Category Archives: Christmas

A Holiday Season like no other

Below is a post that went up on my other site last week.  Thought I’d share it here too. 

Yes, I am still here but just haven’t posted.   Haven’t had too much to share but  with the holiday season here, I thought I would just check in.

Craft fair season didn’t happen here this year so I didn’t do too much as far as crafting/sewing new items.  Not that I didn’t spend time with my sewing machines.   Along with masks, masks, and more masks,  I had some orders for a few other things that kept me busy.   I did add two new items to my products though.  I just couldn’t resist making these two cuties.    

We decorated the outside and inside of the house right after Thanksgiving.  Some people aren’t doing much as far as decorating goes this year.  But we sort of felt that, like the song says, “We need a little Christmas, right this very minute”.   Things will be very different this year but the lights, decor and music have always been highlights of the season for me. I wasn’t about to let covid take that away from me too.

And since I am spending a good bit of time each day in my sewing room, I also have a little tree in there.  This year I decided to decorate it with some items I have had for years that were just sitting in a jar and a tin.

   The wooden beads are leftover from the 90’s for some wooden crafts that I was doing at that time and the tin had some spools of thread that have been around for as long as I can remember.   They are wooden spools and I believe they were from my grandmother.   Of course, it wasn’t usable thread at this point but I wanted to use them for something.   I got out some red and white baker’s twine that I had and set to work putting them together to make a strand of garland for my little tree.    

It definitely brings a smile to my face.       

I hope all is well with you and yours and that your Thanksgiving Day was nice.  Even with all the nonsense going on this year,  I know that our family still has so much to be very thankful for.

Be well.  Stay safe.  See you soon.

Bye for now.

Ginny

Twas the Saturday before Christmas….

….. and all through the house there is so much stirring … but there  better not be a mouse! That would mean our cat Myrtle isn’t doing her job.

It has been a very busy few months since I have been here to post.  Last you heard from me I was getting ready for the first craft fair of the fall/holiday season.  It was quite successful as well as the two others that followed that one.  Between replenishing stock , orders that I received and working on Christmas gifts,  well, let’s just say  my machines are enjoying a well-deserved break now.  Here are some of the popular things at the craft fairs this year:

And then there were a couple items that were made just this last week:

 

After the fairs were over, there were birthday celebrations and getting the house decorated for Christmas.  Luckily we had a beautiful, warm day and were able to get the outside lights, etc. done before our early Thanksgiving get-together.         Outside decorations

The reason things needed to be done early was because I was headed to California to be there for the birth of our granddaughter who was due on Thanksgiving day!   She made her appearance the Tuesday after Thanksgiving.  I was so thrilled to be there for the event and also to spend time with her older brother (who just turned 3 yesterday!).  It was wonderful.   And while I was away, my dear, sweet hubby was taking care of getting the Christmas cards written out and mailed,  doing a lot of the Christmas shopping, finishing up the decorating inside and overall, keeping the household running.   He did an amazing job.  Maybe I should go away for two weeks right after Thanksgiving every year?!  No, sweetie, only kidding.

Now here we are at the solstice and winter will officially be here.  I can’t say that I am sad about that.  I really enjoy all the seasons.   After all the fun and enjoyment of gathering with friends and family and the hustle and bustle of the holidays,  January brings a time of rest and reflection.   I look forward to slower paced days, cozy evenings watching tv or a movie, reading a book,  or two or three,  or just relaxing with a glass of wine or a cup of tea in front of the fire while listening to music.   I hope we have a few snowy days where I can sit and watch the snowflakes slowly fall and cover the ground and the trees in a beautiful soft, white blanket that brings a calm, hushed feeling.

Tonight at 11:19 I will happily welcome winter.     I am excited about the coming week of being with family,  exchanging gifts,  visiting with friends,  enjoying some wonderful holiday food and goodies and then awaiting the arrival of 2020.  What will next year bring?

Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas and a healthy and happy New Year!

Bye for now.

Ginny

 

 

Freestanding Lace Bookmark

Today I was finally able to give this to my NY BFF (belated birthday present) and so I can now post pictures of the freestanding lace bookmark I made for her.    She is an avid reader,  so I knew it would be something she would put to good use.

I made FSL snowflakes at Christmas and enjoyed making them and loved the way they came out.   Having had such a positive experience with those,  I decided to try something else and,  yup,  I  loved making the bookmark too.   I think I will make one for myself now … yes, even though I have a Kindle I do read real books too ….  and then I will be searching for more Freestanding lace projects that I might  like to try.   There are so many beautiful choices out there – even some 3D projects.

Of course, it will not surprise anyone who knows me that I will probably be looking at                    possible Christmas-related designs.  After all, my snowmen do tell me that

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there are only 7 months ’til  Christmas.

Stay tuned.

