Tuesday, January 12, 2010

A Question for Tuesday....

GR&DF once again I do thank you for the kind things you had to say about AlphaBlocks. I am still enjoying stitching on it and will be very sad when it is finished. I think it is always like that. Once you have been working away on something for a time and then its over. Even with the excitement of the next piece or pieces... There is a kind of void until something else takes hold and your off again - a love affair with needlework!! I did very little last night so I didn't bother with a snap of the piece. Luned asked about how I am picking the colours for the block fill - very carefully or at random - well I did pick all the OWS floss I had and put them on a ring. From this ring I randomly pick for the fill. Between blocks I will usually pop it out of the Q-Snaps and give it a good look and pick one of the colours I think will look nice. I am really liking the way the multi coloured boxes look. Since I have been accused of only stitching grey,brown and blacks..... this is a way colourful piece.

I got some really nice mail yesterday - a really OOP chart - the Mary Beale Sampler Wreath. I saw a finished one of these a few years back and have been on the hunt since then. This is a really rare and hard to get chart that is totally expensive on the secondary market. If you have this in your stash know you have a great little gem there. I think this will line up after my Alpha piece - there I go planning out my projects way into the year. But, I figure if I want to have this up at next Christmas that I need to get it done!!

The flicker last night was a TV movie from a Cathrine Cookson novel - "The Black Velvet Gown" - 1991 - starring Janet McTeer, Bob Peck and Geraldine Somerville. I had never heard of this film or novel but threw it on to the Netflix queue because of Janet Mcteer - a very fine actress. The film that brought her to my attention was "Songcatcher" - 2000 - a wonderful film I have seen many times. The Black Velvet Gown was very good and the story was really good. I would highly recommend either film - however Songcatcher is the better of the two - IMHO.

Now for the question - the set up - reading on a Forum yesterday a question came up that made me stop and think a moment.... it was .... Have you ever regretted giving away a piece of needlework? I read through the responses and then it got me to thinking... I have never regretted for a single moment anything I have ever given away. Excluding exchanges and gifts to other stitchers - gifts of my needlework have only gone to family members and very close friends that know the time, effort and cost that go into making a cross stitch or needlepoint piece. Have you ever had a bad experience with a gifted Needle work piece? Some of the responses where quite unnerving to say the least.

There you go sports fans - something to think about!! Thanks for stopping by and do come again!

Take care,
edgar

24 comments:

Cath said...

I did a lovely piece for my Grandmas 80th birthday , and two years later saw it still in the wrapping left lying abandoned in another room. I was totally gutted .
I've also done other things for people who really haven't appreciated them ,so now stitch for my own pleasure and for charity.

Nancy said...

I stitched a birth sampler for some new parents about two years ago and had it framed. When the new mother unwrapped it she asked if I made it, tossed it to the side never to mention it again. Now I mainly stitch for myself and sometimes gifts or an exchange.

Berit said...

Hmm...I put in a lot of work charting up and then stitching (over 1 on 32 count!!) a "keychain" or zipper pull for a friend's birthday (It was a rather detailed character from a videogame, and since it was made from square pixels was exactly the same size it would be on tv!). He didn't seem to care much, and it's sitting on a dusty shelf where he can't see it, BUT I think that's just his way, and when my Birthday came around he treated me to a the Kylie Minogue NYC concert (like her only one ever) which I wanted to go to more than life itself almost, but just could not afford.)

I think most people don't know how to appreciate the arts at large including needle ones. Maybe it's because they are so beautiful--sort of like how nature is often beautiful. No one pays Nature to paint herself in the brilliant reds, oranges and golds of autumn, yet she does so all the same and at a reliable interval. Maybe that's why people don't value the arts and want to invest/pay for them.

But I digress. I think regret is a matter of your viewpoint. It's important to try choosing gifts the recipient will most like/be able to use, and for many that's just not a hand-stitched gift. Also, you have to do something because of who you are ("I'm X and that's just what I do.") So, you stitch because you do and you give it because you think it best and then the rest just (their reaction) isn't relevant. You can only do your best to choose a gift and then give it in the right sprit.

I do think that stitched gifts are best for other stitchers, or people who have outright said (with no leading from you) that they would LOVE to have/do something like x someday.

