When Life Happens Episode #95

We’re back…. AGAIN! Yes it’s been a few months since we’ve recorded a podcast and we’ve missed chatting together about everything crafty. But life happens! And one thing we can do when life happens is to learn from it. This episode we update you on what’s been happening the last two months and then sharing how we’re scheduling our crafty time.

img_6544

Check out Sarah from Stitchin’ Mommy. She was the fellow Flosstuber that gave us so many great suggestions about how to schedule our time to find balance between projects.

And don’t forget to check out our guest appearance on Stephanie Socha Design’s podcast Make and Decorate! You can find episode 5 on her website or on iTunes.

Like us on Facebook: Hobbies Up To Here

Subscribe to us on iTunes: Hobbies Up To Here

Check out our YouTube channel: Katie V. with Hobbies Up To Here

Check out our Zazzle shop for your Hobbies Up To Here merchandise!

And follow us on BlogLovin: Hobbies Up To Here

Pop by on Instagram: Hobbies Up To Here

Kitting Up!

Have you ever excitedly grabbed a new cross stitch chart, then quickly pulled out your (or so you thought!) extensive stash of fabric, floss and needles only to find that you were missing key elements that you needed to start your project right at that moment?

Argh!  Join the club!

Because I’ve had this happen one too many times, I’ve committed to kitting up my projects ahead of time.  What’s “kitting” you ask?  Wellll lemme tell you!  It works!  It’s saved me many a tear and tantrum lol!

Here’s how I go about kitting a project:  As soon as I get a new chart, I go to the aforementioned stash, and start shopping.  Hopefully, I have stitching fabric that will work well, and one that I enjoy stitching on, that also is a color compliment to the chart design.  What’s the point of buying fabric if I don’t use it, right?  Next, I grab my DMC floss, and begin to search for the chart’s list of colors, checking them off one by one.  Then (and here’s my favorite part!) I go to my hand and over dyed floss, and see of I can substitute them for any DMC I’m missing, or switch out the DMC I’ve pulled for more custom dyed colors.  I’ve also taken the time to print out conversion charts from Stitches ‘n Things for Weeks Dye Works, Classic Colorworks Threads and Gentle Art Sampler Threads to make things easier for me.

img_8120

New haul! Now to start organizing and kitting them up!

img_8175

Shopping for floss in my stash! Some of these skeins are over thirty years old lol!

img_8176

Ahhhhhhh all the gorgeousmus stitching fabric options in my “collection”!

img_8174

I made some project envelopes after following instructions from Vonna Pfeifer’s YouYube tutorial. Everything is present and accounted for, and in a safe place! I can start stitching on any one of these projects any time I want. 🙂

When I’m done with that part of the process, I make a list of anything I’m missing.  Whether I shop online, or run to Joanne for DMC or my local needlework shop We, Of The Needle for speciality items, it’s my goal to have EVERYTHING in place and in a project envelope for when I can sit down and stitch.  No more frustration!

I hope this helps!

Happy Stitching!

Dori 🙂

Like us on Facebook: Hobbies Up To Here

Subscribe to us on iTunes: Hobbies Up To Here

Check out our YouTube channel: Katie V. with Hobbies Up To Here

And follow us on BlogLovin: Hobbies Up To Here

Pop by on Instagram: Hobbies Up To Here

When To Ditch A Project

It’s never easy to admit when a craft is no longer working for you.

What? You say that’s NEVER happened to you? Lies!

Every crafter has had that moment when a project or a style or a craft no longer brings you joy and you need to make a decision about what to do. Should you power through and finish? Well, most of us would because that’s what we do! We finish!

(or we quietly stuff it away in a cupboard and forget about it until years later when we decide to declutter and find the abandoned project buried deep within the recesses of a dark drawer….but that’s a whole other blog post…)

But there is another path we can choose…

This week I had to make the decision about my newest cross stitch project. It was a kit passed on to me from my mom. She received it from a friend that didn’t stitch and wanted to find a good, crafty home for it to go to. So my mom adopted it but soon realized it wasn’t her style so she kindly passed it on to me so that I could sink my teeth into cross stitching with a simple project.

But not long after starting did the real struggle begin. My stitches looked clumpy and I couldn’t clearly see where my next stitch was supposed to go. The fabric I was stitching onto was separating funny and my thread snapped when I had to remove a few stitches.

