Archive for the ‘Needlepoint’ Category

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Needlepoint-National Cathedral, Washington DC

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

I just returned from a little mini vacation and visited our nation’s capital, Washington D.C. The weather was perfect, the crowds were gone, and it felt like we had the city to ourselves.

While I was there, I took in the usual sites – the Capital Building with a representative provided by our congresswoman, the White House, Mt. Vernon, the Smithsonian Museums (plural) and the requisite stone and marble monuments.

Despite all the gorgeous scenery and structures, what really got me excited was the National Cathedral. Not the cathedral itself (although it was indeed stunning), but the thousands of needlepoint items inside the gothic stone structure!

The first item I noticed was this fabulous tree featuring seals from all 50 states.It is shown here to the right.

A closer look revealed that the seals are appliques, and were worked in a smaller mesh of canvas than the base featuring the detailed tree. This allowed the makers to incorporate smaller details into each of the seals.

You can see a detail of one of the seals – for the state of Missouri – to the left.

I can just imagine the groups of diligent stitchers working on these pieces.  Each stitch lovingly worked one at a time.

The Children’s Chapel at the cathedral was perhaps my favorite, and featured a miniscule organ, tiny little chairs, and adorable kneelers featuring a variety of adorable animals and birds.

The kneelers in this chapel, and elsewhere in the cathedral, are worked in tent stitches like basketweave and continental, as well as a few other needlepoint stitches in sturdy wool needlepoint wool. I wonder if they used DMC Tapestry Wool?

In addition to hundreds of kneelers, the cathedral also featured needlepoint bench covers, chair seats like the one shown to the left, wall hangings and more.

I think I may have been in needlepoint heaven!

I would love to learn more about the these pieces.  Who stitched them and how long did they take? How many actual pieces are there in the cathedral? Are patterns available? If you know the answers to these questions, please let me know!





 


Boo-tiful Halloween Projects

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

If you’re looking for a few quick, easy Halloween stitching patterns, we’ve got you covered!

Members of Club DMC can select from these four bright, quick and adorable projects.

Originally designed using DMC Retours Matte or Flower Thread (Article 89) available in Europe, US-based stitchers can work them in bright shades of DMC Embroidery Floss using basic needlepoint stitches on canvas, or half cross stitch on CharlesCraft Bright Ideas Aida.

You can get the conversion chart here.

I’ve provided the pattern for the witch on her broom here in the blog, but the others are just a click away by signing up for FREE Club DMC membership and scrolling through the Halloween Patterns section!

By joining Club DMC, you can select from hundreds of free patterns you can download any time.

Enjoy!





 


Needlepoint Inspiration

Monday, July 30, 2012

Check out these beautiful chairs featuring needlepoint backs that were shown on the DMC Spain Emma Broidery site!

Johan Lindsten is a Swedish designer specializing in industrial design. Her work can be seen on lamps, chairs, clocks and other household items throughout Europe.

What caught our eye were the chairs with tapestry embroidery worked in DMC Tapestry Wool.

You can make a similar work of needleart by finding a chair with a wide back, and stitching a piece of needlework to fit the area.

Working a design for the chair back is nice change from the usual seat covers!





 


An Interview with Beth Gantz

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Lakewood, Ohio-based designer Beth Gantz has been creating beautiful needlepoint projects for years. Her fresh, happy designs inspire both beginner and experienced stitchers alike.

We recently had a chance to chat with Beth and learn more about her work, which you can read below.

Beth has also graciously provided this pattern for a needlepoint project that can be worked in our gorgeous Pearl Variations size 5 thread.

The simple pattern is perfect for working with these multi-colored threads, and you can download the pdf pattern here.

DMC Color Infusions Memory Thread is also used in the project, and has been couched in place in the center of the upper flower.

Our Interview with Beth:

How did you begin to needlepoint, and are you self-taught or formally trained? Do you think this affects your practice, and how?

My M.ed is in Adult Learning and Development.  Hopefully that influenced my desire to work with all ages interested in learning to stitch.  We have many artists in our family as well.  My mother is a needlepoint designer, my grandfather was a commercial artist.  My grandmother was a skilled stitcher, knitter, and painter.

Describe your studio and studio practice.

I work in a pretty small space, but there is a lot of natural light and white walls.  I am surrounded by all sorts of needlepoint threads and display materials.

How has your work evolved since you first began working with needlepoint?

I started out targeting the entry level stitcher.  I still think that is essential to the future of needlepoint.  But it is hard to hold back from moving toward more intermediate projects.  So I work with more complicated designs but try to focus on them as teaching tools.

Most of your work is fun, contemporary designs and colors. Can you talk about what draws you to these themes both conceptually and visually?

I thought if the look is fresh and trendy, the younger stitchers would like it.  It has been well received by all ages, which I am happy about but did not expect.

Tell us a little about your company, Beth Gantz Designs, and  the next direction or step for your work.

