CQJP July Block

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

TAST-Oyster Stitch

I forgot to post this to my blog.  Ooops.
A new stitch to me again this week. Heeding Debra's advice to use a heavier thread, I thought I would try this stitch with a colourful yarn I had on hand.
I thought the colours would show the movement of the stitch and look pretty.

Hmmm. Not so much.

Some were loose and messy, so I tried a few more.
 Well, no wow factor for me

I decided to try it in a perle thread instead
I think it looked neater in the green perle.

a closer look shows the shape a bit better
Even trying a few other stitches didn't help

I think if I was wanting a dimensional stitch, I would prefer to use a cast-on stitch to the oyster

It's not a stitch I plan to use again as it lacks any appeal for me

I think I can sum it up in one word:- meh

I hope next week has a more challenging and interesting stitch.

Hugs from Suz

Friday, July 27, 2012

Back to Painting 2 and Stash

Last time I stopped working on my painting, it looked like this:

Truth be told, I was fearful of tackling the water.......

So the painting hid away in the cupboard for a week or so

and then I took it out to study it.

I decided the background trees were too yellow, and the rocks there were too golden.
So I dropped in some cobalt blue to set the trees into the background, and added some to the rocks. Branches appeared on the right with a darkening of the small dirt hill.

Then I added some more colour to the rocks in the middle ground, and added some to the foreground boulder. 
I wanted to add a bit of texture to the boulder, so dabbed on different rock colours, topped it with a layer of plastic wrap and smooshed it around (don't you love that technical term? lol) to create wrinkles in the plastic.
here's how it looked once the paint was dry and the wrap removed
I added more greenery, softened the little earth hill in the middle ground, darkened the boulder base, and began to add the water

oh, no! look at my goof! the water on the hills in the background should be flowing downhill
What did I do?
First, I put in some blue--wrong! it should be brownish and/or greenish. What was I thinking?!
And I put it in flowing side to side--wrong again!
I tried to remove it. hmmm. Then I tried to cover it. no good.

I removed some of the colour from the rocks along the river to add highlights, and then I added some colour to the water. It still needs a lot of work.

Lastly, I applied a thin layer of gesso to white out my 'blue' water. Once it's dry, I can try again.

I got some new stash in the mail!
Luscious threads and fibers and silk ribbon.
Wildflower, perle, silk, and rayon thread goodies.
The fiber bundles unwound look so pretty!

I'm looking forward to playing with them all!

Hope you have time to play this weekend.

Thanks for visiting.
Hugs from Suz

Friday, July 20, 2012

Basquing in TAST Stitches and Garden

 Yes, this week's TAST is the Basque stitch, which I thought quite interesting. I liked the way it stands away from the fabric.

You can see the height and shadow on my happy face circle
here I stitched alternating levels over horizontal lines...makes kind of a grid
a simple fence line
roping some wheat sheaves
5 rows of alternating stitches
this would make an interesting filler

and voila........my sampler

I used the basque stitch to couch down some pretty ribbon with a very fine variegated thread
and then tried a variation of the stitch to create a double vertical line with a thicker thread, also couching ribbon along the seam.

hmmmm, if this isn't the basque stitch, I wonder what it is. Anyone know?
I found this leaf on my walk today. Since we are in the middle of summer, it should be green, but the lack of rain has probably thrown it into shock, and there's only  small strips of green left.......
We've been having hot, humid and sunny weather, but little rain. Look at these groundcover roses. After a wonderful, long soaking, they rewarded me with lots of happy faces:
they certainly seem to like the heat.

Hope it's not too hot (or too cold) where you are today, but may the sun be shining.
Thanks for visiting.
Hugs from Suz

Wednesday, July 18, 2012


I posted my CQJP and TAST for last week on the Tuesday Stitchers' blog,         http://tast2012.blogspot.ca/2012/07/suz-cqjp-and-tast.html  but forgot to post here.
Here's a pic of my finished  July CQJP:

my August block

The first 6 months of blocks, in no particular order

TAST for last week

I've been busy with some stitching projects and hope you've been having fun doing what you enjoy.
Thanks for visiting.
Hugs from Suz

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Back to Painting

I spent an afternoon playing with my paints.
The inspiration is a photo taken about 25 years ago

the water cascades down a rock-strewn  river bed passing trees and rocky ground on its way
 washes were dropped wet in wet onto the sketch and allowed to move around on the paper
Although there is very little colour remaining in the old photograph, I remember the summer day we went on our hike and picnic

the trees were lush greens
while the green paint was still damp, I pressed into it with the stem of my aquarelle brush, creating marks where the paint could deepen, or at other times, pressing the colour away, leaving either the colours of the undercoat or the white of the paper remaining.

it's a fun technique
a bit of a close-up shows the markings as branches
a better look
branches indicated by wiggles and squiggles on the wet or damp  140 lb. watercolour paper
more trunks and branches added on the right

some golden browns and siennas indicate rocks, boulders, and the earth
defining some of the rocks

We had company arrive, so the painting was tucked away in the sunroom cupboard..........

finishing the earth on the hill and the rocky ground appeals to me
the big challenge will be to capture the frothy, rushing water in both the distance and the foreground

guess I'm going to have to drag the painting out of its hiding place

Hope you're enjoying the day.

Thanks for visiting.
Hugs from Suz 

Monday, July 9, 2012

Stitch Explorations: Figure 8 Cable Chain

Playing around with the cable chain stitch, I came up with a figure 8 cable chain. I thought other people might enjoy seeing how I did it.
It was sort of an accident......
I began with  a chain stitch
to make the cable and second chain, I wrapped the thread around the needle counterclockwise once
inserted the needle into and out of the fabric
then wrapped the needle counterclockwise once
pulling the needle through made a figure 8

I tried several times, hoping to be able to create perfect 8's

sometimes they'd twist, or pull out of shape when I created the next stitch
so I tried it with ribbon to see if a thicker 'thread' would hold the shape better........
it seemed to work and the figure 8 can be easily seen
but it still wasn't as stable as I hoped it would be.....

so then I wondered if doing a double wrap might help to lock the shape

the two bottom rows were my attempts with 2 wraps counterclockwise, inserting the needle, then a double wrap counterclockwise before pulling the needle through......

it seems a bit more precise and even
I tried it with a firmer thread.......and the 8's hold better, but sometimes it still twists......

maybe I need to do some more explorations on the figure 8!
I'd be interested in seeing your results if you try this. Happy stitching.
Thanks for visiting.
Hugs from Suz

Saturday, July 7, 2012

July CQJP and TAST

My naked July block:

a blingy fabric flower with a crystal center

green ribbon 'leaves'
a wavy seam edging from my own 'bias tape'

a bias tape half-moon flower with a crystal center
chain stitch and tatted Josephine chains ( like drizzle stitch)  and seed beads
bullion and french knots above a tatted Josephine chain layered edging in variegated thread
ribbon leaves and stems and wrapped fantasy roses with Soie  Cristale thread

a snowflake and some sequin flowers
white seed beads
red rocaille beads
Here's my July block now

there's still more to do, but I like the way it's coming together

TAST stitch for this week is the Bonnet Stitch. I wasn't excited about this one at all.
Here's my sampler:  sorry it's so boring
I'm looking forward to seeing some inspired results from  other stitchers.

Hope you're having a good weekend.

Thanks for visiting.

Hugs from Suz