Busy Hands…Happy Heart

It seems as if I have been visited by the creativity fairies as of late.

These hands of mine have been doing something creative each and every day for the last week.

It all started when I cleaned out, and re-arranged my favorite room in the house…our front formal living room.  With late afternoon winter sun streaming through our windows, weak as it is in January, yet still so very welcome and uplifting in this dark dreary month. I re-arranged all my books (my other great love along side creating).  It was so warm and pretty I decided to move my sewing machine and current projects into the living room.

My new creative corner.

Surrounded by the things that I love and purposely devoid of electronics.


My favorite decorating spot in the house, opposite of where my sewing machine sits.

This window seat was what sold the house for me when we bought it a life-time ago.

The bay window lets in a bunch of afternoon sun when it is not over-cast and snowing, which is about 2 times a week in the winter.  (sigh)

Creative inspiration #1:

DSC03432 DSC03434 This is my old bedroom valance I made years ago, but couldn't part with.

This gauzy streaching fabric, from some estate sale, and my new love.


I simple rough cut the white fabric  and pinned it over the valance



I under-cut by mistake at the ends

but ended up liking the ends peeking

out…sometimes careless planning like an unexpected pregnany ends up being a blessing!




I stitched on this coffe-dyed strip of muslin left over from anothe profect and put some vinage ribbon on that.  I quick appliqued the                             bird fabric, my latest quilt shop fabric purchase.




                                             DSC03468 The finished project: I call it my FOLKSY

COTTAGE runner.






Creative Project #2:

Feminine Curtain and Valance  

DSC03206 DSC03209 DSC03220 DSC03211    It started with a some clearance linen fabric with embroidered flowers.                

I stamped the flower image on muslin squares, aged-up the butterfly and floral fabric with some blue stamping ink.  Hand-sewed the squares with embroidery floss, and inserted some cotton batting scraps in it before sewing it up to give it some volume and pop.  Then top stitched the sets unto the the width of the curtain…equal size and straight stitches not required…such a liberating sewing practice after years of quilting where each 1/4 of an inch is a matter of quilt life and death!

Unto the valance (finished up this week):

  DSC03443 DSC03447 DSC03450 DSC03452

                        It all started with me wanting to try my hand at some scalloped edges.   I had a pattern in my Bend the Rules Sewing  book, but it required blowing the given template up like 200% or something…who knows or has the time for that nonsense?  So it was time for some  improvising.  This time I used the humble tissue box tab-thingy that you rip off a new box for my scallop template, the size and curves were perfect.

I carefully traced it on my waxed paper, using my cutting mat to keep it all square and the scallops equal. 

My little helper gave me the pins as I pinned the paper with traced scallops to my fabric…she loves that cupcake pin-cushion.  I get  approximately 5 minutes of uninterrupted sewing time with her nearby, asking her to put all the pins in the tomato pin cushion to the cupcake pincushion…that's right I encourage my 2-year old to play with pins.

Once secured I slowly cut it out.

And presto scallops!

Then came my TOTALLY AWESOME idea.

 I impulsed bought a very pretty but fluffy white scarf at TJMaxx.

I looked ridiculous in it.  

Very Seinfeld, puffy-shirt-episode-worthy (but I don't wanna be a pirate!).

I cut it in half, coffee-dyed it to match the ecru linen color of the valance, and attached it under the scalloped edge.  Beautiful  romantic flounces peeping out.

Take a look:

     Hot water, instant coffee, and a large cookie tray; that's all you need. DSC03458                                                     

    DSC03459 Let it set for a few minutes, the longer it sets, the darker it gets, scrunch it up to make sure it gets all soaked up.









DSC03460 Look at the nice and vintage-looking difference.  















                                            All Finished!!

                        Curtains have never been so pretty or fun!!

                      They make my daughter's room look so pretty.

Having them hang in the center, hanging my some twine, is a pretty alternative to the standard drapes, and lets in lots of sunlight, while giving privacy.

Hope you enjoyed.

 And here is hoping that creativity strikes you too.




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