Saturday, September 29, 2018


On the outside that is.  On the inside we are feverishly working on tying things together for our upcoming Stitching Down the Danube adventure!  Optional class kits have all be created:

And even supportive hubby has taken them to the post office (in the rain) to be timely forwarded to those waiting anxiously to get their hand on them and play with those Lucious threads.

It is hard to believe that it is almost time!  While planning way back when it seemed like it was forever away!  Now it's like - what - 22 days! (I think.). I prefer to say 3 weeks because it sounds like a little more time to me to get this stuff all rounded up and packed.  Wow. (Will I recognize my dining room table?  I guest bedroom?  My game table? )

Now it is time to get some serious packing done - not for me - for my participants.  We are reviewing, dissecting, plotting and analyzing over the Itinerary that our cruise guru Liz Wolak has put together for us.  I am trying to work in every moment of structured stitching that I can but keeping in mind that we are on an adventure in other countries and that is our first goal. We may only pass this way once - soak it in!  But hey, this trip has been designed (like our last one) to be able to do both to our heart's content. 

The general agenda has us doing our 'touristy' stuff mostly in the morning.  Then we usually head back to the boat for lunch. After that we are pretty much on our own.  In this time we can schedule some exclusive type tours to meet individual desires, take a nap (hubby is the king in that activity), sit in the lounge and snack (notice that I did not say drink because that probably goes without saying with free booze) and just 'watch', or even stitch. 

Generally after lunch is when I have scheduled stitching time.  We have set classes - The Danube - the beaded bracelet - Kumihimo bracelet and I generally throw in some surprises.  But whatever we do, we have a great time:  we renew acquaintances from prior cruises and we make new ones that develop into friendships beyond this event. At any time casual stitching is also encouraged - you are not required to purchase the optional kits to participate.

You should seriously consider joining us on some of our future journeys!  And never hesitate to ask in the groups for feedback from those who have traveled with us before to get an idea of what to expect.  The area you want to go to is Needles 'N Fins Stitching Adventures and ask to join that Facebook Group.  There you will find information about currently scheduled events and discussions for future ones. Some participants are generous enough to share their experiences to add to the excitement.

Next up is a new event we are testing out.  We get requests for trips that do not cross the 'big waters' - or the pond as my WWI Vet Daddy would refer to.  So we have worked up a wonderful Canadian Rockies Train/Motor Coach Stitching Adventure for this April 24 - May 1, 2019.  We leave from Calgary to Vancouver and we travel through Banff by Lake Louise, etc., viewing the wonders of Mother Nature. There is a brochure available for those who would like additional information.

Email me at or travel agent Liz at for information.  We have a minimum that must be met for this journey and the clock is ticking for the registration deadline.

After that is our Mediterranean Stitching Memories 2019. Holey Moley we are overwhelmed at the positive response to this adventure.  This will take place in October 24 - November 4, 2019.  We begin in Rome and end up in Barcelona.  There is also great interest in adding 2 extra days in Rome, Barcelona or both!  How exciting.  We have a beautiful new ship that will add to our great experience as we stop at numerous ports of call. Be mindful though that this is a smaller ship (I think 650 max) so I am comfortable with the intimacy that our group can still enjoy in this smaller setting on the Sea as opposed to the river.

Contact Liz - to make your reservation to assure you get the stateroom you desire.  As with the last adventure this one will surely sell out.   There is already a roommate request list started so there is fun in store for sure!


Well I must say that my observation indicates that the Dallas Market was a tremendous success!  I am so envious.  Circumstances have prevented my attending but I am hopeful that I can work it in next year.  I'm considering pieces to teach now so we'll see between that and the calendar if I can make it work.  Fingers crossed.

But look what arrived out of that venue - THE GOSSIPS!

This cutie from Strictly Christmas is in my itching hands (I meant stitching hands) as we speak! The design area is approximately 6 x 18 on 18ct canvas.  I shared with you last time (I think) that I was adding this to the 2019 Agenda.  I also told you that the calendar was full BUT - I'm a woman and we do reserve the right to change our minds right?  I mean, after all, how could we possibly turn away these cuties.  The shop that is going to kit this for me made the statement that there was a ton of stuff going on in this.  I agree.  And it will likely require a ton of threads - but just look at it!  Oh goodness me - can't wait.  Just email me at if you want included on the notification list.  These munchkins are scheduled to begin mid-May! My embellishment mind is going crazy!

Okay - gotta get back to packing and preparing.  Have a great week!

Saturday, September 22, 2018


Last week I was out of town and did not get the opportunity to share some of the pictures from September's Online Mystery Classes.

We worked on our doggies from JP Needlepoint - Dog Gone Good.  This month we worked on 'The Librarian' and 'Weiner Dog'.

