Thursday, May 11, 2017

New Goodies for Sale

You all were so enthusiastic on Instagram about the fun things I was making for the retreat last month, that I decided to make up another batch to offer for sale. Just in case everyone else that didn't get to attend was feeling left out.

Now available in my etsy shop are:

Frog Stitch-Ripper Pins
We've all been there. Stitching away when suddenly we realize that we've done it all wrong; mis-counted, used the wrong stitch, the wrong color, you-name-it.

We call these mistakes "frogs". We call the process of taking the stitches out "frogging". Why? Because with every stitch the mantra repeats in our heads, "Rip-it, Rip-it".

I had the brilliant idea to make some pins with the specific purpose of helping such ripping to happen in a more entertaining way. So what did I do? Adorned them with frogs of course!

I start with pin blanks, to which I've added various shades of green for the bellies of the frogs along with metal alloy heads and legs. They are secured with the strongest jewelry glue I can find, so they should be able to live long lives and withstand much use and abuse. And they include a little cap to go on the sharp end to protect wayward fingers from being pricked during storage.

I currently have 3 different shades of green made up, which I refer to as: Light, Marbled, and Dark.

You will be able to select your desired shade from the drop-down menu before you check out.

These fun and very giftable pretties will arrive in a resealable cello bag on a card printed with the most perfect vintage image ever. It is titled, "As ye sew, sew shall ye rip" with the name "Alice" underneath.

And...


Cross Stitch Sampler Pendant or Thread Rings
With images from some of my all time most popular designs, the pendants can be worn as a necklace or used as a thread ring. Each pendant comes with a 24 inch nickel plated ball chain as well as a 2 inch book ring, making it easy for you to either wear around your neck or use to kit up new design threads for stitching.

The images in the pendants vary, but are all taken from my own designs or from antique samplers that I've reproduced. They are housed in a silver metal backing (not sterling; these are a costume-jewelry grade pendant made from a metal alloy) with a glass dome to protect the image. I currently have 16 images made up, but I am open to the idea of making a custom pendant for you, so please put in a request if you don't see one of your favorite Heartstring Samplery designs represented.

You will be able to select your design name from the drop-down menu before you check out.

These fun and very giftable pretties will arrive in a resealable cello bag.

Monday, May 08, 2017

ATTENTION NEEDLEWORK SHOP OWNERS

ATTENTION NEEDLEWORK SHOP OWNERS: It seems that I've somehow deleted my email list for new release announcements (I only send emails out about once a month, and only to announce a new item becoming available). If you've signed up to be on that list in the past, or if you want to be added to my new list that I'm making from scratch, please let me know! Either by putting your shop email address in the comments or by sending me a private message. Thank you!

Friday, May 05, 2017

*NEW* Apostle's Creed

Appearing for the first time in print in 390AD, the Apostle’s Creed is said to have been created by the Apostles under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, with each of the twelve contributing one of the articles. Others suggest that it was spliced together with phrases from the New Testament. Sometimes called “Symbol of the Apostles”, it is an early statement of Christian belief; a creed or symbol. It is still widely used today by a number of Christian denominations for both liturgical and catechetical purposes, most visibly by liturgical churches of Western tradition. It was based on theological understanding of the Gospels, the letters of the New Testament, and to a lesser extent, the Old Testament. Because of its early origins, it does not address some issues defined in the Nicene and other Christian creeds, so it is usually used in conjunction with these other creeds to help define a particular denomination’s theological beliefs.

The simple fact of its long history of being recited and studied and memorized by believers of all stripes has caused me to be fascinated by it since I was a young child. I love it when things of value remain unaltered through time. This particular creed has indeed been re-worded by many over the years, making it either easier for modern ears to understand, or making adjustments for the sake of theology. The version that I chose to stitch onto my linen is from the 1662 version of the Book of Common Prayer.

Stitch Count: 131 x 425
Model stitched with one thread over two on R&R Reproductions’ 36 count Olde Town Blend

Using flosses from Classic Colorworks:
Poblano Pepper, Calico Kitty, Gingerbread, Honeycomb

And flosses from The Gentle Art:
Brandy, Wood Smoke, Harvest Basket (2 skeins), Shaker White,

As well as from Weeks Dye Works:
Loden, Red Rocks

Conversion to DMC included with the chart.

The lovely frame is an antique.

