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Tuesday, May 17, 2005
A Day of Change in the Stitching World..

... at least it changes *my* stitching world. Yesterday I learned that my favorite cross stitch designer, Teresa Wentzler, is going to take a leave of absence from designing to focus on her artwork. While this saddens me, it somehow really doesn't surprise me. Nor do I feel totally bereft over it. Actually, I rather feel like I have a chance to catch up with the designs that I do have without being tempted by something new coming out.

This may be a cure for my Start-Itis that I've kept at bay all this time, except for one unfortunate period that we'll call Guilt Free January 2003.

DH was surprised to hear about this when I called him, until I mentioned that she would be working artwork instead. Then he asked if we could have a Wentzler dragon on the walls - one that isn't stitched. Oh, if she does a dragon or two, you betcha.

I have to say this... it's all DH's fault. Really. My first finished TW design may have been Dragon Ride, but it wasn't the first one that I saw, or the was one that woke up the stitching demons. I'd been exposed to stitching (for the second time) by my children's babysitter, and I started getting ideas. But there were so few things out there that were appealing to me - and I didn't know that there were whole shops that were dedicated to selling designs like the ones that I was interested in. I figured I was limited to that which was in the aisles at Jo-Ann's and Michael's.

DH asked me, as I recall it, if there were any cool dragons about in the stitching world. I let him know that there wasn't anything interesting at Michael's that I'd seen, but if he found something to let me know. He went back into his office and started cruising eBay and called me over a short time later. I started staring at this amazingly cool blue and green dragon that was curled around a castle and staring into one of the windows.

I said Oooooh. And Aaaaaah. And goodness, that might take me forever to do. And DH asked me if I could stitch it for him. I told him if he got his hands on the pattern and such for me I'd do it. He also offered me a commission - he'd pay for all the materials too. Deal.

Meanwhile, I took a close look at the name of the designer and committed it to memory, promising myself to cruise around and see if I could find the designer online somewhere and see what else she'd done. The very next day I found the TWBB... way back in 1999 when it was on UBB (Ultimate Bulletin Board). I learned that there was a design coming out in a magazine called Stitcher's World, and I decided that I needed to get a look at it. That design was Dragon Ride, which hangs proudly on my wall today.

Yes, I worked on that before I worked on Castle - but only because I had all the materials and such in hand before I did for Castle. I lurked at the board, I jumped in with a few things here and there, but I watched the dynamic of these people who seemed to know each other so very well and wondered if I'd ever fit in with them. I never signed my name to posts, but for a simple ~WG~ and that green big grin that was always around. Just about the time that I'd finally made my 100th post (about a year and 1/4 later), the BB moved to Ezboard in January 2001 (and I took the green grinning guy with me)

I won't go into any more detail because most of you reading know the rest of the story - I got social, I got chatty, I made some good friends (who are here reading today), I moderated a forum, I resigned, the board changed and I own another space (that I have owned for 2 years, I just let it run itself).

But the long and short of it is, it's all DH's fault that I got as involved in fantasy stitching, and especially in the world of Teresa Wentzler designs. And yes, I suppose you could say it's also his fault that I got involved in the BBs too as a result of that curiosity that he planted by showing me that curious dragon.

I'm going miss when Market rolls around and there isn't a new TW. I was really anxious for the new design Illuminata that she was working on, but I can completely understand why she's doing what she is doing, and I respect it. By no means do I take it as a door closed and locked tight, but that she's just exploring another hallway in the castle of art venues that she could pursue. Art brings happiness to those who appreciate it, and great satisfaction to those who create it as they feed their muse. I suspect her muse has inspired her to take a new direction, even if temporary, but it's one that should bring her great satisfaction and should not be done for the sake of making money or simply to please us, her fans and admirers.

It should, simply, please and satisfy her.

Yes, there are people who are upset, and I understand that. There are folks who are shocked too. Some are saying she's quitting the designing world forever. That's not what she said - she's taking a leave of absence to pursue something different - she may be back, she may not. We can't write it off as being all over and done with until she says (or shows) that it is indeed so. Until then, we can just enjoy the designs we have, and the new mediums she shares with us.

So, Teresa, I wish you all the best in your adventure in creativity and I hope it takes you into all sorts of places in your imagination and that your creative muses challenge you to take it to new and exciting levels. Cross stitch designs will be missed but I have plenty to keep me busy; I'm looking forward to seeing what you have up your sleeve in the new mediums that you have yet to share with us. For everything that you've done that have made so many people happy, all I have to say is this...

Thank you.