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One-Stop Shopping, Never!

I am the opposite of a one-stop shopper. Recently I found myself in the bridal section of a local store, not because I'm planning a wedding, but for the same reason I end up looking at kittens in a pet store when I go to buy catnip. I tend to get sidetracked when shopping for cross-stitch or other items. Who knows when I might decide to knock down a wall and add a new tub or dig up the yard and plant a rosebush? At least that's what I tell myself when I end up looking at bathroom fixtures and blooming bushes during a trip to buy a hammer at the home-and-garden store.

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Another place I get sidetracked is when I go to the pet store to buy catnip and end up looking at kittens. Although I have no desire to get a new sibling for Sally (above), I can't help but wander to all corners of a store when I go shopping.

The bridal section and rosebush window-shopping proved fruitful, however, because it led to my recent cross-stitch project. My train of thought skips the tracks, but try to follow it to see how I came up with a plan for a birthday-present project.

Looking at wedding favors, I thought, Wouldn't it be fun for a bride to save one of these adorable mini-garters? Of course, she'll need something to hold this, like a memory box. Craft stores sell boxes. But a generic box wouldn't have any "wow" factor. But a cross-stitch adorned box would shout "wow" and practicality too. Remembering those coveted rosebushes, I decided to look for a floral cross-stitch pattern to go on a keepsake box for my mother's 95th birthday.

Lucky for me, I work at a cross-stitch magazine with a humongous library of past issues of Just CrossStitch. I found what I was looking for, and I'm sharing it as this update's Free Pattern.

A Rose Garden, by Anne C. Mcintosh, is a pretty design mounted on a candy tin. Just as I ended up in the DIY bath area when I was buying a hammer, I ended up making something different from my original plan. With regard to A Rose Garden, I decided to make the design larger to fit a box bigger than a candy tin, and I chose a different color palette so I could try out a cool new tool, the ColorScope, which you can find at AnniesCraftStore.com when you search for "ColorScope."

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This handy device lets you view colors before you commit to a palette.

See my "how-to" guides for changing cross-stitch design sizes and using a ColorScope in the Tutorials section.

Speaking of presents for brides, my typical gift for close friends or relatives getting married is a cross-stitched sampler. The current issue of Just CrossStitch has a beautiful one: Traditional Wedding Sampler.

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Two samplers that I am dying to try are ones that will be the focus of classes at Annie's Needle Arts Festival: Christmas in Williamsburg in December.

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World-class instructions will teach seminars on how to create these samplers at Annie's Needle Arts Festival: Christmas in Williamsburg in December.

Find out more about the festival in the Needle Arts Festival section of this update.

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