A blog about my interests, which include crazy quilting and various and assorted other artsy pursuits and sometimes known to contain mumblings of a random nature.

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

tentatively pushing the button.....deep breath......




If you didn't read my post yesterday you won't have a clue what all the wooing and whooping is all about.  Suffice to say I am absolutely jumping up and down that I figured out how to make my camera and my computer talk nicely to one another....all by myself.  Yes....by my own self.....alone.  After two days of saying not-so-nice things to myself and a great deal of muttering and blue air, I hit upon the bright idea of doing a 'system restore' which my Computers For Dummies book said was something not to be afraid of.  So....I pushed all the appropriate buttons (with a great deal of trepidation, I might add!!) and watched as the computer chugged away doing mysterious and terrifying things known only unto itself.

THEN, I, with even more trepidation, opened up my pictures file and plugged in my camera.  AND IT WORKED!!!    Eureka!!  Party Time!!  

Computer Guru-ism, here I come!!   

Oh, and for those of you who might be curious to know what the pictures ARE.....remember The Quilt-zzzz from earlier this year?  Remember that there were blocks left over?   Well, this is the resulting quilt from the leftovers, with the addition of the black print fabric.  Almost big enough for a double bed - probably would be fine as a bed topper.  For now, it will reside over the pullout couch in my sewing room.
Today the quote is from Bo Bennett...."Frustration, although quite painful at times, is a very positive and essential part of success"

Monday, November 23, 2015

hair tearing, angst, and (horrors) even swearing....

Frustration runs rampant at Chez Magpie at the moment.  For some reason, known only unto the computer gremlins, my camera no longer wants to discuss the facts of life with my computer.  The pictures will download into some obscure spot that I've never encountered before and then flatly refuse to save themselves anywhere.  No amount of wrangling on my part will allow me to do anything with them. 

Oh yeah, the air has been blue.
And most any other colour you can think of.

To make matters worse, it now appears that ALL my pictures AND my documents have managed to save themselves into at least five different places on my computer.  

Computer gremlins?
I'm serving notice.
Get thyselves GONE
or there's going to be h-e-double-hockey-sticks to pay!!
So there.

(Do you suppose they're scared?).  Anyway....out of all this angst came one good thing.  I think.  I discovered that the little camera thingie we use when Skype-ing with our son and daughter-in-love has the capability of taking still photos.  Who knew?  I certainly didn't!  Imagine my astonishment when it took a selfie of me - totally unbeknownst to me!!   Needless to say, I won't be showing you THAT one, but I did get another one that I WILL share. 

Here I am, silly grin and all.

Silly grin?  Or hysteria?
Take your pick!

Today, beyond giving you a list of the swear words I managed to utter today, I give you this, instead of a quote....

Saturday, November 21, 2015


So, folks, send me photos of your crazy quilting.  We want to see it and we'd love to have your work in our 2017 calendar!!

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Last one!

Here's the final Christmas present I'm creating this year!

This is postcard-sized and I think you can 
click to embiggen the picture.

Today the quote is a Native American proverb.... "We do not inherit the earth from our ancestors, we borrow it from our children"

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Another instalment of mumblings

I'm working on a little crazy quilted project which I hope to be able to show you tomorrow, so in the meantime I thought perhaps I'd mumble....

1.  Karen Ruane has announced a new on-line class called 'Patched Pockets' which will be starting in January.  Wish I had made bigger inroads into my to-do list and my pile of UFO's so I could play along, but I have to be disciplined.  I do.  But you can go HERE and read all about the new class and sign up if you'd like to!  I'd highly recommend it.

2. Karen of Todolwen has posted a really cute crocheted poppy pattern and you can find it HERE.  I love this one!

3.  Kathy Shaw is doing a happy dance because her book  "Crazy Quilting Volume 1: Beyond the Basics'" is going to be ready to ship by Dec. 1st through her Etsy shop and because Amazon has it available early on their site (as well as there being a Kindle edition....which means an instant read for those of you that have that technology).  Go HERE to read more about that!  There's still time to order it for a reduced price through Etsy too!!

