Saturday

Twelve Days of Giving - Christmas Eve Delivery

The best part of the holidays is the gift of giving & we have been so blessed this year by all of you that we wanted to give each of you a gift.  If you are following me on Facebook or Instagram you know we have been giving away one gift each day, but today's gift is for everyone!  I wanted to share the free download for our Christmas Eve Delivery Pillow which also comes with the template for our Holly and Ivy Pillow.  We wish you the happiest of holidays and happy stitching! 

It's time to begin decking the halls and one of my favorite quick projects for adding a big pop of color and warmth are wool appliqued pillows.  If you can cut, glue and go up and down with a needle you can make these!  I have three patterns for you, Swiss Cross, Holly and Ivy, and Christmas Eve Special Delivery.



DIY Wool Christmas Pillows

I have three patterns for you to choose from...or you can make all three!  For these pillows you will need - 
  • 1 yard of wool felt per pillow
  • 16 " pillow form
  • scraps of wool 
  • pom poms for the wreath pillow
  • needle and embroidery hoop
  • scissors
  • fabric marker for tracing
  • embroidery floss to match your wool
  • Aleen's No-Sew Fabric Glue
  • free downloadable pattern from TD Christmas Wool Pillow Pattern Templates

Christmas Eve Delivery Wool Applique Pillow

The first step to making these pillows is of course to gather your wool scraps and cut out the pieces.  I use a fabric marker to trace out my pattern on the wool.  If you are tracing a directional piece such as the truck you will need to trace it in reverse so the most colorful side of the wool shows.  To get the template pieces for these three pillows click on the link above.

Once your templates are cut out you need to place them on the pillow cover.  To make the pillow cover cut a wide strip of the wool 17" wide by 36" long.  This will make a envelope style pillow cover with no need for a zipper or button.  This type of pillow cover works especially great for heavy fabrics such as wool.  Lay your pillow form in the middle of the strip to see where your front borders will be and mark with pins. 


Now it's time to adhere your wool scraps to the pillow front.  Turn your pillow cover right side up and center your design pieces in the marked off front square according to the pattern.  Turn the pieces wrong side up and glue a small strip of Aleene's No-Sew Fabric Glue about 1/4" from the edges and glue onto the pillow background where it belongs. Lightly press into the fabric and let dry.  Continue with the rest of the pieces.


To stitch down the edges of the wool felt pieces, you take a coordinating embroidery floss and stitch a simple tack stitch all the way around.  Your stitches should be about a half inch apart.  Tack down all the edges.  Now let's make the pillow....


To make the pillow cover cut a wide strip of the wool 17" wide by 36" long.  This will make a envelope style pillow cover with no need for a zipper or button.  This type of pillow cover works especially great for heavy fabrics such as wool.  



Fold the left over fabric over the back and pin or clip down wrong sides out.  You can either hand-stitch the sides together or use your trusty sewing machine to make a running stitch up the sides about a 1/4 inch from the edge.  Sew all the way up both sides and turn right side out.  Your pillow cover is now done!  Stuff with your pillow form and fluff.


To make the wreath pillow you will need a 1/4 yard of two different green wool scraps to give a contrast.  Once the front square of my pillow cover was marked, I found a small round salad plate and marked a circle to use as a template for my leaves.  After cutting all of the leaves out, I took them to my sewing machine and using a bright green thread, I stitched a vein into each one.  Then I layered them in different directions and glued them down.  I glued the pom-poms on with Aileen's Fabric Glue as well.


In total these three pillows (Swiss Cross, Holly and Ivy, and Christmas Eve Delivery) took about two hours to put together.  I had my kiddos help glue the pieces on and stitch down the edges.  I like getting them involved with decorating for the holidays.  If you have any questions about these pillows, send me an email and I'll be happy to answer them!  

I hope you have a fun stitching these together and go follow the Twelve Days of Giving on Instagram and Facebook for even more fun and giveaways.  Happy Holidays!!!



