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Needlepoint News - MJD Blog

Stitching in the Sky: Tips for Traveling with Needlepoint

Planning to stitch on your next flight? Here are some quick tips and MJD products that make stitching in flight a breeze!   Keep it Small: When it comes to traveling, smaller projects are your best friend. They're easier to pack in a carry-on and more comfortable to stitch on a...

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Stitching in the Sky: Tips for Traveling with Needlepoint

Needlepoint Plaid Stitch

Tis the season for plaid! I was OBSESSED when I saw this plaid stitch border on our Christmas Bar Cart by @DaneLikeGreateDane_ on Instagram.     I went ahead and created a similar chart for you all to follow - feel free to use it on your projects, save it to...

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Needlepoint Plaid Stitch

2024 Event Schedule!

We are so excited to announce our 2024 schedule. I was able to travel to some AMAZING places and meet so many of you last year and I cannot wait to do it again. Here's what we have booked for this year - with more fun dates to come!  HOUSTON, TX ...

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2024 Event Schedule!

MJD x PL Hamptons Weekend!

Krista from Penny Linn and I are so excited to invite you to East Hampton for a quick getaway. If you ask me why we're going, I'll say to celebrate my birthday but if you ask Krista, she'll say that her birthday is closer to the event! So why are we going? To...

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MJD x PL Hamptons Weekend!

Packed Party x MJD: Spring in Your Step!

I'm excited to share a special collaboration with a brand that is particularly close to my heart, Packed Party! Before we take a closer look at the exclusive launch, let me take you back to where it all began. Fresh out of college, my first job was Visual Merchandiser for...

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Packed Party x MJD: Spring in Your Step!

The Tortured Sweethearts Department

I've recently felt inspired to share a more personal side of my life on the blog. I just turned 27 which is such a special age, I'm loving the coastal life with my dog, Captain, and am enjoying the sense of self-discovery and confidence this chapter in life has brought!...

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The Tortured Sweethearts Department

Party in the USA

As we set sale towards the most festive holiday of the summer, I'm excited to share the story behind one of my absolute favorite bar cart canvases: the Fourth of July Bar Cart. This canvas holds a special place in my heart because it celebrates my favorite holiday, the Fourth...

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Party in the USA

The 5 Anchors of Success from 5 Years of MJD

I recently celebrated a significant milestone: 5 years in business! This journey has been filled with valuable lessons, incredible experiences, and unimaginable growth, both personally and professionally. Here's a look at what I've learned and a glimpse of what’s to come! Daily Routine & Time Management I’ve found that setting...

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The 5 Anchors of Success from 5 Years of MJD

My Favorite 5 Canvases from 5 Years of MJD

  As we celebrate 5 years of MJD, I can't help but reflect on the journey and the wonderful community of stitchers who have brought my designs to life. Here are my top five favorite canvases that hold a special place in my heart!   Charcuterie Board | Charcuterie Board Needle...

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My Favorite 5 Canvases from 5 Years of MJD

Studio Sale 2024

It's finally here! The Studio Sale is happening today, Thursday, June 6th, starting at 1:00 p.m. EST. Here are all the details you need to know. Exclusive Early Access for SMS Subscribers SMS Subscribers will receive a password by 11:30 a.m. EST via text message, allowing them to access the sale...

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Studio Sale 2024

Studio Sale 2024

Studio Sale 2024
It's our biggest sale of the year! Don't miss out on 30-60% slightly flawed but stitchable MJD canvases! Continue reading

The Tortured Sweethearts Department

The Tortured Sweethearts Department

I've recently felt inspired to share a more personal side of my life on the blog. I just turned 27 which is such a special age, I'm loving the coastal life with my dog, Captain, and am enjoying the sense of self-discovery and confidence this chapter in life has brought!

Many of my friends and followers are in different stages of life, with significant others, marriages, and relationships. While I'm cherishing my own phase of independence, I'm also finding humor and relatability in the world of modern dating.

So, you'll probably notice a few more dating stories in future blog posts, to give you a glimpse behind the curtain of the heart flutters, mishaps, and adventures in the world of romance. In this technology-centric, social media-driven world, there can be a lot to unpack!

(Shout out: If you have a son/brother/friend who is mature and you want to nominate him to be my boyfriend, please send him my way and you can win free needlepoint for life!!! Sort of joking but not really joking.)

