Friday, December 26, 2014

Every Princess Needs a Princess Bed

My New Year's Eve grand daughter, Caroline - who lives in Boston and will be 7 on that day - had been wishing for the bed trimmings she believed all princesses slept beneath. Many pictures had been shown to her mother and this subject had been non-stop conversation for months. While I was in Boston visiting before Christmas, I somehow pulled off this request as a surprise. It was a great hit! This child - who never gets too excited about anything - was over the moon JOYOUS with this surprise.

Happy 7th Birthday, dear Caroline! Love, Mimi

Wednesday, December 24, 2014


A huge Merry Chrstmas and Happy Holidays wish from me to you. Keep those hands busy with whatever you choose to do! May the New Year bring you new ideas for projects beyond what you have tried before and may your loved ones appreciate your work and give you PEACE so you can  finish all your UFO's.

Friday, December 19, 2014

And the Stockings Were Placed By The Chimney With Care!

This is the season for Christmas stockings. I have been designing these for friends, clients and strangers for over 40 years now and somehow, each one is "special." I have always attempted to turn over projects within the short span of 2-3 weeks but this year my biggest procrastination along this subject line was the stocking for my 3 year old grandson, Langston, who lives in Boston. It needed to somewhat match his sister, Caroline's. She is almost 7. This was a hard one for me.

Anyway, I started painting and stitching and painting some more and then stitching some more. And, this is NOT the way to design a stocking. I started this project the week before Thanksgiving and finished the stitching last week. Phew - a record. A labor of love and I think it came out great. Whenever I paint a stocking for a family member, I seem to agonize over it more than normal. For months, really. I guess this is called "knowing the person so well that it has to be perfect and nothing can be omitted." Oh well, my problem. But I am now promising myself that NEXT TIME I will paint the whole stocking before taking one stitch. And, next time is in January as I have one grandson left and Jack is almost 3. He has a 7 year old brother too, so it will be HARD - again! But, I promise to start EARLY! Really.

I am a very traditional stitcher when I get a chance to actually stitch something. I know the fancy stitches and fibers - but this is my favorite style and I love wool, and it all works for me.

The top two for my cuties in Boston - 4 years apart. Caroline was born 3 blocks from Make Way for the Ducklings sculpture in the Boston Commons. Langston loves everything sports and with wheels and spends hours lining up dozens of cars, trucks and other vehicles in lines around the room. 
A virtual car lot in the TV room. #14 mesh.

For 3 year old twins in Chicago. #10 mesh.

Two cute little girl stockings. Both join several siblings - different families. #10 mesh for each.

That's it for stockings in 2014. There were more shown in previous blogs if you are interested and/or need ideas.

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Christmas Elves Have Been Working!

I just noticed that my last blog was October 31. Shocking! The time has absolutely whizzed by. Shipping finished ornaments has been the biggest "time eater" as well as trying to get  a few quilts off to my quilter extraordinaire so she doesn't run out of projects during the holidays. And, there are the customers who decide that they need a new needlepoint project. Then there was cooking for Thanksgiving - and, more needlepoint design - and, EGADS - the holidays were upon me!

A few samples of what I have been working on since October 31.

 Lots of ornaments in many different styles all designed by yours truly.

A 70th birthday remembrance for a couple - one for each child's Christmas tree.

A special 100th year Cookie Day commemoration ornament for family members. For this family 1000's of cookies baked and frosted the day after Thanksgiving are a tradition all the way from Germany. A fresh cookie will be slipped into the open stockings upon delivery.

Baseball mitts for my 6 year old grandson and granddaughter - their first year! Both loved it.

A  copy of an iron front gate - in needlepoint.
For a UNC Tarheel baseball team member. Go Tarheels!

And, practically all moms of boys everywhere know who this guy is wearing his tool belt.

Now I will search out Christmas stockings. And wrap gifts. And make cookies. And clean the house. And, maybe sleep!

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Happy Halloween!

It is pretty scary in our neighborhood with this Darth Vader character scooting around. I have heard he will turn into Hans Solo before midnight.
VERY SCARY even without the full costume!

