Tuesday, October 20, 2009


I'm quite sure my mom would be horrified that I am associating her name with this victorian lady on the Scarlet Letter "where the Hart Lives" sampler I am working on for their "big" anniversary in 2010. I promised to show a stitching WIP and here it is:
Their last name is hart so I just fell in love with the idea of stitching this for their anniversary in 2010. It is not hard - but just time consuming because there is so much fill in and I mean A LOT of fill in. The whole 4 sides of the border is completely filled and the whole lower half of the sampler is fill in. Here is a shot of the whole WIP as it stands now.

I know I'm the world's slowest stitcher so believe me - I am proud of this progress - it is on 32ct belfast in antique white with the called for Soie D'Alger - one strand over 2 threads. I am thinking of maybe sub-ing a Belle Soie color for the green grassy area in the lower half of the sampler just so it is not so boring to stitch huge amounts of that color. I am trying to leave the border fill for sampler guild but so often my mom is there too and I can't let her see it. Another guild friend is also doing this sampler and she has been kind enough to make sure she doesn't bring her's along when my mom is going to attend. She is doing the DMC version and has made a few color changes so it is interesting to compare how they look. I think she is ahead of me even though she made a big boo boo and had to pull out half of her victorian lady. She also has the reclining stag in place - that will be my next big motif to start. He is to the left of the lady - then when he's in I can start filling the green backround. I guess I am going to put their initials inside the heart - but I may put their first names if I can figure out a way that it doesn't look too hokey. Any suggestions for personalization from you experts? it will be a long time before I have to worry about that anyway.

I'm trying really hard to stay on track with this sampler and not get caught up starting new things from market. I won't resist too long though - I am interested in starting Jenny Bean and except for the fact that Paradise Lost is so huge - I am really interested in that one too, however I'm sure I'll be seeing frequent updates from our dear Siobhan in the very near future and there are some great photos of Paradise Lost on Nicoles blog - Some of these gals really can crank out the finishes. Other new releases that have really caught my attention are L Haworth - an Ackworth quaker by the Marking Samplar and Sarah Woodham by Shakespeares Peddler. What a gorgeous repro that is - I have not even allowed myself full perusal of these charts for fear of falling under their spell.

Speaking of spells - it's that time again - Can you believe it is almost Halloween??????? I am very excited to be attending a very intimate rug hooking retreat next weekend at my favorite queen of Halloween B&B - The Azalea House Inn in Palatka Fl - we have had so many fun times at Jill's - stitching classes, guild meetings, girls weekends, rug retreats, needlepoint retreats. It is the ultimate in retreat locations and Jill is a perfect host. She works at the Olde Green Cupboard and some of you quilters who attend these huge quilt shows like Houston, Pacaduh, Dallas, Valley Forge - etc etc - might have met her in the booth. She puts up 2 Halloween trees - has tons of stitched items on display and all kinds of memorabilia. Our teacher for the weekend is Dianne Kelly of the Woolen Cottage in Hiram OH - she is a wonderful teacher and I have taken her week long class 2 times at Off the Ocean rug camp and also she was my first "away" camp teacher many years ago at Castle in the Clouds on Lookout Mt in Tenn. - I am doing a wonderful Notforgotten Farm pattern called Peace and Plenty and I will be sure to show you a WIP and some photos from our fun weekend.

Here's one last WIP photo to show - I hear that I am inspiring the masses (ha ha just kiddin') to knit (that means YOU Deb - YGG) - but I know I have at least made a few people wish they could knit with my devilishly delicious yarn photos. Here is a photo of a great little shawl - a freebie pattern called Multnomah named for a county in Oregon. I am doing mine in Dream in Color Classy which is a worsted weight hand dyed yarn - I think the color was Chinatown Autumn.

This is a totally mindless knit and great for the last few minutes before I go to bed at night. I have two local friends who fell in love with it and have already gotten a copy of the pattern and have their been perusing their stash for suitable yarns. It can be done in any yarn from fingering weight to bulky.

Hope you are totally loving fall in your neck of the woods. I know I have been LOVING our cooler weather this week. We have been in the 40's at night and 60's during the day but our temps are creeping back up. At least maybe that stinky humidity is gone for this year. Thank you all for your comments - I look forward to hearing from you all.

