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In a fast-paced world where everyone and everything seems to be moving at the speed of light, slowing down the pace is a good idea. It causes us to pause for a moment in time, take in the details, and truly savor what we’re doing or eating. Slowing things down increases our awareness of what we’re doing.
Over the years, grass-roots groups have been coming together to rediscover the cooking arts with the help of the slow foods movement, and now there’s a similar movement underway for stitchers and needle artists. It’s called the Slow Stitching Movement, and is the creation of international quilting celebrity Mark Lipinski and his uber-talented friends.
The tenets of the Slow Stitching Movement are simple, and encourage stitchers of all types and genres to:
- Approach your creative art-making in a totally different way.
- Recharge your passion for the needle fiber arts.
- Engage the connection between your body, your quilts, and your legacy.
- Expand your creativity, self-esteem and even your spiritual journey.
- Tap your right brain, to train and develop your imagination.
- Find the creative genius in you.
- Implement your creative thought in today’s too-fast world.
- Heal your life, emotions and boost your physical health.
- Create groups and habits to support your creative vision.
Definitely words to live by and methodology to aspire to.
For me, the Slow Stitching Movement really hits home. I love it when I love myself in my stitching. The hours can fly by in an instant. I approach a project in small bites, creating each stitch as a separate work of art that when combined with the other stitches, creates a whole. I am happy, satisfied, and relaxed.
Another aspect of the movement is the creation of local Slow Stitching Salons, where groups of like-minded stitchers can come together to work on their projects, discuss what’s happening in the stitching world, and learn something new. The very first event was held recently in Pennsylvania. You can read about their fun day on the movement’s blog.
Why a Salon instead of a regular guild? Mark’s brilliant explanation is:
“A Slow Stitching Salon is a time for creative reflection as well as a time for thoughtful and helpful discussion. It is not a coffee klatch nor is it a place to learn technique or to finesse your work.
The purpose of a Slow Stitching Salon is to spend time with creative people, like yourself, to share in a very intimate and inspired way, your slow stitching process and progress with like-minded souls. It is around these Slow Stitching Salon tables, and in these Slow Stitching Salon rooms, where you will find the creative fellowship, disagreements, concepts, and understanding, that will not only clarify your place in slow stitching art world, but will open up yet another layer of creativity and inspiration within you as you share your own journey with those who will recognize themselves in your story, and vice versa.”
To read more about the Slow Stitching Movement, you can visit their web site. While there, be sure to poke around the site, because there are some beautiful and inspiring things to see over there, including a gallery of slow stitching projects. You can also submit your own photos of a project you have created while taking your time and enjoying the creative process.
To start your own Slow Stitching Salon, visit the blog and gather up a group of stitching friends of all types. The beauty is that they can come from all types of needlework backgrounds including embroidery, quilting, knitting and crochet. Ask everyone to bring along their current slow stitching projects, their threads and supplies, and hang out together for some quality stitching time.
In this image, from the recent gathering at Liza’s place, you’ll see (left to right) our pal Allie Aller along with Chawne Kimber, Liza Prior Lucy, Mark Lipinski, and Meg Cox. Be sure to visit their blogs for more information on their stitching.
You’ll find an inspiring article on creating your own salon as your scroll through the Missed the Boat Monday posting, complete with more images from the gathering.
Thank you, Mark!
When Ambassador Girl Scout Alexandria Bassett set out on her mission to help the students of the Cow Field School in Liberia support their community, she chose give them an opportunity to learn how to make a product they could sell. In the true spirit of friendship, she thought Friendship Bracelets would be the perfect theme.
Each of the 250 students at the school received a button kit that included a bracelet that Alexandria made as a sample, skeins of DMC Embroidery Floss donated by Iris Whitted on behalf of DMC USA, and hundreds of buttons and instructions for re-creating the bracelet. Her shipment of supplies weighed 110 pounds and contained over 126,000 buttons and over 1,250 skeins of embroidery floss.
The students are taught to make a marketable product that they can sell to earn money to support their families, education, and local school. The finished bracelets will be sold at the local market.
According to the Girls Scouts site, the “Girl Scout Gold Award represents the highest achievement in Girl Scouting. Open only to girls in high school, this prestigious award challenges you to change the world.”
