Busy Life, Busy Hands

Regarding my lack of posts these past several weeks, I can explain: sinus infection, pink eye, my other day job (the one that pays), and ushering kids through that last heap of homework and school projects before the holiday break.  Oh, and one other thing, I have been making quite a few gifts with several more still in the works.

For the teachers this year, I have been using some of those cute holiday fabrics and leftover pieces of batting from various quilting projects to make coaster sets.  When combined with some favorite baking and hot chocolate mixes, it makes for a practical, but yummy gift.  I also like the fact that the coasters are simple enough that kids can help make them.  To make, cut out two 4-1/2″ squares of fabric and one 4″ square of batting for each coaster.  Lay the two fabric pieces right sides together and then lay the batting on top, centering it on the fabric squares.  Using a 1/4″ seam allowance, stitch around the coaster through all three layers, but leave a 2″ gap for turning right side out.   Turn right side out, press, whip-stitch the opening closed, and quilt.  I quilted these coasters by stitching just about 1/4″ from the edge so as not to interfere with the fabric’s design.  I used the walking foot attachment on my Bernina sewing machine to prevent the layers of fabric from shifting when sewing.

Several friends are getting knitted scarves — each one is different  in terms of its design, color, and length.  The scarf below, knit in all garter stitch on size 15 needles, uses two different yarns.  It measures 35 inches, a length that I really like wearing with certain coats and sweaters.  (I am becoming more and more like my grandmother who always had a cold neck — now I, too, like a scarf tucked around my neck in the house and out on these cold winter days.  At least I’m not wearing one in August yet!)  Scarves are great way to use up lone skeins, play with novelty yarns, or mix and match yarns to create an interesting pattern.

Well, back to being an elf … happy sewing!


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