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ISSUE 19   |   October 16, 2015

Hi <<First Name>>,

Welcome to Embroidery News Issue 19.

Last week we called out for more submissions of your projects to include in ‘What Are You Stitching?’ and the response has been great. Thank you to those who have already sent theirs in, we trust the rest of you are waiting for just the right light for your photographs or perhaps you are practising your camera skills? Whatever it is you are waiting for, we’re hoping this is the week you can send us something as we’re looking forward to seeing what you’re stitching!

We know, we know, it still feels too early to be talking about Christmas, but for all of us in the needlework fraternity, if we don’t get stitching now we won’t get those projects finished in time for Santa to deliver them. As there are only 8 editions of Embroidery News left for this year, we thought it would be fun to have a Christmas themed ‘What Are You Stitching?’ in a few weeks. Based on this, send us photos of either the Christmas projects you’re currently working on so we can encourage you to finish in time or send in some pics of your all-time favourite Christmas piece, perhaps a gift you created for someone or something someone stitched for you; we’d love to see them.

This week we’re all back together again in the Inspirations/Stitch.ology office for the first time in over a month, so it’s all go, go, go. Laura is still working on her Mekong recap, hopefully we’ll have that for you next week (maybe Norma’s husband needs to help her along? Lucky she’s only writing it and doesn’t have to stitch it!). Sue Forrest is catching up on all our subscriber correspondence, so thank you for everyone’s patience while she’s been away, and this week Sue even has her very own new segment in Embroidery News…. read on to enjoy ‘Something Special with Sue’ and much, much more.

Do you have something you can share with the Inspirations community? We’d love to hear from you, please email us at


Recently we announced the exciting news that at long last Susan O’Connor’s bestselling book ‘Monograms’ has been reprinted. With Susan now back in the office, we managed to get her to take a quick break from working on Issue 89 and share with us a little about the book from her perspective…

‘It is such a pleasure to have ‘Monograms The Art of Embroidered Letters’ back in print. Over the last few years I have received many emails from readers who were desperate to get their hands on a copy so, here it is, available again. I think writing a book is a bit like having a baby – you work long and hard on developing the content, wait patiently until it is ready and are delighted when it finally comes to fruition. A re-print certainly gives you all the pleasure without any of the pain!

I initially wrote this book because, although it was possible to find a lot of history on monogramming and there were certainly hundreds of alphabets available, there was very little information on how you actually went about creating these lovely embroidered letters.

So, I collected together a wonderful variety of techniques, from simple to complex, and put them together with several projects just to get you started. Regardless of your skill level, you will find a technique that works for you.

We have made a few minor adjustments to the book for the reprinted version and it has a new cover so I do hope that you enjoy reading about this timeless style of embroidery and giving it a go.’

For those who have already placed an order for the book, stock is arriving at our warehouses in the next week or so and your copy will be shipping soon thereafter.

Monograms can now be purchased online and shipped directly to your door anywhere in the world. Click here to order your copy today.


Last week we shared a few teaser images of the projects coming up in issue 88 which starts shipping next week. Today we have a couple more for you, plus the unbound advance copy arrived recently and we sneaked a quick photo while no-one was looking to show you!

BEETLEMANIA by Jane Nicholas
Stunning goldwork diving beetle

OLD FRIENDS by Jan Bergman
Dimensional basket of striking proteas and grevillea

PLEASE NOTE: These images are close ups of segments from the project only and do not show the full project which features in the magazine.


Back in Embroidery News Issue 8, we celebrated 20,000 likes on our Facebook page with this special thanks:

'We know many of you marvel at the spectacular images we post… after all it is the World’s Most Beautiful Embroidery Facebook Page!

The person that makes all the magic happen behind the scenes is none other than our Subscription Manager Sue Forrest. THANK YOU Sue for your tireless online treasure hunting to find all those beautiful images, you do an awesome job.'

Sue has been involved with all things Inspirations/Country Bumpkin/AS&E on and off for more than 10 years now and her knowledge of our history coupled with ‘what’s hot and what’s not’ online today is legendary. When we asked Sue for her thoughts on any popular projects we should talk about in Embroidery News, here is what she said:

‘Many of the projects I share on our FB page get responses like ‘I love it – where can I buy it?’. While some people create their own designs, luckily a lot of the popular projects are from back issues of our magazines, so we should try and make them available.’

