snowman and santa claus….

tomorrow is thanksgiving day, but my mind is on christmas…

santa drawing

i like to draw my patterns directly onto weavers cloth rather than creating a paper pattern.  it’s less work and it ensures that almost every piece i make from my own designs is one-of-a-kind.  ellis likes to help me with this process….

“i’m a tremendous assistant” ~ellis

i kept santa claus simple, using mostly red and white valdani floss.

santa claus

lilly is awaiting santa’s advent….

“santa? i’m watching the birds!” ~lilly

i like adding tags to my pieces, for some reasons.  maybe because they’re fun to make?

christmas greetings

the other piece i’ve been working on is a snowman.  snowmen are so cheerful!


of course, with snowmen comes cold weather, but otis knows how to stay toasty…

“purrrr…” ~the oatsy

and, lilly has a few how-to-stay-warm-on-a-cold-day pointers…

“first, find a comfy cushion, add a kitty heating pad, top with a blanket and crawl under.” ~lilly-kins

sounds good to me!


the santa claus has sold but you can visit snowman on my etsy shop by clicking here.

wishing you warmth and happiness!



a horse and a snowman….

if you’ve been following me, you know that i’ve been struggling with thumb pain for about a year.  that seems to have subsided (hooray!) so i punched a few things which resulted in an incredible burning pain from my elbow to my wrist.  ah, these things are sent to test us, aren’t they ellis?

“sh! quit complaining! at least your thumb doesn’t hurt anymore.” ~ellis

however, i was able to finish a couple of pieces.  one is an antique rug inspiration.  here’s the original rug….

antique rug

i love the muted background and the unexpected red and black highlights, don’t you ellis?

“what?” ~ellis

regardless of ellis’s opinion, i did actually finish my adaptation…

antique rug inspired

usually, when i finish an antique inspired piece i simply turn back the weavers cloth and use it for the backing.  this time i backed this piece with ticking and edged it with the same fabric….

back of “horse”

and added a pocket, because i love pockets (shouldn’t all clothing have pockets?), and a button to hold an id tag.

the other piece i finished was a little snowman…

“snow” snowman

these pieces are so fun to make, and they’re so happy!  This snowman is also backed with ticking….

ticking, ticking, give me ticking!

and a tiny pocket.


You can see these pieces, and more, at my etsy shop by clicking here.


wishing you some peace in this time of uncertainty.




it’s actually been so cool here that one could almost believe in snow.  so, it seemed a bit apropos when i came across this piece that i made a year ago…


i’ve never been very good at sewing circular pieces, and this one is no exception.  it’s a bit wonky, like most things in my life, but it’s a fun celebration of one of my favorite times of year.

you can see more photos of “snow” on etsy by clicking here.






lilly and ellis "help"

lilly and ellis “help”

Despite the fact that I had two cats in my lap while I punched Wynter, I was able to finish it without too much trouble.

"are you sure you're doing that right?" ~lilly

“are you sure you’re doing that right?” ~lilly

Lilly never completely trusts me with the sewing machine.

"let me get a closer look."  ~lilly

“let me get a closer look.” ~lilly

Once I have Lilly’s approval I’m able to move on with the finishing and details like a paper tag.

I wanted Wynter to look a little like a snow globe, so I mounted it on an antique porcelain doorknob. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

I love little pockets, bone buttons and ticking!



When I punched the snowflakes I used a higher setting on my Cameo needle.  I think I set it on #4.

Do you like snowflakes, Ellis?


“snowflakes? are they edible? i’ll try anything once.” ~ellis

I stuffed Wynter with fluff and crushed walnut shells, and finished the whole piece off with a bit of ribbon.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

What do you think of Wynter, Otis?

"winter? i prefer to sleep through it, thank you." ~otis

“winter? i prefer to sleep through it, thank you.” ~otis

I also finished In The Meadow, a Lori Brechlin designs (click here for her etsy shop).

in the meadow

in the meadow

This is my second In The Meadow pillow this season.  I don’t typically punch a design more than once, but every so often a pattern pulls at my heartstrings…  Sort of like my little friend Josie does…



You can visit Wynter and In The Meadow in my etsy shop by clicking here, if you’d like.

wishing you a warm and happy day!




in the meadow….

Thank you one and all for your Merry Christmas wishes!  I hope you, too, had the type of day you look forward to all year!

