Category Archives: sewing with/for kids

Where has the time gone?

Hello all, Mary Ellen here.

I was quite surprised this morning when I looked at the date of my last post. Almost a month has gone by–where has the time gone? Anybody else running around like a chicken with no head trying to get everything done for the holidays? Yikes!

What have you been up to in the sewing room (if you’ve had time to get in there!)? I have made a few adult bibs for  elderly patients in a nursing home.  I copied the outline of the institutional one that is given out, and then make them with hand towels from the dollar store and novelty fabrics around the upper body and neck. They have been quite popular-I did pumpkins in October, wacky turkeys for November, and birds in Santa hats for this month. Those have been sent off so the patients can enjoy them for a bit before the Santa’s are out.

Also working on placemats for nieces’ apartments. They have finally grown beyond the stage where they didn’t want “homemade” stuff from auntie, and are often mentioning quilted things that they would like for their own homes. Holiday things are always mentioned so that’s what the placemats are. I may have to give IOU’s for the later holidays coming up after the new year. (Quick gift idea-when each of them was in college, I made pillowcases of the month for them which were a huge hit with them and the room mates. They would get them mailed in a package around the first of each month so there was the double fun of receiving a bit of snail mail. There are tons of free easy pillowcase patterns around on the internet, if you think this would work for someone on your list. Plus it pushes off the due date for your completion of the sewing project!)

Have you ever had the experience of giving a quilted item that you spent hours making falling flat on its face when the recipient opens the present? Or perhaps you got lots of enthusiastic thank you’s at the time of opening, but then you never see the quilt again or, worse yet,  see it being used as a dog bed or in the trunk of the car? Does that turn you off from making and giving quilts? There is a “hot” thread about this topic on one of the quilting boards that I read frequently. Apparently many quilters have decided not to give away quilts anymore because of lack of appreciation. Fortunately this hasn’t happened to me yet. Perhaps some of the charity quilts I’ve made have not been beloved, but I don’t have to know about that. How about you? What are your feelings or experiences with this?

HO! HO! HO! Off to teach a class today, and then shop for gift cards. After that it’s on to the baking! Making my list and checking it a million times!

Advertisements

5 Comments

Filed under free patterns, gift ideas, sewing with/for kids, Uncategorized

newborn and preemie quilt

Hello all, Mary Ellen here.

Perhaps you have a new little one on the way in your family, or perhaps you make toppers as charity quilts for newborns and preemies. This technique shown in the video (click here) would be perfect. My only suggestion to those of you making this sort of quilt to give to a hospital NICU is to find out the size restrictions if any. Some hospitals put them on top of the isolette and some put them inside. Some hospitals are particular about the sizes they will accept. Just check so your efforts can be used and appreciated.

I recently signed up for the free subscription to the group making the video above (along with others). I’ve watched just a few so far. To date I’ve recognized the names of all the featured quilters as belonging to the staffs of Quiltmaker magazine, and both McCall’s quilting magazines. I think they are reliable sources for quilt advice, so I am expecting their videos to be of good quality.

1 Comment

Filed under free patterns, sewing with/for kids

Just a quick note…

Hi everyone,

hope you still believe this is summer? Brrrr…a bit chilly I have to say, although I am really not complaining!! Some rain is always good for my sewing and cool nights are just wonderful to snuggle under the quilt and sleep well – nothing to complain about! 🙂

Today I am just popping my head in here during the lunch break to share few quick finds that I liked:

Here is a lovely quilty quote for you – maybe framed and up on the sewing room wall? 

Quilty quote

 

And as long as you are in your sewing room, how about busting that scrap basket by making a … SCRAP BASKET?? 

Scrap-Bucket-Bag-Hero

 

You will find a complete free pattern HERE.

Did you notice how this year all the flowers in the garden kinda just “rush through”? They open to bloom, lovely for few days and – boom! – all gone! At least that is my impression and I kinda miss my roses this year… Well, here is a bit of a cure – stitch a lovely rose! Either as a paper-pieced pattern or as a quilting motif – Lori Kennedy has a lovely set of tutorials for all of these HERE! I just love her blog…

I am sure many of you love sewing for your little ones (kids, grand kids, friend’s kids…), right? Well, this new grandma is completely in love with it all !! Here is the one I just did:

IMG_2483

 

Besides quilts, I just love, love love making other little things and internet is so full of wonderful patterns, tutorials, ideas…I am in BIG trouble! 🙂 But I so don’t care either, ha ha! 

