Wednesday, December 31, 2014

The Final Theme-a-licious!

Remember how November was No-Xs November? Well, there weren't any in Do What You Will December, either! =) This is usually how my Decembers go...what with choir rehearsals and performances, holiday events, baking, trying to finish everything up at work before vacation, etc., there is not much time to sit and stitch!

I had decided in the Fall that I wanted to participate in Loopy Academy, so I ordered yarn...
...and away I went. You've already seen the first project, which was a cowl in fingering weight (posted in the previous post).

The second project was to be mittens in worsted weight yarn.
These are Emma's Mittens. They were fun to knit, although I'm still not a fan of bobbles. I'm never sure if mine look right! I apologize for the not-so-great has not been very sunny here, so this was taken under an Ott light! And yes, I really am that pale! =)

The final project is a hat in sport weight. Will I finish it by tonight?? Oh, the suspense! =)

So what did you will your December stitching to be? Do you have a clean slate for 2015? Please add your link below (to your latest Theme-a-licious post), and visit some other Themers if you can (everyone loves comments and encouragement!) Thank you again to all of you that "themed" along with me, whether you stitched along, commented on themers' posts, or just admired our work in silence. =) You guys all rock!!!!

See you for March Madness...oh, yes, that will still happen. ;)

Monday, December 1, 2014

Theme-a-licious November/December

Well, I sure didn't do any Xs in No-Xs November!

November started off for me with an Alison Cole class in Tampa, Florida, which had MUCH better temperatures than Atlanta had been having! Here was my dessert one day at lunch:

Cannoli for now, cannoli for later. ;)
We got a two-hour lunch break! Excellent.

The project was a stumpwork/goldwork piece.

I've done some stumpwork before, but I've never done any goldwork. It was a lot of fun working with some of the more exotic threads, like the super pearl purl. Plus, it's fun to say "super pearl purl". =)

This was a shot of my workspace.
Actually, this shot makes my workspace look a lot less chaotic than it was. I was spread out all over the place (I got lucky to be at a table of 3 rather than 4) and it took me forever to find anything. But the class was simply amazing. Alison is a fantastic (and fantastically fun) teacher, and if you ever get the chance to take a class with her, DO IT! She is one of those great teachers who never tells you anything is difficult; she just explains what to do and what to watch out for in a very straightforward manner and then comes around to straighten you out if you go wrong.

Here's a shot of the model she brought. It's not the best since it was under glass (and fluorescent lights!), but you can get more an idea of the dimensionality the stumpwork has.

She brought some other models, but it was hard to get a great shot with everyone crowded around ooooo-ing and aaaaah-ing! I will show you a couple shots of one of her 3D butterflies:
The little bell jar is only about 5 inches high! Amazing stuff. She had some other great goldwork pieces with her, including a dragon she taught at EGA convention.

Oh, what's that? You want to see what *I* did? =)

Here's where I was at the end of class. The crazy gold fringes will be the stamens in the clematis flowers, and that paper at the side will be basted over the dragonfly while I work on the rest of the piece, because his wings are SHARP!
They are actually brass mesh. Here's a closeup:

And here's a closer shot of the bud and leaf, where you can kind of see the super pearl purl:
Can you tell that the leaf is sticking up from the fabric? I should have done a side view, too.

The other pieces we did in class were a tendril (I have one Alison did, too, since she demonstrated with my wire =) and a flower petal. Only 23 more to go!!!!

Sadly, the only other stitching I did was to finish the branches on this squirrel.
I did the Xs sometime earlier in the year. ;)

I have been knitting a little, and I finished this lace cowl.
It's knit in Handmaiden Sea Silk yarn, which is 50% silk, 50% Sea Cell (think rayon), so it's really soft.

So, I know that I said I'd announce the theme for December around the middle of this month. I won't bore you with the details, but there have been all manner of work- and health-related crises here (everyone is OK!) and something had to give. That something was the blogging. And a lot of the stitching. And all my mojo is still suffering, so I'm calling December...

Do What You Will December
Do you have gifts you need to finish? Projects you're sick of looking at that you want done? Or maybe you just want some nice, relaxing stitching for a hectic month? Anything goes this month!

So, it's not technically a theme, but we'll have one last post together on December 31st to share what we managed to work on during the holidays (or do a year-in-review). I have decided not to run Theme-a-licious next year. I have really, really enjoyed stitching themes with all of you and seeing all the creative things you have been doing with the themes! However, there are a ton of great SALs to participate in out there, and participation here has been waning. Perhaps I'll start back up in 2016; who can say?? Or maybe I'll get bored halfway through 2015 and need themes to push me along again. ;) I'll more than likely do March Madness again, anyway!

So how did your No-Xs November go? Was it a challenge going "off the grid"? =) What will you do with your freedom in December? Please add your link below (to your latest Theme-a-licious post), and visit some other Themers if you can (everyone loves comments and encouragement!) Our last post will be on December 31st.

Old Geek-outs