Wednesday, August 31, 2016

New Punch Needle Pattern!

I finally finished my piece and the pattern is ready. I made a few changes and finished it off with a white cording. The finished piece is 6 1/2 x 4 1/2. I think this would make a great gift idea for an ocean lover or a church lover. I may do it in an art quilt with a saying, love redoing designs in different ways.

I had Bill check out my DIL's Facebook page, I still am not on her list, so I have not seen any photos of Nick in months. There were a few and here is one with Nick and the baby, along with his cousins. A few more weeks and they should be coming home, can't wait to see them.

I hope everyone has a wonderful holiday weekend. Bill told me he can take off a couple of extra days, now that the job is finished. But, all of the camps are full and I cannot imagine how crazy they would be on the last weekend of summer. It is also cooling down, so I told him not to take off time now and wait till next week, so hopefully we can get out and have some fun, after the holiday crowds have gone home.

Friday, August 26, 2016

Still working on it!

I started my new punch needle and this one is much better with the detail and rocks. I also made it a bit smaller. This is the kind of piece that I think would look wonderful in Valdani threads, since they have a nice variety of shades.

Bill has to work again so I will be working on finishing this piece and getting the pattern ready. I also have ones I have done and need to be finished and made into patterns, one is for fall, so that will be next.

It is so hard to get true colors and this is a piece that looks better in person. The seagulls look large, but that is how punch looks before it is all filled in.

Here are the two together, you can see the difference in size. I still have to do the upper sky and border. I hope everyone has a nice weekend.

The photos are more wonky since they are laying on a curved couch.

Monday, August 22, 2016

Oldies but Goodies!

Nothing new this weekend, Bill had to work and I just crashed, so I rested most of the time and redid my drawing to get the rocks right and straighten out the buildings.

I also wanted to color in the design to see how it looked but I couldn't find my colored pencils, they seem to have disappeared. So, I used my watercolor pencils which are limited but it gave me a general idea of how the lighter green and rocks looked against the sea, much better contrast.

I over painted on the right and top, was just fooling around with colors and contrast but I do like how the light green pops and then the rocks will be more defined. Now to start the new punch, though I may change something else before then, we never know;)

One of the reasons that my pencils are limited in colors is because I use them for frakturs. I like using the pencils to start and then I use the better water colors for definition and shading. I thought I would show you some of my old frakturs, something I used to love doing but not so sure I can keep a steady hand now.

I like to find old designs and redo them into something new, this was a fun one to do. I used to write sayings in fraktur style, now I forget what it meant;)

This one was done for a friend, for her anniversary. I always enjoyed making custom pieces for special dates.

This one was based on an old fraktur with a few of my own touches. I usually sold them on eBay or gave as gifts.

And I also enjoyed painting boxes as gifts. This one was made for a friend who had collies. I think it says friendship. With the script I used, not sure what letter that is, my brain is mush. I hope you enjoyed seeing my pieces, another creative side of me.

Friday, August 19, 2016

Friday not-Finish!

I have been working all week on my new piece and as I worked it, colors were not working with each other. Some were too bold, some are too close in hue, so they got lost. So, I started changing colors and changing colors, over and over and now the backing is getting to the point where they threads are not holding properly, so I think I am going to have to start over.

I made it larger and used 6 strands, so I may reduce it and use a mix of 6 and 3 strand, as well as valdani where I can. I had an idea in my head and it just isn't working the way I wanted. The original sea was a mix of blues and greens, a nice look but the colors around it got lost, so it is a choice of changing the sea to a lighter color or making items like the fence a lighter color to go against the darker sea. The cliff is a mess now, I was trying to outline with a black and lost track of where the rocks had crevices, so it is a mess now.

This is how it looks now, I might save this and use some art pens to add some detail and fix things, then I can give it to someone who doesn't care if it is perfect, lol. I also plan on making it into a nautical pillow with a saying and a matching stitchery, wall hanging, so it will be another week to work it all up and get the pattern ready.

Another thing is the position, I think I like the back better, going the other way, just seems to work better but I may change a few things, so I better get to work. Bill has to work the weekend, so I can work on the pieces, though I rather be at the beach;)

The design is called Sailor's Sanctuary and will include a saying.

I decided to give up this afternoon, it was making me nuts, the new changes looked horrible with the light sea, it does have to all come out and I don't know if the backing can take it. So, what to do instead, organize my floss. It is a mess, I have to use floss with numbers for the color charts which usually means new floss and then I make more mess with lose floss, so time to organize it and keep it organized so I can use what I have.

I used card stock and cut strips with my paper cutter. I wrote the numbers on ones I had and the others can go into a hit or miss project. I cut a little slit on the side and top so I could keep the threads from coming lose. For now it is in a box, then I can put it in a more organized box by colors. Easy way to store the thread and a lot cheaper than buying floss cards.

