Sunday, December 16, 2018

Another Busy Day! - Day 16 - 31 Day Blog Writing Challenge

Good evening!

It has been another busy day - not too much time today for creating. Cleaned house, took shells off of pecan nuts (they were already cracked), and prepared a couple of boxes and cards for mailing.

The days often go by quickly, and not every day becomes a creative one. I believe you need life experiences in order to create, so in that sense it was a very good day.

Below is a photo of some ornaments I made and gave as gifts for the holidays a few years ago. (I was able to send them with my greeting cards.) I didn't create anything new for the season this year, but I may make it to my studio, and create some holiday themed items in January. It would be a good way to extend the season.

Still have to bake a few cookies! I usually end up baking a couple of things after admiring all the photos and recipes online and in magazines. I think admiring everyone's creativity is the fun part.

Machine and Hand Needle-felted ornaments made with wool roving,
acrylic felt, embroidery, buttons and beads.

Happy Holiday Season!

Denise A. Buchwalter-Losczyk


Saturday, December 15, 2018

Holiday Decorations Complete - Day 15 - 31 Day Blog Writing Challenge

Finished decorating for the Holidays! We are now spending time cracking nuts (pecans) from our tree, next it will be time to bake a few cookies and desserts...

Here's a look at our Holiday displays:

Holiday guests waiting for Santa

Teddy Bear on the left from my childhood (61 yrs old perhaps?),
Tree by my friend Gloria, who passed away. It is nice to have
it to remember her by each year. Little Hallmark Cookie bear who
visits each Holiday Season. I made the blue and white throw quilt.


Snowmen hanging out with Quan-Yin and Buddha!

Holiday Display

Holiday Display, Holiday cards to be written in the background.

Another Holiday Display: Tree runner is from one of my Aunts,
who passed away. I love having it to remember her by each year. 
Vintage elf I found at an antique store, 
glass chickens from my collection, vase and Merry Christmas
candle holder are gifts from dear friends. 
I found the Victorian Santa at a Marshall's store
we once lived nearby.

Winter house plants (green pepper, basil)

More Winter house plants: Nasturium on the left, peppers on the right.

Hope you are enjoying the holiday season! Keep warm and have a good season. 


Denise A. Buchwalter-Losczyk


Friday, December 14, 2018

Embellishments - Buttons - Day 14 - 31 Day Blog Writing Challenge

Today I am resharing one of older blogs: 

After hearing that it was bad for old buttons to store them in jars, (from Jill Gorski, in Episode 1204: Songs, Stories, and Buttons, on I moved most of my button collection (accumulation!) to an antique type setting tray I have.

Button collection in type setting tray
A sampling of my accumulation of buttons - intended for use as embellishments - I need to get busy embellishing!

 I've started using my buttons more often as embellishments in my projects. It is hard to resist a good old button.

Pearl buttons and buckles from a Muscatine, IA button factory
Pearl buttons and buckles from a Muscatine, IA button factory.
One of my aunts gave me several small pearl buttons to use - at the time I planned to make dolls and use the buttons for doll clothing, but now most of the buttons are finding their way onto my wall quilt and textile projects. The pearl buttons come from Muscatine, Iowa, and were from the button factories which had closed down. They once made pearl buttons from clam shells sourced from the Mississippi river there. I have always loved the pearl buttons.

Here is a photo of buttons I bought recently (this week!):

New Buttons!
I couldn't resist the small parrott buttons - looking at the large assortment of buttons at my  fabric store, I know I could get into some serious trouble "collecting" buttons! I will have to limit my button excursions there.

I have usually only purchased used or old buttons (some are old and still unused on button cards) from thrift, antique stores and garage sales, though I can see there are many beautiful new buttons available now.

You can also buy great button assortments for embellishing your projects - one of my favorite catalogs is Home Sew, Inc., and Newark Dressmaker Supply. They have a great assortment of other sewing notions and supplies, as well. Their website is:

1970s children's animal buttons - plastic
If you are looking for inspiration for a project, you could design a quilt to display your favorite buttons - or use your buttons to add special embellishments to your projects.

I have an assortment of Cracker Jack toys I've collected, that I've thought would be nice displayed on a quilt, but that is a topic for another day...

                                                      1970s animal buttons from a good friend - I used them on a sweater, now they are waiting to be repurposed - too cute to throw away!

Assortment of old buttonsCelluoid buttons
A few more buttons from my collection - and some Celluloid buttons.

Happy Friday!

Denise A. Buchwalter-Losczyk


Thursday, December 13, 2018

Day 13 - 31 Day Blog Writing Challenge

Good evening!

Another busy day today, not much time to write. It was a day of appointments and shopping. Hope you have had a good day.

It is also Day 13 of the #31DayBlogWritingChallenge. (I had to write something!)

I am participating in the blog writing challenge this month. It is past the date to sign up to participate, but you can still view the blogs of the other bloggers who are participating. Just go to the following address and check it out:

It has been a fun experience so far, I think I will definitely be able to manage at the very least a weekly blog in the year ahead. 2019 will be a year for writing!

Next, I may have to see if I can post a video on my blog. That is something I haven't tried yet.

