A Victorian Style Motto Embroidery

This week I decided to tackle a design with a large amount of stitches.  I started out making the two flowers into one design and stitching them out.  Then, although pretty , it looked plain...like it needed something.  I looked up on my wall and spied my antique frame and it came to me...I would create a Victorian style motto and use that frame.  Since the finished embroidery was made with the master bedroom colors in mind, I chose a phrase that would be suitable for a bedroom.


I think I'll make another one of these soon for another location in the house.  Or maybe for a gift...hmm...




I Love Banners

I finished a cute little banner for a friend's baby yesterday.



I love banners.  Such a fun way to use up small pieces of fabric.







Those letters were a lot of stitches!  I'm grateful he has a short name. ;-)




Late Winter....

Winter feels like it's dragging on and on.  I suppose it isn't really, since it's normal to see snow around here in late February/early March.  I think it just feels long because there has been so much snow this year. 

Just. So. Much. Snow.

I wonder when we last saw the uncovered ground?

Albert is growing and has taken to climbing up to the back of the couch and looking out of the window.  He is too little to ever know what warm weather is like and yet he seems to be asking when it will be Spring.



He goes outside a several short times each day but doesn't venture past the big snow banks surrounding the house.  I suppose I should be grateful for this long deep-snow winter since he seems to be a brave little guy and I know the great outdoors and all of its hazards will be something he will be eager to explore as soon as he can.  It will be much different having him here on our farm compared to our independent, low-maintenance big dogs.  I will have my work cut out for me.

                                                      .......................................................


I embroidered a little bit a week or so ago and made a pillow to replace my Let It Snow pillow I had had on display.  I thought a nice floral design would do the trick.


It did do the trick of brightening up the sofa but it didn't seem to have any effect at all on the weather.

Huh.  Imagine that.


Today I am stitching up a little St. Patrick's Day decoration. 

I'll post a photo later if it turns out nice.

Stitching Project for Today

Today's quiet afternoon project is a monogrammed pillow for the living room.





I have monogrammed all kinds of things.  Embroidered, appliqued, ...you name it.

I think I will make another pillow, or maybe a slipcover, for the existing "Let It Snow" pillow on the left.  I think we may have had enough snow now.

I think.

And as always, there are new puppy pictures every day.


Albert loves to snuggle with Elsa.  I don't blame him, she is super soft.  Bunny soft.  And warm.

Pick on the Puppy Monday

What do we do to the puppy who is on the couch and is too small to jump down?  We show him that we can steal his toy squirrel and tease him about not being able to reach it, that's what.


A New Baby!

Guess who has arrived here at the country bungalow!  A new puppy!

He came last week to live with our family and boy-oh-boy, is he adorable.  So much fun in such a small package!


As you might have already guessed, he's a Yorkshire Terrier...or Yorkie.  He's the smallest puppy we've ever had, although he's not as small as some of those yorkies out there.  We did not want a tiny "teacup" variety of yorkie, as they are just too scary small for me.  I have big dogs and probably a million other hazards that would be incompatible with a forever 2 1/2 lb. dog.  He should weigh a healthy size of 6-7 lbs. when he's full grown.  That's about the size of our dog who passed away a little while back.  She was big enough to keep up with us when we were outside, but small enough to take on trips and sit with us when we watched a movie.


When I first picked him up, I thought in my head of one name in particular, but we still took the time to live with him for a few days and make a list of 50 or so names that we liked and thought suited him.  As a family, we narrowed the list down to half...and then down to our top ten.  We just kept coming back to one name that everyone liked...and no one disliked.  And lo and behold, it was the name I thought of the moment I saw him.  Isn't that how it always goes?

His name is Albert.  Or sometimes Bert.  Or Bertie.  Or Prince Albert.... but mostly Albert.  And he definitely knows his name.

Our other small dogs came to us as adults with personalities very much established.  Unfortunately that meant they brought small dog syndrome with them.  They hated our big dogs and would growl or bark every time one came in the house or got too close.  Every. Single. Time

That was a lot of noise.

Now the leader of those two small dogs, the female, has passed away and the other of those two is elderly and pretty blind and pretty deaf and guess what that means? It means he doesn't even notice when a large dog comes in the house or peacefully walks past his warm little bed.  He just sleeps a lot and the world is a quieter place.  So. Much. Quieter.



