Perfection

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I have always been haunted by the need for perfection in my crafting. If it is not perfect, then it is not good has been my attitude. Not such a good attitude but it does not apply to other people’s work just mine. Strange that I am just fine with other people’s work not being perfect and will even purchase work by other people that is not perfect yet I am unhappy with imperfection in my own work.

This does not mean I have achieved perfection in my work, just that I get very unhappy with my work if it is not perfect.

So when I found this tutorial about making the perfect loop in beading I just had to try it out.Here is the link:

How to Make a Perfect Simple Loop

I decided to practice by making knitting stitch markers. It has been on my mind to make some for a while now so combining the two goals was a great idea. I loved how the tutorial broke it down into very simpleĀ  steps and it really helped. I found I had been making my loops in a different way – making them this way increased the number of perfect loops I was able to make.

Of course not all the loops came out perfect and I had to make a bunch over but overall I was please with the outcome.

But now I have too many stitch markers. I might just make some more for retreat goodies. . . .

Here is what I made:

workarea

My favorites were the orange ones and the clay bead ones.

orangemarkers

claymarkers

Quickie Tissue Holder

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For the retreat I went to the last weekend of January and for the ladies in the Sew and Quilt club I made some tissue holders with pockets. They are such a fun thing to do and were so easy to make. It took me less than two hours to make about 26 of them. I impressed myself with this little giftie. It has a flap that folds over and covers the tissue and has an inside pocket behind the tissues. For mine, I inserted a zipper to hold the pocket closed and sewed a buttonhole and button to hold the flap closed. My purse can do a lot of damage to an open packet of tissues.

If you want the pattern the download link is below the picture.

Tissue Holders with Pockets

Tissue Holders with Pockets

Tissue Holder with Pocket (10 downloads)

 

PS please don’t share my patterns or download. Send your friends here to get their own. That way I know if they are useful to you and and will continue to make them available.

 

February’s Sew and Quilt Club

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We had an awesome time at the Sew and Quilt club this past week. A few ladies were missing but with good reason so we forgave them – LOL

For those who did miss, the handout may be downloaded by clicking below.

Feb2015SewQuiltClub.pdf (2 downloads)

 

One of the things we did was make a sweeties a mug warmer for Valentine’s Day. I sewed tubes of red and white fabric at home. During the club we ladies turned the tubes right out and filled them partially with rice. Then we rolled up the tubes and hand stitched the back, attached a felt circle to the back with glue, added a ribbon and bow embellishment and ended up with a microwavable mug warmer.

We all had a good time making mug rugs for our sweeties.

We all had a good time making mug rugs for our sweeties.

An Organizer Book with options

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For Christmas I made my daughters some bags with pockets inside to use for first aid kits. But these are really too much work to make a bunch or to teach. So I made a different pattern that is more like a book instead of a bag. Of course, I had to make it fancy cause I just don’t know how to do it easy.

Organizer Book Front

The front of the book, notice the fancy tassels on the binding side.

Organizer Book back pocket

Organizer Book back pocket

Organizer book inside

Organizer Book with center screen pockets and front inside pocket

Meet Millie

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Just recently I got back into embroidery. Are you like me and have periods of time when you concentrate on one skill or another? Well for me right now it is crewel embroidery and other fancy embroidery work. I am loving it, sitting in my chair and working away.

For a pincushion swap I made two pears made up in crazy quilting style. I have another one ready for the embroidery work. Here are some pics of those.

pearcushionall

Then, I got an idea of how to make the embroidery work easier on myself. You see, to do the embroidery work on the pears, I sewed it all together except for the last seam. Then I had to struggle with the needle to get the knots and all hidden. I made a circle of pie shapes and embroidered that then all I had to do was gather the edges and pull them in to make a ball. It made a nice turtle shell for Millie. I think she came out so pretty. She sits on the arm of my chair and holds my pins. Her head and legs make a good place for my needles so they don’t get lost.

 

Millie the Pincushion

I love how she came out.

Memories

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Did you ever run a diaper pin through your hair to make it easier to use?

Have you ever torn up rags to use as bandages?

. . . pulled your child in a red wagon to the corner store down the road cause strollers just were not in your budget.

. . . taken a taxi to hubby’s workplace to get the family car cause child woke up needing a doctor visit? (most families still only had one car apiece)

. . . had one doctor for everything, children, childbirth, skin moles EVERYTHING?

. . . boil baby bottles to sterilize them – the nipples too?

