Call me a nerd. Call me crafty. Call me whatever you want. The truth is, despite how much I love traveling, I also love domestic hobbies as well. Cooking, gardening, binging on Netflix, and various craft projects. And when I can combine my domestic hobbies with my love for travel, that’s even better! Sometimes that’s stitching pictures of pretty places I’ve been, and sometimes it’s making things to use on my travels that make life a little easier. So I thought I’d share with you my favorite craft projects from 2016 and maybe inspire you to do a little crafting of your own!

2016 craft projects

Pretty Little Los Angeles

I looooved working on this project! Everything that Jody at Satsuma Street designs is adorable. From spring and fall scenes to her cute series of pretty little cities, and they stitch up quickly, too! It took me about 2 months to complete this project, much of which I did on my trip to Honduras and El Salvador. I have all her US cities, and will probably end up buying some of the international ones as well. I can’t wait to see what cities she designs next. Fingers crossed for Seattle!

Pretty Little LA

Travel Backgammon Set

My friend Adrienne is so incredibly talented. She works as a book designer for Martingale, a knitting and quilting book publishing company. They also sell books of cute little sewing projects for everyday items. As someone who loves to travel as much as I do, she enjoys creating patterns to make traveling easier and more fun. She designed this cute backgammon set that is small and lightweight, perfect for tossing into your luggage without taking up space. Because you just never know when you’ll need something to pass the time while you’re waiting for a bus, or relaxing on a beach.

Travel backgammon

Mountain Pillow

I first saw this pillow in Adrienne’s apartment and fell in love with it. As someone who loves to climb mountains, how perfect is this? She let me copy the pattern and it’s sat in my sewing room gathering dust until I finally bought enough felt to complete both this project and the above backgammon board. Now it sits on my couch, tempting me to find my next mountain to climb.

Mountain pillow

Spanish Arch

Originally I purchased this and the Alhambra kit to work on while I was in Spain in 2011. I’d pick it up and put it down over the years until I finally managed to finish it earlier this year. They are so beautiful when completed and not complicated at all. I really love all of John Clayton’s international designs. I’ve also completed the Alpine Meadow and Neuschwanstein Castle pieces and am working on the Golden Gate Bridge. Now I just need to decide what to do with them!

Spanish Arch

Autumn Sampler

Speaking of projects that take forever and not knowing what to do with them when they’re completed – I’ve been working on this Autumn Sampler for over 10 years. I can’t tell you how glad I am to finally be finished. I remember working on it in the car during a road trip with my friend Erin down the New England coastline in 2006. It’s also been to Costa Rica, Belize, Morocco and Tunisia with me. It’s a big piece with a lot of detail. But it’s beautiful when completed. Seriously though, what do I do with it now? I have limited wall space and 3 more seasons in progress. If anyone has any ideas, I’d love to hear them!

Autumn sampler

E-Reader Cover

Ok, I’m sneaking this one in. I didn’t really work on this in 2016, but I did use it, so that counts, right? I actually made this book cover a few years ago after noticing the screen on my Kindle was getting scratched. I like to carry it around with me while traveling, but sometimes I can be hard on my things. So when Adrienne (are you sensing a theme here? Adrienne does some serious supporting of my crafty habits) pointed out that the co-author of the book she wrote had designed an adorable e-reader cover, I purchased some fabric and made one for myself. And I love it! It’s machine washable when it gets dirty (as it always does) and most importantly, protects my Kindle from further damage by my manhandling.

Kindle cover

I’ve already got a number of craft projects going for 2017. Pretty Little Chicago, the Spring and Summer samplers to accompany Autumn, a book cover and matching pencil pouch (on the cover of the Sew Gifts book that the backgammon set comes from – also designed by, you guessed it, Adrienne!!) which should be handy for keeping knick knacks in one place while traveling. And who knows what else will come my way. I look forward to working on them and hopefully completing a few.

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2016 Book Review
Ruinas Mayas in El Salvador