But, so far, I don't regret it. :)

Kat said...

Great question! I have never experienced regret after giving a piece away, but my sister did. She stitched a beautiful eagle for her in-laws for Christmas one year, they opened it and set it down behind the chair and never said anything beyond "Hmmm....nice". She was of course devastated and snuck it our of their house that same day and brought it back to her own house. (Not something I would have done...but...we're different people). Too add insult to injury, they never mentioned the "missing" picture again. Not sure if they ever knew what she did or why, but she never stitched for them again.

Charlene ♥ SC said...

OK, you enabler, you! I 'ran across' a couple of the letters in the alphabet while browsing this morning, and come to find out, it is sold with ALL the alphabet. Woo hoo! It is now ordered for my stash! Thanks for your fine examples!

Evelyn said...

Great question, Edgar.
About 15 years ago I stitched a lovely wedding sampler for two coworkers who got married. Spent about $100 getting it framed, and of course, you guessed it - a year later they were divorced. So, I learned a good lesson there!

Myriam said...

Chanceux Edgard...the Mary Beale Sampler Wreath is a treasure!

Marjorie said...

I have never had a bad experience. For the most part I only gift stitched pieces to family members or very close friends, who thankfully seem to appreciate them as they are all on display...I would be bummed to find out something was tossed in a closet since so much work is put into even a small xs piece.

Ginny B said...

I'm very careful about giving away my needlework. In fact, I usually have something stuck on the wall and someone comes by and drools over the stitching, THEN I'll give it to them. There are some things I'll never give away, but many times if someone loves a work as much as I do, I'll give it to them.

By the way, I finally found pics of the Mary Beale Sampler on the web, and almost fainted. How utterly gorgeous. Now begins my search for my very own copy.

I have just finished The Sampler Company's Plymouth Sampler, which I think is on your wish list. I never know what to do with patterns when I'm through with them, so if you still want it, I'll shoot it off to you.

Sharlotte said...

I have never regreted gifting a piece of cross stitch as a regular gift or for an exchange, which exchanging I'm fairly new to. Now other forms of needlework... that's a different story. I had made a quilt for my neice when she was small ,only to see it later in basically rags and bleach spots on it! I had also knitted an afghan for my sister- in - law ( mother of the neice) and seen it later with a huge hole in it and used to cover a guinea pig cage! I had had both of these projects made and give before I ever seen either in such condition so it's not like I made one, found it in disarray and fell for it again. It would have only taken one time if that was the case.I learned my lesson after seeing those projects to NEVER make anything for them again. It's almost like people who don't "craft" can even see the effort put into a gift.

Tracey said...

Yes, I have.. I stitched a lovely wedding sampler for my BIL and his wife. It was fairly large and took some time- and to this day I have never seen it displayed in their home-and I have been in every room but their bedroom. I guess it may be there but I really doubt it. It hurts to put so much work into something and then someone does not even care enough to display it or tucks it into some obscure corner of their home. I don't so much regret giving it away as ever stitching it.

Catherine said...

I don't have regrets so to speak. But there are some pieces - for example - some that were given to a long ago boyfriend's parents, or a long ago coworker for the birth of their first child - and from time to time, I often wonder - where did they end up? Do they still display them proudly or are they packed away or even worse....
They were all given with love, so I do hope that they are all still appreciated and enjoyed - even if they have been passed on.

Barb said...

As usual, your blog and my coffee were a bright spot this morning! Now to your question. Before I became addicted to stitching, I was a hand quilter-both the piecing and quilting. I made wall quilts and many pillows for people -at times with never even a thank you. I decided to only give gifts of stitching to very special people who appreciate the work, money, and time involved! Lesson learned! Have a great day!

Jennifer said...

Mary Beale Sampler Wreath? Why does this sound so familiar to me? Is it part of a series with ornaments to match also? Is there an Adam and Eve or perhaps another biblical themed series by this designer? All sorts of bells are going off in my head.....or that maybe be the three York Peppermint Patties I just ate.
Yes, I have regretted giving stitched/handmade gifts away. I made a very detailed quilt wall-hanging for my brother and sister-in-law of their cat, Murphy. When searching for a phone book in their utility closet several years later I found the quilt in there with the dish towels and plastic bags. That's just the way they are. Not neccessarily ungrateful, but just totally unaware of the time, effort and true value of a handmade item. The same thing happens to the hand-knit sweaters my mother makes for my niece and nephew.

