In the library

My happy place is a bookstore, a library or a comfy couch for reading. This design is my recreation of these happy places, and I hope stitching it brings you some comfort too… It is also one of the first designs to feature the new Bookshelf range – my collaboration with Cottage Garden Threads and…

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Among the roses

An antique reproduction I must confess – I have a real love for Victorian needlepoints and have been collecting them for some time. When I reproduced “Mary Barton’s Work” last year, I wasn’t sure anyone else would want to stitch it – and I’m thrilled that Mary’s weird little bird found so many homes with…

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Afternoon in the Garden

An antique reproduction The mysterious origins of this sampler Some samplers are a mystery. This piece, reproduced from an original in my collection, tantalises with its enigmatic initials and charms with its details – that little dog hiding under the table laid out for refreshments in the garden, that rooster standing proudly, and that figure…

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Twitching noses

An antique reproduction Sometimes you can be lucky enough to stumble across an antique piece of needlework that just makes you smile. The original of this design was done completely in petit-point – the tiny stitches creating such a lifelike image, I could almost see those ears turning and those noses twitching. I tried several…

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Cross-stitching with Cottage Garden Threads: Tips & Tricks

This is a long-promised post, and one that’s just a beginning. The more I work with Cottage Garden Threads in my designs, the more I discover about their potential for bringing new & exciting things into cross-stitch. The following are some tips & tricks that I’ve discovered so far, but I’d love to hear your…

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Tasmania, after the fires

This design arose from the wonderful opportunity to create a design for the first Dark Mojo Retreat in Hobart, Tasmania in June 2022. Kerrilyn Packer at A Stitch in Time has been a fantastic support for Australian designers, dyers and needleworkers and working with her has been a delight. After I suggested doing a design…

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Peace & Plenty: A New Year’s Wish

I must confess a secret. I often look at antique samplers and embroideries and wonder about the lives that the stitchers lived. I wonder about their hopes and dreams, and how they stitched themselves into their work, which survives long after them. And so I want to stitch my hopes into my work, each tiny…

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Christmas 2021: Christmas hot & cold

Christmas is not all snowmen and reindeer for everyone. In Australia, Christmas Day is typically uncomfortably hot, spent under blazing blue skies with family and friends. The way we celebrate is different too: when I was little, I remember one of my grandmothers battling to create the traditional baked lunch, when it was too hot…

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Falling Leaves

Don’t you just love that crunch of Autumn leaves under your feet? My new Quaker design explores the beauty of the changing leaves of Autumn and Fall, and the creatures that you can find alongside them. In Australia, the vast majority of our native plants do not change colours for Autumn (with an interesting exception…

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Mary Barton’s Work

And finishing tips… When preparing new designs for the US Fall 2021 Needlework Expo, I was in the middle of a prolonged lockdown. I was working on a different antique reproduction, when it became clear that the lockdown would not end before Expo – meaning I couldn’t get the piece framed, or even get framing…

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