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January 2019 SOTM Complete!

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Hi Everyone —

The NJNA SOTM group is doing the ANG SOTM which is a Mystery!  I chose my own colors and just finished stitching the first installment.  It is great fun to do these fancy stitches — even if it took me three aborted attempts to get the correct thread length on the crescents.

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I also want to say that using two strands of floss on the circular Amadeus was a true challenge to my thread-laying ability!  But only one aborted attempt on the thread length, but three re-stitches because of missed holes!

Can’t wait to see what February brings!

Cheers, Rosie

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Christmas in SC

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I arrived to spend Christmas with Carol on Thursday, and by Saturday we were ready to shop. We set out early, met up with another of Carol’s stitching buddies, and drove to Atlanta.

The first shop we visited was the new Labors of Love. Carol and I have decided to stitch “Patchwork of Peace,” the American-flag-in-little-boxes piece that I think Margaret and Sylvia have already stitched, so we had a LOT of threads to search out! We decided to focus on the blue threads to start. Mark and Charlesy helped us pull the threads, and especially in my case, to find substitutions…because of course I decided to be different and stitch on Congress Cloth and not 18-count canvas. Imagine, we found ALMOST all the threads in one shop! And they special-ordered several that they didn’t have.

For anyone visiting Atlanta, we highly recommend that you visit Labors of Love! The shop is spacious and airy and the walls are lined with full ranges of many threads not always found in smaller shops. You want Dinky Dyes? How about those Threadworx overdyed Kreinik braids we had trouble finding for Autumn Kaleidoscope? They had them both…Burmilana? Bella Lusso? Yes and yes again. And Mark and Charlesy were knowledgeable about all the threads and very helpful. They even recommended someplace for lunch…but when we got there we couldn’t find parking so we headed over to the second shop on our list…

Nimble Needle is a smaller shop, but also carries a large thread inventory and walls full of painted canvases. We found a couple of the thread colors we hadn’t found at the first shop and I succumbed to an ornament canvas from the trunk show currently on offer. But frankly I was a little shopped out and didn’t spend as much time absorbing the surroundings as I might have otherwise. But this would also be a great destination for you if you visit Atlanta!

We ended up having lunch at an unassuming-looking barbecue place just a few shops down from Nimble Needle, and it was wonderful.

Both shops have off-street parking, always nice in urban settings.

First Day in Paris!

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Hi Everyone —

Harold and I flew to Paris yesterday.  Our hotel room was not ready when we arrived, so we decided to do a walkabout with our traveling friends.  With no definite plans in mind, I suggested that we hunt up the needlepoint shops that I had garnered from various Facebook postings.

The first and most famous of these is only about 100 steps from our hotel!

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This photo was actually taken of our reunion cocktail hour — but can you see what is lurking across the street?

Tapisseries de la Bucherie is a small, brightly lit shop.  One woman was painting canvases by hand while we were there!

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It was a large canvas in beautiful colors!

I did purchase a few items — and was given permission to take a photo of the shop.

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Aren’t the wool colors gorgeous?

The non-stitchers in our group were fascinated by this spiral staircase inside the shop:

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I asked if the woman had painted the stairs, but she said they were original!

So — that was quick!  We next decided to walk to the other shop which we were told was about a 30 minute walk.  So we crossed the river and walked past Notre Dame cathedral and crossed a second river.  It was difficult to follow the map that the hotel had given us because of lack of detail, and after several map consultations and man-on-the-street interviews, we ultimately got our google maps to direct us.

After a nice lunch (I was starving) which had us straying from our direct route, we made our way to Sajou, known for its scissors.

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Of course I bought a(nother) pair of scissors!

I also asked if I could take photos of this shop — it was also brightly lit and beautiful.  When I went to take a photo of the scissors, I had to wait while they fixed the display that I had disturbed while making my selection!

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Interior of Sajou!  Scissor case is front, right hand side of the picture!

You can see that it is a beautiful shop.

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In fact, you can arrange your own Sajou shop by purchasing miniature storage furniture.  The drawers even open and are filled with Sajou signature style boxes!

It was a long walk back and although the men weren’t too interested in the shops, it did give some structure to our “wandering about”.

Cheers, Rosie

 

 

A new tool for me

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Before the ANG Seminar began in Washington, DC, last month, I was working on a piece called Two Haunted Houses. Just before it was time to get ready for seminar, I realized that I had made a major counting error and a big section needed to be taken out. I put it aside. Today I knew it was time to take out that section so I could work on it again.

When I had removed the completed house and fence posts, there were some fuzzies that stayed behind.

Note the orange and dark blue fuzzies.

And after I had used a sewing tool often used by quilters called Seam Fix, you can see the canvas is clean.

Now I am back on track with a clean canvas. I bought my Seam Fix in the quilting section at JoAnns. I believe that it could be found in any quilt shop.

Sue

My Home away from Home

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Every other month, I go to the Bay area in CA for an a couple of weeks to spend time with my daughter, son-in-law and my “little people”  There are three of the latter, ages 7, 5, and 1.  As you can imagine, it’s a very busy household, so that is why I go so frequently.

Sometimes it is a little difficult (notice the little – after all I’m with the “little people”) being away from my normal routine, which includes hanging out with my stitching friends at Edwardian Needle.  However, I am really a lucky stitching soul.  I have found a home away from home.

