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,


It is almost here!

The vehicle is loaded and tomorrow we will be Nashville-bound!   It looks like Mother Nature is going to make this trip a bit more challenging...ugghh!  We are in a winter storm warning today, lots of heavy snow predicted for today.

I'll be releasing 11 new cross stitch patterns at the market and am sharing little snippets of the final 5 designs...enjoy!

'Market preview ~ Day 11'

'Market preview ~ Day 9'

'Day 7 ~ Nashville Market preview...just a little peek!  Thank you to Suzanne for lending her beautiful stitching talents on this piece.  I ask my model stitchers for weekly photo updates as they work a design.    In one of Suzanne weekly email updates, while working Stars & Stripes, she noted that she prayed for her deployed son while she stitched this patriotic-themed piece.  I felt so honored to know that this design brought prayer, peace and comfort to the mother of a military serviceman.  Truly the best kind of compliment, brought tears to my eyes...I can't even imagine.  Her son has since safely returned home.'

With thy Needle & Thread,


Just one week left...

A week from today everything has to be done!
I am a walking post-it note...notes everywhere,
 reminding me of what to take and what needs to be done.  

Tuesday is "load-up-the-vehicle-day" for an early push off on Wednesday morning for the Nashville Needlework market.     I've been working day's, nights and weekends since the holidays to pull this all together...
 let's just say,
I am pooped! 

 Thanks to the help of model stitchers,
 Suzanne, Susanna and April, 
I will have a booth full of fun & exciting new cross stitch releases.  

Today I am sharing snippets of 6 of the 11 patterns 
that will be debuting in Nashville at the end of the month....
just a little something to tempt your needles!

With thy Needle & Thread,


Worker Bee!!

Things are quite "Bizzy", lots and lots of new patterns coming together.
Nashville market is the buzz and I currently feel like a little worker bee!   I do sort of see a theme here with the upcoming Nashville releases..bees, fruit & flowers!

Did you know?
Bees are said to have knowledge of all secrets, as well as the gift of foreknowledge or seeing the future.  They are also considered to be divine messengers...their buzzing to be a song of praise.    They seem like perfect little motifs to stitch...I like their story, I like how hard they work!  

For those of you who stitched the "Gardener Goode Witch" and "Christmas at Winterberry Cabin", this is the spring/summer version to that series.  It is the last piece to stitch before market.  I know, I know...time is ticking!    I usually don't have a finish in mind when I start stitching.  My mind usually wanders to title and finish, in hoop,  as I stitch.  I am thinking... rather then rusty bell finish, as the other two in this series have, perhaps old mother of pearl button trim and maybe even toss in a bee charm or two...something a bit more "Springy".    I am stitching this on a 40 count rather then the 32 count and it is going to be small & sweet as honey...perfect for tucking on a cupboard shelf or trencher bowl.  
 It shall be titled, "The Potting Shed"

And with that,
 I leave you with pattern titles of the upcoming Nashville releases...
just something to tease and whet your needles appetite!!

Stars & Stripes
A Shepherds' Sampler (antique reproduction with some adaptations)
Summer at Cherry Hill
Spring Greetings Bouquet
Be Happy Humble & Kind
Button Button!
In Season 
A Tisket A Tasket
The Potting Shed
Pin Feathers Pinkeep


We had a good old fashioned winter storm over night...looks to be 7" or so of new snow.
Stay warm,



how does it already get to be mid January? 

 Just picture the Tasmanian devil with a needle and thread in it's hand, that is how I feel!  Lots and lots of new cross stitch designs are in their final stages, in preparation for the upcoming February needlework market.  
With the help of model stitchers Suzanne, April and Suzanna the larger pieces are all stitched...
thank you ladies, you are thee best!!  

My mind now needs to switch gears,
 from charting and stitching,
 to figuring out how to turn a hotel room into an inviting and charming market exhibit...
am trying to wrap my brain around this!
 May need to sneak off to an Embassy Suites
 for a weekend get away
 to get a better visual for how this is going to happen.  

For those shop owners making the buying trip to Nashville,
 stop by and visit me on the 6th floor, room 615 to view the new goodies!
 I have some really cool next door neighbors while at market...R&R Reproductions, The Scarlett House, Plum Street Samplers, Blackbird Designs, Shepherds Bush, Valdani Floss...the list goes on and on!  
  I am over the moon excited to be their neighbors for a weekend!

With Valentines candy already in the store isles it isn't too soon to start stitching some heart and love-themed goodies.  

I am happy to share two new charts
 with just that in mind!
Not too "Valentinesy" ~
so appropriate for the month of love...

"Tied with Heart Strings"
 Old buttons, vintage silk ribbon and faded shades of silk floss, combined with a simple bird and "viney" floral motif, make for a finish that hints vintage farmhouse.    I chose to fill it with lavender- scented crushed walnuts...currently is sitting next to my stitching chair and smells wonderful!

Heart & Hand Needle Keep
A tiny little oval booklet is a safe haven for ones needles!  I chose a simple floral wreath to encircle one of my favorite shaker symbols, the heart & hand.  The backside of the booklet is adorned with a tiny, dainty flower basket.   Crystal glass-headed stick pins encircle the piece...a stick pin will now always be at hand, should the need arise.  Booklet closes with a bees-waxed thread.  I quick little stitch that would make a perfect little gift for a stitching friend.

It's been a really cold start to the new year, we are in for a slight warm up this weekend...can you say January thaw?!!!  

Until next time,


Heap on the Wood!

It's a frigid morning here, we received dry & fluffy snow over the weekend and with today's winds we are in for some blowing and drifting....brr, heap on the wood!

With that said,
 I'm excited to introduce my final cross stitch chart of 2014, 
"Heap on the Wood"

©2014 With thy Needle & Thread

Bundle up, stay warm & have a good week,


New Punch Needle Patterns!

New holiday-themed Punch Needle Patterns
With thy Needle & Thread!

©2014 With thy Needle & Thread

©2014 With thy Needle & Thread

©With thy Needle & Thread