Messenger Bag #4

My daughter-in-law received her Christmas messenger bag today and she said she loved it.
Coming from her, this is a great compliment.
She makes beautiful bags.
She sent me this photo.
I showed the bags to my sisters, and my younger sister
hinted that she wanted a messenger bag to carry her notebook.
So, I made this in her colors…black and white.
It seems my two sisters and I have a thing about polka dots.
So, I lined her bag with black on white polka dots and used white on black polka dots on the flap.
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Quilt Bag

For some time, I had been trying to find or design a quilt for my oldest grandson.
My son reminded me that as a child, my grandson liked Dragon Ball Z.
I found some Dragon Ball Z fabric on Spoonflower, but it would not have gotten here in time to get pieced and quilted before the mailing deadline of December 19.
I found an orange and blue quilt kit at Mesquite Bean and I pieced it and will get it back this week so I can bind it.

I have a quilt that I made for myself and I made a pillow/tote bag for it.
This bag makes it easy to throw in the car whenever I go visit my grandchildren.
It has come in handy for picnics, storytelling tents, and nap time.
I wanted to do something with Dragon Ball Z, so I decided to made a pillow tote bag to hold the quilt.
I found the logos for DBZ and pieced them in the center.
This will also make it easier to mail the quilt.


Busy and Fun Day

Today was a busy and fun day.
One of my friends invited us over to make bird seed ornaments for the students at the school where we volunteer.
We have some activities planned for this coming Thursday.
A nature scavenger hunt is one of the activities, along with art, writing, and reading lessons.
My friend had the idea of making seed ornaments for each of the 94 students.
So, we spent today attempting to make these ornaments.
The result, after three hours of fun, was only 54 ornaments!
She volunteered her husband to help her finish this project.
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Before I left the house this morning, I managed to complete one stocking.
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Now, on to the next project.

Super Siblings

We knew this first December without mom would be tough, but oh my…
Thankfully, I have three super siblings.

My youngest sister was in town this week.
We went to eat breakfast at Jim’s, my mom’s favorite place for breakfast.
It was great being together.
We miss having our brother near.
He lives in Seattle, but we do keep close contact.
It has been a great week.

Emma, the author and illustrator for The Pig in a Wig series, was scheduled in schools and  at Barnes and Noble for author visits and book signing.
It was a thrill to see her with the children.
She connects with her audience and inspires them.
Today, one little boy said he was going to go home and write his own story.
The teacher in me just wanted to dance with joy when I heard him say this!
I took this photo as she was setting up at Barnes and Noble.
The wig and pig nose are big hits with the kids!
I am so proud of her!

Oh, at Barnes and Noble, I found a great book by Lucinda Ganderton.
I haven’t had a chance to study it, but, I like what I have seen so far.

Upon returning home, I got right back to work on a Christmas stocking.
My youngest son said he was looking for a stocking for his son, and I, of course, volunteered to make one.
I made my own pattern for the stocking, but I did find a tutorial from Missouri Star Quilt Company.
When my sons were little, I made stockings out of felt.
I followed the tradition of placing a felt, beaded tree and train.
This time, I wanted to quilt a stocking.
This is what I have so far.
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I made my own tree applique, but cheated and used already made Christmas and bird appliques.
I hope to finish this tomorrow morning.
My friends and I will be volunteering at a school on Thursday.
I let my friend talk me into her bird brain idea of making 97 bird seed ornaments to give the students.
I will be teaching an art/writing lesson on Thursday, and I need to prepare for that.

Magical Pillowcase

My friend told me that she had made Burrito pillowcases for her granddaughters.
I found an online tutorial , twiddletails , where I learned that these pillowcases are also known as Magical Pillowcases.
The tutorial was very easy to follow.
I’m still learning and trying to build my sewing skills, so I was happy to learn how to make a French seam!
I made these pillowcases to coordinate with the space quilts I made for my two youngest grandchildren.

Now, I am looking for a good pattern to make organizational fabric baskets/containers.
I found a few on Pinterest.
There is also a round fabric canister kit at Mesquite Bean.
Any suggestions are welcomed.

