Friday, December 31, 2021

2021 Fabric Usage

You know darn well I pieced a quilt back yesterday to boost my totals just a bit! Thankfully, I did use more stash fabric and scraps than I brought in this year, though I felt like I constantly struggled with balancing it all.

In November, I brought in 10 yards, most of which was for several good (to me) reasons:

  • silver fabric for that month's Bee Sewcial blocks
  • background needed to continue work on my Bow Tie quilt
  • sashing and background to finish my Summer Sample quilt
  • and that red stripe to use as accent casing on all of the gift bags I made for Chrismas - with bag exterior and lining fabrics all coming from stash.


Meanwhile, down to the nitty gritty:

November  Fabric Usage
Used up: 12.09 yards
Brought in: 10 yards
Net: -2.09 yards
Year to date: -23.96 yards 

December Fabric Usage
Used up: 18.85 yards
Brought in: 0 yards
Net: -18.85 yards
Year to date: -46.99 yards

So what's that mean for the year?

2021 Fabric Usage Totals
2021 used up: 135.24 [vs. 199.47 yards in 2020]
2021 brought in: 88.25 yards [vs. 73.2 yards in 2020]
2021 Net: -46.99 yards [vs. -126.27 yards in 2020]

So, I definitely reached my goal of using more stash than I brought in, but my ratios aren't as good as last year. Not sure what that really means, and I'm not going to stress about it. I can definitely see a difference in my stash, where I'm beginning to combine color groups of fabric within my storage cubbies, so that's good. Let's just say I'll keep on keeping on this next year and see where it takes me!

This is the final post in the 2021 31 Day Blog Writing Challenge. Thanks for hanging in there with me!

Thursday, December 30, 2021

About those Scraps

In sharing that I was contemplating Another 50 Days of Scraps, there were a lot of questions about my process and 'rules.' I didn't really think I had any, but I guess I did have some very loose guidelines or considerations when I challenged myself earlier this year, so I thought I'd share some of that in case it's helpful for others who are considering a similar challenge.

I'm sure many folks would begin a scrap-focus period with organizing their scraps, and honestly, I don't do that. For me, my own personal scrap sorting method is a very simple one. Like not much at all! In fact, when I first saw folks sorting and organizing their scraps all nice and neat, I was so surprised. I guess that's not one of the things I picked up in my early quilting classes. That said, I do separate my print and solid scraps, and have a small bin of low-volume scraps separated, but it ends there. I do realize that my method means more work for me when I really want to do scrap-sewing, but that's the way it is, and I don't expect I'll be reforming any time soon. The element of discovery as I rummage through the scrap basket is part of the fun for me. 

Soooo.... by 'scrap' I mean single project leftovers [ie. whatever is left from a particular project] or more often for me, purely scraps - prints/solids or a mix - small bits left from a variety of projects over time - possibly sorted by color, or all tossed in a basket like I do. Projects can be of any size. I think this is key, for me at least. I don't have to be piecing a quilt every day. There are many ways I like to use my scraps, and the variety just adds to the fun. Here are a few:

  • Use a quilt pattern - Kitchen Table Quilting's Plaid-ish (see below) or other scrap-friendly patterns; crazy mom quilts' Scrap Vortex or anything in her book, No Scrap Left Behind. There are so many scrap quilt patterns out there, so pick one that appeals to you and suits your scraps.
  • Full-on improv - Just start piecing and make it up as you go! Maybe create your own 'block' as I did in Let It Be (pictured below). Note that changing up the scale is often a detail that adds interest, though of course, is not always necessary.
  • Focus on a shape - Piece a bunch of the same shape over and over - quarter-circles, HSTs, stripes, etc.
  • Inspired by a vintage design - I've really enjoyed doing this in 2021. I have several books with vintage quilts and I just choose one I like and make it my own. Octo (shown below) is just one example.
  • Scrappy binding - Just make it so you have it on hand for a future scrappy quilt.
  • Bee blocks or other project blocks
  • Other small projects - Pouches, bags, pincushions, potholders - the options are limitless. Piecing a big swath of 'made fabric' (pieced from many scraps) and then cutting into it to create something else is often a fun way to go.
  • Let one project inspire the next - Work in a series of sorts, taking the leftovers from one project to create something else, adding in more scraps or fabric if needed. Keep working in this way until you're out of scraps or ready to move on completely.
  • Lastly, don't think that a machine-sewn project is the only way to go! Maybe a portable hand-sewing project feels right. That totally works!

