At The Beach
Saturday May 11th 2013, 7:07 pm
Filed under: Needlepoint & Me

Look at this, 2 blog entries less than 3 years apart (ok, I am exaggerating a little).

I forgot to feature this Mayo original design, hand painted needlepoint canvas that I call At The Beach.  This available as either a kit or the canvas alone.  The link is for the kit.



This canvas took a long time to get.  I waited much longer than the usual hand painted canvas order time (6-10 weeks) for it.

I had hoped to list it last summer but it came too late.

So, I sat on it (not literally, please) until, I thought, late this past winter when I planned to list it.

Meanwhile, I had to keep my hands off it, I love this design and think about stitching it myself…then again, I feel that way about many of my canvases.  Since I buy what I love, this can be a problem.

Then, of course, I was so caught up in my dad’s illness etc.  I spent all of last winter flying to Florida and back.  (in fact I am there now).  I was so wrapped up in all of it that I almost missed this listing this for this spring.

(same thing with the 2 new Melinda McAra baseball stadium canvases:

The NY Mets at Citifield in Queens

Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field

I got them listed just barely in time (in standard retail time, anyway).

I also have some new Pajamas & Chocolate hand painted Colorful Animal designs to list and a spectacular Pink Roses design , another one I would love to keep but….if I did there would be no stock for

Go figure.

I am ok,  doing better than I was.  I seem to have survived the back to back traumas (the end of my long and I thought happy marriage & my father’s terrible illness & death).

Now there is just the estate business to see to and that is easier.  It is just business  (you can either do it or you can’t).

I have not mentioned what I am reading for a long time now but be sure I am still reading (I believe it keeps me relatively sane….no laughing or snorting out there).

I got through my most recent hard times reading M.C. Beaton aka Marion Chesney.  She is, as M C Beaton, the author of many books including the wonderful Agatha Raisin mystery series (love them, mostly) and the Hamish McBeth police procedure mystery series  (could not get through them, too much dialect) .

As Marion Chesney she is the author of a number of more books in series.  T

The Poor Relations, The Six Sisters, A House for the Season,  The School for Manners,  The Traveling Matchmaker,  The Daughters of Mannerling, Edwardian Mysteries & Regency Romances  (whew)

I have read most of them . I couldn’t get through the Six Sisters, I think it was too much, too soon and have not yet read all the Edwardian Mysteries or Regency Romances.

What is did re-read, back to back, was the 6 books in The Traveling Matchmaker series (1990-1992) and then the Poor Relations series, 7 books from 1993-1994.

I am almost done with Poor Relations.  I think after that I will take a break (read other’s work) and then go back and re-read The Daughters of Mannerling unless I steel myself to endure all the dialect and try Hamish McBeth again.  They are very popular, I am sure I am missing something here.

Anyway,  expect the next blog entry in a year or two.

another day in paradise
Friday May 10th 2013, 11:06 am
Filed under: miscellaneous

I am back in Florida again.  There is a time limit for when you can begin probate on someone’s estate  (30-60 days).  Fortunately , my dad and the lawyer left things in great shape, everything was already planned for.

In addition, dad left me specific (private) instruction to take care of my mother.

She is 83, they had been married since she was 19.  He had been her boyfriebd (or obe of them) since she was 15.  Mother tells me she has had experience dating and knows what it is like and how it feels to be hurt, dumped or one of the other less than nice things men sometimes do to us.

She has no idea.

Anyway, this could have been dobe on the phone but she wanted me to come here, do it in person with her.   I understand,  Sunday is Mother’s Day and all, so here I am.

Once we got the lawyer stuff done (which was pretty easy) this is a wonderful place to be.

The only downside is I moss Jack T. Cat a lot.

Ok,  back to business, as they say.  I have finally waded my through all the tax & estate & other such scut work and have begun listing te new stuff that has been waiting (and ordering replacement books) has been having a *run* on books in the last few weeks.   2013 has been so slow, so far, that I am thrilled to see sales (Very!).

Actually, there is a medium funny story here.  I always sell some of the excellent June McKnight Needlepoint books, they are steady sellers and one of the *backbones* of my new books collection.


Recently I had many orders for Decorative Backgrounds in Needlepoint.  So many (and duplicates in orders) that I placed 2 orders for more of the books one right after the other.

