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Thea's Latest Newsletter!  [contents

Dear friends...!

It's already November, (Happy Thanksgiving to our American cousins!) and I am delighted to say that I've finally recovered from a very busy and eventful Summer. I am truly happy that I decided to semi-retire, as I can see that it takes me a lot longer to recover from various things, including travel. This past year I've tested how it would feel if I were to travel and teach more, and found that it takes more energy out of me than I'm able to manage. I love to teach my needlework and meet people though!  So, even if I am unable to see everyone in person as often as I want, I will be working to teach online more in the new year! 

So, I hope you forgive me for making this newsletter short but sweet for now, and know that I'm happily working away making my new business plan a reality!
At the end of April, Lisa, Kathleen and I hosted over 44 stitchers to our VS Retreat 2017. I was so very very excited and happy to see everyone again!  In previous years, we've made such close friends with many of our returnees, and we also had some newbies.. who were quickly part of our VS family. Because of the size of this class, we had a new bigger classroom , and it worked out so well! We stitched on the Happy Birthday Sampler, we exchanged gifts, took a bus to enjoy a full studio tour with wine and cheese, and had a delicious final celebration meal at the hotel together on the last day. What a joy to know I could still do this despite my advancing years..!  But I know I could not do any of these things without Kathleen and Lisa's help.

Particularly Lisa's help organizing and remembering things I find hard to remember. She kept all the lists straight and all of us organized without seeming effort. Thank you Lisa and Kathleen!

The past few months have flown by like they should, with plenty of fun but also work and even some pain!  Sometime in early May, I sprained the ligament in my lower back near the coccyx when I attended a hot Yoga session on a whim, and this injury has had quite enormous repercussions, mostly good ones!

My trip to Florida with the ladies at Stitc hing Under the Oaks, was an enormously fun time. The ladies and I had become good friends during the past few years, as this was my third summer teaching in a row! I absolutely loved the smaller class, as it was more intimate and more relaxed overall, and I could pay more attention to everyone individually.

The weather co-operated by being a bit overcast and not quite so warm as it could have been, and I was thrilled with their enthusiasm and enjoyment of the "Happy Birthday" Sampler that I brought them. That sampler is full of specialty stitches, so I brought my usual videos to show the stitches up close, and that was great too. You will all get to see these videos when w e release this project as a Home Study project next year! Thanks always to Harriet, John, and Pat for going out of their way to show me their kindess and encouragement. Thanks also to Jennifer, who was unable to attend.

Now on to more news about what's happening with Victoria Sampler designs! - Thea

Victoria Sampler News!

FROM THE STUDIO ...  Some design news -   I've completed the  Beginner's Hardanger Home Study Course. There will be videos explaining exactly how to work Kloster Blocks properly, as w ell as showing you how to cut your linen threads, and fix cutting mistakes(!) and also some simple needle-weaving like Dove's Eyelets. The finished piece will be a lovely pillow, and we'll even show you how to put that together!  The other designs I'm working on involve additions to the Gingerbread Village for September, and a cute Button Sampler for January.

Teaching Projects coming up!
Scroll down to bottom of this Newsletter for dates and times!

Finally, Sue at Stitcher's Hideaway asked me to design a Thank sgiving Sampler for her Retreat at Sturbridge in October of 2017.. So, I created a project I call "Thanksgiving Sampler".  It was inspired by all the different ways we spend this favorite holiday of the year. I'll be meeting my students in a short week, and I'm so looking forward to teaching this Thanksgiving Sampler.
And now.. o
ur newest offerings...and news below.. 

VS Retreat April 2018 in Sidney B.C.  We are just finalizing plans for a new Spring Retreat from April 26 to 29 of 2018 ! However, instead of the Harbour Towers hotel in Victoria, we're going to be stitching at the most luxurious 4 star hotel in Sidney-by-the-Sea, which is close to the airport and only just a few miles north of Victoria. There is an awesome meeting room there, the sleeping rooms are lovely, and we're so excited to set up in this lovely new place! Please check your calendars so you'll be ready when we open registration. We are looking forward to seeing all old and new students, but only will have room for 30.

