BRENTWOOD -- Whether it is a one-of-a-kind children's birthday stocking or a ring bearer's pillow in the image of a grandmother's garden, Sandy Grossman-Morris' custom needlepoint designs have become cherished family keepsakes to her followers across the nation.
"I feel like I'm part of history," the Brentwood resident said. "Generations of families are going to look at these items and enjoy them."
And now Grossman-Morris is bringing her motto of "Design, Create, Inspire" to the PBS TV series "Creative Living with Sheryl Borden." In various segments that are currently running on KCSM and KRCB, which is channels 22 and 43 locally, she is demonstrating the art of designing needlepoint plaid to display important dates and creating a ribbon rose.
Combining a lifelong love of sewing, computer technology, beading, crochet, design and needle art, Grossman-Morris calls herself a "lifestyle designer." She describes her holiday pillows, stockings and three-dimensional craft items as unique and modern.
"Technology has given new life to the art of needlepoint," she said. "No longer is it just a canvas stitched with dull colored wool yarn and hung up for display. Incredible fibers, exciting stitches, clever embellishments and creative designing have brought this old world art into the 21st century."
Beginners can learn from Grossman-Morris and fellow needlepoint instructor Janet Perry at a Needlepoint 101 series of three needlepoint classes that started last weekend and continue April 6 and May 4 from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. According to Grossman-Morris, it will help novices, those who need a refresher course and others who have never learned beyond the basic continental stitch.
Intermediate and advanced classes will follow this spring series. She currently has a display of her work at US Bank in downtown Brentwood.
"Sandy's designs are so bright and colorful," said Janet Perry, who is teaching the class with her. "They are a fresh alternative to so many other pieces out there. Sandy makes them easy to stitch. Needlepointers at any level can get beautiful results with her work."
As a former health care worker and Red Cross volunteer, Grossman-Morris touts the health benefits of needlepoint as a hobby, including reduced stress and lowered blood pressure.
"Once people start taking classes, their interest will increase," she said. "It is very relaxing."
Through her love of needlepoint, Grossman-Morris wants to introduce newcomers to bold colors paired with beads, pearls and crystals to make the project pop.
"I like doing things that are really unique," she said.
Reach Paula King at 925-779-7174 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
To enroll in the Needlepoint 101 class, call 925-240-9034 or send an email to email@example.com. The cost of classes is $48 total, including the canvas, stretcher bars, threads, needle and instructional assistance. For details, visit www.sandygrossman-morris.com.