I am always looking for ways to attract new stitchers of all ages.  I’ll keep pursuing that goal.  I am also introducing items for the next level of ability so the beginners can continue to use my products as they learn and grow.

What else do you spend your time doing and do any of these influence your work?

I enjoy golfing, traveling, and spending time with friends and family.  I have always been fascinated by trends in home decor and fashion.  I look outside the industry for what is happening design wise.

Where can we see your work?

My web site is www.bethgantzdesigns.com. There you can see my designs, as well as in stores nationwide.  www.tnna.org has a listing of shops carrying my products.





 


DMC Stitch Guides

Monday, May 7, 2012

I’m so sxcited to report that DMC has now added another awesome item to the needlepoint Stitch Guide collection!

The newest stitch guide is for the Beautiful Flowers canvas by Maggie & Co.

The canvas can be purchased or ordered through your local needlework store, and the free pdf stitch guide can be downloaded here. It’s a large file, so be sure to give it time to download.

The details created using DMC Color Infusions Memory Thread and other DMC Needlework Threads are gorgeous and really set off the bright, colorful design. This thread has been used not only to outline elements in the design by couching it in place, but also to create interesting textures around flower centers and on the vases.

Enjoy!

 





 


Memory Thread Show Features

Thursday, January 26, 2012

I’m back from the TNNA show with my mind spinning from all the amazing creative stitchy genius that I saw at TNNA. I’m not about ready to rest yet! I will be California bound tomorrow for the Winter Craft & Hobby Show in Anaheim.

The Winter Craft & Hobby Show is produced by the Craft & Hobby Association otherwise known as CHA. CHA is an international, not-for-profit trade association consisting of thousands of member companies engaged in the design, manufacture, distribution and retail sales of products in the U.S. craft and hobby industry.

These shows are so much fun, there’s always innovative new products that are being showcased and great connections to make. I keep you posted from the show! If you are going to CHA this year come check out DMC’s Booth at #2733. Follow me on Twitter @DMCThreads #CHASHow.

I wanted to post some amazing inspiring pictures of our newest Memory Thread canvas that I’m currently obsessed with. This canvas was designed by Maggie & Co. and is absolutely drool worthy. Stitched and embellished by artist Alice Okon, this needlepoint canvas is a work of art and will be displayed proudly in the DMC offices in Kearny for years to come!

Alice braided, twisted, wove and shaped Memory Thread into a vibrant amazing masterful work of art. Everyone at the booth oohed and aahed at this piece. I think it’s safe to say everyone is catching the Memory Thread fever as stitchers and artists of all kinds are discovering all the many uses of Memory Thread. From embellishing your needlework projects – to creating dazzling statement jewelry pieces – to the possibility of tatting and crocheting with it. We want to see what YOU come up with! So please email us pictures of your creations for a chance to be featured on the DMC Blog!

How amazing is this piece? Check out some of the close-ups.

To achieve this result of the three dimensional leaves you shape the frame of the leaf with green Memory Thread and attach a middle piece of Memory Thread to enable you to weave your threaded needle up and over the leaf base to form the three dimensional effect.

These vibrant flower centers were created by braiding. twisting and beading Memory Thread. The flower center on the left was created by braiding together four pieces of Memory Thread, two fuchsia lengths and two lavender lengths. Once the circular braid is complete, couch the braid down using one strand of DMC floss. The flower center on the right consists of two lengths of Metallic Memory Thread, gold & silver, twisted together. Tightly coil the twisted length into a half inch diameter circle and couch down with silver DMC Metallic Embroidery Thread. A lavender piece of Memory Thread is beaded with Sundance lavender seed beads and couched down around the metallic coil with one strand of lavender DMC floss.

Check out these other parts of the canvas. Such amazing innovative ways to use Memory Thread! You can click on the pictures to enlarge them and see all the gorgeous detail.

 

Achieve this awesome three dimensional flower petal effect by hand looping these delicate perfect flower loops.

Easily make your own larger Memory Thread flowers by downloading the Memory Thread flower project sheet. Using Clovers Loom Tool you can easily shape the petals!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

At the DMC Booth there were a number of displays showcasing beautiful pieces that you were created using DMC Threads and products. The DMC Memory Thread display case showcased Maggie Co. canvas. The carpet underneath was quilted by one of our favorites, Nancy DiDonato. She couched down Memory Thread and hand sewn in beads to create a beautiful carpet that looks great as a wall hanging.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Check out the beautiful quilted flowers in the vases. These were quilted and embellished with Memory Thread. I love these flowers and can totally see these on my bedroom balcony. They are so fresh and vibrant!

 

 

 

Our last featured Memory Thread piece was this fresh funky design showcasing some cute hair styling options with Memory Thread. Look out for this piece being featured in Needlepoint Now. Love those tight ringlets you can achieve easily by twisting the Memory Thread around a tapestry needle.

 

Stay tuned tomorrow for more news from the show!

Happy Stitching!

~ Emma





 


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