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Madras Plaid Placemat SetsIt’s been a busy January for me helping my business clients with payroll setups, W-2s, 1099s and year-end closings. However, on the home front I have still managed to get a few things done. I made 8 linen placemat, napkin and napkin ring sets for Catherine’s Table. I used Robert Kaufman’s Yarn Dyed Linen (Flax) and Emily Herrick’s Madras Patch from her Shore Things collection for Michael Miller fabrics. The heart buttons, just in time for Valentine’s Day, were purchased from Etsy seller, Bohemian Findings.

Love Letter Pocket PillowAlso appropriate for Valentine’s Day, I whipped up a “Love Letter” Pillow for my grandson’s (Cameron aka Baby Cam Cam) 2nd birthday. Since I have 13 grandchildren, I usually give them gift cards, as it is easy on me and the children can get something they need or want (and their mom and dad get to be involved in the purchase). Even though gift cards are sort of impersonal, I am trying to think of ways to make it a little more personal. I saw this pillow on Cathe Holden’s website, Just Something I Made and I already had the fabric, so I gave it a go. The pocket holds the gift card or any other little love note you Country Livingwould like to slip in.  The directions are in the current issue (February 2013) of Country Living Magazine, however I used a pillow insert and made with one piece of linen folded with a fold over closure instead of sewing two pieces of linen together and stuffing. The template for the pocket is available here. I enlarged the template 1/2 inch around all sides.

I first saw the typewriter fabric by Melody Miller for the Japanese fabric company Kokka in Elizabeth Hartman’s Craftsy class, Inspired Modern Quilts and Creative Quilt Backs. I googled “typewriter fabric” and it took me to Harts Fabrics. I love this fabric website for the huge selection of Japanese fabrics. I purchased the typewriter fabric in 3 colorways and made one throw pillow when it arrived, but I was just hanging on to it until I figured how I would use the rest. When I happened upon Cathe’s post, I was all over this project.

Gift card sleeveHere is another idea for presenting gift cards I used at Christmas time. I am now the proud owner of an Accucut GrandeMark (cousin to Accuquilt’s Studio) die cutting machine. I had great fun making these cute little envelopes to slide the gift card in. I attached a fancy gift tag with ribbon. The grandkids thought they were pretty cool. I love scrap booking paper about as much as I love fabric (however I don’t scrapbook). I use the paper to package the key fobs I sell in my Etsy shop and I’m sure I’ll find more uses for the beautiful papers with the help of my awesome die cutting machine.

More later on other interesting things I have found as inspiration. Now what should I start on next?