Monday, March 4, 2013

The Dreaded Stitchery Inventory

Gradually, over the last year or so, I gave up cross-stitch. Not by choice - RA pain made holding a needle difficult to impossible.  As a result, a lot of undone projects went neglected, and projects where the stitchery was done, but not framed or otherwise finished piled up.

I spent a couple hours today rounding up and sorting through all these unfinished stitched bits, along with unused fabrics, stray threads, and charts.  I am not at all sure I've found and organized everything, but I think I've gotten most of it.

This month, no new starts for me - I have a whole lot of things to keep busy with without that.

This is my fabric stash - a few large pieces, and a very deep pile of odds and ends suitable for ornaments and other small projects.  So, when I DO decide to take on a new start, neither fabric nor thread will be a barrier.

Items that are finished:

On the left is a traditional wedding blessing charted by The Sampler Girl called "Deep as the Ocean".  On the right - and I no longer remember who the designer was - is a Fairy Godmother Teddy Bear that I meant to turn into a stuffed pillow for a grandchild  that has now long since outgrown her fondness for fairies. Oops. (fortunately, there are other, younger grandchildren who might still be interested.)

Another Sampler Girl finish, this one for my daughter who adores all things Jane Austen.  Also to be turned into a pillow.

The smalls! So. Many. Smalls.  I have a million ornaments to finish off here.  Or 45. I think - I keep losing count.

Oh - I forgot to add this. Make that 48?

And this is the saddest finish of all, because it is never ever going to be framed, I think.  It's huge (about the size of a couch cushion), and took me a good bit of time to finish, for my now-ex husband.  The marriage that ended approximately a day after the last stitch was put in.  For a while I thought I'd get it framed and give it to him anyway - then realized that I no more wanted to spend that much money on him than he'd want to hang a personal gift from his estranged wife and came to my senses.  But - I can't toss it, and it's too specialized to just give to someone else.   So I suppose it will stay stashed in my stash forever or until I come across some other EOD Tech who might want it.

Even at that, I am not likely ever to pay for it to be framed, so sad finish it will remain!

And then there are the WIPs (Works In Progress):

This is a freebie Quaker sampler that will not ever be adequately photograph-able. The linen is pale blue, and the colors are pastel variegated flosses so the entire thing is pretty subtle.  I regret that, but want to get it done and either framed or turned into a pillow for the guest bed.

High on my priority list is this Therea Wentzler tapestry.  Full of blended threads, this one isn't for casually grabbing on the go, or doing while watching a movie, because it takes concentration, good light, and a place to safely put all the threads without getting them mixed up.  But I love it and one it done and on display.

A historic reproduction sampler published in Gift of Stitching.

A spring biscornu - I'll be focusing on getting this finished this month, as my ornament for the Ornament SAL.

The Stitcherhood's Tree of Life - I switched up the colors.  A pillow when it's done.

One of Lizzie Kate's ABC Samplers - lots of fun to do, and a very high priority to finish and frame.

I can barely call this a WIP - a little Tokens & Trifle perforated paper shape, with some variegated green and red thread.  No pattern - I was/am just going to let the colors do what it may.

This crazy cat is from a Just Cross Stitch Halloween Special.  I think it may have been the last thing I was working on before it just got too hard and painful to keep stitching.

From Gift of Stitching - this is Autumn and Summer.  If you look close at the giant pile of finishes above, you'll see Spring.  Winter hasn't been started yet.

From a kit I started several years ago.  I think I'm going to be buried with this when I die..and it will still be incomplete.

There is no graph for this - I was working on learning the Elder Futhark Runes, and started stitching them as I went.  Now, I wish I'd done the Younger Futhark (the Anglo-Saxon Runes, which have more runes than the Elder Futhark/Norse Runes and are familiar to anyone who read The Lord of the Rings), but no... I want to finish this, and then do another with the Younger Futhark.  It will be finished as a wall hanging.

I think this WIP may be older than my youngest daughter (she'll be 20 this summer) - perforated paper, stitched and turned into a 3-D gingerbread house.  Someday I might finish it!

My will to finish this is just about nil.  When I think about just cutting off the stitchery and using that nice big expanse of linen for something else, I get a lot happier than  thinking about going forward.  So this may not survive the year.

And The Stitcherhood's Midnight Dip, which I did not get as far along with this past month as I'd hoped, but back she goes into the stack, hopefully to be completed soon....ish.

This was a new start in February, and it's really only an hour or so from being done, so I intend to make that happen this week, so it can go live with that huge stack of needlework pieces needing to be completed for display.

Another kit, and so, so much more left to do. It's a growth chart, and it's done on vinyl evenweave, which I do NOT find pleasant to work with at all.  If - big if - I ever finish this, I suspect it will wind up going to a great grandchild, because surely all my grandchildren will be grown by then.  Not a high priority for this year.

I'm not highly motivated on this one, either - it's my own graph (with heavy help from a 'turn your picture into a graph' program) - several shades of grey on black, it will be one of the Dr. Who stone angels if it is ever finished.  I'm about 50/50 bored with the whole thing and really curious to see how it comes out.  Probably not going  to happen this year.

A kit with a celestial theme - I love the way it's coming along, and hope to get through a lot more of it.

And finally - my nemesis!  Also a kit from several years ago, and long since out of print.  It's almost entirely done but has backstitch in several colors still to do.  I'd long ago lost both the chart and the threads (which didn't translate into DMC or other non-proprietary thread colors), but a friend of a friend copied the chart for me from their own copy of the kit.  Except... in black and white, which means I still don't know what color each bit of backstitch and outline stitch is supposed to be.  I'm going to have to just wing it and guess and get it done, already.

So that's it - I know I'll be adding some new starts throughout the year (but not in March!), and hopefully I'll get some of these finished as well.  Now that I know how possible it is to lose the ability of my hands to stitch, I value both getting things done before I can't anymore, and also value not putting effort into those things that do not excite me.

Shared with: Happiness is Cross Stitching Linky Party.


  1. :) I feel your stitch-pile pain. Here's hoping RA and the stitch fairy are kind to you from now on.

  2. Oh my, so many lovely projects, I`m still drooling! Love all of them but especially the runes and the Quaker sampler... and the Lizzie Kate... and the gingerbread house... so all of them! Are you in any stitchy groups on FB? I`m sure I`ve seen the wizard in either Completed Cross Stitch Projects or I Cross Stitch And I`m Not Ashamed Of It - maybe someone from there could help you with the pattern for the backstitch? And the EOD mammoth I`d just put on Etsy or Ebay the way it is - if someone buys it, they can frame it for themselves, and you can buy yourself even MORE stash with the money (it`s a win-win!). :))

    1. You know, I am not - I will go look for a few FB stitch groups. And great idea on Etsy or Ebay... it'd be nice not to trip over it anymore. lol! and more stash is always good! (I can't believe I just said that... haha)

  3. I do no know what to say!!! oh my gosh! I hope that you manage to get some of them finished... best of luck :)