Be on the lookout for lots of new embroidery designs in the new year! Creativity is flowing like crazy.
Hey Paul has your color requests covered. We have a wide variety of threads and fabrics. Send your custom embroidery requests through Etsy.
We took a break for the holidays but Hastystitch is back for 2013. Check out the January list.
The purpose of Hastystitch is to try out new stitches, subjects, and to connect the needle craft community. Please feel free to copy this image and share anywhere and everywhere! Happy stitching.
|US & Canada Etsy Sales in 2012|
In 2010, I registered my Etsy shop. At the time I was pumping out yo yo hair clips faster than I could find places to sell them locally or to friends. I sold a grand total of 1 clip on Etsy in the first year. I forgot about my shop and started playing around with stitching.
|My First International Sales in 2012|
In early 2012, I started posting my embroidery pieces on Etsy. I had a personal goal of selling 100 pieces online within the first year. I spent a large portion of the year with an injured stitching arm due to a roller derby injury and shrugged off my goal.
|Thanks to my Australia Etsy Customers!|
Here we are, at the end of 2012. To my great surprise, I hit my 101st Etsy sale and I am beyond excited! I can't wait to chart my progress at the end of 2013. Thanks to all of you who made it possible.
To my great excitement, my nieces and nephews have began to show quite an interest in stitching when they come to the studio.
This DIY gift giving season is the perfect opportunity to spread around some embroidery propaganda to the young and impressionable; so I assembled a little embroidery starter kit for all of the kids on my Christmas list.
I grabbed these plastic knitting needles and thick thread at Hobby Lobby. The plastic needles are safe for children (with proper supervision) and the large eye of the needle is kid friendly. The needle will pierce most fabric but is best with a knit.
Stitching promotes eye-hand coordination and makes a great DIY gift for the kiddos on your shopping list. Check out my 4 year old nieces handy work here.
Welcome to a special edition of Indie Interview, featuring the work of my domestic idol. Move over Martha, Betsy, and Julia--there is a new boy in town. In this Q & A session, we will be taking a glimpse into the creativity of Jason Vanfosson, the founder of Domestigay. The purpose of this series is to create an opportunity for independent embroidery artists to connect, share stories of their creative ventures, and to promote their amazing art work.
I am so envious of this stitcher, blogger, knitter, cook, gardener, and PhD student. His skills are truly amazing.
Jason draws inspiration from gay culture and through his work, breaks down gender roles within this craft.
1. How long have you been embroidering and who taught you this skill?
I've been embroidering regularly for the past two years. When I was much younger—like twelve—my mom had one of those stamped cross stitch kits for a table runner and napkins set. It had a cornucopia and grapes on it, very Thanksgiving-cute. I stole one of the napkins and tried to do it myself. She caught me needle-handed. She showed me how to do the basic cross stitch (on stamped fabric). I never finished that damn napkin.
Two years ago, I was in the middle of a graduate program, really depressed, and grieving the loss of my father. In a fit of fury, I decided to try free hand embroidery. I printed off a cartoon coloring page of a whale, poked some holes in it with thumbtacks, and penciled those holes onto some fabric. It was a disaster. The whale looked dead and deformed. I liked the process, though. I spent many hours teaching myself the different stitches from YouTube. I read any embroidery book I could get my hands on and ordered a beginner kit from Sublime Stitching. I have had stitching bliss ever since.
2. Tell me more about the beginnings of Domestigay, it's current purpose, and your hopes and dreams for it in the future.
Domestigay's origins are really selfish. I wanted a space where I could embroider things that were not necessarily cute and challenge assumptions about gender and sexuality through embroidery. I was also preparing to move to the Midwest and made it my goal to become the best Midwest housegay I could be. Domestigay started as a place to create a community of other people who were tired of only finding patterns of cute ducks and dancing fruit.
3. Wonderful, unique, exquisite, and striking. I'm running out of proper words to describe how much I love your work. Tell me more about the inspiration behind your designs.
Why, thank ya. That's quite flattering. Well, right now, I am really inspired by sexy beefcakes. But who isn't, really? Seriously, my muses are many. A lot of my work focuses on images of the male body and masculinity. Many of my designs and projects have been inspired by American muscle magazines from the mid-twentieth century and bodybuilding photography from the earlier part of the century. I like embroidering beefcakes because it takes something extremely masculine—muscled bodies—and merges it with a completely feminized form—embroidery. I think this breaks down the gender roles in a constructive way, especially as a gay male embroiderer.
I also draw a lot from gay culture—like sex positions and gay slang. For example, a project I am currently working on uses the gay hanky code that codes different colored handkerchiefs to identify a person's sexual proclivities. I am embroidering corresponding sexual images, words, and phrases on the handkerchiefs to make the code more domestic and available.
Finally, I am a huge book fan. I can always find inspiration there. I've also been merging my embroidery with my love of books—as in embroidering books and embroidering text, images, and concepts from books. This inspiration is completely new, and a lot of times still influenced by muscles, masculinity, and gay culture.
4. Do you have a studio or a particular room in your home where you prefer to stitch? If so, please describe the space. Are you a mobile stitcher that carriers a project around at all times?
Yes and yes! I just moved into a bigger apartment and have a great little space in the corner of my bedroom where I design, stitch, and think. I love it. I feel divinely creative in this corner. There is a big window by it that looks into an oak tree. The natural lighting is perfect for stitching. I have also filled it with beefcake books and fabric, a bench recycled from Indian sarongs, and my favorite embroideries (of my own and others).