Well, this being retail, one customer wanted to exchange her 2nd copy for another book and one cancelled an order.

In an instant I went from sold out to an overstock of copies (since I had ordered a few extra, to handle the rush).

So, I have marked it down, to reduce the inventory.  The sale price is shown on the listing, with free shipping, of course.

I have 2 new original design hand painted Needlepoint Canvas artist Melinda McAra.  On fact, I now have so much of her work that I have given her her own category.

In fact, while writing this I realized I forgot to add two of her Beginner Designs made into kits

Blue Hydrangea Kit



and the Green Hydrangea Kit




Ok, back to my main topic ( I always digress).

Melinda McAra lives in Falmouth on Cape Cod.  MUch of her work is Boston based, which is another reason I love on top of being good designs that are interesting to stitch

(stitcher confession:  sometimes I am defeated by too much background and I put off or never do finish the project)

Anyway….( I know, more digression)  in addition to her Boston Red Socks Fenway Park and her New York Yankees in New Yankee Stadium, she has added the Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field



and the New York Mets in Citifield in Queens



Both are available as both Canvas Alone and as Kits.

I snagged the last 2 copies available anywhere of June McKnight’s Needlepoint Wisdom.  When it was still being published it sold well.

When they stopped printing it, there was talk of a updated & revised edition but I have no heard any talk about that for a while now.

Anyway,  It is a beautiful day here and I am going out, driving my mother’s hot sports car (no old lady car for her) on a perfect South Florida spring day (aka, the beginning of the summer heat & humidity).

I will be home Tuesday.

HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY  ( a retailer manufactured holiday but still a good one)

back in the saddle again
Tuesday April 30th 2013, 11:05 pm
Filed under: Needlepoint & Me

I received a comment here from Nancy, she was wondering if Elsa Williams was still alive.  I did some searching and discovered that Elsa Schaff Williams died in Monterey, CA in 1995.

She helped focus attention on needlepoint and her kits were world famous.  She fostered interest in Bargello Needlepoint, interest which last lasted.

She employed many of the women ( and men) in Townsend, MA in creating & shipping her kits.  The JCA co, the former manufacturer of Paternayan Yarns was part of her business interests.

I was sad to hear, last year, that JCA had closed.  it seems their last master dyer retired.

I was quite happy to hear the business & color formulas had been bought by the Saco River Dye House in Maine.  I think by now they have most of the line available for sale.

It’s funny, I wrote the Elsa Williams blog Thanksgiving 2011 but someone found it recently.  I love the net.

I am back,  The wedding was gorgeous.  I was an acceptable Mother of the Groom and my Night Before dinner at Lemon Cafe was a huge success, right down to the belly dancer and the live fire dance by John, the chef & owner as a special gift to me.

I don’t have all the pics yet but here are a few.

Eric & Polly walking on the beach just before the ceremony



The members of the wedding party who were staying at the West Bay Club (where the ceremony was) jumped into the pool fully dressed after it all was over.  The bride & groom joined them.  This was a very  (unscheduled) *goodman* event.  All the goodman guests (except me) jumped in

thejumpIsn’t that an amazing picture?

Everything is Ok in Florida, my mom seems to be doing well (or she says so anyway).  it seems like we all did our hard grieving while he was so sick and suffering with no hope of getting better.

It was, if it possible and beautiful death.  Now I have all the work of starting the Probate on his estate.

I was going to go back to Florida Sunday but the lawyer says we can do this remote.  I am so tired of traveling and Jack T. Cat says if I go away again, so soon, he will love the cat sitter more then he loves me  (huge threat).

It was a terrible last 13 months, but I am still here and still on my feet and  (mostly) sane.

I have lots of new, new books to list.  The last of the monogram & stitched letters books including this one.  The Treasury of Floral Designs and Initials for Artists and Craftspeople by Mary Carolyn Waldrop.



And from Meredith Willett & Beth Robertson Knots, Fur & Turkey Work.



I have new canvases & kits too.  2 baseball themed from Melinda McAra.  The Mets at Citifield, NY and the Cubs in Wrigley Field in Chicago.  I have been to Wrigley Field and it is every bit as wonderful and historic as my beloved Fenway Park.



