Saturday, February 20, 2016

New Christmas Stockings

One of my really good friend's daughter got married a few weeks ago.  Years ago, when her kids were still little, I made her family some Christmas stockings.  As she added to her family, I added new stockings for each one. 

As her kids have gotten older and gotten married, I've made stockings as part of their wedding presents. 
Her oldest son's stockings are here.

So when I found out her oldest daughter was getting married, I started on the hunt for some new appliqued stocking patterns.  I'm surprised by the lack of patterns around that matched what I wanted.

I ended up making soft muslin stockings with a red velvet cuff with white pom pom's hanging from the cuff.  I've had the stockings made for weeks.  But I was literally paralyzed by the appliques.  I looked, and thought, and searched, and pondered.  I couldn't decide what to do.  I had lots of ideas but I wasn't in love with any of them.
Finally - I was out of time.  I had to do something.  I found these basic patterns and tweaked them to be similar to each other. 

I decided to do initials this time - which I've never done before.  But I was worried about crushing the velvet with the iron.  I actually quite like them this way.
On the Santa, I used a jingle bell for the tip of the hat, and some small red beads on the tree.

And for the angel, there are some tiny red seed beads on the crown. 

I think they turned out pretty darn cute. 

I have some other similar applique patterns by the same designer for future stocking needs.
I hope they love them!
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Friday, February 12, 2016

Valentine's Day 2016

I love making creative and fun Valentine's for my boys to give out to their friends at school.  Each year they pick out the item (I like to go non-candy items if we can) they want to give out and we find a talented blogger who has made a free printable for us to use to go with it.

This year son #1 choose little Valentine rubber ducks and son #2 chose Valentine gliders.  Both items came from Oriental Trading.  Both ideas for the printables came from The Crafting Chicks.  The airplane/glider printable is HERE.  And the duck printable is HERE
I had some difficulty getting their printable files to download - and I was in a hurry to get them done - so I created some simple paper strips with the words on them myself.  Cut them in to long strips - tie or staple them on, and boom, Valentines are done.

For boxes to take to school, son #1 chose to re-use his Football box from last year.  It was a classic and I was very happy not to have to make another new one for him this year.

Son #2 saw a Hot Air Balloon box as I was perusing the internet - so we grabbed a $3 basket from Target and a mylar balloon - tied them together, and there you go.  He loved it.  This idea came from Tatertots and Jello - HERE
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Saturday, September 12, 2015

Another UFO - Life in the Tetons Wallhanging

This is another project that son #2 has been waiting and waiting for me to finish.  I got this pattern and kit on a trip up to Jackson, WY a few years ago.  I worked on it . . . little by little by little.  I had everything done but the quilting and binding and finally over the recent holiday weekend I decided to just sit myself down and get it finished.  
For some reason, machine quilting scares me!  I hunted around for a chalk marker to measure and outline some sort of quilting pattern and then, when I couldn't find the marker, I just sat down and whipped it out.  And it turned out great.  Sometimes I just over think, I guess.

Anyway, here is the finished wallhanging.  It is a pattern called "Life in the Tetons" by SMG Quilts.  

Here is a close up.  The appliqué is very detailed and cutting it all out was tedious - but it was well worth it.  It is actually one giant piece - connected to itself. The details are wonderful.  The background fabric is perfect.  

Now we're just waiting for the quilt hanger we want to order to come back in stock.  Son #2 is very excited to have something to put on his bedroom wall.  
And another long unfinished project finally completed.  That does feel good!
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Sunday, July 19, 2015

Finishing a UFO - Summer Stitching Club

I have plenty of UFOs in my craft room - Unfinished Objects!

This project is a summer stitch-a-long from Wild Olive.  I finished stitching the top about 2 years ago.  And I finished piecing the top about a year ago.  I finally put the binding on in the last few days and now, ta da . . . a mini quilt of hand stitched hexagons.

Here is a close up of the individual hexies - All kinds of summer icons that make me think of summer.

And how is it that summer is flying by so quickly?  I have another UFO waiting to be finished.  Soon - - - can't wait to share it.
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Sunday, June 21, 2015

Teacher Thank You Gifts

I'm still alive and crafting a little bit, here and there.  A new job has really taken up my time and I haven't had the energy to do too much.  But I'm trying to get myself back into the swing of my crafting life - because it does my soul good!
My boys just finished school a week ago.  With both my husband and I having been classroom teachers for quite a few years, we try hard to give teacher gifts that can actually be used and are things that teachers will like - - - and more often than not, that means gift cards!  It may not be super crafty or cute-sy, but teachers can only take so many mugs or cute little gifts.  Gift cards are where it's at!  For the end of school, we do try to also add in something homemade from the boys, usually something "rock" related.  This year that was necklaces with beautiful stones for each of the lady teachers. 

I found these really cute printables for Amazon gift cards at Fabulessly Frugal.  I love when people are willing to share their talents and creativity with us, for free!  I simply printed them out on some 5x7" photo paper I had laying around and used some glue dots to attach the gift cards.  

Super easy and really cute.  But most important - hopefully personal and yet useable and appreciated by those hard working teachers that spent the year teaching and working with my boys.  

I have a pile of mending sitting in front of my sewing machine waiting for me to get to.  And then I have a few projects in mind.  More to come, soon, I hope!
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Sunday, August 10, 2014

More Baby Blankets

Our nephew and his wife had twins this summer - a boy and a girl.  He joked that everything should just be gray so he didn't have to worry about which was the girl and which was the boy.  I tried to take that philosophy and trend it up just a bit.  I found some matching flannel in pinks and greens.  Following Diary of a Quilter's tutorial, I made up these super soft blankets.

I will admit that I haven't perfected this type of blanket yet.  My corners are still not perfect and the blanket gets a little skewampus but you just can't beat the soft cuddle fabric.  This is probably the hardest pattern I've used so if you're looking for something quick, easy, and perfectly square, this one isn't it.  But it is so softy and cuddly!
Here is Anara's blanket.

And here is Brock's blanket.  
 Cuddles all the way around.
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Sunday, June 15, 2014

Fabric Covered Notebooks

The end of school means a stack of teacher gifts need to be thought of, made, and wrapped up.  Fortunately there are some great crafters out there who provide lots of great ideas (and tutorials).  I happened upon this Fabric Covered Notebook idea over at Ameroonie Designs and fell in love.  Her tutorial is easy to follow.  And just to make sure I didn't have to mess things up with sewing math, I made sure to get notebooks that were the same size as hers (5"x7" - thanks Walmart!).  I even ordered in the same fabric that she used - it couldn't have been cuter!

I used the pastels, boy, and primary colored main fabric for variety, since I had to make six of these.

My boys each chose the coordinating fabrics, ribbon, and elastic colors for each of their teachers.

I loved each of them - the dark blue is so pretty.

This pink one on top may have been my favorite, if I had to choose.

There are endless possibilities with all the coordinating fabric choices in this line (Riley Blake Hexis).

The notebooks are simple lined notebooks and can be changed out as needed.  The old one slips right out of the sleeve and a new one slides right in its place.

And here is the finished product, with a pen in the pocket and all.

We added a polished geode slice necklace that the boys helped make to go with each notebook and along with a handwritten thank you note from the boys, we called it a great school year.  It's always so wonderful to have great teachers that are patient and help your children become better at everything they do.  
I love Amy's tutorial - quick and easy.  

The boys each wanted a notebook of their own, so with some BOY fabric (they each selected their own fabric from my stash) and larger notebooks, I made summer writing journals for each of the them.  I didn't think to take a picture of those, but I will and will add the picture later this week.  
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