MAGPIE'S MUMBLINGS

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.

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Boring, boring, B-O-R-Ing!!!!


Yep, the title says it all!  Not a thing happening here at Chez Magpie that's even worth talking about.  There's another (currently nekkid) doll in the works but that's boring to see.  

So, for lack of something creative to show, how about pictures of my sons and grandsons?  

Above is #1 son and his son and below is #2 son and his son.



The first picture was taken on the weekend when we took #1 grandson to the zoo.  Second picture was one I snagged from facebook.  

- I stumbled across THIS blog and spent quite a bit of time going back through a lot of the posts.  Talk about eye candy overload - and all different types of subject matter too!

- Sometimes the vintage patterns are the best and THIS sweater set for a little one is a great example.

- If you like log cabin quilts there are tons of setting ideas HERE.

- If you happen to be looking for an easy knit sweater that looks comfie and stylish, how about THIS one?

- For the crazy quilters among us, perhaps you might like to have fun with a Halloween pattern from HERE.

- If you happen to be a fan of the 'Crazy Quilt Quarterly' magazine (and you are....right?) you might be interested in checking out the new facebook group being run by Karen South.  You can find out more by reading Pam's post HERE.  

Today your quote is from Terry Pratchett...."Human beings make life so interesting.  Do you know, that in a universe so full of wonders, they have managed to invent boredom?"








Friday, August 11, 2017

She's finished! And an update


This is #1 of what I plan to be four rag dolls....


As I mentioned previously, she's created from several different patterns as well as some parts that have been pulled out of my head.  I'm still not overly pleased with the design so the next one will change again.  My original pattern had pantaloons, a camisole AND a slip - this one has been pared down to just pantaloons (I did make the camisole & slip and decided they made her too bulky).  This one has both an underskirt and an overskirt - again too much.  The next one will have just one skirt.  The sleeves are too bulky too - and they will be downsized somewhat to make them a little more manageable.  My original doll had yarn hair - which was a complete and total PIA to make, quite truthfully.  I've tried her with curly yarn hair and with straight and none of them suit my requirement of playability (and yes, I know that's not a proper word!!).  This one has felt hair which is glued on and is quite a bit safer for curious little fingers.  The next thing is to re-do her facial features.  Stay tuned - there will be more!!

And....look at what appeared in my sewing room doorway just a few minutes ago!!  

Coconut cream pie!!

Further on the sewing machine front - I took it back to the store for a service call yesterday and am, at least so far, pleased with the outcome.  It has gone from sounding akin to a threshing machine to almost purring.  Who knew?  The girls in the store had quite a laugh over the expression on my face when I first tested it out.  I had gotten used to the various clunks and thumps and growls and was quite astounded that it could sound so quiet!  Now I'm in the process of testing it at home and will be giving it a workout over the next couple of weeks to be sure everything is working as it should.  Phew!!

- THIS is a really interesting pattern for a quilt block.  Not that I'm a sane quilter, but I know some of you are!

- THIS fits under the 'awwwww' category!

- Never let it be said that this blogger fears ANY subject - so - how about making one of THESE for your bathroom?    I actually have one of these that I bought many years ago and it's invaluable!

- Wish I had known about  THIS when I was heavily into working with recycled denim!

Today your quote is from the Dalai Lama..."There are only two days in the year that nothing can be done.  One is called yesterday and the other is called tomorrow, so today is the right day to love, believe, do, and mostly live"




Tuesday, August 08, 2017

Not quite nekkid!


Having a sewing machine that won't do anything but straight stitch rather limits my creative endeavors so I had to cast about for something to work on.  I've been toying with making a doll (or three...maybe four) and this is as far as I got yesterday...


As I said - not quite naked, but close!
Here you see her sporting her camisole and bloomers.

And below she has her slip...


All created from stash findings (bonus!)

Unfortunately I can't share the pattern source but suffice to say it's a cobbled-together one
that originated probably about 30 years ago.  Some parts were from a McCall's pattern,
some were from a Butterick pattern, and some out of my head.
Each time I make her more of her comes out of my head!

....and before you ask, no, I'm not making any announcements about any new grand babies in the picture!  This one is for my friend who has a wee granddaughter just the right age for a rag doll.  I have two more friends who also have granddaughters that will probably get one too.  Just for the sheer fun of making them!


