Category Archives: Woodlawn

Woodlawn Drop-off 2023


On Wednesday, Mr. M and I headed down I-95 to Alexandria to drop off NJNA members’ needlework for the 60th Annual Needlework Show at Woodlawn. This trip was a bit different than those in the past – the weather cooperated (past years have seen us travel through torrential rain and even snow); we didn’t have to stop at the Mt. Laurel Starbucks as Melita was able to drop off her and the other Linda M’s pieces at our holiday luncheon earlier this year; and, we were able to get an appointment on Thursday instead of Saturday since Mr. M is now retired.

We woke up on Wednesday to a bit of snow on the ground, not an auspicious start for the trip. But the weather was dry and we did finally manage to see sun by the time we hit the Maryland border. We stopped in Catonsville at Matthews 1600 for lunch where I enjoyed a deconstructed brie flatbread (a small wheel of brie, cranberry-pear chutney, chopped pecans, and flatbread pieces). Fortunately, we did bring along a cooler bag so the brie will be enjoyed over the weekend.

We arrived at our hotel mid-afternoon with enough time to take a short nap (travel is so exhausting) and get some stitching done before heading out to dinner. We dined at a restaurant we found last year on our way back from the Williamsburg retreat – Old House Cosmopolitan Grill. Mr. M enjoyed Cordon Bleu while I had the Züricher Geschnetzeltes, accompanied by a white wine from Bosnia-Herzegovina. We did save room for dessert – Apfel Kuechle for the gentleman and Pistachio-Raspberry Cheesecake for the lady.

This morning we headed over to Woodlawn to submit the 27 pieces from 15 NJNA members. As always, the volunteers who staff the Exhibit were happy to see us and expressed their appreciation for our continued support of the fundraiser. The needlework filled the trunk of my Mazda 3!

Fortunately, our packaging system, which we’ve implemented over the last few years, proved to be effective in getting the pieces unloaded and ready for logging into the system. The volunteers were well-organized and ready for us – a large table was set aside for the pieces. Since we had so many, we did wind up using a second table.

The staff then carefully examined each piece and noted whether there were any nicks in the frames or any distortion in the canvas/linen. Each piece was then assigned a number, which will be the number you see in the Exhibit listing. Our numbers start at 204.

As we walked around the tables examining and logging the pieces, we did discuss the judging process. I was told that the judges see the pieces exactly as shown in the photos – placed on the tables. The judges do not see the back of the piece at all. They are also instructed to evaluate the stitching only – how the piece is finished, the condition of the finish, and whether the ground material has buckled are not considerations in the judging process. I thought that information was good to know.

We talked about buckling of ground material, whether due to the type of stitch used or some other factor such as humidity. It was recommended that pieces be laced to the mounting board rather than pinned; lacing allows for better control of how well the piece is mounted. I attended a workshop last October at which lacing was demonstrated. The speaker takes her pieces to the framer prior to lacing to select the framing molding. She determines the amount of the overhang for the molding as well as the distance from the edge of the stitching to the framing to calculate the size for her mounting board.

NJNA is known for bringing one piece stitched in various colorways. This year we had the 2021 ANG Stitch-of-the-Month, Stratigraphy by Jennifer Riefenberg. Although we only had three versions, they were all very different with one done in the original grays, one in browns, and one very colorful.

Way back when, our first multiple colorway entry was Michael Boren’s Frankie! which was a 2014 workshop submitted to Woodlawn in 2015. At that time, they were all showcased in one room on a single wall.

Since then, our multiple colorway submissions have been scattered throughout the Exhibit. I was told that the single wall treatment overwhelmed the visitors, and they did not stop to look at the differences in the colorways. Obviously, they were not stitchers! However, scattering the pieces throughout the Exhibit has allowed the organizers to use them as a scavenger hunt for children. The kids are told that there are X number of pieces that are the same and asked if they can find them. It sounds like fun; Mr. M and I always comment when we find similar pieces. This year they are going to try to hang all three Stratigraphy pieces together.

We were complimented on our packaging system and were told they wished other groups adopted the same standards. Whether it’s the best, I don’t dare comment. But we were able to unload the car, unpack the pieces, and have them evaluated/logged in under one hour!

