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June 16, 2019
Ripe Apples -- Blended Threads and Big Stitches from Michelle's Romantic Tangle

For a kit I picked up just because it was so inexpensive, Ripe Apples has been a pleasant surprise. The stitches are huge, which would usually be a deal breaker for me and I think I did briefly think about swapping out the fabric for something more my speed, but the blended threads are making these apples look amazing and it turns out that I don't hate the 10 count fabric as much as I feared I might.

Riolis Cross Stitch Kit 1450 -- Ripe Applies

 This was one of my Maynia starts and I will absolutely have it finished before next ...

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June 9, 2019
The Invisible Man from Michelle's Romantic Tangle

Friday morning the fourth room for the Universal Monsters SAL was revealed....

This is how far I got on the invisible man's lab before bedtime Friday night. It would've been further except I was scrambling to find several of the colors, which are in with other projects. I still need the blue for the sky in the framed picture and another shade of yellow for the light bulb.

We get one new room every second Friday (I think) and my goal is to have all of the rooms I've started done before the next piece of the ...

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May 28, 2019
THIS is Why I Grid from Michelle's Romantic Tangle

Gridding seems to be one of those topics that cross stitchers have strong opinions about. Every time someone asks on one of the discussion lists, it sparks nasty comments from people who think it's a waste of time. 

I grid almost everything these days. I can stitch without the lines, usually, but that extra safety net keeps me from abandoning projects.

I lost almost an hour to this project. The red stitches weren't lining up with the blue letters correctly, no matter how many times I counted. Finally, I realized that my "W" is misshapen. Everything else I ...

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May 27, 2019
{Stitch Maynia} The Monsters and the Wizard from Michelle's Romantic Tangle

I don't think I've tackled this kind of stitch along before, where the pattern is revealed a section at a time. There have been a couple of quilt alongs that I didn't manage to keep up with, but I've never tried something quite like this.

Now I'm hooked.

Patterns: Universal Monster Sal by the Witchy Stitcher and Emerald City SAL by Owl Forest Embroidery

Just look at the Phantom of the Opera with his pipe organ! Room number two, The Mummy, is even cuter. If it wasn't for Stitch Maynia and all of the ...

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May 25, 2019
{Stitch Maynia} Splashing and Shading from Michelle's Romantic Tangle

Maynia start #19 -- Splashing Fun bookmark from All Our Yesterdays Cross Stitch Collection.

I was hoping I'd have time to put in a few stitches but the rest of the family was busy with other things and I got a lot done. I love how that shading of her dress looks!

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May 20, 2019
Drama at the Laundromat (and Some Stitching) from Michelle's Romantic Tangle

One of the things that's surprised me about Stitch Maynia is how frequently I'm looping back to my earlier starts. A Caledonian Sky is the long kitted up project that I started on the first of the month and since then I've found myself putting more and more stitches into it. 

I tucked it into my purse on our last laundry day because I'm filling in blocks of solid color and  the lighting at the laundromat is surprisingly good.  I'd get in some stitching while the dirty clothes sloshed around and got clean.

Maybe I ...

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May 18, 2019
{Stitch Maynia} Goblins, Resorts, and Cats from Michelle's Romantic Tangle

Start #7 -- The Goblins (Cross Stitch & Country Crafts September/October 1995)

I've had this one kitted up for years. The original choice was some greenish linen but there wasn't enough contrast between the color of the goblins and the fabric. Or that's what I told myself, because these days I'm more comfortable stitching on aida.

Start #8 -- Grand Resorts on the Lakes (Cross Stitch Plus August/September 1991)

This is another one that I've had in my stash forever. I love the way the chart looks but I would never ever have decided to stitch ...

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May 13, 2019
{Stitch Maynia} The Next Two Starts from Michelle's Romantic Tangle

I've been doing more stitching than blogging about stitching. I think I told you that in my last post about Stitch Maynia.

Start #5 is Mr. Rabbit, a free download from Maria Brovko's Facebook page.

This adorable little guy may be my undoing.  There's not a lot of stitching but that outlining -- the whole reason the rabbit is so stinkin cute -- is hard to figure out. And made harder by the fact that I'm using aida and have to pierce the fabric to get it in what I hope is the right position.

Start #6 is ...

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May 7, 2019
{Stitch Maynia} Cats, Apples, and My Love of Stitching from Michelle's Romantic Tangle

Over the past few days, I've been doing a lot of stitching and not much blogging. As I type this it's day six of Stitch Maynia and I've started five new projects. There's a sixth one sitting next to me that I plan to start this evening.

Start #2 is a Riolis Kit, Cat With Gramophone

Remember how happily obsessed I was about Cat With Clock a few months ago? It's that all over again.

Start #3 is a Dimensions Kit that I bought when I first started cross stitching and a local independently owned ...

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April 27, 2019
I Stitched a Thing... from Michelle's Romantic Tangle

I'd been carrying around the pattern and fabric and floss in my project bag since January. Sometimes it seemed like the most appropriate thing I could possibly stitch. Some days things were going smoothly and I was happy with hedgehogs and snowy scenery. 

