Category: Christmas (Page 1 of 2)

Includes Christmas themed quilts and decor.

Old Barns, Red Trucks, Mercantile and More

Nostalgia at Christmastime

There’s a nostalgia that happens at Christmastime for me more than any other time of year.

Does everyone have vivid memories from childhood? From an old rendition of a Christmas song (Time Life Collection) to “holiday” foods we made when I was a kid (Pizza Fondue), Christmas brings back strong and warm memories for me. Sometimes I wonder if everyone reminisces their childhood and feels strong nostalgia at Christmastime as me.

For instance, one display in my dining room this year holds a host of happy and varied memories. I’d like to share these with you. Some are from long ago and some are very recent.

Simply put, some things we have are more than just things when they spark memories of loved ones, here and gone, and things we’ve experienced throughout our years.

image of plaster water wheel mill

Let’s start with this water wheel mill. Oddly enough, I painted it (probably during finals week) when I was in college. My aunt’s family owned a plaster shop. My friends and roommates and I would walk down to the shop on Broadway to pick out affordable gifts that we could paint for family. I suppose it was also a form of procrastination from studying, but let’s say it was a “break”!

The trees are made from the old red barn.

See three wooden trees? These are made from an old red barn at our family farm. The barn is no more, but here, in it’s place, is a pavilion and cross. Notice the roof line of the pavilion mimics that of an old red barn?

image of pavilion and cross
Image of Lighted Church

Next up is this lighted church. This belonged to my mother-in-law, Pat. It plays “Silent Night” and the lights blink.

As the video scrolls, you can see a wool-wrapped candle with a snowflake made of fringed cotton fabric. Only a few years old, I made this wrap to add another texture to my Christmas decorations.

Image of P.Town

Behind the candle comes the lighted P. Town. and Mercantile. These are two buildings in Pawhuska, Oklahoma. Ree Drummond (Pioneer Woman) renovated these buildings (and more), making the town a tourist and vacation destination.

In addition, my daughter Paige and I spent her spring break on a “creative getaway” here and had a blast. We ate pizza in the corner of the balcony shown here! See Watercolor on a Whim to read about our adventures and the creation of “Watercolor Whimsy” fabric and more! These decorations will spark new memories in years to come.

image of mercantile
Pioneer Woman Mercantile

At the very least, click on the link above to shop for this lighted Mercantile building and see more items fun things from Pioneer Woman!

Do you notice how many of these memories are connected to crafts and creativity?

Lastly, you find Merry, the good ol’ red truck quilt. One of my favorite pattern designs and, of course, made with both beautiful sides of fabric, she’s sure to be a part of our decorations for years to come. Merry reminds me to stay focused and never give up on goals, dreams, and creativity.

As always, you can shop patterns, fabric, merchandise and more by using the easy-link, blue SHOP buttons at Creative Bee Studios.

Quilted JOYS of the Twelfth Day

Here’s a little JOY from me to you this Christmas season.

Joy is in the air during this season when families come together, holiday foods are prepared, decorations adorn our homes, special gifts are given to those in need, and everyone is just a little bit nicer to one another. When heaven and nature sing, there is happiness in our world.

One of our holiday favorites is singing Christmas carols. Learn about the tradition of the Twelve Days of Christmas HERE in “Wild Goose Chase Quilt Under the Tree”.

Looking ahead to the Twelfth Day of Christmas (also known as Epiphany, Three Kings Day, Little Christmas), we recognize several things (in my understanding): the coming of the Magi (Melchior, Caspar, and Balthazar), representing the first manifestation of Christ to the Gentiles (for all peoples); Jesus’ baptism by John the Baptist; and the revelation of God in his Son as human in Jesus Christ.

Since on the Twelfth Day of Christmas we recognize the gifts brought by the Magi, gold (royal standing), frankincense (divine birth), and myrrh (mortality), I thought it appropriate to pass along a little gift of a mini Christmas tree template.

Image of JOY Pattern on Canvas Bag
JOY is fused onto a canvas bag!

Download this FREE pdf pattern by clicking the link above. It’s just a little JOY, a miniature of the larger quilt patterns. You can use it to decorate gift bags or other items using BOTH sides of a scrap of fabric and fusible…and if you have a scanning/cutting machine, you can have all the cutting done for you!

