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ISSUE 37  |  MARCH 25, 2016

Hi <<First Name>>,

Welcome to Embroidery News Issue 37.

In this our very special Easter Friday issue, we celebrate and give thanks with a gorgeous selection of Easter themed projects from around the world, and uncover more stunning needlework in ‘What Are You Stitching’.

Susan O’Connor fans are in for a real treat as we take you on a behind the scenes look at her magnificent project ‘Chatelaine’ from issue #89. Plus, we recently made another exciting ‘warehouse day’ discovery finding printed copies of Inspirations #55, which features Susan’s prequel project to the book Monograms - The Art of Embroidered Letters.

However you chose to celebrate Easter this year, we trust you can enjoy the company of family and friends, and that we can all take a moment to reassess our priorities, push aside the temporary and less significant things in our lives, and focus on that which is truly important.

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


We love that you are loving our newest segment ‘The Benefits of Needlework’. Each week we receive such positive feedback as to how much encouragement you are getting from reading each other’s inspiring stories, and sending in new stories to share.

This week Maureen Nassiri from California, USA shares some beautiful, heart felt insights as to how needlework has touched her life;

‘I have often thought about the joy of embroidery.

It connects me to my grandmother and my mother who were both fantastic women. Both worked long hours and had hard lives, but created beautiful work.

My mother said if you wanted something beautiful, you had to make it and both created many beautiful things over their lifetimes. I still have them.

I began embroidering young after watching mom. She never corrected me, but praised my progress from one pillowcase to the next. I still have them.

When I do my embroidery and pass it on to the family, it's really three sets of hands and three hearts doing it.

Life has a great need for love and beauty these days. It needs calm and peaceful souls.

For me, every time I'm tempted to forego doing something beautiful, I realize that peace, that calm, that loveliness will go missing both from me and from those around me.

Little Sophie, my ten-year-old granddaughter, watches me and now wants to do it herself. She's a natural and will create many beautiful things in her life.
Maureen Nassiri’

Thank you Maureen – so eloquently put, we can really feel your emotion and connection to your ancestry, and what gorgeous memories you have inherited which you can now pass onto the next generation.

If you have a story about the benefits of needlework you would like to share, email us at


Are you free on May 15th? Why not Escape with us?


From May 15th – 22nd come and embroider on a five-star luxury cruise down the Mekong with Inspirations. Once you’ve experienced this exotic destination you’ll be hooked, and will want to join the regulars who return each year.

Have you seen the amazing Easter sales for flights, cruises, hotels, holidays etc. etc.??

Contact Laura before March 31st for more information about the Mekong Masterclass and to find out what she can do to take advantage of these amazing Easter deals for you.


If you ever want to have a passionate conversation with Susan O’Connor, just ask her about the Elizabethan period. Or needlework. Or Inspirations. Or Monogramming. Ok… she’s passionate about a lot of things, but this week we’re focusing on her passion for Elizabethan flowers as we take a look at her project ‘Chatelaine’ from issue #89.

‘Chatelaine’ by Susan O’Connor – Issue #89

It’s just as well Susan included this project as how could an Inspirations issue called ‘Fabulous Flowers’ be complete without featuring an Elizabethan rose? Lucky for us, Susan included two, a red Tudor Rose and the pink Eglantine Rose, commonly known as the Briar Rose.

When we asked Susan for the back story behind her design, she ended up telling us all about the back story behind England itself! You see Susan first created ‘Chatelaine’ in pink to reflect her love for the eglantine rose which she explains is the quintessential English rose. It is also unique in the fact the shading of the petals are light in the middle and darker on the edges, which is the complete opposite to a standard rose petal. This attention to detail is captured beautifully in ‘Chatelaine’ which Susan shaded using Au ver á soie stranded silk.

After Susan stitched the pink version, she realised the design would look equally as striking as a Tudor rose and created a second one. There are several portraits of Elizabeth 1 that feature both eglantine and the Tudor rose.  She went on to explain to us the significance of the Tudor rose in that it was used to signify the union of the houses of Lancaster and York at end of the War of the Roses in 1487 and remains the floral symbol of England to this day... Furthermore, Susan loves the fact that the Elizabethan period symbolises the shift in English sensibilities from flowers being used only for medicinal or nourishment purposes, to an awakening of their beauty and growing them purely for pleasure, which led to gardening for leisure as we know it today.

So there you have it – the complete story behind the exquisite project Chatelaine depicting both the eglantine and Tudor roses for your stitching pleasure. Whichever version you choose to stitch, you can now also enjoy researching more of the history behind these roses of historical significance.


