Saturday, May 17, 2014


Gersternkorn is German for Huck (Swedish) weaving.  One of my first stitching projects that I remember from elementary school in Germany was a buttoned pouch adorned with Gersternkorn embroidery.  Today we have few Swedish Weaving patterns available to us and Zweigart has discontinued their Huck fabric.  So imagine my surprise and pleasure upon my arrival at the Hobby & Crafts tradeshow in Germany back in March, the first booth I came across had fabric and patterns for Gerstenkorn.  I was completely enthralled.  Their patterns are very attractive and specifically designed for tablecloths, table runners, and pillows.

When my order from the show arrived this past week, I just had to pick out a table runner for myself.  The fabric is 16" wide and I cut myself a 60" length.  The pattern I choose requires four shades and my colour selection for the threads, with no surprise to some of you, are DMC 924, 926, 927 and 3072.

Huck embroidery works up quickly, and over the holiday weekend, I hope to have enough time to finish this table runner.
These patterns, and fabrics can be found on Gitta's website.  Click here to visit the Swedish weaving page.

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Happy Mother's Day

Although my kids have a special Mother's Day planned for me, it still feels a bit empty this year. I usually spend the afternoon at my Mom's. We'd sit out in the garden enjoying a coffee and piece of cake.  With the beautiful weather we are enjoying today, it would have been a wonderful afternoon.

I have been thinking all week of a way to make this day worthy of my Mom.
I wish I could at least send her a card, to let her know how much she means to me, how much I still miss her, how much I love her.

Before it is too late, take today to let your mom know how much she is appreciated and loved.

A friend sent me this card; what a lovely thought to hold dear to our hearts.
Until we are together again, I love you Mom.

Saturday, May 10, 2014

A Biscornu Fob

Even if you are not stitching along with the "Designer of the Month" Sampler, each individual design can also be stitched singly.
I finished my free pattern for the sampler as a mini biscornu to be used as a scissor fob.
For the biscornu I made 2 changes to the pattern.  Instead of using 3012 DMC for the border, I used the Thread Gatherer SNC066, Granite.  I then added a back stitch all around the square right up against the cross stitched border using 517 DMC.  I used this outline to sew the 2 biscornu sides together.
Finally, I did not stitch the centre eyelet as it would have been covered up by the button.
I used a blue pearl shank button, available at Gitta's.  It looks so cute, like a pearl resting in an oyster.

Click here for the pattern itself.  For biscornu finishing instructions please visit my blog from June 30, 2011.

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Designer of the Month - Guess who

The designer this month is ME, how exciting.  I have displayed a broad range of my works from over the years.  I was quite taken by how my style has changed. 

My very first needlepoint project was a painted canvas of a horse's head, a gift from my mom when I was 11.  I was hooked.  My next projects were mainly 3 thread petit point, and then 1 thread petit point on 40ct silk gauze.  I stitched during every free moment, gifting everything I stitched to my Grandmother and aunts.

Having restitched many of our favourite designs 4 or 5 times, my mother & I grew tired of the limited patterns available to us.  I was still in high school when we started working on our own designs.  Once we had 25 designs stitched and printed Gitta's Charted Petit Point was born.  These earlier designs were very traditional, mainly scenes and florals.

With my love of 1 thread petit point, I later played with the idea of how small of a scene I could design and not lose detail.  From this grew my seasonal series, first Summer by the Lake, then Winter in the City, Fall on the Farm, and finally Spring in the Park. 

These are only 61 x 117 stitches, and petit pointed on 40ct silk gauze. Their completed design size is only 1.5" x 3".

To promote Gitta's designs beyond our local area, my mother & I exhibited at Stitching shows across Canada and in the United States.  It was at these US shows that I was really taken with Samplers.  And when I was told that Samplers can only be cross stitched, my first thought was: why?  As long as a design is composed of primarily full stitches, it can also be petit pointed.

It was this fascination with Samplers and my love of nature, especially trees,  that inspired my Tree Sampler series.
My newest of these tree samplers is the "Palm" tree.  Although I had designed and stitched  it 2 years ago, it still needs to be printed, which I plan on working on over the next weeks.

In the last few years my inspiration has been driven by practical applications.  Items to embellish that we can use, and not necessarily need to frame, such as biscornus, scissor fobs and cases.  Although most are cross stitched with hand-dyed silk threads, one also incorporates specialty stitches.  I designed my Dragonfly Needlecase and Scissor fob as the workshop project for Gitta's first stitcher's retreat Getaway.  It offers 2 colour options and a full dragonfly alphabet to personalize the scissor fob which is shaped in a biscornu.

I had also started Little Sparrow Designs to separate my cross stitch designs from our traditional petit point patterns, and in the hopes of drawing my daughter in to join my Mom and myself.  Although her artistic talents have taken her into a different direction, I am still hopeful that one day she will join the Gitta's team.

In planning my FREE pattern for the Designer Collaboration Sampler I had toyed with the idea and designed several small petit point florals to be stitched over 1 in the continental stitch.  I wanted to reflect the early beginnings of Gitta's designs, but once complete it just did not fit in with the other designs.  So back to the computer I went to work on another.  I'm glad I did, because I love the look of my Floral Medley in the sampler.  I'm sure you agree.  Here is a peek at the sampler thus far.
Although many of you have seen my designs every time you visit the shop, I hope you manage to drop by over the next month.  For those unable, please take some time to visit Gitta's Designs on our website and see all that we have to offer.  I'm sure there is something for everyone.

Thank you,