- THIS falls under the stash busting/gift giving title.  With 'That-Day-That-Shall-Not-Be-Named' approaching faster than any of us would like, perhaps you might like to make one (or several).

- And HERE's another great gift idea too!  And another one HERE.  And how about THIS?  And THIS one might be handy for a guy (or a girl!) who jogs or runs.

- Further on the doll theme - perhaps you'd like to make one of THESE for a little girl and her doll?

- Pam Kellogg has released the latest in her cross stitch pattern series and you can find more about that HERE.  And she's also continuing her free  Never Sending Sampler series and you can see the latest patterns HERE.  

Today your quote is from an anonymous source...  "Things money can't buy....manners, morals, respect, character, common sense, trust, patience, class, integrity, and love"


Monday, August 07, 2017

Something a little different


Over the weekend I played with some of my now almost-defunct denim stash and made a couple of the little hats for our grandsons from the link I gave you  a day or so ago.  Pictures aren't great, but I think they turned out rather cute.



They're reversible - with denim on the outside and some green cotton from my stash on the inside.  Pattern is the 'Reversible Bucket Hat' from HERE.


- Oh wow!  Karen Ruane has just announced her amazing new online venture and it's a doozy!  An entire year of playing and learning with her (along with the rest of the participants).  It's a not-to-be-missed opportunity, so go HERE and HERE to learn more.

- If you like turtles and pincushions, perhaps you might like one of THESE living in your sewing room.

- There's a really pretty idea for a bag HERE.  The pattern for the bag itself isn't there, but there are tons of free patterns out there that could easily be adapted.

- Tutorial HERE for making a really cute sock monkey.

- If you'd like to try making your own patina mixes, have a look at the post HERE.

- Does your jaw need some exercise (as it drops open in amazement?), then have a look at THIS.

Today, instead of a quote, I have a poem to share with you...

THE FINAL INSPECTION

The Soldier stood and faced God,
Which must always come to pass.
He hoped his shoes were shining,
Just as brightly as his brass.

"Step forward now, Soldier,
How shall I deal with you?
Have you always turned the other cheek?
To My Church have you been true?"

The soldier squared his shoulders and said,
"No, Lord, I guess I ain't.
Because those of us who carry guns,
Can't always be a saint.

I've had to work most Sundays,
And at times my talk was tough.
And sometimes I've been violent,
Because the world is awfully rough.

But I never took a penny
That wasn't mine to keep.
Though I worked a lot of overtime,
When the bills just got too steep.

And I never passed a cry for help,
Though at times I shook with fear.
And sometimes, God, forgive me,
I've wept unmanly tears.

I know I don't deserve a place
Among the people here.
They never wanted me around,
Except to calm their fears.

If you've a place for me here, Lord,
It needn't be so grand.
I never expected or had too much,
But if you don't, I'll understand."

There was a silence all around the throne,
Where the saints had often trod.
As the soldier waited quietly,
For the judgment of his God.

"Step forward now, you Soldier,
You've borne your burdens well.
Walk peacefully on Heaven's streets,
You've done your time in Hell."

Author Unknown








Thursday, August 03, 2017

Update


Since absolutely NO stitching has been happening here at Chez Magpie, there will be no pictures to share. 

I know -
boring, right?

No knitting.
No crocheting.
No stitching.

I am going c-r-a-z-y!!!!

Does this mean that (horrors)
I have to CLEAN???

To bring you up to date on the ongoing saga about the sewing machine....I spent a large part of yesterday emailing back and forth (and on the phone too) with a lovely lady from Bernina head office.  More experiments with the machine, accompanied by much photo taking and sharing, has led to the consensus being that there is something off kilter with the lower tension.  (Could have told them that from the get-go, but anyhoo....).

Turns out that the store where I bought it should have given it a full service before they sold it, which didn't happen for whatever reason.  I bought, at a very reduced price, the demo model they had in the store - accompanied, thankfully, by a full warranty.  As of this moment I will be toting it back to the store next Thursday (what am I going to DO in the meantime???????!!!!) bright and early in the morning so that the repair guy can do the proper service and make the adjustments to the tension, which will (fingers crossed) rectify things.  I will bring it home and give it a VERY thorough run and, if things aren't right I will be heading back to the store to demand a refund or a replacement machine.  They have also promised to have an 'education' representative on hand to go over all the fine details on the machine with me to be sure I fully understand it (not necessary, but a nice additional touch).  Not only that, but the Bernina person also said she would be more than happy to meet me at the store and run interference with them should the need arise.  Not necessary, but lovely of her to offer. 

