Sunday, April 28, 2019

January in April

Hi, stitching friends!

Spring in Idaho is like a moody teenager. One day it's 72 degrees and almost all my neighbors are outside in tank tops and shorts, walking the dog or weeding flowerbeds. And the next day we have a high of 59, strong winds and overnight frost warnings. At least we haven't had snow again. We have had snow as late as June.

Speaking of chilly weather, my post today, "January in April," was inspired by my blogging muse, Carol at Stitching Dreams. Hers was the first stitching blog I ever read, and her post from way back in February 2010 (<--- link) inspired me to get my hands on this chart: Waxing Moon Designs' "Monthly Sampler Series: January."

Isn't it lovely? I love the whimsical sentiment, the variegations in the blues, the "pop" of the red house and how it adds the perfect splash of vibrant color.

I stitched it on 36-count country French mocha linen, mostly using the called-for colors. I substituted Colour & Cotton "To All a Good Night" (from the 2018 Christmas mystery box) and Colour & Cotton "Dark Indigo" for Weeks' "Deep Sea," and I used DMC B5200 in place of Week's "Whitewash."

I plan to write more about Colour & Cotton in a later post, so watch this space. By the way, thanks, Arlene, for the recommendation!

I love January (it's my birth month) and I love blue, so I couldn't wait to stitch this. I did have good intentions, starting it back in January. But I used so much of the "To All a Good Night" thread in the top band and the side borders that I didn't have enough left to finish the bottom band. I wasn't sure what to do since this was a limited-edition thread and I couldn't get more. So I put January away and started working on Halloween at Hawk Run Hollow.

Earlier this month, inspiration hit me. I looked through my collection of Colour & Cotton threads and found "Dark Indigo." While it's not exactly the same as "To All a Good Night," it's pretty darn close, and honestly, now that I've finished this, I cannot tell a difference between the top and bottom bands. Can you?

To frame January, I painted a thrift-store frame that I got for $4.99 with three coats of white chalk paint. (Thrift-store frames are usually priced less, but this one had a signed and numbered art print in it, which I will donate back.) I mounted the stitching on foam core, and because the frame was a little wider than it needed to be, I added crocheted white lace to the sides. I think it's dainty and complements the dainty swirls in the frame. What do you think?

Another bonus to using this frame was that it had professional mounting hardware on the back. I was able to salvage and reuse that. Yay!

My mom bought me the Logan Dual-Drive Elite Point Driver for my birthday, so I used it as well. (I'm linking to this on Amazon because I really like it. I'm not getting money to convince you to buy it! Sometimes readers ask where I found something so I wanted to make it easy to find.)

What's a point driver, you ask? Well, you know those little metal bendy-tabs on the back of your framed pieces that hold everything (the glass, mats, photo or stitched piece) in place and keep them from falling out of the back of the frame? Those are points. A point driver is a tool that looks like a staple gun, and it shoots the points into the back of the frame. If you recycle a lot of thrift-store frames, a point driver is helpful. It also comes in handy when the points on your existing frames break off. This happens to me when I use one frame and swap out different stitched pieces, such as monthly series. Those little bendy points eventually wear out and break off.

Thanks for stopping by! I was so excited when I finished this today that I couldn't wait to show you. I will post again soon, when RJ and Mary reveal our progress on our Summer Schoolhouse SAL. Until then, be well, sweet friends. I hope your weather is a little more even-tempered than ours!


  1. Meg, I love your January piece. Both of the blues used are gorgeous. I can't tell the difference. I love how you added the scalloped lace trim along the sides. Hmmm, you might want to put it under lock and key! If it goes missing, I didn't have anything to do with it. LOL Enjoy your week!

  2. Oh I love that beautiful finish Meg. And I may have to check that link for the point driver. The lady that does my framing is thinking of retiring.:( I just ordered the Patriotic colors from Fat Quarter Shop that Priscilla and Chelsea mentioned in their video this week. I plan to do a lot of patriotic stitching in the near future. I have several WIPs I am thinking of putting in Time out for a while. Or I may take them to Grimmwood and work on them there. They are not sparking Looking forward to seeing more of your mad framing skills Meg.

  3. I do love that January piece. I can't tell the difference in the colors and think both blues look smashing. I love all blues! You are right about that piece being so pretty with the blues and whites and then the spot of color with the house. You framed it perfectly. I had not heard of the driver, but that would be quite handy for framing your own. I am always on the prowl for frames at my local Goodwill:)

  4. This is a fabulous piece and I wouldn't have known that you had used different threads for the top and bottom bands, Lovely framing too. x

  5. Hello Meg,
    a wonderful design. I like it very much. The little winterhouse is so beautiful. The frame is perfect and the laceborder is an eyecatcher.
    Have a nice new week.

  6. Meg, January is so beautiful!!!

  7. Great finish! Love all those blues. Successful color swap there with the floss. I wouldn't have known you changed it. Thanks for the link for the point driver.

  8. Love this stitch I fancy stitching this one soon .
    Looks beautiful.

  9. Beautiful. Just beautiful. I love the lace addition to the sides.

  10. Aah Meg I LOVE it with all my heart. The stitch is gorgeous, the frame perfect and the lace made it beyond special. When I saw it I got a big smile because I had a stitch planned to do something very similar with lace. What is it they say about great minds? LOL!!!

    Love that tool. I was telling George about the driver at dinner tonight. Hint...hint!

    We love having you with us stitching the SAL together. It sure is getting pretty. We will be posting Friday so send your photo whenever you want. RJ

  11. I love how you have finished this piece. It looks fabulous!

  12. Your January piece is gorgeous. I would have seen no difference about the threads if you didn't tell ! I love the lace too, and this frame is perfect ! Here, you hardly find those old ones anymore, or they are pretty expensive, alas. I've always wondered about those little parts to hold the back of a framed piece, I saw once a very expensive machine.. I love this much more simple one ! Congratulations for your finishing !

  13. I love your January piece. The addition of the lace is lovely. Happy Stitching!

  14. Meg, your January piece turned out perfectly...I too see no difference in the dark blues and the lace is a perfect addition. I am going to have to check out that driver. I'm trying to keep an ongoing list of gift ideas, since I can never seem to think of something when asked by hubby or daughters "what do you want for your birthday, Christmas or Mother's Day"?

  15. Well, that is a first--I have never been called someone's muse before, Meg :) I LOVE your January piece--both the stitching and framing. The way you put the lace on each side is perfect--makes it seem like you are looking out a lace curtain at the pretty winter scene outside. Very, very nice. I'm hanging my head in shame that I still have not framed mine after all these years :(

    Funny, but I got a point driver for my January birthday, too!! Are we twins? No--you are a lot younger than I am :) I got the Fletcher brand and just used it (my husband helped as it kind of scares me!) to frame two older pieces from 2015 and 2016.

    So glad you found a thrifted frame that worked so well--I love the thrill of the hunt and am planning to go on Thursday (Senior Citizen's day--25% off everything!).

    Happy May to you, Meg!

  16. Hi Meg: What a beauty the January design and finish are, you have a flair for picking the right frame and the lace, positively lovely.
    Point drivers are a great tool.

  17. January looks wonderful! Adding the lace really finishes it beautifully.
    I have a point driver too and have used it many times, it's so quick and easy to use.

  18. How did I miss this post??? I Love, love that pattern and your framed it perfectly!! Isn't chalk paint the best? Your addition of the lace is perfectly, has a snowflake look to it too! I bought myself a point driver but have not used it yet. In fact, I have no idea where I put it, I need to get organized like you!


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