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Entries in Molly's Sketchbook (89)

Sunday
Dec082013

Molly's Sketchbook: Taffy Twist Felt Garland

Every Christmas Eve my family and I dress up, drive to the city, and climb the grand staircase of the War Memorial Opera house for the San Francisco Ballet’s performance of the Nutcracker. As an adult I’ve come to appreciate the beautiful music and dancing, but as a kid it was sometimes a little hard to sit through the whole ballet. However, I always did look forward to the second act with its amazing Land of Sweets, a magical place where confections pirouette and pas de chat into life!

Inspired by the Land of Sweets, my Taffy Twist Felt Garland uses a rainbow of brightly colored felt that would be right at home in the costumes of the Russian Candy Canes and Mother Ginger’s Children. And best of all, it’s so easy to make that even a kid who has trouble sitting through a ballet will be able to help!

Super simple to whip up and adorable to have around, this garland is sure to join my family’s other wonderful traditions! Here’s to a sweet holiday crafting season! -Molly

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Saturday
Dec072013

Molly's Sketchbook: Ribbon Candy Felt Ornaments

With its looping curves and bright sugary colors, ribbon candy is a thing of beauty. I love its old-time Christmas feeling too. What I don’t love is eating it! If we’re talking holiday candy, I’d much rather go for a peppermint candy cane or a chocolaty piece of Hanukkah gelt. Ribbon candy is awkward to break apart, dangerously sharp and a little bland on the taste buds. Plus, it’s too pretty to eat!

These Ribbon Candy Felt Ornaments deliver the charm of this traditional treat without getting you sticky! They are made from our new Confection Felt Bundle in a  rainbow of cheerful colors, accented by equally spirited machine-sewn zigzags.

Small ornaments like this are, for me, the perfect kind of holiday sewing, They are quick but considered, colorful yet classic, cute but unfussy. Maybe it’s their old fashioned motif or the fact that they are sewn in an assembly line style reminiscent of Santa’s workshop, but these sweet little baubles really scratch that yuletide itch… and best of all you don’t have to eat them! -Molly

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Sunday
Nov102013

Molly's Sketchbook: Cozy Sherpa Lap Duvet

I recently learned a new Spanish verb: acurrucar. It's in a Spanish childrens song that we sometimes sing to my daughter, and when I asked my husband (the resident Spanish speaker) what it meant, he paused and said, "Just what it sounds like... to be all snuggled up." What a great word!

This winter its my goal to be as snuggled up as possible which is where my new Organic Cotton Sherpa Lap Duvet comes in! Organic Cotton Sherpa is a beautiful thing to hold and to behold. Its soft, lofty, and toasty warm, like a layer of cotton balls or a blanket of billowy cloud.

To double down on Sherpas innate coziness I used it on both sides with a layer of plush wool batting in-between. And for fun I sewed it all together with seven vertical rows of bright red tacking stitches. The finished blanket is so cuddly and warm, like a portable heater. Perfect if you want acurrucar! --Molly

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Sunday
Oct272013

Molly's Sketchbook: Running Stitch Napkins

I love Thanksgiving traditions! Every year I need to turn on the parade and the dog show for background ambience as I make my requisite three pies (pumpkin, apple, and a chocolate truffle tart). And every year I need to dress up in something semi fancy and take a walk in the crisp fall air on the nearly empty streets of Brooklyn. I need to have turkey, even though I dont really like it except in sandwiches the next day. Oh, and those sandwiches have to be made on white bread with cranberry sauce, iceberg lettuce, and mayonnaise. And finally, I need to make a set of napkins for the Purl Bee!
 
This years set is close to my heart because it uses three of the most beautiful Liberty of London Tana Lawn Seasonal prints that Ive ever seen. Together they make such a handsome autumnal mix! I chose to keep the sewing simple with a straightforward set of muslin-lined napkins, although at the last minute I couldnt resist hand sewing the top stitching just to make each napkin extra special. You could certainly do a quick machine-sewn running stitch if the timers about to pop on the turkey!
 
With or without the hand stitching, these Thanksgiving Napkins will dress up the table nicely,  really adding to the richness of your Thanksgiving traditions. If youd like to see all of my previous Thanksgiving napkin projects you can browse our archive here! And Happy Turkey Day! --Molly

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Sunday
Sep292013

Molly's Sketchbook: Trick or Treat Tote

Halloween tastes are ephemeral. One year your kid might insist on dressing up as a pink princess, while the next year nothing but a ghoulish ghost will do. It’s all part of the fun!  But while costumes change from year to year, one thing abides… candy!

To celebrate this most timeless aspect of Halloween we sewed up this sturdy little Trick Or Treat Tote. It’s easy to sew but so well engineered that it will serve its purpose year after year. Plus, with Orange Reflective Ribbon as the handle, your little goblin will be safer in the dark!

Small and simple, this project would be a great first bag. It’s so quick and satisfying that you may find yourself making them for all the little witches, warlocks, princesses, and ghosts you know! Everything you need to make one is in our Materials for Trick or Treat Tote Kit here! --Molly

ps- The beautiful candies in the photo above are from our favorite Swedish candy shop in New York, Socerbit!

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