Out of all of this I have to say that I have nothing against Bernina per se - I think this machine, if working properly, would be more than adequate for anything I need.  I was happy to be assured by the rep that they, as policy, keep replacement parts for all discontinued machines available for at least 20 years.  That was good to know.  The company rep made me feel validated and completely understood the issues and assured me that none of this was my fault - I was fully prepared to have to go into battle and that was definitely not the case.  

So far, so good.  Stay tuned for further chapters in the ongoing saga!!

So, now how about some mumblings?

- If you have little ones in your life, perhaps you'd like to make them some of THESE hats.  I'm looking in my stash to see what might be usable so I can make one for each of our grandsons.

- I've been searching for some knitting patterns to perhaps create between now and that not-to-be-yet-mentioned day in December.  Found THIS one for our oldest 'grand'  and THIS one for our youngest.  And THIS one would be fun for the women in the family perhaps.

- If there's a little girl in your life, THIS would be so cute!

- There doesn't seem to be a specific tutorial on how to make THIS, but it's easily done I think.  Now to remember to save the cardboard rolls!

Today your quote is from another anonymous source..."The strongest people are not those who show strength in front of us, but those who win battles we know nothing about"

Tuesday, August 01, 2017

Just mumbling today




I was away most of the day yesterday and much of today too, so not much done on the stitching front beyond trying a few more ideas to try to wrestle my sewing machine into submission.  More dismal failures and I know you have NO interest in seeing those!!  

On the bright side, I did receive a call from a person in the 'education' department at Bernina.  Of course I wasn't home when she called, but at least we're trying to connect.  Remains to be seen if she has any good ideas to fix my issues.  If not, I may have to scuttle my whole plan of trying to create barns and give up on any type of free motion work (or working with mono thread).  Not what I want to do, but buying yet another sewing machine is definitely not in my budget.  

- The fall issue of 'Crazy Quilt Quarterly' is now available!!  It's another great issue (and I'm not just saying that because my 'Courtship' project is in there! ).  You can get your copy either HERE at MagCloud or HERE at Etsy.



- Mary Corbet has announced the release of her brand new e-book called 'Will Ewe Bee Mine?' -filled with wonderful monograms and patterns.  Go HERE to find out more.

- Another of my on-line friends (Susan Leschke) has some absolutely adorable stitching patterns available.  Go HERE to see!

- And another of my friends (Suzy Quaife) has a great online class available for making her absolutely gorgeous fabric and lace books.  Right now the class is on sale so hurry over HERE to find out more about 'Peaceful and Pondering Fabric Lace Books'.  And if you want to see more of her work, she blogs HERE.

- If you enjoy working with beads and like owls, perhaps you'd like to try your hand at creating one (or more!) of THESE.

Today the quote is from an anonymous source..."One day or day one. You decide"






Monday, July 31, 2017

Bumbling along

Who knew?  I not only mumble but I bumble too!!  Just a woman of multi-talents, that's me.  

To explain....I've been working away on Barn #2 and decided I wasn't happy.  Not at all.  Quite perturbed actually.  It just plain didn't look right.  Of course not having taken any lessons in this form of art and having to rely on what tidbits I can glean from books and the internet makes it a lot more difficult.  Not having any training in art whatsoever is probably the biggest issue.

Anyhoo.

Here's what I've done so far and maybe (most likely!!) you can see what has me wondering...


The scene I'm attempting to use for inspiration is this one....


I'm limited in what I use for fabrics to what I have in my stash so that's part of the problem.  Anyway....do you see the grass?  Can you see that it's a great big fat mound of yuck?  I wanted a field of grass and it looks like there's too much 'distance' to it - for lack of a better explanation.  It's too much.  

So I putzed a bit and laid some 
fabric over top to audition and came up
with this...


To my seriously un-trained eye I think it looks better.  It's no longer seeming to be the focal point.  Maybe.  Or maybe not.  

Suggestions?
Ideas?

or should it be scuttled altogether?

*******

- Although I would never create one of THESE, I have to admit it made me smile.

- In my quest to learn all I can about landscape quilting, I have found a wonderful blog and am slowly reading my way through every one of her posts.  THIS particular one definitely caught my eye and not because it's for landscapes.  She has an amazing tip for the sane quilters out there that have issues with deciding on quilt block arrangements and spend tons of time moving blocks about to settle on a layout..  Go see what she does (scroll down a bit in her post to see it).  Talk about inspired!!

