Category Archives: Anaheim 2013 Seminar

First Two days of Lapis Gold


I am combining two days of classes because last night when we got back from dinner, I had to wrap the Leah skein of #12 over dyed perle onto a soft roll of paper that I had made. I spent an hour working on it last night and another hour this morning when I got up. I couldn't not complete the wrapping without cutting it a couple of times because it got so tangled. When I started and held the open skein at one end and let go, it twisted right back up which explains why it was so difficult to wrap! So by the time I had put in my hour of wrapping, I was too tired (and frustrated) to write!

The class and the project are both going well, except that we have quite a bit left to do tomorrow, the last day. Day 1 was spent doing quite a bit of basting which you might think should/could have been prework, but the teacher, a first timer, felt there could be too many questions/mistakes. I think she was right. We did get a few things stitched as you can see from the picture.

End of first day

Day 2 began with plunging the gold threads to the back and wrapping them. What an experience! She gave us the option of using out $10 Japan needle or a plastic dental loop. I chose the dental loop as I was afraid the needle would fall off and I would lose it! It worked great to pull the gold to the back. The wrapping takes practice–I got pretty good and much faster with the ones I did tonight for homework! Then we needed to do 36 queen stitches so that we could be ready for the fan, or as she said “the fan” scaring us all. Then came laying the gold alongside the fan to be couched. Before we knew it four-thirty arrived and we had to be ready to do the next part tomorrow and most of us were not, hence homework.

The only thing I have left to do before class starts is to lay the three sets of gold and couch them along the top. If you are wondering why I am not doing it tonight, it is because there is no surface to work on besides the bed, so I plan to go early tomorrow and complete that before class starts.

I did look at the classes for next year and found several that I really like! Susan has two beautiful pieces on it, including a two day class. Chicago should be a great seminar city! I spent a small amount of time in the exhibits and again was impressed with someof the pieces. One was interesting with a great story behind it. It was a needlepoint piece of two sides of the brain, a healthy brain and one that had been attacked by Alzheimer's. A woman whose husband had Alzheimer's so the x-ray in a magazine and thought that designing a needlepoint piece and stitching it might help her with dealing with her husband's illness. She contacted the magazine which put her in touch with the man who had submitted the x-ray. She e-mailed him asking permission to use it for a design. In under ten minutes he not only gave her permission but also melded the two x-rays of the healthy and the diseased brain into one image with one side healthy and the other diseased. During the time that she was stitching it, her husband passed, but she did complete it. I was impressed with her way of dealing with what was happening and using it to find some comfort.

Look for more tomorrow!



Third Day of Imari Collage


Hi, NJNA —

First of all — Carol sent me the summary of the show and tell from last Wednesday’s meeting!  I can’t wait to see Diane’s pictures that go with them!

Sue and I are having a great time at seminar!  We decided to try the ANG special lunch at Tusca (hotel restaurant) today — a cup of soup and a half sandwich for just under $10.  The soup was vegetable and the sandwich was a tuna melt.  There are no choices because normally the hotel restaurant is NOT open for lunch.  The problem was that we ordered hot tea at $4 each.  So all of a sudden the affordable lunch became a bit much.  Tomorrow we will nosh in our room for lunch!

Debbie’s Imari Collage class continued to be great fun today.  The stitches are beautiful — more so in person — and we continue to enjoy Debbie’s humor and stories as the class rolls on!  It hardly seems possible that three of the four days are over!  You can see from my end of day progress that we only have a few more sections to go.  So sad to see it end — I could stitch with this group for a long time!

Imari Collage -- End of Day Three

Imari Collage — End of Day Three

You will see that I have the pesky ends of the Or Nue taped back so that they don’t interfere with the adjacent panel.  Debbie says that Ideally, these would be sunk to the back and pulled to the side on the back of the canvas.  But, since we don’t have enough time to finish the panel, we have to push them aside on the front.  All in all, I feel much further ahead than I felt at this stage on Asian Collage last year.

