looking back at 2022

I started 2022 in hibernation mode, sitting in front of the wood stove, with work in hand. Twelve months later, I’m back in the same spot. The only difference is what I’m working on. The year brought many joys, both personally and professionally, with a family wedding, a major retrospective exhibition and the continuation of the touring exhibit, Bedtime Stitches. Rob and I filmed a bunch of Stitch Minute videos and I introduced 2 jigsaw puzzles of my artwork.

Here on Cape Cod, which has a median age of 54, I’m surrounded by retirees who always seem to be on the move – driving cross-country in their camper van or disappearing south for the winter. To my husband Rob’s dismay, escaping to a warmer climate or living on the road does not appeal to a serious homebody like me, so we stay put. I’m grateful that he understands how uprooting me from my studio, with all of my supplies and other stuff close at hand, would make me miserable to live with.

Rob in the garden

I’ll never retire, but I am slowing down a bit and making fewer work-related commitments. Instead of spending every spare moment stitching new pieces and organizing exhibits, I’m giving equal time to the people in my life and my garden.

Garden Bounty, including hundreds of zinnias for son Ian’s wedding.

Professionally speaking, the highlight of the year was last summer’s retrospective exhibition, What a Relief at the Brick Store Museum in Kennebunk, Maine.

What a Relief, Brick Store Museum, Kennebunk, Maine

Four galleries on the Museum’s first floor displayed over 150 works that spanned 45 years of my career. I’m touched that so many of you went out of your way to see my work in person. It makes me feel that all of the effort that went into this exhibit was worth it! You can see photos and videos of the exhibition in these 2 posts:
What a Relief installation
What a Relief – first 6 weeks

Last summer I gave this Zoom talk about my artwork. The video includes an interview, slide show and Q&A section.

Personally, the best part of 2022 was our son Ian and his wife Liz’s wedding. I wrote about making their cake topper here.

I also made a wedding cake topper for our good family friend Sam and his wife Louisa, which you can see here.

Bedtime Stitches, the touring exhibit of original artwork for my picture book MY BED continued to travel to different parts of the country.
Bedtime Stitches in Lincoln, Nebraska
Bedtime Stitches in Kennebunk, ME
Bedtime Stitches opens in Minnesota

In 2023, Bedtime Stitches will be going to the Pacific Northwest Quilt & Fiber Art Museum (Feb. 1 – April 30), the Southeastern Quilt and Textile Museum (June – mid-Sept.) and the Southern Vermont Arts Center (Sept. 30, 2023 – Jan. 7, 2024).

Two years ago, I began a series of seasonal landscapes that capture the wonder and magic of the natural world, both real and imagined. The first was a winter scene, Frosty Morning, which I shared in 2021. This past year, I wrote a multi-part series about making the spring scene, Mossy Glen. Overview, Part 1 (moss), Part 2 (cherry trees), Part 3 (stone walls), Part 4 (forsythia), Part 5 (leaves), Part 6 (stitches leaves), Part 7 (violets and berries), Part 8 (wee folk).

Mossy Glen

I also began sharing a series of posts about making the fall scene, Harvest Time, which will continue into 2023.
Harvest Time – overview
Harvest Time – Part 1 (mossy tree trunk)
Harvest Time – Part 2 (turkey tail mushroom)

Harvest Time

I’m working on a summer scene now, which I’ll share after it’s finished next year. As always, you can follow along and see its progress in real time on Facebook and/or Instagram. 

Despite Rob’s skepticism, the Stitch Minute videos have been a big hit. He couldn’t understand why anyone would want to watch me stitching for a whole boring minute. You can see them all on the Videos page.

Stitch Minute – moss

After years of searching for a high quality product and an economically feasible manufacturing arrangement, I finally decided to test the market just before Christmas with two puzzle designs; Birds of Beebe Woods and Harvest Time. The puzzles are available in my shop here.

Is there a particular piece of mine that you would like to see in puzzle form? I’m planning to have more puzzles made and would love to hear your suggestions. Illustrations from my books MY BED and Pocketful of Posies can’t be reproduced, but other stand alone pieces are a possibility, if I have hires photos. Please leave a comment with your suggestions.

Many of you have requested 500 or 1000 piece puzzles, but for a small operation like mine, manufacturing large puzzles isn’t economical, nor do I have the storage space. So I compromised on the 300 piece version.

As a thank you for your support, I’m offering a 20% discount on all cards and posters in my shop. So, if you’ve thought about getting the Birds of Beebe Woods poster or want to stock up on cards for all occasions, you have until January 6th to take advantage of the New Year’s Sale. Free Shipping in the US. Apologies to my international fans, but due to the unreasonably high cost of shipping overseas, I now only take orders from the US and Canada. Enter my Etsy Shop here.

To keep up with new posts, please subscribe to this blog (top right column on the home page). Your contact info will not be sold or shared. If you’d like to see more frequent photos tracking the projects in my studio, please follow me on Facebook and/or Instagram

16 thoughts on “looking back at 2022

  1. Do you have an inventory of your books ? I would be interested in one being signed and mailed to the west coast. Have a wonderful new year.

  2. Salley,
    Your end of the year letter brought me so much joy, almost as much as looking at your work.
    I would like more notecards. Can I just get them from you directly?
    I’d like 6 boxes of Birds to give to the 300 Committee Outreach Committee Wayfinders. They lead hikes there all the time.
    Happy New Year.
    Susie Goodman Hallstein

  3. Salley you are an inspiration and delight! Your posts are a highlight to my day as you share your family, process, creative stories and gorgeous detailed illustrations! Before I knew of your Etsy shop … I had been collecting your books for my grandchildren.
    Blessings and joy to you today and always.
    Thank You for sharing your gifting ❤️

  4. Your talent simply blows everyone else out of the water! The Oscar goes to…..YOU!!!!

    Of course I think of my Mom’s doll house when I pass your street now and then. Have you had an occasion to use it yet? I hope so!

    Happy New Year. And stay well… Jeremy Brown

    • Thank you so much Jeremy! I love seeing your Mom’s dollhouse everyday. I have gotten as far as taking pictures of wee folk peeking out of the windows. The scale is perfect and I hope to have time to really play with it!

  5. Happy New Year Salley from NZ. I thought you might be interested to know, I found one of your books in our wee town library… Population of Oxford around 2,000. You are world famous and deservingly so. Thank you for sharing your magic.

  6. This is a really lovely retrospective of your year and the current status of your life. I so agree with the idea of being a homebody, of moving a little more slowly and I love the picture of you by your hearth.

    Happy 2023, and I hope I will see lots of you in the new year.



  7. You have been an inspiration for so many years, and your books, cards and puzzles continue to bring delight and warmth to our hearts. Thank you so very much and Happy New Year!

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