Here are 5 ways you can enjoy more of Susan O’Connor’s work:

1/. – Purchase a copy of Inspirations issue #89

Inspirations Issue #89 Includes ‘Chatelaine’ by Susan O’Connor as well as the following projects:
Love Letters
Still Life With Flowers Windflowers
Les Hirondelles
Flowers Of The Sea
Curtain Call

Click HERE to order.

2/. – Purchase a ‘Chatelaine’ Pink or Red Inspirations Kit
Kits for Chatelaine have been so popular, we can’t keep them in stock. Both colours are currently on back order, and with limited numbers available you can pre-order your kit today to avoid disappointment. Each kits costs AU$115.60 when using the 15% subscriber discount.

Chatelaine i89 Kit - PINK
Pre-Order HERE

Chatelaine i89 Kit - RED
Pre-Order HERE

3/. – Register for a Susan O’Connor class at Beating Around The Bush 2016.

With her commitments as Inspirations Editor-In-Chief, Susan’s opportunities to teach are limited meaning BATB 2016 is one of the few opportunities you have to take a class with her. Places are still available, but they are selling quickly so why not register for Beating Around The Bush held in October later this year today, by clicking HERE.  

4/. – Purchase Susan’s book Monograms – The Art Of Embroidered Letters:

Now back in print after being unavailable for the past 4 years, you can enjoy a masterclass in Monogramming. Printed copies of her book Monograms are available for purchase via our website HERE.

Don’t forget Inspirations issue #89 also include the bonus ‘Monograms’ project ‘Curtain Call’ which for the first time includes the entire Rose Alphabet from the lavender sachets.

Kits for this project are also still available in limited quantities here.

5/. – Download one of Susan’s Digital Patterns

Susan’s needlework has and continues to be prolific. A small gallery of her stunning pieces are now available to purchase as an instant digital download. You can check out the gallery now by clicking HERE.


Les Hirondelles 
by Catherine Laurençon features dainty thread painted swallows.

Kit contains: fabrics, threads, needle.

by Susan Porter is a superb stumpwork study of Japanese windflowers.

Kit contains: fabrics, wire, ribbon, threads, needles.

Great value at only $67.15
(based on 15% subscriber discount)


Great value at only AU$46.75
(based on 15% subscriber discount)

Click here to order


Click here to order

To browse our complete range of kits, click here.


maps courtesy of and

Last week Louise Upson helped Claire plan her ‘Destination London Adventure’ by inspiring her with her own recommendations for all things needlework related while she was there. This week, Christine Hetherington joined in on the conversation in the hope that Claire, and anyone else, who may be planning their own ‘Destination Needlework Adventure’ to the embroidery section of the Victoria and Albert Museum can learn from her experience.

‘On my first visit I was shattered to find the section was closed. I had been looking forward to it for years, so please check that they are going to have the section open! Three years later I made it to London again, having emailed the museum to make sure it was going to be open. I got there as soon as the museum opened and spent five wonderful hours looking through drawers, pulling out things and generally having the most wonderful time. As I arrived so early, I was the only person there for the first two hours until another embroidery enthusiast arrived with her husband. He was soon sent packing and told to come back later – much later! I would suggest that you allow four hours minimum to look through this section of the museum as it is just wonderful.’

Christine also passed another piece of advice to Claire . . .

Ickworth House in Suffolk, England

‘Whilst visiting castles and stately homes throughout the UK, I found that by mentioning I was an embroiderer and asking to take a closer look at particular items, the answer was often a positive one. I was only refused once and found that it pays to be cheeky and ask!’

Again Claire, we look forward to sharing your ‘Destination London Adventure’ with the Embroidery News Community, so please make sure you email us at with the ‘must visit’ places you find along the way.

Featherwale Corduroy design by Robert Kaufman

Now back to Carol’s corduroy dilemma from Issue 35 of Embroidery News . . . you may recall that Carol was frustrated by the number of needles she was breaking and the large holes that were being made while she was trying to pleat featherwale corduroy. Carol was hoping to try her hand at pleating denim, but given her experiences with featherwale was too scared to try! Hopefully the following suggestions from the Embroidery News Community will not only solve Carol’s corduroy dilemma, but will also give her the confidence to try her hand at pleating denim.

Whilst not all fabric can be pleated using a pleater due to the weight and/or weave of the fabric, Merrilin Wilder suggests rubbing either soap or tailor’s chalk of the reverse of the fabric, as this can often help the material glide through the pleater.

