Melitastitches4fun's Blog


Woodlawn Roadtrip 2017
March 12, 2017, 9:31 pm
Filed under: General comments, Woodlawn Needlework Exhibition

The weather wasn’t as warm as we’d have liked it but my husband & I were limited on weekends we could get to Woodlawn this year. Bill & I headed out Friday just after the snow ended (roads were fine). We took a break at a restaurant/bar my husband wanted to visit in the Washington, DC area & then made it to Old Town Alexandria in time for dinner at one of our favorites places.

Since it was colder, we didn’t walk as much around Old Town on Saturday. Instead we headed over to Woodlawn in the late morning. Attendance looked good but there were fewer pieces (463) than in some past years. I didn’t count them – you get a listing and a booklet. Tickets went up to $15 this year but they made several wonderful changes. The biggest improvement is that you can get up close to the pieces within each room. There are no ropes stopping you from walking around. And, they are offering several “events”: http://www.woodlawnpopeleighey.org/needleworkevents/ (also mentioned in the entry form). Since I hadn’t thought to look on the website & didn’t enter anything this year, I didn’t have the opportunity do attend/participate in them. But, I will definitely look at these next year. I would like to walk around the exhibit with a retired ANG judge to hear what issues they deal with. But, that only happens on Wednesdays. This is the 2nd year that some pieces are for sale (at the request of the stitcher & priced by the stitcher with a commission applied).

Winners of ribbons are listed on the website now too: http://www.woodlawnpopeleighey.org/annualneedleworkshow/ . And, that brings me to my review of select pieces. And, I will comment mostly in order by entry number (in parens). And, if the entrant is a designer that I know has his/her first & last name on the web or is listed as an award winner on Woodlawn’s website, I’ll cite both; otherwise, I cite full first name and last name initial letter only.

Catherine Jordan got ribbons for each of her 3 pieces (1-3) including a Director’s Award for her Sharing Secrets book cover. They are in the ‘jewelry’ room which we almost missed had it not been for Bill asking where are Catherine Jordan’s pieces!

That room had a pair of unique original designs (embroidery/crewel) by Catherine Hicks (14 and 15) of Hillary Clinton as a young girl which was quite flattering and one of Donald Trump that was not flattering. Look under his protruding hair and see what is stitched on his forehead! These 2 each which won 2nd place ribbons are for sale at $1257 and $1600, respectively.

Kirdy Biggs got ribbons for her 3 geometric pieces (18-20).

Linda Cole (26) deserved her First Place award for the reversible sampler!! Amazing.

Caroline Hayes (119) not only deserved her First Place award for the map of The Real Counties of Britain but also the Eleanor Custis Lewis Award, Best in Show and a Judge’s Choice award. If my husband has his way, it’ll also get the People’s Choice award. Interesting that my husband & I were most impressed with similar pieces this year. Each of 86 counties have a different blackwork pattern identified in the margin and is stitched in the actual location within the map. We both loved it.

I love seeing pieces I’ve stitched. This year I found Amy G (160) submitted Diane Hermann’s Walking the Water’s Edge.

Two different people, Anne W (182) and William K (275), stitched the same eagle in cross stitch. Interesting to see them framed differently.

The finishing on the cross-stitched golfer by Sherri B (186) was perfect! The mat was artificial turf and the frame had raised band of rounded areas like golf balls.

Donna LaBranche (221-224) got ribbons for all 4 pieces including a Second Place award for her adaptation of a Needle Pointer’s magazine cover that featured the ANG name badge (September 2013) and the Pope-Leighey Award, Outstanding Miniature for a 40-count miniature piece (in the sampler room on a table).

I had to vote for S Ayles, Jr , a senior, who stitched a 4 foot by 8 foot wall hanging of a geometric/floral design done in all basketweave on 18-count (228). Great colors & we both agreed we don’t understand how you work on a piece that big. What an effort!! I ended up voting for this one. This was a close second for Bill’s vote.

One of the first pieces we saw that wowed us was an original design of a dog by Susan MacRae (8). It won a First Place award and the Woodlawn Award, Outstanding Original Design. It was just the face but what an incredible face. The eye and nose were so realistic that it looked like a picture.

Speaking of dogs, Bill had a wonderful conversation with Lee Hanley, daughter of Hope Hanley. I totally missed that connection as I was studying the needlepoint in the geometric room upstairs while he talked with her. Bill found out that the piece she was demonstrating that day was a piece Hope had designed by the Royal School of Needlepoint in England. It has about 2 dozen dogs of different breeds in alphabetic order (like a sampler of dogs) on a large (4 foot by 4 foot) canvas. Bill found out from Lee that her mother traveled so much that she never had time to finish it. Lee hopes one day someone will finish it and donate to the dog museum in  St. Louis Missouri. The other demonstration on the first floor was by a teacher of Japanese Embroidery, Karen Bouton. A draft would blow a single strand of the silk away – it’s so fine. And, she explained that they twist strands together to get certain effects. Beautiful work. Every day they  have different demonstrations going on both floors. It’s a wonderful opportunity to showcase a technique.

