Margaret Randolph

Margaret Randolph
Margaret Randolph stitched by Jenny


Thursday, 31 January 2013

Travel projects

I have just gotten back from a trip that required long plane rides.  I generally kit up projects specifically for traveling. Generally these are smaller projects, monochromes or projects on lower count fabrics. For some reason, I like stitching over one while on planes. However, I greatly dislike over one stitching when traveling in a car.

I decided to start two SL pieces as travel projects for this year.

The first is the multiplication table, stitched entirely over one. So far, it is not at all tedious, but I am sure it will get there...

The second is Lucretia Maus. I love her bold colors and whimsical design elements. This is as much as I got done on the plane ride home yesterday.

Now that I am home again, I will return to Mary Theresa Wilkinson. However, I'll continue to keep these two projects in my rotation as they are such fun.

Take care,

Wednesday, 30 January 2013

First Finish of 2013 - And All Was for An Appil

I put the last of the stitches into And All Was for An Appil last night to have my first finish of 2013. 

Worked on 36-count Lakeside Linen Attic Lace using DMC

I am really enjoying the Scarlet Letter Year but I also need to focus on getting some of my other starts into the finished column.  So for the first part of February I will be focusing on making some progress on a couple of WIPS and pick out another Scarlet Letter. Happy stitching....

Hi, My name is Cheryl and I live just north of Portland, Maine.  This is my very first post ever, anywhere and I'm pretty proud I got pictures and everything!!!
This is my project, Jean Scrimgeowr.  The top picture is New Year's Day and the second photo is from last week.  I had a bit of a set back as I used the wrong green for the border and on the vines going up and around the flowers. I have corrected the vines but I haven't decided what to do about the border.
Now that I know I can do this I will post my progress more frequently and I will work on my photography, or maybe learn how to iron?

I'm In!

Hi all, I am Cheri, from Omaha, Nebraska.  I am a quilter who found your group on a fellow quilter's blog.  I belonged to a group like this a couple years ago who were all working on  a mid 19th century applique album quilt.  It was so much fun to complete that quilt with other like minded stitchers from around the world.

I must say that I had not even heard of Scarlet Letter samplers but as soon as I visited the website I was hooked.   Museum reproductions are right up my alley.   My cross stitch skills may be a little rusty and stitching on linen will be new for me, but I have jumped right in and chosen Sally Harvey from 1737.  I liked that this sampler had the alphabet and numbers and I also liked the little patchwork wings on the birds.  Being an old hippie (who is celebrating her own red letter year in 2013 turning 60 later this summer)  it was very difficult for me not to choose Freelove Hazard--who names their child that in the 1700s?   : )

I will be anxiously watching my mailbox for my package from Scarlet Letter to arrive and in the mean time I will be reading all of your posts and admiring your work. 

Happy Stitching All,

Tuesday, 29 January 2013

Coloring Inside the Lines, Part 1

After stitching 1026 eyelets in a myriad of colors, the eyelet arch band is colored in.

Dorothy Walpole

Dorothy Walpole, eyelet band detail

Dorothy Walpole, eyelet band detail
I enjoyed stitching this band - there is something rhythmic that is soothing about repeating the same stitch over and over to fill a space.  You get to a point where your mind relaxes and your hands just continue on.  This is why stitching relaxes me!  Plus, there was no counting, just filling in.
On to the flamestitch band - yippee, another coloring exercise!
Until next time, keep stitching.
Sharon H

Emma Miles Update

Hi All,

Here is another Emma Miles update.  This seems to be a very popular sampler on the blog(s). 

I finally finished the large over one section. 
Here is a picture of the entire piece so far

                                                 Emma Miles 1-28-13

and the portion I just finished, the verse and the second A&E.

Emma Miles - Over one detail
I met my goal of finishing the over one section by the end of January (even a little early, hehe).  Now I have a little more border work and I can move onto the holly.  The bottom section of this sampler is what drew me to Emma, the holly band and the sweet little birds.

I am enjoying every post to the blog(s).  I find myself thinking about what I want to work on next and I still have a long way to go on Emma.  I don't know how I am going to get all the samplers all of you are stitching stitched as well.  I need them all!!!!  What to do.  I need more time!

Happy Stitching,

Mornings with Rachel

I decided to quit skipping around and work on some filling stitches for awhile.

Rachel Jarratt
first three bands

So far this has required cross stitch, cross over one, backstitch, double running, four-sided stitch, counted satin filling, counted stem filling, fishbone, and Roumanian stitch.   I have to keep setting it down to go consult my stitch reference books.  Still ahead in the sampler: queen, Florentine, detached buttonhole, and bullion knots.  Learning a lot here.