Now I’ve stitched in the past so I’m not completely newbie at this so I was starting to get frustrated. My memory of stitching was not this daunting! I’d never had my floss snap! And my stitches had never started out fine and then begin to turn straight. I had to undo stitch after stitch to try to figure out what I was doing wrong.

Then I saw my mom and explain my situation. And she just looked and me as say “Then don’t do it.”

WHAT?! Stop a project and not push through!?! INSANE!

But she’s right. Crafting shouldn’t be a chore. It should be fun and satisfying with a little side of challenging. And not SO challenging that you want to pull your hair out!

I did I what she suggested. I pulled my project out of the hoop (because let’s be real, I can always use a good hoop) and ditched this cross stitch project. I’m going to move on to bigger and better things that bring me joy!

ditch.png

Dori’s In Stitches! Episode #71

Stitching, floss, and needles, OH MY!
Dori has been dying to share with us her newly rediscovered hobby, counted cross stitching. It’s been a love of her’s for years but it’s recently come back around to the forefront of her mind.

I shared with Dori a hack for storing all her DMC floss. This was shared in the Twilters group on Facebook. It’s from a post on Mary Corbet on how to use comb binding to hang your DMC floss in a file box.

Photo Courtesy of Needle ‘n Thread.

Dori has been playing with cross stitching monthly boxes. Her first box was from the Fat Quarter Shop called Hello There! Each month she gets a new piece of linen, buttons, and a needle minder all to make these adorable stitched projects.

She also gave StitchyBox a try and loved what she received from them! Originally she was on a waiting list but a spot opened up and she received a box full of stitching yummies.

All of these goodies has really fueled her passion for stitching to reignite and burn brightly. She wrote about her newest projects like band samplers and patterns by Heaven and Earth Designs.

She’s also discovered a new app that is really turning out to be a useful tool to read her patterns. 

Like us on Facebook: Hobbies Up To Here

Subscribe to us on iTunes: Hobbies Up To Here

Check out our YouTube channel: Katie V. with Hobbies Up To Here

Tune in for some Periscope fun: Katie V.

And follow us on BlogLovin: Hobbies Up To Here

Pop by on Instagram: Hobbies Up To Here

Stitch It Up!

It’s been almost thirty years, and I can still hear it now….

The unique sound of dial-up on my new computer and those infamous words…YOU’VE GOT MAIL!

Our first foray into the realm of the Internet was through AOL.  The whole family would gather around, excitedly waiting for our Dell computer to connect….and voila! we were in uncharted, wonderful, scary waters.  Through that simple connection, I found a wealth of information relating to my then obsession, counted cross stitch.

I made a new friend, who guided me to chat rooms and message boards relating to all sorts of needlework.  She introduced me to a whole new level of stitched art, called “band samplers”.  Worked usually on linen over two threads, the band sampler consists of rows or “bands” of intricate stitches that often included beads, cotton, silk or perle cotton thread, and various other textures like braided metallic threads.

p.txt

Photo Courtesy of Joanne Perry of Serendipitous Stitching

Fabulous, yes?

I was also encouraged to buy a reference book called “The Proper Stitch” by Darlene O’Steen.  Ms. O’Steen gives the long and rich history of samplermaking which she documents back to the 1500’s, as well as detailed instructions on each stitch. She concludes with two stunning sampler charts, The Proper Stitch Sampler and Our English Heritage Sampler. I have yet to choose which one I’m going to stitch….I need to practice the various stitches first!

img_7207

Thanks to my friend Lori a.k.a. mrskvlca on Instagram, I now have a HUGE stash of linen, Lugana and Aida fabric, silk and cotton threads, and beads to choose from. Having a standing frame to work on also lends to the creative and authentic setting.

img_7243

And finally, for your viewing pleasure, a video from YouTube that gives you an idea of what a band sampler is. This one is unique….the bands are normally stitched in horizontal rows. The rows on this video, are diagonal! Thus, this sampler is called a Twisted Band Sampler.    

Do you have any experience with this type of stitching?  I’d love to know!

Enjoy!

Dori

Like us on Facebook: Hobbies Up To Here

Subscribe to us on iTunes: Hobbies Up To Here

Check out our YouTube channel: Katie V. with Hobbies Up To Here

Tune in for some Periscope fun: Katie V.

And follow us on BlogLovin: Hobbies Up To Here

Pop by on Instagram: Hobbies Up To Here