In line with that, I'm thrilled to introduce a new collection that's close to my heart (literally!), in partnership with Needle Nola aka Needle Arts in New Orleans! As a lover of 13-mesh canvas, I've always admired their playful heart series, especially the cheeky, "You Up?" heart. I reached out to them with the idea of collaborating and together, we've created a collection that captures the humor and spirit of our conversations.

Inspired by the modern, funny sayings that get us through the ups-and-downs of love and relationships, this series features a range of funny quips for single girls, those in serious relationships, and some for the girls who want to celebrate their friendships!

The Tortured Sweethearts Department series launches at Noon on Tuesday, April 30th and includes eight canvases on 13 mesh. The canvases are approximately 8" x 8" with the heart designs being approximately 3.5" x 3.5". Each canvas can be purchased for $48 or kitted with DMC for $55 and are available on our website, as well as needlenola.com (if you see that a design is sold out on one site, check the other!).

So, whether you're patiently waiting for a ring (after all... "Size Matters!" 💍), or giggling through the dating journey like me, Needle Nola and MJD hope you enjoy stitching this sweet collection, regardless of where are you are in life!

 

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Bar Cart Club FAQ

Bar Cart Club FAQ
Here are all the details around the Bar Cart Club, launching in just a few short days on Friday, March 1st! Continue reading

Stitching in Sunshine: Resort Collection Launch

Stitching in Sunshine: Resort Collection Launch
With over 1,300 miles of coastline, it’s no secret that Florida is the prime vacation state! As we head into summertime, it’s the perfect time to announce our next MJD collection launching on Thursday, April 18th at Noon EST! Continue reading

Bar Cart Club Box 1 Reveal!

Bar Cart Club Box 1 Reveal!
Spring has officially sprung, especially now that Box 1 shipments have officially hopped out of the MJD Headquarters and landed on your doorsteps! I am so excited to unveil the contents of the highly-anticipated Spring MJD Bar Cart Club box! Continue reading

Year of the Girl...Continued!

Year of the Girl...Continued!
It’s no secret that 2023 was the Year of the Girl - and we're keeping that energy going here at MJD with 5 new canvases launching March 21st at 7pm EST!  Continue reading

Pop the Champagne...for MJD's Bar Cart Club!

Pop the Champagne...for MJD's Bar Cart Club!
I know how much you all love the Bar Cart canvases, so I’m thrilled to finally share the exciting news with you here! As you might have seen on my social media, the MJD “Bar Cart Club” will set sail March 1st! Continue reading

Year in Review + MJD Holiday Canvases!

Year in Review + MJD Holiday Canvases!
Our final launch of 2023 is here! As we head into the holidays, I hope each of you carves out some time to relax and enjoy time celebrating the season- whatever that might mean for you. For me, it’s going to be focused on recharging and reflecting on what a wonderful whirlwind 2023 has been- it was truly a year for the books.  Continue reading

Morgan's Holiday Gift Guide!

Morgan's Holiday Gift Guide!

I thought I'd try something new this year and and pull together some fun things on my wish list that would make great gifts this holiday season! 

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Charts for Charity 2023!

Charts for Charity 2023!
We’re thrilled to be kicking off the Holiday Season with our annual Charts for Charity 2023 "Boot Skatin'" design!  Continue reading

Launching Captain's Clippers: Our Scissor Line!

Launching Captain's Clippers: Our Scissor Line!

We're dropping anchor with our newest accessory! This is a product that I’ve been very involved with for the past 6 months, so I’m thrilled to share these new “Captain’s Clippers” with you all and hope that you love them as much as I do. 


One of my favorite parts of my job is how involved I get to be in all my products, and while canvases are definitely my comfort zone, the same holds true for my accessories. As I was thinking through areas that I could improve in my collection, I wanted to introduce a more substantial scissor that is a bit higher in quality. Not only was aesthetic important to me, but function as well. I wanted these scissors to really feel good in your hand and be a trusted tool for all your future projects! 

 

In order to bring this vision to life, I worked with a scissor manufacturer to create a design, prototype, and finished product. Because this project was so much fun, I thought I’d share some photos + a bit more about the steps and process of bringing these “Captain’s Clippers” to life! (P.S. for those of you who are new around here, the name Captain's Clippers is a nod to my Goldendoodle named Captain!)

