Monday, April 8, 2013

What's New, You Ask?

It's been a while, so I won't try to recap everything that's come out since Scarlet Thread closed its doors. I'll start off with the latest designs from Kurdy Biggs at Threedles Needleart Design, and you won't be disappointed.

First, you may recall that I teased you with a new design that she was working on when Dawn and I were at the TNNA tradeshow in Baltimore last fall. She brought her frame out of the back and tantalized us with something fresh and exciting, but we could say no more. The cat's out of the bag now, direct from the horse's mouth (how many animal clichés can I pile up here), and it's the bees knees!

Presenting, Pangea, in three delectable colorways:

This is Autumn Leaves, on Santa Fe Sage canvas. I love the warmth of those threads!

Tranquil Seas has two of my favorite colors and is stitched on Lilac canvas. Delicious!

Finally, Desert Twilight is stitched on either Rose Blush canvas or Nature's Palette's Rose Quartz canvas. It's a lighter pink ground than is showing up in this picture, but I couldn't seem to lighten the background without lightening everything else.

I have to admit, I'm quite taken with this design. Just look at it. The opportunities for making it one's own are numerous.

First, you can just toss all the colorways and easily come up with your own, using your two favorite color families (provided you can make them work together). Basically, there are light and dark shades of the two primary colors for each of the types of thread used. You could even decide to stitch it from your stash and make each of the diamonds a different color, sort of a crazy quilt approach. I couldn't resist and pulled threads for my own colorway, thus making this my very first Threedles project. (I've never had the time to even think of trying to stitch one of Kurdy's intricate designs.) Here's what I came up with:

I was inspired by that overdyed thread at the bottom, Silk 'N Colors Spotted Cobra. I may try to work that overdye in somehow. There's also a bit of purple in it that I may try to sneak in as well. I have more threads than I actually need here (I think) because I'm not sure how they'll all be used and play together. I'm planning on stitching it on a brown canvas (that's a brown piece of paper I picked up from Michael's, or was it AC Moore?), which means I may dabble in painting my own canvas for stitching. Yikes!

Another way to make it your own is by choosing how many of the diamond tiles you're going to stitch. You may want to do one, two, three, or all of them! I haven't decided yet, but I think I'll go whole hog (to add one more animal cliché) and do all of them. One would make a nice insert for a trivet or tray. All four would make a nice bolster pillow, because there's always room for one more pillow on one's bed.

I haven't mentioned all the beads used in this design. Kurdy doesn't disappoint, using her trademark nearly-300 beads to embellish Pangea. Here's another place to switch things up. Me, I'm not a bead person. Among the suggestions I've received for a substitute for beads is knots. You could do a knot in one of the metallics for a bit of bling. I doubt I'll do that though, because I don't really like knots either. Try as I might, I can't get them to work. So my solution? I may just do a cross stitch using a metallic thread. If you use the right size thread, it can look like a bead. Really.

You're probably asking, "Well, where can I get this divine chart and instructions?" So glad you asked. You can find stores that carry Kurdy's designs on her website. Easy-peasy. Now for the threads and canvas. I found all of my threads at two local shops: Needlewoman East in Falls Church, VA, and Bedecked and Beadazzled in Lutherville, MD (outside Baltimore and a better-than-an-hour drive away). If you don't have a shop nearby, there are several shops that have online stores as well with huge selections of threads. I always check Needle in a Haystack first because of their extensive inventory, and they also carry Zweigart canvas. Fireside Stitchery also has lots and lots of threads and canvas. I mention these because there's a good chance that you'll find everything you need to complete this project at either one of them. They may even carry Threedles patterns. It's worth a look.

So I'm happy as a clam, ready to try my hand at customizing my canvas, then getting down to stitching. I'll let you know how it's coming along, but it may be a while before I actually place the first stitch. I have a lot of projects waiting for me to finish them up. But that's the subject for another post.

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

What have I been up to?

I posted this as a reply to a comment on my last post before closing Scarlet Thread, then decided that it would make a good update on the status of "It's a Stitchy Thing" and what I've been doing with myself.

First, I miss the give and take I had with all of Scarlet Thread's customers. Sigh.

On to the update.

I've been reflecting, mulling over my options, trying to discern my next pathway. I'll be back to blogging in the very near future. One of the things I've been contemplating is how to handle Jeff Kulick's designs (consulting with Jeff himself). I've had orders that need to be filled, and just how I'm going to do that ongoing is the sticking point.