Thursday

Happy National Hot Cocoa Day

A few years ago I had a winter wedding for my son and you can't have a winter wedding without a hot cocoa bar.  As I was searching for something fun to add to the bar,  I found a recipe for a rich fudgy treat called Hot-Cocoa on a Stick.  Turns out it was so easy to make and made the richest hot chocolate I'd ever had.  (Ok...I admit I added more than one "stick" to my cup, but that's how I like it!) 

It's basically a thick rich square of chocolate, like a piece of smooth rich fudge and after playing around with several different kinds of recipes...I have found my favorite. I love the plain chocolate, but you can change it up by adding different flavorings such as hazelnut, mint, or irish cream.  However you like your hot cocoa...there is a Hot Cocoa on a Stick for you!


Hot Cocoa on a Stick

1/2 Cup Heavy Cream
One 14 ounce Sweetened Condensed Milk
3 Cups of Dark or Milk Chocolate Chips
4 Ounce Bar of Unsweetened Chocolate , Shaved
Vanilla or Flavoring of Choice
Wooden Sticks or Lollipop Sticks
8" x 8" Pan Lined with Parchment Paper

Heat the cream and sweetened condensed milk in a pan over medium heat stirring occasionally until it begins steaming.  Remove from heat and add the chocolate. Stir and let sit for 10 minutes, then place back on the medium to low heat and whisk until the chocolate is completely smooth and silky.  Add flavoring of your choice.

Pour chocolate into parchment lined pan.  Spread as level as possible and let sit for 10 to 12 hours.

Remove chocolate from pan and place upside down on a cutting board.  Using a long thin knife cut the chocolate blocks into 1" square pieces.  Tip - Heat the knife in hot water and dry before every few cuts to get a smooth line.  

To finish off your Hot Cocoa on a Stick, add marshmallows, Swedish pearl sugar, crushed peppermints, candies or any other treat you like in your cocoa.  Add a stick or wooden spoon to the top and dust the bottom of each piece with a little cocoa powder.   I like to place the squares in mini-cupcake wrappers to keep them protected. 

These Hot Cocoa on a Stick squares make great gifts too.  Just wrap them in cellophane bags and tie off with a ribbon and they are ready to go.  This recipe makes 36 squares.

To use your hot cocoa on a stick, heat warm milk and cream at a ratio of 3 to 1 and stir until melted!  One stick will be good for 6 to 8 ounces of hot cocoa. You can make these treats ahead of time and refrigerate for up to two weeks.  

To top off the perfect cup of cocoa you have to have whipped cream and marshmallows and why settle for store bought marshmallows when you can make your own.  There are a lot of things I skimp on but homemade marshmallows are too easy and yummy...and fun to make with kids.  I am sharing the Barefoot Contessa Homemade Marshmallows recipe.  I promise they are worth it!


May your holiday be cups be overflowing with chocolate cheer!!!

Tuesday

Evergreen Wreath Wire Embroidery

Our newest Wire Box Embroidery is here!  We are so in love with this little Evergreen Wreath stitched onto our smallest frame.  It is so simple and sweet!  For the first time ever in Tweetle Dee history we are offering already stitched hoops.  Yes, this means you can purchase one of these already made and ready to love.


We also have kits for these little wreaths which include, the frame, wool yarn, sparkly floss, scissors, needles, and instructions as well as links to our Tweetle Dee You Tube Channel where you can watch how to stitch on our wire embroidery frames.  

To make this even sweeter, our Holiday Sale is going through December 1st with 25% off all orders with code HOLIDAY.   We have you covered whether you want to order on already to love or want to stitch one or two up yourself.  We hope you love these little bits of holiday greenery that will never fade.



Friday

In All Things Give Thanks

New to Our Shop today is our sweet little hoop-art embroidery pattern called In All Things Give Thanks.  It is a fun little 5 " hoop with lots of color, charm and easy stitches.  Our sample was stitched on an old piece of cloth from my husband's grandmother's stash.  It can be stitches on colored cotton or linen.


