A Quilt for Sophie

I was overjoyed and delighted when I heard that my good friend Nancy was having a baby girl. We all ooohed and aaahed as we watched her tummy grow bigger and bigger. We shared in her happiness and anticipation as we waited for baby Sophie to enter the world.

When we found out close to her seventh month that baby Sophie wouldn’t make it, we shared again in Nancy’s sadness, grief, and pain. I was in California at the time, but finally had the chance last weekend to visit Nancy and give her hugs in person.

When I found out that Nancy was having a baby girl, I decided that I wanted to try my hand at making a quilt. Nancy’s not really the pink type, so I decided on a more natural color palette that seemed more fitting for her nursery.

After Nancy lost Sophie, I thought that I’d still like to give this quilt to her.

Nancy, I hope that you would see this quilt and know that you are dearly loved. I hope it brings you comfort and hope on dark days. I hope that it would remind you often and always of your sweet baby girl. Love you!

Highlights from New York + DC

Visited the sewing/knitting store, Purl in SoHo (and picked up some goodies there!):

Kate’s Paperie

When you walk in, it really feels like you’re being transported into this magical paper wonderland.

I love the emphasis on paper throughout the store – the wedding invitation section featured this wedding gown made out of paper!

Peking duck sold by the piece in Flushing’s Chinatown!

Pain au Chocolat :)
High Line Park

I love the juxtaposition of nature vs. manmade

Yakitori with Jules + Billy

Breakfast at my sister’s in DC

English muffin with poached egg, salami, grated parmesan, truffle oil, and homemade mayo!

Visiting the Capitol building

We tried some “freedom fries” there (that’s where they originated…but they’re back to being called french fries now…).

Good Stuff Eatery (owned by Chef Spike from Top Chef!)

Smithsonian Folklife Festival

Ben’s Chili Bowl – Pres. Obama ate here with the mayor! :)

Crabbing with my sister + Dean in the Chesapeake Bay

After crabbing, we went home and made bun rieu, a Vietnamese crab and tomato noodle soup. Read about how we made it on our food blog!

We had a marvelous time vacationing in New York and DC, and we look forward to spending more time with my sister and her husband when they come visit in a few weeks. :) Can’t wait!

For more pictures from my trip, check out my facebook albums:
New York
Washington D.C.

DIY Paper Garland

I hate throwing things away. Especially pretty things. I have stashes of cute paper bags, boxes, ribbons, and tissue paper all salvaged from gifts and purchases from retail stores. I love to find ways of reusing these items in my craft projects – there’s something about being able to repurpose an item to create a whole new item that makes my insides tingle with delight.

For this project, I repurposed an old paper bag from Paper Source. I loved the colors and the striped pattern on the bag.

I got out my circle craft punches and started punching away.

Afterward, I ran the circles through my sewing machine with random gaps in between. To keep the threads from tangling, I wound them up on a an old cardboard tube.

And when I was ready to use it, I just wrapped it around a gift, and tied it with a bow. :)

*Sorry for the poor lighting. Such is my fate when I work on projects late at night… :/

Martha’s Encyclopedia

This is definitely going to be a must-have! It comes out March 30th, conveniently two days after my birthday. :) Wish I lived in NYC, so I could go to the launch party!

Finally, instead of googling every single thing I try to do, I can find it all one place! And look at these adorable potholders. I must learn how to make them!

A Few of my Favorite Things

Some goodies I received for Christmas this year! Can’t wait to use them all. :)

simple sewing by Lotta Jansdotter from my sis,a hand-knit scarf from my cousin Diana, and a super cool plate in the shape of an artist’s palette from my dear friend Esther! :)

Check out my threads!

I stopped by Goodwill this afternoon and picked up this handy-dandy case for $2 to organize all my threads! I love popping into thrift stores every so often because you never know what hidden treasures you just might find. :)


Did I mention I love organization…especially by color!?

DIY Pillows

Okay, I admit I went a little overboard on this project. I didn’t really need pillows for the wedding, but I couldn’t resist having color-coordinated pillows for the benches during cocktail hour. I thought it brought just that splash of purple that the courtyard needed! :)

I started making pillows far in advance before the wedding. I searched for fabric in bargain bins, clearance aisles, and thrift shops. I even cut up some lavender king-sized pillowcases that I found on clearance, which I was able to re-purpose into eight different pillows!

I was able to make about 90% of each pillow in Arizona – the cutting and measuring of fabric, sewing the sides together, but leaving a small hole to stuff the pillow. The other 10% – stuffing and sewing shut the holes- was left to finish in Boston.

I found this great product called Steam-a-Seam that made finishing the pillows so much easier. It’s basically double-sided adhesive interfacing that comes in a narrow roll. You simply cut off a strip and place it where you want the pieces of fabric to attach. Press the iron over the fabric for 15 seconds and voila! You have an instant seam without picking up a needle or thread! :)

Now that the wedding is over, my pillows now decorate the homes of my favorite girls – my mom, Dean’s mom, my sister and all my bridesmaids. I hope that they will enjoy their pillows and think of me often. :)

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