Feb 12, 2009


Well, there is a LITTLE progress to report. I probably would have completed the border last night if it weren't for the buttonhole pinwheels in the center of the blue flowers:Oey vey...I had the darnedest time trying to figure these out! I think I must have "doodled" it a dozen times before the light bulb hit me on the head and I went upstairs to haul out my stitch books. Good 'ol Reader's Digest....their "Complete Guide to Embroidery Stitches" allowed me to get these suckers on the linen without having to wash my mouth out with soap afterwards.

Now as for that border....I did something on the top of it that I have NEVER done in all of my stitchy life: I reversed the stitches! When Aunt Chrissy taught me to stitch, she was very clear that your x's must always be done the same way. She said this rather pointedly, so I took it as gospel and had never broken the rule. Up until last night. Stupid me...I turned the project a 1/4 turn (which I KNOW not to do), but what can I say? Jeremy Irons was demanding my full attention and I was all the way across the top before I realized my mistake. Now I have the monumental task of talking myself off the ledge about ripping all of those stitches out. The little devil on one shoulder says "Come on, screw it. You know you wanna' leave 'em in there and get this thing finished. Besides...who will ever know?" and the little angel says "Now, Coni Jo. You know that you will keep yourself up nights thinking about this, so why not address the issue at once and make it all right with the world again."

Considering the fact that my little devil almost ALWAYS beats the crap out of my little angel, I just might leave well enough alone and not tell anybody about this.

Oh. Wait. I just did that.

My other dilemma with this piece is the argument as to whether or not I need to add the letters. I am completely "sampler-impaired", so I am not exactly up on all of the technicalities in the Official Sampler Rule Book, but instinct tells me that I probably should go ahead and put them in there for a more "finished" look. Besides...the girls at Blackbird Designs surely know a whole lot more about needlework than I could ever hope to, so maybe I'll try it their way and see how it goes?

I am determined to learn about samplers. I have a great appreciation for them, but am sad that I have not yet taken the time to learn about their history. I am thinking that a good web search for some books might be in order this afternoon.

I'll leave you with a little pic of my boy. He has been particularly snuggly these last few days because we're having high winds and I don't think he likes the noise. That, and his evil nemesis, Steve Squirrel has been eating all of the feed out of the bird feeder this morning. You will be happy to know, however, that I confiscated the little pea shooter that Stewey borrowed from his cousin. (Bosco went to work with Aunt Chrissy today, so he told Stewey he wouldn't need it.) Methinks these boys need better supervision.


  1. Coni, first off, this stitching is yours--if you like it without the letters, then leave it without the letters. Samplers were mainly either learning pieces or a place to practice and keep records of new stitches. If you know all of your letters then you don't need to stitch all of them. Of course, if you're needing to be reminded, go ahead and stitch them. I think your stitching of the vase of flowers looks splendid just as it is, and your buttonhole middles are spot on. Now, the row of border where the stitches are going in the wrong direction--that I'd fix. It would drive me absolutely more bonkers than I already am. (what with having a hubby who is always gone, an adult son living with us and taking up so much room, and three animals who think they own the place). As your great friend Miss LJP told you, change what you want, its your piece. What attracted you to buy it in the first place? Did you even notice the letters then?

  2. Funny you would ask, Deb. Nope, I didn't even know there were letters on this piece until I was about 1/2 way through the stems and leaves. And, I think you're right....I'm going to fix that top border line.

  3. The button hole pin-wheels look awesome - I'd never guess they gave you an ounce of trouble.

    I agree with Deb about the letters - if you like it better without - leave em off!

    As for the border, is it just part of the border you stitched with the Xs in the wrong direction? Or the whole thing? I'd just make sure the whole border had them going in the same direction.

  4. Your piece is looking great Coni. I am in agreement with Deb that the border would drive me nuts knowing it is the wrong way around. I would change it now before you stitch any further and then have to go back and pull it out. Rather do it now then go through the agony later. How cute does Stewey look in that photo!!!! Who would have thought that such an adorable creature would have such a devious little mind.......

    Best wishes,

  5. Oooh... I love that color blue - it looks almost like a periwinkle. Very pretty! I'm with Debs (and the others) - I would definitely take out the stitches that I put in the wrong way - I would know that I'd made a mistake, and my eyes would be always instantly drawn to the mistake, so I wouldn't have the appreciation for the piece that I otherwise might have.

  6. Hi Coni,

    I am surprised you never turn your work when you stitch - I am notorious for turning my stitching upside down to stitch - sometimes sideways but definitely upside down. Even when I've taken drawing classes, I've done the same thing. Maybe it has to do with my astigmatism/nearsightedness lol :) Do the sampler however you want - it's your piece to live with, no one elses!

    Love the pic of Stewey!

  7. If that is all you have done of the border, then frog it.
    I also turn my pieces, but I am sort of adept at stitching
    "backwards?" so the x's all cross the in the same way. One of my multitudinous talents!
    The vase of flowers is lovely just as it is IMHO.

  8. I feel the pain of the reversed cross stitches having done it in a project once. They had to come out as I kept hearing my grandmother's voice in my head - her stitching was meticulous. :D