by Emma Thomas-McGinnis, artist & quilter
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Trying Something New

June 29th, 2013 | Posted by Emma in All | Crafts - (1 Comments)

I don’t know what came over me, except maybe nostalgia for those hippie craft books I grew up pouring over…but I just got the itch to try something new, micro-macramé! I ran across this website. knotjustmacrame.com, if you have a few minutes click that link now, you won’t be disappointed. She does amazing things with thread and beads! (more…)

Crafty Morning

March 31st, 2013 | Posted by Emma in All | Crafts | Tutorials - (2 Comments)
springyoyoflowers

Brennan frequently wants to go into the studio and make a project…regardless of the time of day. Before I even had my coffee finished this morning he wanted to start! I guess it’s my fault for making our bedtime reading a Family Fun magazine full of craft projects!

Oh but spring projects are soooo fun!!
Do you want to see what we made? (more…)

Cat Tent

March 11th, 2013 | Posted by Emma in All | Crafts | Tutorials - (1 Comments)
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I made a project a while back that I should show you! It’s super cute, not as useful as I hoped, but super cute!

It’s a Cat Tent! (more…)

Christmas Gift Round-up

January 6th, 2013 | Posted by Emma in Crafts | Inspiration | Quilting | Uncategorized - (1 Comments)
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Hi Friends! Did you miss me? It’s been a long time since I posted anything on this blog, so I hope I haven’t lost you, my dear readers, but I just didn’t feel like blogging and didn’t see the point of making myself blog. Now I’m starting to feel like it again, so I’m going to see how long that lasts. Project Quilting just started up again and I was just sewing with my small group and we had big plans for challenges for the year to come, so hopefully I’ll find plenty to write about!

But really, I never have a lack of sewing projects to write about!! I mean come on!

I’d like to start getting back into things by telling you about the awesome Christmas I just had; full of homemade/handsewn gifts. I found lots of inspiring projects in books and magazines and online tutorials that I’d like to share with you! (more…)

marbling12

My mom showed us a fun art project the last time she came to visit…and you’ve just got to try this. Whether you have kids to do it with or want to make some beautiful fabric to quilt with, this is a project where you will love the process as much as the result! (more…)

New Pincushion for Retreat

April 19th, 2012 | Posted by Emma in All | Crafts | Quilting - (0 Comments)
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I’m leaving tomorrow for a quilting retreat!!! I’m sooooo excited! I’ve had a very busy work week and even my evenings have been filled with meetings and things to do with my kids, so I am not as prepared as I would like to be…but I don’t care, I’m just going to drop everything, stop working tomorrow, stop worrying about the housework, bring as much as I can and just sew! (more…)

Weekend Projects

April 1st, 2012 | Posted by Emma in Crafts | Uncategorized - (0 Comments)
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Last weekend when my husband and oldest son went on a trip, Brennan and I got a little extra “project time”…here are few of the fun projects we did. (more…)

More Christmas Gifts to Share

January 4th, 2012 | Posted by Emma in Crafts | Quilting | Uncategorized - (3 Comments)
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Ok, so I had a very productive holiday season of homemade gift-giving! Here are a few more I wanted to show you before moving on… (oh and stay tuned for a wrap-up of the gifts my husband made this year, with a little help from his wife!)

This is a package of three little gifts I gave to my small group secret santa, Veronica. Using a fabric line I knew she’d love, I made a button bag zipper tote, a pin cushion and a fancy twisted drawstring pouch.

Then I made a big quilted tote bag for my sister in law who loves to knit. It’s big enough to put a lot of yarn and a sweater in, I’m sure! I used a charm pack called “Cherish Nature”, that I totally love! I was actually starting to think I should keep the bag halfway through, because I loved those fabrics so much. But my generosity won out because it was Christmas and I wanted Jennifer’s gift to be great!

I loved the quilting on this! I used my favorite free motion pattern and it really looked nice…look at those beautiful fabrics!

Two big pockets inside and one on the outside, along with really big, sturdy handles, make this a really useful bag!

And this might have been the most fun project for me, because I truly love making stuffed toys…and I don’t have many girly gifts to give in my family!

Doesn’t look like much yet, but open it up…

it’s a dolly slumber party!

Here’s my hand holding a dolly, so you can see the fun little size they are.

The pattern came from one of my favorite stuffed toy books “Wee Wonderfuls” by Hilary Lang.

Angry Birds Christmas

December 27th, 2011 | Posted by Emma in Crafts | Quilting | Uncategorized - (0 Comments)
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My boys love Angry Birds this year…what kid doesn’t, huh? Well, I made them a few accessories to fill their requests for Angry Bird stuff.

By far the best was these hats!!

We had seen some knitted angry bird hats at a gas station and thought I could do a better job with fleece. I think I did!

Except that as you can see in the pic, Brennan’s was too small. I wanted them to be a surprise, so I couldn’t try them on the kids. I just measured from one of their current hats. But when constructing, forgot to orient the grain of the fleece so as to stretch AROUND their heads, so I did have to rip a few seams and reconstruct them once. Aw well. It was only too bad that I had made it fully-lined and top-stitched before realizing my error!!

The next thing I made was really my son Conal’s idea. He wanted a “Pig Fortress Building Kit.” His idea was to use foam or boxes to make bricks for building pig houses. I bought a sheet of 3″ thick foam and covered them with brick patterned fabric like you would a baby block. The roof is a sheet of heavy-weight plastic canvas covered in fabric and batting.

This was the tote bag and sign for storing the game.

Here’s a pig in his fortress!

And here’s the fortress after launching a bird at it! This makes me very glad they have a big basement room to go throwing around their toys in!!

Here’s a funny action shot of Conal trying out his angry bird hat and pig fortress on Christmas morning (hence the mess all around!)

I think I took enough photos of the process that I could write a quick tutorial, let me know if you’re interested.

Christmas Crafts

December 26th, 2011 | Posted by Emma in Crafts | Inspiration | Quilting | Uncategorized - (2 Comments)
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Ok, before I tell you about my marathon of Christmas gifts, I have to say that I was still crafting today after making no less than 16 unique gifts this season! I just wanted to be back in my studio making stuff, so that’s what I did.

That and my friend Sherri’s suggestion to check out Pinterest was a good one. I had this inspiring pin board to get me crafting!

So I went to this tutorial at Retro Mama and made these little houses with Christmas fabrics. I have to say I like her fabric choices a lot better, but I started them with my Christmas bin of fabrics and they just turned out.

For Conal:

For Brennan:

For Dave (with Woodstock in the window):

And for me (yes, I wanted one too!):

They were really addicting and easy to make multiples of. I had to stop myself from sewing more of them and go play with my boys a bit!

If you want to get into Pinterest too or have already discovered the wonders…

Follow Me on Pinterest

Here’s another quickie project I did…by watching a video. They are just 4-strand braids in a ball, I’m going to add ribbons and make them into ornaments.

It’s still Christmas and the boys are happily playing with their new toys, I think I’ll go back to the studio! (Maybe I should clean up rather than making something this time, though!)