Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Free Excel Thread Spreadsheets

Susan Thompson has created a series of thread spreadsheets in Excel which Linda K. Reinmuller posted on her website, adding other spreadsheets of her own devising. If you have Excel on your computer, you can download these and use them to keep a list of what you have in your stash of threads.  Many thanks, ladies!
http://www.lkreinmiller.com/thread-inventories.html

Written by Jane/Chilly Hollow
Blogging at http://chillyhollownp.blogspot.com
and at http://chstitchguides.blogspot.com
© Copyright February 28, 2017 Jane M. Wood. All rights reserved.

The Kelly Clark Makeover

Kelly Clark has a new website!  It's set up totally differently than the old one, without a listing of available stitch guides, but with a link to her new blog.  You can see lots of Kelly's fabulous stitching on her designs here.  It's great fun to see all the eye candy and invention.
http://www.kellyclarkstudio.com/?reqp=1&reqr

Fortunately, her old blog is still available.  Personally I hate blogs that are part of websites because I never know when they are updated.  For example, Kelly's new blog will not be posted in my Blog List because it doesn't notify the listing when it is updated.  You will have to bookmark it to visit whenever you remember (which I never do).  Here's Kelly's old blog, by the way.
http://kellyclarkneedlepointhandbook.blogspot.com

Fortunately for folks who want to order some of Kelly's designs, her distributor Colonial Needle has her designs listed in their Kelly Clark catalogue.  There is no longer a separate page for stitch guides but any canvas that has a guide available is marked SG.
http://www.colonialneedle.com/files-customer/catalog/KellyClark_catalog.pdf

Things change, so shops who want to order Kelly's designs will need to visit Colonial Needle and folks who just want to drool over Kelly's stitched designs will visit her new site.  And for now fans have two blogs to enjoy!

Have fun exploring the new.

Written by Jane/Chilly Hollow
Blogging at http://chillyhollownp.blogspot.com
and at http://chstitchguides.blogspot.com
© Copyright January 27, 2017 Jane M. Wood. All rights reserved.

Monday, February 27, 2017

Woodlawn Bound

The nice stitchers at NJNA are submitting their stitching to the Woodlawn exhibit this year, which means someone has to make a road trip to deliver all the stitching to the show.
https://blog.njneedleartists.org/2017/02/12/woodlawn-the-delivery/

It sounds like a fun visit.  They even stopped at Hillside Needlepoint, a new shop that opened this year in Maryland.
http://www.hillsideneedlepoint.com

Remember, the Woodlawn Plantation needlework exhibit is only during the month of March and is closed on Tuesdays.

Written by Jane/Chilly Hollow
Blogging at http://chillyhollownp.blogspot.com
and at http://chstitchguides.blogspot.com
© Copyright February 12, 2017 Jane M. Wood. All rights reserved.

Sunday, February 26, 2017

Fiber Talk Interviews Susan Hoekstra

This week the Fiber Talk podcast interviews Susan Hoekstra, familiar to many fans of the ANG website as the author of the 2016 Stitch of the Month design.
http://wetalkfiber.com/2017/02/26/fiber-talk-with-susan-hoekstra/

To view Susan's "Pineapple Leaves" project, choose the monthly 2016 postings on ANG's Stitch of the Month page.
http://www.needlepoint.org/Stitch.php

Susan often teaches ANG classes and also visits the Nimble Needle in New Jersey to teach.
http://thenimbleneedle.blogspot.com/2013/05/classes-more-classes-and-trunk-show-too.html

http://needlepoint.org/Seminar-15/classes/1day/1day.php

Have fun getting to know her better.

Written by Jane/Chilly Hollow
Blogging at http://chillyhollownp.blogspot.com
and at http://chstitchguides.blogspot.com
© Copyright February 26,  2017 Jane M. Wood. All rights reserved.

Tips for Shading Painted Canvases

Needlepoint for Fun's newest online tip article lays out two ways to shade areas on your canvas, particularly skies and animal fur.
http://www.needlepoint-for-fun.com/how-to-shade-needlepoint.htm

The article links to ANG's website where there is another shading article to help you understand color blending. I expect with this help you can do some pretty neat shading on your own on that canvas that has you puzzled. Have fun learning to master shading!

Written by Jane/Chilly Hollow
Blogging at http://chillyhollownp.blogspot.com
and at http://chstitchguides.blogspot.com
© Copyright January 27, 2017 Jane M. Wood. All rights reserved.

