Saturday, October 29, 2016

Kumihimo braid

In the summer of 2005, I heard about Kumihimo braid.  It is a way to manufacture custom braid for yourself.  The initial kit includes a form with notches (see the photograph below),  You then follow a pattern aroujnd the form (whether a circle or square, depending on what type of braid you are making).  Most people use it to make bracelets or necklaces, but I thought it would be wonderful to manufacture custom braids to serve as cording on needlepoint pillows.  However, in the uproar of relocating Needle Nicely after the roof went off in Hurricane Wilma, I almost totally forgot about my pursuit of making custom braid.

Tuesday on Chilly Hollow Needlepoint Adventure, Jane had a post about the manufacture and usage of this braid.  It reminded me that I had (I'll double-check) 8  beginner kits for kumihimo.  I also have  additional instructional booklets for 2 different types of braids (numbers to be later determined).

This is the original kit. It is from Accent Bead Design.  This photo shows the elements of the kits.
The two additional booklets are Hollow Braid:  ALL COPIES SOLD
and #2 The Two-Faced Wonder:  ALL COPIES SOLD

In 2005, the suggested MSRP was $40.00 for the kit.   I am willing to sell them for $30.00.  The additional instructions were MSRP $10.00, so those I will sell for $7.50.  Let me know if you are interested and then contact Needle Nicely, 772-567-6688.  Postage will be minimal, but will depend on what you purchase.  

EDIT:  I discovered another booklet that I will sell for $7.50

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

35 years in Vero Beach

I'm actually a month late in celebrating Needle Nicely's 35th year in Vero Beach.  Perhaps that is because I wasn't here for the grand opening.  I was still in Blowing Rock, keeping the shop there open through the "leaf season".  I was also awaiting the finishing of an orchid bench from Hunt Galleries, I regret to say, a now nonexistent furniture manufacturer in Hickory, NC.  The bench was too large to be shipped UPS (no longer true), so I waited to drive it to Florida in a Scout vehicle.

 On top of the Scout was placed a rack for metallic fibers from La Lame (I don't know if they are still in business),  that our local Blowing Rock carpenter had assembled for us.  He had covered it with cardboard and it looked like a long, skinny coffin.  After accumulating my cargo, I followed Trubey's parents South.  We spent the first night in Savannah, GA.

Remember, this was 1981, before cell phones.  I was following the Walkers' car as we approached the bridge to the barrier island in Vero Beach.  I remember so well my horror, as the light changed, and Bill Walker drove through the yellow light, leaving me behind at the red light.  I could see Zoe talking to him--and he pulled over to wait for the light to change, so I could follow him.  She realized that I had no idea where we were going--no phone number to call, no idea where we were staying, nothing.  I was blindly following them to our destination.

Obviously, so much has changed in the ensuing 35 years.  But it is in celebration of surviving those years that Needle Nicely is having a "blow-out" sale, running from October 31 through November 4, 2016.  We managed to survive many hurricanes (though Wilma gave us true stress!).

Today I put some retired model pillows on sale at unbelievable prices ranging from $15.00 to $100.00.  That is the sale bonus (or lagniappe).

Other sale categories are:

50% off rug canvases (ask to see photos or look on line at
       Sale rugs
50% off books in the bookcase
50% off sayings canvases in the 3-tiered rack
50% off all previously marked sale items, including sale Lee accessories and $5.00 items
30% off all belts in the belt basket
30% off all Christmas ornaments, including nativities and 12-days of Christmas
25% off all fibers
25% off all other canvases and accessories, with the exception of Sudberry footstoolsand one ottoman.
Sale is limited to items in stock.  Does not include special orders or finishing.

If we are very busy and cannot pull fibers for your canvas(es), we will mark your receipt and you
       can come in November 7-11 to select your fibers ar 25% off.  You must have the original
       marked receipt.  It is only good with my signature and only the week following the sale.  Of
       course, you are always welcome to select your own fibers.

Saturday, October 22, 2016

Medical wake-up call

NOTE:  This is a public service blog to all women, particularly those over the age of 60.  Get an ECG(some say EKG) and have it on file.  Please.

I had been fighting a persistent sinus infection late spring/early summer, 2014.  Then in the late summer on a Friday, I went to my doctor for my "exit examination"; meaning I wasn't getting any more medicine and should be feeling great.  I didn't, but didn't know why.  I asked him about the edema in my lower right leg (foot and ankle).  He suggested that I have an ultrasound of my legs the next week to be sure I didn't have a blockage--i.e., clot.  Then, as he always does at the end of an exam, he listened to my lungs and heart.  After he listened to my heart, he said that my heart sounded different than it had previously.  He asked that I come by on Monday for an ECG so he could compare it to the one I had had in March.

