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We have much to do here today, so let's begin with two bits of news---firstly, we are retiring some older designs, (Cedars of Lebanon, Reflections of Joy, Entomology and a few others). It's sad to say goodbye, but, as you can see above, I have new designs going up every day!  

Silky Safari is a twist on traditional samplers.  It's full of interesting stitches, and unusual threads, Ultrasuede applique' and beads to top it off.  It is a wonderful design to have fun with! 

Also out this week, Windmills of Color, pictured below. This Kit comes in three colorways. With a focus on color application, color balance and color placement, I wrote the pattern to give the user more options and freedom with their choices!

And finally: It's that time again!!!!  It's a Giveaway.

For this Giveaway, I designed a beautiful "Paper Bag" with two contrasting shades of Ultrasuede® to highlight the simple familiar lines of a classic grocery store bag. 

Standing 13 inches tall, and 9 inches wide, it's the perfect bag when you are running errands or just need to take a few things with you. It snaps closed, and is adorned with a couple of whimsical lampwork beads.

To be entered in this drawing, we are going to continue in the spirit of the Color articles I've
been writing for Needlepoint Now over the past months. (If you haven't seen this series, it's a wonderful way to hone your skills as a colorist--to better understand how to use color in a way that speaks for you.)  All you need to do is post a creative, color inspired name for this bag, (click on the post a comment below). Try to take into consideration all that you see in the pictures, and let's see what you come up with! We will announce  a winner (chosen at random from the entrants) on Tuesday November 2nd.

 Good Luck!


Taking your rainbow along for the ride...

This is brilliant, just brilliant! 



Helmut Smits, an artist from the Netherlands is brilliant


Collecting thoughts on collections

I love collections. I loved my stamp collection when I was a child. I graduated to collecting art glass much later and I cherish that collection. 

I think what I love most about collecting is that it is a visual of how one can become curious and captivated by something. It can be antique jewelry, or it can be drift wood.  It doesn't really matter. It's about something you love catching you somewhere inside, hooking on to you and all you can do is collect and follow.





 Do you collect? Tell me about it.


Happy Blues

I've never been much of a blue person but this morning the BLUES stood out in my home.  

Hummmm, maybe I'm liking the blues?






Dues and Don'ts

When I arrived in Columbus and made my way up to my room at the hotel, I carefully unpacked
my entire suitcase. Neatly placed in drawers and on hangers, my clothing and I felt at home.  


I've been back for over week now. I haven't unpacked... I'm living out of my suitcase,
rummaging in the mornings for something to wear. 

Hotels make me feel relaxed, probably the no computer thing. 

Seminar was fantastic!  Although I've had a canvas and thread in my hands for over 15 years now, I've always felt a newbie.  I came into the needlepoint world through the back door. With an art background and a "I can do that" attitude, I jumped in.  Over the years I've been told, or heard through the grapevine, that I haven't, so called, payed my dues...  I think that refers to not having a formal needlepoint education.  I am self taught, that is true. I've learned many of the "rules" of needlepoint by coming across them through my experimentation.  I know how to make sure that the back of my canvas doesn't show through to the front,  but not because I was told that: them the rules. Nope, my motivation has always been figuring out how to make the front of my canvas look it's best. I still haven't seen all of the seven wonders of the world so I don't have time to look at the back of a canvas. Let others do that, I care about the front. 

I could go on and on, but my point is that for the first time, at this Seminar, I didn't feel new to this world. I met so many good friends, I had return students in my classes, I made new friends and I felt at home.  Thank you to all my very dear friends and students for a wonderful week of classes and fun.

While I did enjoy all my classes, I was overwhelmed by the response and the success of my Color Inspiration class. Many of the participants asked for an encore and that I make it a two day class. I agree!  Let's shoot for Philadelphia 2012!

Genevieve and I have been making To Do lists; short-term and long-term.  They are so long, it's a bit intimidating. But we will get thru them and present you with many new designs, ideas and thoughts. We may very well ask for your opinions as well, so get ready.

Off to maybe unpack a few items. Or maybe stitch instead...


I'm still unpacking. In the meantime...


SATURDAY POST: Studio Conquered and other Matters

Genevieve again--so word from ANG is that things went wonderfully! Orna is trekking back and should be home this weekend at some point. In the meantime, I did some serious tidying!!

During my cleaning and sifting, I found a bunch of Orna's thoughts on canvas---I would like to call them Doodles in Silk. I think it's interesting to show an artist's process. Sometimes when we see beautiful art, we don't understand where it comes from. We think it just IS. Even with needlepoint, with it's counted squares and detailed precision---the idea that it comes from a place of complete experimentation seems foreign and uncomfortable. However, as with all art, the first stages--- of playing with color and material and design to see what could happen--- are the most important. And so I give you--Orna's Process:

Not too glamorous, to be sure, but there is evidence of real Creative Problem Solving here.  This grey windmill was gone over a few times---various combinations were tried and pulled out. The Result?

Now that IS glamorous!! More refined, the shape altered make it more elegant. Below left, we have a taste of the early stages of Square Dance. Clearly, the idea that remained was working with multiple tiny squares.  But you can see how much more complicated it became as a finished product.


And then there was this little morsel of a thought I found tucked away in some dark corner of a drawer:

You can see how that one little droplet shape traveled from the center out to the edges and multipled--it started as the green focal point, but ended as yellow and gold border. 

The studio is filled with ideas like these--a sketchbook of thoughts in thread. I hope that seeing the experimentation that goes into these very precise and complicated designs will give you all a little inspiration to think outside the box--errrr---boxes of your canvases and try something new!!

That's it for today--Orna will be back next week--we have giveaways, demos and a new series coming up during the next few months, so keep checking back!


Introductions and The Studio: Revealed!!

Hello All--This is Genevieve, Orna's Assistant.  I have been working for Orna since sometime in June and it has turned out to be whirlwind of a job! My background is a patchwork of art disciplines, from Film, to Glass to Embroidery

and pretty much everything in between! I think I work really well with Orna because we both have the same kind of addiction to process---if we see something we like we both usually say "Oh Let me figure out how to do that..." and then we are off. That thinking is very dear to me--I believe the work determines the medium and not the other way around.

So now that I have made introductions, let me tell you whats going on at the Studio. Orna is off to the ANG seminar this week. We did so much prepping for this event, I am not sure I can clearly explain all that went into it! Let me just show you what we were left with after she was all packed up:

Does the word Chaos come to mind?  Orna is teaching 5 classes, and each one required the most detailed colorway packages and charting. It was trial by fire to be sure! We did, however, come up with some wonderful new ideas. Probably the coolest one is Illuminations on Color---an entire line of thread packs hand picked by orna herself. We used photos for the Inspiration part, and they really came out wonderfully.

 We will be putting these up on the site shortly, and because so much of what Orna does is about color, a great deal of the new things that will be showing up will emphasis ways to think about color, and use color in a thoughtful way. Very exciting.

Orna will be back next week, in the meantime I am daytime Nanny to Esther who has successfully learned to Sit, and is working, rather begrudgingly, on Come!

And just a reminder: the Square Dance Cyber Workshop class mentioned on the last blog is filling up fast---be sure to get yourself signed up!! The Square Dance design is really wonderful, it reminds me of a box of chocolates, or Petite Fours. All those teeny tiny designs---how can you resist!


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