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Welcome and thank you for taking time to read and share the experiences and happenings
at  Barberry Row  and  Heirlooms  and in my life.
I trust they will be a blessing and encouragement to you.
Sincerely,  Sherelyn


Blog #1  thru to Blog #22  have all been written here on my web site,
but since then subsequent blogs can be read on my blog site -

(to access older blogs  -  go to 'Archives' at the bottom of the blog page)

-  or  -   alternatively they can be read as PDF documents.     To access  PDF's  :  click here


Blog #14  -  1 October 2013  :  Below     (Celebration of Needlework Show  -  St. Charles  -  Missouri)

Blog #14

Tuesday, 1 October 2013 ~

In this note I will tell you all about 'Celebration of Needlework'.

HISTORY:  Celebration of Needlework was inspired by a group of ten New England shop owners who were anxious to promote the industry.  They were thankful for the support of their vendors and clients and wanted to find a way to reward them for this long time relationship.  At this time two of the original sponsors, Pam Reed and Donna Reynolds are planning and administering the shows and seminars for each year.

Celebration is the oldest, continuously running needleart show in the U.S. and Canada.  It is their goal to continue to provide the best opportunity for retailers and designers to exhibit at a major regional show as well as to unite nationally known designers to teach.  Their success is a direct result of hundreds of needlewomen who have come to take classes and to hear lectures from the finest teachers and purchase from shops bursting with the latest up-to-date merchandise.

Dates for the 20th year are: 30 April 2014 - 4 May 2014

A choice of fourteen wonderful classes were available at St. Charles.  At the time of writing this note, teachers for the classes, class descriptions & photos of the projects were still listed on their website -

The classes were held on the Thursday, Friday and Saturday.

Some of the classes that were available -


Classes were taught by eight very gifted teachers and designers -

Eileen Bennett  :  Barbara Jackson  :  Susan Greening Davis  :  Pam Reed
Elizabeth Talledo  :  Tracy Horner  :  Lynda Keske  :  Claudia Dutcher

Below are a few profiles of some these outstanding teachers and the projects they taught -

Barbara Jackson  of  Tristan Brooks

Barbara Jackson is well known throughout the needlework world
for her love of traditional early English and American design.
She is a graduate of the National Academy of Needlearts
teacher certification program, and holds a certificate "with distinction"
from England's Royal School of Needlework.

Barbara has taught for many organizations over the years,
including the ANG National Seminar,
EGA National Seminar, and Callaway School of Needlearts.

She markets her own original designs under the Tristan Brooks logo.
Her work has been featured in Needle Pointers, Needlepoint Now,
Inspirations magazine (including cover of 2010 issue #67),
the EGA magazine and Sampler and Antique Needlework Quarterly.


Eileen Bennett  of  The Sampler House

Artist, author, teacher
Eileen Bennett is a recognized expert in the art of sampler stitching,
much sought after in the United States and abroad for her encyclopedic knowledge of historic embroideries.
She has written six books, including her two-volume
Note Book of Sampler Stitches,
The Red Book of Sampler Stitches
A Note Book of Pulled Thread Stitches
that embroiderers and canvas workers routinely turn to
for well documented, historically accurate stitches.
Her designs are noteworthy for their authenticity and grace.
Like her books, they are much-admired for their comprehensive,
easy-to-follow instructions and diagrams.
Since opening The Sampler House, in 1984
she has sold over 500,000 leaflets.

A contributor to America's leading needlework magazines,
Eileen is also a popular, informative and entertaining instructor.
She teaches throughout the country
and serves on the board of Advisors for
Antique Sampler & Needlework Quarterly.
She has executed commissions from Public Museums
in the USA and Northern Ireland.
Eileen has published Sam Cloth
a quarterly newsletter that includes hard-to-find information on samplers.

Tracy Horner  of  Ink Circles

Tracy Horner's passion lies at that intersection between science and art.
Her engineering background has established a strong sense of orderliness
and structure that translates through and into her artwork.
Tracy started stitching as a young girl
and began making up her own patterns at an early age.

