Saturday, July 11, 2009

Short Update

Sorry I haven't updated for a while. I got a job in Ponca City, Oklahoma at the end of May (or was it the beginning of June? I'm confusing the two job offers I had - I accepted one and not the other, and they were a week apart) and moved here in mid-June. I am still not completely settled - I had been staying in a camper my parents let me borrow, at an RV park just outside town, but at the beginning of July started renting a house with a lab tech who works for the staffing agency I used to work for - she will be working in the lab until I am out of training. Once she leaves and the owner empties the house (she was renting it fully furnished, decorated, bills paid, etc), I will be renting it on my own and moving all of my stuff up from Dallas.

So for now, I am less "moved in" than I was even when I stayed with my parents the last few months, because I have to have all my kitchen stuff but yet there is no room in the kitchen for it... and I don't want to put stuff away in furniture that will be sold off in less than a month, so everything in my room is staying in boxes. Needless to say, no embroidery or weaving has been done in about 6 weeks, between the camper and here!! I haven't done much besides play computer games and work.

I will definitely update again when I do more!

Monday, May 25, 2009

floss choice

I was going to post this quite a bit earlier, but my computer decided to act up. I used three patterns from the Spaced Out pattern sheet (which Sublime Stitching so kindly sent me last week) on my band sampler - they cover two of the panels - and I've been working on them tonight. I had a hard time deciding between two color sets - here are the pictures.
I ended up choosing the pink because my sampler has so much pink in it, but then when I was working on her clothes (the darkest pink, on the end) I decided to use the sparkley green (pearlescent effects, like the pink on the other end of the pink "pile") for some of the stuff in her helmet. THEN I decided to make her skin green, like an Orion chick from Star Trek. :-) I haven't started on the skin yet - the belt took quite a while, I filled it with tiny little chain stitches except the buckle, which has one algerian stitch, and now I'm working on her hair, which is in the variegated floss third from the right end (on the long thing, not still in a regular skein), and I'm a little disappointed. Had I used the second one from that end, I would have expected her hair to end up looking rather white, but I expected the one I used to look more pink than it does. I think I'll end up adding some stripes of a solid light pink when I fill in her hair (which I wasn't really planning to do until it came out that way).
I'll post pics in a bit.

Mail rec'd!

The holidays kind of got me off track with posting about this, but:

Saturday, I got an envelope from Sublime Stitching! In it was not only the Spaced Out sheet, but also the Bon Voyage sheet!!! How cool is that? I am on my way upstairs to iron the Rocket gal on to my sampler - will post pics later today. :-)

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

SS vs UT

Here is the post about Urban Threads copying and altering (allegedly, I suppose I should say - I do watch crime shows, lol) designs from Sublime Stitching.

Sublime Stitching Rocks!

After the post I made about the kit I have from Sublime Stitching, I got an e-mail today from them - they are sending me the Spaced Out sheet! Isn't that sweet?! THAT is a company that cares about their customers!! :-)

Another response I got to that post was a comment with a link to a blog post about a big controversy over Urban Threads. I'm very sad now - and torn. I do really like their designs, but how can I, in good conscience, buy from them if they are ripping off designs from Sublime Stitching and falsely promoting themselves as a small, independent company when they are a subdivision of a huge corporation? Actually, to be honest, the last part wouldn't stop me from buying from them as long as they had designs I wanted to use (which they do) - but the whole thing of taking designs that Jenny Hart made and just altering them a little and then selling them for more... ugh. I'm glad I haven't bought any of THOSE (afaik).

I had heard, a few weeks ago, that there was some kind of "bad deal" with UT - I had wanted to submit someone I know as the guest artist, but although she was honored, etc., she said I should look into them. I kept my head in the sand. See no evil, etc. :-) Sigh. I STILL want Eliza to do embroidery patterns, though - I love her artwork! Her chair and house ATCs are among my favorites. She's more in to yarn and soap now, but I think she could probably still whip out a few sketches. :-) I'm pretty sure she's a fan of SS, too...

Back to working on MY designs. And watching Criminal Minds. The guys in the ice cave were inspired by episodes of science fiction shows - still wondering exactly what one would DO with it, though...