I also keep all my embroidery stuff compact so that it is also always with me. I keep a needle in my wallet, an embroidery tool case in my bag, and always have a project with me. Down time is embroidery time. I am also a huge fan of stitching in public. Embroidery is not a super prominent art, so when I do it in public, people get interested in a guy doing this thing that looks like what women did in the nineteenth century. A lot of times this leads to people getting interested in embroidering. I’m on a mission to convert the world to embroiderers.
5. Do you have a favorite stitch?
I love the herringbone stitch, but I rarely use it since it is more of a border stitch. I also have a special fondness for the simplicity of the back stitch. I use that one all the time. And, it is really versatile.
6. Do you sell your work or is your craft for fun? If it's for fun only, how can we talk you into changing your mind and selling us some of your pieces?
So far, I've embroidered for myself, for gifts, and in the name of art… but not for long! I made a New Year's Resolution that I would open an Etsy store before the end of the year, and I'm running out of time. Be on the lookout between now and the end of the year. I can be a huge procrastinator, so I’m shooting for a launch of 11:59PM on December 31st.
7. You do it all. You cook, clean, stitch, garden, and knit. Let's not forget that you probably spend a fair amount of time working on your Ph.D. How do you find a good balance for all of these things and how does stitching contribute to that balance?
Stitching is the balance. I started stitching because I was highly imbalanced. Graduate school was taking over my life in a bad way. Now, embroidery is taking over my life—but in a really good way. Embroidery focuses me and is like daily therapy. I do admit that I have a hard time balancing things like embroidery and knitting. But at the end of the day embroidery always wins the fight.
8. Is there anything else that you would like to mention about your awesome embroidery art and website?
Dudes embroider. They do it well, too. I hope that my work inspires guys to pick up a hoop and needle and start stitching. It is fun, cheap, and easy—what’s not to love?
Keep up with all of Jason’s domestic adventures:
Here is my Instagram fall round-up. It was a particularly beautiful fall in the midwest this year.
I felt much more of a connection with nature, the history of the landscape, and an obligation to experience my environment in a deeper sense.
The wind, snow, sleet, and rain is on it's way now. Soon, the massive leaf piles in my yard will be all that remain of this beautiful fall.
I picked up these adorable notions quite awhile back at an antique store. I was drawn to the color palette. After months of seeing them set on my studio desk, I have declared that I have no practical use for them and a pile of goodies this cute should be shared, not hoarded away. It includes some pre-cut quilters fabric, an assortment of coral and orange buttons, and two types of thread.
Have a use for this pile of goodies? Leave a comment below saying hi, how you found my blog, or any quick little message. I will randomly draw a name on December 14th and if you are selected, I will contact you through your comment profile and announce the winner in a post.
Stop by the Hey Paul shop on Etsy. Domestic orders placed before December 15 will be guaranteed to be delivered by Christmas. International orders can no longer be guaranteed to be delivered by a specific date. Place your last minute orders today.
My assistant is hard at work in the studio today, from the comforts of his suitcase doggy bed. Have I mentioned that he has been famous in the UK for the past year? Check out his feature in a DIY article on Crafting in a Green World!
I am all about celebrating the many anniversaries that are coming up in the next month. 4 years of working at my current job, 3 years of dating my boy, and 2 years of stitching my heart out! I recently dug back through my old blog, Spec-ta-cles, to try to pin point the first time that I picked up a hoop and tried my hand at embroidery. December 7, 2010, exactly two years ago today. I am so thankful that I was bored enough to give stitching a try.
This little teapot was my first embroidery attempt. The brain on the right is a current piece of stitching. I wanted to celebrate this special day by letting other stitchers show their progress. The following are submissions of early embroidery attempts and current pieces. These are stitchers of all levels. Some have been embroidering for a few months and others, for decades.
The first submission is from Daniela Montelongo of Pompons Party. Daniela is an Architect and crafter from Mexico, based in Texas. Her work is extremely detailed and beautifully stitched. Check out her shop!
I am so excited to share these pieces from Rocio Peña, a/k/a @PinchePanDulce from Instagram. Pinche is one of my early Instagram friends. Our love for roller derby and embroidery brought us together. She is a part of the San Angelo Soul Sisters roller derby league and is such a bad ass stitcher. See more of her work on Instagram.
Candice Barnes is an Australian craft enthusiast, embroidery addict, occasional blogger, and works in the the behavioral health field. Sound familiar? I love my like minded stitchers. She attempted her first embroidery piece 10 years ago. She now has an adorable Etsy shop called Candykins Crafts. Be sure to check out her work.
The next submission is from Lauren Hicks of Lauren and Stitch on Etsy. Like myself, Lauren was also taught the art of embroidery by Jenny Hart of Sublime Stitching. I love the detail in her pieces.
Kate with Heisk submitted these photos to me and I was in complete awe. I have seen her current work floating around Pinterest and a few other sites. She stumbled upon embroidery just under 2 years ago as well. She has a really great website that is worthy of a click!
A very new stitcher in the embroidery world, Lacy Moore, is one to watch out for. She's a ninga of sorts, a Ginger Ninja. Ginger is one of my roller derby sisters from Dead Girl Derby. Her talent for stitching makes me so proud.
Last but not least is the newest stitcher of all! This is Melanie Aswell's first embroidery piece. @beeswaxand is a good Twitter and Instagram friend and I look forward to seeing more stitching from her! Connect with her at Beeswax and Lavender.
Thanks for all of the submissions and cheers to another year of stitching.