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Saturday, September 19, 2020

September/Friendship post
Styling with Stitches Project
Memory Lane
Question of the day

Today, I went to write the post and I found out the hard way that Blogger had changed everything. So I've been fighting with the computer for hours to no avail. I give up...blogger has won! Did anyone else have a hard time just figuring out how to single space? Why change something that is not broken is my question???

Has Fall come your way?   Are your evenings getting cooler and are leaves falling in your area?  I love Autumn weather but here in Florida it will stay warm and humid until December.  So, I miss the crisp Autumns that I remember so well. I know Mary will have a gorgeous Fall in New York and she will really enjoy her hikes.   I wonder if she would like a good friend to  make a trip north.


Styling with Stitches

September is our friendship month when Mary and I show you gifts we have given each other or other friends.  And, we would like to thank all of you for the friendship you share with us.  Your visits mean so much to us.  We also have two extra features.    Memory Lane is a new addition that we hope you will enjoy. And we haven't had a Question of the day in awhile so we thought we would add one of them too. 

RJ's Styling with Stitches Project  

My gift to Mary was a set of three stitches in a kit by Lizzie Kate called  Busy Bee.  The patterns all centered around a bee theme which we both enjoy.   The first little stitch was honeycomb and your initials which they showed in a round box.  I saw alot of ladies doing them in a Tim Holtz pocket watch locket and loved how that looked so I gave it a try.   It was hard stitching on 32 ct. over one but I love how it came out. In fact, I enjoyed it so much I made six of them for gifts.


The second stitch was a busy as a bee stitch that I put in a chippy black frame.  It was a lucky find in Hobby Lobby.   I don't know exactly what it is made of but it is very heavy and had alot of space in it for framing.


And, the third pattern I really thought was cute.  They had this one framed too but I decided to put it on matboard and then attach it to a bigger piece of matboard covered with black ticking.  Then the whole thing was attached to a white washed plaque.   I changed BE to BEE yourself and I bought a cute little bee button and forgot to put it on.  The yo yo is the cutest bee fabric but it is not showing up too well in photos.  And, it sits on top of black ribbon with a large black button in the center.

I love this set from Lizzie Kate.  It was really fun making all three and I really want to stitch them again sometime.

Busy Bee set
By Lizzie Kate
40 ct. Platinum  Linen
called for overdyed floss
Tim Holtz pocket watch


Mary's Styling with Stitches Project

While on vacation in Vermont with a friend, we stopped at a small quilt and needlework store. Diane William's "Needleworker" was on display and I immediately knew I had to stitch this for RJ.  She is the one that got me so interested in this pastime we both love so much.

 I had it put in this beautiful frame and I love how it is displayed on her bookcase.

by Little House Needleworks
Country Mocha linen
called for floss
custom frame


Memory Lane

This is a new feature where we will feature some of our older projects.   We get asked alot what our favorite projects have been. So we each chose five to share with you.

RJ's Five Favorite S/S Projects

#1.   I would chose our pillow pinafores.  These are kind of Stitching Friends signature project and we  are trying to make one for each month of the year.   We are half way there and more are coming next year. This design is called Life and Liberty by Shepherd's Bush. 

#2.  Our trays were really an enjoyable project.  You will be seeing some new inserts for our trays with the change of seasons.  Can't wait to get started on them.  This intricate design is also by Shepherd's Bush and it is called Where my  home is there dwells my heart.  I really liked adding a list of all the bases we were stationed at on the right side.

#3.  Making sewing machine covers was a fun way to make our machines look prettier.   I really enjoyed the stitch on this one too. It is called This is my happy place by the Scarlett House.

#4.  Last year we made our first bulletin board for summer and another one is coming this October for the fall.  Plum Street Sampler designed this stitch and it is called Hello Summer.The tacks are made with scrabble tiles and spell out summer.

#5.  We are making a word play door beller for every month of the year too.  I've had fun adding fabric, small appliques and charms to make up these sweet stitches. I  think I like the December one the best so far but they are all really cute.  All of the word plays are by With thy Needle and Thread.


Mary's Five Favorite S/S Projects

My top 3 favorite projects are "Surprise-Surprise" from Brenda Gervais, my favorite designer.  Where Hearts Rest is a fairly recent finish and I just love it on the little chest.

 #2 is Liberty for All and I love it on the frame turned tray.

#3 is Valentine Sampler.  I was chuffed with myself that I was able to gift RJ a stitch on 40 count.  I've come a long way from the first 14 ct. Aida gift that I stitched for her.

