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SBQ – September 2010

  • Posted on October 2, 2010 at 10:45 am

Is there anything that you do while you are stitching that is kind of weird or unusual? A quirky habit maybe? Or anything that you do that makes you think, Hey…I wonder if anyone else does this?

The strangest thing I have noticed with my stitching is not something that I do on purpose. I first noticed this behavior when I was model stitching. When I make a mistake on an important piece (i.e. a model), I get completely flushed. My face goes red and I get hot. Seriously. I’m neurotic. And I would be very surprised if anyone else has this kind of physical reaction to making a mistake and having to frog.

Other than that, I have a tendency to stick out my tongue a bit when I am really focusing on something. That goes for anything that I’m working on, not just stitching. I don’t do this a lot when I’m stitching, I don’t think, unless I’m weaving a complex Hardanger filling.

SBQ – August 2010

  • Posted on October 1, 2010 at 9:44 am

This SBQ is picture-heavy:

Read the list of questions below and answer them with the title of a needlework design. Include the designer’s name, too. Try to add a photo of the design, if you can. While you don’t have to own all of the designs, you should at least want to stitch all of your answers. And finally, if you played along 5 years ago, try to come up with answers using new design names (ones that have been published in the last 5 years).

It wasn’t easy, but I did complete this quiz back in November of 2005. So, here we are with an updated set of answers.

1. Are you male or female?

Rose Maiden – Shinysun’s Cross Stitching © Jane Starr Weils

2. Describe yourself:

Made of the Stuff of Stars – Heaven and Earth Designs © J.M. Leotti 2008

3. How do some people feel about you?

Whatever – Subversive Cross Stitch

4. How do you feel about yourself?

The Awakening – Heaven and Earth Designs © 2005 Jonathon Earl Bowser

5. Describe your girlfriend/boyfriend/interest:

Hearts Entwined – Northern Expressions

6. Describe your best friend:

Making Friends – Just Nan

7. Describe where you currently live:

Cardinal’s Treat – Diane Graebner
I picked this one because we have a bunch of cardinals that hang out in our yard, plus we live near Amish farms.

8. Where would you rather be?

Hawaii Moon – Shinysun’s Cross Stitching © Marshall White

9. Describe what you want to be:

Be Happy – Shepherd’s Bush

10. Describe how you live:

be silly, etc. – My Mark Designs

11. Describe how you love:

friendship on fire – My Mark Designs

12. Share a few words of wisdom:

Housework Never Killed Anyone – Lizzie*Kate

13. Now use a title to say goodbye:

Leave It Green – Just Nan

SBQ – July 2010

  • Posted on September 30, 2010 at 9:29 am

The July question is a long one, with a lot of detail to it:

Stitching is an activity that tends to be solitary. Sometimes I wonder if we choose stitching because we are more comfortable with pursuits that we do alone, or does our stitching cause us to be loners? So what do you think?

And you know that I can never stop with just one question or thing to think about, so here’s something else that’s been on my mind.

Since we’re stitching alone most of the time, it seems to me that we get great joy from coming together with other stitchers. It can be such a good feeling when we find a group of people who speak our language and understand our stitching excitement and passion. But since not all stitchers are perfect, not all groups can be perfect either. So…if you could create your own perfect stitching group, what characteristics would make it perfect?

For instance, would you all be near the same age, or would you like your group to span a generation or two? Would you enjoy political or religious discussions while you stitch or would that make you shy away? Would you like a big group or a small group? Those are just a couple of variables in groups…tell us what’s important to YOU.

I’m a bit anti-social to begin with, so I guess that I probably like stitching because it’s a solitary pursuit. In fact, most of my hobbies are solitary ones that can be made social, but don’t have to be. I guess it’s because I’m an introvert that I gravitate towards these hobbies, but being crafty does not seem to lend itself to being terribly social. So, maybe the answer is a bit of both.

As far as deriving great joy from gathering with other stitchers, it depends on the stitchers. 😉 Seriously, though, I have a hard time putting myself out there to make new friends, so while it is a true joy to get together with stitching bloggers that I feel like I already know, it’s not so much fun for me to be amongst a group of strangers. That’s probably why I tend not to go to the monthly stitching group if Anna isn’t there. I had the intention of going to the last one without her and even RSVP’d, but ended up having tummy problems that kept me from going. I felt incredibly guilty about not going when I had actually called just that morning to sign up.