Cute embroidered coffee cuff, and embroidery design thoughts

Wild Olive's Coffee Cuff

This is a very cute pattern/tutorial for a coffee cuff that I found today while wandering through blogs. I need to make some! I wish my yard of felt wasn't in Texas.

I've been watching Enterprise on the SciFi channel the last couple of days (I saw Star Trek - the new movie - Sunday, and have been on a major Star Trek kick since then) (of course, I wear my Starfleet Academy Class ring, which I got in Las Vegas ten years ago, every day, so it's not like it's a new ST obsession), and have been thinking how the astronomical charts they use in the background of the intro would make SUCH good embroidery designs! I think I'll google that and see if there are any public domain charts I can adapt to embroidery.

I've been thinking for years that I should try to adapt my sketches to embroidery patterns, and I finally did one today. I still need to clean it up a little, but then I'm going to start working on it on my sampler. Not sure how many people would want to buy two men walking into ice caves, but I had the idea that the flashlight beam on the ice would look cool with a lot of the sparkly or glow-in-the-dark threads out there, and the solid white, grey, and black areas (the two figures are silhouettes) are perfect targets for playing with stitches. Not sure WHAT stitches - I'm not that good at embroidery yet - but I'm going to play around. :-)

I have several sketchbooks in storage. I have two, I think, with me - I'm going to dig through them and see what I can find to adapt.

Sublime Stitching

I've been working on stuffed animals lately (and job-hunting), so haven't done much embroidery, but I got it back out tonight. As soon as I finish three frogs and a flamingo (sounds like a drink or a band, or a very odd code phrase...), I'm going to get the stuff back out and work on it. I suppose I could keep it out as well as the weaving, but I tend to be the kind of person who has to SEE EVERYTHING, not just rummage around in my bag every once in a while for something, so it all gets spread out on the couch next to me, and having two crafts out at once would just make an even larger mess.

I did, however, go through my embroidery bag (which I got out of storage last month when I went to TX) and found my "stitch-it kit" from Sublime Stitching. I bought it in a bookstore a few years ago (05? around the time I was dating Jeff, I think - that's the last time I was really in to embroidery - I remember starting a needlepoint stocking for him but not wanting to do the name in case we broke up so I could put a different name on it) (it's still not done, still has no name, still in storage) (actually, they never got all the floss for it in for me) -

ANYWAY. My kit. I had noticed an ad on Facebook for Sublime Stitching, and it had the Rocketgirl on there, and I thought "hey! I recognize her!" so I went to my bag and dug out the kit - that design wasn't in the kit, but I do have an Eiffel Tower, a couple of guitars, and some other cool stuff I can put on my sampler (for variety in between the bands). I also saw a pattern for napkin rings on the site and had the idea to make some with my 2x6 weavette, adding a band of embroidery around the center of the ring before I take them off the loom. I can't wait to get those made!

I went to the Sublime website - they have a lot more designs than the last time I was there! WOW. Absolutely gorgeous. And I love the fact that they are iron-ons. I love the designs on Urban Threads, but I do love the convenience of the iron-on. I didn't do the transfer of the one design I'm doing from UT very well, and it is very faint and rubbing off. It doesn't look exactly like it's supposed to. I'm not TOO worried about it, but it's also just for me, not for someone else - were it for someone else, I would want the pattern to look better. Of course, I didn't have transfer paper or a light table when I did it - I used a grey quilting pencil and taped it to a window, and the fabric is tea-dyed, so of course it's faint... but had it been an iron-on, I wouldn't have had that problem. UT does definitely have more variety than SS, though. SS is cheaper, however, since they have so many grouped on one page. Then again, the transfers only last about 20 times compared to unlimited use for the graphic download... I suppose if the pattern is still visible on the SS sheet after the transfer has transferred for the last time, you can use it the same way as the download.

I think it's apples and oranges. They're both great. :-) I just need to get a job now so I can order from Sublime Stitching - I have a lot of patterns in this kit, but I still want the outer space set! And a few others. I'm just glad I have the Eiffel Tower!!! :-)

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Algerian Stitch

Working on a fiber postcard - it's not the band sampler, but it the next stitch I will put on there, if I can figure out how to get it evenly spaced!

