Saturday, March 21, 2015

Lorrie's Latest!


My first Spring bloom has finally opened during the past week and I couldn't be happier.  If I can't have it cold and snowing, it is time to move on to hot with tons of flowers in bloom.  Yep, I'm a girl who likes her weather in extremes.  I'm just not a fan of Fall and Spring like so many others.



Ending this week on a relaxing note.  Hubby, son and I enjoyed beverages at our favorite coffee shop after early morning haircuts.  Tonight is date night for hubby and I and we will be seeing the movie Gunmen (Sean Penn) just out in theaters.  The past few movies we have seen have been a bit disappointing so am hoping this one will fair better as we have heard no reviews.  Sometimes when you see movies after everyone says how great they are you build them up in your mind that they will be phenomenal and then are usually disappointed.


Last Week


This Week

This week has been less filled with appointments so my days have consisted mostly of exercising at the Y, housework and running errands with the exception of lunch with my BFF, Rene'.  Happy to report that this left some time for stitching.  You can see July by Prairie Schooler is coming along nicely.  I'm looking forward to a bit more stitching time tomorrow so am expecting to finish the house this weekend.  Yea!  I'm getting sick of stitching with the house color so am looking forward to finishing this part of the design.  It is the last time I have to use the color in the design except for about 4 more stitches.  Yippee!

Well, time to go take a quick spin in the Camaro before getting ready for date night.

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Saturday Snippets

I know it has been awhile since my last post - a month to be exact.  At times life gets busy and I feel I have nothing worth sharing.  Let's see if I can't bring you current with my life's happenings.

SPRING IS COMING

I think we are heading into the warmer months here in Iowa.  We have had a week of temperatures in the mid 60's to mid 70's this past week and Spring bulbs are really peeking up through the ground.  It will be so exciting to see Spring colors very soon.  Hubby has been doing some Spring clean up in the yard and putting out some of the patio/porch furniture.  We are currently on the hunt for new cushions for the gliders we have for the front porch.  

DAD'S CANCER BATTLE

My dad's cancer battle is just that a battle for him.  He has finished the first round of radiation and "starter" chemo had his 4 week break and started the targeted chemo 3 weeks ago.  This chemo has sure taken a lot out of him.  It is tough to watch this man who is a fighter and always on the go to having his legs knocked out from underneath him.  The chemo makes him so very weak and he is frustrated as he has the will and desire to go and do but just doesn't have the strength.  Prayers and pep talks are a constant right now.

STITCHING


I did finally finish Poinsettia House by Little House Needleworks.  I stitched it on a piece of 28 count OOPS overdyed fabric.  You will notice that I did change the design just a bit.  I took out the words and moved the little banner with the birds to the location where the words were.  I took out about 10 stitches on the side borders (5 above, 5 below the "V" in the middle) to accommodate the change in design.  I'm pleased with how it turned out and am now just looking for inspiration to do some finish work with it.  


I have again picked up July by Prairie Schooler and am making great progress on it.  This is a photo I took after picking it up again but I have made much more progress that the photo shows.  I will take another photo for my next posting.  I'm stitching on a piece of 32 count fabric using HDF Premium Silk.


I just picked up my framed Advent SAL 2014 piece by iStitch from Stitch n Frame just yesterday.  I am so very pleased with how it looks.  The red frame is a perfect color match for the red thread.  I still say it was the right choice to add the red border outside of the white border.


Remember this Advent SAL piece I left with Vicki.  She was going to check her scrap moulding at home as she thought she had a moulding just perfect for it.  I stopped into the shop last week and she had two options but she was leaning toward one over the other.  As always, it was the one I preferred as well.  She knows my taste so well.  It will be a couple weeks before I get this one back as she only has enough moulding to make one frame and wants to make sure no mistakes are made.  It will be well worth the wait.

COOKING


I've slipped in some baking over the past 3 weeks.  My hubby and son have enjoyed a pan of magic bars and my loaded chocolate chip cookies.

My niece had a Pampered Chef party last night which I attended.  I had looked at the catalog online before going and had some idea what I wanted to purchase.  As always,  after seeing some of the new things in person I switched my selections.  It really was a fun evening!

READING

I've been doing a lot of reading lately which probably explains why there hasn't been a ton of stitching going on.  I got hooked on reading The Chronicles of St. Mary's (a series of time traveling historians) by Jodi Taylor.  I've been in the mood for some light entertaining reading and this series was just perfect.  To bad for me I went through all 5 in the series so quickly as I would enjoy reading another.

I read the most recent by Sarah Addison Allen called First Frost.  I really enjoy her books which have such a magical quality about them.

