Sales of Kits and Patterns
Updated August 2021
I decided to take a hiatus from sales through the fall. Right now I think life is just too difficult: supplies chains are difficult, delivery unreliable, trips out not a good idea.
All that said, I will finish Time Sampler kits. Yes, the Kreinik braid is now here and offer them sometime in October.
Keeping Track of My Sales:
If you sign up for my Newsletter will your inbox be flooded? No, I send out a Newsletter a few days before a sale and that's all.
My Newsletters are one page long, with date and time, of a sale and usually a listing of what is in the sale.
Requesting Old Patterns
If you wish to request an old design of mine, please email me with your request. I will do my best to bring back your requests in future sale.
Queendom Website’s Own Jargon
MacSoph is my trusty little Apple MacBook computer.
Back in the late 1980’s DH and I had an SE and an English friend named that computer ‘Sophie Enchilada’ a bit of ridiculousness that stuck and our computers have been ‘Soph’ ever since.
DH is my 'Dear Husband' who helps me with Mail Jail. He does some of my bookkeeping and he and I drive together to the post office because of parking.
The main thing to know about DH in connection with Queendom Website is the concept of ‘First Thing in the Morning’.
First Thing in the Morning means just that to me: it is the first thing I do in the morning.
DH has a different concept: First Thing in the Morning can often mean before 4:00 in the afternoon. DH isn’t a morning person.
This arises in connection with ‘Mailing Packages First Thing in the Morning’.
How Queendom Website Got its Name
Not long after MacSoph and I started our website, a friend said to me, your website is just like your own little private kingdom.
I replied, “yes, but not a kingdom, it’s a Queendom and I am Queen.”
And that’s why I usually have an abundant number of crowns and Things Royal on Queendom Website.
E-Week is my big once-a-year sale usually in mid-October. I have other sales during the year but E-Week is my extravaganza.
E-Week is named after Merchandise Night at seminars. Merchandise Night at seminars is an evening when teachers and other vendors sell their wares for 2 hours or so. Now I have E-Merchandise Week, shortened along the years to 'E-Week'.
During E-Week, Early Morning Surprise Windows happen on Saturday morning at 8:00 sharp California Time.
Surprise Windows have special items, often limited in number, for a short period of time. If I do say so, they are a special part of E-Week and they are great fun!
Mail Jail is the shipping division of my little business and it is the main reason I don’t have things for sale on Queendom Website all the time.
Every needlework teacher knows about Kit Hell. That’s the time before a class when you do nothing but order supplies and then divide them up into kits.
Even though I am retired from travel-teaching, I still have a bit of Kit Hell in my life.
If you have ever spilled 10,000 seed beads, you will know about Bead Mania.
This is all the Queendom Website Jargon I can think of right now. If I think of more of it, I will post it here.
Queendom Website's Production Team
Queendom Website's staff includes:
Queen Consort (DH) who helps with bookkeeping and is an occasional staff writer (when I can talk him into it).
and Queendom Website's Faithful Subject, MacSoph (my trusty little MacBook computer).
July 9, 2019 Tuesday
The First Day of My Remodeled Website
My New Year's Resolutions for 2021
1. Take all the pent-up anxiety about perfection and redirect that energy toward creativity. Open up your minds and think of creative possibilities you can bring to your needlework, ways that will personalize it and make it distinctly yours. Here are two ways to start:
Oops you made a mistake and you face a lot of ripping.
Ask yourself, is it really a mistake or a variation?
You do have to rip if you crossed most of your crosses in one direction and suddenly you started crossing them in the other direction, yep no way around that. Why? The real reason for good technique is that it allows all your attention to focus on your design (where it should be).
You don't have to rip if you made a leaf one row bigger than the design called for. This is obsessive behavior that needs redirecting in 2021.
You do need to rip if you make something so large it is out of scale with the rest of the design; you do not have to rip if it is barely noticeable.
You do not have to rip if you mixed up colors and the design is not exactly as the designer's model. For heaven's sake, if it looks OK, stop obsessing.
You do have to rip if a color or texture is not in harmony with the rest of the design.
You do not have to throw away a design if you run out of a dye lot.
