Jun 10, 2024


On Saturday, I got my shoes and socks on and headed to Hoosier Heartland, which is my ANG chapter. (ANG = American Needlepoint Guild). This used to be called Library Guild, because we met at the library branch south of town, but now we meet at the bank branch in front of CS2.

(I'd call it Bank Guild, but the evening group of South Bend/Michiana EGA meets there, too, so it might be confusing.) 

(EGA = Embroidery Guild of America).

(Then again, the morning group of EGA meets in a library, so I suppose that might be confusing too.)

(And then, there's the fact that the Elkhart Chapter of EGA meets in a Church...which is tonight, and just happens to be on the same day as Library Guild, but not the Library Guild that is ANG...the Library Guild that is EGA...but South Bend/Michiana, and not Elkhart...which meets in a Church.)

So there. (*)

Welcome back to Batshit Crazy Spinster Theatre, Dearies. Sorry for the crazy detour we just took, but my tiny little brain is just chock-full of all things Guild and stitchy-licious-ness, and I can't wait to tell you all about it!

First up...Saturday. Hoosier Heartland. Needlepoint.

Each year, Miss Charlene guides us in the stitching of a Janet Zickler Casey Santa. I have one completed and one unstarted one in my stash, and this guy is this year's version. Isn't he swell?

We started by stitching the foundation of his nose, and then we were told to stitch his cheeks and face using the basketweave stitch.

If you're a needlepointer, you are probably intimately familiar with the basketweave stitch. As a matter of fact, I think learning basketweave stitch is the very first thing that needlepointers do in their needlepointing journey, but alas, I never learned how to do the basketweave stitch.

(I'll pause here for all of the veterans in the gallery to take a sharp gasp of breath and then shake their heads disapprovingly.)

Me not knowing how to do the basketweave stitch has always been a tremendous source of shame and humiliation, since I was just certain that absolutely every single stitcher on the planet knows how to do basketweave stitch except me, and that as soon as the needlepoint authorities discovered that I had perpetuated this fraud, would come into my house in the middle of the night to revoke my certificate and confiscate my decoder ring.

Nope. Not so much.

When one of my Guild stitchsters ratted me out, Miss Charlene came over to my side of the conference table (it's a bank conference room, so...conference table), and within about thirty-seven seconds flat...basketweave!

I had to be cool, calm, and collected there in front of Guild, but can I tell you that when I came home that afternoon I prancy-danced so hard over this whole "I now know how to basketweave stitch" thing I pulled a muscle, spilled my sippy cup, and had my Jersey Boy running for the pharmaceuticals.

Total. Game. Changer.

But wait...there's more to the story!

Here's how Santa looked when I stopped prancy-dancing and got back to stitching him Saturday evening:

And then here's how he looked after I completed a good portion of his face:

Hang on a second.

Is it me, or does Santa look kind of...gee...what's the word?  How about FREAKING orange!  Yup, the called-for "flesh" colored silk looked decidedly more like an Oompa Loompa than it did like a jolly old elf, and then it started to look a LOT like a bad spray tan...so out it came.

After about seven hours of basketweave stitching and patting myself on the head every fifteen minutes because I am now a person who knows how to do the basketweave stitch thankyouverymuch, he looked like this:

Oh...so much better! And all it took was a little switch from the called-for color to a more pinky-pale color, and we were back in business!

See? It's amazing how different they look, isn't it?

I left Santa looking like this late last night as the final few minutes of The Jinx played and JB and I looked at each other wondering how we get caught up in these crazy programs on the TeeVee every now and then:

So. Once I finish that tiny little corner that I missed next to his left eye, this will go back into the ANG bag for next month's meeting.

Today was the morning meeting of EGA, and I opened my fancypants Guild notebook to take the minutes and was quite taken with myself when asked a question and I was able to respond with all of the pertinent details because there they were...all nicely recorded in my fancypants Guild notebook. And then everybody patted me on the head and remarked how organized I am, and I basked in the glow of...

Gee. Wait a minute. Something seems...askew.

I guess I missed the big fat note on June 1st that said WRITE AND SEND NEWSLETTER, because today is June 10th all day long and the smug, full of her big fat self, organized Secretary FORGOT to write and send a newsletter.


So. I took copious notes and made pitiful apologies, and will hopefully get my silly act together in the next hour and a half, because then it will be time for me to put my socks and shoes (and bra) back on and head out to Church Guild.

That's the report for the day and the weekend, Dearies! I hope your very own day and weekend have been wonderful, that you've done whatever makes your heart sing and your skirt twirl, and that you'll come tell me all about it!


(*) They're called humorous asides, Betty, and you can look them up under TANGENTS that this stupid Spinster uses to distract you from the fact that much of what is recorded here is complete nonsense and drivel. You're welcome.


  1. Hi Coni Years ago splendor did cards of skin colors, bronze porcelains, blush porcelains, Santa's Rosy Cheeks, halloween fun and Christmas colors. I don't think they do this any more but since I am getting close to older than dirt I have them and would be glad to send splendor numbers if you are interested.

  2. Wowie Zowie Coni...you lead such an exciting life! And I'm bonkers over the Santa...not a needlepoint fan like my mom was, but a smol item like that one I could probably handle...πŸ‘on the color change..much better!xoxo 😍

  3. @Betty - those humorous asides/tangents are part of what keeps me coming back to read Coni's blog Betty! NOT just to see what she's stitching. I'd wager there are far more in my camp than not. So there. You lose. :-)

    @Coni - you are so lucky to have guilds in your area, especially with one meeting right across the street! I'd have at least an hour drive to get to the needlework guilds in my area. And good call on changing the color on Santa!

  4. I’m waiting to get that Santa back from the finisher. It was fun to stitch!

  5. I would have changed the face color too! But I suspect a lot of RG threads have dye lots as well as DMC, etc. Now I want to do a new Casey Santa, only done 1.

  6. Santa is looking awesome and I think your color change was perfect, Coni. I hope you enjoyed the rest of your guild meetings, Coni!

  7. Hooray for learning basketweave. I too was very chuffed as all my pieces used to come out diamond shaped and now they are minimally distorted.

  8. Yes, the skin color change is perfect. On the 10th I was entertaining myself in Amsterdam, got on a ship on the 11th and am now cruising the British Isles. Such joy. Debby in CO