After class today, I went out to the pool.  I exercised for about fifteen minutes, but the pool was 3.5 feet at its deepest and besides was full of kids.  Crouching down to do the routine was tough on the knees — as was skinning my knee on the bottom when I tried to do a lap.  So — I’ll try the pool in the North tower tomorrow.  I expected the better one to be this one which is part of the fitness center — bad assumption!

Sue and I had a nice dinner at an Italian Family Style restaurant which is about a block from our hotel.  We had linguini with shrimp, fresh tomatoes, spinach, and garlic.  It was one of our better meals since we came to seminar!  Both Sue and I were appalled by the treatment our waitress was receiving from a businessman sitting at the bar.  So obnoxious!  She handled it wonderfully and she told us that it used to bother her but she has gotten better at dealing with it.  God bless her!

That’s about all for today!  I hope that we have a few readers out there!



Second Day of Imari Collage


Hi, Everyone —

Greetings from another fun-filled day at seminar!  My class continued to make progress on Imari Collage.  Today I regretted that I didn’t stitch the fourth section from yesterday, because it would have helped to provide an area to tie off the gold underlay in the green area.

Imari Collage -- End of Day Two!

Imari Collage — End of Day Two!

The area that looks like a tied up sheath of wheat is Or Nue, done differently than I have read about.  All of the gold ends will eventually be sunk to the underside of the canvas — but not until the rest of the canvas and the rest of the Or Nue section is stitched.

For the Stitch of the Month group — I am proud to tell you that Debbie brought in the finished SOTM to show our class and it is gorgeous!  You won’t believe the beautiful stitches that are coming up in the last few months of the year!  Before Sue and I met Anne Carol for lunch, I took Sue into my classroom to show her — how exciting!

In our classroom today, we discussed such topical subjects as whether we thought Wilma Flintstone and Jane Jetson settled when they married Fred and George.  When I told Marisa this on the phone, I was greeted with dead air — apparently she didn’t know who any of these characters were!  However — we also discussed the song that the most people in the US know the words to and I know that Marisa could support this theory.  The song is:  The Theme Song to Gilligan’s Island!

I forgot to mention yesterday that Debbie Stiehler is retiring.  So I feel doubly lucky to be in her Imari Collage Class and to be doing her SOTM piece both this year.

Tonight we had our opening banquet which was pretty good for a banquet meal serving about 400.  The speaker was a woman from UC Riverside, Dr. Margaret Nash.  She spoke about misconceptions about women’s education in the late 1700’s and early 1800’s.  Quite informative.

So, it’s all good!

Cheers!  Rosie

First Day of Imari Collage


Hi, Everyone —

It feels like we never left Philadelphia!  I am starting my week with another one of Debbie Stiehler’s beautiful creations:  Imari Collage.  The maximum class size is supposed to be 24, but this class had so many sign-ups that Debbie agreed to take 30!  With so many in the room, it is quite warm — but I am sitting in the same relative spot as I did for Asian Collage in Philadelphia, so it feels like home!

The kit for this piece is very different from Asian Collage.  The threads are either hand-dyed threads on little plastic bobbins or Kreinik metals.  The hand-dyed threads are silk and have an amazing richness of color!  Debbie had all of the silk thread bobbins arranged into small plastic bags with a small bit of corner cut off of each one.  We used our needle to fish the top end of the thread through the cut off corner and then the bobbin rolls around in the bag as we spool off thread through the cut corner!  So cool!  (Debbie said she could only imagine all the many bobbins falling onto the floor and rolling all over the classroom!  Well, she sure solved that issue!)

So we worked two sections in the morning and two in the afternoon.  Here’s my progress so far.  I elected to forego the fourth section in order to clean up some of my threads from the other three.  Here is my end of day progress.  By the way, the red square is the same stitch that I used for Lombard Street!


