Sunday, August 12, 2018

A Slow Sunday Stitching where I ponder how many days till Halloween???

Hello again... another week whizzed by... I know I said I'd be back last Monday to show some quilting but ...well... I don't  know what happened ...I didn't turn my machine on at all  last week... maybe this week...no promises. We've had all kinds of weather this past week... hot...  humid... dry... rainy... sunny...gray... I am pining for Fall...cool, low humidity Fall... it can't come soon enough.I LOVE FALL!!! it is my favorite season!!!

My window boxes are looking raggedy ...the petunias got leggy and the sweet potato vine is a bit droopy. From the street they look okay but up close not so much. I'm ready to pull it all out and decorate them for Fall. I've already decided that if I can get small pumpkins for the same price as a mum or decorative cabbage...and I think I can... I'm putting lots of pumpkins in the 3 smaller boxes that are high up... the beauty of this is that they won't have to be watered. I found out last year that it is hard to water the cabbages cause you can't hardly get the hose in under the leaves...live and learn. Next to petunias, mums are one of my favorite flowers ... I love all those Fall colors...and the weather...did I mention that before???? LOL

Sooooo you may be asking yourself how many days till Halloween? (we aren't even going to discuss Christmas yet, okay?) Well according to a countdown website I found there are 79 days left... plenty of time to do more Halloween stitching and right now I'm ALL about the Halloween stuff.

This week saw  my butt in my stitching chair quite a bit and I finished the Bent Creek Spooky Row...


It is really neon green in real life... in the evening it looked more minty green but in natural light it lives up to its neon label.  I played chicken with the gray floss for the letters... only had a 6" piece left when I got done...




I'm going to frog the ruff around the vulture's neck... it is a cranberry red and is too close in value to the black... that shouldn't take too long. I think this is going to hang in my back hallway.

And since I finished that piece I  broke out my Lizzie Kate ABC Halloween... got the first line done... 11 more to go...



And here's how the  whole piece of linen looks...

I painted a new piece of linen for this as I thought the first piece I did was too busy... I like this better. 

This chart came as a kit with the called for Crescent  Colors and some DMC... and they are pretty but they didn't look good with my painted linen. So I took my chart and my linen to Michael's and picked out DMC colors that I like... a nice dark orange 720 and a light orange 722 and a funky green 581 and a purply purple 333... I traded  the beige  they called for ...3042... for a yellow 726...and I think I'll change the 3848 turquoise for 3812 turquoise.

I purchased this kit around the time Lizzie Kate announced her retirement... I read on her blog that she is going to continue for a bit with the kits of these in collaboration with 123 Stitch... here  is a link to that listing... if you are interested let them know.

And if this isn't enough Halloween stuff...along with the stuff I mentioned last week I got this chart yesterday from Stoney Creek...Halloween Moon ...you can see it here...



 This is a big chart... 207 high by 150 wide.... on 32 ct that 13" x  9.5"... a LOT of Halloween... What drew me to this is the pumpkin that says Halloween with its teeth... I do like the ghosts and the owl over the moon but  I think that  all I'm going to stitch is the big pumpkin...he's 70 x 60 so that would be about 4.5" x 3.75"... that will do ... and I think I may have enough of the orange fabric with the bruises left to do it. Keep my fingers crossed... I did whack off a piece to give to a friend...but I can always dye more. 

Well there may be some more stitching time tonight after dinner. I'm having my son and DIL for the first time in weeks... they've had a ton of things going on so I enticed them over with prime rib... who can resist prime rib??? Not anyone in my family...LOL... the meat is in the oven but my remote meat thermometer isn't behaving... I keep having to check on it with my instant read thermometer... which defeats the purpose of the remote one that is suppose to alert you when the meat has reached the proper temperature...oh well... I use my  20% coupon at Bed Bath & Beyond and get a new one.