I plan to feature what's new in the counted/charted needlepoint world and have in my hot little hands Kurdy Biggs's newest, "Pangea," which is quite lovely. I've collected the threads for the colorways and even made up my own. (That would make this design my very first Threedles project!) So look for that very soon.

I hope that I can convince designers to send me information on their new designs so that I can pass that news along to you with as many pictures as possible of all the pretties you need to create them yourself.

I'm thinking of merging my "Confessions of a Remedial Stitcher" blog with this one, so it will also be a report on my progress (sometimes lack of progress) on the assorted WIPs and UFOs I've accumulated while being a shopowner. I hope to finish several projects this year that have been languishing. And of course, I've signed up for two cyber classes, one of which I'm already behind on ("Mystique" beckons me from across the room). Hahahaha.

So it appears that I'll be very busy, doesn't it? Who has time for work with all that on my plate? Which means retirement from the treadmill of a daily job. I won't miss the pressures that always seem to go along with that. Since I've worked from home for most of my life, that just means that the computer is no longer the office but back to being a window on the world and a source of entertainment and learning. I may even finally get around to designing some needlework again. Wait, now I've added something else to my list of things I want to do. Yes, I'll be very busy, won't I.

All good, I believe. And to close, I just have to say:


Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Final Days! Don't Wait! Canvas Remnants

Scarlet Thread will only be around for a few more days. After this weekend, the Catalog will be deactivated. Don't miss out on getting some last-minute deals on threads, thread packs, and now canvas remnants.

Check out the assorted sizes and colors we have in the Canvas/Congress Remnants section. These are nice-sized pieces of 18-ct mono canvas, some large enough to accommodate a 17" x 17" project. We even have a half-yard piece of Santa Fe Sage! Choose from Aquamarina, Black, Eggshell, Leventeen Blue, Mystical Midnight (hand-dyed), Pewter, Rose Blush, Sandstone, and Santa Fe Sage. In Congress Cloth, we have a few pieces in Sand, Dusty Blue, and Pewter.

Scarlet Thread has enjoyed being your one-stop source for all your canvaswork needs. Sara Leigh will continue with It's a Stitchy Thing, providing news and photos of what's new and exciting in the counted canvas world. Stay tuned.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Playing With Thread

I've been working away at updating the inventory with threads that were unavailable before because they were kit components. The problem is, I keep getting distracted by all the possibilities for combining them. A good problem to have.

New items in the Catalog are Bouclé, Burmilana, Caron Impressions, Kreinik (still working on this), assorted Rainbow Gallery varieties, and Soie d'Alger. There's more to come! But not that much. You can access each category through the left side menu. Some of these are very limited in number of colors and number of skeins available.

As for the distractions, I've come up with some more thread packs. I seemed to have my wild side going for most of these. I think you'll see what I mean.

Jelly Bean

Autumn Timberland

Black Opal

Rainbow Brite 1

Rainbow Brite 2

Rainbow Brite 3

Southwest Take 1

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Deeper Discounts and New Thread Packs

As we get closer to the time when Scarlet Thread will be shutting down, the discounts just get better! Today, we're offering 40% off your total purchase! That's right, even sale items. Everything must go! Just use the promotion code 40%OFF at checkout.

While I've been sorting through the leftover threads and beads from all the kits we've put together, I've been inspired to tweak them a bit to create something new. I'm calling them Inspirations. You can use them as they are, or maybe tweak them a bit from your own stash. They're all in our new Bead and Thread Packs section of the Catalog. The quantities of each are limited, 1 or 2 of each. Here are some pictures to delight and excite you!

Desert Shadows

Forest Fire




Forest Fire
 Aren't they gorgeous? I'd like to keep them all to myself, but they're all for you!

I'm constantly updating the thread inventory as I move things that were reserved for kits into the open stock, so be sure to check back in a day or two to see what else I've come up with. There may be more thread packs in the offing.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Wrapping Things Up for the Holidays!

As the year ends and the holidays approach, we'd like to wish everyone a Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, Happy Kwanzaa, Winter Solstice, whatever holiday you celebrate, and a Happy New Year! We'll be here through the holidays, but our vendors are not. So if you place an order after the end of this week, we may not be able to ship until sometime in January if we don't have everything in stock to complete a kit. Most chart inventory should be reflected correctly in our catalog (though at times it does get out of sync with reality).

We're wrapping up the year with a few new items.

From Laura Perin, we have two new charts that we've kitted up. She released her ornament and annual Christmas tree charts recently, just in time for Christmas.