Step one for me is rummaging through the scraps and beginning to gather fabrics I feel like working with. Often a palette begins to develop, which may or may not expand as I work though a particular project. Choosing a multi-colored print and using that as the beginning of your palette is a fun option. And of course I decide the route I'm going with that particular set of scraps - probably something from the list above. I find that including some 'new' fabric from my stash along with the scraps is often inspiring, but not always necessary of course. I also love including a mix of substrates - that's one thing that really makes it fun for me. 

One question was if I spend varying amounts of time each day sewing each day? And the answer to that is definitely yes! In a perfect world, I'd work for a few hours on my project; but sometimes all I have time for is gathering the collection of scraps I wanted to work with the next days or pressing some of the scraps I'd already set aside. My only rule is it had to involve at least some scraps in some way. It's all progress!

Hopefully this all helps you see how fun and flexible working with your scraps can be. I'm working hard on finishing my final quilt project of this year, but I'm thinking I'll be ready to start in with my scraps early in January. Let me know if you have any other questions or need help finding a project to start with, OK? If you're wanting to have your own scrap-focus challenge, just do what makes it fun for you!

Wednesday, December 29, 2021

Snowflake Sampler :: 3 Star Flowers + 3 Posies

Whew. It was really close whether or not I'd finish this month's Snowflake Sampler blocks before month's end, but I made it! There were two 11" x 21" blocks. The Star Flowers were exactly that, composed of plenty of snowflake and star stitches, weaving, and then finished off with backstitched stems. I really enjoyed that there was a good mix of stitches intermingled for this block, as it definitely made me feel like I've learned something about chickenscratch embroidery this last year.

Then I especially enjoyed stitching the Posies block, though I did run out of my primary colored thread, and luckily had a different but contrasting variegated thread that let me finish in a way that looks cohesive.


So, just one more block to stitch in January, and then it'll be time to piece a quilt top!


X and O Star   +   Tiny Snowflakes   +   Lacy Flowers

Large Snowflake   +   Woven Star   +   Pearvocado

Classic Star   +   Simple Woven Flower

Favorite Coffee Mug   +   Small Classic Star


Tuesday, December 28, 2021

At the Table

Before the year's end, I couldn't resist posting one more collection of recipes we've tried over the last couple of months. One of the pluses of this pandemic time (and there aren't many!) has been my renewed interest in trying new recipes. All of those I'm sharing here we'd definitely enjoy again.

Half Baked Harvest

  • Easy Ginger Chicken and Spinach Ramen - After trying grown-up ramen for the first time at a nearby noodle shop, we decided to try our hand at making our own. Some yummy ingredients (like curry roasted squash!) are hiding under all those noodles and chicken, but this was fun to make and super tasty.

  • Crispy Salt and Vinegar Smashed Potatoes - oh goodness. A little effort due to both boiling the potatoes and roasting them, but the 'salt and vinegar' flavor was realllly good, and we're fans of crispy. A couple bites in, hubby after me to make these again.
  • Apple Cider Caramels - We had actually made these before, but it had been a while. And if you haven't, you should.... SO good with such intense cider flavor.
  • Dark Chocolate Tart with Gingersnap Crust - Just tried this last weekend, and not only was it way simpler than I anticipated, but it was really delish. We topped with some lightly sweetened whipped cream, and enjoyed every bite.
  • Cider-Glazed Bacon-Wrapped Dates - Another one we've made several times, but they're so simple and irresistible, I had to share. For obvious reasons, we only make these when we can share them with guests.
  • Broccoli Cheddar Soup - oh yeah. Not a whole lot to say about this except we finished one batch, and the next day, made another. I think I'll make it again for lunch today, in fact.
  • Fried Chicken Sandwiches - Just had to include these. Yeah, they're fried, but the flavor is just delightful. Definitely a treat now and then.

Molly Baz' Cook This Book! 

