Friday, October 09, 2015

*NEW* Pincushion Street

I don’t remember where I saw the quote, perhaps it was printed on a journal cover or some such item, but as soon as I saw it, I knew it needed to be stitched up in a sampler... “Come in the evening or come in the morning. Come when you’re looked for or come without warning.”

Reminds me of former days when we weren’t all addicted to our electronic devices and Sunday afternoons were reserved for popping in unannounced at a friends’ house. I absolutely love the surprise of someone showing up on my doorstep without calling ahead because it tells me that they are comfortable enough with our relationship to know they will be welcomed with open arms, no matter what.

Stitch Count: 251 x 140
Stitched with one thread over two on R&R Reproductions’ 35ct. Classic Homespun

Using thread from The Gentle Art: Brethren Blue(2 skeins), Bayberry(2 skeins), Apple Cider, Picnic Basket, Caramel Corn

And from Weeks Dye Works: Grasshopper, Red Rocks

Conversion to DMC available on request.

The frame was thrifted, then re-finished by me.

This design is now available in my etsy shop, and will be going out to my distributors and the shops on my automatic shipments list soon. If you prefer to bypass etsy and order directly through me, you can send me an email:

Friday, October 02, 2015


Please forgive me as I very slowly try to catch up on posting photos from our very lazy summer. I put all of these photos and stories here as much for my own record as for your (hopefully) enjoyment.

There were so many tasks that fell to the wayside over the Summer, photo taking and blogging being one of them. As the weather turns cooler and I have more time in-doors, I am going to try to get caught up. My goal being the end of October for the posts to start being published as they happened once again.

If you don't subscribe to this blog ("Follow by Email" sign-up can be found toward the top of my sidebar), you won't necessarily know that there have been back-dated posts published and if you want to catch up, you'll have to manually scroll down to see if anything new has been added (I'm all the way up to the month of August now- woo hoo!). If you do subscribe, you'll get all of the new posts in your email in-box which you can ignore or read, as you choose.

Meanwhile, please enjoy this picture of our happy, healthy, and very green front yard, thanks to the return of rain and a dose of fertilizer...

Friday, September 11, 2015

*NEW* Victoria's Garden (a Faithfully Reproduced Antique Sampler)

This may have been the most nail-biting purchase of an antique sampler in my experience. I had spotted it for sale by auction online, but the closing time was on Sunday morning during our usual church time. No problem, I thought, that’s what smart phones are for, right? I felt very naughty, checking the auction during the sermon, but I wanted this sampler SO very badly. As the teaching was wrapping up, I realized with horror that he was going to finish preaching before the auction’s end, and I was due back on the stage for the closing song. So with a few quickly jotted instructions to the Farmboy, I left the strategy of bidding in his hands. I honestly don’t know how I made it through that last song. I must have been playing my guitar and singing on auto-pilot. I most certainly wasn’t mindfully in the spirit of the song. It was all I could do to not watch my advocate sitting there in the pew, trying to subtly bid on that auction. And finally… a huge smile and a thumbs up. And aren’t we all glad I broke the rules of propriety for this gorgeous piece?

Unsigned and undated, all I know from this sampler is that it is from England, and based on the materials and overall look of the motifs, I guess to be from the mid-1800’s. I therefore dubbed it “Victoria’s Garden”. If you want to personalize this piece with your name and date using your favorite alphabet, there’s room up at the top left. I wonder if the original stitcher intended to do so herself? The overall layout is so well thought out that leaving that space there must have been intentional.

Stitch Count: 247 x 191
Model stitched with one thread over two
on R&R Reproductions’ 28ct. Winter Brew

Using flosses from Classic Colorworks: Pebble Beach, Roasted Chestnut

And from The Gentle Art: Old Brick, Country Redwood (2 skeins), Woodrose, Pomegranate, Caramel Corn, Endive (4 skeins)

And from Weeks Dye Works: Light Khaki, Goldenrod, Dove, Tin Roof, Dirt Road, Collards, Pink Sand

Conversion to DMC available on request.

Frame on the original (top) is an antique.
Frame on the model (bottom) by Valley House Primitives.

This design is now available in my etsy shop, and will be going out to my distributors and the shops on my automatic shipments list soon. If you prefer to bypass etsy and order directly through me, you can send me an email:

Friday, August 21, 2015

Now Available!

My two newest designs, Morning Star and Forget Me Not are now available for purchase in my etsy shop! Thank you for your patience, and for taking part in the online wholesale show through your needlework shops. By all accounts, it sounds like it was a success. This industry can take all the boosts of energy it can get, and you all came through. Thank you!

Monday, August 10, 2015

Enter August

The month of August is usually very photo-deficient around here. Everything is so hot and dry and the angles of light are so glaring and uninspiring. Life continues unabated, but is not very well documented. Thank goodness for my smart phone, which is now on my person wherever I go, because I'm afraid otherwise, there wouldn't be much to show for the passing of this month.
Speed-Dry :: Three Pears :: Purple Sky :: Best Friends :: Proud of her Mama :: Mighty Farmkids :: Adventuring :: She Loves Pink :: Summer Forest :: Starting Him Young :: Almost Ripe :: Cousins are the Best :: Greenhouse Window

Thursday, August 06, 2015

New Designs Coming Soon!

