If you’re Rhinebeck bound, we would love to see you at Jill Draper’s studio in Kingston on Saturday night. Details here.


Dear Ann,
Remember Cristina? Cristina who has sent in imaginative afghan squares every month, each one accompanied by a handmade work of paper art for my enjoyment? Cristina of Voila? Cristina of the elegant lino print? Cristina whose address labels I cut out and save because her calligraphy is so lovely? That Cristina?
A while back, as I was thinking about the Sew-Up Bees for the Afghanalong, it occurred to me that a woman who had amused herself by baking a log cabin shrinky dink, might be so kind as to design a festive invitation to the Sew-Up Bees. I do not actually know Cristina, but I had a hunch. So I asked her.
Cristina graciously gave a big yes and set to work, morning sickness be damned. A few weeks later–this afternoon–the postman dropped off the results. The scan at the top of this post does not do justice to Cristina’s artistry. “Mixed media” is putting it mildly. Cristina used origami paper, mizuhiki (paper cords used for woven jewelry and decorations), and images of some of the afghan squares we have received. The picture of the Sewing Stepford Sisters was from a package of sewing needles I had bought for a dollar and sent to Cristina because I thought it was funny. (“We’re so happy! We all have the same lipstick and hairdo, and we’re sewing!”) What you cannot see clearly is that Cristina actually sewed, not only with the mizuhiki, but with tiny silken threads on the afghan squares. It is Rilly Something, I tell you.
And get this: she made another one. But I’m saving it for later.
Thank you, thank you, thank you Cristina, for sharing your talent so generously!
Love, Kay
P.S. The first Afghanalong Sew-Up Bee will be on Sunday, September 12 in New York City, details to follow. We hope to have Cristina there, holding court with her feet up as she approaches the adventure of childbirth. We will schedule the Nashville Sew-Up Bee soon, and we’d love to hear from anyone who’d like to organize a sew-up in their hometown. Believe me, thanks to everyone who’s knitted, we’ve got squares enough for many blankets, and it would be great to get them done up before wintertime.



  1. Yay Cristina! That really *is* a beautiful work of art she whipped up! She’s the ultimate of crafty goodness. Does the ever-crafty Cristina have a web site for us to ogle?

  2. AAAAAAACK! Gobsmacked! I’m beyond gobsmacked. I can’t get over this invitation. Between receiving peach bereavement cobblers and singing “Old Man River” with grandfather Albert’s friends, I’m totally amazed at this fabulous art.
    Thank you, Cristina. Truly inspired!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  3. Way to go Christina! I’m truly impressed. 🙂

  4. Stunning!

  5. That is an amazing invite! Cristina is a genius!!

  6. Totally awesome!

  7. I’m just standing here trying to pick my jaw off the floor. I am so unworthy of being in the company of such amazing, amazing artists. My heart rate has increased tremendously here. (will that burn calories, you think?)

  8. truly amazing. yes, this blog is so inspiring!! it’s like a workshop all on its own!!

  9. Oh, wow. Definitely plotzworthy!

  10. I’m plotzing, I’m plotzing! And I SO love collage as a medium. Cristina’s brilliant.
    Now, as to the Freedom Tower cornerstone, thanks for the pointer, Kay, because that didn’t catch my eye in the email NYTimes I receive, and I dig type, too. But, Grammar Avengers, couldn’t the inscription use another comma or two?

  11. This is truly stupendous! How I wish I’m closer to where the Sew-Up Bees are taking place. On closer look at the card, I found 4 of my quilty squares on the card!

  12. i adore the collage effect…. so inventive and welcoming…..a lovely tidbit to add to this heartwarming knitathon! LOVE

  13. What a beautiful invitation! I love things like that! Skay, someone suggested you read “Larry’s Party” while knitting the border and I was at the bookstore and saw a copy and now I’m half way through – love it! Thank you MDK reader!

  14. Fab invitation. What talent! Count me in for the Sewing Bee! Please. BTW, did my squares from Hilton Head show up? The packing seemed a bit iffy. Sorry.

  15. This is just too cool. And, since I will have to miss the NYC Sew-Up Bee (hubby has this funny thing about his birthday), I would be happy to host a pale imitation in downtown Chicago, if you have other loyal followers here. Otherwise I am still holding out hope for no conflicts with Ann’s Nashville Sew-Up…!

  16. Thanks a plotz, ladies!

  17. Hey Evelyn, I’m out here in the western burbs, and my sister Melissa from the Land of Many O’s is a short 2 1/2 hours away in Occonomoc, WI. I bet we could have a fun sewing bee! Count me in!
    The invite is gorgeous, the labrynth is mind boggling (I have got to get that book!), and I am just now finally getting around to log cabinning (M-K made it an official verb a while back, right?), which is totallyl addictive!
    And Ann, I didn’t know you collected typeface aracana, but I’m not surprised. Here’s a tidbit for you: I actually dated Frederick Goudy’s nephew (maybe great-nephew) a few times. He had a bunch of notebooks and letters, and was totally unappreciative of them.

  18. Wow–I love the invitation! I do hope that I may attend the NYC sew-up bee? I may not have contributed many squares, but I’m a wiz with a needle! I have one more square for you–I’ll pop it in the mail this weekend.
    I’d suggest a rendez-vous (I think I work only a few blocks from your current apartment, Kay), but with your packing up and my stupid schedule–that would probably prove impossible!
    Good luck with the packing and moving! We moved 13 blocks back in February and boy, was that an adventure. May your move be much smoother than mine!

  19. Can one plotz while in the Midwest? I think it’s possible. . . yep, definitely. Amazing.


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