3 New Laurel Burch designs, not yet kitted and photographed including one of her excellent Mermaids and this fabulous Beach Hand Painted canvas from Mayo Designs.  They are same designers who did the Quilting Bee kit I have for sale.



I hope to have these all listed the early next week  (OK< no laughing at me now, I mean to try).

I am ok,  Ok is good enough.  I am re-reading the M.C. Beaton  (AKA Marion Chesney) series The Poor Relations.   Excellent happy spring reading and they are all available in kindle format (that has become so important).

And it is spring here in Lancaster County, all the cherry trees in the cul de sac are in full bloom



And here’s a laugh for you,  trying to photograph threads for a kit I need to list.  jack is helping me


Anyway, I want to thank all 3 and 1/2 readers I have left for bearing with me this last hard year.  I’m still here.


everything old is new again, again
Sunday March 31st 2013, 6:11 am
Filed under: Mostly Books

I know, I have used this blog title several times including recently but somehow it seems appropriate for so many of my blogs full of blather and some needlepoint.


June McKnight, a very popular and prolific needlepoint book author has (finally) re-styled her book Architectural Stitches for Needlepoint.

The old cover design white letters on a yellow background, impossible to read.  I mostly recognized the book by the distinctive yellow cover.

This is a surprisingly useful book, many of the ideas here translate very well to all kinds of needlepoint, both design and stitches.  Good geometry based stitches are sometimes hard to find.

Below is the new cover.  Still a distinctive yellow but readable.


June has a new book too, copyrighted 2013.  

Colorful Backgrounds is a little unusual in that it is the only June McK book that I know of, so far, that does not include the words *for Needlepoint* in it’s title.

It is full color, every background has 2 pages.  One showing a photograph of the background.  The facing page has how to create the background complete with the threads & colors used.  This is new, as well.

It is interesting to me that after so many successful book, June is still innovating, still changing her formulas for each book.  I like it.



I have a few new canvases to list.  I am ashamed to admit I have not even kitted them yet, which is my first step (that and finishing the edges).  

I used to try to fold over and stitch down the raw edges of the canvases I sell but I find that other stitchers who use frames (which I do not, I find them awkward but that is just me) do not want folded edges so my good friend Patt (of Patt & Lee Designs and Pajamas & Chocolate Hand Painted Needlepoint) showed me the Artist’s Tape she uses for edges and I have mostly switched to using that now.

Many of my canvases, the ones I have had for a while, still have hemmed edges but I must admit the tape is easier to do.  Making small edge folds with sometimes stiff mono canvas can be hard on one’s fingers.

I also have a Belt Category to list.  All the changes and upheavals that have dominated my life since April 2012 seem to be finally easing.  Yes, I have tons of work to do but the crisis (such as they were) are past now.

I am doing Ok, making my peace with things as they are (which is good since I can’t or won’t change them).  

Yesterday was a glorious early spring day.  I worked outside in my garden beds.

Although I live in a townhouse condo, each of us has made the beds and areas around our homes our own.  Mine was all raggedy with the old 20 year old builders (crummy) shrubs.

I dug all that up, except for one wonderful dwarf conifer and a great small Japanese Red Maple.

I added daylillies, 2 peonies, 3 tree form hydrangeas, a weeping cherry and a shrub form magnolia, which I will keep small with pruning. I even stuck in a few tulips that came free with my plant order.  Which reminds me, I have to order 2 peony rings to keep them from drooping flat.

I met my new neighbors across the way, they moved in over the winter (actually I met them because they helped me corner and corral an escaped Jack T. Cat) .

We spent a few hours admiring each other’s renovations, getting ideas from each other.  I really liked them.  While I am friendly acquaintances with all of my neighbors in this nice little circle, I think this lovely couple might become friends.

I also cut some forsythia and a few lower branches from my cherry trees to force.  Remember my gorgeous blooming trees last spring?


The whole circle is full of them.  So, as you see, my blog title works.

Everything Old Is New Again.

the end of childhood
Sunday March 24th 2013, 9:24 pm
Filed under: miscellaneous

To all my readers (and many of you friends too).

My dad, George Goodman, died yesterday, March 23, 2013.  It was the death he wanted.  He wanted to die at home with his family around and that’s just what he did.

He must have been holding on until he got home because he went 50 hours after he got here. It was peaceful.  His breathing was slow, more & more time between each breath until the last one, then silently and gently, no more.

