Wednesday, April 16, 2014

e-Traveling Soon on a Needlework Trip

Five years ago we e-traveled on my website and a year later we took a short weekend e-trip to shop in London. We haven't traveled anywhere since then. Life on my computer became simply too hectic for anything other than changing web software and learning my new program.

But MacSoph (my trusty little laptop) and I are well settled in our new software now, and I must say, Adobe has done a great job of improving the program. I've followed it since it was in beta, and it is now quite wonderful!

The travel bug has bitten both MacSoph and me and we are ready to go. Soon our private e-Jet called 'Queen's Flight'  (which is actually a flying needlepoint shop) will be ready for take off and we fly off into the sunset.

Where are we going? This trip is a long-held dream of mine, an idea I thought up almost five years ago, shortly after our trip in 2009 ended. I hope you will follow along as we begin packing projects and taking off, for this trip is all about stitching our stashed projects. It is the reason for The Year of the Stitch and hopefully we will return home again with a good number of projects completed.

So visit my website,, and choose your Birkin bag and let's start to pack.

Our adventure is almost set to begin.
Gay Ann

Monday, March 31, 2014

Transitions for

I see that I have not written a post on my blog for 3 months, the last one being a post at the end of last year.

So what have I been doing for the past 3 months?
Managing Queendom Website, stitching, learning a new computer program and cleaning up.

I've also been working on transitions for

When I first started working on, my idea was a 5-page website where I would change the content frequently. As it has evolved, I have developed grander plans for it and I have been working on the structure behind the scenes to accommodate my grander plans.

I have tried a number of plans for organizing the site, one after another, and finally, months later, I think I have found a way to set up the navigation system. Finally!

Now I have finished one path (yes, only one path so far) and I would like to ask for your help. Would you click around on my completed path and let me know if you find it easy to navigate?

Here's how to find the path:

Go to
Click on 'Whitework' on the navigation bar
Click on 'Dresden' from the whitework thumbnails

Then click around and let me know if you find it difficult or easy and if you have any suggestions for me.

This is kind of my version of a 'beta' test.

As soon as I settle on a navigation system, I will start adding the content for what promises to be a much larger site than I first envisioned. In fact, scattered all over my house right now are varied piles of whitework, lace and needlework tools, all my trifles waiting for me to photograph and write about them.

It won't be too long  till the site starts growing. It has been a long time in the making and I am eager to see how it evolves.

Gay Ann

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

May Your New Year be filled with many hours of stitches

Already across much of the world the New Year is upon us, and here in California we have only a few hours of the old year left. As they say, 2013 is definitely in the rear view mirror at this hour.

I am starting the New Year off on a good foot: by the end of this evening I will have canvas cut for a new project and I intend to spend much of the day tomorrow starting it. I have thread, scissors, lots of new gadgets and many hours waiting for me to pick up my needle.

I also have a new toy and I am on my way to Apple in the afternoon for a lesson on using my new toy. Yes, I've at last given up my old people's phone in favor of an iPhone which I already don't know how I lived without.

Nice that I have a chance to work on both of my favorite activities on New Year's Day and hopefully it will be a harbinger of good things to come in 2014.

So Happy New Year! May your days be filled with beautiful threads, wonderful colors, perfect tension and projects you love.

Gay Ann

Friday, December 20, 2013

The Year of The Stitch has started for me

I've been neglecting everything since I finished E-Week's Mail Jail because I decided the next year is truly The Year of the Stitch for me. I need to stitch for my next E-Week and beyond, I want to stitch because my fingers twitch for time with my needle, and so guess what: I'm going to stitch. Simple as that.

I began a new design, one using threads new to me and I've incorporated some new accessories into my stitching life also. I've been auditioning stitch patterns with the new threads and for my style of stitching, auditions mean a lot of rejections, so I stitch and rip, stitch and rip, stitch and rip.

For ripping, I've been using my favorite tools: a Bohin Seam Ripper (I know, fast but dangerous), a Boo Boo Brush and a pair of tweezers. I love the Bohin Seam Ripper. I can rip an area twice as fast as with my favorite scissors and four times as fast as with a garden variety pair of scissors. Yes, I'm careful; over the years I've learned it is important to tilt up the little blade and proceed carefully.

The Boo Boo Brush helps a lot, and so do the tweezers. I have the most precise tweezers imaginable, but after half an hour or so, my hand cramps from holding them. I just learned about a new pair of tweezers made by Bohin with a long handle. Usually long handles are easier on one's hands, so I am anxious to try the new tweezers. I ordered them a while back and they should arrive shortly, I plan on trying them straight away and then reporting on them on Queendom Website.

Those are my favorite tools for ripping. If you would like to see photos of them and read more about them, visit Queendom Website and click on 'Stocking Stuffers' on the yellow navigation bar.
For quick reference:

I've been sewing massive numbers of pearls to my new design. Pearls always come with teeny tiny holes and tiny holes always mean #12 or #15 beading needles.

I struggle with threading any needle -- after all these years, I still struggle. I live with a trusty threader nearby, but who has had a threader fine enough yet tough enough to thread a #12 beading needle.

Guess what! I found one! It is super! Glides right through the eye of a #12 beading needle, and I suspect it is fine enough too to thread a #15 beading needle. So far, as I only have a single one of these threader treasures, I haven't been willing to try it on a #15 beading needle for fear of breaking my only one.

