Mystery Stole #3

I belong to the yahoo group Mystery Stole #3. There was a Mystery Stole #1 and Mystery Stole #2, and I belonged to both of them also. I started #1, but didn’t finish, and I never started #2. I do have the patterns saved for my “one day I will get around to it” stash.

There are two other ladies in the group from around here also, and last night we had a cast-on get together at borders. One is from Vicksburg, and one is from Brandon. It was great! They are so nice, and I enjoyed meeting them. We chattered in between bouts of silent concentration. :o)

This stole has beads on it, and I have never knitted with beads before. Hmmmmmm, this is turning into the year of beads for me, as I just took a beading class at the TVR EGA seminar, and I’m hopefully taking a Japanese beading class at the national EGA seminar. :o) The beads are really pretty in the lacey knitting. My stole is being knitted from Knit Picks Alpaca Cloud. The color is called Sunshine, but it is more cream/tan than yellow. But very pretty nonetheless!

Here is my progress from last night.

And a closeup of the beads:

I’m so very glad we had our get together last night! Otherwise I probably wouldn’t have started. I want to finish this one, and wear it to the banquet at the national EGA seminar in September. I better get to knitting!

Catching Up

Thank goodness today is Saturday! Although I’m not really feeling well today. I think I have a Benedryl hangover. I am battling poison ivy gifted to me by my cat. I am so allergic to it that I don’t have to be anywhere near it to get it. My animals or husband can touch it and then bring it to me. Sigh. Anyways, I have been battling it for over a week now, and it is still spreading, so I have been taking benedryl to see if that will help, on top of my topical medicines. I took 4 last night, after I got home from the Mystery Stole Cast-on Get Together, and I really feel icky. I missed my meditation group this morning, and I have just moped around all day. Bleh.

I did manage to finish up my continuing education today though. I am a CPA, and we have to get 40 hours a year. Let me tell you, it is pure torture. I had to do 12 hours of self study to finish it up, and guess when I did it? Yep, you guessed it, yesterday and today. I am the QUEEN OF PROCRASTINATION! Every year, during the last week in June (because our CPE year ends on June 30th) I rant and rave and swear I’m letting my CPA license lapse. Every year (so far) I manage to get through with my CPE in the nick of time. Every year I swear I won’t wait until the last minute. Do you see a certain cycle here??

On a much more positive note, I went to the Tennessee Valley Region of the Embroidery Guild’s seminar last weekend in Knoxville TN. It was great! Rissa and I went together, and we had a blast! I always have a good time when I’m with her. Downtown Knoxville was very nice, much different from downtown Jackson MS let me tell you! We could actually walk around, and it was so clean and pretty. There was an interesting market square with a very eclectic collection of shops.

I took a wonderful beading class with Carolyn Sherman, and the project is a beaded box called Smoky Mountain Wildflowers. I was a little worried about the class because I have never done any beading before. Cynthia in my local chapter showed me some beading stitches to help me prepare. But the class was a dream! The teacher was fabulous, and the project is beautiful. I am actually still working on it now that I’m home, and I’m determined to finish!

This is the top of the box:

This is the beginning of the band that will go around the lid of the box top:

And this is the band for one side of the box:

I enjoyed working on this class so much, I bought another one of her kits during merchandise night. It has a pretty yellow rose on top.

On July 10 I leave to go to Atlanta for my second class in Japanese Embroidery. I am looking forward to that also. I just love spending my days stitching, and being around fellow stitchers. Too bad I have to work. But maybe next year that will change. :o)

My own kimono

My very good friend Rissa read my post about the wedding kimono, and she gave me one! I was absolutely flabergasted, and delighted beyond words! :o) It’s a very pretty black one with metal embroidery along the bottom. Of course, I had to try it on!

And here is Geisha Mark acting as my kimono stand, so I could get a good picture of the embroidery at the bottom. :o)

I just love love love my kimono!

Stitching Finish – Artist Trading Card

Woo-hoo! I finally have a stitching finish!

CyberStitchers has an annual President’s Challenge, and this year (which is a continuation of last year) the challenge is to make an Artist Trading Card. So I finally made one. And not only did I stitch him, but I drew him too, so I’m very proud! :o)

I have always loved seahorses. I was bored at work one day and googled them. (Shhhhhhhhhhhh!) I found a site that raised them for aquariums, and they had them in all colors – red, yellow, even a white one with black spots. They were very cool! So I decided to stitch one as my ATC. He is stitched on Kona cotton with crewel wool.

Now all I have left to do is put a back on him.

Wedding Kimono

Tashiro-san, who taught the Japanese language class I took, called me this weekend to tell me about a concert the Japanese-American Society of Mississippi is sponsoring here in Jackson. It is a performance by the Chieko Fukuda Ensemble, which is a trio of Japanese musicians who perform a type of Japanese traditional music called Sankyoku. Sankyoku uses 3 instruments – koto, a 6 foot long horizontal 13 stringed instrument, shamisen, a 3 stringed banjo-like instrument, and shakuhachi, a reedless end-blown bamboo flute. Mark and I are going to see them on June 14, and I am really looking forward to it!

Then she told me about a wedding kimono someone had given to her, and invited me to come see it. Needless to say, I accepted her invitation with alacrity, and hurried right over! She also let me take pictures. The kimono was absolutely stunning. The stitches were so tiny, Tashiro-san asked me if I thought it was machine stitched. I told her no, the Japanese Master Embroiders hand stitched those tiny, delicate stitches. The kimono is made of light blue silk, and it is embroidered with silk threads and gold threads. I am adding these images as big as I can so you can see as much of the exquisite detail as possible.

This is a closer picture of the top half. Not only is the embroidery beautiful, but it is rich in meaning. Everything embroidered on the kimono is symbolic. I wish I had more time to study all of the symbols in person. The cranes represent longetivity and new life. The red and white flowers are cherry blossoms, and they represent spring time. The yellow/gold and red flowers are sunflowers, and they represent summer.

This is the bottom half. The leaves represent autumn, and the snow covered trees represent winter. There are green pine trees above the snow covered trees, and they represent endurance, good luck, and happiness. The bamboo under the snow covered trees represent strength and honesty.

Those are just a few of the symbols I could pick out from my pictures. The embroidery tells a story and contains blessings for the new couple. I really wish I could study the kimono in person, and dig into all of the plants, animals, and objects on it. The rich symbology of Japanese culture is one of the things I love best about it.

She also had an obi on display. It is black silk embroidered with chrysanthemums. Rich, elegant, and scrumptious, isn’t it?

I really want a kimono of my own. One day!!

Breast Trauma

I was watching Penn & Teller tonight, or rather I was stitching, The Tudors had gone off and Penn & Teller came on next, and Mark was watching them, because I really don’t like them. I think Penn is a jackass. But anyways, I digress. Their show tonight was about breasts, and whether breasts are natural, sex objects, or offensive.

The craziest thing I heard on the show wasn’t said by Penn, which is highly unusual, but by a woman lawyer who is offended by breast-feeding women. She said that a child who sees a woman breast feeding her baby is just as traumitized as if that child was sexually assaulted by an adult. What????? Is that not the dumbest, most misogynistic thing you have ever heard?? I just don’t get how any person, much less a WOMAN, can feel like viewing a nursing child is as horrible as being assaulted sexually. That woman has some deep issues. I wonder if she is offended by nursing puppies, or watching a calf suckling in a field, or if it is just the human female form that offends her. She needs some intensive psychiatric help!