The worst part of it was my brother who lives in Switzerland could not get here in time.  H missed dad by 4 hours.  There was an airline strike in Germany and he could not get a ticket soon enough.

The interment is tomorrow, in the exact place and way he asked for.

My dad was a big man, strong, successful and smart. He was always there.  When I was in trouble or lost, he rescued me.  He gave me great advice (which I sometimes even followed).

I have been able, all these years (62) to remain something of a child.  That is over.  My mother was dependent on him in many ways (just as he depended on her).  She has no idea how any of his financial stuff works or should be handled.

He trained me to be an investor, to manage money & portfolios. I promised him I would take care of her and I will.

Still,  I have no yet experienced what I think of as grief.  It doesn’t seem real yet, although my conscious mind knows it is so.

It will sink in slowly, I think, after I am alone.  Same for my mother.  All her kids, her sister and a grandchild or two is here and she is automatically being our mother.  It is what and who she is.

My brothers think it will not hit her until she is alone for a day or so.

We are discussing which of us will do what, when.

I have my son’s destination wedding in 3 weeks.  A big trip to Boston, then a flight straight through to Turks & Caicos island for me.  Then I reverse it 5 days later.

I host a night before dinner for everyone.  With a destination wedding you do not have the rehearsal dinner for just the wedding party.  Since everybody is already there, one does a diner for everyone.

I think I found a good place for it.  The Lemon Cafe in Providenciales.

The wedding is at sunset on the beach.

Anyway, this all strikes me is an end and a beginning.

But my dad is no more, there is a big empty hole in my world.

And he is released from the pain and the torment that is so much of end of life care, now.

I can’t thank Hospice By The Sea enough, they were here for all of us and  gave him gentle loving care, his death was free from pain.

I am staying in Florida until Thursday.  Then home but it is all different now.

everything old is new again
Monday March 18th 2013, 10:45 pm
Filed under: miscellaneous

I think I have used this title for a blog before.  It is a line from a wonderful song, done by Peter Allen and used in the dancing down the spiral staircase at home scene in All That Jazz.  A great dancing movie and one of my (many favorites)

I just packaged up the last (and hardest to do) of the 7 tax returns I had to assemble and do for the accountants  (yes, plural now,  my folk’s in Florida and mine & the kids in Boston).

Over the years I have become good friends with my accountant, no matter where I live (and I do move) he manages to do our taxes.  He calls us The Goodman Group (very funny).

He has what I call “accountant humor”, it is very specialized but often roaringly funny.

Ok, so that’s done and I have a week before I go back to Florida.  I will (I hope, anyway) rent a place there.  Then come back and begin packing, getting this place ready to sell.

Then my son’s wedding 4/20 Turks & Caicos, with the dinner I am hosting the 19th.

As if this was not a lot, I am having 6 (count em) more caps done on my teeth.  My previous, previous dentist was a hack.  He did many caps for me (soft teeth, prone to decay, my brother’s are like this too) but as my current dentist, John, says ” a cap should be like a hat, it should cover most of the tooth.  Yours do not stay on and break often because they are more like *berets* than caps”.

Ouch.  I did 3 this past winter, had 1 more…then was going to do the other 5 in the fall but I am moving.  I like this dentist, trust him too, after so many bad dentists.  So between now and when I move in May (no more May 1st, more like May 30).  I will do 6 more caps and be done (and look Good).

He is giving me a discount.  Not kidding, buy 4 he is giving me the 5th free (BOGO for Teeth? ).  Why not, it is pretty much 20% off.

Anyway,  (I am getting to my point, I promise) I have some new things to list and I was holding off doing a blog until I got them listed  (nice excuse to not do it) .  Then I thought, why not pull out some of the older designs & books and let them strut their stuff.

Oh, BTW,  thank you everyone for prayers & wishes, my Dad, George, is a little better every day.  They are talking about moving him to rehab maybe next week.

Ok,  This is colorful and very cheerful hand painted Zebra Needlepoint Kit is from the famous needlepoint designer, Jean Smith.  It is suitable for a beginner or someone more advanced could have some fun with it, all kinds of stitch & embellishment possibilities.




There is companion piece that I have kitted in similar colors, if you wanted to do a pair.  it is Jean Smith’s hand painted Toucan.

