Category Archives: NJNA 2019

July 2019 SOTM

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Hi Everyone —

We had a small gathering of eight members at Sue’s house today.  I had not expected to be there, but because of a leg injury, I had to cancel my weekend travel plans.  Sue helped me out with a walker and I was delighted to get out of the house (and Harold was delighted to not have to be home health aide) for the day.

I forgot to take pictures of Robin, Jill, Diane, and Sue’s stitching — here’s hoping that they will post them on our blog!

There was minimal stitching for July SOTM, so I was able to get caught up after missing June.  Here are three of our pieces:

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Joan’s SOTM

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Nancy’s SOTM

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Rosie’s SOTM

How different they are turning out!  Five more installments to go!

Cheers!

Rosie

SOTM – April 2019

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Eleven of our group met on this beautiful Spring Saturday to continue our SOTM projects. Nine of the stitchers worked on this year’s project – the ANG SOTM.

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Joan

 

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Nancy

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Mally

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Sylvia

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Marge

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Rosie

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Jill

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Sue C

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Linda

Two of our stitchers worked on catching up with past projects.

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Margaret

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Amy

As always, we enjoyed stitching as well as chatting. What better way to spend a few hours?

 

Happy Stitching!

 

 

March SOTM

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Hi Everyone —

We had a small turnout at today’s Stitch of the Month, but Sylvia did an awesome job of hosting us.  (And her dogs are very well behaved!)

We all expected to be done with this month’s SOTM and to be able to work on something else afterwards.  But — best-laid plans — most of us did a lot of un-stitching this month.  Take me, for example, I started with red and didn’t like it.  Then I stitched in green and I liked it but made a mistake and had to take it out.  Then I decided to go in the blue direction to introduce a new color to my design, but it looked terrible.  Then I finally restitched the flower in green.  So — I have a few more steps before I am done for March!

Here’s a collection of our progress:

What a variety of different looks!  This is truly a mystery!

Cheers, Rosie

A Cold Day at Woodlawn

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Hi Everyone —

As Linda alluded to in her earlier e-mail, a quartet of NJNA members visited Woodlawn today.  All of us were exhibiting so our admission was free!  HA!

As usual, Woodlawn was decked out in needlework glory albeit with fewer entries than past years.  We were allowed to take pictures and I took pictures of all of the NJNA pieces.  I think I’ll hold most of those pictures until later because it is always a fun surprise to turn the corner and discover your own piece in its Woodlawn location.

Here we are with OUR pieces:

Unfortunately, our SOTM Stars pieces were not hung together.  And we saw one Stars that was not from our group!  Similarly, we were disappointed that Andrea’s beautiful butterflies were not together.  And, we found three versions of Holiday Patches — only one was holiday-themed — and the casual observer would not have realized that they were the same.  Clearly a missed opportunity for Woodlawn.

We saw a stitched version of Beachcomber’s Booty — the Ann Strite-Kurz piece that is being offered by Needleworkers in mid-May.   It was more beautiful than any of us imagined.

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Beachcomber’s Booty — the background is a lovely shade of aqua that none of the photos has quite captured.  One of our group signed up for it on the spot!

Another item that we found fascinating was this sun/moon piece that I know at least one of our members has stitched.

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Notice that the fillet is gold on the sun side and silver on the moon side!  Unusual, but apt treatment!

Of course we had lunch in the charming Nelly Needler’s cafe — Sue and I always do a turn around the exhibit, have lunch and compare notes, and then view it all again!  It was such a pleasure to have Ellen S and Janice M join us this year!

It is always a joy to meet so many other stitchers and to see some some amazing creations!  I hope you will have a chance to visit for yourself!

We stopped at Waste Knot in Arlington on the way down,  visited In Stitches in Alexandria today, and plan to stop at Hillside Needlepoint in Stevenson, MD on our way home tomorrow!   And, yes, the credit cards got a workout!

This is always one of my favorite needlepoint adventures of the year!

Cheers!

Rosie

 

 

Needlework Friendships

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As most of you have realized by now, being a needlework enthusiast brings with it, its own brand of friendship.  The non initiated think of needlework as a solitary activity.  It certainly can be that and many of us relish that alone time doing repetitive movement and creating at the same time.  However, the uninformed are astounded when I say, that needlework for me has a huge social aspect.  I have dear friends across the country that I have made over the years at conventions, classes, from guild memberships and stitch-ins.  Perhaps the dearest friendships of this type are with three ladies from my time spent on the national board of the Smocking Arts Guild of America (SAGA).  We met in 1985 as each of us was going on to the board for the first time. (Technically, one of us came onto the board a year or two later, but we never seem to keep the facts of that story straight.)  Let me introduce you.  I (Barbara) am from NJ.  Bonnie is from Wisconsin, Cary is from Alabama and Regina is from the East End of Long Island.

