Wish I could convey the fun my stitching buddies and I are having with this SAL. There was so much discussion, so many excited emails as we all decided which samplers to tackle. Our family members surely think we're insane as we debate the fine points of embroidery floss, needles, linen, magnifiers, etc., etc. Important stuff!
But you all understand, don't you?
FlyawayJil has already written in detail about our trip to Welcome Stitchery in Crystal Lake, Illinois, last weekend. There were four of us--Debjabo, Sue (who has not yet appeared here on the blog), FlyawayJil, and me. Our fifth buddy, Bets, stayed home as she was already fitted out with linen and threads.
We were hugely impressed with Welcome Stitchery and its staff, and highly recommend it for any stitchers in the Chicago or southern Wisconsin area. The shop does not appear to carry Scarlet Letter charts at this point, but perhaps we can change their minds... Looks like they carry just about everything else in the world. Look at this crazy amount of stock:
And that was just ONE ROOM.
So. After spending way too much money on linen, floss, needles, organizing paraphernalia, etc., I have organized, steadied myself, and begun. I'm using 32-count Colourscapes linen in Ale. Here are my first steps on Margret Lawrance:
Yes, I use a hoop. This is another of the endless details my friends and I debate. And yes, this is one ugly hoop, not at all worthy of dainty Margret Lawrance. I've tried hoopless and it just doesn't work--a hoop steadies and stabilizes the linen, and this seems to be what I need. Everyone's experience is different; we all have to find what works best for us, even if it's a violently turquoise plastic embroidery hoop.
My birthday is coming up and maybe someone will gift me with a vintage birdseye maple hoop with antique hand-forged brass hardware. Ah well, I won't hold my breath.
A belated happy birthday to you, Nicola. It's fun to stretch birthday celebrations out, and I hope you are still celebrating today.