Happy New Year Stitchers!

Happy New Year, Stitchers!  I'm happy to be bringing you a brand new Colorburst Sampler this month.  It's bright and colorful and stripy, so even if your weather leaves something to be desired, hopefully these stitches can match the spirit of optimism of this time of year.  This month's sample was stitched by @woolnest, and you can see her progress (which she did last summer) below.  I love being able to see the backside, don't you?

Can't wait to see how you all stitch your versions.  Will you use satin stitch and blanket stitches and a couched border like this one, or go you own way?  Show me! I love seeing all the different versions pop up on Instagram.  Just tag your sampler with #dropclothsamplers to join the group.

Stitch of the Month Subscribers, this month, I'm shipping out the Couching Stitches Sampler.  It's one of my favorite samplers, and favorite stitches, largely because it's so EASY.  Almost any thread (or yarn) can be couched with a big enough needle (or no needle at all).   Pull out your remnants from knitting projects- or unravel a little yarn from that sweater in your goodwill pile.  For couching inspiration, check out the Pinterest Board I created.   (Filling Stitches that are peeking out underneath are coming soon!)

Green Stripes and Family Feather Stitches....

Hi there stitchers!  This month's colorburst sample was stitched by @woolnest, who you may remember from the Secret Garden fame.  Remember those Woven Picots?  This one doesn't disappoint either, with stripes of stair stepped green and blue.  She stitched hers with stem stitched pops of color, filled running stitches, and satin stitches stair steps.  All that and an awesomely complicated blanket stitched border.  I'm in love.    

Stitch of the month club subscribers, you'll be getting the Feather Stitches Sampler in the mail.  I picked that stitch family for December, since I associate it with crazy quilts, and my family has a beautiful old crazy quilt stitched by my Grandpa's aunts, with "merry christmas and happy new year" stitched into the patchwork.  I love it so much.  Speaking of my family, my mom stitched the version shown here.  She stitched all the monthly samplers and then sewed them into this amazing book, with quilted pages and hand dyed (I dyed the fabric forever ago) borders and backing.  Thanks, Mom!

As usual, for inspiration, how-to's, and diagrams, visit the Pinterest Page I created for this category of stitches here. 

November Samplers: Rainbows and Weavings....

Sampler of the Month Subscribers, this month, we're working on Weaving Stitches.  Having grown up with a mom who made weavings for a living, I am familiar with looms (although I don't really know how to use them with any proficiency). These embroidered woven stitches are teeny tiny, and much less daunting then a large scale loom project.  I love the way they pop off the cloth, creating three dimensional shapes.  For how to's, diagrams, and inspiration, check out the Pinterest Board I created for Weaving Stitches.   Here's an overview of the board:

And here's a preview of the Weaving Stitches Sampler:

Meanwhile, in Colorburst news, in this dark month of the year, I'm sending out rainbows!  I love the way @funyoungs stitched this version up with  (french knot) clouds in the sky, and a beautiful satin stitch rainbow.  Check out that variegated cross stitched border! Snazzy!

October Samplers- Pinks and Picots!

Hello October!

Pink! This month, get out your pinks!  I love the way @funyoungs stitched up the sample version of this month's Colorburst Sampler.  She stitched it with french knots, running stitches, and back stitches, with a satin stitched and stem stitched border.  It's so fancy!  I love the tri-color pink border.   

BTW- My Matryoshka Doll thread winder is from Girl on the Rocks.  She's not making them anymore, but you can get a funny bearded fellow to organize your floss. 

Stitch of the Month Subscribers- how are you doing?  I love seeing full sets of these samplers, like this stunner collection by @cmhornung .  This month, get ready for raised stitches (shown here- it's the third from the left in the top row. Check out the Pinterest Board I created for these stitches for diagrams, how-to's, and some fun inspiration, including a Woven Picot Corn Cob!

Secret Gardens....

