Friday, January 1, 2016

2015 Progress and 2016 Goals

I know that Sunday is my usual progress posting day, but I thought I'd go ahead on New Year's and set my goals for 2016. First though, let's reflect through 2015 (at least stitch-wise).

Since I finished the two HAED's I had outstanding in 2014, The Princess and the Pea (which STILL isn't framed) and QS Angel in Lilac, I was able to start 2015 with two new HAEDs, first with Maleficent, which I started on January 3rd. Throughout 2015, I went from a blank piece of fabric, to about 2/3 through row 3 and stopped here on December 6th:
My second HAED start of the year, on January 4th, was Alice and the Bouguereau Princesses. Again, starting with a blank piece of fabric, I finished row 2:
and got just a bit into row 3 before I gave it up for the year on November 15th:
Alice and the B's is a significantly bigger piece than Maleficent, but it's a lot easier stitching it because there is no dithering (I know, I PROMISE not to go off again, but I can't help bringing it up).

Of course, there are still the two proverbial "thorns in my side"...A Summer Ball which I left off here in March of 2014:
And worked on it exactly one night, January 5th to be exact, and it was probably the reason why a rotation didn't work for me because I HATE this project! It's going to look fabulous when finished, but I actually have to finish it first! So for all of 2015, this was my progress on it (although, in my defense, I did fill in all the white trim on the yellow dress so it looks the same, but it's not):
Just sad. I did fair a bit better on 35th Anniversary Celebration though, I left off here on March 4th, 2014:
And for one night in May of 2015, I managed to progress it to here:
At least there is more visible project on this one night of work. I actually don't hate this pattern, but I hate working on the dark fabric. I have to use a light box, it's on 14ct and still too huge for a typical lap stand so I have to stitch it on the couch instead of my chair. There is just too much involved to spend any quality time on it.

Tartan B also got a lot of neglect in 2015, especially after starting it over in 2014 on a different fabric. I left off here on December 21, 2014:
And I stopped here on May 7, 2015:
I think my issue with this one is that it's on a hoop instead of scroll rods and I can only stitch one-handed and it slows me down. Plus, I am really bad at gripping so tight with my right hand, that it cramps up and I don't realize it until I literally have to pry my fingers off the hoop. I do the same thing with a video game controller. My right hand doesn't know how to function properly since I am left-handed to a fault. I had every intention of putting Tartan B on rods, but just never got around to it.

I did manage a few finishes in 2015 with a little help from the April A to Z Blogging Challenge. I did two projects for this year's challenge (neither of which are framed still), FanGirl Stitches Once Upon A Time Alphabet:
And FanGirl Stitches Veronica Mars Alphabet:
As a wild hair, I started the two Disney Castle cross stitch kits I've had FOR-EV-ER, finishing Sleeping Beauty Castle in a little under a month of on-again, off-again progress during June/July:
(and again, another added to my "not framed" pile)

And I started Cinderella's Castle not long afterwards, but barely got started before I put it down here in the middle of July:
Both of these were an excuse not to work on Disneyland planning, so once I got my planning bug ramped up, I never went back. I want these framed at the same time so that they match, so at least I have an excuse on the framing front.

Then, of course, there was the project I've been focusing the most on as of late, Rainy Wedding. What started as a work needle club project, ended up getting shelved when we stopped the club. It was a while before I took it home to work on it, but I rarely ever did, that is until last month. Once I re-scrolled it in a horizontal fashion instead of vertical, it was so much easier to stitch and I didn't dread it nearly as much. I left off in 2014 here:
And I'm happy to report that I finished (just under the wire), this part of the project at 3:30 am Friday morning:
The project was started on December 18, 2014 and took a total of 125.87 hrs of actual stitch work.

Granted, there is still the matter of the second piece to this project, the name panel, but that shouldn't take long and then I'll have to do my least favorite thing, get it framed before I can gift it.

