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Beads And Beads!! What's a Girl to DO???


Genevieve: "Hey Orna, what are you doing for New Year's?"

Orna: "I'm doing our annual Progressive!"

Genevieve: "That's my car insurance company...."

Orna: "No, no... It's where a whole bunch of families travel from house to house for appetizers, and then dinner, and then dessert.  All the kids go, it's so much fun! We end up at the house nearest the fireworks. We've been doing this for 5 years. What are you doing Genevieve?"

Genevieve: "I just don't know. I have a party invite and a Romantic Getaway invite, but as of today, we have decided nothing."

While I try to nail down a plan of some sort, have a looksee at what I found this week:

We have beads! I have discovered an enormous stash of hand wrapped bead components that Orna has done as a "hobby" (please explain to me where you will find another Hobbyist who will apply such high craft to what she does in her "down time"?? Phew!!)

So I started putting together little sets and taking photos of the larger single ones. They are all available for sale on our Etsy site. This one below is my personal favorite set, but they are all really great. If you are working on jewelry or you need embellishments for your needle art projects, these are really unique options. I think they are so charming!

So I leave you all with these beautiful pictures, may they bring much inspiration. Have a lovely New Year's whatever you do, and feel free to drop a line and make suggestions for interesting things I can do on New Year's----- I am always open to new ideas!!!


To all!

First things first:   Happy Holidays, my friends! 

I hung a large ring of silk ribbon from a high cabinet and squatted under the big big bunch to take this photo.  I thought: what a perfect celebration of fiber for this festive season! 

We were doing some clean up around here, (you don't want to know what the studio looks like!).  Some of these were hanging around, so I stopped cleaning and started adding to the mess.  I put together this collection of beauties, don't you think?

OH, and we posted a whole bunch if new, fun items on Etsy so pay us a visit, and enjoy the colorful display.

We'll talk again soon!


FREEBIE!! a needlecase design for you...

It's ready for you, this free design, a needlecase. 
The instructions are for the needlepoint as well as the sewing (which is very easy, so don't shy away)

If you'd like the free pattern, please email us here.

We are also offering the kit with all the materials and the mini button. You can purchase the kit for $15 on my Etsy site here.

Drop me a line and get the free design..  (hey, that rhymes!)


Colorful Bundles and a tour of my home.

I went Thread Gathering this morning, skipping through the fields 
of skeins and spools in my studio.  Then I paired them......
all of these delicious pairings  are available in my  Etsy Supply Shop!!

Ice, and Chilly Grey Skies inspired this frosty combination of silk, cotton and metallics. 
24 Yards complimented by onyx, agate, and czech glass beads. 

Below is a cheery pairing in "Penchant for Plum". 24 yards of silk, gauze, and cotton set off by metallic glass, large purple rhinestones, and hand dyed wooden beads.

And finally, as named by the lovely Nina, we have "Strawberry Flower Pot"-- 
a Scrumptious Blend of Glittering Greens, Pinks and Plums.

*   *   *   *   *   *   *   *   *   *

Speaking of Nina!!! You can see her beautiful face in our House Tour on Apartment Therapy!!   I love that they lead with a picture of Nina in the kitchen. Head on over there and take a tour of my home!!


Orna's Therapy!

We've been keeping this under wraps for awhile, but now we can formally announce that my home has been selected for a house tour on Apartment Therapy!  The tour will be posted on Tuesday, December 14th. If you are not familiar with Apartment Therapy, this is what they have to say:

*  *  *  *  *  *  

"The Apartment Therapy Mission

Helping people make their homes more beautiful, organized and healthy by connecting them to a wealth of resources, ideas and community online.
What We Believe
A calm, healthy, beautiful home is a necessary foundation for happiness and success in the world. Creating this home doesn’t require large amounts of money or space. It requires inspiration, connection to resources and motivation to do something about it. The basic elements of good home design can be learned and achieved by all. Simplicity and luxury are not mutually exclusive.
Our Goal
To connect people to the resources they need to improve their homes, while reducing their reliance on stuff."

*  *  *  *  *  *  

This website has every idea under the sun to rework your home and make it more beautiful and more functional! What I like most about the site is to see how many people love their homes, love personalizing their living space and have pride in their abode!

The website has "ohdeedoh" for children's rooms, "unplggd" for offices and technology and "re-nest" for great recycling and green ideas. I have been a fan for quite some time, however, be warned, it can be addictive! 

