Sunday, December 30, 2012

A New Beginning

Simply put, this is my wish for the New Year. The outgoing one was riddled with far too much violence and soul-crushing sadness. May we all come together with a renewed spirit of Hope, Love and Peace.

Happy New Year,

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Where does the time go?

Little Sophie is a year old already! Seems like not that long ago she was a tiny preemie in the hospital, those big, dark eyes studying all the large humans who came to see and love her, including Daddy, here feeding her.

She's grown into one of the happiest babies I've ever known, and practically walking now. Nana will be on her way to help you celebrate your first birthday this weekend!

I hope your Christmases were merry and bright. Best wishes for a safe, healthy and Happy New Year to you all!

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Thank You!

Just a little note to say Thank You! for your Thanksgiving weekend and Cyber Monday orders! People got some great deals. I'm working to get them all shipped out as quickly as I can.

Thanks again!

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Cyber Monday

Tomorrow is the biggest online sales day of the year - Cyber Monday. The third and final day in a trifecta of holiday selling events that start the day after Thanksgiving.

In addition to the 23% discount I've offered since Friday, selected cross-stitch, needlepunch and doll patterns have been reduced even before the discount. I'll be phasing out these patterns beginning now and through 2013. Get a stash-building free overdyed floss when you purchase any cross-stitch or needlepunch pattern. It's time for a major down-sizing!

Happy Cyber Monday shopping, wherever you shop. There are a lot of great sales going on.

Friday, November 23, 2012

Thanksgiving Weekend

Hope you had a bountiful and family-filled Thanksgiving like we did! The house is quiet once again. It was wonderful to have my granddaughter, Sophie, here for a couple of days, even though she was a little fussy due to a cold. She'll be one next month! It doesn't seem that long ago that I was blogging about her being born and how tiny this little preemie was with those big, black eyes that studied everyone. How the time does fly!

And now we're officially in Holiday 2012 shopping season! It all begins with the crazy, zany Black Friday, then Small Business Saturday, leading up to Cyber Monday, the biggest online sales day of the year. I'm jumping into the fray by offering a 23% discount on your entire order through midnight on Monday, Nov. 26th. Enter the coupon code BLACK in the Discount Coupon box at check-out.

Shipping for all orders has been set at a standard $4.95 USPS Priority Flat Rate, except for orders of $50 and over which will continue to receive free shipping, and excepting international orders. Those will require additional shipping costs.

Come visit my What's New page for more details. Happy Shopping!

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Life Imitating Art

Can you guess what this is before you click on the picture to get a closer look? Does it resemble anything familiar? Maybe you have something similar in your craft room? It's actually folded and stacked wool, stacked high up two adjoining walls at the Albany International Airport as art! I've often thought of the beautiful colors and textures of wool as something wonderful to look at, and someone actually put it on public display. Art is inspiring, isn't it? Now I want to dive into my own wool stash and create!

Have an artsy kind of day!

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Through the Garden Gate

Wow - looks like I took the summer off, huh? Not really, and quite the opposite - I got a new full-time job that's been keeping me out of trouble. Delivering the mail was challenging and fun, but I knew it wasn't going to be for me. A job more suited to my career skills came along and well, off I went. However, I've still been receiving new goods and finally getting a few minutes to try and promote them.

Garden Gate Threads is Need'l Love's newest. Pretty in pink, wouldn't you say? There's a Maggie B. hooked rug design in this book, worth the book's cost alone. Very sweet projects including fiber art jewelry. Definitely one for the Threads collector.

Several new magazines have arrived over the past several weeks - The Wool Street Journal, Primitive Quilts and Projects and a new issue of FOLK called "the vintage issue". It's a good one. Need something new to read? I've got it!

Just a quick post, must run, miles to go before I sleep. Enjoy your week!

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Back again

Back in stock, but only a handful. It's been tough to try and "guesstimate" how many of these to keep on hand because they keep selling out! If you missed out before, get it while it's hot! I have on my to do list the task of kitting up some of the projects in the book but just starting a new full-time job after being out of work for 17 months has me a bit tuckered out! And I need to update my web site with new things too. As usual, too much to do and not enough hours in the day, but I'll eventually get there.

Keep cool!