HERE is a wonderful compilation of tutorials and patterns for all kinds of fun, beautiful and creative BIBS!! Sent to me by our own Karen G. – thank you so much Karen!! This will be fun!

the-worlds-12-cutest-bib-tutorials

OK, lunch over, back to work for me!! 

Wishing you a wonderful Thursday and weekend ahead and don’t worry about rain – it gives you wonderful little “jewels” to look at after! 🙂 (I saw these just this morning on my way to work!)

Marija

IMG_2497 IMG_2499 IMG_2500

Leave a comment

Filed under foundation paper piecing, free motion quilting, scrap quilting, sewing with/for kids, tutorials

A little of this and that…

Hello all, Mary Ellen here.

I finally got the mulch spread all over the flower beds. Wow, the body protests a full day of labor. Remember those days when we could work hard for 8 hours and then go partying until all hours? Those days are long gone for me. I still enjoy the parties, but the recovery period is a killer. I should buy stock in one of the analgesic companies!

Cool feather block. Great for Gen X’ers or scrap hoarders: click here.

Very cute for fashionistas of any age: click here.

She calls it a scrapbuster, but I think this block would be nice in coordinated fabrics too. How about shades of one color, or for honey bun strips? click here.

Just finished up a series of classes for beginners. Thinking about what new projects to do when the class series is repeated in the fall. The first class was based on the rail fence block-learning about safe use of a rotary cutter, 1/4″ seams, pressing/ironing, etc.  Here’s a great rail fence block quilt, that doesn’t look like a rail fence until you really disect the parts. Would be a great quick pattern for all sorts of occasions, for quilters of any skill level. The more you know about quilting, the faster this one will go together.  click here

Back to summer time activities-soon I’ll have to return to the machine to actually do some stitching instead of just “virtually” quilting across the web.  TTFN!

Leave a comment

Filed under free patterns, gift ideas, scrap quilting, sewing with/for kids, tutorials, Uncategorized

free tutes

Hi everyone, Mary Ellen here.

This post will just be a collection of links to free tutorials.

a quilt for when you’re not in the mood to be precise: crinkle quilt

pincushion pattern, but that’s not the interesting part: hair receiver!

button art for you or the kids: button art

I’m so done with pantyhose!: pantyhose flowers

If you want to get in the running for a prize celebrating my talkativeness, read yesterday’s post (a milestone). If you leave a comment on today’s post you will also be in the running. And yes you can enter more than once, so comment away!

 

 

2 Comments

Filed under "modern" quilting, eye candy, free patterns, sewing with/for kids, tutorials, Uncategorized

more morning thoughts

Hello all, Mary Ellen here.

Lovely sunny spring morning. Shh! don’t jinx it! Here in WNY we’re still in the “anything could happen” stage of weather.

Was thinking about going out to get new sneakers today and came across this in my inbox. Love it! All of you zentangling ladies might like it too. click here

Lovely idea here for coloring stitchery blocks. She has a free BOM quilt available too. click here

Same woman’s site-great idea for a mother’s day gift, either the gift itself or its wrap. click here

If you have an upcoming graduation or wedding for a social media junkie, then this hashtag block might be just what you need for the quilt you are going to make. (Don’t we always make quilts for those occasions?) click here

2 Comments

Filed under free patterns, gift ideas, sewing with/for kids, stitchery, tips and tricks, Uncategorized

We are $ew Worth It

Hello all, Mary Ellen again.

This will speak for itself. (Click here for an interesting point of view on what our hand-made things are really worth.) I wonder if you”ll agree with her. I’ll be honest, I stopped selling my quilts because I couldn’t get very many folks to pay what I felt they are worth. And I’ve learned to be judicious in choosing gift quilt recipients who appreciate what they are getting.

Here’s a cute project for spring. Some cheerful shoes and digging in your button box. Have a look at this. (click here.)

If you’ve sewed a lot lately, it might be time to take care of your scissors. I do this now and then (training from my old tailoring teacher who was a strict old bird!), but not often enough. If you own some really good scissors, and you do this “maintenance” routine, along with periodic sharpening, they will last forever. My favorite Ginghers are probably 35 years old and still are like new. I also have a pair of pinking shears that were my grandmother’s originally, that also still cut well. Who knows how old those are?! (click here for scissor routine)

Happy Valentine’s Day to all!

 

Leave a comment

Filed under gift ideas, sewing with/for kids, tutorials, Uncategorized