Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Cataraqui Guild 2017 Needle Arts Fair

The Needle Arts Fair was so much fun! We arrived in Kingston around 10 pm and we're up early the next day to go to the community center where the fair was held to setup our booth. Patricia always brings so many different products. If you can believe it, this is only 15% of the products she sells at her shop.

Once we setup everything, I took the opportunity to do a walk-through of the entire fair before it got too crowded. There were three rooms filled with vendors and one for exhibiting pieces stitched by members of the the Cataraqui Guild. There was a good mix of vendors. A few embroidery/cross stitch vendors, but also beads, wool, felt,...

I was hoping to make a single video of the exhibition, but Google decided to get rid of the YouTube Editor feature. If anyone knows of a good free video editor please let me know.

When I visited the beadFX booth, I learned that they are now offering tambour beading lessons at the shop. The instructor is a graduate of Maison Lesage in Paris. It's a little far for me, but great to know if I'm ever in Toronto. They were also giving out free baggies of mixed seed beads.

In the gymnasium, there was also a display by the Historical Costume Club of Kingston. Here are some clearer pictures. There were also members of the club walking around in full costume.

Second room of vendors.

I was lucky to be able to get a (very quick) video of the room where members had their pieces exhibited. The Cataraqui Guild even had a special section at the back. Cross-stitched and blackwork pieces illustrating known Kingston landmark that were designed by guild members. I thought that it was an excellent idea as there aren't that many cross stitch designs of Canadian landmarks.

By the time I got back to the room where l'Atelier de Penelope was setup it was super busy so I wasn't able to take a video of it. I really enjoy talking to and helping customers. I didn't really like it when I used to work part-time in University. I worked mainly in department stores and as I don't enjoy shopping for clothes it wasn't much fun. But I love selling embroidery stash :)

We had many visitors at the booth and I was able to see many friends from Ontario that I only get the chance to see at Seminar. The biggest surprise was seeing a stitcher friend who I've known for years but not in person. I've known Dani from her blog Tkdchick for more than 6 years. It was so great to finally meet her in person.

Now I tried very hard not to buy anything as I've placed myself on a severe stash diet. I have enough projects that are planned for this year and I don't need more. However, I did slip a little. Ok, well a lot but not by much :P

I found this little book of embroidery patterns from India. The book says Chikankari and a quick search showed some interesting pieces. It seems to be traditionally stitched white on white. I've only tried European whitework so it would be great to try out an Asian technique. I will have to take some time later on to do a deeper search. I bought it because there are some lovely patterns in it that would be great to practice the luneville on.

Karen Dudzinski of Textured Treasures was there selling her canvas work designs. I took a class with her at the Creative Festival back in 2014. I stitched a piece called Pulled Thread Miniature Ornate Carpet. I keep telling myself no more counted canvas kits, but there is always that one piece that makes me change my mind. Karen is a really amazing designer and I just fell in love with this colorway in black and gold.

The design is called From Dawn to Dusk. Karen has created many different colorways for it in blue/greens, pinks and purples. On the cover of the pattern booklet is the pink colorway but I really do love the black and gold one. She's even in the process of picking colors for a black and silver colorway.

In for a penny, in for a pound, I decided to just get the full kit. It comes with full skeins of everything including a big piece of canvas. The price was pretty good for what you got in the kit. I've never worked on a black fabric, so this will be an experience.

Every time I help Patricia with her booth, I find something I want. I was a little more restrained than last time. I got the navy thread for my Sashiko panel and needles. These are the new Tulip needles I've been wanting to try. They've started to pop up on the internet and I mentioned them to Patricia to see if she can get them. She started with the Sashiko needles and I'm hoping she'll get in the other types, especially the beading needles. They have a needle so thin it can go through Delica 15/0 beads 3 times! I've started using them, I will do a quick review in the next post.

Patricia also tracked down a source for even bigger Sashiko panel. I fell in love with this gilded piece of a geisha. The fabric is navy and it's nice and thick. She also had another panel that I really loved with cranes and peonies on it. I had to leave it behind as I wasn't certain if I wanted it in navy or another color. I will decide once I get a look at the other colors. But for now, I want to do this one first. Now to decide if I will do it in traditional white thread or get creative. There was a stitcher who bought this panel with a gorgeous selection of overdyed perl cotton. She plans on getting VERY creative. I hope I get the chance to see it finished one day.

So this next one, I'm still not sure where it came from because I didn't buy it. I turned my back to help a customer and when I took out my purchase again to show a friend, found this in it. It's an interesting mixed media piece by Karen Dudzinski but not something that I normally stitch. So, I would like to pass this forward to another stitcher. First one to message me will get it, just leave a comment below or send me an email at d1d2blog@gmail.com I know some of you show up as no-reply comments so please make sure I can get back in contact with you.


  1. When you get to your black fabric piece, make sure you're in a good light, and lay a white cloth over your lap when you're working on it. Otherwise the holes become very hard to find!

  2. The fair looks amazing. I love your black and gold canvaswork purchase, it's gorgeous!

  3. I should imagine every stitcher is just the same and can't refuse the lure of a new project!!

  4. Looking forward to your blogs about the Dawn to Dusk project. It's really beautiful. And the kit--wow, I'd buy it just for that. LOL.

    1. Awww.....Thanks Brenda - we just got more of the Black and Gold ones in stock (so far my favourite - though the black, white and silver is coming in a close second and is heading to Nashville in just under two weeks). If you check out Textured Treasures on Facebook we usually put up notices when the fast sellers are back in stock. :)

  5. I have that Chikankari book, too. I bought it after I took a free online class in Chikankari and created a beautiful piece!

  6. Great advice from Rachel about stitching on black fabric. I really enjoyed the video clips in this post, so nice to see the show and especially the stitched pieces. I spotted a beautiful Teresa Wentzler peacock sampler there!

  7. Wow, that Arts Fair sounds like heaven - and hell for your budget! I can understand why you slipped a little with your stash diet!

  8. What a great time you had, lucky you!

  9. it looks fantastic! there are so many innovative kits coming out. I'm hoping my shoulder might be better for me to go to the stitch show in Birmingham next month.

  10. Oh yeah - Chained by Blue and Gold - slipped that into your bag (it's one of the "class copies" - see the XXXX on the designation?). Just an extra bit of fun for you, or a friend....it was a really neat experiment as every stitch is a variation on chain stitch and it's in multiple layers.
    Can't wait to hear about your Dawn To Dusk experience, and will appreciate any feedback.