Hamsa Chai is our Latest Stitched Hamsa


Hamsa, otherwise known as a hand amulet for good luck, is a luck symbol in many religions.  This Judaica piece has the word “Chai,” which means life in Hebrew, stitched in the center.  The rope/stem stitch gives the border a 3D effect. Buy the canvas or the kit at judaicaneedlepoint.com. This stitched sample is not for sale, but a customer at a craft show begged to purchase it.  Sorry, Alice.

More on Stained Glass Designs


The stitching is perfect on this classic stained glass design.


This customer wanted shades of blues, greens, and yellows.  All “girlie” colors were omitted.


This tallit bag was built out, or finished with a velvet border to enlarge the tallit bag. The background was stitched with DMC #939 dark navy, so the stained glass colors stand out brightly.


This is a yamulka expertly stitched by a customer.  The professional finishing is top notch.

The variety of results amaze me even though the canvases all started out identical.  The matching yarmulka is a perfect companion.

Same Idea, Different Results


This is it.  The navy and copper challah cover banner style that I referred to in the last post.  It is finished in copper and navy ultrasuede.  It is stitched in the diagonal hedge row stitch in DMC perle cotton #3 alternating with Kreinik medium braid #16 060.

It’s fascinating how the same idea can be stitched differently.  The two challah covers don’t even look like first cousins.

The summer projects are all back from the finisher. Check back often as I show off some of my customers’ masterpieces!

Another Time Saving Tip for Challah Cover Needlepoint Projects

Challah Cover Banner

Challah Cover Banner

In May this year I blogged about how to quickly stitch a challah cover by just stitching the center. Here is another idea, where I stitch a swath across the middle from end to end, and add material to the top and the bottom to fill it out. This reduced stitching time by about two thirds, and the results are very impressive.

I have a customer doing this project in copper and navy, and another one (on bed rest due to a complicated pregnancy) doing it in burgundy and gold. I’ll post those pictures when I have them.

What color shirt are you wearing today?


When I’m outside on a beautiful summer day, and the sparkling blue sky is clear of clouds, I look up and say, “The sky is a perfect 813 today.” 813 is a DMC perle cotton number for a light blue.  On a day that’s overcast, I dread the 415, that pale grey that doesn’t go away. (But on a needlepoint canvas, I love stitching with 415.  It is one of my favorite colors.)

The DMC color reference chart has been going on in my head for the past couple of years, but recently I discovered just how far I’ve gone.  I was ordering a polo shirt for my nineteen year old son online at OldNavy.com.  He likes typical masculine colors and does not want to flash like a circus light. I was describing the color to him on the phone.  “It’s really not purple; it’s more like 3041.”  I just confused him even more. The shirt arrived this week, and it’s 3041 all right!  The green one came too, and it’s more like 503 and not 989.  I guess if you make a living matching DMC thread all day, the numbers become part of your life.

Blogging in Rhyme

Wanted: a needle swift enough to sew this poem into a blanket.  ~Charles Simic   always-believe-in-yourselfHave you ever read a blog in rhyme?
I’d expect bloggers to try it sometime
But my search on google did produce
Nothing but some lame excuse.

Blogs thrive in the comfort of prose
A rhyme is confining like pantyhose
Blogs are personal diaries undraped
With no significance as to how they are shaped.

I crave to discover a poem that ignites
Passion in its readers as they delight
To cherish a blog once in a while
Written with rhythm in stanza style.

If Dickens, Twain and even Shakespeare
Read blogs today, they would despair
Only write something that’s worth reading
Why then, a blog is truly succeeding.

I invite you, dear readers, to reply
A poetry contest, give it a try
Those worth sharing will be posted
Those worth burning shall be toasted.