Birthday Goodness

Birthday Goodness via cottagemagpie.com

Birthday Goodness via cottagemagpie.com

Last week was my birthday. I love this time of year. Not just because it’s my birthday, of course, but also because everything seems to be bursting forth outside. The big cherry tree on our street always blooms about now. It always seems like it’s blooming just for me.

I’ve been continuing to fuss with the front room art wall above my new-to-me couch. This poor wall has been patched and re-patched so many times from all the various art wall attempts it’s a wonder it doesn’t just fall down. So many holes!! This last time I was absolutely, positively certain that I had it just right, and then the next day realized that the arrangement was way too high. And cluttered. And, well, I’m doing it over again.

Here it is, the bottom half moved down. Still working on the top half–painting frames, that sort of thing. I’m stuck on a color for one of the frames, so that might take awhile. [Read more…]


The Moulding Saga, Part 1

The Moulding Saga, Part 1 via cottagemagpie.com

Those of you who’ve been around awhile might remember that four years ago (FOUR!!!) I worked really hard to put new moulding into my daughter’s room.

Today? Today, I ripped all of it out. Which I admit is pretty shocking. But here’s the thing. When we put that moulding up four years ago? I knew within days that it was the wrong choice, but I didn’t know what to do about it. [Read more…]


The Pillows that Just Happened

Pink Quilted Pillow Covers via cottagemagpie.com

Pink Quilted Pillow Covers via cottagemagpie.com

Last fall I made some pillow covers for my little loveseat in the front room (where I sew), and I never really loved them. I had been seduced by a bold print at the fabric store. I actually still love the fabric, but I didn’t like how it made my little nest feel. So last week I decided to make something new.

A friend of mine (who has an amazing food blog) had given me some leftover fabric that I just fell in love with and knew I wanted as my pillows. But I didn’t have enough. I hadn’t originally thought of quilting the pillows, since I already have SO MUCH going on in that room, but I decided to play with fabric and just let it happen.

Yes, I decided to let the process just happen.

I almost hyperventilated just contemplating this thought of wild abandon.

[Read more…]


More Squares and Even More Waiting

More Squares and Even More Waiting via cottagemagpie.com

More Squares and Even More Waiting via cottagemagpie.com

My blanket is growing, little by little. I love this pattern. Since you work the blanket in strips only 30 stitches wide, you make lots of progress. And each square is only 16 rows, so I can finish a square pretty quickly. Then it’s on to the next color and it’s so satisfying!!

I remember years and years ago I decided to try and crochet a blanket for my Dad. I used double-strands of worsted cotton and some stitch that worked up pretty fast, I don’t remember which one. But after a few days I had only done about 6 inches of blanket and I just crashed. I couldn’t bear the idea of working on each loooooong row for weeks and weeks on end. [Read more…]


A New Crochet Project

A New Crochet Project via cottagemagpie.com

A New Crochet Project via cottagemagpie.com

Tthe last few days I’ve been laid up on the couch with a bad back. Those of you who have been around awhile know that I’m not particularly good at being ill. It’s not that I don’t like to relax on the couch, I do. I love a good cozy book and blanket, or a bit of handwork, anytime. But when I’m ill I’m stuck and I’m using up all of the good will of Mr. Magpie and the kids, and for what? So I can sit here, being frustrated. That’s when I get cranky. [Read more…]


When the Going Gets Tough, the Tough Get Sewing (Pink) – FREE PRINTABLE

When the Going Gets Tough, the Tough Get Sewing (Pink) - FREE PRINTABLE via cottagemagpie.com

Printable Download .PDF File

You know I wouldn’t make one of these without making a pink one, too, right? Of course not!! Inspired by the “Keep Calm” posters that are all over the blogosphere, I decided that yes, indeed, there was room for one more. :-) I am planning to print one for my sewing space, I hope you print one, too. If you do, please leave a link or share a photo on Pinterest and let me know. Thank you!

If you’re more of a modern type, there’s also a sassy, rainbow-colored version of this printable!

~Angela :-)


When the Going Gets Tough, the Tough Get Sewing (Rainbow) – FREE PRINTABLE

When the Going Gets Tough, the Tough Get Sewing (Pink) - FREE PRINTABLE via cottagemagpie.com

Printable Download .PDF File

Well, it took a bit of figuring out on my part, but I was able to finally turn the little graphics I made the other day into actual printables! I hope you enjoy them. Just clicky the linky and download your .PDF file and enjoy! If you end up hanging it in your home, please send me a picture or leave a link so I can see it!

If you’re more of a vintage-y type, there’s also a “Keep Calm” style printable in pink.

~Angela :-)


When the Going Gets Tough, the Tough Get Sewing

When the Going Gets Tough, the Tough Get Sewing via cottagemagpie.com

When the Going Gets Tough, the Tough Get Sewing via cottagemagpie.com

You can always tell when I am coping with a large amount of stress in my life because my sewing output, like, quadruples or something. It’s not that I spend particularly more or less time sewing, it’s just that when I am sewing I am in Full Production Mode. You know what I mean? I’m all about getting things D. O. N. E. Done.

I don’t know why I find that so helpful in stressful times. Maybe because it helps me to feel like in some small measure I am still in control in the midst of the chaos around me. I was in the same mode when I finished the patchwork on The Happy Quilt last summer. At any rate, it is what it is, and as anyone who walks through my front door can tell, now is one of those times. [Read more…]


A Pillow Cover for Fall

A Pillow Cover for Fall via cottagemagpie.com

A Pillow Cover for Fall via cottagemagpie.com

While spending the summer going through someone else’s things isn’t exactly what I’d call the funnest summer ever, there are sometimes perks. For example, my Dad had bought each of us kids a $100 US Treasury Bond back in the 70’s. I had forgotten all about them, but we found them in the bottom of a box, and voila! Some fun money.

I was going to use it responsibly, to pay bills or something, but Mr. Magpie said not to. He said I should take it and buy something special, as a reward for all the hard work I’m doing this summer. It didn’t take long for him to convince me. So I promptly ordered some bedding for my bed and then got myself to the local quilt shop to see what I could find. [Read more…]


Somehow, It Blooms Anyway

Somehow, It Blooms Anyway via cottagemagpie.com

Somehow, It Blooms Anyway via cottagemagpie.com

So, I may have mentioned this already, but most of my time this summer has been consumed by helping my Mom move to a fantastic retirement community, clearing out her old house and putting it on the market. It’s a huge, mammoth, gargantuan job as you can probably imagine, and it’s taken all summer so far and there’s still miles to go.

My house? Nothing is happening at my house except the accumulation of unfinished chores. Inside, the only thing changing is the growing piles of stuff. In the garden, any progress that had been made has completely been overtaken by the six-foot weeds and healthy crop of dandelions. I’m sure the neighbors are wondering if I’ve taken up dandelion farming. [Read more…]