Christmas = Busy!

I have been busy, busy, busy sewing, crocheting, and otherwise crafting for Christmas! I love this time of year, and making heartfelt gifts for friends and family. But you know who often gets left out of the holiday gift-giving? Pets!

Shadow in his Christmas atire.

I made my kitty a paw-shaped stocking and always put a couple of gifts in it when I was a kid. These days I often find myself making another fun cat toy for my little buddy. I came across this post for cute (and hilarious) gingerbread men cat toys today on Dream A Little Bigger, and I just had to share. These donut toys are just adorable, too.

One Christmas we got my husband’s mother’s dog a giant peppermint-candy toy. It was so funny seeing her walk around with that big mint in her mouth! It didn’t help her doggy breath at all unfortunately, but it sure was cute and she really enjoyed playing with it.

Don’t forget your little furry buddies this Christmas – remember that the chocolate treats in your stocking are not good for your pets!

Cross Stitch Christmas ATC

I haven’t cross-stitched in a long time. I learned as a kid, and even worked on a pattern once in school. (Okay, so it was a reallllly boring class and the other students made fun of me.) Anyway, when I came across this Christmas ATC (Artist Trading Card) swap on Swap-Bot, I just had to join in. When partners were assigned and I viewed my partner’s profile, I knew just what to do – she loves Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer. So I searched around for small (think 2.5″ by 3.5″ or smaller) Rudolph or reindeer cross stitch patterns and finally settled on this one:

Isn’t he cute?

I measured everything on the aida cloth I’d be using, and he would fit just perfectly. But first, I decided to try an experiment. I didn’t want just a plain white background, especially since the person I was making him for isn’t fond of white, but the only other colors I had were light pink and light blue. Pastels just didn’t fit, so I grabbed some dark blue paint and painted my fabric blue (sung to the tune of “We’re Painting the Roses Red” from Alice in Wonderland).

I was afraid the paint might cover the tiny holes in the fabric, which would have been a problem, but it glided on without a hitch. Perfect. Then I chose my colors of thread and got to work on the cross-stitching.

Somehow, despite all my measuring, he turned out a tad big for an ATC (grrr!), so I had to adjust him a bit. I secured the fabric all the way around with a glue gun to make sure it wouldn’t fray and none of the stitches at the edges would come out. I also sewed in some beads and sequins on the star for some added sparkle. I <3 sparkles.

And here he is in all his star-shining glory. I think it worked quite well for an ATC, and the method would also be great for Christmas ornaments. I’m glad I signed up for the swap and got to try cross-stitching again. I highly recommend it!

 

Flashback Friday – Christmas Doily

I’m a fan of sparkles. I don’t exactly enjoy loose glitter all over the place, but I do love a little added sparkle, especially on holiday items. Years ago I came across some sparkly holiday yarn by Red Heart. I wasn’t sure what to do with it, but I must have been entranced by the sparkliness, ’cause I picked up a skein each of red, white, and green. I apparently also picked up a free project sheet, as I later found it in my crochet pattern binder and decided to put my glittery yarn to use. I made this:

It’s not quite a doily, but I wouldn’t necessarily call it a centerpiece, either. The project sheet simply calls it a “table center.” A rose by any other name… Anyway, it took me a while, but I was finally able to track down an online version of the pattern for those who may wish to crochet their own. I made this as a beginner, so it’s a fairly easy pattern to follow. I wish now that I’d made all the motifs the same, rather than alternating like the example. Thoughts? I’m sure these motifs would also work for other projects, such as a pretty winter scarf. I’d love to see what you do with it!

 

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