After a one-year hiatus due to COVID, the Somerset County Parks Commission is once again hosting the Festival of Trees at the Environmental Education Center in Basking Ridge. This event is an indoor exhibit of trees decorated by various community organizations as well as individuals.
NJNA is participating in this event for the first time this year. Our tree, entitled Stitching In The Holidays, is decorated with more than 50 needlework ornaments by our Chapter members. Thank you to those members who lent ornaments to the NJNA tree – Sylvia, Ellen, Nancy B, Diane, Sue C, Jacqui, Cathryn, Melita, Linda M, Janet, Linda P, Meredith, and Nancy W.
Nancy B, Cathryn, Janet, and Linda M all had fun decorating the tree!
Get in the holiday spirit and visit the Festival of Trees at the Environmental Education Center starting Friday, December 3, through Wednesday, December 29!
This months meeting was all about the submissions to Woodlawn’s Annual Needlework Show. For one chapter we had quite a few submissions and along with that came quite a few ribbon winners. Due to the pandemic the show was much later than usual but the 2022 show will be from March 2nd thru the 31st. The theme will be “Common Threads – connecting people, families and communities, past and present” They explain on the web site the idea behind this theme. If you have a finished item for the up coming show make sure you enter it and be a part of the needlework community. 2022 Annual Needlework Show Information 2022 — Woodlawn & Frank Lloyd Wright’s Pope-Leighey House (woodlawnpopeleighey.org)
We also got a tease as to what is coming up next year. This may be the year of Bargello stitching !! Have you always wanted to give it a try? Cathryn C is looking to make it part of the upcoming years program. January we will be listening to a wonderful National Teacher/Store Owner/Stitcher and woman of many talents – Susan Hoekstra, but more on that coming up. More important is December’s meeting as it’s time to party !!!
Ooops – wrong picture – they are wearing white after Labor day – Oh Well – time to party anyway. We will be doing a “Yankee Swap” and the gift is to be no more than $25. We will meet in the library like old times – open stitching but no food allowed. More details coming.
Our member, Brenda is doing a pilot program with of all people Susan Hokestra. She is a little more than half way thru the checkerboard and it has some great looking stitches with a boarder that has so much texture and panache. The interesting item is in the finishing. Look where she stores the checkers while not in use. Susan is teaching this piece at the 2022 seminar in Tucson AZ. http://frame.bloglovin.com/?post=8258860813&blog=8225413&frame_type=none
Our Brenda is a very busy person – she also has a new book out !! “Stitches with Hart”. It has barely hit the market place yet so you will have to request it from your LNS.
Correction – The author is not the same Brenda as our member – sorry for the error!
Thinking of a possible upcoming Bargello project – Eye Candy has lots of Bejeweled Bargello ornaments for a quick project or to learn with. So colorful and eye popping. What’s New (eyecandyneedleart.com)
That time of year has come again – Black Friday ! Many stores are having sales. Needleworker’s Delight has 25% off everything, Turtle Bags are giving a nice discount on their totes and cross body bags, in fact most stores have some kind of sale. The following day 11/27 however is Small Business Saturday – please think of your LNS and shop with them so that they are there for us all in the future. www.needleworkersdelight.com –
TIPS AND TRICKS:
From Melita – While in the store “Needle Me” in Havertown PA, Melita found that the store no longer uses tape on the edge of a canvas !! They simply use a steam iron and iron back the edge. Good for a pinch but I am a fan of tape !!
When stitching a piece with an open background and you have random items to put in like stars in a sky etc. you can put a matching shade of batiste fabric across the back of your piece so you will not see the traveling thread !
And Now For Something New :
We all stitch and probably have for many years (I’m not saying we are old but.. yes we are). Along the way we have all heard of many famous people that also share our passion. For the next several blogs I will give you 2 pictures and see if you can name the famous stitchers. I will put their names in the following blog. Good luck some are not so easy !
This week is Thanksgiving already – everyone have a safe and happy holiday and yes have a slice of pie !
