Monday, October 31, 2011

Saturday Night

 Yes, we are officially addicted to hanging out together and stitching!!!  Saturday night found us at Jayne's house for a night of stitching and laughing....good for what ails ya!!!  Aren't Jayne's decorations darling!!!!  If I saw these in a store I think I would do a backflip! 
 Follow along for some of the sights of the evening........
 Pat bought one of the beautiful stitch wallets from Natalia of Stitch 4 Joy.  These are total works of art in and of themselves!  So gorgeous!
 Here are some of Jayne's finished Halloween pieces.  Totally fab!!!!

 Above is an ornament Jayne is working on.  It is from the Just Cross Stitch Christmas ornament preview issue from this past summer.
 Linda was kind enough to bring two newly framed  pieces for show and tell!  Wow on both counts!!!
 Below is an amazingly gorgeous and beautiful and intricate piece of stitching that Barb did for Jayne's birthday.  Absolutely stunning!
 Below is an absolute charmer from With Thy Needle and Thread that Barb stitched and finished.  Perfect in every way!
 Below another of Jayne's Halloween ornaments......please note if the designers of Birds of a Feather are reading this (fat chance!); could you please, please, pretty please start designing again and release all of your old charts!!!!!!!!!!! 

 Above is Brenda's new Ott Lite!!!  It is battery operated, very light and I love the design on it!!!
 Carolyn brought some show and tell too!!!!  Isn't this just amazing???  Gorgeous!
 Cathy is working on this BBD piece (it is finished as I type this) for  a class she is going to do where we will finish the box that goes with it.  It is really great; I was not all hepped up about it until I saw the piece in person and now I am HEPPED UP!
 As Halloween draws to a close........hope you had a day full of fun and treats!!!!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Lucky again

Last Sunday was another lucky day....impromptu stitching with friends!  Here are some of the sights.  Teresa and Barb both have these Gingher scissors which I love!  They remind me of the styles of the early 1970's!  I forgot the name of them....I am sure someone can chime in with that.  Note that they have matching scissor fobs!!!

Above is Karin's work on the pieces of Casting a Spell by BBD.  Love!

Pat needed a consultation regarding fib/fab for a sampler project she is about to embark on.  This is a favorite group activity.

We gave Teresa a lot of guff and teasing about her meticulous arrangement of her class materials for the Dear Jane quilt.  She admits that organizing the pattern was at least half the fun of the project!!!  Click HERE for information about this quilt. 

Karin has many amazing and breathtaking framed pieces of her stitching.  This is one fine example of beautiful stitching by Karin and beautiful framing by Jill Rensel.  This is a Carriage House Samplings chart.

Above is one of my thousands of works in progress.  I am loving this stitch!!!!

Above is Linda's progress on the current BBD Loose Feathers chart, Summer.  Gorgeous!
Patti is working on this amazing Birds of a Feather chart.  I can't remember the name; but it is so cool.  It is a reindeer sampler.  I think I might have to hop on her bandwagon.

Sorry about the poor picture quality....but I still had to post this picture even though it did not really turn out that well.  This is Karin's Mary Peacock sampler which hangs in her entryway.  Can you imagine walking in the door to be greeted by this masterpiece on a daily basis!  I would just go out and come in all day!  This is one of the most beautiful samplers ever on the Planet Earth!   And I am one of the luckiest people on the planet to have such wonderful stitching friends!  Lucky again!!!

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Quick post here as with this change in weather I am just so tired!  I did want to stop by to say thank you for all of the wonderful comments that you left on my last post.  I was thrilled to read each one.

The picture of the Sajou bag above is borrowed from Ellen's With My Needle blog.  She had the great fortune to visit the shop in France.  Being a bag lover, I could not resist reposting this picture in hopes that Santa Claus reads my blog!
Have a good rest of the week everyone!

Monday, October 10, 2011

Inspired Neede Retreat 2011

Here are some sights from the 2011 Inspired Needle Retreat which was this past weekend.  I would really love to hire a photojournalist who could take great pictures and get great stories and remember everyone's name!  Next year I am definitely going to remember everyone's name.  There were close to 40 of us at the retreat and we all had such fun together.  The top picture was taken at the start.  You can see Katrina and Barb getting organized and ready to stitch.  We stayed at the Farmstead Inn in Shipshewana, Indiana.  The second picture shows how plain, simple, and calm it was outside our event.  Quite the contrast between inside and outside!!!  Shipshewana is a great place for the retreat because it is a quaint small town with lots of cool shops and places to eat.  You can even walk everywhere if you like.
Above is a BBD finish by Pat.  Gorgeous!
Rita was working on this gorgeous band sampler for her family.
I could not do these incredible stitches to save my life; but Rita is a whiz at it!!!
My stitching group has been picking a group project each season.  Everyone then stitches it.  I love, love, love this pick that we made at the retreat. 
Patti finished this very cool little BBD Halloween design.
Here are Sharon and Sydney.   I got to have a nice chat with them about the towns we live in and our love of needlework.
Here are Adana and Kathy.  It is fun to look around at all of the stitching equipment in the background or foreground of these pictures!  Below is the BBD project Adana was working on.  Beautiful colors.
Our dear friend Jayne turned the big 65 last week.  Throughout the past six months we have been working on a special birthday present for her.
Here she is opening it.  She was totally surprised. 