The Process


April: I contacted the manufacturer to articulate my goal and vision. It was important to me that these scissors reflect our brand so naturally, nautical was the way to go! 

May-June: I went through several design iterations which incorporated the anchor and rope design. What I learned is that there are so many factors to consider: the weight, the spacing of the handles, the size of the scissors, how the design impacts the hinge, etc to name a few. It took several prototypes and testing on my part to get this piece to be something that I thought would feel good in a stitchers hand - while also maintaining a high level of function and detail! 

July-August: Once we had the final design, we created the molds for the scissors. Finally, production could begin!

September: Working through packaging was one of my favorite parts of this process -  these scissors will arrive in a blue branded box, with foam padding inside. 

October: The final prototype arrived at my home in Florida; you can see my excitement opening these in the last picture!


After 6 months being heavily involved in this design and production process, it is so rewarding to see a project become a product! Below are some photos that walk you through the last few months. 

 

Product Details

We’re launching 3 different types of “Captain's Clippers” which will be available on our website this Thursday, October 26 at 7:00pm EST. 

The scissors will be available in 3 colorways and are shown from left-right above: Gold, Broze with a Silver Tip (to look like a true 'anchor'), and Silver. 

The Gold Scissors will be available for $40, and the Bronze with Silver Tip and Silver Scissors will be available for $35. 

 

More Details:
  • All scissors are Stainless Steel
    • The Bronze is Plasma Coated, and the Gold is 24 Carat Gold Plated
  • All Scissors are approximately 6" tall by 3.25" wide (when closed)
  • The blade is less than 2" tall, making them TSA approved
  • Each pair weighs approximately 4 oz
  • All of Captain's Clippers are packaged in a branded blue box with foam insert that is molded to the shape of the scissor. 

I hope you enjoyed the behind the scenes look into bringing this product to life! I hope these new scissors will help you elevate your accessories and that you are equally as excited about the quality and design as I am.


XO,
Morgan & Captain Continue reading

Houston Meet & Greet with The Courtly Canvas!

Houston Meet & Greet with The Courtly Canvas!

I’m headed to Texas, y’all! I am SO excited to share that I’ll be visiting The Courtly Canvas on Saturday, October 28th for a Meet & Greet Trunk Show event! 


The Details


I'll be at The Courtly Canvas from 10:00-3:00pm on Saturday, October 28th!

Not only is The Courtly Canvas offering 20% off all MJD Canvases on Saturday during this event, we’re also thrilled to share that we will be launching an exclusive Texas themed canvas and accessory! (Please note, the 20% off discount will not apply to the exclusive canvas). Scroll to the bottom to see a sneak peek of the canvas!

If you're not in the area, you may order the new exclusives and the trunk show on The Courtly Canvas website.

 

Where to Find Us 


3637 West Alabama, Suite 320, Houston, TX 77027 


The Holiday Shopping Card

The Courtly Canvas is thrilled to be participating in the Holiday Shopping Card 

For a $75 donation to the American Cancer Society, you’ll receive a Holiday Shopping Card to use for discounts at hundreds of retailers around Houston from October 19-29th. 

With your card, you’ll receive a 20% discount on in stock canvases, threads, books, and accessories. Though this will exclude the trunk show (20% discount) and our exclusive canvas, it’s a great way to get a kick start on holiday shopping and browse in stock supplies. 

Additional exclusions apply: see store for details. 


https://shoppingcard.cancer.org/


 


Sneak Peek

I had SO much fun working with The Courtly Canvas team to create this one of a kind design- I won’t ruin the surprise but it’s a classic MJD canvas with a Texas twist! The canvas is on 18 mesh; we will be offering kitted canvases for grab and go shoppers but I’d also be happy to help you make thread selections while you’re in the shop!


I have loved connecting with so many wonderful members of the stitching community virtually, so I am even more excited for the chance to meet some new friends in person! Mark your calendars for Saturday, October 28 - you won’t want to miss this event! 


See you soon!  


XO, 

Morgan 

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Introducing: Emily NDLPT Stitches!

Introducing: Emily NDLPT Stitches!

 

I am absolutely thrilled to announce that Morgan Julia Designs is launching a line with Emily NDLPT Stitches! Emily is the first artist joining “MJD Crew” a group of talented creatives whose canvas designs, brand, and vision we are bringing to life under Morgan Julia Designs. 

