Author: Angela Flicker

Making a House a Home: Handmade Quilts on Couches

handmade quilts on couches

When it comes to the art of making a house a home, isn’t  there something welcoming about handmade quilts on couches?  A handmade quilt in a main living space acts to soften the space; it makes the space more pleasant, relaxed, and warm.  Who doesn’t want their living room couch to feel that way?

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Image Credit / Quilt Credit : Houzz Tour, Feed Dog, Creative Chicks, Design Sponge & SplitYarn on Flickr

Piper & Chloe’s Spring Showcase

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piper and choloe salt lake city utah

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Mark your calendars, and come support local artists by attending this years “Piper & Chloe – A Spring Showcase”, here in Salt Lake City, Utah.
Both Josh and I will have items for sale.  We hope you can make it!

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Crafts for Kids with Scrap Fabric

Crafts for Kids with Scrap Fabric

Lately, I have been keeping my eyes open, trying to find crafts for kids that use scrap fabric.  My stash of scrap fabric is taking over my studio, and so the other day when I was spring cleaning I decided I needed to let my daughter help me.

crafts for kids with scrap fabric

First, she made a house.  It was much like a gingerbread house, but we used fabric, glue and an old box instead of cookies, icing, and candy.

crafts for kids with scrap fabric

She also decorated a few paper dolls and a paper horse.  The outcome was adorable and it occupied her for days.  Along with that, it was a great activity to help with her cutting and gluing skills.  I didn’t realize this, but children’s scissors will cut fabric.  (I bet they will also cut hair and clothes then –note to self!)

After Monet was all done, I still had gobs of fabric left, so we put together about ten kits for other cousins and friends.

Crafts for Kids with Scrap Fabric

What kid crafts have you done, as a means to use up all that scrap fabric?

Hey, Jude

My “maternity leave” is almost up, and the picture above is a pretty accurate one when it comes to the reality of our lives for the past few months.  At first, Josh and I thought we hit the jackpot.  Our baby boy Jude didn’t cry and he put himself to sleep.  But each day that seemed to change, as Jude became more and more unhappy.  I adored the little man, and so I just endured his crying.  I didn’t call our pediatrician until my oldest sister, who was visiting over Christmas, said that our precious Jude was the “fussiest baby she has ever seen”.  Yikes!

After a few visits to the doctor, we finally figured out the cause of Jude’s discomfort and we have learned how to manage it with medicine, a new bed, and some simple feeding rules. He has what’s called “Silent Reflux”, ironic I realize.  I wonder if there is a support group out there for parents who have infants with reflux –there should be.

Every day, for a few weeks after we put Jude on medication, my husband would come home and ask if the day was better.  My response was always, “Look around.  The house says it all.”  If it looks like a tornado has come through the home, not a dish is clean, dust-bunnies are blowing around the floor like tumbleweed in a desert, and I’m still in my PJ’s and hungry because I was unable to eat lunch, well, that explains the day.

Lately, things have been different though.  Jude seems a little bit happier with life outside momma’s belly.  He allows me to put him down when he naps, and instead of crying around the clock, he smiles and coos at times.

I’m hopeful that soon he will outgrow most of this, and be just a little more content to, say, for example, sit in a baby swing, awake, by himself, for more than 5 minutes.  (Sorry for the sarcasm.  Josh and I have found humor to be a good coping mechanism.)

In the meantime, I’m making lists and setting goals.  Ambition is creeping back into my life, and work opportunities have been knocking at my door.  Every day’s prospect of actual productivity is a mystery, but I’m hopeful nonetheless.

And truthfully, for the most part, I guess I’m just thankful.  I have two wonderful children who have brought such purpose and happiness into my life.  Work can wait, but these two kiddos, they just keep on growing and changing.

Wrapped in Love

handmade blanketsExactly one month ago, Jude Harvey Eugene was born at 8:30 in the morning.  The date was 11/11/11, my husband’s 30th birthday.  I would like to mention that the birth was completely natural, not induced like many people assume.  Ever since his arrival, my life has been a combination of euphoria and fatigue –just like the birth.

