Why do I stitch? by Jean Wallen

Forty-eight years ago, when we lived in Ridgefield, Connecticut, I was a volunteer at the Keeler Tavern.  It was a wonderful old tavern that had survived the Revolutionary War – and even boasted a cannon ball imbedded in one wall.  Besides being a tourist attraction, the Tavern also served somewhat as a community center, offering a variety of classes and activities.  It was there that I was first introduced to needlepoint, and that began my stitching adventure.

Since that time we have lived in several locations, and I have been a partner in four different shops (Kansas, back to Connecticut, North Carolina).  Because I really enjoy teaching, I have been the designated teaching partner in each of these endeavors.  Like any teacher in any discipline, I am sure I learned more than my students, so I was able to grow with my needlepoint.  I branched out into modifying designs, then designing my own patterns, where my art background from Michigan State University served me well.

While I really like designing and stitching, it is the positive responses from my students that truly keeps me going.