Amazing – the end of the year is in sight!! This months meeting will be a bit more casual as we ease into day light savings. We will be discussing this year’s Woodlawn Submissions and review pictures of all the entries. You are also invited to stitch while the discussion is going on. Next month – PARTY !! November 19th several of us will be at Edwardian Needle to collect ornaments for our tree entry in the Basking Ridge “Festival of Trees”. Stop by around 1 pm to help make our tree look festive !!
Let’s all rejoice as November 13th (next Saturday) is Local Needlepoint Store Day !! Another opportunity to add to your stash and keep your local brick and mortar store in business. Check what your store is doing as many are having give away’s, sales, designers stopping by etc. A fun day for all !!
If LNS Day is not enough – it’s also — Virtual Market and Destination Texas Market time !! Needlepoint nirvana !! This weekend all the shop owners are in Texas at the market and they are sending out sneak peaks via social media. From Zecca all the way back to Alice Peterson you will be seeing some very cute things coming up with more being shown everyday such as:
With the chill in the air these days maybe you want to take a trip to Seaside Needlepoint in Vero Beach FL – they are having a class in “Santa’s Beards”. They will be doing 6 different beards, from big and fuzzy to tame and textured !! Seaside Needlepoint
One of the new embellishments people are using on their canvases is Rick Rack. I have seen it on a Danji elephant canvas and it makes such a statement and changes the look. Here is a place to get a wide range of interesting trims, ribbons, rick rack etc. https://www.ladydotcreates.com/
Did you have to have that clear folding tote for all your needlepoint needs?? The people that brought you that had to have item now have something new – Sassy Clips !! A way to keep your drink off the table (as you should know to do when your stitching so disaster doesn’t happen)! They can also be used to keep notions and other things in close reach. Sullivans Sassy Clip – Clips to any table surface! – Moore’s Sewing (moores-sew.com)
Are your scissors getting dull?? Jo-Ann Fabric has a service for sharpening many kinds of cutting instruments from pizza cutters to lawn mower blades. Worth it if you love a specific pair of scissors.
A great tool to have when deciding on threads and colors for a project is a color card from some of the many thread companies. You have your choice thru Needlepoint Gallery and More. You can order cards with the “REAL THREAD” on them to have as a resource. https://www.theneedlepointgallery.com/cocaforthco.html
Have you thought about making a belt for someone? Do you know how it’s done and how long to make it? House of Needlepoint in CT has tips on what you need to know along with other tips to make your first belt project a success:
TRIVIA QUESTION !!!!!Can you guess what famous singer’s mother was a needlepointer?????
NOPE – Try Dolly Parton !! In Gatlinburg TN there is the “Chasing Rainbows Museum” which has an attraction called “Dolly’s Attic” and in there is her mother Avie Lee Parton’s handy work showing all her siblings names and birth dates on display. A piece of needlepoint history !!
This week we had our monthly meeting and our speaker was Vicky Wittershein. Her talk was on using Alcohol Markers with canvas and it was wonderful ! We had one of our biggest turn outs and for good reason. Vicky went thru how to use these markers and different situations that they can be used. Her use of video’s for demonstration were very well done and we were all glued to our screens ! Hope she will be back soon with another topic!!
Of course to get to be a part of these great programs you have to be a member ! Cathryn is already lining things up for next year – you have to be in it to enjoy it !! Come join the fun!
Wow – we are headed for November already!! Our next meeting will be a review of the chapter’s showing at the Annual Woodlawn Needlework Show along with a stitch in. Come join us and see the wonderful creations this chapter has stitched.
We are also going to be putting up an exhibit at the Festival of Trees this year in Basking Ridge. We should be hearing more information shortly. If you want to lend us some of your ornaments to go on our tree we will have drop off information shortly.
