Saturday, January 28, 2012

Heart Bombing

Day #28
Hearts #44-45

After posting 15 new hearts yesterday, you would think I would take a little break from hearts...but no! 

Rebecca (aka CraftyMamaBee) on Craftster recently found out that a close relative has been diagnosed with cancer.  Rebecca decided to do something similar to the "hope" hearts for Amanda that we did on my other blog (Leslie's Art and Sew) a few months ago--she started crafting a jar of hearts to express her love and hope for healing for her cousin.  I wasn't sure if she wanted help, so I didn't jump in until I heard that Wendie (aka wendiek on Craftster) had sent her some hearts!  At that point I couldn't sit by any longer--I HAD to make her some hearts!  Here they are:

 While reading some posts on Craftster yesterday, I came across another person who said her swap group had sent hearts to two people who needed encouragement; she called it a "heart bombing".  I LOVE that term so much!  I wish I had made it up!!  Having a term like that to apply to this activity makes it seem so...official... in a grass-roots kind of way. 

I'm very happy to be able to add to Rebecca's jar of hearts, and I'm sending good thoughts and prayers to her cousin; I hope she is healthy again soon.

Friday, January 27, 2012

More Good Word Hearts

Day #27
Hearts #29-#43

I have FIFTEEN new hearts to show you today!!  Wow--I'm excited about that!  These are the rest of the series of Good Word Hearts I started last week.

I started by choosing appealing fabrics from my scrap bags.  I was hoping to stay with a tight color palette, but I found that if I wanted to use only scraps, my choices were limited.  So I chose fabrics I liked, and then tried to match the words with the feeling the fabrics gave me...the best match in this group is "joyful"--it really fits that fabric!

Of these three stronger colors, I like the fabric on "forgiving" the best; but I think "industrious" is the best match for its fabric.

Here, I put "soft" words with soft fabrics:

and here, things are kind of random!  I like "hopeful" the best.

I was fortunate to have onegroovyday for my wonderful partner in a recent swap on Craftster.  She made this amazing coiled fabric bowl for me (hi Mindy!).  It's the perfect place to store and display these hearts.  Don't they look awesome all together like this?

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Happy Heart Card #2

Day #22
Heart #28

I'm still excited about Lime Riot's "Follow Your Heart" Valentine cards, so I made two more--they are exactly the same (but different than the one I posted two days ago), so I am counting this heart just once.

This heart has a pin on the back, which makes it more versatile for the receiver.  I took pictures as I made it, and there is a tutorial on my other blog, Leslie's Art and Sew, so you can make one too!

Saturday, January 21, 2012


Day #21
Hearts #26-27

One of my inspiration pictures in December was of a heart-shaped bookmark.  I've been eager to try making some, and I finally had some time for it yesterday.  Here are the two I made:

The hearts are about 5 1/2" long, and the tails (which are made of braided embroidery floss) are about 6 1/2" long.

I used Heat n Bond Lite to adhere the inner heart to the base heart, then machine-stitched around the edge. 

I feel like they could use a little more "something", so next time I will try hand-embroidering a blanket stitch around the edge of the inner heart, like the one in the inspiration photo.  That would give better definition to the edge of the inner heart, and add some color.  But I am happy with these--I love the size, shape, weight and overall look of them.

Since these could be made in any color and with any fabrics, it would be easy to personalize them.  They would be great little gifts--I'm going to keep these in mind!

Friday, January 20, 2012

I Love You, Lime Riot!

Day #20
Heart #25

Oh that lime riot, how did she get to be so cool?  Please, do yourself a favor and take a look at her blog.  Last night, when I saw this post of the Valentine's Day cards she made for the other moderators at Craftster, I alsmost dropped my Godiva chocolate into my peppermint tea!  These cards are SO STINKIN CUTE that I was mad I didn't think of them first.  This is the idea I've been looking for--something new to make as a give-away with my etsy sales, so first thing this morning I rushed to my sewing room and made this:

I didn't copy hers exactly, but used them as inspiration for mine.  The heart is made of two cotton fabrics, and I used good ol' Heat n Bond to "glue" the center heart onto the base.  I did all the sewing on the machine, so it went together very quickly, which is perfect for a freebie.  I LOVE the idea of using baker's twine for the hanger, so the heart can be removed from the card and hung anywhere the recipient wants.  I tied the heart to the card by hand-sewing it with a single thickness of carpet thread (which is very thick and strong), tied in a bow inside the card, so it will be simple to remove the heart from the card.

