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Monday, April 26, 2010


Shirley Kulak. You may know Shirley by shirleystitches. I have no doubt that you recognize her work.
Shirley lives in St. Joseph, Missouri which is about 45 minutes north of Kansas City or two hours away from Omaha, Nebraska.
Shirley says, "I have been doing hand embroidery work for a long time because that is something that my mother taught me a long time ago. She taught us to quilt, crochet, embroidery, sew, and cook just to name a few." I started first as I got older doing embroidery work for a wedding present, baby gift, birthday present, and basically giving away my embroidery. Her love of the 40's and 50's inspire most of her vintage tea towel patterns, of which you can see from the cute pattern above.

I have been working to perfect it and I really started doing more of the bigger pieces after my husband got very sick in Nov. of 1999. The first year he was in an out of the hospital every month. I had to have something to help take my mind off what was going on with him and I started embroidering more. I could take the hand embroidery with me where as you couldn't take a machine. I lived 24/7 at the hospital because I became his primary caregiver, where I made decisions for his life.
Shirley began selling her craft in craft shows, a booth in antique mall, and then had it on consignment in a shop in Weston, Missouri. My best place was the shop in Weston, she sold my things as fast as I could make them, but she closed her shop and that is how I got involved with etsy. I have an etsy shop called "shirleystitches."

Like many of us, Shirley is a member of Etsy Cottage Style and joined to make friends and share ideas, and be a part of a group. Shirley also has a blog. You can find her at http://shirleystitches.blogspot.com. Be sure to visit, see what she is up to and leave a nice comment. She also sells a little on e-bay, but does not have a shop. "Most of my things are sold through etsy, or before I even get them listen because I usually show them as part of my blog."

I love to travel if I get a chance. We are known to get in the car and just go where ever with no particular place in mind which can be read about on my blog.. My friends that I have made is my way of seeing the world. We are limited as how far we get to travel away from home and have to have doctor's approval. The short day trips are the ones we will only be gone during the day.We try to go to Branson, Missouri where we enjoy going to the shows.
I have three children, Angela, Patrick, and John Robert. Angela and Patrick are both married. Angela has a little boy Ethan, Patrick has two boys, Matthew and Jacob. All three boys pictures can be seen on my blog. .
I have beaded skating dresses when my daughter was younger. She ice skated and we traveled with her. I would take embroidery work with me because I have never been a person to have idle hands. i hope this gives you some idea about me/ If you need something else, please contact me. You can use pictures out of my etsy shop if you see something you would like better. I feel this a privilege and I appreciate it very much. My http://wwwshirleystitches.etsy.com/, http://shirleystitches.blogspot.com/
You can see that this is one very talented woman. Be sure to visit and let her know what you think.


Debbi said...

yep. Shirley is one very talented lady! She is also a valuable asset to Etsy Cottage Style ning. She welcomes new members and also hardly ever misses leaving Birthday wishes for current members!

Michelle May said...

A very talented lady that I am so delighted to call my friend!

Celestina Marie said...

What a beautiful feature on Shirley. She is so talented and creative and such a joy to know. I love her blog and blessed to call her my friend. So glad to have met her through Etsy Cottage Style.
Celestina Marie,
Celestina Marie Designs

Melody said...

Shirley is very talented and a wonderful Lady. I am so happy she's my Missouri Friend!

Brynwood Needleworks said...

Love, love the talented Shirley. So nice to see your write-up today.

Fabulous Finds Studio/Boutique said...

Really cute work, I love the koala bear! (I used to collect koala bear things when I was growing up!)
Have a fabulous day!

Say It With Roses said...

Great write up about a great and brave lady! Your "stitches" are so cute and you are an inspiration!

CraftySmiles said...

It is so sweet,really great job. I am a new follower i find you via Niesz Vintage Home. And i am very happy about it. Really love it.

JoyAnna said...

Shirley is a joy and does beautiful embroidery. I bet she is a blessing to everyone she meets. Right away she welcomed me to etsycottagestyle and became one of my first friends and answered some questions I had. She also has a beautiful blog and I enjoy reading about her family and travels.
Brenda of JoyAnna

Nanette Merrill and daughters said...

The first little photo of embroidery was my favorite. I love it. I wish I was better at embroidery. I need to take a class. I know how to make all the stitches and do embroidery from time to time but it is kind of messy. I'd like to crisp it up!

starrynightimpressions said...

Congrats on being featured Shirley!
Your embroidery is wonderful.
I use to sell stitchery kits at home parties many many years ago and I still have a love for counted cross stitch. I'm happy to see someone else who also loves this beautiful handcrafted art.

Beth said...

I love her work! Its so lovely!