Can you feel the vibrations in the needlepoint world ??? This weekend is the Virtual Needlepoint Show !!! Yikes – New things to discover – many of which we will absolutely need to have !! Until all that unfolds :
Needlepoint For Fun has moved !! They have crossed the water and come to NJ ! For now they are by appointment only until they get themselves all set up in their new space so you will need to give them a call if you need something. The picture looks like things are now “Open Concept” spacing. Good luck to them !
Check out a site called Fiber Pharm – they have numerous selections of fibers that match to canvases. If you can’t get the threads for your project they sell them by the skein, by the collection or for a certain project which they refer to as a “Curated Collection”. If you wanted to do a Hedgehog Travel Tag you go to their site and they have a package made up of threads just for that project. No searching around ! If you want to peruse thru and find a project they also have links to the designer’s web site so you can buy the canvas. https://fiberpharmllc.com
Many new canvases not to mention canvases for the holidays would look great with a tassel as part of the embellishment. Here is a YouTube from Needlepoint.com that shows you how easy it is to do !! https://youtu.be/PevmZzyxTWg
Tips and Tricks – Want to store your left over thread back in the teeny tiny wrapper so you know what that color and or dye lot is?? Sarah Godfrey posted on Needlepoint Nation an interesting idea – a Bobby Pin !! The picture is worth a thousand words !!
Like we couldn’t see THIS coming !!!! All you Turtle Bag lovers – new colors are coming soon !! They are also having a half price sale on their shell inserts for Halloween and Thanksgiving (in case you couldn’t stitch that fast !). In case you did not know, these bags donate part of their proceeds to the National Save The Turtle Foundation to help with awareness of Florida’s marine ecosystem.
It’s October which means we are lucky enough to have Vicky Wittershein giving this months talk about using Alcohol markers on canvases and ribbons. She is on a path to become certified by NAN and many of us know her from working at the Edwardian Needle. She has a wonderful sense of color and I was chatting with her about her up coming talk – this is going to be very interesting !! She is very easy going and would love everyone to join in and ask questions.
It’s that time again !!!! No – not Halloween – Virtual Needlepoint Market time ! Late in October is when it happens and that is when the new temptations will be coming out !
Of course if you stitch seasonally there is plenty out there to choose from:
Abigail Cecile now has a class on how to finish your ornaments – I heard that groan !! You have access to the site forever and she helps you get thru making round ornaments. Shaped ornaments are coming soon. No eye rolling either !! https://www.abigailcecile.com/products/1521904
Turtle Bags are starting to come in again – and go right out the door. Snooze and you lose !! Now they have cross body bags and the opening is exactly the same as with the totes. Mindy has been modifying her designs to fit these bags and I am sure there will be lots of choices from other designers soon. Check out your LNS but you can also order from Turtle Bag themselves. Turtle Bags | Fashionable handbags with changeable patterns. (turtlebagsinc.com)
FOMO ALERT !!!! You HAVE to go look at this web site. It’s LOADED with amazing embellishments. Way too many to show you so I’m only giving you a peak. It’s the kind of site you can go thru for hours and not see it all. I am giving you a taste of the “Brads” to put on your canvas. https://www.eyeletoutlet.com/newbrads2021.html
A New Feature – Tips and Tricks
This comes from our own Sue C who learned this in a Toni Gerdes class while in Chicago.
Neon Rays and other threads can be tough to stitch with as they tend to fray easily. Place the end of the thread on top of a glue stick and swipe just then end across the glue. The glue will dry quickly. The end with the glue is the end that will go in the needle and stay close to the eye of the needle as you stitch. When you have finished with that thread, secured it, and cut it, the end with the glue is the small piece that you throw away. She reminded us that all glue sticks now are made acid free so that eliminates that worry.
Thank you Sue for the tip and suggestion for Tips and Tricks !! Anyone with a tip let me know !!
Just a reminder that October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Too many stitcher’s have been stricken by this disease so we all need to do what we can to be checked and follow up for good health !!
We’re closing in on the final months of this year’s project – and progress is being made! I find it hard to believe that we are three-quarters of the way through 2021.
