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Thursday, May 26, 2011

Founders Day with Craft Booths

Hi all!  I am very content tonight.  I decided to take a vacation day tomorrow, so my weekend has already begun.  It won't be a sit-down-on-the-couch-and-stitch-all-day thing though; no, I have to prep the house for guests that may end up here for a BBQ on Saturday.  We are just hosting the cook-out in our back yard and it's not supposed to be a big affair.  However, I have a feeling that it would be terribly rude to deny the privilege of using the in-door facilities to the guests while they are here.  In other words, tomorrow is bird-cage cleaning day, including bathroom wipe-down, living-room vacuuming and maybe even window cleaning....  Exciting, huh!? 
Plus, I really should do some good weeding out in the yard too - the never ending rain is not making my magnolia trees any happier, but those weeds are living the high life right now!
Oh, and I have been yearning to make this wreath that I found a tutorial for a while back while I know that the vast majority of my indoor plans are yearning for a re-potting session....

I may sleep in tomorrow too.  I am a night-person and, even thought I keep telling myself to grow up and start improving my bed-time habits, I can't seem to get to bed in a decent hour.  Since I also have to get into work in the mornings, my beauty tends to get shortened a lot.  Yesterday, I sat up and looked at stitched pieces designed by Mary Beale until early morning.  That lady sure can design!  I love her things and I am not normally particularly into Victorian style decor.  Have you ever run across one of her "Pocketbook Needlework" collections?  They are simply adorable!  What is interesting is that no color photos follow the charts, so many times you will simply have to take a chance.  So far, I don't think that I have seen anything that I have not liked by her, though.  Here are links to her blog and her shop, if you have not already checked them out.

Well, enough of the random babbling.  I wanted to show you photos from the Founder's Day event last Saturday.  It was a lot of fun!  The crafters and vendors were asked to show up at 9 o'clock which was one hour before the event opened to the public.  I thought that "Oh well, I'd just sit there and twiddle my thumbs for a while, since it will never take ma a full hour to set everything up".  Guess what!?  It took me every minute of that hour to get everything in order!
The opening ceremony was grandiose, with a procession of bagpipers marching in to "Scotland the Brave".  They played a few additional songs (among them Amazing Grace, which is one of the most beautiful hymns, don't you think?) and three US soldiers lead the group in the Pledge of Allegiance.
Note that we finally had a break from the rain....
This is one of the springs that this little part is built around.  It is so peaceful.
Musicians were taking turns to entertain the visitors the entire day.  Since I was indoors, I didn't get to hear a lot, but I did manage to sneak out to take this photo of a couple playing the dulcimer.  Note the man in the period dress sitting down to listen.
The majority of the crafters that were demonstrating craft and showing finished pieces were indoors.  We had ladies from the local quilt guild, a couple of ladies spinning and weaving (the lady below actually works in out LNS, so it was really cool to meet her here - I had no idea that she spun and wove, in addition to embroider, knit and crochet!), the Daughters of the American revolution who displayed and showed how to play with pioneer toys, a vendor selling real antique helmets and guns, a couple that were displaying their taxidermy art, and I.
The taxidermy art was really beautiful  - guess that I liked it so much because it was birds.  I know that I am supposed to find it creepy, but I just didn't.  The swan was just fabulous.  One of the strollers-through told me that this guy is quite famous in the Middle-East and gets picked up on private jets to work his magic on all kinds of exotic animals.
My home was in the very back corner, but run up through the crowd and grabbed another crafter to take a photo of me posing with these gentlemen.  Is this not cool!? 
 The solider on the right told me that the only difference between the summer and the winter uniform was that you let down the edge flap on your coat on the winter.  He also informed me that the coat was made from wool and that it was always fitted very snuggly to its owner.  That way, he told me, you did not have an insulating layer between the coat and the body so "you froze in the winters and boiled in the summers".  Those were the days!
As you can see from below, all my Michael's acquired display boxes worked out real well.  Can you believe that I stuffed all the stitched pieces in 1 single duffel bag (not even a real big one)?  Sorry about the mass of photos, but since the majority of these projects are pre-2011 finishes, I have not shared them with you before, so I figured that this is a good of a time as any.  (I'll bring a table-cloth next time, btw, promise!)