In 2006 at the prompting of others who enjoyed her unique graphic style
punctuated occasionally with a dot of geeky humor,
Tracy began publishing her charts under the company name Ink Circles.
Her geometric designs lend to a wide variety of fabric and thread colors
bringing each design to life.

Tracy has taught a wide array of subjects to an equally wide range of audiences, including technical training for the US Navy, calligraphy to grade school children,
and sock knitting at the local yarn shop.


REGISTRATION DESK:  Opened Wednesday, the 18th of September.  Besides those ladies who had pre-registered for classes, the event was open to the pubic for a daily admission fee.  Everyone could purchase raffle tickets and/or souvenirs, enroll for classes which still had vacancies and other events.

Each attendee was given a booklet
which contained a schedule of classes, events,
a list of all the vendors
in the Merchants Mall
and places to write notes


Commemortive pins,
tote bags, project bags
badge holders
and other items were availabe for purchase

Just two
of the souvenirs available
are shown.

The needlework project bags were gorgeous
and available in several different stunning colours -
shocking pink,
vibrant purple
& brillant turquoise


CHARITY RAFFLES:  Raffle tickets were available for the duration of the event.
All proceeds were for the benefit of the Dana Farber Cancer Institute  -  for cancer research.
There were at least twenty different raffles on the Registration desk - stitched needlework pieces; needlework designs; needlework accessories (boxes, frames, etc.); bundles of threads; bundles of fabrics, etc.  And all so beautifully presented.

Open every day until midnight for attendees to get together to stitch.

MAKE IT, TAKE IT  or  TAKE IT & MAKE IT!:  This was the first event to be held - Wednesday evening :  6pm - 7.30pm
An opportunity to spend time with four talented needle artists who demonstrated and helped with the finishing of a simple, yet special project. Students began with one teacher and rotated to the others, leaving with four small projects appropriate to give as gifts for friends, family, or to keep for yourself.  One skilled taught could be applied to the other three projects.

MEET 'N GREET:  Wednesday,  8pm - 9pm
This was an informal evening to meet the teachers and for them to present the projects they were to be teaching and for everyone to view all the classes and enroll for additional classes if there were any vacancies.

Thursday,  3pm - 5pm
Stitching on perforated paper, or punched card-board as the Victorians called it, was a favourite from the mid to late 1800's pastime that is today almost a forgotten and certainly overlooked area of Victorian needlework.  The Victorians loved to stitch, and they would stitch on anything,.  It was their creativity that produced the abundance of things we see today.

Collectors learn most of what they know by seeing and touching the things they collect. The more you see the more you know. Claudia Dutcher has been collecting and studying perforated paper needlework for 20+ years. Her collection started with a paper bookmark worked by her Great, Great Grandmother. She owns one of the largest collections of perforated paper Needlework in the United States.

Whether you knew something about paper needlework, or nothing at all, this was a wonderful time as saw the most unusual, beautiful original antique perforated paper pieces.  Handouts detailing the history of perforated paper needlework were given and Claudia walked us through her timeline of perforated paper needlework using her antique pieces for "show and tell". One learnt how paper needlework transitioned from small pieces and samplers to its most recognizable form - the motto pieces.

Claudia Dutcher  of  Dutch Treat Designs

Claudia has always liked to work with her hands.
Since a child she has enjoyed the challenge of making something.
Creating something with her hands has always been what she enjoys doing best.
One of her favorite challenges is making something from scratch -
"from nothing" as she often says.
It is no surprise that she learned embroidery and crochet as a child.
Her love of needlepoint, cross stitch, and knitting came later.

Owning and running a needlework store, with employees and everything else
that it takes to keep a business open, it is more organization and logistics than creativity.
It is a creative business to own, but requires much more behind the scenes work
than most people see. No one actually just sits and stitches at a needlework store.
Claudia always asked herself and her employees;
"What makes Dutch Treat different? Why should someone shop with us?"

