Melitastitches4fun's Blog

Exploring Woodlawn’s 60th Annual Needlework Exhibit 2023
March 7, 2023, 5:09 pm
Filed under: General comments, Woodlawn Needlework Exhibition

Bill and I made it to Woodlawn early this year. The main exhibit has a little over 400 pieces. One lady said they will be placing photos of the pieces in an online exhibit (probably in mid-April) but another thought it was too cost prohibitive based on the number who paid to see it last year and how much the professional photographer charged. Hopefully, they do; and so, I am going to limit the photos I show in hopes you support them online. My photos did not turn out great this year anyway – no close ups allowed (enlarging blurred them) and the light was bright in the windows casting shadows. A good number of them are above eye level making photos long distance anyway.

I found out more about the couch that you can see on Woodlawn’s website. It’s all Nancy B’s original design, and took her 20 years to complete (during the 70-90s). She’s in her 80s now. It must be on Penelope canvas because there is Petite point (small stitches for the motifs) and Gros point (large stitches for the background). It got our vote for the People’s Choice award. Her scenes are amazing front and back! Even the pattern incorporated into the background is interesting (but was impossible to photograph).

Three people (Patti Lynn T, Mary L, and Louise W) stitched and entered my design Overdyed Spools which I taught at the EGA Mid-Atlantic Regional Fall meeting in 2021. It uses an overdyed thread of their choice. Patti Lynn replaced the center spools for a nametag and placed it on a bag. Mary added a black inner border for pop and Louise added beads. I’ve see quite a number of the finished pieces from a variety of EGA chapters and am so glad people are enjoying the piece and making it their own. In fact, I’ll be joining a joint meeting of the EGA chapters Susquehanna/Molly Pitcher Stitchers this coming weekend. Sherri G is teaching it and I will discuss several pieces of mine that manipulated overdyed threads.

The original pieces by other people (which I won’t show without permission) were quite amazing. The surface embroidery of snowflakes captured in negative and positive space by Tina T was stunning. Ekaterina S’s Snowy Evening was stitched on artist’s canvas (docents said she was new to this country and didn’t know what “canvas” meant). Hers was originally placed in the “canvaswork multi-stitch” category but later must have been switched to “surface embroidery” because artist’s canvas is not a countable ground. Her piece titled Autumn is on the same artist’s canvas and is stunning with mist appearing to float up into the hills of green, yellow, and red trees.

I recognized quite a few designs and can name the designer (google will find their websites): Royal Kimono by Toni Gerdes, American Beauty by DebBee’s Design, 3 versions of Stratigraphy by Jennifer Riefenberg (ANG Stitch of the Month 2021), 2 versions of Long Time Gone Stitching by Ann-Marie Anderson-Mayes of Beautiful Stitches), Fibonacci Swirls by Olivia Hartshorn (Needle Pointers Mar/Apr 2022), Star of Stitches (Stitch of the Month 2020), Winter Logs and Serenity by Kathy Rees, Anasazi Dream/Song/Spirit by Carole Lake, Stacked Rectangles by Susan Hoekstra, Gordian Knot by Rachel Atkinson (past ANG Correspondence Course), Pyramids by Wendy Moore, 2 versions of Circles of Life by Lorraine Salt, Woven Ribbons (May/June 1999 Needlepoint Now magazine), Candles Bright by Mary Knapp, Patchwork Evergreen by Janet Casey. There are even a few more I’ve seen but I’m not sure of the designer.

I hope my Main Line Stitchers select Fibonacci Swirls next year. Sue C did a lovely job selecting her own threads.

Linda M of ANG Main Line Stitchers stitched Rainbow Butterflies (a Laurel Burch canvas) for a chapter program discussion of selecting threads for a painted canvas last year and I was thrilled to see it in the exhibit! Congratulations to Linda on a blue ribbon for the Stratigraphy she stitched with threads selected from her stash.

Cecilia, one of the members of ANG Main Line Stitchers, recently contacted me about potential stitches for The Plague Doctor (a full length robed piece). So, I was surprised to see a different version by Stephanie St.C appear at Woodlawn. Cecilia shared the story behind these pieces (wiki it for the details) but that pointed thing is a mask. A Google search reveals its popularity is widespread.