Bye for now.  Enjoy the rest of your week.

Ginny

Scrappy and Semi- Scrappy Quilts

Scrappy quilts are the perfect way to use up all the leftover fabric from all my other projects.  Let’s face it, fabric is not a cheap investment and I don’t like just throwing my money into the trash.  Not to mention adding to landfills.  I am trying to be more mindful of being good to the planet and  would prefer to have the leftovers re-purposed into something useful and be more eco-conscience.  I have made a more controlled version of a scrappy quilt in this lattice quilt

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I used a layer cake by Benartex called Ambrosia.  I wanted to make a lightweight, summer quilt and this line said “summer” to me.  There were so many cheery colors in the line and the quilt came out great and had a very scrappy look.   Now I want to try and be brave and make a true scrappy quilt.  I am going to make a scrap quilt using Bonnie Hunter’s pattern, Happily Scrappily Irish from her book “Adventures with Leaders & Enders” .  Using Bonnie’s leader/ender method, I can be working on getting my units ready for this quilt while working on other projects.   Multi-tasking!  I was thinking about using scraps in autumn colors but I actually  have so much more Christmas fabric scraps (just ask my BFF) that I am going to head in that direction instead.   I do like the Irish Chain pattern.  I made one about 10 years ago in blues. I actually hand-quilted that one.  Please don’t look too closely at the stitching.  But it has held up for 10 years so I guess it wasn’t too bad.   I enjoyed quilting it by hand but won’t be doing that for the Christmas one.  Not if I want to have any chance of using it this year.

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In fact, now that I think about it, I have made two other versions of the Irish chain quilt; one in burgundy,  forest green and white and the other one in green and white – a true “Irish” chain quilt I suppose.   I guess I really do like that pattern.

I will be pulling out the bin with my Christmas scraps sometime over Memorial Day weekend and work on getting the fabric ready for this project.  Ok, maybe it might be two bins of Christmas scraps.    What do you think the chances are of me getting this quilt ready to be used for this holiday season?   I’m going to give it a good try.   Of course, before I left for our 2-week trip to California I did pull out the fabric for my guest bedroom quilt too which is going to be a log cabin quilt in shades of black to grey with the center square being red.  It sat on my cutting table patiently waiting for me to return so I do need to give that some attention too. Looks like I am going to be pretty busy.   Do I really need to sleep?

I should go get some sleep now since I am going to be so busy in the sewing room.   Maybe I’ll just be a midnight quilter like Angela Walters.  I can always watch her videos while working on my projects at midnight.  Quilters love company.

Be well.  I’ll be back soon.

Ginny

 

 

Quilts, Adventures in Embroidery & Scraps

Well here we are in July already.  Wasn’t it just Memorial Day?  I had a wonderful trip to California to visit with my grandson, son and daughter-in-law.  Oh yes, my sister came along too.  🙂    I  brought the quilt and now that it isn’t a surprise anymore, I can share some pictures of it:

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As soon as I returned, I started thinking about his first 4th of July coming up and made him this onesie and bib:       20170626_233137   I got a picture of him wearing it today.   🙂

Before we left for California my tiger lily stalks were looking pretty ready to bloom and I was afraid I would miss their first week of flowering.

But I didn’t miss them; they waited for me and welcomed me home.  20170620_084911

I did a craft show last week and added some embroidery items to my set up.  I did a few onesies and also some kitchen towels which were very popular.

 

The day after the show, I spent quite a bit of time cleaning up my sewing studio.  I must admit, I am a bit of a messy creative person.   I have a number of projects on my “To Do” list for sure but first I spent a bit of time pressing and cutting up the scraps from the last round of projects.  A few of the projects on that To do list are scrap quilts from a couple of  Bonnie Hunter books.  I have so many scraps!  So I am going to work on disciplining myself and cutting the scraps after I finish each project into usable sizes.

I am a bit scrap challenged.  I tend to overthink putting pieces together.   Watching the beautiful quilts Bonnie Hunter puts together using scraps is inspiring me.  I think I will start with “Happily Scrappily Irish” from her book Adventures with Leaders and Enders  I might use my tons of Christmas scraps for that and work on a new Christmas quilt while working on other projects using her leader/ender system.  Check it out if you’ve got scraps.  You put together the units for the scrap quilt while completing other projects.  It’s two projects in one!

And speaking of Christmas  ……… 20170703_213106-1   …….. My trusty snowman is telling me it’s less than 6 months until Christmas.  🙂  Just sayin’   It will be here before we know it.   Better get busy.  Now, where’s my Christmas music?

Happy 4th of July everyone.  I hope you had a great day.  Enjoy the fireworks . American Flag 04

Bye for now. See you soon.

Ginny.