Sharon from ‘Precious Heirlooms’ - an Etsy store that can be found here - suggests hand pleating. Sharon’s suggestion came from a time when she didn’t have a pleater, and although it is a lot more work, it will definitely save needles and a lot of frustration! If iron on dots are not available to mark your fabric prior to hand pleating, Sharon goes on to suggest using 14 count plastic canvas to ensure the holes will be evenly spaced. Simply line up the edge of the plastic canvas with the edge of the fabric, skip a couple of rows and then start marking your pleating rows with a marking pen or fabric pencil using every other hole of the canvas.

Velia Antila tried her hand at needlework on heavy denim fabric and found that, like Carol, she too was breaking needles when trying to stitch through two layers of fabric. Velia’s solution was to use a curved needle which worked like magic when the idea finally dawned on her!

Carol, we do hope these suggestions have helped with your corduroy dilemma and we look forward to sharing your successes with the Embroidery News Community when you try your hand at pleating denim!

Now to our next conversation starter . . .

‘Polish Wycinanki Flowers’ from

Mary Snell would love to hear from anyone in the Embroidery News Community who can recommend anything needlework related that will make her upcoming trip to Poland in May a true ‘Destination Needlework Adventure’! Mary will be travelling through Krakow, Warsaw, Gdanask and the Mazovia Region whilst in Poland and would appreciate any information we can pass on to her.

If you have anything to add to Mary’s conversation, please email us at, we’d love to hear from you!

Have you asked a question that hasn’t yet appeared in Embroidery News? Rest assured that we haven’t forgotten you, we’ve just been so overwhelmed by the number of questions our Embroidery News Community have posed, we’ve had to start a file so we can get through them all in the coming weeks, so make sure you keep reading Embroidery News and fingers crossed the issue that poses your question won’t be too far away!


Did you know that when Susan O’Connor’s book Monograms was first released in 2007. To commemorate the occasion Inspirations issue 55 featured Susan’s monogram project called ‘A Fine Tradition’ which was never included in the book itself.

In another exciting discovery from our recent ‘Warehouse Day’, printed copies of issue #55 featuring this project and many more are still available.

Printed Copies of issue #55 are now available for purchase. Projects in this issue include:
Charming Mountmellick doily; Stunning silk ribbon embroidered bag; Perfectly stitched monogrammed cushion; Truly feminine sewing bag; Irresistible baby blanket with plush felt animals; Ideal introduction to goldwork; Delicate tambour stitch sachet; Quick and easy embellishment for cardigans; Exquisite beaded poppy

Click HERE to order your printed copy of Inspirations Issue #55 today.

Beautiful Needlework. Sold Here.


Our wonderful needlework community has provided us with just the right mix of projects this week to give everyone a little something this Easter.

Peggy Kimble is our 92-year-old embroidery super star and regular contributor to Embroidery News from Canada. We have featured her work in EN 17 and 30, but this week she has completely razzle and dazzled us like never before with what she has sent in.

Peggy gets us started on our Easter journey with these sensational decorative Easter eggs and more:

‘Dear Embroidery News, thank you for including my project in EN #30, and giving me such an exalted title of ‘Super Star’!  Not deserved, lest my head get too big for my bonnet.

This time I’m sending you an Easter wish from Canada and including some photos of my recent work including Temari eggs. I hope the photos come through ok as for the most part I am computer illiterate, and making matters even more complicated I have just bought an iPad and this morning a friend has been trying to educate me, showing me all that this small piece of equipment does -  I think I am even more confused than before!

Now back to the eggs… I have made different size ones, some are small (2 1/2" 3" in size) others like the ones with the chicks looking over them are larger being 4 inches long and with a 7 inch girth.  All the Temari eggs are my own design and my own work. The chicks are from a pattern in Stitch magazine.

Please forgive my lack of knowledge of both electronics and photography - I have come to this at an advanced age and my mind does not seem to be capable of taking in all that these miracle machines can accomplish with the touch of a finger!  I only take a picture usually to record what I have made. This selection of Temari fruit including an orange, apple and pear with stump work leaves actually started out when I tried to make a Temari egg but it all went pear shaped, literally, so the Temari Fruit were born!

These buttons are 5/8" diameter and I make them by cutting small Styrofoam balls in half, then covering them with thread and finishing them off with embroidery. All these are my own idea and designs and I make loops on the backs with thread and needle. 

This is some of my various Temari which is an extension of Yubinuki. I hope you enjoy my work, Happy Easter, and thank you. Peggy.’

