Freebie Friday!

Here it is, Friday yet again. While it’s the first Friday in December I bet the last Friday in December will be here before we know it, and definitely before we want it to be. Being that it’s Friday I thought I’d share a few more freebies that I’ve found either through e-mails that I’ve received or while surfing the internet. It’s true that surfing the net can be fun and entertaining, but it’s equally true that it is one of the biggest time sinks now known to man, or woman as the case may be. Sit yourself down in front of the computer and before you know it that hour that you were going to spend sewing just got spent on surfing instead. If you’d spent that time sewing you’d probably have more to show for it, but then again, on occasion, you do have something to show for surfing. Like the following…

I’ve already shared Peck’s Pieces with you before, but when I went there today to get the last of the Halloween blocks (are you surprised that I’m behind on that? Didn’t think so…) I found that Miss Marjory is offering a new free project called Santa in the Pines. This is a four block wallhanging that should go together fairly quickly. You’ll need to scroll down to November 13 to get the beginning instructions and first block. If you scroll down to October 16 she shows you a mug rug that she made using one of the blocks. That would make a great, quick gift for the coffee or tea drinking fan on your list. Pair it with a mug, a half-dozen cookies, and some coffee or tea samples and you’re all set.

Speaking of cookies, I got an e-mail from Better Homes & Gardens with a link to lots of cookie ideas and recipes. Of course, the chocolate ones grabbed my attention immediately. I kept thinking, if only I had another cup of tea (yes, I’ve already had three cups of Barry’s Gold this morning) and some of those chocolate cookies. What a grand lunch that would make! I am definitely a cookie-holic, and I’ve always blamed it on my great-grandmother who would give me cookies and a glass of water when I walked next door to her house. Oh, the memories…

Anyhow, I was thinking that a body could spend every day of December baking cookies just from this one website and never get through all those recipes, but wouldn’t it be fun to have the time and energy to try. Maybe one of these years we’ll spend the whole month of December baking cookies here at the shop. We could have a giant cookie exchange! Think you’d be interested? We’d have to diet all year long before and after in order to do it relatively guilt free. Actually, now that I think about it, I don’t think I’ve ever felt guilty when eating cookies, only satisfied and comforted, so maybe I wouldn’t have to diet after all. As they say, any excuse will do when you don’t want to loan out your mule…

Last, but not least, I thought I’d share another quick and easy project that would have the added bonus of allowing you to practice your machine quilting while making something for your own holiday table or to give as a gift. This pattern comes from Linda Visnaw by way of Fabri-Quilt’s blog. Click on the link and you’ll be able to download a PDF file for the pattern. It would be a great way to use up scraps of fabrics for the backgrounds, the stars, the binding, and backing. Oh yes, let’s not forget to mention batting scraps as well. Shrink the idea down and you could make mug rugs to match. Get those creative juices flowing and see what you can come up with. For instance, how about a feather tree design. I can see it, can you?

Now for a biggie…how about a FREE week in France?! Paris to be exact! If you win, I get to go too! Thank heavens I took two years of French in high school… How do you win such a wonderful trip? All you have to do is share your needlework story in 250 words or less between now and January 31, 2013. DMC will be collecting submissions and a panel of judges will select the winner. All you need to do is fill out this DMC Memories Contest Form. In order for me to join you, and play interpreter (please quit laughing…), you’ll need to mention the name of the shop on your form. In addition to getting to go to Paris we’ll get to tour the DMC factory. Can you just imagine all the wonderful colors we’ll get to see! I’ve heard Paris in springtime is lovely, maybe that’s when we’ll get to go. Start writing!!!
Holiday Lane Rooftop
Before I leave you I want to share a little more of my Holiday Lane project from last week that I’m still working on. It’s always challenging to me to decide just how to finish the edges of a raw-edge appliqué project. I can blanket stitch the edges, but that’s not always the best way to finisheverything. In this case, I started with the rooftops of my houses. I wanted them to look a bit more interesting than what plain old blanket stitching could do, so I borrowed and idea from Stacy and did this instead. I used the Ricky Tims Stable Stuff on the back because I shrank the stitch down to as small as it would go. I tried one rooftop without it and while it did all right it seemed to pucker just a bit whereas the ones with the Stable Stuff stayed nice and flat.Holiday Lane Roof Close Up

It takes a bit longer to do this type of stitch of course, but I think the end results are so much better. If you have a good imagination you canHoliday Lane - Snow on sill just see the snow piled up on the roof of each of those houses. I did the snow on the window sill as well. It gives it a 3-D effect. Now to decide what to do with the tree and window. I have a new stitch that I’ve not used before that I want to try on the houses. I’ll show you that in a future post. Since I’ve never done it before I need to practice a bit first before I try it on my project. Taking out decorative stitches is not always easy and rarely fun. Trust me on this one…

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