Category Archives: Tutorial

A Few Ideas for Valentine’s Day

cu of tags

A few posts over the  years — if you need creative inspiration for Valentine’s:

Heart cupcakes for delivery


Heart-shaped baking

The ultimate brownie show down (scratch vs. box)

All the Single People Dinner Party (and menu)



Milagro cards

Photo cards

The Lover’s Dictionary — one of the best books you can give for Valentines


Valentines pillow for Rachele


Heart pillow 

Tea towel aprons

Funky flower pin

Knitting needle roll

January knits


Gloves and hats


Spread some love!


The Brittany Yoga Bag

Brittany Yoga Bag

My friend Brittany recently celebrated a birthday, and this summer completed a 30 day Bikram challenge. She is a dear friend; we met through a mutual girlfriend in Phoenix and immediately hit it off. Brit introduced me to her friends in her hometown of Indianapolis, who hosted a book signing and party earlier this year for my novel. In another odd story, I bought a house full of furniture from her now fiance. My life is richer, funnier and more entertaining because of her kindness.

Brittany Yoga Bag

I’ve been wanting to make a yoga bag that holds the full length of a rolled yoga mat in an exterior pocket. This was the perfect opportunity. The pattern I designed resulted in a HUGE bag, enough for a clean set of clothing, towel, water and a box of post-class smugness.

Brittany Yoga Bag

Brittany Yoga Bag

Brittany Yoga Bag

I will play with the dimensions for a future tutorial, if there is interest. I am particularly pleased with how this decor weight fabric worked in creating a cross-body strap. This bag is not going to die anytime soon.


::interior zipper pocket, 8″ zipper

:: interior set of deep pockets for keys and a phone

:: 1.5 yards decor-weight fabric (this is from Ikea)


Tutorial: the Cody Slipper

H4 pattern numero uno: the Cody Slipper. {The Cody Slipper}

The Cody Slipper

This basic slipper is knit with any chunky yarn.  It is an easy and quick pattern that will make the kid of any age (including my 30 year old brother, Cody) want to throw them on and find the nearest tile to slide around.

The Cody Slipper


Needles: Size 9

Yarn: 1-2 skeins of Lion Brand chunky yarn. (The acrylic in this case actually holds up better and is easily thrown in the washer when they get stinky.)

Measuring tape


Row: Cast on 36 stitches. (This is for an adult-sized slipper. If you want a kid’s slipper, adjust the cast on and formula.) Knit until the piece is 4.5 inches wide.

Row: Cast off 8 stitches, knit to the end of the row. You will now have 28 stitches.

Row: Cast off 8 stitches, knit to the end of the row. You will now have 20 stitches. Continue knitting until piece is the appropriate number of inches tall. Use this guide to determine the number of inches for the corresponding shoe size:

The Cody Slipper

When knitting slippers for Cody, I knit 11 inches. Then:

Row:  Knit every two stitches together, leaving 10 stitches

Row:  Knit

Row:  Knit first two stitches together, knit 6, knit last two stitches together. You will now have 8 stitches.

Row: Knit 1, Purl 1 for entire row. Repeat for 5 rows.

Leaving a 12 inch tail of yarn, cut your yarn and using a darning needle pull remaining stitches on tail. Pull and the stitches will come together to form the toe of the slipper. Fold remaining slipper in half and sew using a mattress stitch up the middle of the slipper until desired hole is created for foot. Repeat stitches up the back of the slipper. Weave in ends.

Repeat for second slipper. Pom poms optional! And if you make them, email me a photo.

Knit + slide,


Video Tutorial: Embellished Baby Onesie

Bianca recently purchased her first sewing machine and asked if I’d help her learn how to use it. Me, teaching sewing. I know. I know.

