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Bad Color Days: How to Fix

Sometimes it's hard to come up with a new color scheme.  Sometimes it's easy.  One recommended method is to start with a known color scheme and work from there.  Quilters will find a fabric with a bold, colorful print.  The rest of the fabrics will include shades from the first fabric.  Embroiderers will start with a colorful overdyed thread and use it to select more colors.

I did one such project a few years ago.  We started with an overdyed thread and then chose 4 or 5 colors from that overdye.  The project involved an oak/acorn theme and I wanted green and brown to be included in the colors.  I chose this beautiful overdye:

Besides brown and green, there was red, orange and yellow.  With great excitement I started stitching.  I stitched some more and something happened - the colors where changing and not in a good way.  They began to look like a bad 70's color scheme with rust, harvest gold and avocado.  My excitement turned to disappointment.  I knew I could not look at those colors for the months that the project would take.  Still, it was hard to abandon them.  But, abandon them I did.  The stitches where quickly ripped out and I was back at the needlework store shopping for new colors.  The skein of 70's floss was tossed in a drawer.

Years passed, but I didn't forget that abandoned floss.  Finally, I decided to do something with it.  I had a small frame with a 2 1/4 inch opening so I decided to start with the abandoned floss.  Instead of working with it, I worked against it.  There was no blue at all in it.  So, I chose a bright cheery blue, a pink and a peach to see if they could transform the 70's floss.  I started stitching randomly in the 2 inch square to see what I could come up with.

No more 70's!  If you look the gold, rust and avocado are still there but muted.  They no longer dominate, but complement.  It was an exiting transformation and I had to try it again with different colors.

Next I found some small kits that had been neglected in a drawer, tossed out the pattern and added an unlikely overdyed thread.  What fun!  I was coming up with fun color schemes in unexpected and unplanned ways.   I played with more of these than I care to admit but, the seed of an idea had been planted.  I would use this exercise as a basis for future designs.


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Do Overs

Starting over means re-doing some of my projects.  A lot of the projects that I've done I don't want to do over.  Some turned out not to be the worth effort and others were not fun at all.  There's also a feeling of "been there, done that".    I've also discovered that I enjoy the act of creating more than the results sometimes.
My first do over was this penstemon I designed a while ago.  It's small and simple and only 2 colors.  I'll eventually be restitching many of my own designs.  Luckily, I still have the charts even if I no longer have the item or pictures of the item.
My second do over is actually actually stitching something for the third time!

After the second stitching, I'd had enough.  But, I was given the 2010 Just Cross Stitch Ornament issue with the pattern and that was a sign that the reindeer needed to be stitched again.  Hopefully, that's it.
My last do over represents all the EGA seminars that I attended over the years.


The Next Lone Star

I am continuing to practice lone stars.
This time I tried a different tutorial.  Each one I find is slightly different so I get to try different techniques and see which ones work best for me.
Since I've gotten better with points and the quarter inch seam allowance and need to work on keeping the diamonds from stretching I picked this tutorial.  It has fewer, bigger diamonds so it should go faster.  It also doesn't have the set in squares and triangles so it will be easier to finish if I choose to do so.
As soon as I started cutting the diagonals I realized I forgot the starch.  I just jumped right in and missed the main point of the block.  So, I decided to continue and focus on being as careful with the fabric as I could.  Guess what, my diamonds didn't stretch out this time!
I got some stretching when I sewed on the triangles, however the block still turned out OK.  A couple of points are slightly off but most of them are right on. There is a slight hump in the center …