Thursday, May 29, 2014

Stitching Games Update for May

The clue for this month was "Tortoise", and being a literalist, I thought tortoise = slow, and nothing is slower than stitching a black on black background with lots of compensation, so I got to work on the area behind the flowers in the center panel.  I stitched it in Giant Brick using 1 strand of #8 Perle Cotton in 310 Black. Although I couldn't get it to show well for the photo, the stitch shows up well enough in person that it sort of looks like tall, unmowed grass.  Ironically, it did go a little faster than I anticipated, and I was able to post my picture early this month.

I am really looking forward to an opportunity to get those flower petals stitched!  Hopefully the June clue will be something I can work into flowers.  

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Canvas of the Week: a Princess and a Pirate

I was out yesterday perusing fabrics and was happy to see that owls still seem to be as popular as ever, so I thought I would feature this happy pair this week.  Glad too that I have a brand new owl coming into the line very soon.  No pictures yet, but I will give you a hint: he's a "character" as well! 

I also noticed that foxes seem to be everywhere as well, and yes, I will have some of those in my line soon as well! 

Princess Owl

Pirate Owl

Friday, May 16, 2014

Biscornus and Humbugs, Oh My!

You might recall my series of needlework accessories that were published in Needlepoint Now, the Spring Garden Biscornu, Humbug and Floss Tag.  Here's the biscornu:

Recently, Barbara Evans of the Maryland chapter of ANG sent me photos of finished Humbugs and Biscornus they did as a chapter project:

Aren't these just terrific?  I love seeing different colorways for my designs!

Speaking of different colors, here's another version of the biscornu that I posted a few months back, by Jana Bendawald:

And here is a variation on the floss tag by Elaine Flood, also from a while ago:

Thanks for looking and have a great weekend!

Monday, May 12, 2014

EyeCandy Models on Display at The Needle Works in Austin, Texas

Recently I attended the second annual Needlepoint Nation Retreat in Austin, Texas.  Our host shop was the incomparable The Needle Works, owned by Colleen Church, who (despite having a VERY full plate already) said "yes" when I asked if I could bring my stitched models over for display in the shop.  The shop staff went out of their way to accommodate me, moving out older models and even printing up a sign with my new logo!  

Hope you may be able to stop by and see them while they are still there, and say "Hi!" for me to all the great gals at the shop! 

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Introducing a New Design-- Tropicana Cuff Bracelet!

I am proud to present my latest design for Needlepoint Now magazine, a cuff-style bracelet that I have named "Tropicana" for its warm and vibrant color scheme. However, this design is highly adaptable, so you could easily pick your own color scheme-- how about Sonoran? Aquatic? Preppy, maybe?  The sky's the limit!  You can find the instructions for this design in the current May/June 2014 issue.  

Here's a preview page, complete with list of materials you will need:

As always, I like to show more detailed project photos here on my blog, and I hope they will be both helpful and inspirational.  Here is a close up of the design, before finishing and flat:

And here again, post-finishing.  I added a trim of extra large metallic rick-rack along the edges.  Although I did finish this myself, unless you are an extremely confident self-finisher, I highly recommend sending this project out to a professional, it will greatly enhance the style options and the wearability.

For the clasp/closure of my bracelet, I experimented with using a needle magnet, which I think worked well.  Plus it is another way to show off the fantastic bling in our magnet collections, right?  This great "Smiley" magnet is a prize I won in the Stitching Games last year over on Stitcherie!

Hope you have enjoyed this preview and I hope you'll enjoy working this project as well.  As always, if you have any questions regarding this design, please contact me here on the blog.  Please do share photos of your work as well, I'd love to see some alternate color versions of this piece! 

**Update:  I've added additional detail photos to an album on my Facebook page, click here to see!

Monday, May 5, 2014

Canvas of the Week: Crazy Patch Boo-nanza Now Available!

My 2013 Retailer's Club, Crazy Patch Boo-nanza, is now available for purchase as individual canvases, so if you have been waiting so that you can pick and choose, now is the time!  Each canvas comes with a full color stitch guide.  

Here is a closer look at the Argyle Pumpkin:

Here is the whole collection of nine, 3 pumpkins and 6 candy corns.  It's a nice set that you can display throughout the Fall season.

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Stitcherie Update-- the April Clue

Here is what I stitched for the April clue for the Stitching Games over on Stitcherie:

The clue was "bacon", so it seemed obvious that the frog cooking in the witch's pot would be the area to work on. But what was the connection?  That cauldron looks like it is cast iron, which is often seasoned with... BACON grease!  Some of our other stitchers with canvases with absolutely no food-like images really had their work cut out for them, but they all rose to the challenge, as usual!

I stitched my background to match the one in the upper left panel that I stitched in January, with 3 strands of Splendor in an alternating Gobelin.  The cauldron and fire were stitched in Brick and Encroaching Gobelin respectively, with a really great black/grey variegated metallic from Rainbow Gallery called Treasure Chest and a red/orange variegated size 12 braid from Threadworx for the fire.  A dark green FyreWerks frames the eyes, which are of course, novelty googly-eyes that wiggle! The other embellishments are tiny purple sequins from The Collection for the brew bubbles and I used a pale violet chenille thread from my stash for the dribbles down the side of the pot.  

Here is my canvas as it was back in January, before the first clue was stitched:

Here's a detail of the April clue area before stitching:

And finally, the whole canvas as it looks as of today:

May's clue is "Tortoise", another head scratcher!  Since tortoises have a reputation for being slow, perhaps I'll stitch the background of the center panel, since black-on-black stitching also has a reputation for being slow and tedious!  Who knows if I'll end up changing my mind once I finally get to stitching (towards the end of the month, as it always seems to be with me!)  Check back soon and see, and follow the action directly over on Stitcherie