Thanksgiving Crafting

This post was written for a few Thanksgivings ago, but these crafts are so much fun, I am sharing them again with you for this year!

I have a few crafts to keep the kids busy at your next Thanksgiving gathering. I wanted to keep it contained and interesting, with things they could do on their own without any messy components like glue or scissors.

I prepared all of the pieces for each craft ahead of time, so on the day of, I could just place them out on a paper-covered table, and let the kids go at them!

There were three different projects they could choose from.


Materials to create with: poster board bands, feathers, markers.

To prepare this craft, I cut strips of poster board that were 23 inches long. On one end, I notched it to look like a dull arrow. On the other end, I used an exacto blade to cut 5 vertical slits about an inch apart. In the middle, I used the blade again to cut sets of 2 horizontal lines (one on top of the other- about 3 inches apart). This way, it eliminates the need to be taped closed, or even the use of glue for feathers. Everything inserts! Easy peasy.

Beaded necklaces.

Materials to create: pre-cut string, beads, gluten-free macaroni

We have serious gluten allergies here, so we used a GF noodle, but this also works well with wheat pasta. I pre-cut lengths of stretchy string, and knotted a bead on one end to get them started.

Cuffed bracelets.

Materials to create: halved toilet paper tubes, double sided tape, felt pieces, feathers, markers.

All I had to do for this one, was cut the toilet paper tubes in half, then slit them open vertically. They amazingly stay on all sized wrists and are pretty stylish looking.

I chose to honor Native Americans and the gracious sharing of that very first Thanksgiving meal with strangers to the land.

Even though we used non-traditional materials, I think it is important to show our children how many cultures make up this wonderful country of ours, and how we all meld together as Humans, even symbolically. There is a common good that I want my girls to know. Truly to be thankful for all that they have, and more importantly, have to give.

“I’m thankful for my home my friends my food and all the guests at this table”.

These crafts not only opened up conversations, they kept the kids busy while the grown-ups chatted and had a grand ol’ time as well.

What eventually happened was the grown-ups migrated to the kids’ table and started to craft too.

I call that a successful activity…for all ages.

What do you do to keep the kids busy before the food comes out?


Thanksgiving Toilet Paper Tube crafts

Looking back through my Thanksgiving posts, I found two gems, using toilet paper tubes for decor.

The first is a tutorial for recycled toilet paper tube flower napkin rings (wow that is a mouthful).

It’s all about simplicity.

To make your own, you’ll need:

Toilet paper tubes and an egg carton. I also used watercolor paints and hot glue along with yarn, popcorn kernels, and acorns. But feel free to use what you have!

I started by cutting the toilet paper tubes in half and tearing up the cups (roughly in half) of the egg carton.

Then I painted them. If you have children, this is where they can help out!

Allow them to dry completely.

Next, take two halves and hot glue them together. Then keep adding a piece at a time until you have a flower.

Hot glue popcorn kernels and acorns inside the flower.

Set aside.

I wrapped and hot glued orange yarn (that I got for free) around the toilet paper tubes. You can use any string you have, or none at all. They do look pretty great on their own, too.

Glue flower to the tube.

Insert a cloth napkin and you’re done!

I also left some without flowers. I can’t decide which I like better.

For the rest of the table, I gathered rose-hips and leaves, acorns, and even a dried wooden round that was in the firewood pile.

Cranberries in bowls add a sweet touch. I also whipped up a very simple tie garland using scraps of fabric that I had tied to a long piece of twine.

I had a few squash that I thought were really beautiful, so I added them to the mix!


I chose to just have a lovely crocheted runner instead of a tablecloth. And leaves instead of place mats. I really wanted to show off the table I made (see? if you don’t have a large wooden table, you could always make one!) and showcase the food that will be there on Thanksgiving day. Two of my favorite parts!

Come back tomorrow for another clever couple of crafts!

Bringing the Bookworm Button Up home


I first posted this over at Melly Sews as my first Team Member post.

Melissa’s patterns are some of the very first patterns I had ever sewn up. Ever. They taught me how to install a zip fly, and do welt pockets, and oh so much more. I am honored to share the newest “first” for me with the Bookworm Button Up. *affiliate link*


Before this, I had never attempted to sew buttoned cuffs before! And do you want to know what? They weren’t that difficult to do! As always with Blank Slate Patterns (*AL), this one walks you through every step clearly and precisely so that in the end you have a very professional looking product.


I made a size 7 for my petite 9 year old, based on her measurement, and the fit is great. There is even a little room to grow (which I so love). This shirt has so very many options to choose from (that I was super excited to sew up), and it honestly surprised me when she chose the most basic version. No pockets, no fancy back, and no bows. She is “almost 10, you know“. Goodness they do have strong opinions, don’t they?  Even without all the fun stuff added, you can see that it still looks great!


Rachel from Imagine Gnats (affiliate link) generously supplied this incredible Anna Maria Horner Loominous fabric which was perfect for this pattern. Seriously decadent. I think choosing the right fabric for the right pattern makes all the difference.