 

Emily and I have been working on this line since spring 2023 and I couldn’t be more excited about the canvases she has created. Playful, vibrant, with a touch of whimsy, Emily’s canvases compliment the Morgan Julia brand perfectly; I know you’ll love them as much as I do! 


Emily's line will launch on Friday, October 13th at 12:30pm EST. Customers who purchase an Emily NDLPT Stitches canvas will receive a Chicago Goose needle minder as gift with purchase while supplies last! 

 

Meet Emily: 

Hi everyone! I’m Emily from Emily NDLPT Stitches and I am thrilled to be joining Morgan Julia’s Crew! I grew up and spent most of my life in West Texas, where I learned to needlepoint from my mother when I was 12 years old. Needlework has been in my life for as long as I can remember with my great aunts stitching mine and my siblings’ Christmas stockings. After college I delved back into the hobby and haven’t looked back! When I’m not stitching or designing you can find me decorating my home or spending a lot of time outside with my three kids; Harry, Pierson, and Florence, my inspiration for my first collection. It is so special to see my first collection come to life with the support of Morgan. 

These pieces are very close to my heart; they’re inspired by my children’s love of their favorite books, their stuffed animals, and their ability to find adventure in every day. I hope you enjoy stitching my designs as much as I enjoyed creating them! I cannot wait to see how you finish these and make this collection your own. 

 

Background on the Canvases: 

To celebrate our newest artist, we will be launching 15 new Emily NDLPT Stitches canvases on Friday, October 13. Emily’s canvases will be available for wholesale + retail exclusively through Morgan Julia Designs. Customers who purchase an Emily NDLPT Stitches canvas will receive a Chicago Goose needle minder as gift with purchase while supplies last! 

 

We sat down with Emily and asked her to describe the inspiration behind this collection and its mini series. 

 

Lunar Series: 

Sweet dreams are in store with these darling signs and door hangers! Inspired by the books my kids only allow me to read (not Dad)! You can personalize the 4” squares or stitch as is, the options are limitless.

The squares (top row) are 4" with micron pen corner markings on 18 mesh. The Signs (bottom row) are 5” x 7” on 13 mesh. 

  • Bunny Lunar Lullaby will be available as a canvas for $60 or a kit for $94 with Vineyard Silk, Petite Very Velvet, and Essentials. 
  • Elephant Lunar Lullaby will be available as a canvas for $60 or a kit for $87 with Vineyard Silk, Petite Very Velvet, and Essentials. 
  • Dreamy Bunny Sign will be available as a canvas for $90 or a kit for $152 with Planet Earth Silk
  • Snoozy Cow Sign will be available as a canvas for $90 or a kit for $139 with Planet Earth Silk

 

Feathered Friend Series: 

Who doesn’t love the porch goose that gets decked out for the holidays? These sweet feathered friends are inspired by our neighbor’s goose we love checking out each season. Available on 4” rounds on 18 mesh. 

  • Festive Feathered Friend will be available as a canvas with stitch guide for $65 or a kit for $114 with Pepper Pot Silk, Silk Lame Braid, Petite Very Velvet, and Essentials.
  • Spooky Feathered Friend will be available as a canvas for $60 or a kit for $83 with Vineyard silk, Petite Very Velvet, and Essentials.
  • Feathered Friend will be available as a canvas for $55 or a kit for $89 with Petite Very Velvet, Pepper Pot Silk, and Essentials. 

 

Hopper Series: 

These little toads were inspired by our adventures down to our pond, exploring, catching, and learning about the different phases of the toads. Dressing these cuties up for the holidays just made sense! Toads are all 18 mesh on 4” rounds.

  • Shroom Hopper will be available as a canvas for $55 or a kit for $95 with Pepper Pot Silk, Petite Very Velvet, and Essentials. 
  • Hooked on Hooper will be available as a canvas with stitch guide for $65 or a kit for $120 with Pepper Pot Silk, Petite Very Velvet, Silk Lame Braid, and Essentials. 
  • Holiday Hopper will be available as a canvas for $60 or a kit for $112 with Pepper Pot Silk, Petite Very Velvet, and Essentials. 
  • Haunted Hopper will be available as a canvas for $60 or a kit for $107 with Pepper Pot Silk, Petite Very Velvet, and Essentials. 

 

Christmas Series: 

If you love untraditional Christmas colors like I do, then these are for you! Each of these canvases includes room for you to customize with names, dates, etc - making each holiday extra special. 

