So Three Years Went By

Yup, just like that.

A few things happened. We lost a grandchild and learned how profoundly one short life can touch other lives. We will never be the same.

After three years on the market, the warm and wonderful log home my husband built for us 20 years ago was purchased by an eager young couple with six children who had to move in NOW! We moved into a house trailer for the three long months it took to build the new house. The trailer smelled funny and we had it crammed to the ceilings, quite literally, but the new house turned out to be an empty-nester’s dream. We love it.

New house, new curtains, right?

It was fun to make the duvet cover on the left. We had a  small down comforter, perfect for toasty toes, but I couldn’t stand that it wasn’t the right color for our tranquil new blue/green/gold bedroom. I stash-busted everything in my scraps, appliquéd 3″ wide columns on a neutral base and highlighted design elements of the scraps with decorative stitches. Finally I machine-embroidered a bluebird of happiness on one of the columns on “my side” of the quilt and a pair of smug little owls on  one of “his side” columns.


Our guest room valances are lined in persimmon paisley. I just feel so happy in that room, especially when our daughter is home and staying in it or if we’ve got it filled with grandchildren.

What’s new with you?


Buy Shoes and Organize – A Win Win Situation!

If I can’t live without it, throw it away or recycle it, I can darn sure PUT IT IN AN ADORABLE CONTAINER! Simply put, this is a post about cardboard boxes. I’ve heard they sell shoes in them, too!

Exhibit A:

Four Years of High School in 4 Boxes

4 Years of High School in Four Boxes

Here we have copy paper boxes from my husband’s office. I primed them with white paint and then spray painted them bright yellow. Since labeling is essential I used some simple letter stamps from my grandkids’ art kit and stamped the owner’s initials on them. I did this when my daughter moved to college and I haven’t had to trip all over her treasures since. She knows there here when she gets ready to move to her first real apartment.

Exhibit B: Medium-sized sturdy box wrapped with paper. Paper Covered BoxIt doesn’t get much simpler than this. Warning, though. Remember I said labeling is essential?  I successfully stored twelve magazines for five years in this box. Magazines? Seriously?

Exhibit C: Also a shoe box but this one has fabric glued to it. Bonus? The fabric is an upcycled oxford shirt.

Oxford Shirt BoxI used a piece of the placket from the sleeve just for a little interest. The label is a piece of grosgrain ribbon with the word “TIES” written in yellow fabric paint. Won’t have to guess what we’re storing in there!Oxford Shirt Box Label

Election Day project

After I voted, here’s what I workied on: New Look pattern A6306 includes a view featuring decorative buttons .  It was a no-brainer to use this trim little classic vest as a a  stashbuster for my collection. Delicious chocolately brown satin for the lining and back will make for a neutral yet tactile piece that I’ll wear a lot!

I cut, lined and sewed the buttons on the vest before Election Day and finished up just in time to do my civic duty.

I’m using medium weight Pellon interfacing to anchor those buttons and keep the cotton/lycra ponte from being too drapey.

Hand-sewing 33 buttons was the hardest part of this easy pattern.

Next, I invite you to visit a wonderful blog  at 

She’s got great ideas on how to get your wardrobe working for you!

Just realized I never got a finished view posted here. Ta-da! Craft as Therapy Button Vest CroppedThis is where I either go into a long blather about all the mistakes I made or just shut up and let you enjoy the peek! The sequin-collar chiffon blouse came from Lane Bryant.

Bedside Caddy

Yuk. It was faded into a particularly putrid shade but the towel was still thick and serviceable. So I figured out a way to hide it: Under the bed!

Bedside caddies provide a place to store things within easy reach when you’re lounging in bed. The internet crawls with patterns and ideas and I browsed quite a few before coming up with the right design for my needs, which incorporated the old pink towel as the part that goes under the bed. I measured my favorite magazine and made the big flat pocket that size. I usually have pins and barrettes to pull out of my hair so I made a small elasticized pocket to hold them. I also like to have a pad of paper and a pen to document brilliant nightime inspirations so I placed a smaller flat pocket under the elasticized one for that purpose.

I used really cheap yardage in three  complementary designs that pulled in the earthtones of our bedroom and added a pink plaid element that I was drawn to. Since the fabric was flimsy, I lined ironed on Pellon medium weight interfacing to most of the pieces before I started.Craft as Therapy 001

Make one yourself and send me a picture! I’d love to know someone else was inspired.Craft as Therapy 002

One Man’s Trash

The wastebasket  from my daughter’s preteen bedroom , resplendent with pink and purple flowers, had long ago outlived its attraction, if not its usefulness. So I overlapped inch-square tiles of art paper from the bottom to the top of the plastic bucket  using  Mod Podge as an adhesive.  Then I lined the inside with the paper tiles and coated the project with several layers of Mod Podge.

Saved that one from the landfill!

From this

From this

To this!

To this!