Thank you, also, for all your kind comments about the piece I posted!  It’s a fabulous design from Lori Brechlin of Notforgotten Farm entitled, “In the Meadow”.  It’s available in her etsy shop (click here), or you can visit her blog which is wonderful! (click here)

I punched, “In the Meadow” while I was house sitting for my sister in November….

"i think these are good!" ~miss mudge

“i think these are good!” ~miss mudge

Little Miss Mudge helped me choose my palette.

lovely valdani

lovely valdani

I used all of the above colors, except for the two blues pictured to the right of the red floss.  Here’s how I used them from left to right:

h212 ~ date, snowman hat, eye, arms and buttons, children’s boots

o510 ~ date outline, children’s coats and hats

h205 ~ snowman nose

p3 ~ trees, children’s mittens

jp4 ~ children’s faces

5 ~ background, except around date

3 ~ snow, snowman, date background, children’s hat trim, and a little squiggle of background



This is how it looked before I aged the embroidery with coffee.  I get almost all my Valdani from Snowflake Memories (click here), which is a wonderful online resource for floss!

As is usual for me, I used two strands of size #12 perle cotton in my Cameo Punch Needle, set at the lowest loop height #1.



I backed the finished embroidery with ticking and stuffed it with sawdust from Notforgotten Farm.  Then, I added a little pocket with an antique bone button, and a paper tag.



Though this pillow has sold, I am working on another version which should be finished soon….

in the meadow 2

in the meadow 2

I used exactly the same Valdani colors for this one, except that instead of using the jp4 for the children’s faces I used the p3, and instead of the red o510 I used the light blue jp11, which is shown in the photo of flosses near the top of this post.

We’re still waiting for snow, here in West Michigan.  In fact, we’re still waiting for cold temps.  It was 60 degrees last Wednesday!

Wishing you a little bit of bliss today, and every day!



let it snow…..

Over in our neck of the woods it’s downright…..



COLD!  “They” are calling for up to 9″ of snow in West Michigan before nightfall tomorrow.  Must be time to build a snowman!



This is the kind of snowman I like to make.  The kind that can be whipped up inside, where it’s warm and snug, and where there’s always a friend….



or two…..

lilly and otis....

lilly and otis

or three…

lilly, ellis, otis

lilly, ellis, otis…. i don’t think my lap will hold any more.

…to share a lap.

I think today’s snowman will go into my PHM shop next Friday when we have our update.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

For now, I’ll keep him inside with me where he can watch the snowflakes drift outside the window.

Until next time, be warm and happy!



it’s beginning to look….

a LOT like Christmas!

ohhhhh nooooo, snoooooow!

ohhhhh nooooo, snoooooow!

Of course, this dusting won’t last, but, if we’re going to have snow we might as well have Santa, too!

"ho, ho, ho!"

“ho, ho, ho!”

I started this particular Claus in June…. yes, June.  I meant to have him completed for Christmas in July, but, well, we didn’t have any snow in July, in fact the weather was so fabulous this summer that I hardly ever came indoors.

ticking stripe stocking

ticking stripe stocking

I punched Santa in a sort of brownish~pinkish color ~ Valdani JP6, Muddy Pots, and gave him a functional stocking and some rusty bells.   He measures about 13″ high x about 16″ long including the rocker.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

The stocking can be removed.

another little pocket!

another little pocket!

I backed him with the same ticking I used to cover the rocker which is a slice of antique wood bowl I salvaged.  The decorative ends are vintage clock feet.

"giddy up!"

“giddy up!”

Santa loves to rock~n~…..OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

…roll!  He’s pretty excited about the snow.

How about you guys, Ellis and Otis?  Are you ready for winter?

"yep" ~ellis "Yep" ~the oatbran

“yep, ready” ~ellis
“Yep, all snug here” ~the oatbran

How about you Lilly?

"what? did you say winter???" ~lilly-kins

“what? did you say winter???” ~lilly-kins

Any thoughts you’d like to share about winter or snow, Lilly?

"wake me when it's spring" ~lilly

“you bet i have some thoughts, but this blog is rated g.  wake me when it’s spring” ~lilly

Maybe you’d like to make your own Santa?  Here’s a sketch….

