So-easy-to-sew portable bed

…for surprise guests or sleep-overs or camping or…

On facebook, I just came across this portable bed made from pillows – it’s so quick and easy to sew you can whip it up in an hour!

“…sew 4 pillow cases together, insert the pillows and you have a bed for all purposes. It’s also easy to keep clean as the pillows just slip out and the covers can go in the wash!”

https://www.facebook.com/plugins/post.php?href=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.facebook.com%2Fbitesizedbiggie%2Fposts%2F1585655568428990%3A0&width=500

Sorry – the facebook embed code only renders as a link – no pics 😦

Immediately my mind started spinning and came up with a more elaborate (and certainly more time consuming!) alternative for quilters:

Instead of sewing ready-made pillow covers together,

  • Lay out the pillows and measure to determine the overall size; adding an inch or two for each pillow to make the pillows slip in with ease.
  • As the top layer, sew a full-sized quilt top (according to the measurements you took) and quilt it.
  • For the bottom layer, cut a piece of sturdy fabric the same length as the top but 8 to 10 inches (20 to 25 cm) wider.
  • On the two short sides and a long one, sew the top together with a sturdy fabricΒ  as the bottom layer.
  • Then sew across both layers to make compartments for the pillows.

May take a while to do, but you get a one-of-a-kind portable bed with all your love sewn in. πŸ™‚

If you’d like more detailed instructions for a quilted portable bed, please tell me in the comments. If there’s sufficient interest I’ll publish a pattern with a step-by-step tutorial.

Maria β™₯

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Colouring Time = Me-time

As quilters you’re creative, so you may not be into colouring, doodles or tangles. But do you always feel like stitching something, or rather: Does it always relax you?

I love hand-stitching so much that I get withdrawal symptoms when I don’t do it for a while, but there are also often times when I feel to tired or too stressed for stitching…OK, I admit it, times when I’m a bit worried that my stitches won’t be as regular because I just can’t focus, for whatever reason.

That’s when I like to do some doodles or colouring in – to keep my hands busy and my mind still.

These thoughts (“What is it about colouring or tangles that makes it so relaxing?“) went through my head yesterday when I got my first assignment for the Mini Digital Product Mastermind Group.

This first task was to describe and find the so-called Ideal Customer and to identify one to three problems this customer has. As you can imagine, describing an Ideal Customer for colouring pages is not really possible, they come from so many different backgrounds and enjoy colouring for many different reasons.

But there was something that probably most of them have in common in some way: Colouring for relaxation.

This is mostly because colouring gives us a time-out, a mini-break, me-time. It’s a time period where we can switch off and recharge our energies.

So that’s what my next project is specifically designed for. As a sneak preview I’ll also give you the description I posted for the first assignment:

For people with demanding jobs/businesses or multiple duties, like working Mums or Dads, that is people who are so busy, rushing around and stressed during their daily activities that they forget (or think they haven’t got the time) to
– smile
– take care of themselves first
– take regular mini time-outs for a reboot and for recharging their energies.
Also includes people who are surrounded by negativity, stressed co-workers or clients/customers/patients.

How about you? Are there times when you get caught up in your daily life that you forget to take regular me-time? Are you perhaps so involved that you need to “go to the bathroom” as an excuse for a time-out?

Or, if you do take mini-breaks, how long are they and what do you do? How well can you switch off, how refreshed do you feel afterwards?

And in case you like colouring, doodling or tangles: What does it do for you, how does it make you feel?

I’d really love to know!

Maria β™₯

Benefits of Colouring Pages for Adults
Benefits of Colouring Pages for Adults – http://worldofmagnifica.eu

 

 

Digital Product Mastermind Group

This is for you if you’re thinking of creating or marketing a digital product (eBook, PDF, pattern, music, video, tutorial or online course…) but don’t quite know how to get started.

Last summer I participated in the Small Product Lab (see my review of my lab experience), organised by Gumroad. What I learned about taking a product from idea to launch was ever so helpful, and the community was supportive, encouraging, uplifting…just amazing!

Now previous participants have got together and are organising the Digital Product Mastermind Group on facebook – start is in two days, 18th April 2016, so you can still join.

This time the challenge is how to develop a product idea and take it all the way to launch in two weeks.

Obviously the short time span allows only for the creation of a small product (unless you’ve got something all ready to go), but if you’ve been procrastinating with publishing or launching it, this event might just give you the kick you’ve been waiting for. πŸ˜‰

Maybe see you there?

Maria β™₯

Photo by Alex Markovich, Free images for poets

How do you feel about quilting patterns or designs without instructions?

The reason I’m asking is that a couple of months ago I had to make a very difficult decision.

The question was: How can I make a living doing what I love?

You all know that I love textiles, especially quilting and embroidery – well, I can’t do without stitching. πŸ™‚

And I also love drawing and designing patterns.

