Category Archives: Gifts

Starstruck

An Island Batik Adventure

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This September the Island Batik Ambassadors were Starstruck! No clue at all what I was going to do for this one. Sometimes the creative ideas run a bit flat. I thought of a Christmas theme or maybe Christmas ornaments. I was leaning towards something small and not too involved.

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Then…I got the call…My great niece was pregnant! Yes, a great, great niece is on the way! The next day I was sent pics of quilts she fancied for her “constellation” themed nursery. Of course I was going to make her a quilt but was going to go in a bit of a different direction. It was okay as I realized her theme fit with the IB September theme. So off to Pinterest I went for starry inspiration. I then dove into my IB stash (that’s a lot of diving). I pulled out blues, gray and even found strips of metallic stars from a Christmas line from years ago. I did of the stars and a big, bright sun.

There was a lot of sewing as all the squares were sewn together individually, not in strips. I tackled a little bit a day so it wouldn’t become tedious. The fun came when I drew the sun on a large piece of lightweight paper I have and placed it in the corner. I pulled a couple of bright yellows from the stash and the sun was born.

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The quilting was kept very simple as I thought the quilt itself was busy enough. Some metallic threads were used to glitz it up a bit. I am just so pleased with the result! The quilt will be on its way to NY soon to be given at a baby shower (no, I’m unable to attend). I’m pretty sure she doesn’t visit my blog so the quilt will be a surprise. I hope the precious little one spends many hours and years cuddling and enjoying her quilt from her Great, Great Aunt!

(Linky Tuesday,  My Quilt Infatuation)

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Sewing Machine Pin Cushion

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Here’s a quick and fun little project – and it’s very handy! I wrote this pattern and prepared little kits for a quilt retreat as a make and take for each person attending. I find this very handy on my Passport sewing machine which is the one I travel with. Hope you enjoy it and I would love to know if you made one!

Materials:  Strip fabric 2 1/2″ wide x size needed. (Decide where on the vertical portion of your sewing machine you want your pincushion and measure around, add 2 1/2″.)

Batting: cut rectangle 4 1/2″ x 4″ ; Velcro – 2 one inch squares; Tacky Glue or “Okay to Wash It” glue

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Press under 1/4″ on one lengthwise side. Press under 1/4″ on each short end.

Batting: Starting at a short end, fold batting over 1 inch, then continue to end. Secure with a little glue. Place batting on center of strip.

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Fold over raw edge of fabric, then finished edge. Glue the length in place. Stitch beside both sides of batting, as close to batting as possible.

Stitch short ends closed. Place around sewing machine and mark where Velcro should be placed. Sew Velcro in place.

Attach to your machine, fill with pins and enjoy!

 

 

Surprises & A Great Retreat!

Last week was the Spring Quilt & Sew-In Retreat and it was a blast! There was so much sewing going on, but that is truly the least of it. The sharing, assistance, laughing and teaching moments were all such treasures. The generous spirit of all who attended was just amazingly wonderful. How lucky am I to bring these quilters back together each year!

And there were surprises! Beverly made these darling heart appliqued bags for everyone and a few extras for the wonderful employees of the inn where we stay. She also made  cute little butterflies (mine, unfortunately, is camera shy). She is the resident crochet queen! In addition, she blessed me with the crocheted doilies (if I ever made one of these, I don’t think I’d be giving them away!) and a sewing machine cover with pockets for tools.

Sandra made everyone this cute finger pin cushion (on the right).  It is going to be a real bonus for me when I am hand appliqueing.

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In their goody bags, each attendee received a pin cushion with a Velcro backing – perfect to place on your sewing machine or table or wherever you might find it handy (above left). Several were put to use shortly after receiving them! Both were made with bottle caps as the base.

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Something very special that happens at retreat is that there is a bucket of block “kits” for each to sew if they choose. The blocks are then put together for Hospice quilts. Everyone sewed one – some more than one! These batiks are going to make a beautiful quilt. The very masculine blocks were put together and the quilt top is already finished – Yeah!

AND there was a last minute sponsor – Woo Hoo! Northcott Fabrics so very generously sent these goodies. Sponsor generosity helps to make the retreats so very special.

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In the Fall we retreat again in Blowing Rock. Lucky me – I of course get to be there!

