Friday, December 15, 2017

Free Friday: Christmas Present Coaster

Happy Friday, everyone!  Yay, I got a free pattern made for you all!  And it's a really cute Christmas pattern, too!  I'm so proud of myself :)  The cool thing about this pattern is that you can make it with any colors you want to match your Christmas decor, or even make them birthday present coasters!

Christmas Present Coasters



Skill Level:

Beginner

Size:

4 ½ x 4 ¾ inches

Materials:

  • 7-count plastic canvas
  • Yarn in colors listed in key
  • White craft felt
  • Glue
  • #16 plastic canvas needle

Instructions:

  1. Cut and stitch plastic canvas according to graph.
  2. Overcast edges in colors that match nearby stitches.
  3. Cut a 4 ¼ x 3 ¼ rectangle of craft felt for each coaster, and use glue to attach to the back of coasters.

Click the image above to see it larger.  You may share this pattern however you please as long as you don't alter it or claim it as your own.  Please link back if you share this pattern.  You may sell items made from this pattern.  However, you may not sell this pattern.

Ok guys, I have a lot to do today, so I'm going to head off to get some work done.  Have yourself an amazing weekend and hopefully I'll see you next week!

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

What's Up Wednesday

Good Wednesday afternoon, everyone!  It's a cold and wintry day here in western New York.  We've been just getting hammered by the snow!  We probably got 6 since yesterday.  That's a decent amount for December. I'm going to make a big pot of soup for dinner, because what's better on a snowy day than hot soup?

I know I promised to post a free pattern last Friday, but some events came about that made it so I didn't have time to do that.  They're really good events though!  I had sent off my Lovely Lavender Set to Annie's so they could sell it on their website, and shortly after I got an email from the lady I work with that said she wanted to make it a printed pattern and put it in their spring catalog!!!  I was so excited that I forgot how to reply to her, and then sent a nonsensical email because I pushed send too soon, lol.  She needed me to make a holder for the mug rugs though, so that's what I was working on Friday afternoon, yay!  And I got it all done and sent off to her on Monday.


I don't know when their spring catalog comes out, but I'll be sure to let you know when I know!

As soon as I finished sending that off, I pretty much immediately started knitting a hat because I can't sit still for five minutes, honestly.  It's like I can't just chill out, I have to be making something all the time.  It's coming along nicely and I bet I can have it done by tomorrow!


I spent a little time today getting my Christmas cards made out.  I used to send out a lot of them, but lately I've been trying to cut back on stuff like that, so this year I only sent out about 10 cards to the people I really care about. 


Oh, I got some news about my ring!  They finished working on it and it's amazing!  The jeweler is a two hour drive from our house though, so we have to wait until Saturday to go get it.  OH it's so hard to wait!




 And here's a nice shot of the snow in my back yard :)



Well, I guess that's all for this week!  I hope you're all having a wonderful week, and as long as nothing else comes up, I should be able to get a free pattern posted this Friday!  See you then!

Friday, December 8, 2017

Lovely Lavender Set

Happy Friday, everyone!  I just wanted to let you know I just added a new pattern to my Etsy shop!

Lovely Lavender Set, plastic canvas pattern, $7 on Etsy

Phew!  I worked really hard on this one this week, and I'm glad it's done! 

I realize it's Friday, but I don't yet have a pattern made for Free Friday.  I plan on trying to get one done though!  At least I have an idea, so now I just need to get stitching!  If I don't post again today, I hope you all have a wonderful weekend!

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

What's Up Wednesday

Happy Wednesday, everyone!  Boy, have I had a busy couple of weeks!  I'm so sorry I haven't said anything lately.  I guess I just got so into everything going on around me that I forgot to sit down and work on my blog.  Have you guys ever had that happen to you?  It's kind of frustrating to be so busy that you don't have time for what is really important to you, which for me is my designs and my blog.  Thankfully, things are starting to calm down for a little while so I thought I'd update all of you on what I've been doing!

