Tuesday 29 April 2014

Flash Start

Just a really, really quick post today (I do have more to show and share from last weekend, but that will have to wait a while longer becaaaaause): After some shipping issues, this floss I ordered for that bookmark has finally arrived. The bookmark for my mom's birthsday. The birthday that is tomorrow. And while it is absolutely lovely, I'm going on a 24-hour stitching frenzy now, so please excuse me for the time being :)

Tuesday 22 April 2014

April IHSW & SFS

So, it's the tuesday after Easter now, and even in Germany, the weekend in therefor April IHWS is officially over - so let me share what happend. In case you're wondering: Firefox is still on strike, so I decided to ditch him and I'm now using Chrome for all of my blogy needs.

I have to admit that I haven't been very good this weekend. I already told you about lots of the things that keep me from stitching at the moment, and even though I got to join my girls in the hangout for some much appreciated girl time, I didn't get a whole lot done. The best I can show you is my progress on Lady & the Tramp, which has now been on the go for almost exactly one month - not bad at all if you consider anything else I had going on!

But there is still a lot left to do - I included a picture of the full fabric for scaling reasongs. Let's see how long this one will take me, yet alone all the other from the collection I want to make.

Then came yesterday, and I was really determined to work on PT and eventually get this next border section done in April. So I put in a few stitches here and a few stitches there...and just couldn't get into it. At all. So I decided that it would probably be for the best to put PT away for a while. It's not forgotten, and I wont't let it become one of these oldold UFOs - I'll just try a few stitches here and there and hope that eventually, I'll feel like completing this endless border.

So what now? Of course I could have been a good girl and work on one of my WIPs, and maybe I would have, but my grandma kind of convinced me to start something else. Not like I didn't want to anyway. You see (and with that, let's just include my SFS-post here as well, I'll be too busy this week to think of buying stuff anyway), I really wanted to be good this month, but then I made a big mistake and went over to ebay. And there was this woman who apparently bought kits, used only the fabric, than resold the pattern and the floss, and I was lucky to get Joan Elliott's 'Angel of Cross Stitch' this way for only 4.28€ ($5.91).

I thought I would be safe to not start it yet because, well, no fabric (I originally wanted to get something colored or with some kind of pattern on it or something, but upon realizing that all that white in her wings and shirt and apron isn't stitchted but just the background shining through, I decided to stick with white), but then I realized that I did, in fact, have the most perfect fabric for it: remember this white 28ct evenweave I originally got for The Enchanter until I figured out where to buy the perfect fabric? That one is the perfect replacement for the 14ct white aida missing from the kit. So...I started it yesterday. Found out the fabric is awefully soft, so I have to be really careful as to not disort it while stitching (don't know what brand that's supposed to be anyway...), but if I am, it turns out just gorgeous. So...looks like more border stitching for the time being (I wont cut the fabric before finishing the upper border so  know exactly how much I need), but at least this one is much simpler than the one on PT (at least I think/hope so).

Sunday 20 April 2014

Things that are keeping me busy

So, lots of things going on for me at the moment - nothing scary, just lots and lots and lots of interesting and/or fun stuff that's keeping me from blogging and sometimes even stitching! Mostly my own fault for getting over-excited with things too, oh well. But just as promised, let me give you a quick overview of how am wasting spending me time at the moment.

A - Master Thesis/Work
Well in theory, this should be not only the first, but also the biggest and most important point on the list, but to be honest, I'm being a little lazy at the moment. I hope that will change once there really is work to do, for now it just trial and error and trying to fixing some bugs, and I don't have a lot of patience for that :/ But I', doing to best to find my work rhythm, and getting on with stuff so I can finish by October/November as planned.

B - Gaming
Probably the REAL biggest time eater here. I'm still trying to get done with Final Fantasy XIV (well, not like you could actually finish it, but I just want the Platinum and then get over with it) so I'm investing quite some time to get ready for my last instances and trophies and stuff. Also some other games want to be played, I finally finished Okami (the HD remake on PS3, I also have the Wii-version but abandoned it halfway through some years ago - shame on me!). If you get the chance to play it, please to, it's such a charming game with it's Japanese brush-style graphics and everything. Then some mini games, like one with the most awesome title 'Floating Cloud God Saves the Pilgrims in HD' AND I finally finished Assassin's Creed 2 today - jup, I [SPOILER]went to kill the Pope on EASTER and I'll probably go to hell for that[/SPOILER]. Lot's of other games still waiting for me, I'm doing my very best to finish them one by one, sigh.

C - Crocheting
Carfting-wise, I spent more time thinking about yearn and hooks and floss, fabric and needles. First, I wanted to get Felix' smartphone cover done, but that wasn't to be just yet: I was adamant about using this beautiful dark blue yarn that had been in my stash forever, and completely ignored the fact that it was more or less falling apart - I just crocheted reallyreally loose, and then the whole thing ended up being a good bit too big for Felix' S3 and also I had no way to safely fasten a belt loop. Oh well, I'll try again with some sturdier yarn eventually, and maybe figure out something else to do with what I have now. Instead I started making an oven mitten using Anchor Magic Line, one of the most beautiful (and most expensive) cottons I've ever used, and a pattern I had already done twice before (it was a free hand out at craft stores a while ago, and I promised Carla to type and translate it for her, so if you're interested as well...). I finished it yesterday, now onwards to new projects!

