Sunday, July 25, 2010
Okay, I realise it's been something like 2 years since I posted here. And if anyone is still following this, you might be surprised by this post as it is a little off topic for a stitching blog. I just needed a place to publish some email exchanges I've been involved in this evening. So if you're not interested feel free to ignore!!!

If you are interested, I'll explain:
I've been researching the vaccination issue, as my sister feels very strongly about this issue, and I wanted to be informed for little Lachlan's sake. (Also, I just love to play devil's advocate with her). So I've been following this website called the AVN, which stands for the Australian Vaccination Network. But don't let the name fool you. They should more accurately be called the Anti-Vaccination Network. They hide behind the front of an "information network" but the only information they provide is completely anti-vaccine. They don't even pretend to be balanced, until you ask them to pin down their position, then they start saying things about "informed choice" and "free speech". But anyway...

I've been subscribed to their newsletter for a few months, as well as those of a few other sites on the subject, including some on the other side of the fence, in support of vaccinations. But the AVN is the most entertaining as they always seem to be the centre of attention. They've been in some hot water with the Health Care Complaints Commission (HCCC) recently, and are currently undertaking legal action to try and fight the HCCC's decision that they should have a disclaimer of their position on their website.

So in my inbox this evening there arrived an email from an American Vaccination Council, declaring their support for the AVN. That seemed odd, I thought, I'm sure I haven't visited any American sites in my searches over the last few months. You might (or might not) remember that I'm a bit paranoid about things like privacy, and sharing my email address, so I thought I'll just ask if I did sign up. So I replied to the email:

From: Tash ______ [mailto:HIDDEN]
Sent: Sunday, July 25, 2010 3:44 AM
Subject: Re: Media Release - International Medical Council on Vaccination Support for Australian Vaccination Network

Hi there,

I would like to know how you received my contact details, and I would also like to be removed from your mailing list.

Many thanks!

I received a reply almost immediately:

Hello Tash,

I received your contact information from AVN by my request. To unsubscribe, please click the link at the bottom of the e-mail you received from me.

Thank you.

Nick Haas


Well when I received that email my suspicions were confirmed. I quickly wrote a reply:
Thanks Nick!

I'm disappointed the AVN have so little disregard for the privacy of their patrons, that they'll just share our addresses without our permission, and in breach of their privacy policy. I hope you won't treat our contact details with as little respect!

Thanks for your fast reply. I'll unsubscribe at the bottom of the email :)

-Tash Cooper
and then I dashed over to the AVN site to express my... um.... displeasure.

And I wrote a great email. It was really good. And I was all ready to click send, but I was too busy flicking back and forth between tabs, and my session expired. And I lost that lovely email *sigh*
So I wrote another one which isn't nearly as eloquent, but I think will do the job:

from.: The Australian Vaccination Network:.
dateSun, Jul 25, 2010 at 8:23 PM
subjectCopy of: Breach of privacy!
hide details 8:23 PM (0 minutes ago)
Copy of:

This is an enquiry e-mail via from:
Tash ______

Hi there,

I've been receiving your email newsletter for a few months now, and have been thoroughly enjoying it.

However, I am disappointed to learn that you shared my email address, and those of the rest of your subscribers, with another organisation I have never approached, or even heard of. I received a email from the US organisation the "Vaccine Information Center" and when I asked how they got my address, they informed me that you had provided the mailing list to them at their request. They had also signed me up to their own mailing list without my consent, and who knows what else they may have done with my private details you provided them!

Nick was very friendly and polite when I corresponded with him and asked how he received my information. I have now unsubscribed, but do not feel that I or any one else should have been signed up in the first place without our permission.

When I subscribed to your email newsletter I agreed to your privacy policy, which contained this paragraph:

"Sharing and Usage
We will never share, sell, or rent individual personal information with anyone for their promotional use without your advance permission or unless ordered by a court of law. Information submitted to us is only available to employees managing this information for purposes of contacting you or sending you emails based on your request for information, and to contracted service providers for purposes of providing services relating to our communications with you."

