A Stitch In Time …Quilting

Today I finished my biggest project to date, a full size quilt. Take a peak.

Chicken Quilt

While it has not made it to my bed yet because I literally just finished it minutes ago but was so excited about its completion I wanted to share.

While I get it is not a complicated pieced quilt, and I have done those, this one has gotten me through this nightmare that we have endured the last few years.

Yes I can hear the comments now, “It took you two years to complete I could have made several in that length of time”. Yes, I get it could have been done quicker. Let me explain, this is not my only hobby and was not my only project. This was also not quilted on a frame but in my lap. The squares and borders were sewed together a row at a time after the individual squares were quilted.

It has not been a complicated project but a labor of love. Love of the art of quilting. I actually acquired the fabric for this quilt several years earlier on a camping trip to the mountains. We landed in Marion, NC. It is a quaint small town that has barn quilts on almost every single building. In addition to being a great photo op it gave me the opportunity to drop by their little quilt shop.

For two years the fabric sat in my stash of other potential quilt options. When Covid hit I said it was the perfect time to start the quilt. Striving for perfection was not the objective, just to get a finish during a stressful time was the goal. So that I would not get stressed over the quilt I also worked on other projects.

Two weeks ago my husband says to me “Are you ever going to finish that quilt”. He was anxious as well to see it complete. So I put my other projects aside and finished seaming the last row of blocks. The last two days have been spent gently binding edges. This morning my husband cooked breakfast. When he brought breakfast to me, I was in my office where I could watch the birds and our favorite rabbit. Again the quilt bundled in my lap would probably look a “hot mess” to most people. I proudly showed my husband the last few stitches I had to make. And his remark, “Are you going to sell it?” No I responded because two years of my life was tied up in this quilt!

It might be a while before I undertake another project like this but do plan to make some lap quilts for donation.

If you have never quilted but would like to learn check out your local community College, quilt shops or center for the arts for classes.

Thanks for following and don’t forget to share this blog.

Have a great and blessed day.

When Crafting Becomes Therapy

Believe it or not I was not born with a crochet hook in my mouth or a camera in my hand! I was fortunate that my mother taught me how to crochet and sew at a young age. Like most kids after I learned those skills, I laid them down for other things in life.

After I married, the need for those skills reappeared. I did not realize then that having those skills would get me through some very turbulent times.

Money was often tight but I began to see the value of my skills as a hobby and started to save pennies or whatever I could to pay for my supplies. Whether I was sitting at my sewing machine or crocheting a blanket it didn’t take long to realize it was a positive distraction. While my marriage became an abusive relationship, it was my time crafting that saved me emotionally.

As a single mother, life was always a challenge but I funneled any negative emotions through my hobbies. As my child grew so did my list of hobbies. I added knitting, took a quilting and photography class and more. My list has grown a lot since then.

I was fortunate enough that when I remarried it was to a man that could tolerate my obsession. He not only understands my crafting is a passion but also a coping skill. You see I have this little short fuse and used to get depressed so having developed these skills helped both.

After my Dad passed in 2007 of cancer I started making shawls, hats and other items and donating them to our local Cancer Center. Doing this helped me to recover from my grief. The money I put into this is nothing is nothing compared to what I receive.

If you are depressed or just struggling with everyday life, I strongly encourage you to find a hobby. The money you put into it is a lot less than therapy and a lot more fun!

Don’t forget to like and share!

Have an awesome day!

Creative Cures – Filling Needs

As much as I would love to make a ton of money off of my crafts the truth is I give away most things.

My joy is in the making and the giving. The fact that when I give these things away I know they will be cherished and appreciated.

Lap Blankets

I seldom use patterns because I feel like they limit my creativity. These lap blankets may soon warm the lap of a wheelchair bound patient. Just create a simple block and keep adding to it

Jingle Holly

Dolls and bears and dinos galore will one day rest in the hands of children who have lived a less than perfect life.

While I create to fill needs it also keeps my hands busy and my heart full.

If you have a talent, consider using that talent to help others.

To help fund my cause please consider visiting these links:

For my book:

https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/once-upon-a-mountain-christmas-sue-heath/1138744574?ean=2940162506812

My Etsy Shop: https://www.etsy.com/shop/FolkwaysCreations?ref=search_shop_redirect

Thanks for visiting and have a great day.

Crafting On The Road

When traveling it can sometimes be difficult to take your craft projects with you. This one is easy and can be crammed into a gallon size zip lock bag.

This is rag crafting. In the top of the picture is a small square basket that is great for jewelry or small objects. The picture under it is the beginning of a larger basket.

If you can single crochet you can complete these projects and more.

You will need fabric scraps, the longer the better. Scissors for making the starting cuts and a size H crochet hook.

Lay out the fabric pieces you want to use and make a cut no more than 1 inch wide. After making the clip, pull the section that has been clipped to tear lengthwise. After you have lengths of the fabric torn tie lengths end-to-end forming square knots until you have all tied.

Now with your crochet hook you are going to [for proj 1] chain 3 and slip stitch into first stitch. 2. Continue in the round adding stitches where needed to make your piece lie flat. 3. Depending on how many stitches you now have you will now begin to square your project by adding stitches as follows: if you have 20 stitches in your round then in every 5th stitch you will add 2 stitches giving you 3 stitches to form each corner. Continue in this manner for 5 rows. 6. Continue as on previous row except after the corner decrease one by pulling up loops in two stitches instead of one for the sc. This pulls the corner tight and starts to form the wall of your basket.

After you get your wall height to where you want it cut about 3 inches of your working fabric and weave into the basket to finish. Your basket should now look similar to mine…maybe better.