 

The top row shows 4” rounds on 18 mesh which have room to personalize in the middle! The mini stockings (bottom row) are approximately 5.7" tall by 4" wide on 13 mesh. 

  • Rosy Wreath Round will be available as a canvas for $60 or a kit for $82 with  Pepper Pot Silk, Petite Very Velvet, and Essentials.  
  • Blue Bough Round will be available as a canvas for $60 or a kit for $82 with Pepper Pot Silk, Petite Very Velvet, and Essentials. 
  • Rosy Wreath Stocking will be available as a canvas for $65 or a kit for $90 with Planet Earth Silk and Petite Very Velvet.
  • Blue Bough Stocking will be available as a canvas for $65 or a kit for $90 with Planet Earth Silk and Petite Very Velvet.

 

Please join me in welcoming Emily NDLPT Stitches to the MJD Crew! If you love what you see, just wait until you see what she’s working on for her next drop…..!


XO,
Morgan & Captain

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Acrylic Launch!

Acrylic Launch!
We're so excited to be launching 3 acrylic products tomorrow, Friday, September 8th, at noon EST!  Continue reading

Studio Sale this Week!

Studio Sale this Week!
We're excited to be bringing our Virtual Studio Sale back this Thursday, June 8th, at 8pm EST! SMS Subscribers can shop early.
Continue reading

Our Largest Restock of 2023!

Our Largest Restock of 2023!
We're excited to announce our LARGEST Restock of the year tomorrow, April 21st, at 12pm noon EST where we're restocking over 60 designs! Continue reading

Spring Break/Market Launch!

Spring Break/Market Launch!
Our Spring Break Launch (everything we're launching at market) is launching on Saturday, March 18th at 12pm noon EST! Come see our 8 NEW Canvases! Continue reading

Wedding Bar Cart Launch!

Wedding Bar Cart Launch!
We're so excited to be launching our latest addition to our Bar Cart Collection...Wedding Bar Carts & a French 75 Canvas! Continue reading

MJD Resort 2023 Launch!

MJD Resort 2023 Launch!
We're so excited for our first launch of 2023...MJD Resort launching this Thursday, January 19th, at 7pm EST!  Continue reading

So Long Sweet Summertime Launch!

So Long Sweet Summertime Launch!

We're excited to announce a small launch this upcoming Thursday, November 10th, at 7pm EST! 

This launch is a final farewell to Summer & is centered around everything "sweet" that I love!

Continue reading

Maine Sketchbook Pages

Maine Sketchbook Pages
Every once in awhile, I love to give you all a peek inside of my sketchbook/photos of my travels. Here is a look at my travels & sketches from my trip to Maine in late Summer 2022. Continue reading

Studio Sale this Thursday!

Studio Sale this Thursday!

We're having a virtual studio sale this Thursday, September 15th, at 7pm EST! It's a great way to shop flawed canvases & accessories for up to 60% off. 

Continue reading

Cocktail Launch!

Cocktail Launch!
We're excited to announce a small launch of our cocktail canvases & restock this upcoming Thursday, August 18th, at 7pm EST!  Continue reading

4th of July + Bar Carts Launch!

4th of July + Bar Carts Launch!
You all have been anxiously awaiting these new Bar Cart designs and we're excited to be launching them this Thursday, June 30th, at 7pm EST!  Continue reading

MJD 3rd Birthday Launch & Restock!!

MJD 3rd Birthday Launch & Restock!!
This Thursday is MJD's 3rd Birthday! To celebrate, we'll be launching 3 NEW canvases and kits as well as restocking some of Morgan's favorites this Thursday, May 26th, at 7pm EST! Continue reading

Spicy Margarita Launch!

Spicy Margarita Launch!
We're so excited to be launching Spicy Margarita Canvases, Kits, and Needle Minders next Tuesday, May 3rd, at 7pm EST!  Continue reading

March Launch & Restock!

March Launch & Restock!
We're so excited to announce our first large launch & restock of 2022 coming this Thursday, March 3rd, at 7pm EST!  Continue reading

First Restock of 2022!

First Restock of 2022!
We are excited for our first restock of 2022! We will be restocking some canvases, kits, and accessories on Tuesday, January 25th at 7pm EST!  Continue reading

MJD's 2021 Gift List!

