my needlework shop and wanted everything done RIGHT NOW - he said that phrase to me more times than I can count. I've learned to become patient with more of the process (I see you rolling your eyes honey!)...so I thought I would share part of the "process".

Besides my day job as needlework designer and my 24/7 job as mom & wife, I am also a needlework finisher. I am grateful for all of the stitchers who trust their work to me. Sometimes I get to follow the directions and sometimes I get to "do my own thing".

Recently (OK, I've had these since last fall) - a customer & very dear friend sent me all 6 of the CherryWood Design Studios Dictionary series and said "I was thinking a wallhanging". First let me say, since I used to be part of the CherryWood design team and I remember exactly where I was & what I was doing when the idea for the 1st word in the series came about...I knew this would be a fun project.

I took some pictures to walk through the process:


 
First - pick out the coordinating fabrics. At this point, I have no idea of my vision or the final project, but I knew I needed fabric borders to make the 6 stitched pieces the same size...or at least it seemed like a good place to start.
 
 
This is when I repeatedly tell my kids "don't think you won't use that math they taught you in school"...maybe it's not algebra, but it does take a certain amount of computable skills to make this all work out!
 
 
Once I got fabric borders on each, I put them up on my design wall to play with the order of things. My design wall is really thick insulation board covered in flannel and attached to the wall with roof nails (they have a cool washer on them that helps hold it all together).
 
 
By this time, a better picture of where this piece was heading had formulated itself. It really does help when you can step back & take a look.
 
 
I did some top-stitching for quilting and to help sandwich it all together!
 
 
It will need a little pressing up when it arrives at her home. Along with her one-of-a-kind Dictionary Series wallhanging, I sent home some pretty framed pieced and a bellpull.
 
That's part of the process - certainly not what very project involves (thank goodness), but it's a lot of fun especially when I know the home it is going to! I have met so many wonderful stitchers all over the country as their finisher...it may not be the typical in box/out box job I used to have, but this one is way more fun!
 
I hope everyone is off to a great start on their summer. We are slowly settling into the new routine. How fast this 1st year of college went for our youngest. It was a good year for both boys that ended with a bang for them between grades and sporting events. I have been really touched how many people have "liked" or commented on their achievements when I have played the proud mom on facebook.
 
 Enjoy your weekend.
Cathy

 
 


 


 

 

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Greetings from Home Improvementlandia

Home Improvement...2 words that strike fear into many people. Last time I talked about how we were starting back into Home Improvementlandia - a country from which we have hidden from been absent for a few years.

Normally, I can handle it - I am strong...back when we did a lot more of this type of work, I did not run a business from home! Some might say it's like a forced vacation...umm, not really. We will survive and be the better for it - in the meantime, I will share pictures!

 
I have passed this spot  a lot on a local highway going back & forth to my son's college - my goal by the time he graduates...get the perfect picture of this setting! 

 
While cleaning out some of the flower beds, we discovered that our bushes went condo with the bird nests this season. (Could we call this waterfront property once the pool is opened?)
 
 
This was my son's room, now freshly painted & ready for carpet!

 
Our room, ready for paint...we had yet to move the world's heaviest king size bed! I tweaked my back removing this carpeting but was saved from moving the bed by a well-timed visit from our son! 

Our closets...in the dining room! (blinds closed so neighbors didn't greet us each morning as we selected the outfit of the day!)

 
...and this is why I got almost no work done for a few days...hard to get in my studio when it's loaded with furniture!
 
 
Well, I did get some finishing jobs done...these are pretty easy to work on in the car as we logged drive time to the last few tennis tournaments of the season!
 
 
Carpet is now installed & we are moved back in...still things to do, but at least the house is mostly put back to order! This morning I spent some design time playing with a few stitches for a new counted canvas piece.
 

 
Under the heading "I've never done this before, but I'm willing to try" - walnut crystal staining...interesting.
 
 
Yeah!!! I have now turned in all of the months and stitched models to Cross Stitch & Needlework magazine. I am more than a little sad that my part of this series is done! I am thrilled with the positive response it has gotten.
 
Here are DMC colors for June & July:
June: blanc, 350, 597, 3809, 838
July: blanc, 666, 310, 3852, 312
 
Keep sending those pictures as you stitch yours - I love them!

Not that I am a huge Andy Warhol fan, but I ran across this & it really spoke to me...so I'm gonna' go make some more art & have a great day!
 
Cathy