#4 and # 5 I think are favorites because I use them in flower arrangement displays.  I enjoy combing floral and cross stitch 

 # 4 is Pumpkin Hollow from Fanci That.  I put a call out on Facebook asking for help identifying a stitch and kind stitcher not only sent me the pattern I was inquiring about but a lovely assortment of Fancy That charts.  So, this project reminds me of the generosity of stitchers.

# 5 is Mrs. Maguire Bee Charmer by Pineberry Lane is a favorite because I think it is charming.


Question of the Day

We have missed so much this year because of Covid.    Sometimes it does not feel like it can really be happening.   Prayers are said every day that this disease will be over as quick as possible   So with that in mind, we have a question for you.

What is the first thing you are longing to do when Covid is over?


Don't forget to sign up for the Traveling Whirligig if you are interested in stitching just one or all of them.  There are four patterns (one for each season).  All you need to do is send us an email with your mailing address so we can put you on the traveling list.   They are small charts and you will only need a stamp to mail in America and about $1.15 of postage to send overseas.  So everyone can be included easily.  And, we are excited to see how far they travel.   

Thank you all so much for coming by to see us.  We truly appreciate your visits and your kind comments.   Excuse some of the spacing etc. on this post.  I hope to have the kinks worked out on this new blogger format in the near future.  We will be by to visit with all of you to see what you have been working on.

Everyone that have been affected by the hurricanes and the wild fires remain in our thoughts and prayers.  Stay safe and take care friends.

                                                      Stitching Friends

Wednesday, September 2, 2020

August 31, 2020

August Styling with Stitches
SAL update
Traveling Pattern

Is Labor Day right around the corner?   Can summer really be coming to a close?  It's hard to believe because we have done nothing this summer at all.  Covid has put such a hold on so many plans for so many, weddings, graduations and just a simple night out dining with friends.  But, I am a glass half full kind of person and hold hope that the light at the end of the tunnel is coming.

Happily, it has not stopped any of our community from stitching and I'm so thankful for that.  I find such peace and contentment with needle and floss and I know you all do too.  Mary and I are so grateful to come and visit with all of you and have you stop by to see our newest project.


Styling with Stitches

We have made our theme for August our kitchens.  We are planning to do several stitches that will work well in that room for the next few years.  Our first project is an apron rack.

RJ's Apron Rack

Well Covid made this project interesting.    When we planned it way back last year, I thought I would just go buy a cute rack and add a stitch to it.  But, I have not been able to go to a store for the past six months so a new plan was needed.   First, I looked at all the online craft stores and could not find one.  Then I got a nice coupon for 25 % off from Kirklands and began a search there.   I did not find any racks but I did find this cute photo clip board that I thought maybe I could do something with.  I ordered the clip board online and paid by Pay Pal.  So when you get to the store, you call them and they come out and put the item in your trunk.   It's totally "no contact" shopping.  It's not as much fun as shopping in the store but it worked.

We got it home and took off the middle clips so the stitch could go there.  Then George added three old green glass knobs I had in the house to the bottom for hanging aprons.  After that, I added quilters batting to the matboards and covered one with a print fabric and the other with the stitch.  Some brown ribbon and a house charm were added for some more detail.

In the end, it worked out well and it has an added bonus.  I can change the stitch out at any time to a seasonal or holiday stitch.  And, all it will take is to open the clips!

I bought my apron in Provence in a cute lavender store

Closeup of "Sweet Southern Home"

Sweet Southern Home
by Old South Graphs
40 ct. vintage country mocha linen
overdyed floss from stash


Mary's Apron Rack

Despite Covid this has been a very hectic Summer for me and unfortunately, I had very little stitching time. Hence, the tiny project!  This cute little birdhouse plaque and hook was a find from Michael's a year or two ago, I bought it with no project in mind and was so happy to find it in my stash.   I think this would make a cute hostess gift with a pretty apron.  In fact, my apron was a gift from RJ a few years ago!    The stitch is a Blackbird Designs strawberry pattern called Wild Berry.  

Wild Berry
 by Blackbird Designs
25 ct country mocha linen 2/2 

called for floss


SAL Update

Only Faith was able to complete her SAL monthly design this month.  We are happy to show this adorable stitch.  Thanks Faith for keeping the SAL going.  I know Mary will join you again next month.


Traveling Pattern

We have a new extra feature this month we hope you will enjoy.

Arlene of Nanaland blog passed on to me Heart in Hand's, Autumn Whirligig. We thought it would be a neat idea to pass it on to another blogger and after they stitch it and they pass it on to another

So, the idea was born of "The Traveling Whirligig's."    RJ and I bought the rest of the Whirligig series and we will be randomly selecting a recipient to start it's travel. And then it will travel on to all who have signed up.

