Each year in the Santa Sack Swap, we are each allowed to choose if we receive a sack, a stocking or a tote. Debbie requested that I make her a tote… which was great because I enjoy creating new totes!
Also in her first email, she mentioned that she loves owls. So when I came across this beautiful owl while blog surfing, I just knew that I had to embroider it for her. Gina (aka paganquilter) kindly provided me with the pattern that she had used to stitch hers.
I had this picture in my mind’s eye that I wanted it to look as if you were seeing the owl through sun dappled leaves. After searching through dozens of fabrics at several different quilt shops and rejecting them all, I finally found two batiks that I hoped would give me the effect I was looking for.
I think I came pretty close:
I was a bit nervous though as to whether Debbie would like it. I’m delighted to say that she loves it and says she plans to take it on holiday with her in the spring!
Now knowing that Debbie loved owls, I couldn’t leave it at just one owl. I also made her this little pincushion with matching thimble pip.
He is a combination of several different owl pincushions that I have pinned. (Tutorial coming soon.)
I have to confess though that he actually sat, sightless, on the end of my sewing cabinet for weeks while I tried to figure out what to use for his eyes. I tried all kinds of buttons but couldn’t find any that looked just right. Then one day, Middle Daughter came into my sewing room, picked him up and stuck two pins in the little yoyo ruffles and he came to life! How perfect is that… pins for the eyes on a pincushion!
Debbie is also a member of the Red Hats. In fact, she is the Queen of her local chapter. I figured that as the Queen, she probably had more Red Hatter knick knacks and fabric, etc than she could use in a lifetime.
Still I wanted to give a nod to this important part of Debbie’s life. The Polar Bear in the Red Hat was cut from a fabric panel to make a mug rug for her.
After I got it all pieced, quilted and bound, it still looked like it needed something so I embroidered over the white dots in the sky. I’ll let Debbie decide if they are stars or snowflakes. 🙂
Of course, I had to make her, her very own Prairie Point Star Ornament.
That completed her tote and her small gifts but I also wanted to give her a larger gift.
I had seen a wreath block kit in a quilt shop in Michigan and decided to see if I could recreate it from memory to make it into a pillow cover.
The center of the wreath just called out for some embroidery. And this vintage Workbasket pattern fit perfectly.
I used a pretty red fabric for the pillow cover back and binding.
The concealed zipper closing will make it easy for her to take the pillow cover off so that it can be stored away after Christmas.
Of course, every gift needs a gift tag:
Everything all ready to be wrapped:
As you can see… I also added a few little purchased extras.
Here they are all wrapped and ready to go into the tote.
Then when it came time for us to meet, I realized that if I took the gifts to her like that, it would ruin the surprise of the tote, so I put them all into the fabric gift bag that you saw when I posted pictures of the brunch where we exchanged our gifts.
And as I mentioned in that post, Debbie’s daughter, V, came along to keep her mother company on the drive. Well, I couldn’t very well arrive with gifts for Debbie and not at least a little something for her daughter, so I put together a small gift for V as well.
I do hope that Debbie (and her daughter) enjoy using their gifts as much as I enjoyed creating them.