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.
Twisted Stitches in Albuquerque NM has Lois Kerschner’s Kits for sale. The other night we were so lucky to have had the pleasure of listening to Lois. She has created some beautiful landscapes. Now, though retired from teaching, Lois spoke to us about Perspectives in Stitching. She explained how to achieve these looks with different stitches, colors and techniques. This along with our previous programs with Toni Gerdes and Ann Strite-Kurz are some of the best reasons to join NJNA – we are having too much fun with more to come !!
We are all jealous of our own Cathryn – she will be soon vacationing in fabulous Hilton Head AKA paradise. Of course right near by is a wonderful store – Needlepoint Junction. Can’t wait to see her vacation “souvenirs” !
Stitch By Stitch has some great items for a road trip/vacation – Grab and Go Bundles. Numerous ones to choose from be it soda cans, coffee or our shoe fetish !
Not to be out done – Needlepoint .com also has a bundle “But First Brunch” It comes with canvas, stitch guide and thread – you have to provide your own mimosa !!
They also have MollyBead Necklaces. What a great stitchers gift ! Each necklace includes a pendant thread cutter, needle threader, eyeglass holder, and decorative pendant. Average length of necklace is 18″.
Sale Sale Sale – if you like Rainbow Gallery’s Grandeur, Ridgewood Needlepoint is marking it down to make room for a different line of threads. Get it while it lasts.
Need a unique Christmas idea – how about a Santa Hat with someone’s name on it ?!?!? Stitch By Stitch in NY has them from Pepperberry and they will personalize them !
FOMO ALERT !! BOGO Needleminder Sale ! Judy Tasch has them on sale with the code BOGO21 while they last. Check out her other items on the web site (yup – cute shoes !) https://judytasch.com
Over Achiever Award !! Look closely at this picture – that background is stunning and the color is so rich – IT’S ALL BEADS !! Magnificent !! Great job Sherry
Gay Ann Rogers is doing SPRING CLEANING For the next several Sunday’s at 8 AM Calif Time she will be releasing kits and patterns for sale. Limited numbers so you need to be there early like on Black Friday !! www.GayAnnRogers.com
Our April meeting is going to be extremely interesting !!!! We are having Lois Kerschner and she is going to speak about achieving the illusion of depth in your stitching. How using thread types, stitch sizes, colors etc can help make things look close or further away. What a great technique for landscape canvases, rooms and so many other’s ! Of course you need to be a member for this AND to be able to do David McCaskill’s Dolphin Topiary canvas thru this guild. This class will be done over the following 2 months of chapter meetings.
Eye Candy has announced that they will be including a stitch guide from now on with 5 canvases to start. They may be older items that are in your stash. If you already have them and want the stitch guide she will be glad to send it to you, just email her and ask for it. EyeCandy Needleart Catalog
As I am sure you know, it’s tough to get finishing back. We have all brought needlepoint to a new level – a good thing !! But if you need a gift – Eye Candy again has a solution. Self finishing items. I had no idea they had these options. They make great looking gifts and are a quick stitch – best of all you can finish it yourself.
The “2 Needle Chicks” shop has closed. They plan on continuing doing business online only in the future BUT don’t worry Illinois, your not losing a LNS !! “Little Stitch Shop” has taken over the store. Check out their web site for news of a Grand Opening Little Stitch Shop
If you have not seen Treenway Silks you are missing an amazing line of threads and ribbons. They now have a limited edition series of ribbons inspired by spring leaves and the seaside. Treenway is donating a minimum of 10% of their sales on these to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. They have been making this donation since 2017 to hopefully find a cure. Treenway Silks – Silk Threads and Yarns
part of the 65 Roses collection
Bestitched Needlepoint Shop has a new club that is about to start – A Christmas Train – if you like embellishing your canvas, this is for you ! There are 10 very cute cars to the train and each comes with a stitch guide. They also have virtual support if you need help. It has so much going on you can’t be bored !! Clubs & Series – BeStitched Needlepoint (bestitchedneedlepointshop.com)
So if you stitch with a group and of course you all chat, then you need to go to other subjects than needlepoint at times (there is more to life than needlepoint though I need to say that quietly!) At the Stitching Fox store they have made a list of what their clients are binging on. Are you watching these too ???
