Category Archives: design


Ruffles are luxurious, feminine, over-the-top… but in a good way. They make me happy to be a girl. Here are some adorable ruffles that I can’t get enough of. And a ruffly project I just finished.
ruffle party table settingFrom shabby chic girl blog, take a look at this blog for some amazing girly, eye candy decor.

ombre ruffle cakeombre ruffle cake

ruffle geraniuma ruffle geranium

blue ruffle dress with bow

ruffle ball decor

vintage ruffle apron pattern

Enough said- right? Who’s with me on ruffles rock?

Well, I fell in love with the ruffles on this messenger bag from between the lines awhile back and it’s been stuck in my head ever since. It’s my favorite size and shaped bag- a long handle for wearing across your chest and a flap for those of us who are in too much of a hurry to zip a purse closed all the time… AND WITH RUFFLES (sorry, I had to yell).

ruffle messenger bagI had to make one for myself.

ruffle edge small messenger bagHere’s how my version turned out. I got this fabric in the fashion district in LA last summer, and now I have to panic because it’s almost all used up. The fabric is a heavy upholstery weight, perfect for a sturdy bag (or a couch). I used my basic bag tutorial to make the bag (between the lines has a full tutorial too).
inside ruffle messenger bagI lined the whole thing with a canvas fabric from IKEA. In hindsight, I should have made a cell phone pocket on the exterior of the purse but under the flap. I might still have to hand-stitch one on for essential and easy phone access.
bag interiorA few more pockets on the inside. You can never have too many pockets, especially when you’re in a constant hurry, if you know what I mean.
bag ruffled edgeThis ruffle started as a 1.5 inch wide stripe of cotton fabric, roughly double the length of the flap. I folded it in half, basted then gathered to make the ruffle and make it the right length. I sewed the ruffle to the flap first, then the lining to the outside fabric with the ruffle in between, leaving the top side open. Turn the whole flap right side out and top-stitch the edges.

*If you are following my bag tutorial, sew the finished flap to the purse as the final step before you sew in the lining.

And here’s another ruffle option on a purse I made…
colorful ruffle purse

ruffle, lace, corduroy purseThis ruffle is about 2.5 inches wide finished. It’s made by sewing a sleeve with a 5 inch wide strip of fabric (roughly twice the length you want to cover). Pull the sleeve right side out and with an iron, press flat with the seam in the center of the back side. Baste a loose stitch (to be gathered) down the middle of the strip. Pull one side (either the top or bottom thread, but not both) of the thread to gather and make a ruffle.

lined purse interiorAnd a view inside, this purse is actually available on Etsy-  if you’re in need of some color– ruffles, corduroy stripes, polka dots and lace in your life, then this one’s for you.

wonky quilt squares, part 2

The big reveal… the top of the wonky quilt is all finished. I really went heavy on the white space, like I said I would. It’s still being debated (with my spouse) whether or not I should add some other sort of detail or color to the outside, like pick out the seam between the white and the black and white outer border and add a thin strip of color to ‘put a box’ around the 4 squares or just leave it. I’m inclined to leave it- enough already. I think I’ll run it past the quilt guild ladies tomorrow- they’ll have some excellent ideas I’m sure.
blue and white wonky squares

blue squaresI truly love the white and black geometric ‘step by step’ Alexander Henry outer border fabric and in this setting. I’ve been hoarding the 2 yards I have of it for some years now. I’ve always pictured it as a summer skirt. Well, it seemed to fit well here so I grabbed the scissors and cut before I could change my mind.

step by step Alexander Henry fabric

abstract quilt square

close up of blue fabrics

mountain and quilt

blue fabric scraps

For a look at Part 1 and how to piece this type of squares, visit here.

Bonus feature: Here’s another finished quilt top, made by my 13 year old daughter… who was just playing around in the fabric strip scrap pile. I love to see the youngsters being clever and especially making entire quilts! Now we just need to get both quilt tops quilted and bound and placed on the end of our beds.
scrap quilt

colorful quilt top

scrap stripe quilt

wonky quilt block pattern, part 1

quilt with wacky squaresI just came across these squares… I had pieced them last summer using blue-themed scraps. Oh, how I dislike the unfinished project- it was haunting me, mocking me every time we crossed paths, so let’s see if I can make them into something useful this summer and do away with our uncomfortable encounters. Let’s try a wonky quilt block pattern idea I’ve got.

abstract squaresI was originally thinking about making them into a table runner. Something wasn’t quite right (or maybe it’s just me) the side by side layout (pictured above) wasn’t working or I just got bored of the project and I shelved the squares.

blue squares perspective quiltI like the squares better like this, all four together. But still, there needs to be some gaps, empty space to make the randomness intriguing and inviting- not frightening. It needs white, a contrast between the squares to set it off. It could use some flow and continuity amongst the 4 squares as well.

wonky squares ,log cabin quiltI do love the colors though, I think I’ve got an idea…

trimmed quilt squares First, I trimmed all of the square to the exact same size- 15.5 inch squares.

cut the square in halfI piled all the squares up on top of each other and cut them in half with a rotary cutter. Somewhat scary… so I just took a deep breath and cut.

cut the squares in half againWith the squares still stacked, I cut them in half again. Now each stack has a swatch from all 4 original squares, pre-selected for you if you want to keep things easy in the next step.

crazy abstract squaresTake the 4 stacks and lay them out into 4 new squares made from 1 of each original square.

abstract quartered quilt blocksSo far… all the blocks sewed back together again. I’ve got a plan for the next phase, stay tuned…

Look here for part 2!