Each of us stitched a band on this sampler.  Patti added all of our initials at the bottom.  Cathy hemstitched it and put it together with the hardware for hanging.  Above is a picture of our entire group.  We were so lucky that we all were able to go to the retreat together!!!
Cindy showed us this beautiful quilt she was working on.  She is primarily a quilter and does exquisite blackwork and redwork for her quilts.  Here is one that is almost done.
Totally gorgeous!!!!

Many, many, many of us love Vera Bradley products.  Above and below you can see that many of us have the Kiss and Make-Up bag that we use to carry our stitching supplies in.  Everyone was kind enough to let me go through the room and scoop up each piece for a photo shoot!  I heard they are discontinuing this model.  I want more of them!!!  (even though I don't need more of them, but still!)
Barb made a beautiful ornament for the ornament exchange.  It is really a masterpiece.  Can you believe this is her first finishing job!!!!!
Cathy very kindly brought a traveling boutique so that we could go up and shop every so often. 
As we were going through some of my stash we came across this design from BBD.  Instantly we were looking through fibers and fabric to come up with a conversion so that four of us could share a piece of 36 count Maple Sugar and start stitching it right away! 

As you can see it is a very intense process and here is what we came up with!

Below are Debbie and Trudy.  I interrupted some stitch talk but they were kind enough to let me do so!
 Above are Teresa, Ranae and Brenda.  Here is a really sweet story.  Ranae went over to the antique shop and found these scissor frogs!  She was showing them to Teresa and me.  While listening to Teresa and I talk about how I had found some a while back but had not given one to Teresa, Ranae promptly gifted it to Teresa!!!!  Then, when I mentioned that I was going to be looking for one for Brenda she ran right over and gave Brenda the other one!!!!  Ranae has a very generous and giving nature! 
 Debbie S. started this amazing snowman!!!  Can't wait to see that when it is done!
 Kathy was working on this beautiful piece.  Love the pumpkin patch!
 Above are Kathy, Sheri and Lynn. 
 Laugh yourself into stitches!!!  That is what we did all weekend!!
Above is one of Linda's new starts from With Thy Needle and Thread.
 Above is Karen's Mouth of the Flower project.
 Lynn was working on this darling ornament from the JCS 2010 magazine.  It is a Christmas Robin from Victoria Sampler.
 Above is Kerry Jo's Spring Alphabet by Lizzie Kate.

Below are Cathy's sisters, Mary and Nancy. 
 Karla was working on The Knitting Mouse and it was so adorable!!!
 Above and below are two of Nancy's projects.  Love them both!  The bulldog has got to be a very difficult stitch with all of subtle color changes.  The By the Bay design below makes me really want to stitch one of their designs soon!

 Pam and Grace were sharing a laugh.

Pat is almost finished with her Quaker Diamonds project.

 This design in the current Just Cross Stitch magazine was very popular.  Jayne, Patti and I all are going to stitch it. 
 Here is Ranae's progress on Halloween Rules.  She came with her friend Anna who is from Wisconsin.  I don't have a picture of Anna!  Like I said, next year I am going to be organized!!
 Janet was working on this beautiful Hinzeit Reindeer project. 
Sharon and Debbie were stitching away!  I think they got a lot done.

 Here is the spinner where we spent a lot of time browsing and playing with silk colors.
 Sydney had this totally cool thread keeper!!! Perfect for this time of year.
 Teresa is working on the PS ABC's on one piece of linen.  We got a kick out of how big it is!
 Brenda started this awesomely fabulous PS chart. 
 Debbie worked on this huge counted thread piece.  Gorgeous.
 I took this picture too early!  Cathy finished all the little touches later; but you get the idea of this cool Hinzeit chart.

 Teresa has since finished Fancey Blackett by Pineberry Lane.  Totally great!
Jayne and Linda were involved in some high level stitching negotiations here!

 Brenda gave us a punch needle lesson.  So cool!  I would love to give this a try. 
I am having a hard time coming back to earth after the euphoria of the weekend!  Cathy did a fabulous job and every detail was perfect.  364 more days until the next one!!!!!  Can't wait!!! 

All of you stitchers and crafters out there no how uplifting it is to spend time with others who share your passion.  It is a real lift to the spirit.  Thanks to all of you at the Inspired Needle retreat for such a great time!!!