Thursday, December 25, 2014

Tuesday, December 23, 2014


Somewhere in the Great Smoky Mountains

December started out with a surprise birthday trip 
to Tennessee and North Carolina.
The trip was my birthday gift from my daughters and 
my youngest daughter was my companion for the trip.
The weather was warm (60's), rainy and foggy the whole week.

 I won Santa Nancy's 3rd Day of Christmas drawing
on my birthday, December 3.
How cool is that!!

 Bride's Tree Ornaments
Designs by
Brooke's Books Publishing
Stitched on Wichelt's 28 count Cafe Mocha Linen
with Crescent Colors Belle Soie Silk and Cotton flosses

My happy client has given me permission to show these ornaments.  I'm pleased with how well they turned out and the Rambling Rose fabric for the backing and the box lining matches perfectly.
I stitched each ornament's meaning and pieced it with the backing fabric for the backside of the ornament.  This whole project took me almost two years to stitch and finish. 

Design by 
Country Cottage Needleworks
Stitched on supplied fabric
with DMC and DMC Color Variations floss.
Given as a Christmas Gift

Design by 
Lizzie * Kate
Stitched on unknown fabric found in my stash
with DMC Color Variations floss.
Sent to Jody R. for a Christmas Swap

Sock It To Me exchange received from Mark S

Sock It To Me exchange sent to Mark S

I received this wonderful ornament from Shirlee.
I love the beaded hanger she put on this ornament.
Thank you so much Shirlee!

I'm sure I've forgotten something in this post, 
but I'll just have to include it in a post after Christmas.

Keeping all those affected by storms around the world in 
my thoughts and prayers.

I hope you are enjoying the season!

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Remembering Grandma

Today, I'm remembering my Grandma.  
You see, I am the first grandchild and we share a birthday.

 Grandma holding me right after I was born.

Growing up, Grandma and Grandpa lived just across town
and we got to spend alot of time together.

From her soft spoken, gentle nature to her strong Christian faith, 
Grandma was the living example of the values she taught all of her grandchildren.  So much of her made me who I am today.

My mom, Grandma, my oldest daughter and me.  October 1991.

When I saw the post and free design by 
I knew that I wanted to stitch it in memory of my Grandma.

I Will Be There
The Snowflower Diaries
Stitched on
28 Count Light Pink Unknown Fabric over 1

I changed the thread colors to 
Classic Colorworks Collard Greens for the vine, 
Classic Colorworks Cocoa Bean for the words 
and DMC 3726 for the roses.

I had some scraps of the Rambling Rose fabric and made a pincushion for my sewing room.



Sunday, November 30, 2014

Feathered Friends and an Exchange

I'm not sure which kind of Sparrow these are, 
but there are many of them visiting my yard each day.
  They visit every feeder and like to get
in the woodstove chimney when we don't have a fire going.

The Blue Jay visits every day as well.
His call is very loud.

This tiny Woodpecker visits daily too.

Yes, Mr. Redbird hangs around also.

Yesterday, I had the pleasure of seeing the Screech Owl in my tree!
I haven't seen it in many months.
Right after I saw the owl, a squirrel ran up the tree and the
owl backed up into the hole and stayed inside the rest of the day.

~ ~ EXCHANGE ~ ~

Ornament & Floss 
received from Jody R.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

New Kits and Finishing

A couple new kits
waiting patiently in my to-do basket

Dear Rudolph

Snow Dudes

How's this for a tease?
Ten of the 12 Bride's Tree ornaments in the middle of finishing. 

Stay warm!


Friday, November 14, 2014


We've been having some frosty nights

and extremely windy days around here.  This photo was taken just a week ago and now there aren't many leaves left on these trees.

I really thought all of our summer birds had already migrated to their winter homes...
until I saw these two Robins early yesterday morning.  I don't know if they are just late in leaving or if they are confused and staying here for the winter.  According to some local bird experts, some Robins do stay here all year.

Did you notice that huge wood pile in the first photo?  We'll be moving some of that wood up closer to the house and getting the woodstove ready for use.  Even though Hubby cleans the stove and stack when we're done using it in the spring, he always cleans and inspects it again before the first use in the fall.   It will be so nice to have the heat from the woodstove! 


Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Fabric Hunt

Been looking for fabric to finish projects.

Ever have a vision of the "perfect" fabric for a project?
Yep, me too!

Unfortunately, some of the stitched pieces are proving to be 
difficult colors to coordinate with.

My search started at the local Joann's and Hobby Lobby.  Nothing there.

On to an itty bitty local quilt shop.  The lady working there told me I'd have to travel to a bigger store to find what I was looking for.  
They had some great fabrics, but they were so expensive!

Took a drive to another quilt store about 50 miles away.  They claim to have over 2000 bolts of fabric.  I didn't count the bolts, but I had no trouble spending alot of time in that store!

Picked up a few fat quarters of Snowman Gatherings...

Selected a few balls of Valdani...

Still didn't find that "perfect" fabric though.

Traveled 25 miles further to another quilt store.

found a couple fat quarters of Seasonal Little Gatherings...

a few more balls of Valdani...
and fell in love with some wonderful Christmas fabric,
but they only had one mini charm pack left  :(

and still didn't find that perfect fabric!

Sadly, had to call it a day since I was over 75 miles from home.

A couple days later, took a long drive in the opposite direction
to another quilt store claiming to have over 8000 bolts of fabric.

I asked my mom if she'd like to go with me and
she really enjoyed visiting the store!
As we walked in, we couldn't believe all the fabric.
They also had more sewing machines than I've ever seen.

Found many fabrics I wanted, but still not the "perfect" one.
Mom and I had lunch and then headed back home, empty handed.

  Last week, I decided to take a 60 mile road trip in a different direction to another small quilt store.  The ladies working there were anxious to help me.  I was led to another area of the store where we could lay out the fabric and the stitched pieces.  To my surprise and delight, there were 3 other ladies visiting the store and immediately came over to help.  It was so fun!

Still haven't found that "perfect" fabric I've envisioned, but I did finally find fabrics to finish the Bride's Tree ornaments.
These fabrics are from Moda's Rambling Rose collection.
My client loves the fabric choices so now I can get to work
finishing the ornaments.

What do you do when you can't find the "perfect" fabric?

Monday, November 10, 2014

Quality Time

We had an opportunity for another weekend of camping.

Dottie Dog anxiously waits -- 
thinking she's getting the hotdogs Hubby is roasting over the fire!

She did get a taste, lol.

It was great relaxing in front of a warm campfire.
It makes me sad to think it might be the last camping weekend 
of the season because I am not looking forward to cold and snow!


Friday, November 7, 2014


I just had to share

As little girls, they were best friends.

Junior high and high school brought many arguments between sisters
(which I thankfully have no pictures of)

Then I saw this:

During this month of Thanksgiving, DD's instagram post warmed my 
heart and brought tears to my eyes!


Wednesday, November 5, 2014


I don't have an "official" wishlist, but after seeing this design preview, 
I just might need to create one.
Threadwork Primitives is releasing a new Christmas design this week
and you can read more about it here.

What are you adding to your wishlist?
Oh, who am I kidding? 
I'm going to go ahead and buy the design as soon as it's available, lol.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

A Little Halloween Stitchin'

Spooky Eyes
by Lizzie Kate
Kit Included:
EEK! Hand-dyed Linen
Kohl WDW Thread
Black Hand-dyed PomPom Trim (looked dark purple to me :)
Mother of Pearl Buttons & Tiny Black Buttons


Friday, October 17, 2014

Lots of Beads

Happy October!

We've had such a gloomy, rainy week.  

My rain gauge collected 3 inches of rain in 2 days. 

Yesterday afternoon, the sunshine broke through the clouds
and it was wonderful.

The Maple tree in my neighbor's backyard was spectacular in
the bright afternoon sunshine!

Orange and red are my favorite leaf colors.

As I shut my car door, I saw this in my mirror. 
The fall colors are becoming so vibrant! 
Backwards stop signs, lol

I took this photo with my phone,
but it just doesn't do the colors justice. 

