Tuesday, April 26, 2016

SPOOKED! Mystery Sampler coming this SUMMER!

It's not a mystery anymore. We're doing another summer mystery club, and we can't wait to share the news with all of you. Introducing our...

SPOOKED! Mystery Sampler Club

What's a mystery sampler? Most of you know, because you've been asking for another mystery. But for the "uninitiated", it's a sampler that unfolds in parts. The big mystery is...what will it look like?! Because unlike every other L*K project, there is no project photo on the front (I know...shocking!). Each month you receive a portion of the design. As you stitch, the project develops and the mystery unfolds!

Mystery Samplers are so fun, because...well, lots of reasons:

*It's a giant club with stitchers literally all over the world. And it's the best kind of club, because EVERYONE is invited and welcomed. It's fun to chat with other "members" as the mystery develops. And yes...there are a few over-achievers who race through each section. It's fun for needlework shops, because they get to see you/communicate with you every month. 

*We do lots of extra fun things when it's mystery sampler time. This summer we're working to develop a new overdyed thread color just for SPOOKED! We're also rounding up all sorts of fun embellishments to make SPOOKED! really special. We also offer precut fabrics (fantastic!) in 2 sizes of linen and 2 sizes of Aida.

*We "reward" Mystery Club stitchers with BONUS projects. SPOOKED! will include one BONUS project with each part...3 BONUS stitcheries in all! And let me tell you, they're super fun this time and only available with SPOOKED! 


* 3-part series will ship in mid June, July and August.

* Stitch Count for SPOOKED! is 227W x 97H. Clever mystery sleuths will recognize this as the exact same stitch count from an early Christmas mystery, Holly and Hearts. If you like to switch frames seasonally, that's an option.

SPOOKED! is stitched on Ale linen, from Picture This Plus. It's a great mottled, pale brownish/neutral color that makes Halloween colors pop and we love it. We'll have 4 fabric options...28 and 32 ct. Ale linen, as well as 14 and 16 ct. Ale Aida. All fabrics are precut with 3" border on all sides, serged, and individually packaged. You can also personalize with your own fabric choice.

* SPOOKED! thread pack has 13 skeins of Weeks Dye Works overdyed threads, including an exclusive new color we requested especially for SPOOKED! It's not named yet, but we'll reveal that soon.

* There are 3 BONUS projects, one included with each SPOOKED! portion. I was having so much fun designing this one, I didn't want to stop. I had "leftover ideas and motifs" and needed a place to put them! These are each lovely little projects by themselves. Here are the BONUS projects, in the order they will be revealed:

Bewitched 2 sided fob/pin pillow - 26W x 29H on each side - June
Winnie Witch standup - 43W x 79H (you can stand her up or flatten her like the Wizard of Oz!) - July
For the Birds - 121W x 29H - a very large BONUS for August

You're ALL invited to join our SPOOKED! Mystery Sampler Club!! We've mailed info and order forms to needlework shops around the world. Just contact your favorite needlework supplier for pricing and pre-order info. 

We'll be blogging soon with behind-the-scenes looks at the whole mystery sampler process, including our awesome suppliers/partners at Weeks Dye Works, Picture This Plus, and Just Another Button Company, and (of course) the busy goings-on at Lizzie*Kate. 

***We're super excited to share that we'll be making a field trip to Garner, NC...better known as the home of Weeks Dye Works. We'll be dropping in on Miranda, John and all the WDW gang to visit their fascinating business. I've always wanted to see how those beautiful fibers and fabric are dyed and the whole production process. Hopefully we'll see our mystery thread color in production. And I'll be sharing pics with all of you about our thread pilgrimage...can't WAIT!

We know from previous mystery adventures, that you enjoy seeing all the prep and creativity that make a mystery happen. It's truly takes a (cross stitch) village to put one of these projects together, and we want to include YOU as we uncover the SPOOKED! Mystery Sampler together.