The number of blackwork pieces were more than I remember from last year and they were all amazing. Abigail’s Sampler by Claudia K is impressive because it is reversible and framed on a stand so you can see both sides. The Flower Basket by Michael Ann B is so crisp and bright with the gold outlines. Save the Stitches by Cheryl W is a sampler of all different (130+) patterns intertwined with hints of a rosy-purple adding more interest throughout the piece. It is designed by Liz Almond. And, German Sampler 1661 by Sally P hangs like a large bellpull consisting of band after band of various blackwork patterns. I really am hard pressed to select my favorite in this category but the complexity of the large number of interlocking patterns seen in Save the Stitches edged out the others.

The Japanese Embroidery is beautiful but my favorite is Weeping Cherry by Mary Louise S because of the gentleness of the colors and falling leaves.

Not as much goldwork on exhibit as in past years but a simple and elegant blue ribbon winner of goldwork by Alison K called Queen Anne’s Lace gets my vote for favorite goldwork piece.

Samplers range in variety as usual from traditional to more modern and my featured sampler is by Linda M from NJ Needle Artists who puts a lot of effort into supporting Woodlawn. Congrats to Linda for a Blue Ribbon with Thanksgiving Sampler.

Cross-stitch was not forgotten this year. The geometrics (both designed by Ink Circles), Circular Lights by Jill B and Tangled Fire by C Tobias are beautiful. You can practically smell the Blue Hydrangeas by Lauren B. Bravery by Sumira O is a huge lion head mounted on a shield with a sword piercing his head on a diamond background. But the shading obtained by Tiffany in A Mother’s Love Sepia Elephants (designed by Carolyn Thornton) is lovely and despite being much smaller than the lion, I am partial to elephants.

I wish I could go through all the categories but there is so much diversity, I’d never get back to stitching!

The EGA Constellation chapter and Oatlands chapter celebrated their 50th and 40th anniversaries while the ANG Shenandoah Valley celebrated their 20th anniversary with quite a prolific and diverse collection of needlework. Congratulations to all 3 chapters! I couldn’t tell which pieces were with each chapter but my 3 selections are Asymmetrical Copper by Jeff Kulick (love this colorway; instructions are in the Nov/December 2020 issue of Needle Pointers magazine), Ruby Razzle Dazzle by Ann Strite-Kurz (so intense looking and instructions are in my stash), and a saying that about sums it all up (designer unkown; perhaps a Victorian motto).

My 1,001st Post is: Night Owl Visits Woodlawn

With my last post, WordPress informed me that I have posted 1,000 times! Wow, that’s a lot but I’ve been doing this since 2010. So, I was trying to decide what my 1,001 post would be. I’ve been stitching on projects that I don’t want share until they are done (Step 6 of the EGA Master Craftsman Canvas program and pieces for future Needle Pointers magazine articles).

However, I am preparing to head to south to see the 60th Annual Woodlawn Needlework Show. I found the list of all the entrants where they include the award winners ( and where you can see photos of the special award winners including a couch (!) by Nancy Buckley, Birch Forest-French Alps by Norma Campbell’s (I love her pieces), Oklahoma Gothic by Darci Lenker (my husband looked at these online and thought this one was a photo!), and Cray Cray Bird by Barbara Levy (a member of ANG NJ Needle Artists/NJNA) to name a couple. The Woodlawn Needlepoint Show runs the whole month of March in Alexandria, VA (closed Tuesdays). There are a little over 400 judged entries this year (up 100 pieces compared to last year), special exhibits ( including 3 EGA/ANG chapters celebrating milestone anniversaries, and a variety of programs ( including a couple virtual.

Well, my Night Owls flew south hitching a ride with other members of NJNA and was awarded Second Place in the Original Design category. I did share this piece back in August. It is my original design from Step 5 of the EGA Master Craftsman Canvas program ( The wings are appliqued in place.

