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Thursday, June 23, 2011

The Little Stocking That Will Be

As I mentioned in my last post, my generation doesn't really create heirlooms to be handed down through the generations. Ours is the age of mass production, and I'm sure it will only get worse as time goes on, though this will probably increase the demand for hand-made items by crafters like myself. How's that for a silver lining?

And this revelation got me thinking. I'm a skilled crafter. I can easily put together heirlooms that my children can pass down, maybe even my nieces and nephews on both mine and DH's side. While I was at it, I could start keeping a detailed account of what went on in our lives so that future genealogists would have an easier time getting to know us long after we were gone. This idea tickled my fancy so much that I set about making needlepoint Yule stockings for DH and me. So that I could brush up on my skills before starting DH's, I began my stocking first. As of today I have been steadily working on it for five days and boy can you see the progress I am making! Yesterday I promised that I would put pictures up as soon as I got them and here they are!

Day the First
This is what my piece looked like after I finished my first day of stitching. Across the top of the photo, inside the hoop, is the top border of the Aida that will be used to stitch the image. The Aida around the borders is essentially slack that will be used when I put the stocking together late this summer. (<-- Hopefully) Eventually these little stitches will become a stand of mighty evergreens... and by eventually I mean by the next day.

Day the Second
Behold the mighty evergreen trees, skirted in glorious drifts of gray-white snow! After I got used to the process, my work really flew. Not only did I finish stitching these bad boys, but I got them outlined too! Check it out...
I balked at outlining when I was younger. The backstitch seemed to tedious and pointless to me, but I have to say that it really makes a difference in the picture. In the case of my lovely stand of pine trees, they have much more detail and definition.

Day the Third

By the third day I was really going. In one night I finished that adorable little robin and the antlers he is sitting on. Eventually the antlers will belong to a cute little reindeer that is only one of several animals posing with Santa in my stocking design. I figure, I've always loved Santa (who doesn't??) and I'm Pagan, so the two went well together. I have to say though, switching from those tiny pine trees and the robin to the antlers on a much larger animal really messed up my size perspective on this piece. Thankfully I was able to get a grip on it after finishing more of the antlers.

Day the Fourth

Quite possibly the most gorgeous picture by far, this is what I have done as of last night. The robin has been outlined and all the snow drifts on this side of the design are completed.

By tonight I hope to have the antlers entirely finished and to be working on the reindeer's head and face. From there I will probably move over to Santa and then wrap up with the rest of the animals. Last but not least will be my name at the top and then the construction of the stocking itself. By the time I get to DH's stocking I will be a whiz at this!

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