Category Archives: Roundups

Creative Juice #335

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Creative Juice #335

Amazing stuff this week:

Creative Juice #334

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Creative Juice #334

You can’t fail to be inspired by these wonderful articles.

13 Sources for Free Quilt Patterns

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quilting dinh-pham-527665Quilters, you won’t know whether to thank me or curse me for today’s post.

If you’re like me, you have a whole library of quilting books, boxes full of quilting magazines, and sacks of quilt patterns. I’ll never exhaust all the possibilities those resources hold.

But I’m always looking at more ideas. My Pretty Quilts board on Pinterest has nearly 1200 pins; I’ve saved over 40 videos and articles on my Quilt Tutorials board so I can refer to them as necessary.

So I often check out quilt and block designs online. Here are some especially good websites for free patterns:

  1. Quilt Inspiration
  2. All People Quilt
  3. Connecting Threads
  4. American Quilt Society
  5. Bluprint (Craftsy)
  6. The Quilting Company
  7. Free Quilt Patterns
  8. Quilt in a Day
  9. Generations Quilt Patterns
  10. Hoffman Fabrics
  11. Robert Kaufman Fabrics
  12. Andover Fabrics
  13. AGF Fabrics

Now it’s your turn. Do you have favorite sources for free patterns? Or a favorite quilting site in general? Share in the comments below.

And if you found this article helpful, please share it on your social media, and click the “Like” button.

Creative Juice #117

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Creative Juice #117

Wow! A varied offering this week.

My Favorite Art Blogs

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My Favorite Art Blogs

Art is one of my passions. Blogging is another. Here, in alphabetical order, are my ten most favorite art blogs:

  • Artistcoveries. Judith started this blog in March, 2016 to share her process of discovery as creates. She’s self-taught, and it’s been exciting to witness her progress. She lists lots of resources that she’s found helpful.
  • Beez in the Belfry. Sandy Steen Bartholomew is a talented illustrator, comics author, and mixed media artist. I learned of her when I bought one of her Zentangle® books (she’s also a Certified Zentangle Teacher). She blogs about the many facets of her life, even offering glimpses inside her studio.
  • Colossal. Featuring artists working in all facets of art, design, photography, crafts, illustration, and more, Colossal consistently wows me.
  • Living on the Edge of Wild. Deborah J. Brasket is a writer and artist. She posts about whatever is on her heart and what she’s recently painted or seen and shares her writing.
  • Frugal Crafter. Lindsay Weirich is an artist, writer, and craft designer. She is also an excellent teacher, as evidenced by the wonderful step-by-step videos she produces, shared on the blog and on YouTube.
  • Oil_painting_palette wikipediaMy Modern Met. Similar to Colossal, this website showcases gorgeous art, design, photography, and more. I always find something new there.
  • My Street Inspiration. This site displays examples of creative artistry you find on the street—murals, public art, graffiti, and street musicians.
  • Nathalie’s Studio. Nathalie Kalbach is a mixed-media artist. She designs stamps and she shares her art journal and discusses her projects. She shares visits to museums and documents her strolls through the ‘hood, Jersey City, and Manhattan across the river. (Her photos make me homesick for New Jersey.)
  • Sketch Away: Travels with My Sketchbook. Suhita Shirodkar always has her sketchbook with her and records what’s going on in her life. She’s also an art workshop instructor and makes recommendations about supplies she uses.
  • Writing and Illustrating. Kathy Temean is heavily involved with the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators in New Jersey. Every Saturday she posts an interview with an illustrator, complete with pictures of their work and questions about their process, how they got started in the business, and everything else artistic minds want to know. She also deals with the writing side, and often picture book authors will offer copies for a giveaway on the website.

That’s it—my ten favorite art blogs. (Just so you know, I wrote a separate post about my favorite Zentangle blogs.)

Now it’s your turn. Is there an art blog you love that I’ve overlooked? Or do you blog about art? Share in the comments below.

Creative Juice #115

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Feeling artistically dry? These twelve articles will quench your thirst.

8 Craft Ideas for Gifts and Christmas Decorations

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8 Craft Ideas for Gifts and Christmas Decorations

When our five children were small and we were barely getting by on Greg’s teaching salary, the best Christmas gift ideas were things we could make ourselves. Life has changed, and I don’t often give handmade gifts anymore, but here are some beauties I’d like to make some day.

  1. Handmade Christmas cards. These can be a family project.
  2. I made these beaded candy cane ornaments with my kids when they were small. We made lots and gave many as gifts and used the rest on our Christmas tree. For extra sparkle, be sure to use red translucent and crystal clear beads rather than opaque red and white.
  3. Many of my neighbors lost trees during two horrendous storms this past summer. If I had known about this rustic Christmas tree project, I would have offered to haul away some of their branches.
  4. I’ve been wanting to make pillowcases this way. I’ve seen them done up in Christmas fabrics, juvenile fabrics, and designer fabrics. Gorgeous!
  5. Remember latch hook rugs? You can use the same technique to make rag rugs. The author used cut-up bed sheets and tied the strips to the canvas, but if you have a latch hook (you might be able to find one at a thrift shop), you could do it a lot faster.
  6. Crafty people, do you have more buttons than you know what to do with? (Did you inherit your Grandma’s prized button box?) Make a button garland.
  7. If you like to embroider, you can make a lovely snowflake/floral mandala.
  8. I find it hard to part with fabric scraps. I believe in my heart I’ll use them someday in projects like this English-paper-pieced bookmark.

Christmas balls

Now it’s your turn. Are you making Christmas gifts this year? Or have you in the past? What was a successful craft project? Share in the comments below.