Until tomorrow,

Happy Writing,

Denise A. Buchwalter-Losczyk

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

Studio Decorations and a Fun Ottoman project - Day 12 - 31 Day Blog Writing Challenge

Today I'm sharing some photos of black and white accents I have added to my studio. I like the way black and white works with all the other colors, so it is almost like a neutral to add to your studio décor.

This all started when I discovered a black and white ironing board cover my local Marshall's. 

Black and white ironing board cover with resident irons and steamer:
from left, my older Rowenta, Oliso I-touch, Clover mini iron, 
steamer, and vintage toy iron. I use the Oliso I-touch Iron most often.

I later found a black and white box, (also at Marshall's) which I now use to store textile paints, and also a black and white over the door organizer, which I now use in my office closet. 

Black and white box, used to store textile paints.

I recently wanted to add a foot stool to my reading corner in my studio, to make it a bit more comfortable. I had the idea that perhaps I could make my own, so I did a Google search, and found a pattern and instructions for a fabric ottoman on the HGTV Blog. Check the bottom of my post for a link to the HGTV Blog post by Michelle Edgemont with the pattern and instructions.
This was a very fun project to make. I used fabrics from my stash. In retrospect, I would have purchased new solid black fabric, since the solid black fabric I had in my stash was a little thin. I plan to replenish my stash with a higher quality fabric for later use.
My reading corner with the new ottoman and a little mini quilt I made for the top.

I was able to complete this project in one weekend. It is very easy to sew. The fun part is stuffing it, the instructions suggest stuffing with old textiles you have on hand. A search of our closets followed with findings of old pillow cases, a shirt, and other various textiles. I added polyester stuffing and an older unused polyester quilt bat to fill the ottoman out. 

I also later made a little mini quilt to set on top of the ottoman. This is to rest my feet on, so it limits the amount of dirt that gets on the ottoman (since it is not really machine washable). Easier to wash the mini quilt, than the whole ottoman! I hope to use it for many years! However, it would not be too difficult to sew a new one, and the stuffing could be reused. 

Here are more photos of the results:

Ottoman without the cover.

Ottoman with mini quilt cover.

Reverse side of Mini quilt cover (I also like purple!)

Here is the link to the instructions, by Michelle Edgemont on the HGTV blog:

Give the project a try! It is a lot of fun to make, and also not too time-consuming.

I hope to add additional black and white accents to my studio in the future, I will share an update in the future!

Happy Creating in your space,

Denise A. Buchwalter-Losczyk


Tuesday, December 11, 2018

Fabric Giveaway to check out! Henry Glass Fabrics - Day 11 - #31DayBlogWritingChallenge

Good evening,

It is Day 11 of the #31DayBlogWritingChallenge. It has been a busy day, so I'm just now getting to writing.

As an artist, I love entering creative challenges. They entice me, if it a challenge around a theme, the theme will often give me ideas for creating a project. It is a fun starting place and a great way to get started creating a new project. 

I sometimes enter fabric challenges, and the fabric inspires the design which I create. The design of the fabric can be a great way to begin creating too.

I also like entering contests to win prizes, and I have been lucky to win a few. 

Henry Glass Fabrics has a fun Fabric Giveaway starting tomorrow, which you may want to check out. It is 12 days of fabric prizes starting on 12/13/2018. You can check it out here:

The Henry Glass Blog also sponsors the monthly "Desire to Inspire" Challenge, which you can enter, and if chosen you receive fabric for that month and in exchange create sewing or quilting projects to be featured on their Blog, the following month. I have done the Challenge twice, and it is alot of fun. You can design your own project (I designed a table runner and a quilt, and mug mats.) or you can use patterns to create a project or projects from the fabric. Check it out and have fun challenging yourself!

Until tomorrow!

Denise A. Buchwalter-Losczyk

Monday, December 10, 2018

Some Creative Gift Ideas from Craftsy/bluprint - Day 10 #31DayBlogWritingChallenge

Happy Monday!

If you are looking for holiday gifts, including classes and arts and crafts supplies for your creative friends and family here are some suggestions from Craftsy/blueprint. They are a great place to discover new supplies and learn new things. If you have always wanted to learn tatting, I highly recommend their tatting classes! There are also free classes you can try out, if you haven't check them out before. A fun place to visit, shop and learn.

You may even find something for yourself! 

Sponsored Ad(s):

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Gift A Bluprint Subscription (through 12/31)

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(through 12/31)

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With personalized recommendations, plus lessons for all skill levels and schedules, Bluprint is the perfect all-in-one gift for the creative person in your life. Share the joy of learning new things with your loved ones this holiday season. Just select the gift amount, delivery date and write a personal message. We'll send the recipient a special email and Get Started Guide. Want to give the gift in person? Print out one of our FREE holiday cards!
Coupon Code: No coupon needed.

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Get two free classes and $100 to spend on supplies when you sign up for a year of Bluprint. Unwrap the gift of creativity.
Coupon Code: No coupon needed.