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Crazy for Wool

Does that describe you? If so, you might just go crazy for a new series of wool applique designs from Buttermilk Basin called My Wool Crazy Year. Shown is the July design. All of them have a "crazy" wool background, reminiscent of crazy quilting. All have a unique shape, and all are ready to make a dent in your wool stash. The patterns sell for $9.00. I hope to be able to make up kits for most of them in the near future.

The lawn is calling my name - it's been much too hot and humid for many days to be outside doing anything in the yard, but now that all the "ick" is cleared out I can once again be outdoors, yay! After the front gets done I'll reward myself with a tall iced coffee on the porch, my very favorite thing. I hope you reward yourself with a special treat today too!

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

No Surprise

It happened. Even before Maggie Bonanomi's new book, A Day at Sunny Brook actually arrived, all my copies were sold and then some. I tried to order more than what I had pre-orders for, but in the days just before the books arrived, when it was known that the publisher had begun shipping them, I got a bunch of additional pre-orders, which ate up any extra inventory that I had planned to have generally available. Unfortunately for about eight customers, the books are now on back-order, but more have been ordered from the publisher and will be here perhaps by the end of the week. If you're one of these folks, you'll be receiving an email from me today with more info. It also didn't help that I was away for most of last week and couldn't shut off ordering in time to avoid those back-orders.

It's too hot and muggy to sit up here in this room anymore! The little fan just isn't cutting the mustard and I'll have to retreat into the bedroom, the only room with a window air conditioner. What a waste of a day not being able to work outside in the garden! The weeds are winning but I just can't deal with the humidity! Couldn't even sit out on the porch and enjoy my afternoon iced coffee, something I look forward to on days when I'm home. Phooey! I hope you're managing to stay reasonably cool where you live - I know most of the country is roasting, not just me!

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Maggie's Newest is Here!

Just arrived this afternoon! Maggie B.'s newest book, which people have been chomping at the bit for, is in the building! But not for long - pre-orders will begin winging their way to you on Friday. Speaking of pre-orders, obviously since I now have the books the pre-order offer has expired. Normal shipping charges will be incurred with new orders. Thanks again to all who pre-ordered! Getting free shipping is like getting almost 20% off your order. I'll get as many packages out tomorrow as I can before we make our way to Bridgton, Maine, to set up our tables for the Chickadee Quilters annual show beginning on Saturday (see post below for all the info if you're looking for some fun this weekend). Another batch will be prepared Friday night and shipped Saturday morning. Hopefully I'll finish up all pre-orders in Monday's shipments. With almost 5 dozen reserved copies, the paperwork and packing takes some time! Orders will be processed by date received, so please have patience as I work my way down the list. I know it's hard to wait, but it's just not humanly possible to ship them all at once, especially by myself, so I really appreciate it!

I'll have a couple of unspoken-for copies of A Day at Sunny Brook with me at this weekend's quilt show if you haven't pre-ordered but "need" to have it for your Maggie collection. Admit it - you've got one!

It'll be a late night for me tonight. Time to get back to work...

On the Road Again

Getting packed up to vend at a weekend quilt show! The Chickadee Quilters of Bridgton, Maine are having their annual July quilt show this weekend, Sat. & Sun., July 14 & 15 at the Stevens Brook Elementary School, off Rt. 302, Bridgton, ME. See over 150 beautiful quilts, displays, demonstrations and shop the vendors too. Food is also available. Hours are 10am-4pm both days, admission is $5.00. If you're in the area, come on out and say Hello!

Monday, July 9, 2012

A Happy Ending!

Word has been circulating that the aforementioned rugs that were stolen from a church where Norma Batastini was holding a workshop have been found! Apparently a man walking his dog discovered the rugs in a plastic bag, undamaged, along the side of a bike trail. He attends the church where the workshop was held and had seen the flyers about the stolen rugs.

I like to think that all the publicity within the rug hooking world about the theft caused the thief or thieves to reconsider what they did and discard the rugs, knowing that they'd never be able to sell them without getting caught. Whatever the motivation, it's great news, and I'm so happy Norma has her beautiful rugs back in her possession!

There's nothing quite like a happy ending, right?