Norden's Fall Needlework Show is starting up on Monday! It is a wholesale only show that hopefully your favorite needlework shop has signed up for. All designs released during the show dates of August 10th - 19th are exclusive to Norden Crafts. That means you won't be able to order them from me or anyone else except a registered needlework shop until after the show closes. I have two designs that they'll be releasing for me.

They are... (drumroll please)...

"Forget Me Not"
This is a re-release of sorts. It was originally designed for The Gift of Stitching magazine back in the Spring of 2012. Anyone that subscribed to the magazine had access to the design, but it has never been officially distributed or available to my direct customers until now.

Stitch Count: 100 x 57
Model stitched with one thread over two on Weeks Dye Works’ 40ct. Tin Roof

Using threads from Weeks Dye Works: 1193 Guacamole, 1230 Havana, 2104 Deep Sea, 2201 Moss, 2219 Whiskey, 3960 Teal Frost

Additional Materials: Cotton fabric for backing, Cluny Lace Ric Rac in “Antique Caramel” from the Victorian Motto Sampler Shoppe, and Crushed Walnut shells for filler.

"Morning Star"
I once saw an antique sampler with a portion of a Christmas hymn that piqued my interest, having never heard the words before. After a little searching I found the lyrics and used some favorite parts of them to set the structure of this sampler.

The words were written by Reginald Heber (1783-1826), who was an English clergyman, traveler, and poet. He is best known today for his hymn “Holy, Holy, Holy, Lord God Almighty”.

The words are set to the tune “Morning Star”, composed by James Proctor Harding (1850-1911), who was an English organist and choir master.

Stitch Count: 301 x 129

Model stitched on Lakeside 32ct. Vintage Sand Dune
Mostly cross-stitched with one thread over two, also including eyelet stitch and French knots.

Using flosses from Classic Colorworks: Barn Door, Honeycomb
And from The Gentle Art: 0350 Mulberry, 7041 Apple Cider, 7080 Endive, 7082 Piney Woods

Frame by Valley House Primitives.

I'll put another announcement on my blog when these designs are available in my etsy shop. But for now, I encourage you to contact your favorite needlework shop and request it through them! This online show is a new experiment and I'm hoping it does well for Norden Crafts and for the shops that invest their time in shopping this sale. We are a hard-working industry and have to be supportive of each other if we want to continue to grow and have great new designs and materials available regularly.

For a list of retailers signed up to purchase from the show, click HERE.

Monday, July 27, 2015


Sun Blaze :: New-Old Sampler :: Forage :: New-Old Pillows (made from antique kilim rugs) :: Cousins, all in a Row :: Summer Rain :: Seed :: First Fan Club :: Did I Break Child Labor Laws? :: After the Braid

Monday, July 20, 2015

*NEW* Take Heart

Recently, there was a charmingly naïve, skinny and tall, really worn and primitive band sampler that I nearly won on ebay. It was one of those days when I totally could have been present to place the winning bid, but completely spaced the timing and therefore lost the auction. I was so sad, and irritated with myself, because I had planned to share it with you all, not to mention the fact that I really wanted to hang it on my wall! Because I now couldn’t offer it as a pattern in good conscience, I chose a completely different verse, different colors, different motifs, but tried to capture the same feeling and dimensions. It was a super quick little sampler to stitch up, taking me only four days, and the size is perfect for hanging on an end wall or the side of a cupboard.

The verse is a favorite of mine from the Bible, found in John 16:33, the full verse reads, “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”

Stitch Count: 55 x 256
Model stitched with one thread over two on R&R Reproductions’ 32ct. Star’s Hollow Blend
Using Classic Colorworks': Cocoa Bean, Hazelnut, Honeycomb, Olive Branch, Used Brick, Weeping Willow

This design is now available in my etsy shop, and will be going out to my distributors and the shops on my automatic shipments list soon. If you prefer to bypass etsy and order directly through me, you can send me an email:

Sunday, July 19, 2015

Camping Out... Almost

I don't know which one had the idea first, but sometime during the beginning hours of the day, the plan started to take shape. And the excitement grew as the day progressed. They were going to camp out in the yard all by themselves!

Daddy helped pitch the tent and I offered suggestions as to what they might want to take with them.

As the hour grew near, they were practically giddy with excitement.

Sleeping bags were unrolled and pillows fluffed.
Games were packed as well as flashlights and snacks, and they had permission to stay up as late as they wanted. They were in absolute kid heaven.
I must confess that I had very strong doubts that it would last. But they carried onward with such momentum, that I wondered if perhaps I might be wrong.
Tucked in at last, hugs and kisses given, prayers said, I left them to their planned fun time.
They weren't exactly right next to the house, but this is their territory and they seemed quite comfortable with the situation.
I think I had been sitting in my evening stitching chair for maybe ten minutes when the front door opened and two little people walked in, pillows in arms stating that it was "too quiet" and they just "couldn't fall asleep". The Daddy made them march right back out to the tent for another try, which lasted about another 45 minutes. During which, they were apparently both in tears.

Maybe next summer...