Located about a half an hour’s drive north from where my daughter lives in san Mateo, is a gem of a shop called, Luv2Stitch.  It is owned by Dale Lenci, who is also the owner and creative designer behind DJ Designs.  His canvases are really beautiful.  At any rate, the retail shop has been quite warm and welcoming, as are the “regulars”.  I have been made to feel at home.  So every Wednesday when I am in the Bay area, I declare it my day off and I go and stitch.  Luv2Stitch is open late on Wednesday evening, so if you have the stamina, one could stitch from 10 AM to 8 PM if they like.  I’ve gotten close a couple of times, but I usually can’t last that long!

The shop has such a nice aesthetic.  It is filled with beautiful antique furniture as well as practical  furniture.  There is a stitching room with bright light and large tables.  In the next room there is a bead bar and some cushy sofas as well as a break front featuring finished samples of stitched boxes and picture frames.  The third room is the thread room.  There is a lot of eye candy on the walls and always so many canvases from which to choose.  There are many classes that are offered with national teachers.  I’ve arranged my west coast visits around some of those.  I’ve had classes with Meredith Hahn Willet and Susan Portra.  They were wonderful and I learned so much.

The staff of Rhonda, Irene and Sarah are always so helpful. Dale is extremely knowledgable and of  course if you need a bit of redesigning done on your canvas, he is your man!

I encourage you to visit Luv2Stitch when you find yourself in the San Fransisco area.  Here is their info:

715 Bermuda Dr
San Mateo CA 94403

‭(650) 571-9999‬

https://luv2stitch.com

My time at the ANG seminar, part 2

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So, I was one of the lucky ones who was able to register for the Canvas Investigations Class with the Embellishment Squad, Tony Minieri, Meredith Hahn Willet and Debbie Stiehler.  Usually they are joined by Suzanne Howren, but unfortunately, she was ill and could not attend.  Previously, I’ve had classes with Tony and Meredith, but never together.  What fun!

There were four of us at a table with about 50 stitchers in the room.  We were each given a very extensive handout with diagrams of all the stitches to be used by students in the class, added to the stitch diagrams from other classes.  That plus the required “Stitches to Go” book by Suzanne Howren were all that was needed to execute the stitch plan.  The teachers rotated among groups of tables, but switched after lunch which tables they were servicing.  Each of us had previously selected our canvases and we were given some stitches and areas on which to stitch.  As the teachers went from student to student, they helped with the execution of stitches, but also designing stitches for the other areas.  I send a huge shout out to Lori, the owner of Waste Knot for supplying us with needed thread for the next day for the areas that had newly been covered.  She did a great job!

One fun part of having so many multiple teacher perspectives, is that you can learn different ways to execute a stitch.  I learned three different ways of approaching Or n’ue. By George, I think I’ve (finally) got it!  Here are some progress photos of my canvas.

 

As many of my local fellow needle enthusiasts know, I travel a lot.  Seminar weekend proved to be no exception.  I had to leave the seminar for a short period of time to attend a wedding.  I’ve known the bride since before she was born, so I really wanted to be there.  However, since I was missing Vendor night, I was a bit bummed.  So, of course, when my hubby said he was going to take a nap before we got ready for the wedding, I took off.  Just a mere five miles away from our hotel was a shop in Merrick, NY called Needlepoint Nook.  The owner of the shop is good friends with the aunt of the bride.  So, we had a great time chatting.  I indulged and bought a Funda Scully canvas for one of the little hinged boxes.  So now I was a little less bummed about having to leave the seminar for that short period of time.

Thanks to hubby’s vacation that week and him usually being a pretty good guy, we drove back to DC in time for the afternoon class session on Sunday and both sessions on Monday.  Since the instruction is so individualized in my class, it felt like I didn’t really miss that much for my class.  The teachers were able to finish giving me ideas for the canvas and I have enough information to finish, when I get more time to stitch!

All in all, I had a great time with all that I did.  Sigh – a really happy one.

 

My time at the ANG National Seminar, part 1

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Well, I am a bit late in commenting on my experience at the ANG national seminar, but I thought late is better than never!

I started my trip on Tuesday so that I would have time to spend with my dear friend who lives right next to DC.  Since I was driving, I do what every other enthusiast does, I made stops along the way at needlework shops!

Frist, I went to Hillside Needlepoint in Stevenson MD, right outside Baltimore.  As usual (I stopped here once before), the owners were delightful and helpful.  I love accessories, so as is often the case, I bought “gadgets”  They included heavy duty plastic project bags, a tote and plastic needle cases with screw lids to replace the ones that I use in my needle case that keep opening.  Having chenille needles mixed in with the tapestry ones is not fun!  Of course, I made a quick visit to Lori K, which is in the same shopping plaza and bought a couple of tops for fall.

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Then came decision time, should I drive to Waste Knot in Arlington or go to my friends’ home which is halfway between the two shops?  They were holding Evertites for me at Waste Knot, so I decided I would drive to Arlington.  As I started out on the drive, I was hit with monsoon rains.  Then the traffic ground to a halt.  So I decided I would turn around and go to my friend’s house.  Oh boy, I “got” off the road I was on, to turn around and there was no place to exit the new road for about 5 miles.  I was not happy!  By the time my GPS got me back on the right road, the traffic had started to move, so I just went on to Waste Knot.  They had my Evertites, but of course I also bought some great magnets from the Meredith Collection as well a couple of books I just had to have.

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With some rest and visiting time in Chevy Chase with my friend, I went to DC the next day to register for the conference.