To add more creativity to her business duties,
she began to create unique stitching projects, only available from Dutch Treat,
to give her store something different for classes.
Soon she was designing everything for these Dutch Treat exclusive projects from scratch - the idea, the stitching motifs, and the finishing.
The most well known of this design effort is the Tabletopper -
a 22" square doily / centerpiece stitched on Anne Cloth
using size 5 and 12 pearl cotton and Caron Watercolours thread.
While the general trend in stitching was getting smaller,
at Dutch Treat things were getting bigger.
Claudia started Dutch Treat Designs in 1997
to market the Tabletopper concept to other shops.
There are now eighty plus tabletopper designs available through Dutch Treat Designs.


Perforated Paper
class project

PREVIEW & WINDOW SHOPPING:  Thursday,  6.30pm - 9pm.
This was a special time when the attendess got to "see it first".  There was a brief get-together when Susan Greening Davis, the events emcee, introduced all the vendors and told what special items they would be featuring.  While she was giving the overview of the show, attendees were able to take notes in their free show brochure so that when the shopping began they wouldn't forget to ask for these specials.

Attendees could then "window shop" the show floor where the venders greeted them in their doorways to chat and they could look in the windows to see the enticing displays and to plan their strategy for the opening in the morning.


I had to take part in this event - and for those of you who know me - you will appreciate how anxious I was at having to stand before hundreds of ladies and talk to them!

Once this was over and I was standing in my room doorway with a small table set before me showcasing all my lovely wares, I was much happier.
So much easier to talk to folk on an individual basis.

This ended up being a particularly enjoyable event and evening.

I met so many lovely ladies.

VENDORS / MERCHANT MALL:  Open for the Friday and Saturday  :  9am - 5.30pm
Those ladies who weren't at a class, shopped and shopped and shopped!
This type of shopping - that is, going from one hotel room to the next - is so very relaxing.
Some vendors were retail shop owners and others were like myself (designers).

Below is a list of all the vendors.  Like myself, many of them had travelled for miles and miles to be there).

Room Number,  Retail Shop,  From  ... Room Number,  Designer,  From  ...

  Cecelia's Samplers



  JBW Designs



  Still Stitching With Susan 






  Needle In A Haystack






  Inspired Needle



  Rosewood Manor



  Shepherd's Needle



  Erica Michaels Designs



  The Silver Needle



  Olde Colonail Designs



  The Silver Needle



  Olde Colonial Designs



  Eat, Sleep, Stitch



  Ink Circles






  Dutch Treat Designs






  Barberry Row






  The Heart's Content


 This event was on the Friday evening.  Two sessions  :  7pm - 8pm  and  8pm - 9pm
The two Round Robin classes are among the most popular classes. Each session gives the attendee the opportunity to receive four kits from four talented teachers.  Each teacher rotates to the classroom explaining the kit and any specialty stitches and offers ideas for finishing

BREAST CANCER DINNER:  Saturday,  6pm  -  9pm
A delicious buffet meal and whilst we were partaking of it, Susan Greening Davis (our emcee for the evening whom I have known for 20 years as she was at the first 'Spirit of Cross Stitch Festival' event I attended back in February 1993) told of the history of buttons and of her passion for collecting them and showed many from her collection.  During the meal courses we would wander along the tables on which were about twenty fabulous baskets containing all sorts of needlework goodies.  These were part of the silent auction and so we had to keep checking back to see if our bid was still the highest for the basket we wanted.  (A the end of the evening I was successful in obtaining the basket I was bidding on.  It contained a large floral patchwork bag, various designs and a beautiful butterfly plaque on which was the loveliest of verses.  Just right for a gift for one of my granddaughters who loves butterflies!)

Throughout the evening Susan also entertained us with amusing stories and we played needlework related games.  Everyone ended up receiving a prize!   As each person became a winner, they were able to choose their prize from a table laden with prizes donated by the vendors.  It was a fun night.

At the close of the evening, over $2,000.00 had been raised to benefit the Dana Farber Cancer Institute.

If you would like to view photos of my room set up, have a read of my next blog.

And if you have been inspired by what you have just read - do seriously consider attending the next 'Celebration of Needlework'.

                                 Nashua,  New Hampshire  :  30 April  -  4 May 2014   :

                                                                          Bye for now,  Sherelyn

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