A Quick Christmas Project


Okay, I know there will be a lot of eye-rolling on this statement, but I’ve started a new project. Yes, I know. I have God-knows how many in-progress pieces, and plans for more in the new year, and I’ve started another.

But I have a good reason! (Can’t we always rationalize a new project?) I came to the conclusion, rather belatedly, that there’s no possible way that The Magi might get done for Christmas. So instead of digging out another Christmas UFO (and I can think of one right now), I started something new.

The good news is that it, or rather, they, will be quick. And they’re a complete change of pace from the canvaswork I’ve been doing lately.

May I present The Mittens? This kit comes with woolfelt, floss, and a few accent buttons to stitch some darling mitten ornaments.

Mittens 25Nov2011

The kit is from Rachel’s of Greenfield. The transfer of the designs onto the woolfelt is really easy. Because the designs are printed using heat-transferrable ink, they’re just ironed on to the felt. Stitches include stem/outline (sorry – I can never keep those two straight) stitch, satin stitch, lazy daisy, french knots, and blanket stitch.

Oh, and I have two more of Rachel’s kits on order. So far, this one is a lot of fun!

A Note of Thanks

Just popping in this evening to say that I hope all of you had a lovely day. And in the spirit of the day, I’d also like to express my heartfelt thanks and gratitude that you all stop by and read my long-winded explanations of obscure details of stitching techniques. It never ceases to surprise me that so many of you seem to appreciate my ramblings and put up with my lack of posting consistency.

So THANK YOU. Your support is greatly appreciated.

By the way, please let me know if I can answer any specific questions, or if you would like to see anything or any types of posts in particular. Right now I’m just blathering about whatever crosses my brain on any given day, but if you need information on something, please ask. If I know anything about it, I’ll write it up. And if I don’t, I can always dive into my stack of books and see what I can find!

Wishing All of You a Happy Thanksgiving!


Regardless of whether or not you’re celebrating this Thursday, I wish you a day filled with blessings. Have a wonderful day.


Another Little Something I Started…


With so few posts this year, it’s easy to find something to write about these days. When all else fails, talk about a project not previously shared!

This past spring, Jane Zimmerman offered her former seminar class project, A Garden of Babylon, as an online course with Shining Needle Society. I liked the design, but I was also intrigued by a line in Jane’s description, which states that the class “explores both historical techniques of silk and metal thread embroidery through the ages.”

Of course, I couldn’t just stitch the project using either colorway proposed by Jane. I wanted to soften it up a little, so I decided to go to silver threads rather than gold.

Here is the beginning of my A Garden of Babylon. It is stitched on gray 18-count canvas using a variety of silk threads and Kreinik braids.

GardenOfBabylon 22Nov2011

What do you think? I obviously still have a bit to go on this. Maybe I’ll be able to finish it up next year.

Ruskin Garden Square Progress


Just a quick progress picture tonight, folks! Enjoy!

RGS 21Nov2011

Breaking Up Repetitive Stitching


“Unity” is one of the basic principles of design. One way to achieve unity in a needlework design, particularly in a geometric design, is through the use of repetition.

Unfortunately for stitchers, repetition sometimes gets a bit, well, repetitive. Tedious. Boring. In my last post about Ruskin Garden Square, I mentioned that I have several of the smaller padded buttonhole squares to stitch. By the time I got halfway through the third such box, I decided I needed to break up the box stitching with other areas of the piece.

Fortunately, not all of the boxes will be used for cutwork. Two boxes in each corner provide a little space for a miniature “garden”. I decided to put these decorative stitches in along the way. Here’s the first corner after my mini gardens are in.

RGScorner 20Nov2011

After getting those in, I was ready to get the boxes started on the next corner.

So, what do you do when the design you’re working on calls for several of the same design element? Do you push through and get them all done, or do you have a tendency to break up the stitching with other elements?