Christmas Cards from Quilt

Just before Thanksgiving, I ordered 20 Christmas cards through Shutterfly using a photo of my Island Batik Christmas in July project (above). The cards arrived today and I am very pleased with them.

I cropped the original photo to fit the card. I have room on the wood, at the top of the card, to stamp or emboss some words, like Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, Season's Greetings,etc. I left the inside blank so I could stamp or print my own messages.

I have used my quilts a few times over the years to create cards for various purposes. I order only when Shutterfly has a discount or free cards, so I only pay tax and shipping fees.  I make sure each card costs 50 cents or less. These cost 40 cents per card. The cardstock is a very good quality as are the envelopes. I also begin a photo book of my quilt projects in my account. As I finish more quilts, I upload the photos, write the captions, and save it until a great offer comes to my email or Facebook--usually I use the one free book offers and only pay shipping. I now can say I have been published!

Have you ever used your quilts with a photo service opportunity?

I'm off to write some Christmas cards!


Back to Quilting Projects

I took the Thanksgiving week off from sewing in order to get ready for the holiday. We were going to dinner with our daughter and her fiance. I baked the pies - pumpkin and apple. The kids cooked the rest of the dinner. We had a wonderful day with them.

Gift wrapping was on my list, too. I have been buying items all year to give as Christmas gifts. I now have them wrapped. There are only a few gift cards I will be purchasing for a couple of people on our list.

So, it is back to sewing - Yes!

I did shop on Small Business Saturday. I bought embroidery CDs at my go-to embroidery store. I am experimenting more with my embroidery machine and look forward to using these CDs.

Join me on December 5 for my SEW WITH ME pattern. I will have step-by-step directions for sewing this table topper. (I have revised some measurements.)

It doesn't take much fabric. You can use scraps, strips, or pieces from yardage. It can be changed up for any holiday, so you'll want to grab the free pattern. I made this in October for the Island Batik Pumpkin Fest, but the one on December 5 will be for Christmas (with some EQ illustrations for other holidays).

Other items on my list include this:

I am looking forward to joining Marian and Janeen as they begin 12 Days of Christmas on December 1. I will call it a free pattern collection. They are combining Marian's patterns and Janeen's patterns into something new.  A gingerbread village block from Janeen and a gingerbread man or some other cute item from Marian. I grabbed this preview picture from Janeen's post today. I think it looks so fun. They will not have a new block on the weekend, but Friday's block stays up all weekend.

What are you sewing this week?


Winter Table Topper Finished

I am quite pleased with the straight quilting I did on this table topper using the walking foot on my domestic sewing machine. I set the needle for a 1/4" away from the seam line (ditch). The angular effect makes it graphic. And yes, the end are skewed because of the 9 degree angle cuts I made on the sewn strips. 

I thought these snow people looked quite happy to be playing in this woven winter wonderland of Island Batik fabrics. 

It is thrilling to make (designed) something from a small amount of fabric.


Late Night Stitching

I literally sewed into the night, finishing at 1 PM. 
Sleep came easily. I guess "Sewing does a person good."

I worked on a table topper using some Island Batik strips of blues 
that came in my most recent Island Batik box. 
I used a 9 degree ruler, so it gives a bit of movement to the sections. 
I liked the winter theme of these strips. 
I know they are from a number of different collections. but they look so nice together. 

I embroidered a few finger puppets. Papa Bears from Goldilocks story. 

Finally, I worked for about an hour sewing this sunset with scraps of Island Batiks I just couldn't toss from other projects. (I have more, so more landscapes will be made.) But it was the most relaxing sewing for forgiving, a great experiment with my threads, and a satisfying artistic item. I am not sure if I will frame it or sew a binding on it. It could become a journal cover. 
So many possibilities to explore. 

The postal carrier came to the door with a box just before 11 AM.
 It contained my 3 quilts I sent to the Connections Quilt Festival for the Island Batik exhibit. 
Thank you, Linda, for getting them back to me safely. 

I am ready now to clean house so I can get back to sewing on this COLD, blustery day in West Michigan. We have little flakes of snow spurting from the clouds, but nothing is sticking. 
(The ground is still warm from our near-70 degrees yesterday!

Hope you can take time to sew a project this weekend. Thanks for visiting. 


Winter Wonderland Project and Pattern Special

My Island Batik Winter Wonderland project for this month is finished. 

I had a preview photo on my Facebook page last week showing the two colors of gorgeous Island Batik fabric I was using for this project.

This project involved some sewing, weaving, and a lining.
Do you think you might know what it is?

This is a pattern I wrote and published 3 years ago. 
I decided to revisit it and revise it. 
I won't leave you wondering any longer. 


I've had a great time with this pattern.
I have made it using Christmas fabrics, 
the university colors for my niece and nephew,
and this year, the gorgeous Island Batik fabrics I used are close to 
the colors of the university that our youngest daughter attended. 
I think she will like this gift.
(But before I give it to her, I am entering it into the Christmas Stocking Contest 
at the local quilt store, The New Ewe.)
I also entered the photo to Nancy Zieman's Stocking Sewing Challenge 2016
That is pretty cool, too.

Now, the PATTERN SPECIAL mentioned in the blog title: 
If you would like to make one or more of these woven Christmas stockings, 
I am running a special pricing until December 25 on 
my Woven Fabric Christmas Stocking pattern
You get an instant download 
and the cost is only $2.75 USD.
If you would like to try a smaller woven fabric project, 
I have a pattern for the Woven Quilted Potholder. 
And the special price thru December 25 for this pattern is $1.50 USD. 

Thank you for visiting. 
I hope with the holidays approaching you have time to 
fit in a few 


New Fabric, New Adventure

From Hawthorne Threads, I ordered fabrics by new-to-me designer, Anna Maria Horner. And I think I found some grand fabrics!

December's Queen Bee for the Mid-Century Modern Bee group I belong to, wanted us to make our blocks from Anna Maria Horner fabrics. We have to recreate the block we requested from the members in our month of being Queen Bee. I tried to find any of the fabric within a 50 mile radius of home, but no one carried any. I searched the internet and found Hawthorne Threads, which had good photos and a good selection on their website. (If I couldn't see that fabrics a store 100 miles from me carried, I wasn't going to drive to find out I couldn't use it.)

I might have ordered too many prints, but I needed something that would work as a tree trunk and branches. I found that one print in a fat quarter selection, (top row, third from the left) so I had to order the whole bundle (Honor Roll)! Then I needed fabric for sky and fabric for earth.

I chose the two prints above. I did not know that the blue graphic print was large when I looked on line. In learned that Anna Maria designs large, bold prints. I chose to use the birds on blue from the fat quarter bundle instead of the graphic blue here.

I made the blocks that I had asked the members to make for me using those 3 fabrics. I don't use these types of prints in my quilting, but I was astonished at how pretty they turned out. This photo below might not do justice to them. Each tree block measures 6-1/2" x 12-1/2" unfinished.

I will say that December's Queen Bee pushed me off my regular sewing path to explore a very new adventure in quilting. And that is why we join various sewing groups and bees. 

Have you ever strayed from your comfort zone and found something worth exploring in your quilting journey?


1 Quilt Project Teaser

This pattern idea has been churning in my mind for a few months now. Other projects were finished up and I am now working on getting this pattern completed. So here is my teaser for you. I will be submitting it to Cut Loose Press. I blog when the it is published and post finished photos.

Some of the projects that I recently finished were:

Blocks for the October Mid-Century Modern Bee swap,
My submission to the Four-in-Art 4th Quarter Challenge, 
The theme was I've Got the Blues. 
12 jars of strawberry jam for our youngest daughter,
A few Christmas gifts,
The 9 stars of Nancy McNally's Compass Stars quilt from the AQS class
and top almost sewn.
And a new haircut, which I like very much. 


4th Four-in-Art Reveal for 2016

Today is the reveal of quilts for the Four-in-Art Quilt challenge. This is the last of 4 quilts for 2016. Our theme this year was COLOR. The sub-theme for this last quarter challenge was "I've got the blues." 

Each of us interprets the theme/sub-themes in our own way. Be sure to visit the other members of the group as they show their quilts. 

Four-in-Art Quilts, where you can find us all.
You can search Instagram #fourinart
I thought to play on the word "I've", thinking I could substitute the word "EYE've." I have blue eyes and was going to use only 2 pieces of blue in the quilt. I thought of about the many blue fabrics I have in my stash. I like blue. I would use many of those scraps.

That quilt would have been extremely large. I decided on a smaller quilt. I cut  triangles with the Accuquilt that would finish as 2" squares. "I've got the blues" is true for me. Since I didn't know which direction to go with this challenge, I made some pathways. Some of them turn off and go nowhere others go off the edge.  Here is a dark, short path that ends by a blue flowered triangle.

I used matchstick quilting along the light blue paths with variegated thread. The dark fabric paths use dark blue thread in a wiggly stitch. The quilt measures 14" square. I put triangle corner tabs on the back in order to hang the quilt with a dowel.

Here is my reveal. The sun is even shining in one area! Maybe shedding some light on this challenge.

Also, just wanted to post the paper pieced letter blocks I made this last month and sent off to the Queen Bee of the Mid-Century Modern Bee. November I am Queen Bee and I have trees in mind.