When I decided to reach out for help on the Colorburst Samplers, I picked three stitchers whose work I admired.  Annri (aka @woolnest on Instagram!) was one of the three- and I believe that I screamed with joy when the envelope with this sampler arrived in the mail.  I would have never dreamed of stitching this one with woven picot's, but she did! Not only that, but for every woven picot, there's a satin stitched circle waiting underneath- a reward for looking closer and lifting up the flaps.  This sampler, you guys! I love it so much.  

I love drawing these little colorbursts, and when I do, I am thinking about stitches the whole time. However, the stitches I envision are often not what you all have in mind, and I LOVE THAT.  Watching these colorburst samplers pop up on instagram (#dropclothsamplers) is my favorite part of the job.  Thank you.  Thank you, thank you.

So- if you're a colorburst subscriber, you'll be getting one of these in the mail this month.  I can't wait to see how you'll stitch it.  I explain woven picot's in their entirety (they are really easy, despite how complicated they look when finished) in this video.  

If, on the other hand you are a Stitch of the Month subscriber, you'll be getting this little dazzler in the mail this month.  Get ready for Cross Stitches!  If you need help or inspiration, check out the Cross Stitch Pinterest Page that I made.  Lots of cool examples of non-traditional cross stitch there- including some made on chex cereal!

July Subscriptions & A Big Move....

Over many months, there's been plotting behind the scenes here.  My wife Katy and I have been trying to leave New York for awhile.  While it was certainly generous to us- I wrote a book! I met so many amazing friends! I had an amazing studio with awesome neighbors! It was not really ever a great fit for either one of us.  I love hiking, I love being outdoors, and equally as much I love being at home, cooking good food and in general being a world class nester and homebody. These are not the characteristics of most New Yorkers....

Last week, we moved to Portland, Oregon!  There are so many nuts and bolts to work out, too many to name here without giving myself a small heart attack, but hikes have already been had, and nesting has already started, if not actually, at least conceptually.   I think I'm really going to like it here.   

Amid the hustle and bustle of packing, sampler subscriptions got sent out very early this month. Some of you have probably received and finished them by now, you speedy stitchers you. Because I just moved to Portland, and because this place seems obsessed with the Thai restaurant Pok Pok, the Colorburst of the month is called Pop Pop.  

Pop Pop (1 of 1).jpg

The stitch of the month sampler is Chain Stitches.    I hope you guys love them, and I hope you're tagging them online with #dropclothsamplers  I've been seeing lots of great examples pop up in my instagram feed, including quite a few being stitched poolside, which makes me so, so happy, and so, so ready to join you.  Get the lemonade ready!  

One more thing---as you can imagine, it is taking awhile to get settled here, and to get all the stock from one side of the country to another.  We moved a big distance!  So, the shop is open, but orders will not be shipped out until July 25th.  As a result, I'm having a big sale!  Please take advantage of the moving sale by saving 20% off of every single thing.   Use code PORTLAND2015  Thank you!

June Subscriptions!

Colorburst Subscribers will receive this little number- Hula Hoops!

Stitch of the month subscribers will receive Filling Stitches -some of my favorites!  Be sure to check out the Pinterest pages for tips and ideas for how to use these stitches.....

A few of you have written to me asking if you  could receive all twelve of the Stitch of the Month samplers at once for taking on a summer road trip or extended vacation.  The answer is yes! Just send me a conversation in over on the Etsy site and I'll send you a custom coupon code to save on shipping.

ALSO! For summer stitching fun, I am offering Colorburst Bundles for the first time.  You'll receive a collection of six Colorburst Samplers, ready to pop in your bag for a road trip or camping weekend.  Please note that if you are a subscriber or have been one, these bundles may include some repeats.  Contents vary.  Here's a LINK.

Thoughts on Embroidery Tools & A Giveaway from Hedgehog Handworks!

Oftentimes, I have said that one of the best things about embroidery is its relative frugalness. Compared to say, oil painting, the supplies that you need to get started in embroidery are rather inexpensive.  After raiding your collection of embroidery threads* from junior high 1980's era friendship bracelets (did you have one of those?) and rounding up whatever needles and scissors are nearby, you'll need a hoop and...well, that's it.  

