Monday, March 4, 2019

Aura Blog Party!

Hello, friends! I've been meaning to pop in here to explain why I haven't been blogging much so far this year. Long story short, I dedicated the entire month of January to working on my fabric collections for Art Gallery, and then the day before I was to get back to sewing and sharing here, I injured myself pretty good! I was jumping on a trampoline, came down wrong and ended up badly spraining the ligaments in my right knee and completely tearing my ACL. It's been rough! I'm on crutches and in a leg brace to heal the sprains so I can have ACL reconstruction surgery on March 21st, and then after the surgery there will be a couple of month's recovery time. Today is one month since the injury and still, the two things that bother me the most are stairs and sewing. Most of the day is spent elevating my knee and icing it because it's still very swollen.

As a way to stay creative during this injury, I set a goal for myself to make at least one bag a day. Most days I've been able to, some days I cannot and other days I have made two! This small goal has helped me stay positive and productive during this difficult time! You're welcome to join me in making a new bag anytime and can follow along on my Instagram @MaureenCracknell and the hashtag #MCHbagchallenge!

So here I am, finally back today and excited to share my project for my talented friend, Mathew Boudreaux aka Mister Domestic's Aura Blog Party!

Mister Domestic's Blog Party!

Mister Domestic's Aura

Mathew AKA Mister Domestic is an Angles by AGF designer and Aura is his second fabric collection, inspired by a trip that he and his daughter Helena took to Hawaii!

For my blog party project I chose several of my favorite Aura prints in vibrant yellows, coral and purple and I made one of my quilt as you go flat bottom lined zipper pouch bags and I love how it turned out!

Friendship Braid Zipper Pouch in my Aura favorites!

The front side is made up of 1.5" strips of Aura and the friendship braid Quick Quilt As You Go pattern that I share a tutorial for here --  Friendship Braid QAYG. This bag has a cushiony layer of Hobbs Tuscany cotton batting, a colorful zipper, and is lined with a pretty Aura print!

The back is a simple striping of the same fabrics that I chose for the front. This collection is so good for quilt as you go patchwork!

Aura Zipper Pouch Bag

I hope you're inspired by my stop on Mister Domestic's Aura Tour! It's such an honor to be amongst this amazing line up of designers:


Monday February 11: Amanda Woodruff of A Crafty Fox
Tuesday February 12: Kylie Gersekowski of Little Moo Designs
Wednesday February 13: Sharon Holland
Thursday February 14: Kim Niedzwiecki of Go Go Kim
Saturday February 16: Sarah Maxwell of Fearless with Fabric
Sunday February 17: Natalie Santini of Hungry Hippie Sews
Monday February 18: Carolina Moore of Always Expect Moore
Tuesday February 19: Isabelle Selak of South Bay Bella Studio
Wednesday February 20: Elizabeth Chappell of Quilters’ Candy
Monday February 25: Tara Curtis of Wefty Needle
Tuesday February 26: Monica Tetteh of That’s Sew Monica
Wednesday February 27: Nicholas Ball of Quilts from the Attic
Thursday February 28: Lucy Brennan of Charm About You
Friday March 1: Robbin Flockhart of Sew Farm Quilter
Saturday March 2: Evie Jespersen of EV Quilts
Sunday March 3: Kelly Liddle of Jeliquilts
Monday March 4: ME of Maureen Cracknell Handmade
Tuesday March 5: HollyAnne Knight of String and Story
Wednesday March 6: Mimi Goodwin of Mimi G Style
Thursday March 7: Angela Wolf of Fashion Sewing with Angela Wolf
Friday March 8: Kitty Wilkin of Night Quilter
Saturday March 9: Sharon Burgess of Lilabelle Lane Creations
Sunday March 10: Emily Dennis of Quilty Love
Monday March 11: Sheri Cifaldi-Morrill of Whole Circle Studio
Tuesday March 12: Elina Temmes of Elina Temmes
Wednesday March 13: Jennifer Strauser of Dizzy Quilter
Thursday March 14: Saija Kiiskinen of Saija Kiiskinen
Friday March 15: Brittany Jones of Brittany J Jones
Saturday March 16: Jodi Godfrey of Tales of Cloth
Sunday March 17: Kim Niedzwiecki of Go Go Kim
Monday March 18: Sharon McConnell of Color Girl Quilts

I hope to finish up a second bag just like this one for tomorrow's bag of the day, and I'll be sending these two off to Mathew & Helena!