Beautiful weather in NC and Dee is BUSY!

With the exceptionally great weather we have been having here in Charlotte, it has been especially hard to stay inside and get my work/play done. Lots of needlepoint Christmas stocking coming back in to be finished and a million and six great quilting ideas just simmering below the surface, waiting to explode  into finished quilts. How to decide what to do?

Add all this to the ever changing daylight situation and two grandsons next door that are keyed up with light sabers and Halloween and need to run for at least an hour or two - and the days are full. But the truth is - I am  blessed to have them next door and I love my work/play. I have noticed that as I grow older it is not as easy to stay working into the dark nightime hours. I need daylight and lots of it. A little S.A.D. I am sure.

The good news is that daylight savings time ends this weekend, we all get another hour of sleep and the sun will shine maybe not a bit longer, but earlier. The bad news is that my waking hour of 5 will be 4 and there is absolutely NOTHING one can do at that ungodly hour.

Just a sampling of stockings from the photo pile.


Friday, October 17, 2014

Lots going on here in the studio.

Last weekebnd was a wonderful quilting spree here and there was fabric flying everywhere. I finished up two Irish quilts and an alternate one called Gardens of England.

I then walked back into my fabric room and noticed one of my favorite fabrics that I had made into a duvet cover for the trundle bed (grandchildren) when I moved to NC. The saying on it is "My Heart Always comes Home to You." There was about a yard of it just smiling up at I snatched it up, found three matching fabrics and within about an hour I had a very cute baby quilt. Lots of pink checks for the backing and enough cloud fabric for binding. Now that is what I call fun!

With my long arm quilter out of town for two weeks I have felt an urge to have lots of fun for her upon her return. She came back last Sunday and this deluge of projects might just push her over the edge. We'll see when I deposit four projects on her doorstep. I tell her this is "job security!"

Being a designer and not being able to rent long arm time here in NC, I turn everything over to this genius - and she proceeds. Aren't I lucky?

I can't show some of the quilts going off to magazines but I can show the fun baby quilt.

 This will look more balanced when the pink/raspberry binding is on. Guess I should have ironed the fold out before shooting the photo.

And now for a cute Bob the Builder needlepoint ornament I painted last weekend. Very cute. On #13 mesh. 


Ornaments finished in time for the holidays. I just love to open the packages from my finisher. Merry, merry two months early. Thank you all my needlepoint friends for getting these back for finishing early! Now you can look at them and admire your work for a while before sending them off to loved ones. Merry Christmas!

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

A Great Day!

Today I received a gift of several hours I had not planned on having and got to work on a couple of projects that I really have enjoyed.

The first was a hanging with batiks from  I met the keen team behind this company in Atlanta at the Quilting Live! show put on by my friends the Fons & Porter's Love of Quilting people. The choices were mind-boggling! I have never used batiks in my quilting before and it was so fun. The colors were wonderful - all the brights I love and now the project is about finished.

Aren't these just the best and brightest colors ever?

I also got a shipment of needlepoint Wrightsville Beach ornaments which went directly into the mail for the wonderful shop Yarns of Wilmington in Wilmington, NC. If any of you love that beach and want to stitch an ornament, give Binkie a call at 910-791-2157. She will give you price information and send you fibers to match the ornament.

Wrightsville Beach ornament on #18 mesh.

Here's hoping tomorrow will be as productive as today. Hope you have had an equally great day.

Friday, October 3, 2014


In the past few weeks I have been around several different cities checking out the local quilt shops. I have seen a lot of tuffets - or footstools - being offered as classes. About a year ago, I took a class at a little shop outside of Spokane, WA with two college friends. It was a blast. Several days of sewing, laughing, a little wine and a lot of fun. We were three different personalities - as can be seen in the accompanying photograph.

This fuzzy one is mine. (It makes me dizzy to look at it, but you get the picture.) I had a wild animal moment. Love it. The middle button was first covered with leather which did not work - too heavy. I took the leather off and used felt. Same look - easier to wrap a large button.