Please, feel free to share this pattern with others, but please do not copy the pattern for mass production, nor make more than 10 finishes from this pattern ~ thanks!  I like to change the shape of the hat and the length of Santa's coat for each piece I make, you're welcome to make additions or deletions as you'd like, too.

santa pattern

Please excuse the scribbles, as I said this is just a sketch.  You should be able to drag the drawing to your desktop and print from there.  Please, feel free to share this pattern with others, but please do not copy the pattern for mass production, nor make more than 10 finishes from this pattern ~ thanks!  I like to change the shape of the hat and the length of Santa’s coat for each piece I make, you’re welcome to make additions or deletions as you’d like, too.


I’ll let you know when I list this Claus on etsy, if you’re interested.


Stay warm and ho, ho, ho!



elvis has left the building….

“Elvis has left the building”… that about sums it up for me.  I’m not an Elvis fan, but substitute the words “my muse” for “Elvis” in the preceding sentence and you may get a sense of how I’m feeling…. No?  Still not making sense?  Perhaps a visual will help.  This is how I feel:



That is actually a picture of me, on an airplane, but it demonstrates my level of productivity.  I’m totally uninspired, creatively bereft, stagnant, cocooned.  Could it be this relentless winter?

winter? what winter?

winter? what winter?

Yep, that’s a building in the above photo.  It’s one of the local high schools.  We have a tiny bit of snow.  Just a wee bit.

Here’s my mother-in-law…char

…she’s nearly 6 feet tall.  

Depending on which source I reference, we’ve had somewhere in the neighborhood of 130″ ~ 150″ of snow, so far…. SO FAR!  and it’s STILL snowing!

Don’t misunderstand me, I LIKE  winter, it’s Lovely! but I think it’s affecting my brain.  I have all sorts of fun projects I could be working on….


s is for sheep

This little sheep is waiting patiently for her future to be Now.  Can I muster up the energy to fill her with fluff and mount her on a pull toy? no.


g is for giraffe

How much fun could I be having putting the above giraffe together with one, almost twice as big, that I have punched, stained, stitched and ready to stuff?  Sooo much fun!  Am I having fun?? no.

e is for elephant

e is for elephant

I could be choosing colors for “E is for Elephant”, but am I?

I’m sure I’m not alone.  Not only are some of you in the same predicament, ~ in fact, you may have even More Snow ~  but my companions are also “taking advantage” of the UNbelievable amount of outside fluff and catching up on their nap time.





As I sit quietly in my chair, awaiting the return of inspiration, all I can hear (aside from the howling wind) is a soft snoring.  It’s all most soporific and I feel myself nodding off.  Ah well, tomorrow is another day, perhaps THE day when a hint of Spring will waft its way into our lives….  Not according to the weatherman, however.

Until the time when I’m feeling up to doing more than pecking out a sentence or two with one finger, I leave you with a fabulous antique rug ~ look at those colors!  Wouldn’t it make a fun and relatively simple punch needle?

a horse and a horse, of course

a horse and a horse, of course, of course

Feel free to grab the above picture, trace it and punch or hook it!  Oh, and be sure to send me a photo of your finish….. maybe I’ll be able to ride on the coattails of your creativity!

may you be warm and merry!






winter white…


welcome winter

As I stroll through our woods I find that one thing we have is snow…

clean, unblemished, snow snow snow snow....

clean, unblemished, snow snow snow snow….

beautiful, glorious, cold, snow, snow, snow.


oh! just look at those lovely neutrals


Outside, everything is shrouded in a soft veil, and it is brrrrrr ~ COLD!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe shoulders of my bell from Mackinaw Island wear a feminine ruffle of white.  While the Queen from my chess set is dressed to the nines in her soft, white hat and cloak.

woodpecker heaven

woodpecker heaven

Even the snag looks respectable topped with a soft, creamy, heap.

no snow here

no snow here

Back indoors, I find more wintry whites, but no snow.

oh! heavenly paper whites!

oh! heavenly paper whites!

After my walk in the wintry wood, I’m greeted by warm kitties and the fragrance of Spring.

otis is never far from the action

otis is never far from the action

My mother gave me these narcissus bulbs for Christmas.  Otis has been waiting impatiently for them to bloom.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAHe’s almost as delighted by the fragrance as I am…. or is he considering a snack?

ho hum

ho hum

Evidently, Ellis doesn’t think the daffs live up to their hype.


my friends against a backdrop of white



Winter White, indoors and out!


What color is your world, today?


may warmth and happiness be yours,