Sunday, January 19, 2014

Stretch Segment 1

I have to ask, just to see if others have this issue:  When you are gathering what you need for a project do you often have issues with the fabric you will use?

Remember, I had that issue with the Christmas Challenge as a finished design wouldn't fit on the linen napkin I wanted it to be on so I had to stitch it on white Aida.  I don't know about you, but if I can avoid using white Aida, I will.  It's a pet peeve I guess, or maybe a ridiculous idea that everything DOES NOT need to be stitched on white Aida.  Even if I do have it in abundance, ha, ha.

So there we were picking fabric for Stretch which started out as a chocolate linen napkin.  Pulling the colors of the floss out, I realized this will not do and dug around the stash box and found the shiny green napkin which is a poly blend of some kind but has a lovely shine to it that I liked AND the color of the fabric went nicely with floss colors.

Excitedly I put the napkin on a hoop, started counting out to the upper right hand corner....but as I did so, I realized I could see through the fabric.  At first I thought it was due to where I was sitting.  I adjusted my light and continued figuring things out, but was distracted by how clearly I could see my table top through the fabric.  Then I tried a few stitches and knew immediately that this fabric would not work unless I sewed some kind of material to the backside so I couldn't see through it.

Honestly, I wasn't ready for that kind of commitment and was too tired to think that idea through.  And then I remembered.....in my stash is an unused piece of Crystal Conifer  I had purchased from Picture This Plus in March 2013. Leaping up from my chair, spinning around and staggering over to my fabric stash tote, I excitedly threw back the lid and dug around for the fabric.  One thing to mention here; if you store your fabric in plastic sandwich bags, digging around is actually more like plunging your hand in a bowl of water. You experience a type of displacement and your sandwich bag covered fabrics "splash" everywhere.   

Knowing I was tired, but eager to give it a try, I put in 92 stitches (yes Krystal that was for you) and so far like what I see, but I really preferred the napkin fabric...or the conifer Aida, or the napkin, or the Aida...

Strangely, this shot shows actual color of fabric and now that you and I have discussed it, dear reader, I'm actually feeling better about it.

I'll play around more today and see what I come up with.  

In the meantime...happy stitching!

19 comments:

  1. Well that's a pretty piece of fabric also, it looks like Stretch lives after all, and with several of us planning him for 2014:YOTMTW we are now required to name our Stretches. ie. Mr, Bill Stretch. and Ms. Julie Stretch,

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    1. Then I shall name mine Mr. Vinnie Stretch :D

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  2. I like the fabric a lot actually. Can't relate to the stash problem though as I don't really have a fabric stash (yet). I'm not sure if I will since I tend to only buy the fabric I need for whatever project I'm working on. Although it would be nice to have a selection of fabrics. I'm going to have to get a small stash before I move again as I'm not sure if there is a cross-stitching store in OK and I want to avoid having to order fabric online as much as possible.

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    1. There is a Joann's, but that is as much as I know. I'm hoping there is something else there that has a larger selection than the typical white 18 ct evenweave and aida!

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    2. Yeah there is always Hobby Lobby too but they only have Aida typically. I have a Joann's in Houston so when I go home I can always get fabric if I need to.

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    3. I'm wondering if we did a serious search if we could find a few stores within a reasonable driving area? Your hubby T is very supportive and probably wouldn't mind a half day road trip, right? Maybe if the craft store was very near a "men's store" ha ha, hunting, fishing or gaming? Wait, then you would be in those stores too and you'd never make it to the craft store hahahaha!

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  3. I'm in Krystal's boat her, almost no fabric stash avaible here. But than, I HAVE to order about everything online (and most of it overseas), since there are only two small, crafting stores I know of in my town one specialices in knitting and one in sewing and the only stichable fabric I found was white Aida, 25ct white evenweave and some very ugly bright green Aida with a giant count. Maybe I'll need to do some exploring sometime, but I'll put that of to spring, when the weather acually feels enjoyable for stomping through town for hours.

    Your choice for stretch, however, looks absolutly perfect - can't wait to see how he will look on that. Oooh, and now I want to make him too...I really liked the one you found on dA with three stretches in a frame, I'm still thinking about what mine will look like eventually...

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    1. Yeah those were pretty neat. ^_^

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    2. When you decide to stitch Stretch, don't forget to pick a first name ha ha! With the fabric issue, have you tried the tea bag dying method? And may I also recommend dry red wines? Both give color. Magical and I are still experimenting with "things" to dye with that don't cost very much :D

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    3. If you can find any, the soft shell, (around the inner hard shell) of a black walnut, makes a beautiful rich brown dye.

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    4. Hmmmm, so that means I would have to crack a few walnuts (guffaw) to get that soft shell lining and then turn around and make Baklava with the meat right?

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  4. I just finished a piece on conifer and I loved it! Cannot wait to use it again!

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    1. did you have any left over? It's such a huge piece I'm thinking about just continuing other small projects on the same piece :D I'm going to your blog and have a look around!

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  5. It looks like a great start and I do love those colours together.

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    1. Thank you! I am still (even now yes) very partial to that green napkin, but now that I have more of the golds on it, it's looking nicer :D

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    2. I liked the green but if it is so "thin" its see through then would it perhaps be to thin to support the stitches properly?
      I love the design for stretch, oh and before it slips my mind, if you are thinking about dyeing , do try using onion skins, they make some fantastic shades, especially red onions,and its very easy, just onion skins ( lots) boil them up in a pot with plenty of water and then place in fabric, simmer it for about an hour and leave over night to cool, they nice thing about onion skins is they have a very high tannin content that means the natural dye colour does not need a fixer to keep it in the fabric.
      oh and Ketchup, makes an interesting dye experiment ( sometimes it works brilliantly sometimes its a bit of a fail) you put your dry fabric on cling film, then spread a really thick layer of ketchup over it and leave for a couple of days to dry out ....then wash through with out soap and see what you get :)

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    3. BOTH ideas I intend to try! Magical did the onion skin for a project she was working on and it came out as a pretty pale pink (which was what she wanted). I would like to try beets sometime. It's funny, but going to pick up veggies at the market never seemed so intriguing until now :D Ketchup tho, definitely on my list. the vinegar in it probably sets the color quite nicely :D I'm curious about what color I could get! thank you!!!

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    4. The pink wasn't so pretty really - it's more of a brown for some reason - not sure what I did wrong, perhaps I didn't leave it long enough.

      I've not found ketchup to be particularly difficult to remove stain wise, even after several days - my youngest is really good at getting himself covered in it and the stains always wash out. I would suggest considering heating tomato paste with a knob of butter/marge in a frying pan and using it as a paint - when it's had grease added it's almost impossible to remove normally.

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  6. I only have a few bits and pieces normally + a larger bit that I work off till that too is a smaller bit and then I let myself splurge again on something nice :) When I come across the colour issue I usually head to the kitchen and cook up a batch of natural dye though sometimes the results are not what are expected. I generally try to get an off white or ecru Aida not the white as that is just too light.

    Remember you can always make another stretch... with different colours that DO suit the napkin fabric :)

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