I also spent quite some time sorting through my remaining yarn-stash that was spread across half of the house, put it all together in one place and categorized everything. So after living in a big old mess for about a week, here's the result (still some mess left around the boxes, but at least everything is tidy inside them...):

So what do we have here....a) is yarn I have a decent amount of, enough to make something 'real'. Most of it was bought for specific project that didn't work out in the end (I frogged several balls of yarn from such projects while sorting...sadly, but had to be done) and that is now waiting for a new purpose. I have ideas for some of it, and am still looking for others. 2) is all the other yarn I have and that's either planned for smaller projects, or just so nice and fluffy and waiting to be used on Amigurumi or borders or something like that. Also a lot of really thin cotton a friend gave me once and of which I still don't know what to use it for, and two half-finished projects I decided to keep and pick up eventually. 3) is yarn that is to nice to through away, but of which I'm quite sure it will never be used for anything proper anymore - this is my leftover project, going to be either one big patchwork blanket or a few totes or something like that. 4) is assorted cotton I want to use for several oven mittens and oven cloths. 5) is just downright trash and some projects that weren't worth frogging, probably going to end up as filling for some future projects.

D - Movies/Shows
There was also a lot of movie/show watching going one once again, most of it together with Felix - since he's gone home, I did more gaming and less watching. So...we finally got Frozen on BlueRay two weeks ago (hadn't seen it in theater) and we already watched it three times (two times in German, once in English - German Olaf is much better in my opinion, and I love Elsa's singing voice, it's the same acress as Elphaba in the German Wicked cast, but for the rest of the cass I prefer the English actors, a guess) Also Tangled was on TV twice (which we also hadn't seen yet), and so we watched it - twice. We saw The Great Gatsby (same conclusion as with the book - brilliant acting/writing, but that story is way to depressing for my taste) and we rewatched 'Asterix and Obelix take on Cesar' - I'm not sure, how well known are these guys in the US? Never seen anything about them in English so far. We also started watching Betas, one of amazon's exclusively produced shows about a gang of App-developers in silicon valley...it's quite funny, but clearly aiming to be something like The Big Bang Theory, which it just can't reach. I hope I didn't forget anything here, but I guess that's it.

E - Reading
I usually read about half a dozen books in paralel, and I'm not even going to start on them before I'm done reading, but last week I did get my library card renewed used it to borrow 'Der Schrecksenmeister' by German author Walter Moers. I wish I had started reading his stuff earlier, it's just brilliant - it's like a parody on fantasy literature, but also a (though a little absord) fantastic fantasy novel itself. I'll go bring it back to library on Wednesday, and see if I can get any of his other works. As far as I gathered, Der Schrecksenmeister has been published in English as 'The Alchemaster's Apprentice', but I can't garantee that it's as brilliant as the original, of course.
I'm although going to mention something else here, although it doesn't actually qualify as 'reading': Thanks to Carly, I decided to gice audio books a try. Thankfully, our library has quite a lot of them, both physical copies and digital downloads, and I'm trying both at the moment. The last train ride to Felix was spent listening to Iny Lorentz' 'The wandering Harlot', and it was quite fun - no literal masterpiece, but niece to listen to. Right now I'm listening to Astrid Fritz' 'Die Hexe von Freiburg' (The with of Freiburg, but I don't think there is a translated version of this book), which is quite interesting because Freiburg is actually the town I was born and still live in. I still prefer reading myself, but audio books are absolutely an option for historical novels or crime stories and stuff like that, which I like, but don't love as much as my other genres.

F - Stuff
Well of course there has been also other suff, like meeting friends, going to an awesome 20s party, shopping, trying to get through the mess that is my room, and so on, but I think I said everything that's insteresting, and this post is already to long as it is. IHSW post will be on tomorrow, monday after Easter is another holiday here so I'll just call it a long weekend, I guess. So...see you, and also thanks for everyone's comments, I still haven't figured out why my broser keeps eating my answers. Carla, I'm glad you got your stitching-mojo back, Nancy, your Tully is lovely, Krystal, don't worry, I'm sure we will catch up stash-wise eventually, everyone else: thanks a lot for reading and commenting, I appriciate every single one of you!

Tuesday 15 April 2014

April WIPocalypse

Wait, it's THAT time of the month again? Already? Where did time go? Oh boy, I really did neglect my blog the last two weeks, and while I'm really sorry for that, I feel like I do have some valid excuses. Post about them will probably up tomorrow or the day after that or at least by the weekend, I PROMISE. That I didn't do much about everyone else's blog is a different story - I had to reinstall my browser (or at least get a new proile for now) and I'm still having a hard time getting everything as I want it again, with bookmarks and blocked scripts and everything. n fact, I read most of your blogs, but some comments I tried to write were eaten, but I'll try again soon. For now, let me just take care of this WIPocalypse post for today.

