Tuesday, May 31, 2011

It's been awhile . . .

It feels as if I've been away from my computer for months! Of course it's only been two weeks, but what a busy two weeks. There are only a handful of days now before Summer Break. Between recitals, field days, award ceremonies, carnivals, field trips . . . I've barely had time to breathe. I have, however, found a little time to stitch.

During the Summer I switch from my usual 4oct linen to an easier-on-the-eyes 30ct. It takes a little getting used to but I think I got the hang of it again. I love how "prim" the larger counts look and my designs end up reflecting that. I've been working on two larger samplers with wonderful borders. Hopefully I'll be able to show them sometime next week. With the hectic schedule I've really only found time to stitch at night and I've never been much of a night owl. Usually I'm asleep with my head on my husband's lap by 10pm (he's the night owl). That doesn't leave much time for stitching but if I don't get a good night's sleep I'm impossible to live with.

I did find the time to finish this little piece; a little summer garden of sorts. I love the salmon pink, don't you? As soon as I get it charted I'll offer the pattern. I'm thinking . . . another pincushion? I love this fabric for the backing. What do you think?

It's already hovering around 90 degrees here even though Summer is still a few weeks away. We don't get much of a Spring around here. Our air conditioner is quietly humming outside the window (I could not live without central air) and we're planning our first trip to the beach with the kids. I always stitch less during the Summer and apparently blog less often as well but I've set some goals for myself this year and hopefully that will increase my productivity. I hope everyone had some warm weather and sunshine to enjoy this weekend.


Jennie Lynn

Monday, May 30, 2011

In Memoriam

Gratitude to all those who have served and died to defend our country and a prayer that all those serving now can return home to their families soon.

Jennie Lynn

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Eyelet Sampler Finished . . . I think?

Here is the completed eyelet sampler. Or perhaps partially completed? I can't decide whether or not to add a name on the bottom, under the last row of letters. It would have to be a relatively short name given the amount of room I left myself. I think it looks complete even without a name or date. What do you think?

Would you stitch it as is or would you prefer a name and date? The smaller alphabet up top is complete (minus the letter J) so you could always include your own name choice. With the addition of a name the sampler becomes almost a perfect square, though visually it registers as one now. I simply can't decide. Why is this decision so difficult for me? I think I obsess too much over details and I'm pretty sure my husband would agree.

I did choose to make a few letters in the light shade of cream. It blends really nicely and adds a nice contrast to the darker letters. I promise it shows up better in person and would probably in the photo as well if it wasn't overcast today. The eyelet stitches turned out beautifully and I'm already adding a few other speciality stitches to some of my designs. Though I think the next pattern I stitch will be more "prim" than my last few. I feel the need to return to simpler things and given the chaos about to descend upon me when school ends in three weeks "simple" will be a wonderful addition to my days.

I am anxious to hear what you ladies thing about the sampler. Finished? Name? No name? Date? No date? As soon as I decide (with some help from you) the pattern will be available for purchase. So don't be shy, ladies, opinions are always welcome, since if left to my own devices I'd never decide.


Jennie Lynn

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Mother's Day

I just love this picture. To me it completely captures motherhood. How I view the picture depends largely on the day I've had. Some days I imagine the older child making a gift of the fruit in the basket to her mother and the two younger children hugging her about the neck. Other days I imagine the older child complaining about having to do her chores and the two younger children fighting with one another while the mother attempts to keep them apart. I think what draws me to the picture is the mother's expression. It is simply the perfect combination of love and exhaustion. But then again isn't that what motherhood is?

So with that I wish a Happy Mother's Day to all women. As women we have all nurtured a soul (whether it be a child, husband, sibling or a friend) in a way that only a woman can and for that we have already received our reward but a day of applause doesn't hurt.


Friday, May 6, 2011

Eyelet Alphabet Sampler

So many antique samplers I have seen have an alphabet comprised of eyelet stitches. I've always loved the way they looked. The stitches are so delicate and add a wonderful texture. I don't have much experience with working eyelet stitches. The last sampler I designed I added a few here and there just to get some experience and I adored the way they came out. I decided then to simply throw myself into the deep end and start working on a sampler I'd designed inspired by several antique ones I'd seen pictures of. I don't actually own any antique samplers of my own but they're on the "wish list" my husband keeps for anniversaries and birthdays and the like. There's a full alphabet of cross stitches and a partial alphabet of eyelet stitches as well as three borders of eyelet stitches. By the time I've completed this sampler I will certainly have plenty of practice!

I struggled with choosing the blue thread for the design. I tend towards blues that actually appear more grey. This is truly a blue and I was a little cautious as first; I wasn't sure if it was just too bright. The more I stitch with it the happier I am with my choice. It's very unusual for me not to change thread colors several times once I've begun stitching. How the tread looks stitched can be so different than how the skein itself looks. I am flirting with the idea of stitching a few letters with a lighter shade of white, only slightly darker than the background color actually. The thread barely shows up on the linen, but the texture of the eyelet stitches makes them slightly more noticeable. I've always loved the tone on tone effect and with some older samplers the threads have blended through age beautifully into the background. I'm not sure if I can achieve that effect or how it will look if I do but once I've stitched up the letters I'll post a photo and get some opinions.

The linen is new to me as well. It's a color from R&R that I've never worked with before. For another sampler I designed I wanted an aged white linen so I simply ordered a bunch of colors from several different lines. It's amazing how they all appear white when viewed alone, but when put together you can see subtle differences. One is yellow-white, one is blue-white . . . also different thread colors bring out different tones in the white. This particular linen is a grey-white and while it didn't work for the other sampler it looked wonderful with these colors.

I have no idea when this sampler will be completed. Eyelet stitches are a little more time consuming than I had anticipated so it's slow going. I promise more pictures as I make more progress. Until then, best wishes and happy stitching!


Jennie Lynn

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Basket of Flowers Free Pattern

Another free pattern I won't get the time to stitch. At least not while flowers are still blooming. They'll be snow on the ground again by the time I get around to it.

Most of my free patterns were designed to be a component of a larger pattern, but ended up not fitting into the final design. Perhaps at some point they'll find a home in another design, but in the meantime it seems too much of a waste to let them sit in a folder on my desktop. Hopefully you ladies can find a use for this little guy. You can find the pattern on my Free Patterns page. Let me know what you come up with!


Jennie Lynn