Both Cathryn C (230) and Linda M (238) stitched Tony Minieri’s The Wright Friends – a lovely piece & one I’d still like to do.

Congrats to Sue Chadwick (236) for getting Second Place award for Jennifer Riefenberg’s Color Play.

And, Rosie L (237 and 241) had a great geometric piece with tons of shifts in color as it progressed outward. And, her puffins were adorable!

Linda M stitched Karen Garinger’s Thank You Jean and placed it in a mother of pearl frame (239). Stunning!

Barbara Levy (307) did a lovely Gordian Knot designed by Rachel Atkinson and got a Third Place award.

Rozelle Hirschfelt got awards for bother pieces (315 and 316) – the goldwork piece with red Or Nue in the flower was stunning!

Norma Hiller (319) stitched another piece I’d like to do – maybe someday I’ll take the leap & stitch Liz Morrow’s Leaping Stag from May 2014 Needle Pointers magazine (or for sale on her website (lizartneedlepoint under the Counted Needlepoint tab). Norma also stitched a piece (320) for a First Place award of a piece I’ve seen but can’t remember the name or designer (greens and purples). I have been told it’s Serengeti by Terry Dryden.

Cleo Robbins did a lovely Christmas stocking (324) and a large silk ribbon embroidery piece that won a Second Place award. Cleo has been to our Main Line Chapter & taught us a few basic stitches with ribbons. Glad we learned from her. Congrats to Cleo!

And, our own Patrick B had an adorable Gingerbread House (328). It’s a wonderful 3-dimensional piece with candy all over it. Great use of ’embellishment trim’ by Sundance Designs. Bill spotted his piece first. It’s in the Holiday room upstairs.

Theresa Baird got a First Place award for her original design celebrating locations of Cincinnati, OH (331). It’s a wonderful tribute to her home town.

A First Place award and Judge’s Choice award went to Kate Costello for a beautiful necklace (336). What was so unique about it was the offset silver/grey flower (on the right as displayed) with a different effect on each side of the flower. On the left were beads woven into the threads and only the threads on the right side.

I’ve got to get back to Sister’s by Nancy Cucci after seeing Dorothy B’s (373) piece. We were in the pilot class together last year.

Chandra Jonkman took 11 years to complete a quilt (about the size of a queen size bed) with 142 stitched bible verses and numerous hearts (386). Her daughter stitched a few heart motifs. And, the quilting was done by a third person consisted of concentric hearts.

Tara R stitched the front of a house adorned with 3-D wreaths (414). The window treatment was interesting. It looked like a fine gauze was placed over the window making it look like a sheer drape.

Two pieces of lovely jewelry were done by Dana C (415 and 416). I see Dana will be demonstrating beading downstairs on Mar 30. Nice!! I met Dana at Nancy Cucci’s Sisters pilot class in Rehoboth last year.

The 7 dwarfs and Snow White done by Shirley B were adorable and at $240 would be fantastic to decorate a child’s room (417-424).

I couldn’t find both of Margaret O’s pieces (434 and 435) but the one I did find had a deer under a tree on an interesting stand display.

Once again Nelly’s Needlers did a fantastic job! I picked up the wooden thread minder with numbered holes to help organize threads as you stitch. And, the ginger cookies were delicious! Thanks to all the contributors and volunteers for a wonderful exhibit.

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8 Comments so far
Leave a comment

I am so glad that I will be returning to the exhibit in ten days to see all that I missed!! Thank you for an excellent review, Melita!

Comment by suesci

I wish I had time to go twice. So much to take in. Enjoy!

Comment by melitastitches4fun

Norma’s other piece is Terry Dryden’s Safari. And just clarifying that my Outstanding Miniature piece is on 40ct silk gauze. I still can’t believe it I won…

Comment by needlepointgeek

Thanks for letting me know. I knew that it was an African sounding name. And, for clarification on the ground you used. I just went by the booklet. And, it was well deserved!

Comment by melitastitches4fun

Beautifully written Melita, you have an incredible talent for understanding and conveying thoughts and analysis to paper.You would make an ideal critic as well as a respected judge in this or any other field you choose to endeaver.Great piece!!!

Comment by Bill Glavin

Thanks Glav! You have a good eye too!

Comment by melitastitches4fun

Thank you so much for this report from Woodlawn. Wish I could see it in person this year, but a trip down is not in the cards. So, I appreciate every mention and every detail I can find in the blogs and on Facebook. 🙂

Comment by Arlene Cohen

Thank you for such a detailed & time consuming report.

Comment by Tisha Shaski




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