I am currently reading a book by Tasha Alexander called A Crimson Warning.  It is a mystery from her Lady Emily Series.  I believe it was tucked into a box from my dear friend, Allison.  I am certainly enjoying it as well and think I will be selecting a few more from this series of books.  

SPEAKING OF ALLISON

I'm looking forward to Allison coming for a week long visit in May for her birthday week.  She used to live here several years ago and know we will have fun revisiting old haunts and checking out new ones!

Allison also sent me an idea for a new placemat.  I'm hoping to find some time in the very near future to figure out the sizes I will want to cut my fabrics and get to work.  It has been awhile since I spent any time sewing and look forward to a project.  

HOPE YOUR DAY IS SUNNY AND WARM!





  

Saturday, February 14, 2015

Frosty Felicitations!

HAPPY VALENTINE'S DAY!


This little vintage valentine says it all about my hubby and I.  I think I turned Bill's eye originally because of the '78 Camaro I was driving - LOL!

STITCHING 


I continue to work on Poinsettia House by Little House Needleworks but am rapidly approaching a finish on this one.  I decided I did not want the wording on my piece so I removed the wording and moved the little banner with the birds over to that location.  I will begin stitching the border tonight with a small adjustment.  As the border is not very involved, I'm hoping for a finish this week.  

After this is finished I must get back to stitching on pieces to enter in the Iowa State Fair for 2015.  I've narrowed my next start down to a piece by Lilli Violette.  I'm in the process of pulling colors and picking fabric for it at this time.  I will be making a few alterations to it as I've a desire to add some beading.

FRAMING



I finally found time this week to go to Stitch n Frame to pick out framing for my 2013 and 2014 Advent SAL pieces by iStitch.  Red is usually a very difficult color to match with a red frame but the first frame I picked up was a perfect match.  I expected to spend an hour trying to come up with a frame for the 2014 piece but it was done in SECONDS!


 The 2013 piece is being a bit more difficult.  I decided against the bell pull as could only find one option of hardware in as small of a size as I would need.  I pulled 2 framing options off the wall.   This led to Vicki pulling a smaller profile piece from the back room which in turn led her to thinking she has a piece of moulding at home in a better red in the smaller profile.  As I trust her 100% with my framing, I have left it with her and she will proceed to making it look fabulous with whatever she thinks works best.  Needless to say we are headed in the red direction as the green leaves it feeling a bit lifeless.

ONE THING LEADS TO ANOTHER


As usual when I'm in Stitch n Frame, one thing leads to another.  1)  While looking for frames we find a small pre-made frame on the wall that is delightful.  2)  Must then find the perfect overdyed floss to compliment frame.  3)  Purchase of said items.  4)  Leads me to peruse hundreds every pattern I currently have in my possession to find the pattern that will fit perfectly in the opening of the frame.  5) Find perfect pattern that with a few alterations to the design will fit perfectly.  6)  Picking a fabric to use (count determined by the design stitch count).  I will be stitching the design on 45 count fabric.     Whoops - not an Iowa State Fair piece.

BITS AND PIECES


I was out shopping the other day for a new handbag (no luck there) but stumbled upon this "so me" bowl that is the perfect size for holding my sponges/drain stoppers for the kitchen sink.  


I spent Wednesday and Thursday cleaning house and changing several of the vignettes in my home.  This is my new one on my kitchen island.  Periodically I pull things from my storage in the basement and create new displays and put some things back in storage just to have something new at which to look.  Oh, how I love sitting in a freshly cleaned house with new pretties to enjoy!

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Beauty in Snow!

We had a foot of snow in 24 hours here in Iowa and after shoveling it all out of my drive - yes shoveling as it drifted so deep and was so wet it was too much for the snowblower - I grabbed my camera and walked to the park for a few photos. 










Here it is 2 days later and with the below zero temps there were still many beautiful photos to be taken.  I took my camera while running errands and stopped at another favorite park to snap a few more photos.








 





Saturday, January 31, 2015

A Few Finishes!

FINISHES


I am pleased to report that I did finish the 2013 Advent SAL by iStitch in the 24 days I allotted myself (I did not start until January 1, 2015).  The original intent was to stitch starting December 1, 2013 and finish December 24, 2013 (missed the boat there) so I decided to start on January 1, 2015 and complete on January 24, 2015.  This is an equally special day as it would have been my mom's 80th birthday.  I think she would have liked that I finished this project on her special day.

I stitched this on 36 count Natural Raw Linen using DMC white, CC Balsam Fir and CC Cupid.  I started this project using 1 thread over 2 but I did not like the coverage at all.  I took my start out and then stitched the entire piece with 2 threads over 2.  So much happier with the coverage I got.  

