Friday, May 27, 2016

Friday Finds: 5 Of My Most Favorite Felt Needle Books On Etsy

I just adore needle-books. They come in so many different designs and styles and there is a special one out there for everyone. Needle books can be super simple and utilitarian or absolute works of art. There are some really lovely needle books on etsy and I spent time looking through them all to find some favorites.

In case you don't know what a needle book is I'll explain, they are literally a small book usually made from felt or linen with a design on the front and has 3 or more "felt pages" to hold your needles. They are compact and easy to carry around so you can sew anywhere. It's also harder to lose your needles when they are stored in something so pretty. 

I picked 5 of my most favorite needle book designs on etsy to share with you today.

My hands down favorite are these gorgeous needle books from MMM Crafts. A very talented woman named Larissa Holland is the designer of these lovelies. I've followed her blog for years and I have a felt girl crush on her. Her patterns are outstanding and I'm going to do a post just devoted to her soon. 

These needle books are available as a diy pattern so you can pick your favorite colors and make your own special one.

I'm a real book lover not a KIndle lover so I find this awesome "antique leather, hardcover book" design to be so very charming. Unfortunately it's not a pattern, you have to buy the finished product. I wish it was a pattern cause I'd make one in a heartbeat, that's how much I love this design! This color palette is my favorite.

This seller makes a lot of different kinds of needle books and I had a hard time choosing just one, so please go visit this shop and see the other great designs.

I adore super cute things and I found this design to be so whimsical and fun. This needle book is a different size than needle books normally are which allows you store larger and longer needles. The button closure detail is different and fun too. This seller also doesn't offer patterns so you'll need to buy the physical product.

What a darling matryoshka doll needle book!  I have loved Russian nesting dolls since I was a child and had a great wooden set years ago. Such a cute and a lovely place to keep your sewing needles. This is also a physical product and not a pattern. 

I checked this shop before I posted this and this particular needle book has been sold, but if you love it I'm sure the seller will make another one for you.

Last but not least is this beauty. I love how the bright colors pop off the black background and the embroidery is very nice too! This maker carried the colors from the front to the inside, making this a special treat for the eyes. This is another physical product and there are many to choose from in this shop.

I hope you enjoyed seeing my 5 favorite needle books from etsy as much as I enjoyed finding them for you!

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Worktable Wednesday: Nothing to share today.

 I went to the Emergency room Sunday evening and ended up being put in the hospital for 2 days. I just returned home last night and am just too exhausted to organize and post things right now.

I'll have something ready for Friday's post so pop back in then. And I also hope to have a new FREEBIE for you all next week.

Friday, May 20, 2016

Friday Finds: 3 of The Best Felt Food Pattern Shops on Etsy

Today's finds are the best, in my adult artist's eyes, felt food patterns on etsy. Felt food are some of my favorite things to pin on Pinterest. It's also so much more fun and tactile than plastic play food.

I don't personally make felt food cause so many people do and are good at it. This may change down the line as I get my pattern shop up and running.

There are a lot of shops that have easy and fun to make felt food patterns and I'll do a post on them another time, today I'm talking about the best of the best. 

I choose 3 shops that stand far above the rest in realistic detail. 

The absolute cream of the crop is the shop Sweet Emma Jean. I am blown away by the level of detail her patterns have.

She uses pure wool felt for her samples, which really gives her photos a high quality look. You wouldn't want to use craft felt to make these awesome projects, you could but the result wouldn't be the same.

 Look at that tomato! And the deviled egg and pickle slices! This maker thinks of everything. Her patterns are a great value because you get more than just the hamburger, you get the whole plate of food.

 Pizza Party Set

This pizza looks good enough to eat!  Look at all those yummy toppings! It comes with a pizza paddle (you know the thing they use in pizza places to pull the pizza out of the oven) cheese sticks to dip and a pizza cutter. 

Taco Dinner

This taco dinner has everything from a hard shell taco to a soft shell taco to a quesadilla to a flan dessert. Just beautifully designed felt food.