Saturday, February 25, 2017

Celebrity Spotted Needlepointing

Thanks to Diversions Needlepoint, I learned that the male star of the movie "50 Shades of Gray" is obsessed with needlepoint.  Scroll down until you find Jamie Dornan.
http://www.celebitchy.com/464364/stars_personal_assistants_tell_all_outrageous_celebrity_demands_story_is_amazing/

Here's a bit more about Jamie, in case you missed his movies.
http://www.imdb.com/name/nm1946193/

Written by Jane/Chilly Hollow
Blogging at http://chillyhollownp.blogspot.com
and at http://chstitchguides.blogspot.com
© Copyright January 25, 2017 Jane M. Wood. All rights reserved.

Friday, February 24, 2017

A Trolley for Tools UPDATE

Mary Corbet has another great organizational tool in her blog post today--rolling utility trolleys by IKEA!
http://www.needlenthread.com/2017/01/embroidery-studio-organization-clear-the-table.html

Mary's carts appear to be these from the IKEA website.  They come in various colors, are pretty small and appear to be easy to roll out of the way into a closet or corner when not needed.  Assembly is required.  Thanks once again, Mary!
http://www.ikea.com/us/en/catalog/products/90333976/

UPDATED:  Tisha bought a similar cart (with four baskets) at Costco last week for #27.  Assembly is required but she charmed someone else into doing that bit for her. Just FYI.  Thanks, Tisha!

Written by Jane/Chilly Hollow
Blogging at http://chillyhollownp.blogspot.com
and at http://chstitchguides.blogspot.com
© Copyright January 25, 2017 Jane M. Wood. All rights reserved.

Thursday, February 23, 2017

The Pilot Frixion Erasable Gel Pen

I thought folks who like to draw their own designs and then have the lines disappear would like to hear what Helen has to say about Pilot's Frixion erasable pens.  Heat erases the lines and cold brings them back.  Helen mostly does Japanese Embroidery so she is using her pen on fabrics, not needlepoint canvas, so I cannot say whether they work well or not for needlepointers.
http://hgotts.blogspot.com/2017/01/more-gatsby-tools.html

On the other hand, they seem to be readily available, come in many colors (even metallics), so the mad scientists among us might want to experiment.  Just let us know what you think, ok?
https://www.walmart.com/ip/Pilot-FriXion-Clicker-Erasable-Gel-Pens-7-Pack/22477879#about-item

Written by Jane/Chilly Hollow
Blogging at http://chillyhollownp.blogspot.com
and at http://chstitchguides.blogspot.com
© Copyright January 8, 2017 Jane M. Wood. All rights reserved.

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Rehoboth Beach Museum's Needlework Exhibit Upcoming

Brenda reminds us of the Rehoboth Beach Museum's Needlework Exhibit in March.
https://brendasneedlepointstudio.blogspot.com/2017/02/rehoboth-beach-museums-7th-annual.html

The museum is open Friday-Sunday and is located in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware.  You can find an exhibit form for your needlework here.
http://www.rehobothbeachmuseum.org/images/Documents/Needlework%20Application%20Program%202017.pdf

Written by Jane/Chilly Hollow
Blogging at http://chillyhollownp.blogspot.com
and at http://chstitchguides.blogspot.com
© Copyright February 22, 2017 Jane M. Wood. All rights reserved

Breaking News: Nimble Needle NJ is Moving

Nimble Needle in New Jersey is moving house!  The online shop is still open (second link below) while Karen gets the new location (which is about four miles from the old shop) ready.   Have fun getting set up, Karen!
http://nimbleneedlenj.com/in-the-news/

http://nimbleneedlenj.com

Written by Jane/Chilly Hollow
Blogging at http://chillyhollownp.blogspot.com
and at http://chstitchguides.blogspot.com
© Copyright February 21, 2017 Jane M. Wood. All rights reserved.

Woodlawn 2015

While I was wandering around the Internet, looking for something else, I found these photographs of pieces exhibited at Woodlawn in 2015. The crewel and the long and short dog portrait are amazing.
http://marshacannon.org/2015/03/14/woodlawn-plantation-needlework-exhibition/

The exhibit starts March 1.  Get ready!

Written by Jane/Chilly Hollow
Blogging at http://chillyhollownp.blogspot.com
and at http://chstitchguides.blogspot.com
© Copyright December 26, 2016 Jane M. Wood. All rights reserved.

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Exploring Kreinik Braids

This little bit of back story about Kreinik's metallic threads has some great history, interesting tips on stitching with them and plenty of links to more information on the Kreinik website.
http://kreinikthread.blogspot.com/2017/01/how-to-stitch-with-kreinik-braids.html

We owe the Kreinik family a big debt of gratitude!