And now there is Albert.  He hasn't barked really much yet, even when the big dogs hear something and bark.  I'm sure he will find his voice eventually.

I thought it would be great to have a puppy that grew up with the big dogs, and therefore not a Nervous Nellie every time they're around....and it is, so far.  But what I forgot about is that while the other small dogs had a natural aversion from getting anywhere near the big dogs, darling little Albert is just the opposite!  He loves them!  He's fearless and curious and doesn't mind them at all, especially Elsa the German Shepherd.  The Labradors are older and have let Albert know to leave them alone, and he does, but Elsa is willing to play a bit and he climbs all over her.  She is the calmest dog we've ever had and she lies on the floor and nuzzles him and plays gently. 

We aren't leaving Albert alone with the big dogs.  He will be protected when we leave the house, just in case.

He is friendly, not pushy, but affectionate.  He plays hard and then sleeps hard.  He seems to be housebroken too which is no small thing in that every time we had to take him out for the first week he was here it was a windy -10 below or worse!  Housebreaking a puppy in polar vortex week in not something I'd recommend!  I have to say it for him though, his visits to the outdoors can be measured in seconds...which is lovely when you're out there with him in your pajamas!

Hanging out with me, sleeping, while I arrange quilt squares...
I am sure I will be posting more about our new family member.  In this age of cell phones, someone is always snapping a picture or video of him. 

Oh and have I been my usual crafty self with him around?  Yes...I've already embroidered a blanket and 3 little toys for him.












New Embroidered Pillows

Today I have added two more items to my tiny etsy shop. 

First I have an off-white heavy cotton pillow with an appliqued flower wreath design.


I love anything that reminds me of folk art and quilting.


I made another black pillow also.  I really like the old world, folk art feeling of flowers on black.





I think I will be making some more variations of these in the winter weeks to come. 

A Cute Winter Cottage Banner


I just thought I'd share a picture of this cute banner I stitched out today.  I love cottages and I love snow so I couldn't resist.



I haven't decided where I'm going to hang it yet.  I have to hang it quickly because next thing you know, I'll be hanging up little valentine banners.

Let it snow! 



In the hoop snow covered cottage banner pattern by Big Dreams Embroidery


My Vintage Singer 201 Sewing Machine Cover

The weather this week has been a bit extreme with lots of snow and very cold temperatures.  Since there is little chance I will be venturing out anytime soon, I decided to make a little sewing machine cover for my vintage Singer 201.

 First I embroidered a cute sewing machine design.  I save all of these designs with hopes of finding a use for them.  The hoop size is 200 x 360 mm.  (I really need to clean my hoops!)
73,400 stitches!

I made some patchwork sections and made one large rectangle to fold over the machine from the bottom front to the bottom back.  I then backed the large rectangle and two side rectangles with scrap batting and backing pieces.  I didn't have a pattern so I took a guess and held up my pieces to the machine a lot.  I quilted the pieces on the 201 and then trimmed the two side pieces into an arch shape.

 I sewed them all together and found some scrap binding and lace for trim and viola!  All finished.






The machine does fold down into the table but I use it so often that I don't close it up that much.  Now my shiny black machine can stay cozy and hopefully dust free.  

Now back to enjoying this winter weather!  Stay Warm!


Highlights from Autumn/Early Winter 2013

First of all, a Very Merry Christmas to you!

I haven't really been blogging much.  I haven't had much in new things to say...and instead my hands keep busy creating and cooking and keeping house here in our country bungalow. 
 
 I did my first very small craft show this past October.  It was not a well publicized event and had a pretty low turnout, but that worked out fine and it made for a good experience in seeing what the selling side of craft shows is like.  I sold a few things and felt pretty good about it.  There is much to learn in the crafty world, that's for sure.

I took lots of banners to the craft show and sold a few.  I made so many!  I love them.  Most of the designs are from Big Dreams Embroidery and are made in the hoop on the embroidery machine.
Laying out just some of the banners in preparation for the Fall 2013 craft show

I used a few bows in my own Autumn decor around the house.
I have made quite an assortment of mug rugs too.  They're fun to make, like little quilts!  My daughters all asked for some and they make great last minute gifts too.