I got a bunch of little things on my calendar for next week...pick up a quilt...take my son for an appointment...get the oil changed in my car... dinner with my quilty friends... if Mother Nature helps me out and rains a bit perhaps I can skip a night or two of watering and get in more stitching time... cross your fingers...

I'm linking up with Kathy's Quilts today...and if I get some sewing done tomorrow maybe their will be a post then...hope you  have a good week ahead!

happy stitching-
carol fun 

Sunday, August 5, 2018

Slow Sunday Stitching with Flosstube overtones...

Hello everyone... hope your summer is progressing nicely. We actually had a string of days with lower humidity where I could open the windows... it was lovely. The temperatures went back up but it isn't as bad as before...or I'm getting use to it...I keep reminding myself that at least I'm not in Modesto, CA... lived there for 3 years back in the late 80s... there were 2 seasons...hot and hotter than Hell... the day we moved it it was 106...the day we moved out it was 110...and my memory is that it didn't get much cooler any time in between...ok that is a bit of an exaggeration...we did have a "winter" there one year. Temperatures got down below freezing for a couple of days and in the neighborhood I lived in there were no basements. The water pipes were PVC and the came out of the ground under the tiny crawl space beneath the house... along with everyone's sprinkler systems these pipes froze and burst. There wasn't a piece of PVC pipe to be had anywhere in the city for a week. Luckily we protected our pipes... a light bulb under a cardboard box over the juncture to the house and we the only ones on our street with running water for days....and how in the heck did I get to this story??? Oh well ...lets talk about stitching...okay??

I have gotten several projects stitched...and several are the result of projects I saw on Flosstube... I enjoy watching and somehow I think I've seen everything stitchy that is out there and then BOOM!!!..there is a chart I've never seen before and I MUST have it... this is one of them...


All Hallow's Eve by Lizzie Kate... I came across this one as a result of watching the Flosstube videos of Pam & Stephanie from Just Keep Stitchin....which lead me to the Facebook group of Pumpkin Seed Stitchers...lov'e the little mouse  at the bottom left...used Weeks Onyx and a piece of 32 ct. linen  I had painted and smushed and over dyed... I think the purple spots look like bruises...LOL..I think I'll finish this as a little pillow with either rickrack or pompom around the edges.

And one thing lead to another...(doesn't it always???) and I found another little freebie on The Silver Needle's Free Charts page... Spooky Time by Lizzie Kate...



The chart called for little stacked button to make the eyes but I have these googly eyes in my craft stash and I think they will be perfect. I have an idea to finish this as a little candy corn shaped pillow...got the idea from my friend, Heidi... should be cute to tuck into my Halloween displays.

I was able to finish all the stitching on my Autumn Welcome by The Drawn Thread...


this piece is so PRETTY!!! if I say so myself...and I do!! Here are some close-ups...



Not as many decorative stitches in this one ...which is fine... just some satin stitch acorns and half Rhodes mounds on the basket.  I already ordered the Halloween version of the Welcome and the Winter version too. I will finish this one like I did Summer...simple fabric mat and then mounted on a piece of wood.  Details: 32 ct linen... Rit Teal dye smushed in a mason jar...my own floss conversion from the silks...Gentle Arts and Weeks.


And somewhere on the internet or Flosstube or Instagram or Pinterest I saw this Bent Creek chart...Spooky Row...



And I had to have it ... my version...just started this one on Friday... stitches up quickly as I've spent a lot of time watching Flosstube...which is only going to lead me to something else, isn't it???



a close up ...


I painted this 32 ct linen with Rit Neon Green and Lemon Yellow. I had smushed dyed another piece and it was very deep dark olive green... cool looking but not  working for all the dark stitching on this chart... I'll use it for something else... I've also come to the conclusion that as much as I want to use ALL the colors of dyes that I have, I really should limit it in most cases. I forget that while the piece of linen looks great I will be stitching over it and a busy background is not usually a good idea for cross stitch. Live and learn and then overdye your mistakes...that's my new dyeing motto!!! LOL

So while I'm working on this piece Flosstube has lead me to snag these 2 projects I'm adding to my list...