Written by Jane/Chilly Hollow
Blogging at http://chillyhollownp.blogspot.com
and at http://chstitchguides.blogspot.com
© Copyright January 24, 2017 Jane M. Wood. All rights reserved.

Monday, February 20, 2017

Fiber Talk: Kurdy Biggs of Threedles

The newest podcast on Fiber Talk interviews Kurdy Biggs of Threedles.
http://wetalkfiber.com/2017/02/19/fiber-talk-with-kurdy-biggs/

For those who don't do counted canvaswork, here is the Threedles website.
http://threedles.com/06012011/default.htm

Here is the Threedles' hints page with the angle bars tip mentioned in the podcast.  By the way, Kurdy's projects are listed alphabetically on the left side if you want to look up a project mentioned in the podcast.
http://threedles.com/04012016/Frames/threedles_frameset.html

Written by Jane/Chilly Hollow
Blogging at http://chillyhollownp.blogspot.com
and at http://chstitchguides.blogspot.com
© Copyright February 19, 2017 Jane M. Wood. All rights reserved.

Thunderstruck UPDATED

Nimble Needle in New Jersey just posted a bunch of happy designs on their blog. I was thunderstruck {!!!} to realize that the Maggie "Chalk Board Bird" was just that--a drawing on a chalkboard!
http://nimbleneedlenj.com/happy-diversion/

UPDATE:  The above article was removed from the Nimble Needle blog but I managed to find a photo elsewhere.  Still am amazed that this is a chalkboard drawing. It is so obvious when you look with new eyes.
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Hand-painted-Needlepoint-Canvas-Chalk-Bird-Red-Flower-Maggie-co-/282271517231

Isn't it fun when we suddenly see a new canvas a new way?  Thanks, Karen!

Written by Jane/Chilly Hollow
Blogging at http://chillyhollownp.blogspot.com
and at http://chstitchguides.blogspot.com
© Copyright January 23, 2017 Jane M. Wood. All rights reserved.

Sunday, February 19, 2017

Connie Stover's Canvas Video

Connie Pickering Stover shows off how her original canvas designs develop in this YouTube video.  Fascinating!  She promises more videos once she learns more about filming and editing.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pi9LZX0IiBs&feature=youtu.be

You can always see more on Connie's website.  Don't miss reading her blog articles for more insights into her designs and work process.
http://conniepickeringstover.com

Written by Jane/Chilly Hollow
Blogging at http://chillyhollownp.blogspot.com
and at http://chstitchguides.blogspot.com
© Copyright January 19, 2017 Jane M. Wood. All rights reserved.

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Review: The DuoLamp from Daylight

Cynthia Thomas raves about Daylight's DuoLamp. 
https://www.facebook.com/cynthia.thomas.7355/posts/1440297595988530

If you would like to learn more, Dick Blick's art supply website has them on sale.  Note the tabs that have detail specs of each type of DuoLamp, a review and photographs to help you see exactly what you are getting if you order.
http://www.dickblick.com/products/daylight-duolamp/

Written by Jane/Chilly Hollow
Blogging at http://chillyhollownp.blogspot.com
and at http://chstitchguides.blogspot.com
© Copyright January 19, 2017 Jane M. Wood. All rights reserved.

Friday, February 17, 2017

Travis Wood Paints the Meaning of Stitching

Rebecca Wood's son Travis is an artist in oils who just painted what needlework means to families for his mother. You can see the original on Facebook.
https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=703855569774056&set=a.203756976450587.1073741829.100004488573475&type=3&theater

The painting is on exhibit at the TNNA show now and it is for sale, as well as reprints. If you are going, make sure you take a look at it.

Written by Jane/Chilly Hollow
Blogging at http://chillyhollownp.blogspot.com
and at http://chstitchguides.blogspot.com
© Copyright January 8, 2017 Jane M. Wood. All rights reserved.

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Mighty Bright's XtraFlex2 Book Light: A Review

Mary Corbet just posted a review of Mighty Bright's XtraFlex2 Book Light on her website.  Although this is not a light to use all the time, Mary thinks it's pretty good for travelers, for power outages, and other temporary lighting needs.  As usual, Mary covers all the pros and cons to help you decide if this product is going to work for you.  After all, things that work beautifully for some won't work at all for others, depending on your stitching style, where you stitch and of course what you are working on.  That said, make sure you pay attention to her labeling warning!
http://www.needlenthread.com/2017/01/clip-on-lights-for-needlework-mighty-bright-review-tips.html

Written by Jane/Chilly Hollow
Blogging at http://chillyhollownp.blogspot.com
and at http://chstitchguides.blogspot.com
© Copyright January 19, 2017 Jane M. Wood. All rights reserved.

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Frankenstein and the Pixie

My Monitor Edge is Too Prominent


I've been working away on my Computer Pixie,* enjoying every bit of her.  She has presented challenges, though.   There is a lot of dimension in this piece.  The Pixie is in front of the computer, the tote bag is in front of the chair, the beach ball is behind the computer monitor, etc.  My first real issue was with the edge of the computer monitor.  I worked it in padded satin stitch, using Flair over perle cotton padding.  See how far forward the monitor comes?  It is overwhelming the Pixie's arm and the glass she's holding.  That was easy to fix--rip out the Flair and remove the padding, then restitch the monitor's edge in plain satin stitch.  It worked!


Frankenstein Fingers!

This closeup shows that the new monitor edge is much less prominent, but it also reveals another issue--I gave the Pixie Frankenstein fingers!  What you see are bullions done in the darkest pink floss.  That is the color the fingers were painted but when you see them stitched, it screams "WRONG!"

So I ripped again.  This time I went with the palest pink floss.  Using the dark pink drew too much attention to the Pixie's hand, detracting from the glass of tropical punch she holds.


Better Fingers

The new fingers work much better.  You don't see them before you see anything else and you don't think Dr. Frankenstein's monster, either.  The moral is you don't always need to copy the painted colors exactly.  The original color won't work with every stitch.  Bullions are plenty prominent already without making them dark pink against a light area like the glass.


The Pixie Relaxes While I Stitch Blanket

Here's my progress to date.  I have a lot still to do of course.  Once I finish the blanket her chair's sitting on, the Computer Pixie needs wings, antenna, tote bag and contents, shells and a starfish, not to mention chair arms and legs!  Stay tuned...

*The Computer Pixie is by Ruth Schmuff.   The canvas comes with a stitch guide by Sheena James which I have mostly ignored so I can have fun trying to solve the dimension problems this design presents myself.
https://bedeckedandbeadazzled.com/product/computer-pixie/

Written by Jane/Chilly Hollow
Blogging at http://chillyhollownp.blogspot.com
and at http://chstitchguides.blogspot.com
© Copyright February 13, 2017 Jane M. Wood. All rights reserved.

Hummingbird: A New Mystery Class UPDATED

Ruth Schmuff has announced the next mystery class for Bedecked and Beaddazzled--Zecca's "Hummingbird."  You can find out more about the class which will start in March on the shop website (second link below).
http://www.notyourgrandmothersneedlepoint.com/2017/01/it-feels-like-spring.html

https://bedeckedandbeadazzled.com/product/hummingbird-2/

As always, I'll update this article as Ruth posts progress photos.  The first lesson Ruth works on the background, throwing in a twist or two.
http://www.notyourgrandmothersneedlepoint.com/2017/03/texture.html

Then she tackles the poppies.  One stitch for the red poppies, one for the orange.  But Ruth changes the threads around so that the poppies that use the same stitch look different.   Cool!
http://www.notyourgrandmothersneedlepoint.com/2017/03/poppies.html

Now the little hummingbird!  Ruth uses him to show how you can create birds with various sizes of beads. Very clever, as always, Miss Ruth.
http://www.notyourgrandmothersneedlepoint.com/2017/04/he-can-fly.html

Written by Jane/Chilly Hollow
Blogging at http://chillyhollownp.blogspot.com
and at http://chstitchguides.blogspot.com
© Copyright January 18, 2017 Jane M. Wood. All rights reserved.

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

The Needlepoint Love Story at Thistle Hill

Ada Hayden just posted the newest heart sold at Thistle Hill's needlepoint exhibit as a fund raiser. She designs them every year and also included a photograph of the first three annual hearts.
http://eyecandyneedleart.blogspot.com/2017/01/happy-new-year-little-bit-late.html

The 2017 exhibit is February 22-26.  The details are on Thistle Hill's Facebook page which I am not linking to since only people signed in to Facebook can see it.  The earlier hearts may be purchased through Historic Fort Worth. (No idea about the 2017 heart.  You may have to go to the exhibit to buy it.)  I think you will have to call or email them if you are not in the Fort Worth, Texas area.
http://historicfortworth.org

Written by Jane/Chilly Hollow
Blogging at http://chillyhollownp.blogspot.com
and at http://chstitchguides.blogspot.com
© Copyright January 19, 2017 Jane M. Wood. All rights reserved.