I did French seams throughout, which aren’t necessary, but do give it a lovely finish. I even did a little pattern matching! The instructions walk you through putting together the back yoke so that the inside is as pretty as the outside. The collar and cuffs are finished neatly.





This shirt is an excellent addition to any Fall school wardrobe. Along with the great embellishment options, there is also a boy version! I really enjoyed sewing this one up so much that I have started another.

The Airdrie Bag

I had the recent pleasure of sewing up the Airdrie bag. In all honesty, I actually begged asked the lovely Abby of Sew Much Ado because I thought it would be perfect for me. And you know what?



The pattern is for a large bag (meant to be a diaper bag), but it can absolutely be an everyday bag (for those of us who carry around a ton of stuff). Or double as even a camera bag, perhaps. I plan on putting mine in there, when I need to.


I made a few changes to suit my needs. The first one is, I made the strap wider and not adjustable. I am the only one who will be carrying it, and I like a fixed length out of convenience, even though I do think an adjustable strap is a great feature.


The only other change I made was to not insert plastic into the bottom. Again, not being a diaper bag, I wanted a floppier more relaxed bag.


Let’s see where to begin. How about that fabric?! Do you recognize it from this project? This time I got to use some of this amazingly dreamy canvas (Archery Pool) from Fabricworm for me! I paired it with a wonderful mustard cotton and a super soft gray flannel.


OK here are some pattern details. There is a roomy  pocket with a magnetic snap in front.


In the back is a fantastic zip pocket. I used “faux piping” by bringing the lining up a little. I then had to shorten the pocket by just as much, but that really didn’t affect it, since it is inside.


I did the same thing on the side pockets too.


There is a recessed zip and I triple stitched it just for a fun look.


I did the same to the zipper tab.


Now for a look inside...


There is a whole lot of awesomeness happening in there! There is a padded divider zipped pocket, PLUS a divided elastic pocket. It is an organizer’s heaven in there, I tell you. I had never made a divider pocket before, and love this pattern for teaching me.


All seams are finished professionally and like all of Abby’s patterns (like this one here), this one is written with clear instructions with clear illustrations to go with them. If you trust this pattern, and do everything that is written, you will end up with one magnificent bag. The details are well thought out and worth putting time into.

For the record, I was provided this pattern for free, but all the gushing is absolutely genuine, and all opinions are mine mine mine.

Newsletter Day

Look to your inboxes! I barely remembered this week because that is just how our week has been. But I did it. So that is all that counts, right?


Here is a silly photo just for you.

I will be back tomorrow with a new project! Happy Friday (uh it is Friday, right?).

Working on

I have several things I am working on this week. Two I cannot show you yet, but this one I can.

I am making 50 of these face table covers (that I also made last January). So far I have managed to sew up 36. I am amazed at how very long they are taking! I guess I forgot.


This is just a pile of 12 that I finished yesterday.


To quote Fellini:

“You have to live spherically – in many directions. Never lose your childish enthusiasm – and things will come your way.”― Federico Fellini

I am living spherically lately, thinking all around and taking on many projects at once. Doing a little of this and a little of that while being childishly enthused. I hope to share something completed with you soon!

Anyone else tired?

I realize we only just celebrated Halloween, but I AM TIRED. I think it is the combination of the costumes I poured my self into for the girls (here and here), and a change in the temperature (it is cold and damp here which is a recipe for chilly bones), plus Daylight Savings Time (which always seems to screw us up).

I also know we still have Thanksgiving and our girls’ birthdays AND Christmas coming (rather quickly), and it all feels like a lot. All I really feel like doing is cuddling up under a blanket with something warm to drink (soup has been hitting the spot lately) and a sweet or two. Although I have been making myself get outside to exercise, which does feel good.

Anyhow, even though I have been sewing (slowly), I don’t have anything to share with you today. But I do have some great news! I made the Top Ten over at Project Run and Play!

I would love to have your vote (if you like what I made, that is). Click over here. It is a quick vote. No personal info required.


Thank you, friends.

Anyone else tired?

Laptop bag with Birch Fabric

I was sent some dreamy fabric by Fabricworm from the new Birch Organic Wildland collection.


I chose this one:


Archery Pool Canvas

It is so soft and amazingly creamy fabric. Usually canvas is stiff and rough, but not this stuff. I (reluctantly) agreed to part with a small amount of it for my daughter’s new laptop bag. My teen archer loves it.


It was a quick sew. I wanted to showcase this beautiful fabric by keeping it simple.


I just cut out a rectangle sandwich with the Birch fabric, some batting, and an old white sheet. Then I sewed it right side together into a bag. Added some velcro, and it was done.


I did add this super cool button, as a decoration (not functional).


I wish these photos were touch and feel, because oooooooh weeee.


This fabric was such a pleasure to work with. I bet it would even work for garment sewing.


Luckily, I saved some for myself.  I will be sewing up a little something just for myself.


Big thank you to Fabricworm. All opinions came from me.