. . . made five pairs of pants all the same for your child cause that was the way things were – children did not have to make a fashion statement in those days

. . . cut your children’s hair, gave them perms and suffered the consequences (tears sometimes, happiness others)

Those were the days -times were not simpler or harder, just different.

what I have been doing

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In December I attended a retreat that was just wonderful. It was a all craft retreat and there were quilters there, scrapbookers, as well as a group of ladies who were doing a “Sue Circle”. That is to say they were all working on Sue Spargo embroidery work. They got my attention and made me hungry to come home and try some of the things they were doing.

Well, low and behold, Sue Spargo is teaching a Craftsy class and it was on sale as well. AWESOME! Of course I immediately signed up and the rest is history. I love it!

If you look up at the top of this page you can see a link to my crazy quilt that is an ongoing work in progress that I really don’t thing will ever get done as it is something you just continue to add to until there is not room for one more stitch. Anyway the embroidery work I do on it is really close to what I am doing with the Sue Spargo work.

I first made a small project and then made two pear pincushions for a swap and then got to work on the class project. I am loving it!

Here is the class project I am working on. I will post pics of the pear pincushions as soon as I hear that the recipients got them. I have completed more of it since the pic was taken and am almost finished with the applique part. Next comes the fun part of embroidery and embellishing.

 

Updated

Ready for the embroidery work

Sue Spargo Class project

Long way to go!

Too big for my britches?

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It came to me that I was doing things the hard way because I thought I was too good to do things the right way. In the middle of cutting out some shapes by scissors, I realized that in Primary school they taught us to roughly cut out the shapes first and then go back and precision cut them. When I did that, it became so much easier and faster.

It made me wonder how many other things I was doing the hard way because I thought I was too good or too important or maybe too old to do things the right way. Of course I am not the only one doing that I am sure.

It is a dangerous attitude to have for sure. How about the driver who thinks they are too good a driver to go by the posted speed limits? Or what about the person who carries a gun in places that they are not supposed to? Or how about the person who feels that they know what is best for their children even though it has been proven that they are wrong?

A little bit of humble pie is good for the soul. It makes take a step back from the table of life and look around and check our attitudes and beliefs and re-evaluate our beliefs and perhaps change a few. It is also good to reaffirm what we believe in too.

Pinterest Fail NOT

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Lately I have been seeing posts on Facebook about Pinterest failures. That is, pics of what people did when trying out something they found on Pinterst. Well, I want to tell you that I have had lots of success with things I have tried off Pinterest. Basically, you have to know your limits.

When people post pics on Pinterest usually they are not your everyday simple items cause lets be honest, we post things to Pinterst that we are proud of and want to do a littleĀ  bragging about. I’m OK with that, I want to see what you have done and I want it to be the best you have done not some everyday ho-hum item.

BUT when we try to duplicate complicated items, we just might be stepping beyond our abilities and then we blame Pinterest or the pinner for our failure. Yes we need to push ourselves and no we should not quit before we even start. But we should be a little sensible about it also. There is no way I am going to be able to paint a masterpiece just because I saw it on Pinterest. But, I can paint a simple little image or graphic if I work at it a little.

It seems that we have been conditioned to expect success. Those little blue ribbons and trophies we get for just participating have made us complacent. They might make use feel that if we are not succeeding it is not our fault, there must be something wrong with the instructions or the materials used. Just a thought.

 

Anyway, here is my latest Pinterest fun. I found a pin with cute marshmallows that looked relatively easy to do. I wish I could find the web page of where I became aware of this delicious treats, but after searching for over an hour I figured it was not going to happen. But, basically, you put sticks of some kind in your marshmallows, roll them in melted almond bark and then pour some kind of sprinkles or candy over them. They really looked awesome in the photos and are easy to make. It just takes a little time.

The first batch I made for the ladies Christmas party at the quilt shop. I made them with the giant marshmallows like the recipe stated. Well, they really looked awesome and came out so pretty. BUT that giant marshmallow was too much. So the second batch I made, I used regular sized marshmallows and they really worked great. It took three hours to make three bags up. They were taken to the quilt retreat I went to in mid December. They were loved.

Marshmallow treats giant and regular

Marshmallow treats giant and regular

 

The

Marshmallow Treats getting ready to pack

Marshmallow Treats getting ready to pack

The hardest part was finding containers. I kept the tops bare so they could rest upside down in the containers but it took tall containers to hold them. After a hour or two they set up like candy and were not messy at all. After a day or two they still were great to eat and serve. I am going to try and remember these for the future as they make an impressive item to take somewhere.

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