Christmas in July | Some Exciting News

Christmas in July is here, courtesy of Homespun magazine! This issue is their annual Christmas special, with lots of festive projects so you can get a head-start on your Christmas sewing. This was my contribution to this issue - a 3D felt Christmas pudding. (above image courtesy of Homespun magazine)

Full list of materials and detailed step by step photo tutorial to make this sweet hoop art can be found in the magazine. If you make this project please send me a photo of your hoop as I would love to see it! Happy stitching!

I have been sitting on some exciting news for a few weeks now, which I can finally share! I am honoured to have been invited to join the Project Design Team for Penny Rose Fabrics, sister company to Riley Blake Designs. Every other Thursday one member of the Project Design Team will be sharing a fabulous project on the Penny Rose blog - my first slot is coming up in August and I will be working with their upcoming fabric line 'Toy Chest'. Read more about the Project Design Team in this post from the Penny Rose Fabrics blog and see who else is in the team - I am so excited to be in the same line up as all these amazing designers!

 (image courtesy of Penny Rose Fabrics)

30's Minis Cushion & Mini-quilt

Have you seen 30s Minis by Penny Rose Fabrics, sister company to Riley Blake Designs? It's the sweetest collection of repro 30s fabrics, all in miniature!

My first project with these pretty fabrics was a HST cushion - the pattern is by Little Miss Shabby and was featured in this post for Sew Mama Sew. Simple and effective use of half-square triangles, and a touch of whimsy with the multi-coloured hand-quilting.

I also made a mini-quilt for my rapidly growing mini-wall. Little granny squares are so wonderfully traditional and a great match for the repro feel of this fabric line.

The 'Little Granny' mini quilt pattern is by my dear friend Stacy from Stacy Olson Design and is available in her Etsy shop at 20% off the usual price until midnight, Saturday, July 4th US CST. Check out Stacy's Instagram feed also, she is such a talented quilter and is a constant source of inspiration for me.

Little Joys Quilt Along

Do you remember the pair of pompom Christmas cushions I recently made with Elea Lutz' new line 'Little Joys'? You will be delighted to hear that this gorgeous fabric line is now available in stores, and to celebrate that Elea & the Fat Quarter Shop have joined hands to run a quilt-along! And I have been invited to join in!

The quilt-along will run through July and we will be sewing three novelty holiday blocks to create the most adorable, Christmas-tastic wall hanging designed by Elea herself!

Each week starting July 8 the Fat Quarter Shop will release a free block pattern on their blog at which time I will also share my finished block on Instagram so you can follow me there if you want to see my progress! I’ll be sewing along with this group of amazing designers and bloggers. Make sure to hop over to their websites / Instagram feeds and be inspired by their Christmas blocks, too!

Nadra of Ellis & Higgs (@ellisandhiggs)
Tina of Emily Ann's Closet (@emilyannskloset)
Greg of Grey Dogwood Studio (@greydogwoodstudio)
Jessie of Messy Jesse (@messyjesse1)
Melissa of Oh How Sweet (@ohhowsweetco)
Kristyne of Pretty By Hand @prettybyhand)
Kerry of Very Kerry Berry (@verykerryberry)
Lisa of Vintage Modern Quilts (@vintagemodernquilts)
Erin of Why Not Sew (@whynotsewquilts)
Renee of Sewnwithgrace (@sewnwithgrace)

Here is the link to the quilt along page which has all the details. You can grab an exclusive Little Joys quilt kit from the Fat Quarter Shop, or download the fabric requirements PDF if you would like to use your own fabrics. Come and join in on the festive fun and get a headstart on your Christmas sewing!

On My Bookshelf: Sweetly Stitched Handmades (part 1)

Amy Sinibaldi's long awaited first book is now out, and after much anticipation I have finally received my copy. I am saying her 'first' book as I have no doubt it won't be her last!

Amy (of Nana Company fame) is one of the rock stars of my world. She is an incredibly talented designer and I find everything she makes truly inspiring. There are few craft books I own that have me itching to make every single project in them, and this is one of them (and the reason why there will be further installments to this post).

My first project from the book was the 'On The Spot Trivet'. I learned a new technique that I've never used before - using light weight interfacing to make easy applique shapes. So clever!

I paired linen and Liberty tana lawn for this 'trivet', which really is not a trivet technically as I didn't have any Insul-bright. And as if I would actually put pots on such a precious piece of work! Instead it is now hanging in my sewing room underneath the Liberty butterfly wall art I got from Sew Sweet Violet - a lovely corner of floral sweetness on my wall!

My second project from the book was a sweet set of ric-rac edged coasters. These were a thank you gift for my dear blogger friend Xanthe from Wife-made. The fabric I have used are Lighthearted by Ayumi Takahashi for Kokka.  They are so quick and easy to make and are perfect when you only have a little bit of time to whip up a charming present. I will definitely be making more.

My next project was the 'Home Sweet Home' embroidery. I use Pilot Frixion pens for tracing my embroideries - many moons ago I shared a tutorial on my technique here.

I had a spare square frame just the right size for this embroidery, so it now hangs in my daughter's room. It would make a charming hoop art or cushion centre also.

Just before I go, I wanted to let you know about an Instagram sew-along completely devoted to this book - hosted by @ohhowsweetco and @sameliasmum. There are six "rounds" in the sew along, each lasting two weeks (round 2 is finishing this weekend). There  are prizes, hand-picked by Amy, for the winner of each round and a grand prize at the end! If you love all things Nana Company come and join in on the fun!

I will be back for more projects from this sweet book soon - here's a peek at what I am making next!

'Vintage Market' Garden Lattice Quilt

Have you seen Tasha Noel's new line Vintage Market for Riley Blake? I was head over heels in love when Tasha shared strike off pics on her Instagram feed a few months ago, and luckily for me she arranged for Riley Blake to send me some to play with!

I knew I had to do something very special with this fabric, and it had to feature lots of fussy cuts of Tasha's sweet drawings of a country market. I auditioned several patterns until I found THE one. If ever there was a PERFECT fabric and pattern combo, this is it.

The quilt top is not quite finished. I am waiting for yardage to become available here in Australia so I can add a 4" border, and then it will be ready for quilting and binding. I will share photos of the finished quilt with you in a few weeks.

Originally I had planned this as a baby quilt, but once I started making the blocks I couldn't stop, they are very addicting. So it grew and grew into a large lap quilt.

The pattern is called 'Garden Lattice' and it's by Cindy Lammon from her book Simply Modern Christmas - I confess I bought this book purely for this pattern a while ago, and I was pleasantly surprised to find so many amazing quilt patterns in it, and not just for Christmas either. This pattern is simple and forgiving, and solid proof that a pattern doesn't need lots of fiddly points and tricky bits to be incredibly effective!  I would rate it as suitable for beginner quilters, as long as you take a bit of care to make sure your garden 'paths' are aligned when you are assembling the blocks together.

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