I know this is a blurry pic but it is the best one I can find on the web... this is from Not Forgotten Farms and appeared in the 2013 Halloween issue of Just Cross Stitch magazine. Pam & Stephanie made me aware of this issue and I tracked it down as a digital download on Annie's Craft Store which you can see here.  This is a great deal... I paid $8 and was able to immediately access and print off this chart. There are several cute cute cute pieces in this issues so it was a bargain.

And then I saw this piece  by Heart in Hand...Halloween Parade...on Flosstube...do we see a pattern here? I should stop watching shouldn't I? Ain't gonna happen...LOL


I've tracked it down to both Stoney Creek and Everything Crossstitch...  now Everything Crossstitch has the chart but not the button pack...Stoney Creek has both...Everything Crossstitch is just up the road from me and I like to support local shops and I'm not sure if I'll stitch this as one piece or as individual motifs...if I do them individually I don't need the button pack...decisions, decisions...

So I'm full blown Halloween at the moment. I am looking forward to Fall ...but then I always do...it is my FAVORITE time of the year. Can't wait to get out all my Fall decor ...but first I need to get through August. My goal today is to put away the patriotic stuff and put out a bit of late summer...I'll reuse a lot of what I had out before but plan to add some sunflowers and chickens. I wish I had stitched more of the ladies I talked about in January (which is when I should be stitching summer stuff...sheesh)... next year I want an August display of ladies and chickens...some more Pineberry Lane pieces and that new Hen Peck one by Plum Street Samplers which you can see here.  And for more eye candy check out the new pieces from Brenda Gervais at With Thy Needle and Thread right here.  I order this last night...


Is this not ADORABLE????  Not sure how I'll finish it but I had to have it...

Soooooo.... now that I've dumped all these pics and links on you I shall mosey over to Kathy's Quilts to link up today... I want you to know that the Dude has been very diligent in his inspector mode... and I've passed all my tests...


hope you have a great week... I'm going to try to post tomorrow too... I worked a bit on the quilt I promised my son...not my choice of fabrics but I'm liking the pattern and he's happy so that's the important thing.

happy stitching-
carol fun

Monday, July 23, 2018

So how long does it take to put borders on a quilt???

So just how long does it take to put the borders on a quilt?? Lets say a small inner border, cut 2.5" and then a larger border, about 8.5"?  By my calculations it takes 4 years, 10 months, 1 hour and 30 minutes...yeah that long.... I have no idea why I put this quilt top away when it was that close to being complete but I did...okay I may have some idea why...

Here is the top with its borders...


The pattern is Moda Love and its a freebie you can find here... the fabric collection is Fancy by Lily Ashbury for Moda.  I got the idea to make the blocks crazy pieced from a quilt done by Edyta Sitar which you can see here. It is a very bright and cheerful quilt...

A close up or two...




The background fabric is little snaps...click on the pictures to see it more clearly...it came from  a Gina Martin collection. I really like this combination of fabric and pattern and design variation and I will do it again...and you can't stop me....LOL.  

To make the crazy pieced blocks I stacked 6 or 7 10" squares and then randomly sliced them. Next I shuffled the cut pieces and sewed them back together. Then I squared the blocks up. I'm thinking of using this same technique with another collection or two of fabrics I have...maybe some Anna Marie Horner or Amy Butler or Debbie Mumm or Heather Ross... lots of possibilities out there. And hopefully it won't take as long to complete, but don't hold your breath...

Oh the reason I put this away... well it was October when it got to this point and to me this is a summer quilt so I wasn't going to use it for a while so I put it in a lovely plastic bin where it has languished for the past 4 years... I'd hang my head in shame but it would just give me a neck ache...so I won't...

