Plum Street Samplers Feed

Merry Brew.

We all know how I feel about coffee.  It's the elixir of life.  Make it bulletproof, and I'm even happier.

When Paulette released "Merry Brew", I snatched it up just as quick as it was placed on the shelves.  It combines two of my most favorite things ever: Christmas and coffee.

And, as always, I found a faboo fabric to stitch this on that wasn't a neutral khaki or sand or somethingorother.

Merry Brew by Plum Street Samplers #crossstitch #coffee #christmas #santa

I wanted something dark enough so you could see the snowflakes and the steam in the coffee, but most of the neutrals I have were either too dark and you'd lose the reindeer, or they weren't dark enough and you'd lose the snowflakes.  

Enter Dusk Rose. Dark enough to see everything, and the right color of pinkish to bring out the "Merry" and Santa's suit.  

  Merry Brew by Plum Street Samplers #crossstitch #christmas #santa #coffee

I used all Crescent Colors....or whatever they're called now....is it Classic Colorworks?  I can't remember.  Anyways.  I used all the ones called for, so you can see the variations throughout.  I love using variegated threads.  I didn't used to use them all the time - I'd use the DMC equivalent - but sometimes, it really does make a difference.  Now, silks are a different story.  Unless it's a huge difference to use the silks, like if there's 47 different colors in one skein, I'll use the DMC equivalent.  No use spending all that money on solid silks when I can put it towards graphs I have to have.  Priorities.

Speaking of graphs I have to have, I just got "Snow Queen" from Mirabilia, and OMG.  I cannot wait to start her.  I got some WICKED awesome fabric to stitch her on, too.  I can't wait to post updates.  She's gonna be incredible.

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Christmas Stitching.

Bob:  Must be very Vermonty this time of year, all that underwear.
Phil: I guess I should take the electric blanket back.
Bob:  Where you keeping that?
Phil:  Under the underwear....
White Christmas

So.  Here we are, fully entrenched in the Christmas season (with only 4 days left!!!  eeeeeek!!!).  I've been dreaming about gingerbread and shortbread cookies all day, every day.  I mean, gingerbread, you guys.  To die.  And you can only have it during this time of year.  I'm all about Christmas in July and all that jazz, but gingerbread in the middle of summer when it's Africa hot out just isn't the same as when you're curled up on the couch under throw blankets binge watching all your favorite Christmas movies.  

Wait.  Africa hot.  Kinda like it is now.  I don't know about where you guys are, but it's been straight up warm around these parts.  Aroundabout now is when we start hitting temps in the 40's (which is when I start to cry, quite frankly, because I hate the cold like whoa), but these past couple weeks it's been in the 60's.  Last weekend, when I went home for my nephew's 1st birthday party, it was a balmy 73 degrees.  73!!  On December 13th!  I was sweating, windows down, for the 3-hour drive north.  Sweating.  And not because it was freezing outside so I had the heat cranked to 90 degrees in my car.  Not that I actually do that or anything.....

Anyhooter.  As expected, I'm a teensy bit behind already on my December Daily album.  I just haven't done anything particularly Christmassy yet.....except finish my cards, plan out my cookie baking extravaganza, and listen to vintage LPs.....so, long story short (too late): I'm boring.  Well, so far this Christmas season, I've been boring. 

December Daily 2015 cover #dd #decemberdaily #christmas

ALSO.  YOU GUYS.  Tragedy struck my lil' apartment yesterday.  

One of my Christmas travel mugs from Starbucks back in the day.....BROKE.  I can't even explain the devastation.  It had pretty foil paper on the inside, and it was just so festive and fun, and you can't get them like that anymore.  Tears were shed.  

Ok, maybe just a tear.  

Ok, maybe not even that, but more like me saying, "SON OF A BIOTCH!" when it happened.  The latter is probably the most believable of all presented scenarios, and may or may not be what actually happened. ("Would you believe....twice around the bathtub?"  NAME THAT TV SHOW!!! <---- i really, really need to lay off the caffeine...)

On the upside, I get to treat myself to a new Christmas travel mug! I was holding off, because, let's face it, my mug collection is out of control.  But, I'm replacing a broken one, not adding to the mug hoarding mess!  #winning

Since I've been majorly slacking on my December Daily (other than to adorn the cover, as shown above), I figured I'd give you a WIP update on the Christmas stitching I've been doing instead.

Ok?  Ok.

First up is the Joy Quaker Sampler.  This shot shows the entire left side, which is tough to get in all the pics I take, since this piece is turning out pretty big, despite the fact that I'm stitching on my favorite 40 ct madness...

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I apologize for it being a smidge dark...

This next one has a bit more stitching in it, and you can see additional motifs across the top.  The colors showed up a bit better in this one, too.  I'm loving how this is turning out.