Since the Small Product Lab last summer, I had been thinking about selling quilting patterns with step-by-step instructions. I recycled a few old ones and drew a few new and started sketching and outlining illustrated tutorials.

But for some strange reason none of these got finished. It was only after giving myself a mental break around Christmas that I discovered why I was procrastinating with what I believed was exactly what I wanted: It was way more than I could handle time-wise.

Considering that ideas and images keep popping into my mind all the time, turning a design into a pattern was a frustratingly slow process, and working out, writing and illustrating the instructions the way I want to slows it down even more.

So although this idea got a “love it” on my evaluation chart, it got an “insufficient” in the category Making a Living. I was about to give up, including this blog.

Anyway, the word art tutorial I created for the Small Product Lab had also got me re-started on pen & ink drawings, and after designing some Colouring Cards for adult friends, I saw a new door opening.

I didn’t need to abandon this blog at all, just as I wouldn’t give up stitching, so…

the difficult decision I made was to consider All Things Textile – including this blog – a hobby, with no pressure, no planned schedule, and no aspirations…just for joy and fun.

minibooks5

My website World of Magnifica (Printables for Colouring Pages and Tangles, eCards, Tips & More) went live about a month ago and my days are getting into a new rhythm. I also know by now that I will have time to maintain this blog with occasional posts and patterns. πŸ™‚

What I don’t know, though, is: Are you interested in quilting patterns and designs without detailed instructions?

I’m thinking of patterns and templates and perhaps an outline of the order of piecing, but no pictures of the quilted project or the process, nor indications of size/measurements or how much fabric you’ll need – they’d be up to you.

What do you think? Please comment – I’d love to hear how you feel about this.

Maria β™₯

PS: These are a few colouring examples from the Mini Colouring Book “Patterns for Tumbling Blocks”. You can download it from Gumroad.

And by the way: I’m more active on the Quilting Oneness Facebook Community Page – and a World of Magnifica Community Page also exists. Perhaps see you there?

Quilt Pattern Variations

Mini Sketchbooks Quilters Kit

Designing or making quilt patterns, or both?

I finally got round to digging out some patterns I designed in 1996 (!) when I had my first major quilting phase. Most of them never made it into Fabric World, and if you are designing quilts yourself you’ll understand why – so many designs, so little time…

Still, although I already knew at the time that I’d never make most of them, the creative act of designing (or doodling, as I call it) gave me great pleasure and kept me balanced during a time that was rather stressful and difficult for me. Giving myself frequent mini breaks of sometimes only ten minutes made a whole lot of difference to my days. And doodling can be a lot more mind-freeing and relaxing than even handstitching.

Anyway, browsing these patterns led to three conclusions:

I don’t need to make everything myself

Even if I might not get around to making these quilts, perhaps they can see the light of day with help from someone else – therefore I’ve decided to publicise them during the next months. Stay tuned!

When I find something highly enjoyable, I should share my experience with others

Because of my positive experiences, I also want to encourage you to start doodling, be it patchwork and quilt patterns or just free-form designs.

You haven’t got time? I’d say: especially if you haven’t got much time for the actual sewing.

You’d be interested but don’t know how to get started? Maybe this will give you the kick you’ve been waiting for: On 3rd September I’ll release a sketchbook kit for quilters, consisting of

Mini Sketchbooks Quilters Kit
Click the image for the Mini Sketchbooks Quilters Kit.
  • the How to Make a Mini Sketchbook Tutorial,
  • a collection of special grid papers for quilters,
  • suggestions and instructions for how to use the grids
  • and how to turn the sketches into full-sized patterns,
  • ideas and tips for coming up with variations,
  • and of course examples (read: blocks and quilt patterns for you to make).

The first part, the Sketchbook Tutorial, is available for download on 3rd September (but you can pre-order already), the rest will be released in installments until 30th September.

Thinking big – but making miniatures

My third conclusion has also to do with the fact that my sewing machine is playing up and I had to stop working halfway through a bed-sized quilt. But a few days ago I came across a lovely little quilt: Zigzag Love in Miniature by Hope @ Hope’s Quilt Designs. And I thought, yes, there’s the answer: make mini quilts! I love handstitching anyway, and mini quilts are not only a lot quicker, but also so useful because I can turn them into mug rags, placemats, cushions, pillows, wall hangings, covers for books and folders… So that’s something to look forward to!

What are you working on?

Do you prefer small or large quilts? Have you tried designing yourself, or have you encountered doubts or problems?

As I’m not finished writing the Mini Sketchbook Quilter’s Kit, I’d love to hear about your design experience in the comments. Maybe there’s a question or problem you have which I can address?

In any case, whatever you create, create with joy! πŸ™‚

Maria