- There's a really pretty crocheted shawl pattern available HERE.  Perfect for a wedding shawl I think.  And HERE's another wonderful one that would be a perfect stash buster.  Be sure to scroll down to see some of the different colourways.

- I love THIS one for all the versatile ways you can wear it.

Oh, and just for fun, how about a picture of DH's garlic crop?  Planted in a container on our balcony!


Today the quote is from Warren Buffet...."It is better to be approximately right than precisely wrong"






Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Mourning

Yes, I'm definitely mourning the loss of my beloved Janome sewing machine (most of you will remember the tale of woe that led to its demise and the subsequent purchase of a Bernette).  After spending a lot of time with the Bernette I have reached the sad conclusion that, in many ways, it is best suited for a boat anchor.  The only feature I can honestly say that it has that I truly like is the 'needle down' - the rest of it is cheaply made and it shows.  The latest disappointment was finding it is woefully unable to free motion, despite following (explicitly!!) the directions and consulting several on-line tutorials.  It simply Will Not Work.  It heartily dislikes any 'different' threads (ie. monofiliment) and will snarl at me no end.  (And yes, before you ask, I have done a TON of research to see what I could possibly be doing wrong).  I have sewn for pretty much all my life and have spent more time in complete and utter frustration over this thing.  Unless and until I manage to win a lottery I guess I'm stuck with it, but I'm definitely not happy with it.

Bottom line?  If you're considering buying a sewing machine anytime in the future and want it to do more than sew in a straight line,  don't get a Bernette 20!!!!

On to (I hope) better things....but the above frustration stems from what I want to do with this....


This isn't the entire scene, but I thought I'd show you the barn at least.  The rest of it is still under construction (or destruction, depending on the degree of sewing machine foul ups!).  


- I may have shared THIS free pattern for a nice bag with you already.  Please forgive my 'mental-pause' if I have!!

- There's a sweet little baby bonnet tutorial HERE

- And a fun bag pattern/tutorial can be found HERE.  For some reason I can 'see' the embellishment being a wonderful cluster of lots of buttons.

- THIS is a really cute knitted toddler sweater.

Today I have two quotes for you.  The first one is from anonymous..."I've had full conversations with my sewing machine.  They haven't all ended well"  (and you can be sure that there have been numerous 'conversations' happening here!).  

and another one shared by my friend Maureen...and coming from Phyllis Diller...."Maybe it's true that life begins at fifty, but everything else starts to wear out, fall out, or spread out"





Monday, July 24, 2017

Rust dye - a tutorial of sorts!


I was asked in the comments to share more about the process I used for rust dyeing my fabrics - and about the washability of them.  I'm afraid I never have washed any of the fabrics I've dyed, but I would be fairly certain that they would be fine, particularly if the fabric was well rinsed after dyeing. Here's what I did....

SUPPLIES:  - fabric scraps, preferably cotton and preferably washed beforehand to remove any manufacturer's sizing;   some steel wool (found at the hardware store) and some vinegar.  Some sort of flat container large enough to hold several layers of fabric (I used an aluminum disposable pan that is meant for roasting a turkey - found at the grocery or dollar store).  If you happen to have access to some old washers, nails or whatever might rust (raiding your DH's workshop might yield all sorts of goodies) you can add those to the mix.  Some salt.  

PROCESS:  I laid down a piece of fabric in the bottom of the pan and then pulled long pieces of steel wool out of the pad and laid them down over the fabric.  Repeat the layers as often as you'd like.   You can add any other bits of metal to your layering.  If you have a spare spray bottle, fill it with vinegar, and moisten each layer well as you make them....if you don't have a spray bottle, just wait until the layers are complete and slosh the vinegar over top until everything is wet.  Some people suggest putting the entire thing into a large garbage bag and then tying it shut.  I didn't, because I want to watch the process and stop it when I felt happy with what I was seeing.  I found that about 8-10 hours was long enough.  

When you feel it's 'cooked', carefully remove the strands of steel wool and set them aside for a later session.You might want to wear rubber gloves for that because it will stain your fingers somewhat. REMEMBER whatever you set those rusty metals onto will end up being dyed too, so be careful!!!  Rinse the fabrics really well until the water runs clear.  I then put about 1/4 cup of salt into the sink along with enough water to cover the fabrics, swish around until salt is dissolved, and let sit for a few minutes (5-10 mins is enough).  Rinse thoroughly again.  Dry your masterpieces, press them and you're all done.  

