Saturday, February 1, 2014

I BELIEVE!!! (UFO-ology)

I want to believe I'll work my way through my UFO's.  After making some good progress on my Mercy Goodehart model this week, packing lots of orders, and updating my Etsy site, I was feeling like today might be a grand day to start something new out of my stash.

Buuuuut, my stash is right next to my cabinet with my UFO's (UnFinished Objects!  BWOO-HA-HA-HA-HA!)  How many of those do I have anyway?  I've never really been one of those to keep track, make lists, check things off, come up with a system.  I estimated I probably had about 20, but I was wrong...I had 21.  Twenty-one is too many to justify starting something new (as much fun as that is.)  So, I made a list, and I will let myself start a new something when I check something old off of the list (the Christmas gift I'm still trying to get done doesn't count.) 

I took pictures of a few of them for you to see.  This one is Sampler Sisters of the Thread by The Primitive Needle.  Lisa, the designer, lost her life in an automobile accident a few years ago, and I still think of her.  She was bubbly, and gracious, and kind, and a talented needlework designer.  I really like the color scheme of this one.

This one is Pelouse Interdite by French designer Mouton Rouge.  The words on the sampler mean: Keep off the grass!  I bought this at a trade show I went to with my dear friend, Sue.  We had a blast eating out, drinking martinis, and playing dolly derby in the parking lot (luckily, there were no serious injuries.)  Cedar Hill Designs had some of the Moutin Rouge offerings there, including the models, and I loved this one.  I remember sitting at one of Graham's science fairs working on it.  And it's ALMOST done -- just that bottom left corner left (a turtle and a snail.)

I've stitched a number of Blackbird Designs pieces, so I was surprised that I only had a single UnFinished One in the cabinet.  Sarah Tobias inspired an entire book by Blackbird Designs (and friends.)  I really liked the colors in this sampler (I think there are just four.)  I am about half-finished with this one, too. 

Curtis Boehringer was a big-deal designer about 20 years ago.  His charts were so interesting to me, because although you could tell they were cute, his patterns were just photocopies of the charts, with the flip side sometimes being a line drawing of the piece.  In other words, you didn't really know how it was going to look until you were done!  I bought this set of T-W-E-L-V-E wildflower charts, and to tell you how old they are, they are actually charted for DMC Wildflower Thread, long-since discontinued.

But that's okay!  I am stitching mine in DMC floss (although I haven't probably stitched on this one for ... gulp ... six years?)  Still, I think this is really pretty.  I'm using a super long piece of Glenshee that I had as a leftover scrap.  The linen is really texture-y, and this will look dandy above a door or window when I'm done.  I BELIEVE!!!

Okay, now we're getting into serious business.  This is Elizabeth Hudson by The Scarlet Letter.  This is a big ole sampler, and the colors are bright and cheery.

This is a picture of the original, and I actually have the charts for this one for sale in my Etsy shop (click here to go directly to that page.)  There is something like a MILE of verse on this one, and it's all over-one, of course.  So you do like a tenth of a mile of verse for a while, and then you stitch a pretty band, and I am really dying to get to the bigger bands of flowers.  I'm stitching mine on 36 count hand-dyed linen with the Au Ver a Soie silks (which have a nice sheen.)  I picked 36, because of all of that over-one verse (I didn't want the words to get all bunchy looking.)

You can see I'm at the Queen Stitch stage with the band of strawberries.  Each strawberry is its own wonky shape (you should see the chart!)  But, I love wonky things, and it makes each strawberry unique.  I actually don't mind Queen Stitches one bit, and with the over-one, some Satin Stitch, and a few other fun ways to pull my thread through the fabric, it's a fun piece to work on.  But very large.  I BELIEVE, THOUGH!  I BELIEVE!  I PROMISE, I BELIEVE!!!

Hannah Pepper is a three-part chart that came out in Fine Lines Magazine about ten years ago.  I was sorting through old magazines here one day and came across the issue with the first third, and it had the reproduced sampler alongside the original.  I noticed that the reproduction was done in bright colors, as the sampler might have first been stitched (red, yellow, brighter greens.)  I liked, though, the antique next to it, in which the colors were faded and dull.  So, I dug through my stash and pulled out colors to make one that looks like the antique.

There aren't too many colors in this one, so I actually just have my threads organized on a wooden palette.  I'm stitching it on a 40-count hand-dyed linen, and so far, it is beautiful.  Once again, I am so anxious to get down to the bottom (alas, I've got a lot of over-one verse to slog through first.  This sampler has TWO separate verse sections, the second of which is much larger.)  The bottom has a nice pastoral scene with animals and plants and such.