I bought Molly's book last summer after enjoying some of her cooking videos, and later, her podcast, The Sandwich Universe. An interesting (and helpful!) feature, especially for newer cooks, are the QR codes that access videos on the Molly's site. I think that's brilliant!
  • The Minimalist Wedge - About the simplest wedge ever, it's the dressing that makes this dish. SO fresh-tasting.
  • Master Beans - Seriously, with Molly's recipe, I've made the best beans I've ever made. I've started with dried Rancho Gordo heirloom beans both times, and am happy to finally have a go-to bean recipe.
SO yeah, I'm actually kind of pleased that we're still trying a new recipe or two every week. Most of the above can be found online, but I wanted to share the recipes from Molly's book just for the record, and you can find many of her recipes online just by searching, as she used to work at Bon Appetit. Anyway, enjoy! Let us know in the comments if you have any new favorite recipes you've tried, too!

Monday, December 27, 2021

Best of 2021

It's time again to join in Cheryl/Meadow Mist Designs' annual 'Best of' linky party. There's a variety of ways to go about it, and as is my tradition, I'm choosing to base my 'best' solely on reader views of blog posts, counting up from #5 to the most viewed post of 2021.

With Liberated Wedding Rings, I had an inspiration pattern in mind, and began with a palette inspired by one particular printed scrap, and then it grew as my need for more scraps grew. 


Patchwork Sashiko was something I tried just once so far, but it was perfect for my scrap focus; and of course it was fun to try something new!



Boy were folks interested About those House Top Blocks. A simple log cabin variation, the resultant quilt really did use up a ton of scraps. I enjoyed mixing various substrates into this project too.


The End of 50 Days of Scraps along with the beginning post, 50 Days of Scraps, garnered a lot of interest. I think using up scraps is always in the back of a quilter's mind, and I certainly enjoyed the variety of projects I used mine in. Starting to get excited to do it all again! Below is the back and front of my initial scrap project; then below is the finished Liberated Rings quilt.




And finally, my Fine-Line Piecing quasi-tutorial wins with the most views, and I saw lots of folks using this technique throughout the year. Not all necessarily from my post, of course, but it was popular. I agree it's a good technique to have in your quilting tool-kit.

Did you notice that most of the most popular posts were process-oriented rather than finished projects? Interesting! And all but one was part of my 50 Days of Scraps. Fair enough! I just really appreciate your interest in what I'm up to through the year!

Linking up with Meadow Mist Designs' Best of 2021 linky party.



Sunday, December 26, 2021

Kid Aprons

The first gifts I knew I wanted to make this season were new aprons for our grandgirls. Sisters, aged three and eleven, they both really enjoy working in the kitchen, with both of their parents, as well as at our house when they are visiting. I looked around at patterns and designs, and settled on the Modern Patchwork Apron by  on SuzyQuilts. For the smaller one, I cut it way down, taking overall measurements from an apron I'd made the eldest when she was just three herself.

All the prints came from my dwindling [original] Cotton + Steel stash, with that floral from Rashida Coleman Hale's Mochi influencing my other choices. Ties were made from a stash solid, and will cross on the back, slipping through those loops on the apron's side. I think that feature will be nice for helping the apron fit well as little one grows.


And then for our eldest granddaughter, I just used two prints - Ruby Star Society Speckled in navy paired with Figo Fabrics' Water in Ocean Blue from their Elements collection. Since she is nearly as tall as I, I left the length of the apron the same, while narrowing the 'bib' area as well as the overall width. Fingers crossed I guessed close enough.


This pattern was really enjoyable to sew, it was easily adjusted size-wise; and of course, the fabric combos are unlimited. I'd definitely consider using it again; though for now, I just hope the grandgirls enjoy wearing them as they have fun in the kitchen.

Saturday, December 25, 2021

Merry Christmas!


Wishing you peace and joy
today and all through the new year!

Friday, December 24, 2021

Another 50 Days of Scraps? 100?

At a guild meeting the other night, I actually said it out loud. About the most fun I had last year, creatively speaking, was during my self-proclaimed 50 Days of Scraps. The best part was just figuring it out from day to day... pulling palettes right out of the scrap basket, and making whatever I felt like. That and seeing the level of scraps in the basket dwindle down, quilt by quilt.

In fact, working with scraps throughout the year was so rewarding that I want to do more of it. That, and the fact that my scrap basket is tamped down and still overflowing is leading me to think I should do it again. Though why stop at 50 days? I'm thinking I'll try 100.


Yikes. Can I do it? (Should I?)


I'm still debating....


I was thinking of starting on January 1, but I have one main unfinished quilt staring at me from the design wall that I'd really like to finish first. So I'll see if I can finish it promptly after the holidays. Boy that would feel good. AND free me up to whatever's next.


So I'll keep you posted when I start, and what my goal will be. Anyone want to join me?

