Thursday, July 6, 2017


I departed from my ornament schedule and whipped up a couple of quick ones for my kids over the weekend.  As teenagers, they communicate primarily through text and they are quite fond of emojis.  I've noticed two, in particular, that I receive on a regular basis:  the laughing-with-tears face and the poop.  Very nice.  The laughing-with-tears seems to be their response to everything.  If you judged this family solely by their texts, you'd think we live in a constant state of hilarity.  I'm funny, but I can assure you that no one is sitting around this house crying in hysteria.  

I did a quick Google search for the emojis and whipped up a pattern.  I'm including the patterns here and you can stitch them to your heart's content!  They're very quick and would make a great gift.  The tears on the laughing face are stitched separately and then glued on.  Same thing for the eyes and mouth on the poop.  I must confess, looking at that poop makes me want to stitch a soft-serve ice cream cone with a cute face!

Downeast Thunder Farm Birds

On Pinterest, I found a wonderful site called Downeast Thunder Farms.  She offers beautiful patterns of all your favorite birds and wildlife and they are TOTALLY FREE!!! They are nicely done with color photos and you can just print them right out.  Cool, right??  My husband loves the birdfeeder outside his office window, so I wanted to make him some birds.  They were pretty quick and I love the detailed stitching you can add.  Get yourself right over to that site and download some patterns!  I'm placing the direct link to the specific patterns under each picture.  

Sea Legs Stout

I've been a little quiet lately, but I've been here stitching!  I've done several that I've done before and I didn't think you needed to see a third mermaid that looks exactly like the others I've done.  I made the mermaid for our oldest, Caleb, who was the musical director for his district's version of "The Little Mermaid" back in the winter. Caleb also requested a pirate, so it was back to the drawing board for that one.  How is it that Carolyn DeAngelis never got around to designing one of those??

Of course, I headed straight to Etsy where I found this clipart from a site called Cutesiness.  I had asked Caleb to pick two features so as not to over-accessorize our pirate friend. His choices were:  eye patch, hook hand, peg leg, parrot, earring, and facial hair.  He chose eye patch, peg leg, and parrot.  This one turned out GREAT and I'm such a fan of that parrot that I may have to turn that into its own ornament!  See what you think . . . 

The hat has a strip of gold across the top.  You couldn't see it in the first photo.  Might have to make that a bit wider the next time.  



In case anyone happens by and thinks I've stolen someone else's work or thinks I'm profiting from it:

  • purchased the clip-art.  I did not do a "right click/save as."
  • I am not selling a pattern made from this clip-art.  I'm not even giving away a pattern made from this clip-art.  
  • I am not selling ornaments made from this clip-art.  

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Marching Brayden

If you remember, last month I posted the Marching Mariah ornament.  Time for Marching Brayden!  Here's a picture of the kids so you can refresh your memory.

Brayden plays snare drum and the percussion uniforms are quite different from the rest of the band.  I was able to use the same basic body type from Mariah's ornament and just make some basic changes to the uniform and the arm positions.  (Yes -- you can have this pattern.)

I thought toothpicks would be a little too small scale-wise, so I bought the tiniest dowel rod I could find in the Walmart craft department.  The drummers wrap their sticks with colored electrical tape and everyone chooses their own design.  I had Brayden draw me a picture of what his look like so I could duplicate them.  He turned out great!

I didn't bother stitching the "WH" on the chest because I knew the snare drum harness would cover it up.  I was worried about the beret looking like a blob, but I think it looks okay.  I was also concerned as I was stitching that Brayden's ornament was bigger than Mariah's, but once I got them done I could see that it was perfect.   

I can't wait to see these on the tree this year.  I know if I post a picture of these on Facebook, I'll be hit with a million requests for orders.  My answer will be, as always, "You can't afford it!"

Skating Brayden

Since he was along on the trip to Cleveland for everyone's first ice skating experience, Brayden needed an ornament, too.

(Concentration requires his tongue to be out.  I should've put that on the ornament!)

If you recall, I made Skating Mariah last month.  Back to Etsy to look for a suitable boy. Something about this set of clipart caught my eye.  I think it was the hat.  

