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Tuesday, February 17, 2015

The Time of the Great Back Stitching

Fred.

Oh, Fred, Fred, Fred...

May I never leave all the back stitching until the end ever again!!! 

Fred's bottom bookshelf got some love yesterday because I had the day off and 16 inches of snow outside!  I have fifteen books to finish and knocked off almost seven yesterday - I have to go back and put some page details with one strand of black on that sideways book and a few strands of metallic on the small blue book.

He looked like this:


And now like this:


The book titles are hard to see in the pic; they are 'Garbage Can Cats', 'Catalog of Hairballs', 'Holy Cats', 'Three Wined Mice', 'A Tale of Two Kitties' and '5 Fish Ponds' (Not sure if that is supposed to be the title or sort of like #5 in a series of travel books?).  Eight books, the Owl, his back half, and his whiskers to go.

I have discovered, though, that I have some re-stitching to do - I found a tutorial last year that was supposed to make prettier stitches and be easier - a way to anchor extremely long back stitches like Dimensions kits often have, instead of piercing the Aida fabric - it worked beautifully at the time but in the months since I worked on him the floss has relaxed and separated and looks terrible!  So I have to redo that leaning brown book 'Bye Bye Birdie' next to his head and paw.  If you look close, you can see where it sagged and looks really bad.  But it shouldn't take too long to fix.  Guess sometimes the old ways really are the best :D

Today at work it was really quiet (see afore-mentioned 16 inches of snow) so guess what I did?

Yep, finished it off!



SO. MUCH. BACK. STITCHING.  There is tons of it in that wreath, and half you can't even see!  But it's pretty and it's finished - #29 of 30!  Only the 'Noel' stocking to go!

15 comments:

  1. Both pieces look great! Backstitching is one of my least favorite things to do, and I'm notorious for leaving it until the end and always promise I won't do it next time for the same reasons!

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  2. Ugh, backstitching! How I hate it. I always leave it until the end, too. Congrats on the finish, and early congrats on Fred. Soon he'll be done, and you'll have a beautiful piece. You do really great work, Tama :-)

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  3. It looks wonderful tho I know what you mean about hating backstitching a whole piece. I always leave it to the end and usually wind up regretting it. Have yet to change my ways though....

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  4. Fred looks awesome Tama. Congrats on the cute finish. Yippee only 1 left.

    Linda

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  5. He's looking so good! I usually backstitch as I go so I can throw away the page. Congrats on the cute finish!

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  6. Amazing what some backstitch can do. He looks great:)

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  7. Ditto here re the backstitching! I've just won the kit for Fred in a giveaway on Sarah in Stitches blog so was very excited to see yours. He looks great!

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    1. Great! He's super fun to stitch except for the metallics - I ended up doing the cross stitches first and then going over them with the metallics instead of blending them. Much easier and the metallics actually show up that way :D

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  8. It looks amazing. All that backstitching will be worth it. I usually save it for last too tho I don't really mind it.

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  9. I don't like backstitching as well but you can't argue the results.

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  10. I've always left the backstitching to the end because I thought that's what you were supposed to do. I have begun to scrutinize kits and instructions to see how many colour changes there are and how much backstitching there is. It's becoming the deciding factor now in what I buy. I saw a gorgeous kit called 'peacock butterflies', and an extreme close up was featured on The Stitchery catalog. Even the half stitches had 2 mixed threads, frequent colour changes, and so much back stitching. I decided not to get the kit.

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    1. You can do the backstitching in an area as long as all the surrounding crosses and half crosses are done first. That's what I SHOULD have done with Fred but at the time I really liked backstitching and thought, 'eh, no issue!' but now it's just - so MUCH of it! The kit sounds pretty but yeah, that's a lot of work in that one!!!

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  11. Excellent progress on both! And yes, I tend to try and backstitch as I go now to avoid this very thing. :)

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  12. I backstitch as I go because I can't wait with it! I love doing it 'cause it makes the picture pop so much. Fred is so close and congrats on #29~ :D

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  13. What fun books. Purrfect for the literate kitty ;-)

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