I choose carefully who I share my private contact details with, and I am disappointed to discover that I should not have put my trust in the AVN. You breached your own privacy policy and disclosed our names, addresses, and who knows what other private details to people we haven't chosen to trust with our information.

As I mentioned at the start of my email, I enjoy receiving your email, and would like to continue to do so. I will not be unsubscribing at this time. But if the AVN continues to treat the privacy its supporters with so little respect, I will definitely be unsubscribing, and will be advising others to do the same.

I would suggest that perhaps you would like to apologise to your users for this breach. I feel it would also be appropriate for you to contact the Vaccine Information Center and ask them to "return" our private information, as they should never have been provided with it in the first place, and should not be exposed to this security risk through your breach of privacy policy.

Thanks for your time. I know you have a lot on your plate at the moment, and I'm sorry to bring up another problem for you! I'm sure you will be able to clear it up quickly and cleanly if it's done right :)

Many thanks!

-Tash _________

If you want to see the aforementioned privacy policy it can be found here. It's pretty standard. It basically says they promise not to do any of the things they just did *eyeroll!!!*

So I'll be interested to see what the response to that will be... if any. I'm just writing it here because I really want to document it in case it gets "lost". I've written comments on the AVN blog before which have never been published. And they weren't even an opposing view or anything, I was just defending myself against someone who said he thought I was a fictional character invented by someone in opposition against the group. I guess it's their right to censor comments on their own blog, but that was what really convinced me that they were being sly and disingenuous about things. If they can't even post the comments they receive that they don't want to hear, they obviously aren't going to be honest with the facts either.

I sound a bit cynical now, I know. But I really and truly do enjoy getting the newsletter. It's always good for a laugh ;)

I guess in the end I do agree with my sister. Bummer. I hate it when she's right!

p.s. I actually do have lots of stitching to show off. One is an online class on 55ct linen, another is a whole set of matching smalls, and the last is my first foray into embroidery (crewel and stumpwork!). But that will have to wait for later in the week, I'm meant to be doing my Java assignment now.

EDITED TO ADD: The only changes made the emails were to remove surnames and email addresses. Also, sorry about the wonky formatting.

Labels: ,

posted by Tash at 19:32 | 2 comments
Sunday, November 30, 2008
On Monday night I went to my friend Tara's house for a stitching night. Well, we didn't actually get much stitching done... we were too busy going through her stash! I took my camera and got lots of photos of her stitching.

She has two WIPs:

A couple of old finishes:

And some really old longstitches (for those who like that kind of thing):

posted by Tash at 10:45 | 17 comments
Sunday, November 23, 2008
I actually touched needle to thread this weekend! It was wonderful. I basically spent the whole of Saturday with my iPod catching up on podcasts and stitching. I didn't realise that I'd forgotten how much I enjoy stitching.

There have been some changes in my life in the last few months. I dropped out of uni about 2 months from the end (spare me the lecture, I know how stupid that is). Actually, I haven't dropped out, I have a leave of absence for up to two years so I can go back and complete my last semester in 2010 if I want, but I don't think I will. I made the decision that I just don't want to be a nurse... and it feels so good to just put it behind me. I feel free and happy :) I now have a regular full time nine-to-five job, no more night shifts, no more classes and assignments, no more poverty! I'm working in community health care as a "team leader", which sounds quite boring, but I'm enjoying it so far. The pay is decent, I get a phone, laptop and CAR! WOOHOO!! And I'm working with Tara and Suzi, two friends of mine I used to work with on night shifts a few years ago. It's almost perfect!

One advantage of having regular hours and no study is that I have so much free time! I have evenings! I have weekends! I can go out on Saturday nights! Amazing! So I took advantage of that and had a very productive stitching day on Saturday. I had two finishes in one day!

First of all I finished my little Snow Drop Fairy. I did a good deal of the half stitches in the background and then all the back stitching... and she was finished by 4pm.
Isn't she pretty? I think I'm in love with her. Then I was on such a role I wanted to start something new right away, so I ran to my draw and pulled out a kit called "Tree" from the Historic Needlework Guild and started and finished it by 10pm.
Hmm, unfortunately the picture is really dull and washed out. Wow, I think it takes exceptional photographic skill to get a photo to look dull and washed out at the same time. Oh well, I'll take a better shot when I've finished it. Actually all the stitching is finished, I'm going to finish it into a little pincushion and fill it with emery. I just have to photocopy the template and find some fabric that's tightly woven so that the emery doesn't leak out. I was really bummed that I couldn't finish it right away, because I was going strong and didn't want to stop!