MJD's 2021 Gift List!
It has been quite some time that I've made a gift guide so I wanted to share a few of my favorite picks for 2021, in care you're doing any last minute shopping or need gift ideas!  Continue reading

18 Days of Deals

18 Days of Deals
Because of all of your support you have shown us over the last year, we're announcing 18 Days of Deals! Each day until the 23rd, we will offer a deal! Continue reading

October 2021 Restock!

October 2021 Restock!
We're excited to announce our largest restock of the year this upcoming Tuesday, October 5th, at 7pm EST!  Continue reading

Labor Day 2021 Launch!

Labor Day 2021 Launch!
We're excited to be launching 4 new canvases and 1 new needle minder this Thursday, September 2nd! This launch will be a little bit different, so please read on to see how to shop!  Continue reading

Introducing: The Maryland Flagpole Canvas

Introducing: The Maryland Flagpole Canvas
We're very excited to announce our latest canvas: The Maryland Flagpole! This canvas is an exclusive with Hillside Needlepoint in Maryland. It will be launching this Wednesday, July 21st, at 11am on both of our websites. Continue reading

Favorite Apartment Decor

Favorite Apartment Decor
I know how much you all love decorating so I'm sharing some of my favorite home decor items that I've purchased or had my eye on! Continue reading

July NDPLT Club: Americana

July NDPLT Club: Americana
I am thrilled to be co-hosting this month's @ndlptclub. The theme is Americana and we have the perfect canvases in stock for it!  Continue reading

G-Wagon & 90's Cup Launch!

G-Wagon & 90's Cup Launch!
We're excited to launch 2 new designs: G-Wagon & 90's Cup tomorrow, June 29th at 7pm EST! We're also restocking a few of your favorite canvases and accessories. Come see what's new and restocking! Continue reading

Introducing Charts for Charity!

Introducing Charts for Charity!
I'm so excited to be announcing our Charts for Charity initiative! We are launching a needlepoint chart of a sailboat with all sales going to Chesapeake Region Accessible Boating.  Continue reading

Sketchbook Series: Volume 1

Sketchbook Series: Volume 1
Take a peek into my sketchbook with this new blog series. I'm challenging myself to create more in my sketchbook. I'll share my favorites with you to give you a peek into my creative process! Continue reading

DIY Needlepoint Phone Case

DIY Needlepoint Phone Case
Over the weekend - I had the idea to make a needlepoint phone case. It ended up being a quick, easy project to stitch in a few days & a great way to use leftover thread. I learned a lot along the way, so I wanted to share the steps in case you want to make your own!  Continue reading

Needlepoint Projects Completed in 2019

Needlepoint Projects Completed in 2019
As 2019 quickly ends, I'm sharing all of the canvases I stitched and finished this year! I thought this could be a great way to remember the projects I complete from year-to-year. Continue reading

How to Self-Finish a Needlepoint Jewelry Box

How to Self-Finish a Needlepoint Jewelry Box
If you've ever wanted to learn how to self-finish a needlepoint canvas, this one is for you! I'm showing you how to take your canvas and finish it into a jewelry case in less than 10 minutes. Continue reading

Diet Coke Leopard Print Template

Diet Coke Leopard Print Template
As a thank you for supporting me during this holiday season, I'm giving you a free template to stitch your own canvas! This Diet Coke Leopard Print Canvas makes the perfect insert for a self-finishing case. Continue reading

How to Learn How to Needlepoint

How to Learn How to Needlepoint

Have you always wanted to learn how to needlepoint but don't know where to get started? If so, this guide is for you! I'm sharing resources on where you can learn how to needlepoint. 

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Creating my own Fabric for Finishing

Creating my own Fabric for Finishing

Here I go again, raving all about how I love the design process lol! But in all seriousness, I try to look at needlepoint finishing as an art form. I take my finishing very seriously – and often hold on to stitched pieces for months before I send them for finishing just so I can find the perfect fabric, trim, accessories, etc.

 

This canvas was a gift from my boyfriend over the summer. We were in Disney one weekend and he called up Lycette and spoke with Mama L (who is just the sweetest!!!). The canvas was waiting for me at home when we got back & I stitched it up so fast. If you’re interested in this canvas, it is by Jessica from Lycette and you can purchase it by calling her shop or online! I try to support other needlepoint designers when I can because that’s how we keep this industry growing.

