Category Archives: online class stuff


Had a bit of a crummy evening the other day. So while the kids were running around with friends and otherwise occupied I decided to be creative.

There are so many fun classes on Creativebug, I’ve made and learned so many things. Creative Doodling with Pam Garrison was exactly what I needed that day.


Here are my butterflies. I did have to work a few times to stifle the urge to compare them with Pam’s seemingly effortless doodles, but she is a pro and I got over it.
I shared it on my Instagram and *both* she and Creativebug liked it so I can’t be doing all that bad!

My kids and I also got our sketchbooks out while my leg was still all castified and healing and we all did some of Pam Garrison Drawing Challenge. It was a fun activity to do together.

You should check the class out, or some of the other great ones on there if doodling isn’t your thing (although I think you could be swayed between this class or one of Lisa Cogdon’s like Paint a Geometric Star)

You can see them all at Creativebug.

Art Journaling

Well I signed up for this class and I’m excited!


I watched the first week for a bit while sewing and scrawled a list of all the fun supplies I wanted to run out and buy so badly. But then I just went on an organizing binge because, truthfully, I own most of that fun stuff already I just had to unearth it from my craft area.  I dug out a ton of adhesives and markers and pens and my water colour pencils . . . I have quite the stash ready to get creative with!

So I’m off to finish a sewing WIP and then sit with my sketchbook and hitagain!

Tinkertote awesomeness.

Ok so I’m pretty proud of myself and this lovely tote I made. It used up a bunch of really fun scraps, thank you swaps and Tabatha’s beautiful scrap donations, and I learned some really neat stuff.

I made it with things I had on hand. It’s not hard to find scrap fabric in my house. I cut up a fleece blanket I had lying around in a donate pile, I was just finally about to run out and buy some batting when I remembered that Diego blanket was there and decided it would do. For the bottom of the tote I cut up the legs of a pair of jeans that were too big. I had interfacing and plenty of fabrics lying around to make pockets and line it.

I found the quilting as you go part really cool. Before starting Quilt-As-You-Go: Patchwork Bags I assumed I’d be quilting all the pieces together and then quilting them to the batting. But this whole, just grab a piece and do it as you go was really fun and the effect is great!

I chose a green thread for the denim bottom, I thought it would show up and add some fun contrast but once I got sewing it just disappeared into the fabric anyway, oh well.

I also did something wonky because when I cut a lining piece it didn’t match my outer piece. I messed something up. My bag does seem shallow so I’m not sure what I did but I just kept that lining piece and figured I’ll make another outer tote for it!

Now I knew about the zipper trick already thanks to Lisa Lam’s book, but the quilting technique was brilliant and the bias tape part of this class was just amazing. It’s forever changed how I’ll attach bias tape. I’ve always hated using the stuff but this was super easy and I love the finished look. I’ve made my own tape before but I used Tara’s tutorial on her blog just to be sure I was doing it right.

I have to say I love Tara’s teaching and her sewing style is so laid back and fun, totally like me. Must be a teachers named Tara thing. I went into Fabricland with my tote on my shoulder the other day and shocked a lady in line. She said, a bit insultingly with what sounded like disbelief in her voice “You didn’t make that did you?”. I informed her that yes indeed I did and then suddenly the rest of the line up and the teller were admiring my bag. Tara Rebman- Quilt-As-You-Go: Patchwork Bags“>This class is soo worth buying.

Creative Bug class.

I was hanging around last night with some people, mostly just to be in the company of others. They were geeking out with various games, roleplaying things and such and I was just happy to be out and about. I actually got to a lot of things I’ve been meaning to do. Things I wouldn’t have sat down and done at home, I would have let myself get distracted by chores and such.

I watched some Craftsy classes, I read some of my online magazines and I watched a Creative Bug class. I watched this fun bracelet making class while I was out and then got home at around midnight, put the kettle on and started to find the fabric I wanted to use so I could take the project with me to embroider. But then I got inspired and decided to quilt together scraps and make my bracelet out of those.

When I tried to insert a fun snap I discovered my bracelet was too thick. I chose a thick interfacing so note to self not to do that next time, but also I think the quilting, depending on where you had seams, would effect the snap being able to work too. I had to resort to velcro, but it still works. I was going to add a fun wooden button to it too but I think that would make it too bulky. Can’t wait to give another one a try.

Now of course my favourite section is the sewing classes, but there are lots of fun other classes to watch too.

And yes, I write notes on my hand. Had to remember the mall and berries today. It was super important.

Creative Bug

Ok now that summer is upon me I have to embrace these 2 months of free time and go crazy creating and catching up! I’ve had a Creativebug Inc membership for a while but have only watched a small percentage of my flagged ‘want to watch’ classes.

I watched Anna Maria Horner’s Modern Doily class and then of course wandered off to buy her book. Because, you know, I need more projects.

They have a free content section, that I recommend checking out. You can also subscribe and get access to all the content, which is a great deal.

I’ll be that evil person hoping for some rainy days here and there that stick me inside the house so I can get all this stuff done!

Life is messy, I know eh?

As I sit here covered in ink and massaging my very sore forearm muscle from all this fabric cutting I am proof life is messy. As we move into 2013 I’ve decided to take the plunge and finally sign up for something I’ve debated for a while. Click image to find out what it’s all about.


Mayi Carles has come great advice and wisdom to share about growing your own business. If you click around her Heartmade blog there’s lots of resources and information about focusing, and learning, and expanding your business and well, a whole ton of things.