Thursday, October 15, 2009


Well you would answer NO if you lived in northeast florida. We've had record high temps for over a week however today - the weather seems cooler - it's dreary and cloudy and some much needed rain is predicted.I could not wait for falling temperatures so I went ahead and put out a few things for Halloween that I wanted to share with you.
Here is a photo of my first rug - it is by no means perfect but I love to drag it out every Halloween and remember where I started with rug hooking 10 years ago. It was not my first attempt but was the first thing I finished.
Here is a another shot of how I have it displayed in my living room on a retro glass and chrome table (how 70's) along with a Longaberger basket filled with decorative gourds and minature pumpkins. The little scarecrow gourd ( wish I could remember the name of this awesome family owned company who puts out these gourds) has a light inside but I don't hook it up unless I have company.
I know I've already shown a photo of my wonderful Susannah Goose that DF Henrietta stitched for me as a housewarming gift. It is from the JCS Halloween issue last fall and is stitched on 40ct vintage pear linen with the called for NPS in the frame that was shown in the mag. It is another beautiful design by Kathy Barrick of CHS. I LOVE it and moved it to a more prominent spot for fall enjoyment. The Mirabilia Trick or Treat Fairy was stitched by my dad - I don't think I've shown you that before - it was from the Cross Stitch and Needlecraft mag from last fall and he stitched it on the called for linen with the called for threads. He does lots of Mirabilia pieces and when I asked him about stitching this one for me - he said "piece of cake" and cranked it out in about 5 weeks. Lois at Elegant Stitch did the finishing - I wanted something different besides framing and I did not think the shape of the design was condusive for a cushion or pillow so I suggested the cube - Lois thought it was awfully big for a cube but I think it turned out awesome and I gave her creative freedom with the colors and I think she did an great job with it and I love it every time I look at it. Of course the little box is a Liberty Hill piece - I have SO many - I'm not quite sure which one it is - I was hoping the newest piece would be out by this time so it could be displayed in this spot but I don't think anyone has them yet and I have it pre-ordered but nothing yet.

I am busy stitching - I finished the BBD Souvenir de France - I sent it for finishing and will hopefully show a photo next post. I will (I WILL) also have a WIP photo to show you of the Scarlet Sampler I have been working on. Wanted to get this big motif finished before I take a photo.

I have been knitting a lot but jumping from this to that - whatever catches my fancy - I started an awesome new shawl and I should be able to show a WIP of that one too in my next post. It is simple but very pretty. I am participating in a shawl challenge on the Loopy Ewe - I would encourage any of you who don't have a LYS and don't already know about Sheri and her gang at the Loopy Ewe to check it out - What a fun shop with great customer service and she keeps you so connected with her blog. You can also take a look from the blogs I read section on the sidebar. She suggested this Multnomah shawl in one of her posts and I LOVE it - I am doing a worsted weight hand dyed yarn so mine will be a little bigger than the one pictured. However I also ordered some fabulous fingering weight yarn from Loopy to do another shawl. Shawls are great for Florida - we can actually use them - you put them on in the morning when you leave the house and it's chilly and by 3pm when it is 85 again - you can throw them off and carry them home.

Thanks for all your kind posts and emails about Jody - he is not a fictional character but a real person. He still looks so young even with the touches of gray and I think I am doing all the aging. Hard to believe we've been together almost 30 years. Several of my friends were so inspired by the Savannah post we are already planning another trip in November. WHEEEEE - Thanks again for your comments and for reading my ramblings - I do so enjoy hearing from each of you and reading your blogs keeps us all connected. Hope fall has come to your area and you are able to get out this weekend and enjoy a fall festival or a walk thru the park.

Tuesday, October 06, 2009


Wanted to tell ya'll about the whirlwind trip to Savannah I had over the weekend. I had an opportunity to go to Savannah on business on Friday. Decided to take Jody with me so I could drive back a new car for my mom. They had what she wanted at my company's sister store up there. Jody needed a chiropractic adjustment so we got up early and went to Waycross to see our friend Dr Ronnie - after the adjustment - we headed northeast for Savannah traveling secondary roads thru little Georgia towns - I had done mapquest to get us there sucessfully. I knew we were going thru a little town called Jesup - oddly enough there was a top notch cafe in the little downtown area and we stopped there and enjoyed a delicious lunch at Stories. I took a photo but it just looked like a parking lot shot - bad angle.

