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Resolve to do more of what you love – Take a needlepoint class

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Almost 80% of all New Year’s resolutions go by the wayside before they’re achieved. In fact, most of us give up on our resolutions by January 12.

Is anyone surprised?

All of those pesky lose-weight, get-in-shape promises are such a bore. And, really, you’re fine the way you are. As a matter of fact, you’re wonderful.

So why not do something radical this year: Resolve to do more of what you love.

Do. More. Needlepoint. Find a new canvas or stitch. Retrieve one of the few unfinished projects in your closet. (“Few” is a relative term.) Or resolve to take a class.

Our local needlepoint stores have offerings to help you stretch your imagination, play with new techniques or stitches, enhance your skills, and make new friends … all of which are more fun than eating celery or getting up at 5 AM to jog.

Here’s what you’ll find at the fabulous needlepoint stores we all frequent:

Needleworkers Delight on Route One in Metuchen maintains an up-to-date class listing and on-line payment options here: http://www.needleworkersdelight.com/DesignerClassSeries.html

The Edwardian Needle in Fairfield offers the following classes and events through March. Contact The Edwardian Needle  at (973) 743-9833 in advance for information about cost and registration.

Sunday, January 27                 Goldwork Butterfly with Kate Festo   9:30 AM – 4:00 PM

Sunday, February 3                 Super Bowl Party   Noon – 5 PM

Thursday, February 7              Stars “II” with Cathryn Curia   5 – 7:30 PM

Sunday, February 10               Canvas Embellishment Studio   Noon – 5 PM

Thursday, February 21           Stitch-In  6 – 8 PM

Sunday February 24                Bargello Class with Andrea Santiamo   10 AM – 4 PM

Friday, March 8                       Studio with Anthony Minieri  Noon – 5 PM

Sat. & Sun., March 9-10          French Ribbon 1 with Anthony Minieri   9:30 AM – 4 PM

Thursday, March 14                Stars “III” with Cathryn Curia   5 – 7:30 PM

Sat. & Sun., March 30-31        Crazy Quilting with Betty Pillsbury  10 AM – 4:30 PM

Knit One, Stitch Two in Pennington will offer The Gazebo – a red, white and blue canvas with a gazebo, topiary and flags – as a “stitch along” on February 11 (11:30 AM – 1:45 PM) and February 28th (11 AM – 2 PM). A stitch guide will be available.  Stitch Along fee $25. This is not a class. Minimal instruction is included, and attendees must be able to stitch basketweave. If you’re interested, please email me for the project photo (I couldn’t post it) or contact the shop at http://k1st2.com.

I’ll post information about additional classes upon receipt. In the meantime, happy stitching!

Data sources for those gloomy New Year’s Resolution cited above: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/2980864;https://www.bodyandsoul.com.au/wellbeing/this-is-the-date-most-of-us-give-up-on-our-new-years-resolutions/news-story/ae2e1a32a5e5f5ef0783412fefe6abbf

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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 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.

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As many of you know, I am often traveling.  Most of the time, I head to CA to visit with those precious little ones that I call grandbabies.  However, this spring I had a rare opportunity to travel twice to Europe.  The first trip was on a Craft Cruise riverboat cruise through the Netherlands and Belgium.  For those of you not familiar with Craft Cruises, they are a company that specialize in putting together cruises (both regular and riverboat) that specialize in one’s favorite craft.  This was my second time traveling with them.  Right now, most of their offerings are knitting related.  Since this is a needlepoint blog, for any of you more interested in that trip, PM me and I’m happy to gush and share my experiences.

My second trip was with my 90 year old mother-in-law (whose energy level makes me look pretty much dead), my two sisters-in-law and a female cousin.  This trip was a regular cruise through the British Isles.  Loved the countries.  I did bug my traveling companions a bit to stop at knitting stores.  However, I was also determined this time to find something stitching related.  Although I did not have time to visit the Royal School of Needlework, I did find the time to visit a charming needlepoint shop in London, thanks to the heads up of Cathryn C.  She directed me to a charming shop call Tapisserie.  I got there about a half hour before closing, but the store clerk was charming and did not make me feel rushed at all.  Although they had some canvases, their specialty was hand painted canvases that turn into beautiful and breathtaking evening bags.  There was a whole case of samples.  What they didn’t have in stock, they were most happy to have painted up and sent to you.  Of course, they also do a finishing service of making the purse for you.  Most of the designs were executed in tent stitch with beads put on top of the stitching.  However, for those of you adept at making a stitch guide, one could easily do a more embellished piece.  I’m including some photos for you of their interior.  Please enjoy the eye candy.  The one close up of a canvas is the one that had to come back to NJ.

It is a shop well worth the visit.  The neighborhood is just charming, so the visit is a win-win.  Please let me know about any other good traveling finds.  However, after those two trips, the only place I will be going for a while is to CA to visit those grandbabies.  Of course, that does mean an afternoon of stitching at Luv2Stitch in San Mateo.  More about that another time.

Mouline Rouge by Long Dog Samplers

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Hi everyone,

I am new to contributing to the blog and am also just getting back to needle pointing again after a short hiatus.  In the meantime, here is a pic of an old cross stitch project back when it was still in progress:

Mouline Rouge 02/25/08

Despite the fact that I have more UFOs than finished and framed projects, this one is actually done and hanging in my living room:

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Final day of Jewel

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I know I’m beginning to sound like a broken record, but I still adore this class. Today was the final day and we covered more of what to put in the diamond shapes. It doesn’t look like much but spaghetti now, but I have left the class feeling confident that I will know how to do each section of the design when I return home. Today we laid some grid work over which go more decorative stitches. There was also one section that we turned crosses into octagons.
Since most of the sections are repeated multiple times, I should be an expert by the time I’m finished!

Now I’m trying to turn myself into a weatherman. Since I am finished with classes, I could leave early and try to beat the storm. However, it looks like Friday may be the worst of it, at least in the southern regions. So leaving early may not be the answer. Now my true self of anxious Nellie comes out. Hopefully the next two days of R&R that includes stitching time, will be the remedy for that. Safe travels to all of our readers and NJNA attendees.