I will report more after I see the show but wanted to remind everyone that the 60th Woodlawn Needlework Show has started and is well worth the trip. Even exploring the website offers some opportunities and eye catching pieces.

February 25, 2023, 10:36 am
Filed under: Baskets, General comments

A few members of my ANG Main Line Stitchers chapter had a class to make a basket last Saturday. Only one of us had made baskets with Karen before, so we made this beginner style basket called Cathead’s Basket and was woven with reed. I didn’t add a handle because I am just going to place a lid on top with the Circles design (2008 ANG Stitch of the Month) we’re stitching as a chapter project.

I could use a wood stain on the basket but probably won’t because the white will look better with my blue Circles top. Karen has some lovely designs at

What’s the Point and Magifest!
January 27, 2023, 11:07 pm
Filed under: General comments, Needlepoint Shops, What's the Point

Top billing should be Magifest but this is a needlepoint blog! We drove out Tuesday to avoid snow/rain on Wednesday and break up the 7.5 hour drive to Columbus, OH into 2 legs to be sure we wouldn’t miss any of Bill’s 3-day magic convention (which I attend too-I am his assistant and a mentalist-no not a mental case). What with stops to stretch legs and lunch, we took 9 hours. Wednesday morningĀ  looked like it was going to get bad but I think we drove out of it.

We stayed near enough to the hotel where we’d stayed in 2010 for my first ANG Seminar (Bill was with me then too) that we knew to go to the North Market. Great spot.

These Magicians are night owls! Thursday’s events started at 5:00 pm and ended at 11 pm. That gave us time during the day so we could shop a little. And, I dropped Bill at Half Price Books and I went to What’s the Point and joined 6 ladies for a Stitch-in for about 2 hours! Karen was advising them on painted canvases. Some had less experience than others and Karen watched over them all. Very nice store. I picked up a notions bag and a small clear bag maybe to hold some magic that we’ll be getting at the dealer tables. I enjoyed dropping in and chatting with them.

Except for the hours, this is quite a bit like a needlepoint seminar. There are tables set up to sit and share their passion between lectures. People congregate in the bar and lobby. This event has been going on for years! Lots of first timers and they support the youth with special events. There must be over 750 people here. Two performers said 1,000 but I think that’s an exaggeration.

2022 Year in Review, A Last Finish, and a Look Ahead
January 1, 2023, 1:12 pm
Filed under: General comments

It’s been a busier than usual year with about 30 needlepoint stitched and/or finally finished pieces and several explorations into various fiber arts discussed in 93 posts with a little over 8,500 visitors having stopped by my blog. Thanks again for taking time to check in and especially to those who commented. I appreciate it. Connecting with others is my goal and I have done that through this blog but also by getting back full swing to in person events.

A few of the ANG New Jersey Needle Artists (NJNA) members who are too far apart to meet in person started meeting on Zoom once a month to stitch on Kurdy Biggs projects. Several members finished their pieces and I am far from done with Secret Window but we really enjoyed our sessions. By having my monthly Stitch-in with members of ANG Main Line Stitchers (MLS), I finally finished Orchid and Bamboo (JP canvas). The church where we meet is working out well – great lighting and we can spread out. A few new members joined and it was a great opportunity to get to know them better.

The NJ Needle Fest was a fun 2-day event this year with stitching, shopping, and rooming with Buff. Our table was full with 8 MLS members. I was a big winner each day getting the certificates for registration to the Summer Getaway in Radnor (near Philly) which I will go to in 2023 and Christmas in Williamsburg which I went to in December 2022 with Buff who had won it last year (more about that later).

One of our MLS members, Stephanie [who is also the Board President of the Media Arts Council (MAC) in Media PA] along with Judy of MAC, started the Needlework and Textile Guild of Media. It is drawing in a dozen or more fiber artists with a wide range of interests each month (second Tuesday of the month at 7 pm). We’ve had demos and hands on take home challenges for English paper piecing, stitching on paper/magnolia leaves, tracing designs onto canvas, visible mending, I cord, and more. Very enjoyable and inspiring. The members really enjoyed stitching on a magnolia leaf which I had learned at EGA’s Mid-Atlantic Regional meeting from Catherine Jordan in her Nature’s Palette class. I joined EGA’s Friends of Fiber Forum earlier this month and will see what that brings across my path. I do love learning new things.

