I am on a bike trip through the Texas hill country west of Austin. I didn’t quite look at the weather forecast before we left (or perhaps I looked but decided to not believe the forecast!) so was not prepared for the extreme cold snap here. Sunday’s biking was a bit rainy but doable; Monday morning was not too bad it by afternoon, the winds had picked up and the temperatures fell so the biking was cut short quite a bit. The tour leaders decided this morning was way too cold and windy to be safe for biking so we headed into Fredericksbug. I quickly checked out if there were any Needlepoint shops in town. There is a fabulous museum to the War of the Pacific and a cute downtown. And of course, I found the Needlepoint shop!
Designer Sandy Jenkins (www.sandyjenkins.com) has a wonderful shop with all her own designs. I had to admit I was not familiar with her work. Since she gave up teaching and traveling to market, she does her own painting as well as designing. She welcomed me immediately even though she was working with a client pulling threads. When I responded that I was a stitcher, she encouraged me to look around at the designs and finished samples and reminded me not to touch samples (standard practice as we all know) and not to take pictures due to copyright issues since these are all her own designs.
Since I decided to limit myself to just one canvas, I had a tough time deciding! There was a lot of variety of style and themes. I chose a fun Thanksgiving Sampler, which she offered to kit for me. Since I was limited on time, I decided to not kit it for now. I did listen in as she was helping the other client pick threads and was impressed with how she worked with the client. While her thread selection is not vast, it was varied and I would have had no problem finding any threads I wanted or needed.
Sandy Jenkins’ shop in Fredericksburg, TX
While I couldn’t take photos inside, she did allow me to take an outside shot. She does host stitching retreats, so we may need to think about a road trip!
Today is the last day of seminar. I will definitely miss my morning walks around the Woodly Park/Adams Morgan section of DC,. Unlike at home where I only have 2 directions to walk, i had so many options around the seminar hotel that I was able to walk in a different direction each day. This is one of the big differences between urban versus rural living about which I have mixed feelings. While today was much warmer and definitely more humid, I still enjoyed the morning walk and know i need to continue it at home!
Today was day 3 of New Glory. Since today’s stitches were the least complicated, we were able to cover the remaining 8 sections so we had touched on all the sections. If we wanted to put in the star in the top white box, we had to basketweave the 24 x 24 section last night after the banquet. I managed to get about half done in an hour and a half since i was laying the stranded silk. Since i did have half done, i decided i could put in the gold overlay star on that half to get an idea of how it would look even though you don’t get the full idea of the star. Here’s my progress at the end of today. I have quite a bit to do so hopefully I’ll get back to this before too long as I really love the piece.
The camaraderie in this class was wonderful. I met many stitchers that i hope to reconnect with at future seminars. While we all had some trouble at various times, we were all at the appropriate stitching level for this class and willingly helped each other when we couldn’t figure out something.
Since the exhibit was closing at noon today, i took a bit longer break this morning to go through it and to check out next year’s seminar offerings. There are quite a few im very interested in taking. I did think there were less items in the exhibit so i think NJNA members need to think about submitting finished pieces for the exhibit. Perhaps we could arrange a bulk mailing next year. I did see at least 2 possibilities for our 2019 SOTM.
After class, it was time to pack my belongings, say goodbye, and take the metro to Union Station for the train ride home. I allowed plenty of time to figure out the metro (very easy), get a salad for dinner on the train (delicious), explore Union Station a bit (very fun), and find my train (again very easy).
I enjoyed my time at seminar even though it was very busy. I learned a lot and hope to finish both pieces in a reasonable amount of time. For now, I have several other projects with deadlines that take precedence!
#NewGlory #ToniGerdes #ANGseminar
I was fortunate once again to start my day with a walk around the area before class. The weather is getting more humid but it was still quite nice out this morning.
Today we started working on an additional 6 sections. Each section has multiple steps so we attempted to get at least 2 of the steps done in these sections to begin to see the patterns. Keeping the FyreWerks and NeonRays+ straight on both front and back was tough but necessary when working with ribbon threads.
Toni is very good about providing details of exactly where to place stitches and in what order when necessary. She also provides options when the order is not critical. There seems to be enough details to be able to complete these sections once class is over. Toni suggested we try to complete the white basketweave section in the top row tonight so we can work on an overlay stitch tomorrow. I think her estimate of an hour and a half to complete it is about half of what I need since I’m such a slow stitcher.
Here’s my progress at the end of day 2 before the closing banquet.