Once we finished with the drop-off we headed over to Mount Vernon Inn Restaurant for a leisurely lunch and some browsing at the shop. Dinner tonight was at a restaurant that Melita and Bill found – The Warehouse. Tomorrow will be a sightseeing day (yes, there are still places in the area we haven’t visited) and we’ll head home on Saturday.

We’re looking forward to visiting the Exhibit in March. It opens on Wednesday, March 1, and runs through March 31. Hours are 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. every day except Tuesdays. Tickets can be purchased at the Woodlawn website. The café will be open for dining this year. We were tortured with the aroma of the cookies baking while we were there this morning!

I hope that you all have a chance to visit the Exhibit to see the fabulous needlework that is submitted. In addition, there are needlework demonstrations and other activities throughout the month of March.

I do want to thank all of the NJNA members who submitted pieces to this wonderful Exhibit. NJNA’s support of this Exhibit is truly appreciated.

Happy Stitching!


A Visit to Woodlawn and In Stitches


March turned out to be a very busy month but I wanted to visit the 59th Needlework show at Woodlawn since I had missed it last year. I made plans to do a day trip on Friday March 25th as it was the only day I could make it. Fortunately, it turned out to be a beautiful day and I had no problem getting there in time for my early afternoon timeslot. There were very few visitors which made it nice to browse but sad that all that work was not being seen and experienced. There were about 200 submitted pieces and another 100 in special exhibits. It is so inspiring to see all the different pieces, to notice multiple pieces of the same design, and to search out the NJNA pieces. I had an amazing time checking out all the pieces, seeing what I liked and didn’t like, and enjoying the display. I even met a 99-year old woman who was there with her 2 daughters – what fun to talk with her. I did not take any pictures to share; rather, I just spent the time exploring and examining. Nelly’s Needlers do an amazing job of displaying the needlework and organizing it for fun viewing.

I had planned to stop at In Stitches in Alexandria before going to Woodlawn but a minor car problem along the way delayed me so that I did not have time to go beforehand. I didn’t realize until I got there just after 3pm that they close at 3pm. While I was sitting in my car downloading a new audio book for the ride home, the owner Ellen came out to ask what I needed. I was honest and said I didn’t “need” anything but had been hoping to shop! Even though she had closed for the day, she invited me in to shop as she was busy doing some paperwork. How kind and helpful she was allowing me to browse and purchase what I had hoped to buy.

All around, it was a very successful day! I am so glad I made the time to visit both the exhibit and the shop even though it was a quick trip.

Woodlawn 59th Annual Needlework Show – 2022


March turned out to be an even busier month than I expected so this blog has been languishing in the “Draft” folder for a few weeks. Since today is the last day of the Woodlawn Needlework Show, it seemed appropriate to post it today.

Once again, Mr. M and I traveled down I-95 to Alexandria to visit the 59th Annual Needlework Show at Woodlawn & Frank Lloyd Wright’s Pope -Leighey House. We had a glorious day – a perfect Spring preview – for our travels. What a change from our trip in February during which I had to drive through torrential rains and cold!

Our new favorite place to stop for lunch is Matthew’s 1600 in Catonsville, MD. It is an easy drive off the highway and located near several needlework shops. I did not indulge this trip as my project backlog is staggering and I will be attending several Seminars and Workshops this year, which will add to the inventory.

The weather in Alexandria was definitely a harbinger of Spring with temperatures in the mid-50s. We stayed in Old Town Alexandria and were able to comfortably walk down King Street to The Warehouse for dinner, following up with dessert from Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams on our walk back to the hotel.

Our tickets for the Woodlawn Show were for 10:00 a.m. on Saturday. I was so happy I decided to reserve in the morning because Mother Nature sure had a nasty surprise waiting for us that day. Temperatures dropped more than 20 degrees overnight and a winter weather advisory was posted for the area. Yes, it actually snowed!

Fortunately, we were still able to view the Show although Woodlawn did close at Noon that day due to the icy conditions. With the timed tickets and the weather, there were only a few of us walking around and admiring the needlework, so it made for a very pleasant experience.

