Saturday, April 12, 2008

Volmaakt en Volbracht

Fitting, that the tulips were in bloom.

The chart for Dutch Beast (which includes the extensive blathering on historical origins of motifs, explanations of these mutated motifs, references to obscurata, etc.) will make its sale debut at the Online Needlework Show, which starts April 16th. This is a "wholesale only" event, so stitchers who want to get this chart should hint loudly to their favorite LNS or ONS. Retail price will be $18. I'll make it available in the Ink Circles on-line shop on May 1. This delay is not to tease my customers, but is to keep our LNS in the action. I'm certain that Vikki Clayton will make a silk packet available with the colors of her silk I used, but I will also provide a DMC conversion with the chart. BTW, fabric is the absolutely lovely "Vintage Navy Bean" 40 count by Lakeside Linens.

This has been a joy to share with you. I thank everyone for their enthusiasm and wonderful comments. I don't think any of you will ever look at a Dutch Sampler quite the same way. Best of luck explaining the giggles.

Happy Stitching,

Friday, April 11, 2008

Finally, The Original Sin

Perhaps I have been postponing this entry because I don't want it to end, but my story has to end before you can begin making it yours.

Where does a story begin? Although cross stitch samplers don't date back to the beginning of the human race, some believe that human story began with this pair. Amazingly, the Bible, the Torah, and the Koran all agree on this point. Can you believe it? (Or, in official Cockney rhyming slang: Can you Adam and Eve it?)

From the time samplers did appear on the scene, this pair has been immortalized as a motif symbolizing good and evil. Criss Cross Row has an entire web page devoted to Adam and Eve Samplers - twenty one different designs at the time of writing this.
This particular one is by Samplar Works and features all of the key elements in their simplicity: a man, a woman, a snake, and an apple.

Eve was, of course, not the only woman to be totally hosed over by accepting a nice juicy apple. We all know how history repeats itself. I couldn't imagine trying to document the untold fates of various women who accepted one too many "Poison Apples" (1 part Absolut, 1 part Apple Liqueur). And you all recognize this hag, "Take it Dearie!"

I live in Washington state, over on the dry-side where we have acre upon acre of apple orchard, in many varieties that you have probably never heard of. The Washington Apple Commission has been trying for years to sue Disney for maligning our poor state fruit. In attempts to smooth relationships (or avoid Apple related lawsuits), Disney has put Steve Jobs on the Board of Directors. The Commission is now working on their case against the bible. For more apple lawsuits, read here.
So here she is, Snow White, along with the seven donut heads. By the way, this is an ongoing debate in the Netherlands as to the proper naming of the dwarves. Some factions strongly upholding the English monikers of Doc, Happy, Grumpy, Sleepy, Sneezy, Bashful, and Dopey. Dutch Disney authorities have been promoting the translated names: Doc, Giegel, Grumpy, Dommel, Niezel, Bloosje, and Stoetel. (Perhaps Grumpy and Doc didn't translate well.)

I got to wondering whether dwarven donuts were similar to donettes (a registered trademark of the Hostess company), but I could get over the 6-to-a-package vs 7 dwarves incongruity. I was much relieved to find on the Hostess web site that donettes came in larger packages. So we can refer to these guys now as the seven donette-heads.
And something else I learned, quoting Hostess,"Hostess didn't create the world's first donut — credit goes to Dutch bakers perhaps hundreds of years earlier." That is our ever-present network of coincidences in action.