Thursday, August 31, 2017

Dutch Treat Designs - They Followed the Star WIP

Update - no longer working on this design.  Passed it on.  

My thoughts and prayers have been with those in the gulf region dealing with the recent storms and flooding.

I didn't get my goal met for having this done by the end of the month.  I committed to doing two ornament exchanges and have started those. One is for autumn and the other one is for Christmas.  I have the charts, thread and fabric for both.  I had cut out the fabric and serged the edges but realized I had calculated wrong and the pieces were too small.  They would have worked for the stitching area alone but they were just a wee bit short for making into an ornament.  So, I recut fabric for the autumn one and am getting more fabric for the Christmas one.  The autumn ornament is in the hoop and I've been working on it a little each night. Once I get the fabric for the Christmas one, will start that one.  Rotating between the two of them while working on the Dutch Treat Designs one.  Will share each one after the person has received theirs.

I grew tired of holding my Q-snap frame in my hands while stitching.  The bulk of the fabric was making it too cumbersome and heavy..  I extended the Q-snap frame, put it all in my buddy frame and sit here at my kitchen table and stitch using two hands.  Is going faster.  Perhaps by the end of September I'll have this one done.  Definitely would like to have it done by Christmas.

Was so happy I had only the second shepherd to finish so I could start on the last tree and realized I have to stitch an angel under the star!! Oops.


They Followed the Star Tabletopper
Dutch Treat Designs
18ct Ivory Anne Cloth, DMC #5 Pearl Cotton Threads
Stitching 1 over 2
Started 10/21/16
Progress as of 08/31/17
Number of Days Spent Stitching on This Piece So Far - 20

What the topper looked like before starting the shepherd's block.  Will be two blocks left after the current one is finished.. Another tree and the wisemen.  Will be offering chart up for a giveaway when I'm done with it.  Chart is in booklet form, black and white charts.  


For a smile...

Leah just being her inquisitive self.  Brought a smile and a giggle.  


Thursday, August 17, 2017

Dutch Treat Designs - They Followed the Star - WIP

Making progress.

Have a star, all the green and the brown done on the border for the shepherd's block.  Also have some black done on one of the sheep.


They Followed the Star Tabletopper
Dutch Treat Designs
18ct Ivory Anne Cloth, DMC #5 Pearl Cotton Threads
Stitching 1 over 2
Started 10/21/16
Progress as of 08/14/17
Number of Days Spent Stitching on This Piece So Far - 18

What topper looks like so far.  Only three blocks left, well more like 2-1/2 as I'm currently working on one of the three.  Will be offering chart up for a giveaway when I'm done with it.  Chart is in booklet form, black and white charts.  


Enjoying the change of seasons.  Fall is here.  Cooler temps, gentle rains, soon to be color changes in the foliage and harvest time in the fields.  One of my favorite times of the year.

Sunday, August 13, 2017

Dutch Treat Designs - They Followed the Star - WIP

Third corner is finished.

Sat out on the porch yesterday with Leah and finished the third palm tree.  Only three squares left.


They Followed the Star Tabletopper
Dutch Treat Designs
18ct Ivory Anne Cloth, DMC #5 Pearl Cotton Threads
Stitching 1 over 2
Started 10/21/16
Progress as of 08/12/17
Number of Days Spent Stitching on This Piece So Far - 16

Friday, August 11, 2017

Dutch Treat Designs - They Followed the Star WIP

Plans were changed regarding doing a large machine sewing project.

The weather has been nice as in cooler temperatures and sunny skies, gentle breezes.  I've been taking Leah outside with her halter and leash.  Been stitching on the front porch.

Picked up the Dutch Treat Designs - They Followed the Star and am working on the third corner, third palm tree.  Have past the half way point.  Only have this palm tree, shepherds, the last palm tree in the fourth corner and wisemen to do.  Would really like to have this done by the end of August.  Plan to host a giveaway for the chart once I'm done with it.


They Followed the Star Tabletopper
Dutch Treat Designs
18ct Ivory Anne Cloth, DMC #5 Pearl Cotton Threads
Stitching 1 over 2
Started 10/21/16
Progress as of 08/10/17
Number of Days Spent Stitching on This Piece So Far - 15


Sewed some chemo hats.


Chemo Caps
Fleece Fabric
Machine Sewn, Serged Where Able To
Completed July 2017
Gifted to Woman Undergoing Chemo Treatments

For a smile...