And to further dazzle you with more completed quilting (I know your head is spinning... I haven't done a quilting post in eons)...I present my  American Jane Two Step quilt...bound washed and on my bed...


and from another angle which isn't easy as this room isn't that big...



I started this quilt last September for National Jelly Roll Day...the pattern is called Two Step, it is from the Missouri Star Quilt Company and you can see a tutorial on it here and read about my fabric choices here.  As I remember I started with a Spring-a-Ling jelly roll but added fabrics from other American Jane collections that I had in my rather large stash of her fabrics. I LOVE American Jane fabrics!!! I know all the center squares came from numerous charm packs I've collected over the years.

And a close up or two...






The last pic shows the quilting pattern nicely...the panto is called Flower Child (reminds me of Spirograph designs of my childhood)  and the quilting was done by Quilting by David...you can see his website here. This is the first time I've ever sent a quilt off  through the mail to be quilted. I was very happy with his work and how quickly he turned the job around.  I sent him the top and the back and purchased the batting from him. If you buy your batting from him (which saves you money in shipping to him) he pays for the return shipping.   I have sent the Moda Love quilt at the top of this post to him... can't wait to see what he does with it. He has a ton of patterns on his site but I let him pick the panto for me... check out his Instagram and you'll see what I mean... he told me he picks the pantos most of the time and he has a gift for pairing the right panto with the quilt design...check out his Instagram here...he posts all the time. Oh and he lets you pick the date you want the quilt done by... I gave him a date and he got it back sooner...he says he always tries to turn around a new customer's first quilt pronto...and he did.

So all this completion stuff has gotten me back into my sewing room and working on various projects. I have another...ok, a couple...well maybe several...um coming clean...A LOT of tops that don't need much work to be finished...and I'd like to get them sewn and off to be quilted. I'm working on those projects and I'm starting on the quilt I promised my son. I'm cutting the fabrics today and plan to hit the quilt store... Homegrown Homesewn  this week to get some Grunge for the sashing. Lots of plans... lots of plans...

My quilting mojo got lost around the time Judy's Design Wall Monday link ended and I was unaware till recently that there are several other quilting link ups that I could join ...and today I will... first there is Small Quilt and Doll Quilts (which took over Judy's link) ... and Monday Making at Love Laugh Quilts...and Oh Scrap! at Quilting is more fun than housework...and Moving it Forward at  Em's Scrapbag...   you can click on any of the underlined blogs to get to the linkups... I'm going to link this post up to a couple and see if that keeps me moving in the right direction. Just a little sewing every week would be a good thing.

happy stitching-
carol fun

Sunday, July 22, 2018

Slow Sunday Stitching with Showers...and that's okay...

Well last week was a scorcher until Friday and then it rain... A LOT... and things have cooled down nicely but the humidity remains... I'll take it. I've been watering watering watering watering... I even broke out the sprinklers last Tuesday as the lawn was looking quite brown and toasty in several spots. I hate playing with sprinklers. My yard is irregular and  I can never keep the water just on the lawn... I always seem to get the sidewalk too and water is too darn expensive for that...and when I thought I had it adjusted so I wasn't watering the sidewalk I was washing the windows... oh well they needed it as they were dusty. Yesterday and today have been cloudy and showers on and off...which is the forecast for the week so I probably won't have to be out there watering...yeah...more time for stitching.

And I did find a substantial amount of stitching time in the week ... it sure helps when you don't have an appointment out of the house everyday. First I finished  the stitching on the With Thy Needle & Thread  Tricks and Treats...


Ain't she adorable??? I love her punkin face and that toothy grin!!!  And with this one stitched I broke out another Halloween piece....this one is smaller...



This is a Lizzie Kate freebie I found in the Files section of the Facebook group Pumpkin Seed Stitchers... if you go to FB and ask to join the group you can get access to the chart too. On 32 ct. this one finishes about 3" square... I'm thinking it will be a little pillow. The fabric  is a chunk of that piece I smushed overdyed last week. I like deep orange with the purple bruises. I don't have much to finish here ...maybe get it done tonight. 