Monday after my sporadic appointment with my dermatologist (should be annual in Florida, but I slide), I stopped by to have the ECG.  The nurse (I don't want to offend the women in my doctor's office--I don't know if they are nurses or just very skilled technicians) administered the test, told me it was different from my March results.  She was very careful not to upset me.  I, of course, am clueless because I don't have any adverse symptoms.  What is all this fuss?  She brings in my doctor who explains to me that I am in afib.  So what is that?  Somehow my heart has gone awol and has changed its rhythm.  At that point, I go outside to get my husband where he is waiting in the car.  He needs to learn about this problem while I do.  Talk about shock .  My husband is more concerned than I am because I feel no untoward symptoms.

My doctor then adjusted my current medications and gave me samples of Eliquis to start taking immediately.  He also ordered an Echocardiogram for the next morning before I had the ultrasound of my legs.

My ultrasound revealed no clotting in the veins of my legs.  The echocardiogram showed that I have a leakage from my mitral valve and arrythmia in my atria (I think--the upper right of the heart).  As my doctor marveled, I still physically have no idea or symptoms about any of this.  It truly is the silent killer.

In my future is a visit to a cardiologist.  If my heart doesn't re-establish its natural rhythm, I understand they will "zap" me like you see on television with the 2 paddles and electric current.  It doesn't look like fun.   If that doesn't work, then they will install a pace-maker.

My gp says that women over 70 have a high incidence of this medical condition.  He keeps remarking on the fact  that I still am not aware of any symptoms.  Twenty years ago I would have had a stroke and died on the way to the hospital. 

Ironically, my husband and I had discussed things like this.  My family has a history of cancer; his has a history of heart problems.  So of course, we thought he would be the one with heart problems.  But he has been meticulous about his diet and exercise for at least the last 40 years.  I'm Southern,  so I like gravy and butter--he insists that he is saving my life just by being married to me (I said that since I married him, he was no longer a bachelor and his life span had increased).  Sad to say, he is probably the hero.

The reason I'm revealing this information is to alert women over 60 to have an ECG so you have a baseline and then have regular monitoring of your  heart's rhythms.   Or be fortunate enough to have a doctor like my general practitioner who just happened to catch this for me.  He made sure I had a prior ECG on file with which to compare my present heart rhythm.

I don't like revealing personal information, but my gp has told me that my lack of symptoms is not unusual and many people are walking around with this condition without realizing it.  Go have an ECG and protect yourself in the future.  Please.

ADDENDUM:  I have visited my cardiologist of choice, had a stress test, and he has determined that my heart has its "own" rhythm and we won't do anything to change it==that is, no pace maker, no shocking with paddles.  Thank goodness.   I'm going to wear a heart monitor (holter) for 24 hours this next week so everyone can be sure the arrythymia  is consistent and not helter-skelter.  Consistency is a good thing even if it's off-beat.  And I guess it's a plus that I am oblivious to what's happening.  Though that could be said of a lot of things in my life!!!  And as a photograph by Kate Dickerson in August, 2014, attests, I look disgustingly healthy, overweight and old, but healthy.  And I feel great and hope to for years, taking my blood thinner. 

PPS:  My gp really wasn't satisfied with my cardiologist's decision, so he referred me to a nationally- acclaimed cardiologist from Orlando who specializes in afib cases and comes to Vero once a month.
I consulted him, went to Orlando for my first hospital stay ever in my life since my birth (nobody can believe that fact), and had a cardioversion.  I was back into sinus rhythym and was taking a medicine that prohibited any alcohol.  Yum, yum.

Ten days later, my heart reverted to afib.   The special specialist dumped me back on my gp.  No more medicine proscribing alcohol.  (The power of prayer for those of us who like a tipple or two.)  I still have no symptoms.  My life is now one of checking on my levels (pulse, blood pressure) with  my gp's supervision.  This could go on for years (one hopes).

NOVEMBER NEWS FLASH:  Went to my gp so he can plan my future care--I'm relaxed and confident; after all, he's the one who caught the problem in the beginning. Ta, Da!  I'm back into sinus rhythm.  This is screwy.  This erraticness seems to be my new normal.  My gp thinks I can live forever.  Hip, hip, hooray!!  And I still am clueless about the difference in rhythm.  I guess I shouldn't complain!  There are definitely worse outcomes. 