I guess I should also mention my one failure for 2015, the first project I ever officially scrapped totally. When I initially bought CloudsFactory Once Upon A Time Sampler, it was before the April A to Z and the Once Alphabet. I bought the fabric and the thread and had the "brilliant" idea of making the fairytale outfits sparkle with light effects thread. Needless to say, my vision and what actually ended up happening were two different beasts...the thread was a nightmare to work with and looked horrible and this fantastic purple material was way too soft and difficult to work with. After months of staring at the unfinished project, I decided just to trash it and I put the pattern back in my stash.

And that was my stitching progress for 2015! Now on to the goals for 2016. A few of these I've mentioned already, but since I now have the kits built and am working on getting the fabric scrolled up, these are now officially on my WIP's Page. Of course, I would like to finish the current plus two more rows each of Maleficent and Alice and the B's as well as finish Cinderella's Castle and Tartan B. I'm pretty sure it's safe to say that A Summer Ball and 35th Anniversary won't get finished, but maybe I'll work on them a bit.

I plan to start HAED's Christmas Contest Suteki in January:
Christmas Contest Suteki-000
And, because of it's smaller size, should be able to almost or actually finish it by the end of 2016. Because it's a gift for my sister, maybe that will be motivation enough to rock and roll on this one.

I also plan to start HAED's Snow White in January:
Snow White-000
But the jury's still out on whether or not I'll be able to finish it by the end of the year. It is a bit bigger than Suteki.

And, my third big HAED start, Night Wish, will probably only get a couple of rows finished because it is a bigger project:
Night Wish-000
Although I'm extremely curious to see how doing a one-color dominant project in my absolute favorite color will affect things. I've done monochromish projects before (the nightmare that was the Giant Jesus Head and all that horrible brown), and it's been miserable. I'm really interested to see if my love for purple will make this easier to work on or change my opinion of the color forever. Time will tell!

Once HAED release the Aimee Stewart A Stitch In time (and if they release a SS/MC version), I hope to start a SAL with Heather over at her blog, but that won't be until summer time.

I don't plan to start any other projects, unless I manage to finish some of the stranglers like Cinderella's Castle and Tartan B. Then, I might lean towards another kit, possibly the oldest I have in my stash:
The English Garden
or my next Design Works Mice series, possibly, Sew Mice To Be Your Friend:
Sew Mice Friends
If I decide to go a different route, I do still have Sleepy Hollow Mural kitted up and ready to start at any time (although it has made my list every year for the past three years and has still never been started, so I don't have high hopes):
Sleepy Hollow Mural
But unless the most magical project of all suddenly appears, that's going to be it for new starts. December 31, 2016 will prove how many of these goals I managed to meet but, as always, my hopes are high for a very successful stitch year! Good luck to everyone else and your goals (and some of you guys have some AH-MAZ-ING goals), and I can't wait to see your progress!


Emma/Itzy said...

A very successful 2015 overall! Great goals for 2016 too, I look forward to watching your projects grow.

Heather said...

Great job on all of your pieces Keiley! Congrats on finishing rainy wedding :)! Good luck on next year too I'm excited for our SAL! Before July would be good because I have off the month from work lol. Happy new year!

Bea said...

I would say very satisfactory progress for 2015 and HOORAY for the Rainy Day finish.

Great choices for stitching pieces in 2016.

Linda said...

Awesome post Keiley. I'm going to enjoy seeing your new starts.


Vickie said...

You did great this year!! I am so impressed!! I love your finishes and your future projects!!

I am telling...vow to put in at least 100 stitches in summer ball a day and you will finish it!

Kate said...

Yay! Rainy day is finished :D It looks awesome!

Justine said...

A great year's stitching - especially getting Rainy Wedding finished! That must feel good.
You have some lovely pieces to work on in 2016. Suteki looks like a challenge - hopefully with all that confetti there's no room for dithering! I love Night Wish and hope it doesn't out you off purple as it's gorgeous.

Tiffstitch said...

Great ideas and I hope you manage to finish some this year, especially the gift for your sister. Especially after WDW this spring!