Leah enjoying the outdoors.  Thought she disappeared to around the corner.  Discovered she had nestled under the hosta plant.  She knows that when the front door is open, she might be able to go outside.  She jumps on the arm of the couch and waits.  If I am taking her outside, she sits very patiently while I put on her halter.   I open the door, holding the leash and out she goes.  If I am not taking her out, I say, "No, Leah" and she jumps down off the couch and moves away from the door.  I do wonder who is training who.


Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Using a Needle Trolley Thread Controller

I explained how to use a laying tool in my Using a Laying Tool post.

In this post, I will explain how I use a needle trolley thread controller.

I'm left handed so I take my threaded needle in my left hand, needle trolley is on my third finger - works best for me. I make the first leg of the stitch.


I release the needle to the underside of my fabric, right hand takes and holds the needle.  I insert the trolley into the thread before the stitch is completed.  I rock the thread up...


then down at the same time pulling on my needle from the back of the fabric.  I want the threads to lay nice and even.


Once the threads are pulled from the back and the stitch looks good, is even and complete...


I remove the needle trolley from underneath the threads.


I repeat the process for the second leg of the stitch.


Completed stitch.

Using a Laying Tool

My laying tools.  I like using them and usually use them when I have both hands free to stitch as in having my hoop or Q-Snap in some type of frame.  I don't use them with every piece I stitch but when I do use them, I like what they do to my threads.


Example of my set up using a floor frame.  The stitching has been completed, framed and hangs on my living room wall.  The floor frame was gifted to another stitcher.


I like how the laying tool smooths out the threads and plumps up (for lack of better way to describe it) the threads when doing cross stitch.

Can take a while to work out a system of holding both the tool and your needle, but once you figure it out it becomes second nature.

I am left handed so I hold the tool in my left hand, with my right hand under the fabric.

Note to reader - didn't realize that the video isn't uploading with this post. Somehow it got deleted when I took my blog offline and deleted posts. If I can find I have a copy of the video in my backup files I will upload it.  If not, will have to wait until I have someone that can videotape me as I am using my laying tool.  With just me and Leah (her being a kitty won't work) having an extra set of hands is not possible right now.  I do apologize.


Did the following with my left hand holding the laying tool and my right hand working the camera.

Positioning the laying tool and holding the needle.


Taking the first leg of the x.  Needle goes through fabric and is retrieved by hand underneath the frame.



Better picture of how fingers work needle and other fingers hold laying tool.


Bottom hand has needle.  Top hand works the laying tool.



Shifting laying tool in hand...


to get ready to pull needle from underside of fabric.


 Needle is pulled from the underside and the process starts all over again.


Another tool I use when cross stitching is a Needle Trolley Thread Controller.

Railroading

I learned this technique around 2012 and use it when I cross stitch.  I think that it makes my stitches look so much nicer and neater.  I also run my threads through Thread Heaven before I thread my needle.  Since using Thread Heaven, I've found that I have less kinking or tangles and fewer knots with my threads.  Nice product.

I am left handed and do my cross stitching with the first leg of the stitch going //// and then complete the stitch by going \\\\.

With railroading I am using the point of my needle to separate the threads so that they lay parallel with each other, not twisting, not bunched up.  Smooth, even.

With the first leg, I begin the stitch going from the bottom left corner and as I am about to put the needle down in the upper right corner, I open up the threads and separate.  I keep the threads apart as I pull my needle down through the hole of the fabric.


I repeat the process with the second leg of the stitch.  Sometimes the thread can still be twisted or just don't lay smooth for whatever reason.  When that happens, I use my needle and lift the threads and work my needle like a laying tool, smoothing them out.  Sometimes I have to redo the stitch. Sometimes I have to pull the needle off of the threads and work with my thread, untwisting it.  Then I rethread the needle and start again.


This shows the completed stitch.  I do railroad both legs of the stitch. Doing just the second or top stitch is okay, but I find if I only do the top, and not the bottom, I can tell the difference.


Finished design...

Pattern of the Month Series 04/2013 - 10/2013
Stoney Creek
28ct Lambswool Jobelan with DMC and WDW threads
and embellishments
Stitched 2 over 2
Started 05/28/13
Completed 09/26/15
Number of Days Spent Stitching This - 53
2016 - Mounted, Laced and Framed By - LNS - Osage, Iowa
Hangs in my Living Room