Having a great time!
So, this is where I sat and stitched for about 6 hrs straight. Pink came by to say hi, a number of Scandinavian friends popped over as well, and DH was sweet enough to drive over to give me a lunch break.  I got plenty stitched on the Richmond sampler, so I was really pleased!
The people that strolled by did not really stay for long or say a whole lot.  Most of the comments were either compliments from people who are stitchers themselves (very, very few as you can probably imagine and most of them sighed and said that they "used to stitch before my eye sight got too bad..."), or visitors that mentioned things like "my mother used to do needle-point too".  Nowadays, I don't even correct them with the "counted needle-work vs needle-point blurb", since I have learned that most people really don't want to listen or learn anyway.  I guess it's more of a "been there, done that" or "I already know this stuff"-type of statement than anything else, if that makes sense?
A couple of men did actually take the time to look through everything and told me that "you do beautiful work", which was fun and not something that I have ever heard any person of the opposing gender say to me before.  Except maybe my dad.  DH - forget in a dream (sounds better in Swedish, right Littlest Sis?)!  Oh, and I forgot, one lady stopped by only to, quite snootily, point out that I had misspelled my sign (sigh).  Soooo.... the day progressed very calmly.
In the middle of this slow and relaxing day, the event main coordinator swung by all the tables and handed over envelopes.  I almost fell off my chair when I opened it and discovered a $150 check!!!  I thanked him so much and let him know that the check was absolutely not necessary.  He responded by telling me that it was not much and that the the men wearing the period uniforms probably carry around about $2,000-3,000, so he meant that his group was more than happy to support us.  I did not dare to calculate the value of the content in my packed duffel bag....  (but I do have a feeling that it is more than a period costume.  Much more...)
DH laughed and said that I am now officially a professional stitcher, when i told him about the check!  :-)

So, after telling you about my grand Richmond progress, I guess that I owe you a photo, right?  Coming right up!
The baskets are done and the text is about half-way complete.  Now I just have to get to the sun-flowers in and the border queen-stitched and she is done!  Plus, I am trying to figure out where to add my monogram and date. Probably in the lower right-hand corner, in a pale color that won't show unless carefully viewed.  I am thinking that I may actually have her professionally framed.  That would be my very first one!
If you would like to read more about the history and the lady behind this sampler, hurry over and cheek out Valerie's blog, A Shenandoah Sampler!  She wrote a really nice post about her visit with the Anne Maria Clarke Richmond sampler a few days ago!  Very interesting, very nicely written and with lovely photos to look at.  Simply a wonderful experience to get a piece of.

Other than that, not a whole lot to write home about....  Pink came over for out Wednesday Stitch-In.  This is our new, officially "real" thing and it is working great!  Socializing, coffee, leaving the house, and stitching - can't get a whole lot better in my book.  Of course, Henny always gets a bit disappointed when we leave.  She is pretty much 100% certain that Pink comes over solely to visit her, so she is glued to Pink's shoulder over the entire visit.  Located proudly on Pinks shoulder, Henny contentedly bobs, struts and makes very high-pitched and shrill comments about life'n other important things.
Here is a pic of "The Green Chicks" having a grand time together (it does look like they are up to no good, doesn't it?).

Well, guess what - I don't have to go to bed, so I am not even saying good night today!!!  I think that I will pull Anne Maria back out and get some more over one text stitched up.  Life is pretty great!
Good night and have a wonderful holiday!
Happy Stitching,


  1. Hahaha, glöm i en dröm :)
    Hoppas du hinner njuta lite av att vara ledig också.
    Ikväll sticker jag och några kompisar ut till Älgö. Hurra! Hoppas det inte blir regn (himlen är grååå nu).
    Längtar efter dig!

  2. HI Jenny,
    I hope the cleaning day goes well. I am sure that everyone will have a great time at the BBQ.
    I love the Founder's Day pics and stories. Your display and work is amazing!! The Richmonda sampler is looking great. You are getting close to finishing. The Queen stitches would probably send me over the edge! lol!
    I love the pic of the Green girls :)

    Hsve a great weekend.

  3. Great post! And I can comment on this blog. So many have gone wrong again and I can't leave comments.

    Your stall looks great, there's so much work there. I'm going to go back and have a good long look at the close-ups.

  4. What a fun post!!! Your work is spectacular, thanks for sharing.

    Cute bird too :-).

  5. Awesome, your shadow boxes turned out wonderfully! You do look like a professional stitcher!

  6. Wow a wonderful one woman show. You have a lot of finishes and you did a great job displaying them.

  7. What a neat show! I've never been to a Founders Day anything--it sounds like a lot of fun. I had to laugh at the woman snootily telling you that your sign was spelled wrong. Love your work on the Richmond Sampler!