Our Thanksgiving was very good.  We do dinner at my mom's house on Thanksgiving day, with my mom and dad, sister and her son, my oldest niece and her two boys and her boyfriend.  It was crazy and chaotic, with noisy kids and loud laughter and people everywhere!  But it was also so nice to see everyone.  I made the turkey this year for my mom's house, and it turned out just perfect!  I brined it the day before which made it juicy and so flavorful.


The next day, we went over to my hubby's parents' house for lasagna.  It was a nice change of pace, both with the food and the company.  Nice and quite!  I guess the truth is that I prefer a quite evening in with grownups! 

The weekend after Thanksgiving, my hubs and I started putting up our Christmas decorations.  We got the tree down on Friday and set it up right away because it's just so cheery.  No decorations or anything,  just the lights.


We had some traditional Scandinavian glogg while we were at it!  Sooo good!

Then it took me about a week to get the whole downstairs decorated.  It seems to get a little harder every year.  This year was especially hard because I'm trying to do my pattern designing at the same time.  You know, sometimes I really miss being a full time housewife; it may have been boring at times, but at least I always had time to work on things like the decorations.


I lived with the downstairs looking like this for a few days, which just about drove me crazy *neat freak*






Best present under the tree :)



Here's our tree unlit (also with a boy behind it)...


And here it is all lit up!  I'll be sure to get some more pictures of the decor for next week.

Another thing keeping me busy the last week or two has been a very special Christmas present.  My hubby and I celebrated our 10th anniversary in September.  When we got engaged, we were both really young.  I was 20 and he was 23!  At the time, I was living at home with my mom, and he was living at his home with his parents and working at a gas station.  Needless to say, we were both pretty poor.  So when he proposed, he had a small budget and couldn't get me an amazing ring.  I loved it though because it was special.  It was a simple, small sapphire with two side diamonds. 

Then, when we got married, I had a gold band made to fit next to the engagement ring, and a couple years later, I had a second band made for the other side. 



To celebrate our 10th anniversary, we decided to get the center sapphire replaced with something a little nicer.  We managed to find an amazing metalsmith jeweler two hours away, and after visiting them twice, they managed to find the perfect sapphire for me!


That's an emerald cut tanzanite on the left that they used as a comparison to get the perfect color, and that's my oval sapphire on the right!  They're going to start setting it soon and I should be able to go get it next week!  I'm soooo excited.  I'm going to wrap it up really pretty and nice, and open it on Christmas :)  I know that seems silly, but it's such a special gift I thought it deserved to be wrapped.  up.

Hubs and I went for a lovely hike this past weekend, too, since it was so nice out. 


And finally, another reason why I've been so quiet lately is because I've been super busy stitching up some new patterns for my shop!


I definitely will have the lavender set up in my shop by the end of the week, and I'll get the snowflake tbc up next week probably. 

So now we're all caught up!  I hope you've all been having a wonderful December so far, full of happiness and joy and good cheer!

Monday, November 20, 2017

Quilted Tissue Box Cover

Happy Monday, everyone!  I hope you all had a great weekend.  We had a pretty cold one with lots of snow!  But it was perfect weather for snuggling in with the cats and a cup of tea, my favorite winter pastime.

I've been busy with my patterns this past week.  I got a new one all done and up in my shop!  It's a pretty quilt block tissue box cover, which continues a series I hope to built into quite a collection!

https://www.etsy.com/littlesapphire/listing/573635655/pattern-quilted-tissue-box-cover-2-in?utm_source=Copy&utm_medium=ListingManager&utm_campaign=Share&utm_term=so.lmsm&share_time=1511194001109
Quilted Tissue Box Cover Pattern #2, $4 on Etsy
I can't promise I'll be posting much this week.  I'll try, but hubby and I have two Thanksgivings to attend, and I'm cooking for both of them!  So if you don't hear from me, I hope you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

Friday, November 17, 2017

Free Friday: Poinsettia Ornament

Happy Friday, everyone!  How are you all doing?  It's a nice quiet day for me today.  It's cold and the sky is mostly clouded over, but it's the perfect day to snuggle down with a cup of tea and a project, which honestly is a very nice way to spend the day! 