There are approximately 300 pieces on display this year as well as four special exhibits – From the Woodlawn Collections: Needlepoint of Martha Washington and Nelly Custis Lewis, Historic Samplers from Around the World and at Home, Needlework Connections, and Winchester Chapter of the Embroiderers’ Guild of America 10th Anniversary Exhibit. There were also four Virtual Programs and two In-Person Programs throughout the month.

NJNA members contributed 25 pieces to the Show – I am thrilled that we were able to support Woodlawn again this year despite only recently starting to meet again in person. I am also happy to report that our members received 13 ribbons – four First Place, two Second Place, three Third Place, and four Honorable Mention. One of our members, Barbara L., received Best in Show for her beautiful execution of Gay Ann Rogers’ Eleanor of Aquitaine and Ellen B.’s monogrammed pillow received a First Place in the Embroidery category, not a category we usually enter. All of the pieces are spectacular so I’m sure the judges had a difficult time deciding on the ribbons.

Woodlawn will be presenting a Virtual Show in April for those who were not able to attend in person. Since we will have a Chapter Meeting to showcase our members’ pieces (either July or August), I’m including photos of just a few pieces to whet your appetite!

Thank you to everyone who supported this year’s Show! We hope to have even more pieces for next year’s 60th Show.

Woodlawn 2021 – Drop-off

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The Annual Needlework Show in support of the Woodlawn & Pope-Leighey House in Alexandria, VA has become a tradition for New Jersey Needle Artists members. While several members exhibited at – and visited – the Show in the past, NJNA has been submitting needlework pieces as a group since 2015.

NJNA members rose to the occasion again this year despite the restrictions due to COVID and submitted 25 pieces to the 58th Annual Needlework Show. Since we haven’t been able to meet in-person this year, we had to come up with an alternative to our usual practice of collecting the pieces at our January meeting. Fortunately, our members are flexible and we gathered 23 framed pieces, one Christmas stocking, and a pillow before heading down the NJ Turnpike/I-95 on Friday. In years past this trip was made in February so weather was always unpredictable. Although we still traveled under gray skies and cooler temperatures than I would have liked, the trip down was smooth sailing.

While we usually look forward to this trip each year as a chance to get away, this year it was even more anticipated as we haven’t been able to do much traveling. Mr. M and I stopped for lunch in Catonsville, MD at our new “favorite” spot, Matthews 1600. We found this restaurant last year when our previous “go to” eatery in Ellicott City closed down. Matthews 1600 is located in a historic building (circa 1862) that started as the Terminal Hotel and was a station at the end of the line for the Frederick Road horse car line. The building was renovated in the early 2000s and reopened as Matthews 1600 in 2004. It has an extensive food menu and the appropriate beverage menu to appeal to Mr. M.

On Saturday, we headed to Woodlawn to begin the process of check-in. As a result of COVID, everyone who submitted pieces to the Show had to pre-register on-line and pay their entry fee directly. This really streamlined the process as I didn’t have to deal with individual checks/cash for the pieces. We were able to unwrap all of our pieces and place them on tables in the check-in room. The QR code on each Submission Form was scanned and an email was generated almost immediately indicating that the piece had been registered. The volunteers checking in our pieces also assigned each piece its own Show Number.

The volunteers who check in the Show pieces have developed a really efficient system; we were done and on our way in under an hour. In years past we would then head into DC or Old Town Alexandria to visit a museum. COVID restricted our ability to plan for a museum visit so we headed over to Mount Vernon and had lunch at the Mount Vernon Inn Restaurant.

The Needlework Show will be open from Sunday, May 2 through Monday, May 31 (except Tuesdays). Timed tickets are required and are available on the Woodlawn & Pope-Leighey House website. I encourage you to visit – the needlework is exquisite and it’s an easy trip to make. With the show held in May instead of March, the weather should be great. And I just learned that the Smithsonian Museums and the National Gallery of Art will be re-opening in mid-May, so I’m hoping I can book some tickets for the weekend we’re there.

Stay well and happy stitching!


