First up, the piece for my BIL and SIL. It's a modification of a chart in a leaflet called Marriage Keepsakes by Leisure Arts. I've stitched the chart before - the repetition in the border makes it pretty easy. This time, I charted out the poem they used on their bookmark favors and used that instead. I like to use themes and colors from a couple's wedding when I make their wedding record, so I thought this fit in nicely. I stitched over 2 on 28 using all DMC floss, including a silver metallic thread for the inside borders. I have to frame it up and it will be ready to go for 1/2 of their Christmas present.
I also stitched up what I'm calling the Family Tree for them. It's a copy of a piece my MIL has had hanging on her wall for YEARS. It was something a friend of hers stitched for her and I've always admired it, so when I started stitching, I took close up photos of her piece and copied it into a chart in PC Stitch. It was VERY quick to stitch up, so I made two - one for us and one for my BIL and SIL. The original piece is stitched in red, brown and green DMC floss over one on what appears to be 14 ct. off white Aida, so I replicated the same fabric and color combination for the new ones. I experimented with a slightly brighter set of colors for theirs and framed it in black. I think it came out great. And I was lucky enough to find the same alphabet in one of my books, so now if I want to make one for someone else, I can do that. (I intentionally blurred our family name in the picture).
Next up are some ornaments that have been languishing in a drawer for at least 2 years. My DH stitched them up from a kit by Bucilla, laced them over cardboard backings with a little batting and there they sat, waiting to be finished. A few weeks ago, I finally dug them out and finished the backs by gluing a hanging ribbon and a piece of coordinating felt over the lacings. I know they're a little close to the edges, but this was one of our very first stitching projects and we were still pretty inexperienced. We'd definitely leave much more room the next time! They still came out nice, and they'll be family heirlooms anyway. :-) (And if you notice the kitty in the first row, he even modified him from the original brown to black so he looks like our kitty.)
And finally, I made some progress on Nautical Dreams this weekend, finishing up the cross stitching (almost) in the section with the shells and sandpiper and filling in the background. It's hard to see, but I also started on the 2 little shells on the top. I'm hoping to finish by the end of the week so I can get it personalized, framed and mailed out.