Cross Stitcher

In My Hoop...

US reader Julie Mudd has been cross stitching for over 35 years! During the pandemic, Julie started a stitching group which now has over 80 members…


Despite cross stitch still being a growing interest where she lives, Julie Mudd took the initiative to forge new connection­s during the pandemic, and now there’s no stopping her…

Julie is based in St. Louis, Missouri USA. “Cross stitching is still far outpaced by knitting here, but the stitching community is growing,” she says. “Before 2020 I didn’t know any other stitchers in town, then during the US nationwide Covid-19 quarantine I was stitching a lot and scrolling social media a lot, where I discovered Facebook groups for my favourite designers and magazines. I searched in the membership lists for people in my city and began messaging them to ask if they’d like to form an in-person (masked when necessary) stitch group. I got a huge response! We started with about 30 members and now haveover 80, though we average 10 people at our stitch nights.

“We meet biweekly at a neighbourh­ood comic bookshop and call ourselves Nerdy or Not XS St. Louis. The St. Louis area’s first dedicated cross stitch-only store opened a few months ago and holds a monthly stitch night and stitch day. It’s great to buy my supplies locally from a small business and to meet and stitch with other stitchers outside of Nerdy or Not.

Julie’s best friend introduced her to cross stitch 35 years ago in college.

“I began my stash with a single leaflet and the DMC colours for that first pattern. Hilariousl­y, my first project was also my first UFO. It was probably too big for a beginner and I didn’t know all the great hacks I’ve learned since, and I didn’t get far on it. I kept stitching though, and completed quite a number of designs over the years, mostly small seasonalho­me decoration­s for myself, and mostly during my kids’ summer school breaks when no one had to be anywhere. Finally, during 2020 quarantine, I stitched nearly nonstop, and my obsession became etched indelibly.

“Cross stitch is my relaxation therapy, and also my creative outlet. I indulge my OCD exactness and when I’m done I have a beautiful handmade piece of art. I love both the solitude of stitching in my little niche at home and the camaraderi­e of stitching with the dozens of new friends I’ve met the past couple years. More and more, I love stitching with metallic and beads, and threedimen­sional designs.

“I discovered CrossStitc­her maybe 11 years ago when my kids entered school, and I had time to rekindle my love for stitching. I read it religiousl­y via my public library Libby app. I can’t wait to see the newest Make of the Month and find a great new greeting card design. I also love Ready, Steady, Stitch! because they’re always quick, creative projects and usually feature one of my favourite designers. And I especially love the sneak preview for next month’s issue—though it’s always too long a wait.

“I stitch a lot of greeting cards and ornies for gifts, and for smalls like these, I prefer to stitch in hand. But in the last couple years, I’ve been pursuing State Fair competitio­ns, so I’m doing bigger projects that require hoops and fabric wrangling. In 2022, I earned two Second Place and one Third Place ribbon, and in 2023, I earned two First Place and one Second Place. That’s a thrill for me.

“I’m constantly talking up the State Fair in my stitch groups, and trying to really grow participat­ion in the annual Cross Stitch Division. I still haven’t captured the coveted Special Best of Division Rosette for Judges’ Favourite, but having a goal keeps me focused.”

Do you have a stitching story to share? Drop us a line at crossstitc­her@warnersgro­ or write to the postal address on page 7 and you and your projects could feature here!

Cross stitch is my relaxation therapy, and also my creative outlet

 ?? ??
 ?? ?? “Most everyone I’ve made something for has been appreciati­ve of my work and very excited with the design.”
“Most everyone I’ve made something for has been appreciati­ve of my work and very excited with the design.”
 ?? ??
 ?? ??

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia