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Running Stitch Blog


Quilts of 2020

Posted by Liz Allan on

Quilting is my passion.  I love the variety of patterns that can be created and the different feelings that can be conveyed simply through the use of colour and scale of the pattern.

Take time to browse my Quilts of 2020.

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5 Travel Hacks to Make Your Travels Less Stressful

Posted by Liz Allan on

Travelling these days though enjoyable, can also be stressful. Here are some easy hacks to make your trip less stressful and ensure you have only great memories of the trip!

  1. Use a travel system Travel or packing pouches are an ideal way to organize all your belongings and the up side is with these you can actually pack more! Travel pouches mean that you can stop hunting for what you need and have everything at your fingertips.
  2. Pack for the plane, train or automobile  Use ditty bags to have all those chargers, power cords in one place and easy to access.  Use another for those things that will make the trip easier- socks (who doesn't take their shoes off in a plane!) hand cream, towelettes, and head phones.  Easy access to these will make the trip relaxing and stress free.
  3. Scan all your important documents  Before you leave scan all your important documents like passport, drivers license and health insurance and e-mail them to yourself.  This will make replacing them a lot easier if you have to!
  4. Add a couple of dryer sheets to your suitcase Not only will this keep your clothes fresh they will also help deodorize shoes or freshen a hotel pillowcase so that your can sleep.
  5. Pack a first aid kit Using a ditty bag to put together a first aid kit will save you from a late night visit to a pharmacy in a strange city.  We are talking not just aspirin but band-aids, anti-bacterial cream, lozenges and Imodium or similar product.
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Quilting Explained

Posted by Liz Allan on


The word quilt is derived from the Latin culcita, meaning a padded and tied mattress similar to a Japanese futon. Quilting is a needlework technique involving two or more layers of fabric, usually sandwiched with padding of some sort, stitched together in a decorative pattern.  Simple definitions for something that is anything but simple to explain.

Quilting is sometimes viewed as an addiction by the non-quilting world; however, for us quilters it is just something we have to do…like breathing. So what is it about quilting that can absorb us for hours and days?   For me it is the fabric and colours within, the feelings that a finished quilt evoke and the thrill of looking at the finished quilt that never turns out quite as imagined….it is even better!

In searching various blogs, web-sites and even magazines themes started to emerge as to why we quilters do what it is we do….most of us need to be involved in quilting for even a small measure of time each day…I know I do.  So why do we do it?  I came upon this list of reasons for why I quilt http://www.bellaonline.com/articles/art10198.asp and I am sure most of us can identify with at least 1 or 2 of the reasons listed. 

  • I quilt because it makes me feel good
  • I quilt because I feel I can be productive, often in a seemingly non-productive environment
  • I quilt because it’s something I can enjoy alone or with a hundred other quilters
  • I quilt because I have a drive to create – even neat little stitches, all the same, all in a row
  • I quilt because I go to another place in my head – and forget the troubles of the day
  • I quilt because I can speak through my creating – say things that I might not otherwise say out loud
  • I quilt because it allows me the time to mull over problems, not always solving, but making time to think
  • I quilt because it’s all about me, not family, career, or others expectations, just me
  • I quilt because I love to play with colour and I’m a hopeless painter
  • I quilt because I can amaze myself with what I’m capable of creating
  • I quilt because it absorbs and diminishes the various bumps and bruises of a busy day
  • I quilt because it’s my lifeline - without it I just might go insane
  • I quilt because of the friendships I have made and continue to make each and every day
  • I quilt because I’m in control of the input and the output – no one else gets a say
  • I quilt because it allows me to give and share in the generosity of spirit that is found amongst quilters

No matter the reason what is true is that quilting absorbs us, envelopes and in some way feeds our soul…so enjoy!

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The Origin of the Purse

Posted by Liz Allan on

Women around the world consider a purse as a necessity. A purse has a lot more significance and importance than its function, which is carrying money and other items around in it. It is used as a fashion accessory and speaks volumes about the personality of the person carrying it.
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What is a "ditty" and how can I use it?

Posted by Liz Allan on

What is a ditty bag?  The dictionary defines it as a bag that sailors used to storeor their things like needles, thread etc.

So what can you use your "ditty" for?  The uses are endless:

    • Travelling?
      • Store your power cords and batteries and battery packs
      • Organize your hairbrush, comb, hair ties and bobby pins
      • Keep your valuables like keys, passports, additional cash, all in one place
      • Keep your shoes away from  your clothes clean when packing
      • Store plane supplies like fuzzy socks, book, ear plugs and eye mask
      • Easy access to all your car essentials like registration and insurance, car wipes and a back-up air freshener
    • For the home:
      • Store your belts in your closet instead of on the floor
      • Keep socks and tights from going missing with a go-to place in your close
      • Place your kids hat, gloves and scarf inside so they don’t lose them at school
      • Keep an extra change of clothes for the baby (in case of emergency)
      • Put in your hospital go-bag to store your cosmetics
      • Store picnic day essentials: hand sanitizer, sunscreen, wipes and stain remover
      • Place stray LEGOs inside (so you don’t step on them)
    • for just about anything and everything…

      • Use as a giftbag for the holidays for small gifts

      • Freshen up on-the-go with a travel toothbrush, deodorant, body mist and dry shampoo
      • Store hiking supply kit with bug spray, a first-aid kit and sunscreen
      • Stow card and dice games so they don’t get lost
      • Organize gift-wrapping supplies including ribbons, tape and labels
So how will you use your "ditty"?
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