Then there were the kitties - Catitudes - also from JP Needlepoint.

The Moon Gazer by Brenda Stofft had it's 5th Season shared (prematurely I might add)
For the Christmas Stars the Ladies Dancing showed up on time!
And, we introduced our newest member - Every Bunny Needs Some Bunny from JP Needlepoint.
We did a specially designed darning pattern for this background.  You either love it or hate it - lol. It is fun.

We are also working on the third reindeer in our series from Raymond Crawford - the one wearing the Candles Blanket.

We are putting in the shared ground snow and snowflakes.

F2F Classes

Time is running out to register for the JP Needlepoint Owl - Captain Blackbeak's Wench.  Be sure to join us in Houston at the Blue Bonnet Retreat.

There is so much to share with this piece.  Check out all the classes and receive registration form over at We'd love to have you join us. The Wench is a four-day class - February 17-20, 2019 in Houston, TX.


We are one month away from doing our wonderful Stitching Down the Danube adventure.  Kits are being mailed as we speak.  In the meanwhile, we are busily grouping the various optional mini-workshop projects to have them ready to go!

More interest is stirring for the Canadian Rockies Train/Motor Coach stitching adventure so we have our fingers crossed that there is enough interest on that wonderful adventure.

This trip is early April so be sure to contact us and join Needles 'N Fins Stitching Adventures  Facebook page to download the full brochure and read comments.

Also building up excitement is the Mediterranean Stitching Memories Cruise for 2019!  The response has been magnificent.  Be sure to look over the details and save your spot as soon as you can.  Contact Liz our travel agent at right away to make sure you get a wonderful stateroom.  We are very excited and love the response to this adventure.

Our ship is so beautiful!

I see us making a group picture here - if we ever can get the group together - lol!

We will be visiting so many Ports of Call and there is something unique and interesting at each.  I am pondering the exclusive design now trying to figure out how best to represent this fantastic memory in the making.  Don't miss this opportunity to join us.  Email me at with questions or our travel agent Liz at - she's on the ball.

Also, if you are seeking a roommate be sure to let Liz know and she will work on sharing information to possibly get you hooked up to join us!

That's it for this week - have a great week and remember to Stitch with a Smile!

Saturday, September 15, 2018


What a fun trip.  We are here with a wonderful group of stitchers working on the lovely Winter Cardinal from Maggie.  We have been here since Thursday.  And yes, it rained yesterday!

I was given a lovely bouquet of roses and it even had a cardinal in it!  How appropriate was that?

The Space Needlers are a fantastic group of stitchers.  They ask wonderful questions, listen well and even take out stitches without too much fuss if needed.  

This is a photo of the wonderful Kay Fite who put this all together for us with months and months of hard work.  Her efforts were appreciated and recognized by all.

Many of you will recognize the name as Kay has lovely online classes that she shares with us.  You need to hop over if you have not met her. They are very well executed.  You won't be disappointed.

Those who missed this class be sure to watch for promotion for the upcoming ANG Seminar in Houston, TX next year. I believe it is August 15th through the 19th.  It will be taught there.  We were able to teach this class because it was under prior contract so they got in under the wire.  

Hubby came on this trip with me and a friend has taken him to tour the Boeing facility.  The last time we were here they were on strike so we could not go. They really enjoyed themselves!  Hubby got to give his new stand up walker a trial run before our next stitching adventure Stitching Down the Danube.

Our announcement for the fall Stitching Cruise is being received very enthusiastically.  We are thrilled.  Be sure to join Needles 'N Fins Stitching Adventures so you can follow all the details for Mediterranean Stitching Memories 2019.  A full brochure there explains all our Ports of Call from Rome to Barcelona!  What fun.  

I'd love to chat more but I must get some lessons posted, hit the shower and then off to class.  Have a great week!

Saturday, September 8, 2018


So excited to announce our cruise for the Fall 2019.  We will be boarding a beautiful ship - The Azamara Pursuit.  This beauty will handle 690 passengers - large enough to skirt us around the various islands and ports of call  and small enough to still be intimate!  My kind of environment!
 12 Days - Italy, Malta and Spain!  - October 24 - November 4, 2019!

I think I could sleep here

And my goodness the Ports of Call are amazing - from Rome to Barcelona!  I've never been to Spain!  I'm excited! I might need to add a day or two on the ends of this one - well, since I'll already be there - - - 

If you are not already a follower, hop over to Needles 'N Fins Stitching Adventures and join up.  The brochure will be downloaded there this coming week. You'll find all the info about the various Ports of Call, the pricing of staterooms and be sure to contact our travel agent Liz at for more information and to get on the list.

