My first press!

There's little as exciting as having your work mentioned in the media, especially if that media happens to be one of your favorite cross stitch magazines. I'm thrilled to report that's exactly what has happened. My little workhorse of an elephant made his way into the pages of Cross Stitcher Issue 254. I had no idea it was going to happen. A Facebook fan from the UK actually tipped me off after she saw it in the magazine's pages. Since the magazine is published in the UK and I'm in the States, I had to wait weeks before I could get my hands on a copy. Absolute torture, but totally worth the wait. Here's the spread: I was included as part of fabulous designer Jacqui Pearce's Trend Spotting column. The theme was animal magic - how appropriate! Here is Jacqui's oh-so-kind write-up of my work: I couldn't be more thrilled! Thank you Jacqui, and thank you Cross Stitcher! (Oh, and while this was my first press mention, it wasn't the last. More on that soon!)
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A summer of stitching

Whew! What a summer. Busy, fun, and way too short. It seems no matter where I went this summer, my stitching went with me. I love little projects you can pull out wherever you happen to be when you have a few extra moments. Whether it's in the backyard on a summer evening. Or at the beach. Or story hour at the town library. Or to destinations afar. Where do you love to stitch?
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New cross stitch necklace kits in the shop!

See this adorable cross stitch heart pendant? I've been wearing it - or its purple sibling - nearly everyday. It looks great with just about everything I own. For example: You can make your own with one of the new Red Gate Stitchery DIY cross stitch pendant kits now in the shop! The stitching is simple, even if you've never cross stitched before, and the result is something all stitchers - from beginners to the most experienced - will be thrilled to have in their wardrobe. (Don't want to stitch? Let me do it for you with one of my finished pendants. Easy peasy!) Happy stitching,
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Want to learn how to cross stitch?

Certain cross stitch projects can be daunting: lots of colors, lots of stitches, lots of time. For experienced stitchers, doing a big project can be really gratifying. For new stitchers, not so much. One of the things I love about my cross stitch necklace kits is that they're easy enough for beginners, and I hope they entice some of you who are new to cross stitch to give it a try. It really couldn't be easier. To help new stitchers along the path to stitchy bliss, I've published the Red Gate Stitchery Beginner's Guide to Cross Stitch. It has all the information you'll need to stitch up your own beautiful pendant, or whatever your first cross stitch project may be. Check it out here: Beginner's Guide to Cross Stitch. And as always, happy stitching!
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Stitching up memories

Every stitch holds a memory. It's one of the things I love most about needlework. Every pattern I work up becomes a time capsule of the moment and place it was stitched. A patchwork heart is a reminder of a family trip to Vermont. Snow and cold, my daughter's happy squeals as she raced down the sledding slope, hot chocolate and cozy fires. All tangled up in the floss that passed between my fingers that week. A beehive design in which the buzzing bees carry memories of an anniversary getaway to Quebec City. Wandering the old streets in the rain, searching out the best poutine, and quiet afternoons in the coffeeshop with my love. The heart and beehive patterns are now in the shop, with the wish they may bring to you your own happy stitching memories.
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An Easter egg of a different kind

I only found the time to make one of these Easter eggs using my oval bamboo pendant blanks (in the shop soon!). I would have liked an entire tree full of them. The bamboo forms look just as lovely with decorative stitches as they do with regular cross stitches. Might have to do some more of that.
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I stitch on fabric too

So far you've seen me cross stitch on some pretty unconventional materials - leather, bamboo, acrylic. But the shelves of my home studio are also filled with all kinds of fabric. And of course, fabric was where my stitching adventure began oh so many years ago. I love the modern silhouette patterns that have been all the rage lately. So clean and simple and pretty when done up in a hoop. but I'm also a fan of pattern - the interplay of color and texture that keeps your eye interested. Patterns are also a whole lot more interesting to stitch than row after row of solid color. The combination of modern silhouettes and fun graphic patterns was the inspiration for my new line of cross stitch charts. There are two up in the shop now, but more are coming. My daughter has already laid claim to this little guy done in orange and blues. The bunny I'll keep for myself. Oh, one other nice thing about these patterns? They're quicker to stitch up than your standard one-color silhouette. You know I'm all about instant gratification. Head on over to the shop and check them out.
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New in the shop: Cross stitch rings!

First it was necklaces, then cuffs, and now we're on to cross stitch rings! I just posted two bamboo versions in my shop, both stitched with chevrons in two different modern colorways. I had a third ring, but somehow it made it to my own jewelry box instead of onto Etsy. Go figure!
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A preview of shapes to come

Last week I launched my new Etsy shop with a collection of teardrop-shaped pendants you can stitch. This week I've been working on some companions of a different shape. Here's a sneak peek. They'll be in the shop soon!
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It's my grand opening! (And there's something in it for you too)

Yesterday I did it. I clicked 'publish' on my very first Etsy listing, and in doing so launched my new shop. It's been in the works for over a year now, and I could not be happier that it's finally happened. Best of all, it means I can finally show you what I've been working on all this time. Quite a while ago I became interested in the idea of stitching on material that isn't generally stitched on - think plastic, wood, leather, and the like. I also fell in love with making all sorts of cross stitched jewelry. Combine the two, and you have my new line of bamboo and acrylic stitchable pendants.

Traditional patterns look amazing stitched up on such unconventional material. You can see lots more in my new shop. I'm selling the pendants both as finished pieces and as kits so you can stitch up your own designs. To celebrate my grand opening, I'm offering free shipping through the end of the month, so head over to the shop and have yourself a look! Oh, and pendants aren't the only thing I've been working on. More stitchable accessories are on the way, so stay tuned!
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The granddaddy of my floss collection

Earlier this week I got to do one of my favorite things: comb through my floss stash looking for inspiring color combinations. Picking colors for a project is almost as fun as the stitching itself. I don't have any fancy organization scheme for my floss, just a divided box with warm colors in one compartment, cool in another, and neutrals in their own. I love the way the colors mingle together, overlapping and entwining and hinting at unexpected combinations. I was in a green frame of mind during this particular color-picking session, and came across this beauty that must have been in my stash for a long time. Notice the label of DMC 993 compared to its newer friend. The typewriter font, the smaller size, no barcode. Who knows when I purchased it, probably decades ago. No matter. It stitched up beautifully. It's too soon to share the finished product with you - part of a collection I'm working on that I couldn't be more excited about - but soon!
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Color inspiration: Birthday roses

My 4-year-old loves to buy me cut flowers when she and her father take a trip to the market. Yesterday was my birthday, so she went big and picked out roses in her favorite shade of pink. I've been putting together color palettes for the new designs I'm working on, and these roses seemed like the perfect inspiration. Here are the DMC colors if you find yourself similarly inspired.
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