I can tell you what month it is by looking at my blog stats.
As we near the holiday season, the blog post Fleece Flannel Blankets becomes the daily top post—day after day. The post was originally written in June 2013—three and half years ago!
Fleece flannel blankets are just that—fleece or minky on one side and flannel on the other side—with a nice binding to hold it all together. These blankets are great gifts that are used and loved. It makes me happy to think that crafters from around the world use my tutorial to make them, and you can too.
Or you can make my other popular hand made gift—Artful Oven Mitts.
In celebration of my 100th blog post, I gave away 100 oven mitt patterns. That was a much crazier endeavor than I originally imagined. If you want a good chuckle, check out the post where I describe my ill thought out attempt to mail dozens of hand drawn (what is wrong with me?) patterns.
When I make oven mitts, I do it factory style. They are my standard wedding gift and I also sell them. Right now, I have one lonely oven mitt left from my last factory session.
Which means I should make a new batch, or not. It is a lot of work!
While in Houston at the International Quilt Festival earlier this month, I taught an Artful Oven Mitt class. It was awesome!
I kitted up fabric and Insul-Bright batting, and I pre-cut bindings and hanging tabs, so students could get busy right away.
Okay, there was a small problem—I don’t know count!
Which resulted in a small Insul-Bright crisis and me running the halls of the Houston Convention Center looking for batting.
Thank you dear students for working with me on that one.
Almost everyone finished an oven mitt.
One stitcher even made two!
I would like to celebrate giving and the holiday season.
So, tell me what your favorite hand made gift is—things you make or things you have received—and I will randomly select 12 responses (as in Twelve Days of Christmas) to send an Artful Oven Mitt pattern.
My favorite handmade gift has to be these amazing Owl pouches that my friend quilt artist Barb Mortell made for me. Aren’t they beautiful? I traded her some artful oven mitts for them!
Happy Holidays dear readers. I am very much looking forward to a deadline free December in which I will happily stitch away on whatever I want to make, and I hope you will do the same.
PS I will do the random selecting a week from now–That’s next Monday, December 5th!
I love to gift people with felted soap or ornaments. And, I really want that mitt pattern. LOL!!
I would love to send you a pattern! I will email you the details! Felted soap is awesome.
I love to give or receive small art quilts (12″ x 12″ or smaller). I would also love to use my stash leftovers to make Shell oven mitts….
I will send you the pattern! Look for an email from me with the details. Small art quilts are great gifts.
One of my go-to gifts are click-it bags, made with two fat quarters and strips cut from a carpenter’s rule. Easier than sewing in a zipper, and the recipients love them.
Julie–What a great idea. I don’t make bags because of the zippers. I would love to mail you an oven mitt pattern. I will email you the details!
I love your artful mitts, I made a bunch of notebook covers for my quilting group. I personalized each one and I think those were my favorite gifts I’ve made but certainly not the easiest!
I love those notebooks covers. A friend of mine just made one for a young woman who is studying in Ghana. They are such great gifts. I would love to send oven mitt pattern. I will email you the details!
My favorite gift I’ve received is a song my son wrote for me for Mother’s day a few years ago. To give? Quilts!
What a great son! Yes. Quilts are awesome. Everyone gets mitt pattern! I will email you the details.
I make Christmas stockings from vintage quilts, linens, lace, and buttons. For the gals in my family I made theirs from quilts my grandmother made, assorted linens, lace, & buttons from both grandmothers, aunts, my mother, and my own collections, and the cuffs were made from the last wedding gown my mother designed and made. Every stocking I make is one of a kind. I love making them.
Kay, I would love to see those stockings. The descriptions sound amazing. I will be emailing you about your oven mitt pattern. Everyone gets one!
I make quilted ornaments every year. I’ve done gingerbread men and trees, but my favorites are hearts and stockings. I think I’ve been doing this for at least 25 years. LOVE homemade gifts. Your mitts are terrific! 🙂
Suzanne- those ornaments sound awesome. I can’t believe you have done it for 25 years. That is amazing! I will email you about your oven mitt patttern. Everyone gets one!
Last year I made all the women in my sewing group a crocheted, vintage potholder–ten in all, each a different design. I tried to post a picture here but couldn’t get it to work.
Christmas- They sound lovely! What a beauitful gift. I will email you about a mitt pattern. I will send you one if you like.
I’ve made an annual card every year since the mid- 1980’s: Pop Up, origami, collage-under-plastic, double as ornaments, etc. I’ve made coasters, fiber art postcards, reusable grocery type tote bags, Norwegian Ring Cake (Kransekaka), and more.
This year, I’m making Christmas stockings for my son, girlfriend and puppy for their first Christmas in their first house. I’m also making a tote bag to carry books for someone with a new baby. I often mass produce things (such as 223 fiber art postcards in 2006), and I’ve been wanting to mass produce some artful oven mitts- I hope to win the pattern!
Wendy- Everyone gets a pattern. I just decided that I could do it. I will email you about your address. I made Christmas stockings one year. They are made out of fleece and each one has personal buttons, pins, and what not. 223 fiber art post cards! We are crazy.
I love when someone gifts me fabric and then I get to gift them something made with the fabric the next year. I would love to make some beautiful mittens like yours.
Yes. I like that too. Erica, I will be emailing you to get your address so you can start making artful oven mitts with your friends fabric!
Those owl pouches are adorable. I like to give anything I am cranking out in my factory at the time. I tend to go at things like a zealot until I get it out of my system. But, I do love giving a whole cloth quilt ala Purl Soho. Mug Rugs are fun, too. My favorite thing to receive is an opportunity to spend time together like a lunch date.
And, I’m smitten with those mittens!
