Monday, February 28, 2011

Judy Harper

May we all be as generous and non-judgmental in sharing our knowledge as Judy.  And as joyful in our delight at the beauty of our needleart.  And never forget her wonderful spirit.

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Coral variations II

As promised, here are examples of the coral canvases that Trubey designed for a rug and/or pillows.

The following are 2 of the corals shown without the border.  They are painted on 13mesh canvas.  And they
refuse to be presented side-by-side.  I'm hopeful that
this time next year I will read this entry and chuckle, having learned so much about blog presentation.  I am ever the optimist!  .

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Christmas angel

For the past several weeks, I've been busy stitching an angel designed by Susan Roberts.  At this time of year my stitching time is an hour or two in the evening before I start cooking dinner.  During shop hours my time is spent putting new items on the inventory and waiting on customers (Hooray for customers). 

These canvases come with the brass wings, a ribbon for the bow, and most importantly, the head with curly hair and crown. 

This is the sleeve showing the beginning of the Byzantine Scotch stitch.

I started using a red petite very velvet.  It looks gorgeous when it is finished and the finished surface feels wonderful when you stroke it!

I stitched the "checkerboard" in alternating Scotch stitches and the background of the border in the basketweave.  Both areas done again in the petite very velvet.  Then, using Balger #12 I did French knots for the garland and hearts.  I tried to do these French knots also in the very velvet, but they looked smudgy and indefinite in shape.  The garland was painted in two shades of green but I decided to use only one. The gold border was stitched in candlelight.  I can't wait to see the finished model!!  Here is the finished canvas waiting for the finisher.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Belts, belts

This is the French laundry basket that contains the Needle Nicely belt inventory.  While I have inventoried them, I do not keep a running total of the actual number of canvases in the basket.  Nor do I try to keep them in any order.  People who think they are looking for a golf belt often leave with a bright geometric that caught their fancy.  They can get the golf belt another day.

This belt canvas from Associated Talents is among those canvases we are receiving for "the season".  They have used this design also as a cuff
bracelet and as a 10x10 pillow insert or small pillow.                                                                   

These are additional new belt designs from Associated Talents.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Sophia Designs purses

The other day, one of my customers remarked that seeing me opening boxes of canvases was like watching a child with Christmas presents.  And that's how I feel!!  Even though I'm the one who placed the orders and know what is coming, nothing compares to having the canvas or purse or footstool in my hand.  Oh, delight!

Sophia of Sophia Designs does faille purses with zip-off flaps.  The individual flap has a semi-attached lining which enables one to do the stitching and later slip-stitch down to provide a finished back.  This is one she has with Oriental ribbons as the design.

Another design is a classic of a graceful phoenix.

The purse also comes in an elongated version.  This magnificent peacock is one of Sophia's newest designs.

The purses also come with blank canvas flaps and it is possible to order additional flaps, both blank and with designs, so that one purse pouch may be used with the changeable flaps to vary the look.

On a different subject, a customer recently showed me a needle case and asked if I could obtain more for her.  I'm sorry I didn't think to photograph it.  It is a rectangle made of leather-covered metal about 2 1/2 by 4 1/2.  The leather looks like that used on the Lee's round gift boxes.  When open, the case lies flat, with a magnetic covering on both interior surfaces.  It is thick enough to hold a pair of embroidery scissors.  The label say "Metropolitan".  I have looked on the internet trying to locate something similar to no avail.  It is much sturdier than the two sizes of "Needle Safe" that are available in plastic.  Can anyone solve the mystery?

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Lighthouses III

One of the new canvases arriving today was a Christmas stocking from Alice Peterson featuring a huge snowman with a "generic" lighthouse in the background. To us in Florida, all that snow looks enticing and delightful, just calling to be stitched.  We, thank goodness, don't have to drive in it.

Among the canvases that Needle Nicely's "studio" has designed through the years is a set of 8 coasters of lighthouses of the Great Lake waters surrounding the lower peninsula of Michigan. We also did these same lighthouses as a belt canvas.

Walker Designs produced this belt canvas on 13mesh. It's hard to find belts on 13mesh so this is a double rarity--great design with a larger mesh!

And my final example of lighthouse needlepoint is a belt canvas that the Needle Nicely studio did of the 3 lighthouses of Nantucket. What a feeling of familiarity a year ago September when I got a chance to visit Nantucket and see "our" lighthouses in the flesh, so to speak.
I apologize for the misplacement of that last belt canvas, but tonight Blogger refuses to let me put it where I want it.  I'm exhausted and hungry and want my dinner.  Tomorrow is another day and I hope then I will be victorious!!

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Lighthouses II

This is the most exciting time of year for Needle Nicely. Since I do about 60% of my annual business from February 1 through May 10th, I try to schedule the arrival of new merchandise from the last week in January through mid-February.

Yesterday I received the 4 new designs for Alice Peterson's stitch 'n zip eyeglass cases, cosmetic cases and coin purses. She has previously put out designs for Kindle cases and Tallis bags.

These are two of the brickcover canvases I received Monday from Kathy Schenkel Designs.

Sankaty lighthouse from Nantucket.

We have many winter visitors from Michigan, so I selected this canvas showing some of the lighthouses on lakes around Michigan.

Last year I did a trunk show from Anne Stradal Designs featuring her lighthouse canvases. She also has doorway designs and is currently designing and stitching dancers from "The Nutcracker" ( It's fascinating to watch the stitched canvases develop with Anne's choice of stitches and fibers.

This is Anne's Sanibel Island lighthouse design.

And another of our Florida lighthouses painted by Anne, the St. Augustine lighthouse.

And tomorrow, there will be more boxes filled with canvases!!

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

lighthouses I

Today I drove to Miami to see a long-time ("old") friend who is closing her shop. We've known each other 30 years or more. The drive is 2 1/2 hours long each way. It provides an opportunity to examine your life's goals; how you will spend the lottery (my favorite for trips to Miami and also to North Carolina--endless hours of solitude). Needle Nicely started out in the mountains of North Carolina and continued for many years to maintain an outlet with my driving a trailer full of inventoryup I-95 trailing a line of speeders every June. Trubey drove the return trip slightly faster, witness the speeding tickets. If she had been a 5'6" brunette, just think what a stack those tickets would have been (she's a 6-foot blonde!)

With the Paternayan situation being what it is (dismal!), I took some yarn with me to swap for some more precious colors (to me). I took the
day to make the transfer of yarns, primarily to see Peggy, my friend of many years. We could have done this by mail, but I wanted to make it more personal. To travel old routes--and perhaps to realize that there are no more markets to share. Businesses may die, but friendships can endure.

Anyway, I digress. Several years ago I asked Trubey for several designs for doorstops. In Florida, we often have open doors to welcome "tropical breezes". However, doors slam, vehemently! Doorstops are the order of the day.

This is the Boston Lighthouse (we have many New England customers in Vero Beach)

This is the Tybee Island lighthouse.

And this is the Hatteras Lighthouse (Go! North Carolina!)

And, voila, the lighthouse that is the star of my stitching effort (try to figure a grammatical way around that!)--the Jupiter lighthouse--Ta-Dum---

The sky is Triple diagonal Parisian, the tree trunks are chain stitch, the tree tops are mosaic,and the ground is the woven or t-stitch. We had it finished into a weighted, shaped, doorstop. A perfect murder weapon!!