Saturday, July 30, 2011

Familiar Faces

Although in the back of my mind I knew that these two familiar faces were on their way home to me, I was happily surprised to find them on my doorstep on Monday afternoon. A perfect birthday present for me!

Sarcoph A. Gus and Dev L. Mann have been visiting out in San Francisco with Marlene. These are two very handsome gentlemen all finished in a very masculine steely gray silk with black and silver cording and gray feet. I'm sorry I didn't get another view of their finishing that shows off the fabric but it is a perfect match to the background color of both characters. So now six of the eight characters are ready for Halloween. I'll try to remember to send Dr. Acula and W. Herr Wolff to Marlene this week so that I can have all of them together for my Halloween mantle decor this year. I hope everyone in this group fits on the mantlepiece! It will be crowded!

I finished my Kelly Clark April Diamond Heritage Ornament this week. I am addicted to these ornaments!

 Tonight I plan on starting the July Ruby in this series. These ornaments are like potato chips - you can't stitch just one! And, they stitch up so quickly! I didn't work on it every evening and I still finished it in less than a week. I may have to see if I can order some more of these or maybe just try to wait until the Creepy Characters from Needle Deeva become available. I know they will be a fun, quick stitch.

While I finished one project this week, of course I had to start another. I enrolled in Laura J. Perin's cyber class for Garden Gate and that started on Monday. Laura sent us a complete kit last week with her typically excellent stitch guide. This week we received the first of her emailed instructions. She has written her lesson in a very conversational style which makes you feel like she is there in the room with you guiding you along as you stitch.

I didn't have the opportunity to begin this project until last night. It's been a very long time since I worked on Congress Cloth. It's nice to work on this soft green color. The white in the picket fence really pops off the green background. For my Garden Gate, I opted for yellow roses instead of the pink roses featured in the cover photograph.

You might be wondering what happened to my Keep Calm and Carry On and Peony Collage projects. Progress continues on Keep Calm although two weeks ago I found myself completely stressed out over this canvas because of a dye lot change in the lavender Splendor I am using for the background. I was about 1/3 of the way through the background when I used up the original Splendor I purchased for this project. I had already ordered extra Splendor so it was all ready to go. I compared the new threads to the old on the cards and everything looked fine. However when I began to stitch with the new threads, there was a slight change in the lavender color. My original lavender had a very slight grayish tint and the new lavender has a slight pinkish tint to it.  Under the Ott light, it is (to me) a glaring difference. In regular room light and without direct light on it, you don't notice the difference in color. I know that I will always see the exact spot where I began the new thread. But I hope that once I add the accent threads and stitch the wording that the color change will not be as noticeable to me.

As for Peony Collage, it had an unfortunate encounter with a cup of coffee last weekend. Fortunately, the canvas is ecru to begin with which hides the coffee stains fairly well and the threads are, for the most part, variegated in color which also hide any spots of coffee. I'll go back to this project at some point knowing that once the background is added that it will disguise any lingering coffee spots. One corner is a little buckled from where I blotted it with water but I think if I can dampen it again and put it on the Evertites that I can straighten it out.

I'll leave you this week with a peek at a beautiful little plant I bought last week.

Have you ever seen this before? I hadn't. It is an ornamental Oregano! It doesn't look like any oregano plant I have ever seen but smells just the way you would expect oregano to smell. It is the softest green with shades of soft pink and lavender. You have to look very closely but when you do you can find very tiny pink flowers. I found this at The Fresh Market. I think it's so pretty!

Hope you have a great weekend and week ahead!


  1. Hi Melinda- Found your blog looking for information for my Needlework Network page - a project for my social media class. I'm hoping it will be a great way for my stitching friends to share and keep in contact.

    I'm interested in your "keep calm and carry on"' project. Is it in one of your blogs? ( I haven't looked yet) Our office has used this theme for the last few years with great success. I'd love to see it in needlepoint!

    Thanks and check out the new Needlepoint Network page!

  2. Hi, Lynn - Thanks for stopping by the blog. I'll be sure to check out your new page on Facebook. I always enjoy seeing what other stitchers are working on. Look back through my blog posts in April for more information on Keep Calm and Carry On. That was the beginning of my "all things British" month.

  3. Hi Melinda,
    The finishing on the mummy and devil is just beautiful. Marlene has done a beautiful job on all your pieces. Love your April ornament. It really came out great.