Keeping It Simple – Mouse Pad Revival

This was not the original project that I planned for this week but was inspired out of necessity.  I am forever trying to do more than one thing at a time and this morning was no exception.  I was going along answering emails, downloading some items that I needed and eating break... [More]

The embroidery business in today's marketplace ..

"Hello, yeah, it's been a while / Not much, how 'bout youI'm not sure why I "blogged" / I guess I really just wanted to talk to you" ~ hmmm, that sounds familiar .. OK OK .. I've taken some time off, but wedding plans are really eating up my free time ..I long f... [More]

Keeping It Simple - Strap Covers and Handle Wraps

Well, it's August and the "Dog Days of Summer" have finally arrived here.  That means it is hot, hot, hot and when the temps get up around 100 degrees it is time to let the garden go and sew.  I am done putting up corn, beans, berries and peaches.  I do not wish to see a... [More]

Using Up Those Embroidery Test Sews

I would have to call myself a fabric junkie. I love solid colored fabric and prints and buy it even when I have no earthly idea of what I will do with it. I have so much fabric that my daughters always come by and "shop" in my sewing room before making a trip to the fabric store.  And... [More]

Zero calorie cupcakes

When I was a little girl growing up in South Africa, Fridays were always special baking days and cupcakes were my favorite thing to bake with my mother and sister. Even better than baking the cupcakes was the frosting and decorating of them afterwards. My mother would decorate each cupcake with twir... [More]

Keeping It Simple with a Quick Casserole Carrier

If you are like me, you subscribe to more than one embroidery and quilting magazine and scour them all front to back when you finally get the chance. Sometimes I'm inspired by the projects in the magazines but many times I'm overwhelmed. And any time that I sit down to sew I'm likely... [More]

How a computer stopped an embroidery business ..

Computer repair can be costly, I don't just mean out of pocket cash .. but, cash that doesn't reach your pocket because your computer issues are halting business.  As you can probably tell, I have been MIA for the last 2-3 weeks.  Blame the computer .. I spent hours of my time tryi... [More]

Flag Day Celebration

Did you know that Flag Day is this Sunday?  It is nice to take a moment and remember how gratef [More]

Tea for two

Some people are surprised by our African tea cup designs... Why tea cups? What do tea cups and teapots have to do with Africa? Good question. What many people do not know is that South Africa used to be a British colony. For many years the British ruled South Africa and as a result many of the Briti... [More]

Little Photo Holders for Mother's Day

“Meesy, why don’t Grandma and Gigi have pictures of us at their houses like you do?” my eldest granddaughter asked.  Since I provide them quite often I wasn’t sure how to answer so I told her that they didn’t have anything to put them in.  Of course she said, ... [More]

Art to stitches - what kind of art works well

Q:  You hear stories of beautiful embroidery designs created from sketches on a bar napkin.  Is that true?A:  Though I may have had gotten ideas from sketches, the better the art, the better the embroidered design will be. Your software undoubtedly can import a wide array of art.&nbs... [More]

Basic embroidery digitizing

Q:  How does the embroidery machine know where to put all the stitches?A:  You just scan the image and the software analyzes the art and tells the machine where to place the stitches. Well, that's what our customers think.  I wish it were that easy.  Actually, I don't ..... [More]

It's Over (Sigh) for Another Year II - Coffee Cup Wraps

The sun shone on us all in Orlando and we had a great time at the second annual Annthegran Community Circle gathering.  We met up with old friends and made some new ones too.  For two days we learned lots, laughed lots and ate lots. Mary Mulari and Rita Farro kept everyone in stitches as ... [More]

Being Creative with few resources- Basket Weaving, Arts & Crafts in South Africa

Dear AnnTheGran readers, thank you so much for your comments and your excitment regarding South Africa. I so enjoy sharing this information with you and giving you a small taste and experience of African art and culture. I am always amazed how creative people can be with so little! Creativity does ... [More]

Behind the scenes at HGTV on Uncommon Threads

My Television experience on the show Uncommon Threads with host Alison Whitlock.Leora Raikin, African Folklore Embroiderywww.aflembroidery.cominfo@aflembroidery.com(818) 999-6094Click here to view clips from the HGTV show. Back to Our RootsDuring summer I spent seven weeks in South Africa, regroupin... [More]

When you need really BIG letters

Hello, all ME blog readers.  I got to know many of you at this year’s Community Circle in Orlando. If you were there and don't remember me, there's a picture of me on our About Us page. I also post from time to time in the forums under my username db1921 and I created the cof... [More]