Gift for Baby

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I love making quilts, but sometimes it’s just so fun to make smaller projects. A neighbor friend of mine is expecting a child next month. She is also a very talented quilter and made her soon to be little one an awesome quilt. I knew I wanted to make her something other than a quilt and chose towel bibs.

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I love these! They are so practical. You just slip them over the little one’s head – no tying involved. The best part is that they cover the whole front of the little one.

I started with two store bought hand towels. I chose two applique designs – a baby crow and a dinosaur (she is expecting a boy). In the center of each towel I cut out a five inch circle and added a knit cuff. This project was both fun and easy!

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 The Island Batik Four Season Blog Hop & Giveaways continue – join us! (mine is January 24)

SUMMER

January 22Paisley Dot
Pamela QuiltsSeams Like a DreamMary Make Made Mine

January 23Sunflower Serenade
Kathys Kwilts and MoreWhispers of Yore

January 24City Culture 2
Mary Mack Made MineheARTs Creations

January 25City Culture 2
The Quilt RamblerLizard Creek QuiltsKISSed Quilts

FALL

January 29Pumpkin Patch
Seams to be SewKISSed Quilts
Ark Angel CreationsAdventurous Appliqué and Quilting

January 30Autumn’s Grace
KISSed QuiltsBeaquilter

January 31Plum Delicious
Masterpiece QuiltingAdventurous Appliqué and Quilting

February 1Northern Woods
Moosestash QuiltingVicki’s Crafts and Quilting

 

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My Newest Obsession

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Have you heard the expression, “Give me enough rope and I’ll hang myself?” Well…I discovered rope! At Fall retreat I visited The Mountain Thread Company in Blowing Rock. It is a quilt shop that also specializes in ready made rope bowls and coasters. She also sells kits and I bought the coaster kit. It had complete instructions, rope, a few scraps of fabric and a size 16 needle. Also at Fall retreat, Tina graciously demonstrated how she makes fabric covered rope bowls. After watching her demo, I knew I was hooked.

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When I got home I quickly sewed up the kit into two hot pads instead of coasters. I’ve now made many more. These make great hostess gifts and gifts for guild gift exchanges.

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Now it was time to do a bowl or two (or three, or six)! I did a few little fabric wrapped rope bowls and a couple of larger ones. The blue one is my new bread basket. I also did some that, like the hot pads, have the rope exposed and bits of fabric scattered. These are SO fast to make! There will definitely be many more of these popping out of my studio!

With Christmas just a few days away, I’m pleased that all is bought and wrapped. I’ll return next week, but want to wish you all the most joyous season!

 

A Quilt for Love

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A couple we are quite fond of are getting married this fall and I was so excited to make them a quilt. Did you get that – they are getting married this October and the quilt is done!! Not only did I really want to make them a quilt, but I was excited about the design I chose and the colors to go with their décor.

There were quite a few gray fabrics in my stash and I had fun picking out several more. The oranges were a little more challenging. I didn’t want a “Halloween orange,” but more of a tangerine orange. These colors are out of my usual range, but I knew it went with their décor and I love the result!

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It was a lot of half square triangles, so I took a shortcut. I cut triangles on my Sizzix. The fabric had been starched so I didn’t worry about stretching on the bias. It was so much easier than putting two squares together, marking a line and then sewing two seams. It worked perfectly!

            I’m planning to see the couple soon to gift this quilt to them, and my hope is that this quilt adds warmth to their lives together.

 

Support to Another Quilter

IMG_1723 (Medium)Recently a quilting friend was going through some medical difficulties.  As a show of support, a call went out for 12 inch finished blocks. Within just a couple of weeks the blocks were assembled and a long arm quilter, who also made a block, quilted it. As soon as it was bound it was quickly delivered. The recipient is such a kind, warm and generous person and is also a very talented quilter. Below is the portion of the label with a message. The names of all who participated were also listed on the label.

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Here are just a few of the blocks. So fun to see all the different blocks everyone came up with. There were also a few placed on the quilt back.

I had the privilege of delivering it and the joy on her face when she pulled the quilt out of the gift bag was priceless. This was our way of letting her know we cared, and whenever she wraps herself in this quilt, we hope she feels our warmth. Blessings to her for a full recovery and much joy.

And here is my June wrap-up. There was so much Hospice sewing done while I was at my week in residency, I chose to just group them. Hopefully next month I’ll see a few of those quilted and bound!

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