Sewing Tutorial for Bianca

While I grew up with my mama’s sewing machine on the kitchen table, I never took home ec or had any desire to be artistic. Have you met my mother? Better yet, have you met her sewing?  It’s like a composer’s kid being tone deaf. Or Kim Kardashian’s kids being nuns. I was adamant. Stubborn. Obstinante, one might say. I had zero use or interest in anything that had any scent whatsoever of eu de Housewife.

Sewing Tutorial for Bianca

Fast forward until I became a citizen of Dormistan. The land of honey and irony,  all-you-can-eat-and-weight-you-can-gain-buffets and $18 checking account balances. Skipping the beat of the dance clubs for the hum of a new sewing machine was an easy decision. The latter never required: Spanx, boys, cash, or my self-conscious awkwardness in public. I was a confident know-it-all in class. I was a shy, nervous wreck at an underage club.

Sewing Tutorial for Bianca

Today I’m a fair combination of both, but do have a bit more balance between the social and the sewing. Sadly, 9 out of 10 projects still look like something off of Regretsy. But I can’t stop. I’ve got a closet full of fabric, a binder full of patterns and am slowly but surely becoming more comfortable with my modernized Laura Ingalls Wilder spirit.

Sewing Tutorial for Bianca

{My version of the Oregon Trail would be by Prius. With stops along the way for hiking, sleeping under the stars and hitting the half annual sales at any Nordstrom en route. Wineries, pedicures, fly fishing for dinner. I’m pretty sure Laura would have been all about getting her eyebrows waxed, hitting a hot yoga class and gossiping about that wicked Nellie Oleson over happy hour. Something tells me the oxen and cholera wouldn’t be missed.}

Sewing Tutorial for Bianca

The first video sewing 101 tutorial, for sweet Bianca and girls everywhere who celebrate their inner modern pioneering spirit:*

Happy trails, friends!


* there is a clever joke to be made about how a current Laura Ingalls Wilder would kick some Kardash ass, and what a large task that would be, and her video skills being used for good, nor horror. But I’ll leave that to you…






Moving: A Tutorial

Sunday Funday

Moving house is always a bittersweet experience. Whether you are downsizing to save money, or just need more space, it can be hard to say goodbye to your old property. Luckily there are sites like Reali who can help with finding that new home where you can make fresh memories in a place that suits you.

That being said, I was inspired to write this post after speaking to a friend of mine who is a property developer. She has an amazing ability to predict trends in the US real estate market and has built an impressive portfolio of properties over the past few years.

Have you ever thought about investing in real estate? Even in these uncertain times investing in real estate can boost your finances and assets.

There is a lot to think about when venturing into real estate investing though. For instance, you can Click here to check out a guide to the 1031 exchange process.

Ultimately, after asking my friend for some blogging inspiration she told me to compile a tongue in cheek guide to moving. Read on and be sure to let me know any moving tips of your own in the comments!

1. Visit a place you’d rather live. Or don’t. Pick a spot on a map, out of a book, do the “spin the globe and land” game.

2. Tell your friends and family, “I’m moving!”

3. Say it again for 4 years or so. Convince yourself slowly. Make yourself promises you’ll do something about it.

4. One day, actually do something about it. Start by telling your boss. Ask for a transfer.


5. In the meantime, look for jobs online. Don’t be proud. Apply for anything you think will make you happy. That’s the whole point of this little move, after all. Want to be a barista/knitting store worker/bartender/taxi cab driver/nanny? Well. Good for you! Let’s do it!

6. Send your resume to your smartest friends. Ask them to review it. Then, ask them to send it to their friends who may know someone in your new desired city.

7. Apply for more jobs.

sheila, kelli -- class five rapid

8. If you know someone in the new city, ask to crash at their house for a bit. If they are incredibly generous and wonderful people, they’ll agree. Begin sending them gifts and notes of thanks immediately. If you are making a new start without knowing a soul, God bless you. Look in the newspaper for homes available. Talk to your realtor friends about a referral in the new city. Someone will want your business. Be picky.

