A warm welcome to our second Blogger of the Week, someone who has been an online friend of mine for many years now - I present Gracie!
1. Please introduce yourself – name, where you are from, family, pets etc.
My name is Grace Horton and some people call me Gracie. My dad hated it when someone did. He was very old fashioned. My younger brother never calls me Gracie. I am originally from Rhode Island and now retired with my husband Dennis in Arizona. My small family is still in RI. At present we have no pets. When we moved out here we had a Schnauzer and a Pug. Dennis and I will be married for 47 years this April (knew each other 10 days). I just turned 70 and it has been hard to say that number!
2. How long have you been stitching and how did you start?
My love for stitching began when I was about 7 when my Aunt Lucy taught me to crochet. That was a summer I will always remember. (Crazy story). Not too long after that I learned to cross stitch on gingham check and then to sew and then on and on to other crafts. My favorite first sewing project was a skirt sewn entirely by hand when I was only 12 years old.
3. How long have you been blogging and what inspired you to start? Is there a story behind your blog title?
I started my blog September of 2010. The title is from when I sold my crafts many years ago and that was how my license was listed. I just loved the way it sounded. Needles Pins and Dragonflies…….knitting, sewing and magical dragonflies! I am so glad that I started my blog. I have met so many wonderful friends from all over the world.
I guess I would say I am eclectic with my crafts. I usually have more than one thing going at once like now; I have a tatting project, a counted cross stitch and a sewing project. I then can choose what to work with depending on my mind set that day.
my first 12 tatted pieces from my lessons with a friend teaching me, Deb Wood
5. Do you have a favourite designer or style of design you are drawn to?
There is no favorite designer as I am quite eclectic with that too. I like a bit of all styles.
6. Which piece are you most proud of in your collection?
I love so many of my finishes but I think the sewing doll is one for sure. I saw it in Samplers & Antique Needlework magazine and knew I had to make her. (Vol 20, N0. 2 #75, Summer 2014) Her name is Elizabeth. The designer is Guilia Manfedini. I also did the finishing myself. She is special with the silk threads and silk dupioni dress and of course the beautiful porcelain hand painted doll. It was quite expensive to make but so proud of it.
Elizabeth by Guilia Manfedini
7. What has been your worst stitching disaster?
I do not like to think of stitching disasters, but rather hic-cups in the process. I am a determined crafter. When I set my mind to it, I can accomplish most things….like my tatting.
For something new it would be that I am trying to learn to do smocking. My practice piece looks pretty good but still trying to get my hands to do the real thing. I want to do this so I can make Wee Care Gowns for babies who do not survive birth. They are presentation gowns for the parents.
Doesn’t everyone have that dreaded box of must get to finish items? I certainly do. I really enjoy the process of finishing so I do not know why my box is waiting! I sometimes give away my finished items but mostly display them in my home.
I cannot think of which of my works most represents me. Maybe the Hardanger pieces because they require lots of patience and thought and steadiness.
Hardanger piece from Cindy Valentine, China Rose
I am a very sensitive person but do not like to show that side too often. I rather like people to think I am very strong. When I leave this world for the Happy World of Crafters I want to be able to do anything and everything so I will fit right in and make new friends. Friendship is so important to me.
12. Anything you would like to add?
So far I can say that I can I have learned Knitting, crocheting, sewing, quilting, hardanger, tatting, beading, counted cross stitch, needle punch and almost smocking. Is there anything else I should try? I keep busy every day. My stash, like so many other crafters is a store room of this and that.
assorted friends living in the sewing room...
Thank you Gracie for the interview and the wonderful insight into your life - stitcher, crafter, letter writer and keen contributor to my blog hops too!