Melitastitches4fun's Blog


Annette’s Bouquet with Deborah Mitek, Day 1

This 2-day class is Annette’s Bouquet with Deborah Mitek. Thankfully, the room is warmer.

Deborah puts together a lovely kit organized by flower and stems for specific flowers!

We discussed a good portion of the project but again the amount of stitching does not seem like a lot. I did get one Daisy done!



Rings on Her Fingers with Kay Stanis filling in for Allison Cole

Day 3 was spent with Kay Stanis filling in for Allison Cole who couldn’t attend from Australia due to coronavirus although she did Zoom in to say Hello. The one-day class, Ring on Her Fingers, is an introduction to stumpwork. It’s supposed to be made into a ring but I’m going to place it on a canvas next to a butterfly with a stem and a few leaves. The kit came in a lovely in a nice small compact box.

I practiced the buttonhole stitch over cake wire (Australian cake wire is apparently thinner than here in the US) on the far left one and then finished 3 petals and started a fourth. There will be 5 petals.

I’m not going to make it into a ring to wear. Instead, I am going to stitch a butterfly and place the flower next to and I still have to stitch the butterfly. I wanted to be sure what color flower I’d get. There were 5 options. I got the one I wanted. It will go in the guest bedroom with the other purple pieces!



Overdyed Thread Notebook Class with Gail Stafford, Day 2

Today we stitched tied stitches, eyelets, and leaf stitches. We got 9 stitches in each day. I love the contrast with the solid colors. And, my favorite effect was the Giant Rice (1st column on the bottom left) with the dark solid DMC floss on the bottom and the overdyed thread on top.

I have plenty of thread left and half the canvas to work up a sampler. Maybe a bookmark.

It blows my mind how time flies in class. It should seem like time is frozen because it’s so cold in the hotel. I remembered that it was cold last time when we were here (2014) for ANG’s Seminar. And, I brought a heavier sweater. But, the cold seems to be getting in my bones this time combined with sitting on a chair that isn’t my comfy stitching chair and I am getting stiff and my back isn’t feeling great. Going to wear my long pants tomorrow. Enough about the cold! Got to get organized for my next class.



EGA Seminar 2021 and Overdyed Thread Notebook Class with Gail Stafford

Five days of classes started yesterday with a 2-day class being taught by Gail Stafford on overdyed threads. It’s a notebook class and we are practicing with different weight threads and stitches to see how the overdyed colors move. My take away is that smaller stitches result in a more subtle color shift than the larger stitches. Got to get to Day 2 class!



NJ Needle Fest and Dowager Countess, Violet Crawley, Step 2 by Gay Ann Rogers

Seven members of the ANG Main Line Stitchers chapter shared a table at NJ Needle Fest today. I missed it the year they, Needleworkers Delight, took over running the event from Susan Hoekstra and moved out of the church in Bedminster (2019) and we all missed it last year due to coronavirus. So, it’s been awhile for me but the location, the Embassy Suites in Berkley, NJ was nice. Breakfast, lunch, and snacks were included. Door prizes (I didn’t win). And, vendors (I just can’t buy anything else with so much waiting for me to stitch). I finished the light purple Oriental stitch filling today. Only the very first part of Step 2. The day flew by!



Interpreting Color Theory for Needlework with Susan Hoekstra

One of my ANG Virtual Seminar classes is a color theory class presented by Susan Hoekstra.

We went through the theory Susan presented in her booklet during 3 videos. In the meantime, we submitted a painted canvas and answered questions about the focal point and how we wanted to achieve contrast among the various design elements. Then, during the live online meetings, we discussed how to achieve those goals.

I see the horizontal rings first & the large white/very light yellow area seems to me to be the next important area. The rings imply roundness/curved surface but the white/yellow area looks flat even though I know it should be rounded too. They share some of the same part of the shell & should be curved. 