Don't hesitate on this one.  Remember the Danube was sold out so we could not add anymore great friends. We don't want to leave anyone behind on this one!

I'm getting ready to head to the West Coast to teach the wonderful Winter Cardinal for the Space Needlers ANG Chapter in Seattle.  Really looking forward to this one. Anxious to place some faces with names too.  Kay Fite has really been working on this adventure and class for her group.  I know they appreciate all her efforts and dedication.

I never tire of this piece.  One of my favorites.

Also next week will be time to share peeks of the Online Mystery Class sessions. I had a hiccup on one of the classes (we all knew it would happen - right?).  Seems I miss numbered a lesson and in my efforts to correct that issue I mistakenly posted the lesson that will be up this week!  Oh well nobody was killed because of it - I don't think.  And I believe that I have the ducks in a row now.  They just got their lesson early.

Be sure to scroll down to last week's blog for the 2019 Agenda of Online Mystery Classes.  There are so many fun things in store.  I believe I added one after the initial posting.  The Gossips

Does this not just scream my name all over it?  I can't wait to get it.  It will be available through Strictly Christmas .

And don't forget that the clock is ticking for registration at Blue Bonnet Studios Retreat for this fun JP Needlepoint class - Captain Blackbeak's Wench.  Is she not just full of it!

There is so much to share with this piece.  Check out all the classes and receive registration form over at We'd love to have you join us. The Wench is a four-day class - February 17-20, 2019 in Houston, TX.

Okay that's it for today!  Have a great week and remember to always Stitch with a Smile!

Saturday, September 1, 2018


If you would like to join us for any of these upcoming classes, send an email right away to be included on the notification list.  There is no obligation at this point.  Most lessons are of a 6-month duration.  Quickies are a one-time thing.  Occasionally we will have a special series such as the reindeer. You will be notified about a month prior to the class that invoices have been processed.  If you are still interested just pay the invoice and you will be invited to join a secret Facebook page.  Invoices are sent by PayPal.  Lessons are posted within the secret Facebook page.  Here we can discuss and clarify or just chat about the various stitches, threads, etc.  Just send an email to telling us what class you would like to consider. 

We try to assist those who do not have a LNS by offering optional kits that include canvas, threads and embellishments that are used in the particular class.  We'd love to have you join the fun!


First up is the Reindeer with the Poinsettia Blanket from Raymond Crawford Designs. 
This is a 'Special' Class in that it is made up of 4 condensed sessions.  Class will begin mid-January. 

Penny MacLeod – Dana    - our first Penny MacLeod piece!               

 This design is 12x18 on 13 count canvas.  I am already having fun stitching on this one!

Butterfly Quickie – Burnett and Bradley - Fun, quick, happy pieces!

The Quickie Series is one of the special Series that we offer.  It is all inclusive.  One Lesson which included the handpainted canvas, threads, beads and embellishments when applicable and stitch guide.  These classes are generally $150 or under. Most designs are approximately 4" x 5" on 18 ct canvas. Specific Design to be determined each month.  There are 8 designs being featured in this series.  AND we are having made custom designed ornament stands for them that will be an optional offering - stay tuned for this.

First up is this cutie.



Next up is the second of the Butterfly Quickie Series:
MARCH 2019

Lily Wreath – Sea Theme Raymond Crawford         

Another popular request is this colorful sea themed design wreath.  It is 10" square and on 18ct canvas. 


APRIL 2019 

Spooky Tag   Strictly Christmas - this is a first time for a Strictly Christmas design in our Online Mystery Series.

Is this cute or what?  This is approximately 14.5" x 10".  And has the option of a custom made tray for purchase.  The tray its to die for!  (Ask me how I know?)


MAY 2019

BUTTERFLY QUICKIE - Burnett and Bradley

The Gossips -

JUNE 2019 

Santa Tag      Strictly Christmas

Another fun canvas with the same theme!  So cute!  It too is approximately 14.5 x 10 and also has the optional custom made tray.  Such cute feet too!

BUTTERFLY QUICKIE - Burnett and Bradley

JULY 2019

BUTTERFLY QUICKIE -  Burnett and Bradley

AUGUST 2019 

Sat Nite Bathing Beauty    Brunette with Wine -  from CBK - Our introduction to CBK!

 Another new designer joins our Online Mystery Classes.  What a hoot this one's going to be! There are several in the series so we will start with this one. 
BUTTERFLY QUICKIE - Burnett and Bradley


Sandra Gilmore's At the SeaShore  - This is our first Sandra Gilmore design.

This is 14"x 14" on 18 ct canvas. Lots of fun going on here for us.


      This is generally catch up and cruise time so not in a hurry to schedule anything for the rest of the year. But . . . . I have been known to change my mind.