NJNA at Woodlawn 2020


Hi Everyone —

During our August regular meeting on Zoom, we reviewed all of our Woodlawn entries, saw what prizes were won, and reviewed a few of the critiques.

It was too much to go into the meeting summary, so I thought I would try to capture the pieces in this quick (Ha!) blog post.

So here is a gallery of our first place pieces:

And the second place finishes:

And the third place pieces:

And the honorable mentions:

And last but not least, the rest of the NJNA entries:

Pretty spectacular representation, eh?  I hope even more of us will display next year!

Cheers, Rosie

NJNA At Woodlawn!


Hi Everyone —

Sue and I visited the Woodlawn exhibit today and saw all of the wonderful NJNA exhibits including three by Nancy Brighton.  We have a total of 30 pieces in the exhibit!  Many of you have already seen Melita’s wonderful write-up.  We were thrilled to see so many more pieces than last year.

There were many special pieces (most of original design) that expressed the theme of “Celebrating 100 Years of Women Expressing their Rights Through Craftmaking.”  Of these, we were especially enchanted by this piece:

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and by this special youth exhibit:

I voted for this piece as best in show:

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I loved the 3-D effect of the curtains!  You should be able to get a better (and bigger) picture by clicking on it.

Sue voted for a small ribbon embroidery piece because it was so delicate.

I hadn’t planned to say much more than that we were disappointed by how high some of the pieces were hung.  I couldn’t even read the sayings on some of the samplers.

It’s always a surprise when you go on the scavenger hunt at Woodlawn to find the pieces that you recognize!  So I didn’t want to spoil that surprise for all of you.  But given that the exhibit will be closed until further notice (and perhaps for good), I’ve decided to post pictures of our group’s entries and, where possible, to give you a sense of the surroundings.

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The Woodlawn Mansion!

After a quick stop at the shop and picking up our tickets, we were greeted in the parlor by Margaret’s amazing American flag — in a place of honor above the fireplace.

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The center hall was overflowing with beautiful pieces.  Sue spotted the beautiful tiger maple box that holds Sharon B’s embroidery.

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High, high above this box was Cathryn’s Waterlilies — so high I didn’t get a picture.  Sorry, Cathryn.

Across the hall, we discovered both Cathryn’s other piece and Nancy B’s wheelbarrow of flowers!

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This year the dining room was filled with past year entries from Nelly Needlers.  While these were real beauties — I loved this tray and wanted to include the picture for Ellen S.

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As we walked into the music room, Linda’s prizewinning sampler greeted us at the top of the door!

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The music room held the completed tapestry that some of us stitched on at the ANG National Seminar in Washington DC.  It is covered with plexiglass so my photo was awful.

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I loved this original piece and thought that it was perfectly displayed!

My Rooftops of Paris was displayed right next to the window in this room — it’s a little lopsided!

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These pieces were hung to catch the rays of the sun.  The one directly above my Paris is all beaded and wow does it sparkle in the sun!

As we took the steps to the second floor, we found my “Avenue of the Giants”.

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On a shelf at the curve of the stairs, we found this duck,  I had to take the picture from afar, so it’s a little cloudy, but I wanted to include it because all of the black lines (making it look like stained glass) were cut into the mat.  I thought Rob would be impressed!

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At the top of the stairs, Linda and Noelle’s Autumn Kaleidoscopes in the original colorway were hung on either side of the first bedroom door.  It was very interesting to see how different they looked because of their frame treatment!  (Apparently I didn’t take a picture — Sorry!)

Also in the hall were Noelle’s 2019 SOTM and Janet P’s Kaleidoscope.  Sorry about the reflection Noelle.  The purse was gorgeous too.

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The hall seemed to be the location of autumn colored pieces — and, once again, we found Diane B’s Kaleidoscope in the Halloween stairway!

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I also wanted to call Cathryn’s attention to the vase of Halloween candy flowers in the center.  I know this is a finishing technique that you have also used to good effect.

We had good representation in the Christmas bedroom as well.

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Sylvia’s Beautiful Beaded Tree

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Joan’s Star — It was displayed among other snow scenes!

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And here’s Cindy’s “Santa Peeking!”

