Monday, December 15, 2014

Shakin' Up a Little Snow

Woo Hoo!!  I've just finished working on a new holiday stitch guide, called SNOWGLOBE 1, by Sandra Gilmore.  After the large FALL SPLENDOR piece I stitched last month, this was very, very fun because it was small (8"x 9") and didn't require any fancy stitches!  Here's a peek up close:

I used a blackwork pattern for the table area, using a subtle variegated Watercolours thread; and I also padded some of the pedestal rows stitched with DMC #8 pearl cotton to add a bit more dimension.  As for everything else, I used lots of metallics for lots of sparkle (which, alas, you can't see in any of the photos).  The snowglobe area was all done in tent stitch, but with a blended needle of floss and opalescent Kreinik blending filament.  The globe really does sparkle like a snowy snowglobe should!  And while my model has a more antique-y gold look, I've also included thread options for a pure snow white effect...

If you love snowglobes (and let's face it, who doesn't?) and want a fun little project to keep you merry and bright throughout the holiday season, this may be the canvas for you.  I left my model flat for framing, but it sure would be cute to have it finished as a standup piece, don't you think?

 Please contact your local stitchery store for ordering the Sandra Gilmore canvas called SNOWGLOBE 1, along with my stitch guide, from our distributor, FLEUR DE PARIS.  And just so you know, the stitch guide is available on my website, too....

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

A New (Encore) Cyber Class for 2015

Bonjour, Stitchers!  Recently, I was browsing through my file of past cyber classes and decided it was time to do "Ribbons with Monogram" again, for those of you who may have missed it the first time around (a year ago).  It's such a sweet, romantic piece that looks like this:

It's a small project, 7" x 8.5", done on the old-fashioned brown mono canvas, just to give it an antique look.
There are three elaborate ribbon patterns, but each one is different and equally fun to stitch.  I've also designed a special alphabet that is a little bit Victorian, a little bit French, n'est pas?  If you enjoy stitching up fantasy ribbons, this is a fun way to try your hand at these three ribbons:

This design makes a perfect piece to stitch for yourself and/or for friends & family; the smaller size is great to make into a stylish accent pillow, too!  And because I couldn't narrow it down to just one colorway, I thought I'd offer the stitcher several color options (each one equally yummy):

The cyber class registration runs from now until mid-January 2015, and the class will start in February 2015, after the hectic holiday season winds down.  So if you're looking for a special treat for yourself, or a fun project to kick off  the new year, why not visit my website and see more of the particulars regarding this new "Ribbons with Monogram" cyber class -- including the specific Watercolours threads and #5 pearl cottons used in each of the colorways.  And if you'd like to play with your own thread colors, you can always get just the pattern and create your own unique version from threads in your stash!

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Celebrate the Bounty

Here are more of my designs that share the colors and feel of the Autumn season. 
(They are all available at my website,  in the Sampler Collection and Impressionist Collection,
if you are interested.)
 Anway, I love designing things that can be displayed for longer times during the year; so 
I've amassed quite a collection by now....

Rusty O'Toole

Prairie Star

 Long Autumn Panel

 Red Poppy Collage

 Turning Leaves

My latest stitched painted canvas, Fall Splendor

and last but not least, Pumpkin Harvest 

Have a lovely Thankgiving weekend, and I hope you manage to sneak in a bit of stitching, too!

Friday, November 21, 2014

Fall Splendor

Well, here it is.... my largest finished painted canvas piece to date, FALL SPLENDOR by Sandra Gilmore.

It's been painted on the darker sandstone canvas, so it has a lovely aged parchment look to it; and with the "zig zag" border I designed for this piece, it measures 15" x 15".  Here's a peek at the variegated outer border:

What the photo doesn't really show you is that the entire floral pattern in the background is worked in simple Tent Stitch, using a glitzy Kreinik #8 Braid (6 spools, to be exact!), while the rest of the sandstone canvas is left unstitched.  Then for the leaves, I wanted something very simple (to show off all the colors) and decided to use long Straight Stitches.  Surprisingly fast, fun and non-stressful (well, if you don't count concentrating on keeping the long stitches flat, smooth and untwisted), it really was a joy to stitch all the different types of leaves in 5 ply of Splendor silks.

As this big leaf photo shows, just by changing the stitch directions in certain areas of the leaves, you can create surprising color changes, because the light hits the stitches in different ways....

Those red berries and fat acorns are padded and stitched with a shiny rayon ribbon, just to provide additional texture and surprise to the piece. (The padded elements are a bit smushed in the photos, since they're smack up against the scanner bed, but trust me, they are nice and poofy in real life.)

This canvas was an absolute joy to stitch, and I plan to enjoy looking at it all autumn long.

