Archive | February, 2011

our guest room {aka holly’s room}

In preparing for Holly to visit, I knew I needed to give her a special place to sleep.  I have to admit, I was a little intimidated creating a guest room for a lady who has such design talent. I mean, how could I possibly come up with something as beautifully decorated as her desk:


Or these rooms she has designed?

guest   bed

Our little guest room is just a teensy room off the playroom. It was originally built as an office for me, then used as a bedroom for my best friend’s daughter when they lived with us.

girl room

When they moved into their new home, we brought my office back in until we moved it {again!}downstairs and the room became the guestroom.  All of our family live nearby so, truth be told, we don’t have many visitors. Which means our guestroom {pre-holly} was just a big unmade bed used mostly as a trampoline for the boys.

In true Emily fashion, I waited until two days before her arrival to put it together. I ran around like a crazy woman borrowing pieces from other rooms and digging through closets trying to gather things to make the room look like it was put together with purpose. 

I was actually pleasantly surprised with how it all came together.


With a queen bed, there is only just enough room for a little side table and a pathway to the bed. But I love the way it is all framed by the curtain panels – they make it feel cozy.


The wall behind the bed is covered in book pages {my fave} and the old paned window hangs from a wire to give a little more cottage charm.


I wasn’t sure what to do with this large expanse of wall, but when I found these sticks in a closet, I decided to treat them like driftwood and hang them. Sort of quirky, kind of haphazard, but I like it. 


The bedding was a mix of Amy Butler sheets {a very exciting find at Marshalls}, a white quilted coverlet and shams {from Target years ago}, a white duvet with blue stripe {hand-me-down from Rae} and a random assortment of pillows made in chipper fabric from Premier Prints, Amy Butler Nigella in olive/primrose, a polka dot tea towel turned pillow and that sweet little dotted one from Marshalls.




The curtains are actually shower curtains from Target, with a thick band of black and white ticking to extend them to the floor.  I covered a drum shade with a tea towel and hung it using a plug-in pendant light bulb socket {I have no idea what it is called or where it came from, but it sure worked out well as a bedside light!}


A few little goodies for the guest.

The best part of all was that Holly loved it and felt comfortable as our guest for one of the most refreshing, inspiring, healing, productive, chilly {!} weekends I’ve had in a long time.


I can assure you that miss Holly Mathis is just as delightful, real, sweet and completely talented as she seems on her blog.  I really am thankful for this girl. And her accent. Y’all.

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wedded bliss


mom & walt wedding

My sweet momma was married one year ago to the most delightful man who has added so much to our crazy family.   Poor guy inherited three daughters, three sons-in-law and seven grandchildren with one more baby girl a few weeks later. But he’s adjusted well and we all adore him : especially the kids.

To my mom & ‘new’ dad : wishing you years and years of wedded bliss. We love you.

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the march giveaway

Hooray! It’s time for a new giveaway.

This time around I was feeling inspired by this fabulous dishtowel by Noonday Collection. I found Jessica’s website and love her mission “to adorn you and your home in style while providing a path out of poverty for artisans around the world.” She sells an amazing assortment of jewelry, accessories and gifts  : take a peek at her shop at

The dish towel inspired my ‘yellow kitchen’ theme – a little bit springy, a little bit fun – and a whole lot of useful.



1. J.R. Watkins hand soap. Love this stuff. Love the scent. Especially love the packaging.

2. Ruffled rubber gloves. Because don’t you think you should feel fancy while washing dishes? Made by me – with a tutorial to come. Sort of silly, but oh so fun.