I had that moment where I asked for an opinion when what I really wanted was approval of a decision I'd already made.  "I was thinking about a red hat," I said.  "No.  Camo." was the response.  CAMO.  I actually did have some camo felt, so I could deal with that.  "And a black coat. Because my coat is black."  A black coat.  BLACK.  That's not festive.  I put my foot down on that one.  I reminded him that his other coat is tan and he relented.  And I made a decision not to ask him for any more opinions.  First, the Playstation logo and now, the black coat.  You, sir, are done having input!

This one turned out GREAT.  I love the body position and that hat.  When he's hanging, he'll actually be tipped back a little -- like the clipart picture.  He'll look great on the tree this year!


In case anyone happens by and thinks I've stolen someone else's work or thinks I'm profiting from it:

  • purchased the clip-art.  I did not do a "right click/save as."
  • I am not selling a pattern made from this clip-art.  I'm not even giving away a pattern made from this clip-art.  
  • I am not selling ornaments made from this clip-art.  

Tuesday, April 4, 2017


Brayden's second request was more reasonable, fun, and challenging.  He wanted a Ninja Turtle.  The purple one, to be exact, whose name is Donatello.  Off to Etsy for some clipart!  There were lots of options, but this one seemed to be the best fit for my purposes.  Since Brayden is older, I wanted the least cartoonish thing I could find.  This had a LOT of pieces . . . about 40, to be exact.  It was worth it, though, because he turned out great!

The clipart picture made it look like something was wrapped around the middle of the stick, so I used some skinny hemp cord I had.  I don't usually do much on the back of an ornament other than stitch the date.  Even though no one will see it, I felt compelled to do something fancy with the design of the shell.

Brayden was so happy with it that I feel sure I'll be stitching the other three turtles in the coming years!


In case anyone happens by and thinks I've stolen someone else's work or thinks I'm profiting from it:

  • purchased the clip-art.  I did not do a "right click/save as."
  • I am not selling a pattern made from this clip-art.  I'm not even giving away a pattern made from this clip-art.  
  • I am not selling ornaments made from this clip-art.  

Playstation Playtime

March was the month for Brayden's ornaments.  He's surprisingly enthusiastic about them given that he's a 15 year-old boy.  I asked him if he had any special requests.  He loves to play video games, so I suggested a boy playing one.  Nope.  He wanted the Playstation logo.  


I'll give you a minute.

That's right . . . THE PLAYSTATION LOGO.  That symbol on a black background.  Nothing I said could convince him that would be a pretty stupid ornament.  The Playstation logo on a black background.  That was his first request.  So, with out further ado . . . . here it is:

Is that the dumbest thing you've ever seen, or what??  If it makes you feel any better, he was thrilled with it.  (That's okay . . . it doesn't make me feel any better, either.)

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Marching Mariah

Both kids are in marching band and I knew I definitely wanted to do ornaments of them in their uniforms.  This one took some thought and it took a while to design.  This is an old picture of them from freshman year with their band friend in the middle.  I wanted to include as much detail as possible without losing my mind.  

Because I can't draw, I started by looking for a DeAngelis pattern that had the basic body shape I wanted.  I was looking for a front-facing girl with her arms positioned to hold something.  I landed on Jodi.

Using the method I shared on how I do my pattern designing, I got to work tracing and changing details.  Here's the first pattern I came up with:

I don't usually color them, but I needed that for reference when I started cutting out.  I got it all cut out and even got the front of the jacket stitched . . . . and then I decided I didn't like it.  For starters, I made a mistake that I've made before and I don't know why I didn't catch it.  I like my ornament people to be about 5-1/2" tall when they're completed.  When I printed this pattern, I made it measure 5-1/2" from the top of the HAT to the bottom of the feet.  What I really meant to do was make it measure 5-1/2" from the top of the HEAD to the bottom of the feet.  Secondly, I didn't love the hair.  I also had the head disproportionately large.  And, finally, I didn't like the legs.  I knew this one would be a lot of work and be hanging on my own tree, so I didn't want to be looking at it and hating it every day.  (I already have that Charlie Brown situation -- remember?)

So . . . . back to the drawing board!  I like my second attempt much better.  The hair's a little different, I got it the right size, I changed the pants, and I got the head in proportion with the rest of the body.

(Yes --  you can have that pattern.)