As 2013 starts and many people launch into setting goals and reflecting on 2012 I loved her post about realistic goal setting. Basically, she says set little tiny goals for each day so that you can achieve them easily (and go beyond) and not end up beating yourself up as you fall asleep for letting yourself down (haven’t we all been there?). She mentions if you’re a writer committing to writing 1 word a day, which is ridiculously easy to check off your to do list, but I know if that was my goal I’d want to write 1000 times that just to feel super excited about how awesome I am.

I figure if her free advice is that useful and speaks to me so well, her bootcamp can only get better.

Craftsy class.

So on the day when I’m supposed to be revealing the bag I meant to make ages, and ages ago I’m instead going to blog about this great new class over at Craftsy, Design Your Own Handbag As I’ve said before I’m in love with Michelle Patterns (before = a million times over) and I dream of creating my own patterns some day too so I was really excited when this class recently came up. If you’re interested too you can click the link, check out the class preview and get it for 50% off because I sent you. We’re pretty special.

I signed up for their Sassy Librarian Blouse class a while back but after a foray into making a shirt flopped I haven’t been brave enough to actually give it a go yet. But I’m working up the courage.

As the snow begins to work its way toward my home I’m going to make it a mission to hunker down all warm and cozy with some tea and plow through all these To Do projects (did you catch the snow word play?).

You can check out their Feature Classes and Free Mini Classes here.

Digital Hoarding.

I think I have a problem.

Literally, *every* Michelle Patterns pattern. Every single one.

I mean most people today have too much stuff. We’ve been trying at home to keep our ‘stuff’ minimal. We’ve banned knick knacks unless they come from our travels or really *mean* something to us. With our kids, while we are careful with how much we buy them, it’s hard with an October birthday and a December birthday and then Christmas 2 days after that . . . it gets a bit crazy. Honestly, it’s usually the reason I advocate for us to travel at Christmas, thinking we’ll skip the gifts mountain but it doesn’t work.

When you’re a crafter of course you acumulate stuff. Before getting into sewing I did papercrafts, cards and scrapbooks mostly. Then after starting my blog and getting into fabric now I have yardage, then a fat quarter collection and then I keep a scrap bin. THEN I have smaller scraps for 1 inch magnet making and then I keep the smallest scraps ever for hair clips and such. It’s insane.

Mollie Makes digital subscription. Now add Gathered to that. Honestly, both amazing, amazing magazines but yeah, adding to my collection.

Now add to that the things I’ve started to accumulate on my iPad and Macbook.

Folder and folders of things to look at later and get inspired or ideas to make. As if I need to add to my to do list or ‘things I want to make’.

Then there’s the business research and books and things to read I have as well. Classes to take, things to learn. It’s tough to balance it all when what you love to do, drives you to do it more and makes you happy but is hard to fit into your ‘normal’ life.

Someone please tell me you have this going on too!

Whew! 50 cozies, a broken machine, sick children and an e-course.

Boy have I had a busy last few days! I worked all weekend to get my giant order for 50 cozies ready by Monday.

I missed it by a day thanks to a broken sewing machine late, late Saturday night. The bobbin casing lifted up and I ended up pulling it out with the bobbin. I’ve *never* taken it out and had no idea how it went back in. I did some Googling and finally thought I had it right and started to sew again. Everything was fine going straight but once I switched to zig zag I bent a needle. Totally bent, it was a little U. I really should have taken a picture. So I tried again, took it all apart and started over. Yeah, then I broke a needle. I tried to use my old-reserved-for-juice-pouch-sewing machine but it felt all wrong. So I packed my broken favourite up and had to wait until Monday morning to take it in for some love.

Monday the kids were going to hang out with Grandma and Grandpa so I had a chance to get it fixed and rush home to finish the sewing. I still had the buttons to sew on when the children were returned. I went out to the driveway to greet my lovely children only to discover Nate was sick in the car, his clothes and seat were a mess. I thought he was just car sick but he was burning up. So I spent the entire evening on the couch ‘guggling’ a sick 2 year old and holding a bowl.

Luckily he went to bed early because I realized I was 2 cozies short on one of the designs so I had to do some late night creating. Tuesday morning Nate was pretty listless so I had time to sew the buttons on in the backyard while trying to keep Wesley active and quiet. The package went out Tuesday afternoon, not too bad considering everything.

I crashed Tuesday night, I think the adrenaline of the cozy fest left and I went to bed early, didn’t create a thing that evening! Wednesday it was onto my contribution for Make Art a Part (of your life), which was due Wednesday. So away I worked as much as possible during the day and into the night, sewing and photographing.

Sadly Thursday morning I awoke to a crying 4 year old saying his tummy hurt. Now I would have thought a day with my 4 year old on the couch would be easy. Oh it was exhausting! “Mommy, Nate’s being loud! He’s in my way! I can’t see the show!” repeat. Poor Nate was going stir crazy, like me, and it was bliss when I got Nate off for his nap and Wesley was still sleeping on the couch. There was a wonderful 30 minute overlap where they were both sleeping . . . ahhhh.

So it was slow going but I managed to get my part of the e-course done . . . again a day late. It’s a really fun little sewing project that I show you how to hand sew or take it up a notch and machine stitch. It’s really open-ended leaving loads of ways to personalize it and make it your own. Go check out the info here, registration opens August 4th.

I’m doing this! (now you can actually see it)

Well I’m trying to but I’m not really sure where all my time is going lately.

I’m looking forward to 2 weeks off for the holidays, having the mornings off isn’t enough time lately.  Gotta love being a teacher!