It was really a treat to have photographer/writer Kristin Lubbe and her talented fiance' (pictured above) over for the photo session, and I am very excited to see her work when the spread is posted!  



Hi everyone! Genevieve here--

We have our winners for last week's Giveaway! We so enjoyed reading about your traditions and memories we decided to do a second prize!! We put together a sampling of some of our new Silk Thread Bundles and  Canvas available on Etsy starting today. Randomly chosen with the Google Random  Generator, this little gift should make a nice treat for our Second Place winner AMANDA from Ontario Canada. Have fun!!!

And as for our First Place Winner---MARY from Louisiana takes the Making Memories Needlepoint kit and Instruction Booklet.  Her memory of her Christmas Traditions are a perfect fit for such a special treat!!

If you are a winner---please be sure to email us your snail mail so that we get this to you ahead of the last minute holiday shipping!!! 

In other news, we have been getting great feedback from our Cyber-Squaredancer's!!! Everyone has been getting their kits and I would just like to say thank you for all your kind words. We really really worked hard to get those out as fast and as beautifully put together as was possible in the 2 weeks since we received the final count from ANG on November 15th. It has been just great to read the happy posts--this particular assistant is breathing a sigh of relief!

And lastly---we have been brainstorming new ideas for Cyber Classes and I thought I would just ask you all what kind of class you would like to see in our Cyberclass series over the next year. We are looking for innovative ideas, classes that go beyond the ordinary! 

Let us know if there has been a class you are dying to take and want to see worked up as Cyber class! Just think--you could be taking it this time next year from the coziness 
of your favorite chair!!

That's it for now--Thanks everyone for your wonderful Holiday Thoughts---and here's hoping that the Season has been a happy one for you!


It's time for a giveaway!

It's that time of year and I just feel like giving!!  

It doesn't matter how old you get or what your family traditions are, this time of year you just have to get in a good mood.  It seems like the perfect time for an Extraordinary Giveaway!!!! 

Up for grabs is a "Making Memories" Needlepoint Kit. It comes complete with all the threads, supplies and instruction packet to make one book. The book is bound with blank pages and is suitable for photos, scrap booking, sketching, recipes---whatever you can think of.

So for this Giveaway, you can enter any or all of the ways below:

1. Comment on your very favorite holiday tradition.
2. Go to my blog : ornadesign.blogspot.com and start following me. It's a great way to learn about classes, workshops, new designs and really great sales!
3. And finally, visit ETSY and make my shop a Favorite! It's chock full of small kits, canvas, Ultrasuede, and equipment to help you with your Needlepoint! 

If you do all three you can consider yourself entered three times!

Please be sure to keep checking back--and if you win, send us your snail mail!!
(We promise not to use it for anything else).

The deadline for this contest is December 7th, 2010 @ noon.


Here's what I've been doing!

This is the first batch of kits (over 50), going out tomorrow for Squaredance.
Should have more going out everyday this week. 


Life deserves a very close look...

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving, my friends!


Late night hours

I've always been a night person.  When I was young I could allow myself not to be a morning person.  I rarely spoke more than one syllable words before 10am.  That was many lifetimes ago.  

Now I'm still a night person but it has become harder because I get up early.  I'm at the computer with my first two cups of coffee long before getting Nina ready for school.  

The late nights when everyone is asleep, house chores rarely make me feel guilty.  I sit on the sofa, threads all around me, a re-run of Law and Order in front of me, (I usually just listen because my eyes are glued to my canvas), and it's beautifully quite.  

I've learned to enjoy my own company.  Not in a narcissistic kind of way, but in the way which we learn to do as we grow older.  We calm down a bit and begin to see ourselves as good friends.  It's just me, my hands working the threads, my mind wandering and exploring.  

I love the late night hours.


Needlecase in a day!

I have 5 million things to do. That's usually when I decide to do something new.  Makes sense, doesn't it?  

So yesterday I decided to finally do something with some little button charms that I've had for years.  These are little Susan Clarke mini buttons or embellishments.  The needlepoint design couldn't be simpler but with the charm I think it works.  Then I took some felt, (the felt in the photo is actually dark gray, I couldn't adjust the image to show that).  I sewed a ribbon to the felt, folded it and attached the little needlepoint piece. With a few very easy steps I have a very functional and pretty needlecase. 

