Have Your Say

26th May 2023

Questions & Quips

In All Stitched Up! issue #376, we posed a couple of questions and shared a little quip, and this week we’re continuing the conversation as we share the responses we received.

Alice had been searching for a hoop stand that wouldn’t tip when set on a table and was hoping someone in the Inspirations Community would be able to speak from their own experience and recommend one that might bring her search to an end.

                                                                       Hardwicke Manor Hoop (source)

Elizabeth recommended the hoop stands made by Hardwicke Manor as their square bases provide a sturdiness some other brands sometimes don’t quite measure up to.

Jenny has always used a wooden screw clamp that fixes to the edge of the table. Whilst she acknowledges that they may look quite old fashioned, not only does that appeal to her, but Jenny also appreciates that they are able to hold several different sized hoops. Jenny did, however, suggest protecting your table with cardboard or similar prior to attaching the clamp.

Needlework System4 Table Stand & Table Clamp

After many failed attempts before honing in on what worked for her, Ursula can’t speak highly enough of Needlework System4. Whilst she acknowledges that ‘they cost the earth’, she absolutely believes they are ‘so worth it if you can manage the expense’ as ‘everything is well made and beautifully stable’. Ursula also pointed Alice in the direction of a video from Needle in a Haystack that walks you through how to connect the stand and accessories.

‘Best of luck in your quest Alice. Having a stand that's right for you makes a world of difference. It took my many failed attempts for me to find the right one, so I'd like to send my encouragement even more than information! Happy hunting.’

Missing the printed catalogues the Nordic Needle used to produce, Ruth was hoping someone in the Inspirations Community might know of anyone who’s still releasing printed catalogues because as she reminded us, ‘not everyone lives near a bricks and mortar store or is able to use a computer easily’.

Both Ellen and Susan recommended Herrschners, a needlework company in Wisconsin, USA. They have been in continuous operation for 120 years and will mail a printed catalogue upon request.

They currently have four catalogues available, but if you can’t wait for them to arrive by mail, you can view them online too!

We closed our Have Your Say segment in ASU #376 with a little quip from Karen who found herself wanting to spend more time with needle and thread.

I am 77 and unfortunately my husband is not well, so I find myself having to do all the girl’s work and the boy’s work at home when all I want to do is more needlework. I cannot tell you how much I enjoy seeing everyone’s work in All Stitched Up!, but when do these women get the time to make so many intricate projects?! Do they have maids? Do they get enough sleep? How long does it take them in real time to finish these projects? I mean really, as I have been working on the same needle case for months now!’

Karen, Janet understood your dilemma in trying to find the time to stitch when there is so much to be done but passed on the following thoughts for you to consider.

‘Take the time to care for yourself as well, as caretaking is not an easy task. Try to find a service that can either come in and help with your husband, chores or whatever is needed. If that is not available, set aside a small period of time, even if it’s just 5, 10 or 15 minutes a day, to stitch. You may not get a lot done, but it is your time to do what you treasure. You will be surprised at how much better you will feel.’

Whilst several years younger, Roxanna finds herself in the same position as Karen.

‘I am also caring for a husband and doing as Karen called it, all the ‘boy jobs’ as well. I have always done surface embroidery as a ‘sit down and chill’ activity but found that time was so limited I wasn’t getting any to myself.’

Like Janet, Roxanna also finds power in small periods of time.

‘Somewhere I read that one could get a lot done in 15-minute chunks. You absolutely can! Yesterday all I did was sort some threads out for a project, today I will probably get five or six needles threaded, and on Sunday, I might just get them worked in.

You will be amazed at how quickly things move along. Just keep all your materials at hand and pick an activity for the day, be it threading needles, sorting thread, or actually getting to work.

My project is in a bag beside my chair, my light and glasses are at hand, and I am beginning to celebrate every 15 minutes rather than despairing that I will never get anything done again.’

As always, we appreciate everyone who took the time to join in on the conversation and know Alice, Ruth and Karen will welcome your words of wisdom.

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