Our members who are stitching the ANG Stitch-of-the-Month project, Stratigraphy, have completed 26 layers using nine different stitches. A little birdie tells me that in October they will be stitching another seven layers of the project! We’re all looking forward to seeing the complete picture.
And a couple of us are finally completing our 2015 SOTM Ruby Razzle Dazzle.
This coming Wednesday we will be having Valerie McAleenan speak to us about Appraising Needlework. She holds an ANG certification for appraising needlework along with certifications from other affiliations. She will be speaking on the reasons for an appraisal and how she goes about coming to a value. Personal Property Appraiser – Timeless NeedleArts Appraisals, LLC
If you haven’t filled out the survey that Cathryn sent you via email then please do so. She is trying to gauge what the members would like to do over the coming year so she can plan accordingly !!
NJNA has decided to enter a tree display in the 43rd Annual Festival of Trees which is held by the Somerset County Park Commission. Everyone is encouraged to loan an ornament or two so we can have a well decorated tree for people to view.
It’s official- we are now in the Fall Season. Besides the new chill in the air and the leaves beginning to turn colors you can tell by every needlepoint email you get !! They are all packed with Halloween canvases, fall color threads and seasonal needleminders.You can’t not be put in the mood with this assault !
I always thought of canvases from Strictly Christmas as being santa’s and stockings. They have a designer, Ann Hartman, that just put out a new canvas of a rooster entitled “No One Takes Me Seriously” – I dare you to keep a straight face !! https://www.strictlychristmasetc.com/
I love Gayla Elliot’s Stitching Girl canvases. I have one and can’t wait to stitch it for my laundry room. Stitch By Stitch in Larchmont has all of them together on their web site so you can have an even harder time trying to choose one. https://www.stitchbystitchneedlepoint.com/ While your perusing their site check out an exclusive they have with Pepperberry. Six snow globe canvases and stitch guides entitled Christmas in NY. Six well known landmarks that can be stitched and finished in so many ways – let your imagination run wild.
The Needlepointer has an interesting project called Woven Ribbons. It comes in several color ways and includes a stitch guide. It was inspired by something a customer, who passed away several years ago, had created – it has lots of different stitches in it to try. https://www.theneedlepointer.com/
Who doesn’t love The Meredith Collection for her Needle Buddies ?!?! She has a collection of Charlie Harper needle minders that are just wonderful https://themeredithcollection.com/
You also can’t have enough totes for your stash – check out the Needlepointer to convey how your feeling that day !
System 4 has done a redesign !! Their table clamp will now accommodate a larger table to provide a firmer hold on your project. It now opens 4 3/4″ high and 3 3/8″ deep. A great item for travel or classes.
The Royal School of Needlework is launching a Stitch Bank. To celebrate the schools 150 years they are starting with 150 different stitches with more to come. Read their web site about what the future holds – very interesting !! https://rsnstitchbank.org/about
Choosing your background stitch – The Movie !! Melissa and Megan talk about everything you need to know about how to choose a background stitch in their pod cast. From color to open stitches or not, to shape to shading to color etc. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EEr9kC4enFU
Check out these and ones back from finishing on Absolutely Needlepoint:
I think many needle pointers are all of the same ilk ! We all seem to enjoy searching for new canvases, get excited by a magnet and can’t wait for Needlepoint Now to come out with their newest magazine – among other things in common !! NJNA also has many members born in the month of September (that may explain some things !!) A celebration was held in The Edwardian Needle’s parking lot for several of the September birthday’s – ice cream from Roy for everyone and a good time was had by all !!
First we all have to say welcome to our new member and old friend Vicky W. She has been helping all of those that frequent the Edwardian Needle for a long time. She has also been working on becoming a certified needlework teacher by NAN and we all are there to support that effort. We are so glad that she has decided to join in on the fun.We will also see her in Octoberwhen she will be our guest speaker.