Jude, like all babies, loves to be held.  And to be completely honest, I love holding this little man.  Multiple times a day he falls asleep in my arms and instead of putting him down, I hold on tightly to the little guy, loving his warm body next to mine and his face so perfectly peaceful.

handmade blanketsJude’s older sister Monet, is adjusting well, although she is jealous at times (which is to be expected).  When she gets sad, she says to me “Mommy, I want to hold you.”  Unfortunately, I sometimes cannot, and she has to wait to be comforted.

handmade blanketsThe other day, both Jude and Monet were unhappy at the same time.  I needed to either nurse Jude immediately, or listen to his screams, which I honestly find impossible.  While I nursed Jude in one arm, I wrapped Monet up in one of her handmade blankets.  I gently put my other arm around her and told her the story of how the quilt was made with love, just for her, when she was a baby.  As we talked about all her handmade blankets, and who each one came from, Monet was honestly comforted and soon she was back to “normal”.

handmade Charley Harper QuiltI love this idea, that the work and love put into a handmade item can be felt long after it has been made.  And with that thought in mind, I finally finished Baby Jude’s quilt this week.

handmade blanketshandmade Charley Harper Quilthandmade quiltWords cannot express how in love I am with these two kiddos of mine.  And yet, more than anything, I want them to always know how loved they are.  Hopefully, after I’m gone, and everyday until then, the handmade items I give will remind my children of our relationship, and how loved they are.

Because people, smiles and laughter, more than anything else, is truly what makes a house a home, I hope you enjoyed this weeks “moment”…

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om [one moment] meet upOM is *one moment* and is a meetup designed to notice & relish a moment in everyday life. The meetup idea was created by Linda at her blog, a la mode stuff.  If you’d like to participate in OM, just click the button and you’ll be taken to Linda’s post explaining it all.

The Joys of Christmas

handmade sewn gifts tutu“In the eyes of children we find the joy of Christmas…

handmade gifts for the holidays…and in their hearts we find its meaning.” -Leland Thomas

I hope everyone had a blessed holiday season!

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A Children’s Black Swan Costume

Childrens Black Swan costume

A few months back we asked my daughter what she wanted to be for Halloween.  Her reply was a “princess ballerina” –completely predictable.  My husband and I were hoping to do something a little more creative though and so we decided on “The Black Swan”.  Yesterday, we tested this costume out, and it was a big hit.  However, I did have one concerned mom come up to me and ask, “Has your daughter seen that movie?”.  What kind of mother do I look like?

Childrens Black Swan costume
Childrens Black Swan costume Childrens Black Swan costume

Happy Halloween!

Childrens Black Swan costume

The Calm Before the Storm

charley harper machine applique turned edge and embroidery quiltThe past four months of my pregnancy have been difficult.  When I was pregnant with Monet, despite the morning sickness at the beginning, life went on as usual those last 5-6 months.  Everyday I walked to and from work 3 miles, I was energetic, and ready to take on the world.  I felt like a superwoman.  This pregnancy has been much different.  I have been struggling on a daily basis with intense back, hip, and sciatic problems, and as a result my normal busy-bee type personality has been put to a halt.  I can honestly only do a few hours of work a day when it comes to anything that involves walking, standing, sewing, gardening, and lifting my daughter.  Over the past few months, I have been very frustrated with this fact and I have struggled with it on a serious level.

When I started making Baby Jude’s quilt a few weeks back, I purposefully picked images that had a lot of hand embroidery in them, keeping in mind my situation.  For the past two weeks I have sincerely enjoyed sitting and resting while my daughter plays, and I comfortably sew by hand.  It has been rewarding and peaceful to say the least.  I can honestly say (now that the baby is only a few weeks away) I find my mind being alright with this idea of slow and rest –I’m calling it the calm before the storm.

charley harper machine applique turned edge and embroidery quilt

My moment for this week came just yesterday, when I finally finished the last 4 blocks.  I know these next quilting steps are going to be much more difficult to complete in my situation, but my mind is at peace knowing that it is ok if I don’t finish the quilt until after Jude is born.  So far it is spectacular!

