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Finished Handmade Gifts

I was sewing up until the last possible minute (almost literally) to finish my handmade Christmas gifts this year. Anyone else out there doing that too? But I’m so happy with how they turned out. I really enjoyed making each one and I think the recipients were happy, which is an added bonus. Or at least they faked it really well.
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This pillow was made for my Grandma using Art Gallery Fabrics Indie collection and some Art Gallery Pure Elements (solids). Ever since I first saw Indie, I knew I wanted to make something for my Grandma from that collection – the vibrant colors instantly reminded me of her home and eclectic style. I think that it’s pretty awesome. (If I do say so.)

The star is paper-pieced. I made one of these for a quilting bee a month ago, which I was cursing at first, but once I got going, I got more comfortable with the process. And I totally loved the outcome. So I decided to do it again. I’m still not a perfect paper-piecer, but I love how it looks.

You can find the star pattern here.  I added 1″ x 2.5″ strips around the outside. (They are Sukie’s scraps left over from this quilt back. Aren’t they awesome?) The pillow finishes at 16″. Indie fabrics can be found here, and here.

Another pillow for a gift for my brother. As soon as I saw Rashida’s tutorial for this mini quilt, I knew I wanted to make one for my brother. He has been airplane obsessed for as long as I can remember and got his own pilot’s licence a few years ago. I liked making something for him. I went pretty neutral for the background and used Essex linen blend for the plane to give it some texture.

The back is a linen weave decorator weight print that I got at a Hable Construction sample sale a few years ago.
And yes, you can see pins on both of these pillows, waiting to stitch the openings together.  I ended up doing the stitching on our hairy, snowy drive in the car to my parents’ house on Christmas Eve. But I knew I had to take the pictures before we left. So there are the pins in all their glory.

And finally, a quick notebook cover for a friend. I used a Melody Miller typewriter (which are pretty scarce these days) appliqued on Cosmo Cricket’s Happy Thoughts print on canvas from the Odds and Ends collection for Moda. (You can find the Happy Thoughts print here and here.) I love all the phrases on that Happy Thoughts print. (And speaking of showtunes, I went to see Les Miz on Wed night and I’ve been singing about Jean Valjean ever since.)

The cover was so slick – I think I need to make a few more. Including one to keep for myself. And maybe one of those star pillows too.

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27 Comments

  • Reply
    Marika
    December 28, 2012 at 8:41 am

    I love everything you made, especially the Lone Star pillow. The colors are absolutely gorgeous ! <br /><br />And you wanna talk about being last minute ? I was still sewing the binding on a quilt at 2pm and I had to be at my aunt&#39;s at 3:00. I still finished it on time !!

  • Reply
    Debbie
    December 28, 2012 at 8:43 am

    YES, I too was sewing to the last second &amp; still didn&#39;t do all I meant to. Love your cushions – very nice!!

  • Reply
    Pam Pollock
    December 28, 2012 at 9:03 am

    Love your cushions! They are so different and both stunning. Yes I was sewing the binding on a pillow on the 24 and am still finishing up the presents to send away!

  • Reply
    Amber
    December 28, 2012 at 10:33 am

    Cute projects Amy! I love them all! Nothing like a handmade gift during the holidays!

  • Reply
    Adrianne
    December 28, 2012 at 10:54 am

    Oh wow, these are all gorgeous! I especially love the lone star pillow – your grandma must be one cool lady.

  • Reply
    Sew Nomadic
    December 28, 2012 at 11:15 am

    Wow! These gifts a great. I too was making til the last second! I really love the paper pieced star pillow, I must try one of these! Thanks for sharing. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

  • Reply
    Rebecca Grace
    December 28, 2012 at 12:30 pm

    WOW!!! I LOVE your star pillow. Especially how you put the background white in there, so it looks like your star has a bright, star-echo halo around it. And I love the happy thoughts fabric (must buy!)and the airplane is such a thoughtful, special gift, too. I&#39;m especially impressed that you got photos of everything before giving them away. I never thought to do that with my earliest

  • Reply
    Beth
    December 28, 2012 at 12:48 pm

    They all look great! I really like the bright pillow! I saw Les Mis this week too and haven&#39;t stopped singing!

  • Reply
    Liz DandeliondD
    December 28, 2012 at 1:08 pm

    Oh my I absolutely love your star pillow. My heart is beating fast at the sight of it. It is breathtaking.