A week or so ago, I really needed to work on something that was simple and one color and didn't requite much concentration. So it got stitched. 

Pattern: Swearing Helps, a free download from Glowfall Love & Craft

There should have been a swag of flowers across the bottom, but leaving those off meant that it ...

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April 14, 2019
I Love Lighthouses from Michelle's Romantic Tangle

I'm sure I've mentioned that before, but I'm having so much fun with this kit, Beacon at Daybreak, that I don't want to work on any of my other stitching projects. I just kind of love everything about this one. 

Hobby Lobby has cross stitch kits on clearance again...

There were a couple of other tempting me, but these are three that I know I'll stitch.

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April 7, 2019
Stitching by the Sea from Michelle's Romantic Tangle

I had the absolute best stitching corner last week. Of course I waited until Friday morning to take the picture and by then the weather had turned so this doesn't capture it at all. 

I did most of my stitching down by the pool and if that sounds nice and relaxing, insert the screams of a bunch of kids on spring break...and their parents. My nerves were frazzled by the time we left the pool each night, but I got a lot of stitching done.

That was an unopened Dimensions kit that I threw into my project bag ...

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March 31, 2019
I'm Making Progress on A Little Girl's Fancy from Michelle's Romantic Tangle

The dollhouse is my favorite part of A Little Girl's Fancy. It's the whole reason I wanted to stitch this chart. And it's making me absolutely crazy! 

All of the furniture is there, except for a vague picture over each fireplace, and I've finally put my finger on what's making this part of the project so tedious. The walls of the rooms are half cross stitch and the symbols on the chart are solid squares of color. Some of them are extremely similar to others. It's the same with the lines for the back ...

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March 24, 2019
Happy Trees? from Michelle's Romantic Tangle

The two pine trees on the right keep reminding me of Bob Ross. They also look more like what's going on in my yard right now. 

Every last trace of snow has melted and we got a couple of gloriously sunny and warm days before the rain moved back in and the temperatures dropped. It's not cold, but it's not nearly as nice as it was.

I'm so ready for Spring!

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March 23, 2019
Book Report: Mr. X Stitch Guide to Cross Stitch from Urban Quilter

The Mr. X Stitch Guide to Cross StitchThe Mr. X Stitch Guide to Cross Stitch
by Jamie Chalmers
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I have been cross-stitching sporadically most of my life, so most of this book was review for me. It provides very good basic instructions with clear illustrations and some modern looking projects. The detailed analysis of how a pineapple project changes depending on size, count, and number of colors (adjusted with design software like PCStitch) was extremely illuminating and clarified the implications of these choices in a pattern. My main quibble is that he describes a "laying tool" in the gadgets section (which ...

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March 17, 2019
What Would You Sacrifice for a Frame? from Michelle's Romantic Tangle

The end of the hedgehogs is in sight and, since my daughter has claimed them they're going to be finished instead of tucked away in my box of stitched projects.

A few weeks ago I found this frame for fifty cents at an estate sale. It's nice wood and absolutely gorgeous and it comes soooo close to the right size. Another inch or inch and a half would make it perfect. I could use it the way it is....

But then I'd lose all of that pretty foliage around the edges. I could almost convince myself that ...

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March 10, 2019
B is for Back Stitching and Banister from Michelle's Romantic Tangle

It's my friend Bendy Stitchy's birthday and we're having a stitchalong to celebrate. Friday's letter was "B" so I did the back stitching on the banister...

The last time I pulled this project out and worked on it, I had to force myself. With the stitchalong as motivation, I got quite a bit done and only put it down because I have to get moving on those Smock Madness socks if I have a prayer of finishing before the deadline.

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March 3, 2019
It's Getting Calmer from Michelle's Romantic Tangle

If it seems like I'm posting about All is Calm a lot, that's because I've been stitching on it a lot.  Lots of hours plus lots of half stitches make for lots of progress. 

I've got plenty of Dimensions Gold Collection kits in my stash, but I think this is the first one I've actually started. Village Serene, a Gold Collection Petite that I stitched last year felt a lot slower, maybe because there were so many color changes. All is Calm is nothing but blends, but once I get a thread started I can ...

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February 26, 2019
My Yard Looks Like My Stitching from Michelle's Romantic Tangle

Trust me, it looks more fun than it actually is. 

Remember those winter storm warnings I was telling you about earlier this month? Those storms never showed up, at least not at my house. I'd stopped watching the forecast quite so closely and there was nothing exciting predicted for this week.

Monday, we woke up to twelve inches of snow. Then the power went out...and came back an hour later...and went out for the rest of the day and most of the night. The automated system called and told me my power had been restored, it hadn ...

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February 24, 2019
My Latest Stitchy Obsession from Michelle's Romantic Tangle

I thought I was going to try to finish the hedgehogs by the end of the month, but then I picked up All is Calm and spent a couple of evenings stitching on the trees and now I'm just a little bit obsessed. Those half stitches make for fast progress.

In the Q-Snap, it looks like I've got a huge chunk of it done, but there's a lot more bare fabric hiding off to the right. This won't be done anytime soon.

And it looks like that break from while floss I was planning isn't ...

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