If you are hankering for an elegant fall piece, please contact your favorite stitchery store so they can order you both the FALL SPLENDOR painted canvas and stitch guide from my friends at FLEUR DE PARIS.  The stitch guide is also available on my website

Friday, November 14, 2014

My Current Fall Project

After finishing Sandra Gilmore's OLIVER last month, I was eager to get back to work on this very large piece (another Sandra Gilmore beauty) called FALL SPLENDOR.  It is such an elegant piece that I have been enjoying working on it every night while I watch (ahem, listen) to tv....

Whew!  It's a large piece - 15" x 15" with my added border work - but the sandstone background isn't solidly stitched, so only the gold floral work needs to be done, which I'm doing in plain old Tent Stitch with a Kreinik #8 Braid. I'm making progress, one leaf at a time...

It's rather restful, doing lots of tent stitching with metallic thread; then switching over to long Straight Stitches for the leaves. I've never done any of those old "longpoint" kits that Dimensions used to sell, but I've certainly enjoyed creating my long-stitched leaves, using 5 ply of Splendor silks. It's a simple but effective way to showcase all the luscious fall colors in this piece.

I've already padded the acorns, but still have to finish the red berries at the bottom -- they'll be padded too, with a shiny rayon ribbon, I think.

Anyway, I'm hoping to have this finished shortly (one leaf and five berries to go, woo hoo!), and then I should have the FALL SPLENDOR stitch guide done and mailed off to Fleur de Paris in the next week or so.  Stay tuned for further stitching adventures!

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

More Fall Favorites

After I stitched a few fall quilt designs, I decided to broaden my approach and do some sampler-type designs that would be appropriate for displaying for a longer time in the fall,  and didn't depend on Halloween elements for their continued enjoyment.  They range from traditional designs to more
abstract or impressionistic pieces....

Here are some of my all-time favorites:   PUMPKIN HARVEST (which is basically a cross-stitch graph that is stitched on the plain brown 18 ct. canvas -- simple but elegant) 




As the days and nights get cooler, it's delicious to stitch with these warm, rich colors, plus working lots of elegant patterns is another fun way to transition into the season of long dark nights -- now we'll have lots more time for stitching at the end of the day!

Monday, November 10, 2014

Fall Color

Over the years I've designed many pieces for the autumn season. 
 The first ones were quilts, such as FALLING LEAVES,






 They are all built around traditional quilt blocks that stitch up fairly quickly and easily, and provide an excuse to play with lots of rich reds and golds and greens in a satisfying geometric design.  So if you're looking for an autumn design that is fun to work while sitting in the evenings watching tv, 
these fall quilts are just the thing!!

Friday, October 31, 2014

The Spookiest Day of the Year

Are you ready for Trick or Treat tonight?

Got all your pumpkins carved?

Got lots of candy? (All your favorites, of course...)

Watch out for those spooky black cats;

And keep an eye out for low-flying owls, too.

But most of all, 
be sure to have a really sweet and safe



Thursday, October 23, 2014

WHOOOOO Loves Halloween???

Do you??
Have you been working on any Halloween projects this month?
I've been super busy stitching on several autumn designs and painted canvases this season.  I showed you my new HALLOWEEN RIBBONS in my last post; it was soooo fun to sneak in some counted canvaswork in-between all these delicious new Sandra Gilmore canvases I've been playing with.

And now I'm delighted to share my next stitch guide with you --  he's called OLIVER, by Sandra Gilmore.

What a HOOT!!  And isn't he cute?  I mean, really...  He's a smallish canvas (10" x 10") , with a handful of easy stitches, so it worked up pretty fast.  I really, really wanted a variegated background for Oliver, so I changed the plain green stripes to a woodsy variegated thread with a woven brown border (although the stitch guide also gives solid color options as well).

Oliver's body and feathers are also done in variegated threads, to give him a more realistic look to his feathers. His eyes and beak are padded (although they got a bit smushed in the scanner!).  And the "Happy Halloween" text is tent stitched with one of those yummy variegated Painter's Threads I've been eager to try; here it gives a nice rich shimmer of greens and browns to the sign.

I like OLIVER a lot.... especially because his Halloween message will be nice to display around the house all autumn, and not just for that big purple & orange day!  If you love owls and Halloween, this could be your next fun project...  Please visit my website for more information on this new OLIVER stitch guide!

Friday, October 10, 2014

Time to Stitch Up Some Spooky Fun

Hey, Stitchers: are you buying some pumpkins and setting out your Halloween decorations this weekend? 

Are you itchin' to stitch up one more Halloween project?
                How about my newest design, HALLOWEEN RIBBONS??

I had a blast designing and stitching this fun piece.  I tried to fit in as many Halloweeny treats as I could, so you can stitch some cats, bats, hats, ghosts, pumpkins, candy corn and spiders.  And oh yeah, there are some fun ribbon bands to stitch, with lots of purple and orange chrysanthemums (or asters, if you prefer). 

You can make your pumpkins with or without faces - or alternate them, like I did.  The falling candy corns and sour balls are fun to create, and should put a smile on everybody's face!

