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Sturbridge 2012
Fun Report

And yet another great time was had by all!!

This retreat was held on July 5-6 at the historical Publick House in Sturbridge, MA.  Many of us arrived early to enjoy fireworks at Old Sturbridge Village on July 3rd, and then to have fun in the Village the following day.  The fireworks were great!!  My husband and father joined me, and it was our first time to experience them there.  Folks gathered in a grassy field to enjoy the display.  Street lights are quite a distance from the Village, so the fireworks truly lit up the sky.   We hope to enjoy them there again next year! 

It was so wonderful to have Ellen Chester of With My Needle teach at Stitcher’s Hideaway again!  Her project for us, Fruit of the Vine, can be made into either a huswif or a sampler.  A "huswif" or "hussif" is a folded or rolled case for keeping needlework supplies. Women often carried a huswif in one of the large tie-on pockets worn under their skirts. The verse in the piece, from the Song of Solomon, signifies the beginning of a new season. The attendees were very excited about the project -- and even more so when we saw the stitched model!  What BEAUTIFUL colors! 

On the inside of the huswif is a mattress-style pincushion and pockets for storing  needlework tools. An embellished dupioni silk band wraps around the folded huswif to keep it closed. The project also includes a coordinating needleroll and scissors weight!





In class we worked on the needleroll to learn the many stitches used in the project, including algerian eye, alternating double backstitch, backstitch, barrier, Belgian cross, closed herringbone, cross stitch, cross stitch over one linen thread, four-sided, herringbone, horizontally elongated cross, long-armed cross, montenegrin, mosaic, nun’s stitch, plaited cross, queen, ray stitch, Rhodes, Rhodes heart, Rhodes octagon, satin, small plait, smyrna cross, star, tent, vertically elongated cross, and zigzag stitch!  Yes, we actually covered all of those stitches at the retreat!  Excellent stitch illustrations were included in our Fruit of the Vine kits for future reference.







There were also some optional scrimshaw pieces for this project -- the colors show up great in this photo of them!



Our class time flew by!!  We learned so much and had so much fun!

This group of stitchers was from CT, MA, MD, ME, NY, and VA.  Barbara from VA traveled the farthest and received some special goodies.

And oh -- the goodies!!!   Donations came from 123Stitch, A Sweet Stitch, Calico Crossroads,  Elizabeth’s Designs, Giulia Punti AntichiGlory Bee, Jeannette Douglas Designs, Kreinik, Lavendar Wings, Morning Glory Needleworks, Nordic Needle, Stitcher’s Hideaway, Tempting Tangles, The Prairie Schooler, ThreadworX, Victoria Sampler and With My Needle.

Door prizes were donated by Jeannette Douglas Designs, Karen Cappello (a dear friend of Stitcher’s Hideaway), Rosewood Manor, Stitcher’s Hideaway, The Gift of Stitching  and Victoria Sampler.  What a blessing!




Barb G. with doorprize from Rosewood Manor.

Barb H. with doorprize from Karen Cappello



Deb with doorprize from Victoria Sampler

Jeanne with door prize from Karen Cappello



Linda with doorprize from Karen Cappello

Marie with doorprize from Stitcher’s Hideaway



Terre with doorprize from Rosewood Manor

Lynn with doorprize from Rosewood Manor



Jody with doorprize from Rosewood Manor

Jen with doorprize from Victoria Sampler



Ellen did such a great job of teaching us each stitch and finishing technique.  Her written and illustrated instructions were wonderful, and she also displayed stitched models of the finishing phases for us.



I have no explanation for this exploding skein -- except, really, doesn’t this seem like the kind of thing that happens to me?


Barb H. & Lynn in class.

Donna & Ellen in giggles!



Jeanne & Peggy

Mary & Jodi



Linda M. and Ellen

Terre & Donna


We had some YUMMY meals at the Publick House!


Chris and Pam from Chris’s Collection set up shop for us -- what fun!!  What stash!

