Catching Up and New Designs

comments: 20

Thank you so much for all of your kind words to me on my last post. I really appreciate the encouragement. Man oh man. I am feeling pretty good this week. I have been working a lot and things are coming together that way, which makes me happy. I like to be busy and really dug-in on my projects, and I think that's been part of the problem — it's just so hard to get into flow now, you know?

Time is kind of all broken up in a different way now, and there is very little quiet time. BUT Amelia is doing really well and continuing to thrive in lock-down. She never complains. Well, there was one time that she completely fell apart. She was at a Zoom birthday party for her friend Lillian who moved away last year. Lillian lives in Detroit now, so the party started late for them in Michigan but before school was finished for us, with the time-zone change, so by the time Amelia got off her school call she was ten minutes late to the party. Lil's mom had sent a little envelope of treats and a packaged cookie and a party horn and a party hat for all the girls to wear. Mimi was really into it. I went upstairs to sit down but just a few minutes later I suddenly heard howling. She came running upstairs with her tiny party hat on crooked and her party horn in her hand, crying, "Mama! Mama! The call cut off!" She collapsed on the bed and she was sobbing so hard I thought my heart was going to shatter. Lillian's mom texted and said they had restarted the call for a few minutes so everyone could say goodbye but Amelia was having none of it. I just held her while she cried and I tried not to cry myself. She just cried and cried. She said, "I just want to go back to school!" And man, that was a hard moment. "I know, baby. I know." That is the one and only time I've ever seen her completely lose her shit during all of this. Most of the time she carries on with a smile and a sparkle and really good attitude. I don't think I've ever seen her cry that hard about anything else, ever. I write this because I don't want to forget that she felt this.

Most mornings I sit at my desk with Amelia on her school meetings at the computer behind me and I can hear her teacher and her classmates on Zoom. Every day I give thanks for her teacher and her friends. They make me laugh every single day. Teacher: "Maybe someone in your house can help you with this later today." Seven-year-old: "Maybe. But when my dad gets home from work he usually puts on a tank top and plays video games for a while." Ha! Tank top. I don't know how the teacher doesn't dissolve in peels of laughter every single day but she keeps it cool. I miss the kids and my time reading with them in their classroom every week. They are just all so cute and so sweet to each other and so willing and so adorable. I miss them and I miss Amelia being with them. But I am grateful that she gets to connect with her people on screen, at the very least. Kiddos are resilient but it doesn't mean that things don't still hurt, and thank goodness for the consistency and familiarity of screen-school.

I have DECIDED to make myself a sweater. Out of fingering-weight yarn. Tiny stuff. It's a sweet sweater, called Porty Cardigan. There's a knit-along happening for it on Instagram, I think. I'm going to join in as soon as my yarn gets here. I'm not much of a joiner and I've never done a knit-along but I am excited. This is a steeked cardigan. I had started another steeked cardigan for Amelia last week but I'm frogging it. I just didn't like my color choices (I was using all stash yarn). I ordered all new yarn for my Porty. I bought Jamieson & Smith 2-ply like the pattern calls for. I don't like shopping for yarn that I don't know well online. It's so hard to know what the colors will really be like! I looked at several different web sites and they all had slightly different colors for the same yarn. So who knows. I wonder if I can get the tracking number and stalk it every step of the way until it gets here. Hopefully I'll like what I get but if not, WHO CARES. Alicia, you just need to dig in and FINISH SOMETHINGGGGGG. Finish it. Stopping starting things and then putting them down.

I have a new assistant. She is delightful. Her name is Ivy. She is taking alllllll of the kit supplies home and stuffing all of my kits at her house now. This is amazing. This is life-changing for me because it has been a while since I've had an assistant, and I've NEVER had one that worked from home. It is excellent, though I do really miss getting to work with her here in the office the way I used to do with all my previous assistants, especially Greta and Stacey. I love working with those girls. But someday. Ivy goes to a local college here and is taking a year off. Not only is she willing to model things for me she is also gorgeous, which is just so convenient. I mean:

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Like, ADORABLE. It was literally pouring rain not two minutes before we took this picture yesterday on my front stairs. She's modeling the cowl I designed last month. It's called the Drip Glaze Cowl because it reminds me of the Zoom pottery class that Andy and I took a few weeks ago and the many nights we have enjoyed watching The Great Pottery Throw-Down (love it). The cowl is done in fingering- or sport-weight yarn and I recommend having one of those be hand-dyed and speckled, because it looks cool that way. I used 100% cashmere for the neck ribbing. I love cowls and I love this one and I hope you do, too. To purchase the downloadable PDF pattern on my web site click here. To purchase it on Ravelry, click here. Thank you, Ivy, for all of your help.

