Monday, March 1, 2010

Felted Wool Embroidery Keeper

I have recently finished my "Embroidery Keeper". I love it. Now I have most of my "tools" all in one place, ready to pick up and embroidery whatever project I'm working on. It was also the second time I had ever "felted my own wool". It was a fun project.

And here it is opened to reveal all the little compartments. The pocket on the far left is to hold the embroidery floss. In the middle portion is a pocket to hold the scissors, a pocket to hold a pen or pencil for any tracing that's needed and then there is a pin cushion. On the far right is a removable needle keeper and the heart below has two little pocket areas to hold incidentals. Here I have some buttons in it.

In this picture I've opened the needle keeper so you could see inside.

And here I've taken the scissors out to show that I added a plastic covering to the bottom of the scissors because it kept snagging on the wool as I would put it back in the pocket. Finally I decided to take the covering off of a pair of tweezers and put it on the bottom of my scissors and it worked perfectly. No more catching on the fabric. I bought the pattern from Crab Apple Hills Studio, I really had fun working on it. I am also making one for my sister with a pink wool inside lining. I can't wait to finish it so I can send it to her. We are both working on a quilt from Crab Apple Hills and it has alot of embroidering on it. It seems that embroidery is making a come back...:) So try it, you'll like it.

The Blessings of Industry...

Industry defined:
Habitual diligence in any employment, either bodily or mental;
Steady attention to business;
Opposed to sloth and idleness.
We are directed to take lessons of industry from the bee.
pays debts, while idleness or despair will increase them.

There is a story that goes like this: Charles Schwab, one of the first presidents of Bethlehem Steel Company, once inquired of efficiency expert Ivy Lee: "If you can give us something to pep us up to do the things we know we ought to do, I'll gladly pay you anything within reason you ask."

"Fine." answered Lee. "I can give you something in two minutes that will step up your 'doing' by at least fifty percent." "All right," said Mr. Schwab. "Let's have it." Mr. Lee handed Mr. Schwab a blank sheet of note paper and said: "Write down the six most important tasks you have to do tomorrow and number them in the order of their importance. Now, put this paper in your pocket and the first thing tomorrow morning look at item one and start working on it until it is finished. Then tackle item two in the same way; then item three and so on. Do this until quitting time."

"Don't be concerned if you have only finished one or two. You'll be working on the most important ones. The others can wait. If you can't finish them all by this method, you couldn't have with any other method either; and without some system, you'd probably not even have decided which was the most important." "Do this every working day."

"After you've convinced yourself of the value of this system, have your men try it. Try it as long as you wish and then send me a check for what you think it is worth." A few weeks later Mr. Schwab sent Ivy Lee a check for $25,000 with a letter saying the lesson was the most profitable he had ever learned. In five years, this plan was largely responsible for turning the unknown Bethlehem Steel Company into the biggest independent steel producer in the world. And it helped to make Charles Schwab one hundred million dollars.

I like this plan--I think its simple and to the point--obviously in the home it will look a little different, but the principle is the same. What ever your working on stick with it until its done. Even if it overlaps into the next few days (or weeks-or months) depending on the project.

I have numerous projects that I am working on in all different categories. Some of these categories are; collecting and felting my own wool-quilting-embroidery-sewing-cooking-knitting-crocheting-scrap booking-geneology-writing books about my children-A wall of history with time line-decorating-gardening etc. I am finding if I apply this principle to my projects list, first choosing 6 projects that I would like to have completed and then begin working on the first one for a set amount of time each day while in between I do all the other things that are needful for that day--meals, laundry-phones for the business etc. I am seeing success with accomplished projects. The next day I pick up where I left off the day before on my project. Almost all my projects are rather lengthy and will take considerable time to complete (even years). That just seems to be the way I like doing things. A little twist on this is that I also rotate my 1-6 priority list and may work on say, knitting for one day and maybe the next day I need to step away from it and then I may pick up project 2 embroidering an embrodiery envelope holder made from felted wool. And depending on the length of the project I may have 1 or more wonderful things completed by the end of the week or by the end of the month.

But either way the power is in the "finishing". Finishing what we start can never be praised enough. Because its then that we feel and see the "fruits of our labors". Very rewarding!!!

Some one once asked a famous designer to finish this question;
-The only thing I know for sure about the creative process is ......
(his answer)-"People spend a lot of time talking too much about it rather
then getting on and doing it".

Industry, in praise of our hands for the ability to create, to work, to serve.......:)