Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Everyday Annoyances... 50% Off

So yesterday was a pretty good day for a Monday. Work went quickly. I had leftovers from a really good meal this weekend for dinner. I got rid of some chairs that I have hated for a few years now AND got those magazines I told you about earlier organized.

Not bad.

The capper was the Jo-Ann flyer I got in the mail. I realize how sad my life may seem to some of you. But really, I am glad that at my advanced age, something as simple as a Jo-Ann mailer can make me giddy.

Even better? FLOSS SALE! Three skeins for 99 cents! That is a whopping savings of four cents a skein! Plus, if you shop on Memorial Day, you get an additional 10% off your total bill. I can't do math, but I know that's a deal. The downside? There is a limit of 30 skeins per person. I believe that this rule was instated because of me. I have annoyed many a Jo-Ann's notions jockey with my over-purchasing of floss. Ha-ha notions jockey...I have some friends lined up to go with me on Memorial Day so I can get more floss. So there. Your rules mean nothing to me!

I also want to get one of these things...

Look how f-ing handy that mofo is. First, you can put 20 kinds of floss in it while you are working on something. Then you can write the floss number on it to keep track. And that black thing is a magnet to keep your needles on. Love it. It is a little steep at $11.95. Much more than what I would normally budget for such things, which is zero point zero zero dollars.

Amazingly enough, the Jo-Ann's mailer also includes a 40% off and a 50% off any regularly priced item purchased in store or on-line. A very nice deal, especially on Memorial Day.

So what is so annoying?

You know what is regularly priced on the Jo-Ann web page this month?


Not a thing. Everything is 5% off or 10% off. I have found exactly one thing I may be interested in that is regularly priced and it is $1.39. Not useful.

I will get you, Jo-Ann. Oh, I will get you. Me an my floss army!

Thursday, May 13, 2010

The Things You Do for Your Friends...

When I first started doing this stuff, I bought a book for a quarter called "1,001 Cross Stitch Motifs." It was published in England in the Seventies. I really like using it a lot because it is just small things that you can throw together and make your own bigger pattern. The first time I used it was that vacuum cleaner one I showed off earlier.

The only real problem is that it is old enough that some of the floss colors are out of date. There is nothing more frustrating (well, there are a few more frustrating things in the scope of things. War. Poverty. Whatever.) than making your little shopping list of floss numbers, getting to the store, and then finding out that the number you need is no longer made or has changed numbers. It's just irritating. Then you don't remember what the color was or anything, so you just have to guess or make due. That is what happened with the first one I made....

This was made for a friend of mine who is letting my family stay with her when the are here for graduation this weekend. That is a huge undertaking, trust me. And she refuses to be paid for it. So, I decided to make this. She plays the cello and is a music teacher. So, I picked up my handy dandy "1,001 Cross Stitch Motifs," looked in the index and BAM...there's a cello.

The actual body of the cello is the wrong color. The original one called for "Mahogany." It no longer exists. So now it is a golden cello. Magical. The "S" is her first initial. After I took the picture, I decided it was a little plain, so I added some musical notes in the right hand corner. It looks pretty good and she seemed happy with it.

I have found that Downy Wrinkle Releaser works pretty well to get rid of the hoop marks.

Then I needed to make something for another friend's birthday. I knew I wanted it to have a knitting theme. Luckily, "1,001" has a whole page of knitting and sewing things. There is also a page devoted to keys. And one for stamps. And one for muffins. It's that encyclopedic.

I needed to make it a little edgier, though. Well, as edgy as cross stitching something about knitting could possibly be. (which is a "3" edgy-wise) I found a phrase on Crafter.com or someplace that seemed to suit...

I had purchased the red material when Jo-Ann's was having a big sale on it. I had no idea what I would use it for, though. The letters are just the basic ones from "Subversive Cross Stitch."

This was a quick one to do once the idea came together and I plotted out the design. A little over and hour and a half stitching time. The only hard part was working with the metallic thread for the needles. I hate using it, but it always looks sort of cool. Like fake beading or something.

I only wish I would have spaced it out better.

It was also easy to get it to look nice because the red material was pretty heavy, so it wrinkled less.

Its funny. I like it.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Mother's Day Whatnots

Hey all...back again.

I was trying to get things done for Mother's Day. I do have a feeling that my other and grandmother are pretty much just dreading getting their presents this year. Or they will be really happy. Who knows.

Usually, I try to make things that suit my sense of humor or have some sort of original bent. This time, I just went with the patterns in the book. They are both from the Better Homes and Gardens Big Book of Cross Stitch or some such title. I got it used for about a dollar. I have actually wound up using it much more than expected. I have gotten four items out of it so far, and am using one of the alphabets in the back for another one.

These two patterns were chosen because they match wallpaper. Seriously.

This is the first time I have made anything for my grandmother, and she can be a little..um..picky about things. The pattern matches her new kitchen wallpaper. I think.

It took forever because of all of the color changes. A lot of stopping and starting.

I took some pictures of it in progress earlier, and here it is done and framed...

It is way too nerdy for me, but there it is. I actually like the lettuce the best. Probably because it was a lot of effort. I also sort of like the material. It sort of looks like I made it on an old potato sack, which is kind of cool in a "Little House on the Prairie" farm woman kind of way.

And now for the one for my mother. I don' t like it near as much. I also decided on this one because it matches the color in her bathroom. She also had some sea horse guest soap in a dish last time I was there. It is entirely possible that someone just gave her the soap and she put it out to be nice. I don't recall her enjoying nautical themed stuff when I was a kid...but hey.

It was probably a really bad idea to chose a pattern based on something that will wind up disintegrating, as you are then just left with a framed thing apropos of nothing.

Anyways...here it is:

The material is actually a light blue which isn't showing up very well. I also really need to learn how to put stuff on those board things better and trim my strings better. Again, they don't show up in real life as much as they do in the picture.

Here is a better picture. I do like the frame, so maybe she can at least use that.