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

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

A teeny bit of progress

Not sure if this is actually progress....or something more suited for the nearest garbage receptacle.  At this point in the process I wonder why I'm even attempting to make something that looks even remotely like the original.  As you can see, this is the photo I'm working from...

....and this is the way it looks at the moment...

Dog's breakfast?  

- Although THIS little fellow is perhaps targeted towards Valentine's Day, I don't see why he/she wouldn't be cute any time.  Perhaps could be made using different weights of yarn too?

- THIS is a really pretty pattern for a cowl/hood.  And THIS is another one.

- For the quilters - there's a free year-long challenge running HERE.  This is from last year but the patterns appear to be still available.  It's an interesting read too - she gives the history of the block patterns as well.

- I am unable to track down the originator of THIS - but what a beautiful way to use your doily collection!  (If anyone knows who made this, please let me know and I'll gladly give appropriate credit!).

Another anonymous quote..."The things you take for granted someone else is praying for"

Friday, February 23, 2018

A new beginning

You can never say that I'm not willing to try new things - or at least new applications for things I already do.  I love crazy quilting (imagine that!!) and I love old not combine the two?  Not at all sure if the concept will work, but here you can see the beginning....

Is it going to turn out - or is it the beginning of the end??

- THIS falls under the category of 'wow' - you might have to hit the translate button to read the text though.  And while we're on the subject, have a look at THIS art installation!!!  We mustn't leave out the coffee drinkers who might like to see THIS.  

- For those who like miniatures, how about THIS?

- There's an interesting article/tutorial HERE about ways to carry yarn up the side of your knitting.

- Mary Corbet has a sweet little stem stitch rose tutorial HERE.  

Another anonymous quote..."Be strong enough to stand alone, smart enough to know when you need help, and brave enough to ask for it"

Monday, February 19, 2018


I suppose I shouldn't tell you that I have all of these done for my Christmas box for next year....that wouldn't be nice would it?  Methinks I can feel the hatred for starting so soon flowing in my direction already!  So....I won't tell you that they're for Christmas and just tell you that I finished a whole funch (hah - I was going to type 'bunch' and it came out 'funch'....just as my brain was wondering what you would call a whole lot of mittens.  Funch it is!).  Wonder if I should submit my new word to Funk & Wagnall's??

Ten for women and six for men
Pattern can be found HERE.  
NOTE:  I enlarged the pattern to make the mens

- If you have some pretty hankies in your collection, perhaps making THESE might be a way to show them off?

- I know lots of people like owls and THESE are pretty cute.

- There has been a resurgence of interest in making the bulky knit sweaters and there's a nice free pattern available (various sizes) HERE.

- Most of you know that I love denim (even though I can't work with it any more), so of course the work of THIS artist caught my eye.  Have a look through his gallery!

- If you have children in your life who collect stuffed toys, perhaps making them one of THESE would be a great storage solution.

- THIS bag is a great way to use up yarn scraps!

- If you have a cat (or a kitten) in your life, maybe using up some scrap yarn to make a fun toy from THIS pattern might be fun.

- There are lots of free videos HERE that quilters might find of interest.

Another quote from an anonymous source..."Friendship isn't about who you've known the longest, it's about who walked in to your life, said "I'm here for you", and proved it"

Friday, February 16, 2018

Crochet? Who knew?

My sit-in-front-of-the-tv project for the past few weeks has been to create an afghan for a wedding gift that is upcoming in June.  There's no particular pattern....I just repeated the same 6 rows for each colour and then cobbled together a border.  It's quite large - might even cover a double bed if that's what they choose to do with it.

It's hard to get a picture of something that big - and it's dull here today so pictures are not the best quality.

A close-up showing the pattern and the 

- HERE is a pattern for a very beautiful crocheted afghan.  I love the colours on this one!

- Kathy Shaw has opened up registrations once again for her 'BCQC-2' free (note - I said FREE!!) online class for crazy quilters.  This one features the use of color, piecing and embellishing.  Go HERE for further info.  Registrations are only being taken until Feb. 17th.

- THIS artist does amazing drawings!

- And THIS one has some wonderful textile art pieces.

Another anonymous sourced quote..."When thinking about life, remember this:  no amount of guilt can change the past, and no amount of anxiety can change the future"

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Excitement reigns at Chez Magpie!

Many of you will remember when I showed you the photo of one of my barn landscapes....this one....

It was only my second attempt at this art form and I was surprised when my friend wanted to take it, along with the other one I just finished, to the local quilt guild meeting to show the members.  She was hopeful that someone might want to commission me to make more.  She wondered if I would like to set a price on this one (the other one is spoken for) and I gave her a number that I thought was quite steep.  Well, right now I'm bouncing off the walls because it  SOLD!!!!  Even more exciting is that the guild itself is buying it and will be using it as one of their raffle prizes at their next quilt show being held in 2019.  I am blown away and still can't quite believe it!!  

And, just to prove that something else is happening here at Chez Magpie....the pile of mittens is growing!

The pair on the left is for a man and the rest are all for women.  I still have to add the buttons for additional pizzaz on each one.

- There are lots of free quilt block patterns HERE.  (and if you click on the 'Next' button on the lower left you will be taken to a lot more!!

