This is a short reminder to say we are looking for people to apply for the Seminar Grant of $500 towards a course for Seminar 2014.
There is still some time as the deadline is October 15 2013.
Purpose
        The EAC Seminar Scholarship has been developed to support and encourage the aim of the Association to preserve traditional techniques and promote new challenges in the Art of Embroidery by providing the tuition to an EAC member for a course of study at an EAC Seminar.
        The scholarship will be applied to either one 4-day or two 2-day classes.
        One $500 scholarship may be awarded annually by the Embroiderers’ Association of Canada, Inc.

Check it out on the EAC web site – “members only”
If you want more details or would like an application please go to EAC Web site, Chapter Presidents, Regional directors or
Beryl Burnett  at                               vicepres@eac.ca
Many knitters that I talk with say that summer is too hot for them to knit.  For me, knitting is a summertime activity.  The long car drives through the beautiful Nova Scotia landscape give me time to absorb the beauty and vitality of the places through which we travel.  They also give me time to knit items to donate to Fall and Winter sales and my Church’ s Knitting Tree . It is easy to whip up a small pair of mitts or some fingerless (texting) mitts or the ever-useful knitted dishcloth.

This year, a trip to the Annapolis Valley in June set me off in a different direction with my knitting.  We stopped at the Avonport  Discount  Centre (www.avonportdiscountfabrics.com) where I found a skein of Briggs and Littles hand painted “Softspun” yarn in shades of purple, blues, and turquoise; it cried out to be knitted into a pair of wool mitts! 
I decided to knit a pair of “Fiesta Mitts”, a pattern that I obtained from the Lismore Sheep Farm Wool Shop (
www.lismoresheepfarmwoolshop.com) in River John on Nova Scotia’s North Shore.  This is a pattern that is knit double on four needles using 2 balls of wool.  I found the second ball of wool, a natural cream skein of MacAuslands 100% Maritime Wool, in the Annapolis Valley at Gaspereau Valley Fibres (www.gaspereauvalleyfibres.ca). 
There I also found a skein of turquoise, purple and green  100% Maritime Wool which had been hand dyed in Nova Scotia and a delightful pattern for “Manda’s Maritime Hat”.  I even picked up some wonderful wood knitting needles; they make knitting so quiet that I can now knit at night without waking anyone up! 
With yarn, needles and patterns at hand, I found the time to knit my hat and mitts and, for once now have a hat and mitts for myself that actually match my winter coat!  The nights are getting cooler and there is no telling when I might need them.  I was sorely tempted to wear them recently when I attended an outdoor concert in Truro’s lovely Victoria Park; s
inger / songwriter Dave Gunning and guitarist / fiddler Allie Bennett played and sang for over an hour in single digit temperatures while those of us in the audience shivered and shook but refused to break up the party! Next time I won’t be too proud to take my warm hat and mitts with me!

I have a hard time deciding which type of handwork to pick up but, whether it is a type of embroidery or some knitting or some other “fancy work”, my hands are usually busy, creating something for someone to make their lives easier and more beautiful!

Sheila Stewart
Marigold Guild of Needle Arts

As I have previous shared with you, I have been rearranging my stitching and sewing supplies, (that work continues .. bit by bit ), in addition to that I have also been going through the last things I have kept from my working years along with older things from the Girl Guide side of my life. I came across a ‘Fact Sheet’ on ‘Reflective Practice’ which prompted some thoughts…

‘Reflective Practice’.. how many times did I hear that phrase during my working years? Who knows… it is a required component of Nursing practice… but …. it is not restricted to Nursing… we All do it, in All arenas of our lives… and in some we are much more critical of our work than in others.

How many times have we compared something we have baked from a recipe given to us.. and decided it was not quite as good…. and we checked to determine what brand of flour or butter or other ingredient was used so we could use the same brand.. so ours would be as good as our friend’s?

When it comes to our needlework, I think this is the arena we are The Most critical of our own work..  stop and think of the last time you worked the same piece as your friends/Chapter colleagues… and you nit picked your own piece to within an inch of its life… a stray thread there (well it Is there.. must be your eyes that you can’t see it without a high powered microscope).. oh no, my stitch line is not evenly worked… (again back to the microscope for checking)… in fact, some folks do not frame their works or even finish them because they deem the work to be less than satisfactory for viewing by others.

Now I am not making a case for loosey goosey work in any of the arenas of our lives… that could easily lead to a slippery slope of anything is good enough, and we know that is not so. (and if we tried to rationalize That.. well can you just imagine the discussions we would be having with ourselves and others on That philosophy of work!)

However, there has to be a balance between accepting our best… which in truth is rather well executed.. and Not comparing our work to the same work done by another in response to a visual image.

As Lisa mentioned in her blog post last week, September is the start of a ‘new year’ for many areas of our lives from children returning to school for a new year to the many groups we belong to starting up again after the summer hiatus.  New year, new beginnings, special events, new projects, celebrations. What are the ‘new’ items in your life as we begin this ‘new year’?

Until the next time, Happy Stitching
Marie
I would like to start this blog by thanking Sue Thomas for her leadership in organizing and starting our EAC blog. 

September 27th 2013 Nat'l Stitch in Public Day
Downloadable EAC Poster

With September comes the start of the new year of guild/chapter meetings.  As part of the Toronto Guild of Stitchery I am extremely fortunate to attend both the day and evening meetings.  When I joined the guild I attended the evening group as I worked full time and had two small children in school.  Now my children are both at university and I am retired with my husband and can attend both groups.  Many guilds across Canada have noticed that it is difficult to attract new members.  Offering a day and evening group is a great way to attract new members and revitalize your guild.  Our evening group has it’s own program committee therefore day and evening groups can work on separate projects and learn new things.

September 27th is also EAC’s 40th Anniversary and National Stitch in Public Day events across Canada.  Our website has posters, badges and suggestions for making your event visible and 
attractive.  If your group wishes to be included with our press release for media coverage of your event, please send your event contact information to Lisa Carlin at
communications@eac.ca.  Our National Stitch in Public Day is an awesome way to introduce people to the art of hand stitching which we are so passionate about.

I had an opportunity this summer to give my son’s girlfriend a stitching kit while she was in the hospital.  The kit I selected was a floral needlepoint on a painted canvas that when completed zips up into a mini purse.  No framing or fancy finishing is required.  I was hoping for her to experience that awesome sense of completion and usefulness.  I must admit I was thrilled when my son told me she had completed the purse and was interested in trying something else. 

When I was a child and I was travelling on a bus or sitting in a doctor’s waiting room people were stitching or knitting etc. to pass the time and make something.  Today people have many, many diversions to occupy their time and energy.  Living in Toronto you are far more likely to see people engaged with their smart phones or iPods.  As stitchers we need to flaunt our talents.  You may never know how you might influence someone to take up a needle and enter the world of stitching!

Lisa Carlin

Find out more at the Embroiderers' Association of Canada website.
EAC is not responsible for content at external links provided within this blog.

About EAC

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The Embroiderers' Association of Canada (EAC) is a national non-profit educational organization whose purpose is to have a fellowship of persons who enjoy needlework and wish to learn and share their knowledge; and thereby to work towards maintaining higher standards of design, colour and workmanship.

Our aim is to preserve traditional techniques and promote new challenges in the Art of Embroidery through education and networking.

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