I was meant to spend today cleaning the house, and then spend the evening stitching, but I made the mistake of turning on my computer. That's always a big mistake. The biggest timewaster in the world. But I did get to catch up on some blogs. My feed was up to almost 10,000 unread entries, so I'm pretty much just looking at pictures, but at least I'm catching up, and it's great inspiration! In future I'm going to stitch on Saturday, clean Sunday morning and then computer on Sunday afternoon, otherwise I'll never get anything done!

Gotta go to bed now. One of the drawbacks of a real job is that you have to be up early :( Oh well, I'm thinking it's a fair trade...
posted by Tash at 20:20 | 5 comments
Saturday, September 06, 2008
I'm being tempted.

I know I should be finishing my little Snowdrop Fairy. It really won't take me that long. I could probably finish it today if I wanted to. But I'm being tempted. I was organising all my stitching stuff (I hadn't touched it since we moved house back in May) and I've been looking at all my old WIPs. It's so easy to forget how gorgeous they are! I'm in love with them again, and I want to stitch on them all at once.

But I took one look at Lady of Lake and knew that I HAVE to do more of it.

(Click to embiggen, as always)
That's about 9,300 stitches which makes it about 5.4% complete (total 171500 stitches...yikes). WOO HOO! Oh, and by the way, it's tented, 2x1 on 32 ct white opalescent Lugana.
Here's a picture of the top half of the chart, which might give you an idea of where I'm up to. Also, it looks pretty cool. I love that you can make out the picture pretty well from just symbols.

And for those with short-term memory loss, here's what it will look like if when it's finished.
I'm definitely suffering from WIP guilt though. I didn't actually count how many I have going, I couldn't bear to, but I would guess there's about 10 or 12. I'm really glad I organised the WIPs before going through all the kits and charts, because I can guarantee I would have had at least two more new starts! I was also looking at one of my UFOs, and I'm considering reviving it. I won't say more about it, because I don't want to make a promise I might not keep... but it's a maybe. Anyway, I'm sure you'll hear about it if there's anything to hear.
posted by Tash at 06:14 | 3 comments
Thursday, August 28, 2008
I have nothing to report. No stitching is happening, due to way too much uni work. And probably not much to come in the next few weeks as I'll be on clinical as well as trying to keep up with assignments. I didn't even go to she stitches and craft show on the weekend so I have no stash to share either :(

In the absence of any actual stitching updates, here's a meme I saw on Kathryn's blog

Why did you start your blog?
Well I'd been stitching for a while, but it's really hard to keep motivated when there's no one around to show off to. When I realised how huge and active the online stitching community is I was amazed, and I couldn't wait to jump right in! I love having a blog and being part all of this because it keeps me on track, up to date with all the new designers and stuff, and much more motivated to keep stitching!

How did you come up with your blog name?
Well it's really just that my sister and brother were watching Romeo and Juliet when I was making my blog, and I've always loved the prologue, and I was thinking about the words... Star-Crossed... cross stitch... star-crossed stitcher! It might be a bit misleading though, because I'm not star-crossed in any way at all, I don't believe in astrology or fate or anything, it just sounds cool to me :)

Do your friends and family know about your blog and if so, what do they think of it?
No. I have an LJ for my friends to read where I talk about my life, and don't bore them with all this stitching stuff. My family definitely wouldn't care about me having a blog, and they'd laugh at me if they read it anyway. They think this stuff is pretty pathetic... they're a very boring family. Actually, I did give my Nanna the link a few months ago because she was asking to see a bit of my stitching, but I wish I hadn't. I don't think she actually read anything, and I dont' think she's ever visited again, but I can't be sure. Now I can't talk about some things that have been going on for me in the past few months that I really want to get off my chest.

