In the Spotlight: Belinda Karls-Nace

By AlisonManey, Wed, 2018-06-06 18:26

This feature originally appeared in issue 199 of The World of Cross Stitching

How did your love of stitching develop?

Like many needlecrafters, I was introduced to stitching at an early age by my grandmother. I vividly remember my first stamped cross stitch at the age of six. Growing up I was artistic, but it was after I left school that I started stitching again. I grew to love all kinds of stitching and went to as many classes as I could, soaking up as much knowledge as possible.


Tell us about the early days of Blue Ribbon Designs...

In 2003 I won some awards for my stitching, and I started to consider making it my career. Blue Ribbon Designs began life in early 2004, when I would design at evenings and weekends. Later that year, some redundancies at my office led me to make Blue Ribbon Designs my full-time career, and I never looked back!



What inspires your designs?

I really love antique needlework, so I like to combine concepts from historical samplers with contemporary styles and colours. For me, inspiration is everywhere. I keep a sketch book handy, so I can jot down ideas and sketch motifs and I'm always taking photos. Inspiration often strikes when I walk my dog, or work in the garden – I love nature. I also find inspiration in quilting. Having a creative outlet that isn’t part of my business is really relaxing!


Is it nice to work from home?

My office – a loft – is fabulous! It's where I do charting, computer work, marketing and shipping. I also have a storage room, lovingly referred to as the ‘warehouse’, so I don’t have to go out if the weather’s bad, and I can work in my pyjamas if I like! I have a ‘stitching nest’ in our living room where I stitch my models in the evenings. There’s a recliner and a craft lamp, so I can stitch near my husband when he’s home. I love being my own boss, but I have to be very self-disciplined. My success depends on my own hard work. I work harder at this then I ever did at my corporate job.



Any plans for the future? 

I have quite a few new designs coming up in 2013, including several seasonal and Christmas designs. I’ll also continue to travel and teach at needlework retreats, shops, and special events. I have lots of long-term goals too. It’d be amazing to write a book and it would be a dream come true to design my own quilting fabrics!



Find Belinda's designs at


We use cookies to improve your experience of our website. Cookies perform functions like recognising you each time you visit and delivering advertising messages that are relevant to you. Read more here