Monday, January 1, 2018

2017 Review: The Wips

Hello again! Happy New Year! :)

Well, 2017 is officially at an end, and I must say I'm happy to say goodbye to such a disappointing year! In the last 12 months or so, I've had to pack up and move twice, help my mother recover from falling down the stairs, deal with difficult family until they finally left and cut all ties with us; I worked about 130 hours of overtime over five months, and was rammed in a hit and run that totaled my car. There's more, but you get the gist. Not fun. So here's hoping for better next year!

Needless to say, I wasn't able to stitch as much as I wanted in 2017. I still managed a ton of stitching somehow, but many projects were neglected or not touched at all. But I want to share a few of my favorites, some that did see a good bit of progress.

For the year, I managed 114,637 stitches. Less than last year, but still over my goal of 100k. Total time was 570 hours, 349 days. I really tried to stitch everyday this year. I think it was my New Year's resolution. And I actually managed it until July, when I had to move the second time. I'll definitely be trying again in 2018.

So, pictures! I'll start with my current favorite, Moon Indigo from HAED (retired). I was zooming along great for the first half of the year, but barely touched her the second half. So I didn't meet my goal of finishing page 11. It's halfway though, and she's really starting to look good:
Her face is coming out so well! In person, you can actually see a bit of dark blue in her eye. The details are awesome. :)

I also worked pretty hard on Crystals and Crows, though I'm still shy of a page finish:
I'm loving all those colors in the crow's tail. It's actually a lot of dark blue, not black, and very pretty. I also started parking instead of doing cross country stitching. I didn't want to at first because there are so many colors, and I didn't want 50 threads hanging around. But it's actually not bad at all, and it really helped get some progress going. I think I'm starting to prefer stitching in rows rather than columns as well, especially for heavy confetti projects. Somehow the colors flow more easily. Hard to explain, but my needle seems to like it. Also, that is one of my newer needleminders, from Sun Spot Creations on Etsy. I've named him Sir Thomas. :)

Those are the only larger wips I managed any real progress on. I worked on Wisdom for a bit, but only got a couple columns done, and it's nothing worth showing yet. Blood also has another page, but it's just more background gray.

So for new starts, I'll begin with Angel of Grace, my New Year's start for 2017:
I still really love this design, though the fabric is still impossible to photograph. There was a moment where I realized I'd been stitching with the wrong color, so she spent time in the naughty pile until I finally frogged and fixed it. But now she's back on my favorites list, and I wish I had stitched on her a lot more. Getting there though.

The Quotes to Live By SAL from Stitchrovia occupied much of my year, but I'm only about halfway done. This is why I usually don't participate in SALs. I do love the design though, and plan to have this finished around September:

My big wip this year was my first Chatelaine, Herbularius:
This has been so much fun to work on. I only managed 5 days this year -- it's hard to put down once I start. All those silks are so luxurious and bright. I'd love to finish up the center portion next year, but we'll see.

Another favorite I started back in May is Jinn, from HAED. I'm tent stitching this one so it goes a bit faster, and managed to finish the first page. I so love the colors in this, and all those swirls are fun to stitch:

Sometime in 2016, I took a little trip to my "local" needlework shop (about an hour away) to see what they had. Their chart selection wasn't spectacular, but the walls were festooned with finishes, so the eye candy was very worth the trip. One of the many things that caught my eye was a 12 Days of Christmas piece, charted by Jim Shore. I think I'd seen the chart online and passed on by, but seeing it in person was like, whoa. First of all, it was huge. Like, 2 feet by 3 feet? But the wow factor was the beads. I mean tons of beads, in all different colors. So I had to buy it. :)

I started this in July, but have picked it up again to work on for Christmas, plus the following 11 days. The plan is to work on it every year during the same time until it's done (even if that's 10 years down the line). I'll be working on this 'til the 5th, but I've just finished the stitching on block 1:
I kept having to check to make sure the stitching was done, as there are so many gaps left for beads. And the block is about 6 1/2 inches square on 32ct. So yeah, huge. I'm working in qsnaps, so I'll have to save the beading for the very last. But I do adore this design. :)

Well, those are the highlights for the year. I'll show all my other wips at some point, probably when I pull them out to work on again. In the meantime, I already have two starts planned for New Years Day. I know, I'm a glutton for punishment!

First, I'm really looking forward to starting Morning Glory, one of the Nora Corbett garden pixies. I had a bit of purple fabric in my stash that I hope will look well with her. It's from Hand Dyed Fabrics by Stephanie, 32ct Lugana in Lilac:

I'm also participating in the Temperature SAL in Stitch Maynia. I just thought this would be fun, and colorful. :) I'm just doing simple blocks of color in columns, one column per month. I wanted to keep it small in case I felt like doing this again, so I could easily display them in 8x10 frames. This will be on 32ct Taupe Lugana:
Yummy, huh? :)

Plans for 2018: I'm still doing the Year of Starts for Stitch Maynia, starting a new project on the 18th of every month. I also have a few extra starts planned, so I think my total is 22. (I'll reform next year.)
Moon Indigo is still my focus project, so I'll try to finish off the row this year.
I've also joined a Facebook group called Full Coverage Fanatics, and they're having a monthly SAL called Stitch By the Numbers. The goal is to put in 1200 stitches on a project each month, and I'd like to feature a different project every month. (That's still only half my full coverage projects...)

Eventually, I'll be focusing on more finishes than starts, but that time is not yet. For 2018, I'm just going to enjoy stitching all the things. I hope everyone has a good stitchy year, and a good year in general. May your needles be swift and your counting true. Until next time! :)

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