This month's topic is How do you keep your stash organized? and I'm SO glad you ask because - frankly, I don't. Thing is, I didn't have much of a stash until very recently, only a dark and cramped box were I put everything I had given up on or couldn't use at the moment and oh my looks like I did have a stash after all, I just didn't know what it was. Anyways, know that I startet working on more complex projects and also accumulating lots of to-be-worked-on stuff, I felt the need for a new system, so right now I'm in the process of getting everything out of this dark cramped box and onto a shelf.
As you can see, I'm by no means finished yet (also, my room is still a mess from getting everything out of the box and not yet on the shelf, and yes, that might be one of the reasons for neglecting my blog a little). The general idea is that by having everything out in the open, I'll be kind of forced to actually keep it all neat and tidy, and to not lose contect with everything I already have, so hopefully, I won't find stuff like this in the future:

That's three (yep, three) table clothes (is that an actual plural form?) that are more or less started....these are from a time when I was just starting off with stitching an relatives thought it would be nice to just give me stuff, no matter if I had not picked the design myself. I don't really feel like working on them know, especially since I lost the patterns for two of them (but one is printed anyway, so I'll figure it out, and the other has only two very simple motives, one and a half of which I already made once), but I guess eventually I'll get around and stitch them. But first I'll need to figure out what other horrors this box might still be holding...

Enough with the dark talk, let's get on to my actual stitching progress! It's not as much as I would have liked it to be, but as it's strechted across three projects, it's still not bad, I guess.

First, I spent some more time with Peacock Tapestry. I got through what I suppose is not even half a section of the border (the middle sections on the vertical borders are pretty big) before I got bored - I did power stitch another section right before that, after all - ans switched on to another project. But I hope that I can finish at least this section in April (there's still a bit more to do but the whole section didn't fit inside the frame).

That other project was Lady and the Tramp, and here, I did make some progress - at least, I can't show the whole thing off in the Q-snap now as it doesn't fit anymore. I finished the first tree, which fades right into the next tree, but thankfully, they can be distinguished by color quite easily, and am now working on the house, which has some very relaxing blocks of color and also straight edges to follow. Still a little bit of tree on the side as you can see.

Last but not least, I spent a weekend at and two train rides to and from Felix' parents on my Tully bookmark, which made quite some progress. Fish is done, next to fill up the red, but I probably won't be able to finish just yet, because silly me somehow managed to order to skeins of white and one skein of red instead of the other way around.

While I was working on this on the train ride home, a women sitting across from me adressed me and wanted to know where I got the patterns and my awesome Q-snap frame, so we started talking a bit and I got to introduce her to the treasures of the internet and where they are to be found. Quite a fun experience, I never met another stitcher in real life before.

So, now you're up to date with my progress (if only I could say the same thing about my finishes page and my dA, still need to upload several pictures from march...) and everything else will follow soon, I promise. Until then, fare thee well, and stitch on!

Tuesday 1 April 2014

Peacock Tapestry Border Section 7 & more progress

So March is over (where did the time go?), and I have some progress to show. And since Felix finally had his math exam yesterday (and after all his panic making, it went pretty well...no comment on that) I'm all stress-free now and have the time to a) stitch and b) write about it ^_^

During the last few weeks, I kind of neglected my beautiful, beautiful Peacock Tapestry, so I decided to give pretty bird some extra love and care last week, which worked out quite wonderfully - I actually finished another section of the border on sunday. I switched to the right border now instead of doing the lower one first, it just felt better to do it this way. So have another closeup shot, just because I can~

I also spent some more time with Lady & Tramp - this pattern is amazing, it's huge, but then everytime I work on it it seems to go just a lot faster than I thought it would, maybe because most of the time I can stitch a lot without ever changing the color, almost no confetti thus far - so I've done a good part of a branch and a roof, and started a tree (most of the green was done yesterday while lazyly enjoying 'no exam'-time with Felix). Now the plan is to first finish the tree, then the roof, then to slowly work my way down the house.

Last of, I also want to show you the progress I made on Tully since the last time you saw it - it's not much, but I just couldn't resist doing a few stitches here and there. There probably will be more progress on this in April as I'll spend two weekends and a few extra days at Felix' parents, and bookmarks are for on the road.

So that's it about stitching for the time being. We spend a lot of time in front of the TV yesterday, finishing up NCIS season 9 (evil big cliffhanger in the very last episode) and watching Total Recall - now that is a movie I enjoyed, although maybe, it takes itself too seriously. That's what I like about Marvel movies, they are always so full of jokes and puns and stuff. Anyways, I'm told Total Recall is actually a remake of a Schwarzenegger-movie from some 20 years ago, but I'm not a big fan of Arnie (Terminator was okay, but apart from that...) though I guess I can safely be content with having seen the new version ^_^