Since I can't draw, I had to figure out what to do about that trumpet.  I just did a Google search for "black and white trumpet clipart" and came across this:

I sort of drew around the outside and then drew around the inside.
Worked like a charm.  Mariah loves her!!

Skating Mariah

Neither of the kids had been ice skating before.  We promised them a "friend day" over Christmas break and one of the things we did was go ice skating outside in downtown Cleveland.  It was a beautiful day and everyone had a great time.  

I could've just used Carolyn DeAngelis' Katrina pattern . . .

. . . but I knew I'd probably want to do a matching boy for Brayden, so I wanted to go a different route.  I'd seen some cute ice skating clipart on Etsy and decided this would be an easy one to design. I've noticed that very often on Etsy, the clipart vendors will have a "buy two, get one free" offer.  I've even seen "buy two, get get TWO free" before. That's a good time to peruse everything in that Etsy store to see if there's anything you can use down the road.  This clipart came from an Etsy store called Tiny Confetti  and it was perfect for adapting to an ornament because it was simple.  

I wanted to use paper clips for the skate blades like I did on the Katrina ornament.  This one had smaller feet, though, so the whole paper clip would've been too big.  If you look at a standard paper clip, there's that smaller, inside loop:

I used wire cutters to just snip off the larger loop and that worked perfectly.  The overlap of the of the paper clip is hidden up inside the skate.  I think she's adorable . . . just like the girl she's named for.  


In case anyone happens by and thinks I've stolen someone else's work or thinks I'm profiting from it:

  • purchased the clip-art.  I did not do a "right click/save as."
  • I am not selling a pattern made from this clip-art.  I'm not even giving away a pattern made from this clip-art.  
  • I am not selling ornaments made from this clip-art.  

Rolling Roadster

January was a big month in our house.  Mariah turned 16 and got her license.

Her first job was to drive us straight to the poor house to pay for her insurance -- LOL. Of course, we thought this milestone merited a commemorative ornament and Mariah asked for a shiny red car.  I went with a vintage DeAngelis pattern and chose the Rolling Roadster.  I thought it had fun things to customize and ways to add dimension.  In addition to wanting it "shiny," Mariah also asked for clear plastic over the headlight . . . like the kind I used on the snorkeling ornaments.  You'd have to know this girl; leave it to her to request something specific like that.  I used some of my silver metallic fabric to give the car big, blingy rims.  I think it turned out great and Mariah loves it!


February is Mariah's month for ornaments.  I had hoped to do four or five, but I managed to complete four.  And we can blame that on Goofy.  He is now my arch nemesis in the world of felt ornaments.  And, honestly, I have no one to blame for that but myself.  "What ornaments would you like?" I asked.  "Elsa to go with your Anna that I made a couple of years ago?" I asked.  Her response:  "You know which ones I really like?  That Mickey and Minnie.  I think I'd like a different Disney character every year."

I think you remember the Mickey & Minnie ornaments.  They had a million tiny pieces, had instructions in Japanese, took hours to make, and caused me to say lots of very bad words.  They looked great, but I was super relieved when they were done.  I kept reminding myself that the end justified the means and I dug that horrible pattern book back out and decided on Goofy.  Having been up close and personal with Goofy for what felt like an eternity, I can now tell you pretty much anything you want to know about his appearance and I will never forget the colors of his clothing.  (For the record, I think his stylist might be color blind.)  I knew I had enlarged the Mickey & Minnie patterns a little, so I did the same for Goofy.  So, in addition to being the most horrible ornament to construct, he is also the largest.  If I hadn't enlarged it though, he only would've been more maddening with smaller pieces.

So, here he is . . . . Mariah's latest Disney ornament and the current first-place holder of my least favorite ornaments EVER.  

Thursday, February 9, 2017


I had always wanted to do a Raggedy Ann doll ornament.  I had a set of cloth Raggedy Ann & Andy dolls when I was young; I think they were standard issue in the 70's.  I also have fond memories of the handmade Halloween costumes my mother made us one Halloween.  

That's me on the left, my cousin in the middle in the homemade clown suit with fabric that had Rice-A-Roni on it (???), and my sister on the right.  We will be 50, 43, and 47 this year.  Please take a moment to appreciate the custom slipcovers on that couch, will you?

Anyway . . . my choices for DeAngelis patterns were Matilda . . .

. . . or Raggy Maggie.

