Sunday, April 13, 2014

Life After Ann

Happy Sunday!  Next thing you know, the alarm will be ringing, you'll roll over to shut it off and another Monday will be underway....I was hoping to post sooner than this, but time has just gotten away from me lately.  Not as much time for stitching as I would have liked, but really, does anyone ever get that?

The little bit of stitching time I have managed to squeeze in has been spent for the most part with Frances Eden. 

She's been such a patient companion.  Why am I so impatient to be done with her?!  Well, I've spent a fair amount of time asking myself this lately and I do think it's because of the lessons learned from the whole Ann Grimshaw saga.  These pearls of wisdom have come to me now that Ann is done and I look ahead to the rest of my stitching line up.  I've realized that....

Lots of color doesn't necessarily make it a more interesting stitch.

Case in point -   check these guys from the upper left corner.  Yes, they're colorful.  Yes, they're uncomplicated and easy to stitch. But seeing as they are the exact mirror image of the same guys on the upper right, I wrestled with a certain frustration that I'd already stitched them once - why now again?  Ann's motifs were all done in a single colorway of silk, but because the motifs were all so varied, they never felt repetitious.

Another post-Ann flash of insight - Don't trust your middle aged memory and eyesight to figure out what the heck  you decided on 2 years ago.  With Ann, since the colors weren't going to change, it was just a matter of following the chart and getting the stitches all in their designated spot.   But now thar I've returned to Frances, not only are frequent color changes involved, I also have to figure out from the 30 different skeins of Sampler Threads I started with, exactly which one was used on any given motif??.  Try telling the difference between Forest Glade and Dried Thyme after that long - not so easy. Here's the little blooming plant first stitched on the right side in February 2012.  Did I bother to make note anywhere of any color conversions made??  A big fat NO would be the answer to that one.

Here is same-said blooming plant on the left side, recently stitched a full 2 years later.  I'm embarrassed to say how many times I put these flowers in before I finally got the colors to match on both sides, Even now I'm not so sure I have them right, but I've reached the point of  just moving on.

And lastly, I've learned that size is a relative thing.  I happened to rummage across an old Permin piece I'd started many many years ago and remembered that I put it aside because the stitch count was tiny and it still seemed like such a huge monstrosity of a project.  Does anyone recognize this from the feeble start I got on it?

Funny thing though, in the post Ann Grimshaw era, I feel like I've stitched a sampler the size of those giant flags they hang over football stadiums and car dealerships.  When I found this Permin atttempt again, it didn't look nearly as enormous as it did when I gave up on it  moved it way to the back of the closet.  Maybe I'll take it out for a spin again....after Frances and Hannah Pepper are done , of course.

OK, so that's how things stand for me as of this afternoon,  I have more work travel coming up at the end of the month, so Frances will have at least one more road trip to accompany me on before she sees her last.  Have a good week!


Krista said...

Nice progress on your sampler. I have been there too... have a pile of threads in a WIP and do not know which color is which! After Ann, any BAP does not look daunting I am sure!

Margaret said...

Well Frances looks great anyway! You know what? If the two sides don't match, so what? I'm sure it will look good anyway! I do find it tedious to stitch symmetrical samplers. I stitched Frances as well and it does get old. lol about the relative size of things. Isn't it funny how things change? I love that Permin piece! Makes me want to dig out a similar piece I have waiting for me.

Barb said...

Frances is so pretty. I loved reading all your insights from doing Ann.

llknbillburg said...

I am having just the same problem with a piece I took back out recently. It seems that I have changed the color of the vine and not only did I not note the change, from what I can tell, the new color isn't even in the kit!! I have 2 sides of the vine in so I am really loath to take it all out so it is just sitting while I figure out what to do!! Such are the perils of long term WIPs!!LOL

Melissa said...

Oh, I've done that, Mary. I think I will remember but of course I don't, including how long a break I might take when I put a project down. However, your Frances E is looking wonderful - bright and happy!

Carol said...

It is looking so beautiful, Mary! I have found that I need to write down every color change immediately to help my aging brain :) Hang in there--you'll have another fantastic finish before too long!

The Inspired Stitcher said...

Isn't that the way, you think you'll remember and have good intentions. Uh, recollection at all. LOL! It looks great.