Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Best Laid Plans Of My BAP...

Good morning, dear friend!

I am more than a day late with my BAP (Big Ambitious Project) post and progress…or lack there of, and not only has my dear partner in stitchyness, Parsley, made beautiful progress on her BAP, but she has also posted her progress on the proper date…which came and went for me…

I chose Carriage House Samplings "Houses of Hawk Run" for my BAP, which is a design that I have wanted to stitch for some time but have been awed by it's size and detail…not to mention that it would require me to stitch on Linen…yikes!

First I bought the chart, jumped in with both feet…and encouragement from Parsley, herself, while we shopped at The Silver Needle together…I had already decided that was going to be my BAP, so there was not much prodding needed…and had planned on using the charted DMC alternative, which I also purchased, as well as a beautiful 28 ct Potato Lugana. All was good, kitted up, and ready to roll out January first, along with dear Parlsey…

The Problem…

I should have known…

Have you ever started a WIP that just didn't want to be stitched? I don't mean in a ghosty…ooooooo sort of way…but like the darn thing just didn't want you to stitch it, and no matter how many times you put your mind to it, each and every time you pick that darn WIP up, it just doesn't go smoothly.

I must back up for a moment, and tell you that I had made a start, in fact, with my DMC and was going along fine until I began to look for other's versions online and discovered that it looked gorgeous when stitched in the recommended Soie D'Alger, need I say more? For weeks, I actually forced myself not to give in to temptation...but after some thought, I decided that if I was going to put in the time and effort on such a giant project, I might as well do it right. I cruised over to see which online stores carried Soie D'Alger, just for plots and giggles...and discovered that not only was it very hard to find…but it was very expensive…so I scratched that idea! But, being the hard headed and stubborn gal that I am, I couldn't just leave well enough alone...I decided to compromise and NOT give up…I chose to use the charted alternative silk, which is much less expensive, NPI…though still not cheap. I was able to order it from 123stitch.com and waited anxiously for it to arrive…and arrive it did. I couldn't wait to jump in and stitch along with Parse!

Since I began this WIP, I have stitched and frogged so many times that I can't even count! I made the mistake of asking some one's opinion at my LNS and they gave me a whole lecture on not just how much they loathe NPI silk floss and would use only Thread Gatherer, but also how it must be stitched on a high count Linen…and Linen only…oy!

The Confession…

I fear all Linen!

I will do anything to avoid using Linen, and thankfully I have been able to avoid using it for over 30 years!

But it is now time to grow up, or figure out an alternative…do I change to another design all together for my BAP with Parsley? I have put funds into "Hawk Run Hollow" and hate…haaaate…to give up! I just don't know what to do!

I have found myself quite cranky over it all…silly, really, since it has nothing to do with real life…other than the fact that I have been unbearable to deal with for poor sweet Parsley, not to mention the biggest flake on it all…

The Conclusion…

I must decide whether to scrap this WIP altogether and start a new one for the BAP, or do I just suck it up…so to speak…and buy the 40 count Linen that is charted and use my gorgeous NPI floss…

I will figure it out…because the true fun of a BAP SAL with such a dear sweet friend is the bond that she and I have, not because we are stitching these projects together, but because we are friends first and stitchers second…and that, dear friend, is what this BAP is all about!

I will keep you all posted with our next BAP update in February.

Please head over to Parsley's blog to see her amazing progress on "Quaker Christmas - Songs of the Season" by By ByGone Stitches…it is truly breathtaking!

As always, dear friend, thanks for stopping by…I hear the teakettle whistling and bid you farewell.



  1. You might just be surprised in using the 40ct. You may actually like it!!

  2. Don't give in because you spent the money - that is a big {beautiful} project but you don't want to dread every stitch. The threads can be used for other things! If you decide to walk away, dont feel bad!

  3. Deep breath, Ma. You are dearly loved and we have ALL been there in having big hopes that fizzle out. Take heart! You can come back to this project with new vigor at a later time. Keep these goodies in your stash if you wish and find another thing to work on that will bring you to a happy place. HUGS and much love.

  4. Beautiful choice of a project! I sometimes find I have a hard time getting started on the forty count, but once I do, I am never disappointed! Looking forward to seeing. What you do.

  5. Dear Ma: I am with you sometimes changes donot work the way we want I would go on and not give up I love forty count sometimes hard to work on but a lovely finish.


  6. Whatever you decide to do, you have to be happy with it or the stitching becomes a chore. I have seen it stitched with DMC threads on 18 count aida fabric and it is stunning. If you want to use the 28 count lugana, then I say go for it. Best wishes in whatever you decide on.