However, just because embroidery doesn't HAVE to necessitate beautiful tools, it sure doesn't mean that you can't use them.  The right scissors can make all the difference.  A few years ago, when I was working on a submission for Bibliocraft, author and librarian (and friend!) Jessica Pigza told me about Hedgehog Handworks, a needlework supplier in California. After spending some time on their website, I included it in the recommended resources of my own book.  This small business stocks heirloom quality threads, embroidery tools, and more. They've graciously given me two of my favorite tools to give to one of you, dear readers.

Included in this giveaway are: a pair of French (Red!) Embroidery scissors.  These are sharp, beautiful, and will surely be the envy of your friends.  Don't let your kids cut paper with them!

Second, Hedgehog included a little beeswax hedgehog, perfect for waxing your thread ends when you're threading needles, or for conditioning your entire length of thread for a stiffer line quality.   This is no cheap wax, when you open the box that it comes in, the beautiful smell of honey wafts out.  It's tiny, but it's more than enough to last for years and years.

Lastly, I'm throwing in a copy of my book!  The reviews are coming in on Amazon (thank you!) and I'm so happy that you all like it.  I poured a lot of myself into this project, and it's so satisfying to see it pop up on Instagram and Facebook and Google....Thank you thank you, Thank You.


To enter to win this contest, leave a comment telling me your favorite embroidery tool, be it low end from the thrift store, or high end heirloom quality tool.  Be sure to include your e-mail address so I can get in touch with you if you win!  This contest is open only to Domestic Addresses. Enter by Friday, May 22nd.  I'll announce the winners the following week.  One comment per person please.   Good luck!




*Have you heard of the embroidery artist Ray Matterson, an ex-con who started embroidering in prison with unravelled socks? His works are incredible....


From the book tour...

The first stop on the book tour, and the spot where we had the official book launch party was one of my all time favorite shops, A Verb for Keeping Warm in Oakland.  It was so much fun to see so many familiar faces and to make some new friends too.  Special thanks to the crew that drove up from LA!  

Next, I went to Portland (new favorite place!) and the amazing shop CollagePDX hosted a signing and demo.  You guys, this store is new to me (Portland is new to me) but it is amazing. I wish I had had more time and more money to spend at this gem of an independent arts and crafts store on Alberta.  The Sellwood location is also incredible.  

Stay tuned this weekend for a book and heirloom scissors giveaway!

May Subscriptions are in the Mail!

Hello again!  I'm happy to report that this month's subscriptions were whisked away to the post office yesterday.   This month, Colorburst Subscribers will receive *AURORA*. 

Stay tuned this weekend for a giveaway that includes these beautiful Red Scissors from Hedgehog Handworks, one of my favorite needlework suppliers......

Stay tuned this weekend for a giveaway that includes these beautiful Red Scissors from Hedgehog Handworks, one of my favorite needlework suppliers......

Stitch of the Month subscribers will receive KNOTTED STITCHES.  Some of you double subscribers will receive both!   Whoever you are, whatever you are stitching, thank you! 

NYC Book Signing and BERNINA Demo!

Please join me next week, on May 5th from 6-7pm for a demo and book signing at City Quilter in Manhattan.

I'll be demonstrating one of my favorite drawing techniques, and translating a few of my drawings into stitched lines on the sewing machine.  Learn how to use your machine to add improvisational lines and drawings to your quilts and other fabric projects using the BERNINA stitch regulator.

For more information, click here.

Winners! Book Tour! Shop Sale!


Before I finish packing my bags for California and Oregon, I'm stopping in here to announce the winners of last week's contest.  Thank you so much to everyone who entered here, on instagram, and on pinterest.  It was a lot of fun to read all your embroidery recommendations.

By random selection, using Random.org, the winners are:

  • INSTAGRAM WINNER: @craftyplanner
  • BLOG COMMENT WINNER:  Sheryl Kessler

Winners: you have until April 28th, 2015 to contact me (rebeccaringquist AT gmail DOT com)  with your information. If I haven't heard from you by then, I'll pick a new winner at that time.  

