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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More Addictive Stitching & a Cyber Monday Sale!


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Howdy ho and a happy Monday!

I hope you had a fabulous weekend! Mine was a Banner Weekend on the stitching front. I got a lot of embroidery done! In anticipation of a fun collection of trees coming out this Friday on Needle ‘n Thread, I thought I’d show you some more of my stitched samples that materialized over the weekend.

I wrote about my new stitching addiction last week, and I’ll tell you this: I don’t think I’ve had such fun with my needle and thread in a long, long time! Oh, sure, I always have fun stitching, but for some reason, these little trees are completely engrossing! Is it because they are trees? Is it because they are Christmassy? Is it because they involve simple stitches and work up quickly? I don’t know!

In any case, here’s some weekend progress that you’ll hopefully find fun and inspiring. If they spark your stitching imagination, grab some thread and start stitching!

Oh! and I’m having a short Cyber Monday sale in my shop. I’ll share the details at the end of this article!

Hand Embroidered trees for Christmas on Needle 'n Thread

My biggest problem with this little collection of embroidered trees I’ve been working on is that I can’t decide which ones I like best.

They’re all worked in simple stitches – really easy for beginners and beyond! – and they’re small, so they work up quickly. And while they’re Christmas themed right now, most of them could be embroidered in any color scheme, for any time of the year.

Hand Embroidered trees for Christmas on Needle 'n Thread

To keep the designs really accessible for everyone, I’ve stuck with readily available DMC cotton threads, mostly stranded cotton, though I couldn’t resist using floche and coton a broder once or twice. But they all work with stranded cotton, too.

Hand Embroidered trees for Christmas on Needle 'n Thread

While I was plugging away on one of the trees this weekend, I had a Eureka Moment! I envisioned a tiny alteration involving beads. I needed one size and color of bead to pull it off. I ran out to my workroom and started scouring my bead trays. Sure, surely I had the right beads!

But alas, no. I didn’t.

This is one of the reasons why designers either have full sets of the materials they frequently design with, or at least real-thread or real-bead color cards, to help them choose just the right materials.

Well, I started to do The Grumble. Riffemrackemfrickemfrackem and all that.

But then I paused and reflected that most people probably wouldn’t have the exact item on hand, either, when working from stash on these little projects. So how could I make the project the Most Accessible for All?

Hand Embroidered trees for Christmas on Needle 'n Thread

By adjusting my idea slightly and working with a French knot as the substitute for the bead, I was able to achieve the same result I envisioned, and still add a little sparkle with a different bead, placed in a different spot.

It worked! And that’s the fun of these types of projects. You can let your imagination lead you in different directions, to test different outcomes, and pretty much, no matter what you do, they’re still going to look marvelous! And sometimes, they turn out better than your original plan!

Hand Embroidered trees for Christmas on Needle 'n Thread

I still have a small stack of trees to finish. A few are styles I haven’t stitched yet, and two are styles I have stitched, but I’ve since made adjustments to the patterns so that I can provide you with some alternative approaches.

So, I’ll be burning the midnight oil with these this week – and I don’t mind at all! There’s nothing better than quiet evening stitching, perhaps listening to a good book, and working on something that captivates you, is there?

Cyber Monday!

I don’t really get into the whole Black Friday / Cyber Monday marketing thing, but I do like to put my pattern and instructional e-books on sale once before Christmas, for those who have them on their wish lists.

You’ll find pattern e-books for embroidered kaleidoscopes, for monograms, and for church embroidery. You’ll find several technique e-books for stitches and stitch combinations. You’ll find several fun project e-books, and, if you’re looking for finishing instructions to make things (like ornaments, needlebooks, pin keeps, and so forth), Lavender Honey & Other Little Things will help you out!

So, if you’ve been hankering for any of my e-books, if they’re on your wish list or if you are thinking about gifting them to a stitching friend, today’s a good time to get them!

