Melitastitches4fun's Blog


Festive Fireworks, Published and on the Cover of Needle Pointers July 2017
August 11, 2017, 11:46 am
Filed under: Festive Fireworks

How exciting to see Festive Fireworks on the cover of the July 2017 issue of Needle Pointers!! I knew it was getting published but not that it would be on the cover. I worked with Pam G. again to create the final charts and diagrams. I gave her my hand written charts, diagrams, and instructions to transform them and she did a great job!

Cover of NPs

This piece started with a group who encourage each other to design a piece based on a particular theme & this was to be something that “expressed a celebration”. And, being from Philadelphia, I immediately thought of all the wonderful fireworks especially the ones for the 4th of July. And, I’ve often thought that stitch patterns in Jean Hilton’s books remind me of fireworks and I used Stimulating Stitches and Needlepoint Stitches for most of the stitches. Since we have fireworks several times during the year, I created a main motif of the center star surrounded by a border of Symrna stitches and corner crescents while the smaller side motifs are different in each of the designs resembling a variety of fireworks. When I found the red, white, and blue Silk Lamé Braid, I literally jumped for joy! The 5 points of the center star are intended to serve as a guide for counting throughout the piece. Stitches used are: Crescents, Smyrna stitches, Jessica stitches, Wrapped coils, Double Fans, Plaited Ray, and Wrapped Sheaf. Everything was diagrammed before stitching. Since there is exposed canvas, I took care so that threads do not show through.

I was too shocked to jump for joy when I saw the blue ribbon! First place in non-professional original design at the 2016 ANG Seminar! We were allowed to get photos after the exhibit closed & as long as no other piece could be seen. Another benefit of volunteering – behind the scenes access. The First Place and special award ribbons are beautifully hand stitched and this one was done by Elena L. from the local New Orleans chapter. Thanks to all the volunteers for your efforts – the seminar was fantastic.

I stitched the stars as 3 separate pieces (as seen on the cover) but then framed them as a single vertical set.

Blue Ribbon

It measures approximately 11″ x 23″, is stitched on 18 count monocanvas, and used Fyre Werks, Silk Lamé Braid For 18 count, Kreinik #4 Braid, Crystal Braid, Soie Cristale, and Dinky Dyes. 

2016-06-05 18.24.45

 



Come Design With Me by Orna Willis
July 17, 2017, 8:26 am
Filed under: Come Design With Me by Orna Willis

This is a remote class mainly to follow how Orna designs a piece. And, it’s been interesting because she explains her thoughts as she goes along by sharing success as well as sections unstitched. As with many of Orna’s designs, there are amazing colors being incorporated. We got a kit of threads in the mail, lessons via email, and follow conversations via Facebook. I’m picking up a variety of wonderful tidbits including her preference for brown canvas because it fades away as you stitch better than white, eggshell, or sandstone. This is most of Lessons 1-3 completed (missing some French knots).



ANG Keystone Garden Chapter Mystery Project 2017, Month 5
July 14, 2017, 10:34 am
Filed under: ANG Keystone Garden Chapter, Mystery Project 2017

This month’s installment of the ANG Keystone Garden Chapter’s mystery project added 2 rows of Diagonal Gobelin and corner Ray Stitches. Looking Good!

On Section 2, I moved the 1-2 and 3-4 stitch of the Ray Stitch away from the center hole so the thread doesn’t lay on top of the thread used for the Diagonal Gobelin from Section 1. For the rest of the Ray Stitch, I used the center hole as diagrammed. 

I’ll be curious to see what goes in the remaining diamond and triangular areas.



Needle Storage
July 1, 2017, 1:51 pm
Filed under: General comments, Needles

I got through my needle stash and found, along with many needles of unknown brands, that I have mostly John James, EdMar, and Bohin. I  also know that I can stitch every project with a fresh needle for the next 50 projects!

Now, they are stored in the EdMar tubes of which I had extra when I combined like needles with like. And, crewel (pointed) needles have their own tubes too. Howerver, without enough tubes, I used wool felt or plastic holders. Marilyn O shared with me that wool felt should be used for storing needles, and not the craft felt. The wool wicks any moisture away from the needle, while the craft felt will tend to hold moisture and the needles will rust. The ultrasuede I was going to use would be ok (I tested it by wetting the fabric and leaving a needle in it and no rust formed) but I had enough of the felt and containers.

I had the help of Michele Roberts’ article from NeedlePointers July 2007, “Let’s Get to the Point”, to help tell what size a needle was by length. And, it reviewed the styles of needles and how to pick the right size for the project. I read lots of back issues with timeless articles of Needle Pointers magazines recently. I wish I could keep all the back issues but space is limited. I’m so happy the magazine is available digitally now as well. I can always refer back.

All the needles are organized by style and size in a floss organizer. I’ll use all of these eventually but thanks to Ginny, my favorite needle is from EdMar. They slide so smoothly through the canvas. What’s your favorite?

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ANG Keystone Garden Chapter Mystery Project 2017, Months 3 and 4
June 27, 2017, 6:55 pm
Filed under: ANG Keystone Garden Chapter, Mystery Project 2017

All caught up with the current mystery project we are doing at my ANG Keystone Garden Chapter this year.

It is a lot of Plaited Upright Cross (Blue ribbons). And, compensating is always tough. So, I was glad the triangles around the center diamond were easy.

But, I recognize that this is a Tony Minieri design. I have seen it in NeedlePointers.  But, I won’t spoil the surprise and say what issue, name the design, or stitch ahead of the chapter.

ANG Keystone Mystery, MayJune



Drawers Filled
June 21, 2017, 2:02 pm
Filed under: General comments, Organization

There are 18 drawers from IKEA with solid color thteads and 6 Like-It drawers from The Container Store on top with various overdyed threads for a total of 24. I still had to have a drawer for EdMar threads for Brazilian Embroidery and threads for 13/14 count canvas in the basement. And, more than likely, the white drawer is too full. So, I am contemplating what to do.

I put 2 hanging magazine holders on the left with velcro to hold thread cards.

Let’s hope this works for awhile. I did find a thread I needed for a project!

Drawers



Threads & Tote for Tools
June 2, 2017, 10:54 am
Filed under: General comments, Organization

I had a great day yesterday with Linda. We looked through the threads I had & found a variety of threads that I must have inherited from others stash. The most interesting was some Belding Corticelli twisted silk on old wooden spools. Since Linda sews she had heard about the threads & knew that it is a strong thread used for making buttonholes. Mary Corbet wrote a great article on the history of the thread. What I have was produced in the U.S. between 1925 and 1932. You can still find some on eBay. I will hold on to this for finishing when I bind edges. I received an interesting note based on experience from a reader: “Be very careful if you use them. The wooden spools leach acids into the silk and not only weaken them but change the colors as well.” So, I think I’ll get rid of them – why take a chance.

Belding Corticelli

Linda is also an amazing sewer and she made this wonderful Catch All Caddy for my retirement. It is just what I needed for my stitching tools and fits perfectly in the living room coffee table. I love the colors and pockets. Inside are cute Stitch Happy items and a cute golf piece that I can stitch for Bill. There is also a bag of spool stockings for contolling threads. What a fantastic, practical gift!

Catch All Caddy

We spent a good amount of time walking around The Container Store and found drawes, drawer dividers, and a couple of bins. Great store. We even had time to organize some of the drawers.

Thanks to Linda for her valuable input, suggestions, and especially the caddy.

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