Waddle on over tomorrow!

"Gobble Gobble!"

The Gobble Gobble kit will go on sale tomorrow (September 1, 2015) at 8:00 AM CST.

 This item is available for online purchasing only, no phone-in or mail-in orders will be taken.  No pre-orders will be taken.   There is a limit of 1 per customer, no exceptions.  Recommended payment options are credit card (any form) or PayPal.  E-check or payment options that pull from a checking count take 3 - 4 days.  Those orders do not reach us until the payment has cleared your account, and you will run the risk that the item may be sold out by the time the order reaches us. 

The kit will be sold exclusively at www.countrystitchesonline.com and will be posted under the NEW ITEMS tab.  The website will keep an inventory count.  Please realize there is a time lag as orders travel through cyber-space.    I will try my hardest not to over sell the item, however, there may be a lag in time of inventory notifications to me, and then the time that it takes for me to list the item as sold out.  If there is no number quantity listed below the description, this means the item is sold out.  There is a time frame from when the last one sells, to when I get the notification, and then get the item pulled/marked sold out, that you can still add the item to your shopping cart.   Adding the item to your cart during that small window of time will not get you a turkey...just a heads up!

Kit includes - tin turkey base, full color chart, linen over-dying instructions, finishing instructions, 40 count Cream linen, 10 colors of hand dyed flosses (Classic Colorworks, Gentle Arts and Weeks Dye Works), chipboard cardboard all all neatly packaged in a box.    Price - $47.50, plus priority shipping for USA customers.  Please allow 10 - 12 days for receipt of item (USA orders, international allow 2 - 3 weeks).  International shipping rates apply to those abroad.


Turning my thoughts towards harvest time...

I was raised on a grain farm in southern Minnesota.   Harvest time always seemed to be such a big event.    Everyone seemed a bit more tense.   Dad worked long days, not even taking breaks from the fields for meals.  Mom would spend the morning in the kitchen,  making a good hardy meal.  She then loaded it up in the car and took the meals out to the fields to Dad.  We would eat the noon meal, or "dinner", in the car.   There were no fancy thermos containers or baskets used in her transporting of the meals.   She made-do.   The coffee was poured into a re-purposed Ball canning jar and the casseroles were wrapped in bath towels or old newspapers to keep them warm.  It was my duty to hold onto the plates and silverware.  Mom kept the jar of coffee between her legs!  The smell of pot roast, roasted potatoes and carrots, coffee, mixed with the smell of corn dust and rich Minnesota soil on Dad's boots was divine.   The smell is still there, just like it was yesterday...

     After dinner was served,  Mom would head back to the farmhouse and start on caramel rolls, cookies or pie, for another afternoon trip to the field for what a farm family called, "lunch".  Lunch consisted of a sweet and coffee.  Harvest time meals were some of my favorite...not sure if it was the food, or the fact that we were eating it on an "end row" of a corn field, in the backseat of a car.   I am going to date myself a bit, but it was before the day of drive-up/fast food restaurants in our small rural community....so, eating in the car was pretty cool when you were just a kid in the 60's!

 Harvest was a stressful time. 
 The weather needed to cooperate so the crops could be harvested before the snow flew, and so did the equipment.  Rain and equipment break downs always ruffled Dad's feathers.   When the grain was all harvested and the soil was turned, it was a time of Thanksgiving.  
Another growing season had come and gone.

 Our cornucopia,
so to speak, 
was full and over-flowing...
we were blessed,
 we were thankful.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ 

,  I like to have items that I bring out in late September and keep out through late November...I call them my harvest decorations.    Getting these items unpacked from their boxes each year, takes me back to my early days of being a "farm kid".   

I created this little piece with that in mind.  This little Pilgrim Miss with her cornucopia overflowing of pumpkins and bittersweet, were inspired  by those days in the backseat of the car, in a Minnesota cornfield.  
 As I placed each stitch in this little piece,
 it reminded me of the smell of those smells... that days meal wrapped  in a bath towel,
the  fresh - out- of- the- oven  caramel rolls,
the coffee in a Ball jar,
that smell of harvest on Dad's clothes & hands.