Editor's note:  I have hesitated to post this blog entry because people tend to treat you like Typhoid Mary when they think you have a weakness.  I'm not retiring; I'm not pitiful and weak.  Mary Agnes and Needle Nicely are under a good doctor's care and here for the long haul.  But my message is: If you are over 60 and female, have someone listen to your heart on a regular basis.  There are more afib patients walking around healthy than anyone would suspect.  But they are potential time-bombs if not being treated.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Placing Shop Models on the Shelf in This LIfetime

A few days before Hurricane Matthew came to town, my email account went screwy.  I could receive emails, but could not send any.  I also couldn't access junk mail or empty the deleted message area.  With all that was going on in life at that time, I decided that I would put off contacting Indiiia for help in remedying the problem.  Finally, Monday night I stiffened my spine and called.  I had the most competent person ever--come to find out, I need to say my account is a business one.  It only took about 35 minutes.  And no stress.  Amazing.  I never thought I would say anything positive about distant techies.

The pillows are glaring at me from atop almost every surface in the shop.  I'm tough--they don't worry me.  My customers can access everything they could possibly need, so mere cosmetics don't bother me (says she who doesn't wear any make-up!). I did dodge one bullet when my DH (who is 80) offered to climb the ladder and put them back up.  It took all the tact I will ever possess to convince him that that wasn't a good idea.  If I'm not willing to climb at my age (74), I sure am not letting him do it.  A true recipe for disaster!  Of course, my first two customers this morning thought the disarray was because Needle Nicely was moving.  Trust me, this stuff is here to stay unless a hurricane blows us away!  I no longer have the energy for a move--and preparing for a hurricane really stretched my reserves of energy.

Actually, there is more to putting the pillows back up than just tossing them up there.  First, Marcia dusted the shelf (my dusting theory is if you can't see it, it isn't there!).  Then she carried the pillows,   basketful by basketful, outside by the rosemary and beat pairs together.  The dust flew!  Her nose definitely was stopped up by the dust.  Next, we have to check that we still have canvases for each model.  There will be some weeding out.  This is the time for me to rearrange some areas of the shop.  I also should redo the prices on the pillows since finishing costs (and canvas costs) have risen over the years.  Some people demonstrate interest in buying a finished model and then almost faint when they are told the cost. Sometimes I make a deal.  My air conditioning man, who we have had since first arriving in Vero Beach, looked around one day when he came to service the air conditioner.  He spied one and asked how much it was.  It was a birthday gift for his mother.  I told him he had done so much for us over the years--and gave him the pillow.  Thirty-five years of dependability is definitely worth one pillow!  I also usually donate discontinued models to local charities as door prizes and silent auction items.

Teaser:  Needle Nicely has been in Vero Beach 35 years as of October, 2016.  I will be having a sale the first week in November.  More information later.

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Be Merry, 12

I made myself take time out from straightening the shop to stitch several hours on Be Merry.
It's difficult to see without enlarging this photo, but I have been working on the blue background as I go along.  It's funny, but I catch myself looking forward to the "quickie" stitches.  After I have worked on a canvas as long as I have on this one, I have no shame.  Get it over with!

I've also been spending some time picking out gold metallic from a Christmas stocking I got a real deal on in Dallas.  Someone started stitching it and then returned it to the artist.  It was a really good deal because the artist didn't want to pick that stranded gold out!  I was surprised, though; it never occurred to me to return a partially stitched canvas for credit.  As they say, stick around long enough and you will hear everything possible.

I just saw the button for "save" depress on its own.  Why doesn't it do that when I need it to?

I'm putting on my opera critic hat now (and also kicking myself).  I had arranged for someone to come today at noon to put the pillows back on the shelf around the top of Needle Nicely's walls.  Then, late yesterday afternoon, my local theater, the Majestic, sent out a notice that they were rescreening last week's Tristan und Isolde from the Metropolitan Opera.  There were solar flares and the transmission was really messed up, I have been told.  Actually, I passed on attending last week because I didn't think the plaza (I share with the Majestic) had power.  Couldn't reach them on the phone, nothing on line.  So I napped all day.  I understand it was a good miss.

Anyway, I called off the "pillow man" so I could go to the opera.  The NYTimes gave it rave reviews.
I left at the first intermission, as did several others.  Definitely not my cup of tea.  I loved "The Ring Cycle", so thought this would be similar.  Not so--and in modern dress.  Sigh!  My karma was good for having Matthew side-swipe us, but obviously the mess-up devil hangs around!

