Friday, 8 September 2017

The Black House

If you go down to the woods today then you really are in for a big surprise
because all you'll find is teddy bears and you're in entirely the wrong sampler.
That one's Do Bears and we're here to talk about The Black House!


If you want to see The Black House for real then you need to be out of doors,
and preferably in a field somewhere although if you're pushed the middle of
town will do but you're going to look awfully silly when you start
to follow the instructions ...... and no Alice you won't find it with your GPS.


The Black House is the home of the legendary Pecker Prince (he's not to be confused 
with the Woodpecker King) and before you all snigger I'm not making this up.
Now check your watch as timing is crucial.  When the big hand is on the twelve
and the little hand is on the nine and it's getting quite dark the moment has come
when the veil between the world of the mortals and the principality of the
Pecker Prince can be penetrated.  It's that fleeting moment betwixt day and
night - entre chien et loup!


Now turn round three times in a clockwise direction, stand on one leg,
screw up your eyes till they're almost shut and say the following words:

Jools, I love this new design which measures 111 stitches x 145 stitches
and costs the very modest sum of £6.50.  If I email you at
jools@longdogsampler.com and ask very nicely will you please send me
a pdf copy to download and print myself.

This example was stitched with GAST threads

There - did you see it?  Well it doesn't always work.
Try again tomorrow when the lines may be less busy.




Saturday, 24 June 2017

LIFE AFTER "DEATH"

Life After "Death" is the latest challenge to come hot off the
Long Dog presses for your delight and delectation.
Those of you who have survived Death by Cross Stitch
and still live to tell the tale will probably be quivering with anticipation 
at the thought of stitching this proud new beauty.  Hence the title.


Life After "Death"
372 x 325 stitches
Price:  £17.10
Stitched here in GAST Raven single strand on 18# Aida


The sharp-eyed amongst you will probably have already spotted
that there's a little mini Norfolk-style sampler incorporated in the
design which it's perfectly feasible to stitch up on it's own
if you're not in this for the long haul.


How many sailors can you hide inside a whale?
And look at those bubbles, I think one of them
is still alive!


Why is that squirrel trying to steal the crown?


Is it true that there's always a running dog in every 
Long Dog sampler?


Who sighs for beauty?  I'll go for health every time
with providence and virtue as "nice to have's"
if there's some going begging.


The devil is in the detail.

So, if I've whetted your appetite, put temptation in your way
once again and you simply can't go on any longer without
your very own copy of this magnificent chart simply
send an email to jools@longdogsampler.com and I'll see what
I can do.  

Alternatively, go online or pop into your LNS if you're
still a sweet, old-fashioned girl (or should I say "person"
just to be strictly PC) if you prefer something more
tangible in the form of a paper chart.  Entirely up to you.

Now scroll back to the top and take another look.
You want it - don't you?


Apologies some of the backstitching isn't showing up quite as
clearly as I would have liked - so squint a bit, that should help.

Saturday, 20 May 2017

You couldn't make this up

Something truly amazing happened yesterday which I would like to share
before my internet connection finally gets cut off and this moment, which is
only just short of miraculous, gets swept away in the hustle and bustle 
of my impending house move.

Families come in all shapes and sizes, some close and supportive, some
extremely extended and others bruised, battered and barely in touch.  
I suppose it would be true to say that mine contains elements of all of the above.
It is with sadness that I say that my middle daughter and I are estranged
and have been for some considerable time.  Consequently I know little
about her adult years or her two children or her 5 month old grandson.
But let's get back to yesterday.

I thought I'd move home in style this time around after a lifetime of
doing things on the cheap with the aid of a few mates, a bit of
muscle and an old transit van.so I decided to go with a local removal company
on the recommendation of a friend and opted for their packing service to 
make life even easier for myself.

Yesterday morning two smart young men arrived and set about
bubble wrapping my nick nacks (not a euphamism I might hastily add)
and stowing them away in assorted cardboard boxes.  One of the lads in
particular caught my attention and I felt instinctively that I knew him
although this was quite impossible, but I kept having sneaky looks at him
and searching my brain for an answer.

Several hours later the job was done and just as the lads were about to go
Lad One called my enigma by the nickname CoCo and explained that he
called him this because his last job was as a circus clown.  It was then that
the goosebumps arrived in batallions and the pieces fell into place.

My granddaughter was a circus performer before motherhood 
intervened and although I don't actually know her I'd seen pictures
 on her Facebook page so knew what she looked like and also what
 her partner (CoCo) looked like too.  I took a blind leap and asked
him if he was THE CoCo not caring whether I made a complete fool of
myself and I think you can guess the rest.  We were both completely stunned.

Fate had sent the father of my great grandson to my home and in so
doing had put me in touch with my granddaughter who I thought I
would never have any contact with.  Later that evening I received a friend
request on Facebook and after a long exchange via Messenger we've
agreed to meet up once I've settled in to my new home.  And it goes
without saying that CoCo will be there on Monday morning 
with Lad One to move me in.  Hopefully not dressed as a clown as
I don't want to shock my new neighbours quite so soon after
my arrival.  There will be time aplenty to do that later on.