- I don't know if any of you are fans of alcohol inks, but if you go HERE there's a good tutorial on how to make your own, for a fraction of the cost.

- If you happen to have an odd, unlabeled, ball of yarn (or dozens!) in your stash and you would like to determine the yardage in the ball, there's a good article HERE to explain an easy way to do so.

- There's a nice tutorial here for a cute little stash buster that might come in handy for gift giving.

- And speaking of stash busting, HERE is a great use for bits of yarn you might have in your stash.  It's just one of a ton of free patterns that can be found at THIS link.

Today your quote is from an unknown source..."No one can destroy iron, but it's own rust can.  Likewise no one can destroy us.  But our own mindset can" 


Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Rust dye results


All my little experiments are dried and ironed and ready for use.  Not quite sure what  I will use them for but I'm envisioning (with a little more tweaking) that some might end up being barn roofs.  



and this one is my favourite...


- For those of you who enjoy working with paper, perhaps you'd like to combine it with coffee (go HERE to see what I'm talking about!).

- There's a cute little tutorial HERE to make a keepsake bear from a cherished baby outfit.  

- You can go HERE for part one of a 3-part series on how to begin making landscape quilts.  Some great tips!  At the bottom of the post you can click for parts 2 and 3.

- A few days ago my friend Maureen shared some of her favourite quotes with me.  I thought you might enjoy them too, so I will, over the next few posts, share them with you.  Thank you Maureen!!

The first one is from Lillian Carter (mother of President Jimmy Carter)..."Sometimes, when I look at my children, I say to myself, 'Lillian, you should have remained a virgin"

and this one is from Eleanor Roosevelt...."I had a rose named after me and I was very flattered.  But I was not pleased to read the description in the catalogue:  No good in a bed, but fine against a wall"


Monday, July 17, 2017

Rusting away! and toy for a little boy


This little fellow winged his way out west to live with our youngest grandbaby and by all reports it seems to have been a big success.  So much fun to make, and used up some scrap yarn from my stash. Pattern is 'Donato' and is a free pattern found on Ravelry HERE.  

(and before you ask, no I didn't do the watercolor that he's posing with!  It was painted by my Australian cousin).  

I can't (won't) show you what I'm doing right at the moment because it's an icky mess.  Currently there's little bits of cloth hanging over the chairs on the balcony so they can dry after I've rust dyed them.  Not exciting at this stage (come to think of it....maybe not exciting at ANY stage!!).  

- Vicki Welsh has posted her latest 'play' with making sun prints HERE and she has a great tutorial HERE about how she does it.  (Did you notice how I moved right into another form of dyeing?)


- I've been asked for a review of the online Craftsy class that I took prior to undertaking my barn landscape and I'm more than happy to do so.  The class was called "Pictorial Techniques with Machine Applique' by Wendy Butler Berns  and you can find it HERE.  If you are at all interested in creating landscape quilts using your own photographs, this is an excellent class!  Wendy uses a technique that is really easy to master and the amount of detail you choose to include in your project is up to you.  Of course you know I can't NOT include at least some embroidery!!  

- THIS is a really cute pillow.

This is another quote from an anonymous source..."We get so worried about being 'pretty'.  Let's be pretty kind, pretty funny, pretty smart, pretty strong"



Thursday, July 13, 2017

Done!!!!


I'm sorry to say that my barn project is finished!  Sorry - not because I don't like it, but sorry because it's done and I can't play with it any more.  I had SO much fun creating this and I know I am going to be doing more, once I augment my stash enough to do so.  

First of all, here is the original photo I was working from...



You will notice I took a little creative license and left the people out and added a couple of horses to the scene.  I'm giving this as a Christmas gift and the people once owned two horses, so I thought it would be nice to include them.

Now, here's the finished piece...




The frame was a perfect thrift store find!

Close-ups...



I think you can click to embiggen them 
if you so desire!
(just don't look too close!!)

Earlier in the week DH and I took a little road trip in search of barns that I could create and I think this one will be next 'up' to play with...
These are the types of barns I'm fascinated with.


- If you happen to be a long arm quilter, perhaps you'd like to read about how Vicki uses zippers to attach quilts to her machine at her post HERE.

