Starting today we’re celebrating the publication of the third edition of The Needlepoint Book. The essential book on needlepoint, the new edition is expanded and reorganized.
If you haven’t pre-ordered your copy, do it now, many shops have pre-publication discounts only good until the book comes out Tuesday, April 28.
I’m delighted to start out our celebration with an interview with Jo herself.
What’s new in the Third Edition of the book?
a. 63 new stitches, with a new Ribbon Stitch chapter
b. Double the number of color pictures—now 132
c. Now over 1680 illustrations (photographs, drawings, tables, and charts)
d. Part Two is comprised of seven chapters to help stitchers interpret the painted canvas by giving guidelines on how to select:
Consistent color schemes
Expressive stitch techniques
Successful background treatments
Why do you think that it has been so enduringly popular?
I researched what I wanted to know more about and included that information in the first edition and in each subsequent revision. Apparently, others shared my curiosity about my obsession.
Why did you decide to do a third edition?
Once my eyesight for stitching was restored, I wanted to write another book that would explore the topics in the first question part d, above. Simon & Schuster asked me to revise The Needlepoint Book instead and include my new material. I was happy to do that.
I know that you had a long period when you couldn’t stitch, what are you stitching now?
I am fascinated by and, therefore, experimenting with the illusion of depth made possible by several means. This illusion is produced with the use of color and the textures provided by stitches, fibers, stitch techniques, and embellishments.
The book was and is so different from other needlepoint books. What was in your mind to create something so different?
The books that were on the market when I started stitching and writing small books in 1970 didn’t tell me what I wanted to know, which was everything there was to know about needlepoint. I researched exhaustively in the Library of Congress’s collection with my mother and I experimented on my own, learning through my own trials and errors. I had amassed such a broad body of information that my friends encouraged me to find another publisher and include all that knowledge in a book. That effort resulted in The Needlepoint Book. Essentially, I wrote the book I tried to buy.
What excites you now about the needlepoint world today?
We have sooooo many options to make painted canvases our own! We stitchers can learn about all these techniques through a staggering assortment of avenues.
So many talented designers, stitch-guide writers, teachers, bloggers, and authors are spreading the word, both in person and through the Internet. (How did we ever live without the Internet???)
Even though our shops are, unfortunately, fewer in number than they used to be, I believe that they have the opportunity to be more far-reaching and comprehensive than ever before because of technology.
Our guilds and magazines offer another noteworthy outlet for teaching us.
What’s next for you?
After teaching college classes in business law, business management, and marketing, for 35 years, I am eagerly looking forward to retirement at the end of the spring semester 2016.
Hopefully, needlepoint shops will ask me to travel to their shops and share my passions with their customers. I will be teaching a color and design course at ANG’s 2016 Seminar in New Orleans. I am excited to attend seminars and classes and learn more.
Right after retirement, my husband and I are moving to Houston, Texas. We plan to travel extensively from there.