Nature Studies, Backyard, Gardening, Vacations

Cattail Applique Block - Or how to Avoid Pre-mature Christmasing!


I don't know about anyone else, but this time of year poses a real problem for me. Every fiber of my being wants to embrace Christmas. I want to listen to Dean Martin singing "Baby, It's Cold Outside" and on that same note, lame as it is, I want to watch Will Ferrell's "Elf". I want to pack away all my Thanksgiving decorations with the Halloween ones, and start sneaking out stars and angels, evergreens and mangers. I want the absolutely joy instilling, peace invoking feeling of the Christmas season!

But, I stop myself. Although the Christmas Season officially opens for me when the last vestiges of our Annual Pumpkin Carving Party are  packed away, I've learned from experience, that if I pull out Christmas too soon, including the music, the Holiday itself can feel anti-climatic. Also, if not EVERYONE in your family has the same obsession with Christmas, they are apt to mutiny, and throw you, and all the Christmas trimmings overboard before Thanksgiving!

So, I've learned to bide my time. One of the ways to combat my impulses, is to throw in at least a couple more Thanksgiving and autumn crafts during the month of November. They can't be anything too big, because I AM crafting for Christmas, but it does help keep me in the moment. To that end, I'd like to share an applique block that I totally and completely love! Our Cattail Applique Block is more detailed than many of our other applique blocks, but it is fun to make and absolutely beautiful when completed. As always, it was made to fit a 6" x 6" block, but can be reduced or enlarged to meet your needs. The pattern for the Cattails Applique Block can be found HERE or with our FREE Applique Patterns. Enjoy... and if Christmas is tugging at your heartstrings, focus on Giving Thanks for the next few weeks!

NOTE: The stitch on the cattail stem is called a whipped stem stitch. It is not in our glossary yet but to make one... embroider a stem stitch first using 6 strands of floss. When you are done, whip stitch over the stem stitch, using 6 strands of floss, without going through the fabric below. Basically, you are wrapping the stem stitch. Michelle will include this stitch in our glossary later!

Note about patterns: We are sharing patterns we have designed and made for our own children, families and friends. Every effort is made to share information in a clear and accurate manner. We offer preemptive apologies for any mistakes that may be made. Please let us know via comments or emails if you stumble upon a mistake or if you stumble upon a mistake or if you encounter directions that leave you scratching your head! We will rectify the situation as soon as humanly possible!

http://www.weefolkart.com
Copyright © Wee Folk Art 2008 - 2009. All rights reserved.

All photos, text and patterns are copyright protected. You may not copy, reproduce or redistribute any material found on WeeFolkArt.com without written permission. Wee Folk Art retains all rights.

Autumn Tree Nature Study

We took advantage of a beautiful afternoon yesterday and completed our Fall Tree Nature Study. We haven't be doing any of the Handbook of Nature Study Blog Challenges since the spring and we had a lot of fun getting started again. The kids each got to pick new trees for this year.

Fairy picked her favorite apple tree. (She spends a lot of time up in that tree). The apple tree will definitely go through a lot of changes throughout the year and should make for a fun study. She spent a lot of time trying to pick just the right color green for the leaves.

 

Bug picked a Rock Elm, which we identified earlier this fall, that is right smack in the middle of the yard. This is a great choice because we can see if from the kitchen table. He added halloween characters to his tree drawing (I guess it shows it's autumn). LOL - that boy doodles in every margin.

A Mouse in the Woods Bookmark



It's summer. Ever since I was a child summer equalled excessive reading! My tastes in reading ran the gamut of literary genres, BUT the one commonality amongst all my summer books I read was my ability to chose them for myself. These were not books selected by my teachers, although I often read books that would have pleased them, nor did they need to be books off anyone's reading list. The freedom was exhilarating! As an adult I can now chose any book I want to read at anytime, HOWEVER, there is something so sweet and self indulgent about a summer read. We take books to the beach, on vacation, and out to the hammock under the trees. I have many nooks and crannies where I can be found reading on a summer's afternoon. As a parent I enjoyed sharing summer reading with my children, and now, as a Gammy, with my grandbabies.

The picture above is a special area in our green belt at the back of our property. We refer to this area as our Serenity Garden, for obvious reasons. Although the bench is cement and does not have back support, it is still a wonderful spot to read for a while, especially if reading short stories or poetry.