So far, so good!  (But I still loathe satin stitch.  It doesn't fill well on the 30-count linen, and it shows every tension issue imaginable.)


Post for Rachel F - A Finish

My first sampler and it is finished!

My Beloved

I tried to add a few personal details like the year '13 on the patio and my boys initials at the bottom.  The bunny was turned into another dog and the original dog's colors altered,now they are our Wheaten and Kerry Blue pus!  I had plotted out the boys initials and their birth year under the initials all in backstitch.  Unfortunately the backstitches were swallowed up in the green stem stitch and I didn't think it was legible.  After pulling those tiny buried stitches out, I tried tiny cross stitches, but they weren't very neat on top of stem stitches.  Pretty sad lettering! I just really wanted their initials on this and didn't think I could get those little x's out without destroying the dark green stitches. 

Hoping to re-read the framing suggestions on the blog and have this ready for 17th anniversary.  This is the inscription I had engraved inside my husband's wedding band, so I think it will be a sweet gift for my husbands desk. Perfect size.

Thank you Nicola and Joe for hosting such an interesting and exciting blog.  I have enjoyed seeing such beautiful projects and feel I have made new friends along the way!

Rachel F

Invited to joined challenge

 Thank you  Nicola and Joanne for welcoming me to join the challenge.I am really excited to be a part of the Scarlett Letter Year challenge. I have ordered Emma Miles and when the chart and materials arrive I will post a picture. I have purchased a scroll frame and stand (not to pricey to start with). Nicola it is also a milestone birthday for me this year with retirement just around the corner!
Debbie Bauer

Intermediate Happy Dance

The satin stitch band from h-e-double hockey sticks is DONE!! Happy Dance. I feel like I've run a marathon. No, that would mean I was lying on the ground, gasping for air and swearing like a sailor.  Seriously, I feel like a real weight has been lifted from my shoulders.

You see, I'm one of those very strange individuals who can count her WIPs on one hand. In fact, MG and a Santa that I was stitching for my dad when he died four years ago, are the only unfinished projects I have.  It hurts my brain to have multiple projects floating around in my head. I tend to do everything in serial and stitching is no different.

Now I feel like I can finish MG in a reasonable amount of time.  The current band is the last one stitched over three threads and it's pretty easy, so far. Woohoo!  By the time I get to the cutwork and needleweaving at the bottom, I should be ready for it.

Monday, 28 January 2013

Everyone's work is so lovely!

Hello everyone,

Your updates and photographs are very inspirational.

I didn't make much progress on the Lady and the Castle Saturday, so this week's picture doesn't look that different from last week's:

Here is a slight close-up:

And a scan of the finished picture from the SL catalog:

I started Mery Cox this past week.  I am stitching this on 40 ct linen with HDF fibers.

Sunday, 27 January 2013

My Progress on SDW

SDW is a fun sampler to stitch. I am really enjoying working on it. I am stitching now and will have more finished today, but I wanted to get a picture before it gets any gloomier outside. We are supposed to have ice, but it hasn't arrived yet. I am loving this horse. Funny, the colors are the same as I have on a sweater that I wear a lot. I really like that there aren't many color changes. There are large blocks of one color, so the stitching goes smoothly. I especially like how the blue on the flower is so unexpected and really stands out. I plan to work on SDW daily in January, and then I will start Margret Lawrance in February and alternate my stitching. Hope everyone has a great week.

New Start

It has been a week since I completed ABCD 1817. I could not settle and decide on a new start. I finally went to my LNS for some fabric. I came home prepared my fabric and started AW 1662. I am going with 32ct Lugana (don't know if I spelled it correctly the hand writing on the label is awful :) in a mocha color.
floss toss on new fabric
I started this one Friday afternoon. I was able to get the first band done today. After having Mr. Frog visit yesterday. On the first line of light green I mis-counted and had to frog a large portion of the stitching and re-do. Then I worked on the dark green and had to pull it out when stitching the second line I only placed 4 x's when I should have placed 5. Then I had to frog the whole section of dark green when I went to stitch the tan color and realised that I did not go down far enough under the lighter green. As this is the first time I have stitched over 2 on anything I think I can be excused this one time. lol.  Thankfully I only had a small section to work with at first since I could only find my 6" hoop to work with :) After all the false starts I was wondering if I should actually continue this piece but I persevered and finally completed the whole first row. I am so glad I did. I am enjoying working on this type of fabric and I am looking forward to getting into the other lovely colors of this piece. Here is where I left off today.