One afternoon we had a special presentation on Celebrating Patriotism by Old Sturbridge Village staff members Jean Contino, Coordinator of Households, and Rebecca Beall, Collections Manager.  We saw a very interesting display of a variety of early 19th century items, from embroidery to fabric to ceramics and art with patriotic imagery and emblems.  It was an interesting look into how early New Englanders expressed their patriotic sentiments through everyday objects.  Here are some pictures of this presentation.























Later that night I presented a gift to all the attendees -- a new design I call “Liberty.”  My stitched model was finished into a banner.


Ellen was appropriately frogged at the retreat by me (of course).

And let it be known that at this retreat my coronation as Frog Princess was held!

On our last night together we had a great time of Show ‘n Tell!  We are just AWESOME STITCHERS!!!

Barb H. with a With My Needle piece.

Barb also designed a basket to go with Ellen Chester’s Call of the Sea project.



Barb with another design by With My Needle.

Donna brought in her finished Call of the Sea.



Deb completed another With My Needle design -- changing all the linen and thread colors!

A finished Sturbridge Sewing Box!



Donna’s masterpiece.






















And there you have it -- a glimpse of another fun-filled Stitcher’s Hideaway retreat!  Read on for words from some of the attendees!

See you at a retreat soon!



“Thank you for all the work you did to make the retreat not only successful but also glorious. Now I cannot wait for the next time I can attend one of your retreats. You are truly amazing. The hotel was so historic and comfortable. The food was abundant and delish. The teacher was remarkable. And best of all I feel I have know you all for years and only just reacquainted with treasured friends. What a wonderful following you have! I know this sounds gushing but it is all heartfelt. Thanks Sue, I look forward to seeing you again soon.” ~ Peggy


Peggy with a doorprize from Karen Capello




 “Thank you for the time and energy you spend making our Stitcher’s Hideaways such fun. I look forward to the time together with other stitchers, just doing what we love without the distractions of every-day life and work. I loved seeing the patriotic items that Rebecca and Jean brought from Old Sturbridge Village. Remember the excitement of the Bicentennial celebration in 1976? I’ll bet there is lots of memorabilia from that time in peoples’ closets. (Do you think it was mostly made overseas, like the ceramics and textiles that were made in England for the US market in the 1800s?)   I’m looking forward to seeing you in Mystic in October.” ~ Linda E.




"How nice to have Ellen come back again to teach her wonderful "Fruit of the Vine" design.  I can't believe that it's been since 2005 that Ellen taught her "Call of the Sea" design!  I just love her designs and can't wait to finish this one.  Ellen's charts and instructions are so nice and clear and the finishing instructions are so detailed and complete.  Thanks again to Sue for putting together such a fun and relaxing retreat!  She always pays such attention to detail with all of the goodies in her cute printed bags (one can never have too many bags!), great door prizes and yummy food selections, except for the mushrooms!!  Just kidding!  I'm looking forward to next year's retreats!  I congratulate Sue for having the best retreats during the past 10 years!” ~ Linda M.

Linda showing us a masterpiece at Show ‘n Tell.



“I had a wonderful time Sue and thank you again for all the effort you put into these events, Sturbridge is a great location and I really enjoy all the company and meeting friends, old and new.  Ellen was a great teacher and I'm looking forward to next July.” ~ Barbara H



Barbara H. with door prize from Stitcher’s Hideaway.



“I had such a great time at the retreat. All my good resolutions – not to buy more stash, not to eat too much – just went right out the window. Chris had so many things I just could not resist. And the desserts were so worth the calories. 
     Ellen is a great teacher. She explains things well in class and her directions are so good, I’m sure I’m not going to have any trouble finishing the project. I just love it – the colors, all the different stitches, the verse, the grapes (love grape designs).
     Glad you were able to decide on finishing as a sampler rather than a huswif. I think I’m going to go ahead and do mine as a huswif, as I am very short of wall space and I like all the little pockets for tools and scrimshaw.
     While I was unpacking I had a chance to look at all the stash you gave us.  Awesome!  The Liberty design is terrific and I love the thread.
      Thanks so much for organizing such a fun event. Have a great summer.” ~ Barbara G.

Barbara G. with her Show ‘n Tell.



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