I saw this graph on the Flosstube video of Just Keep Stitchin' with Pam and Stephanie, Episode #54...which you can see here... they are a hoot. There are also other seasonal stitching FB groups and they are listed in the space under See More of this episode... Candy Cane Stitchers, Star Spangled Stitchers,  Watermelon Seed Stitchers....I admit I went and  asked to join them all ... I don't really do a lot of FB but it is fun to see what others are stitching.

And I started my Welcome Autumn by the Drawn Thread...



The fabric is a dustier teal than is showing here and I'm very happy with it and my color changes. As I said last week it is charted for silks and I'm doing my choices in Gentle Arts/Weeks/Crescent Colors. I'm using GA Sarsaparilla for the letters and I like the contrast with the teal. The blob on the far right is going to be a squirrel... GA Toasted Barley... I thought he might be a bit light but the W at the other end isn't a real strong block so I think it will balance out.  The pot on the M is missing its decorative center band but it is a raised stitch so I'll wait till I'm almost done to do it so it doesn't get worn. The thread on the pot is Weeks Kentucky Bluegrass which is a nice darker tone of the linen.

A very successful crafty week it was. I can't wait to start several other Halloween pieces and I'm having second thoughts about some of the linen I painted last week. I think I made them too busy... gonna start over and I'll smush overdye those busy pieces... nothing will go to waste...there will be other charts that will work for them.

And if you are interested check back here on Monday... I've actually had some quilting mojo return and work on not one but two quilts!!!  I sent one off to a new to me quilter and he turned it around pronto... I bound it and washed it Saturday and it is on my bed... very happy...and that motivated me to get out a top I started eons ago and finish it up... and I sent it to the long arm quilter today. Can't wait for its return... and all of this successful finishing has me wanting to start a quilt I told my younger son I'd make for him this year...notice I gave myself a year to do this and it isn't a difficult quilt I just knew I had no quilting ambition at the first of the year. I have plans to get the blocks cut out this week...wish me luck!!

I'm feeling a bit verklempt over my younger son... he is Aspergers...high functioning autism...one of his main interests is Japanese anime and there was a convention called Anime Ohio 2018 on Saturday. He bought himself a ticket online and was excited to go. Lots of people cosplay...that is dress up as their favorite characters...he does that sometimes but this time just wanted to go and shop the vendors (very similar to us crafty people) and take pictures of great costumes...which is exactly what he did. I dropped him off and when I picked him up he said he had bought something for me... I was intrigued because I didn't know what would have been there that he would think I would like...and then he pulled this guy out of a bag...


Is she not stinking adorable??? She stands about 4" tall and is crocheted around some sort of squishy egg that squeaks when you shake it.  My son said the guy who made this had other anime and Pokemon characters but when he saw this he knew he had to buy it. I have her displayed with my star-spangled stuff and I'm sure I'll find a spot for her in my next display of summertime stuff.  It was a such a sweet thoughtful gift... it warms my heart....

I'll be linking up with Kathy's Quilts today and tomorrow I'll show some quilty stuff and see if I can figure out where I can link that up with that. I really miss Design Wall Monday that Judy at Patchwork Times use to do... I know someone else picked up the feature but I've forgotten who that is...

happy stitching-
carol fun

Sunday, July 15, 2018

Slow Sunday Stitching where much is contemplated and nothing is finished...

Hello there... sorry I missed posting last week but I just didn't have anything blog worthy to talk about...not that I'm sure what I have this week is blog worthy but it does have pictures... and that's helpful, isn't it?

Things have been busy busy busy here...lots of appointments and places to go ...and it has been SWELTERINGLY HOT... all those petunias and marigolds I've planted have demanded nightly watering...still hot but hoping for rain the next couple of days... for which I will be very grateful since I volunteered to water my neighbor's plants too as he's on vacation...