And for fun, here is Izzy, Bald but Beautiful, haha. She is such a conceited cat. The good thing is, she has not puked since she got the cut, so it is well worth it. I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend. I will take it easy and work on the stitchery and give my brain a break as I work out the details to better my design, maybe it is time to use my watercolors to do designs first, so I can make better color choices.

Monday, August 15, 2016

Weekend Fun and Sneak Peak!

This weekend Bill had to work on day but we were able to get out Sunday and enjoy some time at the beach. We went later in the day since it is usually too crowded on Sundays and it worked since they had people leaving as we came in and spots were opening up.

This beach is called Charlestown Breachway. The area is popular with fishermen and has a state camping area which is more like a giant parking lot, filled with trailers. It might be nice off season but being on top of each other, is a bit much for me. They reserve one section for parking and we were able to get one right at the entrance to the dunes.

It was a bit crowded but near the breachway there were more open spaces, so that looked good to me. You can see where the people have set up and it continues with people packed together further down the beach.

To the right is the breachway, less people on this side.

And I realized why this section wasn't crowded, the waves are much higher and stronger. With the tide coming in, the waves were crashing down and it made it hard to get in and out.

And this is why they crash down, you can see the drop off. I finally got in when their was a lull in the big waves, I hit a nice large rolling set but it took a lot of back paddling with my hands to hold my ground and not getting pulled out.

I took a walk to the breakers, I love watching the force of the water as it comes in. It is not something I would paddle in. To the right is the area where we come in with the kayaks, there is a calm inlet that we can land at. The beach on the other side is East Beach, we swam there a few weeks ago.

It was fun to try a new beach, but I think this one was a bit rough for me and made it hard to relax and swim in the water. But it was fun too, maybe I will try it at low tide.

This week I started a new punch needle design. It is something I have had in my head and decided to draw out the design and now I am working on that. Hopefully it will be done friday, I am taking my time and making sure I like how it is coming out, one that I change if I don't like a choice, but I am also using dmc so my colors are limited to what I have in my mind. I like to do my designs with floss that anyone can get, so hopefully it will come out nicely.

Can you guess what I am working on? It has a few elements in it, here is a sneak peak at a part of it.

Friday, August 12, 2016

Needle Felted Art!

I have been working on my needle felted piece and I think I am done with the piece. I always see things I should have done differently and wish I had the right types of roving, so something to think about when I make a piece that I want roving that works best with wet felting. Some of the roving is thicker and great for molding animals and figures but not great for working into a wet felted piece.

Another thing I tried was a wool felt background. It is white and looks like batting but it is a thicker wool felt. It is great to work with, the felt goes in nicely and it is thick enough to hold the fibers without too much going through to the other side, but not a good choice for wet felting. You want longer, loose fibers so you can place them on your piece, then use the wet felting process to blend them and work the fibers together. I will have to try a small piece with my longer fibers and see how it comes out with wet felting. It is fun to experiment and try new things.

I used what colors I had, so not the best choices but I wanted it to be bright and fun. I used embroidery floss and pearl cottons to embellish, trying different stitches to see how it looked. Now I have to decide what to make with it. The piece is 9" square and I still need to trim it down, but if it is a little wonky I will leave it that way, I like the artsy look of uneven felt. Would love ideas, what would you do with it? I am thinking of a tote or use the piece as the front of a folder style case, for sewing or something that is 9" square.

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend. Bill has to work tomorrow and it is too hot to be outside, so I am going to try to reorganize and catch up in my sewing room. I also need to decided about simplifying my crafting, since I have too many things, that I can't do it all. I am tempted to sell off my rug hooking equipment and supplies. I have an original Townsend lap frame and cutter with two blades, as well as backing and hooks. I loved hooking so I could create my own designs, but now I prefer to do designs in punch needle.

This piece is a beautiful art quilt design by Laurel Burch but mine look like dodo birds, lol. I will do the piece in quilting too.

Monday, August 8, 2016

Weekend Wanderings!

First I would like to mention something a follower mentioned, about my previous post. On the word, It's, it should be Its, no apostrophe. I got the idea for the bell, then the saying since it had bell in it and looked it up to get the right saying, and I took one that had the apostrophe without thinking. I do that a lot and I know I write my posts without thinking and no editing, so I need to be more careful, since they do seem confusing, even to me.

With the lyme, I have days where I cannot remember what I did 5 minutes ago, forget words and mess things up, so you will have to bear with me on those days;) Other days I am back to normal, it is an up and down process but I am having better days, so that gives me hope.

One of the things that helps me feel better is getting out in the fresh air and exercising. Now that I can move again, I thought it was a good time to go to the beach. It is relaxing, lots of fresh air and swimming is one exercise where I can move freely without pain.

Bill had Friday off so we could go to the beach without the crowds. We decided to go to East Beach since we never get to go there on the weekends and there is limited parking. It is a strip of land that divides a salt water pond and the ocean. They also have two camping areas at the end, but no dogs allowed.

