I did get a lovely "unbirthday" gift from Barbara yesterday - the coolest bookmark I own. Unfortunately, the weather today was cloudy and dim, so I didn't take a picture yet, but rest assured it's a lovely piece, one that I will treasure. It's also the very first piece I've ever received from another stitcher. (And if for some strange reason you don't know who Barbara is, do head over to a blog and "meet" her. She's just wonderful!) I will try to take a photo tomorrow - just wait until you see it!
And now for this week's SBQ (yes, I know I just did one yesterday...)
04/03/08: What items do you consider essential to your needlework that you keep in your stitching bag? (Submitted by Terri)
I usually use a plastic box with a snap on lid to keep my stitching in, unless we're traveling, and thanks to Nicole, I purchased a sweet Vera Bradley Little Travel Case. I haven't tried it out yet (we haven't traveled lately), but Nicole just loves hers and I'm sure I'll love it too. They're discontinuing the style, so if you're interested, pick one up soon. Mine is in Nantucket Navy (my favorite!) from eBay, but the Vera Bradley site is offering them at almost 1/2 price.
Most of the time, I keep my tools in a small, plastic lined cosmetic bag. I'm still without a decent scissor sheath, so I don't want any renegade scissors poking holes in my fabric or my fancy new stitching bag. Obviously scissors and needles are the most important tools a stitcher has, and despite LOADS of temptation from you guys, I have yet to succumb to Gingher scissors. (I confess to checking them out online and maybe possibly looking for them while I was out this afternoon, but I resisted!) My scissors are pretty boring - I use a pair from a set of scissors I bought at Garden Ridge a while back. They get the job done, but I will probably end up treating myself to a nicer pair sometime in the future. Say, oh, I don't know.... these that dear Janet brought to my attention.
They're called Scissoroos and they have a KANGAROO on the scissors! I adore kangaroos - I've been fascinated by all things Australian for as long as I can remember, and I actually collect kangaroos. I have probably about 2 dozen stuffed ones, not to mention a few pieces of kangaroo jewelry, some figurines, etc. I even have a kangaroo coffee mug.
Anyway, I also have a Needle Nest I found in the quilting section to hold my needles. The white part is magnetic and the lid snaps closed. Very handy, and I will occasionally use it to park threaded needles if I am working with color changes.
I usually buy regular old size 28 needles I use to stitch pretty much everything. I did pick up some fancy John James needles here and there, but usually I just use the DMC ones you can buy at Michael's. I have a few other needles of different sizes, but I like the 28s the best.
I do have a needle question though - my DH, who is also a stitcher, has on more than one occasion broken a needle. Literally snapped a needle in half while stitching. This has never happened to me and I thought it was strange that he actually broke a needle while stitching, but perhaps it happens more than I realize? Have you ever had a needle break on you while you were stitching?
Other essentials in my tool kit include:
Finally, I like to have some baby wipes around for wiping my hands if I can't get to a sink (I have a few individually wrapped ones I keep in my stitching bag. And I need to restock, but I like to keep Shout wipes handy in case there are any accidents. I'm usually very careful with my stitching, but better safe than sorry!