Up and At It

comments: 424




I spent yesterday sort of organizing my computer and my bookkeeping stuff. I always dread it so much, but then when I sit down to actually do it I get all ambitious, organizationally speaking: This is fine! Why don't I run these reports all the time? How come I don't use Quicken more? Right. It reminds me of that one time Andy Paulson mopped the hardwood floor of our apartment with Murphy's Oil Soap and, while mopping vigorously, had some sort of olfactory-inspired crazy-talk fit: "This is so easy!!! It smells so good! Why do we not do this all the time??? Yeah. I'm gonna do this, I'm gonna wash this floor every night when I get home from work! I will do that! I will do it!" Pan to me, falling off the couch laughing with my hands over my mouth. That was in 1996. He did very kindly wash the kitchen floor for me one other time, just the other day. I sat in a chair with a cat on my lap and said things like, "It's so weird, it doesn't seem like just yesterday when you said you were going to wash the floors every day. It seems more like it was . . . oh . . . sixteen years ago." But I totally get it, because every year when I am printing out year-end summaries and pretty pie charts of income and expenses I have the same sort of unlikely enthusiasm for keeping house, financially speaking. It lasts about as long as it takes to hurl it all toward the mailbox and get it out of here and off to our accountant. Bleh.

Do you like the sampler? It's about the winterwoods. I'm kind of infatuated with it. It's not quite done, but almost. There are a few little things left to do. I think maybe I'll just become an alphabet sampler designer now. I really love these. I drew all the letters freehand. I wanted them to look like letters you would carve into a tree trunk with a Swiss Army knife (not that I've ever done that [wink] ). This will definitely be a pattern. Trying to figure out whether I can also afford to make this into a kit. Counted cross-stitch supplies — the really good ones, which are what I used here: varigated hand-dyed embroidery floss, 28-count Danish linen — are expensive. I always think that if you're going to take the time you should use the best stuff. Well, we'll talk more about it. Still thinking. Please raise your hand if you like kits.

Are people afraid of counted cross-stitch? I keep hearing this. DON'T BE SCARED. OF COUNTED CROSS-STITCH. I will help you.



I love counted cross stitch too and I think your sampler is very sweet indeed. The colours are lovely and I think that quality linen and hand-dyed thread always enhances a project.

Love the kettle and the mug of tea motifs.

I am dying to try counted cross stitch. My husband bought me a beginners book months ago but there seems to be a severe lack of lovely patterns so please design lots!

I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE the sampler! There is something timeless and "old" about cross-stitch and especially samplers that I just absolutely LOVE! I LOVE the color combinations too. I really like the dark linen with the brighter threads. Did I mentioned I LOVE it? :)
I will order a kit in a heart bit!

Yes! Please make the kit! I had so many cozy summer evenings thanks to your wonderful embroidery kit!

Thank you for the peek at your latest cross-stitch! I was hoping you would post a picture soon. I love kits! Especially when they use high-quality materials that I want to use. It makes it easier so I don't have to track everything down. That little deer is adorable.

Hand up in the air! I am afraid of counted cross stitch! Not so much on the special fabric, because I get how you work with the pattern and the fabric. Regular fabric is where I get confused with how it can stay straight, etc. Perhaps you can do a quick post on it, so that we won't be so afraid :)

I do all kinds of other embroidery and I feel I'm pretty good at it, I just don't know what it is about the cross stitch!

I feel the same way about organizing our books. There's a feeling of dread (and a lot of procrastination) leading up to it, but once I'm in the midst of the project I love it! Plus I make large to-read stacks to put next to my bed.

I LOVE counted cross-stitch and kits, and the design is whimsical and lovely.

Love the sampler and I love counted cross-stitch! There is something so zen about the repetitive little stitches that turn into a beautiful image. There just aren't that many lovely patterns. I would love it you made some for sale (whether it is just the pattern or the whole kit!). I also love that you use good quality supplies for your kits - it makes them easier to finish because you want to spend time sitting with the lovely colours and materials passing through your hands.

The sample is adorable, and I've been longing to try counted cross stitch. I would definitely purchase the pattern.

I just love it! And would definitely buy a kit, or even a pattern. Of course your kits are just one of the greatest things to receive in the mail!!

I missed out on the first sampler kit and that made me sad, so I hope you'll do a kit for this one.

I adore the new sampler! I would definitely buy a pattern but probably not a kit, but I understand that a lot of people love kits.

I like counted cross-stitch a lot. I go through phases where I really love it. But I can't easily work on it while watching movies, like regular embroidery, because I have to keep pausing the DVD so I can count my stitches. :)

I've never done counted cross stitch, but I love your kits and I'd love to try this one out!

I ♥ counted cross stitch. Love your sampler. :)

Kit for sure. If it was just the pattern I would never get around to getting everything together. A kit, well odds are much, much greater. Plus, I like collecting your kits! But please don't stop the ornaments, those are my favorites!

Any of you local to Portland people that are afraid of cross stitching, you really need to go visit Acorns and Threads over off of Scholls Ferry Road. It is packed full of lovely linens and more threads than you can count, and lots and lots of alphabet samplers. Oh, and helpful people too.

Alicia, your sampler is stunning, and I'm sure it will sell very, very well. Kit or not. I am a real-life alphabet sampler designer, so I should know. ;)

please please make this into a kit.

A Little Blue Dragonfly says: January 05, 2012 at 09:36 AM

It's amazing! I love, love, love it! :) I haven't cross stitched in many years, and I have to admit that I rarely see a pattern that I HAVE to stitch, BUT...this is one such pattern!!! I will be getting my supplies out again! :)

Love, love, love CCS! That sampler looks beautiful - you had me at the jumping deer and wellies :)

Yes, a kit, please! I love cross stitch, but lack the organizational something-or-other to assemble the supplies myself. Thank you!

Yes, I like! Maybe you could do a sort of embroidery CSA - get people to pay in advance....

I adore counted cross stitch. And a beautiful sampler! Thanks for bringing stitching to now and having us all crave stitched items in our homes and on our laps in this busy world of techno-wilderness:)

Oh, it's beautiful!! I'd be happy to purchase the pattern alone (but I do like knowing you've chosen the best supplies when I buy a kit). If you don't assemble kits, will you let us know where to find the good stuff?

It's lovely, Alicia.

[raises hand and waves wildly]
Oh, me! Me! I would buy a kit! I love a kit! Patterns are great, but I am waaay more likely to get a project done with a kit. Kit me, baby!

And... who's afraid of counted cross stitch?! It's just little x's. Nothing scary there!

As always, thank you Alicia.
You are lovely.

This is so beautiful! I love it. I'm with Shannon above (having never done or heard of counted cross stitch), but how hard can it be, right? (<--famous last words). Anyway, if mine came out looking even half as great as yours, I'd be thrilled.

Additionally, your thoughts on organizing (and mopping, for that matter) sound so familiar to me... ;) And they remind me very much of Hyperbole and a Half's post "This is Why I'll Never Be an Adult".

Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been posted. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.


post a comment

About Alicia Paulson


My name is Alicia Paulson
and I love to make things. I live with my husband and daughter in Portland, Oregon, and design sewing, embroidery, knitting, and crochet patterns. See more about me at aliciapaulson.com