Mary Corbet

writer and founder


I learned to embroider when I was a kid, when everyone was really into cross stitch (remember the '80s?). Eventually, I migrated to surface embroidery, teaching myself with whatever I could get my hands on...read more

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Hexie Update, for the Curious!



After many requests for an update on my hexie project, I figured it’s about time to ‘fess up on where things stand with those thousands of little fabric hexagons just begging to be stitched up!

For those who are just making your acquaintance with this particular project, I’ll give you a brief background. Last year, I began a hand-pieced hexagon quilt made up of 3/4″ hexies. The quilt requires some 5,200-ish hexies for a full-sized quilt (sans border).

My purpose in undertaking this particular adventure was to have something ongoing that I can turn to whenever I want to do something with my hands that isn’t embroidery, and that’s portable, so that I can take it anywhere and have something to work on.

At the end of today’s update, I’ll link to previous articles on the project.

Let’s look at where things stand and chat about another organizational discovery that I’ve implemented.

Hand pieced hexie quilt with 3/4
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Willing Hands – Full of Great Embroidery Finishes


Good morning, and Happy Wednesday! It’s a good day for a book review, methinks.

The book I’m going to review today has been in my reading stack for a while. It’s been on the market since last autumn, and perhaps many of you – especially if you are counted cross stitchers – already have it. It’s a book chock-full of finishes.

The book is Willing Hands: The Counted Thread Embroidery of Betsy Morgan. And even though Willing Hands concentrates on counted thread techniques, I don’t see it so much as a counted thread technique book. Instead, I see it as a book that overflows with fabulous ideas for finishing embroidery into useful and beautiful needlework accessories.

Let’s take a look at the book and then chat about how it is a universally useful book for embroiderers of every discipline.

Willing Hands: Betsy Morgan - for embroidery finishes
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Beginner Goldwork & Silk Embroidery Project


Here in the studio, Anna and I have been having a boatload of fun, stitching and … well, stitching. (We do other things, but they aren’t always a boatload of fun.)

After Anna finished my Gertrude Jacobean design – which was a variation on this Jacobean design I just finished – she moved along to a beginner goldwork and silk project.

Anna makes a great guinea pig.

It’s wonderful to have someone to test stitching ideas and theories on. The idea I had for this particular design was to develop it into a beginner’s project for working with silk threads and goldwork techniques. So we picked out silk and gold threads, I gave her an overview of a general idea for stitching, and she set to it.

Beginner silk & goldwork embroidery rose
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Ta Dum! An Embroidery Finish, with Close-Ups


Finally and at long last… the Jacobean piece is finished.

Yay! Yesterday was a banner day, so I’m calling this embroidery project officially finished.

Now, that doesn’t mean I won’t make some changes. There are a few spots that I am mulling over, but I’m going to set the project aside – still on its frame – for a week or so. Then, when I look at it fresh in a little while, I’ll be able to make better decisions if I want to adjust anything.

Today, I’ll show you the finished design, close ups of the different sections, and share some random thoughts on the project as we examine it.

Jacobean design embroidered with silk
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Embroidery Update: Two Down, Two to Go


Good morning, my friends! Today, just a quick update on my Jacobean Sea embroidery project. It’s been a while since our last update. And yes, you’d think I’d have it finished…

It definitely should have been finished by now, and, while I’ve managed the last two large “leaves,” I still have two small ones to go!

I’m not necessarily completely finished with these two large leaves, either. The base leaf is ok – I think I’ll probably leave it – but the side leaf is awaiting one more color of thread, and I’m not quite sure I’m satisfied with it. We shall see!

So here’s a very quick update just to show you where I am.

Jacobean Sea Embroidery Project
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Tool Talk: Aficots & Laying Tools


Every hobby, craft, and artistic pursuit requires tools.

True, not all tools are essential to the craft.

If you take embroidery, for example, as things go, it requires very few tools. At the minimum, embroidery simply requires a needle. I suppose even scissors could be considered unnecessary – if you have good teeth!

But the fact is, good tools can make embroidery less frustrating and more efficient. And beautiful good tools can also add a certain aesthetic value to the embroiderer’s experience, enhancing the embroiderer’s pleasure while using them just by virtue of the fact that they are beautiful.

As you progress in your embroidery journey, it makes sense to add tools to your embroidery workbox that are not only useful, but also beautiful.

Today, I want to show you some beautiful and useful embroidery tools.

Aficot and matching laying tool
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Hoop Talk: Stitch Ezi Embroidery Frame-Hoop Review


Good morning, and Happy Wednesday! I hope last weekend was marvelous for you, and that you were able to get in some good bonding time with your needle and thread!

Today, we’re going to continue my mini series of embroidery hoop-related product reviews that I’ve shared with your recently.

Back in May, we looked at this Nurge hoop-holding floor stand, and then a couple weeks ago, we looked at this Morgan double hoop combo lap stand.

Now let’s look at the Stitch-Ezi Embroidery Frame Hoop, a hoop lap stand that I had heard about a while ago, so I purchased it to check it out. It’s another one of those needlework products that has definite pros and cons. In my book, it leans more towards cons (I’ll tell you why), though it does have a couple notable pros that many needleworkers would appreciate.

Stitch-Ezi Embroidery Frame-Hoop Review
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