So I've ordered 15 of these threaders (all for me), and soon as I have my new ones, I'll test the extra fine side on a #15 beading needle. Heavenly if it will work!

In addition to the threader, I have looked at small clips for hemming linen, wonderful scissors made for metal threads, gold scissors with extra large and therefore comfortable finger rings, and an array of other accessories to make my stitching life more organized and efficient.

These tools all came to my attention at the beginning of December and MacSoph and I decided we should post all of them on Queendom Website as 'Stocking Stuffers for Stitchers'. Each day we post a new one.

As time has gone on, people have been writing and asking, am I planning to sell all these accessories? The answer is no, because I'm personally all involved in The Year of the Stitch and I don't want to be in Mail Jail again.

But Kate said she would sell them all.

So if Santa leaves some money in your Christmas Stocking on Christmas Morning, save it till December 26 when all these lovely accessories will indeed be for sale on Queendom Website.

Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, and all the best for 2014, The Year of the Stitch!
Gay Ann

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Thanksgiving and Needlework: The Year of the Stitch

It is Thanksgiving Eve and my Website is decorated for the holiday now with a little riddle: do you know what a PPP is?
Silly game of mine. If you want to take part in guessing:

It is Thanksgiving now and time to be thankful for the blessings of our lives.
First and foremost I am thankful that DH and I are both healthy and well, busy and well occupied with our passions.

I heard the saddest story the other day about a group of women so bored they really had nothing to look forward to. A non-stitching friend was relating this to me and it made me so sad. Sad, but thankful that it's not me, nor any of the members of our stitching community. Isn't it wonderful: we always look forward to stealing time from our busy lives and chilling out with our needles. To a one we are always looking forward to our next stitch. Good for us that we have a passion we all enjoy.

I am thankful for my material possessions, the ones that matter to me: I think I have at least 100 needles in various sizes and endless baggies of threads in colors I love, drawers full of inspiration and more drawers full of drawings I look forward to stitching. Yes, I am thankful for my wonderful stash, for in it are the seeds that feed my imagination.

I am also very thankful that I have reached the end of my E-Week sale and all its shipping. Mail Jail.DH will go to the post office this afternoon, and when he does, he will deliver my last packages and I will officially be out of Mail Jail. The end of Mail Jail, now that is indeed something to be thankful for.

And along with the official close of Mail Jail comes the opening of my year ahead:  The Year of the Stitch. I will officially open The Year of the Stitch at 4:30 p.m. California time today. This is about the time that I predict DH will hand the last of Mail Jail to the postman.

Yes, I plan to take off large chunks of the next year and stitch. Stitch and stitch and stitch. I have new threads, new projects, new pieces of canvas, and new hopes for some challenging time with my needle. I greatly look forward to the year ahead and hope that my website's followers will join me.

Enjoy your Thanksgiving and I hope you will find time to join me this weekend and celebrate the opening of The Year of the Stitch this afternoon and throughout Thanksgiving weekend.
Gay Ann

Friday, October 11, 2013

My Own Brand of Needlework Magic

Two days ago I started a little story that MacSoph and I concocted to celebrate the time leading up to E-Week, my annual sale.

Our tale begins with the photo of a sunset out over our back yard. This morning the tale continues with a photo of our driveway. The driveway has a telephone pole and telephone wires. The telephone pole and wires will enter into the story in a small way.

So far our tale features ordinary photos out of the back of our house (sunset) and out of the front (driveway). Yes, the sunset was a real sunset from our living room window; yes, the driveway really is our driveway.

Tomorrow's image? Well, we would have to admit it is a bit of fanciful fiddling. Ditto the images on Sunday, Monday and Tuesday as well. Of particular interest to needle people may be the image on Sunday where shopping opportunities abound, only in a most unusual way.

From tomorrow forward: bit of techie fairy dust.

Please join MacSoph and me for our special Pre-Week Tale on Queendom Website.
For quick reference:

Gay Ann

Monday, October 07, 2013

My Needlework Sale: the Busiest Time of My Year

It's almost here again, my once-a-year E-Week Sale and I get so busy it's al I can do to stay afloat through it.

I look forward to it each year! I have so many little tasks like deciding what to do each year to introduce E-Week. People tell me it's not necessary, that I should just post the designs and save the time it takes MacSoph and me to think up ideas to welcome E-Week. But I would miss that part of it. Each year I've done something inventive, I've learned so much!

And this year is no exception. I have 5 days of a wee story leading up to E-Week's opening this year and in it I have done some of the PhotoShop work I am most proud of. In this year's lead up to E-Week I have re-worked some of the very first scenes I ever made in PhotoShop and I am proud of how far I've come in four years.

One of the scenes is my favorite ever and I hope you will come, follow along and see if you agree.
I am excited about displaying it and if MacSoph and I didn't have so much work to do still, I would wish the day I post it were here now.

Right now on Queendom Website I have a display of my Geometrics from past E-Weeks. I am asking the people in my General Shining Needle Society Classroom to vote which two I will bring back in E-Week's Early Morning Surprise Windows on October 19 and 20. The voting will last through Wednesday.

On Thursday morning, October 10,  my little display and story will start. There will be different images to go along with the story each morning through October 15, and I am, if I do say so, proud of each of the images.

If you would like to follow along, and I hope you will, here's a quick reference:

Remember, Thursday morning, October 10.

E-Week begins at the crack of dawn on Wednesday October 16.