Something to Talk About
Great British Baking Show
FOMO Alert !! The ladies I stitch with (and I am just as guilty !!) have HAD TO HAVE canvases from Kate Dickerson’s “Here’s Looking At Shoe” collection. One is prettier than the next and she seems to be adding new ones. They are 18 mesh and approx 5 X 6 in size (and I will not tell you how far we went to get some of them – yikes !)
I get to see how many people are looking at this blog and where they are from. I am amazed how far and wide we are being read. We extend the invitation to join in our fun and if you have a topic or suggestion you want to hear about, please comment. Of course we would love for you to join our guild or any of the ANG guild’s and participate in all the projects that are offered, virtual tours of shops, manufacturers and the access to so many wonderful instructors and designers. It is never boring !!!
Fun, fun, fun – we have a new workshop you can sign up for by Vicky Witterschein of the Edwardian Needle. Pretti Petite Watering Can is 3.5 X 2.5 so it should be a fast item. The interesting part is you learn how to needle felt along with ribbon stitches, french knots, van dyke and a cute bee to finish it off with. Please let Ellen Briggs (ebriggs782 @aol.com) know if you are interested. The workshop is $35 plus shipping of $8.95.
Cyberpointers has several lovely projects that you can sign up for. The newest one I saw on their web site is Tumbling Stripes by Marilyn Owen, led by Gretchen Janesak Description: This appealing counted canvas design is great fun to stitch – no boredom allowed because each stripe in the section is a different stitch! You can download the pattern for free or order the kit for $51. There are 3 colorways Red White and Blue – Mauve & Green – Coral & Silver
Needlefest – It’s now scheduled for August 28th and they have moved it to a larger venue with outdoor spaces and much larger shopping area to allow for ample social distancing if need be. The venue is still easily accessible from Routes 287 and 78.
FOMO ALERT !! If you want a floor light (whether you need it or not!) there is a new Mighty Bright floor light out there that is also a magnifier BUT it has 3 different settings for brightness AND a unique option to adjust the LED output from warm white eye-care light, to extra bright blue-white light. Tool-free assembly and a touch-activated power button, making it as easy to set up as it is to use. https://www.fleurdeparis.com/product/rechargeable-led-floor-light-and-magnifier-lamp/
Pantone has come out with the new color of the year !!! ULTIMATE GREY (someone I know’s favorite color !) Rainbow Gallery is happy to help with an array of wonderful threads to keep you in style.
Stitchers Garden in Fayetteville NY is closing their doors. Everything is about to go to 50% off and they will be closed by April 17th. After that they are having a Yard Sale which will include furniture and fixtures !!
M’s Canvas House is no longer going to carry Planet Earth 6 ply silk thread along with Felicity’s Garden thread. Until it’s gone her entire stock is 50% off.
Woodlawn Exhibit items – Last Call !! If your going to send anything down with Linda M you need to contact her and arrange to meet – time is running out !!
To start out this week we have to welcome a new member to our group, Helen D. Helen has known many of us for quite some time, glad you decided to join in the fun !!
Another of our members, Melita, along with a group that she stitches with, donated a canvas they all had a hand in stitching to a coffee shop where they met frequently. Since that place closed the canvas was moved to another store and is prominently displayed. What a wonderful gift to the store. Hope all the ladies can stitch again in person soon.
Speaking of stitching in person, ANG Seminar has decided to go virtual again this year. They were hesitant to have an in person event with registration way down and with many COVID variant strains creating spikes in various parts of the nation. They felt this was the safest way to go. They will be putting more information out soon but promise to have a robust program thru out the coming year.
