Photo of Christy Schmitz

A Note From the Editor

Dear Readers,

It's no secret that I love Christmas! I look forward to decorating every year, and it seems that every year, I start thinking about it earlier and earlier. But of all of the decorations, it's the tree that is still my favorite; I think it always has been. I remember being fascinated by all the hanging ornaments as a child and lying under the tree staring up at the twinkling lights. Every year, my mom would allow me to sleep on the couch in our living room so that I could fall asleep watching the lights. And I was so excited when I saved up and purchased my own small tree at age 9 for my room, which meant more ornament projects.

The trees in our home were always decorated with scores of ornaments. There were tiny angels my mom purchased in the 1960s and '70s, handmade ornaments from my granny, grandmother and mom, construction-paper handprints of mine as a toddler, salt-dough ornaments crafted on a rainy November evening, and projects I created at school, church and even during craft time. Our tree was a living scrapbook and memory holder, and it was beautiful. I think it's this early fascination and being surrounded by unique Christmas ornaments that makes the annual Just CrossStitch Christmas Ornaments issue one of my favorites. I love that every ornament is unique, handmade and crafted with love. I love that we are part of a craft community with designers who create with such passion. I love that each of you enjoys stitching these ornaments as much as I love having a part in bringing them to you. And I love knowing that our own versions of these ornaments will hang on trees around the world for years to come.

This year's ornaments issue once again showcases the talent of our stitching community. We have a beautiful array of motifs, styles and stitches for you this year. There's something for everyone -- from the cross-stitch novice to the most experienced stitcher. No matter what your focus, we've got it covered. There are Santas and stockings, Nativities and angels, and birds and beloved pets.
And in the spirit of my favorite holiday, I am including a photo of an ornament I designed for Just CrossStitch readers. Log on to our new, updated website to get the free, Web-exclusive pattern. So grab a needle and floss, pick a few of your favorite ornaments, turn on the Christmas carols and start stitching!

Merry Christmas!

Christy Schmitz signature
Christy Schmitz, editor

Originally from Mobile, Ala., Just CrossStitch editor Christy Schmitz holds a bachelor's degree from the University of Mobile and a master's degree from the University of Alabama at Birmingham. Christy began stitching at the age of 5 when she was handed a piece of Aida cloth, a few colors of floss and the instruction to pretend she was coloring; with that, she was off with a needle in hand. Christy has been with Just CrossStitch since 2005 and now makes her home in northern Indiana where she spends her evenings stitching, cooking, renovating thrift store finds and taking her two beagle mixes for walks in the quiet, rural area.
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