- There's a tutorial HERE to make a cute little wallet.

- If you happen to like pouches, there's an unusual one HERE.

- Pool noodles.  They have great uses in quilting and you can see that HERE.  

- How about a tool belt for your sewing machine?  I don't know about you, but my tools are constantly rolling/falling off my sewing table and one of these would be so handy!

Today the quote is from anonymous..."The same boiling water that softens the potato hardens the egg.  it's about what you're made of, not the circumstances"

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

A little more


I've done a little more at my barn project and here's a picture...



I rather doubt that you can see much difference!!  Trust me though, there IS some.  The grass area is complete - the horses are re-done (several times over!!) and there are tons (!) of feather stitches and straight stitches on the trees.  Maybe if you scroll a couple of posts down you can see the difference from when I started.  And you should be able to click to embiggen this picture too.   


- Suzi of Suziqi Threadworks has announced that there's a sale for her online workshop called 'Peaceful and Pondering' - a class in making her absolutely stunning fabric books.  Go see HERE, even if you don't plan on taking the class!!  Her work is amazing!

- Thanks to Dolores for giving us the head's up about the free patterns to be found HERE.

- There's an interesting article HERE about how creativity can affect your well being.

- HERE is a great article about how to use tea bags in your art - printing on them with your printer sounds intriguing!

- Sandy Babb has a wonderful video HERE about pressing and using botanicals in your art.

Today your quote is from Khalil Gibram..."Progress lies not in enhancing what is, but in advancing toward what will be"






Thursday, July 06, 2017

Teeny bit of progress and three's

I'll start with the 3's aspect of my post today.  You know how there's an old adage that things happen in three's?  Well, first came the fender-bender with the car.....then my ceiling light/fan in my sewing room decided to start shorting out, which necessitated a call to the building super to come and fix it.  He came this afternoon and yes, there was a loose wire inside and he repaired it.  Well....I turned it on tonight and, you've guessed it, it's still not working.  Argh!  The third disaster was yesterday afternoon when we were both sitting relatively still and there was an unexplained crash.  Investigation showed nothing....until......DH went into our storage room and realized that a wine bottle had mysteriously turned itself sideways on the shelf and decided to make a run for it.  Literally.  HOW it got turned is a complete puzzle because nobody was near it....nobody had been near it....or anything else on the shelf.  

Yesterday was quite warm.  We're told that saunas are good for your health, so after we moved everything out of that room and washed everything (including the walls), we know that the sauna-ish health benefits must be SO good!  

That outta be our three!!

In and around all the mopping and cleaning, I did manage to get a little more done on my barn quilt.  I don't know if you can tell the difference from this picture though!


I have a question for you - if you happen to own any books in your collection that pertain to making landscape quilts, which one(s) would you recommend?  And why?  It's something I would like to do more of, but I need some instruction that might help me figure it out.  Thank you in advance!!

- If I were to happen to win the lottery one day, I wouldn't mind having one of THESE

- I love this style of quilting and the subject matter too.  And THIS one too.  And THIS.  

Today the quote is from an unknown source... "Don't worry about what people say behind your back.  They are the people who are finding faults in your life instead of fixing their own"



Tuesday, July 04, 2017

A new venture and a dent

I may have mentioned previously that I've been toying with attempting to make a landscape quilt featuring a barn, after having been gifted with an online class by Wendy Butler Berns through Craftsy.  Over the weekend I made a start at it.  Not sure about it quite yet.  I am limited in the fabric choices I have because I'm not a 'sane' quilter and therefore am sadly lacking in cotton options in my stash.  Anyway, here's the first step...


Remains to be seen how much of a mess I'm going to create from now on in!

Stupidity runs rampant here at Chez Magpie - at times the degree of same increases beyond even my expectations.  Our much-loved Toyota Rav4, with me at the helm, managed to back into a little Pontiac Sunfire whilst attempting to exit a parking spot.  Sunfire got the worst of it and I feel exceedingly stoooopid.  Nobody was hurt, fortunately, but it's taking awhile to recover from the self-abuse I'm wallowing in.  First time in all my years of driving that I've done something that dumb and I must say that I hope it's the last!

I'd like to also wish our neighbours to the south a very happy 4th of July!  Be safe.

- There's a really pretty quilt pattern available through a link HERE.  I love the colours the artist used.