Speaking of MAC, our in person exhibit of Orna Willis pieces in July was a big hit – we had a nice turn out for the opening and we mingled and had a lovely evening. Our chapter contributed 13 pieces to the exhibit – all Orna’s designs of course. Wearing her earrings that I stitched always starts a conversation!

The ANG 50th Anniversary Seminar was certainly memorable for many reasons. My classes with Jennifer Riefenberg (on photographing needlepoint, Kathy Rees and Dawn Donnelly were great and I finished both Mesa Triangle and Blue Hills within a month of returning home. I enjoyed meeting Carolyn and her husband Bill at the banquet, have stayed in touch, and wrote an article about her adaptation, My Neighbor’s Backyard, which is coming out in Needle Pointers Jan/Feb 2023. The President’s Award for A Spring Sampler was a big surprise (watch for more exciting news about this piece in 2023). And, Crescent Journey was announced as the ANG 2023 Stitch of the Month! The Beach colorway I stitched won a 2nd Place Ribbon at Woodlawn this year.

One of the intriguing features of Crescent Journey is that the different colorways look so different. On the top left is my water color design I started from and below it is the Bright colorway which is the original stitched piece (I should have used a lighter blue around the crescents like I had painted). The alternate colorways are Linda’s Neutral colorway (center top), Lisa’s Lavender colorway (top right), my Beach colorway (center bottom), and Kristen’s Beach at Night stitched on black canvas (bottom right). So much credit goes to Linda, Lisa, and Kristen from MLS who stitched such stunning alternate colorways and lent me their pieces for about 9 months so far! You must be an ANG member ( to get the monthly free instructions starting January 3, 2023. Only a Kreinik and silk are needed to start stitching in January. So, if finding Trebizond takes a little longer, don’t worry!

In November, the ANG Central NJ chapter (CJC) invited me to join them because they will be stitching Festive Fireworks (from Needle Pointers July 2017) and Crescent Journey in 2023! I recently joined the ANG Keystone chapter in PA to show them the 5 colorways of Crescent Journey – great to see them again – I was a member for several years. And, Crescent Journey will travel twice to NJNA in January. Between NJNA and CJC, there are 30 members planning on stitching Crescent Journey. It is so much fun to see people discuss this design and am curious to see if people come up with more colorways.

At the Christmas in Williamsburg event, Crescent Journey generated a lot of interest and 3 people said they would join ANG (which they had not known existed) so they could stitch it. I looked up local chapters for them too. It was another nice event shared with Buff. I happened to sit with Cindy B from my EGA Overdyed Spools class and met new people including her friend Janet H. The silver classes were fun and gave me a break from stitching. Once Michele Arsenault can fire and polish them, she will send out what we did. I also ordered a ring for Bill that she is doing. I got the ring I picked out from her table as a Christmas present and will blog about that when everything arrives. The event is 4&1/2 days of stitching. We missed the first half day and left a day early – still plenty of stitching time. A wide variety of classes were offered but I resisted another stitching project.

Overdyed Spools has brought me into contact with lots of EGA members and chapters! Now it is a Petite Project and one of the many free projects available to all members of EGA. I had a lovely chance encounter with members of the EGA BC chapter who will be starting it in 2023. We just happened to be at Expressions in Needleart, a needlepoint store in Canandaigua, NY at the same time. I visited the EGA in Bucks County Chapter in PA and will be visiting the EGA Mollies and Susquehanna chapters in March 2023 (and probably will see Cindy B again) to discuss overdyed threads. Members of the chapters have been great about sending me photos of their finished pieces – one even made it into a clutch. Seen in this photo is also Rhode Rage by MLS member Heather G, Pretty Petite Fall by NJNA member Vicky Witterschein, and Favorite Medallion #1 by Harriet S (more on this below).