Needlefest is going forward with their event in person on August 28th. This is put on by a wonderful shop, Needleworker’s Delight in Metuchen and is being held at the Embassy Suites in Berkeley Heights NJ. They are also having an Easter Sale – 25% off everything !! They have begun to have needlepoint trunk shows (as you probably already know from those FB Live events) and in the coming months you can look forward to the Princess and Me along with a trunk show of Accouterments needle minders – because we just can’t have enough of them !
FOMO Alert – can you have too many scissors??? I think not ! Check these Cotton Candy Scissors out. They come in the color Lavender (and we know who loves all things purple ) You can spend hours looking at this web site !! ttp://www.embroidery.com/family.ec?efid=4146
Rainbow Gallery has a new thread line coming – Silk Lame Plus – a Silk Lame type ribbon
DebBee’s Designs has a Kit of the Month and this month is a cute “Rainy Day” though the 3 prior ones are adorable also. Each kit is 4X4 and contains everything for $40.(includes shipping) For another $10 you can get a kit to finish it yourself. The other nice thing is you can buy just one or how ever many you like, your not committed to a club. April – Rainy Day – DebBee’s Designs
A favorite shop in Houston TX is Chaparral Needle Works and there is a new owner – Heidi Henrichs – she has been a customer, employee and now owner of this shop that has been in business since 1962 when 5 friends opened it’s doors. She is lining up a lot of events and we all wish her much success !
And finally we have something I had to read 3 times to be sure I got it right !!! Diversions Needlepoint in CO on 4/1 put out that they have come up with a new class to offer inspired by Goat Yoga – stitching with Pygmy goats and Mary Lou. “Imaging how relaxing it will be to stitch a Tony Minieri stitch-guided piece with a cutie-patootie goat perched on one’s shoulder!” Other advantages are an ample supply of mohair for stitching beards, Orts are encouraged to be thrown on the floor for “recycling”, the goats have been trained to offer stitch and thread advice along with technical help as they know the difference between Cashmere and Turkey Work stitches and they are trained frame weights among other advantages. Sheer ma-a-a-a-a-a-a-gic
Once again it is time to show off our Stitch-of-the-Month projects. Our group is still meeting on Zoom, which provides us with some interaction while we stitch, but we are all missing the in-person experience. We continue to hope that we will be able to gather together soon.
Those in the group who are working on Stratigraphy have incorporated a third stitch into the design.
Barbara is moving ahead with Petite Arabesque.
Linda added the center petals to Ruby Razzle Dazzle and Noelle has started her version. Nancy is making progress but is too shy to share a picture yet!
Our newest NJNA member, Melita, has joined our SOTM group and is working on ANG’s 2020 Stitch-of-the-Month project – Star by Kathy Rees. Her colors are delicious!
We are looking forward to our April gathering to see more progress on everyone’s projects!
Have you read the new issue of Needle Pointers magazine? The cover of the March/April issue is by our NJNA member Melita G, A Tale of 2 Stitchers features Noelle D and there is a feature story about our donation to the Bernards Township Library. Come join in the fun at NJNA – we are always active in the community and have more upcoming events. April NJNA is having Lois Kerschner and she will be talking about “Achieving Perspective in Stitching”. There is always room for new members !!
Woodlawn entries will be transported from our chapter by Linda M – please make the arrangements soon.
Have you read the blog for Serendipity Needleworks in Alabama ? Ellen Johnson has plenty of advice and ideas to offer in her blog and web site but the item I have not found on any other blog so far is “What’s For Dinner” !! I have tried one of her recipe’s and it made my dinner last night a success.
I know one person at NJNA (and I am sure there are more) is a fan of Zecca !! Bedecked and Bedazzled has a new club featuring Karen Hennessey’s whimsical birds. Included in the price is tree display to show off your work.