Below is a gorgeous canvas from Danji Design, it is all over Fuchsias in glowing colors.  This one is special for me, when we all lived up in Boston, every Mother’s Day I brought my mother a hanging basket of Fuchsias, she had a special hook for them by the front door.

This is available as the canvas alone or as a kit.  The kit is made with Paternayan Yarn, the real original stuff.  It is the last Paternayan kit I have.



Then there is one of Patt & Lee’s very good idea Glicee’ Scrap Threads canvases.   It was Patt’s inspiration to design these for you to stitch using all those left over threads, yarns, beads, whatever you have in your stash.

You can go by Patt’s always good colors or use the colors you have in interesting and even unusual ways.  I call this one 15 Cats in 15 Colors.  Below is the canvas unstitched.



And here it is stitched by Patt (who is a much better stitcher then I am but I adore her anyway)



It seems as if everyone is just interested in new books now.  There has not been much activity in the Rare Books category lately.

However, every so often there is a run on Bargello books.  I have no idea what sparks it but  it happens.

There are not that many “contemporary” Bargello books in print now but a few of the better ones have been re-issued in New Editions including

Florentine Embroidery by Barbara Muller.  Translated from the original German, this is one of the Bargello books I consider a CORE book.   I learned a lot from this book.

( I think some of you know I taught myself Bargello needlepoint from these books)

Traditional Bargello by Dorothy Phelan.  This is another important Core book.

And of course Frances Salter’s famous The Bargello Book.  This was the first Bargello book I ever saw, it fired me up.

There are some terrific used/rare book as well.

Bargello Plus by well-known NP author Mira Silverstein




I can’t possibly approach this subject without pulling out Margaret Boyle’s Bargello: An Explosion in Color.  The is the ONE.   I taught myself Bargello using this book and a few others but this was the base of it all.   I want to show you a pattern from this book that I stitched about a month after beginning to stitch Bargello.  This is in the book and considered an Advanced Stitch.  The colors are me.



Yes, I know the book is expensive.  It wasn’t when I started buying it a few years ago.  I have sold so many copies that I have created an awareness and market for this book, which has driven the price way up.



I even have one *Gift Quality* copy of it.  It is not listed yet, I am saving it for the Holiday Season next fall.

I go back to Florida 3/26 but I am always reachable by email.  Any orders placed will be shipped the day after I get home.

This blog was fun to write, like visiting old friends.

Happy Spring everyone- it snowed here in Pennsylvania today

Monday March 11th 2013, 9:57 pm
Filed under: rants (with some books or NP)

I am back from Florida.  It was a hard visit.  My Dad (George)  is still in the hospital.  Something has gone wrong with his throat and after 16 days of him not able to eat, the surgically inserted a feeding tube into his stomach.

So far, he is mostly alert and engaged but sometimes he gets this wide eyed look.   Like a confused child.

He hates what is happening to him and really hates all the doctors & nurses poking and prodding.

This is terrible for my mother, they have been together 63 years and were boyfriend & girlfriend since my mother was a teenager, he is 5 years older.

I brought home all kinds of his work and the stuff to get his taxes ready for their accountant.   Plus I have my own tax doing stuff still to do.

My father wants me to move there.  I don’t like S. Florida (I have lived there twice before in my life of moving a lot) but I will move there for as long as he needs me.

He wanted me to buy there but I do not want to be stuck, I will rent.

I always did plan to eventually move home to Boston,  My son , who has become a protective adult while I wasn’t looking, wants me to live closer now that I am alone. And I want grandchildren even more then I want kittens (and that is a lot).

Anyway, sorry to bother you, if it is TMI please ignore me.

I do want to thank my customers, over the last few years I have had to be in Florida to help my folks a few times (when Mother broker her arm etc.)

Anytime I received an order while I was away I would email the customer and tell them, much more briefly than this, what was going on.

Not one customer has ever been less than kind, gracious and told me to ship their order when I could…not to worry.

I suppose that is why I go on with my funny little web store, year after year.  Some of my customers are genuinely nice.

Then again, some are not.  I have 3 times told customers to take their business elsewhere.

The first was the lady I call “Crazy Lady” and she was.  It was like she has a split personality.  She would be nice and curious about needlepoint.  She wanted to get better at it and I was glad to help.  The other side of her was vindictive, sending me terrible emails & doing replies here accusing me of lying, cheating…and on.

