Saturday, April 19, 2014

Happy Easter

It's a good thing Easter is later this year, or the kids would be hunting for their Easter baskets in the snow.  Easter is a sure sign of Spring, and with the beginning of Spring so is our hope for new life; a new beginning.  Spring brings colour back into our lives, with a brighter sun the buds sprout on the trees, the grass is green once again, and the flowers are a bloom.  Have a happy Easter and enjoy every glorious sign that Spring is finally here.

 Here is a small token gift to welcome Spring and celebrate Easter.  Click here to download the bunny's symbol chart.  Choose some threads from your stash.  Have fun with it and choose fresh colours to symbolize Spring.


I have been stitching and collecting Easter ornaments for many many years, and this year some of them are hanging on the NEW metal tree we are carrying in the shop.  The tree can be decorated with ornaments and tokens for every season or holiday.

Happy Easter

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Blue Orchids for Mom

 For the last few weeks, I have been struggling and wondering how today will play out.  Today is my Mom's birthday; she would have been 73 years old.  I miss her everyday and today is her first birthday without her.
I was wondering what we would  do to celebrate this day if she were still here to share it with us.  She, like most moms, would always say "I need nothing", so we generally spent the day together and in the past few years I would bring a tropical house plant or something for the garden.
So this year, I purchased this orchid in her honour.  Blue was her favourite colour, and it now sits in my bay window towering over my other orchids, just like my mother towered over us.  She was larger than life, caring and watching over everyone she knew.  She was always honest in speaking her mind, yet never made you feel small.
Later today we plan to go for a family walk through Allan Gardens and enjoy a nice dinner out.  My sister posted a poem on facebook, that holds so true for me each and every day, so I wanted to share it with you.

Our lives go on without you
But nothing is the same
We have to hide our heartache
When someone speaks your name
Sad are the hearts that love you
Silent are the tears that fall
Living here without you
is the hardest part of all
You did so many things for us
Your heart was kind and true
And when we needed someone
We could always count on you
The special years will not return
When we are all together
But with the love in our hearts
You walk with us forever.
                                                          Author unknown

Happy Birthday Mom, I love you !!

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Designer of the Month: Freda Murfin

Upon my return from Germany, Freda's parcel with her models
was waiting for me in the shop.  I liked each and every one of her models that I unpacked.

When I had first contacted Canadian designers over a year ago, to see if they would be interested in participating in our "Designer of the Month",  I had only seen Freda's designs on her website.  But as always the stitched piece is more impressive than the photo, and this is true of Freda's designs as well.

Freda lives in Calgary, Alberta, so unfortunately she will be unable to visit the shop during her month of April.  Freda has stitched all her life and like me her first love is petit point.  She started designing for her local stitching shop and has only started reaching beyond her local market a few years ago.  Thank goodness for the rest of us, that she did.




Click here and visit our designer page for Freda's Fancy designs;  to see and purchase her patterns.  For the month of April 2014 all of Freda's designs will receive a 10% discount.  With every purchase of her designs you will also receive a copy of her free design for our Designer of Month Collaboration Sampler.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Another Month with the Victoria Sampler

It's been a crazy few weeks, and as well as not finding the time to blog
I had also forgotten that I was to be the "Designer of the Month" for March.  Oh my !!
Needless to say, the models for the Victoria Sampler will remain on display this month, and if you have not yet collected her free pattern you still can.

Tonight, I am heading to a trade show in Germany.  I'm looking forward to seeing all that is new.  It should make for an exciting few days.  I will try to tweet daily, follow me on Twitter @GittasShop.

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Designer of the Month: Thea Dueck

This month we actually have 3 for 1.

Thea first began designing and self publishing her cross stitch patterns under Lampost Designs in the late 1980's and later in the early 1990's she further exhibited her talents by designing and self publishing samplers under The Victoria Sampler.  Today she also features other designers under her label, The Victoria Sampler.
Thea lives in British Columbia, but teaches and sells her designs around the world.  She loves working with silk and her samplers are truely heirloom pieces.  Many stitch her samplers for special occassions such as weddings, anniversaries, friendship, birthdays and other remembrances.
Each of her samplers is a pleasure to stitch with a combination of different techniques and specialty stitches.  Thea's teachings and excellent step by step instructions also add to her popularity with today's stitchers.  Pictured is her sampler, Love is Patient.  It has long been one of my favourite, and although it is a Wedding Sampler I want to stitch is as a Remembrance of my Mother.