Monday, February 13, 2017

Perfect Pom-poms

Enriched Stitch just got their rabbit canvas back from the finisher--and it's wonderful! The trim is perfect for the design, enhancing it instead of drawing the eye away from the design.
http://astheneedleturns.com/black-and-white-and-fun-all-over/

I believe the rabbit design is from the Meredith Collection, formerly the Elizabeth Turner Collection, but no credit is given and the design isn't listed on the shop's website.

Written by Jane/Chilly Hollow
Blogging at http://chillyhollownp.blogspot.com
and at http://chstitchguides.blogspot.com
© Copyright January 14, 2017 Jane M. Wood. All rights reserved.

Saturday, February 11, 2017

Beads and Bullets UPDATED WITH KREINIK

If you like adding beads to your needlepoint, sooner or later you will have a pile of tubes of beads you have to organize in some fashion.   If you visit the big online bead stores like ArtBeads, Fire Mountain Gems or Fusion Beads and search for storage boxes, the  results are staggering.  I've tried several ways to keep mine in order.  First I tried the little "Chicklet" boxes that fit in a larger box.    The best photo of this system I found is on eBay.
http://www.ebay.com/itm/180-g-Miyuki-DELICA-Mix-11-0-Japanese-Seed-BEADS-Clear-Flip-top-Containers-Box-/361895498247?hash=item5442a71207

This is great if you like to store your beads by color but you have to add stickers to the boxes and write down what they are if you do stitch guides like me.  I have to know what brand, size and color I've used.  It's a little limiting for me, frankly.

So next I tried stackable storage boxes and laid a row of beads in their tubes in each.    This is similar to what I tried.
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Plastic-Stackable-Clear-Storage-Carry-Container-Tote-Organizer-Craft-Case-Box-3-/272143782482

Some of mine clip together so you can pick up the entire stack of small boxes at once or unclip the one you want.  Others just rest on top of others of their size. All are available in office supply stores.  I have discovered this works for me except some of the bead tubes don't have secure tops.  I have one box that has a bead soup of all sorts of colors I will have to sort out and put each back in their tube.  I also waste a lot of space as I don't like to have more than one layer of beads so that when I take off the lid, I can see the colors.  So I'm still trying for the perfect bead storage solution for me.

I might have found it, courtesy of Sundance Designs.  Those of you familiar with Sundance know that they sell beads as well as painted canvases.  (If you aren't familiar with their work, have fun exploring their website.)
http://www.sundancedesignsonline.com

I discovered that Sundance stores their bead tubes in cartridge boxes!  If you don't live in a rural area like I do, you may have never seen the plastic boxes that are used to store handgun and shotgun shells.   The box below is specifically for shotgun shells.  They are perfect for storing tubes of beads upright!
http://www.ammoboxes.com/ca50se.html




I bought myself a box that will hold fifty tubes for $2.99 plus tax today.  My box is seven inches long by three and three quarters inches high and three and a half inches wide.   In the photo above you see the plastic box closed with a selection of bead tubes that I grabbed to test how well they will fit.




Here's the inside of the box.  I put the longer tubes in the back and the shorter in the front. No matter the diameter or height, they all fit nicely.  However, you cannot see the colors of the beads in the smaller tubes.  I will solve that by using this box for my selection of gold, white, clear and black beads, the colors I use the most often.  My box came with stickers for labels so I may label the top gold and white on each end and the middle black and clear beads.  Note that the very long bead tubes for Japanese beads probably won't fit.  You can only store tubes shorter than the three and a half inch height of the box with the lid closed.

I purchased this at Dick's, which luckily has the gun and fishing sections next to each other.  Fishing tackle boxes are equally useful for storage, fairly cheap and they come in a dizzily array of sizes and configurations.

So maybe it's time to check out the sporting goods sections of places like Walmart, or sports stores like Bass and Dicks.  Your beads will thank you!

UPDATE:  After this article published I got a laughing email from Sandy Arthur, who sent me this photo of her Kreinik storage boxes which are clear ammo boxes, sized for rifle shells I think.   Sandy says there are smaller boxes available but she always picks the larger ones.


Sandy Arthur's Kreinik Storage

Sandy says everything but size 16 braid fits in these.  And you can see the labels because the lids are clear and the colors are somewhat visible through the clear sides.  Nice!

Many thanks to Sandy for allowing me to share this additional tip for stitching storage with ammo boxes with you.


Written by Jane/Chilly Hollow
Blogging at http://chillyhollownp.blogspot.com
and at http://chstitchguides.blogspot.com
© Copyright February 11, 2017 Jane M. Wood. All rights reserved.