Back to the canvas. I stitched this canvas fairly quickly and knew I wanted it to be my vacation clutch. The best part about a clutch? It has two sides so each side can be a statement! I knew I wanted to make something completely unique for the other side.

 

In my early e-commerce days before I was a needlepoint canvas designer, I created patterned fabric. I loved the challenge of designing repetitive patterns. I studied under Kaeli Smith, who has her own apparel line that you’ll love if you love Lilly Pulitzer. She actually produced a line with a pattern I designed one summer! Some images are below. I honestly think that wearing a fabric that you created is one of the coolest feelings in the world. I still create patterns for fun from time to time, and if you’re interested you can shop them here on Spoonflower. I also have a Pinterest board that I am constantly updating with my favorite fabric. 

 

So for this finish, I knew I wanted the fabric on the other side to be beach or tanning related. I spent weeks looking for a fabric but couldn’t find anything that I loved. I tried to design some patterns and came close to ordering this one, but it just didn’t feel right for this finish. The only rule I had was that I wanted a fabric that had similar colors to the needlepoint.

 

 

I went back to the drawing board. I was scrolling through Instagram and came across this photo from The Skinny Confidential. Unfortunately, I did a reverse-image-search and couldn’t find it anywhere. I was hoping it was an art print and I could contact the artist to purchase – but I think Lauren’s team created it. I started to look into vintage maps to find something similar. Maybe an artist had created a cool map design of a beach I had been to? But again, I couldn’t find anything I loved.

 

 

As I was searching for vintage map, somehow I came across old Coppertone ads and it clicked. I loved the irony of having a Coppertone design on a “Gone Tanning” canvas because I am crazy about sun protection. I attempted to find vintage Coppertone fabric, bags, or anything of the sort. The only thing that turned up was this Coppertone bag. I came across 3 online, but all had discoloration, stains, and the color palette didn’t fit the needlepoint canvas. I was hesitant to use a fabric that had been stained to create a clutch. 

 

Because I’m obsessed with Captain (my goldendoodle), I thought “How cool would this be if the dog could look like Captain?”. I decided to use the bag as inspiration and create my own sketch with custom colors. I spent a few hours drawing a similar design on my iPad and trying to match colors to the canvas. Below is the final sketch I created!

 

Next, I needed to find a shop who would print my fabric. I considered creating a canvas from this drawing, but decided it would be better to just have it on fabric. I didn’t want to turn this into a pattern because I wanted the sketch to be a large motif on the fabric. I reached out to several different stores and finally decided to work with this Etsy store because they totally understood my vision. As you may have guessed from above, I’m really picky about fabric and finishing, so I was really happy to work with a company who just understood and delivered. 

About 2 weeks later, the fabric was at my door and it was perfect! I will definitely use them again to order again. This isn’t a sponsored post and I paid full price for my fabric – I was just thrilled to find someone who understood my vision, was responsive, and helpful. I’m already dreaming about my next project through them!

 

Now, this stitched canvas and fabric is off to Lycette for finishing! I will post a final picture & update when it’s finished, but I am so excited to see the results. Stay tuned!

 

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The Canvases I'm Packing for Vacation

The Canvases I'm Packing for Vacation

As I prepare to head out of town for a much-needed vacation, I thought I would give you a little peek at the canvases that I am packing. Frankly, I haven’t had enough time to stitch my own projects because I have been so busy with orders (thank you all!) This is a great problem to have. 

If you're new here and want to learn a little bit more about me, check out this blog post.

Side note: the last time I was on vacation I was considering taking the leap to launch Morgan Julia Designs. I'm SO happy I did!

 

 

Before we get started, I wanted to fill you in on a little secret: I will be launching a new collection of canvases this Winter. I brought a few of those to stitch, and I’ll note which ones, but they won’t be available for sale until early 2020. If you sign up for our emails here, you’ll be the first to know when they launch.

 If you’re interested in how to pack your needlepoint for a trip, my friend Jessica from Lycette has a wonderful blog post on the topic

I’m including some of my extra tips below. 

Traveling with Scissors:

  • Always pack your canvases in your carry-on to ensure they can’t get lost.
  • As Jessica stated, TSA will let you travel with scissor blades under 4 inches for domestic flights. The bamboo scissors I sell are TSA safe and travel approved!
  • International countries may not allow small scissors. If you’re traveling internationally, pack other items that can cut your thread such as a dental floss container, nail clippers, or a thread cutter.
  • If you check a bag, throw an extra pair of scissors in there. In the rare case that your scissors are confiscated on your trip down, you can have a back-up pair for your trip home.
  • If I have time (and remember) before I pack, I’ll choose one project and cut threads for it. That way if I lose all my scissors, I can still stitch.

