Saturday, September 20, 2014

Counting Bats - WIP Photos

Remember that project I pulled out back at the beginning of the year that was a UFO... well it remained mostly a UFO the last 8 months... and then I finally told myself to just work on it and get the darn thing done!
So I've been forcing myself to work on "Counting Bats" from Just Nan. I couldn't figure out why I hated this project so much, give it's on a great purple dyed fabric, with silks and a Just Nan. But I think I've finally figured it out. There are two reasons:
1) I really hate the Weeks Dye Works fabric it's on. the color is perfect! BUT... it's really course, not soft at all and a bit uneven in the weave. so it's a real pain to work on!
2) Backstitching... ugh there is a lot of extra detail on this Just Nan, and it's mostly the spiders I hate (I think).

So not my fave piece, but that's okay. Once it's done then I won't feel bad that it cost me more than $100 to kit it up b/c of the silks.

So here she be to date, I've very close (working from bottom to top as per my usual backwards way). There is a header above #1 with a lovely moon and bats (I'm looking forward to that part) and some more 1 over 1 lettering that says "Counting Bats".

There are still beads and some embellishments to put on once I have the top layer done as well. 
Again I'll just be happy to say I finished this one just to get it out of the WIP/UFO bag and justify the amount spent so many years ago. 

In other news: Been fairly sick (again!). Got some sort of flu bug or food poisoning. On day 3 since got really sick and already mostly bounced back so at least it was quick (though nasty). I think I need to look at using my immune essential oils again as since I stopped using them a few months back (no real reason just stopped...) I've been a lot more sick. So back to the nightly regime I go. Damn compromised immune systems due to other health concerns. 

I just got the new Just Cross Stitch Ornament issue (digitally) and printed off a bunch of great new ornament patterns for Christmas. As usual I'll likely only get one or two done but it's something I suppose. Look for those in the near future as starts. 
Dragons has not progressed at all! (I know bad). I've having a hard time motivating myself to start the second last page as it has the Dragon head in the corner I start from and it's all scales, which means confetti nightmare (again). But I am going to start on it before the end of the month (my goal) and hopefully that will get it rolling along.

Hope you're all doing well and Happy Stitching! 

Friday, August 29, 2014

Stitch From Stash August - Metamorphosis Stitching

It's already starting to get cold here again. Summer always seems so short (maybe because we get maybe 8 weeks of it in Calgary, lol!). This morning we had a frost warning and I could see my breath on the way to the day job. 

So alas it has come time to check-in for August with Stitch From Stash. 
I know many of you won't believe it, and with Market releases this month, I did it! I didn't spend a single dime on stitching stuff!!!! I'm pretty proud of myself. But am also concerned that I will be aching to spend tons of money next month. But again it is looking very lean at my house, as expected earlier this year. Therefore I will have to be very good likely through September as well. My kind husband is trying very hard to be supportive and not make it seem like we are scrimping every penny but when it's true, it's true. 
However, the promised raise from a couple months ago at the office should be coming up (we pray) this month. Assuming HR removes the pay freeze as promised in early September. Often times it really sucks to be working for a gov't body and their stupid freeze everything to make politicians look good. However I'll stop my complaining as we are managing and move onto more exciting things! 

So no new purchases to share b/c of zero dollars spent. 
But the start of Metamorphosis I do have. I'm on the third motif now and am sooo excited to see it come together fairly quickly. And it was definitely a good way to help with the aching of spending to have a new start. However, it does mean I haven't started second last page of Dragons. But that will come next week I think. 
I did discover that this is a 36ct linen as per the pattern and the colors I'm using are the exact same as well. So it's almost like a model version of this lovely Ink Circles pattern: 

Thanks to everyone for their comments, emails and support in not spending. I really do have hundreds of patterns and dozens of items ready to stitch (kitted up). And besides stuff is not happiness. Though many days I have to convince myself of that! (lol)

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Dragons Page FINISH! - 2 to go!