If it looks like you are headed toward thread shortage, don't use the thread to the last strand, save at least 1/4 of it. Buy some more and decide where and how to introduce the new dyelot. I actually prefer to work with multiple dyelots. If you pay attention to lights and darks etc., they can bring an added depth to your design.
2. In memory of Audrey Francini, my generation's greatest needlewoman, slow down. Needlework is not a speed contest. Audrey was the slowest stitcher I have known. She was also the best. I have a couple of great stories about Audrey and her speed, I'll tell them in the next couple of mornings.
3. Forget about the Needlepoint Police. They don't exist except in their minds. You may meet people who think they know it all. Good for them, I applaude their confidence, but I don't buy into it.
I have probably told this story a dozen times but it is worth telling again and again. Years ago a friend wrote to me and asked, will this Kreinik braid look good with this silk?
I replied, beats me, try it and see.
Friend: whadaya mean you don't know, you're the teacher.
My reply: if the Immortal Artists Of The Western World don't know without trying, how would I, one mere mortal needlework teacher? (There's a bit more to thsi story too, I'll tell the rest another time).
All this goes to say once again, there is no real right and wrong, there are problems of course. The best way to find solutions is to think creatively.
Those are my New Year's Stitching Resolutions for 2021.
Reminders for me as well as for all of you.
Thursday September 23, 2021
What a good time I had yesterday: it took me all day and I stitched very little, but I worked out the next steps of my sampler. Hopefully today I will have a chance to stitch and see if it all works.
As I am stitching this sampler, certain details about technique come to mind and I will include them here in News&Views as they crop up.
Here is one from this morning:
Waste knots: when possible begin AND end threads with waste knots in channels where you will work over them, rather than anchor your thread through the back of your work.
Why? Needlework is all about tension. I'm guessing you have worked hard on tension by laying threads carefully and evenly. If you anchor your next thread through the back of your nicely laid threads, you will inevitably tighten them. thereby taking a chance of udoing some of the even tension.
In multi-layer work this is only important for the top layer, the one that will ultimately show. That said, if the first layers peek through the top layer, you do want to pay attention to them also.
I know waste knots aren't always possible, but do consider using them whenever you can.
I'm off to stitch now. I'm eager to see if my plans for my sampler will work out well.
Wednesday September 22, 2021
I had quite a few notes in the last couple of days about my designs. I will see what I can do about them in the next months.
Some time ago DH suggested to me that I might consider putting sales on hold till the spring and use this time for some creative projects as well as catching up in general.
His idea coincided with my finding the pair of barely started samplers and now my plans have evolved and I am happily stitching away.
On Queendom Website's home page this morning, I began telling my Elizabeth Cady Stanton Story. I decided a few days ago that what I really wanted to do was make a sampler celebrating the friendship of Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony, and so I planned a rough sketch and I've started.
I'm hoping I can do a decent job; I have a special wish and a dream for it, and if I stitch a sampler I am proud of, I will tell you my wish and my dream.
A Nice Time ahead! I am sorry about no sales in the autumn or winter, but when things are better, I'll be back. Meanwhile I hope you will come along on my journey.
Monday September 20, 2021
This morning on Queendom Website's home page I have posted four designs, three different directions I could take my business:
Dowager in the Evening is my tribute, a jeweled evening dress adapted to a geometric shape. You have to look carefully to see that it is indeed a square. Congress cloth.
Peacock Square is a simpler geometric on 18-mesh, a design well adapted to easy choices of colors and I would sell this design as instructions only.
Dressing Henry is a larger more complex sampler of patterns adapted from Holbein as well as other artists who have painted Henry VIII through the ages.
Dressing Elizabeth is the most complex of the four designs. This version, with its imitation cutwork, is the easier of the two, both for me to write and stitchers to stitch.
Of the four, which would you choose?
Sunday September 19, 2021
Tomorrow morning I will post two geometric designs. They are interesting to me because one is a simple four-way geometric on 18-mesh canvas and the other a more complex and intricate design on congress cloth.
I will also post along with them Dressing Elizabeth and I will leave Dressing Henry.
I will be interested in comparing the four and I would be interested also in your choices. I will write more about my observations tomorrow, along with the postings.