This seven-step project involves identifying an issue, researching the issue thoroughly, building a team, creating and presenting a plan, gathering feedback and then putting the plan into action to inspire and educate. In supplying these kits and showing these schoolchildren how to make the bracelets, Alexandria is not only providing a way for the children to support their community, but is also teaching them lifelong skills that they will be able to use throughout their life.
On behalf of DMC, I’d like to extend a huge, “WELL DONE” to Alexandria!
Are you getting ready for Summer guests, parties and barbeques? Make some welcoming hand-stitched towels from the DMC Shop for your guests to enjoy.
Starting Friday June 13th through June 19th 2014, DMC will be offering 15% off our ready to stitch kitchen, guest and hand towels! Use promo code June14 when ordering through the DMC site to get the discount.
Select from our gorgeous set of two cotton linen striped towels or Boreal Collection towels (shown), or our tried and true CharlesCraft Ready to Stitch Banded Huck Towels, Maxton Guest Towels, or any other towel in our collection.
You can see the entire collection of DMC and CharlesCraft towels and towel sets, featuring 21 different styles on the DMC Towels Page.
All individual DMC hand, guest and kitchen towels come with an exclusive free pattern collection designed to fit the towels perfectly.
The sale lasts 6 days and starts Friday!
I’ve been on the road again… It happens every year around this time – sometimes it’s work-related, other times it’s just for fun. This time I was down in Southern California, and had enough free time to visit a few shops on my trip.
On a sunny Saturday morning I dropped in at Needlepoints, LTD in Garden Grove, located just a few blocks west from Beach Blvd and the I-22 Junction. I had an awesome visit with owner Diana Hardner and her daughter, and managed to find a few new goodies to bring home with me – but definitely wish I had room in my suitcase for a few more!
The shop is definitely a stitcher’s candy store – the selection of eye candy is amazing!
In addition for carrying a complete wall of DMC Needlework Threads (this image shows our pearl cotton), the shop carries a huge – make than gargantuan – selection of patterns for cross stitch, embroidery, needlepoint, counted thread and other needle arts.
Trust me – You can’t be in a rush to look through the patterns – it will take you a while because there’s so much to choose from. The wall of patterns shown here is chock-full of ideas and is just the beginning… wait until you see the binders. Oh my!
You’ll also find an impressive selection of fabrics and linens, plain and hand-painted needlepoint canvases, beads, buttons and charms, as well as stitching organizers, gadgets and frames – and don’t forget the necessities like scroll frames, needles and tools.
Needlepoints, Ltd also features a large, well-lit classroom area and offers classes from their own experienced instructors as well as top designers in a wide range of needlework types. Visit their classes page to see what’s going on before your visit.
Feel free to drop on by the shop the next time you’re in town as well. Bring your needlework and visit for a while… I’ll definitely be dropping by again on my next visit!
Greeting stitchers! I’ve been on the road again, and as usual I like to visit the LNS in the area while traveling. A few weeks ago I found myself in cold, breezy and beautiful Ogden, Utah, where I had an opportunity to pop into The Needlepoint Joint.
This store actually takes up two store fronts on historic 25th Street, just down the street from the museums in the old Ogden Depot, and just a short drive to Promontory Point and other historic sites. I couldn’t help but think of the snappy Hell on Wheels theme tune while walking from the train depot to the shop…
This beautiful retail shop carries quality supplies for all types of needlework, from cross stitch and needlepoint to lacemaking and yarn crafts. They’ve been in business since 1973 and carry a huge array of threads, yarns, tools and needlework fabrics. They feature not only common items, but some unique and hard to find things.
Owner Judy Jones and her staff were welcoming and I had a great time visiting with them, admiring all the needlework goodies, and enjoying the shop. I’ll definitely be visiting again on my next trip to the area.
Here’s a photo of their wall of DMC Needlework Threads. They pretty much carry it all – and their selection of books and patterns is awesome!
Oh, and some of the more unusual items I found at the store were bobbin lace books and packages of quality wooden bobbins. These can be hard to find without special ordering them.
So, I’ve decided to learn bobbin lacemaking this year – wish me luck!
Glow-in-the-dark floss, part of DMC’s Light Effects thread line, is a fun choice for making unique embroidery or craft items that light up after the lights go out.
Designer Heather Lin has created a unique Stitch the Stars Kit, featuring the zodiac worked in this super-fun floss on a linen tea towel. You can make the project as a special gift for the stargazer in your life.