I suggested she up her meds and find another needlepoint store.

The second was someone still around in the on-line needlepoint world.  She bought a few things from me, kits & canvases.  We became “friends”, once talking on the phone for an hour or so.

After the last purchase she made was delivered she contacted me to say she had been double charged by my on-line virtual terminal.  Then she said triple charged.

I have been using this payment system for awhile now and the only mistakes in it have been made by me.

I checked, checked again.

The customer wanted me to refund 2/3 of the triple payment plus she wanted a gift from to compensate her for the extra interest involved.

The list which she gave me, of the gifts she wanted approached $50.

That was my first clue that something was up.

I called the payment people, spoke with the head tech and we crawled all over my account.  The payment was perfect, just the amount it should have been.

I called her, told her this and asked what was going on.  I asked her (in a rare brave moment) if this was a scam.

She said yes and that it sometimes worked.

The last one was 2 weeks ago, the customer was a good one but a pain in the you know what.  Constantly calling to say she needed more thread.

And always calling at 9am precisely.  Now I work nights (doing this at 10:38 EDT) and sleep late.  I begged her not to call so early.

Over & over she would wake me, on the dot of 9 am.  She had something going with grey thread, she demanded more then double the amount of grey thread that would be needed for her kit.  I often, she claimed, forgot to include colors.

Ok, she finished the kits she bought and then she began to annoy me about displaying the pictures of her stitched canvases she sent me.

Well, I did the first one.   The New York Yankees



but I guess she did not see it.

She began calling & calling about not seeing it.  I put it up here again and again she said she did not see it.

After awhile she began to annoy me about displaying her special order canvas.  She asked for one of a specific superhero and sent me a picture.

I found a great NP designer for her (Sandy Morris Grossman) and all was well.



Looks great doesn’t it?

She sent me the picture about the time my father fell and broke his hip (while leaving dialysis).   I had other things on my mind (understatement alert).   Plus the traveling.

The emails & calls began again.  When would I show it?  when, when?

I finally emailed her and told her a bit about what was going on for me right now and that her compulsive need to have her work displayed was not something I could handle now.

Yes, it was hard and I could have been nicer.  I could have just shown it and shut up…but I didn’t.

It might be that I was taking out some of my fear & anger about my Dad being so sick on her.  (yes, anger comes in to it, in an odd way).

I told her to find another NP store.  She sent me back an email response.  I did not read it & deleted it.   I am not proud of my behavior, so I am confessing, I think.


I have Laurel Burch’s Butterfly Dogs back in stock, finally.



and Laurel Burch’s Indigo Cats, which has been a popular design.



The two above are available as kits or the canvases alone.

I have The Cat Angel Ornament Kit again, too.  I have lost count of how many of these I have sold.  I love this design.


You can find these all in the Laurel Burch Category.

Sorry for so much personal stuff, I promise all NP & books next blog.

Pajamas and Chocolate
Tuesday February 26th 2013, 1:47 am
Filed under: Mostly Books,Needlepoint & Me

Pajamas & Chocolate is an appealing name for a Needlepoint Design business.  It evokes evenings stitching by a warm fire while watching a Bette Davis or Joan Crawford or Drew Barrymore movie on TV  (sorry, I am inflicting my movie fantasies on you).

Minus Bette, Joan or Drew this was the feeling Patt was looking for when naming her new, next generation, Needlepoint Design Business.  

I have known Patt since both our  beginner days on eBay.   I began by buying this wonderful Cat & His Coffee canvas from Patt.  I liked it so much I asked her if I could sell her designs in the new (not eBay) Needlepoint Web Store I was opening



This is still a popular design for Patt & Lee.  I sold the one I had fast, It was one of the first sales made.

Many of  Patt’s early design are still current.  Shower Cat has been updated and carried over to her Pajamas & Chocolate line.


This one has been stitched by Patt (who is a much better stitcher than I am).  I do not yet have the Pajamas & Chocolate version of this design.

I do have a Beginner’s Patt & Lee Version of Shower Cat, customized by Patt for me.



Ok, I got off track again.  Over the last 2 days I have listed 2 new Pajamas & Chocolate canvases, both up-dated from her original design portfolio and a new, new one

I don’t have to introduce anybody to Geisha Cats.  A very well-known and popular design.  It is now hand painted and the colors glow.