Peggy it’s astonishing how much needlework you are creating and it’s all so contemporary and cutting edge. The style of your designs and use of colour is so youthful and current, if we didn’t know you were 92, judging by your work we would have guessed you were 22! We just adore you and your projects, thank you for not being afraid to learn technology so you can be part of our community online, and thank you for giving us such bright and fun decorative eggs for us to enjoy this Easter.

Next up we have an egg whose Easter might not go according to plan if he falls off that wall…

‘Dear all at Inspirations, I would like to thank you for producing such a wonderful magazine. I just love it and as I am a student of the Royal School of Needlework, I find the different projects inspiring and the information about them very useful. The piece of work I would like to share with you is my Humpty Dumpty meets Alice in Wonderland appliqué. The design for the piece was taken from an original illustration from Alice Through the Looking Glass written by Lewis Carroll and illustrated by John Tenniel. The appliqué was not a straight copy of the illustration as I have included the White Rabbit, the Cheshire Cat, the falling cards and other small details not on the original illustration. The project was done in appliqué, the first technique that students work on when they study at the level of diploma. The RSN has also honoured me by producing greeting cards of the piece.
Best Wishes, Mary Laidlaw.’

That’s wonderful Mary, such a clever idea to combine two fairy tale favourites into one design. Let’s hope Alice and the White Rabbit have better luck saving Humpty than the all the kings horses and all the kings men did! Congratulations on having your design published as a greeting card, please let us know when they are released and where we can buy them.

The Royal School Of Needlework is another much valued supporter of Inspirations and you can read all about the wonderful work they do for the needlework community in a special feature article ‘Here For The Future’ in Inspirations issue #89. Also be sure to check out all their terrific 2016 courses at their website

Ok so now we have our Easter eggs, we just need someone to deliver them for us. Enter… Easter Bunny:

‘Hello, I have just finished a rabbit in my style of steampunk crazy quilting. My name is Kathleen Klein from Michigan, USA. The tree by the rabbit is made up of various yarns couched down with silk thread, and it has been fun to incorporate silk ribbon embroidery and Brazilian embroidery with the metal work.’

Thank you Kathleen – regular readers of Embroidery News will recognise Kathleen as a frequent contributor with her amazingly creative and intricate steampunk crazy quilting projects she continues to impress us with. We must say, Easter Bunny has never looked so artistic, it’s great!

For those who prefer a more traditional Easter Bunny, that’s ok we’ve got you covered. Rose Nordenberg from Grand Junction, Colorado, USA has sent in this ‘so fluffy I could die’ bunny masterfully stitched, along with some other delightful projects to share:

‘I had a career as a photographic artist, doing negative retouching, airbrushing problem photos and restoring and printing the old fashion photographs. When I semi-retired and my profession became obsolete (because of the computer) I fell back into what I enjoyed; starting with painting.

I always enjoyed embroidery but started doing needlepoint in wool because I could get the supplies easier. I used my art as a pattern with the pillows pictured below.

The Columbine (Colorado State Flower) was done in embroidery with cotton thread. I call this method “thread painting”. Then I found your magazine on Mary Corbet’s website ( and I was hooked (or needled!). 

Seeing the Christmas Bouquet in issue 88 I knew I had to make it, but first had to learn stumpwork, so I purchased Celeste Cahalasanis’s video and finished the poppy with cotton thread.

I just finished my Christmas Bouquet with the silk thread and I love it. I am joining the Desert West Chapter of the Embroiderers’ Guild of America to keep learning more. Thank you for your “Inspirations” and keep them coming.
Rose Nordenberg

Rose your story is just so wonderful for us to hear – it makes all the long, tiring hours of putting Inspiration together worth it when we see the positive impact it has. Your projects are really amazing, we just loved them, and your version of Christmas Bouquet is brilliant – you have conquered the art of Stumpwork beautifully and we look forward to seeing many more of your projects in future issues of EN.

Now that we have our eggs and Easter Bunny is ready to go, our last stop on our Easter journey is fittingly, Church where the real meaning of Easter is found. When Jesus walked the earth and died on the cross for our sins, and rose again on the third day, the world was changed forever (John 3:16). Millions of people all over the world will celebrate the death and resurrection of Jesus this weekend at their local church – but we doubt any of them will be as beautifully decorated as the church Sainte Anne in France thanks to Jacqueline Blandot

‘I live in the north-East of France, in the area which is known as "Pays des 3 Frontières" (Three borders country), my small village is just close to Thionville, which is between Luxembourg (town) and Metz. I just finished this altar cloth (pictured above and below) for one of the parishes where I usually play the organ. It took me 2 years, it is embroidered on fine white linen, with jours d'Angles (cutwork from Angles sur l'Anglin in France). Everything is embroidered on a cleared network, you have first to cut and take off the threads, and once it is cut, you cannot do anything if you cut it wrong. The edge is not lace, it is embroidery too, finished with a feston stitch made on 3 threads, each stitch made one thread further.  