Traveling Tips:

  • Separate your projects into individual bags with the tools you need. That way, you can pull out the project bag instead of having to dig through your carry-on for all your supplies. You can read about my favorite project bags on this blog post.
  • Pack a few needles in various places: your wallet, a Zip-lock, in a project bag, etc. Needles have a tendency to go missing – especially during travel.
  • Remember if all else fails and you lose supplies on your way down, Amazon ships almost everywhere so you can easily buy supplies.
  • Take more canvases than you need! That way you have more to stitch in case there are delays.
  • Upgrade yourself to first class so you have plenty of room to stitch. (Just joking…kind of)

Okay, now the moment you have been waiting for, here are a few of the canvases that I am bringing to stitch.  

Canvas #1: Champagne Dreams

I have been wanting to stitch this canvas for months. I worked on the design for over 2 weeks (this is probably my record) just playing with colors, font, size, etc. The background was originally a forest green and off-white stripe, but I think the two-toned pink fits it much better. It is on 13-count mesh and meant to be finished as a sleeping mask. I have been working on 18-count mesh a lot lately, so I think this will be a nice break and it should be a fairly fast project.

This is a retired Morgan Julia Designs Canvas.

 

Canvas #2: Champagne Bucket

Can you tell there may be a theme to this new collection? On vacation, I love to start every day with a mimosa. This canvas reminds me of that. It is on 18-count mesh and the size of an ornament, but it could be finished as anything. I’m really excited about this canvas because it’s a great way to get creative with thread. I’ll be stitching the green bottle with velvet and the ice bucket with sparkly thread.

This is a new Morgan Julia Designs Canvas

Side note: One of the places we love to vacation to is the Ritz Carlton in Cancun. (I know Cancun doesn't have the greatest reputation, but it's a wonderful resort destination). Last spring, we were sitting in the club level drinking champagne. I was stitching Pip and Roo’s Whispering Angel canvas, and a little girl came over and sat right next to me. The first thing she says is “I LOVE your napkin-thingy”. I kindly explained that it was needlepoint, she watched me stitch for a bit, then went back to her parents. It was a really cute moment and we joke about it now. Maybe I should re-name this canvas “Napkin-thingy”. Thoughts?

  

Canvas #3: Oysters on the Half Shell

Remember how I said I was so busy? I haven’t had a chance to properly stitch any canvases from my last release. I’ve done some test stitching to make sure the colors and designs looked good – but it’s just like a draft and I haven’t had a chance to nicely stitch them for finishing. I’m so excited to stitch these oysters. This canvas has been a best-seller from my most recent collection and it will sell-out before the holidays, so if you’ve been thinking about grabbing one get one now!

If you follow me on Instagram, you may have seen I picked up Frye Werks FT25. Nicole Letts (@NicoleMelv on Instagram) mentioned I should use it for the oysters and I think I’ll do just that!

 

Canvases 4-7:

I’m a notorious overpacker, so of course I’m packing extra canvases (even though I don’t need to and probably won’t even touch half).

  • My boyfriend requested another belt so I’m bringing that to stitch. The design spells out a phrase that he asked for in sail flags. Gotta love a man who appreciates a needlepoint belt & sail flags.
  • I am also bringing an American Sails canvas to stitch for a patch on a Boat & Tote.
  • I picked up this adorable Lycette canvas that I want to put my own spin on. As you know, I love gold bamboo, so I picked up some thread to make the border gold. I love that the foo dogs are in my favorite colors: light blue & navy blue.
  • The final one I’m bringing is a secret. It’s the only canvas I’ve had time to stitch lately and I am about 75% finished. I promised myself I would finish it on this trip so I won’t touch the others until this is done. It will be available in my winter collection and I may even post a picture of it on Instagram, so follow @MorganJuliaDesigns to see. 

Okay, that’s all! And that’s more than enough. Who knows if all 7 will actually end up in my bag (probably not), but at least you get to see a glimpse of what I’ll be stitching over the next few months. Let me know which is your favorite in the comments below – I love seeing which canvases other stitchers love. 

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