The small center upstairs room is what Sue and I call the Needlepoint Room.  We were well-represented in this room.

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Jill’s Kaleidoscope is at the top and took a First Prize ribbon.  Ellen B’s Medallion is directly below.

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Sue C’s Kaleidoscope at the top and Cindy’s beautiful Mermaid at the bottom.  I think this was the ocean row!

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So much in this picture!  Melita’s piece is at the top left.  Another entry by Nancy B in the middle at the bottom.  Sylvia’s beautiful Kaleidoscope at the bottom of the right column.

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The small wall in this room boasted Ellen B’s Mermaid!

Remember that you can always enlarge a picture by clicking on it.

Sue and I decided to call the big bedroom at the top of the stairs the Colorful Room!  My Kaleidoscope and Janet P’s Disco Ball made it to this room.  I loved the piece above the fireplace.  Janet’s was hung all by itself on the closet door!

The room next to the Halloween stairs had several themes, but mostly I would call it the “Other” Holiday room!   Janice’s Kaleidoscope seemed to be group with Valentine items — appropriate for her Cherry and Chocolate colors.  (Although I think a Christmas item snuck in there too!)

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Sue C’s Hooray for the Red, White, and Blue was also displayed in this room, along with several armed service themed canvases.  Note the flag — the same design as Margaret’s, but not as nicely framed.

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I’m generally not too fond of Bargello, but I liked this piece in this room.

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Finally we came to the last bedroom, filled with lace — and Barbara L’s perfume line-up!

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I thought this next piece made an interesting birth sampler — very different.


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So, I know I missed more than a few and offer my apologies to all.  Rather than individual pictures, I wanted you to get a feel for the flow of the house and the more overall arrangement.  I hope you enjoy.

Before I go, Woodlawn was encouraging us to read “A Single Thread” by Tracy Chevalier.  Sue and I listened to it on the way down, while there, and on the way home.  We are enjoying it tremendously.  It is about a woman who learns needlepoint just so that she can stitch a kneeler for the cathedral.  Woodlawn featured these kneelers as a special exhibit that tied to the book.

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We will keep everyone informed about the return of our pieces.  It appears that Woodlawn may try to extend the exhibit into April — but I wouldn’t hold my breath right now.

Cheers, Rosie




Houston Seminar


August 15, 2019

Hi Everyone —

Greetings from Texas — we have eight NJNA members here this week so expect some great blog posts.

I’ll start by posting my SOTM piece finished through August!

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I have to agree with someone’s thought that it looks like a bunch of shape blots on a canvas!  Hard to imagine what will come next!

Sue and I flew to Houston on Tuesday because I have to help set up the Correspondence Course section of the exhibit.  Little did I expect that no one else was there to help (except the marvelous Sue C) with any of the distance learning exhibits and we ended up having to do all of them.  My gimpy leg was not much help!  We spent over four hours with unpacking and set-up.

Even with my bad leg, we managed to walk the perimeter of Texas multiple times!

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How’s this for a Texas-sized lazy river pool?  Plus our room has a view of Minute Maid Park, home of the Houston Astros.  Sue thinks she will take in Monday night’s game!

Classes started today.  I am enrolled in a fabulous class with Jennifer Riefenberg called “Winter Lights”.   It is a collection of candles — not a menorah, but the same number of candles.  Here’s my progress at the end of Day 1.

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Five of the nine candles are complete!  No spaghetti!

Tonight we had our opening Fiesta banquet dinner buffet with a live band and Texas brisket in multiple forms.  It gave me a chance to show off my special earrings!

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These scissor earrings were my souvenir from Woodlawn this year!

Cheers to all!


A Cold Day at Woodlawn


Hi Everyone —

As Linda alluded to in her earlier e-mail, a quartet of NJNA members visited Woodlawn today.  All of us were exhibiting so our admission was free!  HA!

As usual, Woodlawn was decked out in needlework glory albeit with fewer entries than past years.  We were allowed to take pictures and I took pictures of all of the NJNA pieces.  I think I’ll hold most of those pictures until later because it is always a fun surprise to turn the corner and discover your own piece in its Woodlawn location.