9. Cry. Laugh. Schedule happy hours in your home town. Give yourself whatever emotional space you need to feel whatever you need, and don’t let guilt take hold. Laugh some more. (Stop yourself on occasion to think, “I AM ACTUALLY DOING THIS!”)

Home, sweet home

10. Organize your home. If you haven’t seen or used it in a year, someone at Goodwill can. Donate generously. Give friends books. Give friends plates of cookies and pitchers of sangria and make them promise to return them to you in your new city (built in guests). Give friends anything you think they can use.

11. Packing. Find boxes and start packing. Call a moving company. Try and find the most reputable company for Removals In Bournemouth (or wherever you’re located). Do some research on different moving companies in your area and pick the one least likely to break your stuff!

12. Make a pledge to pack a certain number of boxes every day. My number is 5.

13. Keep applying for jobs.

14. Check out the newspaper for your new hometown and find an event you want to attend when you arrive. For me, it’s Ray LaMontagne at Red Rocks. I am dreaming of this show.

15. Pack five more boxes. Apply for more jobs. Say goodbye to those you love. Cry. Laugh. Remember not to burn any bridges, especially those that may prevent you from returning to the hometown you still very much love.

16. Rent your current home. Pray your renters aren’t really sociopaths waiting to turn your casita into a meth den.

Siblings, Grand Lake, Colorado

17. Consider what you what this new life to look like. For me, it includes dogs, chickens, babies, a big chunk of land, a dirty Outback, a messy kitchen, an all loving church, an indie bookstore, a masters swim team and many, many happy meals shared with my baby brother and Colorado family.

And with any luck, your hometown friends will throw you one heck of a going away party and have plans to come see you before you even leave.

So, hopefully, this has been a fun tutorial for you to follow. Finding Alpharetta movers, buying the right home, figuring out what to do with your current home, etc. can all be extremely hard so remember to have a laugh while doing it!


Tutorial: Fabric Correspondence Envelope

What to do with those handmade cards you buy at the local coffee shop? Or order from Paper Source? Or buy in bulk from Etsy? (Or perhaps my favorite new local shop: See SawDesigns. Hello, adorable letterpress creations!)

Finished correspondence envelope tutorial

Finished correspondence envelope tutorial

How about a fabric correspondence envelope, with space for both your cards, stamps and your favorite pen? You could use this to clean up your stationery drawer, or throw it in your suitcase when you travel to keep postcards and an address book handy.

{Yes, I actually travel like this. And yes, if you are in my address book, you’ve more than likely received your fair dose of correspondence over the years.}

Let’s start with fabric selection. Pick two pieces of fabric that are decor weight to give this some heft.

Finished correspondence envelope tutorial


– 2 pieces of decor weight fabric, interior 10 ” x 14 ”

– 2 pieces of decor weight fabric, exterior 10 ” x 7″

– 2 pieces of lightweight fusible interfacing,  one, 10″ x 14″; the other 10″ x 7″

– 1 fabulous button, with needle and thread to attach

– general sewing notions: scissors, machine, ruler, pencil, etc.

Finished correspondence envelope tutorial


All seams are 1/2 inch.

Cut your exterior and interior pieces, along with your interfacing. Iron the interfacing to the wrong side of your exterior pieces. Place the exteriors (with interfacing now attached) and interior right sides together. You’ll have two stacks. The 10″ side is the bottom. The 14″/7″ side is the height.

Now, we are going to cut the larger set of pieces  to make the point of the envelope. Pin the 10″ x 14″ exterior and interior piece together.  Use a ruler and a dull pencil and measure 7″ from the bottom of the sandwiched pieces. The wrong side of the either the exterior or the interior should be facing up. Draw a line across the 10″ width at the 7″ (from the bottom up) mark. Now, draw a line from top to bottom at the 5″ mark. You should have two lightly drawn lines across one piece of your fabric.