#188 Gingerbread Retreat Cottage

Come and stitch this delicious Gingerbread Retreat Cottage, another addition to my Gingerbread Village! Add yours to previous designs in this series.. like the Tree Etui, Stitching House, Church, Candy Cane Cottage, Bakery, Haunted House, Needlework Shop, and Quilt Shop. At the front of the cottage, you can see a welcoming figure in a Santa hat waving you inside from the lower veranda. Picture windows at the lower floor show students and teacher in class. There is even a separate porch addition, which I know you’ll love! The roof is almost covered with Hardanger stitching, although you can always omit the cutwork if you like! You will be stitching with yummy silk flosses, Perle Cottons, sparkling beads and delicious looking ‘candy’ buttons. Finishing instructions and colour photos are included at the end of this leaflet. Look for more Gingerbread Village additions in future years! Sending all of you a delicious and Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year from my house to yours!

NEW!  #189 Village Xmas Tree!   

Yum! What a delightful Accessory for your Gingerbread Village, including the Tree Etui, the Stitching House, Church, Candy Cane Cottage, Bakery, Haunted House, Needlework Shop, Quilt Shop, and Retreat Cottage. This three-dimensional Ginger-bread Tree can add some atmosphere and foliage to your Ginger-bread Village. Stitch a few with decorations to place near your favorite buildings, AND add a few without decorations, for a whole forest of little trees you can place around your scene. You will be stitching with yummy silk flosses, Perle Cottons, sparkling beads and delicious looking ‘candy’ buttons and can use your own green linen. Each tree can have it's own colour of green! This little tree was not lined, which makes finishing easier and faster, but you can always line it inside, or add a bottom to finish it off nicely. Finishing instructions and colour photos are included at the end of this leaflet. This year, place all your finished Gingerbread buildings on your mantle for the Holidays and add a few trees to make it look more realistic. Look for more Gingerbread Village additions in future years! Sending all of you a delicious and Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year from my house to yours! -Thea

#185 - October  
#186 - November
#187 October
Three NEW Birthday Samplers
"For You, With Love..."
Remember someone's birthday by stitching a little birthday sampler. Featuring a Birthstone Heart stitched in sparkling metallic thread, and a medallion and tiny garden showing the appropriate birth flowers, this design is dedicated to all those special people who are born in October, November or December! The  Birthstones for each month are Opal, Turquoise and Topaz.. and they are stitched as little Rhodes hearts in metallics. The flowers for each month are Calendula, Chrysanthemum, and Narcissus. Using the enclosed Alphabet and finishing directions, you can personalize each little sampler and finish it into a needleroll, or frame it using any easy to find 5" X 7" frame. I'm sure that the birthday recipient will truly appreciate this as a gift from your heart.

Stitched with DMC flosses and Kreinik Braid. There are no ACCESSORY PACKS for these three charts. 
Ask for this leaflet at participating needlework shops or check our Victorian Sampler online catalogue.

The Victoria Sampler is on Facebook in the FB Search Box.  Our Company Page is a great place to come visit for news. Then there is the VS-Home Study Group where we come and learn some of our special projects for which we have full kits!   Come and 'like' us and leave a message or comment..!  It's fun to keep up with Victoria Sampler! ;) We have a new VicSampler CHAT Group on Facebook as well. Just check out the link or search for it. I also have a personal page listed under my name.

Learning with videos and Animations! 

Have some fun learning new stitches with Thea's informal VS-Home Study Facebook Group classroom videos. Learn how to work specialty stitches of the featured design, and our great finishing techniques to make Thea's designs come alive. What a fun way to learn!
Click on this link to Buy Full Student Kits for these exclusive Home Study designs!

Click here to subscribe to our NEW Victoria Sampler YOUTUBE Channel!  We have launched a new Youtube Channel for your enjoyment! Enjoy stitching with us as you learn how to make the designs and projects shown in the "Home Study" or "Previous Designs" sections. There is also a section organized in Alphabetical order of Stitches; a section for Hardanger stitches only; and a section for previous Live Webcast Classes recordings.  Spend some time browing through..!

