Make Your Tee Shirt Quilt Pop


Kids love tee shirt quilts! They make great graduation gifts whether for kindergarten or college. It keeps memories alive not just for the person, but for generations to come. Can’t you just imagine sitting with your grandchildren and telling the story connected with that particular shirt.
You have decided to construct the quilt and have found the plastic bags full that have been stored on the basement shelf. What next?
1. Decide what theme you want to center the quilt around. It may be sports, music, vacations, marathons, etc. What did your child enjoy most? Sorority quilts are popular as are academic or you could do a combination to express the entire college career.
2. Fold the shirts showing the front and/or back designs and lay them out. The easiest way is to lay them on the floor to get a feeling for what shirts look best together. I recommend using either 9 or 12 shirts laying three across and either three or four down.
3. Next is the fun part of selecting colors and theme for the sashing, backing and binding. You can find a nice selection of licensed fabric from college and professional teams, you can use solid colors, prints or a combination of both or all. Let your imagination run free. I pick out the most colorful tee shirts and take them to the fabric store, then walk down the aisle matching colors. If you don’t feel comfortable choosing colors, google a color wheel to see what colors are across from each other. When choosing prints, find a color that is part of each piece of fabric. I like to use prints and solids. A solid color makes a great frame for your pieces. What type of fabric you use is up to you. I have uses anything from cotton to minky for a soft cuddly backing.
4. Embroidered motifs on the sashings adds a three dimensional look as does adding a name at the top. Here again, let your creative mind work.
Most important of all is to create a quilt that will bring a smile to the child’s face; and it doesn’t matter if that child is five or 25, everyone loves a tee shirt quilt. Imagine the joy this quilt will bring for generations to come.

tee shirts for a quilt

tee shirts for a quilt


Make a Thoughtful Valentines Gift


Easy Valentines Gift

If you are looking for a quick and easy Valentines idea that won’t cost a fortune, why not make this candy bouquet? You can pick up inexpensive vases at your local dollar store or your local thrift store, fill it with colored paper, put a piece of styrofoam inside the vase. Then attach your candy to soda straws with scotch tape and stick the straws into the styrofoam ( you could also use a small piece of modeling clay or play-doh). Add some ribbon, tulle, or whatever you would like and “Viola” you have a great gift for a favorite person.

Flannel and Denim Brings Back Memories


A few days ago as I was looking through my old pictures, I came across a picture of my Grandpa sitting on the floor playing with my two and five year old boys. This picture was taken forty years ago and brought back the warm memories I had for my Grandpa and the memories my boys have of him.
He was wearing his uniform, “a flannel shirt and denim bib overalls”. These memories gave me such a warm feeling so I wanted to see what a quilt made from flannel shirts and denim would look like.
Down to the Thrift Store I went to dig through the fabric bins to see what was there. (Well, actually it took several trips to several stores to find what I wanted). Several trips later I was able to put together the quilt I wanted.
Now, is it the actual clothing my Grandpa wore? No, but just seeing those plaid shirts and faded jeans brings back so many memories. When my grandchildren come to visit, they want to know all about their great-grandpa; and his love for their Dads.

Memories Warm the Home

Memories Warm the Home

Handkerchief Quilts

One of the best parts of growing up on a farm in the Midwest was the sense of family we shared with all of the surrounding farms. In that era the words “country club” did not mean a beautiful building in the middle of a golf course where you met others for drinks, dinner, golf, etc but rather a group of farm women who met monthly following a criteria set up by our county extension office. There were also social events such as ice cream socials, Christmas (yes Christmas not holiday) parties, and county style shows with the ladies modeling clothing from the local merchants. Deep friendships evolved that lasted a lifetime. My Mother belonged to the local “country club” in an area where our family had farmed for three generations that I know about, and it could have been longer.
When I was 11 years old, we moved from that farm to another farm not in this neighborhood. My Mother was no longer close enough to belong to the group.
This triggered a “handkerchief shower”. A “handkerchief shower” was very similar to a bridal shower, but the gifts were all beautifully designed handkerchiefs. They came in the mail inside a warm greeting card. Just think of the memories my Mother had each time she used one of these handkerchiefs. Time has moved on (now we use tissues) and handkerchiefs have been delegated to a storage box or an estate sale.
They also make beautiful quilts, and fit into multiple quilt designs. Are you one of those lucky people who have found them when cleaning out your Mother or Grandmother’s home? Have you seen them at an estate sale or antique store? Why not design and create a quilt that you can showcase in your home to remember those days?

Combining vintage handkerchiefs and modern design

Combining vintage handkerchiefs and modern design

Mom’s Senior Prom Dress

How many of us can say that we still have that perfect dress from our senior prom? Not only that but we married our date that night?
Wouldn’t that be a great story to tell your granddaughters as they unwrap beautiful pillows made from that prom dress? I can visualize those granddaughters telling the same story as their daughters unwrap the same pillows. What stories do you have in your closet?




