Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Japanese Embroidery

I've always been fascinated by different types of embroidery, but the one that has caught my eye the most is Japanese Embroidery. Every once in a while I would do a Google search and see if anything new has popped up and try to decide if I should join the JEC and enroll in classes to learn.

I haven't done it so far because if I do, it would be to enroll in the Phase I class to start on the journey to get certified in it. It would be a HUGE commitment, because the classes and the materials are not cheap. And also, there are no teachers in my area. All the ones in Canada are out West, so my only choice would be to go to the US.

But I'm so tempted. I mean look at these http://www.nuido.org/photo_gallery/Gallery2.htm.

At this moment there are so many things that I would like to learn, that I feel like I don't have time at all for any of it lol. But for now, I got this book:

This book was written by the founder of the JEC. It gives a very good introduction to Japanese Embroidery and has lots of detailed pictures of various techniques used. The book is actually discontinued now, I had to search around online for it, and found it on Alibris. There are still some copies available here if anyone is interested.

One thing is for sure, if I do end up moving away from Montreal, I will make sure that the next place I live in will be more accommodating to my hobbies :P

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Almost Done!

I finally finished the inside of all the octagons :) I've been pushing back uploading a picture on the blog for Flower Patch because I really wanted to finish all the octagons. All that's left is the border around it.

I can't wait to finish this so that I can start something new. I've also been working on Castle in the Air part 6. I think I might take a break from it once I get part 6 done. There is so much white in this part I'm going crazy. Maybe my mood will change once I switch colors.

My mom has been pushing me to finish it thought. She wants to turn it into a table cloth for the living room coffee table. We'll see how it turns out in the end.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Castle in the Air Part 5

Finally! After not touching this project for 3 month, I finally finished part 5 of Castle in the Air. It took a total of 24.25 hours.

As a side note, this lap frame is so awesome! My stitching is much faster now that I don't have to hold the frame like I used to with the Q-snap. I'm actually thinking of getting the adjustable brackets from Heartside so I'd be able to use the lap frame with the Q-snap. Just something to think about :)

Thursday, July 19, 2012


Hmm... It doesn't look like I did much this month. I actually went back and compared it to last month and there's almost no difference, but I seem to remember working on Flower Patch. I took a closer look and I did see some threads from it. I think it's because I'm cross stitching in petit point (1 thread over 1 thread) so the threads don't show.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

I'm Back

Finally back from vacation! I came back on Sunday (actually it was more like Monday at 3AM), but I've been busy catching up at work.

What can I say about the trip? I spent one week in Calgary and managed to go to Lake Louise in Banff park and we even went to Edmonton to visit the West Edmonton Mall, which was huge. Between that, the Stampede and visiting the city I didn't have the chance to work on Flower Patch except in the plane. I'll put up an update picture in a few days.

What I do want to share today is what I brought back :) Whenever I go anywhere on a trip I always make a point of finding local shops for new Stash. I went to two places: The Stitching Corner in Cochrane and The Craft Connection in Edmonton. The ladies at both stores were so helpful. I managed to get 4 patterns that were on my wishlist and two that weren't.

There was so much stock in both stores that my head turned and I didn't know what I wanted lol. I ended up getting Athena by Mirabilia instead of Ring Around the Rose Tree which was on my wishlist, but that is ok. Athena is very pretty, but I'm going to have a hard time getting all the silks in Montreal.

However this is nothing compared to what else I bought. I've been looking for a stitching frame for a while now to do big projects. I've actually had to stop Castle in the Air because my Q-snap wasn't enough anymore. After a lot of research I had narrowed it down to the Millenium Frame or the Heartside Lap Frame. Would you be surprised if I told you that Heartside is not only a Canadian business, but is also based in Calgary ;)

So I contacted the company and they were very helpful. I was originally supposed to go to their workshop but in the end I went to The Stitching Corner a second time and was able to see their lap frame in person. I liked the look and feel of it so I decided to get it. Here it is set up with Castle in the Air:

First impressions, this lap frame is very solid. It's made from Canadian oak and it has smooth finish. It comes with a 20" scroll and I bought the 24" for bigger projects.

The only downside is that the fabric needs to be basted to the frame which I don't really like because it takes a long time to do and I can never seem to get the fabric taut. Someone recommended getting those stitch clips. I might do that if I can even find them in a store >_<

Monday, July 2, 2012

Happy Canada Day

Another long week-end here for us. This time for Canada Day. Don't you just love long week-ends! I didn't spend as much time cross stitching as I did during the last long week-end. If you call 15 hours not a lot lol.

Here are the results:

I will be going on vacation soon. I'm going to Calgary to attend the 100th Stampede. I was interested in going until I found out that the Embroidery Guild is ALSO having a demonstration there, so now I'm really excited to go there =D

I will try to get some pictures to share.