Hello, my stitching friends! Can you believe I'm back so soon? I just posted last week and here I am again with a couple of cute Halloween finishes to share with you. But, first, I want to thank everyone for your kind thoughts and congratulatory words on my son's engagement! That is what I so love about this stitching blogging community--everyone is truly excited for everyone else's happy news. And, at the same time, I know I, like many of you have been comforted by words of support when something sad has crossed my path. If only the world were made up of stitchers, right?!
This sweet Drawn Thread sampler has been in my stash for years and I'm so glad I finally stitched it. Honestly, it was such fun! I just loved the little trick-or-treaters and they brought back such delightful memories of Halloween night when my sons were small. This is called "Halloween House Sampler" and is stitched on 40 ct. country mocha Newcastle. I used a variety of overdyeds and DMC pulled from my stash and am so pleased with the result. If you are familiar with this design, you'll notice I made a number of changes. I stitched a trio of black bats rather than the initials that were charted. I also omitted the year after the "31" and stitched two gold stars on either side of it. Teeny-tiny eyes were added to the witch, ghost, and cat, and also to the two ghosts peering out the windows. I think I'll be framing this one, but I could change my mind! What do you think?
|"Halloween House Sampler" by The Drawn Thread|
My other finish is a Prairie Schooler pillow that those of you who follow me on Instagram (if you want to follow me, please click here) have already seen. It is one of the PS mini-cards, but I changed the shade of orange to DMC 3826 and made the eyes gold (DMC 729) rather than the charted orange. It is stitched "over one" on 25 ct. mushroom lugana. I can't tell who is more scared--the ghost or the moon! What a cute design--oh, how I miss the anticipation of seeing the new Prairie Schooler designs each year...
|Prairie Schooler "Boo!"|
To finish it off, I simply added some orange ric-rak, black and ivory gingham, and handmade gold cording tied in a bow and topped off with a rusty star.
|Another PS finish for my Halloween collection|
I haven't really decorated for Halloween once again this October. As some of you who are long-time readers remember, my dad died on Halloween two years ago and I've struggled with this time of year ever since. But, at least this year I actually stitched two pieces so I'm slowly returning to normal... baby steps, right?
I have simply kept my autumn decorations on display and will begin putting out my Thanksgiving stitching next week. Perhaps 2018 will see me decorating for Halloween once again... We'll see! The photo below was already posted on Instagram, but I thought you might like to see it, too... Three of my favorite Prairie Schooler autumn finishes all in one vignette. They were stitched in 2007, 2008, and I made the teeny pillow on black just last year ... Don't you feel a sense of comfort just by looking at them? Nobody does autumn designs like Prairie Schooler did, in my opinion!
|Prairie Schooler autumn beauties|
Annual stitching retreat update... Last weekend I attended my 7th annual stitching retreat with four friends. As in past years, we rented out an entire Bed & Breakfast near Erie, PA and just stitched, laughed, ate, slept, and repeated that routine for three days straight! I spent my time working on two of my monthly snowmen ornaments (which you can see a sneak peak of in the collage below). The B&B is always so beautifully decorated for Halloween--just look at that cool pumpkin that the innkeeper carved based on the "American Gothic" painting. And, of course, every good inn has to have a kitty! This one had two--here is sweet Sweeney watching us from his perch on the sideboard as we dined on one of those way-too-big breakfasts that were served each morning.
|Stitching retreat 2016 at The Grape Arbor Inn|
Stitchy gifts... Two of my retreat friends gifted us with some lovely presents! From Pam came this gorgeous zippered project pouch with pockets on the front and the back--so pretty and useful. We got to select one from the nine (!) that she had made and, of course, I picked this blue and yellow beauty. Isn't it lovely? And Barb made these sweet needleminders with the name of the inn where we stay--she did a wonderful job on them! I am actually using mine on my refrigerator to remind me of the special times we've shared through the years. I think both Pam and Barb could go into business--their gifts are so well-made and would be great for any stitcher! The future of our get-together is uncertain as we are all becoming busier and busier with family things (like my son's wedding next fall!) and such, but it certainly has been a memorable retreat for seven years...
|Gifts from Barb and Pam|
A lovely honor... So, I mentioned an honor in my blog title, didn't I? Well, imagine my surprise when I received an email last week telling me that Stitching Dreams, yes, this little old blog of mine, has been nominated for the 2017 British Craft Awards "Blog Of the Year" in the cross stitching category. I keep wondering if they made a mistake because, obviously, I'm not British! But, I am truly so honored just to be nominated!
I have been blogging for almost 8 years and in that time, I've "met" so many wonderful stitchers from all over the world. I don't blog for money or the desire to be known; I do it simply to keep track of my stitching progress and to cultivate the friendships that blogging offers. I would never make a good political candidate because I could never say "vote for me!" and I've never been comfortable being in the spotlight. I haven't even told anyone about this nomination except my husband and three sons (surprise, mom!!). But, if you would like to take a peak at the nominated blogs and vote--for any one of us, that would be wonderful. You can vote by clicking here and then on the "cross stitch" tab at the bottom of the page. It takes less than a minute... So, thank you to the wonderful folks who nominated me--that is so special! And thank you, in advance, for anyone who does choose to vote for Stitching Dreams...
Well, since I'm working this weekend, I won't get to pop in again to say "Happy Halloween!" I hope you, who celebrate it, enjoy your day on Monday and are treated to some tasty goodies. I always loved watching my sons sort out their "loot" after they returned from begging for candy up and down our street. And sometimes, I was even lucky enough to walk away with a Mounds Bar or an Almond Joy because they, like their dad, do not like coconut! Do my international friends have trick-or-treating? I know it is becoming more common in some other parts of the world; it has become so hugely popular here in the United States... ENJOY!! Bye for now...