For those of you that are Shelly Tribbey fans, one of our local NPS, Needleworker’s Delight, is going to have a trunk show of her designs. ND has been doing Face Book Live events with contests making many of us stuck to our computer screens on Sat evenings (you know who you are!) For those grandma’s, check out the Jack In The Boxes – just too cute ! ND is going to have more trunk shows in the future for needlepoint giving us all just what we needed, another place to shop.
Barbara’s Needlepoint in SD has a new website https://www.barbarasneedlepoint.com/ For a store so far away from the NJ Shore – she has a canvas we can all relate too – Saltwater Taffy. Makes you feel like summer really is coming this year.
FOMO ALERT – New tools from Clover. The macaron is not only a magnet but it sharpens and smooths your needle. They also have an interesting beading needle for embellishment.
Does everyone know we have a Face Book Page????? There is actually 2 with our name but one is no longer being used so the place to be on Face Book is “New Jersey Needle Artists”. Come join the fun as we are starting something new there – Work In Progress Wednesday’s. Everyone is invited to upload a picture of what they are working on each Wednesday. Ask a question, look for a stitch or just bask in the glory of everyone ooohing and aaahing at your work so far. We all love a good Show and Tell !!
Get your TV dinner and glass of wine ready – tonight is another needlepoint show starting at 6pm on Face Book courtesy of the lovely owners of Needleworker’s Delight in Metuchen NJ. They are once again putting up canvases for sale, one by one during their live event. On the side is a chat that you can claim that canvas as your own or ask a question. https://www.facebook.com/events/869382217187527
I have a correction from last week – The new store Needlepoint By The Bay is actually in Rhode Island. This makes it an even better road trip !!
One of our very favorite people is Trish Vine. You know her from those wonderful project bags she makes for our works of art. She recently moved and is in the process of unpacking BUT she is putting together a video tour of her “amazing new sewing space”. She has some new items and is updating the Pop up tray, Carry All case, Booklet Pouch and Needle Keeper. She also will be announcing a contest as soon as she gets the details together. Trish says that she will be at Needlefest this year ! We all look forward to seeing her.
Have you seen Raymond Crawford’s new web site? Home – Raymond Crawford Designs – needlepoint, where imagination lives! Very easy to navigate with nice clear pictures of his beautiful designs. The S’Mores and Berry Tart gives me cravings for summer time. If you watched New Stitch Monday by Stephanie at Ridgewood Needlepoint – she did his “Needlepoint” canvas, what a challenge !
Did you see all the contestants for the sweater contest going on at House of Needlepoint in Darien CT ? One was better than the next. Everyone must have had a fun time doing these as they had everything from the Grinch to Bernie Sanders sitting in a chair with his mittens. Can’t wait to see who is the winner as it was a hard choice.
The next meeting of NJNA – everyone will be Irish as it falls on St. Patrick’s Day ! Bring all things Irish to the meeting which this month will be a stitch in.
I read Brenda’s Blog today and she came up with an interesting gadget called a Graph Gripper. I have been doing a complicated background stitch and I’m referring back to the diagram often. This handy little gadget allows it to sit on my canvas so it’s easier to look at. Of course I had FOMO and it should be here in a day or so !! Thank you Brenda !!
Another favorite blog, The Chilly Hollow Needlepoint Adventure let us know that we have another new shop opening in our area. Needlepoint By The Bay is opening on 4/1 in East Greenwich CT – sounds like a spring road trip to me ! Thank you Jane !!!
If you like music and musical instruments have a look at Robbyn’s Nest Designs. Very interesting and rich colored canvases of instruments. They have lots of other subjects as well just as colorful and detailed but the instruments are eye catching.
So – how many ways can you use a belt canvas other than as a belt??? This week, everywhere I looked I saw another interesting idea. I read about someone using a belt canvas as the straps to a tote bag. Then you can have flip flops made with one as a friend of mind did. How about a tray made with one or 3 !! Wrap a fun hat for the sun or to hold your sun glasses. You can also have it framed and hang it over a doorway. A perfect stitch for traveling and using up stash. The uses seem to be endless ! Have you got one I didn’t think of? Comment and let me know !