How do you write posts?
I used to update all the time when I had some stitching to show. Now I'm really not doing much stitching so I don't have much to share. I like to have a picture to show off when I post, so until I've made some progress I usually don't post unless I have some burning stitching issue I need to talk about to someone who understands.

Have you ever had a troll or had someone leave unkind comments?
No, no. I really don't write anything that anyone would care enough about to leave a negative comment. Plus, stitchers seem to generally be a very nice bunch :D I did get a lot of spam a while back though, but that seems to have stopped.

Do you check your stats?
No, actually, I just forget I have stats! I should do though. I use blogpatrol and I think they tell me the ip address of who visits, so maybe I can see if my nanna does visit...

Do you care how many people read your blog?
Um, not really, but I do love it when I get comments. I would hate to think that NO ONE read it though!

What kind of blogs/posts interest you?
I read a lot of science and skepticism blogs, as that is my other obsession. Of course I read TONS of stitching blogs, but mostly I just look at the pictures and read the stitchy parts, i kind of just skim over the non-stitching related stuff.. except for a few special stitchy friends. The only other blogs I read are those of my real life friends because I like to keep up to date with their dramas, as I don't get to spend that much time with them face-to-face.

What do you like and dislike about blogging?
Hahah, sometimes blogging is definitely a chore for me. Especially my stitching blog, when I don't have any real progress to talk about. And I always feel guilty when I haven't been stitching, and then I feel even more guilty because I don't update! But I do really love being able to share my stitching with someone who understands what I'm talking about!
posted by Tash at 15:39 | 1 comments
Friday, August 22, 2008

If you had to choose, would you rather spend money on overdyed floss or hand-dyed fabric?

Hmm, that is a very very tough choice. I have a real fetish for both. But at the moment I seem to have way more floss than fabric. Plus there is so much gorgous fabric out there! And it's really hard to get what you want on short notice, whereas it is quite easy to find the floss you want. So I'm going to have to vote for fabric.

Speaking of buying yummy fabbie, the Stitches and Craft show is on this weekend. Unfortunately I don't think I'm rich enough to go and indulge :(

Not much stitching is happening here, I'm still working on that assignment. It's due at 4pm today, but I'm really just making a start, so there's no way I'm going to finish in time. But there is hope. I decided to check the handbook for the late penalties. When I was at Sydney Uni, the late penalty was a level a day, so if you were one day late you'd drop from a distinction to a credit, two days late, a pass, and three days late, a fail. But the late penalty at UTS is only 5% per working day. So I can work on it all weekend and hand it in on Monday and only lose 5%! YAY!!!

posted by Tash at 11:56 | 2 comments
Tuesday, August 19, 2008
It was hiding from me, lurking in the shadows, waiting until I have a REALLY important assignment to procrastinate from. The best motivation to stitch seems to come when there's something else I should be doing. Typical!

I've been stitching up a storm over the weekend. Actually, that's a total overstatement, but compared to the last few months it's been a storm. I finished off all the crosses on Snow Drop Fairy. I'm really pleased that I've done so much. The background is going to take me ages, because it's tons of half-crosses... which I hate doing. But once that's done, I just have to backstitch and then a finish! YAY!

Of course I really do have to work on this assignment, because it's due on Friday. It's an article review on cannabis use and psychosis. Fun, fun, fun! I really feel like not doing it. I just hate uni at the moment. I have 6 weeks of clinical this semester, as well as lots of really annoying assignments. (I'd be okay if it was just essays, but I have to do things like a 'portfolio'... boring!!) I wish I could just wave my magic wand and this semester was all over. *sigh* I just have to keep telling myself to just stick it out. It's the last semester and in 15 weeks it'll all be over.

...but 15 weeks seems like such a long time...
posted by Tash at 21:09 | 1 comments
Sunday, August 03, 2008
It's been nine months! I'm not going to explain. It's too complicated. I'm just going to apologise and start again.

Don't worry, you haven't missed much though. The last nine months haven't contained much stitching. Plenty of other junk, but almost no stitching. I do have a few photos though.

I've been shopping! Do you want to see what AU$100 of silk looks like?

