First –> Then –> FINALLY!

What a day, WHAT! A! DAY!

FIRST — Hair Day!!!!!

My best friend gets MAAARRIIIED next weekend which means I absolutely HAD to refresh my summer locks before I head out to California for the big day!

Hair by Kasia

(I am not taking selfies while driving a car. I am in the back of a VERY bumpy cab.)

If you are in the NYC area and looking for an amazing cut and color, Hair by Kasia is the way to go!!! Not only is Kasia an incredible stylist, she is also a ridiculously talented knitter. Head in there to spruce up your look and gab about WIPs!

THEN — Bedecked and Beadazzled Mystery Class (Long Distance)!!!!!

I have been a HUUUUUUUUGE fan of Ruth Schmuff for a long time and have been DESPERATELY YEARNING to take one of her mystery classes! One day, while visiting her kick ass blog Not Your Grandmother’s Needlepoint (let’s be real, I check it for updates every single morning because I’m insane), I saw the post advertising her latest mystery, La Sirena by Lulu Mypinkturle. SWOON SWOON DROOL FAINT. I mean…a Dia de los Muertos mermaid…and a cat-fish…like…a cat with a little fishy-tail…a freaking CAT-FISH.

I signed up immediately.

Anyway, the first class was this past Sunday at her store in Maryland (which I’m still determined to visit) Bedecked and Beadazzled. The awesome thing about her mysteries is that you can sign up “long distance” if, like me, you are trapped in a jungle…concrete or otherwise. Sooooo…TODAY THE FIRST SHIPMENT CAAAAME!!!

Immediately ripped open the first shipment of deliciousness.
Immediately ripped open the first shipment of deliciousness.

Here are my pretty new things all sprawled out and fawned over.

Carol Eix designed that sick snap tray which will definitely be displayed in my house 24/7.
Carol Eix designed that sick snap tray which will definitely be displayed in my house 24/7.

Dinosaur-size THANK YOU to everyone at Bedecked and Beadazzled for this perfect little bundle of awesomeness, especially Ruth Schmuff, Lulu Mypinkturtle, and Carol Eix. AAAAH I CAN’T WAIT TO GET STARTED!!!!!

FINALLY — Completed WIP!!!!!

I BEADED THE TOILET, TACKLED THE PLUNGER, AND FINALLY COMPLETED THE LOO!

The Loo

Tomorrow, he’ll be sent off to the framer and I will move on to my next WIP. WHAT A SENSE OF ACCOMPLISHMENT!

***A stitchguide for this Mariko King for Amanda Lawford piece is available for purchase. Please email me for details: briemchavez@gmail.com***

Now I am off to organize my massive pile of used thread, eat a super messy and delicious Philly Cheese Steak, and watch Seinfeld until I pass out.

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Needlepoint and Steinbeck

And now that you don’t have to be perfect, you can be good.

This quote, from John Steinbeck’s East of Eden, happens to come from my favorite novel of all time, and resonates with me daily. In fact, it is the mantra I repeat to myself in the mirror every morning. You don’t have to be perfect. YOU DON’T HAVE TO BE PERFECT. YOU DON’T HAVE TO BE PERFECT.

I have been a perfectionist my entire life. Everything has to be just so, or else I can’t function (**PLEASE do not mistake perfectionism for being a neat freak! I leave a path of destruction everywhere I turn!**). Throughout the years, my Type-A personality has hit its peaks and valleys, but needlepoint has helped with that. I started stitching when I was seven, which means that from a very young age I have been able to channel all my anxieties and neuroticisms onto the canvas. For a few years, this was easy. Continental and Basketweave was soothing and methodical — I didn’t have to think about anything except coloring inside the lines. However, that allowed my mind to wander, which anyone that knows me even the slightest bit will tell you is an ABSOLUTELY HORRIBLE IDEA.

Cross-stitch. Counted Canvaswork. BASICALLY ANY STITCH OF ANY KIND where I HAD to focus, and lay threads delicately stitch by stitch. I can nitpick my work. Stitch it, tear it out, stitch it over again until it’s exactly how I envisioned it. I can do that to my work, because then I won’t do that to myself or to other areas of my life. I can be normal(ish…not really), take it one day at a time, f*ck up and not freak out — all because I have one thing that soothes me, calms me down, and keeps my mind from obsessing. For anyone that struggles with perfectionism, anyone that can’t allow their hands to be still, anyone that honestly just needs an outlet and wants to cope in a healthy and productive way — needlepoint. Needlepoint AND Steinbeck!

Kind of lazy Sunday?

WHAT a Sunday-Funday!!! …If fun involves not leaving bed from the hrs of 2 pm – 8 pm and taking a three hour nap…MAGIC.

I woke up this morning ready to take on my day! I took my first ever Soul Cycle class and whooped my ass straight into the shower and then straight back into bed. The 40 loads of laundry I needed to get done? No. The delicious Parmesan-Crusted Zucchini Spears I wanted to make? Laughable. I couldn’t even sit on my couch because my body desperately needed a mattress.

Luckily, while I snuggled above the sheets with my gigantic feline counterpart, Ichabod, I was able to get some stitching done on a WIP that has definitely been in my stash for going on 8 years.

The Loo

I recently pulled this bad boy out only to discover that all I have to complete is the green border, toilet, and plunger! No excuses. Get-er done.

*Ridiculously cute canvas is Mariko King for Amanda Lawford with stitchguide by me. Canvas, magnets, laying tool, and bead minder all purchased at Annie and Company Needlepoint and Knitting.*

**Please note the level of adorableness in that Elizabeth Turner Hello Kitty magnet. I SWOON.**

Now I’ve already decided what I’m doing with the border, and as you can see, I already started brick beading the toilet (if only I could bedazzle my actual toilet…a girl can dream), but that plunger is RUINING MY LIFE.

Plunger

I have already ripped it out TWICE!!!!! So fellow stitchers ——- I implore you ——- HELP! Any ideas are greatly appreciated!!! I really want to get this sweet little guy done!

Beyond all this, there is nothing else I can do tonight. I am already fully prepared to eat Indian food in bed while streaming old episodes of Silicon Valley. Ideally, this is the moment when my blog would start playing Iggy Azalea’s “Fancy” while you watched a meme of me flipping my hair…in bed…chicken tikka masala stain on my pajama shirt… #noshame

Let’s dig in!

Ok so…I have joined the blogosphere! Is that a thing? Did I butcher the spelling? Whatever…

Anyway, HI!!!! My name is Brie, and I spend practically every waking hour working in a needlepoint and knitting store in New York City. Those few hours I’m not stitching, I’m either reading or baking — those are honestly, like, the only three things I do.

I’ve created this blog mainly to share any tips, tricks, and disasters that take place in those three main areas of my world. There will be successes and mistakes — a completed canvas here, a burnt flan there. There will be books that I recommend with tears streaming down my face as I emphatically shove the pages toward you, and others that I throw across the room in a rage blackout. I’ll boldly give advice, and gratefully receive advice — I love an interactive audience, PLEASE LEAVE COMMENTS!

Obviously, or not, this is not necessarily a “professional” blog — this is straight from my weird little brain to the screen. I will probably drop a wee lil curse bomb here and there, especially if I stab, burn, or paper-cut myself. But in all seriousness, I love what I do and I’m good at what I do…and I CAN’T WAIT to share my experiments with all of you!