Image of Joy Pattern on Gift Bag
JOY is shown here on a paper gift bag.

You can learn how easy and fun it is to use BOTH beautiful sides of fabric, like with the #usebothsides quilt patterns.

Patterns come with complete detailed instructions, guides for auditioning both sides of fabric, and full-size paper templates.

For a larger Christmas wall hanging, see JOYFUL below!

Use the easy-link blue SHOP buttons HERE to shop patterns, fabric, home-decor and MORE!

Enjoy your quilting journey!

Textures of Christmas Time

Do quilts already play a part in your Christmas decorating? They do in mine! How about including some additional textures among the quilts?

Add texture with simple touches.

Explore some new techniques and textiles to add to your holiday handmade joy!

The main focus of my dining room is a texture-rich quilt! This quilt is great for decorating all winter long. I happen to love aqua as a Christmas color (year-round, really) and it’s here to stay in parts of my Christmas/winter decorating! Fun things to note on this quilt are the buttons, “pearl” necklaces on the birds, skate strings and glitzy fabrics.

Add in a little Punch Needle Snowman

Mr. Punch Needle Snowman is small enough to finish quickly and glue to the smallest canvas (available at Michael’s). Click on the link above for the free PDF download.

Image of Mr. Snowman
Image of Mini Punch Needle

Snowflake Table Runner

I made this simple table runner from one wonderful piece of snowflake fabric. Next, I cut the glitzy snowflakes with an Accuquilt die and fused them in place. I did quick quilting on the top/batting. Then I added a ribbon of tiny white balls, like a piping. Finally, I layered it with the backing and turned it like a pillowcase- super fun and fast!

Wood Manger Scene Sign

Make a quick manger scene sign using Scan N Cut, a pre-made sign and shimmery vinyl!

Image of Candlelight Wool Wrap and Manger Scene

Wool Candle Wrap

To make the candle wrap, I just cut strips of muslin on the diagonal and stitched down the middle of them onto a piece of wool. I then threw them in the washer and dryer with a load of towels and they came out nice and fuzzy. Connect the ends in back with a button and a thin hair elastic, sewn to the wool.

Image of Bear Quilt

Just for fun, take a look at this Christmas bear quilt! I made it from a McKenna Ryan kit. His hat and glove were meant to be red cotton, but instead I made them from a fun aqua cotton and the ribbing from an old wool sweater that was in my late mother-in-law’s stash.

Be sure to check out the Christmas quilt patterns made with BOTH beautiful sides of fabric HERE!

Wishing you layers of joy this Christmas season!

A Mini-Quilted Christmas

I wanted to make a little Christmas gift out of our dad’s shirts for my sister. I couldn’t come up with ideas, so picking the brains of my Lady of the Lake (LOL) quilting buddies proved quite helpful!

Image of Orville Wichern

Sitting around the table, we ran the gamut of ideas…a bear, a quilted Santa, an apron, a journal cover…whatever I could make from my dad’s old shirts – but it needed to be just right. One friend suggested framing a pieced/ quilted shirt quilt – she was on to something. It often takes a period of mulling…or percolating for me to round out an idea…instead of a frame, make it a shadow box… and add vinyl lettering to the inside of the glass…

I have to say, this little piece came out sweeter than I expected!

It’s not a big, fabulous quilt, but I really like how it turned out- and hope to one day make for myself one day–or maybe the gift to me was the cutting, stitching, and remembering that came with making this for my sister.

I used small amounts three different shirts. Once quilted and trimmed, I glued the quilt to the back of the box. Using Scan N Cut (click HERE for more info.), I added our dad’s name in vinyl to the inside of the glass (remember to reverse the lettering). I penned a short message on the back of the box with a Sharpie.

Do you gift your quilting for Christmas? How do you find ideas?

Please share in the comments below.

But when the fullness of the time had come, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the law, to redeem those who were under the law, that we might receive the adoption as sons. Galations 4:4-5

Read The Tie That Binds to meet Willie (Orville, Bill, husband, brother, uncle, son…dad).

Walking in a Winter Wonderland

Sleigh bells ring – are you listening?

In the lane, snow is glistening…

Want to experience some old style Christmas? There are a couple of ways here locally (Southeast Missouri) and in towns all across the nation – and if you can’t find one near you, grab a Christmas themed book – the one I’m sharing includes quilts, a Christmas Walk, and antiques in a quaint wine country town.