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

A New Belt for Arthur

Years ago, I stitched a needlepoint for my husband, Arthur.  I'm not sure if it were while we were dating or after we married (which was 25 years ago this past August).  Arthur is a minimalist.  I asked him over 10 years ago if he wanted a new belt.  His response was"no, thank you.  This one is still good."  Over the years he has walked an hour each morning and cut down drastically on his intake of adult beverages.  The result has been, he now has a tidy waist and a noticeable chest.  AND a needlepoint belt that he is wearing in the closest hole to the needlepoint.  Not to mention the fact that it is now slightly grubby.  So you can understand my amazement this summer when he requested a new one.  Shock!

The design of his first belt consisted of his 3 initials stitched in groups of 3 shades of a color.  I couldn't photograph the belt in its entirety, so here is a series of photographs.

It has a navy background and is, even today, attractive.

The new belt reflects Arthur's interest in the New York Giants football team.  He loves them, except when he is screaming at them!

Since Needle Nicely has cornered the market on navy medici, that is what I am using to stitch the background.  The elements are going to be stitched in DMC perle cotton.  I took it to stitch on while I was in Dallas for the recent wholesale market.  Pitiful progress!

These segments start from the right side of the canvas and proceed through the middle and then the left side. Arthur has been very understanding in my lack of progress, but I really would like to finish this before January.  We'll see if that happens!

EDIT:  The red APC monogram doesn't show up well in my photograph, but it shows up in person.

Saturday, October 8, 2016

Some delightful canvases from the Dallas market

 I purchased this froggy bathing beauty and her companion from The Collection.  What a fun canvas for stitches and to chuckle at.
 Just had to have this sand dollar from Zecca.  The colors are glorious.  I keep trying to think how I could make this into a clock!  I think it is doable since the top "spike" is 12 and the 3rd downward "spike" is 6.  Put buttons there and then place two on each side spaced appropriately.  It works for me!
 This rabbit from Susan Roberts has had many incarnations.  Here it is the seat for a  child's chair, though it would make a great pillow.  The rabbit appears in many different sizes on Susan Roberts canvases.  And it should--it's a winner!
There was no way I could resist this small canvas from Mary Englebreit from Painted Pony.  Just makes me smile looking at it.
 Melissa Shirley has a series of large canvases with interesting border items that vary in size from 18x18 to 22x22.   She also does the inner canvas from these as 8x8" (which this is), and 5x5".  This is a great selling device since many people don't want to tackle a canvas as large as 22x22"--the other sizes give them the same feeling.  By the way, these are swallow-tailed hummingbirds.
Then I come to this long (I'm sorry, I didn't measure, but it is about 20" long).  But what fun to look at!  It doesn't fit in my life or my shop stitching, but I do enjoy looking at it.  It's a Debbie Mumm for Melissa Shirley Designs.  It offers so many possibilities for pattern stitches.

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Old-Style Telephones that work when the power is off

When Needle Nicely had the roof come off after Hurricane Wilma and we moved very swiftly to relocate, the electricity was off.  However, I still had my old blue rotary dial telephone from eons ago.  I plugged it in to our former location and the telephone company could then forward our calls to our new location.  However, because of mold issues, I couldn't rescue the phone.  After talking with some friends, I discovered that places like Wal-Mart and K-Mart sell those old phones--though these are not rotary style, but rather princess phones.

My husband couldn't believe it when I pulled out of my bag of tricks this Princess-style phone that I purchased in 2005 after Wilma and stashed in the voluminous head board of our bed (my husband has yet to discover this cache, even though this was his bedroom suite when we met!).

I have just plugged it in, because I know we will need it after the latest hurricane status report.
If you live in an area with many power outages, this is not a bad investment.  I can't remember what I paid, but it couldn't have been over $20.00.  It's worth having it tucked in the back closet!

Haven't I danced this hurricane dance before?

Blogger did it to me again!  Nuf said.  Now to recreate the masterpiece that I just managed to delete.

Yesterday, Marcia (who is back from Michigan just in time) and I started digging out Needle Nicely's vast inventory of plastic bins of various sizes accumulated from previous experiences with hurricanes.  The majority of Needle Nicely's pillow-sized canvases (or larger) hang on 7 sides of 4 racks. Those were left in place with black trash bags taped to the top so any water would drip down and not touch the canvases.  I also double-checked that no canvases were touching the floor or had threads hanging down (water wicks up through dangling threads--definitely a no-no).