If you do not have the beginning crochet skills, you can find videos on YouTube or Rumble.

This is literally a “no cost” project unless you need a crochet hook and you can even find them at auctions, yard sales and flea markets.

You don’t have to go broke to make great crafts!

Have a great day.

Don’t forget to stop by Barnes & Nobles and download a copy of my novella https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/once-upon-a-mountain-christmas-sue-heath/1138744574?ean=2940162506812

Crafting One-Of-A-Kind Rugs

In a time of uncertain supply it is important to make the most of what you have. With Christmas coming up I have been contemplating new projects. By a stroke of luck I found a rug canvas at a local auction along with a bag of scraps. Here is what I am working on.

Ragpoint

As you can see this canvas had a design printed on it. You could easily design your own using a fabric marker. Here is what you will need:

Fabric scraps ripped into 1 inch width.
A good pair of scissors, crochet hook to tuck in ends and a pack of needlepoint or yarn needles
And of course your rug canvas you can purchase from Michael’s or any craft store. This is pretty inexpensive depending on the size you purchase.

You thread your needle with your fabric and work this project using a basic needlepoint stitch (You can find videos on YouTube).

While this is not a project you will finish overnight it does work up pretty quickly. After you finish your design, select enough fabric of a neutral color to work the rest of the canvas.

Have fun crafting…

Beading Week

This week I have gone back to doing a little beading. I don’t typically use a pattern so what you get is what you get.

Double Triangle

Beading is very teadious but the results can be rewarding. It takes me a day and sometimes longer to complete one pair. The beads have to be woven in a pattern tightly which makes it more time consuming.

In all things there are lessons….in beading it is patience.

Have a blessed Easter. Christ sacrificed his life for us…sacrifice some time for Him.

Crocheting With Purpose

I do a lot of crocheting and most of the items I make I give away. It is the giving and not the item that is most rewarding. Here are a few items I recently fiished.

While the pattern I followed for this was not 100% accurate, I enjoyed making it.

This is not my pattern because if it was mine it would have had eight legs not seven. Still I thought it turned out pretty cute.

The following is my pattern. This is a simple bear cub.

It is amazine what you can make with a few idle hours. If you are a crocheter consider making toys for sick children or children in the foster care system.

While you are making these also remember the thousands of children that have been taken, abused and murdered because of child trafficking. Be an active voice against the evil of child trafficking.

Have a blessed day.

Pet Crafting 2

I always wanted to see what my little guy “Rocoe” would look like in a bow-tie. Here’s my version.

While Rocoe doesn’t like to have his picture taken, today he proved to be a great model.

If you love to crochet this is very easy. You first need to know your dog’s neck size. Then with a G hook half double crochet the band with 4 stitches across. You can do the band in one length or do two half lengths and add velcro. For the bow make two short lengths (I did the bow in a contrasting color to make it “pop”.) one at least 4″ and stitch end to end. The other a longer piece to make the actual bow part 6″ or longer or to desired length. Stitch the longer piece toghether first then place the 4″ band around the longer piece and the neckband. Walla! You now have a neckband bow-tie!

Hope you enjoyed this crafting tip!

Cross Stitch Mania

Guess I am old fashioned as far as needlework goes because I love cross stitch. Not so much the printed kind but the kind you work to create pictures.

I either will use a photograph or draft a drawing like this one and then upload it to a cross stitch program (I use KB-Chart which is a free program but you can convert to a profession version if you get really good at it) to convert to a cross stitch pattern. If by now you still don’t know what I am talking about here is what cross stitch is:

You use embroidery thread, preferably DMC brand, and cross stitch fabric (my preference is Aida 14 count because it is easier to see) and cross stitch needles.

Cross stitch on Aida 14 image.

If you can blow the above image up, you will see in the fabric little blocks. Each little block has a hole at each corner. To make the cross you pull your thread to start (I work left to right typically but you can do in either direction) leaving a small lenght and do not knot. Pull your thread up from the bottom and up and across to the right corner and down. Then carry your thread from the back right corner to the left top corner and up and across the top and to the bottom right corner. You have now completed your first cross. Before you begin to work the pattern you will determine your design size and allow at least an 1 inch or more on all sides depending on what you want your frame size to be. Once you have cut your fabric to your determined frame size, find the center of your fabric and then the center of you pattern which is usually parked at the top and left size with a character like a triangle.

Mark the center with a straight pin until you are ready to begin. Looking at the pattern see which character is at the center (this will determine your starting color). Now go to the key (which is the last page of your pattern that list all the different threads by character) and find the character that matches up with the center character of the pattern…across from it is the DMC floss number that you will use. There are six threads to the floss. I typically only use 2 but go by whatever your pattern calls for, separate and thread your needle.

Begin with the stitch instructions above and stitch one color at a time following your pattern.

If you need further instructions or have questions about cross stitching, feel free to email me at sgheath1@hotmail.com

Happy stitching.

Build A Blanket

Knit and crochet blanket.

I always have to have something in my hands. I started this last night. It is a good way to incorporate a multitude of different stitches. In the center is a 7″ granny square. At the top on the needle is afghan stitch. On the left and knitted is garter stitch. On the bottom and knitted is moss stitch. On the right and knitted is basket weave.

I started with granny square and then knitted the garter stitch and attached to the granny square. I then picked up stitches across both to do the moss stitch then worked around and picked up stitches on the right side to do the basket weave and finally the afghan stitch in like manner.

You can use any combination of stitches as long as your crochet and knitting needles are compatible and produce similar sized stitches.

When you get your desired width then just add strips on top and bottom to get desired length.

Happy stitching!

Strips are 4″ wide.