Wait, there's a fly in my shop...
by Dena Lenham
You know that an independent needlework shop is a mecca for cross stitch and needlepoint, but do you know it is also a fly fishing Dream Scene? (The stitchers out there whose fishermen husbands periodically raid their thread stash are all nodding yes.) The eyes of fly tyers "bug out" when they see Kreinik metallic threads because of the realistic, naturalistic color range and durability of the material. The thread colors and textures that make Mirabilia angels and Strictly Christmas stockings also make woolly buggers, bass bugs, poppers, eels, wings, streamers, nymphs and midges. Super alluring to striped bass, crappie, trout, salmon, steelhead, pike and muskie, Kreinik Blending Filament catches as much action in the water as it does in cross stitch.
Did you know, for instance, that new Kreinik Blending Filament color 003L Robot Red also makes a fabulous Disco Midge? Pretty Kreinik 1/8" Ribbon in color 009 Emerald could easily be called Japanese Beetle. See your favorite Kreinik Christmas color 015 Chartreuse? It's a beautiful Caddis Larva in the eyes of another beholder. Here is a little story about one needlework shop that accidentally discovered fly fishing as a fun, creative, thread-collecting, loyal customer, just like needleworkers.
Stitch-A-Cross in San Diego is a thread haven to needleworkers in Southern California. Owner Elizabeth Braun carries all brands, including a large selection of Kreinik threads. Now 83 years young, Elizabeth started stitching back in the 1970s and early 80s. "My husband and I had a hardware store," Elizabeth recounts, "and we had the stitching section in the back of the store." When the hardware business closed, Elizabeth moved needlework to its own spot on Mission Gorge Road.
One day fly tyer Richard DeBusk walked into the store, looking for the Kreinik thread he heard about from the San Diego Fly Fishers club president. This club has 300+ members, offers free fly fishing and casting classes to the general public, and publishes a newsletter with "recipes" for tying specific flies. In Stitch-A-Cross, Richard found a source for products to tie flies for bass fishing in San Diego bay and lake fishing out in the mountains. He told some friends about the store, Elizabeth ordered some fly-specific items from Kreinik (like our pattern book, starter kit, and Flash-In-A-Tube), and a local fly tyers paradise was born.
Fly tying is an amazing, creative process for many, whether they actually use the flies or tie them for art's sake. One person in the San Diego Fly Fishers club has over 6000 flies ("He catches a lot of fish."). Tying his own flies was "interesting at first," Richard said. "Once I started catching fish, that made a big difference." Now he sees fly tying as a valuable tool for his hobby. "I've tied up some new ones and we are anxious to try them," he added.
Will Elizabeth pick up fly tying now that she has expanded her store stock to include books, Flash-in-A-Tube, and other Kreinik fly fishing supplies? Maybe it is too soon to tell, but we do know she has the stash ready for fly tyers out there making lures to catch a big one. Visit the store in San Diego or give them a call for more informaiton. The next time you shop your own local needlework store, bring a fly-fishing friend and share the thread love.
Visit Stitch-A-Cross or contact them for mail order:
7435A Mission Gorge Rd. San Diego, CA 92120
Information about the San Diego Fly Fishers club:
Membership $35/year, Monthly meetings held first Monday of each month in Clairemont Mesa
Free casting lessons on Sundays, 9 a.m. at Lake Murray Casting Shelter
Wait, there's a fly in my shop...
Now that I have rested a bit after working the International Quilt Market in Houston, Texas week before last, and gotten acclimated to Daylight Savings Time, I need to say: I love Quilt Market. There is such a variety of creative options to see, from hand work to machine work. The art work is great and the imagination is overflowing. My favorite moment was the exhibition where there are more than a 1000 quilts to view. The quilts range from the very traditional to fantastic art quilts, plus clothing, dolls and this year a fantasy bra exhibit. The art quilts were big and used all sorts of medium. Landscape quilts played with experiences and scenes, making incredible eye candy. Being a bicycle rider, one of my favorite pieces was from Finland picturing a bicycle race. It showed depth, speed and perspective all at one time - very exciting. We are seeing more surface embellishing on quilts and, surprisingly, surface embellishing using the long-arm machines. We worked with several long arm companies at this show, using Kreinik metallic and silk threads for quilting and embellishing.
In our booth, we had a professional Janome educator, Carol McKinney, who used our product as I have never seen before. She also made a scarf from the Kreinik Bag O’Bits. It is so easy that even I could do it. She used a water-soluble material (preferably one sheet of the sticky type and one plain), added lots of metallic bits, a free-motion foot for the machine, Kreinik embroidery thread for the top stitches and a regular bobbin thread. Carol encased the bits by stitching around the outside, then creating an up and down grid, followed with lots of free motion embroidery. After about two hours, presto: a great-looking scarf. Our instructor made a sweater jacket with coordinating colors by creating fabric and cutting it out. The whole process blew my mind.
I really enjoy visiting with the doll makers. The dolls builders used Kreinik metallic and silk threads as embroidery and embellishments on clothing and also for the hair. They even used the Kreinik iron-ons in the clothing. This years theme for one doll challenge centered on Gypsies. The faces, clothing and fantasy adventures around the dolls described many stories. I will always be a fan of doll making.
Oh yeah, and the favorite eating places... I always eat at Whole Foods and Central Market in Houston. BBQ was at Goodes off of Kirby and 45, and my cousin took me to a terrific Dim Sum restaurant in the new Chinatown area near the Police Department at Bellaire and Ranchester. Also, I was treated to a 1-hour foot massage across the way. Very reasonable and relaxing.
You may or may not have noticed these funny little codes showing up on posters and brochures recently. Well these codes are a cool way to quickly and easily send someone to a web page or video. Kreinik has recently begun including these "QR" codes on all marketing materials.
How does it work? You need a smart phone such like the IPhone or an Android based phone like the Droid, Samsung, LG Ally, etc. You will then need to download an app for your phone that will read the codes. Luckily there are free apps to do this. For the IPhone you can try the QR2D Code reader and for Android based phones try using the Barcode Scanner. Once you have downloaded and installed these apps on your phone, start the app. The scanner will use your phone's digital camera to scan the code. Simply hold your phone up in front of the code and the scanner will scan the code and instantly take you to the web page that code is programmed to link to. Try scanning the code in this post and see where it takes you. You should be able to scan it right off of your monitor.
Blackberry users we want to hear from you. Tell us about apps that work for you.