Now we have our new website up and running, we can do just that – hence our new segment ‘Something Special with Sue’ where Sue features a popular project from our back catalogue that is available for purchase via a printed copy of the magazine it appeared in, or, if it’s out of print, as a digital download. Over to you Sue…

‘In Good Company’ by Carolyn Pearce – Inspirations #50

‘To get started, this week I have chosen ‘In Good Company’ a gorgeous sewing accessory set by Carolyn Pearce. I remember we couldn’t keep up with making the kits when it was first released in Issue 50 and since then it has always been popular.

I think the fact it is a relativity quick project means it’s perfect for beginners but more experienced stitches also love it because you get that thrill of instant gratification (well almost!).’

As Sue referenced, ‘In Good Company’ was featured in Inspirations Issue 50 which is still available in print.

To purchase a copy of this issue shipped anywhere in the world, and to get started on stitching this exquisite project, click here.


The projects we stitch are often an emotional journey as much as they are a technical and artistic one. How many of your projects have a back story that is as fascinating or as beautiful as the finished piece itself? Leana van Baelen has an extraordinary quilt which that has become a multi-generational family heirloom, and with it an enthralling story. Leana explains…

"A few years ago I had a good look at all the embroidery I did when I was younger and realized I came from a family with many needlecraft talents. Using various pieces my family had already created, I ended up making this ‘Memory Quilt’.

The quilt itself features four generations of sewing, including my great-grandmother, grandmother, my mother and some of my work as well.

The oldest piece that my mother was able to date with accuracy, was created around 1910. That is the crochet with the "cocks".

We’re not certain how old the other small crochet pieces are, but we believe they were done around 1900. My grandmother was born in 1894 and my family is originally from South Africa, but I now live in the USA.

My mother is alive and doing well at 85 and still lives in South Africa. She still does x-stich, knitting, quilting, sewing her clothes etc. I am not that adventurous and at 58 mainly do quilting and embroidery.

Four generations of sewing ladies represented in one quilt, and I trust one day my grandchildren will add to the collection. I say grandchildren as I only have boys myself and it seems highly unlikely they will be contributing to it themselves! I hope you enjoy it. Leana. "

Thank you for sharing this with us Leana and well done for having the vision and putting in the effort to create a ‘stitching family tree’ which will live on for generations to come.

From a special memories quilt to blankets for some special people, Teena Vikingur has been hard at work stitching some gorgeous blankets as gifts for some special people in her life.

“I have just completed this ‘Bunny Love’ blanket by from Inspirations issue 23 for my 4 year old grand-daughter. I have been back in Perth, Western Australia for 6 years, after living in Adelaide for 8 years - where I purchased the materials for this blanket from the original Country Bumpkin store.

I also made the floral blanket ‘Windflower’ from the book the ‘World’s Most Beautiful Embroidered Blankets’. I created this one for a dear friend who was in an accident which left her a quadriplegic and she used it as a wall hanging.

They were sewn on wool blanketing and I used various stitches including Bullion knots, split stitch, detached chain, and long and short stitch. With the ‘Windflower’ blanket, I used felt padding in the flowers to give a 3D effect. I then used piping as the edging before finishing with a cotton/polyester blend backing.”

Teena your blankets have certainly lived up the title of theWorld’s Most Beautiful Embroidered Blankets’ as your projects have been superbly stitched and we can’t tell the difference between your versions and the originals! Well done.


If you have been inspired by Teena’sBunny Love’ blanket, you can now purchase this Jenny McWhinney pattern as an instant digital download on our Stitch.ology website. Plus we have just added one of our all-time popular children’s blankets, also by Jenny, ‘Midnight Feast’ as an instant digital download. If quilts are more to your liking, Liberty Rose is a delightful floral surface embroidered quilt by Heather Scott, or create a special treat for the canine in your life with the ‘Puppy Love’ quilt by Monique Johnston. See below for details.