Thursday, June 28, 2012

The Dark Side

There's a dark side to everything, I suppose, and that includes the world of rug hooking. We've been made aware of the brazen theft of two beautiful hooked rugs belonging to rug hooking teacher Norma Batastini. Below is her description of what happened and pictures of the two rugs that were stolen:

Last week I was teaching a workshop in Ohio for a small group in a local church. Two rugs were stolen from the church sometime after class on Tuesday and before class began Wednesday morning. The room was filled with wool, hooking equipment including frames and cutters, other rugs and a digital projector. None of those items were touched. Please forward this email on to your rug hooking guilds and groups. If you are a frequent follower of Ebay, Craigslist or any other internet site that sells things I would appreciate it if you would be on the lookout for the rugs. I am offering a reward for information leading to the return of the rugs.

Rug #1 is my Crocodile Mola design. It was featured in the November/December 2011 issue of Rug Hooking Magazine. It was exhibited at the ATHA Biennial exhibit in Lancaster, PA in October 2011 and at the Green Mountain Rug Hooking Guild exhibit at the Shelburne Museum in November 2011. The rug is 36 x 48.

Rug #2 is my Pumpkins and Leaves design. It was hooked by Linda Woodbury and has been exhibited at many local shows in New Jersey. The rug is 28 x 40.

If you see either of these rugs, in person or online offered for sale on Etsy, eBay or another venue, please contact Norma at g_batastini@msn.com or Linda Woodbury at linda.woodbury@yahoo.com.

Luckily these incidents are few and far between, but they hurt and make us angry. I hope the rugs are found quickly and are undamaged. Perhaps with all the publicity this has received, the person or persons who stole them will have a change of heart and return them. I'm sure Norma would be very happy just to have them back.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Waiting for Maggie

I've finally got a picture of Maggie Bonanomi's wonderful-looking upcoming book, A Day at Sunny Brook: Primitive Projects to Recall Home Life in the 1800s. Yep - looks like another keeper! Here's The Kansas City Star's description of what Maggie has in store for us in this new collection:

"This is a little tale about three sisters living in rural Lafayette County in the mid 1800s.

Inspired by the rich colors of a vintage quilt, an 1899 book of advice, and a favorite doll, Maggie Bonanomi brings you the world of Sunny Brook School for Girls. Explore and make the necessary items for every part of their lives: classroom study, sewing, exercise, rest, finer skills and sleep.

Maggie supplies the projects that will take the girls though their days! And what an abundance of projects: a sampler, mending baskets, a chatelaine, pincushions, a fireplace screen, pillows and more pillows, a throw, pinched purse, several hooked rugs, a bed cover, daily books, even a flower press. The golden hues of Sunny Brook School await you."

I'm offering my familiar pre-order deal on this book - free shipping of your order that includes this book when I get them in stock. They are expected in early July, per Kansas City Star. Pre-orders will be accepted until the books reach my door, so there's still time.

Need another tease? Click here to view some pages from inside the book.

Enjoy your day - and where did the month of June go anyway? Wow - I was shaking my head looking at the calendar this morning! July will be really busy too. I hope summer doesn't slip by under my nose...

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Shamelessly Showing Off

My angel-faced granddaughter, Sophie, almost six months old now. Her mom just took this picture and I can't help but share it everywhere! I saw her last weekend. Oh, the kisses she got. And there are many more to come!

Happy Flag Day!

Sunday, June 3, 2012

A Little Bird Told Me...

Say that again?
Maggie Bonanomi has another new book coming out?
What's it called again?
A Day at Sunny Brook: Primitive Projects to Recall Home Life in the 1800s?
(BTW, how did you remember all that, little bird?)

Yes, it's true! I've heard it from a number of other non-avian sources too. Kansas City Star will release a new Maggie book next month! The woman is a primitive project machine! Are you excited? Me, too! So, I've started taking pre-orders as I've done in the past. The book can be pre-ordered now, and as a Thank You for pre-ordering and helping me determine how many books to buy, you'll get free shipping when the books arrive and orders start flying to their new homes. It looks like the retail will be $25.95. (Sorry, but pre-orders for this new book are not eligible for the SUMMAH 30% discount that is winding up tonight.) I'll post a picture of the book cover as soon as one is available. Several folks have already pre-ordered sight unseen because they know anything from Maggie will be fabulous!

Isn't this a beautiful little bird? I found the picture online so don't know what kind it is. I love the colors. In the past week I've seen a mama Ruffed Grouse with a brood of babies crossing the road (in front of my mail truck) and my husband saw a Red-Winged Blackbird on his way home from work. I noticed a little orange salamander in my garden the other day. All the wildlife are out loving spring!