Loved To Pieces + Aura

xo Maureen

Friday, January 11, 2019

A Sun Kissed GIVEAWAY with Lady Belle Fabric!

A Sun Kissed GIVEAWAY with Lady Belle Fabrics

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My sponsor Lady Belle Fabric is run by husband and wife team, Rob & Brooke! In their shop you'll find both bundles and single cuts of handpicked fabrics that are fresh, modern, and fun! Designer fabrics include many of our favorites -- Art Gallery Fabrics, Free Spirit, & Moda, just to name a few! Lady Belle Fabric's goal is to offer the most gorgeous lines of fabric, as quickly as they can! 
SHOP  *  Instagram  *  FACEBOOK
  *  Pinterest  
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We hope you enjoy visiting the Lady Belle Fabric sites!! 


For this week's special Fabric Giveaway Friday, Lady Belle Fabric is offering the winner my newest collection for Art Gallery Fabrics, Sun Kissed! This bundle prize will include all TWENTY quilting cottons that make up this happy, beachy, colorful collection!

A Sun Kissed GIVEAWAY with Lady Belle Fabrics

You're all invited to checkout SUN KISSED along with a special discount of  20% OFF anything in the Lady Belle Fabric shop with Coupon Code: winter20 

PLUS all U.S. order over $75 ship FREE! Enjoy these special offerings throughout our Sun Kissed Giveaway, Monday 1/14 at midnight EST!

Sun Kissed Fabrics GIVEAWAY

Enter to win!

Here's how,

1. Simply leave a comment here in this post! (one entry)

2. Follow Lady Belle Fabric on Facebook or on Instagram! Just be sure to let me know you do by making a separate comment here for an extra entry! (optional extra entry)
3. My followers get a third entry! Just let me know that you do by making a separate comment here to record that entry.
(optional extra entry)

4. Help spread the word!! I know that many of you already do, so I thought it would be nice to add that as another way to enter! Whether by Instagram, tweet, facebook, pin, blog, etc... (optional extra entry) 

That’s 4 possible entries! Enter now through Monday, January 14th!! The winner will be picked at random and I will announce their name at the bottom of this post here on the blog!

* Note * This giveaway is open to EVERYONE! If you're a "no reply" or anonymous commenter, please remember to include your email address in your comment! 

A BIG thanks to all who entered our Giveaway! The lucky random commenter is Amy, thank you so much! Please check your email for a message from me! xo

Monday, January 7, 2019

Inspired by Svetlana Sotak

Sun Kissed LookBook Projects

Before I continue this week with more Sun Kissed fabric goodness, I want to first recognize a fellow artist and sewing pattern designer, Svetlana Sotak of s.o.t.a.k handmade, who I have been immensely inspired by and learned so much from over the years! When I started this blog in 2010, for the first couple of years I was quite the fabric hoarder and prolific pillow maker, but too insecure to attempt to turn my beloved fabric stash into the quilts that I dreamed of making, and I also lacked the skills and knowledge needed to make many of the small sewing accessory projects that I loved seeing so many fellow bloggers making. In a nut shell, quilts and zippers scared me. I was, however, an improv sewist from the very beginning. Each project began with a unique idea, almost always inspired by the fabric themselves. It was through the trial and error that comes from simply trying that I discovered my style and this wonderful community to share and learn with. During those early years of sewing and blogging, Svetlana was one of the bloggers I followed who always created such perfect looking projects, who had the skills and knowledge I was hoping to gain, and who was so extremely generous with sharing tutorials and patterns for so many of her projects. I've probably learned more about sewing from Svetlana than any other person in this industry. So today, before I share some of my recent Sun Kissed fabric projects, all of which were inspired by Svetlana, I just wanted to share with all of you, and Svetlana most of all, how grateful I am to have discovered her work!