When I was home and not stitching (I do not stitch all day long!), I wrote up almost 20 needlepoint book reviews with lots more to get to over the coming years. I was able to draw diagrams for an EGA Petite Project which allowed Harriet S to fulfill one of her life long goals to bring pulled work designs by Hetsie van Wyk to the next generation. I contributed an article, assisted with diagrams and proofreading, wrote and stitched a stitch guide for a counted a piece for the Needle Pointers magazine. And, it was the year of “finishing” with a dozen ornaments (starting with the 4 bargello hearts), placing Framed Seven which is my second published piece from Needlepoint Now (March/April 2022) in a Sudberry Box, placing 6 small pieces from Cards and Needles by Orna Willis in 2 frames, constructed Corinthian Earrings by Orna Willis, Ginkgo Leaves was placed on a Vera Bradley bag, and an eyeglass case was lined. One stand up and several framed pieces I did have finished professionally.

A few pieces stitched this year still need finishing including Orchid and Bamboo and the Bird of Paradise and Bamboo which will be made into pillows by a professional, my design of Lady Sybil which will be framed with other pieces designed by Gay Ann Rogers after I stitch one more black and white design I have in mind to make 6 pieces in total, Variations of a Florentine design which I want to make into an eyeglass case for me, Blue Hills which will be framed professionally, and I will probably frame Floral Fantasy myself.

My stitching plans for 2023 are to send Night Owl to Woodlawn and finish Finnegan (for new great nephew), keep stitching along with monthly MLS projects (Circles and From Dawn to Dusk), continue working on 3-Way Autumn Leaves (Toni Gerdes/CJC workshop), finish EGA Step 6 Master Craftsman Canvas Program, start an EGA Correspondence Course regarding painting canvases with Laura Smith, start Imperial Topaz by Sue Reed (upcoming MLS counted project) and start Rainbow Butterfly by Danji for discussion at MLS meetings. Somehow, I need to find time to work on 6 pieces I have started as far back as 2011 and through 2019. I also have threads purchased for 7 others. Maybe I should try to stitch all day long! If I can just say no to new projects for 2023, maybe I can catch up with these older pieces.

I am looking forward to a weaving class coming up in January (weather permitting) and my first choice classes at the EGA Seminar in Boston in the summer, Pomegranate Heart with Melinda Sherbring and Understanding Color Relationships: Luster and Luminosity with Patricia Goaley.

Hopefully, our 2023 is filled with lots of new stitching adventures! Enjoy!!

Seashell Ornament

Thanks to stitch suggestions from Susan Hoekstra in a Seminar Color class in 2019 and a thread from Rosie at NJ Needle Fest in 2021, I finished stitching this Seashell ornament. Fast forward to 2022 when I won fabric pieces as a door prize at Linda’s Quilt Guild Show. There are 19 pieces 5&1/2″ squares all different but coordinated. I narrowed the choices for the backing down to 6 and let my husband pick the fabric to coordinate with the seashell.

I did my cutting and ironing of the fabric and fusing web onto Skirtex as previously described.

On the canvas, I see areas that appear raised and want to accentuate them. So, I spent time cutting and tacking felt into the vertical areas along the bottom left and the larger upper right area. One layer of felt on the outer 2 vertical areas, two in center 2 vertical areas, and two in the upper right area.

Then, I attached the padded canvas to another piece of Skirtex in the unpadded areas to make the padded areas raised.

I tacked the edging back using invisible thread (not the lacing technique).

I didn’t have any cording I liked. So, I went into my stash and found Vineyard Silk Shimmer S-515 Toffee which is brown to match the back, frames the seashell nicely, and has a little gold sparkle. The skein was already cut into 38.5″ lengths. So, I thought I’d need 11″ without a hanger. The instructions for the Kreinik Custom Corder say to start with 3x what you need. Tension can vary ending length.

By tying together 2 lengths for one large loop and 2 for the other, I got 16″ final twisted cord which even allows for a hanging loop. Between the Kreinik written instructions and YouTube video, I made the cord and hopefully I got enough twist.

With more invisible thread and Wonder Clips to hold the back and front together, I attached the twisted cord between the two layers.

Plenty of time to clean up the dining room table before Christmas!

Ornament Blitz

Well, I channeled Cleo, of Busy Lizzy, a professional finisher, who works on multiple ornaments simultaneously. I saw her in her workroom during a Zoom meeting working on at least 6 ornaments. I have all the supplies on my dining room table but am working on a tray table in the living room going step by step. My husband is very tolerant of the mess. One more odd shaped ornament after these and then I will clear the table for Christmas.

Step 1. Make copies of the ornaments at 100 & 135%. Two diamonds are the same size. The Winter Sleigh is a painted canvas by Alice Peterson that ANG Main Line Stitchers discussed using 2 stitch guides in 2019 just before the shut down, the 2 large diamonds are by Kurdy Biggs from Needlepoint Now November/December 2015 issue that was a 2018 project with ANG Keystone Garden chapter that I finished in 2019, and the small diamond is by Vicky Witterschein which was stitched during a Zoom class in 2021 with my EGA Brandywine Chapter.

Step 2. Cut out paper templates and cut ornaments out of canvas allowing about a half-inch larger than the design.

Step 3. Using the larger of the 2 templates, trace and cut out fabric backs. All will get the new silver fabric and was an opportunity to use my Karen Kay Buckley micro serrated scissors (which stops edges from fraying). The right tool for the job helps.

Step 4. Cut the Skirtex and fusible web slightly smaller than front design for the fabric backing.

Step 5. Iron the fabric backing onto the Skirtex with fusible web (like that better than glue-much neater-as long as I make fusible web smaller than the smallest side).

Step 6. Using the exactly sized template, cut a piece of magazine board.

Step 7. For the sleigh, I cut 4 layers of felt smaller than the magazine board to make it puffy, tacked the felt in place, placed the magazine board on top of the felt. There are 2 layers of felt on the 3 diamond ones.

Step 8. I found my Wonder Clips and used them to hold the folded-over canvas while I laced the canvas side to side with invisible thread. One spool has 2,200 yards. I’ll never need another!

Step 9. Attach hanger for the 3 diamonds. I used a Kreinik #16 Braid which I tied into the felt to start and finish but run it up through the canvas and back down right in the center. Very easy! I am reminded of a Brian Regan joke sarcastically saying “you’re breaking some new ground there, Copernicus”. It’s probably not a new way to add a hanger but I can’t recall seeing it suggested anywhere.

Step 10. Get my Thimble Pack out because my index and middle fingers only made it through 2 ornaments. Using a small Crewel needle pushing through Skirtex and sometimes magazine board was tough on my fingers!

Step 11. I sewed a cord on the edge for the sleigh simultaneously with the backing but cord is not needed on the others. The others look fine with just raw edge I guess because the design has some open canvas. I’m very happy with the results and see improvements with each one. Reminds of the old adage, “Practice makes perfect”. I still prefer to spends the hours stitching.

Step 11. Hang and enjoy the ornaments!!

Framed Sevens Displayed

In order for Framed Sevens to fill in the 7.5″ x 7.5″ visible design area in Carol’s Fancywork Box by Sudberry House (Item #99021), I filled in the surrounding area with the T stitch using DMC #5 Pearl 310 Black. It fit exactly with 9 stitched and 2 empty canvas threads on each side without blocking of any kind. I’m using the glass to cover it.

Framed Sevens was published in Needlepoint Now (March/April 2022) and a thread kit is available from Colour Complements:

Ginkgo Leaves Stitched and Finished

The Lee canvas (design size 8.5″ x 3.75), BR67, Ginkgo Leaves, was easy and fun to stitch. The Gloriana Duchess Silk threads I got from Busy Lizzy were great to work with – so soft. I mixed in some sparkly threads on the edges of the leaves and in the patterns of four leaves.

Patterns are from a variety of sources including Desert Island Vol 1 and 2 by Carole Lake and Michael Boren, Lone Star’s Grab-n-Go Stitches, Needlepoint Dictionary of Stitches by Susan Sturgeon Roberts, and The Needlepoint Book by Jo Ippolito Christensen.

Patterns in the top row from left to right are from: Desert Island, Vol 1, pg 29; The Needlepoint Book, Byzantine #1; Needlepoint Dictionary of Stitches, Carl; and Lone Star, pg 50.