Since I got my patriotic display up I haven't added anything to it... I had plans to add to it but they haven't totally materialized. I did finish stitching this little piece...


This is a freebie from Marly at Samplers and Santas called Gold Star...you can find it here.  She has lots of cute little pieces that are free. I started this for StitchMaynia... after I finished I noticed I'm off at the bottom... I think I might take out that last row of navy blue stitches and then all the letters will be spaced  2 stitches from the design.

And continuing on the patriotic theme I did finish stitching this half of Farmyard Parade by With Thy Needle and Thread...


I used a piece of 32 ct linen I painted ...it is more yellow orange than is showing up here. I made the chickens darker and as I was stitching I realized that the chickens have eyes but the people don't...huh??? I added a bit of stitch to give her an eye... Brenda calls her Ora but I call her Lena since her counterpart is called Ole... and here's what I got done on Ole...


Ole has big pants and I'm not sure I have enough floss to stitch them... ordered some more and should be here next week. My plan is to display them on this frame I got at Hobby Lobby...


And I'll  Priscilla-fy it a bit with some frou-frou...but first I have to stitch them...

And then I got sidetracked ... lots of people are stitching Christmas in July for a jump on the holiday, but Halloween comes before Christmas and I want more seasonal pieces so I started this...


Isn't she a hoot???  This is Tricks & Treats from With Thy Needle & Thread. I found it here at The Silver Needle.  The fabric is brighter than is showing in this pic... 32 ct I painted... it was charted in DMC but I substituted some  Weeks for the head and the dress... now somewhere I thought I read that the dress needed 2 skeins and I couldn't make up my mind whether I wanted Weeks Oscar or Weeks Guacamole...and instead of ordering an additional skein of either one I decided to use one ply of each giving the dress a homespun look...at least that's what I'm calling it...and when I searched to find where I thought I read this BIG dress would need 2 skeins I can't find it... so I think I made that part up. Oh well, another "lady" with LARGE clothing... I seem quite attracted to these creatures and while it could be a reflection on my size I am going to ignore that fact... la la la la la la ... I can't hear you....

Then yesterday I got a wild hair to play with the new Rit Dyes I had bought...  I had a bottle of Neon Green and a bottle of Teal... and here's the trouble I got into with them.

First I decided to play with the Teal... I did notice that is has more gray in it than I thought but other than that it really seems to be pretty close to Aquamarine... I started this piece painting splotches on it but I wasn't impressed with myself, so I smushed it into the mason jar the dye was in and let it set...I like the mottled look.


This is going to be Welcome Autumn by Drawn Thread ...you can check it out here.


Now the chart calls for silks and I'm not going there so I pulled my own floss choices...


A combo of Crescent Colors and Weeks and Gentle Arts... I'm using GA Sarsaparilla for the letters ... and assortment of colors for the leaves...black crows and a Toasted Barley squirrel. There is a basket on the M that was charted in a color close to the linen color I'm substituting Weeks Kentucky Bluegrass as it is a darker shade of my linen.  Can't wait to get started on this one...

And since I was making a mess and thinking of Fall things I painted some linen for my Lizzie Kate Halloween ABCs...


This uses the Neon Green and Tangerine and Lemon Yellow... it is more intense in real life...and these are the flosses for this piece...


All the threads came with the pattern as a kit and it is still available here on 123 Stitch. Now this isn't the first piece I painted for this chart... I started out having these colors and added some purple ...and some purple splotches and that's where things got out of hand... I just didn't like it at all...the purple was too intense... so I started over and I'm happy I did. But what to do with the piece I didn't care for...well, I ended up smushing it into a mason jar with lot of tangerine dye and this is what I got...


This piece is very IN YOUR FACE in real life. I think it will make a great background for a piece stitched all in black or maybe a deep mottle purple...I'll probably end up cutting it  into smaller chunks and it won't go to waste.