 Magazine Designs and Free Patterns!          
NEW! Inspired by tradition, this little Free pattern is perfect for your fellow readers! Look in our catalogue for Tiny Packs for Tiny Packs for the latest of these free patterns for your convenience! Check our Website menu to find some free patterns as well as other features like our Search feature, Shop Finder, Catalogue, Stitch Animations. Also, you can find our new Stitcherama Webcast classes to learn some of the specialty stitches!

Discontinued Products Notice!  REMINDER: Just a note to let you know, we are discontinuing some of our products as we run out of stock. Almost all our full kits have been discontinued or will be soon, except the Beyond Cross Stitch Learning series and our Home Study Series. Many of Cathy's and some of Linda's and my Accessory Packs are now discontinued. Many of our Tiny Packs are also discontinued. So remember to buy the products in your wish list now, as they may no longer be available from us in future! 
NEW Office Hours! Just a quick note to all my stitching friends. I love my work and won't retire yet, but my designing will slow down a bit.. :) I am going to cut back my stitching time, computer time, and online teaching time, to take it easier. Lisa will work full time, and Kathleen will join us part time too, as Cathy has retired. So, now our office hours will be 9am - 4pm Monday-Thursday.

A few letters from our readers.
Thank you for your email and notes. For more comments and participation, please visit Facebook: 'The Victoria Sampler' and the 'Victoria Sampler CHAT Group'  where many of our fans now write to us!  I also want to remind you to notify your service provider that our email address is safe, and to keep your VS online Account current by updating your email and details as needed! :) 

#32 Woodland Garden Baby Sampler!

Hi Thea, I wanted to show you the baby sampler I stitched for my newest granddaughter. I stitched the first 12 bands of your #32 Woodland Garden Sampler, then I added the name and date, then I finished it with the buttonhole border and bottom Hardanger from the Noel Sampler. Thank you so much for these lovely designs. They were perfect for my little sampler.  Love and Hugs, Ginger

Hello Ginger!.. Love this idea!  Almost any sampler can be dedicated to the little ones in our lives. You have made the woodland garden a place of wonder and delight. Thank you for sharing!  - Thea

Spreading the VS Cheer  .. !  

Hi Thea, I had about 4 minutes for a presentation to the Winchester EGA meeting. I passed out a screenshot of your homepage with the free patterns and stitch animations hig hlighted . I told them how great a teacher you are both in person and online and when retreats are this year. I put out a spread of Victoria Sampler handouts, accessory packs, and projects I had finished for all to see. Several members have contacted me to say how much they have enjoyed the website. I enjoyed spreading Victoria Sampler happiness, Kathi

Thanks Kathi! What a wonderful thing for you to do, thank you!  - Thea

Thank you ...! We are grateful for your personal pictures and letters to share your experiences with Victoria Sampler designs, so keep em coming! Send stories letters etc and pics to me. Thanks to all of you who wrote.. you make our hearts glad.  I am more grateful than ever that you are all in our Victoria Sampler family.. ! - Thea

Classes online or in person
Come and join me... the next in-person CLASS or my new  Home Study Courses through  Facebook and even Youtube. You will meet new people and learn new stitches and finishing. I am always looking forward to meeting old and new friends... so check the Teaching Link in the menu of our website for all Teaching events, to check for dates and times. See below.  - Thea :)

Future Stitching Retreats and Webcasts with Thea

NEW! Stitcher's Hideaway 2017 !
Will be held in Sturbridge, Sept-Oct 2017
Email Sue at:

Victoria Sampler's Retreat 2018 !  - waiting list being taken

Will be held in Victoria, April 26 - 30, 2018
Email Lisa at:

Please let me know if there are any errors in this newsletter by emailing me at


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#165 Peacock Sampler!

This gorgeous Peacock Sampler will take your breath away! You will love the beautiful shades of turquoise, cobalt blue, tans, black and gold! While using luscious over-dyed silks, silk flosses, metallics, gold fillagree heart charm and even some lustrous pearls and sparkling beads, enjoy practicing some lovely needlework techniques! Look for stitch videos online.. ... click and scroll down for more