Of course I had to do it in two colorways...

I have a limited number of these charms but I will be kitting this little number after Thanksgiving and I'll send notice to my mailing list.  If you'd like to get notice of this, please sign up on this page,  to the left, so that you can join the list and find out when special items are available.  

What are your Thanksgiving plans?  Cooking?


Have I become one of them?

Dog people used to drive me crazy! (WAIT till the end before you send any hate mail my way...).   Not all dog people, just the ones that talk and talk and talk to you about their dog and really don't care if you're interested.  The ones that when their dog comes and sniffs you all over, jumps on you, licks you-- they just smile at you. One of those proud parent smiles, those sweet smiles, as if to say, "awww, don't you just love my dog's nose and saliva all over you?".  

I don't want people to assume I'm interested in their dogs.  I don't assume they are interested in my loved ones.   I used to get so worked up about this kind of dog person. I'd grumble and squish my eyebrows together in anger.  I swore up and down that I would never, ever be a dog person!  Not THAT kind of dog person!

But then this came into my life...


What do you think? Wasteful? Not?

Yesterday morning I went to pick up some mid-week groceries. You know, the kind that doesn't really fall under the: "OH MY, we have nothing to eat at home", but does fall under: "Are we out of milk and eggs already?".  So at the entrance to the store there were buckets and buckets of flowers. They weren't my favorite kinds (not Hydrangeas, or Peonies or other such varieties), but still, they were so abundant, singing to me as I entered the store. I could feel my mouth watering and I kept picking up packs of them and putting them back in the buckets, dreaming of combinations.  Finally I forced myself to move on and I packed my cart with the items I came for.

At the cash register things were going slow. Very slow. Yep, about five minutes into the wait I grabbed my bag, left my cart in line and dashed over to those buckets. I had already figured out combinations, so I knew exactly which packs to grab. Dripping water I ran back to my cart at the line just in time to unload and pay. 

I got home and spent the next half hour putzing with the flowers. I love putzing, especially with flowers.  These are a few of them.

 The tulips went in the bathroom. 

You would think that's the end of the story but here's the catch... I've been ridden with guilt about having spent all this money on flowers.  Did I really need them? In less than a week they'll be gone anyway.  And why did I buy more than one pack? On and on.  

So what do you think? Wasteful or not?


Kit Utopia

It's Genevieve again:
If anyone is wondering about the best part of this job, let me just show you---I know that anyone who does Needle Art of any kind will appreciate this!!

After receiving the final count on our Squaredance Cyberclass today ( a whopping 114 of you signed up!!) Orna and I have begun putting together the Squaredance kits in two colorways: Veranda Views and Summertime Hills. 

The threads have been arriving, all these beautiful silks and colors.  I lined them all up to take inventory, and I had to snap some pictures when I saw this extraordinary array of colors!


Eastern Couture in Tapestry, dramatic!


New Designs at Ornaments!

Tiny Trinkets: Rectangle
Hi everyone--it's Genevieve again. Orna is off with her family taking a much deserved vacation amongst the Glorious Fall Colors!! Hopefully she will come back inspired and well rested! In the meantime, I just finished putting up two more new designs! 

At the top, is Tiny Trinkets: Rectangle-- available in three different Color Families. For each Color Family, you will receive three different colorways in each kit. Included are 9 different skeins, 3 metal finishing frames, canvas, and all the rest of the materials you need to create all three of the colorways in your kit! It's a great little holiday stocking stuffer, or perfect to make holiday ornaments that are unique and extraordinary!

Also just posted is Tiny Treasures: Square. This is similar to the Rectangle Kit, however 13 skeins are included in two Color Families. Along with the canvas, 3 frames and finishing materials these designs are perfect little holiday projects. 

Both of these are fantastic projects to make in a day or two, and the best part is the finishing is a snap with all the supplies that are included. Both kits come packaged in beautiful little aluminum boxes to keep all the supplies together.

So that's all for today---we are now in the midst of getting ready for the Squaredance class--the response was fantastic!! We will be making kits for days!


Going to the Poconos... what to wear??

We are leaving tomorrow for our annual expedition up north, just a bit, enough to see leaves on the ground, hills, smell fireplaces, read, eat, play games and work on jigsaw puzzles.
We'll be back on Monday.

See you then!




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©Orna Willis
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