The perfect stitching group, for me, would be my favorite stitching bloggers, as I already mentioned. The ones I follow regularly, even though they are scattered around the country and the globe. It would be lovely to just hop in our transporters and meet somewhere on a regular basis for stitching and chatting, although it would be more chatting than stitching, I suspect. I don’t care about age so much: some of my best stitching pals are older than me. In fact, I think that most of them are. Having a open-minded group that would be open to political and religious banter would be nice, though Anna has no qualms about digging into those conversations regardless of the company, which can be lots of fun. So, that’s pretty much it for me. A gathering of good friends is what equals good fun for me!

SBQ – June 2010 – Part 2

  • Posted on September 29, 2010 at 1:55 pm

Often times we identify our love of needlework and our skills with our mothers or grandmothers or other women. It’s understandable because often they were are first teachers or role models. Now let’s think about our stitching life as it relates to our dads. Is there anything about our approach to stitching that we can recognize as traits of our fathers? For instance, does your dad (or any other important man in your life) have an approach to one of his interests that you can observe and think, “Hey….if I substitute the word “needlework” for “fly fishing”, we’d be pretty darn similar!” So tell us about it.

I’m afraid that I don’t have a good answer to this question. It’s a bit amorphous for my brain to process right now. I guess I would say that I am generally a perfectionist by nature, which I get from my biological father. However, I am learning to leave mistakes in my work, unless they will screw me up further down the road while stitching the piece. This I get from my step-father, whose motto is “perfect,” even when it’s not quite.

I had the concept of perfectionism psychologically beaten into my brain as I was growing up. Everything had to be just right. My father had a lot of anger issues at that time and I think that he was just generally unhappy, so nothing seemed to measure up to his standards. I’m one of those people-pleasers who pushed myself to get straight As in school, finish first in competitions, etc. It’s taken its toll on me as an adult and while the concept may have been initially instilled in me by my father, I now take full responsibility for allowing it to continue to have a (detrimental) hold on me.

My step-dad, on the other hand, is very easy going by nature. He is soft-spoken and puts a lot of thought into everything he says and does. I guess I could categorize him as being careful and deliberate. He is very gentle, accepting, caring and giving. No matter my flaws or flaws in my work, everything is “perfect.” He has been an incredibly positive influence in my life.

SBQ – June 2010 – Part 1

  • Posted on September 29, 2010 at 1:41 pm

You could say I’m a little behind in answering the Stitching Blogger’s Question of the month. I have answered one since they started back up in May. Oops.

This one is a two-part question, so I broke it up into two posts.

Tell us about something that you have stitched or plan to stitch for any father in your life. Maybe it’s for your father, your father-in-law, your children’s father, your grandfather, your godfather, or someone who was or still is an important father-figure in your life. Why did you choose this particular piece of stitching? Tell us the story behind it.

I’m going to drag out my answer to this question and show all of the pieces I’ve stitched for my fathers. That should fatten up this post nicely with lots of photos. 😉

First up is from 2004. My paternal grandfather passed in April of 2004 and I had recently renewed my relationship with my father, so I stitched a memorial piece. The design is by Cindy Morrill of Stitchworks, but I redesigned all of the stars.

That same year, I stitched a Dimensions kit for my step-father. He has been a father to me since he married my mother when I was 14 years old and in my heart he truly became my dad when I separated from my biological father in college. He has been my rock and my biggest fan for all of that time. He has also been a great inspiration to me, as he started his own business when we was in his 20s and continually makes huge strides. His entrepreneurial spirit is one to be truly admired and emulated.

Since re-establishing a relationship with my biological father, we now exchange Christmas ornaments every year. In 2005, I sent stitched ornaments.

This is a bad picture and the finishing turned out a little wonky, but I had the best of intentions. The design is Victorian Christmas Tree from (I believe) the 2004 JCS Christmas Ornaments issue. I don’t know the details because apparently I neglected to record them in my gallery.

This one is Santa’s Trimmings by Mosey and Me, as published in the 2004 JCS Christmas Ornaments issue. I really like this design and I think I knocked the finishing out of the park. 😀

I then had a dry spell until this year. I stitched a Pine Mountain pillow named My Dad for my step-father in May. It was intended to be a birthday gift, but I mistakenly stitched the pillow on the wrong count fabric (I didn’t want to use the aida included in the kit), so I had to stitch it again. It ended up being a belated birthday/early Father’s Day gift.