Susan- I love that you admit your factory tendencies. I do the same thing. I was obsessed with making bags for awhile. In fact, I have been thinking about making more recently. I love seting up the assembly line and cranking things out. I will email you about sending you a Artful Oven Mitt pattern.
You may think that you were crazy, but it made my day to get your hand drawn mitt pattern along with a note. I appreciate your kindness. How lovely of you!
Sharon- It was my pleasure! Thank you!
Aww! Thanks for faving my owl pouches! This year I have made earrings from blingy sparkly drop beads and hammered copper – and Indigo dyed scarves. Okay, the scarves are not yet made, but I have all the parts in the house. I made Maria’s Amazing Oven Mitts – that year you mailed me a hand drawn pattern (thank you). Quilty things take a lot of time, I’ve made improvisationally patchworked coasters, potholders, table runners, quilts… and I now know that I make quilts as art and hammered metal things like spoons and earrings for gifts. Sweet, you are.
Barb- You are busy! I am into improv coasters too. I have been trying to work out an idea on how I can make them using the little bits we feed through our sewing machines to avoid thread throw up. I hope you are doing great!
My favorite gift to get is a handmade card from one of my grandchildren. I tell them they can give me anything they want, as long as they make it themselves. My favorite gift to give was a peculiar Mexican amulet from the flea market that purported to make you rich. It included, among other things, unhulled sunflower seeds spray-painted gold (I assume that gold attracts gold). I gave it to my son, who’s in business for himself, and he gave me a strange look in return. I hope it works.
Pam- You tell the best stories! Happy Holidays to you and yours.
My favorite received handmade christmas gift is the cross-stitched ornaments that a neighbor of my husband’s family made every year for a while bunch of neighbors and family. She must have worked on them all year. Each year’s ornament was different and each one had a hand printed label with the year, maker, etc. Amazing!!
That sounds lovely. One year, I got lucky and won a Kathy Loomis (her blog is Art with a Needle) Christmas ornament. It hangs year round on my long arm light bar. I would love to send you a mitt pattern Susan. I will email you with the details. Happy Holidays!
My favorite gift to give is probably a table runner. Each one can be its own little composition. I, too, am looking at a relatively deadline free December
Table runners are great! As are deadline free months! Penny, I will email you about an oven mitt pattern. I will send you one if you like.
Thank you so much. I love your oven mitts. (Sorry for the slow response here. I have had limited internet access recently.)
I tend to go for quilted Potholders because I like playing with scraps. Sometimes I pair that with homemade apple butter when I beat the deer to the fruit. Your mitts are spectacular-looking and I’d love to make those too!
That sounds like a great gift Audrey. I will email about the oven pattern. I would love to send you one!
I really do enjoy sewing factory style. This year it’s zipper bags made out of recycled chicken food bags along with some woven scraps a friend passed on to me.
When I received your hand drawn oven mitt pattern it felt like an unexpected gift from a friend! I’ve enjoyed reading your blog ever since.
What a nice thing to say Colleen! Thank you so much and happy holidays!
My favorite gift to both give and receive are small zippered fabric bags. I love the range of possibilities for them–pieced, hand embroidered, oil cloth. I use them for cosmetics, jewelry, art supplies… Even though I make them to give, my friends come up with new variations that I love to receive. Happy deadline-free Dec!
Robin- I love those bags. Quilt artist Deb Cashett made me a tiny one, and I always travel with it. I will email you and get the details to send you an oven mitt pattern if you would like.
Ooh, I don’t know. One of my favorite gifts is a small box of my BF’s Oatmeal Mincemeat Cookies. She only makes them at Christmas, and a she sends me some special delivery every year!
I love donating quilts to specific charities, usually through my church, for shut ins, or older folks or the homeless.
And I would love to have a new tradition of making artful oven mitts! Plus, I’m so happy to find you posting again. And hearing that you have a deadline free December–have a wonderful Christmas season!!
Debby- Those cookies sound suppy yummy. I have a friend who makes holiday cookes with potato chips and I am always happy to get them!I would love to send you an oven mitt pattern. I will email you with the details!
I give improve pot holders. Sometimes I just need to play in the scrap box. But what do I do with these random experiments? (Sometimes they go somewhere and become wall hangings.) so I started making pot holders. Now it’s my thing. Oven mitts would be a great addition to my repetoir 😊. Happy Holidays. I very much enjoy your blog.
Everyone gets a pattern Sheila! I will email you to get your address. Happy Holidays!
I was one of the lucky recipients of the Artful Oven Mitt pattern. I love it so much I made sure to store it in a very safe place, which at this moment remains a mystery to me!! I had planned to make these for Christmas gifts but they will have to wait till the mystery storage place is revealed. I love seeing them here in all their glorious color and wonkiness and I love seeing all these happy smiling faces of oven mitt makers!
Penny–it is your lucky day! I will email you to make sure your address is still the same, and then I will send you another pattern. It is all good.
Oh Maria ! I was one of the LUCKY ones who got your Artful Oven Mitt pattern, which resulted in a dozen (give or take) lovely gifts. It was so fun to “make” my own fabric. On Thanksgiving weekend one of my daughters was using her mitts, and “saw” the fabric for the first time. She has a baby and I had made a bib for the little one with a “larger” scrap of fabric that is also in her AOM’s from 4 years ago. 🙂 Next batch I make will include some for ME!
Mary-that is a great story! I hope you are having a great holiday season.
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Just found your blog. Love it. Made zippered makeup bags x8 for family and friends last year. Your artful oven mitts would be wonderful as my next round of gift giving. Love your freestyle of sewing different patterns and colors together. Great opportunity to practice my beginning free motion skills. How can I obtain a pattern? Merry Christmas!