Thursday, December 23, 2021

Mash-Up Cut-Up

So do you remember Mash-Up? It was a scrappy quilt I made last spring, measuring 18.5" x 23.5", and was the object of my most recent revisioning.


I had an idea and that idea involved my rotary cutter and ruler and cutting Mash-Up into 12 equally-sized rectangles.




The plan was simple, really. Bind the now mini-mini quilts, one for each of my co-workers, with an extra to keep for myself.


I crafted a postcard with a photo of the original quilt on one side, and a note to my co-workers on the other, telling a bit about what the project meant to me, and what they meant to me.


I even suggested a use for their little quilt, "Use it as a coaster, display it as an original piece of art, tuck it into a drawer to be discovered & pondered another day. I'd even be fine if you re-gifted or recycled it. It's all good. For now, consider it a reminder of the connection between each of the pieces; between each of us."



Yeah, I went with sentimental this year, and felt a little sappy for doing so. But whatever. Just trying to share some good vibes in the way I know how....

Wednesday, December 22, 2021

Field Bag

Oh this was fun! I needed a handmade guy gift and happened across the Field Bag. Designed as a project bag, the pattern was a collaboration between Grainline Studio and Fringe Supply Co., which closed shop in 2020. [more here]

The bag is unlined, but all the seams are either finished or hidden, so it's a really nice finish. Though canvas was the suggested fabric, I opted for an exterior of Robert Kaufman Waxer Canvas, with the interior pockets from Big Sur Canvas, also by Robert Kaufman. That pairing worked beautifully.

You can read about my experience with the Copyshop in printing the pattern. It was a great learning experience, though if I'd had the dimensions, I could easily have measured and cut the pattern pieces, as they were all rectangles. And considering I was using waxed canvas, I didn't mark like I might have on regular fabric; though I did test using pins and they worked just fine, so they were helpful in a couple of spots.

The pattern was great, but as a bonus, I was able to refer to a series of YouTube videos from the Field Bag Sew-Along earlier this year. I especially found Days 5 and 6 helpful, as the final bag construction came together. There are two particularly interesting and unique construction techniques used - for the casing, and for the gusset - and both added some fun ah ha moments.

I finished my bag off with 1" cotton webbing for the handle and 5/32" cotton braided cording, inserted with a bodkin, of course. And though the original bag has a helpful feature for knitters that involves grommets, I chose not to use them. That said, I know now how to simplify the pocket section just a bit for my non-knitter needs.


I made the bag for a young dad, as I could totally see it as a handy 'grab and go' bag, and he totally agreed. Gotta love folks who appreciate a handmade gift!

Tuesday, December 21, 2021

Bodkin

If you were to ask me my favorite notion, I just might say my hera marker. It changed the way I mark things for the better, and it's always nearby. But you know another one I really like? A bodkin. It's not something I use in my quilting, nor most of my sewing at all. But when I make something with a casing, I am so, so thankful for my bodkin. After years of using a safety pin to weave ribbons and cords and such through casings, I discovered the bodkin, and it makes things SO much easier and faster.

By definition, a bodkin is "a blunt, thick needle with a large eye used especially for drawing tape or cord through a hem." Mine is just a long flexible plastic 'needle,' but whatever, it works so well! A task I used to dread is easy peasy now.

Monday, December 20, 2021

2022 Planning Party

Once again, Yvonne/Quilting JETgirl is hosting her #2022PlanningParty, a time to look back on 2021 and consider plans and goals for next year.

