We are now in the thirteenhundredth month of the year 2020 – or at least it feels that way. I miss getting together with all my needlework friends! Zoom is great, but it doesn’t replace in-person gatherings.
That being said, our intrepid group met again on Zoom earlier this month to continue our progress on the SOTM project. We are all working on the background sections. Kathy Rees has chosen some very calming stitches for those areas, which we all need right now.
Many of us are using neutral colors that blend with our canvas colors. But there are some surprises in those backgrounds. Without further ado, here are our October progress photos.
Brenda is stitching in Kathy’s original colors.
Ellen chose a pink background that coordinates beautifully with her overdyes.
Jacqui played with several different colors before deciding on a dark green to set off her red and gold design.
Janice is also stitching in Kathy’s original colors. Stitching with overdyes gives a unique look depending on the color placement.
Linda chose a neutral background to allow the greens and purples to really pop.
Robin matched her canvas perfectly with her choice of background thread.
Rosie also matched her background with a pale gray that coordinates with the yellows and grays in the star.
Another green background for Sue really offsets the star design.
Pale threads are the way to go for Tina as well.
And, Tina finished a previous SOTM – Stars for the New Millennium from Tony Minieri in her own colorway. Just beautiful and well worth the wait.
The first lesson of the ANG virtual Seminar class began last Monday. We already had our kit and instructions; what arrived on Monday in my computer mailbox was the additional notes that usually are verbal when a class begins. The instructions for the first week covered the land portion of the piece. The written instructions were very complete, what was added in the notes was icing on the cake! The stitching was fun to do because the picture unfolded quickly (at least where Needlepoint is involved)!
Here is the land portion.
The Bargello on the left establishes the hillside. Above that you can see the sunflowers stitched as eyelets with their green stems, a diagonal satin stitch. Below the Bargello, you can see the wildflowers which are stitched as a composite stitch made as a diagonal Gobelin . Separating the wildflowers and the Bargello is the soil stitched as free-form eyelets.
On the right side you can see pine trees, a slanted Gobelin, with trunks, a VanDyke stitch over a Fyre Werks for some glisten. Above the trees for the mountainside is an overdye Diagonal Roumanian (fun to stitch but a bear to remove!). The base is a Sprat’s Head to anchor that side.
I am ready for Lesson 2 on Monday! (Can you tell this is a delight to stitch??)
ANG decided to postpone the seminar this year in Tucson for two years, but offered a virtual seminar instead. I signed up for two classes and the kit for one of my classes arrived in the mail yesterday. I knew it would arrive any day so I kept checking for the mail to see if it had come. It finally arrived at its usual time, just before 3:00, and there was a package!
Our instruction via email from Wendy Moore was to let her know when the package arrived and the contents checked. I opened the package and saw this beautiful turquoise painted canvas with slight variations in color–she had said that there would slight differences but it takes a careful eye to see that. Then this large package of threads divided into smaller bags, a bag with four needles and a needle threader–do you ever have enough needle threaders?
Wendy Moore’s class, Sunrise Reflections, will be taught in four sessions separated by a week. Each session addresses an area of the design. The threads are separated into bags for each section of the canvas which is in one session. There are numerous threads used and since many of these are more expensive threads, they are cut to the amount needed and put on thread drops. The Land section has 15 threads on green drop cards in a bag. The Sun has 8 threads on yellow cards. There are 9 threads on blue cards for the Water section and the bag for the Sky has 4 threads on lavender cards.
The direction sheets already had holes punched in the, so I immediately put them in a binder and double checked that all the pages were there. Today I will attach my canvas to the stretcher bars and be ready for the first session on September 7! I love this virtual seminar since traveling at this time is not what I am comfortable doing!
We were two small groups for this month’s Zoom version of Stitch-of-the-Month, but no less enthusiastic about getting together. As usual, during our first session we caught up on what’s been going on in everyone’s lives. During our second session we discussed the SOTM project.
This month we completed the last point of our star. Each piece is so different – even those that are using the same colors. It is really amazing to see how the colors work with each other.
Next month we will start on the background. Some of us are still deciding on background colors, waiting until the full star was completed before checking out different threads. So, stay tuned for the September SOTM to see what each of us picks!
The SOTM group is still meeting via Zoom. While we miss getting together in person, the virtual meetings have enabled our long-distance members to join us in real time. We have enjoyed “seeing” members who haven’t been able to get to our sessions.
This month we worked on the seventh point of the star. It will be fun to complete that eighth point in August and then move on to the background stitching for the remainder of the year. Many of us held off on choosing a background color until the star is completed. It will be interesting to see what colors are chosen.
Yesterday I stopped in Bay Head Needlepoint which has just opened this summer in Bay Head. (bayheadneedlepoint.com)
The address is on Bridge Street, but the entrance is on the side of the building on Lake Street. It is a magical little shop with lots of light showing off a beautiful display of threads. The painted canvases they have are from some well known designers and many are perfect for shore vacationers. Right now you must wear a mask as well as use the hand sanitizer provided as you enter.
The shop is owned by four friends who all Needlepoint and have been friendsfor years having spent summers in the area for a long time. The threads are beautifully displayed which would make it easy to purchase a canvas and select the threads to stitch it all at one time.
Did you see the brick covers? Perfect to stitch for a shore home where the ocean breeze always tries to slams doors shut!
The threads that they carry include Vineyard Silk Silk and Vineyard Silk Merino, Silk and Ivory, Pepper Pot Variegated, Fyre Werks Soft Sheen Minis and Tili Thomas Essential minis (50/50 Silk/wool). I was impressed with their thread inventory and happy that they limited the lines but carried so many colors of each. When you want to match the color on a painted canvas, you need that. At this point the accessories are limited, the stitching bags you can see hanging on the checkout counter, small finished boxes only needing the stitched insert to complete a perfect gift, and the perfect book for painted canvas people, Stitches to Go. The shop consists of two small rooms and a hallway where they have set up a taping machine to get your project ready to go!
For those of you making a shore stop this summer, make a side trip here, you won’t be disappointed in what you see. I am looking forward to stopping in again next time I am down that way.
The June SOTM was the last section stitched in Color family 1. I noticed that in all the sections, I had put the darker of the very light shades I was using in the middle triangle of each parallelogram. This time I used the darkest shade of all. When I finished the section, I realized that it was much darker than anything I had used before and I had no chance of using that thread in the future. It had to go.
Of course it wasn’t as easy of removing only that stitch, the whole section had to come out. I replaced the offending thread, a Splendor, with a DMC floss that fit well with the other threads used, even if it would only be used in one place in the piece.
Apologies for the delay in posting the June progress on our Stitch-of-the-Month. I have totally lost track of days. I saw a post on Facebook that showed a calendar of THIS DAY, THAT DAY, THE OTHER DAY, SOME DAY. That’s how I feel!
We are continuing to meet via Zoom on the second Saturday of the month, getting together to first chat and catch up then meeting later in the afternoon to check our progress. Those who are stitching the ANG design are now halfway through the project with six of the main star sections complete. For most of us that means we have four sections of color A and two sections of color B stitched up. In July and August we will finish the main star, and then spend the rest of the year stitching the background.
Everyone who is working on the star is happy with the project – the directions are well-written and there is a nice amount of stitching each month.
Here are the June progress photos, in no particular order.
Sylvia is working on Kurdy Biggs’ A Different View. She’s been waiting for some of the threads but has made significant progress despite the delay. It will be gorgeous!
Enjoy the start of Summer and the Independence Day weekend!