Snow Day = UFO Day

Yay!!!  A snow day!    This is what the view was from my sewing room window this morning. snow-day

So, I got to spend time inside in my sewing room.  I decided to make this a UFO day — UnFinished Object .   I went to the bin where I keep projects I have started but they aren’t yet completed.  Some have only been waiting for me to finish them for a short time and others, well, they have been waiting quite a while.    The first one I chose to work on was a Christmas Tree skirt that I made waaayyyy back in the ’90’s.  I came across it this last summer when we were going through things in the Brooklyn house before selling it.   I had made it out of 6 wedge pieces of material and I used it for a number of years but I never quilted it.   christmas-tree-skirt    I actually forgot that I had made a trim for it by braiding red and green ric rac together for around the edge.  braided-ric-rac   I decided to just use a serpentine stitch in rows on each wedge.  The batting inside had already begun to shift around but I figure maybe I can get a couple more years use from it with a bit of stitching.   I will now wash and dry it and pack it away for next Christmas.  I better put it someplace where I will remember that I have it so it doesn’t disappear for another decade.

Next I worked on a small quilt that I had begun a few months ago.  pink-green-charm-pack-quilt

I had sewn the charm squares into rows so I needed to sew the rows together.  Then I added my first border – pink.    I am going to add another border of green and I have some Chenille-It that I think I will add to it.  This isn’t going back into the UFO bin.  I’m keeping it out so that I will finish it.  I don’t have far to go.  I do have to pick my backing fabric for it yet though.

Lastly, since Valentine’s Day is only a few days away,  I pulled out a heart shaped potholder that I cut out about a year ago but never finished.                                                        heart-potholder     I just need to put the binding around the outside and the loop on and it is done!

All in all, a good day in the sewing room.   And I got to watch some old westerns on tv with hubby — Wyatt Earp and Wagon Train.  I enjoyed them even if they were in black and white. 🙂

We are very lucky to have some wonderful boys who live on our block that we call our Snow Elves.  They showed up when the snow flakes slowed down  and took care of the 11″ of snow that needed shoveling          snow-elves-gift

It snowed for a bit more after we went out to clear off our cars.  As soon as they saw us out there, they came back over and shoveled some more.   Great neighbors.

I will be finishing up the potholder and the quilt top this weekend and I also have rearranging the living room a bit on my To Do list.  I want to carve out a small space to set up my Featherweight down there so I can sometimes  do some stitching in the evenings while watching tv with the hubs.  Should be a fun weekend.  Wish me luck.

Have a good night all.  See you soon.

Ginny

Un-decorating Day

Well, today was the day to take the Christmas decorations down.  The kitchen sounded hollow somehow and the rest of the house seemed so bare.   I miss my tree .  The space where it spent the last month shining brightly    Christmas Tree    was so empty        Empty space.

So it was time to rearrange things a bit and fill that void with something else that would make me smile and so this is what I moved there Filled space    I set up my guitar and music stand there and it’s time to get back to practicing.  I did learn to play Jingle Bells before the holidays but not well enough for me to play it for anyone but myself and the cat.  Oh, and does it surprise anyone who knows me that the first song I can play all the way through was a Christmas tune?  Probably not.

Time to get the Valentine’s Day decorations out and then, quickly right after that, there will be the St. Patrick’s Day green making an appearance. However, if you take a look around, you will see that Christmas hasn’t really gone completely away.  🙂    I left a few reminders around Countdown

These cute little guys are actually keeping track of how many months to go until Christmas, not days right now.   And if you look closely, you will see a few holiday friends still hanging around in this little cabinet   Snowmen & Santa

After un-decorating, a whole lot of vacuuming, rearranging and having some delish onion soup for dinner, I did get to spend some time in my sewing room organizing my fabric and working on a couple small projects. Tomorrow is going to be a rainy chilly day, so I will be spending a lot of time with my sewing machines.  I have a few projects on my to do list and I have been looking through quilt books and magazines and finding more things that are going to be going on my “I want to make that” list.

Have a good week everyone.  See you soon.

Ginny

The Most Wonderful Time of the Year

christmas-border-clip-art-christmas-clipart-free-downloads-christmasWhat a great time of the year.  It has been so very busy with shopping, wrapping, baking and wonderful family visits! I haven’t had any time to pop in here and wish you all Seasons Greetings. I hope you all have had a great few weeks from Thanksgiving on.  Mine was very busy indeed and I truly was quite tired by the time we got to the Christmas weekend but it was all well worth it.  I even fit in another craft fair.  I was a very busy elf. Elf    A few things that made their way from my cutting table to the sewing machine and out the door to new homes were:      Notebook holder open (August)  Some notebook holders.  These hold a medium notepad (5″ x 7″) and I am constantly using mine.

A friend had requested some Christmas kitchen curtains and I had a bit of leftover material so I surprised him with this tablerunner :Christmas Tablerunner for Ray  I really liked the way it came out and I hope to be able to make one for myself before next Christmas.