Needlepoint For Fun's Top Three Background Stitches

Needlepoint For Fun's Top Three Background Stitches are diagrammed here.
http://www.needlepoint-for-fun.com/top-needlepoint-background-stitches.htm

Written by Jane/Chilly Hollow
Blogging at http://chillyhollownp.blogspot.com
and at http://chstitchguides.blogspot.com
© Copyright January 16, 2017 Jane M. Wood. All rights reserved.

Friday, February 10, 2017

Jane Tattersfield's Needlepoint Canvases

The English artist Jane Tattersfield's designs are being translated onto needlepoint canvas by Stitchery Thames Ditton (run at least in part by Jeremy Hamilton, formerly of Kirk and Hamilton) but in the United States, Needlepoint Now magazine distributes her work. You can see the full range of her current designs on the Stitchery Thames Ditton website.  Just click on "Collection" and enjoy!
http://www.stitcherythamesditton.com

Written by Jane/Chilly Hollow
Blogging at http://chillyhollownp.blogspot.com
and at http://chstitchguides.blogspot.com
© Copyright January 15, 2017 Jane M. Wood. All rights reserved.

Thursday, February 9, 2017

Orna's New Storage Rings

Orna Willis has a new type of storage ring to hold a lot of threads.  I think I've seen these--the little connector unscrews to add new threads, making it more secure than the regular rings that start to open unexpectedly after a while.  There's a link at the end of the article to Orna's Etsy shop where you can buy some of these for your next project or your thread storage needs.
http://ornadesign.blogspot.com/2017/02/try-these-you-will-love-them.html

Written by Jane/Chilly Hollow
Blogging at http://chillyhollownp.blogspot.com
and at http://chstitchguides.blogspot.com
© Copyright February 7, 2017 Jane M. Wood. All rights reserved.

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Basketweave on a Stick Tutorial



Computer Pixie Underway (Canvas by Ruth Schmuff)


My Computer Pixie canvas from Bedecked and Beaddazzled is coming right along.   Last night I stitched her pony tail using Basketweave on a Stick and thought you'd like to see how this stitch is done.  I decided to change the Pixie's hair color to light brown, ecru and cream, using Caron's Impressions for the ecru and cream and a brown Felicity's Garden.   All three threads are silk-wool blends which I think create perfect hair texture.

Basketweave on a Stick is done just like regular basketweave except you stitch over a stick of some sort every other row.  Since I need something smooth (don't want to snag the threads) and long (have to cover the area to be stitched), I used a doll makers' needle.  These are thin but long.  The needle I choose is four inches in length.  I bought a selection of these at a big box crafts stores eons ago and use them periodically.    Here is what the sets are like in case you want to pick up a set.
http://www.nancysnotions.com/product/doll+making+needle+set.do


Row Two Underway

The steps for Basketweave on a Stick are simple.

Row One--Stitch a row of basketweave as usual.
Row Two--Lay your "stick" along the diagonal row you will be stitching and do basketweave over the raised item.  Leave the stick in position.
Row Three-Stitch as usual.  Once you are done with Row Three, slide your needle or straw or whatever out from under Row Two.
Row Four--Lay your stick down over the diagonal row you will be stitching.  Now do basketweave over the raised item.
Repeat Rows Three and Four until your area is covered with stitches.

It isn't always easy to see where the stitches go or what color you are supposed to use if you are doing this in a shaded area like I was.  Wiggle the "stick" slightly to glimpse the holes and painted colors.  It helps to use a long stick as it makes wiggling easier.

In the progress photo above, you can see I'd skipped a stitch over the needle. I did all the ecru stitches first and need to go back and add a cream highlight here.  Also note that I covered the painted antenna with my stitches.  It will be couched into position on top of the hair later.  The needle parked on the magnet is a regular size 18 tapestry needle, to give you some idea of how large doll makers' needles are.

Basketweave on a Stick is a good substitute for French knots if you hate making those.  I am not sure it is a good substitute for uncut turkey work as it isn't as dense as turkey work is.  (It all depends on the effect you want, of course.)  You do need to pay attention so you don't accidentally skip one row hidden by your stick.

This stitch is probably easiest to do on 13 count in an area without shading, like a big fat white sheep.  You can use anything for a stick--a plastic straw, a large needle, a laying tool, a pencil, etc.  The size of the loops you are creating will vary according to the diameter of your "stick" so choose wisely.  Also avoid anything like a toothpick that might snag your threads unless you smooth it with fine sandpaper first.


Curly Pony Tail

Here's the end result.