The only downside I see is toddlers might try to actually eat this so it's probably best for children over 4 years and older. 

This shop also sells pure wool felt so you can get just about everything you need, except the embroidery thread, and get started making your own awesome felt food.

The second shop that's on my best of the best list is Gulf Coast Cottage PDF.

I've followed this shop for a long time and have at least one of their patterns from way back in 2008 or 09 and have watched them grow and change. There patterns have gotten more detailed lately and I look forward to seeing how they grow further.

Gulf Coast Cottage's patterns aren't as detailed as the shop above but they are good achievable patterns with a nice level of detail and their accessories are outstanding.
Seafood Set

This seafood set is so good and has the right amount of detail for small children. A more realistic detail might be a little scary for the small ones.

This pattern is a full dinner which gives you the customer options to make what you'd like, without having to make everything.
Toaster Set

I LOVE interactive play sets and this toaster is amazing! You can actually put the felt food pieces inside! It's not just something you have to pretend to do. I really like that you get 3 different "toaster items" plus the toaster in this pattern.
Cookie Jar Baking Set

While this is a simpler pattern, it includes everything you need except a cookie sheet (which is available in other pattern set), 3 different kinds of cookies, a rolling pin, cookie jar, rolled out dough and a cookie cutter. I am in love with that rolling pin!

Last but not least is Bugga Buggs. I have a few patterns from them too, when I was first learning to sew with felt.

Garden Veggies

This set has really good detail. Just look at the butternut squash with the seeds, cauliflower and the artichoke. I really like the bright and fun colors used and children will too.

This set has everything but the plates. It's a lot of "food" for one pattern and has very nice recognizable details. You get 2 entrees (lasagna and spaghetti) plus salad, 2 kinds of bread and dessert. I love the curly edges to the pasta in the lasagna, great attention to detail!

This pie set is a favorite of mine. There is a cherry pie plate, a whole cherry pie and 4 different patterns for pie slices. Look at the meringue on that lemon pie and the details on the blueberry pie and grasshopper pie, not to mention the crust on that cherry pie! So darn good!

I encourage you to go to these shops and check out their patterns and even buy some and have some felty fun!.

I hope you enjoyed my finds for this Friday! See you all next week!

I'm thinking about purchasing patterns form different businesses and making them and doing a review on them. Please let me know if this is of interest to you. Leave me a comment or email me.

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Wednesday Worktable: A Video of My Worktable and What I'm Working On.

I've had an increase in viewers lately, so I thought you'd all like to see a little video. I'm currently in the process of shooting step by step photos of a new pattern.

So enjoy my messy studio and I'll see you back here on Friday

Friday, May 13, 2016

Friday Finds: A Gift From Me To You!

This Friday is a little different. Instead of me finding things to show you I'm giving you a gift I made just for you!

I worked super hard for days to write and design this just for all my crafty people out there.
 Ready to get your craft on but not sure how 
to find quality patterns?

 Do you have any idea what makes a really good pattern vs a poor or mediocre one? I breakdown the 6 most important things to look for when choosing a pattern.

 Finding the right good, quality pattern makes all the difference between your confidently creating a good final piece you'd be happy to give as a gift or feeling frustrated and miserable about time and money wasted.

Come check out this guide and I hope you find it helpful!

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Worktable Wednesday: Making an Accessory Pattern Set

If you've read the post about making a PDF pattern HERE, then you already know I'm in the process of making a Penguin plush pattern. Actually that pattern is complete and just waiting while I finish the add on pattern set I decided to do.

I made prototypes of everything and then set them aside for a few days so I could let the excited feeling fade and then I could look at them again with fresh, rational eyes. (I tend to get super, over excited about things and miss mistakes and details so waiting a few days helps me see those things that I missed the first time around get ideas for changes)

 I had an idea for glasses, yup glasses on a Penguin! See excitement, right? And I was sure I loved the design, but after a few days I realized:

  • I didn't like the shape of the glasses, too superhero-ish.
  • I wasn't thrilled with the design of the satchel, yeah there's a satchel too, squee!
  • The small fish inside the satchel was too long and not detailed enough for my liking.
    (yes the Penguin is carrying a satchel with a fish!), See I'm getting excited all over
  • Going back and forth on whether I'm completely satisfied with the hat yet.