Tomorrow, we will spend the entire morning doing a section of Or Nue — and Debbie has a different technique than anything I’ve seen before.  She says it is a traditional technique — so I am glad to be learning it before I teach the NJNA chapter about Or Nue!

Sue ran into our friend, Anne Carol, whom we met at the Philadelphia seminar — we plan to have lunch with her tomorrow!

Sue and I planned to take the shuttle to Garden Walk tonight for dinner, but as we were waiting the bellman came to tell us that it had just been taken out of service, so we will eat somewhere nearby instead.

We haven’t had any midnight fire alarms yet, but thankfully we have a refrigerator in our room and have it well-stocked for breakfasts, lunches, and snacks.

That’s about all for today!

Cheers!  Rosie

Selecting more threads for Holiday Patches


Last night when I was showing Rosie the threads that I had purchased this week for my Holiday Patches which is not going to be holiday related, I realized that I had missed the four colors of Silk &Ivory! So today I went to the seminar shop, Needlepoints, Ltd., and asked if I could bring in the threads I already had and have help in selecting the appropriate colors from Silk & Ivory. Since it was not busy, there was a saleswoman who spent time with me selecting the right colors.

Threads with Fabric Patches

What do you think of the colors with the fabric?


Needle Nook of La Jolla


On Tuesday I went to La Jolla to check out the needlepoint shop called Needle Nook of La Jolla which is on Fay Street. I was able to park almost in front of the shop, a rarity as this is a busy shopping area. I went into a shop filled with beautiful canvases. It also had a collection of books and counted designs–I put my hands behind my back when I looked at the Kathy Rees designs–as well as accessories. I did buy a thimble thingy–just the end which you stick to the end of your finger–to use in one of my classes next week. I didn’t see any threads! When I asked, she said that the threads are in a separate shop two doors down. So as soon as I left I walked maybe 50 feet down to the second shop and saw two walls filled with threads all hanging in a beautiful display of color and texture. There were even sliding walls to see more threads behind them. It was overwhelming! Of course the project I wanted to kit was back at my motel which explains the second trip today.

Thread Display at Needle Nook of La Jolla

Thread Display at Needle Nook of La Jolla

I came back with the fabric pieces I am using in the project and the threads needed. These are the wrong colors, of course, because my fabric was not holiday fabric. With the help of two lovely saleswomen, I made all my selections. It was a great experience. Just looking at all those colors and threads displayed so beautifully was refreshing!  There website is and they are happy to do mail order!
Tomorrow I leave by train for Anaheim where I will join Rosie at the seminar.

Seminar Prework


Hi, Everyone —

I’m leaving for the Anaheim seminar on Tuesday morning and I’ve been working on the prework for Irresistible Iridescent.  I finished it this morning just in the nick of time.

Rosie's Prework for Seminar

Rosie’s Prework for Seminar

I know it doesn’t look like much at this point.  This is the sage colorway — it was also available in light blue and grey.  Unfortunately, they all looked grey to me!  I was hoping for salmon or peach or, well, something more colorful!

I also had my Stella Polaris installed into a Sudberry Tray.   I plan to give it to my nephew and his wife as part of their wedding present, so I won’t be able to bring it into a meeting to show you.  I posted a picture on the NJNA website gallery and I thought I would include it here to add a little bit of color to this post!

Stella Polaris in Umbria Colorway and Sudberry Tray!

Stella Polaris in Umbria Colorway with Sudberry Tray!

I’ll be meeting up with Sue C on Friday in Anaheim and we can’t wait to share all the seminar excitement with you this year!  I have four days in Debbie Stiehler’s Imari Collage (which is a companion piece to last year’s Asian Collage).   Then I will tour the mission at San Juan Capistrano.  I’ll end the week with a two-day class by Nancy Cucci — lots of iridescent beading on the prework shown above!

Hope everyone has a great week —

Cheers, Rosie