What do we do with them?

How many of you remember your Grandmother’s or you Mom’s bedroom? Do you remember the dresser scarves that covered the dresser (where else would you put a dresser scarf?) or the dressing table that had a big mirror and a stool where you sat and looked in all the little decorated containers that held jewelry or tried the perfume? These scarves were hand embroidered by them or an aunt. Perhaps you remember watching Grandmother sit and embroider them?
Fast forward to today. A lot of us still have these scarves put away in a box or a bag. They are a precious memory of those wonderful days; however, since they do not fit in our décor, we only see them when we clean the basement (who does that very often?) How about taking these scarves or your favorite scarf and creating a beautiful adornment for your home that you can see every day or giving it to a daughter or granddaughter to cherish?
You can make a small bag, a pillow, a jewelry bag or a quilt, placemats or a table runner to not only warm your home but allow you to relive cherished memories every day.

Teddy Bears – Love for Generations

When my youngest son was old enough to begin to love stuffed animals, he took over “Pooh” from his older brother. “Pooh” went everywhere we went, slept with and was continually in Jeff’s company. At times he may have been carried by his ear or foot, but “Pooh” was definitely a part of our family.
Over the years “Pooh” had to have surgery as we sewed on ears and legs, and he lost his youthful figure. Whenever I could talk Jeff into letting me wash “Pooh”, he would come out of the dryer a bit lumpy. Gradually I lost track of “Pooh” as sports, school and other activities became important.
My son is grown now and has his own family, runs a successful business, etc etc. Recently, when I was spending time with his family, my youngest grandson appeared in the kitchen with non-other than (you guessed it) “Pooh”.
What cherished items do you have stored in a bag or in the basement? Why not turn them into a Teddy Bear that could be handed down to children and grandchildren?

“Cream of the Crop”


Whenever we think of a birthday, holiday or special event, we usually try to find an appropriate gift. If it is a wedding, the bride and groom will go to a store, usually a chain, and make a list of what they would like. Generally, their choices are items for their home. That way we can be sure the gift is something the couple needs and/or wants for everyday living. Likewise, at birthday or holiday time we try to observe or ask others for suggestions as to a gift that would be valued.
Have you ever stopped to think of gifts that you have received that were very special? This is a way that we remember relatives or friends that have given us the best gift or as I call it, the “Cream of the Crop”. This gift is very personal and reminds us of happy times in our life or in the life of a loved one. Every time we see it, we are reminded of that person or time.
What special occasion do you have in the near future? Is it a wedding, a birthday, a graduation or are you getting a head start on the holidays? What do you have stored in a bag or a box that would bring back special memories for someone? It may be tee shirts, a wedding gown, a mink coat, or Dad’s shirt and ties. Whatever it might be, there is someone we know who would appreciate a gift that reminds them of that very special time in their life.
Here is a pillow made from Grandmother’s wedding gown that was used as a ring bearer pillow. It is now displayed in the bride and grooms bedroom so that every time they come into that room, the wonderful memories of their wedding will greet them.

Everyone Loves Teddy Bears!!

Everyone Loves Teddy Bears

When my son was two years old, Santa brought him a teddy bear, and he immediately called him “Pooh”. “Pooh” became an important member of our family. Jeff would not go to sleep at night without “Pooh” tucked safely under the blankets, which sometimes caused a mad search for the bear looking outside, under the bed, or in the toy box.
“Pooh” went on vacation with us. We made sure that he was always in the car before leaving the motel or restaurant (Yes, “Pooh” had lunch with us).
When Jeff became a father for the first time, he called one day to find out if I still had “Pooh”. Of course I did, and “Pooh” became a part of another generation. Now, he has a few miles on him. He’s lost an eye and has had to be patched many times, but he is still one of my grandchildren’s most beloved toys.
What do you have stored away that was very important to your children? It might be a blanket, a toy, or a onesie Is it still in the box or bag in the basement? Get your creative juices going and see what you can do.

Fun Bears for Christmas

Fun Bears for Christmas

Christmas Gifts for Mom or Grandma


One of the fun things about repurposing is the different ways and ideas that my customers have in mind. I love the challenge of looking at each wedding gown, group of tee shirts, dad’s ties or shirts and pretty much anything else people bring me. It could be a set of sheets or in this case a picture hat worn instead of a wedding veil.
This wedding dress was very simple with no adornments, pearls or sequins but had beautiful ruffles on the sleeves and bottom of the dress. However, it also had a picture hat with flowers and lace. My customer asked if I could do a pillow combining these flowers, lace and ruffles from the dress.
To the drawing board I went and came up with this design. How lovely to have this beautiful pillow displayed in her bedroom to remind all of her family of their wedding day!
Elegant Vintage Pillow