For now I am at work on my Demons Needle Book, and I have cut and hemmed a piece of congress cloth for a sampler for Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony. I am very much looking forward to starting it.
Enjoy your Sunday.
Saturday September 18, 2021
What to do about these designs of mine: Dressing Elizabeth and Dressing Henry. Do I write them and sell them next year? Or do I simply say I enjoyed stitching them and park them back in a closet?
I haven't made up my mind yet.
Over and over and over again I hear from people that I MUST start selling my instruction by pdf. Since I would have no additional expenses, I could sell a pdf file for $7.00 or $8.00, thereby making them so affordable for everybody.
Given how often I receive these emails, I think it might be time for a change. This thought is the reason I am waffling about writing my large projects like Dressing Elizabeth and Dressing Henry.
Some time ago I stitched a four way geometric to look like a peacock feather -- it is a simple little design, the sort where people can choose a variety of colors and threads and most choices will be successful.
Not long ago I stitched another four-way geometric on congress cloth, called 'Dowager in the Evening.' It is more intricate than the peacock feather, plus it has a ton of beads. It is more expensive, its choices more involved, the level for making choices more difficult.
I will post these on my website on Monday morning. the peacock feather is certainly less intricate, less expensive, less of a stitching commitment, and perhaps a better direction than Dressing Elizabeth and Dressing Henry.
Friday September 17, 2021
I am taking a day off from writing about designing and stitching to recommend a nearly 40-year-old television series called The Jewel in the Crown.
DH and I bought a recently remastered video of it and started watching it about 5 nights ago. We saw it when it was new; we've seen it several times, but not for about 10 years, I'd guess.
It is long -- 14 hours long in total, and it is sometimes not easy to watch, but after all these years, it holds up remarkably well.
As we finished hour 5 last night we thought the same that we have always thought: hands down our choice for best television series ever.
When I first saw it, I remember thinking that the actor who played the police chief must have been an evil person in real life. In my English years, I had a friend who knew him quite well and she always told me no, he was a very gentle and kind person, nothing at all like the character who for a while made him famous.
Funny, even knowing what my friend of long ago thought, I still find it difficult to believe he isn't spooky evil.
For those of you not familiar with the series, it is the story of the English leaving India. 'The Jewel in the Crown' is India.
I knew the backstory, for my English BFF was married to one of the Granada executives who made the series. The Chairman of Granada (my friend's husband's boss) was an English war hero married to an Indian woman and he was responsible for ordering the re-ordering the four novels (the Raj Quartet by Paul Scott) into a sequential story.
Nobody ever said this directly to me, but I always had the notion that 'The Jewel in the Crown' was a love letter from the Granada Chairman to his wife.
Thursday September 16, 2021
The second half of September is here and I am thinking the first signs of fall are in the air. Both DH and I noticed it yesterday on our walk.
I have been at work on Elizabeth Cady Stanton for about three weeks now, and yesterday it came to me what I want to do with her. I was quite excited about my idea and worked for a while on a drawing. I will finish her needle book and then start on my idea.
I will leave Dressing Henry and Dressing Elizabeth on Queendom Website's Home Page for a few more days, then I will post a geometric I am particularly pleased with. It is my favorite geometric in a long time.
On with the day. For a couple of days I'm guessing I will be stitching lettering. The hard part of lettering is getting it in the right place on the piece. The rest is, as many of you know, easy Cross Stitch over 1 Mesh.
I am partial to samplers because of the different motifs and the lettering and I have plans for several new ones. But first I have Mrs. Stanton to attend to.
Five days till fall is officially here.
Wednesday September 15, 2021
Today we are half way through September, doesn't seem possible! Fairly soon I have to start making Time Sampler kits or decide to delay them until the spring. The kits are sooo time consuming to make -- I have to cut up, count and label 24 different colors of Soie d'Alger for each one.
I'll decide in the next few days.
I will leave Dressing Henry and Dressing Elizabeth up for a few more days. I've had several notes about them and about Phoenix in the last few days. The hard reality is, it is unlikely I will write instructions for all three, I have to choose one.
I don't know when I'll decide but if you have a favorite one of the three, let me know.