Friday, April 29, 2016

Productive April - Lace Traces~Shades of Jade Model Completed

April is almost gone, just a day left and I'm happy to say that stitchingwise, it was a productive one on Gracewood.  The first pattern in the 'Lace Traces' series of designs, 'Shades of Jade' model is completed.

Lace Traces~Shades of Jade

Stitch count is 123 x 123 and the model is stitched in Kreinik Silk Mori threads - #4196 Dark Jade & #4193 Light Jade.

My plan, Lord willing, is to add at least another three designs in a similar size but varied colors to this series and I hope to use them as quilt blocks that will be made into a wall hanging.  Well, that is the plan anyway, lol

This was a fast and fun stitch, the more I stitch Assisi style the more I love it.  The pattern is now for sale on my website and will soon be listed at Creative Poppy and ICG Crafts

The next design in this line will be 'Lace Traces-Plum'

Lace Traces~Plum

May is a busy month on Gracewood as our yearly 'projects' begin and one of those this year is a plan to add more raised boxes for more vegetable beds.  When you live as far as we do from stores that carry good produce it is becoming a priority to finally complete the raised beds so we can grow a lot more of our own veggies and fruit.  That of course means more outside tasks and I doubt May will be as productive a stitching month as April.

Hope all is well in your part of the world!

Thursday, March 24, 2016

New Collection of Designs - 'Lace Traces'

Lace Traces~Shades of Jade
Spring, I find, truly has the effect of making me want to begin new things.  In addition to the strong urges to begin Spring cleaning everything from ceiling to floor, I also experience a strong creative impulse and this year it has resulted in what I hope will be a series of patterns I'm calling 'Lace Traces'.

The first is 'Lace Traces~Shades of Jade' and is a good bit smaller in size than the larger Vintage Textile series of patterns.  This one is a more manageable stitch count of 123 x 123 and the finished pattern on 18 count cloth is just under 7 inches square.

Many of my designs are inspired by color and this one certainly was.  I am stitching the model in Kreinik's Silk Mori floss in shades of Teal/Jade - "4193-Light Jade" and "4196-Dark Jade".

I hope to finish the model and have this one available on the website and through Creative Poppy and ICG soon.  I think it is going to be a quick stitch :)

It is Spring indeed on Gracewood and thankfully, this Winter and so far, Spring, has been blessedly wet and everything seems to be just waiting for a bit of warmer and drier weather to burst forth in abundance.

Snowshoe Hare turning from white to brown for Spring

Some mornings are still icy as this Bittersweet vine can attest

Monday, February 29, 2016

Spring Approaches & New Free Pattern!

It really looks like Spring here on Gracewood, I know it is almost three weeks away, but we've been getting blessed rains - drought busting rain & snow this winter, thank the Lord - and the snow is rapidly retreating.

Still cold and frosty at night but on clear sunny days it is warm enough for Jasper to fall asleep on the back porch bathed in sun rays.

In celebration of such days I'm posting a free design that is 'swatchable' in that there are so many variations you can create from one simple pattern.  The link to download the pattern is beneath the photos.

Pavane - Swatchable Pattern
Pavane possible patterns

Download Pavane - click here -  Free Pattern


Saturday, January 30, 2016

January Begone! & Belfast Pattern Grows


Yes, even I, one who loves winter is this January glad to see it ending.  You see, it started out with a big challenge.  On Christmas Eve, our wedding anniversary too, our electrical power to our well house began to sputter and eventually failed.  Living where we do it isn't possible to just pick up a phone and call for a service person or for that matter to run out to a store for parts.  Add to it the fact that it was a big holiday weekend (two big holiday weekends in fact ) and I knew we were going to be without water for some time.

I didn't know it would be two weeks till the problem was solved!  Thanks to neighbors we were able to fill up containers of water to see us through, but Mr. B spent a lot of hours in a freezing cold well house to put in new wiring and a new pump that took extra days to be sent to us.  So all holiday cooking was postponed since all water had to be heated on the stove and daily chores became a lot more difficult when that precious water wasn't flowing out of the taps!

Now I didn't think I needed anything to make me appreciate running water more than I already do, but I can guarantee that I do indeed say my daily,' thank you, Lord', for it even more frequently after two weeks in the midst of winter without it, lol
Belfast Pattern
One might think I had extra time to stitch since all holiday 'merrymaking' came to a halt, however, it seemed as if everything necessary for daily living became vastly more difficult without running water and by the time they were accomplished I had no desire to do anything but collapse on the couch.

