Yarn in Autumn

November is a beautiful month in Southern California. The days are warm, crisp, and blue, with the occasional passing cloud. Leaves are turning all sorts of wild colors, falling wistfully to the ground. By Thanksgiving, the skies will sometimes turn gray and dark, and the nights grow cold. Winter peeks in over the garden wall, promising frost and a peaceful slumber to all the green things. Sometimes I wish I could hibernate in the winter, too. After a long and busy year, the shortened days are a reminder to turn inwards awhile, and tend to the spirit landscape. I try not to fight my body’s natural tendency towards slowing down, resting more, and being still.

In other news…I had to share with you this utterly magical thing that happened: we’re in Mollie Makes! (See the kawaii cuties poking out from the corner of the cover???) This was such a delightful project to work on, and it’s amazing to see our darlings in the pages of one of our most favorite magazines.




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This is the time of year my thoughts turn to yarn. Needlework is my forever love, but on the first frosty wind comes a yarnie passion I can’t resist. My mind races and tries to sort through all the possibilities: stripey knit fingerless gloves, crochet mittens, knit hats, colorblock crochet scarves, shawls, tree skirts, table runners, coasters… In other words, all the beautiful things. I couldn’t decided on my knitting needles or crochet hook, wool, cotton, or acrylic, something for the house or something to wear… So I played with yarn for a bit to see if any colors spoke to me. Then I started a crochet linen stitch square for a possible scarf project. Nothing was clicking.




One day, quite by accident, I discovered this beautiful blog. I think I heard bells then, or birdsong – it was lovely. So I chose a few of my favorite Christmassy colors and got started on the ‘Granny Square Table Runner.’ I’m hoping to get this lovely project done in the next week. (And I foresee one of these for every holiday!)



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November is like a second spring in the garden. All the plants that withered in the scorching summer sun have been revived. The tomato vines are flowering, nasturtiums are popping up everywhere, and the rosemary is covered in purple blooms. In a few short weeks the frost will come and put an end to the green things, but it’s lovely to see a green revival in the meantime.

Cuddles the Garden Cat has put on his winter coat – a perfectly poofy strawberry blond he is, sunning himself on the cinder block wall behind the flower bed.

And the zinnias. Love of my garden life. They’re still blooming away – the hot pinks and reds more ferocious than ever, the whites more stark, the yellows richer, and my heart fuller than ever.





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Ahh…needlework. Happy, soothing needlework. Without it, I would be one very grumpy frumpy girl. (Because why bother getting up in the morning?) I’m making progress on my ‘Jolly Reindeer’ cross stitch. He’s such a sweet thing, and I can’t wait to stitch up his eyes, mouth, and nose. I just need that jolly retro smile of his.



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We hope you’re enjoying these last few weeks of autumn, before winter sets in. If you’re in the States, we wish you a warm and happy Thanksgiving!

‘Till next time!

Sweet Autumn

Oh, sweet autumn! The days are warm and the nights are cold enough for orange and black stripey socks. Leaves turn late in this part of the country, but already they’re hinting at gold. Time is always playing tricks on me, but it’s October so I’m fine with the trickery. This month that celebrates the shadows, witches and goblins, wicked smiles, candied apples, black cats, and pumpkin moonshine – it’s enough to send my spirit soaring.

To add to our October jollies, there’s a bit of Trellis & Thyme news at the booksellers and craft shops: We’re featured in the ‘Meet the Designer’ interview of Cross Stitch Crazy magazine! (Issue 234/November.)




We’re so over-the-moon about this! I’d like to pretend we’re entirely cool and blasé, but that’s not us at all. For us this is pure magic, and we’re more inspired than ever to add to our collection of cross stitch designs, and share our love of needlecraft.


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I’ve been stitching a storm, as usual, ever aware of the power of needle & thread and how much my well-being depends on it. For me, it’s calming and empowering, soul-soothing and enriching. I especially enjoy working seasonal designs and motifs. These days everything whooshes by so fast, it’s hard to enjoy the little mysteries and inspirational treasures hidden in the holidays. Stitching classic seasonal motifs is a lovely way to experience the present, to really relish in the charms of whatever season you’re in. This applies to all seasonal crafting, I believe. It just connects you to the present, no matter what you’re doing. And it’s wonderful.