I love the combination of x's and dashes which make up this little piece that has a big message for all of us!  In All Things Give Thanks...no matter what you are going through, where you are in life, or how bad things seem to be there is always something to give thanks for.  What is such a sweet gift is that when we give thanks even in the most trying times, our hearts heal a little and it's like we are given more than we received.  

I hope you enjoy stitching this little darling.  The pattern is in the shop and through November 11th everything in The Shop is 20% off with discount code: Holiday.  Have a wonderful fall weekend and express thanks for something awesome in your life too!  


Tissue Paper Pumpkins - Fresh Living

This is my first blog post since the fires came to our mountain home.  We are so thankful to be back in our home, with all of our neighbors and friends close by.  If you follow me on Instagram you know the story of how close these fierce flames came and how the prayers of many changed hearts and allowed us all to see a true miracle.   I will write more about it soon.  


We missed a four weeks of fall in our home with the evacuations and are getting caught up on our pumpkin addictions.  One of the prettiest pumpkins in our home is the collection of Tissue Paper Pumpkins.  I love these pumpkins because they are low cost to make, and are so pretty with the variety of prints and colors.  They look like hand painted pumpkins you would purchase in a high-end boutique....but you made them for dollars.

To make these Tissue Paper Pumpkins you will need:

Plastic Pumpkins
White Chalk Paint
Knife
Patterned Tissue Paper
Mode Podge
Chip Brushes
Scissors
Glue Gun
Disposable Table Covering


I purchased my plastic pumpkins on discount at our local dollar store.  Some of them had solid stems which I cut off using a knife.  Some of the smaller ones had stems that would pop off with hand pressure.  Either way, you will want to remove the stem and set it aside until later.



If there was any stem coloring on the pumpkin body or if I used a orange pumpkin, I painted it white with Chalk Paint.  You want a white surface so the tissue paper pattern shows well.

Let's talk tissue paper while your paint is drying.  I love beautiful patterns and colors and especially in delicate papers.  The tissue papers I purchased from Amazon were part of a wildflower collection in the previous link.  You can find any kind of patterned tissue paper, however, you do pay for quality when you pay a little more.  Meaning, the colors do not bleed and the paper is a little thicker which works great for this craft.


Fold the paper into a square and cut the open edge in a curve to create a circle.  Lay the circle over the top of the pumpkin and make sure it reaches about 3/4 of the way down the pumpkin.  The smaller the pumpkin the smaller the circle.  The larger the pumpkin the larger the circle will be.  Cut two circles.  


Using Modge Podge Matte and a chip brush, lightly coat the top of the pumpkin down about 3/4 of the way.  Carefully place the tissue paper circle over the top of the coated pumpkin and begin smoothing and folding the paper to the pumpkin.


Make folds or tucks where the ridges are on the pumpkin and lightly press the paper down to the surface.  Go all the way around pressing the paper down.  



At this point you will tip the pumpkin upside down and repeat the coating of the pumpkin down to the edge of the top piece.  Take your second tissue paper circle and eyeball the size from the point of the fold and the bottom of the pumpkin to the edge of the top piece that is already glued on.  Trim in a curve to create a smaller circle.


Place this smaller circle down on the bottom and fold and smooth it out as you did to the top piece.  Once it is stuck down.  Coat the entire tissue paper covered pumpkin in Modge Podge to seal the paper.  Let dry for 4 to 5 hours.  Using hot glue, adhere the stem to the top of the pumpkin and let dry.


These gorgeous pumpkins can be used in floral arrangements, on candle sticks, in baskets, etc.  Anywhere you want a fall touch of color.  Keep them up throughout the holiday season...I know I will!


You can watch the KUTV Fresh Living segment today at 1:00 PM to see how these are made.  I hope you enjoy this project.  It takes a gentle touch, but no mistaking these pumpkins are tough but pretty and will last for years to come.

 
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