This piece is truly over-the-top, I know.... but hey, where else can you have so much fun with lots of purple and orange threads?!?

Please visit my website for all the ordering information on this new, spooky fun HALLOWEEN RIBBONS design.           Happy Friday, Everyone!

Friday, September 5, 2014

Time for a New Cyber Class!

Many years ago (well, 14 to be precise) I designed a monochromatic geometric piece called PINK PARFAIT:

Over the years it's been a consistently popular piece, even though it takes some time to stitch it on the finer 24 ct. Congress Cloth and is worked with only two DMC floss solid colors and one fine metallic thread.

Just recently a stitcher emailed me about her interest in stitching PINK PARFAIT but didn't want to work it on 24 ct. Congress Cloth; could it be stitched on 18 ct. canvas instead?   So I pulled out the model and propped it in my office.  As I studied it, I wondered how it would look if I updated the design a bit -- revising some the stitch patterns, and using variegated silk threads on 18 ct. eggshell canvas this time around.

Well, folks, here's how it turned out:

(Please note: the photo of the pink version is turned "on point"; although the piece is actually stitched in the direction shown in the teal version above.  With this project you have the option of framing it either way -- and how cool is that?)

And I must say, even though the 11.5" size is almost the same as the 12" one done on Congress Cloth, it definitely worked up a LOT faster!  And was VERY fun to stitch using a subtle variegated Waterlilies silk, with two matching Splendor silks and two different metallic ribbons.  Here's a peek at it up-close:

And after I had it stitched up, it occurred to me that this would be a really fun cyber class.  So  TA DA, that's how I'm presenting it to you:  as a new cyber class for November 2014, called PATCHWORK PARFAIT.

The stitching on this piece is very easy and soothing; nothing difficult here except the counting of the borders... In fact, the hardest thing about this piece was deciding which color of variegated thread I wanted to stitch it in!!  I wanted to stay with more monochromatic color skeins, so there weren't any big jumps in the color sections.  Ultimately, I whittled it down to these five luscious colorways, so stitchers have these choices for their piece:

So, Geometric Stitchers, if you are in the mood for a yummy new project that's lots of fun to stitch, please visit my website, Laura J. Perin Designs, and click on the LJP CYBER CLASS section to find out more about this upcoming PATCHWORK PARFAIT class.  Registration is open from September 5th until October 18th.

Monday, September 1, 2014

Back At the Beach (again)...

I promised you a look at my finished new canvas (and the resulting stitch guide)....
          so here it is -- SHELLSCAPE, by Sandra Gilmore:

This was soooo fun to work on; and very different from the stuff I usually stitch!
There are lots of areas that need to be done in Tent/Basketweave Stitch, but I truly
enjoyed the simplicity of those sections.  Although I did jazz it up a bit
by using lots of "blended needle" work -- mixing thread types or colors, to add
subtle depth and texture to the large flat areas like the dunes, sea, and clouds....

And I used a LOT of variegated threads -- for the sea, sand, borders, shells, coral  -- 
well, almost everything!  Even the table ledge with its enlarged blackwork pattern is done 
with a "driftwood" looking variegated #8 pearl cotton by ThreadworX.

And you can see that most of the items are slightly padded as well.  I was surprised how fun 
the conch shell was to pad and stitch; if you look closely you can see that I used 
two variegated peachy threads for the outer conch shell - the lighter one on the top half,
 and the slightly darker one on the lower half:

I left the big white flowers for last, and I'm very glad I did.  Barbara Elmore, a designer 
who I consider to be the Queen of Embellishment, was kind enough to send me a sample
of a new ribbon she is marketing (through Sundance Designs) called RETRO RIBBON.
She suggested I give it a try for my floppy flowers -- and 
she was soooo right -- it was perfect!!

The 5/8" wide couture ribbon really mimicked the crinkly petals of a mantilla poppy; 
and I very carefully flattened, twisted or poofed each petal in place, before tacking them 
down with small couching stitches.  The ribbon also has a slightly transparent texture, 
so the yellow painted canvas showed through enough to create an interesting effect 
as well...  I was so impressed with the finished look of the flowers, that I asked Barbara 
to send me a bit of green RETRO RIBBON to add a few dimensional leaves!

So if you want to celebrate the end of a lovely summer
or perhaps you just love a good beach canvas,
please contact your local stitchery store to get this SHELLSCAPE 
canvas and stitch guide from FLEUR DE PARIS.
You can also order just the stitch guide from my website....


Friday, August 8, 2014

Last Call!

Just a reminder, Stitchers: 
This weekend is the last time you can register for my next cyber class, 

 It's a printed canvas (that I make myself) with very fun easy stitches worked on top; a jazzy little border; a shadow-stitched background; and the best part is definitely the "messy beading" that finishes off the flower center.  And you have your choice of a red or pink flowered canvas...

So, if you want to try a small project with lots of appeal, that works up quickly.... this might be the summer project for you!  Please visit my website for the class registration information.