 Isn't it funny where our mind goes while we stitch?  .

 Coming to you on September 1st.

I hope you enjoy this little piece as much as I did creating it.   I plan to create a vignette with it and various small gourds/pumpkins, and fresh bittersweet placed on a large tin platter.   Much like you see here.   The platter will grace the center of my table this season of Thanksgiving.
Stop back Monday for more "Gobble Gobble" details.
With thy Needle &Thread,


Coming soon!

"Limited Edition Kit - "Gobble, Gobble!"

" Gobble, Gobble!" goes on sale September 1, 2015 at 8:00 AM, Central Standard Time. This is a Country Stitches exclusive offering.  

Kit includes - tin turkey base, full color pattern/chart, linen, 10 beautiful shades of autumn hand-dyed flosses (Classic Colorworks, Gentle Arts & Weeks Dye Works)  & chipboard cardboard.  



The work tables are over flowing with beautiful shades 
of autumn colored flosses.

The kitting has begun!

 Waddle on over to www.countrystitchesonline.com on September 1st
for the releasing of a limited edition kit,
"Gobble, Gobble!"

See you then!


NEW ~ Cross Stitch Patterns!

What a beautiful evening,
a slightly cooler breeze and no humidity!

The days are starting to get notably shorter.  
Birds are starting to flock on fence lines,
where did the summer go...

It is the best time of year to stitch,
 and autumn-themed designs are my most favorite to create~ 

I am excited to share with you the 
NEW 2015
 cross stitch designs ~

With thy Needle & Thread,

Mark your calendar!

Mark your calendar on September 1st....

'cause something fun to stitch,
 all kitted up
with an extra special finish,
 is coming your way!

One tiny hint, whose tracks are those?  

See you on September 1st!

With thy Needle & Thread,


Finish work!

If I were a carpenter,
 I would be a "Finish Carpenter". 

 It is the finish work,
 the trim, 
and all the extra detail
 that goes into a piece
 that I enjoy the most . 

 It is what makes someone want to pick the item up
 take a closer look...
 to touch,
 run their fingers through a tiny, little fringe tassel...

The finish must nicely accent the piece, 
without being overwhelming.
It is a fine balance.

I like to combine different materials, 
for varying textures,
it is calming to my eye....

I like to mix old with new...

Or finish the piece into something useful,
a place to rest our needle or pins
is always fun.

A finish that can
become our stitching companion...

A pattern finish is always close at hand when I am to this step... 
may just be another reason that I enjoy finish work!
The end is in sight.
  An idea from a sketchpad 
is now in full color...
mission accomplished

With thy Needle & Thread,


Stitch by Stitch ~ Row by Row...

 I am starting to close in on a finish,
 it makes me feel giddy knowing I am close to conquering the 2,727 Olive "fill-in" stitches.
I am "sewing" an autumn lawn in this piece. 
 I love the subtle variation in the Olive floss,
 perfect for a dried out October lawn,
 don't you think?

And, I couldn't resist to show that sweet little witches shoe
over in that corner!

Do you often finish a piece and wonder how many stitches were needed to complete the piece?
  This is something we designers don't typically supply in the pattern (we wouldn't want to scare you)
 with modern software programs 
we do know the number of stitches.  

   When I am done charting a design,
 I print off the page that supplies me with the total stitches in a design.

I find this very useful when it comes to the next step of stitching...

When the design is completed I will have stitched 9,528 stitches.

At this point the floss colors are not always accurate.  
 Floss colors are most often determined as I stitch. 
 Once the piece is stitched,
 I will go into the program and change out the colors of flosses,
 most often to all hand-dyed threads.

After totaling the number of stitches
 I do some simple math. 
 I know how many stitches I can stitch an hour,
 and I know that I typically dedicate two hours of stitching time in the early morning hours and then two hours in the evening. 
My calculation on this piece told me that I should have it finished by this weeks end
and folks I am right on task!

   This also guides me in knowing the cost to hire the piece stitched, if I choose to to go that route.