While Marcia and I were busy as bees, a customer came in looking for a Christmas stocking.  She took photos to send to her d-i-l, waited for a response, made a selection, then sent a photo and waited for another response.  What she selected was a Strictly Christmas stocking that I had just received.  I had priced it and inventoried it, but it hadn't been hemmed.  Lois suggested that she would pack the Christmas stockings in one bin and the belts in another bin while I hemmed the canvas and then selected the fibers to get her started, if she decided to ignore her current project.  Of course, during hurricanes you are inside with free time; however, you probably have no electricity (no air, no
 phone, perhaps no cell towers for cell phones).  It is really difficult to stitch by candlelight.  It gives you a new appreciation for those medieval stitchers who only had candlelight or firelight in those dark castles!  Candlelight is supposed to be romantic, but trust me, it sucks when it is the only light!

This morning, Marcia, Toni (a customer and fellow Met Opera attendee), and myself worked at getting the finished models from various spots around the shop.  Most importantly, Marcia (the tallest) used either a grabber (used by people recovering from hip or knee surgery) or a 24" stretcher bar to eject the pillows on the shelf around the top of the shop.  They were flying like missiles!  In past years, I have put finished models in black plastic bags.  However, Macy was so active this past winter in emptying many of the Needle Nicely cabinets--we had space for all of the models tucked inside.  Kudos to Macy!

Marcia left at noon because she lives on the barrier island and they always need to evacuate during a hurricane.  She and her husband have a hotel in Kissimmee that takes dogs, so Nicky won't be left at home (as though that were a possibility!).  Vero Beach always makes the barrier island evacuate, because when winds get to 45 or 50 miles per hour, that is too strong for emergency vehicles trying to access the island over the apexes of the two bridges to the barrier island.  Thus, the city turns off the water and electricity to encourage people to evacuate.  Of course, I have previously noticed that our electricity is always cut off on the hour, be it noon or whatever.  Hmmm.

Toni and I chatted for a while, giving me time to cool down and get in the mood for lunch.  She left about 1pm and I sat down to eat.  It gave me an opportunity to look around while I was eating, discovering things that could be better stowed.  I finished about 2pm and assembled the items I wanted to take home, like the money and back-up cash.  I also packed up the brand-new laptop that I had just purchased.  I covered the printer with a black trash bag.  I also cleared perishables from the refrigerator, since it is a given that the power will be off.  I know it will be at home, but at least we have a big cooler there to keep some things for a few days.  My husband is going to purchase some ice tomorrow morning at the crack of dawn, since he forgot to take ice out of our fridge ice-maker and store it in the small freezer we have in the garage.

Finally, it's 4:15 pm and Ray appears with his helper.  When I precipitously relocated here in 2005, I specifically asked the landlord's man-in-charge about having him install hurricane panels (which after a certain year was legally required in Florida).  He said, sure, Mary.  When I contacted him, he said he was too busy, but did refer me to Ray, who agreed to install the shutters.  Thank goodness!  My 80-year-old husband and I have replaced the metal sheets that came with our home in 2001 with accordion shutters.  Eleven years we did manage to install the shutters I had purchased for Royal Palm Pointe.  But we were that much younger.

Here are some photos showing the interior of Needle Nicely and the exterior while our shutters are being installed.
 The bins for Paternayan yarn.  I may be giving up the bottom colors if the roof goes.  You have to make a decision about what you can preserve.  Paternayan I put on a wing and a prayer.  Time will tell.  I could have put it in plastic bags.  Nevermind!
Here you can see several plastic bags topping 2 fiber racks.  Also, on the left that black blob is a child's chair.
 These are the bins holding primarily Christmas ornaments.  The smaller bins on top are various small canvases that were on the walls.
 Up close the impressions rack, with sale canvases in black plastic to the right.
 Here you can see the plastic bags taped to the top of the canvas racks.  This worked quite well in previous hurricanes.  My fingers are crossed.  Actually, this is the first time I have put trash bags on the tops of the fibers.  I just couldn't face stripping those racks into trash bags.  I remember the agony of reassembling the fibers on the racks when we had to strip them after the roof went off on Royal Palm Pointe.
 This is 2 footstools covered in plastic.  You can see the tip of the Needle Nicely sign that we usually have stuck into the ground in front of the shop.  One of the guys from the computer store nextdoor brought it in this afternoon.  Thank goodness!  It would definitely be a goner!
 More shrouded canvas racks.
 This is 2 footstools, one upon the other.
 These are the bins with smaller canvases other than Christmas ornaments.
 The magnificent bin with Christmas stockings.  Underneath is the belt bin.  Yes!  Easy to get to next week.
 This is the empty sayings rack (I got it when a store went out of business)  Makes me wonder about having a sale on sayings canvases.  Keep tuned!
 Many small canvases!
This is Ray's associate buzzing the layers of paint off the screws to attach the shutters (Yes, they painted over them at least twice since I have been in the plaza!).

