Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Trimming The Tree Ornament - 10/10/17

October 10, 2017--Finished stitching this ornament and for picture taking purposes, placed the cut-out oval on top of the canvas to confirm I've got the right shape.  Looks good.  Now to turn it into an ornament with beautiful cording around the edge.  

PS  The black edge along the oval top is caused by shadow, not a pencil.

Trimming the Tree Ornament Completed

September 26, 2017--I've shied away from finishing ornaments into oval shapes--didn't know how to draw a perfect oval template.  Well, no more.  I'm nearly finished stitching the "Trimming The Tree" ornament by Eula C. Malson published in the December, 2009 issue of Needle Pointers (project photo can be found on the right under "In Process Projects"), and before I decide to fill in the background with something like the "T" stitch, I needed to pencil in the oval shape on the canvas.  Here's what I did.

I used Microsoft Word's shapes to draw an oval, then used an old bit of software called "Cool Ruler" to make it the length and width I needed to fit my ornament.

Cool Ruler used to measure how far to pull down the oval to the length desired


Cool Ruler used to measure how wide to pull the oval for the width desired

Once the oval shape was set, I used Word's shapes to draw straight horizontal and vertical lines through the middle and printed it out on standard 8.5" x 11" paper.  Then I placed my stitched ornament on top of the template, using the lines to help locate the exact center of top, bottom and sides, then drew my oval.

Lines on Template Visible Through Canvas for Centering
Here's a picture of my ornament with a perfectly shaped oval.  The top has more space than the bottom because a star will be stitched on top of the boxes after I fill in the background.



Friday, October 6, 2017

Name Tag for ANG Checkerspot Chapter - 10/6/17

October 6, 2017--I recently joined the ANG Checkerspot Chapter located in Silver Spring, MD.  They are a delightful group of stitchers located within a day's ride round-trip of where I live in Delaware.  Not long ago they changed their name from Executive Branch to Checkerspot which is Maryland's state insect and attached is a picture of a glorious specimen.  Love the butterfly colors they incorporated into their name tag.

ANG Checkerspot Chapter Name Tag

Checkerspot Butterfly, Maryland's State Insect



Sunday, September 24, 2017

Needlepointed Black Velvet - 9/24/17

September 24, 2017--Below is a needlepointed picture of Pam and Ray's (our friends) horse, Black Velvet (or Blackie for short).  It's all done in tent stitch and I just had to share it here.  The use of thread to "paint" the horse and background is so fine that it looks as if it were done with delicate brush strokes, not with needle and thread.

Needlepointed Picture in Tent Stitch

Close Up of Stitching

Signature on Back of Needlepointed Picture
The stitcher, a Bulgarian woman who was the mother of our friends' friend began working on this piece in 2005 using the original photograph from which the below painting was made.  Unfortunately the stitcher's name is forgotten and cannot be deciphered from the signature on the back of the piece (our friends believe the first line says "with respect").

Painting of Blackie Front View

Painting of Blackie Side View
In 2000, Blackie was commissioned to be painted from a photograph by an artist who lived in Soprin, Hungary. At the time, our friends lived in Vienna, Austria.

The needlepointed picture was given to them by their friends, Glennis and her boyfriend, as a Christmas gift in 2007 (2 years after the stitching was begun) while they were stationed in Frankfort, Germany.   Both the painting and needlepointed piece now hang in their study where they can be quietly enjoyed.

Thursday, September 21, 2017

ANG Stitch of the Month 2017 - 9/21/17

September 21, 2017--Almost a year ago I was invited to pilot stitch the ANG Stitch of the Month project designed by Deborah Forney.  Almost forgot that I worked on some of this since time restraints prohibited me from completing all of the steps.  Below is a picture of what I stitched.   It really is a fun project. 

The monthly instructions posted on the ANG website (click here) will entice you to stitch each month's section and look forward to working on the next.  Of course, if you start now, the first nine months of instructions are already available.   Please post pictures of your progress--would love to see your color choices.

ANG Stitch of the Month 2017 Partial


Thursday, September 14, 2017

Back from Seminar - 9/14/17

September 14, 2017--Currently doing lots of stitching, but there's nothing I can write about.  The projects I'm working on are for the 2018 ANG Seminar in Washington, DC.

But what I can write about is the 2017 ANG Seminar in Anaheim, CA I attended from August 24th through September 2nd.  Took two wonderful classes--the first with Cynthia Thomas on how to use Excel to write stitch guides.   A few years ago I wrote a stitch guide for a drawn thread class I gave to Delaware's Seashore Chapter (click here).  I used software that was .jpg based and once the work was saved, could not make changes.  A very cumbersome process.   Using Excel would have been so much easier.  Now I know.

The second class was Coy Koi, a needlepointed purse by Janet Zickler Casey.  Not only did we learn how to work the front and back sections, Janet also showed us how to mount the canvas on the pre-formed "clam shell" style purse form which was included with the class kit.  I can't wait to blog about this one.

Coy Koi Purse by Janet Zickler Casey Project Photo
Will take a break from 2018 Seminar stitching to work on Christmas ornaments soon, so that will be fun to write about.  In the meantime, my cable TV company, Verizon Fios, has given me free HBO streaming through November 30th, so DH and I are binge watching GOT, seasons 1 through 7.  We're currently up to season 4 and all I can say is WOW!

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

ANG Seminar 2017 Name Tag - 8/22/17

August 22, 2017--My new ANG name tag showing that I'm a member of Distance Learning (DL) as Correspondence Course (CC) Chair is ready and attached to the bottom of my chapter name tag.  I'll be sporting this at the ANG seminar in Anaheim next week.

While at seminar, I'm taking Creating Diagrams and Stitch Guides using Microsoft Office by Cynthia Thomas on Monday and Coy Koi by Janet Zickler Casey on Thursday and Friday.  I'm also working on the Hospitality Desk Wednesday morning and in the Exhibit Hall on Wednesday afternoon.

Looking forward to seeing you there.



Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Holiday Gift Blue Ornament - 8/1/18

August 1, 2018--Completed stitching the 4th ornament in the Susan Portra Holiday Ornament series which I wrote about here,

This one is the blue gift which will be adorned with a pretty silver ribbon bow when finished into an ornament.  The silver square in the middle of the top area is where the bow will be attached.

Holiday Gift Blue Ornament