Written by Jane/Chilly Hollow
Blogging at http://chillyhollownp.blogspot.com
and at http://chstitchguides.blogspot.com
© Copyright February 8, 2017 Jane M. Wood. All rights reserved.

Jolly Red's Makeover

The British tapestry kit company Jolly Red has a finishing department that is occasionally asked to make up older pieces that have been stitched but not finished. These often make the most amazing pillows and they have amazing stories behind them, too.  So if you have something you've stitched and then stashed away, time to talk to a finisher....
https://www.jollyred.co.uk/out-with-the-old/

Written by Jane/Chilly Hollow
Blogging at http://chillyhollownp.blogspot.com
and at http://chstitchguides.blogspot.com
© Copyright January 15, 2017 Jane M. Wood. All rights reserved.

Picking the Winners

Speaking of Jolly Red, the company ran a contest in December, asking customers to send in a photo of their piece, either finished or just started.  Then they asked local shop owners in their small Somerset, England town to pull names out of a hat.  You can read all about it here.
https://www.jollyred.co.uk/service-and-a-smile-in-langport/

The contestants are in a photo album on Jolly Red's Facebook page if you want to take a look.
https://www.facebook.com/pg/mrsjollyred/photos/?tab=album&album_id=1618260248199818

It's a fun way to learn a bit about the tastes of your customers and showcase your town!

Written by Jane/Chilly Hollow
Blogging at http://chillyhollownp.blogspot.com
and at http://chstitchguides.blogspot.com
© Copyright  January 15, 2017 Jane M. Wood. All rights reserved.

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

This Week's Fiber Talk Podcast is Orna Willis

This week's Fiber Talk podcast is an interview with Orna Willis.
http://wetalkfiber.com/2017/02/05/fiber-talk-with-orna-willis/

Orna designs amazing colorful geometric designs.
https://adornbyorna.com

If you are curious about the fiber selection combos Gary mentions in the podcast, you can see them on Orna's blog...
http://ornadesign.blogspot.com

...or at her Etsy shop.
https://www.etsy.com/shop/ADORNBYORNA/items

Written by Jane/Chilly Hollow
Blogging at http://chillyhollownp.blogspot.com
and at http://chstitchguides.blogspot.com
© Copyright February 5, 2017 Jane M. Wood. All rights reserved.

Monday, February 6, 2017

Shades of White

Karen at Nimble Needle shows off Kreinik's whites, listing both the new whites and the olds.  She also has words of wisdom about picking and substituting colors and choosing the right size of Kreinik for your canvas.  (Although take the "right size" with a grain of salt since stitch tensions vary.  We all have our favorite Kreinik size for our preferred canvas size.)
http://nimbleneedlenj.com/7-shade-of-kreinik-whites/

Those who want to see more photos can refer to my posting about them here--
https://chillyhollownp.blogspot.com/2016/12/the-newest-kreinik-colors.html

Written by Jane/Chilly Hollow
Blogging at http://chillyhollownp.blogspot.com
and at http://chstitchguides.blogspot.com
© Copyright January 5, 2017 Jane M. Wood. All rights reserved.

Sunday, February 5, 2017

How to Use Darning Stitches in Backgrounds UPDATED

Needlepoint For Fun's newest newsletter is about darning stitches for backgrounds.  The article shows off a simple darning pattern the shop created for a canvas, recommends two books of darning patterns for your backgrounds and gives tips for creating successful backgrounds with these stitches.
http://www.needlepoint-for-fun.com/needlepoint-darning-pattern-a-question-mark.htm

UPDATE:  Read the comments for further darning book recommendations.

Written by Jane/Chilly Hollow
Blogging at http://chillyhollownp.blogspot.com
and at http://chstitchguides.blogspot.com
© Copyright January 13, 2017 Jane M. Wood. All rights reserved.

Saturday, February 4, 2017

Konya Prayer Rug Free Chart

Fans of silk gauze miniature rugs will be thrilled with Natalia Frank's free rug chart for 40 count silk gauze.
http://www.dollhouseneedlepoint.com/free-patterns

Written by Jane/Chilly Hollow
Blogging at http://chillyhollownp.blogspot.com
and at http://chstitchguides.blogspot.com
© Copyright January 3, 2017 Jane M. Wood. All rights reserved.