I made some crafty, quilty goodness for my own home too.  I made a simple small quilt in warm Autumn colors.  It looks nice on my brown couch.





For Halloween we used a few of the banners to decorate and I embroidered some earrings for my girls too.  They were a big hit!



Monograms are big this year and I added my own to one of my winter purses.



While out and about Christmas shopping in early December, I spied this lovely beauty in the candle shop/ antique store.  She is a beautiful Singer 201-2 in wonderful condition.  She needed to come home with me.  She is amazingly quiet and smooth.  I tried out some free motion quilting with her and it's like butter.  We are going to be very close friends, she and I.

Here she is at the shop...calling me....telling me to come and take a closer look...

Free motion quilting is a piece of cake.
I made a couple of patchwork pillows for the sofa with some Christmasy fabrics and did some very basic stippling to give them depth.




I finished a red and white quilt in time to be displayed for the Christmas season.  I didn't take any pictures of it specifically, but you can see it in the first photo of this blog post and also in the background of this photo of one of my nosy dogs, Maggie.


My kids wanted to do a homemade Christmas this year, which was a wonderful idea.  But the joke was that for all of the things that I make, they actually did better than me in making all of their gifts.  It was wonderful.  They were extremely creative and put a lot of time into their gifts.

One of the things I did manage to make was a sewing machine cover for my daughter-in-law.  She has the same sized sewing machine as my newer Singer, only mine is black (The Singer 160) and hers is white (The Singer One).  This made it easy for me to make her gift and try it out to make sure it was a good fit.  With no pattern, it can be a guessing game, but it turned out to fit nicely.




My 160 and my adorable little Featherweight on the right.


 I also managed at the last minute to embroider a hoodie for one of my boys who loves all things Poland.



I made a quilt for my youngest boy, who is 14 and hadn't received a quilt from me yet.  I quilted it on the frame (Next Generation Grace frame) with my Viking Mega Quilter.  It's not my dream set-up, (read: it's not a long arm)  but hey, it works well for all-over quilting.

I've made lots of things this year but I am the worst for taking pictures of it all.  Maybe one of my New Year's resolutions should be that I take the time to get out the good camera on take better pictures!

A Happy New Year to everyone!  And my you have a blessed and safe 2014.

Last Minute Civil War Ball Sewing...


I helped my daughter-in-law with some last minute sewing on her hubby's outfit for the ball.  She did most of it herself; I only helped because she was trying to make a shirt, tie, vest, and wool pants in less than a week and that is with working two jobs!  Whew!


Working side by side in my little sewing room with Ashley (pictured)
I did sleeves...


After all of the work we didn't remember the SLR camera and had to just snap a couple of photos with the phone. Rats!

But they did look pretty cute.


I told her that they look like the young Mr. and Mrs. Lincoln.


Love Those Fall Colors!


I made these 2 leafy Autumn banners that I thought I would share.



I think I am going to take some to the craft show.



I really like this pattern and I have so many more fall fabrics to try!

This morning I am making a requested leafy bunting in soft colors.

I'll share that one when it's finished.

Sweater Redo - A Practice Run

I browse through a lot of crafty websites and Pinterest links and I love seeing the upcycled or refashioned clothing.  I am always saying I want to learn how to do that!  So I looked it up and gave it a try.  For the blog with actual tutorial that I followed, look here.

So I thought I'd give it a try with an old blue sweater that I don't like and wouldn't miss if I messed it up.

My pictures aren't so great because photos were kind of an afterthought....

Here it is, missing a big button, looking pretty rough...


After the big slice....


I quickly realized that I had nothing in my fabric stash that was even close to this color blue so I decided to improvise with a coordinating blue floral from the handed down-probably older than I am-collection.
I just followed the tutorial and made the facings to cover up the raw edge...
Here it is, after its transformation from pullover to cardigan.  I haven't decided what, if any, buttons to add.
I left it alone for a while and then went back after it and added some applique to the front....but I forgot to take pictures.

It was pretty easy and pretty fast.  I've already done another one and I have my eye on a couple more....
 

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