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Piper & Chloe’s Spring Showcase


piper and choloe salt lake city utah


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!


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”…


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!


Handmade Gifts for our Little June-Bug

county fair birthday invitation Handmade gifts are a part of the family traditions Josh and I are building.  Ever since we have dated, handmade gifts have always been something we have made for each other.  And now that our family has grown, handmade gifts continue to be a theme in our holiday and birthday celebrations.

Monet turns two in about a week, and Josh and I are spending our spare time getting ready for her County Fair themed birthday party, along with finishing up the handmade gifts we have made for her.

This year, for Monet’s birthday, I made her an interactive photo album of her birth.  Since I’m currently pregnant, and the baby’s ultrasound is scheduled for the day before Monet’s birthday, I wanted to take this birthday as an opportunity to talk to her about her birth.  Do you remember the Moda Bake Shop feature I had a few months back, where I wrote a tutorial on how to make a Fabric Photo Album?  Well that’s the book I used for Monet’s gift.  Here are a few pictures of the book:

handmade gifts fabric photo album

The book is filled with photos and memorabilia that Monet can touch and play with.

handmade gifts fabric photo album
handmade gifts fabric photo album

The book also has slots for scrapbook pages and the last page of the book is one big vinyl envelop filled with cards, letters, and other precious items that Monet can pull out and look at.  Each piece tells a story.

handmade gifts fabric photo album

Josh finished making Monet a play kitchen for her bedroom.  Can you believe how cute this is?  Here are a few photos:

Handmade gifts childs play kitchenHandmade gifts childs play kitchenHandmade gifts childs play kitchenHandmade gifts childs play kitchenHandmade gifts childs play kitchen

Oh, and did I ever show you the bike that Josh made for Monet a while back?  Here are a few photos:

handmade gifts a wood bike for kidshandmade gifts a wood bike for kidsMonet loves this bike, and I can absolutely see why.  I think she senses how special it is, since it was made for her.  Soon we will be able to flip it over, to make it taller, and turn it into a two-wheel bike.

If you also want to make handmade, here are some past handmade gifts we have made that could inspire you:

A Handmade Holiday Fabric Photo Book

Handmade Accordion Fold Book

Handmade Sock Monkey Art

Handmade Charley Harper Quilt

Handmade Gift Tutorials

Making a House a Home: Sewing Tutorials

sewing tutorials

When it comes to the art of making a house a home, I believe it’s important for some of the items in your home to be made by hand –I’m not talking about items just for your home, but items used by loved ones in your home as well.  Here are a few sewing tutorials that I hope inspire you to create something special for your space, and the people you love who live in it:

  1. Pleated Tote Bag Tutorial by U-Handbag
  2. Cathedral Windows Pillow Tutorial by House of a la Mode
  3. Headband Tutorial by JezzePrints
  4. Spider Web Quilt Block Tutorial by House of a la Mode
  5. Diamond Quilt Top Tutorial by Urban Patchwork
  6. Add a Zipper to your Pillow on Sew, Mama, Sew!

“Quilting 101″ Quilt-Along: Cutting Fabric for the Border and the Back + A Quilt Contest + The Story of My First Quilt

order a custom made quilt

For those of you who are following the “Quilting 101″ quilt-along in 2011, we are now on step #3 of our quilt-along where I will show you your steps for cutting fabric for the border and the back of your quilt.  It’s not too late to join –just follow the before-mentioned link.

Today, I’m going to guide you through 2 steps: putting a border on the front of your quilt, and piecing the back of your quilt.  But before I do, I wanted to share a story, along with a few past blog posts in celebration of my blog’s one year anniversary.

This “Quilting 101” quilt-along has been bringing back memories of the first time I made a quilt from beginning to end.

While the Charley Harper Quilt I made for my daughter was my first design, and mostly my work, the binding, back, and quilting on that quilt was done by a professional.  Soon, after my daughter was born, I wanted to learn the technicalities of quilting and so I took a quilting class.  Again, I wanted the design to be mine (meaning I didn’t want to follow a pattern, rather I wanted to use an idea I had in my head), and for the first time, I made a quilt, all the steps, by myself, from beginning to end –it was officially my first quilt.

order a custom made mondern quilt

get a custom made modern quilt

order a custom made modern quilt

order a custom made mondern quilt

get a custom made modern quiltThe idea behind this quilt, was to “step out of the box”.  As you can see, hand-turned appliqued and hand-embroidered birds are “walking” off their fabric and onto other fabrics on the quilt.  I felt that this described me well as a quilter –I never wanted to conform, rather I always wanted to follow my own designs.

Gen X Quilters Earlier this week I stumbled upon a blog called Gen X Quilters.  They are hosting a competition and so I thought I would enter this quilt.  What do you think?  I’ve always loved it –maybe because it was my first.

Since you guys are making your first quilts, I thought you might want to read about my first quilt.  Check out these links:

Making Another Machine Applique Quilt – Part #1 (Follow this link to read about the rookie mistake I made as a first time quilter.)

Making Another Machine Applique Quilt – Part #2

Embroidery Birds, Making Another Machine Applique Quilt – Part #3

It’s Finished, Making Another Machine Applique Quilt

Well, maybe I should stop telling stories, and instead I should get to the quilt-along part of this post.