Susan's, Dee's, Dwyta's. Love them all.
There's nothing better than quilting with friends!

Saturday, September 27, 2014

OK, I am in and doing this!

It seems that everything easy is not really easy at all. I began trying to post my first blog in several years and after doing what I had been told to do - FOUR times - and I was still without blog. I guess if you are over 40 this probably rings true to many. If I am told one more time - "it is so simple a child could do it" I am going to call in my 2- 6 year old grand children and have them write the blog. It might even be better than what I am trying desperately to do.

Since I feel have been silent for so long, when I decided to speak and then couldn't, I felt the earth had stopped moving. (Maybe too dramatic?) It has not, I have been assured.

So, I will add a few more photos, I think I have this now. My son-in-law came to my rescue yesterday. I appreciate his wonderful work on my behalf in spite of the fact he only uses a PC and has never even looked at Facebook. Yeah, he did it! Now I will do it!

A food quilt for my bestie who got her Masters Degree in Culinary Arts a few years ago. Hope you have all purchased the games "Foodie Fight" and "Wine Wars." If not, look them up. Great fun. She is a genius!
This quilt is called Beacon of Hope. I made it for an auction to benefit cancer survivors held by Above & Beyond Cancer in Des Moines. Fons & Porter's Love of Quilting magazine featured it earlier this year.

Another BIG College

Recognize this one? For a University of Iowa Hawkeye fan extraordinaire. This will hang on a door during all Hawkeye games. The size is 20" across and on #10 mesh canvas. It is off being finished currently.

Friday, September 26, 2014


Seem to get a lot of requests for school logos.

University of Colorado

Nice logo, cannot remember the school. Someone out there will know.

Anami Montessori in Charlotte, NC

I am in the South now - ALABAMA

St. Augustin's school in Des Moines, IA. This might have been for a 1st Communion.

Most of the school logos are on #18 mesh as the detail is much better. If you are interested, just send me the school name or the logo. As the grandkids say "easy, peasy, lemon sqeezey." But it does take a couple of hours to paint these little ornaments :)

I am BACK!

To all friends far and near,

It has been several years since my first blog, but things are about to change! I have moved to North Carolina, acquired through my children’s birth experiences several more grandchildren, sold the Kids Kits part of my needlepoint business to Colonial Needle, Inc. in NYC and traveled with son, Charlie, on a couple of great climbs around the world.

The children and grandchildren are the best part of the above scenario, the move was difficult (too much stuff ), selling the kids kit line was great as I had no space to put the kits together and I am glad I traveled with Charlie when my knees were a little bit younger!

It is now time to get back to business and see what all my friends are up to when it comes to keeping their hands busy! From now on, I will be showing all of you a lot of custom needlepoint designs that leave daily from my now “smaller” studio than the one many of you visited in Des Moines. The good news is that many, many more designs leave the premises now, I design custom needlepoint for several shops around the country and I am BIG, make that BIG, into quilting design.

In 2006, Martingale & Co. published my first quilting book Applique at Play, 19 Sports Blocks to Mix and Match projects for the athletes in your life. It was a blast doing that book and my hope is to do several more books soon so I need the help of all of you, my friends! READ my blog, even if you don’t sew quilts or do needlepoint. It’s the numbers that count here so, please take a few minutes and sign in.  My DeElda Erbe Wittmack Facebook page will have a link to this blog and will be showing lots of current custom work.

There will be both needlepoint and quilts, some of my needlepoint line canvases that are particularly popular, and all my ideas for future projects. And, YES, weigh in. I always like another opinion, even if does not agree with mine. My sisters say I don’t listen to others, but I do! ☺

 The quilts are not your grandmother’s quilts! I often start with a traditional pattern that morphs into clean, contemporary projects of all sizes in bright and sunny colors. These become a focal point of every room and are great for the decorator in all of you. Lots of Kaffe Fassett florals, polka dots, and batiks – just about anything the mood warrants.

 So tune in, remember to like my website and blog.

This is one of my first quilts and one of my favorites! It is called Evening Star and is a scrappy quilt.