I am going to make a TON of these!  All you future swap partners of mine, get excited, because you will be getting one of these in your package from me!!!

Thank you, Lime Riot, for your inspiration.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Good Word Hearts

Day #17
Hearts #21-24

As you might imagine, challenging myself to make a heart a day for a year has influenced  my thoughts; I'm always asking myself "what new hearts can I make?" and I clutch at any inspiration that comes my way.  Here's a perfect example:  I found this scrap of fabric in one of my many bags of scraps, and I kept thinking about the little hearts on it:

I wanted to make a bunch of cute little hearts like the ones on this scrap, but to satisfy me, there needed to be a bit more to them.  Inspiration struck me yesterday; I decided that each heart would have one "good word" on it, a word that is either a virtue or associated with a virtue, and that I would make a whole pile of these hearts to fill up a pretty bowl that I have.  It will sit on a table, and perhaps I will randomly pick up a heart or two every day, and use the word or words as my "thought for the day".

These are the first four.  I really struggled with the form each word would take--would one say "kindness" or just "kind"?  "Goodness" or "good"?  I decided to go with the form of each word that would follow the word "be", as in "be kind", "be good"--but I wouldn't include the word "be".  That way, when I pick one up and consider the word, I can put it in a sentence like "Leslie is kind" and use it as an affirmation and a goal for that day.

I used the same heart template I made for the hearts on the grapevine wreath, so each heart is about 3" tall.  Another layer of challenge that I've added to this particular set of hearts is that I want to only use scraps from my scrap bags to make them.

When I get more of these finished, I will show you a picture of them in the bowl I have in mind.  I printed out a list of words I want to use, and I keep thinking of more.  Do you have any suggestions?

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Today's Post is Brought To You by the Letters H and Q

Day #15
Hearts #19 and #20

I have two more alphabet-letter hearts today.  They are both made of cotton fabric and have a felt letter sewn onto them.  I will start with the best one. 

Presenting:  the letter Q!

Somehow, this heart came out perfect!  The shape is symmetrical, the hanging loop is nice and straight, and the letter Q shows up sharply against the bright yellow background.  The fabric is from the package sent to me by my friend Susan with this challenge in mind.  She wishes the question marks were larger, so the fabric would be more useful to her, but for this small heart shape (about 3.5"), it is perfect!  Thanks, Susan!

Now for the letter H.  This picture shows my new technique to make the hanging ribbon come out straight:  I tape it in place before sewing the back and front of the heart together.  After sewing and turning it right-side-out, I simply remove the tape, and the ribbon is nice and straight.  Hooray!

Here's the finished heart.  The curves could be smoother, but it's okay.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Grapevine Wreath

Day #12
Hearts #12-18

I got busy and sewed seven hearts today!  Each one is made from a different Valentine's Day fabric.  I love how bright and happy they all look together!

This one is my favorite, because of the way the white flowers and stems are placed on one side; I didn't plan that, so it was a nice surprise!

Back in December, when I was posting "inspiration" photos on this blog, there was one picture of hearts on a wreath, so I searched for and found  a bare grapevine wreath to purchase on eBay.  It has been waiting patiently for me to do something with it, and today I tied six of my new hearts onto the wreath.  It's a simple decoration that I can change with the seasons, which is perfect for this heart challenge!

It is now enhancing the inside of our front door.  Cute!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Beginning at the End

Day #10
Hearts #10 and #11

I've begun a series of alphabet hearts, and I started with the letter "Z", simply because I saw this great, graphic zebra fabric on the shelf in my sewing room and I knew it was perfect for what I had in mind.

