Jan 5, 2018

2017 Recap - Stitchy Finishes

Sometimes I surprise myself.  With as busy as I was in 2017, I still managed to create ELEVEN finishes.  I know, I know... it's not many, but pretty good considering I don't have a lot of time to stitch.  The job... need I say more?!

Revised:  I realized I'd forgotten one finish. So, I actually had 12 finishes!

Without further adieu, my 11 12 finishes:

At the beginning of the year, I participated in the Stitchers Day Exchange with Yahoo group Friendly Stitchers.  I really enjoy this exchange since the theme celebrates STITCHERS!

Fabric: 28ct linen
Fibers: GAST Burlap Nap Sack
Embellishments: Lace weaved with DMC

There was some controversy surrounding the design and designer when I posted my finish on Facebook.  If you're interested in reading more about it, go HERE.

In a mailart group (both on Yahoo and Facebook), I coordinated a Spring themed mail art exchange.  This is another exchange I enjoy doing.  I try to do at least one if not more stitched mailart exchanges each year.

Front Designs:

Back Designs:  Spring by Lizzie Kate

More details on this particular exchange can be seen HERE.  If you're interested in how to make a mailart envelope, just look on the left side bar under tutorials.

In 2016, I participated in the 12 Days of Christmas exchange coordinated in the Stitchers Circle Yahoo group.  I was ecstatic when I received not one, but two kits in the Victorian Pansies series (I stitched the needlebook and scissor keep in 2007 and 2008).

Victorian Pansies Bookmark by Textile Heritage

Even though I don't have many, I do love stitching Patriotic pieces.  I've had this design (now OOP) and the frame for quite a few years.  I finally told myself to "stitch it!"

Design:  Flag 1998
Designer: Bent Creek
Fabric:  28ct Blue Gray Linen
Fibers:  DMC, WDW, GAST
The frame is what was called for in the leaflet.

As I mentioned in Finish #3, I received two kits.  This one finishes up the series of four kits in the Victorian Pansies series.  All of them turned out so pretty!

Victorian Pansies Sachet by Textile Heritage

Here they are... all four together:

Aren't they gorgeous?!!

No matter how tough, frenzied, or stressful life gets, I always think about how it could be worse.  So, this is a very apt design.  While visiting my "other mom", she was stitching this design.  She gave it to me to stitch.  I switched up the colors.

Design: Abundantly Blessed
Designer: The Trilogy
Fabric: 14ct Brown Aida
Fibers:  DMC and Carries Creations

Remember, whether you think so or not... You really are Abundantly Blessed!

Toward the end of the year brings Christmas ornament exchanges.  This one was sent off to a fellow stitcher, Marina who lives in Canada.

Design: Let It Snow
Designer: Casey Buonaugurio
Fabric: 28ct White Cashel Linen
Fibers: DMC

I had envisioned a snowflake finish, so I went in search of something I could use to finish this adorable snowman.  I found a bunch of wood snowflake ornaments at Michaels, and had the mitten button in my stash.  I don't know if anyone else has this problem, but each time I make an ornament for an exchange, I want to keep it for myself!  Marina sent me the sweetest email after receiving it. It warms my heart that she liked it so much.

This was supposed to be an ornament (for an exchange) also, but after stitching it, I realized it was too big for an ornament.  What's a girl to do?  I decided to make it into a pillow!

Design: Love and Dreams
Designer: Jan Fate of Angel Stitchin
Fabric: 28ct Linen
Fibers: Carries Creations, GAST

I changed up the colors on this design to suit the tastes of the recipient.  When I saw the fabric, I knew it was perfect for this design.

I'm not really one for Halloween designs, but once in a while one will catch my eye.  I finished stitching this one at the Hoosier Retreat which is held in Indiana each year.

Design: Full Moon
Designer: The Drawn Thread
Fabric: 32ct Linen
Fibers: DMC, GAST, WDW
The box is from Cottage Garden.

The tricky part about finishing this piece to fit it in the treasure box was learning the nun stitch and doing it in a circle shape.  It's not exactly perfect, but no one can tell once it's in the box.  The box is well made and I really liked how the entire project turned out.

If you're looking to use a treasure box like this, I recommend shopping around.  I wrote about my experience HERE.

As a Christmas gift, I stitched another "ornament" that turned out to be too large.  Again, I made a pillow.  One thing I've learned is that aida works great (compared to linen--I may need heavier interfacing) for this type of finish.

Design: Outside My Window
Designer: Diane Graebner of Lynn's Prints
Fabric: 14ct Baby Blue Aida
Fibers: DMC
Embellishments: Rice Beads and Handmade Cording

This design is from 2005 JCS Christmas Ornament Issue.  One thing to note is that some of the called for embellishments/beads may be difficult to find many, many years later.  I substituted the rice beads because I couldn't find the ones called for by the designer.  The smallest package of rice beads I could find was 4,000.  As you can see, I only needed 8!  Anyone need rice beads?

When I saw this design, I thought it would make a wonderful Christmas gift.