 This is a view showing the shutters of the computer store next door.  That planter of rosemary survived Frances, Jeanne and Wilma.  They wanted to move it inside.  I said it is heavy enough to make it.
 These are the accordion shutters closed on our kitchen window.

And this is a view of the accordion shutters closed on the houses across the street from us.

After all this, tonight when I returned home, the 5 o'clock update suggested that the hurricane was going to go along the coast and then it is going to do a Ueeey and come back to us.  Perhaps only 90mph, but back to us.  Really  big sigh!


Saturday, October 1, 2016

Ribbon embroidery on canvas

My usual gripe about blogger is that I opened this draft blog and started to add information to it.  Then I hit something (who knows what?) and the whole damn thing disappeared.  You would think that the draft posting would be a saved entry.  Not so.  So here I go into the mists to try to reconstruct that entry.  Sadly, not the first time this has happened to me.  Do you think I would have learned?

Several years ago at a TNNA market, I took a class from Laura Taylor.  She started as a teacher for Aristeaia, a needlepoint shop in LA.  She is quite talented.  After the class, which I enjoyed, I went ho-hum ; because the majority of my customer-base is really traditional.  They don't work on frames; and only kicking and dragging do they use fibers other than Paternayan or DMC perle cotton. But I am pecking away at them.  And this year, I took another class from Laura, among several I took at Dallas. I'm determined to show my customers silk ribbon needlepoint and other techniques,

At Destination Dallas this September, I decided that I would take classes.  The first, as I have mentioned, was social media (facebook and instagram).  Next I took a class from Gretchen Janasek, the owner of Threads in Charlottesville, VA,  of a rabbit Easter basket.  This is the canvas.  It is realistically a canvas I could stitch for a model in my shop.  I am going to try to finish the canvas to have a shop model, she says hopefully!

Then, I attended Laura Taylor's ribbon class where she demonstrated 3 of the basic stitches utilized in ribbon embroidery on canvas.  And they seemed so easy!  So, the next day I went out and purchased several kits so I could practice and perhaps find a kit that I could teach to my customers.  This is a photograph of my class progress.  I must confess that I usually do not do much stitching in market classes because the lighting isn't right, the chair isn't the right height, ya da, ya da.  You get the picture.  I stitch better and faster at the shop or at home.  I've had to realize that is the reality.

That needle on the right is there intentionally, not as a laying tool, but to keep that tie-down of the stitch from disappearing when the tension of the next stitch occurs.  Otherwise the "lift" of the tie-down would disappear and the stitch would look totally different.

 My last class was taught by Tony Minieri.  It encompassed 4 stitches, only 1 of which I plan to utilize.  The first (and my favorite) was repousse.  The other 3 were intricate woven stitches from Italian embroidery, I think, that I don't have the patience to execute on a canvas--or try to teach to others to put on their canvases.

Tony has such incredible knowledge about the history of needlework.  I enjoyed the experience of taking a class from him and I understand the power of his charisma, but many of his stitches are just beyond my customer base.  I have to be realistic about this.  While I managed to achieve the stitches in class, only the repousse is one that I could envision ever trying on a canvas.
 To the extreme left of the canvas you can see my repousse example where I stitched 6 threads over one thread and  made them equal  lengths.  Then I wrapped 4 strands of a silk fiber around them; and after I determined the length I wanted on the surface of the canvas, I plunged the remaining lengths to the back.  Here you can see where I knotted the group and use a thead to keep them out of my stitching area.  The theory is that after you have stitched the surrounding area, then you end the individual strands into the back of the stitched areas.  Of course, if you aren't a purist, you can just leave this bunch of strands behind your work.  You can be the judge!
EDIT:  I notice that some of the labels for this entry were  cut off.  I have fixed that since the people who teach needlepoint classes at wholesale markets deserve credit for their contribution to the whole market experience.