3. Flower headband from my shop

4. Set of two hand-cut sponges.  They are the magic kind that puff up when wet.

5. Rainy Day Tea Towel from Noonday Collection

6. Set of small nesting bowls. In bright yellow.

7. Emily’s brand dark chocolate covered dried strawberries. I couldn’t resist.

8. Set of two cork placemats.

9. And to top it all off, a good reminder that even though you have fancy gloves, cute sponges and yummy smelling soap, sometimes you just need to pop a chocolate in your mouth and admit that you “Can Not Do It All” {its an art print from my shop}


To enter, click on the button below:


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party hat {tutorial}

They were a hit with the kids {even the birthday girl didn’t mind wearing hers} and very simple to make, so here is a tutorial on these festive paper party hats.


Here’s what you will need:


:: party hat template {download below}

:: decorative paper

:: scissors & glue {I used a hot glue gun}

:: embellishments {pom poms, ric rack, ribbon, hole punch, fabric}

:: elastic

STEP ONE: print and cut out paper hat template {download below}


STEP TWO: trace pattern onto decorative paper


I used scrapbook paper, cardstock and wrapping paper.

STEP THREE: cut out shape


STEP FOUR: *optional* score where the dotted line is on the template


This just makes it easy to fold when you form the cone and adhere.


STEP FIVE: fold a small flap


STEP SIX: add a bead of hot glue to the flap


STEP SEVEN: roll the paper into a cone and glue together.


STEP EIGHT: embellish!


For the tops of my hats I cut apart some pom pom trim I had and hot glued to the top of the hats. I used a leftover ruffle scrap for the birthday girl’s hat, polka dots made out paper for another and ric rack, ribbon and pom pom trim around the base of others.

STEP NINE: add the elastic band


I cut my pieces of thin elastic {from the fabric store} to 15 inches, then hot glued inside the edge of the hat.


Very simple project that makes for a custom decoration and party favor!


I have created a template that you are welcome to use.



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paper goodie bags {tutorial}

Let’s talk about a simple little project today.

paper bags

I received this darling pink bag from Whisker Graphics a while back and just couldn’t toss it. I read on their website that they will be offering packaging supplies soon and if this pink stripy bag is part of the collection, then we are in for some delightful new packaging options.

Anyway, when I needed a quick goodie bag for the cousins at Audrey’s party, I decided to make my own.

Want to make some too? Oh good.

Here is what you will need:


:: 8.5 x 11 paper
:: paper cutter {or scissors}
:: glue
:: decorative scissors or rotary blade


STEP ONE: print design on paper and trim border {see below for my free download}


Just trim the bottom and one side.


STEP TWO: fold in the sides


Nothing perfect here : just fold in each side until they overlap the white border that you didn’t trim.


STEP THREE: glue flaps together


STEP FOUR: fold bottom up about an inch


STEP FIVE: glue bottom flap closed


STEP SIX: glue bottom flap up



STEP SEVEN: trim the top of the bag with a decorative edge



Then fill with something sweet


fold down the top and add a sticker to hold


Cute as can be.


If you would like to make blue striped bags, please feel free to download my template.


{I used regular text weight printer paper for my bags, but you could also try a heavier weight if you prefer}

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audrey’s first birthday {the party}

We hosted a birthday brunch for our baby girl this weekend. 


I went with blues, gray, white and lots of flowers – just like her nursery and apparently my favorite combination of colors right now.  Her invitations set the tone and it was fun to carry out the peony and striped papers into other parts of the decorations.


We had our family and a few friends for a nice little party to celebrate the big girl.


Straw flags with kids’ names {straws from Bake it Pretty}

IMG_9461 IMG_9464IMG_9462



Yummy brunch food: a few of my favorite pastries {granny horns, cranberry orange scones, Top Pot doughnuts}, lots of fresh fruit and a fancy egg dish made by Audrey’s adoring papa.






party hats

For the kids, I made simple favor bags filled with yogurt covered pretzels.


And the grown-ups received monogram note cards.


Audrey’s big brothers wanted to help out with decorations, so they made this sign which I just love.



It’s the birthday girl!

IMG_9487 IMG_9488


{notice No. 3 kindly helping his sister blow out the candle}


She wasn’t too sure what to do with this big pile of sugar, but after her biggest brother gave her a taste, she was hooked.