Enjoy the waning hours of your weekend. Hope yours wasn't as soggy as ours has been here in Maine. Wet, raw... Perfect for a little baking (banana bread is in the oven) or a nap, which is what my snoring husband chose!

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Summah's Almost Over!

Have you used your 30% SUMMAH discount yet? There's still time - orders placed through midnight Sunday, June 3rd using the SUMMAH discount code at check-out (not case-sensitive) will get a 30% discount off the entire order, sale items included! Already ordered but still want something? Use the code again if you like! Family and friends are welcome to use it too.

You've probably seen these cute mail trucks in your neighborhood. This is my new job these days, as a Rural Mail Carrier for the town of Freeport, Maine. Not full-time, just a fill-in, but it's helping "plug the dike" in these tricky economic times. This is traditionally a slow time for fiber art retailers, and it seems this year belts are tighter than ever. I've just started delivering the route this week and it's been a real learning experience, especially since my career has been in the information technology field lo these past 30 years! I'm up for the challenge though, and in lieu of finding something where I can use my career skills I'm working hard and trying to have fun too. So, Freeport residents, give me a wave if you see the truck coming! It might be me driving!

Enjoy the rest of your weekend. It's June already!

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Unofficial Start of "Summah"

The Memorial Day weekend is traditionally the unofficial start of summer, or "summah" as it's pronounced here in Maine! This picture is from Maine humorist Gary Crocker. I thought it fitting for today's post.

I decided to celebrate what for most folks is their favorite season with the biggest sale yet - 30% off your entire order when you enter the discount code "SUMMAH" at check-out. This is for new orders, back-orders do not apply. The code is not case-sensitive, I put it in all caps here to highlight the word. The code will be active through this Saturday, June 2nd. Feel free to share with family and friends, and it can be reused as well.

Hope your Memorial Day weekend was relaxing and fun. I hear planting was the most popular activity and we were no exception. Some veggies and herbs are in the ground and seeds started for more. A few perennials were added to our collection. Looking forward to an abundant summer with lots of flowers and good things to eat.

Enjoy your short work week!

Thursday, May 17, 2012

What's the Bzzzzz

I made this little bee skep pin some time ago and love wearing it. People comment on it all the time. It looks great worn on a spring green cotton sweater. Kits seemed like a fun idea, so I made up a bunch and they're available on my web site for $10. The kits include #6 wool strips (may vary from sample), piece of wool for pin backing, bit of dark brown wool roving to needlefelt the bee skep opening, pin back, piece of cardboard to give your pin some stability (optional), color picture, written instructions and little design on paper for you to trace on your preferred rug backing. Make your pin with the wool provided or dive into your own stash and color plan it your way. I'd love to see your finished pins!

The sun is shining after all the rain we've had the past few days. My mood is greatly improved! Let's see if I can get out there and do something in the yard. Enjoy your day!

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Last Call for Book Sale!

Last call to save 25% on those books you've had your eye on!
Need to round out your Maggie Bonanomi collection, for example?

There are dozens more to choose from - browse through all the Books categories to see if there's something you "need". Sale prices will be given on orders placed through midnight Wednesday, EST.


Friday, May 11, 2012

Happy Mother's Day

A quick post to wish all the Moms out there a wonderful Mother's Day! Do click on the picture to read this lovely sentiment from an 1890s book. Very sweet, and just reinforces the fact that there is no love like a mother's love.

I hope you spend the day wrapped in the warmth of your families.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Another Sale!

I'm still in "sale mode", so when I took a look at the many books in my inventory I thought it would be a great time to make room for what I know will be coming my way in a few months. ALL BOOKS are on sale for 25% off - stock up on titles you've been contemplating, or stock up for upcoming holiday gifts, or just gift yourself! No exclusions - get out your reading glasses and have at 'em! And remember, shipping is free on orders of $50 or more. As with other sales, I'll apply your discount when I process your credit card order, or refund your discount to your PayPal account if you pre-pay using that method.

Special Purchase:

Haven't checked out FOLK yet? It's a great new publication about the simple life, great American artisans and exploring our great country. Here's the scoop: after selling out of last year's Christmas issue I neglected to reduce the number of issues I purchase wholesale when interest in magazines typically falls off. So, my mistake will allow you to get the first issue of 2012 at a reduced price of $4.00. You may find a new "must have" read.

Have a great day!