It was a beautiful day, the water was warm and very few people on the beach.

The tide was going out and that means more waves. It was fun body surfing in the waves, not so fun when I got slammed a few times when I wasn't looking, lol. The island in the distance is Block Island, that is where the ferries go.

Saturday we we went to East Matunuck Beach. This beach is harder to get to since the roads are narrow, but perfect for a Saturday. Not as many people as at the main beaches and great waves.

It is also a nice place for great views, the channel was to our left and we could watch the ferries that go to Block Island.

They also have large areas with salt water marshes behind the beach, and an area where the Piping Plovers nest. Great place to stroll along the beach and look for heart stones.

I was hesitant about going to the beaches on a Sunday, but we decided to go later in the afternoon and this time we went back to Roger Wheelers Beach. They have a larger parking area and separate sections so you can pick a spot away from the main crowds.

We parked at the end and walked up the dunes, figuring there would be less people.

The minute we got to the end, we ran into, wall to wall tents. This must be the party end, luckily they all set up at the main entrance, we walked down, closer to the water. The tide was going out so we were able to find a spot further down and enjoy a few hours, even with the crowds. Great place to people watch and watch the boats coming in. This beach is on the other side of the channel, that we were at on Saturday. We could watch the ferries as well as the fishing boats that came across, to unload their catch at the docks.

I hope you all had a wonderful weekend and if you would like to see my videos, you can check out my YouTube Channel. You can see more of the views and hear the sounds of the sea.

Friday, August 5, 2016

Friday Freebie and Winner!

Thank you all for entering my contest, it was fun reading the comments and quips. The winner of a free pattern is Kim Budash! Congratulations Kim, you can pick any pattern from my E-Crater store and email me with your choice.

For everyone else, I thought I would offer my newest idea as a freebie. I wanted to try a technique with Press and Seal and I have been wanting to make something as a gift that I can give to members of our choir, especially the ones who sang at Dani's funeral and I thought this would be a wonderful gift for them.

As for the press and seal, I liked it in one way and not in others. I found sewing through it, hard with the larger needle that I use for pearl cotton. It stayed on but the lettering faded as I went and I used a black art pen on dark wool, so I am sure that didn't help either.

This is how it looked with the stitching on the Press and Seal.

It pulled off fairly, easily but then I had to get around those small letters, that was not easy. I pulled and the stitches pulled so it messed a few up. Then I realized it would be easier to clip as much as I could and that made it easier to pull out the pieces between the stitching. Once I got going, it went faster. I also messed up on some spacing, and I guess it shifted a bit, the design is not perfect and I had a hard time following lines with the chain stitch.

I took out some of the stitches on the wing and fixed it up a bit. I cut out a second piece of wool and a piece of batting cut smaller than the design and blanket stitched them together. Then I added some leaves and red balls. I used pearl cotton through the top and put the leaves on top of that.

This is how it came out. I am not thrilled with this one, the wings are a mess and I think the lettering needs to be lighter? You can also add a bell to the bottom, this one is rusty but I may use new ones for choir gifts. What I want to do is try another but make it neater and not so prim, as the gifts.

Here is the pattern I used, you may use it for yourself or as gifts. All I ask is, if you come up with a better look, please share. I really wanted to make something special and I think this is a wonderful idea as a gift so please share you pieces with us and better ideas to make nicer lettering.

I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend, filled with joy and adventures.

The bell is 5 1/2" long, but you can make it as small or large as you want. I think this would be nice in a larger version to put on the wall.

Monday, August 1, 2016

Weekend Wanderings Giveaway!

It was an easy weekend, not too much but I got out for a bit and enjoyed some time outside. I also decided not to do too much work on my little dog, I just did some tweaking and made him a ball, so I thought I would show you how he looks with his ball. I enjoy making fun things instead of realism but I may try more dogs and some cats too.

On Saturday I wanted to get out but not go for a long ride so we took Bean to the dog beach. It wasn't too crowded and the tide was going out, so more waves coming in. It felt good to be in the cool breezes.

And now for the contest, give me a caption for this photo! The winner can pick any one of my e-patterns or e-booklets. If you can't think of anything, you can just leave a comment and I will draw a name on Friday night.

There was a group using the area to picnic and sail their boats from the beach, not sure why they didn't go to a regular launch site, makes it hard for us dog lovers when others use the beach and Bean doesn't have the freedom to play. I can just imagine what he would do if I let him off leash, no one on the beach would be safe from his loving.

On Sunday we went for a drive to the south end. We did a little shopping and then went to the beach. It was cloudy and the forecast was for rain showers, but we didn't get any and that meant the beaches weren't crowded. I finally gave in and got a season pass, it is well worth it and we got to enjoy a little time on the beach and a swim. I hope you all had a wonderful weekend.