And although summer reading is indulgent and fun, having a special bookmark accompany you on your literary journey just makes it that much more enjoyable! Today I'm sharing a pattern for a sweet little mouse bookmark, donning a very long and useful tail. This bookmark could easily be made by even young children if you glued it together instead of sewing it together and you could use paper instead of felt. Directions and patterns for the Mouse Bookmark can be found HERE or in our FREE Pattern Section. Enjoy!

BTW... Do you have a favorite animal you would like a bookmark pattern for? If so, leave a comment and we'll pick at least one other animal to turn into a bookmark! 

Mouse Bookmark


Here is a sweet little mouse bookmark with a long and useful tail! This one is made out of felt and sewn, but if you're doing the project with young children, you can glue the felt pieces together or use card stock or construction paper. Whichever way you make him, I'm sure you'll find he'll fast become an indispensable friend!

Materials:
felt
embroidery floss
yarn
black glass seed beads (optional)
pattern

1] Make copy of pattern.

2] Cut out materials as follows:
2 body pieces in gray or tan felt
2 ears in pink
3 pieces of yarn 24" long (I used 2 tan and 1 pink)

3] Transfer face markings and embroider face as follows:
Nose: satin stitch using 3 strands floss
Eyes: French knot using 3 strands of floss (optional: instead of French knot add 2 black seed beads)

4] Using pattern as a guide place the 2 ears on the mouse. Using 2 strands of floss, attach to mouse using a running stitch.

5] To make the tail, knot the 3 pieces of yarn together 1” from an end. Braid the 3 pieces until you are 6” from the end. Knot the tail close to the end of the braiding section. Cut the extra yarn leaving 1” beyond the knot.


6] Position the tale on the back of the front body piece. Place it so 1/2" of the braid will be inside the mouse. Tack it in place being careful not to go all the way through the felt.( If you are using paper, glue it in place and let it dry before proceeding.)

7] Pin the mouse together with wrong sides touching. Using 2 strands of embroidery floss, attach the 2 pieces using a running stitch.

8] Knot the end of 6 strands of black floss leaving a 2" tail. Referring to the pattern for placement, slide the needle between the front and back section of the mouse. Make a small knot on the other side of the nose. Clip the whiskers so they are 1/2" long.


9] Find a book you want to read, and slip your little mouse's tail in the book to mark your place!

 

Note about patterns: We are sharing patterns we have designed and made for our own children, families and friends. Every effort is made to share information in a clear and accurate manner. We offer preemptive apologies for any mistakes that may be made. Please let us know via comments or emails if you stumble upon a mistake or if you encounter directions that leave you scratching your head! We will rectify the situation as soon as humanly possible!

 

http://www.weefolkart.com
Copyright © Wee Folk Art 2008 - 2009. All rights reserved.

All photos, text and patterns are copyright protected. You may not copy, reproduce or redistribute any material found on WeeFolkArt.com without written permission. Wee Folk Art 

 

Quick Craft Basket

It's summertime. Time to head outside and find a shady patch of grass to stretch out on. It's also a great time to grab your crafting supplies and "while away the hours" drawing birds and butterflies, clouds and clover. Although I like the roll-up colored pencil holders, I personally am too impatient to take the pencils in and out of their snug little niches. If you look at my own crafting table, pencils and pens, rulers and scissors, are all sticking out of containers making easy access and storage. 

So, I wanted to create a very simple, but organized, take-along craft basket that was sturdy, easy to use, and earthy. I began by finding a cute basket at Joann's. I was looking for a small basket, that was sturdy and deep enough to stop crafting supplies from spilling out if being carried by a wee one. I only buy baskets when they are 50% off, and I got this beauty for $4.00. I was pleased!

To make the pencil holders, I hit my toilet paper roll stash, slathered them with crafting glue, and wrapped twine around them. For a more detailed and pictorial view of wrapping the pencil holders, check out our tutorial HERE. After the toilet paper rolls were dried, I threaded the twine into a yarn needle, and simply tied them to the side of the basket.

Now, load the craft basket up with your favorite supplies, and hit the great out-of-doors. Enjoy!  

photo: 7-16-09

 

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