Celebrated author and creator of the popular Colebridge Community and East Perry County novel series,  Ann Hazelwood provides insight into a new community with her Wine Country Quilts series. I am currently reading Lily Girl’s Christmas Quilts (2nd book of the new series) and was fascinated to learn that the real town, Augusta, Missouri (upon which the series is based), is having a Christmas Walk (as depicted in the book), and the author, Ann Hazelwood, will be signing books at this Stone Ledge Antiques shop (I wonder if it looks like Lily’s) starting at 7 tomorrow night! Learn more about Ann’s books HERE. Take a stroll on the Candlelight Christmas Walk tomorrow night – find more information HERE

Image of LIly Girl's Christmas Quilt Book

A beautiful sight- we’re happy tonight.

Stone Ledge Antiques during the Candlelight Christmas Walk in Augusta, MO.

Another opportunity  for an old-style Christmas experience is to take the driving tour of country churches in rural Southeast Missouri counties of Bollinger, Cape Girardeau, and Perry. You are encouraged to tag your steeple-chasing buddies for this self-guided tour and travel the beautiful country-side to these decorated country churches where you’ll find music, warmth, treats, and the real meaning of Christmas. This tour begins today at 2 p.m. The tours run both today and tomorrow until 9 p.m. Learn more HERE.

I hope you’ll find joy and take a break from rush of the season by going walking in a winter wonderland.

Need a last minute gift for the quilter in your life?Shop #usebothsides quilt patterns HERE.

Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a Son, and shall call His name Immanuel. Isaiah 7:14.

Cross-over Quilting Tools

Like many of us quilters, space is at a premium, so when I find a tool or machine that has multiple uses, I get excited about it!

Let’s face it, we can’t make everyone a quilt every time we need a gift! That’s why I like to use my Brother Scan N Cut, which I mostly bought for quilting purposes, to also make unique non-quilted  gifts.

Click HERE for a review of  the monogrammed baby quilt I made using a phone app and the Scan N Cut:

Click HERE to see the old Italian proverb made with Scan N Cut in this Italian Row-by-Row quilt.

The Scan N Cut project I’d like to share with you today is one I made for Christmas last year – and it requires a short story…

Each year, we gather at my husband’s family farm before Christmas. We all traipse into the fields and watch as the chosen tree is cut down. The (now grown) grand-kids decorate the tree while the older grown-ups visit. Before opening gifts and eating, everyone gathers around the very long dining table while our mother-in-law leads us on the piano in Christmas carols. It’s sounds all cozy and Hallmark-y, right?

Then comes the finale, “The Twelve Days of Christmas”! Except for two assigned parts, we all do the motions for each of the days. The assigned parts? The three brothers are “Lords a Leapin'” for which they do what is supposed to be a leaping type of movement (they take this role very seriously) and any new boyfriend or girlfriend brought to the party is the “goose” for “Geese a Layin'”. This involves squatting, twisting, and flapping movements.

Image of Kiefner Brothers Leaping

Fabulous Photo by Black Kiefner

Now, there is a year-long push for new geese–so each single grandchild has a bit of pressure to find a goose to bring for Christmas! Both of our daughters will say their geese have been somewhat traumatized by Kiefner Christmas!

What does this have to do with Scan N Cut? I came up with this gift idea last year using vinyl and paint on glass in a barn wood frame. The painting was very easy, just dabbing layers of green and white in the general shape of a tree (the only tricky part was that the paint is on the back of the glass so you want to paint the foreground first). Placing the letters was easy once I figured out to use a rotary mat under my glass to line everything up.  I ended up making a few variations for other families and I think they were all well-received. Image of Hanging Picture

If you’ve wondered about using a Scan N Cut for quilting, this would be a great time of year to check them out – dealers are having sales and you need something to put on your wish list, right? (I have no affiliation with Brother or any dealers, I just like to share with you the things I like!)

Check out these Christmas items in my Etsy Shop (Click Here).Image of Poinsettia Quilt

Image of JOY QuiltImage of Blue Christmas Tree Quilt

Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a Son, and shall call His name Immanuel. Isaiah 7:14

Christmas and Quilts and JOY!

