Some Goodies for the Animal Shelter

Each year, I make some small items to be donated to one of the no-kill shelters I support (League for Animal Welfare).  These go on a craft table to be sold at their annual Christmas party.

Helen, my blogger friend in Australia, has sent me gifts on two different occasions and each time thoughtfully included the link for making the items.  One is a small notebook cover with a tutorial by Lara Cameron. For a 3×5 spiral notebook, I cut the cover and lining pieces 3-¾ x 11-½ inches.  For the pockets, I cut 3-¾ x 5-¾ inches.

Another really nice gift is a List-Taker from a pattern for sale by Jennifer Casa.

This cover includes space for a 5×8 inch pad and pen and has a large pocket for carrying fabric swatches, patterns, notes, etc.

My daughter donated some pretty cat and dog charms for the ties and assembled them for me.

I hope these cute covers in animal prints make a little bit of money for the shelter.

A Beautiful Beaded Stiletto

I’ve been getting advance gifts from my daughters for my upcoming 80th birthday, but I was surprised by a wonderful gift from my blogging friend, Freda, at The Adventures of the Empress of the Universe.  Last week, she had posted a tutorial on making stilettos from turkey lacers to use in sewing – and she sent me one!  It’s so precious and will definitely be used.  Freda enclosed it with a card by one of my favorites, Mary Engelbreit.

To learn how to make these beautiful stilettos, go to Freda’s blog:

Thank you, Freda, for making my day.

A Biscornu Pincushion from Darlene

Today, I found in my mailbox an Easter gift from my blogger friend, Darlene.  She sent me a pretty card and a biscornu pincushion she had made.  I was familiar with this type of work only because Darlene had blogged about it with this web site as reference:

I learned from this web site that a biscornu is an interesting 8-sided little pincushion.  The word “biscornu” (sometimes written “biscournu”) is derived from the French adjective meaning skewed, quirky or irregular.

Darlene’s tiny cross-stitch work is so beautiful.  What a nice surprise!

Miniature Pyramid Easter Tree

An Early Easter Gift

Look what I found on the kitchen table when I got up this morning – an early Easter gift from my oldest daughter.  She made a miniature pyramid Easter tree, constructing the shelves and arranging/gluing all the tiny figures.  The piece stands just 9 inches tall with German metal figures about 1-1/2 inches tall.  I love the rabbit ringing the bell on the top shelf.

The middle shelf holds some more German rabbits with colored eggs in a wheelbarrow, a basket and a backpack.

On the bottom shelf is an assortment of miniature Easter figures…chicks, rabbits, a lamb, an egg…

….a unique and beautiful treasure to enjoy for years to come.

The Early Christmas Gift

When I came out to breakfast this morning, I found an early Christmas gift on the kitchen table.  My oldest daughter had been up until 3:30 AM making this miniature pyramid tree for me.  She had been inspired by a tree we saw at the Taft Museum (Cincinnati) which was similar to this one from 1883.

The original German trees were made of wood, but she made this one of flower pots painted a rustic red and gold.  The tree stands 14 inches tall, so each figure is very tiny.

After all these years, she never fails to amaze me with her talent and creativity.

A Surprise Christmas Package

Yesterday, I found a package from my online friend, Darlene in Columbus, Ohio, setting by the front door.  Inside were three beautifully wrapped gifts.  The first one was this mini-quilt – she remembered I love scotties!

The next package contained a hand-crocheted bag for me to carry my books to the library.

The third gift was a delicious snack and an original Christmas card.

Christmas is so much fun with nice friends like Darlene.

Lunch and a Surprise Gift

Today I was invited to lunch by my oldest daughter and her long-time friend, S.E.  We met at the Silverton Cafe (Cincinnati),  home of extraordinary double-decker sandwiches. After we had ordered, S.E. handed me a beautiful gift box and this was inside:

This 3-1/4 inch pie looks so good you can almost smell the home-baked aroma.  S.E. hand-carved this out of basswood and painted it in a very realistic way.

The holder was her ingenious idea of a piece of an old bed spring.

The carving and painting are beautiful front and back.

The gift is especially touching to me because S.E. remembered that I love to bake pies – a real treasure.

And the sandwich was delicious!

Vintage Hanky Heart Pillow

I love vintage handkerchiefs and pick them up whenever I find them at a reasonable price in antique malls.  Last fall, when we were visiting Amish Country (Holmes County, Ohio), I found a book devoted to projects using vintage hankies – Hooked on Hankies by Laurene Sinema and Janet Carruth – Suzanne McNeill Design Originals.

I decided to use a pattern for a small hanging pillow that has a pocket where a vintage handkerchief can be inserted and it doesn’t need to be cut or altered in any way.  I used one of my pretty old hankies and embellished the piece with two vintage buttons.

I made it as a birthday gift for my online friend, Darlene, and she posted a picture of it hanging on her country-blue front door.  Check out Darlene’s blog to see how her quilting, crocheting and sewing projects are coming along – here.

The book has projects for using vintage hankies such as a table runner, wall hangings, baby clothes, shower curtain, wreath, etc.    Nice for displaying old handkerchiefs you own or as a good excuse to go to an antique mall to find some.

A Surprise in the Mail

A couple of weeks ago when I wasn’t feeling very well, I went to the mailbox to find an envelope which contained this wonderful hand-crocheted pot holder and a pretty card which said, “I’m sending this to you as I thought you’d like it”.  It was a complete surprise from one of my favorite bloggers, Darlene, in Columbus, Ohio.  It’s amazing how this thoughtful gift immediately brightened my spirits and made me feel 100% better.

At the time, my digital camera had gone out on me, but I got a brand-new one for Mother’s Day and wanted this to be the first picture I took.

Darlene has a warm, friendly blog with news of her crocheting, quilting, family, dog and cat here.