    Pattern making is a longer process than you might think.
    My plan for the day was to figure out changes to the design and make new prototypes.
    But my DNA results from came in and I've spent literally all day going over it and adding people to my family tree. Can you tell I'm easily distracted?
    So all my plans for today will be shifted until tomorrow. 

    If you found this post about pattern making interesting, check out this more in depth post on how I make patterns!

Friday, May 6, 2016

Friday Finds: Gnomes

Ever since the famous Gnome book first came out in the late 1970's early 1980's I've been fascinated with Gnomes. I would pour over the illustrations in the book, just enamored at all the wonderful little details and loving the tiny little woodland world they lived in.

So today's finds are all about Gnomes!

Aimee Ray has the most wonderful little felt Gnome with embroidery pattern, that's always been a huge favorite of mine.

This Gnome print is just the cutest, with this Gnome doing his happy little thing with his tiny insect friends.

Debbie's Clay Art
A beautiful clay sculpture of the Gnomes from the book. So well done and a great keepsake piece for a Gnome lover.

Hoop art is awesome and this Gnome themed one would be an adorable gift for a kids room or a Gnome loving adult.

A Gnome garden Gnome! Seriously who wouldn't want one as a gate keeper for their garden?

Giant Gnome Paper Co
And finally, a set of Gnome greeting cards. Sent them of frame them, just have fun with them!

 Here's my old Gnome that I'm going to be re-designing and making a new diy pattern of for a woodland series to be available this Fall.

If you have any ideas of what you'd like to see in a woodland series, please leave me a comment, I'd love to know!

Hope you enjoyed all the Gnomes! Give these shops some love!

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Worktable Wednesday: FREE Mother's Day Felt Flower Pin Pattern and Tutorial

I've been so busy working on my for sale patterns lately that Mother's Day came up so fast.

So I dropped everything and worked on a quick felt pattern for you to make for the wonderful mom in your life. This is a cute pattern for kids to make too.

I made my flower with 4 colors of felt but you can use 2 colors if that's what you have. I chose pinks and purples cause those are my mom's favorite colors.

You'll need:

Felt - at least 2 colors.


Embroidery Thread - in colors that closely match your felt.

PDF Template

1-1/2" Pin Back

Button - large button in a coordinating color. The button I used was 2cm.

Optional: Hot Glue Gun and Felt Glue

Download and print template. Cut template pieces out.

 Gather all your supplies. Pin paper patterns on your felt colors and cut out flower shapes.

 Sew pin back onto the back of one of the bottom petal pieces. You could hot glue this too if you want to save time. You could also glue a hair clip on instead and make this a cute child's hair accessory.

 Set this piece aside until the rest of the flower is sewn.

 Applique stitch the larger petal overlay piece to the top of the 2nd bottom petal piece. (Not the one you sewed the pin back to) You could glue this down using felt glue.

Sew the smaller petal overlay piece to the top of the top flower piece using an applique stitch just like the bottom piece.

At this point I decided to add some simple embroidery back stitching to the petals. I thought the stitching added texture to the petals. You could leave the petals as is and move on the attaching the top back and the button. It's your project so have fun!

I added stitching to both the petal overlays in the darker colors of the bigger flower pieces (dark pink and purple).

Line up the 2 top flower pieces (shown here in dark pink) and blanket stitch together.

Overlap the top flower piece (pink) and the top bottom flower piece (purple) and sew on the button through all 5 layers (but not the piece with the pin back).

I changed my button at the last minute to this one. 

Flip the flower over and line up the bottom piece with the pin back to the other bottom piece (purple)

Blanket stitch the 2 bottom (purple to purple) pieces together.

And you are done! Great job! If you make this project I'd love to see how yours came out. You can find me on Facebook and Instagram.


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