Starting at the left corner of the 7″ mark and the left-side of the fabric, gently draw a line to the top 5″ mark, creating one side of the envelope point. Repeat on the other side of the fabric, creating the other side. You’ve now drawn a perfect triangle. Trim your envelope pieces accordingly:

Finished correspondence envelope tutorial

You started with rectangles.

Finished correspondence envelope tutorial

Now you have four pieces, two with a triangle top.

Let’s sew these pieces together. As per most sewing patterns, the key is to always sew things right sides together and leave a hole so you can turn it right-side out when you are done. Starting with the smaller 10″ x & 7″ pieces, place right sides together and sew only the top edge closed. (see the above photo) Press with your iron, turn right-side out, repeat seam with a top stitch.

Finished correspondence envelope tutorial

Now, leaving a 3″ hole along the bottom 10″ piece — we are going sew the envelope portion together. Place the 10″ x 14″ (pointy envelope) exterior piece and interior pieces right-sides together. Sew along the outer edge, leaving the 3″ hole along the bottom. Place the other two pieces (10″ x 7″) right-sides together and repeat, leaving the same hole. Clip the corners. Turn both sets right sides out. Using your iron, push out your seams as far as you can. Match up both sets of fabric along the bottom edge (both with 3″ holes). Carefully turn these in and pin. Pin around the entire outer edge of the envelope and top stitch, enclosing your 3″ turning holes. You should now have one giant envelope.

To create pockets for the pen and cards, measure in 2″ from the left-hand edge of your fabric. Run a seam from the bottom to the top of the pocket section (only 7″ tall, not the entire 14″ triangle point!). You’ve now got one large pocket — on the right — for cards and stamps, and one little pocket — on the left, for your pen.

Finished correspondence envelope tutorial

Now, pick a coordinating button to sew on the front of the flap. This is simply for decoration, and to provide a bit of weight to keep the flap down. You won’t create a button hole, so your button doesn’t need to be practical. Go wild!

Finished correspondence envelope tutorial

Add a personal label if you’d like, fill with stationery and a pen and enjoy!

Finished correspondence envelope tutorial

Finished correspondence envelope tutorial

Finished correspondence envelope tutorial

Finished correspondence envelope tutorial

Yay! Letters! Who doesn’t love letters (especially love letters)!


Adventathon: 25 Final Edition!

Namaste bag tutorial

Namaste bag

Okay, 25 projects and I’m done! I realize this one is a double-post, but you asked for a tutorial. The Namaste Yoga bag:

Namaste bag tutorial

Cut your exterior (above) and interior pieces 15″ wide by 17″ tall.

Namaste bag tutorial

For the exterior yoga mat pocket, cut a piece of fabric 12″ x 10 ” (this piece pictured is too big, as you’ll see. This is a live and learn tutorial.)

Namaste bag tutorial

With the yoga pocket, iron under the 10″ (tall) edges by 1/4″ and top stitch.

Namaste bag tutorial

Then iron under the 12″ top and bottom.  Set aside.

Namaste bag tutorial

Turn your exterior piece right sides together and sew 1/4″ seam along both edges and across the bottom.  Set aside.

Namaste bag tutorial

Random photo of a European candy tin I use for pins. I love these.

Namaste bag tutorial

Cut an interior pocket piece 15″ wide x 5.5″ tall.  Iron under top edge by 1/4″. Top stitch. Place it as desired on one side of your interior fabric.

Namaste bag tutorial

Pin the pocket down.

Namaste bag tutorial

Add a fancy label if you’d like. (I buy my labels here. Yes, they are pricey. They are also fabulous!)

Namaste bag tutorial

Topstitch along both edges and the bottom.

Namaste bag tutorial

I also like to add a stitch up the center of the pocket to create a division. These smaller pockets seem to hold keys, cell phones, etc., better.

