Wednesday, November 26, 2008


I've been fighting with this one cross stitch for awhile. First, I found the symbols for two colors (Dk Beige and Lt Beige) were switched, but only after I’d been stitching and realized that the shading didn’t look right. I checked it against the picture and found that yes, the two color symbols were switched. Grumble, grumble…okay, fixed that.

Somehow, it got smooshed under a banana and left for a few days. I'm still not sure how it happened. The edge is stained brown. Luckily, this is the edge of the linen and will probably be completely cut off when I go to finish it. Any leftover ickly bits will be in the seam allowance, I'm sure, so while it was a very annoying experience, no harm done.

THEN I ran out of white. That’s okay, white’s pretty common, I have more of that from other kits. It's not exactly the same, slightly smoother and brighter, but not really noticeable unless I'm going to submit it for an award.

Continuing along, no problem with greens, then I get to taupes - and the Lt Taupe and Taupe symbols are switched! Two in one pattern! Fine, I took out the Lt Taupe and continued on…only to run out of the Lt Taupe! Aaaaaugh! I hope I can find something close! The kit doesn’t list what types of floss (DMC or otherwise) were included. It does list a color code of 6114, but as the kit was made 10 years ago, and I’m now living in Japan and have no idea where to go to get embroidery floss, who knows if I can match it! I’m so close to just tossing the whole thing in the sink along with a lit match…

Found a correct color and finished the stitching since starting this post. The new color to match the Lt Taupe isn't quite right - a bit of grey and blue instead of a gold and green tinge, but not different enough to be noticeable. Again, not going for any awards here, just going for a finished piece. The cross stitches, back stitches, and straight stitches are all done. It just need some satin stitches in the gold metallic thread and a tassel to finish off the hat, then it needs to be sewn to a backing. It's a pretty small piece, but with all the setbacks, has taken a while to finish:

(See the banana gunk along the left side? The other spot in the bottom right-ish is just a fuzzy)

Now, I need to wash and block it out before putting the metallic thread and tassels on. For this, I was planning to toss it into some really cold water with some white vinegar, a rinse of really cold water, and then one last bath in Soak, again with really cold water. The vinegar will keep the colors from running, then a rinse to get the vinegar out, and then some Soak to clean it, though it's not really dirty or anything. The problem I'm having with this is that Lee and I can't seem to find any vinegar here! Apple cider vinegar, balsamic vinegar, vinegar for sushi rice, sure, many different kinds of vinegar - just not white! I know if I go ahead to finish this the red will bleed into the white, since that's the kind of luck I've been having with this piece, so it will be dormant for another while, until I can get proper color protecting ingredients. Vinegar - who knew that would be such a problem?

Once clean, it needs some tassels and then I'm supposed to sew it to some brown felt for backing. I don't have brown felt. I know where to get some, but I do have some more of that cloth I use for the ornaments. I'm trying to decide if the reason for the felt is that it's thicker and more sturdy, or if the fabric will be good enough. Since I'm waiting for the vinegar to clean it anyway, I'll probably go out and get the felt for it. May as well not skimp!

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