So with a couple of Fall and Halloween pieces kitted up I turned my attention to Christmas...I LOVE this chart by Silver Creek Samplers... My Christmas List... which you can find here.



I love how it rhymes and how it ends with the real reason for Christmas...so I had purchased some "Natural" color 32 ct linen and it was nice but it was blah... so I started by painting some Wine Rit Dye here and there and then I did the smush it into a mason jar "technique"...


And now it is a nice mottled rosy brown which I think will go very well with the DMC flosses...


It calls for B5200 for the white but I may go with something a bit creamier... otherwise I like all the colors in this piece.

Sooooooo I have loaded myself up with projects and we won't speak of the charts I ordered last week. A nice reader sent me a pic of a new ornament by Hands On Designs and said she thought this looked like my decor...and she is spot on right...thanks for enabling me Lana!!!

 and I added this to the cart...


I LOVE that they include a tier tray and a cake stand!!! And there were some other With Thy Needle & Thread charts and some from Blackbird Designs that needed to come live with me too. I'd hang my head in shame but that would just give me a neck ache and I'd have to break out my shawl heating pad...so I won't do that...LOL

No dinner to prepare tonight...going out with my SIL and niece and her significant other and my sons and DIL to celebrate the memory of my brother James who passed away earlier this year. Every year in July he would take us all out for dinner to celebrate his stem cell transplant. At the hospital they start counting the days when you receive your transplant and continue to count them as long as you live. They consider it your  new birth date and it was ... my brother lived almost 7 1/2 years with his transplant, time which he would not have gotten without it. His death wasn't the result of his leukemia but rather from other health issues. I'm so grateful we got those extra years but it will be hard tonight... we all miss him so much. 

So my parting thoughts are stay cool and hug your loved ones... I'll link up with Kathy's Quilts and I hope everyone gets some quality stitching time in this week...

happy stitching-
carol fun 

Sunday, July 1, 2018

Patriotic Palooza on a Slow Sunday Stitching...

So perhaps one or two of you are wondering..."where in the heck have you been the last two weeks?" ...well, I've been right here in my stitching chair ... needle in hand but too lazy to post... but today I shall rectify that situation and show you all the patriotic palooza  I've been working on... let's start with the wall decor as that's what motivates me to change the rest of the doodads, knickknacks and stuff...


I have been wanting to make a patriotic quilt  for a while and I've eyed the little flag one that has been popping up all over IG but I didn't get my butt in gear...and then I remembered this quilt... I made this one a long long time ago...so long ago that I actually quilted it myself and sewed the binding down by hand... but it didn't look like this back then...it was wider and longer and had a border of that double bunting all the way around. Soooo... I cut it ...yes I did... I cut off the sides and I cut off the top and I re-did the binding and the sleeve which I salvaged and it will be this size forever more.  If you make the pic bigger you can see that the eagle and the 13 stars are blanket stitched appliqued by machine.  All the fabrics are Debbie Mumm...Debbie does patriotic very very well!!

As for the tray...


lots of bits and bobs mostly from Hobby Lobby... I want to add some small cross stitch to this and I have 2 started...hope to get them in there before the month is over.

Now onto the display shelf unit...


My theme here is patriotic/Americana/Debbie Mumm/birds...all  with a touch of yellow... very inclusive... shall we look a bit more closely?

From the top... Welcome Summer by The Drawn Thread...


Again if you make the pic bigger you can see I matted it with a navy grunge fabric and fastened that to a piece of picket fence like wood...the wood piece came from the craft aisle at Target...it was unfinished...cost $6.99 and the proportions were great for this piece. I painted it white craft paint. I will use it again for some other seasons, but I'm going to get another one to paint black or some other dark color for the Halloween Welcome I want to do.

Here are some close ups of the piece...it had quite a few decorative stitches...