This friendship of ours certainly defies all odds.  We are from different parts of the country, have different religious and political beliefs, had very different professional aspirations and have led very different lives.  We have no idea what binds us together so tightly, but it is quite evident that there is an abundance of chemistry.  We may not speak for months at a time, but when we do, we pick up right where we left off.  Our largest claim to fame are our giggles.  There are lots and lots of those.

We meet usually once a year.  Formerly, we always got together at the annual SAGA convention, but as our needlework interests migrated we breached out and started meeting in other places.  For many years, the ladies came to Long Beach Island to my beach house, but when I sold it (to spend more time in CA with the “little people” ), we had to get creative again.  It can take us months to plan (just coming up with mutually convenient dates is quite the challenge) but there is not much that keeps us away from our appointed get together.  I missed once because of a death in my family and one time Cary got as far as Charlotte and then the flight was canceled due to weather.  This year it looked as if Bonnie wouldn’t make it because of a blizzard in Wisconsin, but somehow she got there at the appointed hour.

So where did we go this year?  We went to Nashville.  Now one might think we saw the Country Music Hall of Fame or that we took the tour of the Grand ‘ole Opry, but you would be wrong.  What we did mostly was scout out yarn stores and the one needlepoint shop, Nashville Needleworks (more about that in another shorter blog entry) and hang out in our suite hotel to knit, stitch and laugh. Cary’s grandmother was from Nashville so we did do some driving to see some of the mansions and horse farms off the beaten track. No honky tonk nightlife for us.

We all cherish this friendship and will be devastated when we can no longer manage these trips.  We are always up for suggestions on places to go.  However, SAGA turns forty this year.  We are hoping to make an appearance at the convention in the fall to honor the legacy of SAGA and more importantly the treasure of our friendship.

I will attempt to upload a photo of us at a yarn store in Nashville called Bliss.  That is such an appropriate adjective for how we feel about each other.  From left to right, standing is Bonnie followed by Cary.  Seated on the left is Regina and on the right, yours truly.  Now let’s hear about your needlework friendships.IMG_0246

More Lucky Winners!

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February 20. 2019

Hi Everyone —

We had four more lucky NJNA door prize winners at Stitcher’s Hideaway yesterday and today!

 

The great thing about this retreat is that it allows all of us time to stitch on special projects or long-standing WIPs!  No new projects — unless you count the ones you pick up at the stash swap, or the door prizes, or the gift bags, or the special giveaways.  Or, in my case, a very generous hand-off of an adorable design called “The Dog Park”.  Thank you Maureen!

Nonetheless, I am happy to report that I will have at least two completed projects to bring to our next NJNA meeting!

Snow started to fall tonight and we expect a modest accumulation overnight.  Sue and I plan to start our drive home a bit later than usual to allow time for the snow plows to clear the roads!

Thanks to Jen for organizing a great retreat and to the Publick House for seeing to our care and feedings!

Cheers, Rosie

Hiding Away!

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February 18, 2019

Hi Everyone —

Seven NJNA members were very appreciative of Mally’s Needlepoint Yoga post today!  We are attending the Stitcher’s Hideaway retreat at the Publick House in Sturbridge, MA.  So we stitched from 9:00 AM until about 9:00 PM today!

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NJNA Members at Stitcher’s Hideaway!

Sue C and I drove up on Saturday so that we could make a stop at the Enriched Stitch in Wilton, CT.  Sue R joined us there and we purchased threads, sale canvasses, bags, and other goodies.

The retreat started today (Monday) so the two Sues and I toured Old Sturbridge Village on Sunday afternoon.  We toured the Towne House and visited the old bank, the weaver, the tavern, the tinsmith, the general store, the shoemaker, the potter, and the candle maker.  You can see our weather was gorgeous, even if the streets were a bit muddy!

 

On Sunday night, we needed a table of ten for all of our NJ contingent which includes several EGA members.

Overnight, it snowed — at least three inches by the time we ventured out.  The snow continued all morning.

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Monday morning view from our room!

And, of course, what retreat would be complete without prizes!

 

Today’s lucky NJNA winners!

I think I’ll go practice my child’s pose!

