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 F E A T U R E   A R C H I V E  

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Quick Holiday Gifts to Sew or No-Sew
Nostalgia for simpler times can become the inspiration sewers may consider for making unique holiday gifts with homespun charm. Many are surprisingly easy to sew for gift giving using thrifty scrap fabrics to give as gifts of the heart.

Needlework Chatelaines
With meticulous attention to detail the popular series Downton Abbey shows the character of Mrs. Hughes wearing a needlework chatelaine. Often elaborate and very ornate, needlework chatelaines had scissors, thimbles, and tiny cylinders containing needles. Sew a modern one with a nod to the past.

Basic Hand Stitches
Holidays bring back memories of cherished traditions and allow us to not only reminiscence but endeavor to carry on those beloved customs as well. Knowing how to sew using basic hand stitches is one of those customs worth knowing and teaching to a willing learner.

Sew a Child's Bean Bag Toss Game
The roots of the bean bag toss game, also known in times obscure as Cornhole, is originally a lawn game where players take turns throwing small bags of beans onto a raised area that has a hole cut into it. Why not sew small colorful bean bags for a delightful children's game!

Sewing Soft Toys
No child can resist a huggable soft toy, especially one sewn with care just for that individual youngster. Whether bears, or bunnies, charmingly dressed mice, traditional rag dolls or enchanted characters from storybooks of old, children are delighted to have a clutchable treasure all their own.

Sewing with Plaids
Plaids have always had a traditional strong presence for the fall and winter seasons. From the many customary tartan plaids of the Scottish Highlands to the red, black, camel and white English Burberry signature design plaids are a very distinct and memorable style maker.

Holiday Ornaments to Sew
The simple beauty and homespun warmth of holiday ornaments lovingly made bring many a smile to all who have ever gazed on an old-fashioned decorated Christmas tree. Simple sewn ornaments bring elegance to the time-honored tradition of decorating a pine tree brought indoors for seasonal goodwill.

Blanket Stitch
Decorative, versatile and functional this overcast or edge stitch is often one of the first beginning embroidery stitches taught to children. Adding beads to each stitch further allows the stitch to add emphasis as an outline to the evenly spaced, even length stitches.

Enduring Patchwork
The terms cozy, rustic, Americana, and old-fashioned come to mind when considering patchwork items. The fabric patches are all of the same size, usually squares distinguishing them from "crazy" patchwork designs where pieces are of asymmetrical sizes assembled in a thoughtful yet random design.

Harvest Mantel Pennants
The familiar colors of autumn displayed on a fireplace mantel can evoke the beauty of fall. Sew triangular shapes of fabrics chosen in the golds, yellows, oranges, browns and reds that remind us of the seasonal transition from the intense warmth of summer into cooler autumn days.

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