- I'm not a painter, but for those of you who are, perhaps you would find THIS interesting.  

- If you decorate for Easter, perhaps you might like to have one of THESE fellows greeting people on your porch!

- And, rather than chocolate, how about making some of THESE for your little ones?

- Or maybe make one of THESE

- If you want a yarn bowl and are put off by the price, maybe a trip to the thrift store might yield the makings for THIS (you wouldn't have to paint it either!).  And HERE is another idea and HERE is another (the lid would be perfect to keep the dust off too!).

The quote today is from Albert Einstein..."The one who follows the crowd will usually go no further than the crowd.  Those who walk alone are likely to find themselves in places no one has ever been before"

Monday, February 12, 2018

Planning ahead?

I have been enjoying making a bunch of these....

Men's on the left and a women's pair on the right.  They're made from recycled sweaters and lined with recycled velour housecoats.  Really fun to make and cheap too!  They will be going in the Christmas box for next year (at least 14 pairs!!).  Will show you a picture once I have them all finished.  The pattern is from HERE  (with some adjustments by me).  

- For those of you who make (or who are interested in making) twiddlemuffs for patients with Alzheimer's or dementia, there is a very good how to (with great ideas) HERE (it's a PDF).  They are a wonderful use for scrap yarn.

- HERE is a nice heart-themed quilt block that would be nice in a quilt or even on its own.  And HERE is another one, and ANOTHER

- You know how sometimes you come across something that's so darned simple that you wonder why you haven't thought of it?  Well, have a look at THIS video and you'll see two fabulous (and easy!!!) tricks for knitting.

- THIS is a fun crochet pattern that would be lovely in baby blankets.

- I don't know who created THIS (if you do, please let me know and I'll give proper credit) but I thought it was such a great use for those CD's we hate to throw away.  Would be nice to fine the actual pattern. 

- Awhile ago the San Francisco School of Needlework and Design announced a challenge for participants to create pieces of needlework with the theme 'The Summer of Love'.  Their online exhibition of the creations can be found HERE.  Their next  stitch at home challenge is "View From My Window' and further information can be found HERE.

- THIS is a very elegant little pouch that would make a lovely gift for someone.

- Am I the only one that remembers at least one of THESE pillows sitting on my grandmothers couch?

- And just for the sheer cuteness factor, have a look at this....

Today the quote is from Abraham Maslow...."In any given moment we have two options: To step forward into growth or to step back into safety"

Wednesday, February 07, 2018


....and you will receive!
(mainly because I have nothing else!!)

A couple of people have asked to see my button collection so here you go....

Sorry about the glare!

My buttons are guarded by 'Elyron' my sewing room dragon, who oversees all that I do.  The shelf they're on runs almost the entire length of one wall of my room.

The reason for all this downsizing of buttons was not only to get rid of w-a-y too many, but also to make room for this....

I received this wonderful hand-made magpie for Christmas and needed a place to put him/her.  Getting rid of four of my button jars gave me just enough space to display my magpie.  A win/win!

- If you know someone who is expecting a wee one, perhaps she might like one of THESE

- THESE are rather cute to make for your Valentine. 

- The embroidery pieces shown HERE are quite interesting (be sure to scroll down).  THESE aren't embroidered, but certainly fun.

- THIS is beautiful embroidery!

- THIS is a really nice slipper pattern (perhaps make several pairs and put them in the Christmas box for next year?)

Another quote from an anonymous source.."Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around"

Saturday, February 03, 2018

14 + 1 - (4 +1) = ?

I'm a day late in posting this AND (maybe worse!) I don't have any pictures for you.  You DON'T want to see my cleaning/purging efforts in my sewing room which is what's been happening behind the scenes here at Chez Magpie.

Many of you will remember my true confession earlier of having FAR to many buttons for any person in this world.  Fourteen (large!) jars AND a nearly full shoe box (see what I mean?  Too many!).  So....I've been spending my evenings sorting through them and....drumroll.....I am now down to *only* 10 jars! 

Ten jars that look like this....

The only problem is that, although my plan was to get RID of the empty jars, they have now been snatched up by my DH for use in the kitchen.  Drat - I almost had them out the door.....

I'm happy to announce that the spring issue of 'Crazy Quilt Quarterly' magazine is now available!  There are some wonderful articles, how to's and eye candy in this issue and you can get your own by going  HERE  (or you can click on the picture of the current issue in my sidebar!).

Please remember that we are constantly searching for content for the magazine and welcome YOUR contributions!  We are looking for how to articles, photos of your work, and any crazy quilting tips you want to share.  You can go HERE for further guidelines.  The magazine is entirely reader-written so please don't be shy!

- If you are a football fan and are having people over to watch the big game, perhaps you might like to serve THIS.  Or maybe THESE?  Or THIS?

- Seeing THIS made the wheels start to turn.  Wouldn't it be fun to create a page like this; make copies (perhaps one for each month) and then write the names of the books you read in the 'spines'?  At the end of the year you'd have a fun record of all you read.  Hmmmm......???

- THESE would be cute to make for Easter.

- and THESE are cute too!

- If you'd like to make a wee teddy bear, how about THIS one?  And HERE is a pdf for a simple bear.

This is another quote from an anonymous source..."The quieter you become, the more you can hear"