I will be sharing 4 new Autumn & Halloween-themed cross stitch designs shortly,
stay tuned! 

With thy Needle & Thread,


A Lesson in Color ~

Trim work this morning with needle & thread,
the window muttons are now stitched in place
and I have a finish!

Grateful, Thankful & Blessed
is ready for the framers!

Two down, two to go!

I always finish what's in my hoop 
before I move onto the next.  
Not really, it is my motivation for a quicker finish. ;)

There is no rest for the wicked,
today is a day of color planning, 
floss & linen selections for a future Halloween design.
I want to name this design
Oct. 31st....
I am laughing at the originality of this title...
I may need to work harder on this title!

When I chart a design,
 I am privileged to experiment around with background color (or linen),
on-screen, with a click of a button.  
 Sounds easy, right? 
 What looks good on the computer should look good 
when you go to place your stitches on that color of linen, right?
Not really...

I struggle with colored linen, blue sky colors in particular.
I am determined to make it work for this design,
wish me luck!!

  This morning I have been playing with sky-colored linens. 
 They all seem to be too cool-toned, in my opinion...
 I cut off a fat-quarter of two purchased hand-dyed linens
 and gave them an early morning bath in some strong coffee.
I function better with a little coffee,
maybe it is just the trick for sky-colored linens, no?  

See how it warmed up the linen?
I now have a warmer grungy linen,
I like the results!

(original linen is to the right of it's respective over- dyed version)

I have started several designs on blue linen, only for them to end up in my "reject box".  What is so frustrating for me, is, I have to stitch a gazillion stitches before I know whether it is going to appeal to me or not.  Just a couple of stitches doesn't determine whether I like it or not...no, that would be way to easy...so, I keep stitching and stitching, and thinking, and hoping it is going to get better ~

I am going to brave it again.
I think the linen on the lower left will be the choice.

 The linen and floss colors seem to work together when spread out.
This is where it gets tricky, their needs to be enough contrast between linen to floss.
 Green flosses get tricky on blue linens.
 I will need to brighten up my greens, pulling green flosses with more yellow in them.

   In the case of autumn,
 the floss colors we use
 tend to be warmer tones,
 my eye tells me warm flosses work better
warm toned linen.

Enough about warm & cool tones ~
it's going to be a beautiful late Spring day!

Our Service Berry trees are just loaded with berries
and the young robins have found them.
Their acrobatic moves in plucking them is quite entertaining.

I am going to find a shady spot today
 and take in the beauty of nature,
 and stitch!

Late Spring...my favorite season.
Stitching my favorite season....Autumn & Halloween
Total Bliss!

Wishing you a day full of beauty,
 a stitch or two,


To be treasured....

Mary was just 9 
when she crossed her last stitch on this sampler.
The year was 1819.  
I have a weakness when it comes to samplers with houses,
but there was more then just the house,
more on that later...

Her young eyes had no trouble stitching a verse in
 over one,
 on teeny tiny linen.  
I love the verse.
In a close up study you will see a few of the bird's Mary stitched are going side-ways.  
This is a little unusual for a schoolgirl sampler.  
What did her instructress think of her side-way birds? 
Makes you wonder, doesn't it?!!

Her chosen verse reads:
All you my friends that now expect to see
a piece of marking thus performed by me
cast but a smile on this my mean endeavour
I will strive to mend and be obedient ever

What makes this sampler extra special is I am able to put a face to the name.
An older face, anyway.
This is Mary Meredith in her later years.  
Her married name was Mary Hope.

Her clothing indicates she is in mourning.  
Who was she mourning, one wonders?

Look close.
  See her necklace?

Tucked away in a velvet line box
 lies Mary's necklace.
It is the necklace she is wearing in the photo.
Sort of gives you goose bumps,
doesn't it?

Take a closer look...
 A mourning necklace.
The center locket of the pendant
holds basket-weaved hairs of
the deceased, 
in which she is mourning.

not to be forgotten.

With thy needle & thread,


New Patterns!