I also have an embroidery kit for you. It is quick to do and to hoop-frame; I finished it in a single day. I think it would make a lovely gift. I'm selfish and am keeping mine for myself. I forgot to list the ribbon on the list of things included in the kit, but you get that included (and the Hardwicke Manor hoop, too).

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This is done on plain muslin with two plies of DMC embroidery floss, and that's all included, too, of course. To purchase the Winter Wreath kit, click here. For the PDF pattern only, click here.

And, last but not least, I have the last installment of this year's seasonal series, Things of Winter:

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I have really enjoyed doing this series, and I loved stitching this one in particular. Thank you to every single one of you who has stitched the designs for every season this year. I really like doing seasonal stuff and I have no idea what I will do next year. Throw some ideas at me and I'll see what I can come up with. To purchase Things of Winter kit, click here. For the PDF pattern only, click here. Since last spring, all of my PDF patterns include both color chart and black-and-white charts. Kits only include printed color charts. But if you buy the kit and you want the black-and-white PDF, just email me and I'll send it to you.

I'm going to be doing all of the shipping of these kits myself, and I'm hoping to get every single thing out by Thanksgiving. That's my goal. I wish you all a peace-filled week and I thank you again for every kindness you show you here. It helped me a lot, and I am thankful for you. XO


lovely work!!!! So proud of your daughter; it IS hard! but it WILL get better. We just need to hold on a bit longer!!! God bless you! I hope your family has a really nice Thanksgiving! <3

Alicia, I have been waiting with bated breath for this last "Things of" kit to complete my collection, checking in daily to make sure you hadn't yet posted it. These beautiful patterns are sweet and nostalgic and comforting and hopeful and I'm so grateful to have them in this difficult year. Thank you for sharing your gifts with us, and for giving us all a little something sweet to savor in the midst of such darkness. It means more than you know.

So excited! I just ordered "Things of Winter" and your new little "Winter Wreath" kits! Thank you for all the loveliness you share with the world.

I hear you on the Jamieson & Smith! I've finally worked up the nerve to do a fair isle sweater and I'm stuck at yarn selection. I looked at the Porty Cardi as well. Such a lovely choice. Anything Gudrun Johnston designs is always gorgeous.

I ended up deciding I wanted to knit Flea: A Lady's Cardigan but now I think I may need to just knit another as well.

I'm so sorry that Amelia was so distraught with Lilian's birthday party. That kind of experience is all too familiar here, but always hard for those involved. It sounds like that was not typical for her, so I'm thankful for that!

You are so right - Ivy is just beautiful! I'm so happy that you both have found one another. It sounds like a perfect match.

Thank you for the delightful post and sharing your lovely designs -it is always a highlight!


Alicia, I too have been waiting and checking your shop daily (obsessively 🙄) for these two kits, and they were well worth the wait! How lovely! I threw both of them in the cart, checked out, and only then did I think to go back and read would would be included with each kit. So glad you mentioned in the post that the ribbon is included with the Winter Wreath as it is the perfect finishing touch with the hoop frame. Ahhhh, shopping at the Posie, you made my week! Thank you so much for the calm and loveliness of your kits, they are my therapy these days. Oh, and any time you feel like sharing The Darnedest Things that Amelia and her little friends say, I’m all ears — I laughed so hard about the child’s dad in his tank shirt playing video games. Have a lovely day and a safe, blessed Thanksgiving.

I'm sorry that Amelia was so sad :( and as a parent it's so hard to witness their sadness, too. It's difficult enough for them when people and parties and playdates can't be the real thing, but when the online alternative has been cheerfully accepted but *that* goes and breaks too, well... it's just too much. Wishing you peaceful and happy days xx

My daughter is self-isolating as a precaution at the moment, and every morning she's at the kitchen table with her laptop and getting on with her school work. She's 12, so it's a little easier for her. But she misses her friends so very much. She shouts out of her bedroom window to them as they head home in the evening. So near, and yet so far.

What I have seen though, and it's a beautiful thing, is her resilience grow this year. In our first lockdown in the UK, her and her brother simply couldn't cope with the anxiety of it all. Now, she's not thrilled, but she is getting on with it.

I wish with all my heart that noone had to learn the lessons we've had to learn this year in such a brutal way. But there are still small blessings to be found in the middle of it.

Oh, and teachers. I've always thought teachers were amazing, but now, more than ever, I'm in awe of them!

