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Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Fall is on the way!

          I can't believe how quickly the summer flew by, but now I am looking forward to the cool, crisp air and the vivid blue sky of fall and the beautiful colors of the season.
          It has been a while since I last posted but a lot has been going on behind the scenes of my designing endeavors.  I know I said I would be releasing the smalls to accompany the Mayflower Ornament design, but I've had to come to a realization -- I am only one person -- and since I am my own model stitcher, I've overextended myself and gotten woefully behind on stitching and assembling the Mayflower Rose smalls. I apologize for this delay and am hoping to have them ready to publish in January.
          Aside from thinking I could do more stitching than was humanly possible, I have three reasons for the delay.  My computer with all my designs went on the fritz and is now at the repair shop, so I did/do not have access to my charts.  I've purchased a new computer but the old one would not stay on long enough to transfer the files or load the files onto a flash drive.  The old computer is not really old, so hopefully it can be repaired and all my valuable information restored to the point where I can access my charts and make changes, etc. without having to rechart them on the new computer.
           The second reason is that I was asked by the Queen City Sampler Guild (QCSG) to design a sampler for their upcoming 20th anniversary in November 2015.  I put the final stitches in the sampler over the weekend and will be teaching it as an on-line, 5 part mystery class, starting this November.  Here is a sneak peek of the upper left corner of the retail version of the design:
And here is a sneak peek at the coverlet design for the Guild Exclusive:
Both versions of the retail design area and the Guild Exclusive design area will be included with the chart for the SAL.
          I had a wonderful time designing and stitching this sampler and thanks to all my research, have added quite a bit of knowledge to my brain's database about Ohio and Cincinnati in particular.  And, in case you were wondering, the grapes are all stitched in the spiral trellis stitch.  10 bunches of grapes, with 13 grapes on each bunch -- well, you do the math -- it took a while to stitch them all but it was well worth the effort.  The floss is Classic Colorworks Silk (formerly Belle Soie) in Elegant Eggplant and Petunia.  The lighter part of the strand was purposely used on the top of each grape to give it the hazy opaque appearance of a real grape.  If you are interested in joining the QCSG in order to join in on the fun, you can contact them through their website:
          I will be following up the year long 5 part mystery SAL with a visit to Cincinnati in November 2015 to celebrate their anniversary and also to offer a set of accompanying smalls for sale to the members.  Since this sampler is rather large and labor intensive, I'm offering an incentive to the first three people who have theirs completed when I come to Cincinnati for the anniversary.  The First Prize to the first person to complete the sampler -- A full kit, including all the Classic Colorworks and NPI silks, as well as the linen for my design "Sojourner", a $300+ value.  Second Prize will be the Sojourner chart and a full stitchers half of the linen for the sampler, a $100+ value; and the Third Prize will be the chart for Sojourner, a $50 value.
          And last but not least, the third reason is that I am also working on a sampler design for the Sampler Guild of Georgia and the Magnolia Sampler Guild.  This design is my favorite of all I've done so far.  Since there are few samplers that survived in Georgia due to the Civil War and the climate, I decided to try and interpret a design that a young lady would have stitched in the 1800's.  I am adding a sneak peek to this sampler as well.
This sampler has a lot of specialty stitches and will include a beautiful plantation house and a band of Florentine stitch, as well as a verse I specially composed just for this design.  Here is the verse:

A soft wind blows through the Spanish moss that hangs from the live oak trees
The trees that line the long road home to distant memories
Of a fine old house with columns tall and porches all around
Where the sweet scent of Magnolia blooms in the spring abound
A lady fair in a flowery gown, silk ribbons in her hair
Sweetly smiles at her courting beaus, who look so debonair
And in the distance, o'er the  knoll, I can almost hear the song
Like a choir of angels singing low, of a time forever gone