Aren't they delicious? Unfortunately the picture is quite dark, so the colours aren't perfect, but not too bad. I got these at the Quilt and Craft show in June. They're from Kaalund Yarns, and I'd never heard of them before, but I'm glad now that I have. They mainly do knitting yarn, but these are proper stranded silks. How gorgeous! And they are SO soft and beautiful. I think they're even nicer than Gloriana! The colours are from left to right: Jacaranda, Lavender, Tropical Berries, Pacific, Wisteria, Waterlilly, Rainforest, Taipan, Wine, Bottle Brush, Poinsettia, Bushfire, Guava, Pawpaw, and Silky Oak. Good Aussie names, aren't they :) I also got the huge hank of natural silk at the top, which I may use for Cirques or something. Oh the possibilities!

I just checked the website and I saw that I only need 8 more then I have all the colours. I feel some more shopping in my near future...

Also at the show, I saw some scissors that I fell in love with, but unfortunately they were sold out. It was probably lucky though, because I thought that $120(!) was way too much for a pair of scissors. So I went home and bought them directly from the Sajou website, and for the same price ($120) I got a matching thread winder and thimble! I was so excited! Until they actually came in the mail. I was so disappointed with the quality of them. I was expecting them to be real mother of pearl, but they are just a kind of shiny plastic. I think the blades are good quality, but the plastic just ruins it. And they feel really light, and just plain fake :( But I guess they are still beautiful. I just probably wouldn't have paid that amount for them if I had known they were so crappy. So if you're considering buying them, I've warned you. (But they are very pretty!)

Okay, now for some actual stitching. Pretty much all I've done in the last nine months is in the picture below.
Anti-climax, huh. I just totally lost my mojo. But I think it's coming back. Today and yesterday I've spent about 6 hours on Tranquility Sampler, and I'm enjoying it! I'm having fun stitching again. YAY!
So watch this space. I think I'll definitely be stitching more. Time permitting. I'm in my last semester of uni, so I really should be prioritising that... hahaha!

posted by Tash at 03:31 | 3 comments
Friday, November 16, 2007
The finishing process is taking me a lot longer than I thought. I've been finishing for two nights solid now, and I don't have much to show for it. Wednesday night was mainly measuring and cutting bits of skirtex, cardboard, and interfacing. Last night was making cording and tassels, and I actually managed to finish the scissor case and fob of Cherry Blossom Spring€ (and they look absolutely gorgous!) I'm having a little trouble with the needlebook, but I think I know how to solve it, I just need to be inventive.

I'm worried...
posted by Tash at 07:29 | 3 comments
Wednesday, November 14, 2007
Here's Monday's progress on JOB. I finished wll the stitching in the third panel, and added some gold to the lantern at the bottom. I didn't get too much done because I felt guilty and decided to study for my exam (it went okay by the way)Wow, the fabric colour came out quite well in this picture! I was going to do more... I was going to do more gold on the top and bottom, but I got stuck on a decision. I was looking at the way I had put the gold around the rhodes stitches. I followed the instructions which said to do it in two stitches (on the left) but I think It might look better if I just do it as one long stitch (on the right). I looked at other people's WIPs on webshots, I saw that Kyrie is doing it in two stitches, other on people have done it both ways, and some people have done it with four tiny stitches! I'm leaning towards the one long stitch on the right. Any one else have an opinion?
And lastly, I finished Cherry Blossom Spring yesterday. Yay! Now, I can get started on the finishing. Eeek! Actually, I'm tempted to stitch Fir Tree Mountain too so that I can finish them all at the same time. But I really should finish the other two as they were supposed to be birthday presents and they're already very late. *sigh* I just don't know.

Happy stitching :)
posted by Tash at 17:04 | 8 comments
Tuesday, November 13, 2007
So.... here we are, it's 0215 hrs, and I'm still awake. I have a mental health practical exam in the morning, and I need to go to sleep. This is why I hate night shifts. GRRRR

I need to post a pic of today's progress on JOB, but I can't find my camera at the moment, so it'll have to wait for tomorrow. I didn't do much anyway, I decided that I probably should study a bit for my exam, although I don't know how much help it will be. There's not much preparation I can really do.