I’m nearly done hand-sewing the binding of my Halloween Crackle quilt. It’s Dennis’ quilt, technically, and he’s been waiting patiently for it for three years! I am taking my sweet time, loving the mindful motion. Also, it feels just lovely curling under the quilt, windows open to the cold night air, crickets chirping, kitty cat at my feet, warm cup of tea at my side.





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We hope that this October finds you well, wherever you are. And as always, wishing you all good things.

‘Till next time!

September

These are the last petaled jewels of summer. September’s soaring swiftly by, and soon we’ll arrive at the equinox and the true beginning of autumn. I’ve been designing, stitching, and sewing endlessly all summer long. Creating draws time out, doesn’t it? It stretches it like taffy. Sometimes I marvel at just how much we can do in one day, or one season. And while we worked so hard on so many projects, those seemingly endless stretch of summer days are still coming to an end. But I have an account of them – stitched and sewn and charted in countless things. That makes me so deeply happy.







Now I’m really rather tired. I want an autumn holiday. I want to sort through balls of yarn and crochet silly Halloween bunting. I want to cart out the painted pumpkins and the haunted village Dennis and I made last year, and decorate our home. I want to pour over cookbooks for new and favorite fall recipes. And I want to bake bread again. Mostly I’m dreaming of a slower pace, one to match the new season.

‘Till next time, wishing you the best of days.

Cats & Bags

While it’s still hot as blazes, summer is winding down. Autumn’s arrival is subtle: a few leaves dashing across the walk, a touch of chill in the evening air. As with any change of seasons, I’m excited and a little nervous. I think if you pay close attention to the seasons, you feel that bit of tension when things are on the verge of change. It’s a fidgety, not-quite-settled feeling. But it’s temporary and you settle in, and all becomes well.

Have you seen Cross Stitch Crazy magazine? It’s a positively gorgeous UK publication sold at Barnes & Noble and Joann here in the States. That’s Helz Cuppleditch’s work on the September cover, (issue 232.) I have a crush on all her designs. And there’s a bit of a Trellis & Thyme surprise in this issue, too:




Cat’s out. We’ve been having a wonderful time working with Crazy! There’s a lot of fun stuff in store for both our cross stitch and softie fans. Stay tuned.


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My ‘Washi Star’ quilt is coming along. I didn’t have a spare moment to sew the larger blocks together last week, but it was good just to admire it as I walked past. Coolba and Fluffo have somehow managed not to traipse across it (nor sleep on it, roll on it, dash over it, etc.) They’re waiting patiently until it’s quilted, I think. Good kitties.

I’ve also been busy stitching up my ‘Trick or Treat’ cross stitch pattern. It’s an enchanting little design and I love it so! Halloween’s not as far off as it seems, and I do love seasonal stitching.







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The garden’s still growing flowers by the armful, and everything’s buzzing and brimming with energy. Soon we’ll have bunches of pomegranates and lemons to pick. Cuddles is plumping up again after a long listless summer which rendered him totally slinky. He’s sleeping like a loaf in the evenings – another sign of the changing seasons.








Hope you’ve been having a wonderful summer (or winter, depending upon where you live!)

‘Till next time!

While the Sun Shines

It’s a sweltering 102-degrees in the afternoons, while I sip hot tea and sew a Christmas quilt. Like Billy Mumphrey, I suffer from the all-consuming affliction known as unbridled enthusiasm. (They said it would go away this side of childhood, but I think it’s gotten worse.)

This quilt’s been such fun. We call it ‘Washi Star’, because it features sawtooth stars, squares, and rectangles in a lovely, twinkly, washi tape array. We designed it so that all the pretty fabrics could take center stage. (By “all the pretty fabrics” I mean the most delightful Andover and Kaufman cotton chambrays, paired with Cotton+Steel’s ‘Tinsel’ and ‘Garland’ collections.) All that’s left is piecing the larger blocks together to finish the quilt top. I’ll see about taking a proper photo of the layout for my next post.







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The garden’s bursting with flowers these days. There are fresh blooms all over the house, like every summer, making everything in life a bit better. Flowers do that. Cuddles is his dapper self, (when he’s not being a complete brat, that is.) And my ‘Life on the Farm’ cross stitch is growing cheerfully each day. I will have to pause for a moment and start ‘Trick or Treat’, because that jolly Jack and his curious black kitty are calling me.










In the meantime, we’re working on so many lovely new projects (some we have to keep hush-hush for a bit.) And ’tis the season for holiday stitching, so be sure to pop into the shop regularly to catch all the festive new cross stitch patterns!

‘Till next time, cheerio!