Category Archives: Uncategorized

Needlepoint Yoga

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Needlepoint makes me feel creative, peaceful and … ok, I admit it … sore. After an hour or two of stitching, my back, shoulders and neck start to rebel.

So I asked my friend Laura, a brilliant writer, editor and certified yoga instructor, for advice. With her own long sessions in front of a computer, I figured that she shared some of our pain. Neck pain, that is.

I was right. Laura was happy to pass along some thoughts on yoga poses that might relax “up tight” stitchers.  Here are her recommendations:

Neck rolls. Perfect for the tightness caused by looking down at a project. (Try the other stretches listed in the article linked here, too. The chair twist is my favorite.)

https://www.yogajournal.com/poses/six-stretches-to-do-at-work

Wrist squeezes. Brace your right elbow on your right thigh. Wrap the thumb and pointer fingers of your left hand around your right wrist. Gently but firmly squeeze the area between the base of your hand and the bony protuberances of your wrist. Now comes the fun part: while squeezing with your left hand, flop your right hand back and forth and from side to side. Remember, you’re squeezing your wrist so that you can isolate the movement to your hand and fingers. Move only your hand and fingers, not your forearm.

Extended puppy pose. Laura explained that this pose is a gentle way to open the shoulders and upper back.

https://www.yogajournal.com/poses/extended-puppy-pose

Child’s pose. This pose helps with tightness in the lower back and hips, which is common when we spend a lot of time sitting.

https://www.yogajournal.com/poses/child-s-pose

Not every pose works for everyone, of course. Try out the one(s) that interest you, and, if you have your own Rx to loosen tight “stitching muscles,” share your tips in the comment section below.

In the meantime, Namaste, y’all.

 

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2019 February SOTM

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Hi Everyone —

This year, NJNA SOTM Group has elected to do the ANG SOTM Mystery Project.  Thirteen of us gathered on February 9 to stitch this month’s installment.  This is quite exciting as the directions allow quite a bit of leeway even within a given colorway.  A number of us have deviated from the designers’ colorways so that’s exciting too!

Four of us are up to date after Saturday:

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A few of us are just starting and are in different states of progress:

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Dee hit a major milestone on “A Different View” by completing her last hexagon.  Now onto the small squares and beads!

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Hexagons Complete!  Beautiful!

Diane is finishing up the border on Autumn Kaleidoscope by Lorene Salt.

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Almost done!  Diane expects to be able to start the Mystery next month!

It was a bright, sunny day so we had plenty of light to stitch by.  Thanks to all who brought the wonderful assortments of dessert!

Cheers, Rosie

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

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

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