Here's a sneak peek at what I've been working on.  

 There are about 100 beads on this piece.  Sorry, you only get a sneak peek as this is for a client.

Have a wonderful weekend!

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

How Do You Stitch?

With needle and thread, right? LOL

Seriously, how do YOU stitch?

Do you stitch in hand or with a hoop, q-snaps, scroll rods or a frame?

Do you use the stab-n-stick method or the sewing method?

If you use the sewing method, why have you chosen that method?

Do you love stitching with hand-dyed, over-dyed and variegated threads as much as I do?

I normally stitch in hand using the sewing method.  For me, stitching in hand came about because I suffer from Thoracic Outlet Syndrome and found holding any type of hoop, q-snap or frame very difficult and painful.  Often, I'd still have pain and numbness from moving my right hand and arm above and below the fabric for each stitch.  I started experimenting with the sewing method.  At first, I found I was stitching with a combination of the stab-n-stick and sewing methods.  Eventually I became more comfortable with the sewing method and now use it the most.  There are still some times when I will use the stab-n-stick method, especially if I'm using a metallic thread or blending filament.

What I like most about the sewing method, besides being the most comfortable way for me to stitch, is that it has a rhythmic flow that I find soothing.  Since I stitch for enjoyment and relaxation, the soothing, rhythmic flow is a bonus! 

Today, I want to share the way I stitch with the sewing method.

I'm right handed and find it easier to move the needle from the top of the stitch to the bottom of the stitch.  The sewing method is most often used when stitching in hand because hoops, q-snaps, scroll rods and frames keep the fabric taut or "drum tight", making it more difficult to move the needle through the fabric in a sewing motion.

When using solid colored threads, I stitch left to right, stitching the bottom leg first and then the top leg from right to left.

 Come up at #1

Needle down at #2 and back out at #3.

Needle down at #4 and back out at #5.  
Continue until the end of the row.
For the top leg of the stitches, work from right to left with the needle still going from the top of the stitch to the bottom.  Needle down at #6 and back out at #7.  Continue working stitches in this manner until back at the beginning of the row.

When using hand-dyed, over-dyed and variegated threads, it is often desirable to form one stitch at a time to maximize the effect of the color changes in the threads.

After using the stab-n-stick method to complete one stitch at a time, I was frustrated because I was having pain and numbness and couldn't really get into a stitching rhythm with it.  After playing around with lots of different methods, I finally developed a modified sewing method that is both easy and comfortable for the way I hold the needle and fabric.  Mostly, it's what works for me and allows me to stitch in comfort and enjoy a rhythmic stitching pace.

Beginning at the right end of the row and working right to left, 
come up at #1

Needle down at #2 and back out at #3

Needle down at #4 and back out at #5.  Notice that the needle is going from the upper right corner of the stitch to the bottom left corner of the stitch. 

Starting the next stitch, needle down at #6 and back out at #7.  Notice that this segment of the stitch is worked just like the first leg of the sewing method when using solid colored thread.

 Needle down at #8 and back out at #9

Continue working the stitches in this manner until the end of the row is reached.

When at the left end of the row, simply rotate the fabric so the stitches are upside down and stitch the next row in the same manner.

In this example, I started with the loop method to secure my thread.

In the group of 3 rows in the example above, the top row is stitched the traditional way -- bottom leg / / / / / across the row then top leg \ \ \ \ \ back to the beginning of the row.  The next two rows are stitched with my modified sewing method.  The back is not bulky at all and I've even found that on certain lighter weight or looser weave linens, the stitches are more supported.  I don't have a problem with the needle catching any of the threads on the back since the threads are laid very similar to the traditional stitching method.

One thing I will point out is that the thread does still twist with this sewing method so I am conscious to watch the twisting and dangle my needle and thread to let it untwist.

This sewing method is something I came up with after playing around with many different methods and is my own way of working with hand-dyed, over-dyed and variegated threads.  I have not ever seen anyone else stitch this way, but I'd love to hear from any of you if you also stitch this way.

I'd also love to hear how this method works for you if you give it a try.