A long time and a long list...

Hello all!  
I know it's been forever since I've written, but I haven't disappeared altogether.  Sometimes life just kinda takes precedence ya know?  Anyway, I'm back and I have a mountain of stuff to show you!  Are you comfortable?  Do you need to top up your coffee before you start reading?

This year we spent Christmas with my family in Canada.  Olivia is 18 months old now and we thought she would really enjoy meeting her cousins, playing in the snow, and all the great stuff there is to do at Christmas.  We were not wrong!  

Opening a present with cousin Liam.  Yes, I'm the dork in the antlers.

We had a full house - two parents, five kids, four sons/daughters in law, three grandkids, three dogs and one cat!

So now that I've set the scene, let me tell you about the presents.

I made four throw pillows for my mom, done with mostly DS fabrics in blues and a selection of Kona solids, (still working on that giant Kona box I bought three years ago!).  Please forgive the cell phone pic.

Then there was the quilt for my brother and his new wife, which was actually a wedding gift since they got married at the end of November.  They live downtown Toronto and are young and cosmopolitan, so I wanted to make it a sophisticated colour palette with modern fabrics they would like.  It was made to live sitting chicly on their grey couch!
I finished this up two days before we had to hop on a plane to Toronto, so I didn't end up getting any nice pictures of it.  Here are some cell phone pics I took during the making of.  At first I was going to do it all triangles, but then I thought that staggering the rows and adding a black background would make the fabrics really pop.  I used a silk batting to make it extra warm for those cold Canadian nights!

After we decided to go home to my parents' house for Christmas, I had to get my butt in gear and finish Olivia's Christmas stocking.  Both hers and my husband's are made from Bucilla felt stocking kits.  They are many, many hours of work, but definitely worth it.  
My family has a long tradition of felt stocking, starting more than 40 years ago when my late grandmother made two for my newly married parents.  Since she passed I have taken up the torch, making them for my niece and nephew the years they were born.  I am still working on one for me to have here in Italy, so I can keep my "original" one in Canada.

I managed to make a few couch pillows for us along the way, mostly made from extra fabric from the quilts I worked on.  

Two couch pillows with two couch potatoes!

A few weeks ago I signed up for Sanae and Ute's Secret Valentine Exchange.  I don't want to say too much, but since there is a flickr pool I assume I can show you the couch pillow that will soon be winging it's way toward my partner.

A couple of weeks ago we bought Olivia her first table and chair set, the boring "Latt" from Ikea.  I spiffed it up with some hot pink paint, a piece of Echino oilcloth I never made into bibs, and used the leftover hot pink canvas from the rocking chair in her room to upholster the seats.  I think it looks great don't you?  The perfect place to play with Play Doh!

Since we've been back I've been trying to finish up a few straggling WIPs, which seems to have become a theme in quilty blogland this past month.  

I am happy to say I have finally finished Olivia's cross stitch birth announcement.  Most of it was done while I was pregnant, but the date, weight and border still had to be done.  As usual with cross stitch, it took forever but the results are adorable!  I cannot wait to get this framed and hung up in her room!

Please forgive the pictures - we haven't seen the sun in weeks!

Now that that's done, my new evening project is to finish the hand stitching on my little mini quilt from last May…

My new big quilt project is a bit of a departure for me.  Not only am I using the last three collections of Anna Maria Horner's fabrics, it is quilt-as-you-go.  I am following Maureen's tutorial and making an AMH herringbone quilt.  I upsized it slightly to use 18" strips so I could a) make the quilt a bit bigger and b) just slice across all the fat quarters.  I've made the batting strips 11" wide and 90" long.  Maureen's blog is one of my favourites, and I have been curious about QAYG for a while now.  So here are the first four strips done, hanging on my design wall.  A good Virgo can never go full-on random, so I arranged all the strips before sewing to ensure good "random" colour placement!  Ha!

I've actually still got more things to show you, but I'm going to stop there and save it for another day.  Don't want to wear out my welcome!
I promise I will be back blogging much more this year, and I'm going to try and use Instagram more often too.  If you want to follow me I'm anniemac_original.

Talk soon!


  1. I've been eyeing off Maureen's tutorial for this quilt - it's a beauty isn't it. Yo have been busy and have much to show for your time. Beautiful gifts!

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