This is a very simple heart.  After fusing some Heat n Bond to a scrap of black fabric, I just cut out the letter Z on my Sizzix, and ironed it onto the heart I had cut out of the zebra fabric.  I added the ribbon loop so I can hang it eventually; I will either use these alphabet hearts to spell out messages on a garland, or maybe just string them in alphabetical order and show them off that way.

This next heart came about in the same random way; I love this pig fabric that Susan sent me (you can see all the fabrics she sent HERE) and I didn't want to forget about it when I got around to the letter "P", so I used it early!  This heart is made simply, like the Z, but I am not happy with this one...the right-hand side has a wonky shape, and the ribbon loop is really crooked...but I know the value of learning from my mistakes, so rather than discard this one, I'm keeping it to look at as I make the rest of the alphabet.

I plan to make extras of most of the letters so I can spell things like "welcome" or "happy birthday", so I will make a better P, sometime in the next month or two!

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Lavender Heart

Day #7
Heart #9

I'm working on some gift hearts for Valentine's Day.  This one is a lavender sachet, filled with lavender buds I bought from Prairie Lavender Farm last summer.  The mailman left the box on the porch, and when I opened the front door, the lavender aroma just about knocked me down! 

Two views of the same heart:

The fabric is cotton, and the flower and leaves are wool felt.  The vine and details are hand-embroidered.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Brand New Cutter Quilt Heart

Day #5
Heart #8

Yesterday on my other blog (Leslie's Art and Sew), I posted about making my own "cutter quilt" fabric to craft with.  This is the heart I made from new materials:

This is the other side; I used the cutter fabric to make a two-sided heart, which will probably turn up in a garland in a doorway eventually, so both sides need to look pretty!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Cutter Quilt Hearts

Day #3
Hearts #3-7

A month or so ago, my friend Diane gifted me with several pieces of old "cutter" quilts for my crafting. Over the past week I've been carefully cutting and sewing hearts from them.  I am careful, because I don't want to waste an inch of these quilts; they are precious to me and I want to preserve as much of them as I can.

This pink square has beautiful hand quilting, and was hand-pieced.

I made two hearts from the section on the lower left.  I didn't want to waste the scraps that came from cutting out the larger heart, so I made the small one too.

Diane sent this small piece that was left after she made two hearts for Amanda

From that scrap I was able to make these two hearts:

This big block has a lot of color; I was drawn to the lower left corner, which is so worn-out that the batting is showing through the fabric

I just made one heart out of this piece, because there weren't any little scraps that needed saving.

This last one is the scrappiest and raggediest of all, but that's what I like about it!

Monday, January 2, 2012

Heart Charm

Day #2
Heart #2

I made this tiny heart to be a charm on one of my scrappy braided fabric bracelets.  Hopefully I will get the bracelet finished today and post it on my other blog tomorrow.  (UPDATE:  the bracelet is now posted HERE.)

This heart is made of purple wool felt, with seed beads for the flower, and cotton embroidery floss for the leaves and the blanket stitch around the edge.

This is the other side (looks pretty much the same!).  I added the jump ring so I can put it on a bracelet.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Let the Challenge Begin!!

Day #1
The day has finally come for me to start this "heart-a-day" challenge!  The name implies that each day I will take time to make one heart, but that's not how it's going to be; I need to let my creativity be my guide, which means that some days I will make one, or two, or five...and other days I will make none.  Posting will be unpredictable too, based on what I have made, but I promise to post something at least once a week, so if you check in here that often, you won't miss anything!

Heart #1
Wool felt, cotton embroidery thread, fiberfil, safety pin.

I took the idea for this heart from this Valentine's Day post at The Purl Bee.  I decided to try the safety pin on the back because the regular jewelry-type pin backs stick out so much that this little heart would always look askew when being worn. 

I must say that it was much more difficult to make than it looks; cutting two hearts exactly the same size with the pinked edges lining up perfectly was not easy!  And I am a perfectionist, so the edges had to line up.

I like the simplicity of just the red felt and green stitching; I wore this a lot during December.  You may see this again in different color combinations in the coming months!