The project I've been working on today is this pretty Christmas ornament.  You could also make it a magnet or a pretty topper for a present, but I thought an ornament was a lovely way to display it. 

Poinsettia Ornament


Skill Level:

Beginner

Size:

3 x 3 inches

Materials:

  • 7-count plastic canvas
  • Red Heart yarn in colors listed in key
  • Gold craft cord
  • Hot glue
  • #16 plastic canvas needle

Instructions:

  1. Cut and stitch plastic canvas according to graphs.
  2. Using picture above as a guide, glue pieces together with hot glue.
  3. Use hot glue to attach an eight inch piece of gold cord to the back of the ornament, forming a loop.  


Click the image above to see it larger.  You may share this pattern however you please as long as you don't alter it or claim it as your own.  Please link back if you share this pattern.  You may sell items made from this pattern.  However, you may not sell this pattern.

I'm going to start making lots of pretty Christmas patterns for Free Fridays, so keep an eye out for them!  If you have any requests, please feel free to comment!  Have a great weekend!

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Christmas Boxes

Happy Tuesday, everyone!  I hope all is well with you.  I'm well, but this dreary weather is making me so lazy today!  Don't you hate that?  It always seems to happen when I have so much I want to do too!

It was a struggle, but I finally managed to get my Christmas pattern all finished and uploaded today, yay! 

https://www.etsy.com/littlesapphire/listing/558398488/pattern-christmas-boxes-in-plastic?utm_source=Copy&utm_medium=ListingManager&utm_campaign=Share&utm_term=so.lmsm&share_time=1510693905723
Christmas Boxes plastic canvas pattern, $4 on Etsy

I'm going to get started right away on some new patterns.  I really want to get back into the swing of creating patterns more frequently!  Only posting one a month is a little sad.  I already have several ideas for new patterns!

Have a great rest of the day, everyone!

Friday, November 10, 2017

Free Friday: Poinsettia Basket

Happy Friday, everyone!  I find  myself once again making my pattern at the last minute, before I need to leave for the evening, so I'm going to keep this short and sweet!

Poinsettia Basket

Skill Level:

Beginner

Size:
2 ¼ x 2 ¼ x 4 ½

Materials:

  • 7-count plastic canvas
  • Red Heart yarn in colors listed in key
  • Hot Glue
  • #16 plastic canvas needle

Instructions:

  1. Cut and stitch plastic canvas according to graphs. For side pieces, fill in blue area with white continental stitches.
  2. Using Hunter Green yarn, whipstitch sides and bottom together. Overcast top edge with Hunter Green.
  3. Overcast around handle piece with Hunter Green.
  4. Using hot glue, attach handle to inside of basket as shown in picture above.  




Click the image above to see it larger.  You may share this pattern however you please as long as you don't alter it or claim it as your own.  Please link back if you share this pattern.  You may sell items made from this pattern.  However, you may not sell this pattern.

Have a great weekend everyone!

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

What's Up Wednesday

Happy Wednesday, everyone!  I hope you're all having a great week so far.  Mine has actually been amazingly good!  I guess I was due for a good week after so many bad weeks, right?  And I'm sure having a positive attitude will help me continue to have a good week.

My biggest news this week is that I got a new smart phone!  Well, ok, let's be honest here.  I got my very first smart phone!  Yes, you heard me right; a 33 year old middle class American woman just got her first smart phone.  Until now, I've had an ancient flip phone.  Even my mom got a smart phone before me!  Let's just say I'm extremely frugal and that's why it's taken so long.  I got a Google Pixel 2 which has an amazing camera, and that's where all of the pictures are coming from this week.

So let's start with what's up with my garden.  I did the last thing with my garden for the year; I planted my garlic.  I've been growing this garlic for I think 5 years now.  It's a variety called German Extra Hardy, and it's never failed me. 



