UPDATE 10/21/17. Went to goal day meeting, met previous goal of finishing all stitching. Just the back stitching left now.
UPDATE 10/3/17. My dad passed this morning. Progress on this project has been put on hold for now.
UPDATE 9/23/17. Due to my dad being in hospice since mid-August I am now making loads of progress. I work on this every day while I’m up there. There are days when he sleeps a lot and others when we have time to visit. He has enjoyed seeing the progress made and how “full” it has gotten.
I finished the cross stitch for Brett yesterday and took it in for framing. I was told 2 weeks (sad) because they order frames on Wednesdays only. So me being slow didn’t finish until a Thursday.
Now it’s time to start birth sampler No. 3. As of yet there hasn’t been an announcement for baby 4. But I’m not ruling anything out at this point. Baby No. 3 was born at the end of January this year! So maybe she’ll have hers in a more timely manner.
I started this the evening of 5/11/17. (Yay documentation!) Usually I don’t start posting until I’m months in (and have no idea when I started), but I have vowed to be better about keeping up this blog, and with the Side Projects Club meetup I have motivation to work on these projects and *gasp* finish them. So if you want to follow the progress of this cross stitch from start to finish, just bookmark this blog, or maybe RSS it? I have no idea, but be sure to check back. It will be updated every 4 weeks (Goal Days at SPC).
My husband’s sister is way ahead of me with the kids than I am with the cross stitches for the kids. The third baby came a few weeks ago, the second one will be 2 at the end of April and I have not made much progress on this project.
Thanks to a co-worker I was introduced to the Meetup app. There is a group for side projects called The Side Projects Club. As long as it’s something you can do quietly they encourage you to bring your side project to work on. Most of the group bring laptops to work on coding, but a couple of us do things like cross stitch or knitting.
A huge thanks to that Meetup group. Without them I wouldn’t be working on this project at all, just getting mad at how much isn’t done. I was getting a bit burnt out on them, but it’s not as bad now. I am finally making some progress, and with getting back to this blog I thought I would use this as a secondary motivator to keeping pushing forward and making progress.
Update 5/11/17: Finished! Now it’s waiting to be framed, final photo coming in 2-ish weeks since frames are only ordered once per week on Wednesday.
UPDATE: It’s completed and framed. (And I’ve already begun on the next one). The framing wasn’t exactly as I hoped it would turn out, but overall I think it looks pretty sharp.
I haven’t been forgetting to post about what I’ve been up to. I’ve been very focused on one project. My youngest niece was born at the beginning of February and since Christmas I’ve been working on a cross stitch for her.
I’ve made a lot of progress this last month, trying to finish before photography picks up as the weather warms up.
I’ve also been to the store a couple times to pick up more floss, this may not look big, but it’s a little over 8×10 and has very small stitches.
This is my progress now. Looking much better than at the beginning of the month. I’m hoping to start outlining by the first half of April.
Another Pinterest project is underway. This time working with concrete, which I know nothing about. I do however know where to find rhubarb leaves. Not only in my backyard, but I found some wild rhubarb (and strawberries) growing along the path to the park from my house.
Using rhubarb leaves as a base and toilet paper rolls and pie tins to hold in the cement I went to work creating some stones. I bought a bag of quick set concrete to use for making the stones. They are fairly crumbly and I never researched what type of concrete would work best for this project. Sometime when I get back to this project I will try different ratios of water to concrete to see if that helps at all. I think there might also be too many air bubbles causing them to break apart easily. I also had some trouble getting the veins of the leaf out once the concrete hardened around it. I figure eventually it will dry out and wash away.
I have a large collection of mixed seed beads. Not sure when they became a random mixture. It’s how they have been since I received the tupperware full, well 3 actually. I wanted to make jewelry and I thought maybe having each color separate would be a good idea.
The execution of this idea is another matter. I’m sure there are some sort of tools that can be used to make this much easier, but right now I’m using the round-about backwards way that gets the job done, but takes a really long time.
I sit at night watching TV(from the DVR (almost to July!)) and stringing beads onto a wire and drop them into a canister. Only problem was when I forgot to hold the beads at the end they slid off the wire and all over the floor. Now that I have done that, it seems curling up the end might be the solution so I don’t have to pick beads out of the carpet, again.
So I will continue on my tedious journey of separating all the colors. When I am done sorting, I am hoping to have more inspiration to start working on some beaded jewelry.
Right now my uses of newspaper is a super list of 2 things I use old newspaper/ads for while crafting and gardening.