So, here is my list of what I haven't finished (but I have stitched probably a few hundred different things in the last 30 years, so I'm not too disappointed).  I have included their "status" behind, in case you're wondering.  If something has been discontinued, try eBay or Etsy.  I've included links where I know you can find some of these charts right now for purchase.
  1. Elizabeth Hudson: The Scarlet Letter (available)
  2. Hannah Pepper (chart is in three separate issues): Fine Lines Magazine (discontinued -- regularly on eBay)
  3. The Flock: SamSarah Design Studio (available)
  4. Alphabet Baubles: SamSarah Design Studio (available)
  5. Happy Haunting (kit): Shepherd's Bush (available)
  6. Pelouse Interdit: Mouton Rouge (discontinued)
  7. Life Has No Blessing: Mary Engelbreit (discontinued)
  8. Witches Garden Sampler: Notforgotten Farm (available)
  9. Birdhouse Sampler: Prairie Schooler (discontinued)
  10. Sampler Sisters of the Thread: The Primitive Needle (discontinued)
  11. Wildflowers of America: Curtis Boehringer (discontinued)
  12. Asenath Whitcomb: Carriage House Samplings (available)
  13. All Our Troubles: La D Da (available)
  14. Heart that Gives: Ewe & Eye & Friends (available)
  15. Christmas Sampler: The Prairie Schooler (discontinued)
  16. Roses are Red: La D Da (available)
  17. Sarah Tobias: Blackbird Designs (available)
  18. Be Mine (kit): The Heart's Content (available)
  19. Four Seasons: Marjolien Bastin (discontinued)
  20. Colonial Homestead Pinkeep Drum: Stacy Nash Primitive Designs (available)
  21. Christmas at Hollyberry Farm: Stacy Nash Primitive Designs (available)
So now I'm off to figure out which one is the CLOSEST to being done, so I can start something new.

How many UFO's do YOU have?  Leave a comment!

(P.S. I work in-hand, if you're wondering, so the pictured needlework all got a quick visit with the iron before I took out my camera!)


Anonymous said...

I believe and I call mine WISPs instead of UFOs (Works in Slow Progress)- I have 33 over all my crafting genres. And 25 on the FUPpy list (Finished Unfinished Projects).

The goal this year is to keep it under 60.

It sounds like some of your UFO's have memories and emotions tied to them and sometimes that can be hard to work on/through. If you're a religious person, maybe consider prayer stitching when working on those?

pamelaric said...

Theresa - I think I have every color of flower thread made and many doubles. If you decide you want to use the original threads, just let me know. I believe you have my email address.
Tucson, AZ

Krista said...

Lots of great UFOs! I love how you are doing Hannah Pepper in a different color palette. And Elizabeth Hudson is really calling me, although keeps getting scared off my list when I hear about miles of over one verse! I also have quite a few Curtis Boehringer patterns in my stash from my earlier days.. love how yours is turning out!!

Ann at Beadlework. said...

Hi Theresa
I checked for your email address but couldn't find it. I just love the Curtis Boehringer wildflowers and would love to stitch them - there is a real shortage of botanical cross stitch out there. Would you consider selling the charts to me as you finish each one. I've checked on ebay and they aren't all available and one of the main sellers won't ship overseas unfortunately. You can let me know and I look forward to your reply.

Theresa said...

Ann, yes, I'd be happy to send you the first six of the Wildflowers -- I won't be doing them again. My e-mail is Send me a message.

Marilyn said...

I probably have about that many in WIPS and UFO'S too.
Really, what is the difference?
Both aren'y really done, so aren't they ALL really UFO's?
Some just sit around longer. lol

marly said...

I seem to be the odd duck because I can't start one without completing (or burning) the current. I had so many Boehringer Santas and thought I was missing part of the chart so I threw them out!

Anonymous said...

I really have no idea how many UFO's I have. I am really afraid too count:)

Unknown said...

Just love your starts..Hannah is just wonderful! Thanks for sharing them with us.

Terry said...

Ah Theresa! You don't have that many, and they all look like fun stitches. I currently have 55 WIPs and 4 more to add in this year. Yes, they are all WIPs. I work on them in a rotation and love it.

Now on the other hand, I do have 9 that are actual UFOs. I have lost interest in them or discovered an error in my stitching, and can't decide what I want to do with them. So they'll sit in their bags until I can determine what I want to do with them. (Psst... actually had 10 but sent 1 to someone who wanted to stitch it and I knew I wouldn't so it went to a good family.)

In the meantime, I'll stitch my WIPs and enjoy them.

Anonymous said...

Hi Theresa,

Those Curtis Boehringer flowers are lovely. I have 20 WIPs/UFOs. The oldest is about 7 years. For every two that I finish this year I'll start one new project.

Jen said...

Theresa is an extremely fast stitcher (you have no idea, sometimes I think her hands move faster than the human eye can process). UFOs- your days are numbered at the Venette home.

Vonna Pfeiffer said...

I don't talk about mine :)

Stitching Noni said...

I don't want to count... but maybe I should get them out and have a rummage around and pick one to get it finished! That might make my finishes total better for the year... last year's finishes total was dismal!
Look forward to see you attacking your pile :o) Well done!!
hugs x

Anonymous said...

I have 2 Curtis Boehringer: black eyed Susan and Daisy. I was getting ready to pass them on but then found your UFO including them. Now I would really like to collect the rest! I love botanicals! May I get in line for the patterns as you ladies complete them? I will happily pay for them! I am also happy to share the two that I have if anyone else would care to do this grouping. I love the idea of putting them over a door. Thank you for the inspiration! 💖

Anonymous said...

I'm not sure how I will hear back from this comment so I am quickly adding my email address my name is Joy and you can reach me at I eagerly await to hear from you!