But February is around the corner and hopefully I'll regain momentum and get to stitching like I should and get Belfast's model completed - btw, this may be one of my very favorites!

However, I will have a bit of a pause since Just Cross Stitch has asked for another Christmas Ornament for the 2016 special edition.  Yes, they do that this far ahead!  I've made a design but need to lay Belfast aside till I can stitch the ornament and get it off to the magazine soon.

Orphaned fawn known as 'Baby'
One lovely 'gift' we had this season was an orphaned fawn that has got to be the cutest fawn we've ever seen.  We've named her 'Baby' and though she trails along behind the herd that makes Gracewood their home, she is most often found on her own up under the trees by our bird feeding station.  She comes right up to the back porch and blinks those big eyes at us and waits for the inevitable apple or pear, or her favorite celery or carrot.

Hoping your January was a good one!

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Merry Christmas! & 'Winter Daybreak' Pattern in JCS Magazine

Winter Daybreak
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year dear stitchers!  I hope it will be a very happy and blessed holiday for you all!  

We are so thankful for all the snow we've gotten so far and the promise of much more on its way.  After our dry and dangerous summer this has really been an answer to prayer.

The current issue of Just Cross Stitch magazine is out and features my design 'Winter Daybreak', the pattern is of course included in the issue.  It is inspired by some of our winter mornings when frost covers our windows and daybreak's soft hued colors begin to suffuse the view.  I hope you'll enjoy it!

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Snow Begins, Kyoto Finished & New Design Introduced

What a difference a month makes!  I'm so happy and thankful to be able to supersede photos of wildfire skies with snowy ones.

Jasper Loves Snow!

 Kyoto's model, the latest in the Vintage Textile Collection of patterns,  is complete and will be up for sale at Creative PoppyICG Crafts and my website by this weekend.


I'm now stitching the model for a new design that is another textile and this time in a damask. This is 'Belfast' named for the area of Ireland well known for its damask linens.  I'm stitching it on a 16 count Wichelt Aida evenweave called 'touch of yellow' in a Kreinik Silk Mori thread called Dark Butter.

I must admit I have a particular fondness for damasks, I use them on our table as runner, napkins or tablecloth as often as possible and I believe this will be the first in a new line of damask designs.


It is definitely stitching weather on Gracewood and I'm so enjoying it.  Despite the very hot dry summer our apple and pear trees gave us an abundant crop and the house is almost always redolent of pies, kuchens, and in general great baking aromas.

It is as if the whole area, forest, lakes, wildlife and we residents of the inland northwest have breathed a sign of relief and are rejoicing in our blessedly wet weather.

Hope things are well wherever you are!

Friday, October 2, 2015

Lots of Gracewood Stitches N E W S

It is finally October and it does indeed feel like Autumn here on Gracewood.  While it is still way too dry weather wise, we did have enough rain in the last weeks of September to help with all the wildfires and we are so thankful for every drop of it.  Thank the Lord, the fires nearest us are almost all contained and only the fires that are in the steepest and most difficult to get to areas are still having to be monitored.

So with a great deal of relief I can turn my attention back to stitching and designing and I have lots of happy things to report.  First, the 2015 edition of Just Cross Stitch Christmas Ornaments is now available and I'm honored to again be invited to participate.

Full of lots of lovely ornaments, you can find the Gracewood Stitches contribution on page 100.  It is Log Cabin~Noel and it was a lot of fun to stitch.

And in other news, my publisher, Creative Poppy, has a new tutorial online that takes last year's ornament, Twilight, that was in the 2014 Christmas Ornament edition of the magazine and creates a really lovely whole new ornament using beads and beautiful ribbon.

The instructions for the tutorial are available Here

Creative Poppy has also introduced the new collection of  'Swatchables' that will be exclusively available through their site.

The first pattern is Rondo and can be found Here

The design is presented with 3 variations and the collection is created to give stitchers small patterns, or 'swatches' of a motif that can then be stitched in many combinations.

Rondo Swatch

Some of Rondo's Variations

I've also almost finished stitching the Kyoto model and have a new design I'll introduce next blog post.  So as they say, 'watch this space' :)