What a fun day for our special girl.

{Party hat and favor bag tutorials are coming this week : stay tuned!}

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my sweet girl

audrey ryan


To my sweet Audrey-girl,

From the moment we knew you were joining our family, we adored you. When we met you for the first time we were overwhelmed with your gentle beauty, your petite features, your long fingers. Your demeanor is sweet and delicate, your smile melts us, your movements are graceful and your laugh is contagious.

Your great-Auntie Lorrie once told me that having a daughter is ‘magical’ and now I know she was absolutely right.  I love your brothers, but the connection I feel to you, my sweet girl, is different.  You have awoken a greater creativity in me, a softness and protectiveness that is new to me.

I have so many hopes and dreams for you, but my deepest prayer of all is that you will know how perfectly and wonderfully you have been made.  May you always know that you are adored by your mommy and daddy, by your big brothers, your grandmas & grandpas, aunties & uncles and all of your cousins and friends. But most of all, may you know that Your Heavenly Father was overjoyed when he created you and He is so pleased with his princess, Audrey Ryan.

You have changed our lives, baby girl. You have completed our family, added precious femininity to our household of boys and have forever blessed your mommy.

I love you sweet girl.


Love, Mommy

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things i like: olive juice

No, not the kind you drink. That would be gross. I’m talking about this:


Have you heard of this darling company?

My friend Julia gave me the most adorable dress and overalls for Audrey at her baby shower that she is just now fitting in to and I love them. Classic, simple clothes that are made well.  

image image

image image

image image image image

Don’t they have the sweetest things?

{click on the images to shop}

A bit spendier than my norm, but sweet nonetheless.

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25 favorite fonts

25 logo

I like fonts. I suppose that makes sense as I do design things that require the use of them.  I’ve put together a list of my favorite ones – the fonts I use most often – and thought I’d share them.  There are so many amazing fonts available, but most of what I use either came with my computer or were downloaded for free {I’m a little cheap like that}.  By clicking on each font name below you will be directed to its source where you can either download or purchase.  Enjoy!

2peas old type

18th century

1942 report

a font with serifs

albemarle swash














little days

nelly script

oldstyle italic

pea lovey dovey

pea quinny


sketch block


What good is a downloaded font if you don’t know how to install it? So here is a quick tutorial on how to add a font.  Keep in mind I am working on a PC, so there may be variations on a mac {if this tutorial doesn’t work for your set-up, I’m sure there are others you could find by googling ‘installing a font’}.


Select the font you wish to download and click the download button.


Click OK to open with the default program.shot 4

It will automatically pop up. Now you need to export the file {extract}, so click on that button.

shot 5

You can decide where you want the font to open up {I chose my desktop} then click ok.

shot 1

When I go to my desktop, there it is.


Now open up your control panel, and then your font folder.

shot 2

Now drag and drop the new font into the font folder.

shot 3

Now you can use the font. I opened up a word document, selected the font tab and found my new font in the list.



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love letters

Under my bed sits a box.  A box that is often forgotten, but contains some of my most cherished possessions.


Ryan and I started dating early on at college. Our first date was the day after Valentine’s Day for coffee at Starbucks {how fitting for two kids from Seattle who were at school in Southern California}.  The date lasted for hours and I’m pretty sure I fell in love with him that night. He was my first real boyfriend and I was instantly smitten.


Over the 13 years {!} we’ve been together, we have written many love notes to each other.  They are a little embarrassing to look back on {how mushy we were!} but also such cherished keepsakes that document our relationship. The highs and lows, the innocence and passion, the growth and deepening of our friendship and love for each other.

every day



So on this day that we celebrate LOVE, perhaps you can dig out your box of love letters and go down your own memory lane.  It might make you giggle.


And to my own Valentine, I say

i love you

More today than ever before.