Here we are with OUR pieces:

Unfortunately, our SOTM Stars pieces were not hung together.  And we saw one Stars that was not from our group!  Similarly, we were disappointed that Andrea’s beautiful butterflies were not together.  And, we found three versions of Holiday Patches — only one was holiday-themed — and the casual observer would not have realized that they were the same.  Clearly a missed opportunity for Woodlawn.

We saw a stitched version of Beachcomber’s Booty — the Ann Strite-Kurz piece that is being offered by Needleworkers in mid-May.   It was more beautiful than any of us imagined.

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Beachcomber’s Booty — the background is a lovely shade of aqua that none of the photos has quite captured.  One of our group signed up for it on the spot!

Another item that we found fascinating was this sun/moon piece that I know at least one of our members has stitched.


Notice that the fillet is gold on the sun side and silver on the moon side!  Unusual, but apt treatment!

Of course we had lunch in the charming Nelly Needler’s cafe — Sue and I always do a turn around the exhibit, have lunch and compare notes, and then view it all again!  It was such a pleasure to have Ellen S and Janice M join us this year!

It is always a joy to meet so many other stitchers and to see some some amazing creations!  I hope you will have a chance to visit for yourself!

We stopped at Waste Knot in Arlington on the way down,  visited In Stitches in Alexandria today, and plan to stop at Hillside Needlepoint in Stevenson, MD on our way home tomorrow!   And, yes, the credit cards got a workout!

This is always one of my favorite needlepoint adventures of the year!





2019 Woodlawn Drop-off


Mr. M and I packed up the little Mazda 3 and set off on Friday. It’s actually quite remarkable how much can get stuffed into that car – we didn’t have an inch to spare!

Yes, we did manage to fit in some luggage.  And Mr. M didn’t have to travel with anything on his lap!

Our first stop was Starbucks in Mt. Laurel where we met Melita, who is also submitting a piece to Woodlawn so we added that to the inventory. Melita designs some fabulous pieces and blogs about her various projects at Melita Stitches 4 Fun. Be sure to check it out.

The rain eventually stopped as we were traveling through Maryland. We stopped for lunch at BJ’s Restaurant and Brewhouse in Laurel. I do have a deal with Mr. M – whenever possible we try out a brew pub for lunch on a stitching field trip. BJ’s is a chain that we’ve been to in the past so we knew what to expect. But the food is good (I had a bowl of excellent vegetarian lentil soup that was quite filling) and Mr. M enjoyed the beer.

After lunch we headed to The Waste Knot in Arlington to see the new shop. Last year Lori moved a few blocks from her Lee Highway location to a larger and much brighter shop on Glebe Road. She carries quite a lot of threads and beads along with all the canvases. I did purchase one canvas as well as needles and a couple of small magnets. I had to buy those because I had brought two projects to work on in the evening but forgot needles and magnets.  What a disaster that could have been!

The Waste Knot’s new location

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Ho Ho Ho from Strictly Christmas

We stayed at the Embassy Suites in Old Town Alexandria, right near the King Street Metro Station. We did make quite a sight as we unpacked a few pieces of luggage and then started carrying in all the needlework pieces.

On Saturday our appointment at Woodlawn was 10:00. In years past we’ve had a 9:00 appointment, in advance of the general public (well, the general stitching public) bringing their pieces in. This year was different – and was probably the most efficient one yet. We were met by Debra K. who is one of the co-chairs of the show and a member of Nelly’s Needlers. Instead of checking in at the front desk, we were led to the other wing for a separate check-in. For those who have been to the Exhibit, we were in the room that houses the Cafe.

They had several tables set up for us; Mr. M and I unpacked all of the pieces and lined them up. Only after all the pieces were unpacked (which itself took about 30 minutes) did Debra start the check-in. She processed the paperwork and examined every piece so that she could note the condition of each, including slight marks on frames, buckling of canvas, etc. Debra was very thorough in her examination and we talked quite a bit about finishing techniques. As we were entering the pieces many of the other volunteers came through and looked at our submittals. As was expected, there were a lot of comments about all the different colorways for Stars for a New Millennium; several people were trying to decide which colorway was their favorite. By the way, we have 9 versions of Stars in the Exhibit.

