Family,  Holidays,  Stitching

Winter Sampler Exchange 2014!

Those of you who have been reading my blog (what little of it there is) for the past several years, know that each year my mother and I exchange samplers for our annual Winter Sampler Exchange. It's the most fun time of the year for us, and each year we've had different ways of doing it, all while trying to keep what we're stitching a secret.

The only rules to this exchange are:

1. The stitch counts need to be similar. (This rule came into effect when one of us was highly embarrassed one year when her stitch count was a bit on the lean side after her mother presented her with the densely-stitched Garden Glade.)

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2. The piece must be framed by the enormously-talented Jill Rensel of frame fame. (Jill knows that she will be hearing from us around the end of each summer, begging her to please-please-please hurry because Mom and I have ants in our sampler pants once the pieces have been dropped off at the post office.)

This year my mother suggested we have a theme to our exchange, and she decided that the theme would be Christmas. I agreed, after which she exclaimed excitedly, "Oh this will be so fun, and I already know what I'm going to stitch for you!" Then I heard her say with coyly-downcast eyes, "If only you would design something for your mother.. that would be so nice."

I knew then that I wouldn't have much say in the matter, especially when she looked directly at me and added the two words she knows will make my knees buckle:

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Yes, those two G-words have the ability to shrink me back down to a child in my mind…

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But I'm a grown woman now, and grown women do what they must…

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One more thing that those of you who have been reading my blog for a while know: I am completely joking when I portray my mother this way. She is truly the most loving mom in the world, and our exchange was just as fun and exciting as it's always been! My mom stitched the most beautiful sampler in red for me, and I am so in love with it! And as usual, Jill couldn't have been more spot-on with her choice of moulding for it!

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I did, in fact, design something for my mother. It's called Merry Brew, and when it was finished, I felt that it could use some of Jill's legendary hand-painted mats! Jill didn't disappoint, and I was so happy with the beautiful work she did on it!

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Here's a closer look at the gorgeous details on the frame, mats, and fillet…

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I wish I had a picture to show you of my mom's reaction.. it truly was priceless, and we both had so much fun laughing and chatting about how we chose to stitch what we did for each other.

I may not ever make up for the Great Garden Glade Debacle (at least in my mind), but I do know my mother was very, very pleased, and so was I!

Next year's theme was my suggestion, but it's not in stone just yet: Houses.

Merry Christmas, and thank you for tuning in to this year's episode of our Winter Sampler Exchange! ๐Ÿ˜‰

P.S. For those of you who saw our exchange pieces on Instagram and asked about Merry Brew's release, I will most likely release it next autumn. Thank you so much for your kind words and lovely compliments! They made my day!

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