Patterns in the bottom row from left to right are from: Lone Star, pg 37; Lone Star, pg 53; Desert Sand, Vol 2, pg 30; and The Needlepoint Book, Byzantine #2.

Basketweave with Pepper Pot Silk, Cream filled in the background.

I found a Vera Bradley bag online that has a lovely interior fabric and good pockets.

The front of the bag had a large enough area to apply the canvas. I cut out the design leaving 9 canvas threads on each edge (1/2″). I cut a piece of ultrasuede allowing a 1″ border on each side. Then I cut the window out to fit the design exactly. The piece of vinyl is about 4 canvas threads larger than the design area and rests on top of the design without being attached in any way. A little Aileens fabric glue attached the ultrasuede to the outer edge of the canvas not covered by the vinyl (waited 2 hours), more glue to attach the ultrasuede to the bag (waited 2 hours), and glue again to place the black trim on the outer edge. Thanks to Jacqui C for the trim suggestion – it really makes a difference although from a distance you probably can’t see black on black. But up close you can. Also thanks to Jacqui for telling me there is such a thing as fabric glue! I was going to use E6000. This was so much easier and faster than ornament finishing!

For those of you super observant people who noticed a piece of wood sticking out from underneath the bag (bottom right corner of photo), the bag came with straps on the bottom. They said it was for a yoga mat but it holds my Elan lap stand! I wouldn’t “travel” with it there but for going back and forth to class this bag will hold the stand, my charger, light, travel supply bag, bottle of water, and perhaps a small project bag.

Postscript: I realized months later that I put it into the purse upside down from how I stitched it! Oh well.

Fiber on a Whim at Expressions in NeedleArt

Last Saturday I went to Expressions in Needle Art in Canandaigua, NY. Lori has a wonderful collection of threads and yarns for stitchers and knitters. Lots of counted instructions and painted canvases.

First, I got talking with the 5 ladies from Endicott/Endwell, NY who had arrived almost the same time as I did. They were with the EGA B.C. Stitchers chapter. And, they will be stitching my Overdyed Spools in January! That was fun to find out. We exchanged information and I look forward to hearing from them next year.

Then, we got to exploring the store. I found an overdyed cotton thread by Fiber on a Whim. Pretty but I did resist them.

I don’t consider the 2 booklets that I picked up as “Books in My Library” because they are more project oriented. That is especially true for Vienna Hearts by Sue Lentz Needlework (1998/1999). I have a piece of interconnected hearts that I need to redo and write up. These are much larger than mine and I liked the patterns Sue choose.

The other booklet, That’s Not Needlepoint (It’s Inspired Art Created with Your Needle) is by dede Ogden (2011) which are now represented by Fleur de Paris, Inc. It’s not intended to be complete charts or diagrams to finish various painted canvases but to offer suggestions for types of elements found in seascapes. The first canvas discussed is Seahorse Spyglass 18073 and is still available (and so is a stitch guide by Tony Minieri). Other canvases discussed are still available from a variety of sources including Undersea Fish 1373, Glass Aquarium Tropicals Green Fish 18015, Glass Aquarium Tropicals Blue Fish 18034, Undersea Garden 1378, Seahorse Pillow 18056, and Enchanted Mermaid Dream 18050. The Casalgudi stitch is a new one and quite interesting. I’ve read the section several times in the past week to understand it. The center of the Orchid (which I have been putting off because I haven’t found the right stitch) may be why this stitch is calling to me. I’ll give it a try. The Railway Stitch makes a good background stitch. Sue has an interesting Bead Cup Stitch and shows how to expand an overlapping cross stitch to fit fluctuations in the width of seaweed.

The store walls had a bunch of stitched samples. I spotted the Textured Treasures design, From Dusk to Dawn, that we are stitching at ANG Main Line Stitchers chapter. I’m doing a group of three too but it will be a different three designs and in a different colorway than displayed.

In fact, that was the piece I had taken on the road to stitch. The outer boders of straight Gobelin stitches were easy.