Bet you didn't know there was a North Pole annex here in the cornfields did ya? Well -- that's what it's been feeling like around here. All Christmas, all the time. And I haven't even BEGUN to decorate (unless you count digging out the Christmas videos for dd -- I think I have now seen Rudolph, Santa and Frosty more times in the last three weeks than I ever did growing up, and my poor husband who HATES the Santa one, or is it Rudolph? -- um, yeah, moving on).
Anyway, I have been in full on gift making mode these days. And -- amazingly enough, I've gotten a few things done! (hooray -- I'll have to post the full list of what I'm actually trying to finish for you to truly appreciate the INSANITY that runs rampant in this house though. Next year, I swear, I will be starting earlier!)
First up on today's project list are some little ornaments. Gifts for teachers and other folks who I don't see often but want to do something homemade for. I will fully admit these are "cheater" presents. Simple panel squares backed with some additional yardage, a snippet of ribbon and some leftover batting. Pillowcase it and top stitch around the edges.
Still home made, but well -- um, yeah, I had to make quite a few so this is about all the time I had! They are cute and I refuse to feel guilty about not piecing something. Really. (yes, I am trying to convince myself as much as I am you).
The next round of finished presents I can't actually show you. These were commissions from my Mom, and one of the recipients reads my blog. But, I do have permission to hint and tease (hi DJ!). So -- to whet the appetite of a certain someone (and, well, hey -- I like taking pictures) here's the hint. I finally got to use some older Hoffman Christmas batiks I bought long and long ago. I love these fabrics but just hadn't found the perfect place to use them.
Not enough of a hint? Hmmm...well, ok. One more tiny one. So these are done and even out in the mail already. I still will be going to the post office on a regular basis -- but one project completely gone from the stuffed bins waiting for me to get to them. Plus, a project mostly from stash. This is a good thing.
Oh, and lest you think that Santa's Sweat Shop is only producing goodies for me to give? Oh no -- not by a long shot. I've also been working on more shop samples (and if you click on the link you can see the earlier ornament samples on the web site -- yes, I'm easy to amuse). These cuties are courtesy of the Quilts and More Winter 2007 issue. It's a fun and pretty quick little pattern to hold an ipod (and yes, my large "old" ipod fits in it too -- I checked!). Might make a good present for a teenager -- especially if you make it up with some of the cute Chocolate Lollipop or Urban Gardens fabrics I was playing with. The pattern calls for a 1/4 yard cut -- but I used fat quarters and had fabric left over.
I've also managed to finish some hand quilting. I'd show a photo -- but, well, this one has turned into a Christmas present for someone who reads my blog. So, I will take photos when I finish binding/making it into a large pillow (per the recipient's request) and show them in a post-Christmas round-up. I will say that I really did enjoy the process and I want to do another!
I'm also busily working on a quilty project -- but I don't have any in-progress photos to share. I will try and get some, but since I'm hoping to be done with it tomorrow (I must say, the SciFi Tinman miniseries has been great for getting some of my handwork projects done!) -- you may get a completed picture rather than in-progress (I hope, I hope, I hope -- this one has a deadline that has already come and gone).
Finally, a bit more catching up -- I've been meaning to post photos of these, and keep on going way too long in my posts. Remember me talking about ordering the patterns for my daughter's doll from Australia? Well -- the folks at Jet Music and Books also hold a monthly drawing for free pattern giveaways to customers. And guess who won the October contest? Yeah, li'l ole me! So, two Melly & Me patterns to go with my Lolly collection! Woo Hoo!
I REALLY want to make these. I do -- but, um, if I start one project right now that is not for a Christmas gift -- I'm never going to get done. But, I'm just sayin' wouldn't this guy look fabulous made up out of this fabric? With this for the ear inserts and the tummy? And maybe this for the shorts? I'm just sayin' (and copying shamelessly from Vicky).
Well -- that's it from my corner of the sewing sweat shop. Now to get back to work -- man those elves get cranky if you take a break that's too long!