Ta Ta for now,
Angela CG

Friday, 25 January 2013

My start on Huswif

I finally got a start on my challenge piece. I found Huswif in my stash so I started that. It's a kit I bought several years ago when I visited Scarlet Letter for their Open House. I would love to go back someday and take it all in again. Seeing all those samplers in person was a dream come true. Huswif is done on 40ct linen over 1 thread with 1 strand of silk in tent stitch. I'm so glad to have a magnifier for my Ottlite to stitch this sampler.
I also ordered these- Maria Theresa Wilkinson, Elizabeth Sheffield and Mary Ann Body. I am seriously considering Ann Medd and doing the mini challenge for The Manifesto-we'll see....

Emma Miles

I am very happy to say that I have the first color of the border completed all the way around, and it met the first time!!!  I used the "do 9 half stitches and cross the 10th" method for more accurate counting, but I was still surprised that it ended up correctly.  I need to put Emma aside to work on a wedding sampler, but I am hoping to be back to Emma within 2 or 3 weeks.

I have been really enjoying reading both of these blogs and seeing the amazing array of samplers!  Thank you Nicola.

Over one and framework

Dorothy finally managed to get some of my attention this week.  I finished the over one verse and name.  Since I'm working on 40 ct this is an accomplishment!  I feel like the rest of the sampler will be just FUN!!

Dorothy Walpole verse

Kind of self-explanatory!

Dorothy Walpole
I actually finished the verse and name about a week and a half ago and just haven't had time to share.  I love Dorothy's verse - it's so simple but says so much. 
I also have worked the framework for the eyelet stitch arches and the flame stitch bands.
Dorothy Walpole

Close up of eyelet arch band, Dorothy Walpole
Now I get to have fun filling in both bands!!  Ironically, I am a stitcher of counted work who doesn't like to count - I will do anything to get out of counting!  So, to have the framework completed as a guide, I basically get to "color inside the lines" for the rest of the bands.  What fun.
There is something comforting about just the rhythm of stitching without having to worry about counting!!
Well, the forecast is for a Winter Storm here in NC this afternoon.  I have bread and milk and my stitching, so I'm good to stay in the house and watch the sleet fall!
Stay warm and keep stitching.
Sharon H

Thursday, 24 January 2013

Circling Alphabet

My new start was Circling Alphabet on 35ct linen(Scarlet Letter grab bag) using 1 thread DMC. I'm further ahead than my picture but have had trouble attaching the photo to blogger. I hope once I figure out this blogger, I will then be able to comment on all your beautiful posts.

I am so excited, I think I finally got it!

Cindy L

Late to the Party

I'm a little late to get here, but I finally made it.  I started a SAL late last year with Susan Singleton and she will be my Scarlet Letter piece that I am focusing on.  I am also celebrating a big birthday this year.  The big 6 - 0.  Yuck. Funny how you don't think about those milestones when you're young. I was trying to focus on Susan but with holiday stitching, ornaments and other BAPs it's hard to keep on target.  She has a lot of stitching on each page and most of the subjects are large and solidly filled in. 

A year or so ago I went through Scarlet letter's online catalog, page by page.  I wrote down the samplers that really spoke to me. I came back a week later and looked at those samplers again and narrowed down my choices.  I wanted to indulge in one silk project that I truly loved to have for my retirement.  After another week or so of rumination, Susan Singleton was my pick.  When I got her, I admired her and then tucked her away in my filing system.  I couldn't believe it when blog reading late last summer Susan Singleton appeared as a SAL.  I asked if I could join in and was graciously accepted.  I know she is going to take longer than the two years planned for but I'm good with that.  She will be gorgeous and a labor of love.  And who knows, the way work is going, I just may retire sooner rather than later!

I went to a Stitch Away that my LNS hosted last weekend and spent one whole day on Susan. I was pleased with what I accomplished.  (Edited: I stitched four pomegranates and the tree outline at the stitch away. I had worked on her previously. Sorry.)

I can't wait to stitch on her again. Soon.


I'm a Lucky Girl!

I really am one of the unluckiest people ... I can count on maybe two fingers the number of times I have won anything! So I was truly surprised and excited when I read my name as the winner of January's pop up give-away to guess the name of Nicola's new project.

Let me show you what arrived in my mailbox this week ...

It's a Buddy Case and it will be a great buddy! Great for storing my needles.

Great for storing my scissors under the removable divider. And the best part is the inside top and bottom are magnetic so your scissors (or multiple pairs of scissors) will not rattle around in the case. Now someone was thinking!

Not only will my new buddy be the perfect place to safely store all my small stitching items, it will be perfect when travelling; large enough to hold stitching essentials but small enough to slip in your purse/overnight bag.

Oh ... I almost forgot ... as you can see, my buddy is Scarlet Red ... a perfect memento of our Scarlet Letter Year!

Nicola, thank you so much for your wonderful generosity! I am so glad my luck changed!