*sigh* I'm going to go back to bed and see if I can get to sleep yet. Goodnight
posted by Tash at 02:12 | 0 comments
Saturday, November 10, 2007

Ooh, it looks so sweet, doesn't it! I love the colours in this. I'm not usually a pink kind of girl, but this is just too pretty! I went to Spotlight (yuck!) at Birkenhead Point on Thursday and bought the silk I needed to line these with. It's white silk dupion, and it's just divine! I'd never heard of it before. It was very expensive, $40 per metre so I only bought 1/2 a metre, that should be plenty for this, but I'd love to go any buy a metre of each colour and use it for all my smalls. It's absolutely decadent.
I got the other equipment I needed (skirtex, fusible interfacing, cloisonne beads) from Dragonfly Dreams when I was there a couple of months ago. I have to say that Karen is the lovliest person! She was so helpful. I was asking her about skirtex, and she didn't know if what she had was appropriate, so she said "Just hold on for a few minutes and I'll phone the designer!" Wow. So she phoned Janie Hubble at work on her mobile phone! It was pretty cool. I can't wait until I have enough cash to make another trip up there!
The only other thing I need for finishing is "heavyweight cardboard". Does anyone know exactly how heavyweight is heavyweight? Should I be able to bend it? It's for the needlebook, so I guess I don't really want that bending, do I? Maybe I should just use skirtex for that too, or would it be too flexy? Oh I don't know. I'm such a dunce at finishing!
Okay, I have to go now because my yummy fish and chips dinner is here. I'm hoping to finish the second panel of the needle book at work tonight. Wish me luck!
posted by Tash at 20:07 | 2 comments
Thursday, November 08, 2007
Free ice cream, even on a cold day, makes me happy.

It's my last day of uni today (besides exmas) and that makes me happy too.

I'm meant to be in a mental health tutorial at the moment, but the teacher gave us a half hour break --->happy

Plus, it's payday, and I'm going out for some S.E.X this afternoon!

And I got a HD on my assessment!

happy, happy, happy!
posted by Tash at 10:29 | 0 comments
Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Yay, a finish! Sorry for the blurry pic. This is Running Rabbits by Just Nan. It was my first Just Nan, and I enjoyed it. I think there'll be more Just Nan in my future. My stitches are very messy on this, because it was too small for a hoop or q-snap, I hate in hand stitching :(
But it does look very cute, doesn't it! I was thinking of putting it in one of those Whimzi frames, but it's too big. So I don't know what I'll do with it.
Now back to Cherry Blossom Spring.
posted by Tash at 15:20 | 4 comments
Tuesday, November 06, 2007
Isn't it nice to have a rainy day? I love the rain. The only thing I like better is a thunderstorm, we usually get a few in November in Sydney. Unfortunately today was just rain. Not even any wind to speak of. Oh well, I'll keep my fingers crossed.

I didn't go to uni today.... very naughty of me, I know, but it was the last class for Patho, and it's mainly revision, so I decided to stay home and generally lay about the house and stitch. I've finished all the crosses on Running Rabbits, and it's just been washed and is hanging up to dry now. Tomorrow I'll attach the beads and the charm to the centre and give you a picture. I'm thinking of framing this to give to the lady who gave me the kit. At least I know she'll like it! If I can't find a frame then I might finish it into a little cushion or something, or maybe a pinkeep if I'm feeling adventurous!