I've been really getting into a cooking mood lately.  I guess that's just what colder weather does, it makes me think of hearty stews and pies and delicious smells.  I've been rummaging through my old Taste of Home magazines looking for good cabbage recipes, since I have about 30 pounds to use.  One of the cool things I made the other day was Blueberry Cranberry Sauce.


It's a pretty purple sauce with mild blueberry notes that mellow out the cranberry twang.  Since my hubby and I don't eat sugar, I used a mixture of stevia, xylitol, and erythritol to make it taste almost like the real thing. 

The city went around and collected the leaves off the streets yesterday, using their amazing crazy leaf picker upper machine.

It works like an escalator, and shoots them off the back into a dump truck that's driving backwards behind it.  It's pretty amazing to watch.

Ironically though, we hot a heavy frost last night that made all of the remaining leaves fall.


I don't really mind so much.  We usually rake our leaves and put them into our compost pile out back.  It's just hilarious timing.

I got some nice pictures of the frost, too.




Nature sure is pretty, isn't it?

And here's some gratuitous cat pictures.  Spices got herself tangled up in some charge cords, and Sunshine is just being a cutie.



I'm still working on the Christmas plastic canvas boxes.  Unfortunately, it's going slower than I wanted and it may not get put up into my shop until next week.  I really want to get some Christmas patterns out before the holiday is over.


And this is how my work area usually looks when I'm working on a project.  Pretty terrible, right?  I'm like a messy kid.  I may have a craft room, but the crafts usually move all over the house.


And a little side note; Annie's is selling a couple more of my patterns!  You can check them out by clicking the links below.  I'm not an affiliate, but if you buy the patterns I will receive a royalty (or you can buy directly from my Etsy and I'll receive all of the money from the sale).

https://www.anniescatalog.com/detail.html?prod_id=140196&cat_id=17


https://www.anniescatalog.com/detail.html?prod_id=140198&cat_id=2410

Well, that's all for now!  I hope you all have an amazing week.  I'm going to enjoy this beautiful sunny day we're having because it's supposed to start snowing on Friday!

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Tuesday Tips: Curtain Rod Organizer

Happy Tuesday, everyone!  It's been a long time since I've done a tip Tuesday, and not because I haven't had anything to share!  I have lots to share, I've just been super lazy about it.  But I'm feeling really good today, so I'm going to share with you a fun little tip that makes my craft room a little nicer to work with.

If you're an extreme crafter like me, you probably have a ton of tools.  Scissors, rulers, rotary cutters, odds and ends that are useful but hard to store.  You don't want to have them just sitting around because that's a lot of clutter, and I don't know about you but I don't have much room as it is.  You also don't want to put them in a box or a drawer because you'd be pulling them out every day, and that's a pain.  So let me show you a cool trip I saw on the internet that works for me.


Tada!  The curtain rod organizer.  Now I can hang my tools right above my craft table and everything is there right within reach.  What I used was a very cheap curtain rod from Walmart, which was less than $5 and came with all the hardware needed to hang it.  It took less than 10 minutes to hang this up! 

I thought long and hard about what I wanted to use as hooks to hang everything, and what I ended up deciding was 12 gauge craft wire.  It's very soft and easy to work with, but thick enough and strong enough to hold everything.  I just wrap it around the rod a couple of times, and leave a hook at the end to hang things on.


Now I do have one special hook on my curtain rod for a pair of old fashioned all steel scissors.  They're pretty loose scissors, and they fall open if I put then on a normal hook.  So what I did for them is I made a loop with the wire and rest the scissors in the loop.


Cheap, fast, an easy!  That's my favorite kind of organizing tip :)  So how do you guys store your scissors and other crafting tools?  Have any good tips you want to share?  I'd love to hear!

Friday, November 3, 2017

Free Friday: Grape Bunch Magnet

Happy Friday, everyone!  Did you all have a good week?  Mine was odd, to say the least.  I still have vertigo, maybe a little worse today than previously.  I'm not sure what to do about it other than rest and let my body heal.  The good news is that since I've been having to spend time on the couch this week, I've gotten a lot of stitching done!  And this pattern is what I got done yesterday!