It’s the most wonderful time of the year!

“Holiday Revue” is our youngest daughter’s current dinner theatre gig at the Myers Dinner Theatre in Hillsboro, Indiana.

Our first stop in the quaint town was a visit to the old-fashioned soda shop!Image of Hot Fudge Sundae

Image of Myers Dinner Theatre Logo

Everything about the dinner was delicious and the Christmas “variety” show featured every Christmas genre: we heard beautiful spiritual music, classic carols, and youthful tunes. Featured guests included Mary and Joseph, Elvis, Santa and Mrs. Claus, Frosty, a cow girl, a giant blue bear, Linus, and a stage full of life-size toys. Image of Raggedy AnnImage of Cow Girl

And there was lots of audience participation! Yes, that is my husband on stage and dancing to Santa Baby! I got a little hug from Elvis!Image of Matt DancingImage of Karla and Elvis

The show ended my favorite way- with a wonderful White Christmas finale!

Image of Matt on StageImage of JacquelynImage of Singers

Oh, the weather outside is frightful…

It’s the most wonderful time for quilts! Do you include quilts in your Christmas decor?

You might recall JOY, made with Hoffman California Fabrics All Aglow on a scrappy background. The tree, topper, and binding are made from the front of the focus fabric and the gifts are made from the reverse.Image of JOY Quilt

This year, I #usebothsides of one Hoffman California Fabrics Supernova Seasons panel for the tree, topper, gifts, and  binding! It’s a fun quilt pattern that makes a great gift for a quilter friend, a quick quilt to gift, or to add to your Christmas decor.Image of Blue Christmas Tree QuiltImage of JOY Quilt Hanging

Shop HERE for the JOY Quilt Pattern.

Also, learn about Pepita (named after the poor Mexican girl in the Legend of the Poinsettia who had no gift to give the Christ Child on Christmas Eve) HERE.Image of Poinsettia Quilt

Silver bells…silver bells…

Yes, I’ve been listening to Hallmark Christmas music the whole way to and from Hillsboro, Indiana!

I love the classic big band sounds of the holidays and Hallmark has a great variety. Sirius XM has Free Listen – so check out the Christmas channels!

And there shall come forth a rod out of the stem of Jesse, and a Branch shall grow out of his roots: Isaiah 11:1

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‘Tis the Season to be Giving

Quilters are notorious givers. In this season of giving, I’d like to share with you two of my favorite organizations which provide ways for you to give to others (aside from quilts) while you celebrate this Christmas.

First, the h.o.w? Helping Orphans and Widows ministry. There is a small group of 30 women in rural Kinangop, Kenya, who are the focus of the h.o.w? ministry. They help empower these widowed women to care and provide for their families’ needs.  While there are numerous ways you can support these women, my favorite is through purchasing the hand-made jewelry, stockings, ornaments, scarves and other items available through their website or at the beautiful boutique located in Cape Girardeau County. I have this bracelet in aqua colors and it was amazing how many quilters at the Paducah quilt show stopped me to find out how to get it! (A perfect gift for your quilter friend.)Image of Bracelet Read more in my post, Presents of Beauty and Purpose.  This stocking was made from the wool of their raised sheep. It hangs on our mantel as a remind to pray for these widows and their families. Image of Knitted StockingImage of Handmade JewelryYou can follow the ministry on their Facebook page. H.o.w? Ministry.

 

Second is Samaritan’s Purse. You can choose from many wonderful and specific ways to help your fellow mankind through this organization. From purchasing chickens, goats, sheep, or other livestock for a family to raise to support their family, to feeding a hungry baby for a week, to drilling a well for a village or funding clef lip surgery for a child, you can choose what you want to do and you can fund the whole project or just a portion of it.

Image of Man with Sheep

Samaritan’s Purse

I first learned of Samaritan’s Purse through Operation Christmas Child, a ministry our church supports, where we fill shoe boxes with little toys, socks, personal hygiene products, and art supplies to be delivered around the world to needy children. There are over 40 ways to give to others through this ministry and you can support them in honor of or in memory of loved ones. I’m happy to know that we purchased a goat for a family in honor of family as part of their Christmas gift this year. Click here to learn more about Samaritan’s Purse.

