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barkcloth table runner

Back from vacation in Jackson Hole and head first into duties and responsibilities- being an adult is truly delightful. I got right down to the business of hand making a birthday gift for a friend of mine.
A reversible table runner in the making, here are the pieces being organized. In my book there are just a few rules to guide you when piecing together something wild and random. Here are the guidelines:
1) use various widths for the pieces
2) pick a few colors to focus on
3) use the same fabric a few times throughout
4) vary the patterns in the fabrics- small & large prints, geometric patterns etc.

All pieced together and ironed.

I found this perfectly-perfect piece of vintage barkcloth in amongst my piles of fabric and it’s even barely the right size- miracles do happen.

I decided not to put any interfacing or batting between the two layers this time, either way works just fine for a project like this, it’s just a matter of preference on a project like this.

I ironed the heck out of the wild pieced side, then pinned like crazy to keep the layers from moving at all when I sewed them together. I sewed the two layers together ‘in the ditch’ or very close to the seam (or ditch), using tan thread so the stitching blends in on the barkcloth side.

The stitching is there, but blends in well.

I used black bias tape to finish the edges- after I squared things up and trimmed the edges first.

All finished- here’s the subdued and sophisticated side- makes me feel like I’m on the set of Mad Men. (If I were to be granted three wishes, one would definitely be to hang out the set of Mad Men- maybe work in the costume department?)

Welcome to the jungle- life on the wild side.

tutorial: God bless America banner

Make good use of an abundant fabric stash or make a stop at the fabric store for a few fat quarters– here’s a quick and easy, last minute project to jazz up your party or your space this 4th of July.

I picked fabric from my stash, skipping the trip to the store (this time) and here’s what I came up with in red, white and blues or ‘America’ themed fabrics.

Cut the fabric into strips, I used a wavy rotary cutter but a straight edge would work just fine. I alternated two different sizes of rectangles (that will be folded over) 9″ by 3″ and 8″ by 2″.

Fold the flags in half and run an iron across the fold to make a crease. I used twill tape, but you could use rick rack, ribbon, twine or bias tape to string the flags all together. Arrange the flags about an inch apart, alternating colors and large and small flags, fold in half over string and pin into place.

Sew the two sides of each flag together and in place on the string by sewing around all four sides of each flag, then the next flag and the next until all the flags have been sewn into place.

Here is the finished banner, and a simpler one (above) with one size flag spaced 3 inches apart.

I thought I’d shared these two small, patriotic quilts I inherited from my mother-in-law. I think they must have been displayed outside for years before they fell into my hands because the colors, especially the blues are faded– but that’s what I like best about them.

Have a fantastic 4th of July!
This year, as I think back on my recent journey to Cambodia, I feel even a deeper gratitude and appreciation to live a country in which I am free- a land of opportunity and plenty. I hope I can use these advantages to make this world a better place, to help others who don’t have the privileges of freedom, education, enough to eat every day or even clean water to drink.
Let us all make decisions out of love and not fear.

scrapwood wallpaper

‘Scrapwood’ wallpaper by Dutch designer Piet Hein Eek emulates the look of real wood planks on paper. Six different looks available- choose your favorite or how about I’ll take a few boxes of each, please.
I’d like to see scrapwood fabric too- can you imagine a couch? Or even a few pillows?

Picture scrapwood wallpaper in your life:

I think these two are my favorite- I want to cover a wall in each room of my house, wrap gifts in it, modge podge it to flower pots and picture frames…

product specs:
– each roll measures 900 x 45 cm
– no pattern: over 4m² of unique planks
– heavy-duty non-woven wallpaper
– colorfast and washable with a soft cloth
– no wallpapering table necessary
– super high-resolution printing
– FSC certified paper