Rachel S said...

I have never regretted giving anything away because the only pieces I've ever given away went to people I know appreciated them. I see too many cross stitch pieces at yard sales to just give them away. Too much love goes into a piece of stitchery for someone to sell it for a dollar.

missy said...

No regrets because I never look back. I enjoy stitching so much and when it's a gift I enjoy it more so. What is done with the give it is not for me to say. I loved it while I had it and love the memory of it even more.

hugs
-missy-

Margaret said...

Your question is easy for me to answer -- I've never given a piece of needlework away. :D On the other hand, I've given quilts away. I don't think I've regretted it though. I think with fondness of some of them, but it's nice to remember where they are now too. :D

April Mechelle said...

Great Question Edgar !!! I started stitching back in the eighties. Remember Ducks & Geese and Blue & Mauve ??? LOL Just married , We didn't have much money.. Still Don't.. LOL I made family members for Christmas all cross stitch gifts.. Inlaws.. Looks like Duh...
Sister In law .. Duh.... Well now I stitch for my family and close friends who know how much money goes into those Silk floss, overdyed linen and framing or finishing and appreciate the time spent and the love put into picking out a chart that goes with their taste. I LOVE TO Stitch !!! LOL

Terri(TerriBoog) said...

Most folks don't appreciate the time or expense it takes to stitch and finish something (other than fellow stitchers, of course). I don't stitch for too many other people - a few, but not many.

Marnie said...

I have had many wonderful experiences gifting my needlework but three very memorable gut wrenching experiences that will haunt me forever.
#1 - after spending a good deal on custom framing, the receiver only talked about how they would have to 're-frame' it to be presentable in her home.
#2 - I charted, stitched and custom framed a LONG classical poem for fiance, then broke off with him several months later.
#3 - first year of marriage, stitched all year on a piece for my new MIL for Christmas. She opened it, looked at it for two seconds and tossed it aside, reached for next present.

I learned my lesson(s). I still gift needlework often and love it, but am careful about how much time, money and effort I put into the gifts.

Ja'niece said...

I use to stitch for my immediately family and a few close cousins. Not anymore. They might have the wedding and birth announcements hanging on the walls, but it was more something that was expected and not much appreciation went into the getting of the gift. So after I did something for my parents 50th wedding anniversary 4 years ago I said... _No More_ from now on I stitch just for myself.

Gabi said...

Yes and no...lol. Until recently ago I never had a problem with giving something away. Normally I finish a piece in time and enjoy it a week or two before sending it off or giving it away. And then it feels as if it went to the place where it belongs.
But last month I gave an ornament away and first time I thought...bummer. I'm going to stitch it again, which will solve that. Was the first time that I felt like that.
I like it also that when I visit family to see some of my stitched pieces hanging on the wall. Gives me always a warm feeling.

Nic said...

I don't think there's anything I regret giving away, but then I usually only do exchanges with other crafters, or give gifts to close family, who all appreciate it - it helps my ma crafted ;o) In fact, when my gran died I discovered she'd kept *everything* I'd stitched for her, even little cards that had taken only a couple of hours to do, and that she wanted me to have them back. Even my BiL knows the effort that goes into these things - when I'd made a cross stitch afghan for my niece, he laughed and said it was fabulous and too good for her, and has put it away until she's "safe" to be let round it - so when she's 18, maybe ;o)

Kendra said...

Good question. And yes, I regret 2 items I've stitched, both went to my IL's. One was a snowman piece for my MIL for Christmas a few years ago. She acted like she liked it, but where does it hang - at the end of a dark hallway where no one ever sees it. The other was a wedding sampler I'd made into a pillow for my SIL and her hubby a couple years ago. That SIL has since made my life a living hell and is one reason that I'm almost completely cutting ties with my IL's.
Both pieces took a lot of my time and effort, and both were not really appreciated for what they were.