Turns out my 4x6 Weavette is perfect for postcards! Used Lime Stripes Sugar & Cream yarn, and a variegated DMC floss for the Algerian stitch. Haven't figured out what to do in the center yet. I love it, though, and this gave me SO many ideas for embellishing stuffed animals before I even take them off them loom and stuff them! I could do a lot more complex embroidery while they are still on there.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Website update

The Altered Art Version of Sheeptopia

I updated - after three years - my second website. When I was in NH in 06 I removed all the ATCs, collages, scrapbooking info, beadwork, embroidery, etc. from Sheeptopia in order to make it an exclusively weaving website. I created the second site for all the stuff I had removed, but never put it on there. Now, it's there! There's only really one example of embroidery - a doll with SRE, beading, and regular embroidery on it. It's on the beadwork page - I have several bead embroidered dolls.


First stitches

Well, all I've done so far is put my initials and the date on my sampler, which I did Tuesday night (and after I took the picture, I realized I didn't finish the A!), but I thought I would post a picture of it anyway. I didn't do any embroidery yesterday - I'm staying with my parents right now, and my mom was coming back from Nashville so I tried to clean and stuff, and my dad and I went out target practicing when he got home from work at about 3:45, and then I actually ended up going to bed early for once (well, early for me).

So here is the picture - chain stitch is my favorite stitch, so I used it for the date, and I decided to try detached chain for my initials, but discovered that while it seems pretty easy at first, going back and filling in the spaces with another color of detached chain can be a little more difficult... I think next time I'll try filling in the spaces with something else!

I actually did the lettering in April uneven on purpose, but now that I look at it, it just looks sloppy. I think I'll have to go back and add some kind of wavy likes under it or something. I'm also going to add lines of chain stitch on either side of the detached chain in the lettering - pink on the outside, the orange/yellow on the inside, to tie together the alternating row I already have.

I think I need to do something like stitch another strip of fabric to the top in order to do embroidery that high up, then remove it - I hadn't thought of that until I was trying to do the very top of the "A."

What I was doing as I was working on it: watching old episodes of the X-Files (started at the very end), West Wing, and either an episode of Psych or Law and Order (Criminal Intent) - I can't remember. Part of that time was actually spent sewing together the end of the coffee-dyed panel - I think that was during Psych. Yes, I realize this is of no interest to anyone but me, but I'm going to try and keep track anyway. :-)

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Band sampler all sewn together!

I finished hand sewing the pieces of both panels of my band sampler! Since I really liked the look of Sharon's sampler, with the six inch working width, I'm just copying it on mine. I didn't worry too much about the width when I was cutting (er, ripping, actually) the pieces of fabric - I just tried to make sure they were close to nine inches wide (as you can see from the picture, I was not always right). After I ironed the first section (haven't ironed the second one yet), I took a six inch wide quilting ruler, laid it down the center of the panel, and marked lines down the sides of the ruler with a silver quilt marking pencil. I was lazy. :-) But I can do a border over it.

The first panel, oddly (since I stopped measuring the lengths of the strips I was cutting after a while, and although I THINK I can still eyeball a 1/4 inch seam allowance, I can't imagine I got it perfect on every one), ended up being exactly 32 inches long. I haven't measured the second one yet, but it looks like it's three or four inches longer. Plenty to start with!

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Since my sewing machine is in Texas and I am in Kansas, I hand-stitched the panels in the band sampler together. My stitches were a little too wide, so I went back down the row and went in between each stitch. The white in the picture is actually the white fabric that the pink is sewn to, not just a background!

I am currently finishing up sewing together the other set of fabric strips for the other panel of my band sampler. I did one of all unbleached muslin and coffee-dyed fabrics, and one that had not been coffee dyed and had only white muslin, no unbleached muslin. I'm going to start on the white one first, but I wanted to get the other one put together before I started on it. I do still have a LOT of strips in a zip lock bag that I can add on to each, but at least now I have quite a bit of space to work on before I have to sew on more strips.

In the Beginning... :-)

I decided to create a new blog for my band sampler. Here are the blog entries from Roving Weaver where I have pictures of the pieces as I was first thinking about it and then putting it together (they are in chonological order):

Next, to upload more pictures from my camera!