Mysteriously yours, 

P.S. Lots of you are asking about pricing and where to pre-order. Just contact your usual cross stitch supplier and ask them to pre-order. We've mailed info to needlework shops. If they haven't started a list, ask them to put you at the top of the list! If you need to find a needlework shops, you can visit the "Shop Listings" section of our website. http://lizziekate.com/stitchers.html  Most shops are willing to mail - just ask! 

* Check back soon for a SPOOKED! teaser photo and more mysterious happenings at L*K.

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Cross Stitch Design 101 - Spring Break!

What? Only 2 classes and it's already time for spring break? I'm the teacher, I make the rules and I say Spring Break!

Actually, after 2 posts full of L*K designing tips, I feel like I've hit a wall on giving advice. (Scroll back to see previous Design 101 posts if you've been skipping class.)

Now I need some comments/questions from all of you!!!

I want to hear what else you would like to know about designing cross stitch.

Have I left out some important design steps?
Want to hear more about the publishing process after a design is "done"?
Want a tour of L*K world headquarters/warehouse where Alan works?
Want to hear about "typical day" as a designer?
Want to hear about distributors/shops/online shops and all that confusion?

I know I can't answer all of your questions, but please leave a comment below with what you'd like to know about L*K and cross stitch design. 

Class dismissed for SPRING BREAK!

***Summer MYSTERY SAMPLER sneak peek info coming soon!  Visit again soon! 

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

MORE coming soon!

In addition to the new Yearbook Double Flips, we have a couple other new designs COMING SOON!

B53 Accept What Is Inspiration Boxer plus BONUS sampler!

I'm so excited about this new Inspiration Boxer. I love the simple sentiment that was a "Top 10 finalist" in our inspirational sayings contest several years ago. It finally made it's way to the top of my design list. 

But I'm also super excited to share this darling BONUS sampler!! It turned out extraordinarily large for a BONUS. If you read previous posts on cross stitch designing, you know how things don't always turn out as anticipated when I'm designing.  I considered releasing it separately as a Snippet, then decided to include it as a BONUS, as originally intended.

Speaking of things not turning out as intended, the frame we ordered for the BONUS arrived the wrong size. We were in a rush, so used the too-long frame, and tried to disguise it in our cover photo with some lovely vintage linens (see top photo). So there's a behind the scenes L*K snafu. Sometimes you have to be flexible, even in a very precise sort of business like cross stitch. Here it is (above) with correct frame...charming.

B53 Accept What Is Inspiration Boxer includes 32 ct. Lambswool linen for main piece, tiny pink buttons (for main piece and BONUS) and BONUS design. You furnish a bit of fabric from your stash for the BONUS sampler. 

S125 For We Walk by Faith Snippet

Our other newbie is a Snippet, using II Corinthians 5:7 as our text. I'm thinking about starting a series of Snippets with some favorite scripture...but where to begin? This verse jumped out at me a while ago while sitting at my computer, and a new design was born. We're including the sweet little heart/cross charm because we love it. 

Above is the cover as you'll see this Snippet in your favorite needlework store. Don't miss our little "20 years" logo which will appear on all our designs this year. 

***On a personal note, I had my second cataract surgery yesterday. I did my left eye 2 weeks ago, and returned to do the right eye yesterday. Clearly I'm seeing a whole lot better than I did yesterday (while sporting my pirate patch) if I'm able to do this post. 

What an interesting experience! I'm sure many of you have had this surgery and have your own stories to tell. I was surprisingly alert during both procedures and remember the whole thing - which the anesthesiologist said I would not. Clearly the anti-anxiety drug was working or I would have been more alarmed, but still...pretty psychedelic light show was happening in my surgical eye! 

Thankfully both surgeries were less than 10 minutes, so I didn't have too long to ponder what was happening. I refrained from chatting with the surgeon...didn't want to distract her. Now I'm off for my day-after visit with my doc, and see how this new lens is working. My kitchen counter has 2 detailed schedules of 3 rotating eyedrops for each eye, so hopefully I can manage that for the next month.