You’ll find them priced on sale in my Needle ‘n Thread shop right here, and they’re on sale now until tomorrow morning, for 15% off. So dive on in!

A Stitcher’s Christmas

On Saturday, I launched the first give-away in A Stitcher’s Christmas, 2017, a series of very special needlework give-aways on Needle ‘n Thread between now and Christmas. If you haven’t joined in on that, feel free to take a look and see if it interests you!

I’ve started posting hints on my Facebook page about upcoming give-aways in the series, too. Definitely worth keeping an eye out for them, so you know what’s coming up!

And that, my friends, is the end. I’m heading right to my needle and thread, and the only interruption I anticipate is a visit to the optometrist this afternoon. (I can’t wait to get my eyeballs sorted out again!)

Have a Marvelous Monday!


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(18) Comments

  1. Mary,

    I can’t tell you how much I am looking forward to your trees.
    They’re just what I need right now. My brain is too fried getting my store ready for Christmas and now I have to get the house ready. I have plenty of supplies and right now I need a project that I don’t have too think too much about. Something I can pick up at the end of the day to relax and calm down. ,lol be pulling out fabrics this evening. Having recently reorganized most of my threads and all of my beads, it will be easy to find what I want and just stitch.

  2. All that red a green stitching really does look like a lot of fun. Beautifully done, too! I appreciate the great close-up photography. When do we get to see the whole project, Mary?

  3. Hi Mary! I can’t wait to see your little trees!
    I have so many complex projects going that it’s a relief to work on something that will be complete in a short time. Right now I’m working on the “Home Sweet Home” embroidered workbox (Carolyn Pearce), which is very complex, and an applique/patch quilt panel to cover the shelves that house my embroidery supplies, so to have the satisfaction of making something that I can start and finish in one sitting, I’m making watercolor Christmas cards. They can be finished in a couple hours at most and though they aren’t masterpieces, they are very fun!

  4. Dear Mary

    These are really lovely trees and I’m glad you had such fun with them and was able to stitch to your hearts content even though you didn’t find the right beads for one. What will you do with them once they are completed? will you make them into Christmas Cards, that would be lovely you could send one to me. I saw your next give-away on FB the Scissors I can’t wait I will definitely enter that one. Great news with the cyber Monday discount on your books although I already have them all. Riffemrackemfrickemfrackem I love it, it made me laugh this should be in the Oxford Dictionary it’s great. Happy Monday.

    Regards Anita Simmance

  5. Mary I love seeing the little Christmas trees progression.
    Are you going to do a post telling us which stitches you used?
    I’m not that good at embroidery to figure it out!

  6. You know we would love to have you put this into an ebook. A Christmas themed one perhaps. That would make it easy to access the stitches and what you did. I would gladly pay to have it all together.
    Thank you,

  7. Oh help, dear Mary! I’ve followed the link to your shop but none of the images are showing! I’ve not seen this problem before.

    I am really hoping to buy some of your products.

    Best wishes,

    1. Hi, Helen – everything seems to be working from this end…. could be the settings on your browser? I’ll dig a little deeper, but you might try accessing again to see if the situation has resolved itself, or perhaps check the settings on your browser. I’ll let you know if anything’s askew.

  8. Thanks for the sale! I was waiting very impatiently to see if you were going to have one this year. Love those trees!

  9. Hey, Mary 🙂
    Great pics of your new trees! Very inspirational!
    I’m new to embroidery and have been trying to find just the right material to work on. What are you using on these trees? It looks very easy to stitch on

  10. Oh your Christmas trees look wonderful and I cannot wait to see them all. Your designs are so different from each other – how talented you are. Thank you for sharing it with us.

  11. I have enjoyed the journey of the Christmas Give Away. I learned about businesses that were not familiar to me previously and the gifts were fantastic. Thank you and thank you to all the small businesses that participated.

  12. How exciting it is to apply to win a chance at this weeks prize. And every is just great. The chance to try it would be just great! Thanks for the opportunity.
    Nancy Shelton.

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