Every Saturday I join Meg and Rachel in hosting the Saturday Night Craft Along on Instagram. It's an amazing community of makers, encouraging each other and crafting the night away! This year we decided to have the first (in what we hope will be at least annual) swap. With three time zones joining in each week, it was quite the task to organise but we mixed it up and became swap mamas for other continents so we could join in the fun!

My swap partner was Jen aka Mum In The Madhouse, who I met this year at the Simply Solids retreat! So I already knew she loved Anna Maria Horner and I wanted to make her something to help her unwind and relax. She works really hard, her blog is full of amazing inspiration, ideas for family activities and so many brilliant posts! After seeing an instagram story she posted about having trouble sleeping I knew exactly what to make and gift her.

handmade embroidered eye mask

Having always had sleep problems myself, I know how helpful and calming an eye mask can be, I made myself one a few years ago and still use it. Even if she doesn't want to wear it to bed (not everyone likes them) I thought Jen might like to use it to chill out while listening to music and just ignore the mad house for a moment!

To help it feel soft against her face I used one of my very favourite Liberty patterns (Pepper) on the back.

reverse of eye mask liberty and anna maria horner fabric

It felt nice to sit and add some embroidery stitches to the AMH fabric I used on the front. Though I find it really hard to know when to stop when I embroider on printed fabric, I intentionally tried to keep it fairly simple. Also adding in some flecks of bronze with beautiful Aurifil Brillo.

seed stitch embroidery

eye mask, close up of embroidery and machine blanket stitch with 12wt thread

After doing some successful machine blanket stitch appliqué recently I thought I would see if it would work round the edge of the mask and I'm happy with the results again!

I used Aurifil thread, 12wt as the top thread and 50wt in the bobbin. Of course it had to be the Anna Maria Horner Aurifil collection, all 12wt threads and perfect for hand or machine quilting. It works so beautifully in my machine and adds extra charm in far less time than hand stitching would take. I wish I had time to hand sew more but it's just not always possible and that's why I love this thread so much. You have that handmade look with the thicker thread and the only thing you need is a bigger needle. I use a 90/14 - currently Organ and I often use Schmetz Topstitch needles. 

Anna Maria Horner Aurifil 12wt thread collection

The extras included were a sleep tight gift set from thisworks, a 'stop cracking up' lip balm, some cute stickers and of course a card - from my favourite Etsy seller for cards and sweet prints, Pixieland. *actually ended up sending a different card from Pixieland than the one pictured here because I moved it after taking the picture and couldn't find it. But she did still get a cute one nonetheless, doh!*

selection of swap gifts handmade eye mask

My swap package also arrived this week from the lovely @what_saysie_makes, it was beautifully wrapped and of course I tore it right open!

sewing folio case and paper pieced patchwork quilted penguin

The cutest penguin mini with really pretty wintery stitching. She didn't even know that penguins are my favourite creatures! I adore it and it makes me smile so much, penguins do that and perfect fabric ones even more!
She has made the most gorgeous sewing folio - with more AMH fabric featured - it looked amazing enough outside but the inside is incredible. Cute scalloped needle book, well made pockets and that stunning cyan colour. I filled it up right away with epp supplies! I recently downsized my handbag and so this is absolutely perfect for my travels. Thank you so much Sarah! ♡

open sewing folio

Another arrival this week were more candles! I adore the pink glass bowl one I got recently and when I saw this pretty pair I couldn't not. If you would like your house to smell amazing and be able to reuse the vintage container, I absolutely recommend candles_n_vintagestuff. They were packaged so well and it's so great to be able to shop small and support other makers. And just look at them!

pretty vintage sugar bowl and milk jug with wax candles in

I have a hectic week ahead, with a few deadlines and a to do list longer than my arm. Still I am taking moments when I can to remind myself to stay calm and trying to do one thing a day just for me. It really helps! 

What are you all doing this week? Any fun sewing plans or other excitements?