Bunny Love by Jenny McWhinney
Issue 23 – Embroidered Blanket
Purchase Digital Download here

Midnight Feast by Jenny McWhinney
Issue 34 - Thread Painting
Purchase Digital Download here

Liberty Rose by Heather Scott
Issue 71 – Surface Embroidered Quilt
Purchase Digital Download here

Puppy Love by Monique Johnston
Issue 71 – Thread Painted Quilt
Purchase Digital Download here

Teena is not the only stitcher this week creating beautiful needlework to be given away. Cate Longley has poured herself into this extraordinary wedding present she created for a friend who lives on the other side of the world. Cate tells her story below…

“This is a silk embroidery project I have been working on. I photographed it in the sun so that the silks showed up better. The sewing part took me about 3 months, but that's due to juggling work and kids! Plus I spent a good month designing it and choosing the colours before that. I completed it in June as a wedding present for a very special friend. It is silk floss on dupion silk. I adapted a painting I had in a Japanese book, and used colours that I know my friend likes. I live in Auckland, New Zealand and sent it to my friend in England. Cate.”

What an amazing gift to receive – such a fitting design to mark the occasion of a wedding. Your colour selection and choice of threads are gorgeous Cate, we love it.

Our final project for this week is a really creative, fun piece from Chris Richards who lives in Warwickshire, UK.

‘Hello, I would love to share my recently finished project 'Sea Breezes' which uses many different types of stitches including beadwork. Hope you like it! Chris xx'

Thanks Chris – this piece would fit in perfectly at the Inspirations Magazine beach house. Now all we need is the beach house to put it in!

What are YOU stitching?
Send us your photos, details about your project, where you live and a little about yourself to:


We encouraged you to join in on the conversation - & that you did indeed! We’ve been overwhelmed by the number of responses we’ve had from the Embroidery News Community over the last couple of weeks and wanted to thank you for your interest. As we’ve said before, without your involvement we’d have many questions, but no answers!

Someone else who wanted to pass on their thanks is Gill . . .

Before Help

After Help

“A BIG thank you to everyone who wrote in to help - I was amazed at all the different suggestions everyone had sent in. I went with the suggestion of using an old wet sheet (and I have to say it is an old flannelette sheet I bought 33 years ago for my first son and now this little blanket is going to my first grandson) and placed it over the blanket and very carefully steam ironed around the bears.”

Whilst Gill is going to try this method again to remove the remaining creases, you can see the difference it’s made already. In other news from Gill, her son is currently renovating a cradle her blanket will call home.

The cradle has been in his wife’s Norwegian family for 100 years. We think they’ll make the perfect match & can’t wait to see the photos when the cradle, ‘The Loved Ones’ blanket and Gill’s grandson all find themselves together!

Gill’s next dilemma is how to get the blanket all the way from Tasmania in Australia to Norway without undoing all the work she’s done removing the creases! Gill thinks rolling it will be her best option.

As promised last week, here is the next instalment of ‘creased wool fixes’:

• Ensure quality blanketing is used to minimise the creases that will form.
•Dampen the blanket and pin it to a lace curtain stretcher. However, if this old fashioned tool is no longer available, the same result can be achieved by blocking the blanket with pins on a cork board covered with fabric and/or plastic and allowing it to dry.
• Stretch the blanket in a tapestry frame or similar and then steam the stretched blanket over water.
• Spray the blanket using a solution of half water and half vinegar before ironing.

The Loved Ones by Jan Norman
Issue 9 – Wool blanket with applique.
Purchase Digital Download here

After receiving so much interest in Gill’s blanket over the past few weeks, for those of you who were interested in making the blanket as well, we have now added this gorgeous project from Inspirations issue 9 as a digital download pattern to the Stitchology website.

The Loved Ones captures the intrepid adventures of a bear in three stages of mischief - Floating Bear, Honey Jar Bear and Gazing Bear. Details on how to purchase the pattern are to the left.

Moving now to our other ‘Can You Help?’ matter at hand, and Kate from Virginia is also in luck as there were numerous people who recognized the app she enquired about in the YouTube clip she sent in.