Finally got to Savannah around 2pm and I dropped Jody off at the Marriott and went to work. Jody had never been to Savannah so I wanted him to see the historic district - I decided he would enjoy dinner at the Olde Pink House which is a historic home on one of the squares downtown. I wish I could have taken a photo but my IPhone camera would not get enough light on the subject. Anyway we ate in what was the ballroom of this grand house and had an excellent meal. I am a southern girl born and bred and I have been eating collard greens all my life but honestly - these were the BEST collard greens I have ever had in my life I do believe. I ordered pork tenderloin and it was served with these outstanding collards and a delicious sweet potato with a burbon molasses glaze. Jody had a house specialty - grouper stuffed with crab meat. We rode by Lady and Sons and waved to Paula Deen and her sons - no way to get into that place for a meal without going thru a lot of trouble. I have been there once and while it is good southern cooking - I just can't stand the hassle of trying to get on her book for dinner. So the Pink House was perfect for us - more elegant than Lady & Sons and we love historic homes complete with ghosts.
Saturday morning I got up earlier than I wanted to and headed off to a class at a new yarn shop called Unwind. I had been itching to go there ever since I found out they opened last month. Here is a photo of what I have done so far on the fingerless mitt class using Kollage 1/2 N 1/2 - a fingering weight yarn which is 1/2 wool and 1/2 milk - yep - milk - Not sure I would choose this yarn again but I do like to try new things.

I wish I had taken some photos of the new shop - it was stunning - - beautifully stocked with marvelous brands most of which I was familiar with. Here is my purchase - some beautiful Debbie Bliss Donegal Tweed Aran in a dark plum color - I am planning to do a simple jacket out of the new DB fall/winter magazine - I also bought a wonderful new DB book The Big Easy that uses mostly the Donegal Tweed Aran and Chunky weight yarns. I have some chunky weight from last season that needs to be "repurposed" (my new favorite word for recycling stagnant projects) to something more do-able than what I purchased it for. So I barely escaped Unwind alive - I could have dropped a thousand bucks so easily in that place.

So I had to rush back to the Marriott to pick up Jody and check out. I wanted him to see the historic district in the day light so we headed back down town to visit Firefly Cafe. Here are a couple of views taken from the sidewalk seats we snagged at Firefly.
I should have gotten up and taken a photo of the square just down this street but I was too busy eating to be bothered. LOL - It was a lovely day for lunch on the historic streets of Savannah, nice breeze and not too hot. I think Jody enjoyed seeing it but he is not as into historic things as I am so he was pretty much ready to leave the crowded historic area after lunch.I had a hidden agenda for choosing Firefly - I knew it was right around the corner from another favorite yarn shop in Savannah - Wild Fibre - I LOVE this shop - I have been a customer for a number of years now. It is rather ecclectic and at times it's hard to find anything to buy (if you believe that you don't know me very well LOL) however this time Jennifer was well stocked with all the newest fall magazines and some lovely new yarn from Rowan that I just had to have. Pure Wool DK is used in the new fall/winter Rowan mag for a darling moss stitch jacket which is trimmed in kid silk haze - now you friends who don't know knitting won't be too excited about this but Rowan is not all that easy to come by in the deep south. There are more and more shops in Ga carrying Rowan but it's slim pickings in Florida. I have already cast on this jacket and here is my progress in just a few hours. My color is more aqua than what is pictured in the magazine. The KSH is a dreamy accompaniment and I think blends well with the aqua wool.

I'm sure you won't believe me but I have been stitching. I have the BBD freebie Souvenir de France almost finished. I am going to be giving that to a good friends daughter who had a fabulous honeymoon in France earlier this summer. I'll show the completed project before it gets shipped off. I also put in a lot of time on Where the Hart Lives by Scarlet Letter - I will show a WIP photo of that when I finish the motif I am currently working on - hopefully next post. So - I am living up to my mantra these last few posts - I AM living and loving the wool life !