Namaste bag tutorial

Now, turn your interior pieces right sides together and stitch down both edges and across the bottom. HOWEVER: leave a 3″ hole in your stitching across the bottom. This is how you’ll eventually turn the bag right-side out. Set aside.

Namaste bag tutorial

Back to that exterior — to create a bag that looks a bit more structured, we are going to sew and trim these corners. I forget what this is officially called in sewing lingo, but I think it is something like a gusset.

Namaste bag tutorial

See that seam running down the center? That is actually the seam from the bottom of the bag. Take your first corner and make a triangle with this seam running down the center. This seems (seams?) difficult, but it is very easy. Just try it.

Namaste bag tutorial

See? Not hard. Now, measure 3 inches in from the point and place a pin to mark where you will sew.

Namaste bag tutorial

Sew along the pinned line being sure to backstitch at each end.

Namaste bag tutorial

Then chop off the ends, leaving a 1/4″ seam.

Namaste bag tutorial

Turn the exterior right-side out and voila — trimmed, structured corners to the bottom of the bag.

Namaste bag tutorial

Now, about that yoga mat pocket. Obviously this pocket is too big, but the dimensions above are a better fit. Place the top edge of the yoga pocket 12″ from the bottom seam of the bag. You want to create a significant flap in the pocket to allow space for the mat or towel when in place.

Namaste bag tutorial

Pin this top edge of the pocket 12″ up from the bottom of the bag and top stitch to the front of the bag. (Be sure not to stitch through both layers.)  Now take the bottom edge of the pocket and pin it 5″ from the bottom. Top stitch. Set aside.

Namaste bag tutorial

On to the handles. There are two options. If you’d like the bag to be cross-body, as pictured, cut two pieces 3″ wide by 45″ long. If you’d like a shoulder bag, follow the same directions but cut your straps 5″ wide by 25″ long.

Iron each strap in half, right-sides together. Then uncrease and fold each half toward the center, as pictured above.

Namaste bag tutorial

The fold the strap in half again, enclosing all raw edges. Pin these and topstitch along each edge, all the way down the straps.

Namaste bag tutorial

Now place the exterior inside the interior bag, right sides together.

Namaste bag tutorial

It seems weird, but I promise this works.

Namaste bag tutorial

Lay your completed straps out and fold them in half. Be careful to make sure the strap isn’t twisted and pin the top edge of each strap between the layers of the bag, on each side. (This step isn’t photographed.)

If you think of this as a sandwich from the cutting mat up,  it would go: interior, strap inside, exterior, exterior, strap inside, interior.  Leave an inch or so of strap poking above the layers and sew around the top of the bag enclosing them. Trim the remaining strap that is poking between layers. Then pull the bag through the opening you left at the bottom edge of the interior. Press flat.

Namaste bag tutorial

Then top stitch that bottom edge of the interior closed.

Namaste bag tutorial

Press the bag and pat yourself on the back. Namaste!

Namaste bag

This bag looks to have a saggy butt. It must need to do more yoga.


Adventathon: 24

Makeup brush kit

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Finny sent me this sweet makeup brush kit several years ago for my birthday and I’ve used it nearly every day since. I love having fancy brushes and like my mama recently said when jewelry shopping, “Isn’t it fun to be a girl?” Yes. I am so very thankful for femininity.

With that in mind, a tutorial to sew something similar. You’ll need:

– a set of makeup brushes

– exterior fabric 7 ” x 10 ”

– interior fabric 7″ x 10″

– interior pocket 5″ x 5.5″

– interior terrycloth 7″ x 4″

– ribbon at least 7″ long for interior

– two pieces of ribbon 5″ long each for closing tie

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Take your interior pocket fabric and after ironing…

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Iron under the left hand and top edges 1/4″.  Top stitch the top edge.

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Iron a center crease in your interior fabric. Place the interior pocket on the lower right hand corner of the interior fabric. Your bottom and right hand edges should be raw (not turned under.) Pin. Top stitch pocket right, bottom and left hand edges to interior fabric, leaving the already seamed top edge open.