However, I didn't care for the color choices of the designer and wanted to make them more to the recipient's liking.  I changed the colors and simplified design to this:

Design: Family Matters
Designer: Hinzeit
Fabric: 28ct Silkweaver Solo Jobelan
Fibers: DMC, WDW, GAST

I started and finished stitching this at the Hoosier Retreat I mentioned earlier.  It was a fun stitch.  I found the frame at a thrift store.  Originally, it was gold and I painted it a gloss white then cut a blue mat to coordinate.  The recipient really liked it.

While spending Christmas in Virginia, I started and finished this adorable snowglobe.  It's from the 2017 Just Cross Stitch Ornament issue.

Design: Snow Much Fun at the Northpole
Designer: Frosted Pumpkin Sttichery
Fabric: 28ct Sky Blue Linen
Fibers: DMC

The fabric looks gray in the photo, but really it's a light blue. That little penguin is so adorable!!

I'm seeing light at the end of the tunnel for Japanese Garden!  I went to a stitching get-together in September where I put in a few more stitches.  Yes, it's really true... I have proof...

Not only that, I've stitched on it a bit after that day.  Here's what JG looked like at the beginning of 2017:

By the end of 2017, I had to move JG up on the scroll rods.  Here's what it looks like now:

Who knows... Maybe by the end of 2018, I'll be ready to start putting beads on it!

The other project I've been working on is called Swallows by Maia.  Another stitcher asked me to finish it for her.  When I received it in July, it looked like this:

I didn't work on it as much as I'd liked to (Sorry, Debby!), but did make some progress.  Here's what it looked like at the end of 2017:

The backstitching makes such a difference!  I think the flowers are so pretty with the vines.

Hopefully, 2018 will allow me to have more stitchy sessions.

Until next time...


Berly said...

I love all your finishes!! JG has really come along since I saw it last. Maybe this year you’ll get it finished!

Katie said...

Great recap post. I love all your finishes. Your WIPs are looking great. I love the one you are finishing up for a friend. Too pretty. I wish you tons of luck in your 2018 stitching!!

Sandy In Montana said...

Wonderful finishes Meari and eleven is a lot compared to my big fat ZERO starts or finishes in 2017.
Hugs, Sandy

jhm said...

I love the Family Matters Design. Is it a Henizit? If not then who did it? I would love to do this one for my married kids.
OVerall great stitching for the year. If I remember, you also did some paintings too. Keep up the good work

CatsnCorgis said...


What a great year you had! I totally agree with your color changes on Family matters.

KimM said...

What gorgeous finishes and WIPs! Happy New Year!

Donna Pheneger said...

Meari, your stitching, as always, is wonderful. And your finishes! You are so creative! Thank you for sharing your talent with us!

Robin in Virginia said...

What wonderful finishes you had in 2017! I am like you with exchange stitching; I want to keep them for myself as well. Enjoy your weekend!

Deb said...

Well done on your finishes!

Faith... said...

Great finishes Meari! I really love the Victorian Pansies set you stitched for yourself. It must be a wonderful feeling to not only have everything stitched but finished!

Look forward to seeing your 2018 finishes and that Japanese Garden will be one of them.

Happy New Year Friend!

Anonymous said...


What a nice variety of lovely projects! All finished to perfection in true Meari style. The pansies are gorgeous, and I will treasure my snowman ornie always. Congrats on a productive year, awesome work!


Anonymous said...

Lovely stitching, Meari!! Your finishing is phenomenal too! I've been practicing, but I doubt I'll ever be as good as you are!


htimcj said...

I love all of your stitching! Your finishing is always superb!

Mouse said...

Gorgeous finishes Meari :) love them all and well done on the progress as well on the chatelaine...fingers and paws crossed for the beading too :) love mouse xxxx

Anonymous said...

I loved the cardinal pillow Meari. And those swallows! You gotta get that one done, it is beautiful!

~Valerie Kalyani

Anonymous said...

Well done on your finishes!

About your mail art. I noticed stamps on your work. So, you mail it out
without putting in a padded Envelope? Obvious question, how does it make it through the postal system without getting torn/damaged?


Anonymous said...

Beautiful work, Meari

Karen V
Fitchburg MA USA

Marexstitch said...

all so lovely, congrats

Miriam Pauline said...

Beautiful finishes Meari! And beautiful finishing on everything--your pillows and framing are lovely. I liked the sentiment of Family matters, but not the color scheme of the chart--but I LOVE the simplification that you did. Congratulations on a year well stitched!

Carol said...

Really enjoyed the revisiting of your beautiful stitchy 2017, Meari! I especially love the pansy set and I'm so happy for you that your JG is on the road to a finish. What an achievement that will be :)

Wishing you even more stitching time in 2018. Happy New Year!

Mel said...

I'm sooo excited to see you keeping going on Japanese Garden. It's one of those labours of love and I know you've been working on it for years!
Lovely pieces for the year and as always, I'm super jealous of your amazing absolute to finish your stitching into such cute little pieces.

Akila said...

12 finishes and you say not much?!?! And WIPs too!! Such beautiful finishes Meari. Great progress on JG too