Based on the discussion, I started with Vineyard Silk Classic C-184 Butter Pecan for the laid thread and am using 2 strands of Splendor S818 (3 strands) which is a perfect match. 
Initially, I was staggering the diagonal couching which wasn’t really giving the rounded effect (see photo “Staggered Couching”). Then, I accidentally lined up two diagonal stitches on the same diagonal line and knew instantly that was giving a better effect (in the same photo, look at the bottom right two stitches).

Staggered Couching

It’s very possible that Susan meant for the couching to be vertical stitches moving diagonally but I like the extra diagonal effect of making the stitches diagonal as well. I’m really feeling the roundness even in such a small space (see photo “Diagonal Couching”). 

I’ve been through my stash and have threads for all areas except for the dark purple 4×4 areas. So, I sent a request to members of my two chapters attending NJ Needlefest tomorrow to find 36-48″ of a DMC #8 or 12 that might work. One possibility has already found. Stitchers are wonderful people!



ANG Virtual Seminar
August 24, 2021, 6:11 pm
Filed under: ANG Seminar 2021, Secret Window by Kurdy Biggs

The American Needlepoint Guild (ANG) is holding their Seminar virtually again this year. Jessica T sent these gifts to all attendees and a lovely letter thanking everyone for attending virtually this year and inviting us to join what surely must be an in-person Seminar to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of ANG as an organization. The orange thread drops on the ring came from Barefoot Needleart. Very thoughtful surprise!

My 2 classes are both underway. A notebook class with Susan Hoekstra on color theory and the other with Kurdy Biggs called Secret Window, a 5-panel piece to fit in a specially made wooden frame.



Violet, Dowager Countess of Grantham, Step 1
August 21, 2021, 3:01 pm
Filed under: Gay Ann Roger's, Dowager Countess, Other People's Pieces

The Dowager Countess of Grantham, Violet, is the fourth in the series of Downton Abbey inspired pieces by Gay Ann Rogers.

Another month, another in-person Stitch-in, and another ANG Main Line Stitchers chapter member, Sally, hosted 6 members at her house and 2 members attended via Zoom. Wonderful lunch and so great getting together. Lots of chatting.

I forgot to post my progress on the black ‘stones’ and ‘chains’between the 2 Stitch-ins. Today, I stitched the border using Watercolours 006 Amethyst. There was more brown than I preferred for this piece. So, I cut most of it out!

The border completes Step 1.



Pretty Petites, Needle Felting, Watering Can with Vicky Witterschein

The ANG New Jersey Needle Artists had the second 2-hour class on Zoom Wednesday night. Vicky Witterschein had us needle felting first because the rest of the stitching went on top of the felt except for the small bee.

I added a third strip of felt along the bottom to see if I could create depth which doesn’t appear to have added much.

We were given a big piece of foam to protect our fingers because it just gets stabbed into place with the needle which has barbs on it to catch the fiber. I didn’t get jabbed once even when I didn’t use the foam because I didn’t put my fingers below the canvas where I was jabbing! Perhaps if the canvas hadn’t been on bars and I was holding the canvas instead of the bars, the foam would be practical.

I love learning a new technique although I don’t think it’ll be anything I have to do again. But, it certainly is not anything I would avoid!

Using clear beading thread, the bee has a large x to hold him in place along with a straight stitch below the head. Everyone was done with the project at the end of the second class which was great!



Secret Window Kit by Kurdy Biggs
August 8, 2021, 7:02 pm
Filed under: ANG Seminar 2021, Secret Window by Kurdy Biggs

The ANG Seminar went virtual again this year due to coronavirus. I signed up for Secret Window by Kurdy Biggs.

Isn’t the kit wonderful! I never used Treenway silk threads before. There is Tranquility described as a fine cord, Harmony is a silk floss, and Zen Shin which is 20/2 spun silk (looks like #8 perle). One of my ANG Main Line Stitchers chapter members got a kit from Debbie Rowley for her ANG Seminar class and she’s using the same thread line but she also got Serenity.

Isn’t the frame interesting! She gives finishing instructions and makes it sound doable. But, this will take quite some time to finish. So, I don’t have to think about that now.