I didn't love either one.  Matilda's face wasn't right and Raggy Maggie was too simple for my taste.  I did a little digging online for some photos so I could add some details.  I decided if I changed the face on Matilda and added stripes to the stockings, that would do the trick.  I had intended to do some little polka dots or something on the dress, but once I got all the pieces done I decided it didn't need it.  Here's my finished product . . . let's call her Raggedy Matilda, shall we??

I fully intended to do a Raggedy Andy, but January ran out on me.  February is ornaments for Mariah.  If I get time later in the year, I'll swing back around and stitch Matilda a friend.  

Charlie Brown & Snoopy -- Patterns from Etsy

This is another one I'd saved on Pinterest.  How cute are these?  As a child of the 70's who grew up on the Charlie Brown cartoon specials, I had to make these.  Straight to Etsy for the pattern from a Brazilian designer.  It's interesting . . . a lot of the really cool things I pin lead to blogs that are from Brazil.  That must be the felt crafting capital of the world.  The pattern is a bargain at $18.90 because it includes pieces for all these ornaments you see here.  I thought I'd do two a year.  If you look in her Etsy shop, she has a couple more Peanuts characters you can buy if you finish all 10 of these and are still in the mood.  The only downside is that it's pieces only:  no real diagrams or instructions.  There are color photos, though.  If you'd like to order this pattern, click here

Now . . . my Snoopy turned out great.

My Charlie Brown, on the other hand . . . . not so much.

Oh, my.  Everything about him is bad.  I feel angry every time I look at this ornament.  I mean, I'm probably over-thinking it.  It's a Christmas ornament, for crying out loud.  And you CAN tell it's Charlie Brown.  Seriously, though . . . I'm embarrassed by him.  There's too much leg showing.  I don't really know what's griping me about the arms because they look like they do in the photo.  And that FACE!  The horror.  Somehow the proportion is wrong.  The eyes are too high.  Something.  I'm honestly toying with taking the whole head off and starting again.  It's a good lesson in how a few tiny things can really throw things off.  I've decided to not look at him again until later this year and then see if I feel like I need to redo that head.  Sorry, Charlie!

PLEASE NOTE:  I have never personally communicated with the pattern designer other than to order the pattern.  I didn't receive a free pattern for this post and I'm sure she doesn't even know this blog exists.  I just saw these photos on Pinterest and followed the link.  

Xmas Little People -- Patterns from Etsy

If you are a Pinterest hound like me, you probably have a board set up for felt ornaments. There are oodles of beautiful ornaments from all over the world.  Many of them lead to links on Etsy where the patterns are available.  That's how I stumbled across these adorable folks:

The great thing about patterns on Etsy is that they're available for immediate download.  Just a few clicks and you can be printing out a pattern and getting ready to stitch.  No more pesky postage fees or hanging around the mailbox in anticipation.  The pattern is available from an Etsy shop called Hello Felt.  You can order these little guys individually, or get them cheaper by ordering all three patterns in a set which is what I did.  The patterns were FANTASTIC.  Very clear instructions, beautiful photos, and even suggestions for different ways to accessorize the ornaments.  I will most definitely be purchasing patterns from this shop again.  If you want to purchase this pattern, click here to go to the Etsy shop.  

Honestly, these are maybe my favorite ornaments ever.  Look at that snowman . . . . how cute is he?

PLEASE NOTE:  I have never personally communicated with the pattern designer other than to order the pattern.  I didn't receive a free pattern for this post and I'm sure she doesn't even know this blog exists.  I just saw these photos on Pinterest and followed the link.  

Little Bo Peep

I realized as I was decorating my Christmas trees that I hadn't made a single ornament for myself last year.  I made several for the kids so there were new ornaments on the tree, but none of them were for me personally.  I did everyone else's ornaments first and then ran out of time to make myself some.  This will not do!  I decided to take the month of January and make ornaments just for me.

First up -- Little Bo Peep.  My sister and I had Madame Alexander dolls when we were little and she had Little Bo Peep.  Any time I looked at the DeAngelis pattern, I pictured that doll in my head.  She looked like this:

That's all I could visualize in terms of color choices for the ornament.  I made some modifications to the pattern to add the vest and the petticoat.  She turned out great and is a nice reminder of our childhood doll collections.