My stitching life has been busy but happily so! I went a retreat organized by the Primitive Stichers Society (Facebook stitching group) in Colonial Williamsburg at the beginning of May - had a fabulous time!! It was my first stitching retreat but not my last I can tell you that for sure. I got to meet my cyber-stitching pal Cindy finally -we've corresponded and shared our love for stitching online for a few years now, plus I got to meet Faye of Carolina Stitcher, lots of other wonderful stitchers and some designers as well - Nan from Threadwork Primitives, Kathy Barrick from Carriage House Samplings fame, Lori Brechlin from Norforgotten Farm, and Elizabeth Talledo from Dames of the Needle. I felt so blessed to be able to go. We had a finishing class with Lori Brechlin and a punchneedle class with Kathy Barrick. I must say that punchneedle was harder to learn than I thought it would be but with more practice I think I will be fine. I have to master it as I have patterns and kits in my stash that I need to make!
Here's a few photos from the retreat.......
Here we are finally meeting after communicating online for 3 years -
my cyber-stitching pal Cindy and me
|Our stitching table of friends - what a great group!|
|Designer Kathy Barrick (left) and me - a thrill to meet one of|
my all-time favorite designers!
|There's a wonderful store called Yankee Candle Village that was near my hotel in Williamsburg. It had a fabulous Christmas store in it with several rooms of Dept 56 village displays - absolutely gorgeous! |
|They even have a Downton Abbey buiding now with the Dowager Countess -|
it's a good thing I don't have room for all this but it sure was fun to see it.
And speaking of stash....they had a fabulous vendor mall at the retreat and we all shopped 'til we dropped. I spent a bundle but enjoyed every minute of it having never been to a stitching event like this before.
|I went a little crazy at the vendor mall but love all of it!|
Here was the exchange gift I made for the retreat exchange that was held on the last evening of the retreat, plus a photo of the gift I received. I stitched Stacy Nash's "Spotted Hare Pinkeep Drum" and I made some carrot pins out of Fimo clay to go with the pincushion. I got a great gift - a primitive-style pincushion mounted onto a lovely fabric-covered box. I think everyone who came had a great time and I highly recommend it if you are part of the PSS Facebook group and get a chance to attend. Next year's event will be held in Atlanta, not sure if I'll be able to go (a long way for this Arizona gal) but I do intend to try to go as often as I can.
In April I made a quilted stitching bag for myself to take to the retreat. I found this great travel-themed fabric a year or so ago and it worked out great - I also made some coordinating project bags to use with the bag - it has pockets to store my portable light, magnetic board and stand, and I made a little travel tag to hold my 'business' card as well. I'm very happy with it.
My quilted stitching bag with travel-themed fabric
Inside of bag with covered bottom insert
and pockets all around
Coordinating project bags
I've had a few finishes lately. Below is the first project from the Colonial Gatherings stitching club I joined this year. I haven't decided if I want to get it framed or make something with it. This piece gave me a lot of headaches...nothing wrong with the pattern but I made so many mistakes it seemed like I was constantly frogging. GRRRRR One problem I have is I like to use 36-ct linen but I find that using only 1 thread of cotton over-dyes doesn't give me the coverage I like, but 2 strands sometimes can be a little hard to fit in and tough to frog if you have to. I really prefer one strand of silk on 36-ct but don't always want to do conversions from cottons to silks. I started with the flowers on this project and after getting about halfway done with them I was unhappy with the coverage and I ended up going back over the flowers with an additional half-stitch of floss to get the coverage I wanted. But in the end I'm happy with this project.
"Hurt Not the Earth" by Paulette Stewart of Plum Street Samplers
I also picked up some framing recently....now don't laugh but I stitched this sampler 25 years ago!! Yes, it's sat rolled up in tissue paper since 1990. It even has my maiden initials as I stitched it right before I got married. I don't know why I kept putting off getting it framed...somehow it kept getting pushed to the bottom of the pile yet it turned out much nicer than I thought it would. I stitched this using Ginny Thompson flower thread which is kind of like wool thread - it was popular for awhile in the late 80's. Funny story....my framer called me and said she found a couple missing stitches in the border and she wanted to know if I still had the chart so she could see what color thread to use. Well I didn't have the chart but I still had the leftover threads even after all these years so I took them to her and she slipped in the missing stitches for me.
Finally framed! "Ella's Sampler" from Pat Rogers
Here is one of my current WIPs - it's "Hannah's Brownstone" by The Scarlett House. The house took a long time to stitch with all the bricks and details but I'm loving this project.
That's all for today...I have a couple other items I'll save for my next post.