Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Bracelet, Part 2

I made more progress on the bracelet the past couple of nights than I thought I would. Just the flowers and leaves left to do, and the Rhodes stitches along the sparkly fancy part. I'm thinking about leaving the Rhodes stitches until I'm done with the whole thing because they get a bit crushed by being rolled up in the frame. Hoping for a good evening of stitching tonight so I can finish up this part!

Tuesday, September 27, 2016


Photo of the entire piece so far. 
I took this photo before I started stitching this week, but as of today it  doesn't look much different. 
I consider it half-finished. 
(Half-finished not counting 
all the beading left to do.)


Safe to say I'm tired of stitching eyelets, after doing 18 of them in one evening. I do love the variegation in that red thread. It's Gloriana hand-dyed silk in Cranberry.

Monday, September 26, 2016


I made a bit of progress on the upper left bracelet, mostly the metallic gold thread. It's called Petite Treasure Braid and it's so nice to work with. It hardly ever knots up, and it pulls through the evenweave like a hot knife through butter. I filled in the flowers that I outlined last week, and I just love the combination of colors. Hoping to get this bracelet mostly finished this week.

Saturday, September 24, 2016


These corner pieces are so much fun to stitch. I saw someone on Instagram called them "bracelets" and that's a perfect name for them. It's where everything that makes this whole design so beautiful comes together: beautiful colors, sparkly metallics, hand-dyed silks, specialty stitches, and (eventually) beads. I stitched a little of the framework of it--the dark navy background and the sparkly gold--hoping that I can sneak in a few stitches here and there in between work this week.

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Last One

That border there on the left, with the yellows and browns and the red flowers, is the bane of my cross-stitching existence. The symbols on the chart muddle together with the lines for the back-stitched stems so it's hard to follow, and I think the flowers and stems don't stand out enough against the background. I find this section tedious to stitch. There are four of these borders at each end of the central "plus sign" and each of them looks a little different from the others because of my mistakes on them. Minor mistakes that don't affect the overall design, and probably nobody will see them but me.

I'm happy I finished the last one!

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Frogging Forgiven

After last night's frustrating round of frogging, I was determined to make up for lost time so I kept at it until I finished the palm tree border and the blackwork on it too.  Can it really be called "blackwork" when it's done in that gorgeous variegated silk??

Tuesday, September 13, 2016


In cross-stitch, there's a term called "frogging". It means the process of removing stitches when you've made a mistake, called frogging because you go "rip it, rip it" to the stitches.

Tonight I'll be frogging this whole vertical border.
That very first green bush at the top of the border should be 5 stitches wide at its widest point, not 4. That mistake throws off the whole border. Once I found the mistake, I considered fudging a row of stitches at the end of the border to make it even out. That won't work though, because the first tree trunk needs to line up with the edge of the corner piece, like this one on the opposite side:
Not having it lined up ruins the symmetry of the design. Rats. I have no choice but to take it all out and stitch it over again. This is why it's good to check your stitching often for mistakes. On many designs, one wrong stitch here or there doesn't make any difference (and I've made a couple small mistakes on this piece) but on this part of this design it makes a big difference.  I guess I should be happy I caught it now instead of later when I had more done.

Rip it, rip it...

Thursday, September 8, 2016


When I was little, my grandma and I were talking about our favorite colors as we sorted through fabric scraps for some project she was doing. (Probably a quilt block or clothes for my Barbie.) She said she liked most colors, but if pressed to pick a favorite she'd pick orchid. I feel the same way about colors: I like most all of them, but aqua blues and lavenders are my favorites. 

So this week I really enjoyed finishing up the sky on the pyramids picture in the upper right corner of this design.

Just look at those lavenders and turquoise blues next to those dark blues. The empty spaces in the sky will be filled up later with beads: tiny seed beads described as "silver-lined sapphire" and at the point of the largest pyramid, a cube-shaped bead called "iridescent sapphire". 

I also finished up the sand and the pyramids on the upper left corner (a mirror image of the right).  I almost finished the sky. I had just a little bit left, but my eyes were tired. 

Maybe I can stitch on it for a few minutes before and after work this week and finish it; otherwise, it'll be next week before I get back to it.