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I got a bit bored with that this past weekend, even though I was in full hibernation mode and didn't leave the apartment much, so I started on something a little smaller to give me a sense of instant gratification - the next day in the 12 Days of Christmas - Second Day - from Plum Street Samplers.  A bout of insomnia and one Christmas movie later, viola!

Second Day | 12 Days of Christmas | #crossstitch #plumstreetsamplers #quaker

Like with First Day, I used Currant and Blue Spruce to stitch these ornaments.  I'm trying to use up my scraps, though, so I used a different fabric than for First Day.  This one is 36 count, and is definitely a WDW fabric (although I don't know the color name), which I loathe, but whatever.  I need to use up my scraps, so I suffered through it.  Anyone else out there hate WDW fabric as much as me?????  I cannot stand how limp and lifeless this fabric is, and the weave is so loose it drives me insane.  UGH to the UGH.  

Tonight there will be binge baking and hopefully some DD album building before the big day arrives this Friday!  Are you guys ready for this??  I'm so not.  BUT - thank God for Amazon Prime - I didn't even leave the couch on Saturday (ok, I did for mass....4th sunday of advent and whatnot....) and was still able to order the last of my Christmas gifts, which will be arriving tomorrow!  Queen of Procrastination at her best, my friends.  

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First Day. | Cross Stitch

We're officially in the Christmas season, which makes me beyond giddy.  I mean, Thanksgiving is fantastic with all the food and pumpkin pie and all....but, Christmas.  

Lately, I've been stitching some seriously big pieces, and I needed a break from all that.  So, I decided I needed to incorporate some smalls, like ornaments, into my WIP rotation.

Enter, Plum Street Sampler's fabulous Christmas freebies.

First Day | 12 Days of Christmas by Plum Street Samplers #christmas #12daysofchristmas #crossstitch

Have you guys gotten on this wagon yet??  Paulette has the first six days posted on her website - she's posting them all as freebies! (fun fact:  the twelve days of christmas are actually the twelve days after christmas, leading up to the epiphany, not the days before christmas...)  I'm a huge fan of her designs, and these are no exception.  

She doesn't have specific colors listed in the charts, she just says to use red, green, gold, and black.  This one only calls for red and green, so I used the same two I used for Quaker Christmas II - Currant and Blue Spruce.  They're superb Christmas colors, and I have a ton of them left over, so it's a great excuse to use up some thread in my stash!  

I'm so far behind already, but Christmas comes every year, so here's hoping I can get all twelve all done by next Christmas!

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October.

Well.  It's October.  I don't know how, but it is.

The month of September flew by so fast, and I'm already terrified that I'm going to blink and it'll be Christmas morning.

September is always a busy month for me at work, which doesn't help as time flies on by.

However, I was able to finish Halloween Delivery --

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I love that pumpkin in the middle.  I'm not quite sure why, but I do.  Might be the dark burgundy shade...makes it kinda look purple....

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I love the flowers that creep down the back of the buggy....

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And who doesn't love a raven drawn buggy?  I love this piece, and I'm looking forward to stitching some more of Paulette's creations!  I can't decide if I want to frame this piece, or make it into a little pillow...decisions, decisions.....

That's all I have for you today, guys.  I'm spent.  This week was rough. Hopefully this weekend I'll be able to fully recharge and be good as new :-)

Happy Friday, everyone! 

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Goodbye Summer. | Cross Stitch

How is the summer over already??  HOW???  I feel like we just got out of that horren winter (side note: i heard through the grapevine that the jet stream moved, and we're in for winters like that ALL THE TIME NOW??????? i'm moving to costa rica.), and here we are on the cusp of fall.  Le sigh.

I had this post all ready and waiting for a few final touches, and then I got sick.  Really sick.  Sick like I don't normally get until say, late October or even March.  Three weeks of congestion and coughing is not fun, and I don't recommend it.  Also, steriod antibiotics and me do NOT get along.

Ugh.  Anyway.

So much of what I had written is like, so two weeks ago, so I'll instead give you a snip of what I've been stitching.  I have some super-secret-on-the-down-low projects going (I know...again...), so the big reveal of that shiz will be soonish. 

Until then, it's all about Halloween/fall stitching.

I went rooting through my stash the other day, and picked out this lovely piece from Plum Street Samplers:

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It's called "Halloween Delivery" and is very reminiscent of something out of an E.A. Poe poem...perhaps it's the gigantic raven drawing the carriage....or the little one on the wheel.  I can't know.  I do know that all that black does get boring, so the pumpkins were a welcome change when I got to stitch in color.

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I am kinda obsessed with this carriage for some reason.  That purple valence just kinda adds to the creepiness, doesn't it?! 