It will be fun to see how far and wide the patterns have traveled and how many of you stitch them.  We will include a recording sheet, just add your name, date you completed it and your state or country and then we will give you the name and address of the next person to stitch it.

To participate just let us know if you are interested in the comment section or by email so you can give us your mailing address.


Thank you all so much for stopping by to see us today.  We really appreciate your visits.  Hope you are all staying safe.   We'll be by to see what you have been stitching.    Hope you will all sign up for the traveling pattern.  It should be fun and there will be one for every season to enjoy.

                                                  Stitching Friends 

Friday, July 31, 2020

Styling with Stitches
SAL update

Happy last day of July!   It is so good to be back.   I missed stitching, blogging and most of all my stitching friends so much.  You can count on me to come by and visit with all of you as soon as possible.   I would like to thank all of the lovely ladies who sent get well emails, comments and lovely cards.  They all meant the world to me and cheered me up greatly.  I have a serious auto immune disease that is causing alot of pain and making it hard to do much of anything.  I'm on meds but have not seen a huge difference yet but hoping to.   It is also causing weakness, dizziness and stomach upset.  But, I'm determined to get to the blog as much as possible.

Most of all I would like to thank my very special blog partner and dearest friend, Mary who made sure the blog kept going.   Each and every one of her projects were beautiful.   I especially loved the box with the nesting stitch...just gorgeous!!!

And thank you to Faith for sending us SAL updates and to Robin and Marilyn for their lovely stitches they sent for Friends Who Stitch.   Mary and I really appreciated the help of all three of you.


Styling with Stitches
This month we did patriotic wraps for planters.   We chose two of our favorite patterns to wrap around cans.  These can be changed out through the year for other holidays or seasons.

RJ's Planter Wrap

For my planter wrap, I chose the pattern Lady Liberty by Blackbird Designs.  It was a gift from our friend Catherine because she knows how much I love patriotic stitches.  I loved stitching this gorgeous flag.  You can find Catherine's lovely blog here.  Things didn't exactly work out as I planned.  For starters, I'm not allowed to leave the house because of Covid and an underlying condition so I had to make due with  flowers on hand.  Then I didn't have a can (they don't even sell coffee cans in our grocery store when my friend went to look) but dear Mary had an extra and even painted it for me with Annie Sloan paint.  Thank goodness for wonderful friends!

Long may she wave

Closeup of stitch.  The back is star fabric but it did not show up in photo.

Lady Liberty
by Blackbird Designs
40 ct. pecan butter linen
overdyed floss
Annie Sloan paint on can

Mary's Planter Wrap

The last time I went to a cross stitch shop I saw this pattern and immediately decided it would be my can cover for July.  I thoroughly enjoyed stitching this,  I love the Quaker style of the flowers and the banner trim.  Fabric from RJ was the perfect background.  I substituted grits for Shaker white as the white just looked discolored in spots.  I used Needlepoint Silk Raw Sienna for Old Hickory and the rest were called for colors.

I put together the arrangement from after season sale flowers from Michael's.

Sweet Land of Liberty
 by Heartstring Samplery
32 ct Wexford Linen 


SAL update

Faith and Mary were busy completing their July SAL's.   Aren't they adorable?   I wish I did not have to drop out of the SAL this year but am enjoying the beautiful work of my friends.

Faith's Sal

Mary's SAL



Here's a sweet freebie to share.  You can find the chart for this stitch here


We hope you are all staying safe and enjoying lots of time for stitching.  As always, thank you so much for stopping by to see us.  We look forward to visiting your blog and seeing what you have been working on.   We have some new extras next month to share with you so hope you will come see.

                                                  Stitching Friends 

Tuesday, June 30, 2020

June/Grab Bag
Give-a-way winner 
Friends who stitch
SAL update   

Give-a-way Winner:  The winner of "two become one" is Christel of Toilesetfils blog.  Christel please email Mary with your postal address.  

Grab bag
Several  years ago RJ had the fortune to visit the Shepherds Bush shop in Ogden, Utah. She surprised me with this adorable kit.   I immediately stitched it and then it languished in a drawer.  I decided that it needed to come out for this 4th of July.  This was my first attempt at sewing beads to a ruffled trim.  It was challenging but I'm satisfied with the final result for a first effort.  

True Heart Kit
Shepherds Bush
32 ct. Linen included
Floss included

Silk ribbon and beads included

Friends Who Stitch                                                                                                                    
     Marilyn and Robin are stitching friends that do not have blogs.  We are happy that they are sharing their lovely stitching with us once again.  

