Tuesday, February 24, 2015


Our next online mystery class is entitled HARVEST.

This elegant Robbyn's Nest design - #R888 - can be ordered on 18ct or 13ct canvas.  The design area is 10" x 15" requiring stretcher bars of 14" x 19".

The beautiful fall colors and icons of pumpkins, berries, grapes, and flowers lend themselves to fantastic stitching threads and techniques!   Bead work, or nue`, possible padding, stump work, needle weaving, and much more can be in store. The finishing options are many and will be discussed in the introductory lesson.

Class lessons are distributed monthly for 6 months.  Class fee is $150 which will be billed the first of April.  A private Facebook page will be available to all students.  The first lesson is to be released mid-April.

Students are to obtain their canvas and threads.  A materials list will be distributed as soon as one is completed.  There are also some shops who will be offering thread kits for this class.  When those are determined I will be sharing the information with the enrollees.

TO ENROLL:   To participate in the class simply send an email to duodesignsinc@yahoo.com and let me know that you want to participate.  An acknowledgement email with more details will be sent to you as a reply.

Contact some friends and set up a stitch together to enjoy this class or simply participate online at the Facebook page with Internet friends. Share pictures, comments, questions, shortcuts, etc. 

I look forward to your possible participation.


Saturday, February 21, 2015


I was fortunate enough to teach at Blue Bonnet Studio's Retreat this year.  I had wonderful ladies from all over!  It was great.  We were so busy!

The first day we started easy and did some necessary stitching on Wizard of Paws. Lots of fun stuff to work with!

Everyone was so anxious to start their needle felting but we had other necessary stitching to be accomplished first.  Also, the first day gets everyone loosened up some and started getting to know each other.

Finally, on the second day, critical areas had been stitched and the felting could begin.

Care and patience really pay off!  See how beautifully smooth the right side of the face is?  See how well-defined the area is?  That is achieved by using great Clover tools and not being in a hurry!

Beautifully felted cat finished and embellishing stitches being executed.

These fantastic photos have been graciously shared by Elizabeth Hurd who took them during class and gave me permission to display them here since I didn't get to take any photos.  Her cat was the envy of many of the students.  However, I must say, that all students had wonderful results.  For some reason we have difficulty with acknowledging our own accomplishments!

Some students chose to change stitches (imagine that!) but all in all I think everyone had a positive experience.  

We left after our four days having made new friends, exchanging email addresses, friending on Facebook and expressing the wish to see each other again in some future classes.

I look forward to seeing those who can make it at Blue Bonnet Studio Retreat next year where I will be teaching two 2-day classes. 

Pumpkin Spiced Tea incorporates many techniques including stump work processes, needle felting, bargello, etc.

Boston Terrier Cocktail also has great techniques including needle felting and many decorative stitches.

Be sure to bookmark the website and register as soon as you can for these and other classes!  Would love to see you there!


Until next time, stay warm, safe, and remember to stitch with a smile!


Thursday, February 12, 2015

New Territory!

Well I try not to stay stagnant too long.  I hate the saying 'you can't teach an old dog new tricks', so I try to avoid that label as much as possible - can't do too much about the old part.

So today I ventured out and set up private Facebook Pages for my Online Mystery Classes.  What fun it is turning out to be.  I was only going to set up a page for the next Online Mystery Class HARVEST but with some nudging, I set one up for the current Online Mystery Class MOD ORNAMENTS.  So far everyone seems to love it.

Yahoo! just wasn't doing it for us.  And, I had very little participation under that venue.  Hopefully there will be more back-and-forth interchange under this venue.  Everyone seems to be more comfortable with Facebook.

To help make the process of the online class flow more smoothly, it has been decided that we must charge an up front lump sum payment for the 6 monthly lessons.  Although a few people requested the individual payments, it seems that more and more prefer the one payment option.  We all have such busy lives that many get really frustrated at themselves if they forget to make the payment right away and so would rather just pay it and forget it.  

I will say that with the group of over 100 I have only had 4 lagers and they have been removed from the roster.  I think that is great.  I have personally met most of you through my traveling teaching engagements and I feel blessed to have such a fantastic group of people.  Most of you know my quirky sense of humor and just ignore me and go on.  Those of you who do not will eventually get it!

Those of you that I have not met personally, I sure hope I have the opportunity to do so.  But until that can happen, we will just have to meet online and work through the drawbacks that might be present, and these are very few and very minor.  Isn't it wonderful that stitchers from Australia, London, Canada, United States, etc., can all meet and share a class that otherwise could not happen? Through the Internet our world has become so small and manageable.  Isn't it wonderful that those who cannot travel for various reasons, health, financial, personal commitments, etc. can have this opportunity of being able to share our passion of the needle? It is almost like we are all there in the same room when several of us get going on a thread (fooled you didn't I, I sorta know what a thread in the technical term is na-na-a-na-na).

So, I am thrilled that I have been able to create a better way for us to share our Online Mystery Class lessons.  So many of you stepped up and offered suggestions and helpful hints that has made this accomplishment possible.  I certainly could not have done it by myself.

Now that we have a new 'chat' room, I can move on to my next task - teaching at Blue Bonnet Studio!  Isn't that great?  I leave early tomorrow morning and will share 4 days of classes with a roster of students that look as if I am going to have my hands full!  I'm up for the task however and am anxiously looking forward to it.

Those of you who are still considering the HARVEST Online Mystery Class, the doors are open and we welcome you with open arms.  You still have a month to decide, but don't hesitate too long.  To sign up just send an email to duodesignsinc@yahoo.com and tell me to register you for the class.  Remember that  HARVEST is a hand painted canvas and those things take times order soon.

Until next time, remember to stitch with a smile!