Friday, December 31, 2010

Happy New Year's Eve !!!!

Kitty (who needs a new party hat ) and the entire MBIAJ staff wish all of you a very HAPPY and HEALTHY NEW YEAR !!!

Be back soon !
Mary Anne (aka Mare)

Friday, December 24, 2010


.... and the stockings were hung by the chimney with care ...

MERRY CHRISTMAS Blogland Neighborhood !!

Be back soon!
Mary Anne (aka Mare)

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Pretty paper stars

Happy count down (CRUNCH TIME) til Christmas Blogland Neighborhood! The MBIAJ Decorating Dept FINALLY finished getting the Christmas tree decorated ..... they like to make it a month long event of tripping over boxes in the living room .....

Anyhow, the Decorating Dept thought they'd share some pictures of a box of paper stars that were made about 45 years ago as a gift to George (my dad) the MBIAJ patriarch from one of his patients (he is a retired physician .... from back when family doctors made lots of housecalls any time of the day or night , in all kinds of weather AND delivered babies too !)

Aren't they BEAUTIFUL !!!!! Can't imagine the time and patience it took to make all of these! The Decorating Dept thought for a brief (VERY brief) moment that they would try to make some ..... they even found directions at Craftideas ......but then they looked at the "to do " list and the calendar and came to their senses!!! However, not daunted by complicated looking instructions, sweet MBIAJ niece Maura made .....

....this pretty new green one to add to our collection! She's such a sweet kid !! (just like her aunt !:)

OK .... that "to do " list isn't getting any shorter and the darn elves didn't show up again this year so we've gotta ZOOM !!!!

Be back soon!
Mary Anne (aka Mare)

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Saturday report on last night's Friday Night Sew In

Howdy do Blogland Neighborhood! We're zipping in for a quick report on last night's
Friday Night Sew In. Actually this isn't quite a report .... it's more of a confession ..... in fact, this post should be titled "Confessions of a Procrastinating Holiday Slacker" !!!!

So.... determined to get going on at least one thing .... just ONE Christmas sewing/quilting project, we started to go upstairs to the MBIAJ Sewing/Quilting room when we were distracted by the fact that the outside Christmas decorating wasn't quite finished .... as in close, but not quite .... which REALLY has been bugging the MBIAJ Decorating Dept, so first a quick detour OUTSIDE (just 5 minutes should do it) to finish putting up the wreath and adjusting the lights ...

....ok, that's done (oops, took a little longer than 5 minutes though). NOW, we can proceed upstairs with a clear conscience. But, along the way another distraction ....

...this bunch of beautiful new books just sitting there begging to be looked at.....well, they ARE sewing/quilting/crafting books ..... and the MBIAJ Sewing/Quilting Dept needed some inspiration so we feel this 2nd detour was well justified (and rationalized!) as part of the Friday Night Sew In .....

OK, so FINALLY we stopped piddling around and got down to the business of ....

....picking out some fabrics....

....tracing some applique shapes onto fusible web and .....

.....doing some fusing and cutting out ...... and then we were pooped and went to bed .....(sigh), th, th, that's all folks !

Be back soon!
Mary Anne (aka Mare)

Friday, December 10, 2010

Instant Christmas !!!

Good morning Blogland Neighborhood!

The MBIAJ Decorating Dept plunked some candy canes in mason jars for some instant Christmas because ....

.......this is pretty much what the rest of MBIAJ Headquarters looks like! (sigh) YIKES !!! Gotta zoom! Late for work .... again ......

P.S. Just realized tonight is the Friday Night Sew In over at Handmade by Heidi's blog ..... should we ignore the major mess in the living room and in every other inch of Headquarters and join in thr Friday Night Sew In? Hmmmmmmmm...... that is tempting .... and we do have a sewing "to do list" that would put Santa's list to shame, maybe .....

Be back soon!
Mary Anne (aka Mare)

Monday, December 6, 2010

Stick a fork in it cause it's FINALLY done !!! :)

WHAT?!?!? Halloween stuff ?!?!? STILL ?!?!? (sigh) .... yes (head hung in shame).
Happy Christmas Season Blogland Neighborhood! Yes .... that IS Christmas music you hear in the background .... and YES that is a picture of a Halloween project.... and YES, the MBIAJ Sewing and Quilting Dept JUST finished it ..... "Better Late than Never" is how we roll around here!

ANYHOW, we wanted to share our quilt hanging method we used here (which could be used for any small wall hanging for example a CHRISTMAS wall hanging ).

First thing we did was go outside and rustle up a stick.....

.....and paint it (just acrylic craft paint)

......just simple stripes and dots ....(please ignore cruddy laundry tub)

Next, finish sewing/quilting wall hanging (this is where we usually allow for about a 1 -> 3 year window of time......) BUT don't finish the binding .... yet! Well, you can bind the sides and the bottom but don't finish the binding across the top of the quilt yet. (I do 4 separate bindings ... one for each side instead of a continuous binding. I think this method would also work OK for a continuous binding ).

OK .... so you have the binding on both sides and the bottom. Now you need to make your hanging loops. Here's the recipe:

Cut 2 loops 3" x 8"

Press under 1/4" hems on each long side of each loop

Fold in 1/2 lengthwise with wrong sides together and press.

Top stitch 1/8" from edge.

Matching raw edges, pin loops equal distance from outer edges of quilt (for this wall hanging I pinned them 1 1/2" from outer edges)

Place and pin top binding along top edge of quilt OVER loops matching raw edges. Stitch 1/4" from raw edge. Finger press seam and loops flat.

Bring loops over top of quilt top to back edge and pin in place matching raw edges (makes a loop)

Bring binding over top edge of quilt to back , covering quilt and loop raw edges.

Stitch binding down, first folding ends in.

OK , so you've got your loops and you've got your painted stick . Now you need to put the stick through the loops (I know.... we're stating the obvious here). NOW, you have to have a way to hang the stick/quilt unit. So ........

Cut another piece of fabric 1" x about 52". Fold in 1/2 lengthwise with wrong sides together. Press. Topstitch long edge close to edge (edges are raw and unfinished).

Trace 4 shapes (we did stars) onto fusible web. Iron web onto wrong side of fabric and cut out.

Sandwich ends of long (52") folded fabric strip between 2 stars.

Fuse together.

Top stitch.

Tie onto either end of the painted stick.

Well, hope you can use some of this info!

OK ..... now that we finally have Halloween out of the way, it's time for the MBIAJ Decorating, Shopping, Baking, Wrapping, Card Writing, Stocking Hanging Depts to get a wiggle on since Christmas is coming faster than a freight train! YIKES !!!!!

Be back soon!
Mary Anne (aka Mare)