A Seasonal Finish

When I last posted, I was optimistic–about my ability to finish projects & my dedication to regular blogging. Ha to both!

Well, mostly. I’ll post about the knitting…hiccups…at another time, but for now I wanted to share the entirely seasonal cross-stitch I DID manage to finish on time!

Cross Stitch Merry Christmas Santa with Cat and Mouse

Although this Santa isn’t quite as colorful as the first two I made, I do find the little mouse adorable–I even saved him for last. This marks the end of the cross-stitch kits–just in time to hang the trio of Santas up on the kitchen coat rack (an entirely spontaneous location that works really well). Now…what to make next?

Advertisement

Of Productivity and Completions

Yesterday was an unusually productive day. Unusual not just because I typically treat Sundays more of a day to relax than a day to get things done, but because I accomplished more than I often do on any individual day off. I wish I actually was this productive more often. I think it’s due to the fact that yesterday I actually had specific plans/goals rather than the more generic “I need to get things done” that usually rules my life. But I did some blog reading, some blog writing, baked some breakfast bread, read, and blocked a shawl. I didn’t really get around to looking through Ravelry for ideas for my next project. My les Abeilles is almost finished, and I’m guessing that I could have my mom’s Monkeybread Hat done in short order if I put my mind to it. And then…nothing on my knitting needles! (Although, paging down through recent posts, I’m reminded that I did have it in the back of my mind to return to the Lerwick Lace Shawl…hmm…a good possibility, but I think I’d like something else for knit night…)

I’m almost down to nothing on the cross stitch needle as well. One of my goals for the year was to finish out, finally, the various Christmas kits I’ve had around and been working on off-and-on for years. And thanks to the need for some mindless projects last winter/spring and for not-so-warm projects during the summer month, I’m down to one kit left. It looks like I’ve not yet presented the recently completed projects here, though.

Cross stictch snowman on navy aida - finished

This first is the bigger accomplishment – although the physical size of the snowman is not very big, all things considered, there are many details and shadings in the pattern. The trickiest part was the use of blending filament–those fine strands often want to fly away. The most frustrating part happened when I began the backstiching to outline the characters, specifically in the dark brown. It was only then that I realized how inferior the embroidery floss included with the kit actually is–it kept breaking as I was stitching. I finally gave up on the dark brown included in the kit and substituted something similar from my own stash of floss. Otherwise, I enjoyed the stitching but am very happy to have it done. Now I just need to frame it up in time for the holidays!

Santa Ornament - Nice List

This Santa was much quicker – and oh so cheerful! He’s the second I’ve finished in a group of three; the third is the last kit I have left–and is already about half-way finished. I should have a nice little trio of Santas ready to hang out together decorating a shelf edge or some such come Christmas! (Which somehow seems wrong–I’m never this prepared for the holidays!)

Taking Stock

So I’ve been poking around my project basket lately, and realized that I really needed to take stock of what was/wasn’t in it. And what I should really be trying to finish up.

The first two projects aren’t so much in my basket as they are adjacent to it. I’ve been working on the cross-stitch snowman forever, but it’s down to some backstich (mostly on the tree) and French knots. The Santa with a cat is a newer project, but I’ve had the kit as long as I’ve had the snowman kit. So it’s time to be done! Although I cross-stiched quite a bit this winter, I stopped to save them for when it’s too hot to knit. Which might include today–not that it’s so terribly hot, but it IS very humid.

DSCN8474_Edit

DSCN8505

In the category, “isn’t this done already?,” there’s my Aeolian. Which is done. Exept for blocking. I’ve been on a roll of washing and blocking shawls lately, and I think I have enough room to block this if I double it, so there shouldn’t be any reason I can’t be completely finished with it by the times it’s cool enough to wear it.

DSCN8494

The sweater, Ondulé, whose seaming I’m avoiding. (And I need buttons. I’ve looked locally, but haven’t found anything yet.) There’s another sweater pattern I’d like to knit–and I even have the perfect yarn–but I think perhaps I should actually finish this first. Ahem. I just need to plan to sit down and do this some Saturday.

DSCN8501

So…I was almost finished with my Les Abeilles back in November. I was slightly concerned I might not have enough yarn, as I don’t have as much as the pattern calls for, but I made it to the last row with plenty yardage to spare. Too much! I could tell, just spreading it out a bit that it was going to be as small as the smallest pattern size, even though I knit the middle. Shoulda checked the gauge. Oops!

Les Abeilles - starting to unravel

So it looks like this now, after I ripped and restarted. I’m through the first chart. I’ll still have the yardage concern, so I’m going to add a lifeline in before I start the next section–if I run out, I’ll change the decrease rate in the gartar stitch portion. I’m not worried about finishing, as this has been my go-to project when I’ve been looking for something that doesn’t require any thinking lately.

DSCN8499

Then there’s this: my Girasole, finished several years back–and hurt. I don’t know what happened; likely I snagged it on something and tore the fragile cashmere. I have plenty of yarn so I can repair it, but it will take some thought to work out. So I’ve been avoiding it. For over a year. So, again, something to just plan to do some weekend. Before I want to wear it again next fall!

DSCN8502

Finally, something new! This is another Monkey Bread hat, this time for my mom. I think I need to restart, as the brim seems too tight. (Not sure if it’s just the cast on, or if I should go up a needle size as well. Regardless, I really want to get it finished for my mom by next winter. There’s no reason I can’t as long as I stick with it.

DSCN8472_Edit

But otherwise – nothing new! No new lace, and I’d like to have another project on the needles. I don’t know what yet–but I think perhaps that’s okay as I really should finish off some of these first. After all, I don’t have any good excuses not to!