Thursday, December 12, 2013

Studio Stitches For You, Stanford Marshmallows, Pattern Sale, Yee-haw.

Ok-- I said I would get this post up last week.
I am a liar. BUT, I am a liar with good intentions and a heinous cold, and I do apologize.
Aaaaaaaand, since my brain is still slowly leaking out of my nose, this will not be a long and flowery post: Would you like to win a copy of this pattern? It is the result of much, much love, mixed with a potent combination of blood, sweat, and tears. Not literally, that would smell awful. I'm sleepy, can you tell?
THE POINT IS! This pattern is my baby, and I love it, and it has both iron-on and traceable templates and a TON of images and DIAGRAMS! Oh, the diagrams, I love them dearly. It's a great excuse to buy shiny happy floss and sit in front of a heater and watch movies and stitch away to your heart's content. I'mma do this differently than I have in the past-- for every 20 comments, I will give away 1 pattern, and each winner will be drawn from that specific segment, so you have a 1-in-20 shot of winning, no matter how many people comment! Sound good? Cool. This time I'm going to make it easy, you don't have to answer any questions, just comment with anything. Although, if you're an overachiever, you can comment with your favorite quote from a Christmas movie. Or any movie. Run with it. I'll draw on the 18th!
And, if you've decided you'd just like to get one, all quick-like, Empty Bobbin now has a shop with downloadable PDF patterns! Instant gratification-- it's pretty awesome. You can eat your marshmallows right now-- no harm, no foul.* AND, To christen the newly launched store, Shea is offering a 20% off code through Monday the 16th at noon on ALL of the patterns! Just enter the code GIVEAWAYDAY at checkout for 20% off your PDF pattern order. Check it outsies.
And now, I shall scuttle back to my lair and return to coughing up phlegm! Victoire!

*When I was a kid, my mom would always tell me about this study in order to encourage me to be a more patient and productive human being. I don't think it worked. And, apparently, no one elses' parents used this as a cautionary tale? My kids will know what I mean when I yell "Wait for your marshmallows, delinquents!"

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

The Somewhat Sad-ish Sampler, or: How I Learned to Embroider, Kinda.

After deciding to dip my toe into the delicious-flossy-rainbow pool that is embroidery, I realized that it would be prudent to, well, uhm... actually learn to embroider? I think maybe I'd done it a few times before, but I can't imagine I had produced anything with any degree of aesthetic appeal or skilled craftsmanship. 

Which is to say, I sucked at it. Thus was born, The Somewhat Sad-ish Sampler! Shifty, shaky, and utterly without skill! It was insanely fun to make.
You could probably guess, but this was not a well-planned project. Basically, I decided to start randomly embroidering concentric squares in different stitches, and it just became a sampler by default. Did I have any idea what I was doing? No. But I DID have a book on embroidery, and a lot of West Wing episodes to burn through. Netflix streaming is the jet fuel of the 21st century crafter.

I think I learned a lot, because that's easiest to do if you know almost nothing. And it was just so much fun to play with pretty colors and spent almost no time thinking about what I was doing-- bumbling along, picking stitches at random and being generally unconcerned by the many, many mistakes and irregularities in the design. When you're in the habit of thinking about projects as (to some degree) commodities, it's really refreshing to make something so haphazard and unappealing that there would never be any question of re-making or marketing it. 
Clearly I'm still no expert, but it was great practice for the MANY hours that I would put into sewing up the Studio Stitches sewing machines, several of which I stitched multiple times before I had acceptable samples. More on those soon-- I promise, I really am getting around to giving some of them away; this week it IS happening.
(For the record, I didn't embroider it in this hoop, but since I had put no forethought into display, there's really no good way to do it. Stitch tension, heh, heh... it was an issue.)