Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Needle Arts Snobbery

This is something that seems to come up from time to time in the world of needle arts.  Now, I know I may be throwing out a few blanket statements with this post, so don't think I mean this for every single person in the needle arts world.  I don't.  Most of us have manners and can appreciate the time and effort and talent it takes to make something with needle and thread or yarn, even if it's a type of stitching that is not our forte.  But then....there are others...

Embroiderers who look down their nose at cross stitchers.  "It's no different than painting by number."  ~  "That's just a craft, not an art." ~ "It's just X's, not real stitches."

And then there are the cross stitchers...

"I like all stitching.  Well...except for those stamped pieces."  (Said with a look of disdain.) ~ "I would never stitch on Aida."  (And nothing wrong with that, but a little more stitching and a little less attitude would be nice.)

And then it seems as if many from all forms of stitching look down on plastic canvas work.  
"Oh, I remember doing that.  
When I was 10."

Over the years I've seen and heard some things in groups that just astound me at the disrespect of other's work, effort, and yes - TALENT.  One person shared a finished piece - a large nude that obviously took a long time and someone comes in to take offense and say she doesn't like having to see nudes and it should be removed - and this wasn't an admin, it was a new member no less.  Somewhere else there was a discussion of making the backs of pieces neat and one person piped up to say that when they received a stitched piece as a gift, they literally take it apart - no matter if it was framed or finished into a pillow/ornament/etc - to see if the back was, "neat enough to meet my standards." 

Oh. My. Gosh.

I just don't believe that snobbery should have any place in this wonderful, cozy little world of the needle arts.  If anyone should be getting along, it's us.  Even if our tastes are different in what we like to stitch and how we like to stitch it, there is room for all of us and there should be respect given in all directions.  No one form of needlework is better than another.  And yes, they are all art forms, not merely a childish hobby.  Both cross stitch and plastic canvas can be and are just as filled with as many specialty stitches as embroidery is.  And the vast majority of beautiful embroidered pieces couldn't be done if the stitcher wasn't working on something stamped.  And for that matter, there are many gorgeous cross stitch works that start as stamped pieces.  Linen is wonderful, but Aida will always have a sure and secure place in the world of cross stitch.  As a matter of fact, if you do charity stitching, there are some charities that require you to use 14ct Aida - period.  The back of one person's piece may be a perfect replica of the front and the next person's a hot mess - but it's all ok and good and we're all at different places on many different learning curves here.  So let's always give others the wiggle room they need on those learning curves without discouraging them or making them feel like their work some how isn't as good as someone else's or as another form of needle art.  

Needlework in all it's forms is a beautiful thing and there is room - and should also be respect - for all of them in our stitching world.

Saturday, October 10, 2015

Well, this kind of snuck up on me...

In 5 weeks I'm headed to a retreat in the Smokey Mountains.  It's a trip that's kind of traditional for me and one that I look forward to all year long.  There are two gift exchanges at this retreat.  One is a gift box full of stitchy type notions and the other is a stitched ornament exchange.  So I know all year I have to stitch something for this retreat.  But for some reason, this year it slipped my mind until now.  When I stitch an ornament for giving, I like to stitch two so I can keep one myself.  So my stitching schedule grew by two ornaments, lol.  The pattern I chose for this year's ornament is a dove inside a circle with a filigree, leafy type of border around it.  It's charted in blues and roses but I'm changing it up to Christmas colors.  I'm going to give them a simple finish in the clear acrylic ornament frames that 123Stitch sells.

I have a little finish!  :0)  I finished up Frosty Friends a couple of nights ago.  I want to "finish" this into a no-sew cube, just not sure when I'll have the time to do that.  But it's going to need to be before Christmas, lol.  Although truly, this design is appropriate for the whole winter.  One thing kind of perturbed me about this pattern though.  On the picture of the finished product that comes when you buy the pattern, it shows two different ways of stitching it up.  One is like I have done it and the other shows it larger, finished into a pillow.  This one has a border all the way around it, that obviously "goes" with the pattern, as in, it's a style that is consistent with the look of the pattern.  But after you buy it and open it, you find the border is no where to be found.  You don't get the pattern for that.  I just feel like the way it's represented on it's packaging is misleading.  Because it obviously leads you to think that you can stitch it with or without the border, but then it doesn't provide or even address the fact that there is no border pattern.

I'm still working on Lady Victoria as well.  I hope to have her finished soon.  I can't wait to start her silk ribbon roses.  Sorry, no pic.  :-(

I took a Christmas stitch that I did last year and turned her into a pillow.  My intention was always to make her a pillow for Christmas this year, so after stitching her last year I just put her away in a project roll.  But this week I got her out and finished her up.  I am **super** pleased with how this turned out as I've never done anything like this before.  I can't "sew," not in the traditional sense with a machine, so this was all done by hand.  But it wasn't difficult or even terribly time consuming.  I started one day and finished the next.

And one more little extra I want to share. ~ Earlier this year, I stitched and made this little pouch.  It had been sold as a cosmetic case, but there is no way it would work for that.  It doesn't even close up in a way that would work for that and it's rather tiny.  So I put it away (procrastinating) with the intention of turning it into a needlebook at some point - which it's the perfect size and design for that.

So I finally took the whole 5 minutes needed this week and stitched in some felt and added in my needles.  I really love it.  A filled up needlebook makes me terribly happy.  :0)

That's about all I have for now.  Happy stitching everyone!  :0)