Thursday, October 23, 2014

Heartfelt Thanks and Honest Answers

Photo taken on an early morning
training walk with Miss Schatzi...on the trail at
Raccoon River Park...
I can't believe it - it just two short weeks, I will be leaving for Dallas, TX to walk in the Komen 3-Day! I feel prepared for my 60-mile journey this year and I'm going to do my best to pamper my feet, so I don't get the ridiculous blisters I got last year (different socks and shoes, plus good preparation). My mom happens to be getting married the weekend after the event and I would definitely hate to attend the wedding in flip flops, so my feet will be getting all the attention they deserve. The next couple weeks will be spent making sure I have everything I need, packing (praying I can fit the necessary supplies and camping gear in my suitcase - yes, I pack like a girl), doing my final training walks, and taking care of all those little things that need to be done before taking several days away from home/business. I would truly like to thank all my supporters and supporters of Team Twinkle Toes - every single one of you make this incredible journey possible and I am so very grateful for your love and support. I  feel extremely blessed to have so much encouragement and support from my friends, family, and the stitching community - I am overwhelmed by your kindness. I know that in this day and age, there are so many worthy causes and people in need, and it is impossible to donate to everyone - that fact is not lost on me - I am extremely thankful to everyone who has made an effort to support me and/or my AMAZING team - every little bit adds up to A LOT - and to be honest, it makes me very emotional - my heart is full. 

I will be working right up to the event, as I currently have about a million "irons in the fire"...yep, as always, I am keeping busy! Recently, I have received a few "nastygrams" about my blog and my creative endeavors - therefore, I feel it is necessary to address a few things...

I know it has been a while since brand new Blue Ribbon Designs cross stitch charts have been marketed - and I am looking at options to release new needlework designs in the near future - the problem isn't having new designs/ideas, I actually have a HUGE pile of new designs created and ready to print - the problem isn't that I have forgotten my cross stitch fans - the problem stems from a financial end. The fact of the matter is, that in the current economy, the needlework community isn't doing a lot of purchasing. The last couple years have been slow, slow, slow...and it has been a gigantic challenge to keep Blue Ribbon Designs alive - it has been an emotional roller coaster, and I am doing my best to "stay afloat" and keep my designing dream a reality. I adore the needlework industry and I would put out a new design every single day if I could - but the fact is, I can't afford to print them and have them sit in my warehouse. I have researched endless options to keep Blue Ribbon Designs in business and I do have plans for the future in both needlework and sewing/quilting; however, right now, I am focused on supplementing my income just to stay afloat (bay bills, buy groceries, keep the lights on) - hence the new website, quilting/sewing designs, Etsy shop items, book sale, magazine pieces, needlework finishing, the "Learn to Counted Cross Stitch" video, etc. I am doing everything in my power to continue to pursue my passion and work in this creative field - Blue Ribbon Designs is my life - period. So, in the future, you WILL continue to see me designing, in both needlework and quilting fields (maybe full-time, maybe part-time) - you WILL see Blue Ribbon Designs in magazines and publications - and as always, I WILL be expanding my creative passions and working on projects that make me happy. Bottom line - I haven't given up on Blue Ribbon Designs and I hope you haven't either.

That should clear up the nastiness floating around - so let's get back to the heart of my blog and talk about my projects this week. Last Friday, my dear friend Mary gave me a small pile of twelve orphan quilt blocks, thinking I might be able to use them for something fun - I just love the fact that my friends pass along their fabric stashes, quilt blocks, creative supplies to me - I'm a very blessed girl! I took one look at the quilt blocks and decided to make them into pincushions - I just knew they would make cute little 6" x 6" pillows...and now, I have all twelve of them complete with the exception of whip stitching a few of them closed. I also have three more stitching wallets completed and several owl pincushions in the making - I am hoping to start listing these in my Etsy shop tomorrow or Saturday. I am also going through my finished items cabinet and may be listing a few pillows, table runners, and/or quilts...

My autumn walks have been inspiring and a good time to think - just take a look at some of the photos I have taken the last few days...

The rain has ended for the day and the sun is now shining - Travis and I will be taking Schatzi to Blue Heron Lake shortly for an evening walk...then I plan to be in my stitching nest for the rest of the evening - I *need* to pick up a needle...thanks for visiting!


  1. Good luck on your walk! No nasties from me... you know I love your designs! One question when you have a chance ... does the Stitch Start Ruler come with the Stitching Pouch, or should I order it separate? I love the pouch with the lime and aqua flowers.

  2. Love your nature photographs from your training walks, Belinda! I can't believe it is almost time to hit the road to Dallas and this year's walk. I like your new creations.


  3. Good luck on the walk. There are nasties everywhere. Ignore them. Love the flowers

  4. I'm so sorry to hear about people being nasty towards you. I always enjoy seeing what you are working on whether it be quilting, cross stitching or whatever else it is.

  5. Love, Love, Love your new pincushions! Your photos are absolutely beautiful. You will always have my full support for Blue Ribbon Designs. You are the best Belinda!

  6. Oh how on earth can anyone be unpleasant towards you? Your an amazing creative inspirational person with a heart of gold... Here you are doing everything to keep your wonderful business afloat and raising money for charity too.
    I know your going to be amazing in Dallas, I wish you and team twinkle toes lots of luck not that any of you will need it, I have been following your training, with all the amazing photos of your walks with shatzi...
    I really love your designs...cross stitch and patchwork, for me everything you do and share here on your blog is so inspirational.. You give me so many ideas and the excitement to try new things too.
    One last thing to say.... Go You!!!

  7. I am sorry people are not nice, I try to say a prayer for the ones that are nasty, because they have to be sad people if they are stirring the pot. those blocks are beautiful. Please don't worry about nastiness it will fly by faster if you don't respond, your work is beautiful, you have the business and you are doing great, enjoy your time and your mothers wedding. and may GOD bless you.

  8. Good luck on your walk.....may the road be easy and your feet walk on a bed of clouds :)

    It's really a shame that the economy all over the world really is having such a bad impact on businesses, not only the needlework sector. And that people don't respect copyright is also a further issue that the industry has to contend with. I do hope that you are able to continue doing what you do - you do it so well!

  9. Best of luck on your walk! I'm sorry you are receiving nasty comments. I guess those meanies are fortunate enough to not be affected by the economy. I understand all to well what a struggle it is to keep the household afloat.

    I love your creations not matter if they are quilting or stitching. I too used to be quilter and I think it is normal for any crafter to have more than one interest.

    Not saying your designs are not worth the money. I have many in my stash. With a tight budget most of us look at price first. Maybe designing smaller cross stitch designs that would be a little less expensive for us the consumer. (Instant gratification of a quick stitch is nice sometimes. LOL ) Possibly a choice of PDF or printed charts on your Etsy. This way there is no cost to you for printing them. I have purchased quite a few PDF charts in the past, since they tend to be less expensive than printed. Just a couple of thoughts take them for what they are worth. ;)

  10. Thinking of you and wishing you well on your walk!

  11. I am so sorry to read people have not been nice to you. Unbeleivable! It is obvious through your blog and your designs and your involvement in all things that you are a talented, wonderful busy person. Don't let the negaholics get you down. It is so easy to sit in the cheap sits and be the Monday morning quarterback criticizing others!

  12. wow I'm shocked that people can be critical on a blog that is devoted to so much happiness. Sad shame - just ignore and march onward. Good luck with the Dallas event - I'm glad I could donate even a small amount to your cause. Times are hard for all of us - believe that - nothing is the same as it was before and I do think most people are thinking hard about stash enhancement and considering "will I really stitch this" before pushing the button on an order. Take care and hang in there - Melody