The Quilts
  • I said this in 2020, and it's true agaon.... it seems that the biggest success of the year has been that I was still inclined to sew regularly. It's been another very unique year, and I'm glad I've had the consistency of creating.
  • That said, I had an unspoken goal of at least one finished quilt project a month, and I was able to accomplish that, though having a December finish remains to be seen.
  • Stash-busting was a priority at the beginning of the year, and I sewed right through 50 Days of Scraps, which I thoroughly enjoyed.
  • New and unexpected was the opportunity to make liturgical quilts. Definitely a unique challenge each time.
  • Continued entering challenges with the Improv Quilt Studio.
  • For the second year, I logged every little bit of fabric I brought in and subsequently used up. Generous gifts of fabric near the beginning of the year threw off my stats considerably, so I kind of felt like I was playing catch-up all year. But the goal remained and I prioritized sewing from stash.
Handwork
The Community
  • Blogging felt just a tad sluggish this year. Not terrible, still consistent, but not as inovative as I would have liked. My second year participating in the 31 Day Blog Writing Challenge this month, though, has me on my toes, and I'm really enjoying it.
  • The Scrap Basket newsletter settled into monthly publication, and the readership continues to grow, so that's all good. 
  • I DID make my Instagram account professional, which mostly allows me to see insights on each of my posts. That's interesting, but can't say I'm doing much to evaluate that.  Stories still seem a bit of a struggle, but I'm trying.
  • Another thing this year was needing to figure out a new way to get my blog posts to my readers who subscribe by email. After Feedburner quit supporting that option, it took a bit to figure that out, but my solution with Mailchimp has been working well, so thankful for that!
  • Besides social media connections, my local Seattle MQG guild has been awesome in trying to keep us connected, and I've really appreciated that. Also, the VQG (Virtual Quilt Guild) begun in 2020 continues, and has been a good connection, allowing me to meet some new creative folks.
QuiltCon Together
  • It wasn't quite the familiar QuiltCon experience, of course, but QuiltCon Together was still great fun. I had a quilt in the magazine for the first time, some quilts in the show, and took classes I enjoyed, so can't complain.
New Directions

  • I honestly made no real plans for 2021, feeling the need to just take it as it came, and that felt like plenty
So considering everything, I'd say 2021 was successful enough, though pretty much more of the same. So on to 2021....


The Quilts
  • More stash-busting and scrap-using is definitely in order. In fact, I'm considering starting 100 Days of Scraps, since I enjoyed my 50 so much this year. AND my scrap basket is truly overflowing. Again.
  • There are a couple of key WIPs that I'm still working on finishing - my 2021 Summer Sampler quilt, and the hand-pieced bowtie quilt begun in the 100 Day Summer Sewalong. I expect the first to be a priority after the holidays.
  • As usual, I plan to make something with 2021's Pantone color of the year, Very Peri. Once I get an official Pantone swatch, I'll work on figuring out fabrics. 
  • The goal of at least one finished quilt project a month continues to encourage me along, so I plan to continue with that. I really think I want to continue to go with the flow, though, about what those quilts might be.... whatever brings me joy in the moment would be my preference, and discovering what that might be is a big part of the fun.
  • Bee Sewcial, an improv and solid-only bee, is heading into our 8th(!) year together and I'm up again to offer a prompt come April.
  • The blocks aren't quite done yet, but will be early in the new year, so I plan to make a quilt out of my Snowflake Sampler blocks, hand-stitched all through 2021.
Handwork
  • I definitely want to keep up with the handwork I've been doing this year, and continue to be open to learning new techniques. I'm mulling over what new to explore.
  • I expect I'll continue to stitch the occasional Dropcloth Sampler, and am looking forward to a new one that is coming soon!
The Community
Hope to do more of the same:
  • Regular, frequent posting on the blog here and on Instagram. Don't expect me to try any fancy stuff though. ha.
  • I'll take The Scrap Basket into its 7th year, and monthly editions seem to make sense for the time being. 
  • I'm mulling over whether to focus more on entering quilts into shows. I really like that idea, though the process of entering doesn't bring me joy - ha. So we'll see. 
QuiltCon 
  • I'm not going to make it to QuiltCon in Phoenix, having to settle on a couple of my quilts going in my place.
New Directions
  • I've been debating whether to move my blog away from Blogger but need to consider my options. I've also been toying with the idea of adding a shop to my brand for the occasional (most likely small) quilt or other sewn item. Still debating.
Boy that all feels like a lot, doesn't it? One day at a time is my motto of late, so time will tell....

Sunday, December 19, 2021

Potholders

Nary a Christmas season passes without me making at least a couple of sets of potholders as gifts. This year has been no different, and the first set I made was a new-to-me pattern from Quilt Expressions - The Folded Pot Holder. The original maker folded her potholders and gifted them with recipe cards and a spatula tucked in tied with a bow, thus the 'folded,' but there's really nothing folded about the making of them.

I used up the little bit of dala horse print I still had after making a table runner for a friend a few years ago. It's from Katarina Roccella's In Blue line. Backed with a reddish Cotton + Steel basic, I quilted them simply, with different patterns on the background and pocket. I also did not make a separate hanger, as the pattern suggested, but tried to duplicate the method Marla/@pennylanequilts uses. I got close at least. You should check out her beautiful scrappy potholders!!


