A box arrived from Mesa, AZ recently, bearing exciting contents: finished stitching! Sandy, the framer at the Attic Needlework shop, does such a beautiful job framing stitching (and the local shops around here have consistently let us down) so all the needlework done at Maple Hoo gets packaged up and mailed cross country immediately after the final cross is made. The only draw-back to this system is that we’re not the only ones who rely on Sandy’s excellent eye and exquisite attention detail; as a result, it can take a while to get our projects back. More often than not, when we see a box from the Attic the initial reaction is, “I wonder what’s in here… I can’t remember the last projects I finished…” It’s like Christmas morning, then, opening the box and rediscovering whatever we’d sent out weeks (or sometimes months) before.
The latest box contained two pieces I’m super excited about — “1824” and “Live Each Season As It Passes”. Both were small, impulse projects that stitched up in next to no time. Blogging has put a serious spoke in my stitching wheel; small, impulse projects seem to be the only thing I can finish these days! Fortunately, these little gems will be excellent additions to our rotating wall of seasonal pieces.
Designer: Carriage House Samplings
I adored this piece the first time I saw it on the Carriage House website. There were two colorways to choose from, but I loved the vintage-y feel of the red, brown, and dark gold. I think it really sets off the simple yet funky look of the giant flowers.
I also really loved the linen the designer suggested (Pear, from Lakeside Linen). The hand-dying is very subtle, but adds a depth that this piece might other be missing.
Technically this piece is called, “1824”, but I like to think of it as “1848”, because that was a date my college American Western history professor deemed “a date to hang your hat on” because so much happened that year. My little jaunty deer seems like one to want to hang his hat on something, so “1848” it is.
Live Each Season As It Passes
I can’t remember when exactly I stitched this. I don’t remember what I had just finished, or what I put down to make it, but I do remember waking up and saying, “I must start ‘Live Each Season’!” I had no idea where the chart or materials were in the giant basement-sized stash Boomer and I share. I gave up looking for it after about ten minutes of looking in all the obvious places it could be. Boomer, however, was much more dogged. After descending into the Stash Abyss, she returned some twenty minutes later, victoriously holding up the chart, linen, and threads.
The linen was a special cut (I’m assuming of Lakeside Linen) that was provided with the chart (which I think is part of a series of little charts called the Loose Feathers Club; members get awesome new charts every other month, with special hand-dyed linens selected for that exact piece) and the threads were Weeks Dye Works overdyed cotton floss. There’s a big upswell in the popularity of variegated threads, but I’m finding they really have their time and place. I think they’re used to great effect here, giving a subtle shading to the white of the flowers while adding a dramatic punch to red lettering.
I love this piece for two reasons. The first is that this year Schnookie and I have both come to the shocking conclusion that we now both love all the seasons equally. Summer used to be a big downer around here thanks to the lack of hockey. But now that summer means watching the garden hit its peak (as well as sitting around playing Katamari instead of being tied to the hockey schedule), summer is just as much fun as Spring, Autumn and Winter. So the sentiment on this little project is perfectly suited to commemorate this year.
The second reason is that as a hockey fan, I think the sentiment to enjoy the season (as in, “the NHL season”) as it chugs along, never taking for granted that there is hockey on TV to be tied to, is a good thing, too!