Our day trip to The Nimble Needle was such glorious fun! I was so excited to meet Sharon G in person, and of course Linda & I love meeting new needlepoint shops & their owners. Linda, Ashley & I figured we needed to leave by 6:30 AM to avoid beach traffic going to the Jersey shore. We did well driving down, just a little construction congestion but nothing really difficult.
Haddonfield is a pretty little suburban town, with a nice downtown area ripe with plenty of little shops. As we drove through, searching for (of course) Starbucks, all of us found a shop or two that caught our eye. I brought my framed Ponza canvases to share with Sharon, Karen, the shop owner & our classmates; Karen quickly found a spot to display them during class.
As we were getting set up, Sharon arrived, with a trunk show in tow! Great fun! Ashley helped Sharon bring in the show, as the rest of us mounted our canvases on stretcher bars & sorted out threads; right away, I saw plenty of Kreinik, beads & silks.....oh, this was going to be lovely.
After Ashley left us to visit friends in Philadelphia, Sharon handed out the pieces as well as the 25 page stitch guide. What detail!! And Sharon's guides even include two beautiful color photos of the piece, one on the glossy cover of the guide.
Sharon started us off by explaining her guide & we set out to work on the dragonfly, the highlight of the piece. I am always impressed by the professionalism of teachers dealing with the various skill levels in their classroom, and Sharon was exceptional. Karen's shop has a terrific variety of stitchers, some of whom are real newbies, stitching less than a year, others who were lifetime stitchers. It's a real credit to shop owners who encourage their customers to learn, and our classmates were no exception. Couching can be a challenge, but Sharon walked us through & talked us through. As we began mastering the dragonfly, she reminded us that we could just make these beautiful creatures on our own, with nothing but canvas & the lovely, sparkly threads.
We took a little break mid-morning, where I & my classmates took the opportunity to shop the trunk show. I had to restrain myself to just two canvases, one of which I've had my eye on since its debut, the beautiful vases. I also scooped up a Tuscan landscape that I just called to me. After lunch at The Bistro, we set down to get into the rest of the piece. Sharon went through each of the ten areas, explaining techniques & threads & giving tips. Then we selected a canvas area & stitched, with Sharon coming around to lend some insight.
The day just flew by, and before we knew it, everyone was packing up. Linda & I had a terrific time. I was so looking forward to meeting Sharon in person, and she was just such a joy to be with. And Karen, The Nimble Needle's owner, is so lovely and gracious; I think her shop reflects her dedication to the craft & I was duly impressed.