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Place your brushes on this pocket to determine their sizes. Draw lines vertically with a blue sewing pen (water soluble) as guides.

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Sew from top to bottom along these guides, backstitching along the top edge.

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Place your brushes to make sure they fit before continuing. (In this case, I slid two large brushes into one sleeve)

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Place your terrycloth on the left-hand side of the interior fabric. No need to turn under edges.

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Now add your 7″ of ribbon to the right-hand edge of the terrycloth piece.  Sew along the top edge of the terrycloth, down the center of the ribbon (also catching the right-hand edge of the terrycloth, which is tucked under the ribbon) and along the bottom edge.

I added terrycloth because it’s nice to have a place to clean off your brushes in between uses. And when your pouch starts looking like Rainbow Brite, just throw it in the washing machine, iron flat and refill.

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Now find your two pieces of 5″ ribbon for your closing tie.

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Place these 5″ up from the bottom edge of your interior fabric with 1/4 ” protruding.  (See that little bit of ribbon poking out on the right-hand side of this?) The ties should mostly remain sandwiched between your interior and your exterior. Place the exterior right-side down on top of the interior fabric. Pin. Sew around the edges leaving a 3″ hole.

Those raw edges will be enclosed in this process. It’s sewing magic!

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With that hole, turn your makeup brush pouch right-side out. Press flat. Top stitch with a pretty thread.

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See? Pretty.

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Add your brushes.

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Tie tight and wrap for the holidays. Voila — Christmas beauty!


Adventathon: 1

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Advent begins today, some 26 days before Christmas. I don’t remember ever celebrating advent with any great fanfare as a child, but have coveted intricate and beautiful advent calendar traditions during the last few years. I am particularly fond of this calendar and this homemade version. {How amazing would it be to receive a sweet note each day?}

This season means different things to Christians. For me,  it is a great time to prepare. It provides 26 days to find reasons to be thankful, be mindful in prayer, and to get my heart and home ready for the Christmas season. Cheesy? A bit. Truthful? Definitely. I am a sentimental girl.

I didn’t participate in Black Friday this year and don’t plan on buying a thing for Cyber Monday either. The older I get, the less the stuff seems to matter. I don’t need a thing. Most in my life are equally blessed. And let’s be honest — all you need is a $.50 newspaper to be reminded the most important things in life cannot be purchased or wrapped — love, fidelity, health, sanity, peace. The very last thing I needed this weekend was to sacrifice sleep for the celebration of consumer gluttony. (If I want to celebrate gluttony, I prefer to do so in the comfort of my own home with a piece of pizza in one hand and bottle of wine in the other.)

Instead, my list of handmade items is long and my list of tiny intentional acts of beauty is longer. This year, I’m celebrating Christmas with Christ in mind — He who fed the poor, spent time with the lepers, advocated for love and peace. Needless to say, I’ve got a lot to learn.

I’ll be posting a project each day for the next 26 days. Some take considerable time, while others are conquered within minutes. I hope there will be something included that strikes your fancy. I wish you and your loved ones a holiday season abundant with the very best of life!

Adventathon: 1 Children’s Art Portfolio Tutorial

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Supplies needed:

  • Exterior fabric 18″ x 11″
  • Interior fabric 18″ x 11″
  • Interfacing 18″ x 11″
  • Interior crayon/marker pocket fabric 7″ x 8″
  • Two pieces of ribbon, each 10″ long
  • Wax paper
  • Art supplies

Directions: Iron all fabrics. Iron/sew interfacing to wrong side of exterior fabric. Set aside.

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Take interior pocket material and iron under top (7″) edge, 1/4″.

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Repeat, ironing same seam again under another1/4″, hiding raw edge.

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Repeat with right-hand (8″) edge of pocket. Top stitch top seam.