This design is now available in my etsy shop, and will soon be in the hands of my distributors and the shops on my auto ship list. If you prefer to bypass etsy and order directly through me, you can send me an email: beth@heartstringsamplery.com

*NEW* All the Pretty Flowers

In the midst of the winter months, when the world around me is drab and soggy, when all of the plants and trees are taking a well-deserved rest from the abundance of Spring and Summer days, I find myself starving for color and light. In those rare moments when my hands are busy but there is no background noise to distract my mind, I often take mental walks through the remembered flower gardens of the warmer seasons. Some of these walks are plotting and scheming about moving this plant or introducing that new flower, dreaming of the days ahead to be spent with my hands in the dirt. But some of the imagined walks are just remembering; the freshness of their floral scent on the air, the unlimited nuances of their colors.

This is how this little pincushion design came to be. “All the pretty flowers (really do) live forever in my heart”.

I hope you enjoy this quick little stitch and that it will always remind you of the sunny days that inevitably will return again and again, with the turning of the earth.

*This design was originally released as an exclusive in January of 2016 for the Ladies' Prim Society club*

Stitch Count: 88 x 90
Model stitched with one thread over two on R & R Reproductions’ 32ct. Stars Hollow Blend

Using thread from Classic Colorworks:
Honeycomb

And from The Gentle Art:
Brethren Blue, Old Red Paint, Endive

And from Weeks Dye Works:
Palomino, Pink Sand

Recommended Additional Materials:
1 fat quarter of co-ordinating cotton fabric
2 ft. chenille trim “Mossy” from Elegant Stitch
Pincushion filler of your choice

This design is now available in my etsy shop, and will soon be in the hands of my distributors and the shops on my auto ship list. If you prefer to bypass etsy and order directly through me, you can send me an email: beth@heartstringsamplery.com

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Lately

Oh my lands, have I ever been busy! This little business venture of mine called Heartstring Samplery has been growing slowly and steadily for the last 9 years, and its been a good thing; but I've reached a breaking point, it would seem, between keeping up on designing and filling orders while also homeschooling three days a week and managing our household. I think I have the equivalent of three full time jobs overlapping all at once. Between all of these wonderful, necessary things (and I confess, the easy nature of Instagram for posting pictures), I've sorely neglected this here blog thing. I've heard from more than one of you that you are missing my posts, so I am currently on an airplane taking advantage of the hours that I'll be sitting with nothing better to do, and am determined to get caught up! I'll be back-blogging (post dating) entries all the way back to January, so keep scrolling down if you're one of the faithful readers who really want to know what I've been up to (but bear with me if you're reading this immediately after posting, because this airline internet connection is pretty slow).

I did finally break down and hire a friend to start doing the bulk of my chart folding and stuffing, which has been an immense relief. I kid you not, the day I gave her the first big batch of orders to assemble, I literally slept better. I didn't realize how much stress I was releasing by doing so. Up until now, every single blessed chart has been touched by yours truly at least three times. Now you all have dearest Becky to thank for the freed up creative space in my head. I just hope and pray that she doesn't get sick and tired of the job any time soon.

As I type this, I'm en route to my first ever teaching gig at a stitching retreat in Virginia Beach. Pat and Ann at Dyeing to Stitch have been so helpful in giving me all the direction I need to prepare, but I admit I'm a bit jittery over how it will go. I get that way when doing something new. Not worried that I'll fail, but just not knowing what it will be like. Once my brain has a frame of reference, I'll be good. Having never even attended a stitching retreat before means I have no clue what to expect. I'll be sure to let you know how it goes.

This year has been a blur of preparation. First getting ready for the Needlework Market in Nashville, which started for reals as soon as the holidays were over, then as soon as I got home, I started planning and devising fun things for this retreat. I don't know what I'm going to do with myself once this trip is through. No more travel on my calendar for 2017 other than a couple of family vacations. I think it will be very nice to just breathe for awhile. :)

Now with no further ado, here are some pictures from the month of April, including lots of blooming flowers, smiling and growing-up-too-fast children, our first firepit of the season (it was a balmy 65 outside that day, who could resist?), and some Resurrection Sunday fun with cousins.

Friday, March 31, 2017

The Rest of March

The rest of March was a blur of filling orders and rain and gearing up for Spring and also gearing up for my very first stitching retreat. There wasn't much time for breathing or resting, but I did it anyway, because I've learned that it just isn't worth it to push too hard any more. As much as you all on the outside and my own brain on the inside might think that I'm still a Spring Chicken, I just am not. Simple as that. And the better I take care of myself, the better Mom and Wife and Friend I can be.