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sweet little headbands

From the day my baby girl was born I loved putting her in headbands. Maybe it was something about not having the chance to accessorize any of my other babies, but getting this little girl fancied up with a sweet headband was {and is} such fun for this mommy.


There are a million headband makers out there {just search for ‘headband’ on etsy and you’ll see!} and some very darling ones at that.

But, if you haven’t yet figured this out about me, I like simple, classic and neutral.

Even on my baby girl.

audrey 2

So I’ve decided to put together a mini collection of my three favorite go-to headbands:

white headband-1

gray ruffle-1

yellow flower-1

They are now available in the shop.

hadley 1

isabella 1



They are ‘one size fits most’ {approximately 15 1/2”} handmade with soft elastic and can be worn by babies, toddlers, big kids and ladies. {There are small pieces on the flower headbands, so please be careful if your baby is anything like mine and wants to pull it off and chew on it}

headband collection

You can purchase a sweet headband by clicking {H E R E}

P.S. There is not a what I wore post this week … but let me just say that three out of the seven days I was wearing skinny jeans {I think I’m a convert}.

P.P.S. Special thanks to my little models Audrey, Hadley, Natalie & Isabella. Aren’t they the sweetest little things?!

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audrey’s first birthday {the invitations}

It’s hard to believe, but our baby girl is nearly one.


Which means she’ll be having a special one-year-old birthday celebration. 

We aren’t planning an over-the-top event : just brunch and birthday cake with family and a few friends at our house.

inspiration board

But that doesn’t mean I can’t make her party pretty!


I found this crepe paper peony bouquet in the Martha Stewart section at Walmart and it became the inspiration for Audrey’s party : white, light blue, peacock blue, gray and gold {pretty much just like her nursery}.

stack of invitations

I wanted the invitations to be special – girly, pretty and a little bit fancy.


I used gold tissue paper to create the pleated ruffle and stitched it directly onto the card.

tissue ruffle

I am so pleased with how they turned out.

{Sources: the sweet little silver shoe in the top photo is from Target which I’m sad to say I can not find online. The gray striped straws are from Bake it Pretty. The silver ‘audrey’ was made by me : perhaps a new tutorial idea : as were the little crepe paper flowers. I have a great vision for how I’m going to use them that I hope works in real life as well as it does in my mind – more on that to come.}

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rug pillow {tutorial}

A vintage grain sack pillow is a perfect staple for any home : simple, graphic and classic.



The real ones can be a bit expensive and hard to come by but there are plenty of great faux versions available.


{via: potterybarn, etsy}

While walking through IKEA a few weeks ago, I saw a stack of woven rugs with great stripes of color. They were $3.99 and I was instantly inspired with the idea to turn one into a pillow. I know, weird idea to turn a rug into a pillow. But it was soft and not too heavy for my sewing machine, so I figured I could give it a try and see what happened.  I LOVE how it came out!

rug pillow

So here you go : a tutorial on how to turn a $3.99 rug into a grain sack look-alike pillow.

Here is what you’ll need:

what you need

:: a rug {I used the Signe rug from IKEA}

:: pillow insert

:: scissors & pins

:: sewing machine

STEP ONE: cut rug to desired size


I wanted the stipe to run horizontally through the center of the pillow, so I cut the stripes off of each side and then trimmed to the size of my pillow form {12 x 18 + 1/2” on each side for seam allowance}


I only used one rug and the stripes worked out perfectly.

STEP TWO: pin right sides together


STEP THREE: stitch together


Because of the slightly loose weave of the rug, it frayed easily and I was nervous about the stitches not holding it together well.  So I used a smaller stitch {dial set to 2 on my machine} and went around the pillow twice {leaving an opening for the insert}


STEP FOUR: trim the excess


STEP FIVE: turn right-side out


STEP SIX: stuff in pillow insert


STEP SEVEN: pin the opening shut

stitch 1

STEP EIGHT: hand stitch it closed


I doubled my thread to make it extra strong.

hand stitch

And here it is:

pillow finished

This darling pillow was part of the February Giveaway

feb giveaway

and the lucky winner of the collection is:


Congratulations! Please send me a note at and I’ll get your Valentine’s Day goodies to you right away.