Happy Memorial Weekend to you all!  We are having more rain...cold, gloomy and drizzly.  I had hopes of doing yard/gardening work, but the weather is keeping me inside... so I am doing work-work!!

Though the calendar still says spring, this weekend is the official kick off to the summer season.  With that thought in mind, I am happy to share with you some fun summer-time patterns for your stitching pleasure!

 This is a fun little kit that includes the tin, weavers cloth, Valdani 3 strand flosses, chenille trim and pattern all put together in cute packaging.  This piece is just 4 3/4" tall!  This kit is sold exclusively through Country Stitches.

X X X X X 

I haven't done a whole lot of designs that have a nautical theme, so this was a really fun stitch!  I went for a fun finish with the use of mother of pearl fish buttons, waves of rick rack and cording tied in a nautical knot.  The wonderful movement and flow to the larger areas of this piece is achieved with the use of the Valdani 3 strand floss.  Pattern includes weavers cloth, tracing template and complete finishing instructions.  Buttons & rick rack are available for purchase on our website.  

X X X X X 

A mother bird stands so patiently and proud, just waiting for her little nestlings to arrived.  I chose faded shades of rusty reds, oranges, and corals of Valdani 3 strand floss  to work this piece.  The piece is simply backed with wool and makes a nice table accent piece.  Pattern includes weavers cloth, tracing template and finishing instructions.

X X X X X 


A quick-to-stitch, honoring the needlework of Betsy Ross.  The piece is worked on 40 count Legacy linen over two threads with hand dyed flosses.  The piece is constructed into a floss card for a fun and functional  finish!   Mother of pearl rings keep your floss neat & tidy and the backside features a little pocket to keep your scissors and needle packs at your fingertips.

X X X X X  

The time of year was my inspiration for this piece...the time of year when the birds are back to their nesting grounds and sing for food.  This design is worked on 36 count Wren linen over 2 threads with hand dyed flosses.  Tobacco brown vintage silk ribbon gets gathered and added to the pin keep for a pretty little finish.  

With thy Needle & Thread,


Pattern Corrections!

I stumbled upon an error on two of my new charts, CS151 Stars & Stripes and CS155 Be Happy, Humble & Kind. The error falls on the materials needed list on the backside of the pattern cover. I have listed color #1160 Adobe as a Weeks Dye Works floss, and it is a Gentle Arts floss. The color is correct, it is the fleshy color used for the bodies of the little people. So there are no worries when you go to stitch, the color number/name and symbols on the chart are all correct. It may cause some confusion when you are purchasing your flosses. Weeks does make a floss with the same name, however, it is a red and of course has a different stock number.

 A change was also made to Stars & Stripes after it was stitched & charted, and the wrong file was pulled when it got printed.  Pattern will show the stars worked in Roasted Marshmallow, this should show them as worked in Harvest Basket.

Sorry about this, as hard as I try, something slipped by me here!

My apologies,


Nashville Market Recap!

I survived my first needlework market and there is no way to prepare yourself for the craziness that happens upon opening your door.  The curtains are shut, however, you can see shadows and hear eager customers outside your door.  The doors open and imagine a can of sardines...this is what the room felt like, total craziness...but good craziness!  To add to the craziness I ticked the wrong box in the software print option and the printer just started spewing out invoice after invoice...totally flustered and no time to fix!   So, I grabbed invoice books and started handwriting invoices...I must have had a premonition that this may happen, as I tossed a couple into my briefcase , when packing.   I was able to get this fixed in due time and then things moved a long a bit smoother & quicker.

It was great to meet my customer and each seemed to have a story... the best part!   I enjoy hearing about their shop and the way things run for them.    Breakfast and social hour allowed time for mingling & visiting with other designers... sharing our stories and passion of needlework, and just "shop-talk" in general.  

I took my good camera with good intentions of taking lots and lots of pictures.  However, you are pretty much tied to your room for the most part.  Sadly, the only photos I snapped are off my phone so they aren't the best...


And lastly,
2015 Spring Nashville Needlework Market releases.

With thy Needle & Thread,