Monday, December 19, 2011

'Tis the Season

Christmas is one of the most wonderful and hectic times of the year.  Every year we push ourselves to make Christmas magical for our family and friends.  Loving this time of year, and wanting to make everyones Christmas perfect, I find it hard to say no to any stitcher bringing in their stitched pieces for finishing.  This year I received a record number of pillows, Christmas stockings, ornaments, bell pulls and a box top to finish for Christmas.    One of the bell pulls I finished is the one shown on the left in the photo.  The one on the right is our shop model.   We had stitched our model 1 over 1 on a 28ct linen banding.  We stitched it over one, so all 13 flowers could be included without the bell pull being too long.  If all 13 designs would have been stitched over 2 the bell pull would be over 8 feet long; too long for most homes.                                                                            I was so taken with the bell pull, stitched 2 over 2, that I just had to share it with all of you.  It arrived in the shop just a few days after I had told another stitcher that she didn't have to stitch all of the flowers for her bell pull to look just as beautiful.  These designs are all in Gitta's leaflet G-236, it includes all 13 provincial and territorial flowers.  The leaflet was named Wild Flowers, as many of these flowers are also State flowers.
Tonight I am just 3 stockings away from having everything done;  I have been sewing steady since the Christmas Open House.  With all of these finishing  projects I have had very little time to decorate at home.  But when I came home on Saturday I had a wonderful surprise.  My kids had decorated the kitchen bay window  with my Christmas village, and my husband strung Christmas lights on our apple tree in the backyard. 

 What a wonderfull Christmas gift.  
I love sitting at the table and looking at my lighted village window. 
Isn't Christmas magical.  Wishing you all some magic over the holiday.

Merry Christmas

Friday, December 9, 2011

Christmas Open House

From right to left are Margaret, Gitta, Ietje, Mary, Monika, and myself.
Gitta's annual Christmas Open House is an "all hands on deck" kind of event.  It is the busiest Saturday of the year at the shop, with stitchers both locally and further away dropping in for some Christmas cheer, goodies, and shop specials.  The Open House is our opportunity to say "Thank you" to all our customers.

In preparation for the Open House, the shop is decorated, with a touch of Christmas throughout the store.  In the shop window, the stockings are hung by the chimney with care, and the Christmas tree is decorated with stitched ornaments of Christmas' past.

The front counter is decorated with ornaments of Christmas present.  Every year there are great ornaments to be found in magazines, the Mill Hill collection, which we stitch them on fabric rather than perforated paper, and there aren't many that we can resist.   We stitch as many as we can, with Mary stitching the most, and I then try to finish them into ornaments in time for the open house.
At the back of the shop was our goody table with lots of munchies.  Back by popular demand from last year's favourites were my dad's hummus, and my sister's guacamole.  There was also a selection of "can't resist" crackers, a spinach dip and Christmas squares and cookies.
To make this year's Christmas even more special I designed my own Christmas ornament.   We then prepared  kits that included the fabric, threads and charm.  The kit, a few other Christmas Freebee charts, and a chocolate completed our Christmas gift to everyone that came to the Open House.   As not everyone was able to drop by for whatever reason, I would still like to make this chart available to all of you.  Click here for a small Christmas gift from one stitcher to another.  Merry Christmas.

At the Open House we also revealed a  Christams themed 15 sided Biscornu.  This biscornu is designed by a local designer, Sam Calderone of Snow Dragon Designs.  She will release it in April 2012, by making it her gift to all those retreaters attending  Gitta's Getaway.

Many more photos were taken to remember the day, and if you would like to view the entire album here is the link to my facebook page.  Enjoy!!