    Robin in Virginia

  7. In out, in out - deep breaths.... you will love stitching this in NPI - I've stitched both VoHRH and So HRH and am sort of stitching (WIP) on AaHRH all in NPI on 36ct linen, and although sometimes I could toss the thing into the street, I plug along until I reach a better place... as will you..... so breath and stitch without regret!!!


  8. Let me just say that I do not like linen nor does it like me!!!!! I have one project I did on linen and that was enough. That is a pretty piece though.

  9. Well, instead of linen, why not try evenweave which looks like linen but is more evenly spaced e.g. Jazilyn. Or stick to your aida. I dont think it matters which you do: it is your work and as long as you like it and are enjoying it then that is what counts! I know some people look down on aida but I use both and samplers can look amazing on aida. Dont let this chart beat you: just stitch one stitch at a time and know what we are all there for you ready to push you on or send you a hug when needed lol

  10. If NPI is Needlepoint Inc, then I understand your pain. I decided to use DMC instead of it on my Autumn Sampler because I couldn't justify spending all that extra money for silk that isn't overdyed. Now, I am using Silk Mori Milkpaint on my current project and I like it. I hope you enjoy it once you start anew. I can't say I fear linen though. I did a project on 36 ct the other day and enjoyed it.

  11. ok deep breath here .. don't give up on it ... just change the fabric to an evenweave ... much nicer to stitch on :) take my word for it ...lol and if you just use short lengths on the NPI it will stitch better too ... good luck :) love mouse xxxx
    and the opinion hmmmmmm that one is straight in the bin ... you do what is most comfortable for you to do both in the stitching fabric (you will like evenweave ...lol ) and also the threads prices ,... ((hugs)))

  12. I can't believe I'm saying this, but go ahead & change the fabric or threads or whatever else your heart desires to make it "happy stitching" for you. Once was the time when I had to follow a designer's floss & fabric recommendations to the proverbial letter. It's not worth it, however, if you end up chucking the whole thing in the sink & setting it on fire. I bought the Christmas at HRH chart back in 2012 along with the recommended linen. For Christmas that year one of my gifts from my sweet baboo was the collection of NPI floss to go with it. Alas, I haven't made a start on it yet. Maybe your work on this BAP will encourage me : )

  13. I too drank the Kool-Aid and joined the HRH frenzy a couple of years ago. Got one or two squares finished (1 over 1 on 25 ct. lugana), and couldn't take it any more. Not sure why, because I still think they are cool designs. Didn't get as far as investing in all the floss, but have the 40 ct. linen just waiting for the right project. Do what your stitching heart tells you, and maybe find another SAL to stitch with your BFF!

  14. I would like to smack whoever told you that you *must* use linen. What a load of rubbish! Stitch your BAP on whatever you want, with whatever you want. There really are NO RULES in cross stitch. It is your project -- stitch it your way. That's one of the best parts of cross stitch -- that we can tweak and adjust the design to suit ourselves. What the designer suggests is just a suggestion, not an unbreakable command.

    I look forward to seeing YOUR stitching.

  15. If you are stitching this over one on that 28-count Lugana, then switching to 40-count will be easier on your eyes, as you will do it over two which is 'only' 20 count! But really, as everyone says, YOU decide what makes you smile. I have chucked plenty of late, cause it doesn't suit me or make me happy! I haven't done a 'Shirlee' but have come close! Hugs!

  16. I truly don't think there are any rules and would be hard pressed to patronize a shop that told me what I "had" to do. Do what you want to do! The only person you need to please is yourself!

  17. First off, do what makes you happy. It's your time and your money. That being said, several years ago I undertook a huge project. It took about 5 false starts before I found my "rhythm." I started out cross stitching on aida, but eventually did a project on linen and have never looked back. I love linen. I also love working with silk threads, but will use whatever a pattern calls for. I just love fiber! lol So, give yourself time. Don't stress. It will all fall into place. Not sure if you were planning to work over one or over two on the 32 ct or whether you are working with one strand or two. Sometimes two strands can be a bit more fussy. I assume you know that if you are working with two strands, that you separate them, let them dangle so the twist gets out of them, then put them back together to stitch with. I was late coming to this knowledge and boy does it make a difference! Wish I had started doing it years ago.

  18. The HRH pieces are so beautiful with all the details in the different blocks. So, if you still love the design, stay with it. And choose the fabric and thread that works best for you and that you love working with. Everything else is of no importance. Just my opinion. I started the Houses many years ago on 36 ct linen and with DMC threads and loved it. But then it became a UFO because so many other things got in the way. But I think I will pull it out this year again and continue stitching on it.


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