It would seem my little trick worked; start a new piece and then give me motivation to finish a Dragons page if I switch off. :)

So I'm pleased to say I have another page finish!! Only 2 to go!!
Here is the latest. Please forgive the angles and the bottom is slightly folded over. I was eager to keep going and didn't wait for my man to come home and take good photos.
Top Section:

Entire piece, minus a small fold over at bottom:

It seems very surreal to me to be on the second last page in some ways; and in others I feel like I have been doing this project forever. Though after almost 7 years it has been a long time. In fact I started this piece when my lovely man was just entering back into my life. And seeing as how I can barely remember life without him and we are approaching 6 years of living together I suppose it's like a lifetime in my mind.

As always thank you so much for your continuing support and questions about Dragons. It keeps me from getting too distracted by other pretty things! :)

No stitching purchases so far this past week! Sadly that is an accomplishment! Lol.
However I feel like I'm saving again and "stitching from stash" which is encouraging!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

New Start - Metamorphisis

So as many of you know I've been struggling with Stitch From Stash. And I have a bit of an idea as to why...
I haven't really stitched anything new! Instead I've just tried to stop buying as much stuff which is not rewarding.
So I decided regardless of how many projects and goals I have right now I'm going to start something new. Guilt free (or so I'm trying to tell myself)
I have picked a project that's not a "small" but likely to be a quick project and one I am stitching and had kitted up just because I love the design and the colors. No reason to do it except that I want to.

So here is the kitted up project from my stash. I didn't have to buy or reorganize anything; this project was ready to in my stash.

It's called "Metamorphosis" by Ink Circles (yep a Mel fave designer). I am using the exact Gentle Arts colors called for. The linen is a bit lighter and different. I can't remember exactly the brand it is but it's a 32-count linen.

I'm hoping this start helps curtail some spending. And maybe I can make "mini deals" with myself to stitch Dragons so much and then work on this as a reward.
Worth trying I figure!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Friday, August 1, 2014

Stitch From Stash - July

I've come to the conclusion that it will be a miracle if I can go one entire month without spending anything on stash...
This makes me kinda sad. Seriously how is it that I just can't stop looking??
I think one of my 'new' goals is to have one year in 2014 where I can log a zero in SFS.

So this month... no zero for me... really didn't do all that well at all actually...
+ $19 HAED - Raven (I shouldn't have I know but I was chatting with Michele about some copyright stuff and couldn't help but go and buy something new from her - Shown on right)
+ $18 on JSC Halloween Mag (of course!!!) and Kreinik for Mermaid
+ $17 Fabric on eBay
+ $13 Serendipity patterns on eBay
= $105 (US)
= $67 (US)
EDIT: Thank you, thank you to all my awesome readers for commenting to correct my math!!! I'd say how embarrassing but at the same time I'm not so great at basic math (apparently). 
So the total is actually $67!!!
This new total I WILL log and keep my exemption as I think I can make it work in my budget by using forward money and attempting to have August be a ZERO month. *fingers crossed* 

Okay I didn't realize how badly I'd really done until I added it all up. I'm fired for sure!
So what that means is I'm going to take my exemption/skip month for July. But I'm soooo disappointed with myself for not keeping better track so that I could be sure to spend even more! (I know I'm pathetic - but did you know there are 2 more witches from Mirabilia now!!!)

Now I have to have to be good in August. I can do this I hope. At least stay under $25!
I won't lie I'm starting to feel like I might fail at this whole Stitch From Stash as I haven't really started anything significant from my stash or had any significant finishes except Cottages. I guess my Mermaid is a stash pick-up and Counting Bats is too but I haven't gotten to finishing it yet (I need to get on that!)

Alright. That's enough of that.
Upcoming: Dragons page is close to done, just filling in a bunch of white. 

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Mirabilia Mermaid & Winner Announcement

Thank you sooooo much to everyone for such lovely comments about the choice CSC magazine made to feature my blog. I cannot wait to share what issue it will be in. As soon as I know you will know too!! 