What are you guys working on?  Have you done any fall/Halloween stitching or craft projects yet?!  

Speaking of which, I need to decorate for fall....

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Halloween in May | Cross Stitch

I know what you're thinking - we barely (and I mean barely, since it's still not really all that warm, even though we're more than halfway through May...) made it out of winter alive, and I'm talking about Halloween already.  We celebrate Christmas in July (well, I do, anyway...in fact I'd celebrate Christmas year-round if it were socially acceptable...as it is I just took the holly garland off my staircase railings.....moving on...), so why not Halloween in May? Right?!

I don't know why, but this past week, I've been obsessed with Halloween pieces, so I pulled a few to stitch.  Maybe it was the heinous weather I had to endure while in the Chicago area last week, as demonstrated by the below screen shot...

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Awful.  Just awful.  By the way, it never hit 52 degrees that day.  In fact, it SNOWED on Friday morning.  SNOWED.  Reason 847 not to move to the MidWest.  Ever.  Unless by undue force.  Or really just ever.  Being landlocked kinda freaks me out.  

Anyways.

 Regardless of whether or not you're on board with me in celebrating Halloween in May, these pieces are pretty awesome.

Up first is one of the smalls from Stranded Jacks, a graph by Plum Street Samplers.  I did three of the smalls last fall, and I decided it's about time I finished the last two.  A Halloween whale totes a teeny tiny jack-o-lantern on his back, over an orange and black sea.

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Seriously you guys.  The whale's tale is striped.  I can't.

Next up is Beggar's Night from Threadwork Primitives.

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 Loving that white pumpkin.  Keep an eye out for my WIP updates on this one - there's a raven off to the right.  Yep.  Raven.  Wicked awesome.

Memorial Day is almost here (RIGHT.  I can't believe it, either.), which means SUMMER is coming. Thank the good Lord.

What have you guys been up to?  What are you all stitching or sewing or scrapping or doing or making?  Are any of you going somewhere for the long weekend???? It's been so long since I've checked in!  I hope you all have a fabulous start to the week!  

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Non-traditional Halloween Smalls | Cross Stitch

Plum Street Samplers is quickly becoming one of my favorite designers.  Paulette has been coming up with some super cute designs recently, and I've had to grab every single one of them.

One of her graphs which came out last year (but I didn't get it until this year) is called "Stranded Jacks".  It's five different Halloween smalls, which can be stitched as one piece all in a row, or each individually as smalls.  I chose to do them each individually.

They're not your typical Halloween graphs, that's for sure, but they are super cute.

They're not named individually, so I've been naming them as I go.

This one I just called "31 October", but I feel like it needs something more...

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(I'm semi-obsessed with that anchor, btdubs....)

This one I named "The Pumpkin Sails at Midnight"...

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And then this one, I named "Merwitch Floats Over Pumpkins"...

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Wicked, cute, right???  They all have traditional Halloween elements, but then that flair of the open sea.  Who knew this could be so cute & clever?!  

I have two more to stitch up, then I'll finish them as smalls and display them....somewhere....no idea where....

(PS - Paulette is having a Christmas stitch-a-long, if you're interested in joining!  Click on the link for her blog above!)


Happy St. Patty's Day! | Cross Stitch

Yeah, I know.  I'm a day late.  Better late than never, though, right?!  Besides, I'm late for ev-a-ry-thing, so late with a holiday wish should be no surprise.  HA.

I didn't do any special projects this year for St. Patty's Day, but I dug up this old post from 2 years ago, which has a cute little shamrock freebie from Paulette over at Plum Street Samplers, and is a super quick stitch.  Somewhere in that post I make some outrageous claim about doing the finish work on it so I could put it out for the following year (meaning 2012) to celebrate the holiday. 

Ummmm.......it's still in my "to be finished" pile.

Ahem.

Also, in case you missed it, I posted a St. Patty's Day model finish for my LNS the other day, so be sure to check that out, too!!

Have a fabulous Monday!!!

Sig

{note: to download your own copy of the freebie, head to Paulette's site, click on "freebie" in the category list on the right hand side, and scroll until you find it}

 


Give Thanks.

Happy Thanksgiving!!  Christmas has, unfortunately, taken over the entire last 3 months of the calendar year every year (don't get me wrong -- I LOVE Christmas -- but retail won't let us enjoy the most wonderful fall holidays anymore), but Thanksgiving is still a fabulous holiday :-)  Who can go wrong with all that turkey, stuffing, cranberry sauce, pumpkin pie, sweet potatoes, mashed potatoes...the list goes on and on.

On this day, when we all come together on a day of rest, be thankful; be grateful.

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(Click here for your copy of Plum Street Samplers' freebie!)

Love and stitches :-)