I play the organ in 3 churches, and now the 2 others have complained : Why did you embroidered such a beautiful piece for Sainte Anne and not for St Michel ?? or for NotreDame??? So, I am currently embroidering another one for St Michel : I chose Point de Beauvais and light ecru on white linen.

It will take some 2 or 3 weeks before it is finished. I hope the sacristy ladies will appreciate it. The third church will have something either in Schwalm embroidery, or in Punto antico, I still cannot make up my mind.
Best regards Jacqueline.’

Jacqueline your needlework is just stunning and your finish is immaculate – congratulations on creating this incredible piece in such a challenging technique, on what is a rather large scale project. Moreover, now you have three of them to make! Thank you for sharing this with us just in time for Easter, we look forward to seeing photos of the other two altar clothes when then are finished.

What Are YOU Stitching?  We’d love to see it… send your photos, a description of the project and a little about yourself including where you live, to



Don’t forget when ordering any Inspirations Kits to use the promo code on your Fly Sheet at checkout to receive an instant 15% off.

If you are an Inspirations subscriber but don’t have the promo code, that’s easy fixed… just email us at and we’ll send you one.


Inspirations is the world’s most beautiful needlework magazine. We bring all the beautiful needlework projects from all over the world together for your viewing pleasure 4 times a year.

So if we bring the beautiful, all you need to do is subscribe and we’ll deliver it right to your door anywhere in the world.

If you have never subscribed, we’d love to have you join us. 

For those who don’t have a current subscription – we’d love to have you back.

Either way we’d really appreciate your support.

Beautiful is waiting … subscribe today.

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’.

CALL US | If you are not sure what option is best for you, have some questions 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 and 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


Digital Patterns Recently Added:

‘Tiny Treasures’
by Betsy Morgan

Exquisite cross stitch etui and sewing accessories.

‘Elizabethan Botanicals’
by Susan O’Connor

Pair of threadpainted stumpwork masterpieces.

Click here to purchase


Click here to purchase

Magazines Recently Added:

Printed Copies of issue #61 are now available for purchase.
Projects in this issue include:
A lavishly embroidered little bear; An amazing stumpwork picture; A fascinating embroidery étui; An elegant embroidery accessory; Charming linen placemats; A dainty potpourri pillow; A superb whitework cushion and 2 simple 'pocket projects' to make in a night.

Click HERE to purchase

Printed Copies of issue #70 are now available for purchase.
Projects in this issue include:
Crewel embroidered needlebook; Baby accessory roll with thread painted bunnies; Silk ribbon floral Sampler; Stumpwork daisies with a traditional rhyme; Footstool embroidered with Jacobean motifs; Mountmellick cushion cover; Ayreshire inspired quilted cushion; Shadow work butterfly curtain; Tray cloth embellished with birds and blossoms.

Click HERE to purchase


Amazing detail


Silk shading


By Helga Wolter


" On Easter Day the veil between time
and eternity thins to gossamer.
~ Douglas Horton ~


What: Slipstitch
Where: Latrobe Regional Gallery, Victoria Australia
When: to 17 Apr
Details: Click here

What: A Stitch in Time – Home Sewing Before 1900
Where: Victoria and Albert Museum | London
When: to 1 May
Details: Click here

What: RSN | Peacocks and Pomegranates Exhibition
Where: Hampton Court Palace
When : to 22 Jul
Details: Click here

What: Pulled Thread Strawberries
Where: Pacific Northwest Needle Arts Guild | Seattle
When: 26 Mar
Details: Click here

What: Muchas Manos Workshop | Beaded Lotus Flower Pincushion
When: 2 Apr
Where: San Diego, California
Details: Click here

What: The Embroiderer’s Guild of Victoria | Threads of Asia Exhibition
When: 16 Apr to 1 May
Where: Embroidery House | 170 Wattletree Road Malvern, Victoria
Details: Click here

What: The Textile Society at The Art Institute of Chicago | Annual Meeting
When: 19 Apr
Where: Fortnightly of Chicago | 120 E Bellevue Place Chicago
Details: Registrations at

What: Celebration of Needlework Show
Where: Nashua Courtyard Marriott Hotel | Nashua, New Hampshire
When: 27 Apr to 1 May
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