Mel helped me out with my blog problem. I think the problem is the way webshots hosts pictures, it seems to change the url of the photo every hour or so, so I stuck it on Flickr instead... fingers crossed it goes better this time.
posted by Tash at 23:16 | 1 comments
Monday, November 05, 2007
Yaaay! I finaly spent a Monday on JOB! I've really missed this, and I had great fun stitching it today. Actually, I didn't do very much now I think about it. It took me over 3 hours to do the bird, the clouds, and some of the blue mountain. Hmmm, next week I'll have to spend a bit more time on it. So, anyone notice that I changed my layout? I like it, but for some reason the picture at the top won't show up. Sometimes it does and sometimes it doesn't. What have I done wrong? I'll never understand HTML!
posted by Tash at 18:01 | 2 comments
Sunday, November 04, 2007
I went to work last night, and Jan, who works the evening shift gave me a little Just Nan kit that she had picked up at a fete the day before. She said she had trid to start it, but the fabric was too small and she couldn't see it! (It's only 28 count! I'm glad I have good eyes). It was Running Rabbits. So I was very naughty and had a new start last night. Here's where I am so far. I'm going to work on it a bit tonight, then take a break tomorrow for JOB SAL, and then go back to this until it's finished. It shouldn't take me too long, probably be finished by tuesday, all things going well!
posted by Tash at 19:19 | 1 comments
Saturday, November 03, 2007
So, I'm a few days late, but better late than never, right?

Goals for November:
1. Finish Cherry Blossom Spring
2. Start the final square of my RR
3. Get back into JOB SAL with Kyrie (Mondays)
4. Do a few more green bits on Mystery X
5. Write a novel.

That's all... sound's do-able. Except for the last one maybe, it's not coming along too well. 4,207 words, but only about 300 of them are any good. *sigh*
posted by Tash at 07:54 | 1 comments
Friday, November 02, 2007
So... I'm working night shift tonight... shall I stitch on Cherry Blossom Spring, or Wri my No?

Oh, by the way, this is my 100th post. Hooray!
posted by Tash at 14:05 | 1 comments
Thursday, November 01, 2007
So, I know it's been a while. August, September, and October have always been problem months for me. I don't know exactly why, but it seems to be the time of year when I've very unsettled. Among other things. I don't really want to go into it, but basically I'm an emotional write off during those months.

My other excuse is Uni. I've never worked so hard as I have this semester. I have to say though, thus far my marks have reflected that. I'm doing extremely well this semester. Hopefully that will continue. I may not be lucky though. November is going to be yet another month from Hell. First of all there's exams. Two written, which will be a breeze, and two prac, which will not. I hate prac exams, and I'm very worried about one of them. I'll be assessed on IV drug administration, blood transfusions, and catherterisation (only female, thankfully, they're not that cruel to us.

Also this month, I'm doing NaNoWriMo for the first time ever, and I'm not confident. I've already started, I'm about 3000 words in (that's not very much). I don't have a plot, I've just started off with some characters and a situation, I don't really know where it's going. It might be a very interesting adventure.

But I doubt it'll be much of anything, as I might be moving house this month. Catherine (my dear sister) will be moving down to Canberra in the near future, thereby leaving me stuck here paying two people's rent, which I simply cannot afford. So goodbye little house in Pennant Hills, goodbye my darling little puppy, I'll be moving into my Dad's weekday flat in Rhodes, and my puppy will be moving down to Canberra where there's a garden for her to live in :( So this month I'll be boxing up my life and moving the majority of it into a storage unit somewhere, and taking the bare essentials with me to Dad's place. It's tough to downscale everything you own, which at the moment fills my whole (small) house, and work out what I need to live out of one (small) bedroom. But that's life. It will at least be a financial relief. I've been struggling big time lately. But I don't want to go into that either.

I do have some interesting things to show you... lots and lots of lovely pictures! The days are getting warmern (yuck) and longer (yay) since daylight savings has commenced, so when I noticed an opportune ray of sunshine hitting one of my finished pieces on my piano this afternoon, I decided to whip out everything I've touched for the past few months and take a few snaps.

First is the round robin catch up. I finished the first one back in... um... September? Yeah, that sounds right. This is Sheri's and it's a fragmented version of Vacher's Sacred Hour. I did the bit in the bottom left. It was really easy because there were only about 8 colours. I can't wait to see how it turns out when everyone's stitched on it. (don't forget to click on all the pictures to see them nice and huuuuge, if you like)

