Progress Report: November Windows

After three weeks of working (two of stitching and one of ripping), I’m pleased to announce that I have finished the “November Windows” piece! Woo-hoo! This brings my 2008 Finished Pieces count to three! How pathetic. But, still, I have an adorable little wintry piece to show for it!

I’m super-pleased with how it turned out. I hated working on 32 count with doubled-stranded floss but the end result was worth it. The overall size is perfect (it’s about 4 inches by 6, or thereabouts) and the colors and matte look of the DMC (and the over dyed floss I used for the writing) are just what the design called for. The only problem is the quality of my stitching itself was a little off. I struggled with how loosely woven the 32 count linen was, and found myself splitting the linen threads often. I need to work on being a little bit more deliberate with my stitching. That said, I was proud that I took the time to railroad the entire thing. (Railroading, by the way, is a technique where you make sure the needle is in between the two strands of floss when it enters the hole of the linen; this ensures that the floss lies flat and even across the linen when it’s pulled tight.)

Railroading makes for slow going — I like to think if I’d done it in silk and if I hadn’t miscounted and needed to rip out a good sixth of it, heh, I could have finished it in a week and a half — but I think it was worth it.

Here’s the dreaded cornucopia all correctly stitched:

Here are the two houses:

I’m not sure I’ve ever stitched a fox before; I can’t get over how adorable it is! The turkey is a little less adorable. I think it wasn’t meant to be studied up close.

Here’s the money element — the giant pumpkin:

As much as I love the pumpkin, the thing that really makes this piece, I think, is the line of wintry trees along the top:

All in all, the pommerdoodling over this chart was worth it! I can’t wait to get it framed and have it hanging on the wall.

23 Comments

Filed under Pins and Needles, Progress Reports, Stitching

23 responses to “Progress Report: November Windows

  1. hg

    Railroading sounds like a bunch of hooey to me. :-P

    I’m sure I’ll learn how whenever I start my Coach Pookie piece, won’t I?

  2. Oh you sure will! :D

    (I haven’t forgotten my promise to send some linen up your way; I’m just lazy! Just in case you were wondering where that offer stood.)

  3. I thought railroading sounded like hooey, too. Until I tried it. Stupid slow stitching techniques that make your finished work look better. Grumble, grumble, grumble… :P

  4. hg

    (I haven’t forgotten my promise to send some linen up your way; I’m just lazy! Just in case you were wondering where that offer stood.)

    No worries. I’m a horrible mailer of things too.

    Stupid slow stitching techniques that make your finished work look better. Grumble, grumble, grumble… :P

    Gaaaaah…… Don’t tell me it makes it look better!

  5. Gaaaaah…… Don’t tell me it makes it look better!

    Sorry! Pretend I didn’t say anything!

  6. Yay, finished object! (although is it finished yet if it isn’t in a frame, the way knitting isn’t finished yet until you block it?) Either way, it looks pretty. Good for you :D

  7. hi, I found your blog when I was googling to see what would happen if I changed from a 32-count fabric to something a little less challenging for my first ever Praire Schooler chart…

    I about fainted when I saw how tiny those little fabric squares are…but now I see your work looks good…I’m almost decided to give it a try…I dunno…

    anyhoo, Hi again :)

  8. That’s a good question, Mags! Since we don’t do our framing ourselves, “finished” comes when the stitching is done. Then the piece gets mailed off to Sandy at The Attic, and magically appears beautifully framed several weeks later. :D

    And hi Sheila! Thanks so much for stopping by! You shouldn’t be too intimidated by fine-count fabrics — sure, they seem small, but if you stitch over two threads, 32-count just turns out to be the same as 16-count Aida. It always takes me a bit of time to get used to working on teensy linen when I pick up a project, but once I get into the swing of things, it’s reassuring to rediscover that the process of stitching hasn’t changed, even though I’m working on a different kind of material. All it really takes is added patience. You can do it! :D (Please do let us know how your project goes, if you’d like! We love to hear about other people’s stitching adventures!)

  9. Mags, I suppose it would make sense to say the project is “completed” when I’m done with the stitching, and “finished” when it’s framed. That’s a good distinction, right? :D

    Hi, Sheila! I’m so excited for you that you’re starting your first ever Prairie Schooler chart! Can I ask which one you’re stitching? As for the linen, what Schnookie said! Seriously, don’t be afraid! It takes a little getting used to, but it makes such a big difference in how the project looks in the end! Once you work on it a bit, when you look at 32-count linen, you’ll see 16-count squares. If that makes sense. Also, if you have a needlework store nearby, they might have scraps of linen for sale so you could practice.

    Do let us know how it goes and good luck! And thanks for stopping by!

  10. I love, love, love those nifty winter trees at the top What a gorgeous job you did!

    I don’t get this railroading concept. I think I need a diagram or something. :p Either that, or I’m distinctly undercaffeinated.

  11. Caitlin, it took some digging, but I finally found a somewhat good diagram for railroading:

    LINK TO DIAGRAM

    Basically, want to want is for the needle to be have one strand of the floss on one side, and the other strand on the other side as it’s going into the linen. When you pull the needle through, what you’ll end up with is the two strands lying next to each other, rather then twisted on top of one another.

  12. Oh, and let me know if this makes sense. If not, I can take some pictures of railroading — I think the General would show enough detail to make it make sense.

  13. Oh no, that makes perfect sense!

    Now my anal-retentive self will have to do this from now on! Thanks, Obi-Wan Pookie! :D

  14. You’re welcome, Caitlinakin Skywalker!

  15. I know, Caitlin, it’s terrible. I used to live such a simple, fast-moving life, and then Pookie told me about this railroad crap, and now I can’t NOT do it. Stupid Obi-Wan Pookie. She ruins everything. :P

  16. and then Pookie told me about this railroad crap, and now I can’t NOT do it. Stupid Obi-Wan Pookie. She ruins everything. :P

    So, by “ruin” you mean, make better? Just slowly, right? :D

  17. So, by “ruin” you mean, make better? Just slowly, right? :D

    :^::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: Yeah, WHATEVER! :P

  18. I’ve got the When Witches Go Riding chart :)…and I picked my floss this past Wednesday…as soon as I prep my fabric, I’m ready to roll…

    oh…I did chicken out…I’m going with a 28-count even-weave…my eyes just crossed looking at the 32-count linen!

    wish me luck and unstrained eyes :)

  19. oh…I also have the November chart but want to do this one first :)

  20. Oooh! I love the When Witches Go Riding chart! Good luck (and unstrained eyes)! I think it’ll look great on the even-weave. It looks like such a fun chart to work; Pookie called dibs on it in our house, so now I’m just waiting with bated breath for her to start it up. :D

  21. Sheila, great choice! I think your fabric choice sounds like a good one. Looking at the chart, I think that one’s going to be so, so, so much fun to stitch!

  22. Hi Ladies!

    I, too, have When Witches Go Riding. I haven’t started yet but I love the chart I HAD to buy the linen so I’d be ready to stitch.

    Happy Stitching!

    Cathy

  23. It’s always good to have these things ready to go for when you’re struck with the need to be stitching that particular piece, right?

    I just got this one back from the framer and it looks awesome. Such a fun piece!

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