This week's pattern is a really pretty grape bunch magnet.  I think grapes are super pretty.  I may be biased since we live in a very grapey area.  Would you believe that the area I live in, western New York, is the top producer of concord grapes in the world?  So when you drink your Welch's grape juice, you're drinking something that came from my neighborhood! 

Grape Bunch Magnet

Skill Level:
Beginner

Materials:
  • 7-count plastic canvas
  • Red Heart yarn in colors listed in key
  • Magnetic tape
  • Craft glue
  • Hot glue
  • #16 plastic canvas needle

Instructions:
  1. Cut and stitch plastic canvas according to graph.
  2. Overcast edges of grapes with Medium Purple, overcast back piece with Dark Orchid, and overcast edges of leaves with Medium Thyme.
  3. Attach grapes to back piece with hot glue, then attach the leaves to the back of the grape bunch (use picture above as a guide).
  4. Cut several pieces of magnetic tape to fit on the back of bat magnet. Remove paper from magnets and apply craft glue to sticky side before attaching to grape bunch. This may seem like overkill, but it makes for a very secure bond.

Click the image above to see it larger.  You may share this pattern however you please as long as you don't alter it or claim it as your own.  Please link back if you share this pattern.  You may sell items made from this pattern.  However, you may not sell this pattern.

Have a great weekend everyone!

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

What's Up Wednesday

Happy November, everyone!  Did you all have a fun and spooky Halloween?  Mine was ok, certainly not the greatest, but also not bad.  It was soooo cold here that, for the first time ever, we decided to stay in the house and open the door to pass out candy, rather than sitting out on our porch.  It was like 30 degrees!  YUCK!  Most of the kids were wearing jackets and scarves over their costumes.  There was one teenage girl that had a lot of guts, though.  She was wearing a tiny little spaghetti strap dress and fishnet stockings.  She said she wasn't cold, but I bet she was just trying to prove how tough she was! One must suffer for beauty, I guess!

It's been a long week for me, and unfortunately not exactly a good one.  I spent all of last week getting my yard and garden ready for winter, and then I spent an entire day picking up and cleaning my house because I'd neglected it all week!  The good news is that almost everything is done for my winter prep.  Hubby even got the snow blowers ready so as soon as the snow starts flying, we're ready to go! 

This week has been hard too because my recurring vertigo has come back.  Once in a while, maybe twice a year, I get severe vertigo to the point where I can't walk around much without getting so dizzy that I get nauseated.  And to top it off, hubby woke up with a severe migraine today.  Thankfully he can work from home (he's a computer programmer and does everything on the internet), so he's just chilling at home.  I'm also lucky that I can be home when I'm sick, since I'm a homemaker.  So even though I'm not feeling the best, I am grateful.

Since I'm not feeling so great today, I'll be quick with the pictures so I can get back to resting on the couch.


I've been working on some Christmas box patterns to sell in my shop, and I'm really happy with how they're turning out so far!  I should be able to get them up for sale by next week.


I've almost got my canning cabinet all filled with home canned food.  I'm going to make some chili sometime, and I have some jam and pickles yet to make, and that should fill it right up.  I try to get it all full every season.  Some years I'm able to fill it up and sometimes I'm not.  It depends on how busy I am.


I have a window next to the stairs leading down to my basement, and next to the window grows some lily of the valleys.  They get so pretty this time of year, with their yellow leaves and their bright red berries, so I had to get a picture of them.


By garden is looking pretty sad these days.  I'm almost done putting it to bed for the year.  I just need to spread some compost and plant my garlic for next year.


I got around to putting my all flannel quilt together.  I need to put the binding on yet, and then I need to go get some more flannel for the back.  It'll be easy to finish though since I'm just going to tie it rather than quilt it. 

That's all for this week, everyone.  I'm sorry my updates have been so brief lately because I've been sick so often.  I seem to get sick all at once, and then for 6 months I'm great!  So hopefully this will be the last of it, and when my vertigo goes away I can get back to work!