1. You may have seen the use of it in my garden. I’m not sure how well the inks mix with dirt, but I’m hoping it’s not too bad and won’t cause more problems than the GMOs I inadvertently ingest.
2. Keeping old newspapers around for crafting is always good. With all intentions of not getting glues everywhere I’m just not successful. So I now coat everything with newspaper and spill away. I’m sure it would be great while painting and such as well, really any art project. Who am I kidding you probably have a stack higher than mine of papers ready to be spilled on.
3. Blocking a bee hive that is in an old swing set. As much as I don’t want to, they keep attacking my husband when he tries to mow. If only there was a good way to communicate with bees that we don’t want to hurt them, just mow around their house.
Anyway, someday I may start adding photos and make this much more exciting to look at. I am trying to do more crafts. But I ran into a snag with my last project when I gave it as a gift before I took a photo. So I took the process of making it and then nothing at the end.
I got this brilliant idea to make my own bird feeder. This is out of selfishness of wanting to be amused by my cat Coco Puff. She loves to talk to birds that take a breather on the deck. They don’t stop by all that often, so I thought, maybe get some bowls and have a little place for birds to come eat, drink, and be chatted to by my cat. (Someday I hope to capture her “chirps” on video)
I took a trip to Goodwill to find something to house my birdseed and water. I didn’t want the traditional bird feeder. My original idea was to have two bowls on a long plate. I found this instead.
So far it’s doing it’s job. And attracting some squirrels too. But hey Coco doesn’t mind, she likes to pretend she’s talking and chasing all of them.
Coco and the squirrel having a pre-chase stare down.
It’s been over a year since my last post of my cross-stitch. Honestly it hasn’t gotten much farther. Many days my husband tells me I have my goals set a little too high with all my projects. I have decided that I will spend at least a couple of evenings this week working on it. I have a couple of photo events this weekend and still have photos from last weekend to go through, so next week will be a photo week. This week will be TV and cross stitch. Sounds like a plan to me!
My sometimes wanning addiction to Pintrest is what lead to this project. Years ago I made a journal at a lady’s house, she was a friend of my mom. She had countless stamps at her disposal, I’m sure those fancy punches too. I assume she was a scrapbooker normally, which is an expensive hobby, and so she invited people to make journals. These journals cost around $20 for use of the supplies. The books and pages were pre-cut into 5×7’s and then hole punched. All you had to do was decorate the covers and assemble. My journal ended up with a combo of Elizabethan and Egyptian theme to it. Odd, but looked cool. We even pasted in a little blurb about a gratitude journal into it. I think Oprah had recently mentioned them on a show. Mind you I made this at least 10 if not 15 years ago.
Now I am taking that premise and adding a new and more complicated twist. I took the idea of transferring photos to wood blocks from Pintrest (see here). I’ve taken this and have been working on transferring photos to mat board to create the cover of my journals. The first one I made I gave to a then co-worker who was looking for a more pocket friendly, line free sketchbook. So now these journals are more pretty blank page books for whatever you want.
The first time I tried to make a transfer I decided to forgo the instructions from the bottle of transfer adhesive stuff and chose to follow the Pintrest video instead. This worked out ok, but with so much paper and lots of water, it just didn’t work out as well as I had hoped. There were lots of white streaks from where not only the paper came up, but the photo as well. This was turned into abstract wall art instead of a journal.
I decided that my second go of the photo transferring should be attempted after reading the instructions on the bottle. Just so you know this still uses a lot of water, and I swear shrinks up the picture a little. And as it dries, add more water, these transfers are super thin and tear easily. This project takes a lot of patience, but the end result is worth it. Now I am working up some more journals to list on Etsy.
Sadly this set ended up too dry when I went to adhere it to the matte board, so there are no finished project images. But I have had a couple of successes, just not this time.
In my quest to stand out I have decided to make my own business cards. My first venture was to create hand texturized cards. I have handed out a few and have gotten some positive feedback. But I felt that I need to get back to my favorite paper, wallpaper. It may not be the most exciting thing to see on a wall, but as a repurposed paper it’s awesome!
I have made my share of note cards with wallpaper, and recently turned some into postcards. Now I have turned my love of wallpaper loose on business cards. I think it really gives a whole new look and feel to business cards and could, I think, give an edge to the person handing out their card. I make these in small batches to keep them unique. I hope to get a set listed on Etsy soon.
I’m excited about this new way to use wallpaper and I hope others enjoy it too. There are so many possibilities, many more colorful than my first example, but I do like the texture. I say when it comes to making yourself noticed dare to stand out with these awesome cards.