If I hadn't decided to move, if I hadn't chosen that particular firm of
removers, if they hadn't scheduled CoCo to do my job, if Lad One hadn't
used his nickname, if I hadn't dared to ask the questions I'd have been
none the wiser and much the poorer.  The chances of winning the lottery
are probably greater than this but I know which I'd chose every time.






Friday, 19 May 2017

For your information

All my worldly goods, and a few slightly dodgey items too,
are now packed tightly into some old cardboard boxes awaiting 
transportation next Monday morning (22nd May) to a new address.

I've moved several times in the last few years and I think
that if I whistled loudly enough everything would jump into boxes
without any help from me at all now.  So it will be goodbye
Lock-Up and hello Castle Long Dog.  I don't ever want to move again.

The reason for telling you all this is that I'm about to lose my internet
connection at the Lock-Up any time now and the new one won't
be installed at the Castle until 30th May for some reason better
known to the engineers who will be running the miles of cable
across the moat.  

All this means that if you're trying to email me for any reason
I won't be able to reply or even pick them up in the interim
so please bear with me, try to be patient and I will get back to
you eventually - I promise.






Friday, 14 April 2017

INtUITion

For this latest design from the fabulously wondrous Long Dog Samplers
you will need to hitch up your dog sleds and hold on tight because we're
heading north to the icy wastelands of northern Canada, 
Greenland and Alaska.


We're going to visit the Inuit people and get a taste of their traditional
designs and artwork.  This little dude looks pleased to see us.


Although I'm not so sure about this guy.  Looks like
he may be having a bad feather day or is severely hungover.
That northern moonshine is strong stuff!


Here's one I made earlier.


INtUITion measures 183 x 328 stitches, costs fourteen
seal skins or £16.20 and is available as a pdf download
direct from me if you ask very nicely and send your email to:

jools@longdogsampler.com

Otherwise visit your LNS if it's a paper copy you're after
or go online to one of the many excellent suppliers you'll find there.

Now you'll have to excuse me, I'm off to feed the goose.






Saturday, 28 January 2017

Hoity Toity

I can finally put you all out of my misery with this colourful new design.
Never before in the whole history of Long Dog have I experienced
such anticipation of a sampler.

"When is it coming out?" you politely asked while some of you took
a more direct stance and simply demanded point blank the release date.

NOW|


So here it is - HOITY TOITY (or the Two Posh Peacocks as I've
been calling it).  Breathe in it's beauty to your very soul and then
nip off and order a copy pronto.


The bottom border was inspired by the beautiful ceiling paintings at
Ranworth Church which is only a five minute drive away from
the Lock Up.  You couldn't help be inspired by art such as this and I
count myself lucky to live in a county so cram-packed with ancient churches.


This was the little snippet I posted many moons ago that got you
all so fired up to see the finished article.  Has it been worth the wait?


And here are the two naughty boys themselves up on the roof
strutting their stuff.  You wouldn't believe the mess they make.


And in conclusion a very naff photo even by my standards of the
exquisite finished piece.  It measures 197 x 282 stitches,
costs £16.20 for the brace (that's £8.10 per bird) and is available as a pdf
download direct from me by simply emailing jools@longdogsampler.com
or from all good LNS across the planet in paper form.

So don't forget LSO|
(Look - Salivate - Order)
Off you go.







Saturday, 19 November 2016

Castles in the Air

Come closer - I want to whisper.
There's a new Long Dog out today and if I say it any
louder tens of thousands of people might get injured
in the ensuing panic buying that is sure to occur.


It's called Castles in the Air.
Why?  Because there's loads of castles and they're
all in an elevated position.


But it's not exclusively about castles.  There's flowers,
grassy knolls, tiny flowers, butterflies and even an
ickle wickle spider too.


Now we're starting to get the bigger picture even if it is a bit
crumpled because I never bother to iron anything.
The stag was a bit camera shy but I managed to capture
most of him before he leaped out of view.


And here's little Bill again.  Some of you may remember
his last adventure when he was bobbing about in a rowing boat
all at sea.  This time he and his brother Alan (who's in a
castle on the other side of this piece) are standing their ground
against hostile crested woodpeckers which are far worse than
aphids, fighting off giant squirrels who are after his nuts and
keeping an eye on a blackwork elephant which has mysteriously
appeared on the scene.  It's all happening.



But I've kept you waiting quite long enough and this is what the
glorious Castles in the Air looks like when all stitched up and
ready for a trip to the framers.


This major work of art, which is much praised in woodworking
circles, is 209 x 285 stitches in circumference and is priced at
£16.20 so hurry and get a copy before the pound sterling begins
to rally again.  

Paper copies are available at all good LNS's globally and far across
the galaxy too and if you're an impatient little imp downloadable
pdf copies are available simply by writing a nice email to:

jools@longdogsampler.com


I
I shall be hanging about waiting for you to drop by
just like the aforementioned ickle wickle spider
but with more legs and much scarier.