#ToniGerdes #NewGlory #ANGseminar
Saturday was another beautiful morning for a walk before class, especially since I knew it would be a busy day. We have been very fortunate with the weather here even though most of the day is inside the hotel. Hence it is so nice to get out and explore when I have the chance.
Saturday was the start of my second class at seminar – New Glory with Toni Gerdes. Yes, I ended up with two patriotic classes -there was no particular reason; I just liked both pieces! Toni handed out the canvases with the lines drawn for all the borders and sections. We started the morning painting the borders with blue Copic markers so the white doesn’t show through as much. We then played with various fabric samples to place in the 3 fabric sections. There was lots of discussion and camraderie as we discussed each other’s selections and sought other’s opinions. We then applied wool felt to those sections and then applied the fabric using fusible web. The challenge was making them fit exactly, overlapping the borders part way but not too much! Toni then taught us how to use the border thread to tie down the fabric so it doesn’t fray and puffs up a bit from the felt but keeping the stitching lines straight even though we’re going through the fabric so you can’t see the holes! It’s very slow going!
We then worked a few more sections, including doing a burden stitch usng a new thread Stardust as the base and couching it with Accentuate. Here is my progress at the end of the first day.
I had bid at the silent auction on a cute witch canvas and won it for $10. I could have done a lot more damage but only had 5 minutes to swing through and bid! Think of how much fun this canvas will be once I get to it!
Saturday evening was Expo! and Sue C and I had volunteered to help Trish Vine. What an experience from the other side of the table! At least I didn’t mind the crowds as I wasn’t trying to fight through them to shop. I can only hope I recorded everything correctly for Trish.
A bit exhausted after packing up what was left of Trish’s inventory, we headed down to the bar for a glass of wine and some apps. There we were treated to a fascinating fashion show of people attending the Black Community Supports Breast Cancer Research Pink and White Ball. It was great fun to watch people coming in elegantly dressed in pink and white, especially the men. There was a man with pink and white spats and another with shoes that sparkled with LO and VE. While there were a few questionable outfits, most were stunning. It was a great end to a long day.
#NewGlory #ToniGerdes #ANGseminar
I once again started the day with a short walk. The weather is beautiful and his is a great area to walk around.
Then it was time to start again on Liberty. We continued through the various sections and made a lot of progress despite more frogging! At the end of the day, Dawn described how we would add the swirls and the fire works at the top of the “cake”. Hopefully I listened well enough to do it once I get home and have time to finish is piece. As you can see, I made a lot of progress. This was a very enjoyable class with a fun project that I look to finish.
Then it was off to a quick run through the auction where I bid on a halloween piece, a Cyberpointers meeting, a Cyberpointers Board meeing, and then to the tail end of Teacher’s Showcase. Sue C, Rosie, and I went down the street for a wonderful dinner where we met a delightful local couple and their 7-month old daughter. We talked them into checking out the exhibit so hopefully they will.
Tomorrow starts a new class!
After an easy train ride from Trenton to Union Station followed by a Lyft ride to the hotel, I arrived at ANG Seminar 2018 in Washington, DC. After checking into the hotel and seminar, I walked up Connecticut Avenue to the National Zoo since it was such a beuatiful day. I was somewhat familiar with the area since my son had lived in this neighborhood for a year so it was fun to explore it again. The Zoo had been a favorite stop for us, especially the elephants!
After dinner at the hotel and bisiting with several NJNA members, it was nice to settle into my room to get ready for today’s class. I started the day with a morning walk as I knew I’d be sitting inside all day.
Liberty by Dawn Donnelly is a really fun project. While it is not a challenging piece, I ended up ripping out quite a bit today of 3 of the 4 sections we did. You can see where I ripped out what I’d done in the 2nd tier and didn’t get a chance yet to redo! This is a very fast stitch so hopefully I will finish it sooner rather than later! Dawn is a wonderful, fun teacher with a relaxed teaching style. The room is very bright for stitching although a bit chilly so I’m glad to have my fleece. Here’s my progress at the end of class today.
Tonight was the opening banquet and it was great to at least quickly catch up with various stitching friends. The welcome gift is a Trish Vine project bag – well worth the cost of the dinner!
What a wonderful appetizer, salad, dessert supper we had at last week’s NJNA meeting. There were an amazing number of wonderful dishes and I certainly did not go away hungry!
I have added 3 of the recipes to the Members Only portion of the NJNA website (njneedleartists.org) – Dee’s Bacon-Cheddar-Chive Scones, Mally’s Orzo Salad, and Diane’s Warm Crab Dip. Members can and should check out all the great recipes on the site. Please contact Heidi if you have forgotten the password for the Members Only section!