Mindy Memories

Friday, April 22, 2005

Stitching Blog Questions

I haven't answered any of these in a while and feel like posting but am kinda "blah" about it, too. So, it's a good time for me to answer them.

1. Have you ever been asked to do model stitching?Did you do it? If so, what was your compensation? (money, stash, etc.) If not, why not?If you haven't done it, if you were asked would you? Why or why not?
I stitched a model for my LNS and one for a new designer. I took longer than planned finishing the one for the designer and after I'd finished it she decided that she wasn't making enough money from her designs and stopped. They were cute designs, too. I can't blame her though. I think few designers actually make any money and that for most of them it's a hobby and may pay for their own stitching supplies. My compensation was a free copy of the chart and my name as the stitcher, which was fine. I probably won't do it in the future because it feels too much like I'm working and then I don't enjoy it as much.

2. What is your next specialty stitch?
I really want to take a class in Hardanger. I don't dare try to teach myself as I can see that being disastrous! I've tought myself most specialty stitches from diagrams on Just Nan charts or the Just Cross Stitch Ornament issues. They are usually pretty clear. However, if I goof I can easily take it out. Goofing when you are cutting fabric is a different story. I keep hearing that it's easy, but I'm still skeptical :)

3. How has your stitching evolved since you first started stitching?
Well, not only has my own stitching evolved but stitching itself has evolved since I started over twenty years ago. When I first started I was 10-12ish and I only stitched simple ornaments and such. In the past years I've branched out and am now favoring designs with lots of color, beads and metallics - hence my Mirabilia obsession. Recently I've also discovered Chatelaine and plan on starting one sometime next year when I'm better able to afford it -- that's not a complaint, as I think the designs and materials are well worth the expense, just a fact. My technique is also better: I railroad and my backs look pretty good -- not perfect but pretty decent. I also stitch exclusively on linens and evenweaves because I enjoy stitching on them better and also because I personally think the Aida background is a bit distracting sometimes. Lately I've also become interested in stitching more with overdyeds, silks and on hand-dyed fabrics.

4. What are your thoughts on craft and/or needlework shows? Have you been to one or are you planning on going to one this year?
I went to my first CATS last year in Hershey and loved it! I met quite a few people from the boards and had a blast with them and will never forget Anne walking around the main area with Sally's chicken purse on her head. What a hoot! It's also nice to see so many different types of designs in one place. I had never seen anything from Northern Pine designs before and fell in love with their beautiful shiney designs made mostly of specialty stitches. I haven't ordered from them yet but I drool over their website every so often. I was pretty strapped while there so couldn't buy much. I hope to go this year if I can get off work for a few days but it's our busiest season so I'm not sure. If I go I hope I can spend more money on stash :)

5. On average, how many hours a week (7 days) do you think that you spend cross-stitching?
I'd say I spend about 15ish hours a week on stitching. Of course, some weeks I can stitch that much in a weekend and other weeks I hardly get an hour in, but usually I stitch quite a bit on the weekend and at least an hour a few nights during the week.

6. Do you have a favorite designer (or designers)? If so, who is it and why is he or she your favorite?
Most of you know I'm a huge Mirabilia fan! Often I see a design of Nora's that I think I won't stitch, then I see a WIP or finish at the Mirabilia BB and I gotta have it! I can't tell you how many times that's happened. I like her designs because they are beautiful and look more difficult than they really are. I like her use of color and shading and the detail without using a lot of backstitching. I also really like the effect of metallics and beads in many of her designs. I'm not crazy about a lot of beading but I do it because I love the finished product.

I also like Lavender & Lace designs very much, for many of the same reasons, but Nora is still my #1!

7. Which do you prefer and why? "Old-fashioned" black and white symbol-only charts, charts with colored blocks, or charts with a combination of colored blocks and symbols?
I prefer "old-fashioned" b&w symbol-only charts. I have a hard time reading a lot of colored charts and it's one reason why I won't stitch any Dimensions kits no matter how much I love the designs. I tried once and ended up with a UFO I gave away because the chart drove me batty. The blue and green symbols were just too similar to me, and I not only had to match the symbol but also the color and it was just a pain. Give me b&w symbol charts any day!

8. Is cross stitch your only crafty hobby or do you have others?
Not my only crafty hobby but definitely my favorite and the one I spend the most time on. I knit a little, but very rarely as it makes my hands fall asleep. I sometimes make melt & pour soaps and gel candles but not often. They are fun, but I'd rather spend my money on stitching stash than soap and candle stash.

9. After you stitch a pattern or kit, what do you do with it?
It depends. If it's something I think I will stitch again I keep it. Usually I end up giving it away to one of several online stitching friends.

10. Do you frame your cross stitch yourself or do you take it to a professional framer? Why? In your opinion, what are the advantages and/or disadvantages of putting your work behind glass when you frame it?
It depends. I tend to frame most of my small projects myself, or use one of the many tuck pillows I buy from Ames. However, I take my large projects (Mirabilia, L&L, etc.) to a great framer down the street. She's very reasonable, does the stretching and uses good materials and has a great eye. I'm also getting some things together to send to Ames to make into wall hangings, mostly for my seasonal stuff so it's easier to store on the off seasons. I usually use glass on my work for various reasons. For one, people have a tendency to want to touch stitching to have a better understanding of it, and that gets it dirty. Also, I feel it keeps the stitching better protected in better. The drawback is you can't see as much depth on pieces with beadwork if you have glass over it, but I can live with that.


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