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starched flower {tutorial}

    I never grow tired of making new flowers – as you can tell by the crazy amount of tutorials I have done on flower-making.  I saw instructions for a starched flower a few years ago in the Life:Beautiful magazine {a really lovely christian publication} which looked a bit like my very favorite flowers by EmersonMade. I’m not crazy about doing a complete copy of someone else’s signature flower, so this is my version, with a few of my own little tweaks.

    starched flower

    Here’s what you’ll need:

    supplies for starched flower

    :: fabric {linen works beautifully, as does a heavier cotton}

    :: starch {if you can find heavy starch, go for it}

    :: petal patterns {download mine below, or create your own}

    :: felt circle

    :: pin back

    :: scissors, hot glue gun, iron

    STEP ONE: starch fabric to desired stiffness

    starch and iron fabric

    STEP TWO: use petal tempate {or create your own} as a pattern to cut out petals.

    pattern for starched flower

    You will need 8 large and 10 small, but of course you can add more if you would like a fuller flower {or adjust the petal sizes to change the finished flower size}.

    flower petals cut

    STEP THREE: cut a slit in the bottom of each petal, about 1/2″.Continue Reading…starched flower {tutorial}

    my best friend

      Let me introduce you to my best friend. Her name is K.C. {the initials of her real name, but she’s gone by k.c. for forever}.  She is really, really pretty, has amazing arms, brings out the wittiness in me, loves her three children more than… Continue Reading…my best friend

      let’s chat

        When I read a blog for an extended period of time, I start to feel like I know the writer. Oh, doesn’t Ashley Ann just come up with the best projects? That, Meg. She always makes me smile. I was reading Angie the other day… Continue Reading…let’s chat

        our backyard

          We moved into our current home five years ago. We had just sold our darling, but major fixer-upper {or perhaps tear-down} 1920’s bungalow and were beyond thrilled to have a new home {read: without rodents and a sagging foundation}.  At that time our eyes were… Continue Reading…our backyard

          summer in snapshots {week one} and a simple way to make a photo collage {tutorial}

            Last week I mentioned that I’d be playing along with Amber of Starfish Jewelry and taking a photo each day to document our summer. Did you do it too? Here is our week in snapshots:


            I’m linking up at Starfish Jewelry Designs : click the button below to link up too.


            zig zag

            I’ve been asked a few times how I create my photo collages {you can see more examples here and here}. And now I will give out my secret.


            That’s right. There’s no fancy photoshop steps involved : just Google’s pretty amazing free photo-editing software called Picasa.

            There are lots of different ways to edit your photos and as I get more into photography, I’m learning more about how important editing is. But Picasa has been a great resource for me {especially since it is simple and free} and is what I often use for my photos on the blog.  You can download it HERE.

            Once you have it installed on your computer, import your photos either from your camera or from a file on your computer. You can learn more about the editing features on the picasa site, but feel free just to play around – they make it pretty easy.  Okay, on to the tutorial :


            When you open picasa and have photos uploaded, it will look something like this:


            Now you can select the photos you would like to put in your collageContinue Reading…summer in snapshots {week one} and a simple way to make a photo collage {tutorial}

            ahhh … that’s better

              A month or so ago I posted photos of our not quite finished living room.

              living before

              As I was looking at the photos after I posted, I felt like it looked way too cluttered. It doesn’t help that there is a cord hanging down from the tv, but the shelves looked knick-knacky and needed to be re-staged. And, of course, we wanted to rearrange the furniture.

              This how it looks now:

              living new

              Doesn’t it look much more open and clean? We’d still like to resurface the fireplace {see below} and I need to hang a few of our new family photos on the blank wall on the right.


              We brought in our old church pew {one of my very favorite pieces from my m-i-l} and Ryan bought me a new coffee table {when it was in stock and on sale} that I love.


              I wanted the shelves to be lighter and more neutral this time around, so I turned the books around {appalling to most booklovers} and used some white pieces from the kitchen.


              The basket on the bottom shelf holds toys for the baby

              IMG_1514 IMG_1442

              The left side holds the components for the tv, a basket full of dvds and black leather boxes with more toys and diapers. Not as pretty as the right side, but it does the trick.



              A few of my favorite pillows {made using the ruffle pillow tutorial & gathered flower tutorial}






              I’m feeling good with the changes so far.

              I tried my best to be like Layla and photoshop the fireplace to see a few different resurfacing options : here is my very rough depiction.

              option one: barnwoodContinue Reading…ahhh … that’s better