Or The wonderful Striped Cats.  This can be a great Scrap Threads design or stitched using the Stitch Guide which comes with it.



The new, new one  is The Poodle.  I think she is charming



My Book sale continues.  I have some fine Needlepoint books marked down.  I need to clear out some of  the Duplicate Copies I have of these books.

The marked down books include

Spooky Stitches by June McKnight   I kept losing track of how many I had and ordering more.

I have marked down Sandra Arthur’s excellent The Shapes of Needlepoint Series 2 & Series 3

Ribbonwork by Helen Gibb

Canvas Applique by Ann Strite-Kurz

and more.

Have I blabbed about the changes I am making  to the Books I list & sell on yet?

If I have, ignore me,

If not, 2 years and some months ago I began adding other types of Needlework Books to my web store.  I added Knitting & Crochet, Embroidery, Cross-Stitch.  Then I had the OTHER category where I had all sorts of things: Punchneedle, Rug Hooking, everything that interested me.

Well, it has not been a success (understatement alert).  I have given it plenty of time, if it was going to catch on it would have by now.

I am taking back to it’s Needlepoint Roots.

I will carry all the Needlepoint & Bargello Needlepoint books I can find (or like).  

I am keeping the Alphabets & Monograms Category.  Although most of those books are embroidery based, the designs, templates & techniques apply to NP as well.

I am keeping the Color & Color Theory Category.  That is universal.

I am keeping the Other Needlework Books Category.   Here is my Catch-All.   I have my finishing Books here,  I kept the Stumpwork & Beadwork Books.  These are techniques which lend themselves beautifully to NP.

I kept all the RibbonWork books.  I see so much Ribbon being used in Needlepoint these days.   Gold Work Books.

I have the Church Embroidery Book here, however you stitch them, the designs are what they are.   I have 2 books of stitching for Left-Handers, they are still here.

I have Graham Leslie McCallum’s Design Books.  I kept the Blackwork Books, Blackwork on canvas is very fine.   I kept my 1 Montmellick Embroidery Book, it is raised padded surface stitching.  Why not for NP too?

I have not yet edited out my Used/Rare book inventory, that is next.

And me?  (m sighs) Remember me saying 2012 was a horrible year for me.  Well, 2013 is not looking any better.

My Dad fell as he was leaving Dialysis a week ago and broke his hip (he is 89)  They put in a new hip and he is at a Rehab Facility now but he does not sound good.   He is in pain and depressed. 

I have never known my father to be depressed, ever.  Neither has anyone else including my mother.

I go there 3/4/12, after my brother leaves.  We are doing shifts being with our mother. 

Then my son’s destination wedding 4/20/13 on the Turks & Caicos Islands.  I am hosting the Night Before Dinner.  With a destination wedding, you do not have a rehearsal  dinner.   Everybody is there for the next day, you invite everyone.

I have never been to Turks & Caicos, it was hard to find a reasonable venue, long distance.  The Bride & Groom had hopes for a Beach BBQ.  That was way beyond me.

And of course, there is my sad & pitiful long distance marriage.  The less said about that the better.  It will be 1 year on April Fool’s Day (how perfect is that)

I plan to survive it all,  I expect one of these days I will pop right on up and be marianne again.   Not this draggy mess I am currently.

Jack The Cat is being nice to me


Big Book Sale
Tuesday February 19th 2013, 11:42 pm
Filed under: Mostly Books

Once again I am re-furbishing (not again I can hear everybody yell).

My experiment with other kinds of Needlework Books has not been a success.  If they were going to do well, they would have begun to by now so……

I am concentrating the books I list to Needlepoint Books, Needlepoint Related Books or Needlepoint Useful Books.  I am keeping the Bargello Needlepoint Category, of course.

I am keeping the Alphabets & Monograms category.  Many of these books are embroidery based but the techniques, charts and designs for letters, monograms and numbers are applicable to Needlepoint too.  Books of this kind are rarely found grouped together so one can actually choose the types & styles you might want.  Usually you have to take what you can find (yes, this has been my experience)


The following books are mostly grouped in Other NewNeedlepoint Books Category.  I will do the same to the Rare Books when I get to sorting them out.