Meanwhile I'm facing the world make-up free for a few days. But the hope of saying goodbye to contacts forever is making me smile!

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

NEW for April!

We're super excited to preview what's coming soon...including a new Double Flip series for 2016!

***We don't have an exact ship date to shops yet, but we're crossing our fingers and planning to ship on April 18.

L*K Yearbook Double Flips!!!

What's a Yearbook Double Flip? We're doing another monthly series. It's been years and years since we've done a monthly series, and decided it was the perfect way to celebrate L*K's 20th anniversary in the needlework biz. And you know...we have the same 12 months every year...so this never goes out of style.

After considering lots of options, we decided to name this series Yearbook because it seemed fitting for our 20th year. And who doesn't love enjoying a good Yearbook? Check out pics from my Class of 1973 yearbook at the end of this post.

This time we're packaging our yearly designs as Double Flips - 2 months in one little leaflet. Because they're Flip-its, we're including a charm for each design.

Here's a couple fun facts about our new Yearbook Double Flips:

* We're using the same 12 antique gold charms we used for our original "A Year with Charm" Flip-its from back in the day. It was a fun design challenge for me to incorporate the same charms and it's a nice nod to our L*K Flip-it history.

"A Year with Charm" was the first Flip-it series (F1-F12), where we learned to put charms in tiny 1" x 1" sacks. We even pioneered using fugitive glue (Glu Dots) to attach the tiny bags inside each Flip-it. Twenty years later, we're still busy putting embellishments in tiny zip bags, "stripping" them, and attaching to Flip-its and Double Flips.

* Every Yearbook Double Flip month contains an L*K motif, previously seen in another L*K design. What does that mean? I thought it would be fun to "hide and seek" some familiar L*K motifs. Example: the little house in January previously appeared in F115 Snow Day. I tweaked the roof line and windows a bit, but the house is mostly the same. On some months, you can spot an exact "copy" from a previous L*K design. With 20 years worth of designs, there's a lot of territory to "borrow" from. And it's OK to copy yourself...right? Another fun little design challenge for me and a little "historic" note.

* Every Yearbook Double Flip contains a little house, and a "boxed" motif. I've been talking in my previous Cross Stitch Design 101 blog posts about how repetition is a great design tool. Here's a perfect example of using repetition in a design series. Each Yearbook Double Flip contains 2 months, so I included a house in one month, and a little "boxed" motif in the other month (check out the pics). It was fun to vary the style of the houses...there's even a schoolhouse and a log cabin! I also varied the shape of the "boxed" motifs, using all sorts of geographic shapes to outline a featured motif. Maybe this all sounds silly, but it's part of my design process, and how my brain works.

* Every Yearbook Double Flip has our little 20th Anniversary "alarm clock" on the cover. I designed a little celebratory motif for the recent Nashville Market, and decided to use it for 2016 designs. Fun reminder of 20 years and counting...

Yearbook Double Flips are coming soon! We're busy printing and assembling, but we plan to ship to shops everywhere in mid April. Contact your favorite supplier to pre-order.

A funny thing happens when you move...you find all sorts of interesting things you didn't know you still needed...like my Class of 1973 high school Yearbook!

I have fond memories of my time at historic Wichita North High School, and was thrilled when our daughters were able to attend the same school. The lovely old building was a few years older (and still not air-conditioned) but the 1929 building was still so pretty, sitting on the banks of the Arkansas River with it's own matching bridge. Hey...we were the only school in town who did canoeing in gym class while wearing those crazy bloomer gym shorts!

Thought you would enjoy my senior photo. Why wasn't I smiling? I was rocking the "Farrah Fawcett" layered look and seemed to be having a good hair day (1973 style). Who knows what high school angst I was dealing with back in 1973, or was the photo lady playing a trick on me?

Alas, this photo will haunt me for years to come in the 1973 Yearbook and hanging in the antique halls of North High. 

Farewell, hallowed halls of Wichita North High. I will still visit you whenever there's a North High Open House or a great basketball game. 

Hello...L*K Yearbook Double Flips!