More Men Doing Needlework in Public

I saw this ad from the Prostate Cancer Foundation on TV the other night and cracked up.

Rosey Grier still does needlework, but this time it's knitting and as a public service. Now, if this really echoed women's stitching groups I'm familiar with, well, let's just say it would have been a bit livelier.

And they said it couldn't be done. I finally managed to get caught up on the ANG Stitch of the Month. Phew! The May stitch only took me about an hour to an hour and a half to complete last night, just as a couple of friends assured me it would. I was skeptical, though, primarily because the April stitch did not go very smoothly. What a bear that was! Instead of the hour and a half that these same friends told me it would take to finish, it took me at least five or six hours, including the time to rip out that session of stitching with the wrong color. Gah! I think I belong to the slow stitching movement. You know, like the slow food thing?

Now I should really get back to my bargello correspondence course, which I am definitely not completing on time. I believe the deadline is sometime in June. Yikes! I think I'll just be happy to finish it sometime this year.



Sunday Stars

Sunday was Stars day. The group gathered at my house to tackle Clark Gable. Hahahaha. Before our meeting, there was much talk via e-mail about his reported halitosis problem, which I believe was caused by dentures and more than likely also poor dental hygiene. He was still dashing nonetheless, thanks to the lack of smell-o-vision.

When we started on Stars, everyone's progress was all over the place, but this week we seem to have evened out a bit. One stitcher is excused for being a bit behind because she's been juggling a few balls in addition to trying to stitch on very rare occasions: college, family (husband and two children), and a Web business. In all honesty, she hasn't had much of a chance to stitch at all. All are agreed, however, that we love the bargello bits in Clark's square. Some of us do not like working with the crewel wool, especially me; others like it. It's not a thread I'd choose given other options. It gets fuzzy and seems much duller than the other threads we're using on this piece. Then again, I'm a silk lover.

Herewith our progress toward the end of the session on Sunday:

Taryn finally got started this week. Yay! She's doing hers in the Peacock colorway, as am I.

Donna's Cherry Blossom colorway is working up just beautifully.

Sharon is working from the top down, in Tony's original colorway, which looks so much nicer in person than in the cover picture.

Julie is also working in the original colorway.

JoAnn, ever the individual, is working from the bottom up in the Jelly Bean colorway. It's really quite striking.

This is mine. Last night at the stitching group I managed to finish my bargello section. I really do like the way it looks. Please excuse the upside-down photo. When I rotated it to right-side-up, it looked a bit bizarre.

And now, I have to get to work.




Is that a word? I think it must be, or it should be. It seems to be my mood lately when it comes to stitching.

I started a new project the other night, well really early morning. After tossing and turning for hours, I finally decided to just get up at 4:30 am, go downstairs, and see what I could do to make myself sleepy. Naturally, I turned to stitching. Huh? I decided it was the perfect time to pull out a painted canvas I'd gotten from a friend's destashing a little while ago. Donna, needleworker not in paradise, had plucked it and its twin from the stack, keeping one for her and saving the other for me. She immediately pulled colors and started on hers. I mulled it over. And over. And over. I finally decided to go for the subtle approach, a tone on tone in deep purples, using Petite Very Velvet for the words and Silk and Ivory for the background. Then I set it aside for a while.

So the other night/morning, I started stitching it to see whether the contrast would be sufficient and to test a background stitch, since the whole of the canvas consists of two words. Here's what I came up with.

Can you see the letters against the background? I can, but I really want to. When I showed it to the stitching group last night, the consensus seemed to be that it was a bit too subtle. The light would have to hit it just right. So I think I'll continue with it and outline the letters in a coppery metallic when it's all stitched. Or something like that. I'll decide when I get to that point. I'm not sure whether you can really tell what the background stitch is. It's a checkerboard pattern of 3 x 3 blocks of tent stitch and scotch stitch. I really like the texture it gives.

My other monochromatic WIP is the ANG Stitch O' the Month, or SOTM. I'm still working on April. Yes, I know it's supposed to be a light stitching month, as is May, which I have downloaded and believe will be easy to do. For some reason, though, I'm taking forever with April's stitch. Part of the problem stems from my using the wrong thread for one session of stitching, then spending the next session of stitching ripping it out. Gah! This is what happens when you use a monochromatic color scheme that has two of the major families very close in gray value. Sigh. So here's my progress on April's stitch.

Sunday, I'll get to stitch some more on Stars. Mercifully, it's not a monochromatic colorway.



We Have Liftoff!

Today marked a new milestone in my business life. My partner and I finally launched the Scarlet Thread Web store. Of course, it's a work in progress, as most any store is. We'll be adding products, photos of threads (gah! the photography!), photos of finished work in the Gallery, and I don't know what all for the next several months. It's been a lot of work, but I'm pretty happy with the results. And I've learned perhaps more about html coding than I ever really wanted to know. Hahahahaha. Soon I'll be able to approach it with my usual aplomb. I mean, how hard can it be? And this time, I know the answer to that.