For now I am keeping the Stumpwork Books.  Stumpwork is an fine embellishment to Needlepoint stitching and I have some very good books about it.  I have compete and overall Stumpwork books and decorative Stumpwork books.  The Di Van Nierkirk books combining Stumpwork & Ribbon Embroidery are very good.

 I am keeping the Blackwork Books.  Blackwork Embroidery is very adaptable to Needlepoint and I have some very good books on the subject


Of course, I will still list Ribbonwork and Ribbon Embroidery Books, Ribbon is so often used in Needlepoint now that it has become a basic.   There are some fine books on Ribbonwork but this one has been a steady seller

Needle Painting is another Needlepoint basic that is often just taught in Embroidery Books.

Ok, the Sale I mentioned to trick you into reading this blog.

I have multiple copies of some books, I could use the room they take up (my poor bookshelves) to make room for New Stuff.  I have marked down some of my duplicate copies of books quite a bit, in many cases they are not much above my wholesale price (with a dollar or two for shipping included, no profit, no free shipping).

These books cover many subjects and are (most of them) shown on the home page (I did that tonight, I am suddenly ambitious….it will pass)

OK, a bit about me (sorry, you can skip this if you want)  My dad who is 89 now is in failing health.  He does dialysis 3 times a week now (and hates it but as he says, what’s the alternative?).  He fell leaving dialysis Monday and broke his hip.  He was operated on today.   I am told it went well.  My mother did not want us all rushing down there, she says she can bear it better alone and to come when he is at the rehab hospital or home.  

I do understand her, I prefer to worry alone too.

He is an amazing man and I am sure anyone who reads this joins me in sending him best wishes.

This has put a stop to my pending kitten adoption.  I was supposed to meet Simon & Luna, a brother sister pair of black kittens on Saturday & adopt them on a 2-3 week trial basis, to see how Jack T. Cat handles it.  

This is them with their sibs.

I will be back & forth to Florida for who knows how many months so I have cancelled the adoption, for now.  The breeder (the very nice cat rescue people who I was getting them from, understand & say to let them know when it becomes possible again).  They interviewed me, had me fill out a long form and asked permission to call Jack’s vet. I like that they are careful.

I am so disappointed, I have been wanting kittens for a long time now.  It is a step towards my future career as a Crazy Cat Lady

I guess that’s it for now.  

The Rare/Used Book sale will be next.  I will let you know when it begins.

BTW, anyone know where I can donate a lot of Knitting & Crochet Books?


back in the saddle again
Wednesday February 06th 2013, 2:14 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

I know, words from an old cowboy song, re-made into a rock song (everything old is new again)

I have neglected my blog shamelessly.  I will not bore the pants off of you by recounting the events of the last 9 months of my life.   Let me just summerize and tell you it has been hard & then some.

It is like someone pulled the rug out from under my life…it has been hard to get my balance back.

I try to be upbeat here on blog, so I stayed away.  I had nothing happy to say.

I feel (and am) some better so….now I will try to re-build my blog readership.

I have been doing very well with new books, in fact I had some holiday best-sellers.

Stitch Landscape by Elaine Oliverio & Stacey Tombros


The Stitches To Go books by Suzanne Howren & Beth Robertson


And from out of left field, a customer told me about Pat Mazu’s book Finishing 101

which has sold very well.  Pat has printed special “” copies.  The pages are printed on both sizes so it is not such a thick heavy book  (less costly to ship, too)

I have, or have had,  almost all of Pajamas & Chocolate’s 2012 line of colorful animals and more.   Now thaty they are back from the Dallas shops, I will be getting some of the 2013 line.

Pajamas & Chocolate (wonderful name) is the next generation of designs from Patt & Lee.  They are all hand painted.  It includes a few of their most popular designs and many new ones, all stitch painted.

I am about the list the PUG


and the Poodle (no pic yet).  Both are available as both canvas alone or kit.

That about covers it.  My son’ destination wedding is coming up fast, as their wedding web site shows, 73 days away.   It is a destination wedding on the Turks & Caicos islands.  I am hosting a night before dinner at the Lemon Cafe in Providencales.

I am getting excited.

I still read a lot.  In fact I credit it with somewhat (a little) saving my sanity this past year.  I have recently read an amazing book.  The Stockholm Octavo.

more soon, I almost promise.