Friday, September 17, 2010

Bi-lingual Temari

A new yahoo group has started for people interested in making temari who speak Spanish. I'm excited to join that group. I think I am going to post in English and in Spanish when I talk about my temari from now on. I hope that is not too distracting.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Pincushions II

So here is my finished pincushion. I found a wide ombre ribbon with wire in it, folded it ninety degrees every five inches, and gathered one edge. In that way, the dark yellow and the light yellow edges of the petals alternate. Then I just stitched it to the felt base.


I'm really pleased with the way it turned out. It doesn't look bare at all, any more. From the side, I think it looks like a black-eyed susan with a very colorful center.


These are all the pincushions that were entered in the summer contest. I think they are all amazing. The Hardanger one, with the peach ribbon, won first place. Everyone in the guild appreciates (and knows how much work it is) to do fine needlework. I think they are all gorgeous!


Here's the temari I'm currently working on. This picture actually turned out quite well. It looks like a delicate gold netting over the green surface. I am more than 1/2 way done stitching the marking, then I get to start stitching the embellishment itself. This one is going to take a while.


I will leave you with a picture of our three cuties. From left to right this is Scruffy, Ali Cat, and Kit Cat. They are intrigued by the big world out there, but of course they are interested in everything, until nap-time.


Life is very interesting, and entertaining with them around.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010


We had a wonderful time at guild last night. The food was good, and the company better.

Our summer project, which I can start to show now, was to make a pin cushion using a glass candlestick as the base. I started by cutting out some shapes in the background color I wanted to use, embroidered a stem in stem stitch, and added some leaves by using straight stitches to make the veins.


After that I cut out a bunch of flower shapes and started adding to my base like adding flowers to a bouquet. I really like working with felt, you can get very detailed shapes, and you don't have to worry about your cloth fraying. I didn't have the best quality of felt, though, it's what I could get on-line using my Paypal credit. The places that had the best felt didn't take Paypal!


I set the top on the candlestick, and checked on the progress:


It still looks a little bare... but you will have to wait until tomorrow to see what I came up with.

My current temari stitching is starting to move a little bit better. It is again a multi-pole, and I am still working on the marking, I haven't gotten to the stitching yet. But it is (now) relaxing and I can pick it up for a couple of minutes at a time and make some progress on it. Up until now, it was a little bit of a mess, and a couldn't find my place, but I'm using different colored pins to help map out what to do next. Yellow means "needs work" and blue means "done with that step." I'll try to get a picture tomorrow to show you what I mean.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Busy Saturday

We had a very nice day on Saturday, but it was very busy. We went to the Chicago Renegade Craft Fair in Chicago. I mainly wanted to go to see the Mimi Kirchner dolls (here) but even though I had some "mad money" I couldn't afford one.

The Renegade Craft Fair was very different. The people at the fair (there were a lot of them) were all very nice, but I was disappointed by the level of craftsmanship in a lot of the booths. The emphasis was on recycling (and upcycling), but I don't see that as an excuse to make ugly things. Mimi's dolls are beautiful, all made out of goodwill sweaters and used fabrics.

I found a couple of things to spend my money on. I picked up some hand-made soap in Wintergreen scent (!)


and a pattern and some magnets from Mimi.


The teacup pin cushion calls for a felted wool ball as its base, but I'm thinking that a mari would work...

We were there with a crowd, and had a lot of fun. My folks were there, and DD1 with her friend who we met for the first time, a friend of the family, and P & C.

We had dinner at Bella Notte on the near west side, and we enjoyed ourselves tremendously.


DD1, her friend, and P being silly.


P again with Oma & Opa (my parents).


DD1 with C, looking adorable as usual.

The only complaint I had about the restaurant was that it was too noisy to be able to visit with everyone.

After dinner, DH, our friend, and I went to the Dukes of September concert in the Chicago Theater. I love looking at down town! This is the Willis Tower (formerly known as the Sears Tower) and another tall building basking in the sunset light.


The concert was wonderful, with 12 musicians on stage and a good selection of songs, from the Blues, to jazz, to a Beach Boys' song, and more. The musicians were all wonderful, After and I don't think there is a bad seat in the Chicago Theater. We were in the middle balcony, 3 flights up, but we had a wonderful view of the stage.

After the concert we had about a 40 minute ride home, with very little traffic. We got turned around a little bit trying to get out of down town, and for me it was an amazing eye-opener. It was past my bed-time, and there were throngs of people on the sidewalks having fun (or at least trying to). I guess it is true that one half doesn't know how the other half lives. I can't say that it looked like a lot of fun to me.

My idea of fun is tonight, my Guild annual dinner meeting, good friends, good food, and a lot of stitching talk. I'll take pictures!