Cathy Jean's adorable country folk art designs are very different from Thea's.
Her Button Up Birdies series have been extremely popular in the shop.  She has unique finishing suggestions that incorporate  homemade country flair.   But framed they will  add some whimsy to every decor.



Linda Rosser is the newest designer to join
The Victoria Sampler family.  Linda owned her own Needlework in Florida, and today is a budding new designer.  Her pretty exquisite designs, from her Ort Bag to her Biscornu ornaments, bring a new dimension to The Victoria Sampler.

So please drop by the shop this month and view the wonderful selection of models we have on display from these 3 talented designers.

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Blackwork - Valentine Celtic Heart

Blackwork has changed a bit over the years, but the concepts and techniques have not.  Blackwork dates back to the Moorish influences in Spain and was later brought to England in the 1500's by Katharine of Aragon, Henry VIII's Spanish wife.

The Elizabethans would decorate their clothing with elaborate and beautiful floral designs.  Worked with black silk on white linen, the strong outlines would be filled with lacy stitches.  Today Blackwork refers solely to the technique, as we incorporate other threads and colours, and I love the effect of variegated threads.

But the technique is still the same, and the stitches unchanged.  Some popular stitches for Blackwork are double running (holbein) stitch, backstitch and stem stitch (for outlines).  What makes blackwork so intriguing to me is that it can be (but not always) reversible with a pattern on the front and on the back.

Carol Storie, the designer we are exhibiting this month at the shop, has a few wonderful Blackwork designs.

 This is her Blackwork Medley, and it features some wonderful Blackwork patterns that can be applied to other designs.  With Blackwork, the openness or density of the repeating filling stitches creates different shades.

Carol's designs will remain on display until Saturday. I will be putting up our "Designer of the Month" for February on Monday.

To commemorate Blackwork and Carol's designs, I have designed a Blackwork Celtic Heart as a Valentine's gift to you.  I also wanted to share one of Carol's Blackwork tips with all of you.  As not all Blackwork patterns show the stitch path to ensure it is reversible you yourself must plan the path.  Carol suggests to highlight every second stitch to make the path more visible.

Click here for the Blackwork Celtic Heart chart



Friday, January 10, 2014

Designer of the Month: Carol Storie

Carol Storie publishes her designs under Heartfelt Designs.  She has been designing for over 25 years and has sent us a wonderful selection to display at Gitta's for the month of January.

Carol designs and teaches all kinds of needleart techniques - hardanger, canvas work, blackwork, pulled thread, cross stitch and embroidery.  One of my favourite is her inspirational design "Wind beneath your wings.  I love her colour choices, layout and finishing.

She creates designs in many techniques of counted thread including hardanger, canvas work, pulled thread, and cross stitch, incorporating specialty threads and a wide variety of stitches. - See more at: http://heartfelt-designs.com/?page_id=2#sthash.EDjLgCIi.dpuf
Carol Storie is the owner of Heartfelt Designs, and has been stitching for over 25 years.  She creates designs in many techniques of counted thread including hardanger, canvas work, pulled thread, and cross stitch, incorporating specialty threads and a wide variety of stitches. - See more at: http://heartfelt-designs.com/?page_id=2#sthash.EDjLgCIi.dpuf
Unfortunately Carol will be unable to drop by the shop so I will teach a beginner Blackwork workshop at the end of the month using one of her designs.



While in the shop don't forget to pick up Carol's free pattern  for the "Designer of the Month" Collaboration Sampler.  If incorporates several stitching techniques, canvas work, cross stitch and blackwork.  The wings were fun to stitch.

Unable to visit Gitta's?  Then please visit her designer page on our website and order your favourite.  With every on-line order of Carol's designs we will also include her free pattern.



Carol Storie is the owner of Heartfelt Designs, and has been stitching for over 25 years.  She creates designs in many techniques of counted thread including hardanger, canvas work, pulled thread, and cross stitch, incorporating specialty threads and a wide variety of stitches. - See more at: http://heartfelt-designs.com/?page_id=2#sthash.EDjLgCIi.dpuf
Carol Storie is the owner of Heartfelt Designs, and has been stitching for over 25 years.  She creates designs in many techniques of counted thread including hardanger, canvas work, pulled thread, and cross stitch, incorporating specialty threads and a wide variety of stitches. - See more at: http://heartfelt-designs.com/?page_id=2#sthash.EDjLgCIi.dpuf