Tuesday, October 27, 2015

HOMEMADE Stitched With Heartstrings 2015...

The other night, after a hot and humid day of spring housecleaning, I poured myself a long cool glass of ginger beer and settled in for an hour on the laptop looking for wonderful gift ideas to share with you.
In the midst of this I pondered a most common question which generally shakes up my 'little grey cells' as the calendar rolls further towards Christmas each year.

"What should we give him/her?"

Mr E and I discussed this dilemma over breakfast the next day and as we reflected back over our own childhood Christmases it became obvious that 'then and now' were vastly different. 

The only gift receiving times all year were Christmas and birthdays so we thought very carefully about what went on our wish list. Gift giving outside of those two celebrations were rare.

But today as a general rule most people purchase what they want, as they want it, for themselves and their children. That's a big reason as to why gift giving has become such a headache. 
Many of us already own what we want.

And that, dear girl, is where the whole concept of making gifts comes to the fore!

My family and friends cannot buy what I can make them. Sure, they might get a similar generic factory made copy I suppose, but not the real deal. 

Not a "handmade and stitched with heartstrings" personal gift from my hand to theirs.

So that's going to be a focus here on the blog over the next two months.

A couple of times a week I'll share a blog post with ideas from others and the odd one of my own. 

If you'd like to add my *homemade stitched with heartstrings* button to your blog and join me in making as much as we can ourselves this Christmas that would be wonderful!

You can download the button HERE to pop in your blog sidebar with a link back to my blog.

I'll be carrying this theme on into 2016 as well, but more about that will be shared on the blog in January.

Now let's kick off *homemade stitched with heartstrings* Christmas 2015 with these (fairly) easy to make projects...

The Northern Hemisphere will be wrapping themselves up in warm woollies come December, so I thought these Simple House Slippers would be a grateful gift for just about everyone in your family or friendship circle.
They are a free pattern by Simone from Denmark on Ravelry. 
Download it HERE...

I've been an admirer of Kerryanne English for years and love her shabby chic style designs. She recently shared a tutorial to make these sweet scrappy hearts. 
Naturally they have been added to my sewing list for Christmas giving and also for hanging in my own home.
See her tutorial HERE...

This table runner by Amy is a quick make so I'm thinking it wouldn't be difficult to spend an afternoon sewing three or four from the scrap basket - that's quite a few pretty (and thrifty) gifts at once!
See her tutorial HERE...

 Another terrific scrappy idea using leftover fabric bits and pieces is this bag by Ashlee.
An idea would be to scour op-shops for old weathered bags that still have usable (and detachable) handles, or maybe you have a bag already which is long past it's 'use-by' date but has perfectly suitable handles. 
See her  tutorial HERE...

With a new baby arriving in our family next year I went hunting for some useful (and pretty) gift ideas I could sew.
Like THIS fold up clutch-style change mat tutorial from the Bernina website. It easily fits into a hand bag or could be kept in the car...

This is another cute clutch, but without the change mat. It stores nappies (diapers) and wet wipes. Wish these were around when I was birthing my bubbas!
Tutorial from Cheri can be found HERE...

Orphan fat quarters are perfect for whipping up a stack of baby bibs!
HERE is a very simple tutorial for a basic no-knot bib from Delia.
You could add applique across the front or an embroidery...

If you're joining in why don't you leave a comment below with your blog address so my readers and I can visit you?

In your *homemade stitched with heartstrings* blog posts over the next two months share what you've personally 'stitched with heartstrings' for Christmas as well as great gift project ideas you find on the internet, and include the *homemade stitched with heartstrings* button each time.
What fun for all of us to visit each other and be inspired?!

I'll also add your blog link to my sidebar under the *homemade stitched with heartstrings* button until Christmas Eve.

I'm pretty sure this is going to be fun, don't you?

Happy handmade sewing!


  1. Once again Jenny you are an inspiration with this wonderful idea. Can't wait to try them and see what is coming up.

  2. Creo que es una magnífica idea. Ahora mismo he añadido el botón a mi blog. Gracias por tantas cosas buenas que compartes. Un beso.

  3. We have been downsizing and simplifying our lives, so this is a great concept! Count me in!! HUGS

    Pam Bump
    Galt, CA., USA

  4. Great idea Jenny. I'm a firm believer in homemade gifts. Our quilting bee tries to do that too, always fun to see what people come up with. Thank you for your wonderful and heartfelt ideas. Just adore you and your blog. God Bless you Jenny.