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Iron center crease on right side of interior fabric. Align the folded under right-hand edge with the center crease of the interior material:

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Pin down pocket side edges and bottom. Stitch 1/4″ from edge of pocket material securing pocket to interior fabric. Do not sew down top edge you’ve already hemmed.

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Now, pull out your markers, crayons, pencils, paint brushes or whatever art supply you’d like to gift in this porfolio. Measure the width of these items. We are going to create a series of pockets for each of these by running hems from the top of this pocket to the bottom, backstitching at each end.

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I created 8 of these lines, measured equally across the pocket, to hold a packet of markers.

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Now, measure the drawing pad you’d like to include on the other side of the interior fabric.

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Find the center of the right-hand side of your interior fabric, 3-4″ from the top edge. Draw a line measuring the length of your drawing pad, adding 1/2″. This pad was nearly 5″ – so my line was 5.5″.

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Very carefully, snip this line open with a pair of scissors.

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Tuck the back cardboard edge of your drawing pad into this hole to make sure it fits. If it doesn’t, make the hole a bit bigger on either side.

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Now hem a small zigzag stitch in a coordinating thread around the hole (buttonhole stitch) to close the raw edge.

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Place the exterior fabric — with interfacing already attached — on top of the interior fabric with right sides matched.

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Measure 6.5 inches from the top of the left and right hand sides of the portfolio and tuck your pieces of ribbon between the exterior and interior pieces, leaving at least .5″ outside to pin and later stitch. Sew both sides together with a 1/2″ seam. No need to leave a hole to turn right sides out. Clip the corners, trim any excess including that extra bit of ribbon and then pull the right sides through your drawing pad hole. Iron flat, pushing out the corners carefully. Top stitch in a coordinating thread.

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Now, measure several pieces of wax paper to place in the center of the portfolio for stamps/stickers. Carefully run a tight zigzag stitch down the left-hand side of the wax paper to secure to the portfolio. This also creates a center binding for the portfolio because you are stitching through all three layers (make sure your bobbin thread matches your exterior fabric.) This step is entirely optional. Wax paper doesn’t hold up well and if your artist is too old for stickers, skip it.

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Add a label if you’d like.

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Place the drawing pad in the hole by securing the back cover.

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Add your art supplies

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And stickers

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Voila — a children’s art portfolio.

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Other variations may include thank you notes, stamps, stationery, etc.

Tomorrow: a favorite holiday recipe


{Cheap} Lasagna Gardening Tutorial

Where we started

Find the space you are interested in gardening. Survey this for type of soil, etc. Is the soil horrible? Is there no soil — such as this space? Then consider starting on top of the existing ground.

Not sure what the ramp is for

Even this can produce.

Supplies gathered

Gather shredded paper, cardboard, coffee grounds and kitchen refuse.

Layer 1 of the lasagna garden

Layer 1 — cardboard. Cover your space with one layer of carboard

Layer 2

Layer 2: shredded paper

Layer 3

Layer 3: garden refuse — in this case left over palm fronds

Layer 4

Layer 4: coffee grounds. Ideally you want about 10,000 times what I was able to produce for this project today. We’ll be adding more. You can’t have too much.

Layer 5

Layer 5: Kitchen refuse. Granted, it is better if it is added as compost, but considering I am traveling tomorrow — I went through the pantry and fridge and got rid of everything that wasn’t going to be eaten in time. So, we’ve now got whole fruit and vegetables out there in the process of decaying. With 100+ degree heat, this shouldn’t take long.

Layer 6

Layer 6: Water.

Now we must add a considerable amount of soil. I’m going to buy as much manure as my little car will haul so we have a layer to actually plant. We’ll plant on top of this soil and water top down. Within a full growing season, ideally this will all decompose causing the compacted earth beneath it to become great, healthy soil.

Jalapenos set out to dry for seed

And so the salsa garden begins!

{These were placed in the sun to dry for their seeds, but I couldn’t help but note the humor.}