Expiration Date: 12/12/2018 11:59pm MST
Restrictions: By clicking the Start free trial button you agree to the Terms of Use, Membership Agreement and Privacy Policy. You authorize Bluprint to charge your credit/debit card at the above stated price and before each subscription term at the then-current rate plus applicable tax. You understand that your plan is continuous and will auto-renew until cancelled or changed by visiting the Account page. For plans with a trial you must cancel during the trial to avoid being charged. *Monthly and Annual Bluprint subscribers will receive 50% off the full listing price of classes, DVDs, kits and supplies November 3rd through December 31st, 2018 11:59PM EST. To redeem this discount, customers must sign in with their Bluprint email address and password on Discount cannot be combined with other offers or promotional codes and is not redeemable for cash. 50% off discount is only available upon the completion of free trial. Discount cannot be applied towards the purchase of the following products: excludes classes regularly priced at $9.99, Throughstone Sweater Knit-Along, Kitchen Invasion, The Flower Kitchen, Real Life Cooking, iPhoneography: Photos Videos & More, Baking Swaps, Easy & Delicious Plant-Based Meals, Classic Quilted Stockings, Minion Cookie & Cake Decorating Tutorial, High Sierra Shawl Knit-Along, Creating a Quilting Plan: Approaches for Any Quilt, Let's Decorate: Gingerbread House, Master Portuguese Knitting: Advanced Techniques in the Portuguese Style, Tealeaf Sweater Knit-Along, Fair Isle Holiday Ornaments, The Quilted Tree Skirt, The Easy Modern Apron, The Cross-Body Bag: Sewing With Waxed Canvas, Covering Cakes in Fondant: Round, Square & Shaped, The No-Sew Clutch, Fremont Tote Bag Kit, Embroidery Kits, Creative Grids, Karen Kay Buckley, Zirkel, Bluprint Boxes and the Mastering in Minutes series. Discounted $9.99 monthly and $100 annual price is only valid for the first 12 months of service, after which you will be charged our standard subscription rate of $14.99 for monthly or $120 for annual plans. Subject to additional terms. Bluprint and Craftsy may end or alter this offer at their discretion.

Happy Crafting and Shopping (that last offer was a long one!),

Denise A. Buchwalter-Losczyk


Sunday, December 9, 2018

More Organizational ideas from my Studio - Day 9 - 31 Day Blog Writing Challenge 2018


Hope you are having a good day. Today I'm sharing some additional ideas from my studio, for storing and organizing art supplies.

I meant to post them on Day 7 of the #31DayBlogWritingChallenge2018, but I was writing on my tablet and it was taking a bit too long! Also, my photos were deleted at the last minute. (technical difficulties!)

So, here are a few more ideas/views from my Studio:

View of my walk-in supply closet. I was able to plan the design of my studio and this is something I have always wanted. Fabric is stored on a middle shelf away from direct light. On the right art books and thread are stored, on the left are other drawing, painting and paper supplies. Additional supplies are stored in fabric baskets on the floor, marked with paper tags.

Close up view of closet shelves.

I use my family antique secretary to display my camera collection and other 
collectibles and family items, and use the drawers for storing my needle-felting supplies. The rolling shelf holds sewing supplies, ribbons and marking supplies (stored in tins and boxes).

Close up of my secretary.

Cubby storage for additional fabrics and trims, stabilizers and fusible. 

Close up of one of the tags labeling a cubby basket.

Hope you enjoyed this peek at my studio! Happy organizing and creating!

Denise A. Buchwalter-Losczyk


Saturday, December 8, 2018

A new studio tool to explore - Day 8 - 31 Day Blog Writing Challenge 2018


Sharing my new studio tool today! I have wanted to get a Brother ScanNCut cutting machine for quite a while. This arrived about 2 days ago. A present from my husband and myself!

This is the Brother ScanNCut DX125 model, it arrived neatly packed. It was thoughtfully packed so it was not too difficult to remove from the box. The Styrofoam on the ends of the machine is in 2 pieces, so you take out the top halves, and it makes it easy to lift the machine out of the box. Simple solution!

Box which came inside of another cardboard box, inside of 
another larger cardboard box.

When I saw the machine I thought, it is so pretty, and also nicely compact, not too heavy, but sturdy. I tried out the get started project 
which didn't take too long to make. (It is a little box, which can be folded into shape.)

Looking forward to experimenting with the machine to discover the different ways I can use it. The machine comes with one standard mat, and cutting blade. Also a black pen holder and pen. A spatula tool for removing designs from the mat is included, along with a plastic stylus, for use with the touch screen. (You can use your finger on the touch screen, also.)

There is software that you can download for use with the machine, so you can design your own work. You can also scan your own designs into the machine, and cut them out. It comes with designs built in, and some included with the software. You don't need your computer to use it, which is one thing I like very much about the machine.

I plan to cut paper, fabric, and felt with it for use in projects. I may have to buy some additional supplies for cutting fabric, but plan to use the blade and mat that came with it first, and cut some paper projects, so I can become acquainted with it.

Will share my progress with you in the days ahead!

Have a great day,

Denise A. Buchwalter-Losczyk 


If you would like to participate in the 31 day blog writing challenge or visit the blogs of the other participants go to