Finally, I stitch up the Maine design from the Hearts of America series by Thea Dueck of The Victoria Sampler this August for my father-in-law and his wife.

Stitching Blogger’s Question – May 2010

  • Posted on May 4, 2010 at 12:00 pm

I’m so glad that Lee has chosen to resurrect the Stitching Blogger’s Question. This way, I might at manage to post at least once a month.

Suppose we say that there are two types of stitchers.

There are those who enjoy the “process” of stitching. They stitch for stitching’s sake and if something gets finished, so much the better, but it’s not necessarily the end goal. Primarily, it’s the application of needle and thread to cloth that makes them happiest.

Then there are those who are “project” stitchers. They move steadily through their projects, certainly enjoying their stitching time, but finding their greatest joy in the completed stitching.

If you had to pick one to describe yourself, which type of stitcher would you be? I imagine that we could all say that we fall somewhere in between, but really think hard about this and try to pick just one. And once you’ve decided whether you’re a Process or Project stitcher, tell us if your recognize that approach in other parts of your life.

I enjoy the process and use it to relax me, but I’m in it for the finish. Granted, I tend to do nothing with those finishes (which reminds me, I need to get my behind to Strawberry Sampler this month with the two projects I picked to have framed), but the bulk of the satisfaction for me is just to say I finished it. The process is important to my sanity, but what continues to drive me is the end product. I firmly believe that this is why I stitch so many smalls. With my limited stitching time, I get the most bang for my buck with small projects. Otherwise, I would have to strangle someone because it takes me forever to finish a large project. I even dread doing medium sized projects nowadays.

Someday, though, I fully intend to stitch all of the Mirabilia’s that I have. I am just going to have to break the design into sections and consider the completion of each section as a monumental finish itself. Someday when I’m able to have that brick-and-mortar needlework shop that I’ve been dreaming of and might actually have a little downtime between customers. Yeah right, who am I kidding? At least I might have some time off to stitch after work? Maybe?

SBQ: Finding Balance

  • Posted on August 12, 2008 at 2:25 pm

This SBQ is:

How do you balance your stitching time with your other obligations such as work, household chores, etc.?

HAH! You mean there are other things in life besides stitching? I scoff at the idea. But seriously, it’s easy to balance with work because I have to wait until I come home from work to be able to stitch. As far as balancing stitching with housework goes, I’m just not very good at it. I tend to let housework go (and go and go…) until it gets on my nerves to the point where I absolutely must do something about it. Or one of us is out of clothes. Or we’re out of pans for cooking. Or whatever. That’s pretty much my philosophy, at this point in time. A household diva, I am not.

SBQ: Stitching Publications

  • Posted on August 12, 2008 at 2:20 pm

This SBQ is:

Do you currently subscribe to any stitching publications or have you in the past? (Either in print or online) If so, which ones?

I have never subscribed to a printed publication, nor am I now; however, I do subscribe to The Gift of Stitching, which is an online publication. I have subscribed to this one since its inception and while I have yet to stitch anything from it, I will continue to subscribe to it and enjoy the goodies stashed inside of its virtual pages, even if it’s purely ocular enjoyment. 🙂


  • Posted on June 6, 2008 at 4:45 pm

This SBQ was suggested by Jan and is:

Do you ever get to a point working on a project that you’ve had for so long, you start to wonder what possessed you to start it in the first place?

Looking at my WIP/UFO list, I think I can honestly answer “no” to this question. When I look through everything I have stitches in, even the ones I’ve abandoned for now, I still like the designs and, for most of them, the desire to finish them someday still exists. For some, though, the original deadline or event has passed and I no longer have the original reason for stitching the piece, so while I can find something to do with it or someone to give it to, the piece falls to the bottom of the list of things to work on. 😉

SBQ: Stitching Terminology

  • Posted on June 3, 2008 at 3:22 pm

This SBQ is:

For seasoned stitchers: Define a stitching term or acronym for new stitchers.
For newbies: What stitching term or acronym would you like defined?

I know that this one was already covered by now, but a term I didn’t know for a while was SABLE – Stash Acquired Beyond Life Expectancy. That is SO me! 😆

My Stick Family from