On this page, I’m posting a few of the craft projects I have enjoyed over the years. I appreciate a challenge and usually work on large, full-coverage counted cross stitch projects–wall art, mostly–that take 12-15 months to complete. I try to choose things that teach me a new skill or how to use a new tool, and require me to organize my work in a different way. I don’t have a lot of space, so I work on one project at a time, on a lap frame and always with a magnifying lamp. I’m glad to answer your questions–use the contact form on the menu bar.
The current work-in-progress, started July 15, 2022. Expected finish: summer, 2023. Based on a painting by Charlies Wysocki, “Quilts for Sale.” I’m now working with Pattern Keeper, keep-track software that makes these complicated charts much more fun to do.
April 2022- This is my summertime pickup project, a little less challenging than the fractal below. It’s a 6×9″ Dimensions kit (handy because the floss comes with) and easier to work on during the shorter worktimes I have right now. But lovely in its own way. And I know just the person who will like this! Working with a Q-snap frame.
January 2022-April 2022. I’ve started this complex fractal and have about 4 pages of the chart completed. But it requires longer working periods than I have this summer. I’ve laid it aside and turned to something less demanding. No point in being frustrated, is there?
January 2021-January 2022. This one is from a 1928 painting by Georgia O’Keeffe, “Red Cannas.” I’m working on a novel about her life in New Mexico and chose this because of its vivid colors and abstract forms. I’ve ordered some framing materials and will post the framed project when I get it together. I learned that on the blended sections, it’s okay (and easier and more fun) to use the chart as a color guide, rather than try to follow the detailed charting, which doesn’t follow the O’Keeffe painting exactly, either. Fun do to some abstract play with color, rather than another pictorial project.
February 2020-January 2021. This is a cross stitch project I’ve just finished. It’s called “European Bistro”–a Dimensions kit on blue 16-ct Aida, 16″ x 11″. Lots of challenging half-cross stitches that required me to learn how to use a laying tool. I used several different frames, depending on what where in the project I was working. If I get around to it, I’ll add more French knots to the flowers. (I’m not a fan of French knots.) I liked the depth and the colors, but I made a few changes in the chart to “unbusy” several areas. I’m a frugal stitcher, so I was a little annoyed when I ran out of the supplied floss and had to supplement from my stash. The work needs a frame, the next time we get to Austin.
January 2019-February 2020.”Winter,” a Luca-S kit from Europe, purchased at Herrshners. 14″ x 19″ on 16-ct white Aida. I especially enjoyed working on it during the summer–felt cool! Lots of shading in this one, and subtle color changes. I used an 18″ scroll frame. It was meant to hang over our fireplace, with a companion water color. But the pandemic arrived and I still haven’t been to Austin to get it framed.
July 2018- January 2019. “Sunflowers in Wind,” a Benway counted cross stitch kit on 14-ct Aida, 19″x15″. All that flat blue got a little tedious, but it taught me that I don’t enjoy doing large patches of a single color. (I tried some variations, but didn’t like those either and took them out.) So now I know what to avoid. I worked on a scroll frame and (for the first time) gridded the fabric with red Sulky Sliver, to make it easier to keep my place.
September 2017-May 2018. “Poppies,” another counted cross stitch chart/kit, this one by Benway. 14-ct Aida, 34 colors 20″ x 14″. Framed, it went to Alaska to live with my DIL, Sheryl Wittig. I learned some keep-track lessons on this project–bought a needle holder like this one to manage multiple threaded needles.
August 2016-July 2017. “Burntwater.” Aida 14, 11″ x 16″. The pattern was first created as a rug design at the Burntwater Trading Post near Sanders, AZ. According to the Cameron Post web page, Bruce Burnham and Don Jacobs at the Burntwater Trading Post near Sanders, AZ designed the pattern. “These traders encouraged their local weavers to create very fine weavings using the Central Diamond and Four Sacred Mountain design introduced from Oriental rugs to the Navajo by traders at the turn of the century in an attempt save the art of Navajo weaving by opening Eastern markets in the United States.” The chart was way beyond my skill level when I started. I loved its precise symmetry, but the design was utterly unforgiving. It taught me many lessons in counting carefully (NOT my strong suit!) and frogging (taking out stitches). But I persevered, and in the end, was very proud of it. I was making it for a specific place in the home of my daughter, Robin Wittig, where it hangs today.