I'm not a fan of backstitching but those vines and tendrils add a lot to the piece...


That flag took quite a while... and the bee skep is done in satin stitch...the little bees were little pains in the butt...I ended up stitching each one at least twice but in the end they were worth it...


The flowers in the pot are little Rhodes mounds... they pop right off the linen... very dimensional. I think this is one of  the prettiest pieces I've stitched in a long time. I'm happy with the 32 count linen I painted and my floss conversion...the piece is charted for silks... I looked at the conversion charts to Gentle Arts but didn't always like their suggestions so I rummaged through my thread stash and came up with my own choices.  I'm looking forward to doing the Autumn and Halloween versions of this Welcome...already ordered them from 123 Stitch.

Moving down...

  
That second shelf has a sparkly hat spouting sparkly fireworks ...Hobby Lobby ...couldn't resist...and the God Bless America sign was an unfinished wood piece from HL too... I colored it  with a Copic marker... maybe a little too gold but it works  for me...as for cross stitch...


Prairie Schooler July... I stitched this years ago and it has languished in a box...glad to free it... the frame was from Kohls...loved the color...it had a clip at the top that didn't work for me so I took it off and cover the hole  and filled in the rest of the space with wood painted stars from my button stash. This frame is a good size for these monthly pieces. The frame is a shiplap clipboard frame... I got it in 4 colors...this barn red, white, black and a turquoise... that should cover all my bases.

Next shelf down has more sparkly stuff...those firecrackers came  from Michaels...there was a definite glittery sparkly vibe to lots of the patriotic decorations this year and I'm a sucker for the shiny stuff...

On the cross stitch front there are two pieces....


this little bird from Blackbird Designs. It was in the booklet Souvenirs of Summer which I think is OOP. I added a #priscillafied touch with burlap and a button.

And we have one of my newest finishes... Birds of a Feather Liberty...


another enormous flag  that was so worth stitching... that ribbon was in my stash for a while and the porcelain button is at least 25 years old... glad I keep this stuff around...LOL

On the bottom shelf is another piece by The Drawn Thread... Free & Brave...


more Priscilla-like touches with a Debbie Mumm teapot ... 

Overall I'm happy with my display...this is the most I've ever had for Independence Day...I plan to leave it all up till the beginning of August when some of the stuff I had up will return and perhaps some new stuff will get mixed in.  Changing it around motivates me to keep stitching and cruising the aisles of Hobby Lobby, Michaels and Joanns... which is perhaps not great for my pocketbook but it does help the economy and that is doing my part as a productive patriotic citizen, right??? Yeah, I can BS with the best of them...LOL

So I'm thinking wherever you are you are HOT HOT HOT... I'm mean the temperature is hot, not your persona... right now it is in the 90's with  high  humidity so it feels like 100 degrees...no kidding...that's what the weather app says. And it is forecast to be this way for at least a week... I almost had a heart attack when I opened my utility bill this month...I'll be sure I'm sitting down when next month's  bill comes. The flowers seem to be doing okay...of course I've been watering regularly (and my water bill showed the results of that...sheesh)... but no one likes wilted petunias so I continue to go out just before sundown and water. According to the  local weather guy last year we had 11 days all year that were above 90...so far this year we've already had 10...and that was yesterday so we've reached that mark and will exceed it for this year...oh joy...now I don't want the sub-zero weather but I'd like it to be a bit cooler... I hope it averages out and August is more like June should have been.

I'll be linking up with Kathy's Quilts today...and if you want to see what  I'm up to in between posting here check me out with this link to Instagram... carolfun53  

Have any plans for the 4th?  My younger son and I are joining my older son and his wife and going to her parents for a cookout...need to make marinated tomatoes and pasta  salad as my contribution. Younger son is making patriotic cupcakes...should be a good time...

Hope your summer is coming along nicely...hard to believe the year  is half over... the older I get the faster it flies by...

happy stitching-
carol fun