Monday, January 30, 2017

Summer Quakers - update #6

Hey all! I thought I'd show a picture of my weekend progress on Summer Quakers. :)

I'm really enjoying that large flower motif in the bottom left, even if it does seem to have every single thread color in it... and a good amount of confetti. I'll finish up that motif this week and see how much more I can get done on page 7 of this pattern! (By the way, I'm not stitching the alphabet and numbers at the bottom, so I've already reached my bottom on this pattern!)


Mindful stitching thoughts! Feel free to skip if you're not interested. :p

Despite participating in the original Stitch from Stash and other self-imposed challenges, I don't feel that I've ever made any real progress on my shopping habits. Maybe it's because there aren't any consequences for breaking the rules. If I spend more than planned, so what? As an adult in a stable financial situation, there really aren't any consequences for buying extra stuff.

I'm not really sure how to address this. I could enlist my wife as outside motivation but it's not fair to her, having to tell me no and then put up with my pouting afterward. I've asked my friends to remind me not to shop when I mention my usual triggers (stitchy stuff and nail polish) but sometimes I get irritated when they stop me. No, I think I need to do this myself.

I've definitely overspent this month - again. My expenses were:
- about $90 for a Lowery stand & one pattern (to be fair, I ordered these in November and my order was mishandled so badly that it was only charged two weeks ago *sigh*)
- $51 for two Chatelaine bead packs from EuropeanXS
- $18 from Crafty Kitten, but only because most of the order was covered by cash that was in my Paypal account from ebay & FB sales (actual cost was about $180 *cringe*)

The reality is that my stash is ridiculously huge and I could literally go the rest of my life without buying anything but DMC and still have a happy, fulfilling stitchy life. Just yesterday I was digging through my stash to pick a fabric for a new start, and the sheer amount of pieces was overwhelming - not just physically, but mentally as well. It's like when you go to the museum and look at a ton of fine art, and after a while you're like... dude, I'm so sick of art, get me outta here. And of course, the moment of self-disgust when I remember ordering EIGHT MORE FQs only a few days before with the excuse that "the exchange rate is soooo good right now!"

This is a problem.

This problem can't be solved by "churning" (aka selling stash, then buying more), it has to be solved by NOT BUYING STASH. I need to learn contentment and satisfaction, not keep chasing new things and neglecting the many beautiful patterns and fabrics I already have. I want to be mindful, not wasteful.

Starting now and continuing through February, I'll be putting a stop to ALL wasteful spending, especially our problem areas (crafts, nail polish, and collectibles), with my wife's full knowledge and support. I need to get back to our real budget, not this bloated trainwreck of a mess.

I've done it before and I can do it again. Let's gooooo! :)

Thursday, January 26, 2017

Summer Quakers - update #5 (and post #500!)

Time flies when you're... well, I don't know what I've been doing, honestly. Here's the latest update on Summer Quakers!

Only a partial photo this time, since the qsnap has been moved to allow work on the entire bottom area of the design. I haven't completed as much as I'd hoped this week, but weekend stitching time got eaten up by watching figure skating. Worth it. :3

Not much else to report, except that I've decided not to continue with Stitch from Stash. I like the concept but I'd like to see something that's more like the makeuprehab subreddit, a harsher look at the underlying shopping addiction and emotional/mental factors that drive it. I'll stay in the group and enjoy the progress and finish photos, but I won't be reporting anything.

I want to bounce back to the idea of "mindful stitching" I posted about last year and talk about that in future posts. It won't be a joinable thing, just me rambling a bit about my own overspending and bad habits, not just with stitching stash, but nail polish and other things I collect. Don't worry, though, I'll always put those thoughts at the bottom of a post and separate it with a divider of some sort so you can skip my rambling if you like. :3


And somehow this is post #500 in this blog! I never imagined I'd keep it up for so long! :)

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Summer Quakers - update #4

Oops, has it been almost a week already?

Sorry about the cruddy picture, it's been raining nonstop all week and there isn't as much natural light coming in as usual. I tried correcting the colors a bit but it's still kind of off.

Making good progress! Also, a couple of small color changes in the upper left, because I needed to make the iris blue and purple instead of the strongly variegated red/purple/blue thread. Purple-blue irises are kind of symbolic in a story I'm writing, so I had to make this one match my idea. :3

Friday, January 13, 2017

Summer Quakers - update #3

Another quick post, just so I don't go forever without updating. :3

Full steam ahead! The leafy branch in the top right is the corner of the pattern, so I'll be working across toward the left side now. Still not getting bored with this! I wonder if I'll end up stitching this straight on through until it's finished. :3

Sunday, January 08, 2017

Summer Quakers - update #2

Just a tiny update today! I wanted to show my progress on Summer Quakers before I get too much farther on the design. Still loving this one with all the cute little motifs and fun colors!

Also, I've already sent an email but just in case - Rhona, if you see this post, please check your email, I need your mailing address so I can send you the Etude aux Fraises chart! :)

Tuesday, January 03, 2017

Summer Quakers - update #1 (and goals!)

It's that time again! But before I get to the goals, let's take a peek at my new year start. This is Summer Quakers by Rosewood Manor, and I'm stitching with (mostly) the recommended threads on Vintage Petals Belfast by Crafty Kitten.

I say mostly for the threads because I've subbed other stuff from my stash for two of the Valdani threads, both of which didn't have the same color variation shown in the model photo OR in the thread images on the Valdani website! I expect some differences in dye lots, but one of the threads wasn't even close. Grumble.

Despite that, I'm loving the pattern so far and I've made good progress on the central page!

I'll stick with this project for a while until I feel like I need a change!


As for goals, last month I said...

- blog about progress once a week - YES!
- finish Etude aux Fraises - YES!
- NO craft/stash shopping unless I NEED something for an active WIP - nope

Bought a few things from ABC Stitch during their 35% off sale, but kept it under $50 total. My wife chose the charts, and I picked the fabric and threads. The fabric is a PTP solo which is pretty similar to the original Haunted. (These days, Haunted is green - I'm not the only person who got an unpleasant surprise when ordering that color recently!)

Anyway, here's the goodies! The threads are by Carrie's Creations and they're gorgeous silks... I really love CC threads, you can't beat $1 for cotton and $2 for silk!

And goals for this month...

- blog about progress once a week
- stay within stitch from stash budget (which is $0 for me haha)
- stitch a little every day :3

Vague goals, I know, but since I'm not close to a finish on anything and I might end up working on Summer Quakers all month, I don't know what to write here. :p

I also have an additional yearlong goal, which is to keep my stash and nail polish spending under $400 this year. My in-laws gifted us each $400 for Christmas, which we've decided to keep as our spending money for crafts and stuff. This means I may report on stash I buy despite having a zero budget in stitch from stash, as gifts don't count against your personal budget.

Haha, maybe I'll even show off any nail polish I get. :p