Wishing you all a great week!

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w.i.w. {with thoughts on the skinny jean}

It was fun to start up What I Wore again last week. 

image   boots

Many of you wondered about the blue shoes with bows {Report Halle Shoe} and my new boots {Civico 10 Remmington riding boots}. The blue shoes were purchased a few years ago and the boots were on sale, so neither are readily available, but do a little searching and you just might find them in your size.

This week, I did a bit of hands-on fashion research all for the sake of what I wore.

But first, my day 1 & 2 outfits:

1  2

1. Vest: Nordstrom Rack ages ago, scarf: Nordstrom, jeans: Citizens of Humanity. Just wanted to prove that I am a true Pacific Northwest girl by wearing a puffy vest, jeans and running shoes together. 

2. Dress: Banana Republic, tights: target, shoes: payless, necklace: Old Navy.

Last week, a reader mentioned that she didn’t see me wearing what EVERYONE is wearing these days : skinny jeans. Then she asked for my thoughts on them. To which I was very ready to reply, “I don’t like them.” But then I realized that maybe before I make that blanket statement, I should try some on.  Since we live in a very hip town, there are only three stores that sell jeans within 20 miles and Target was my best bet. So off we went on a Skinny Jean Research adventure.

legos keys

When you want to try on a million pairs of jeans with three small children, I find it helpful to bribe them.  Legos for the boys, car keys for the babe. Worked like a charm.

I keep hearing the word ‘jegging’ all over the place, so decided to give those a try first.



Nope. WAY too tight for my liking. #2 didn’t like them either.


sweater: Gap, jeans: Mossimo at Target, boots: DSW.

I put on these ones and found myself sort of liking them. I think. They are tight, but sort of cute. I surprised myself and bought them {for $13} and we’ll see how much wear they get.

4 5

4. sweater: Old Navy, jeans: target, boots: DSW. I bought this pair too {$13 as well}. I’m not sure how I feel about the bagginess of the knees. Is that how they are supposed to look? I’m not sure about this skinny jean thing :

5. sweater: Target, t-shirt: Old Navy, jeans: Seven Dojo, shoes: Payless.

To conclude my thoughts on skinny jeans: I’m no longer going to say that I don’t like them, but I can’t say I love them on me either. I’ll keep trying and see if they grow on me.

What are your thoughts on the skinny jean?

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random notes for today:


If you ordered an art print last week and have not yet received it : IT IS ON ITS WAY!

. . . . . . . . . . .


My baby is S E V E N today. Seven! I get teary just thinking about how fast he has grown. I don’t know why I get so sappy on my baby’s birthdays : don’t I want them to grow and flourish? Of course! But there is something slightly mournful about knowing my son will never be little again. I guess that is why they say “cherish every moment”.

6 mo rocking


shaving creammy boy

I could not love this boy more. He was the sweetest baby, the most delightful toddler and now a kind, smart, goofy and amazingly creative big kid. I’m pretty proud to be his momma.  See? I’m crying.

. . . . . . . . . . .

I had a minor break down on monday {although I’m pretty sure my husband would not call it minor}. Sometimes I just get a little overwhelmed by life and responsibilities and all my to-dos and asking for help is not my greatest strength. While I may look like I’m good at balancing marriage and kids and business and hobbies, I can assure you I struggle mightily.


So monday after calming down, I created a calendar for myself to help avoid said meltdowns.  If you would like to print your own, I’m happy to share. You can download the pdf file, save to your computer and print them weekly to help you {and me} stay organized.


. . . . . . . . . . .

Once again, thank you for all of your nice comments, your amazing encouragement to me, your support of my business and my blog.  I am so thankful for the many ways you bless me.

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