Again there were so many responses we can’t name everyone individually, however you were all unanimous in your answer – the app is called the ‘GoodReader’ by Good.iWare and is used in conjunction with your digital chart files. The App is available for purchase through iTunes, just search ‘Good Reader’ and look for this icon.

We also highly recommend you watch this YouTube tutorial by Carolyn Mazzeo on using the app for Cross Stitch charts to understand more about how it works. Click here to view.

Kate who lives in Barcelona, wrote in with some last minute suggestions about ‘destination needlework’ locations for Kathy to visit on her travels.

Kate recommends visits to :

Fet a Ma – Calle Obispo Ribas which stocks a gorgeous range of fabrics.

– a really traditional shop which offers courses and has a treasure trove of supplies.

Dona has shops in both Calle Provenza 256 and also in Calle Laforja.

Planas & Linares in Calle Muntaner 155 and La Selecta in Rambla de Catalunya 109 . Whilst these are really haberdasheries, Kate sees them as Aladdin’s caves as you’ll never know what you might find while you’re there!

Mokuba in Calle Corsega 220 which sells the most beautiful ribbons imaginable

El club de l’AgujaVia Augusta 100 which is close to Dona in Calle Laforja and would allow visits to both shops in either a morning or afternoon.

Embroidery News Community – it’s now over to you again, but instead of looking for answers this week, we’re looking for the next question that will once again start the conversation. Please email your question/s to - and remember, the only foolish question is the one you don’t ask!


We are now in the final 2 weeks of Issue #87 being the current issue. What does that mean? It means stocks are getting low on everyone’s shelves as we only print limited numbers of each magazine. It also means kits will soon no longer be available, plus if you haven’t read issue #87 yet, some of your stitching friends may be looking at you sideways wondering ‘what is wrong with you’!?

Inspirations #87 is a stand out issue and if you don’t have a copy, we highly recommend you act now to secure one so you don’t miss out.

> Option1 – SINGLE ISSUE (Print)

You can now purchase a single issue of Inspirations from our new website. Click here for Issue #87

> Option 2 – SUBSCRIBE

PRINT | For a print subscription simply fill in our secure online form with your details. It’s so easy and quick, you’ll be done in 5 minutes. Click Here.

DIGITAL | For a digital subscription you can purchase it through Zinio direct here or through the Inspirations APP which can be downloaded via the iTunes and Google Play stores, by searching ‘Inspirations Magazine’.

Current Issue - #87

> Option 3 – CALL US

If you are not sure what option is best for you, have some questoins or just like to talk to someone rather than type, we’d love to hear from you. You can call us from anywhere in the world on +61 8 8293 8600 anytime, we work crazy hours so you never know when we’re free to have a chat, but if we’re not in leave a message and we’ll get back to you. For anyone within Australia, call us on 08 8293 8600.

Otherwise email anytime us at

KITS REMINDER! – Purchase Inspirations kits here.

15% OFF - As a subscriber you receive a 15% discount on all Inspirations kits. Don’t have the discount code? Email us at and we’ll send it to you.


Quilt by Sherrie Jewson





Vladimir Denshchikov 


" Buttons & patches & the cold wind blowing. The days pass quickly when I am sewing."
~ Author Unknown ~



What: The Fabric of India
When: 3 Oct to 10 Jan
Where: Victoria & Albert Museum, London UK
Details: Click here

What: Lecture | Xtreme Embellishment
Where: The Art Institute of Chicago – 111 South Michigan Avenue
When: 20 Oct (1100 to 1200)
Details: Click here

What: Cape Embroiderers’ Guild Members’ Exhibition
Where: Nova Constantia, Klein Constantia Road,
Constantia Cape Town South Africa
When: 20 to 24 Oct
Details: Click here

Send us details about events, exhibitions and celebrations happening in your place of stitch and we’ll include them in Embroidery News. Contact us at

Happy Stitching
The Embroidery News Team

Welcome to ‘The Embroidery News’ published by Inspirations Studios Corporation. You are receiving this email because you signed up online, at a craft show, when you subscribed to our magazines, or when you purchased something from our online store. Subscribe to our mailing list to keep up to date with news and events. If you no longer wish to receive emails from us, we'll be sorry to see you go, but click here and we will remove your email address from this list. Thank you