And then I made an old favorite out of Zakka Style, compiled by Rashida Coleman-Hale. This particular pattern, Patchwork Pot Holder, is by Kim Kruzich. I happily pulled cotton-linen scraps to coordinate with that floral from Anna Graham's Forage collection.


Again, simple quilting, and I was happy I had enough of the floral to make the pockets on the back of both potholders. Bias binding was in order, of course. And for all of these, I used one layer of batting + one layer of Insulbright, which is my standard for potholders.


As much as I love making quilts, these other sewn projects provide me with much joy. 'Small sewing' is where I began my creative journey years ago, and it's never really gone away.

Saturday, December 18, 2021

Copyshop

Well I did a thing! Not planned at all, but still, an experience worth sharing. I had a pattern printed at a copyshop for the first time. I prefer and typically purchase pdf patterns over paper for the speed of it all, as well as storage. I just keep a digital file of all my pdf patterns. So when I wanted to purchase the Grainline Studio Field Bag pattern yesterday, I of course, purchased the pdf, not realizing until afterwards that the pattern consisted of actual pattern pieces, rather that measurements for the pattern pieces, as I had assumed. That's probably because they are primarily a garment pattern company, which makes perfect sense. But I wasn't keen on taping 18 pages together, so looked to see if there was a print shop locally that could print the pattern out for me.

Luckily, the FedEx Office Print & Ship Center a few miles from my house could! There were several options and the trickiest part of the whole process was deciding which print option applied. I finally chose Document Printing, then Blueprints & Architectural Drawings ("oversize prints"), which was exactly what I needed. The print options might vary, of course, at a different shop. It was so easy to upload the pdf file - the one I needed in this pattern was labeled "CopyShopUS," one of several files that came with the original pattern download. And I needed to select a paper size of 36" x 48", which I guess is pretty standard. Surprisingly, I got a notice that my printed pattern was ready to pick up just 30 minutes later, but I certainly wouldn't assume that's a normal turnaround speed. I guess Friday night the week before Christmas isn't a busy time at the copyshop. Anyway, I waited until the next morning to run out and pick it up.

Above is a photo of the complete pattern on my cutting table - oversized for sure, but I managed fine cutting out the pattern pieces with a ruler and my rotary cutter.

Admittedly, this wasn't the most cost-effective way to go. On top of the pattern price, it cost me $9 to have the pattern printed. But it was worth it to me, at least this time; and I'd use the same process again if I needed to. As I told the clerk at the store, it was my first time doing something new, but it proved to be so easy.

Many of you may have much more experience than I printing to a copyshop, so I'd be happy to hear about your experiences. Also, I found this article, How to Print PDF Patterns Using a Copyshop by Cashmerette, quite interesting, with much more information than I needed for my bag pattern, but you might find it useful for your copyshop printing job. Anyway, I'm happy I tried it, have my fabric picked out, and now just need to get cutting it out and sew it up. I'll be sure and share it once it's done!

Friday, December 17, 2021

Alllll the Dropcloth Samplers

It was clear back in May of 2020 that I picked up The Original Dropcloth Sampler that I had somehow started and then let linger FOR FIVE YEARS. Not sure how that happened, but it did, and I think I've made up for lost time since. 

I THINK I've completed my last sampler for the year, so it seemed like a good time to do a little round-up. These samplers kind of became my pandemic hand-sewing of choice, and I've stitched a lot of them! There are just a few that actually have been finished into a usable product, so I'll share those, too.

The Original

Red Stripe

Months later I went out on a limb and made Red Stripe into a pouch, using @sarkirsten's Pear Pouch tutorial. I had to tweak dimensions just a bit, but I still consider it a success.

Summer Lines

Meadow

Disco Nap

ABC Max

ABC Sprinkle (one of my very favorites to stitch!)

Paisley

Picnic (another of my best-loved!)

And... as I shared recently, I found the perfect frame for my picnic sampler in the shop of Modern Hoopla!

Pincushions

Or in my case, a pincushion and a needlebook. Oh yeah.

Heart Ornaments

And they became exactly what they were meant to be.

Mistletoe 

I knew I wanted to finish this one into something to be enjoyed this season, and a pillow seemed doable and perfect.

Whew. Hmm. I guess I've been a bit obsessive, eh? Gotta say, though, I've enjoyed every stitchin' minute.