  5. Hello Jenny
    What a great idea, I'd love to join in.


  6. Thanks Jenny , what a great idea. I'm in....

  7. Hi Jenny i love this idea too,i will grab your button now,thankyou xx

  8. Hi Jen. I saw this little "cord keeper" on Connecting Threads and think it would be quick and useful. We all have lots of unruly cords! http://leafytreetopspot.blogspot.com/2013/05/tutorial-diy-cord-keeper-from-fabric.html?m=1

  9. Jenny what a wonderful idea, I am in the proses of starting my own blog and would love to join in at a later date.xx

  10. Looking forward to all these great ideas!

  11. A lovely idea Jenny, I would love to join you as I am on my own mission this year to make as many of my gifts as I can. x

  12. Wonderful idea. I don't have a blog but will be following and add interesting sites that I come across.

  13. Hi again Jenny, I have just posted my post linking up to your Homemade, stitched with heartstrings. It will be great to see what others are making and share ideas. https://creativityandfamily.wordpress.com/2015/10/27/homemade-stitched-with-heartstrings/
    Sharon x

  14. Good idea ! I'll be joining you.

  15. Love making gifts for all occasions!! I'm in!!

  16. I just had to create a post to my followers about this great idea!! Thank you, Jenny!!!

  17. Jenny, this is a fantastic idea! I will add your button and share a few items. I have been seeing so many ideas to make for gifts, just not enough time in the day to get to it all. Sure will be fun and most likely chaotic at times. Thanks for sharing and have a wonderful creative day!

  18. Hi Jenny, Haven't written for a while, Enjoying all the pattern's I receive monthly from you and also on Craftsy. Getting cooler here in NS Canada. Time to start making Christmas gifts. Thanks for sharing these.

  19. I joined with this Bath Salts Idea. You are on my sidebar! I love this idea and hope to post something every week. This one has optional stitchery, but others will be definitely sewing ideas. Thanks for another way to re-energize my gift-giving thoughts this year, Jenny!

  20. What a great idea. Thanks for this I'll put the link on the sidebar if I can remember how. It's so long since I did anything but post!

  21. How true this is that we just go and buy things as we need/want them - even my 23 yo said the same the other day. Thanks for those links - I can see some great projects that might end up on the "must make" list.

  22. Jenny - You are awsome. I will post some embroidery I just finished soon.

  23. Jenny - You are awsome. I will post some embroidery I just finished soon.

  24. Hi Jenny - This is a great idea, thank you, have made the clutch and onto the change mat with built in clutch, so useful and same as you wish they were around when I became a mum, they make wonderful handmade gifts. I also would like to make the table runner, would be a first for me and have had in mind an eye spy type quilt for granddaughter, so many interesting fabric designs that fit that. I do appreciate all your lovely designs and patterns and your research and sharing other good ideas you find. Inspires me with my intention to make handmade gifts, I am currently making my granddaughter circle skirts plus I have also been making pot holder/mits that also double as heat pad and embellishing tea towels and shoulder covers for hanging jackets etc, adding recycled doilies as well as embroidery, and could also add covered coathanger with them, oh and not to forget a needle case I have recently made for gift inspired by your very pretty last one with the vintage lace, I used a sandwich tray embroidered doiley for the outside and Tilda fabrics on the inside with lace trimming the edges of pockets as the doiley had crocheted edging, can see a couple more being made for gifts Look forward to see what you make for your new expected grandbaby too, very exciting news after your wonderful visit earlier this year with your daughter and gorgeous granddaughter, lovely to see Frankie healthy once again, it is a huge worry when little ones become ill, we experienced similar with granddaughter last year for 2nd time, huge relief to see them healthy. Enjoy your creating and gift making Jenny I enjoy seeing your beautiful results. Thank you, hugs Judithann :-)

  25. Thanks for taking the time to find these ideas Jenny. xx

  26. Homemade all the way! Miss H and I had already decided that this year everything would be handmade so this is brilliant! Thanks so much. Gonna be fun!

  27. Thank you Clairellen! I added it to the HSWH blog post on the 4th November. :-)

  28. Jenny, I just wanted to let you know that I posted a picture on my blog of the Cancer Awareness design that you shared with us. I really enjoyed this design and will definitely be using it again! I love your designs and every thing that you share. Thank you so much! Have a wonderful creative day! Brenda


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