Thursday, October 16, 2014


Just recently began adding new items to my Etsy store and will continue to add over the next few weeks.  Majority will be needlework related sewing tools, linens, quilts and a few samplers.

I have a beautiful Silver Chatelaine Stamp Case and Silver Pig Tape Measure along with more great items I have acquired over the years that are ready for new homes. 

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Light at the end of the tunnel

Ever since market my life has been a whirlwind.  For my full time job I had a critical exam that consumed any free time I had for the last five weeks.  Out of the four exams I had to pass this ONE and it wasn't making it easy for me.  There are four exams required to be passed and all of the others I was able to pass first go around.  This one I had the pleasure of failing twice - the third time was either going to be the charm or I would need to find a new career to pursue - no pressure. Fortunately, for me I have always worked well under pressure.  Before I left to take the exam I told my husband and mom if I fail it the third time then this was not the plan God had for me at this point in my life, because it sure wasn't from the lack of studying and preparing for the exam. Over the last two years the verse that always comes to mind is 

"For I know the plans I have for you,
declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, 
to give you a future and a hope" 
- Jeremiah 29:11
When I sat down to take the exam after it started - can't write anything down before then I wrote another verse that comes to mind quite often at the top of my erasable board.
"I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me." 
- Philippians 4:13

It was with this mindset that I began my exam for the third time and hit the submit button - which seemed like forever to tally my score even though I am sure it was only a few seconds.  I about jumped up out of my seat when I saw the words PASS - never has one little word looked so good!  I was ecstatic to see I was able to bring up my score in two of the critical sections by approximately 30 points each.   I passed the exam with room to spare.

Now what do I get to do with my new found free time? I get to study for one more optional exam and a certification, but before beginning all of that fun I spent Friday evening and a good portion of Saturday at an amazing auction.  They were selling the estate of a collector who was more of a curator of fine antique quilts, crocks, furniture and all kinds primitive accessories.

Friday night the focus was quilts and stoneware.  My mom and husband arrived before I was able to get there and my seat when I arrived had three quilts he had already purchased for me that I had marked in my book.  As the night continued I had no trouble accumulating more.
Stack of quilts not all were from this auction
I headed out Saturday morning to Day 2 of the auction.  My husband told me to take his car since he thought I wouldn't be able to get much into his. 
By 10:00 this is what his car looked like and it was full by the end of the day. 
Beautiful sampler in blues and whites
Another wonderful sampler I had to remove from the frame
the glass was not cut large enough for the frame and
I was afraid leaving it would do more damage than good

Beautiful Victorian bed with hand carved medallions.
My husband had to make the trip out to pick this one up.
It was too beautiful to leave behind and will
probably replace Lance's existing bed.

After two days I ended up with quilts, samplers, furniture and of course I am a sucker for handmade wood boxes and was able to pick up one that is hand hewn - I don't know why I love wood primitive boxes and tools.  I joke that I must have been a wood worker in a prior life.  My mom also bought one for me which I didn't know until we loaded up because she was walking around and bidding behind me.

All of the goodies I found over the months and years are too many for just me.  I will be gradually adding many of these beautiful finds to my Etsy store for those of you who may be interested in adding to your collection.  I firmly believe each piece I find has it's own unique story and each of us are only it's temporary caretaker.  I will be including as much information about each piece based upon what I know.  I want to be able to share its history and how well it is made.  Some of these treasures only come around once since many are from the mid to late 1800's.  If you are interested in any of my finds you may purchase them thru Etsy and if you are local we can arrange pick up or delivery instead of shipping - just let me know. 

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Market Update

Wow - things have been really busy but I wanted to post my new designs I released at market this past weekend.  As always they are available from your favorite needlework shop or if you do not have one close by feel free to visit my Etsy store.

First up is the Holiday Wreath a very quick stitch.  May be finished as an ornament, gift bag or insert the design into a ready made Cottage Garden box to use as a "gift box" during the holiday season. 

Holiday Wreath
Threads – Gentle Arts
Linen – Lakeside Linen Meadow Rue 32 count
Model Stitched by – Stacy Diokno
Stitch Count – 47 x 45
Cottage Garden Box by Roman Inc.,

During 2013 Loudoun Sampler Guild's Program Committee offered to members a mystery band sampler as our project. Each month a member of our guild designed the mystery band of the month.  I had the honor of designing the band for the month of November.   The project was to use linen and threads from our stash.  This sampler does include a variety of specialty stitches and the materials used for the model I have included.  The inspiration for my band was based on the Adam and Eve Samplers but with a colonial twist given we were in Virginia.  The home I featured is based on a log home design and includes “Adam and Eve” in colonial attire.  November is known for Thanksgiving and included is a turkey along with a deer which run freely throughout the county.  I personally have always had a dog by my side so I felt my ”Eve” must have her favorite companion as well.

November Harvest
Fabric – Lakeside Linen, Pearled Barley 32 ct
Design Area – 200 by 100 (stitched over one)
Silk Threads – Gloriana
Model Stitched by LaDonna Snellbaker
Framing by Sherri Hubka Berkman
with Total Framing, Fairfax, VA

Early this year I stumbled across a portion of a sampler from England.  The sampler features a beautiful colors, border, floral motifs and one of my favorite sampler verses “Let Virtue be a Guide to Thee”.  The sampler portion does not include the name of the stitcher or the year the piece was stitched.  However, I was struck by how charming the sampler was and of course can’t help but wonder about the remaining portion left behind and why this portion was cut away from the main sampler.   When I was offered the opportunity to offer a kit exclusive I choose a portion of the sampler for a pinkeep.  The kit is available for thirty days from the shops who attended market.  After thirty days it will be available to all shop owners.  If you are interested please contact a shop that attended market to let them know you would like to purchase a kit from them.

Virtue be a Guide
Fabric – R&R Reproductions St. Valentine’s Blend, 30 ct
Threads – The Gentle Art
Model Stitched and Finished
by LaDonna Snellbaker