How about a little girl in each season. You have wonderful pictures of Amelia on the rocks at the river, with blossoms in spring, leaves flying around her, mittens and cocoa. Her hair blowing around her. I think it would be a beautiful series.

Thanks so much for the lovely Winter Wreath embroidery pattern! It is beautiful and I love your colors and the design is lovely. It will make a great gift but I want one for me too! Have a very nice Thanksgiving. I also love your other patterns.

Oh man, I've had more melt downs than Amelia so she's doing okay! I've been finding it hard as well to find flow and rhythm and actually complete things (ack). The cowl, embroidery and cross stitch are absolutely lovely. You've made everything shine in the muted palette of winter. As far as next year goes, you could keep doing seasonal cross stitches to infinity and beyond and I would be happy! But if you're looking for inspiration, maybe a house for each season with all the signs of the changing weather & activities around it?

Oh this is so beautiful- but that finishing something first.....that is me. I STILL have not finished The leaves by hundreds came or first snow. Man. I have to finish at least one before spring.

Dearest Alicia, I love when you share stories and conversations from you and your family. It always touches my heart. You paint a picture so clearly too. Poor Amelia with her party. She seems like she's handling all these changes in stride but sometimes it's just too much to bear. I get it. All your new kits are so beautiful, of course I had to go and order immediately and then come back later and actually read your lovely words and descriptions. Ha! For next year's seasons... perhaps something with seasonal flowers or plants? Whatever idea comes I know you'll make it something lovely and cozy. Your designs and kits are always such a comfort to me and have seen me through so many good and bad days. Thank you!

The little embroidery wreath is adorable, I'll be buying the pattern very soon. Those orange-y yellow balls on both it and Things of Winter -- what kind of flower/berry is that?

Remote schooling is hard. I'm glad Amelia is doing so well, all things considered.

I just ordered the "Things of Winter" kit and look forward to stitching during the winter nights ahead. Have you framed each of your "Things of..." series? If so, do you mind sharing them at some point? I'm not great at choosing frames. Your choices always seem perfect.

Congrats on your new assistant!

Wishing you and yours a blessed Thanksgiving.

I just ordered your pdf for "Things of Winter" and love it. This type of cross stitch (with cute little items is so much easier for me to work with vs. a regular picture). Wonderful that you have an assistant! You are sooo very talented and thank you for sharing all your lovely kits etc with us! So very sad that Amelia was upset and so difficult to have your kids upset (no matter what age). You asked about ideas and perhaps, little felt (sequin)animals to hang on a Christmas tree? I have some of your older kits, but maybe about 2" would be cute? Kittens, puppies, wildlife etc? You always come out with adorable kits so I know you'll come up with something. Happy Thanksgiving to you and your lovely family! Stay well!

Kristen from MA says: November 23, 2020 at 08:28 AM

I'm normally a cross stitch only type of person Alicia, but I'm ordering the wreath embroidery kit because it's so beautiful. You're so talented.

Happy Thanksgiving, lovely Paulsons :)

It's been a while since I've checked in, and I'm so glad I did.
Your 'Winter Wreath' is a must have for times like these.
Sending good thoughts & prayers to you all. 😘💕
Have a blessed Thanksgiving 🦃

I feel so sorry for all the children who are missing out on their school experience this year. My grandson is in middle school and is missing out on meeting and making new friends and taking part in all the extra-curricular activities. I feel sorry for those who graduated this year and couldn't have graduations or were very limited in who they could invite. It's been such a crazy year for all students so I think one meltdown is called for and expected. I hope next year all the children will be sitting in a classroom with their friends again. Wish I knew how to knit because that cowl is beautiful.

Love the kits! I ordered one kit and hope to get the pattern for the wreath sometime in the future. Glad your daughter does well with homeschooling. These are tough days but things will get better eventually. Wishing you a peaceful advent season.

And I'm thankful for you. For like twenty years! :)

Hi Alicia, I would love to see your take on a ‘Home Sweet Home’ cross-stitch done through the seasons. I’ve been searching for a few years now to find one I like without success. I’m sure if you decided to do one it would be just perfect! 🤞 I’m looking forward to Things of Winter arriving soon so I can cosy up and start stitching 🧵xx

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About Alicia Paulson


My name is Alicia Paulson
and I love to make things. I live with my husband and daughter in Portland, Oregon, and design sewing, embroidery, knitting, and crochet patterns. See more about me at




Since August of 2011 I've been using a Canon EOS 60D with an EF 18-200mm kit lens and an EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro lens.