Friday, February 3, 2017

Threadaholic Alert: News About Glints

If you are a fan of Bijoux Glints, you'll want to make a note that this thread (which is basically Bijouix with a white core instead of the typical back core that makes the thread look like zebra stripes) is no longer available from Madeira in smaller spool sizes. 
http://needlestack.typepad.com/whats_new/2017/01/bijoux-glint-colors-spool-size-change.html

If you are curious about the difference in the look between regular Bijoux and Glints, you can see the two threads here.
http://www.needlestack.com/WebStore/Thread/Access_Bijoux.html#MAD-FS20

This is no hardship for me because I adore this thread and use all of the colors a lot.  Buying the thread in larger spools is perfect for me.  But if you just want to try this out or only have a limited use for it, you should pick up the smaller spools from your favorite shop before they are gone.

Written by Jane/Chilly Hollow
Blogging at http://chillyhollownp.blogspot.com
and at http://chstitchguides.blogspot.com
© Copyright January 13, 2017 Jane M. Wood. All rights reserved.

Thursday, February 2, 2017

Pippin Copes with a Canadian Winter

Pippin Studio has the most fun blog ever! Read about her winter adventures and see new canvases, too.
http://pippinstudio.ca/blog/2017/01/10/still-brrrrrrrr/

You know, I should add a bag of sand to my shopping list.  Snow topped with sleet is in my forecast....

Written by Jane/Chilly Hollow
Blogging at http://chillyhollownp.blogspot.com
and at http://chstitchguides.blogspot.com
© Copyright January 12, 2017 Jane M. Wood. All rights reserved.

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Framing Up DMC Stitchable Metallic Mesh

Gold Stitchable Mesh Side

I finally decided the best way to mount the DMC stitchable metallic mesh was to treat it like needlepoint canvas.  I simply thumbtacked it to two sets of ten inch stretcher bars.   As you can see, the edges fray a bit but instead of covering them which I might do with needlepoint canvas, I left them bare just to see how badly the edges fray as they are worked.


Silver Stitchable Mesh Side

The mesh itself seems slightly stretchy as you pull it into position.  I didn't pull it drum tight as I don't know if it will tear under stress but I did pull it enough so that it was straight and that the dents from mailing were pulled mostly straight.

As far as I can see, the mesh is roughly 13-14 holes to the inch.   Therefore I think I can work one of Threedles' "Christmas Diamond" designs from the December 2015 issue of Needlepoint Now magazine on one half of the 10 inch square mesh and then flip the design over to stitch something else. 
https://www.needlepointnow.com/product/november-december-2015/

You can see the three "Christmas Diamond"designs stitched by Brenda here.    Number one looks to be the easiest to stitch so that's the one I will work on.
https://brendasneedlepointstudio.blogspot.com/2016/12/christmas-diamond-ornaments-12416.html

Since counting is involved, you might want to start praying hard for me!

Written by Jane/Chilly Hollow
Blogging at http://chillyhollownp.blogspot.com
and at http://chstitchguides.blogspot.com
© Copyright January 22, 2017 Jane M. Wood. All rights reserved.

Dry Hands: Ideas UPDATED

Mary Corbet tackles the issue of dry, rough hands.
http://www.needlenthread.com/2017/01/rough-hands-fine-threads-some-tips.html

I suffer from split skin on my fingertips in the winter, courtesy of genetics.  (Mom had the same problem.)  If you do as well, I highly recommend Liquid Bandage.  It stings when you put it on a split but it quickly seals the split, protecting you from infection. It is available under various brand names but they all seem to work, except I cannot recommend the spray on version as the nozzle is plugged every time you use it. This is the sort of item I'm recommending for split finger tip skin.
https://www.walmart.com/ip/New-Skin-Liquid-Bandage-First-Aid-Liquid-Antiseptic-0.3-oz/10316533

Lots of my friends have similar problems and recommend quite a few brand name lotions to help heal and prevent dry skin on one's hands.  Note that these are not to be applied just before stitching.  You'll want to go with lotions specifically made to be non-greasy for that.  (I use Udderly Smooth.)

In alphabetic order:

Aveeno Daily Moisturizing Lotion
CeraVe Healing Ointment
L'Occitane en Provence Creme Mains
Luberiderm Intense Skin Repair Lotion
Neutrogena Norwegian Formula Hand Cream
Palmer's Cocoa Butter Formula

If you have other products you've tried on your hands that work really well for you, please add them in the Comments or email me at chilly hollow at hot maildotcom and I will add them for you.

Here's to healthy skin!

UPDATE:  Make sure you read the comments below for other great skin care products!  Many thanks, everybody.

Written by Jane/Chilly Hollow
Blogging at http://chillyhollownp.blogspot.com
and at http://chstitchguides.blogspot.com
© Copyright January 27, 2017 Jane M. Wood. All rights reserved.