I can hardly wait to have this sampler completed and ready to show to you.  I will be teaching this sampler in Atlanta, Georgia in April 2015.  If you think you might be interested in joining the Guild to take the class, here is a contact email where you can get more information.
          And so, as you can see, I've got a lot going on behind the scenes and am feverishly working on getting things stitched and ready.  I've started stitching the pieces for the Mayflower smalls and, as I said, will have them ready for retail sale in January.  Thanks so much for your patience and understanding and wish me speedy stitching fingers so I can get all my pending designs done and ready for publishing.
          BTW, starting in January 2015 I will also be teaching/leading a year long, on line SAL for my design "A Delaware Inspiration" to the members of the Swan Sampler Guild. 
 If you are a member, you will have already seen the information in their newsletter.  If you are not, you can find out about how to join on their website:
          Have a wonderful fall and, as always, if you have any questions or comments you can reach me via my email address
Yours in friendship & stitches,

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Good News!

Hello fellow stitchers,
          Just in time for your holiday stitching, the chart for "Mayflower Rose" will be available for purchase on June 1st.  You may recall, I designed this for the Mayflower Sampler Guild's annual ornament last year.  The proceeds from the sale of the kits that were made (50 in all) go to their Sampler Conservation Program.
          I've made very slight changes to the original design which I'm sure you will like.  Also, I am in the process of designing and stitching a set of smalls to compliment the ornament, which will be introduced in August.  My plan is to mount the ornament on the top of a Nantucket Basket, and the smalls will go inside the basket.  I'll post pictures of the completed project prior to release of the set of smalls.
          In the meantime, here is a shot of the cover page for the ornament and a shot of the original:

          If you are interested in this chart, you may contact me at to purchase it from me directly  or contact your local or on-line needlework supplier to have them order it.  Thanks so much.
                                           Yours in friendship & stitches,
P.S.  I thought you'd enjoy seeing how two of the members of the Mayflower Sampler Guild beautifully finished their Mayflower Rose design:

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Hello fellow stitchers,
          I apologize for having woefully neglected my blog, but I've been working really hard behind the scenes with new projects and teaching assignments.  For some reason my work has turned to custom designs for guilds and I've been stitching like a madwoman trying to get these projects to completion for the beginning of the on-line classes.  One of my custom designs was requested by the Bay Area Sampler Guild and the on-line class for it is starting this Saturday, May 1.  Here is a picture of "Sojourner", the sampler I designed:
          I chose the name Sojourner because the design incorporates elements of some of the ethnic peoples that made their way to California and the American West in the mid 1800's.  Each band within the sawtooth border represents an ethnic design -- the Queen Stitch strawberry band, is in honor of New England and the wagon train pioneers who blazed a trail to the western frontier; the Holbein Stitch pansy band, reflects Great Britain and the Irish, English, Welsh and Scottish peoples who came to America seeking a new, better life; the floral rope is a nod to the nautical history of San Francisco as a major sea port; after that is my rendition of a Chinese style band in recognition of the thousands of Chinese who traveled East across the Pacific Ocean to find their fortune in California Gold; next to the last is a band commonly found in Russian folk art garments; and finally a traditional Mexican band with Satin Stitch and Rhodes Stitch details.
           The floral basket vine incorporates flowers indigenous to the San Francisco area.  I chose to use the following:
San Francisco Wallflower
Evening Primrose
Sticky Phacelia
California Poppy
and last, but not least, the beautiful Dahlia
          This will be my first on-line class and I'm hoping, if all goes well, to do more of these in the near future.  If you think your needlework guild or stitching group would be interested in stitching this sampler, please contact me via my email address at
and I can fill you in on the process of setting up your group.
          On another note, I taught the Delaware Inspiration sampler at the Biggs Museum in Dover, Delaware during the Delaware Sampler Symposium.  If anyone is interested in stitching this design, the Swan Stitchers are having me teach it in an on-line format starting January 1, 2015.  If you are a member of the Swans, or just want to stitch the sampler, you will have to contact them to get on the list by joining the guild.  Again, if you have any questions concerning this upcoming class feel free to contact me.
          I hope everyone is finally past the brutal winter most of us endured.  The flowers and bushes are blooming here in Delaware.  I just hope spring hangs around for awhile before the summer heat sets in -- we'll all be wishing for one of those snow days once the temperature reaches 90 degrees plus!
Yours in friendship & stitches,