4.  There's a really sweet little embroidered ornament tutorial available HERE  and there's a  free chart for a cute little cross-stitched Christmas bear HERE.  

5.  For those of you who knit or crochet and are looking for some last-minute gift ideas to create, have a look at all the patterns that are available HERE.  

There. that should keep you busy for a little bit!

Today the quote is from Corita Kent.... "Doing and making are acts of hope, and as that hope grows, we stop feeling overwhelmed by the troubles of the world"

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

A tutorial - who knew?

It's been a very long time since I did any sort of tutorial on my blog and as I created this little project this morning I thought perhaps I might share it with you.  It worked up very quickly so it's certainly do-able for some little Christmas presents (which is what this one is for).

Isn't this little strawberry needle case the cutest?

So, here's the tutorial (please let me know if you make any, because I'd love to see them!).


You will need the following supplies:  red and green felt; a piece of Freezer Paper (optional); yellow and red pearl cotton or embroidery floss; 1 green bead; scrap of Heat N Bond (optional).
NOTE: Print the pattern on a full-size 8 1/2 x 11" piece of paper.

Trace the patterns onto either paper or Freezer Paper.  You can either iron the Freezer Paper onto the felt prior to cutting out the pieces OR simply pin your paper pattern onto the felt.  I like to use the Freezer Paper because it holds in place really well, making your cuts on the felt more accurate.  It peels off really easily and can be re-used a couple of times if you're making more than one needlebook.

Cut two of the larger strawberry shapes, one of the smaller shape and one of the leaf from felt.  Using yellow pearl cotton (or 6 strands of embr. floss) stitch 'seeds' randomly over one of the larger strawberry shapes.  

Either pin the two larger shapes together OR use some small scraps of HeatNBond to adhere them together.  Using red pearl cotton (or floss) stitch the pieces together around the outside using buttonhole stitch.  

Place outer and inner strawberry shapes together and, using the sewing machine, stitch along the fold line.  Stitch two or three tacking stitches about 1/4" away from the seam (helps to hold the needlebook nicely closed).

Adhere the leaf to the front, using a green bead to hold in place.

Today the quote is from Dale Carnegie.... "When we hate our enemies, we are giving them power over us:  power over our sleep, our appetites, our blood pressure, our health, and our happiness.  Our enemies would dance with joy if only they knew how they were worrying us, lacerating us, and getting even with us.  Our hate is not hurting them at all, but our hate is turning our days and nights into a hellish turmoil"

Monday, November 16, 2015

And now, for a little Christmas

I've spent the past few days working on some Christmas things (and about time too!).  Remember that white blob I showed you last week?  Well I turned a number of them into this...

Seven not-so-edible pincushions!

The little strawberries are filled with emery.

The patterns/idea came from http://ideas.stitchcraftcreate.co.uk/fabric-cake-tutorial/  (the cake);  http://thehappyzombie.com/blog/?p=322 (the whipped cream) and http://marthastewart.com/273284/strawberry-pincushions (the strawberry).  Of course I made some minor changes to all the patterns.   


an ornament
(x 18)

These were positively addictive to make!

The pattern for these was found HERE (it's a PDF file).  I also watched a you tube video to be sure I had it right.  The PDF pattern called for a piece of quilt bat inside the ornament, but I saw several other patterns that didn't, so I didn't put any in mine either.  I really don't think it is necessary to the overall look.

* * * * * * * 
I have searched for the right words to express my sorrow over the horrible events that happened in Paris over the weekend.  One can only feel such sorrow for the people of France, and particularly those in Paris.  I found a quote that I think is appropriate for the people of Paris ...  "You never know how strong you are until being strong is the only choice you have".     All we can do is pray.