While we were checking in we did chat with some of the other volunteers. We learned that almost half of the pieces that had been entered were from first-time exhibitors, and there is a notable increase in the number of men who entered this year. I think that’s a great sign for the continuation of our craft!

All in all, the check-in process took 2 hours to get our 27 pieces (by 19 NJNA exhibitors) fully checked in. By that time we felt we deserved a nice lunch, so we headed back to Old Town to The Wharf on King Street where Mr. M enjoyed a shrimp po’boy and I had a lovely she-crab soup and side salad.

We had an early dinner reservation at the Mt. Vernon Inn that evening so we returned to the hotel and sat in the atrium where the lighting was perfect for me to stitch. I managed to get quite a bit of Herringbone Happening stitched.

Dinner was fabulous and I enjoyed a brie appetizer, a large salad with shrimp, and a slice of cherry pie. Mr. M had the turkey pot pie and apple pie. We also were very pleased with a Virginia wine. This was the first time we had been to this restaurant, although we had visited the estate in years past, but it won’t be our last time.

We traveled home on Sunday and made good time – at least we arrived back in NJ early enough to get settled before facing the work week.

We’ll be heading to the Exhibit in early March when Nora is home for Spring Recess. I’m looking forward to seeing all of our pieces! I hope you’ll consider heading to Woodlawn to see the exhibit. It is open the entire month of March (except Tuesdays). There are quite a few events in conjunction with the Exhibit, so be sure to check them here.

Happy Stitching!


A visit to the Needlework Exhibit at Woodlawn


Today Rosie and I went to Woodlawn as we have been doing for the past few years. We now have a system of going through the house once, having lunch in Nelly’s Cafe and then a second go around of the exhibit. At lunch we talk about what we have seen and what warrants a second visit. This year during our second trip around we picked our People’s Choice vote for a silk ribbon design that had special touches of embroidered felted wool small birds and tiny 3 D butterflies that had a shadow of the butterfly stitched behind it as well as all the beautiful silk ribbon flowers! We missed those details the first time around.

As usual we found some needlepoint counted designs that we particularly liked and wanted to know the designer. My job is to fill out a question sheet to be given to the stitcher requesting the name of the designer. Rosie’s job was expanded this year as photographs of rooms were permitted–not close ups where a design could be repeated by another stitcher without purchasing the design. So to entice you to come, here are a few room photos.

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An entry from Sue R and the silk embroidery with the butterflies!

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Joan S’s two ribbon-winning pieces were displayed on the same wall.

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Diane B’s and Barbara L’s SOTM along with Sue R’s second piece.


Two pieces by Andrea B as well as Cathryn C’s and Ellen B’s entries.

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Rosie’s two collages by Debbie Stiehler, Imari collage won a ribbon!

We did not get photos of all the entries from NJNA, hopefully there will be a later post including others.

What we always enjoy is trying to identify the designer of pieces that we see. This year we identified eighteen different designers whose work we have either stitched or are familiar with! See what spending time with NJNA members will do! This year several members, who had stitched former president of NJNA Susan Hoekstra’s Stitch of the Month design for ANG in 2016, exhibited their completed piece either framed or as a pillow. Unfortunately for those of us who find the different color ways as well as variations of the design a great study of both design effect and color relationships, these pieces were exhibited in several different rooms. Another two (that I counted) exhibitors stitched this design with a very different center. One was at eye level so that we could see the center was beaded and three dimensional. That was one of the question sheets I filled out, who had designed the center. It made for a very different piece!

I felt that in this year’s exhibit there were many more original designs than I have ever seen exhibited before! Several were by teachers but most were not (or at least I don’t believe they are designers!). This seems to me to be a good sign that needlework is expanding and more people are creating their own work.

Each year I come away inspired to stitch more and a plan of what I want to complete for exhibit next year! If you have not come, plan a day in March–not a Tuesday–to come see the beautiful pieces and be inspired! If you have not yet exhibited, consider exhibiting next year to inspire others in this great hobby!