Keep It Thimble – 2012 in review

Happy New Year!  Time for Keep It Thimble’s 2012 Year in Review. WordPress.com prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

4,329 films were submitted to the 2012 Cannes Film Festival. This blog had 54,000 views in 2012. If each view were a film, this blog would power 12 Film Festivals

Click here to see the complete report.

Here’s to a new year full of projects, ideas, tutorials, etc.  Keep it Thimble!

Marshmallow Snowmen

My husband and I went to a concert last night so a friend came over to babysit.  He gets the prize for  best babysitter, because he came prepared to do a fun food project!  He had a bag of marshmallows, a tube of black icing, Jelly Bellys, Airheads, and pretzel sticks   Add in one excited 6 year old and you get these adorable snowmen!

Marshmallow Snowmen
Marshmallow Snowmen

The pretzels are used to hold the marshmallows together and also for the arms.  A Jelly Belly is used for the nose, and you can cut them in half to make eyes or buttons.  A strip of airhead makes a delicious scarf.  The final touch is putting on buttons with just a drop of black icing.  I can’t wait to make these myself.  Thanks for the idea Jim.

Keep it thimble!

 

Christmas Decorations – Elf Hat and Shoes

This is a cute little project of an Elf Hat and Shoes.  The shoe pattern is from Country Whims and the Hat pattern is courtesy of a class with Liberty Rose.  They turned out pretty cute and look great in the hallway, almost like the Elf stopped for a visit and took off his shoes and hat off at the front door.

Elf Hat and Shoes
Elf Hat and Shoes

Keep it Thimble!

Tis the Season – Frosty the Snowman

Now that it’s finally December, I can start posting Christmas things!  I had a crazy idea about posting something everyday in December as a sort of holiday countdown, but the reality of doing that is a different story.

Frosty the Snowman Makedo
Frosty the Snowman Makedos

Last year I planned to make a bunch of these cute little Frosty make-dos; they were all cut out, the heads were sewn, the candlesticks were prepped, but I just didn’t manage to finish them.  This year I completed 12 of them and they are being sold at a local shop.  I think they turned out pretty cute!

My favorite part is the carrot nose that sticks out.  Some of the carrots turned out a bit crooked, which give the face a lot of character.  I made one snow woman because a customer requested both a man and woman.  She has on ear muffs and a different face.  Unfortunately, I didn’t get a picture of her before she went to her new home!

Keep it thimble!

Stuffed Animal: Horned Nerite Snail

Here’s an unusual project I did over the weekend with my son – a stuffed Horned Nerite Snail.  This is a real snail that tends to live in brackish water.

Inspiration for Stuffed Horned Nerite Snail

My son learned about them from a virtual aquarium game he has, and wanted to make one.  Since we had to work with scraps from my stash, our color choices were limited which explained the electric orange color for the shell.

Stuffed Horned Nerite Snail

It took about an hour to make it.  My son did the original design and selected the fabrics.  He also drew the face.  As a special bonus, he drew the templates and wrote his own directions for the pattern on a very wrinkled piece of newspaper. The templates were too small to actually use, so I made my own with his careful oversight.  Next on the agenda is to make the snail a pair of pajamas, again based on my son’s design.

Keep it Thimble!

Double Whammy – Iron Maiden and Sewing Expo

As usual, it’s been busy at Keep It Thimble this week! But this week had not one, but two special events that I have been anticipating for a long time.

The first one was the kick-off concert for the Iron Maiden U.S. Tour in Charlotte, NC.  My husband is a HUGE fan and I got him tickets to this for his birthday.  We left Thursday afternoon and arrived in Charlotte just in time to see the Opening Act – none other than Alice Cooper.  Fittingly, he ended his set with the classic song “School’s Out for the Summer.”

Iron Maiden – Charlotte, NC

Iron Maiden took the stage at 9pm sharp and rocked out for 2 solid hours without a break.  For a bunch of dudes in their mid-fifties, it’s amazing how much energy they have.  This tour was a retrospective of their music, so they played a lot of fan favorites.  The stage show featured  amazing pyrotechnics, a 10 foot tall Eddie, a phantom organist, a feast of other visual sights and sounds, and of course Bruce Dickson dancing and running all over the stage.  Definitely worth the price of admission.

Sewing Expo – Raleigh Convention Center

We got home very late that night, but I was able to catch a few hours sleep before my next exciting event – the Sewing Expo at the Raleigh convention center!  I have been waiting for years for the Sewing Expo to come to Raleigh and so I was thrilled when I found out it was going to be here in June.

Sharon (aka Liberty Rose) at Primitive Gatherings Booth
Sharon (aka Liberty Rose) at Primitive Gatherings Booth

The expo featured several local vendors and some from places as far away as Oregon, Wisconsin, Florida and Texas.  My favorite booth, hands down, was Lisa Bonegan’s “Primitive Gatherings” – packed to the brim with wool applique projects, wool, and patterns.  And can you see who is in the picture I took at the booth – Ms. Sharon Stewart herself (aka, Liberty Rose).  I caught her in the act of making a “few” purchases.

House Blocks @ Sewing Expo

The expo also featured a ton of quilting, sewing, and applique classes.  Sadly, I didn’t have time to take any classes, but I plan to do so the next time it is in town.   They also had a quilt show feature Quilts of Valor and several quilts from various McCall’s contest.  My favorite display was the “There’s No Place Like Home” one which featured about 100 different blocks shaped like a houses.  I thought this was a cute idea I might try for some type of online quilting activity.  What do you think?

Keep it Thimble!

Civil War Blocks – Update!

Civil War Blocks - Set 1
Civil War Blocks – Set 1

Here’s a quick peek at some of the 55 blocks I’ve completed for my Civil War sampler quilt.  These are 8″ blocks that I’ve been sewing in my monthly “Civil Sewing Circle.”  It was nice to spread them all out to get a better idea of how much has been accomplished with this project for the past year.

Civil War Blocks - Set 2
Civil War Blocks – Set 2

In addition, I am rededicating myself to the Building Houses from Scraps challenge.  The idea is to sew one scrappy house block a day – right now I have 17.  On June 1st, I started sewing 2 a day (and plan to for the rest of the year), so there will be 365 blocks by Dec 31.  As of June 1, I am only 6 blocks behind (as in, I still haven’t started sewing on them 🙂 ).

Civil War Blocks - Set 3
Civil War Blocks – Set 3

Any tips for how to better organize your time?  I’m sure all of us could use some time management advice.  I’ve tried various ways to get on a sewing (and blogging) schedule, but it seems something always comes up that is more important.  Right now, my focus is on finishing projects since so many are close to being done.  By the end of June, there should be quite a dent in the UFO pile (fingers crossed).

Keep it thimble!