"Jewel Ornaments" is the latest in the ornament series. Each of these beautiful diamond-shaped designs is 6" x 6". The original colorway, Fuchsia & Lime, is based on Caron Collection Watercolours Cerise and absolutely gorgeous! She's used DMC #5 perle coton, Kreinik 1/16" Ribbon, and Rainbow Gallery Fyre Werks Soft Sheen to great effect.

Laura's also offered a colorway in the traditional Christmas colors, Red & Green, based on Watercolours Holiday.

It's just as lovely, though I have to admit a certain fondness for the Fuchsia & Lime.

Right after Laura released this lovely, she followed up with her annual Christmas tree design, "Bargello Tree."

Isn't this a striking design! It just glows! Laura's used Watercolours Holiday as the basis for the colors, using DMC #5 perle coton and three colors of Kreinik 1/16" Ribbon.

We picked up some new charts that we think you'll like. Gingerbread Girl Designs of Canada has a delightful design by Kathryn Drummond, "La Floron."

This charted needlepoint design uses Watercolours Peacock as the basis for the various blues and browns of the DMC #5 perle coton, Kreinik braids, Wildflowers, Waterlilies, and Dinky-Dyes silk floss. I like the swirly bits and the nice gradations in color.

Finally, Freda Murfin has added a few charted needlepoint designs that look like fun stitches. She's added a couple of pieces that are companions to "Variations on a Rhodes Theme."

"All Rhodes Lead to Stitching" is stitched entirely in DMC cotton floss and perle cotons with an accent of Kreinik #4 braid and beads. The other companion piece is "More Rhodes to Follow."

For this one, Freda changed up the colors a bit. I think I might like these better than the original! The color scheme is based on Watercolours Green Tea. Both pieces are stitched on 24-ct Congress Cloth.

Last, Freda offers "Four Square," another design stitched on 24-ct Congress Cloth.

This is a slightly smaller design. I like this color scheme based on Watercolours Morning Mist.

And that wraps up the year for Dawn and me at Scarlet Thread. Hope your holidays are full of love and peace!

Monday, November 5, 2012

UPDATED: It's That Time of Year Again. All Those Ornament Exchanges, Gifts to Make.

What will you do?

Scarlet Thread has collected all of the holiday-related items in the shop in one convenient place for you: Holiday (I know, really creative). Here are some highlights of what's in store.

Ornament Cuts
We have lots of small pieces of Canvas Ornament Cuts, just the right size for holiday ornaments. The size varies, but none are smaller than 7" x 7".

These are the colors that are available (some in limited quantities): Leventeen Blue (New!), White/Silver Metallic, Eggshell/Gold Metallic (New!), Rose Blush (New!), Brown, Sandstone, Aquamarina, Lavender, Black, White, Pewter, Santa Fe Sage, and French Blue.

We're offering these in packs of 4 pieces, assorted colors or all one color, subject to availability. Just indicate your choice in Special Instructions when you check out. If there's any problem, we'll email you.

We have some complete kits and some partial kits and some delightful new designs.

While we were browsing the online Needlework Show last month, we found some great little designs from Handblessings.

This is Eileen Gurak's delightful Christmas Wreath Ort Box design. This little charted needlepoint design (only 2.75" square) is a quick stitch and great stash buster, and it comes with the ort box for finishing. It's available at an unbelievable price too.

Have a friend who's a Halloween nut? Eileen's also designed a Halloween Web Ort Box that would make the perfect gift.

(We won't tell if you want it just for yourself because you just love Halloween and stitch for it all year long.)

We have one very special Kit in a Bag in very limited quantity.

It comes with absolutely everything you need to stitch this lovely little Threedles Christmas Star ornament. Bonus? After you've stitched it, you have a handy large project bag, with scissors and magnets for the next project in your rotation. It would also make a lovely gift for a special friend.

We will restock when we run out of our initial inventory, so let us know if it's showing as out of stock. (Sometimes we just can't keep up with these things!)

Laura Perin's Christmas Tree 2011 Kit has been very popular. We haven't seen what she's got in store for this year, but look at what you can do with this design just by changing the canvas.

We switched out the canvas, using Nature's Palette's lovely hand-painted Sunset, for a stitcher who wanted just a little more pizzazz. We think it's stunning.

Don't really need another ornament for your tree? Want to finish something as a special presentation for a dear friend? Check out these Sudberry boxes.

This is the Simply Square Box, a very economical box that we have in two sizes: Design area of 4" x 4" (shown) and 5" x 5" (same as the photo, just bigger). Sorry, out of stock.

There's lots more in our Holiday section. Stop by and browse for a while.

Oh, before I let you go. We have a very special price on Caron Collection Wildflowers thread packs. Check it out. Individual skeins have also been discounted.