Mermaid Update
I think I've shared this piece maybe once since kitting it up and putting it into my "work on when bored" bag. It's called "South Sea Mermaid" and is by Mirabilia. I have picked it up a bit in the last couple months so it actually has some semblance of a "beginning" to it.
It's on 28ct (over 2) SilkWeavers fabric which is just divine (seriously some of the nicest fabric I've ever used!)! I love the smoothness and color of the fabric. Using DMC, lots of beads (which will be added last) and Krenik (that I just ordered) it is quite a delight to stitch on.
As always I started from the bottom corner. Not quite perfectly but mostly, so this is some seaweed/plant below her and the beginning of her tail. Lots of beads and Krenik not yet in here that fills in holes, creates swooping ends and whatnot. But you get the idea I hope.

Thank you to everyone who commented to enter for the giveaways and whom re-shared on blogs or twitter. I really appreciate all your lovely congratulatory messages.
Without further delay....

Package 1 winner is: KimM @

Package 2 winner is: Heather @ 

Winners please email me your mailing addresses - epicstitching (at) gmail (dot) com or use the message me button on my profile.

In other news: The latest page of Dragons is coming along. Filling in spaces of the same white, while quick, is not so exciting so I'm doing it in smaller stages. I'm hoping for a finish on this page no later than end of August. Counting Bats is due for some time and an update so that will likely be later next week with my Stitch from Stash update. 

Thanks as always for visiting. Those in summer enjoy the sunshine! Those in winter, enjoy the cooled off temperatures (because I don't know how you stand it when it's so hot in the summer, lol)! 

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Exciting News!!

As promised I have a very exciting news to announce to everyone!
While the timing of this is as yet unknown (I will update when I know), it has been confirmed to be happening and almost all my requirements for submission have been met (I have to send some extra photos in still).

I was approached a couple weeks ago by Cross Stitch Collection Magazine. They are running a series of features on stitchers who blog, where we chat about why we have our blog, what we stitch and other stitchy questions. I'm sooo very excited!!

Now I know many of you are thinking, but Mel you used to work in magazines and that wasn't near as exciting... Well the difference for me is this is a magazine about my absolute fave thing to do in the world. And I feel it's a HUGE compliment to be chosen.

Now here's the thing that I know with absolute certainty. This feature is a huge compliment to all my followers as well, yes that's you!! Because without all of you to encourage me, vote, have dialogues, give opinions, etc. this blog would be nothing. So I want to say a huge THANK YOU to all my followers, new and old, over the last 5 years. This blog started as a way to track my Dragons progress, and to meet other stitchers and it's become so much bigger than I could have ever imagined. All because of my readers! We've been through some crazy life events over the last 5 years; including surgery, health issues, living with my man, buying my first home and so much more! Nevermind all the XS projects including the continuing epic of Dragons, Mirabilia Fairy, Raven, Lizzie Kate Halloween fun, Cottages and sooo many more!

As a big thank you I'd like to hold a giveaway!!! Yep that's right, a big thank you to all of YOU. :)
There are two different packages to enter for, you can enter for both or just one as you prefer.

Giveaway Requirements! 
1) You must be a follower of my blog
2) You must comment on THIS post and indicate if you want to be entered for package 1, 2 or both.
3) To get additional entries you can do one of the following:
    - Post about this giveaway on your blog (please comment with a link)
    - Tweet about this giveaway (please comment with a link)
    - Tweet about my Etsy shop (please comment with a link)

The Prizes! 

Package 1:
All patterns I've stitched in the past and finishes I've shared on this blog over the years:
- Just Nan: Merry Old Elf
- Lizzie Kate: Spring Basket (Snippet)
- Just Nan: Over the Top (Glow!) - pattern only
- The Trilogy: Domes of Doom (Haunted Heads) with Liberty Street Designs 28ct Caramel Toffee linen

Package 2:
My favourite "easy" stitches are Mill Hill Bead & Button kits on perforated paper. So here's two for you to work through, or try out if you've never worked on perforated paper before.
- Mill Hill Holiday Ornaments III (Frosty)
- Mill Hill Autumn Series VII (Autumn Garden)

Good luck to everyone!!

Other updates: Dragons is continuing on and looking great on this page (though filling in the giant spaces of just white or ivory is kinda boring). Current Mill Hill (herb garden) is actually getting worked on AND I worked on my Mirabilia a bit this week, pics of the Mermaid to come. 

Truly thank you to absolutely all of you for making this blog what it is today and for sticking with me for so long!