Monday, December 15, 2014

Spring Sampler Finish

One piece done and on its way - at last!

Last winter I used a gift certificate for amazon (one of my favorite Christmas presents, BTW) to get myself the Sampler and Antique Needlework Magazine CD-ROM collection for 2001-2010. It has been like having access to one of the best candy stores ever - and quite a time suck. I can lose myself for hours in that thing.

One of the pieces in it is the Hearts and Flowers Spring Sampler by Ruth Ann Russell. I knew as soon as I saw it I had to do it as a present for an old friend of mine. Barbara and I've been pals since junior high school, and it's got two of her favorite things on it - dogwoods and rabbits. And it's got one of my favorite things - specialty stitches.
Satin, Four-Sided, and Bosnia Stitch, Oh My!
It wasn't an entirely easy piece; the Upright Smyrna Crosses in the dogwood like to killed me. Luckily I had also used my gift certificate on a copy of Darleen O'Steen's Proper Stitch, and that helped me get myself sorted out. Though I'm still not thrilled with how they came out.

Upright New Smyrna - thanks to Darleen O'Steen.
 The rest of the "specialties" came along much better. It's the first time I used Weeks Overdyed Thread, and I'm still not sure if I like having my thread color fade in and out like that. But it's a sweet little piece.
Do not know why this image scrunched up this way.
The framing was something else. I don't have a framer this side of Jacksonville (a five hour drive) I'd trust with my needlework, so I do my own. I'd gotten a frame at the local Goodwill for another piece, Prairie Schoolers' Plant Your Seeds. The frame would have been perfect, except it was too small. But good things do come to those who wait, and more than a year later, the frame and even the mat were the just right size for this piece. Well, the frame was perfect. The mat had issues. It was just the right size, but do you remember that "Miami Vice" coral from the 80s's? The inside edge in that color.The rest was an off-white that just did not work with the linen. I thought about taking it to Micheal's and getting a new mat cut, but while they're advertising getting stuff done by Christmas, would they get this done in time to get it mailed in time for Christmas? That's an entirely different kettle of fish. And what color would I pick anyway?
Close up of frame. Pretty good for a Goodwill find!
Then I had a bit of a brainstorm. I still had some of that gold textured spray paint from when I did the frame for my friend's osprey print. What was there to lose? So I sprayed the mat the textured gold, and gave it a couple of days to get good and dry and off-gas whatever was in the spray paint. Put it against the frame, and, well, it looks about as good as anything I could find at Micheal's and I could get it shipped in time for Christmas. Get the Kraft paper backing on, and go! Yes, my framer pal in Jacksonville could have done a far, far better job, but for what it is, I'm pleased. And it will get to Georgia in plenty of time for Christmas.
Stick a fork in it and call it "Done."
And you cannot beat the price!


  1. Beautiful! What a lovely piece, and your framing is a wonderful touch!

  2. Hi Amanda, I came by to return the blog visit and thank you for taking the time to comment on mine. The sampler is beautiful! What an accomplishment. And the frame is a perfect choice. Well done.

  3. What a beautiful sampler, and your weaving is something else. I loved the story about McDonalds, don't they teach kids anything now. Thank you for stopping by my blog, hope you enjoyed it.