Wednesday, 23 January 2013

Margret Gatis Update

I didn't even take Margret Gatis with me this weekend while visiting my mom.  Her light is insufficient and Margret requires too much concentration to work on her unless I'm in my 'nest'.
As most of you have probably experienced when stitching satin stitches, the more you get done, the faster it goes. Hallelujah!  As I continue to fill in the flowers, etc. on this band of satin stitches OVER THREE (yes, I'm screaming), I find a few frogs lurking about, but they are quickly dispatched to the pond. I hope to finish this band by the weekend and move on to the knot garden.
I've probably stitched some of these in the wrong direction, but unless you have access to the original you will never be able to prove it. The photo on the chart is so small it is useless and the directions regarding this are minimal. In fact, on this band, they are non-existent. So, I take artistic license and spare not a thought to how Margret stitched it.

Ann Hair update

My third attempt at stitching this sampler has definitely been the charm.  Here is my progress as of this morning. 

My progress is slow because of all the over-one (mainly on the verses).  There are six of these long verses.  I have just a little bit more to do on the large bird band--mainly filling in the three vases with long and short stitches.

I  have a problem with the lower leaves on the flowers in the three blue vases.  I've drawn arrows below to show the problem.  On the chart, only the flower on the far left has this filled in and the color doesn't look anything like that on the photo.  The other two flowers don't have any symbols there, but on the model photo, there is definitely some stitching.  I've tried unsuccessfully to find a photo of the original sampler.  Please let me know if you have any ideas where I can find a good photo of the antique.  I've looked in Carol Humphrey's book and also at the Fitzwilliam Museum's website but to no avail..

I'm putting Ann aside for a few weeks while I work on some other projects, but she'll be back next month.
Hi everyone,

First of all, a big, big thank you for all your support and kind messages about my false start with Polly Phillip! All your words were very helpful for me...

I have started again with Susan Singleton...I have carefuly read the instructions,  there will be no bad surprise this time : only a few verses in one over one, but I can manage that without trouble... ;-)
Susan Singleton

It's a little beginning and I hope to have more progress to report in a few days...

Susan Singleton 
I'm also waiting for the supplies for Elizabeth Sheffield...maybe that will be my next start ...

 I'm delighted to see all your work... so beautiful designs and colors ! You are all very talented ladies... and gentlemen....

Tuesday, 22 January 2013

I completed the 3rd band today and so I thought I would post a picture of my  progress.  I am thinking of taking a break from this and am going to work on Mery Cox. 

Working on Ann Grimshaw

  I have spent the last week working on Ann Grimshaw.  I thought this alphabet section would go more quickly but I confess to being distracted.  Chores and watching tennis are keeping me from getting the hours in I thought I would have but progress has been made.

  She's about 3/4 finished now and although I am supposed to be moving on to another piece in my rotation now, I think I will work her until she's finished.  I can see a finish by the end of the month. I hope!

Wish me luck,  Laura

But what does Lady and the Castle look like?

Hello again,
There was a question about what the finished Lady and the Castle would look like. I'll try to remember to post a picture next week. The pattern and kits for Lady and the Castle in an Autumn Landscape (to give it its full title) are still available on the Scarlet Letter website. For an amazing finish check out Ellen Daniels' work on the American Needlepoint Guild website (click on the picture at the right for a full screen version.)

Introducing Gentle Susan

Hi, I'm Katherine.  I live in the Mountaineer State of West Virginia, USA.  This is my first time joining a group. 

I have decided to work on the sampler Susan Singleton.  While I obtained three samplers, all of which I will eventually do, The Huntsman and Hannah Carter (to me, they are a similar style and deserve to hang together) are too ambitious for me to take on now and finish by the time of Nicola's birthday in 2014.  So, Susan Singleton was who I settled on for this soiree.

Those of you who know me, know that it's really hard impossible for me to leave any design unchanged.  I realize that this is the thing that may get me voted off the island and will abide by the group's decision.  I've decided to do Susan with some major changes.  As you can see from my photo above, I couldn't decide whether to stitch her on a natural linen, or a colored one.  Also, the size of my blue linen presented a problem.  The design was too big for the piece.  So, I am slightly altering the borders and have decided on the blue linen.

Then - in for a penny, in for a pound - I went for the third drastic change - floss color.  I will be stitching Susan using Gentle Art Sampler Threads.  Below are my notes on the floss changes.  If anyone in the future decides that they want to stitch a "Gentle Susan", just let me know and I can send you a PDF file of the color changes.  I really hope that you all decide to let me stay and live on this wonderful island for the next year.  I'm a good cook, a lousy housekeeper, very creative, and can't wait to get to know you better!  Hope you enjoyed.