  • Reply
    Jess
    December 28, 2012 at 3:27 pm

    I agree – that star pillow is stunning! I haven&#39;t been all that excited by Indie until I saw that. Awesome!

  • Reply
    Micki Clemens
    December 28, 2012 at 3:30 pm

    Love all your gifts. I think the airplane pillow is wonderful-it&#39;s so unique! Being older, I have finally learned to get things done earlier or just leave them til next time.LOL! You did good kid!

  • Reply
    Bea GarcΓ­a
    December 28, 2012 at 3:32 pm

    WOW! The Star Pillow you made for your Grandma is fabulous!!

  • Reply
    Tracee
    December 28, 2012 at 4:33 pm

    They are all such gorgeous gifts and I&#39;m sure that they couldn&#39;t of possibly been faking.

  • Reply
    Nedra
    December 28, 2012 at 5:57 pm

    The Lone Star block is perfect for a pillow. and I have a BIL that is a pilot, and that pillow would be perfect for him, too. <br />We went as a family and saw Les Mis last night, and we all loved it!

  • Reply
    CathyK
    December 28, 2012 at 7:30 pm

    I am sure all the recipients were thrilled with their gifts! Who wouldn&#39;t be?! They are beautiful!!!!

  • Reply
    Debby
    December 28, 2012 at 8:40 pm

    You wre not the lone ranger on taking the sewing down to the last hour. I was putting on the lable of my last quilt at midnight!! What lovely gifts everyone recived from you!!

  • Reply
    Kirsten
    December 28, 2012 at 10:20 pm

    The Indie pillow is gorgeous and I love the Aeroplane one too!

  • Reply
    Katy Cameron
    December 29, 2012 at 7:25 am

    Work up to the last minute? Err, every year it&#39;s gone midnight when I&#39;m done… When I grow up I&#39;ll be better organised ;o)<br /><br />Love the cushions, especially the Indie one – I&#39;m about to make my dad a lap quilt from Indie in a giant star, the bonus being that I have enough leftover to make me one too, win-win ;o)

  • Reply
    patchworkdelights
    December 29, 2012 at 9:14 am

    In LOVE with that paper pieced star pillow, also now a fan of Indie fabrics and when I have a bit of dosh I&#39;ll be adding some to my fabric stash! Happy New Year! Fi

  • Reply
    Sherri
    December 29, 2012 at 1:04 pm

    I love everything! I so want to make a pillow from that star block too–have wanted to make one ever since I made Aprils block

  • Reply
    badputts
    December 29, 2012 at 1:06 pm

    Good job!! I always LOVE your color combinations!!

  • Reply
    Elizabeth
    December 29, 2012 at 9:20 pm

    I loved the star pillow when I saw a peek of it on your post on the 26th before I knew it was a pillow, and I loved it even more all finished. It is so beautiful! I hope your grandma loved it.<br /><br />Amy, you&#39;ve inspired me once again, although I really should quit reading your blog, because every time I come over, there&#39;s something awesome with fabric going on and I just *have* to

  • Reply
    GrannyTaughtMeToCrochet
    December 30, 2012 at 2:51 am

    Wow! I am in lurrrrve with that happy thoughts fabric … i has been &quot;pinned!&quot;.<br /><br />xxx

  • Reply
    CitricSugar
    January 2, 2013 at 8:11 pm

    Gorgeous gifts! I&#39;m completely in love with that airplane…

  • Reply
    Jessica F
    January 4, 2013 at 11:44 am

    Gosh, all of these are amazing and especially that star pillow — beautiful! I actually have fabrics picked out to make a pillow using the same pattern. Now I can&#39;t wait to get started on it!<br /><br />Thanks for the inspiration!

  • Reply
    Dedra C
    January 7, 2013 at 5:04 pm

    I just stumbled upon your blog and I need to tell you that I love that airplane pillow! My son is a huge airplane fan (at age 13) and I just may have to copy it. Thanks for sharing it.

  • Reply
    kara quilts
    January 9, 2013 at 11:05 am

    I just stumbled upon this using google. I LOVE the airplane pillow and even reblogged about it here: http://crazycatquilter.blogspot.com/2013/01/airplane-mini-quilt.html I hope I am giving credit where credit is due, so please let me know if I&#39;m not. Great work, you are very talented!

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