Image of Girl with Goat

Samaritan’s Purse

How do you give to others during the Christmas season? Please share you favorite organizations or ways to help others in need in the comments below.

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Not Your Typical Christmas Goose

Twelve Days of Christmas

Learn the real meaning of the twelve days of Christmas, Kiefner style!

At Kiefner Christmas at the farm, any newcomer (boyfriend, girlfriend, lucky friend) is a “goose”. We search for these geese all year, prodding the nieces and nephews to find an unsuspecting goose to bring to the farm for Kiefner Christmas.

While we make out this tradition to be a little scarier than it actually is, so far no one has become a cooked goose!

Pop teaching the geese how to get down!

Each year, Pop (my husband’s father) describes the origin of the Christmas carol, “The Twelve Days of Christmas” and the secret meanings behind each of the symbols for the 12 days. (This year, niece Elizabeth helped him with that.) The carol was a way for the Roman Catholics to secretly teach and reinforce their faith at a time when they were not permitted to openly confess. Click here to see the full description of the hidden meaning of this well-known carol.

In short, the meanings are as follows:

Partridge in a Pear Tree – The True Love of Jesus Christ

Two Turtle Doves – Old and New Testaments

Three French Hens – Faith, Hope, and Love

Four Calling Birds – The gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John

Five Gold Rings – First five books of the Old Testament which tell of man’s fall into sin and God’s plan for redemption through His son.

Six Geese a Laying – Six days of creation.

Seven Swans a Swimming – Seven gifts of the Holy Spirit.

Eight Maids a Milking – The Beatitudes

Nine Ladies Dancing – The Fruits of the Spirit

Ten Lords a Leaping – The Ten Commandments

Eleven Pipers Piping – Eleven faithful Apostles

Twelve Drummers Drumming – The twelve points of belief in The Apostles Creed.

So with each verse we add motions to the song, with our special new geese flapping their wings and squatting for”Geese a Laying”. The three sons are always the “Lords a Leaping” and everyone joins in on all the rest. Click here to see the last verse of this banner-year’s Kiefner version of “The Twelve Days of Christmas” with a whopping FOUR geese-a-laying!

After we parade into the field to cut the tree (we actually watch Kent and Barry do the hard work), we file back to the house  for caroling led by Luanne at the piano and AFTER the performance and congrats to our new geese, we open gifts and eat Luanne’s delicious chili or soup. 

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See more quilts, wool and punch needle on my website, Creative Bee Studios!

Please share and pin! Thanks so much, Karla

Do ya wanna build a snowman?

Make a snowman today!

Come on, let’s go and play! You can build a snowman today with Mr. Snowman Punch Needle!

Put down your lists and have-tos.

Make a snowman yours today!

First of all, no shovel is needed for this little guy – and very few supplies!

Just grab one tiny 3-inch canvas, your punching supplies and some yummy threads to make yourself a little, friendly snowman.

Get details and the Mr. Snowman Punch Needle PDF download HERE.

Mr. Snowman Punch Needle
Mr. Snowman Punch Needle

Also, you’ll find a link for a How-To tutorial!

In addition to this little guy working up super-fast, he adds some needlework texture to your winter decor! (See Textures of Christmastime) My guy likes to sit in front of my “Winter Blessings” quilt (pattern by Shabby Fabrics) hanging in my dining room but he’d be darling on a window sill!

Alternatively, you can draw your favorite snowman. What’s great about punch needle is the simpler, the better. So think back to how you would draw a snowman as a kid-then punch away!

Winter Blessings Quilt Pattern by Shabby Fabrics
Winter Blessings Quilt
Pattern by Shabby Fabrics
Do ya wanna build a snowman?

A side note.

A few years ago, my girls dressed as Anna and Elsa and sang for the Salvation Army ringer outside our mall. It was cold, but they had a great time, surprised lots of little ones by being there, and brought in a few more dollars for the Salvation Army.

Do ya wanna build a snowman?

It also made for a great Christmas card that year!

Do ya wanna build a snowman?

Remember to be prepared for the winter days ahead and check your emergency supplies, like water, batteries, thread, treadle machine oil (in case you lose electricity), and chocolate!

Most of all, enjoy your quilting journey!

Image of Quilt
Noelle is made with BOTH beautiful sides of one Christmas floral!

Shop Quilt Patterns HERE

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