Whole Cloth Zipper Pouch Bags

For the Sun Kissed LookBook I made several Quilted Zipper Pouches in a variety of sizes depending on the zippers and batting scraps that I had on hand. You can find so many helpful tutorials for making similar bags with just a quick Pinterest search, so I haven't created my own tutorial to share just yet. I do think I've discovered some tips and skills that are worth sharing from making so. many. bags. this past year, so I may put together a Janome Sewing tutorial sometime toon. For LookBook I linked to Svetlana's Mini Quilted Zipper Pouch Tutorial, with step by step instructions that are clear, easy to follow and can be easily adapted to make any size bag. If you're looking for a wonderful zipper pouch pattern, The Essential Pouch measure and cut pattern by Svetlana with help you make perfect pouches in four sizes!

bright bag duo

Summerdress Dreams Tide Whole Cloth Zipper Pouch Bags

The Quilted Zipper Pouches that I made using my Sun Kissed Summerdress Dreams prints in both quilting cottons and in the lux AGF rayon are my new favorites! This bright floral looks so pretty left whole cloth and simply quilted with this scalloped stitch. I love the subtle contrast of the coral Aurifil thread against the yellow fabric on this one, and the Dritz hardware and store-bought tassel makes this simple bag look fancy!

Summerdress Dreams Ray Whole Cloth Zipper Pouch Bags

Last Summer I shared a tutorial for Whole Cloth Quilted Journal Covers during Janome's Summer Camp sewing event, a project that's become a favorite of mine that's perfect for enjoying favorite prints and gift giving. My tutorial gives instructions for creating journal covers by quilting fabrics to a layer of Hobbs Tuscany Cotton batting with decorative stitches that are lined, washable and can be used again and again. Svetlana has a Notebook Cover tutorial on her blog as well, that's great for mixing several prints & using interfacing, that I learned a lot from using several times before I started making quilted journals. Be sure to check it out HERE!

Sun Kissed Whole Cloth Journals

Another great s.o.t.a.k handmade pattern that I link to in the Sun Kissed LookBook is Svetlana's Drawstring Bag Pattern that creates beautiful drawstring bags in four different sizes. I couldn't resist making the mini size in my Sun Kissed Basking Buds print. Look how cute!

Sun Kissed LookBook Projects

Be sure to visit the Blog, Tutorial Page and Pattern Shop for more wonderful sewing projects! I hope you love these Svetlana Sotak inspired projects as much as I do!

xo Maureen

Thursday, January 3, 2019

My SUN KISSED LookBook is Out!

Happy New Year! I'm so excited to kick off 2019 by sharing the LookBook for my brand new collection with Art Gallery Fabrics, SUN KISSED and I hope you all love it just as much as I do!

My New Sun Kissed Collection

Inside you'll find this colorful new collection on display in the form of dozens of inspirational projects from quilts & home decor to lots of beautiful apparel & accessory projects! Today I want to start by showcasing some of my personal favorite features in the LookBook to get you inspired for happy Sun Kissed sewing. Yes happy, I truly believe it's impossible not to smile while sewing with these fabrics!

LookBook Cover

In the Lookbook you'll find projects made by myself, the AGF Studio and so many generous makers that were so kind to lend their talents to make something with Sun Kissed. I'm always blown away when I see it all come together!

With each collection comes a free Quilt Pattern PDF created with just the collection prints in mind and for Sun Kissed I designed Sun Spots, a fun mix of bright colors & white that creates a perfect quilt for beach trips and Summertime picnics! This pattern makes a large throw size measuring 72" x 72" and was a very enjoyable quilt to sew. I stitched it together from start to finish in just a few days time, which is perfect for my schedule & patience level, haha. In the weeks ahead I do plan to add some additional hand quilting using threads in Sun Kissed colors which will be something new for me, but I just can't get the idea out of my head, so I'm excited to give it a try. I've heard from several folks who are making Sun Spots already and that makes me so happy, be sure to let me know if you give it a go, too!

My Sun Spots Quilt

Whole Cloth pillows are such a perfect way to showoff a favorite fabric and my Sun Kissed Palm Island Escape novelty print is extra special to me. This past Spring I went to visit my sister in Hawaii for the first time, a magical trip with some of my favorite people! I love how it looks as this large Euro size sham and now every time I see this beachy printed pillow I will think of my Hawaii family and my wonderful trip to Oahu!

Palm Island Floor Pillow

In the LookBook you'll also find gorgeous garment inspiration like this dress made by my friend Alexis Wright using the Sun Kissed rayon, Summerdress Dreams Flare. To me, this pattern and fabric combination couldn't be more beautiful & perfect to wear on vacation and hot Summer days!

Summerdress Dreams Flare Rayon -- Dress by Alexis Wright

This sweet garment was made using two of the three Sun Kissed knits, Hazy Daisies and Sunny Side Up by the lovely Florence Taylor who always makes such magic with my fabrics! For the LookBook Florence stitched up this adorable 2t sized twirly dress using a Little Lizard King pattern. For this dress and many more garment ideas you can find all the details by clicking HERE!