Riverwalk Inspiration

My walking buddies and I walked 4 miles of the downtown Riverwalk this morning.
We even visited the Alamo.
It’s the first time in years that I have gone to the Alamo without being in charge of bus loads of school children!
I actually got to enjoy this visit.
We walked through the Menger Hotel and the Fairmount Hotel to see the beautiful buildings decorated for Christmas.
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Tree in front of the Alamo
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I loved the old phone booth at the Menger! This was the main tree at this hotel.
Santas and Chandelier at the Fairmount

Up-cycled Art at the Henry B. Convention Center

After spending the morning with my friends, I went to the Mesquite Bean for some more fabric.
Then I came home, inspired to make another Christmas messenger bag.
Since I decided to keep the gingerbread messenger bag, I made another one for one of my daughter- in-laws.
She has made me some beautiful bags.
I used remnants and some black and white polka dot fabric I had.

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Christmas Messenger Bag

Last year, I visited the Stich Lab in Austin and purchased a pattern for a messenger bag.
The pattern comes with a medium size and a large size pattern.
I used some gingerbread fabric that my sister gave me, along with a candy cane and also  a polka dot remnant.

I wanted to make the purse a bit firmer, so I used interfacing and canvas.
I pieced the flap in order to add some festivity and color.

Polka Dot lining

I think I will use canvas for the next messenger bag I make.
I had seen some pretty canvas at Hobby Lobby.


Missing Tonie

My mother, Tonie, loved Christmas.
She decorated every part of every room in the house.
Mom had different Christmas themes each year.
There was her Victorian Christmas, Blue and Silver, Traditional, Red and Gold, just to name a few.

Mom was very talented and creative.
She made wreaths and arrangements.
Mom was also very good at crocheting and embroidery.

Mom embroidered this denim shirt for my younger sister.
I would love to do something with this, but I don’t know what can be done without losing the integrity of mom’s beautiful embroidery.
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What I loved the best, was mom’s bead work.
When my older sister was a teenager, mom would bead the entire lace bodice of my sister’s formals.
She would bead lace appliques and add them to the paeu de soie skirt of the formals.
Mom always wanted to do the same for me, but I did not like going to formal dances.
She joked about beading some jeans for me.
She did bead a purse for me, but I just can’t find it.
I know it is some box somewhere in this house.

Mom has been on my mind quite a bit.
I wanted to share some of her lovely beading work.
She beaded a tree skirt for my siblings and me.
I gave two to my son, since I no longer put up a large tree.
Mom had me draw and cut the felt petals for these poinsettias.
Then she covered every inch of the petal with beads and sequins.
My son sent me this picture of his tree and one of the skirts mom made.
It brought back memories of seeing mom working on beading these poinsettias.
I drew this poinsettia for my art journal today.
Years ago, Mom purchased a fabric panel of the Nativity scene.
It took her a few years, but she beaded the entire panel and made a tree skirt.
My favorite part is the sheep.
They are beaded with pearls.
Some sheep are beaded in sequins.
Mom did lovely work.
She had bins filled with all types of beads.
One time, we were in Laredo, our home town, and we turned it into a bead buying spree.
When we were preparing to sell her house, I took all of her beads, lace, and doilies.
Someday, I will make something with those doilies.

I knew that beading is something that I could not do, so I gave most of the beads to my friend, Nancy.
Nancy is very creative and I knew she would put them to good use.
Nancy used these beads to make bracelets for all the women in the family.
My sisters, granddaughter, and daughter-in-laws loved receiving these bracelets, as did I.
Nancy also used the beads to decorate a pillow she made for me.
She is a very special friend.

Cold and Rainy Day Inspiration

Saturday was rainy and cold, but we drove to Dripping Springs to
see our lovely granddaughter dance in a Christmas ballet.
She wore a green tutu and a beautiful ornament head piece.
Of course, this proud grandma cried.
The little ballerina looked so confident, proud, graceful, and happy.
After a white-knuckling drive home in the rain, I decided that Sunday would be
another pajama day.
(I’m getting a little too fond of pajama days.)
This cold and rainy Sunday was so comfy and inspirational.
I spent the morning sketching.
Then, I decided to use the Christmas fabric that I had recently purchased to make some place mats and a table runner.
I had started this piece on Friday, but I did not know exactly what I was going to do with it.
I just completed the top of the table runner. This was made with remnants from the purse I made my sister.

I also had some white remnants from the solar system quilt that I made.
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My sister had given me some snowflake material, so I cut four pieces for the backing of the place mats.
It was fun designing the tops with the different fabrics.

Since I do not have large pieces of Christmas fabric, each place mat will be a different design.

It is going to be cold and rainy tomorrow, but I have a dental appointment in the morning.
Bah humbug!