This month’s fun is a talk by Valerie McAleenan from Timeless NeedleArts Appraisals. She is a certified appraiser with ANG and others. This should be very interesting on how to appropriately value your needlework art. I am sure there are issues that we never would have thought of – can’t wait to listen to her talk.
If you have gotten your current issue of Needlepoint Now then you saw the article by one of our members, Melita Glavin. She used all stash threads and created wonderful patterns that can be used in all kinds of ways (I am thinking of those Turtle Bags !!) It was an interesting read with lots of stitches to try and ideas for other projects.
I heard that Needlefest this year was a big hit – even in a pandemic ! Next year will surely be sold out early. As a gift for coming you were given , among other things, a needle minder – I have FOMO ! Here is a quick video of what the event looked like. https://www.facebook.com/silkweaver/videos/374776037580610
Rain Rain go away !! We here in the northeast are soaked beyond reason and it seems that all this weather has brought on – ugh – cooler weather ! What happened to summer ?!?! Everywhere you turn the stores and web sites are showing Halloween/Fall/Christmas/winter canvases.
EyeCandy has some cute new items to get you in the mood !! EyeCandy Needleart Catalog Look in What’s New for some stunning Teal Pumpkins.
There is a company that I have mentioned before that makes glass needleminders – Beau Verre Art. They too are getting into the season with some adorable needleminders – because you can’t have too many ! https://beauverre-art.com/
Seasonal Clubs are popping up and there is something for everyone. Bestitched has an assortment of clubs to sign up for and they even have Valentine’s Day – already ! Can’t start to early I guess. Then the Needlepointer has the most adorable tote bags as a club.
The Rehoboth Beach Museum now knows just where the holes are in the roof after all that rain !! Unfortunately because of this they have cancelled the needlework exhibit for this year. If you already brought something to be shown you need to go pick it up. Hopefully they can hold this exhibit next year.
I just saw that Rainbow Gallery not only has great threads but they have an accessory – a Needle Tugger ! Who knew? Certainly a more interesting looking item then the cut off rubber finger that I have been using.
Merry L came out with those great needle minders several years ago that clean your needle. Now they have colorful ort holders that are reversible. They are made with felt which I would think would hold on to the orts – a good thing. Merry L Needlework Accessories – Home | Facebook
Needlepoint Now magazine has a very interesting article on QR Codes (Quick Response). The idea behind these designs is to get the attention of younger people to enjoy the craft we all enjoy. They are small and can be done fast but Island House Needlepoint had a great finishing idea. They made them into a frame weight with magnets inside and a packet of emery in the middle to clean your needle – what a great idea.
We want to say welcome to our new member Barbara E. Glad you have joined the party !
We were all captivated in our last meeting by our guest speaker David McCaskill. We had one of the biggest turn outs to date and everyone was so thrilled to hear his witty tips and tricks that before we knew it the talk was over. We are all hoping he will return soon. Thank you David – and we are anxiously waiting to see what new items you have !!!
Our September program will be all about Needlework Appraisals. Valerie McAleenan will be speaking and she is a certified needlework appraiser by ANG and other certifications. What we do is art and if you are going to insure it as part of your home insurance then you will need an appraisal for a proper value. Should be very interesting.
Next weekend is – OMG !! – Labor Day Weekend. The unofficial end of summer – yikes !! Where did it go?? Maybe because we were inside with all that rain it slipped by ?!?!? Time to get our last licks in !!
Look on Etsy – My Pink Sugar Life – they have so many cute 8 X 8 canvases for a quick stitch in a wide variety of subjects but for now let’s just look at summer !!!