Next up: Wanda's RR, a fragmented version of Verdure by Linda Ravenscroft. Her art has been discontinued at HAED, so I can't give you a link. This kind of art isn't really my kind of thing... there's something about her face that creeps me out a bit, but I have to say that even so, she is absolutely stunning in real life, and she is so much fun to stitch!
But the most exciting thing is that my RR came home to me! Everyone has stitched on it, and it looks amazing! Now I have to decide what to put in my last square, then finish the border, and it's all done!
I did manage a finish during my absence. Actually more than one, but some of them are secret (PIFs are due out soon, and I'm not finished all of them... nevermind!) Anyway, I think I can show this because the recipient is blissfully unaware of the world of blogs, let alone the fact that I have one. It's for my friend Veronica, who is also a stitcher, and stitches on night shifts with me. This is Shades of Blue Willow by The Cat's Whiskers. I've finished the stitching, but I still need to do the actual finishing into accessories. I'm absolutely terrified of this bit!

I also started one if it's companions Cherry Blossom Spring for my other stitchy work friend, Tara. And I'm planning on doing the final one in the trilogy, Fir Tree Mountain for myself. When I've finished stitching on all three of them, I'll tackle the finishing. (Even though Tara and Veronica's birthdays were over a month ago.)
I've also made a small amount of progress on Mystery X. I will be SO happy when I've finished part 2. Nearly there now. My goal is to finish this bit by the end of the year. Fingers crossed. I also started adding some of the beads and treasures from part 1. Alternating beading and monotonous stitching with honeydew keeps me sane.
That photo was a bit washed out by the sun, but the next one is a much better picture of the colours. I love taking relief photos, they always look stunning. I had about six, and it was really hard to pick just one to share!
I also put a small amount of work into tranquility sampler. I still have a looong way to go on this one too, but I've put it away for a while. It'll come out again next year I suspect.
Oh, yes, I was also very naughty whilst I was away. I had not one, but two (2) new starts! And both of them were full size HAEDs! Oh, lord, just strike me down now. I know I have no self discipline and am therefore destined for Hell. (I've been craving a few more new starts too, there are just more and more stunning artworks coming out every week!) Anyway, the first is Lady of Lake by Sara Butcher. I'm doing it in tent stitch (eeek!) 2 x1 on 32 ct white opalescent lugana. Actually, the coverage is perfect, and stitching is going very fast, I just hope that when I get to the lovely lady herself, she doesn't look slanty!

And this one is Princess Asleep by Yvonne Gilbert. I love this picture, it looks like it has come straight out of a fairytale. It's 1x1 full crosses on 28 (or maybe 27)ct cream Linda (I think.) This one is much slower going, due to the fact that there's just so many colours, but it will hopefully be worth the hard work.
Wow, it really has been a long time since my last post. I've had a trip to Dragonfly Dreams, and got some lovely stash, and finishing materials... but I'll have to save those pictures for later I guess. I also went to the quilting and craft show in Darling Harbour, and bought myself a lovely treat.
Yes, it's a box to put all my bits and pieces in. I've needed one of these for a long time. And it was only $60! I think that's a bargain!
Awww, look at my pretty girl, I'm going to miss her when she moves away :(

Anyway, last, and least, I'm going to leave you with a picture of the world's smallest sewing machine. I haven't used it yet, except for on a test piece of fabbie, and it seems to work fine. But for $15, I certainly can't complain!

Phew, okay, that's all for now. I'll post again when I have something of significance to show.


posted by Tash at 22:56 | 3 comments
Thursday, July 26, 2007
Yay!! I actually finished it last week, but haven't got around to uploading the photos until now. Laaaazy, that's me. I have to say that I LOVED this piece. It was so fun to do. Stitching a little bit each week was a great way of getting it done (fairly) quickly without getting bored of it. Thanks so much to Nicki for stitching-a-long with me :D So is proof (with some relief photos for your viewing pleasure!)

Don't forget to click on the pics to see them much MUUUCH bigger.
Sorry if the pictures are dark, it was late at night when I took them.
So, I was going to start Noah's Sampler Reborn by Just Nan, but I decided to wait for a while before I do, see if I can knock off another WIP first. I did start my HAED RR, and I'm hoping to get it finished before I go back to uni on Monday!


posted by Tash at 01:56 | 4 comments
Thursday, July 12, 2007

Area 7 and 8 - Vertical and Horizontal pattern couching.

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posted by Tash at 00:14 | 1 comments