Thanks to Robin for her suggestion on finishing this into a bell pull.  I had thought about this myself and after finding a couple of tutorials I am going to do this.  I am on the hunt right now for bell pull hardware that 1) will look great with the design and 2) is the right size.  Smaller hardware is difficult to find but I love a challenge.

I'm hoping that Carol does another SAL in the future in which to participate as the two Advent SAL projects were so much fun.



This is the 2014 Advent SAL by iStitch.  I did go back and add a red border around the white border as my white border was fading into my fabric.  I really think it was what this piece needed on my fabric choice.  I've narrowed it down to two ideas for finishes.  One would simply be to finish into a pillow.  My other thought is to finish on top of a box to store my Christmas scissors, fobs, etc.  


This little finish is a freebie called Miss Mushroom by The Little Stitcher.  I stitched it on a scrap piece of Desert Stone Jobelan.  I'm pleased to report it puts me closer to my goal of stitching 2 ornaments this year as I am planning to finish this into an ornament for my tree.

WIP


I've now picked up a WIP that I started quite awhile ago (Poinsettia House by Little House Needleworks).  So long ago in fact I had to sit and think about it for a few minutes.  Why you wonder - well I had decided to change the design just a bit and I had to figure out exactly what I was thinking a couple of years ago when I crossed things off the design and showed arrows moving things around.  I think I have figured out what I had in mind.  If not, I have at least developed a plan for what I'm going to do now.


I also picked up my WIP called July by Prairie Schooler.  I started this fairly recently (after this past Iowa State Fair).  I'm looking forward to getting this one done as it will meet my goal of finishing something from my stash.

A QUICK ROADTRIP


I went on a quick road trip over to Omaha yesterday with my friend, Cathi H. to visit a framing and stitch shop I had never been to before.  Several of the ladies here in the local area go there quite often for stitching and stash enhancement but to date I had not managed a trip there.

It is a small but delightful little shop with such friendly and helpful staff.  I liked the way they had the shop set up.  Quite efficient use of space and easy to find what you are wanting.


My intent for this trip was to add some 45 count fabrics to my stash as I've been stitching so much on the smaller count fabrics.  I came home with 2 large pieces of 45 count fabric as well as a nice size piece of 52 count fabric.  I've never stitched on 52 count and am looking forward to the challenge.  I was delighted to also find a piece of 32 count blue with petite dot that I was wanting.  

I also picked up 4 small designs I had on my wish list plus a freebie they had on a display.  I'm looking forward to working on these while working on bigger projects.  I get bored sometimes working on the same thing so they are nice take a 2 day break projects.

IT ARRIVED!


Just picked up my asymmetrical pink coat this morning and am excited we are having a cold spell and snowstorm this weekend so I will have a chance to wear it before Spring arrives.  I was getting worried as......


yep, my Spring flowers have popped up through the ground in January.




Saturday, January 24, 2015

Fashionable? Me?

I can't believe I'm actually going to do a post on fashion.  

Fashionable is not a word that I would use to describe myself.  It occurred to me over the past couple of months at some point over the past few years my "style" of clothing has become anything but fashionable.  I don't tend to wear the latest trends but tend to hang out in the more casual look of jeans and sweaters in the winter and capris and sleeveless tops/t-shirts in the summer.  

My working out and eating "cleaner" has resulted in the loss of inches which in terms of clothing is an entire size.  As I've been replacing my clothes in a smaller size, I have been purchasing things that are -  do I dare say it - a bit more stylish and fashion forward.  

My recent purchases have been for winter coats.  I will admit my first purchase was a practical Columbia coat in black. 


See I told you it was practical.  However, it is more form fitting that it appears on the hanger and not a "puffy" coat which is my norm.  It does have a hood and is great for those cold snowy winter days when shoveling snow.

Next I went in search of a wool coat to replace my maxi length coat.  I like a longer wool coat that is a bit dressier for going out to lunch, date night, etc.  When I went to actually buy, I had my eye on a lavender toggle coat.  You can see I did not come home with that coat.


I ended up with this wool coat (almost feels like felted wool).  I loved that the closure on the coat was off center and it has one showing button at the top and has hidden snaps the rest of the way down behind the flap.  The coat is more form fitting at the top and flairs out a bit at the bottom.  The hanger really doesn't show off the true cut of the coat.  I added one of my vintage brooches to the lapel.

I had also tried on another off center zipper closure coat at the same time as this one.  It was also in black and figured another black coat is not what I needed.  


I was looking at the online selections for this store and low and behold they had the zipper closure coat in a beautiful raspberry color.  It has been ordered and should arrive mid week.  


I wonder if my recent purse purchase will be complimentary to it.  It is hard to tell until you have the items together.


Now I am considering purchasing a pair of fashionable boots (gasp).  What next?