Rox Chast: Cartoonist and Embroiderer

For the second time in a month, I’ve come across a magazine cover with an embroidered image. The latest (June 1, 2020) issue of The New Yorker has am embroidered by long-time cartoonist Roz Chast. The piece includes chain stitch, satin stitch, back stitch and French knots.

In a short interview published online, Chast says she was taught to embroider in the sixth grade at her public school in Brooklyn.

Sewing Face Masks

You’ve likely heard of the shortage of face masks during the current coronavirus pandemic.

The CDC says “In settings where facemasks are not available, health care providers might use homemade masks (e.g., bandana, scarf) for care of patients with COVID-19 as a last resort. However, homemade masks are not considered personal protective equipment, since their capability to protect HCP is unknown.

Even if not suitable for hospitals, using the masks in non-clinical settings might free up the highest quality masks for health care workers. Masks may help the rest of us avoid touching our faces, and may provide some protection from the virus if we’re out in public.

Patterns and instructions for homemade face masks are popping up all over. I chose this pattern because it is made from a square of fabric that can be quickly cut with a rotary cutter and assembled with materials I had on hand. The instructions are thorough and included step-by-step photographs. I made three in my first afternoon, and I got faster with each one.

A few notes:

  • I used fine-weave cotton pillowcases that can be laundered in hot water. If you are looking for some research on various materials for DIY mask-making, this post from Smart Air Filters is exceptional: What Are The Best Materials for Making DIY Masks? It also includes a few great links at the end of it.
  • Instead of bread ties as suggested, I used pipecleaners to give shape to the top of the mask.
  • Not having any bias tape on hand, I cut made binding from strips of the cotton.

It’s not much, but it does make me feel good to be doing SOMETHING. Stay well.

Stitching Fundraiser for Australia

The chart for a reproduction Australian sampler ~ Jane Marshall 1857 ~ is being sold to benefit the Rural Fire Services (RFS) of Katoomba/Leura and Wentworth Falls. The background on this project, including information on the RFS can be found at

The Loudoun Sampler Guild’s own Anne Cannizzaro, with “Jane Marshall” already halfway complete.

Needlework Events at Woodlawn

Woodlawn has announced the events happening during the 2020 Needlework Exhibition in March. Some of the topics, including a talk by Catherine Jordan on needlework maps, and the Shenandoah Tapestry are familiar to Loudoun Sampler Guild members, while others are farther afield:

  • Poplin, Lawn & Whipcord: The Fiber Art of Roxana Geffen
  • Strong Women: Embroidery on Photograph Workshop with The Comptoir
  • Crafting Dissent, Crafting Democracy: A Storied Tradition
  • Crochet Handcraft Workshop: Suffragist Emoji Crafting with Hinda Mandell
  • Painting with Wool – Needle Felting Workshop with Dani Ives
  • Found Objects and Family Influences
  • A Single Thread: Highlighting the Power of Cathedral Needlework

Details about dates, time and registration can be found at Woodlawn’s website:

Betsy Morgan’s Book is almost here

The Loudoun Sampler Guild has been lucky to have amazing, talented members who have shared their work with us.  Betsy Morgan was one of the original members the  LSG, and we’ve often gotten a “first look” at her wonderful projects.  Over the years, members have stitched her Toy Chest Etui, Virgin Queen’s Stitching Wallet and others.  Her etui called “This One’s For Betty” was even named for our Guild founder, the late Betty Flemming.  The one in the photo below is The Swan’s Bower Etui.


So we were delighted to hear that Betsy has partnered with Inspirations to publish a gorgeous, full-color, softback book of eight projects, which include 36 accessories.  The book contains over 90 cross stitch charts using 36 different counted thread techniques.  If you have seen any of Betsy’s projects, you know that the projects are creative; the colors are lovely; and — importantly — the instruction are easy to follow!  Congratulations to Betsy for this capstone to her designing career.

More about the book, including a list of  all of the projects, can be found at

Another LSG member, Sharlotte DeVere of The Queen Stitch, has pre-ordered a quantity of the books and is offering them to LSG members only at a 25% discount. This puts the price at $30.00 U.S.  Sharlotte can’t guarantee that she’ll have enough for every member of the guild, so get your order in soon if you are interested.

To finalize and pay for a book order (yes, this applies to those who did a pre-order in July) please fill out the attached form and snail-mail it with a check, request to pay cash when you pick it up at a meeting, OR for a PayPal invoice, to Sharlotte at the address listed OR send an email with the applicable information to


Books will be available for pick up at the November 9th LSG meeting, the December 14th Christmas party meeting OR can be shipped to you for an additional charge.  If you are having your book(s) shipped – please get in touch with Sharlotte to reserve your book(s), and she will  send an invoice with the shipping costs so you can pay for everything at one time.