Soon Jude will be with us, and hopefully with his arrival my busy-bee personality will also come back, as I heal and my body returns to “normal”.

charley harper machine applique turned edge and embroidery quilt

charley harper machine applique turned edge and embroidery quilt

charley harper machine applique turned edge and embroidery quilt

Now I just need to decide how to arrange the images on the quilt.  Any suggestions?

Because people, smiles and laughter, more than anything else, are truly what makes a house a home, I hope you enjoyed this weeks “moment”…

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om [one moment] meet upOM is *one moment* and is a meetup designed to notice & relish a moment in everyday life. The meetup idea was created by Linda at her blog, a la mode stuff.  If you’d like to participate in OM, just click the button and you’ll be taken to Linda’s post explaining it all.

Sewing Clothes for Kids

sewing for kids girls shirtFor the longest time, the idea of sewing clothes intimidated me.  It all started the day I accidentally pinned my 9 month old daughter while I was trying to alter a dress that I had made for her.  Ever since, making a quilt has honestly seemed easier.

sewing for kids girls shirtsewing for kids girls shirtsewing for kids girls shirt

sewing for kids girls shirt

In preparation for Baby Jude’s arrival, the cold weather ahead, and my growing daughter, I have been sewing lots of clothes for my two kiddos these days.  Can I say two kiddos, even if one is still in the oven?

sewing for baby kids pants

And I’m happy to report that I have honestly enjoyed all the sewing projects that I’ve done.  I’ve learned a lot and we have all stayed injury free.

I still need to get a dress form some day, and then I’ll tackle making clothes for myself, but in the meantime I’m enjoying sewing clothes for my kids.

Here are some bibs I made for Baby Jude: (this pattern comes from a dear friend of mine, Nicole from Elsa Bags)

sewing clothes for kids baby bibs

Here’s another skirt I sewed for Monet (along with the two skirts I sewed for her a few weeks ago).  I made this skirt reversible, so really it’s two skirts in one:

sewing clothes for kids girls skirt

sewing for kids girls skirt

I still have about 10 more items waiting to be sewn –the fabric yells at me every time I walk into my sewing studio.  So I guess this is just the beginning.

What do you think I should sew next?

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Sewing Patterns I used:

Quick Change Trousers from Handmade Beginnings by Anna Maria Horner

Oliver + S Ice Cream Dress

Oliver + S Lazy Day Skirt (After making this lovely skirt so many times, I have now started to add my own alterations and embellishments.)

Making Another Charley Harper Quilt

machine applique and embroidery quilt Charley Harper

Three years ago, I truly enjoyed making a  Charley Harper Applique Embroidery Quilt for my daughter Monet.  It was my first quilt, and so I think it will always be my favorite, as this is when I discovered and feel in love with the process of quilting.

I have always wanted to make another quilt following this pattern, as I really enjoy Charley’s images and the overall whimsical feel of the quilt.  Now that I’m pregnant, and the two kids will be sharing a room, I figured this was my chance.  Monet’s room was built around a gray and pale pink color theme.  I’m going to make Baby Jude’s quilt using a gray and pale turquoise-blue color theme.  I’ll post more later with how I’m going to integrate Baby Jude into Monet’s room, so that the room feels more gender neutral.

My moment for this week was being able to finish two of the blocks for the quilt.  The results are adorable and the best part was seeing how excited Monet was to see the blocks, in anticipation of her baby brother’s arrival.  Monet brought the blocks into her room and played with them.  She pointed out the fish block and the beetle block on her quilt.  She talked about how Baby Jude was going to sleep in her old crib –she went on and on.  And the entire time she talked about Baby Jude, her face was bright and smiley.  I know times will be hard when Baby Jude actually joins us, but I’m hopeful that these two will grow up to be the best of friends.  I can’t express how much that idea warms my heart.
machine applique and embroidery quilt Charley HarperBecause people, smiles and laughter, more than anything else, are truly what makes a house a home, I hope you enjoyed this weeks “moment”…

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om [one moment] meet upOM is *one moment* and is a meetup designed to notice & relish a moment in everyday life. The meetup idea was created by Linda at her blog, a la mode stuff.  If you’d like to participate in OM, just click the button and you’ll be taken to Linda’s post explaining it all.

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