Today is drippy, rainy/icy and gray, so it's perfect for stitching on this bright, engaging sampler--"Ann Dale 1827: Big and Beautiful" by Shakespeare's Peddler. This doesn't count as a new start, because I put a day of stitching into it back in December, since I have zero impulse control when it comes to buying a new sampler, fabric and thread and bring it home without starting it immediately. If you are on the fence about stitching this up because of the size, go ahead and get it. While it is a bit larger surface-wise--yes, it does take a full half yard of fabric in 40 count--there is quite a bit of unfilled white space around the elements of the design. Only the very bottom third of the sampler with the swans, the hills, some birds, some trees, a couple of flower-filled urns and a large tree of life is really densely stitched. Take it from someone who just started an HAED design (more about that in another post), this really isn't that daunting. The border, unlike a lot of borders I'm working on for other samplers, is repetitive and small enough to commit to memory, so it's an easy stitch while watching tv or visiting with friends. I've made a couple of color changes to the threads, because as I said on the last post on this sampler, I don't care for the recommended Lakeside Pear. Too green for me, and when I did the floss toss, I liked the colors of the thread against the Picture This Plus Legacy instead. I did change of couple of colors of floss, because I thought they were too pale for the new fabric or the design needed a little spark of color. You can tell where I did so starting on the second strawberry from the top left. I'll leave the original color as is, without picking it out. It's a repro sampler, so color changes in the middle of things are part of the charm. Same thing on the dye lots. I don't buy all my threads at once. Some of the colors called for four or five skeins, and I'll get them as I go (of course my life is made simpler by working in and living near my LNS, so I can pick things up without planning ahead). The only time I care about dye lots is if I'm knitting a sweater--I don't want two different color sleeves. [Edited to add, after reading Margaret's and Stef's coments: I think there are some color issues in this sampler that beg to be adjusted or played with. Stef, changing from the 692 to 693 is a great idea. I changed to 843--it's greener, plus I didn't have 693 handy. Also I changed the stems of the plant to a pale green (AVAS) from what appeared to be almost a white, and instead of making the tips of the strawberries that same whiteish color, I'm using a pale pink from AVAS, 641. I also think that even on 40 count, AVAS has a better coverage.]
Here's the sampler in its entirety, although this is a photo of the original sampler, not the repro.
Pink thinks it's a good idea to pretend to lie in a green field, have a nap and dream of spring.
See you again soon!