Marilyn's sweet stitch

Love the nest and the pretty pink colors

Robin's pretty stitch

Choose Joy
by My Big Toe Designs
Lakeside Linens,
32 ct. Butter Pecan
Weeks floss
 SAL Update

We have now completed 4 months of our  HOD, A Year in Celebrations.  These are enjoyable quick stitches and it's not too late to be a part of this year's SAL!  You are welcome to join anytime.  Just drop us an email with a photo of your stitch. 

Faith's June SAL

Mary's June SAL

This is certainly a Summer like no other. We hope that you are enjoying all the pleasures that Summer has to offer.  Have a safe and Happy 4th of July and as always, thank you for visiting and taking the time to comment.
                                                           Stitching Friends 


Saturday, May 23, 2020

May/Post 2
Grab bag/Give-a-way
SAL Update

RJ is feeling a bit better and is appreciative of all your well wishes.   I am deviating from what we have planned to show for May's post till she can join me.  Hopefully soon!!

Grab Bag & Give-a-way

I wanted to stitch something for one of the ladies that I worked with before I retired for her wedding. I loved the sentiment  and simplicity of this pattern. The pattern came with a gold heart charm and I substituted a silver charm as the recipient prefers silver. I am offering this pattern and the gold charm that came with it as a give-a-way. Just make a comment you would like to stitch this and I will enter you into the drawing.  All followers are eligible.

I searched a long time for a frame and I really like how this one picked up the grey in the stitch and how the zig zag design complimented the design in the stitch.

Frame from Home Goods

two become one by Heart in Hand
Called for floss, 30 ct dolphin linen, 2 over 2

Mary's SAL

25 cent pin I found at a flea market -love how it works with this stitch

Faith's SAL
I am looking forward to seeing how Faith finishes her stitches. It's not to late to join us if you want to stitch this series along with us!
Hands on Design
A Year of Celebrations

Thank you for taking the time to visit.  We hope you are getting lots of stitching in and staying well.  Till next time, stay safe!! Mary and RJ.

Friday, May 1, 2020

May/ Spring has Sprung
Styling with Stitches
Sal Update
What's Stitching

I am saddened to report that I am going "solo" on this post.  RJ  has been very sick and is unable to participate.  I  pray that she gets better soon as this will certainly not be the same without my dear stitching buddy. I am sure you have noticed her absence from commenting on  your blogs. I know that she is missing everyone  and hopes to be visiting again with you soon.  Please keep her in your thoughts and prayers for a speedy recovery.  

Mary's Styling with Stitching Project  

Birds chirping at dawn, robins arriving and nest building are some of my favorite harbingers of Spring. So, Brenda Gervais's "Where Hearts Rest" was the ideal choice for my Spring stitch. 

Sometime last year, I saw Deb at Country Stitchers Floss Tube show a stitch on top of a little chest she purchased at Hobby Lobby.  I literally ran out to purchase that same chest. Fortunately, my Hobby Lobby still had them in stock. 

At that time I knew I would use a different pattern and I rifled through my patterns to see if I had a stitch that would work.  I struck gold!!  "Where Hearts Rest"  would fit nicely so I immediately went to work and while stitching the nest I realized I made a major error that entailed lots of frogging.  I put it aside until a few weeks ago.  I spent an entire morning frogging and once I started stitching again I could not put it down!! 

I used all the called for colors with the exception of the border.  Our friend Robin had sent me some Victorian Motto  flosses and I substituted the called for floss for  Victorian Motto Burnt Russet.  I love how there is so much variegation in the VM floss. Thank you Robin, I love the VM floss. 

I painted the chest with Annie Sloan Primer Red.   I laced the stitch onto mat board using Meg's excellent directions that you can find on her blog Live to Stitch. 
Cording and a little metal bird finish the project.  

With Thy Needle and Thread
Where Hearts Rest
mystery linen-called for floss with one exception

Mary's Sal Update

Faith's Sal Update
Hands on Designs A Year of Celebrations
If you would like to join us in our SAL just send me a photo of your stitch, up next is May! 

What's Stitching

May is here and Stitch Mania has begun! For those that are unfamiliar,  it was started in May of 2015 where stitchers start a new project each day. There are no hard and fast rules, so you can choose how you are going to participate. I know my limitations so I only kitted up 5 new projects.    Are you going to participate in Stitch Mania??   How many new projects are you going to undertake? 

We hope you are all enjoying Spring as much as you possibly can during these trying times.  Stay safe and as always, we appreciate your visits and taking the time to comment.  

                                                                 Stitching Friends

                                          Despite the forecast, live like its Spring.    
                                                                                                    Lily Pulitzer