Cheers, Rosie

 

SOTM Progress

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I came home on Saturday and finished stitching the January and February installments…Although I’ve been feeling some regret at using colors similar to one of the provided color ways, especially after seeing what some of the other pieces look like, now that I’ve got more stitched, I’m really happy with how mine is looking!

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2019 Woodlawn Drop-off

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Mr. M and I packed up the little Mazda 3 and set off on Friday. It’s actually quite remarkable how much can get stuffed into that car – we didn’t have an inch to spare!

Yes, we did manage to fit in some luggage.  And Mr. M didn’t have to travel with anything on his lap!

Our first stop was Starbucks in Mt. Laurel where we met Melita, who is also submitting a piece to Woodlawn so we added that to the inventory. Melita designs some fabulous pieces and blogs about her various projects at Melita Stitches 4 Fun. Be sure to check it out.

The rain eventually stopped as we were traveling through Maryland. We stopped for lunch at BJ’s Restaurant and Brewhouse in Laurel. I do have a deal with Mr. M – whenever possible we try out a brew pub for lunch on a stitching field trip. BJ’s is a chain that we’ve been to in the past so we knew what to expect. But the food is good (I had a bowl of excellent vegetarian lentil soup that was quite filling) and Mr. M enjoyed the beer.

After lunch we headed to The Waste Knot in Arlington to see the new shop. Last year Lori moved a few blocks from her Lee Highway location to a larger and much brighter shop on Glebe Road. She carries quite a lot of threads and beads along with all the canvases. I did purchase one canvas as well as needles and a couple of small magnets. I had to buy those because I had brought two projects to work on in the evening but forgot needles and magnets.  What a disaster that could have been!

The Waste Knot’s new location

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Ho Ho Ho from Strictly Christmas

We stayed at the Embassy Suites in Old Town Alexandria, right near the King Street Metro Station. We did make quite a sight as we unpacked a few pieces of luggage and then started carrying in all the needlework pieces.

On Saturday our appointment at Woodlawn was 10:00. In years past we’ve had a 9:00 appointment, in advance of the general public (well, the general stitching public) bringing their pieces in. This year was different – and was probably the most efficient one yet. We were met by Debra K. who is one of the co-chairs of the show and a member of Nelly’s Needlers. Instead of checking in at the front desk, we were led to the other wing for a separate check-in. For those who have been to the Exhibit, we were in the room that houses the Cafe.

They had several tables set up for us; Mr. M and I unpacked all of the pieces and lined them up. Only after all the pieces were unpacked (which itself took about 30 minutes) did Debra start the check-in. She processed the paperwork and examined every piece so that she could note the condition of each, including slight marks on frames, buckling of canvas, etc. Debra was very thorough in her examination and we talked quite a bit about finishing techniques. As we were entering the pieces many of the other volunteers came through and looked at our submittals. As was expected, there were a lot of comments about all the different colorways for Stars for a New Millennium; several people were trying to decide which colorway was their favorite. By the way, we have 9 versions of Stars in the Exhibit.

While we were checking in we did chat with some of the other volunteers. We learned that almost half of the pieces that had been entered were from first-time exhibitors, and there is a notable increase in the number of men who entered this year. I think that’s a great sign for the continuation of our craft!

All in all, the check-in process took 2 hours to get our 27 pieces (by 19 NJNA exhibitors) fully checked in. By that time we felt we deserved a nice lunch, so we headed back to Old Town to The Wharf on King Street where Mr. M enjoyed a shrimp po’boy and I had a lovely she-crab soup and side salad.

We had an early dinner reservation at the Mt. Vernon Inn that evening so we returned to the hotel and sat in the atrium where the lighting was perfect for me to stitch. I managed to get quite a bit of Herringbone Happening stitched.

Dinner was fabulous and I enjoyed a brie appetizer, a large salad with shrimp, and a slice of cherry pie. Mr. M had the turkey pot pie and apple pie. We also were very pleased with a Virginia wine. This was the first time we had been to this restaurant, although we had visited the estate in years past, but it won’t be our last time.

We traveled home on Sunday and made good time – at least we arrived back in NJ early enough to get settled before facing the work week.

We’ll be heading to the Exhibit in early March when Nora is home for Spring Recess. I’m looking forward to seeing all of our pieces! I hope you’ll consider heading to Woodlawn to see the exhibit. It is open the entire month of March (except Tuesdays). There are quite a few events in conjunction with the Exhibit, so be sure to check them here.

Happy Stitching!

Linda