Here’s how you cut fabric for the border and the back:

Before we get started, please check your fabric amounts and decide how big you want your quilt to be.  If you have more than 4 and 3/4 yards of fabric for both your back and your border combined, I recommend making your quilt bigger.  The border of a quilt is used to frame a quilt, and make a quilt to the desired size.  Right now your quilt top should be about 74″ x 40″.  My sister wants the quilts I’m making for her to be 48″ x 82″ in size, so I’m going to add a 4″ border around the entire quilt.  A standard twin size mattress is about 40″ x 75″ in size (Note: please measure your mattress, as all mattresses vary a bit).  A standard twin-size quilt is around 60″ x 90″ in size –and that means that you would need a border that is 10″ wide.

Please decide for yourself, how wide you want your border to be.

Now, we need to do a little math.  I’m going to use my quilt-top and border situation as the example.  You might need to vary these numbers a bit, depending on what you decide.

My quilt top with borders is 48″ x 82″ in size.  Add 3″ to the length and the width of the quilt to figure out how big your quilt back needs to be.  My quilt back need to be 51″ x 85″.

When we started the quilt-along, I told you that you needed at least 4 3/4 yards for the back and the border of the quilt (more if you wanted your border to be a different fabric than your back).  This is how it breaks down, and these are the step I took:

Step 1: 4 3/4 yards x 36″ = 171″ (this is the length of the fabric)

Step 2: Divided 171″ by 2 = 85.5″ (Note: My quilt back needs to be at least 85″ long –so far, so good)

Step 3: I CAREFULLY cut my 4 3/4 yards into two pieces, exactly 85.5″ long, or 2 3/8 yards long.

Step 4: I set aside one of the 85.5″ long panels, because I’m going to use that for the back of my quilt.

Step 5: With the other 85.5″ panel, I’m going to cut three strips that are 85.5″ long, and 4.5″ wide.  Why 4.5″ wide?  Well, I want my border to be 4″ wide, and my seam allowance is 1/4″.  The border is going to be sewn on two sides, so I take 1/4″ x 2 + 4″ = 4.5″.  So , I first cut off my selvage, and then I cut my three strips and I’m left with a strip that is about 28″ wide and 85.5″ long.

Step 6: Remember, my quilt top without borders is 74″ x 40″.  So I cut one of the 85.5″ strips in half to get two strips that are about 43″ long.

Step 7: Sew one of the 43″ long strips onto the top of the quilt-top, and sew of the 43″ long strips onto the bottom of the quilt-top.  Press the seam allowances.  Using a straight edge, trim off the excess border fabric to square the corner.

Step 8: Sew a 85.5″ strips onto each side of the quilt-top.  Press the seam allowances.  Using a straight edge, trim off the excess border fabric to square the corner.  My quilt-top is now complete!

Step 9: I have two pieces remaining: one that is 85.5″ x 42″, and another that is 85.5″ x 28″.  My final step is to sew these two pieces together, press my seam allowance, and whala, my quilt back is assembled.  (Note:  It’s ok for your quilt back to be too large.  You will cut off the excess fabric after you finish with the quilt sandwich process.)

So, if you only bought 4 3/4 yards of fabric for both your back and border, you follow my exact steps stated above.  If you have more fabric, please feel free to play around with making your quilt larger if you prefer.  Also, pieced backs are really popular these days, so if you find your quilt back being too short, or too skinny, pull out that left-over fabric, and see if you can piece together a row or a strip to make up that needed yardage.

Good luck!  And as always, leave any questions and thoughts in the comment section below.

A Handmade Holiday Fabric Photo Book

A Handmade Holiday Fabric Photo Book sewnEvery Christmas my husband and I give each other a handmade gift.  This year, I made Josh and Monet a photo book by basically sewing photos onto felt along with other memorable items like old letters, ribbon, keys, and rings.


fabric photo book sewn together


a handmade holiday fabric photo book sewn


a handmade holiday fabric photo book sewn


a handmade holiday fabric photo book sewn


A Handmade Holiday Fabric Photo Book sewn


What do you think?

Did you ever see the accordion style book that Josh made for me last year?  If you haven’t you must, it’s amazing!  One of the nicest things he has ever made for me.

And while I’m happy with how the book I made turned out, I fear it doesn’t even compare to the book he made for me.   That’s how it goes when you’re married to an artist. It’s the thought that counts –right!?

I hope you and your family had a Merry Christmas and blessings for the New Year!

Participating in a Giveaway

Scrappy Projects

I’m a firm believer in saving and using scraps, even though it can sometimes become overwhelming.  I put up with the chaos it creates because I believe in being resourceful and “green”.  Lately, all my scrap-saving has really come in handy –I’ve been busting through my scrappy piles as I prepare for The Beehive Bazaar.  Do you want to see?

machine applique felt flower

A machine applique flower made from old sweaters.

applique flower made from an old skirt

A flower made from an old skirt, scraps of tulle, and an old sweater.

leftover batting

A throw pillow insert made with leftover quilt batting and poly-fill.

pot holders made from scraps

Potholders made with leftover fabric and binding scraps.

The potholder idea was inspired by Camille Roskelley, after taking her Retro Kitchen class at The Creative Connections Conference.  Below are my piles of coordinated scrap fabrics and scrap binding.

Are you working on any “scrappy” projects?

We Have a Winner

Congratulations Eleise, from One Artsy Mama, you’re our lucky winner!