Cauldron Crafts came about when our resident fantasy artist, Jenna LeFevre sent our resident cross-stitch addict (me) a drawing at the end of a letter. It was of a little elven warrior, and is now one of our patterns. I saw the drawing, and thought "I can make that into a pattern!" The next natural step was the 'little elf dude' as I came to call him could easily become a commercial pattern. I discussed the idea with Jenna, and Cauldron Crafts was born. I also found another genre for us, the Pagan Patterns. I searched the Web and was very disappointed with the number of Pagan spiritual cross-stitch patterns on the market-to be more precise, the lack of them. Jenna and myself are Internet buddies, having met in a chat room in 1999. All of our collaborating is done via email, telephone, and snail mail.
The Folks of Cauldron Crafts
The Cross-Stitch Addict Tami has been cross-stitching since 1990, and has been the recipient of many Country awards for her stitchery, winning everything from first in class and first in division to Awards of Merit for several years running. She has an extensive 'collection' of floss colours, loves sparkly threads, and is constantly searching the web for new products and samples. How many people do you know who put new floss colour release dates in the computer scheduler? Tami does most of the digital colouring on the artwork (with input from Jenna), the patterning, and the test sewing.
The Artist Jenna is a contract artist with Atlas Games, suppliers of Fantasy Role-Playing Game products. She has artwork published in several of their manuals, and has done several commissioned pieces. Jenna is well used to emails that start with "Jenna, how about if we " She does all of the line drawings, putting up with the "well, that's not quite what I meant" emails and the ensuing re-scans and file uploads. There are also lots of "oooohhhhhhh I like that one, Jenna" conversations and the subsequent patterning of drawings never meant for the cross-stitch world. (Ah the powers of persuasion!) Personally I think the hardest part for Jenna is waiting until her work has been stitched.
The Patterns Every pattern starts out as a hand drawn idea. Some are fully developed by hand, scanned and then digitally coloured. Some, such as the Pentagram Sampler are drawn on computer. After the colouring process, the drawings are then imported to the pattern software and converted to cross-stitch patterns. A working pattern is then test sewn, and any revisions are made to the pattern during this stage. Sometimes parts of patterns are sewn a few times, using varying techniques, and whichever result is most satisfactory is added to the pattern. After the test sew is completed, the pattern is deemed ready for release. It can sometimes take several months from inception to release.
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