Didn't win this time? There's a second chance! STC Craft/Melanie Falick Books (my publisher) is running a similar contest this week!  Click here to find out all the details. 


I hope you can join me at one of the following book tour stops:


I'm leaving town early tomorrow on a book tour, and the shop elves just don't cut it when it comes to mailing out orders.  Instead of closing up shop for two weeks, I'm having a sale to thank everyone for their patience while waiting.   From now until April 27th, save 15% with code BOOKTOUR.  All orders placed between now and April 27th will ship on April 28th.

Enter the code BOOKTOUR at checkout.  (I can not offer this discount retroactively) This offer is good on everything in the store including subscriptions!

Subscriptions are out EARLY this month...

Since there's a lot going on this week, what with my BOOK COMING OUT TOMORROW, and the BOOK TOUR THIS WEEKEND, I packed up subscriptions and got them out the door this weekend, a little early.  I didn't think you would mind, would you?

Two designs went out on Saturday.  For Colorburst subscribers, April Showers got tucked into your envelopes.  I stitched mine with lazy daisies, french knots, and back stitch. The border was stitched with a little made up stitch of parallel lines.  Maybe it's a deconstructed satin stitch? Who knows?  I like the way it turned out.  

Stitch of the month subscribers get Running Stitches this month.  That has got to be one of my all time favorite stitches, and the Pinterest board I've been working on for that stitch is one of my most crowded boards.  It's fun and easy.  

Are you a subscriber? Show us what you're working on with the hashtag #dropclothsamplers

In other news, THE BOOK LAUNCHES TOMORROW!  I can't believe the day is almost here.  Amazon has been surprising some of you with early deliveries of your pre-ordered books, and my friend in Oakland has spotted it at Pegasus books and Diesel books.  If you see it in the world (or in your mailbox!) please do tag it with #rebeccaringquistbook.  I love seeing where they are landing!  Thanks so much.

Lastly, today is the LAST DAY to enter the giveaway.  Please do comment on the last post to win.  You can also enter via instagram.  Find me there @dropcloth  Good Luck!

Cartwheels and Threaded Stitches

The samplers of the month are in the mail! After a few weeks of working from home on bookkeeping and package design, I'm happy to say that all of this month's subscriptions are in the mail.  It felt great to be back at the studio yesterday, and it made me happy to send off so many samplers to all of you!  This month, Colorburst subscribers are stitching Cartwheels: 

I stitched the example with back stitch, couching, blanket stitch, and a few french knots in the centers.  I'm still working on it, as you can see in the circles.  What color do you think I should use?

Stitch of the Month subscribers are working on Threaded Stitches this month.  These are some of my favorite stitches, because they look complicated, but are generally really easy.  For assistance, check out the collection of tips, charts, and inspiration that I've collected on the Threaded Stitches Pinterest board.

Finally, ALL subscribers will receive a sample of threads from one of my favorite small batch thread dyers, Kathy Leever.  Check out her variegated perle cottons and perle tencels on Etsy, and lookout for a giveaway of her threads next month here on the blog.

Happy St.Patrick's Day!  - Rebecca


Samplers of the Month: Pansies and Feather Stitches...

I spent Friday packaging up everyone's monthly subscriptions, and somehow managed to get them out the door and into the mailbox before Saturday.  Some of you might even have them on your kitchen counters by now....
I've been having so much fun sitting in the glow of the radiator stitching these Colorburst Samplers in the late afternoons.  In a season without a lot of color, they make me really happy.   This one, Pansy, is in the mail now.  I stitched mine with back stitch, running stitch, french knots, and Algerian eyes.  How would/will you stitch yours?

If you are a Stitch of the Month subscriber, this month you'll receive Feather Stitches- the version pictured below was stitched by my Mom. Hi Mom!  For the entire year in one book/post, click here.  For a mom that will stitch them all for you, I can't help you.  She's all mine.