Check out Stitch By Stitch in NY – they are closed right now as they are renovating the store. While that is happening they have been working on their web site. They have been putting in loads of pictures of the canvases they are selling – Finished !! Nothing better then more ideas on how to use what you have stitched. Also check out the new Kate Dickerson Rainbow collection – it will cool you right off !!! https://www.stitchbystitchneedlepoint.com/
Do you enjoy collecting shells at the beach?? How about needlepoint shells? Check out Kaffe Fassett’s shop and let him do the work !! (I could not bring myself to step on the carpet or sit in the chair!) http://www.kaffefassett.com/gallery/shop/
The Needlepointer is now featuring the artist Julia Briggs from Birds of a Feather. She had a studio in Brooklyn and her art was showcased in the windows of Bergdorf Goodman. I don’t know about you but that Cosmo looks like a wonderful summer drink to me with all my friends around (Very Sex in the City) !!
Everyone at NJNA can’t be more excited and thrilled at hearing that Mally Becker’s book “The Turncoat’s Widow” was put on the Chanticleer 2021 short list for the Mystery & Mayhem book awards. This award is to recognize emerging new talent and outstanding works in the fiction genre. Congratulations Mally !!! Good Luck, we are all routing for you to win ! Here is the entire list up for the awards: The 2021 Mystery & Mayhem Long List | Chanticleer Book Reviews (chantireviews.com)
We have another 2 new members of NJNA – Robin and Patricia – Welcome to the fun !!
Stitch Palettes is no longer offering their photo converter service for free as of 8/1. You can pay for the service once a month or annually. Their web site still had plenty to take advantage of if you chose not to be a member. https://stitchpalettes.com/about/
New Shops Opening !!! In case your in the area Creative Needle Arts is in Gulf Shores Alabama, Forest Acres is in Columbia SC and if your going to the EGA 2021 seminar, just outside of north Chicago is the Little Stitch Shop in Libertyville IL. and in Chicago is Third Coast Stitches. Let us all know how they are if you have time to pop in.
Treenway Silks has some limited edition ribbon colors for sale – their 65 Roses collection. Each 5 yard skein of 3.5 mm ribbon is $9.95 and at least 10% of that is donated to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation to help find a cure. The reason the collection is called 65 Roses is because young children use this term to remember easily how to pronounce the disease they have.
Poppypointe has an interesting new service in their store that they are trying out. With the thread shortage going on they are creating a “Thread Bank” If you need a thread, take one and leave one. All threads need to be from a smoke free environment and in individual zip lock bags labeled with all the information about what you are leaving. they are looking at it as good karma to the next stitcher !
Did you catch the crazy hair on the LEE woman’s face canvas on Needlepoint Nation? She used Haute Fur knitting yarn from Yarn Bee for the spiky hair ! It looks great !! You also have to love the canvas and everyone knows someone that looks similar to it – right !! She did a great job !!
It may be steamy and hot enough to melt your shoes on the pavement but when you see that the store “The West” in Tucson AZ is giving a class to stitch “Larry The Turkey” – you know fall is around the corner !! Of course their class on Larry doesn’t start until Jan 2022 but summer is flying by and the urge to stitch a fall item is going to be calling very soon!!
Ugh – Too early for Fall – let’s get back to summer !! Painted Pony Designs has a new Retro Girls design by Lori Seibert in her Ice Cream Girls series – this is #10 !! So much you can do with this canvas and it makes your mouth water for a cone or a spiffy hat !!
New Gadget FOMO !!! Dritz has an all in one tool that covers many bases. It’s a seam ripper, and an awl (for those pesky knots) plus the top is rubbery so it can help get out those tiny threads that stick in the canvas when you have to rip out a section. It seems to do everything but make a cup of coffee !!
If your floor frame has a tendency to slid on non carpeted flooring – try Gorilla Pads by Slipstick. They are made for furniture and have 2 layers of rubber to keep anything from slipping and sliding as you work. The package has plenty in it to share with friends and they come in several sizes. Look in your hardware stores for it.
Have you seen the interesting way to hold your stitching items ?? The Needlepointer has 2 fashionable options – First is a crystal bangle. You can hang any number of items at your wrist for those times you only have one hand available !!
The 2nd one is for all you seamstress wannabe’s – This wrist needleminder looks convenient and it comes in 5 colors. If you wear the “I Watch” I think there would be no completion – the watch will win out every time.