Sun Kissed Knit Dress by Florence Taylor

The bag making kick that I've been on this past year continues and I made some of my favorites to date using Sun Kissed! Simple whole cloth zipper pouch bags with fun quilting, brightly colored zippers and Hobbs Tuscany Cotton batting scraps is all I needed to make these for the LookBook. The happy vibe of this collection allowed me to have some fun shopping for the tassel keychains that decorate each of these new bags. A must make for sure!

Sun Kissed Zipper Pouch Bags

My quilted journal making continues, as well, since these are such a fast, useful and rewarding sew. I especially love making these to give as gifts. These new Sun Kissed journals all turned out so pretty, I even quilted up some using the Summerdress Dreams rayon, a first for me!

Sun Kissed Journals

These are just six examples of inspirational projects that fill the 72-page LookBook! I'm overjoyed that SUN KISSED is now shipping to stores and I can't wait to see all the things you're going to create with this collection! To ensure I don't miss a thing, please remember to use the collection hashtags #SunKissedFabrics + #AGFsunkissed and to tag me @maureencracknell when you share anything Sun Kissed on Instagram, or to upload your Sun Kissed stash and project photos to my Maureen Cracknell Handmade Facebook page!

I'll be back soon to share a more detailed look at some of the Sun Kissed projects that I made for the LookBook, along with many new projects ideas & tutorials to get you inspired to sew with these fabrics! In the meantime, be sure to visit Art Gallery Fabrics blog to enter for a chance to WIN a Sun Kissed Bundle by clicking HERE or by simply clicking on the photo below to be redirected!

Sun Kissed Fabrics GIVEAWAY

Thank you all for your continued support, encouragement & love!

xo Maureen   

Monday, December 10, 2018

Scrap Bundle Destash!

Once upon a time this was the bulk of my fabric stash. Fat quarters to half yards cuts organized in rainbow order, minus a special shelf for all of my Anna Maria Horner fabrics and of course, a shelf dedicated to my collection of Art Gallery Fabrics!


I took this photo in the Summer of 2012, just after I had finished my first big quilt and a couple years before my dream of becoming a fabric designer came true. There has been so many quilts and SO much wonderful, beautiful fabric since I snapped this picture!

My goal is to start 2019 with a clean studio and slate, in the sense that I wish to have empty scrap baskets and drawers. Yes, I have both! I recently decided to completly redo my studio, a two room space that I rent downtown, after the holidays are over and destashing and decluttering will be key!

So last week, overcome with the desire to start purging, I emptied all of my various scrap vessels into one large basket to bring home, and throughout the past several days I've been putting together colorful 1 yard bundles to sell!

Scrap Bundle Destash

In each scrap bundle you’ll find a range of patterns and the occasional out of print fabric, in sizable strips and pieces of my studio scraps from the variety of collections that I've used to create my quilts and sewing projects over the past year or so, making these little bundles perfect for patchwork! Bundles are $10 a piece plus shipping. Please feel free to email me at if you're interested in ordering anytime!

$10 1yd Scrap Bundles

Thank you!

xo Maureen

Monday, December 3, 2018

Love Story Patchwork Stockings : :

Holiday making is well underway and my goodness, I do LOVE these days of non-stop making!

Love Story Stockings

Last year this time my Love Story collection had just arrived at my studio and I was brimming with ideas for using these pretty prints for some surprising holiday themed handmades. I made so many bags that I never finished these Love Story stockings that were at the top of my to-make list, until now...

Love Story Bundle

Making unique Christmas stockings have become one of my favorite things to make! Years ago, before I knew yet how to sew, I purchased our family's stockings from Pottery Barn. Their shape and size are the style I still like best all these years later, so when it came time to try making my own to gift and to sell, I traced one of those stockings to be the template that I continue to use for each one. The extra large size is just perfect for stuffing with all kinds of small gifts and treats!

Love Story Stockings

These Love Story Patchwork Stockings include all twenty quilting cottons that make up the collection. And to add a special boho touch, I embellish each with handmade flower & fabric twine cluster!

Love Story Flower Cluster

Aren't they pretty?! I love them so much!! So much so that I made eight!

*UPDATE* All Love Story Stockings have sold out, but I would still love for you to check out my other Ready To Ship bags, pillows, quilted journals and quilts of mine, you can visit my new Instagram Pop-Up Shop --

Love Story Stockings

Thanks for looking! xo Maureen