- THIS artist does really great work (there are three different links to see her work, so be sure to click on them to explore!).

- There's a really pretty crocheted trim pattern & video found HERE.  

- Some beautiful art quilts HERE.  

Today your quote is from an anonymous source..."You can't fix stupidity - even with duct tape"


Friday, June 30, 2017

Lacking in pictures


Today I'm sadly lacking in any photos to show you because it's been one of those weeks when I've been doing lots of lunches out and such and obviously haven't been home long enough to really create anything worth showing.  I have, however, accumulated several mumblings and will share those.



- If you have young people in your life and happen to be searching for something they can do in the summer holidays, perhaps THIS might be something you could have on hand for rainy days.

- And HERE is another little something that might be fun for the kids.  

- THIS falls under the 'well, I'll be darned' category.  I don't know about you but I didn't have a clue about any of what Super Mom No Cape has discovered about spool threads.  Go have a look!!

- There's a handy downloadable tool HERE for helping to make even hems in fabric.

- If you would like to add a lace insertion there's an easy tutorial HERE.

- Have a peek at the work THIS artist does - pretty amazing things.  And also have a look at the work found HERE.  Wow!  And THIS too!

- And the work found HERE is pretty incredible too.

- HERE are some more.  I can but dream of being able to do such things!


Tomorrow is Canada's 150th birthday - so - if you are Canadian, a happy (and safe!) holiday to you!!  


Today the quote is from an anonymous source..."There are 3 C's in life:  Choice, Chance, and Change.  You must make the Choice, to take the Chance, if you want anything in life to Change"




Monday, June 26, 2017

What's a girl to do??

Yes, what's a girl to do when there are several strikes against her
 and she's weak, oh so weak?


What is she to do when her husband suggests that
a trip to the fabric shop might be a nice thing
to do on a rainy day?

What's she to do when he reminds her that
there are four big boxes of donations
sitting on her side of the bedroom 
floor waiting to be taken to the thrift store
and that the fabric shop is on the way?

What, I ask you, is a girl to do 
when the afore-mentioned fabric shop
just happens to be having a huge
50% off sale??

What is that girl to do when
a beautiful piece of fabric
simply leaps off the shelf and 
into her arms, flatly refusing
to be put down?

What's that girl to do 
when several other pieces of fabric
do the very same thing?

What's a girl to do 
when there's 'No, No' on her lips,
but 'Yes, Yes' in her heart?

Well....

This is ONE piece of fabric - with lace already applied!!


- You have to go and look at the latest creations from the very talented Michele Palmer!!  They are absolutely beyond adorable.  Go HERE.

- THIS is one of those things I won't likely ever make but I said 'awwww' right out loud when I saw it.

- Further on the twiddle muffs for dementia patients....when I saw THIS I immediately thought that you could combine a lap quilt and the aspect of a twiddle muff by putting things inside the pocket.

- There's a whole bunch of free patterns HERE, including a really sweet little girls dress.

- THIS will take you to a pdf pattern for a really nice hot mat that will make excellent use of scraps.

- There's a really nice purse organizer pattern HERE.

Today your quote is from Anonymous...."The Dust Bunnies killed my cleaning fairy.  Please pardon the mess while I seek a replacement"




Friday, June 23, 2017

As promised


Today I have something just a little different to share.  As many of you might remember our #2 son and daughter-in-love have started a family photography business (miamusa.ca) and at the moment they're searching for appropriate 'props' to have on hand for their baby photo shoots.  I am currently working on creating a number of these little baby headbands that hopefully they'll be able to use.



The one on the upper left is knitted and the rest are all crocheted.  I did each of these designs (with the exception of the knitted one) in several different colours so they have an assortment to choose from.

- If you have lots of corrugated cardboard lying about, perhaps you'd like to try your hand at something like THESE?

- I would love one of THESE for my grandson(s) - but a little pricey don't you think?

- If you have little ones that love Lego in your life perhaps you might want to file THIS idea away for those days in the summer when they're bored.  Or if they're a little older maybe having THIS idea in your arsenal might be fun.

- And for some jaw-dropping embroidery skills have a look HERE (be sure to scroll down!)

It's raining again today - seems like we get some every day and we're beginning to wonder if maybe we're living in a rain forest.  Everything looks so lush and green but I know it's hard on the farmers who need sunlight and heat for many of their crops.  

Today I have another quote from Bob Marley...."Some people feel the rain, others just get wet"