Friday, February 22, 2013

Nashville Releases

I really should make the title of this entry - Snow Day. Early this week, the esteemed weathermen were predicting a foot of snow. As each day passed, the predictions lowered. started snowing. I drove into the bank drive-thru seeing a flake or two & came out the other side to a massive downfall. 10" later the kids had that most blessed of events...a Snow Day - and on a Friday to boot!

Here is a peak out into our backyard. 24 hours ago, it was nothin' but dead dormant grass!

I started releasing pictures on Facebook yesterday of my 3 new designs that are officially available next weekend at the Nashville Needlework Market. I was so nervous to put the pics out there - what if I hit enter & all I heard were crickets?? Well not only did you not let me down...I couldn't get off Facebook all afternoon what with answering messages & questions. (Imagine how I explained to my DH what I did all afternoon..."yes honey, I was on Facebook all day...but it was for work...really!")

When I made the decision to start Hands On Design & design on my own, I planned to take a different approach to what I put out there. Since these would be from just me, I wanted to make sure they told a story...a story that reflected who I am and what I am all about.

1st up to be introduced is actually #3 in the line-up and while mother's are not supposed to have favorites...this one is:)

hd-3 Under A Quilt is stitched on 30ct WDW Cocoa with hand-dyes from GAST, WDW & CC. The frame is East Side Moulding.

The story behind this one is that, it wasn't even in the original lineup! I hemmed & hawed about what should be my first releases...I mean, I've been designing for 5 years, but this was starting all over again! I had heard this saying before & stuck in the database of my mind for another time.

While driving home from a college scholarship weekend with my family, my brain went wandering as we drove through the NW IA countryside (filled with it's share of barn quilts I might add). I saw a flash of something that was the beginnings of this design...and for once, I had no pen & paper with me. I kept drawing it in my mind (later my husband told me he could tell I went to "that place" I go sometimes when thinking about a design). We arrived home, unpacked, pet the cats & dog, and 4 hours later, this was complete.

What makes this even more special is I recently gave a quilt to someone who is very special to me and is going through a rough time right now. I had no idea what that quilt would end up doing for her and ultimately, me...a long distance hug.

I hope you will enjoy this many of us stitchers are also quilters. Enjoy the little quilt block too. I will explain more about those another time.

Have a great weekend & Happy National Margarita Day!


Thursday, February 14, 2013

Happy Valentine's Day!

I hope it's a great day that you get to share with someone special.

Last week, on our anniversary, my husband & I actually booked an afternoon tennis court & enjoyed a game..something we haven't done in years. While I do play a lot, we actually spend most of our time driving our youngest son around the states to watch him play in tournaments. He graduates high school this year and will play in college as well. Big changes in store for our family as very soon we will no longer pack the car on a Friday to head to whatever city and play in whatever tournament. Any parent of a child in sports can relate! Heavy sigh, but a happy sigh as his hard work has paid off for his coming college years .

When I started this blog, I said I would share a bit about the design process. I snapped a few pics as I am frantically trying to get new releases charted and shipped to one of my distributor's who is kindly showing them at the upcoming Nashville Market.

Yesterday was photoshoot day & today is final charting & covers. They will get sent to the printer who will hopefully work his magic...quickly! Fun times in our house this weekend as we bag teeny little buttons and fold & stuff charts. The picture is my desk...actually cleaned up a bit. My cat, Zeza likes to manage everything. She would be the perfect shop cat I think.

I do carry a sketch book with me pretty much wherever I go. I promised Norden Crafts Ltd (who will be showing my models at market) a complimentary design for market. This is a teeny look at what it all started out as...a weird sketch that ended up looking like anything but the final product! That happens A LOT! I pretty much design with the final colors in mind. I am weird that way...I don't write rough drafts and I don't design them either. Yes, I do tweak here & there as I stitch models, but pretty much once it's in the computer, its all good.
Better go - one model was not quite finished yesterday for pictures, so we're getting it done today.
Have a great Sweetheart's Day & a great weekend!

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Happy 25th Anniversary

25 years ago today, it was 5 degrees in Pittsburgh, PA...and I was sweating. Not because I was unsure of the giant step I was about to take. I was more worried about tripping down the aisle or my voice cracking in front of friends and family as I promised to love & cherish (yes, I said "obey", but I always told him he knew what I really meant!) my best friend through good times & bad. Fortunately, the good times have been many & the bad times...well, we'll just call them learning experiences!

I could go on & on about how is seems like yesterday yet it seems like forever or it's been the happiest 25 years of my life...well, all of that is true. What I really want to say is "Love You More"...more today than yesterday, I couldn't love you more, and still Love You More. That's all the sappy country tunes I know! (Pretty good for a couple that watched their share of Heavy Metal 80's bands!) I designed this with you in mind Bill and I am truly grateful for the life that we have built together.

Enjoy this complimentary chart. If I did everything correctly, you can "click" on the link below. If I did not, then I will be getting lots of comments about how you can't get the post & I will have to e-mail you the file ;)        Love-You-More Chart

There is plenty of time to get this stitched up before Sweetheart's Day - so get busy!

Just to leave you with a laugh (plus I didn't have any other handy picture of the two of us - how sad is that!) is Bill & me at Topsail Beach...probably about 26 or 27 years ago! We both had mullets!

Happy Stitching, Happy Anniversary, Happy Days,

Saturday, February 2, 2013

I've got a winner!

Just a quick post to let you know I did not forget to pick a winner from the Grow Your Blog Party! I am on the road at the moment, so I am trying this post from my iPad!

So, using a Random Number Generator (with the help of my dear I'm gonna be lost when he goes to college next year!)...Pam is the winner! Woo hoo...confetti, bells, and whistles all around! I will definetely be doing more contests in the future...this was fun!

I have to include one pic in each post. I took this of Zeza the other day as I was working in my studio (otherwise known as the extra bedroom, sewing room, padded cell, where to find Mom if she's not in the kitchen, laundry room or car!)

Zeza is sitting on top of the lovely little design I'll be posting on Wednesday! Hint: still time before Valentine's Day!

Pam, congrats and a little bit of Sioux City will be heading your way!