And then there were these adorable baby blocks for the new little princess in the family:     Lily's Blocks

So now, what will the new year bring?   We can only guess and hope and work towards what we would like to happen in 2016.  Time for setting goals — I don’t call them resolutions.   Time to take stock of what 2015 brought to our lives.  There will be good and there will be bad for sure but now it’s time to take what we have learned and head into the brand new year with renewed hope, renewed resolve and increased wisdom.   I will be cleaning up my sewing studio and starting work on some orders.  I will start planning what I’d like to make for the Spring craft fair and yes, I will even start planning out our vegetable and flower beds for the spring and summer.   We had a great garden and “farm” last year and the craft fairs and sales went well this year but I will try to use the “increased wisdom” that I garnered through the year and figure out what will work and also what will not work in both the craft fairs and the gardens and hopefully increase my success in both areas.

So many things I’d like to accomplish or at least work towards in the coming months but that is for another post.  For now I would like to wish you all the very best for 2016.  Health and happiness and a peaceful heart.

Happy New Year

See you in 2016

Ginny

 

 

 

 

 

Happy New Year!

The last couple of months of 2014 were certainly  busy and lots of fun.   Thanksgiving was wonderful and then early in December we got to spend one relaxing  weekend up at the Inn in Connecticut.  We love going up there the weekend of the Light parade and getting some relaxation time and then as a bonus, we also got a lot of Christmas shopping done.

I had a terrific Christmas. My son and daughter-in-law from California were able to be with us for Christmas.  My youngest couldn’t be with us though. 😦   Sure did miss having him and his girlfriend with us too.  So three out of my four sons were here.  It was a very active week with lots of fun and laughter.

On the sewing side of things, we got all orders done and delivered just one day past my target date of 12/15.  I had a couple of days where I was down with a nasty cold so that slowed me down a bit but we made up the time.  Hubby, as usual, is always a big help with the cutting of the fabric and, of course, the delivering of a lot of the items.  I also made a friendship quilt for someone who was retiring at work.  

 Susan's Quilt

That is the second one I made in the last few months.  Made one in August for someone who was changing jobs.

Some other things I made this season were: 

  Blue Pocket Potholders #2 Red Candlemats #2 

Potholders were a big seller this year along with the Frost zig zag tablerunners and candlemats.

The hardest thing I had to make was this memory pillow for a young girl who had lost her mom.  Her aunt approached me and asked if I could make it for her.   We decided hearts would be a good theme so that’s what I put on the front. The base material for the front was from a skirt so I sewed the hearts onto that and since I was using a denim jacket as the base for the back, I took the two pockets from the front of the jacket and added them to the back.  Maybe she can keep some special keepsakes in them.  I appliqued some flowers from another blouse onto the denim also.

 Front of Memory Pillow Front   Back of Memory Pillow Back

I am looking forward to 2015.  I’ve got plans for learning new things:

 * some new techniques in sewingpin cushion

* learning to play the guitar — I’ve always wanted to learn to play a musical instrument and although the piano has always held a certain fascination for me, that’s not quite going to be able to happen so the next one on my list was the guitar.  I actually had registered for a class where I would get some beginners instruction many years ago but had to drop the class because of work schedule changes at that time.  I never had the chance since then but my hubby was listening and he got me an acoustic guitar for Christmas.

New guitar

* trying some new recipes and expanding our menu choices.  I already saw two recipes today that I’d like to try.cooking                                             

What’s in store for you in 2015?  Do you have plans for some new endeavor?  A trip planned?  Here’s to a wonderful year for us all.

Happy New Year!       Happy New Year

 

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas.

Christmas Tablerunner   Made a couple of Christmas tablerunners for a friend.  She has a couple of bridal showers coming up.   I really liked them and I want to make one for myself before I use up all the fabric.  While I was working on them, I was humming Christmas songs.  I was tempted to play some — but I will wait until July.  🙂

But it is also looking a lot like summer here:

Rosebushes  My roses are blooming beautifully.  Yes, June is finally here.

And I have a “surprise” flower too.  I remember someone at work giving me this plant to put in the garden a couple years ago.  I don’t remember the name and it was just sort of there and being green.  Then today while taking a walk in my front yard I find this:

Purple spire flower  I am thinking it was called an angel plant but I’m not sure.

Got a Summer craft fair coming up at the end of June so I won’t be working on any Christmasy things for the next few weeks at least (unless I do get to make one for myself). Instead I will be working on burp cloths, wine bottle bags, casserole carriers, potholders, microwave potato bags and tortilla warmers and a few other things I have in minds.

Looks like I will be busy.  Better go get some sleep.  Good night, sleep tight — with visions of sugarplums dancing in your head.

Talk to you soon.

Ginny