Friday, November 2, 2012

The Holiday's Are Coming!!!

So I know it's been a while since I've posted anything here on the blog, if you haven't done so already be sure to "Like" the Handmade Heart Facebook page.  It's becoming easiest to post quick updates there in a few sentences, rather than taking more time to post here on the blog which often takes longer to write.  I'll still blog here, it's just not always going to have the most up to date info is all.

Anywho!  First of all I've been crazy busy with projects lately! This is great, but mostly they've been personal projects.  I'm making all my holiday gifts this year so that has been a little challenging since I seem to love to bite off more than I can chew sometimes, lol.  Because they are gifts I can't really show you a lot of the progress, but I can show you some.

For instance, remember a few months ago I talked about making a Super Mario Brothers quilt? Well I'm making progress on it.  It's been a slow process since I discovered it really works out best to use an interfacing to keep the small squares lined up correctly and easier to sew.  The problem with this was that the interfacing that I needed was to get enough to make the quilt would be REALLY expensive.  So slowly I've been getting it when it was on sale, or when I had a coupon to help the cost stay down.  I recently got a donation from my family though of two beautiful rolls of the interfacing to help finish the project in time for when I go home to visit so I'm chugging along with that.  Only five more characters to go!!!

I also recently finished a baby gift.  My sisters former college roommate, and her close friend, is pregnant with her second child!  I consider this woman to be my second sister, when I was a preteen and would go and visit my sister in the dorms she never seemed to mind me being there...and it was always fun to have someone else to tease my sister with. ;-)  So naturally I had to make something special for her.  Because of various projects I didn't really have the time to make something totally from scratch before the baby is due in December.  So I found a cute kit that I could easily make and personalize with the baby's name.  She recieved it the other day and seems to love it!  =)

Also recently my sorority held a fundraiser for our foundation.  A painting studio that teaches everyone how to paint the same picture donated some of the studio fees for us being there to the foundation.  It was a great way for me to help a cause I care for, get creative, and socialize with new friends.  Although the painting wasn't really something that I would normally do, I decided that if it turned out too horibably I'd just give it to my parents as a gift.  As parents they have to love everything I make, I think there's a code or something they have to follow.  It's not too bad, but not my best work ever.  Since I have no use for a painting of a wine glass I think I'm still going to give it away as a gift.  It was a fun evening none the less and something I think I will be doing again in the future...maybe my birthday in January? =)

For those of you that know me, you know that I tend to have multiple projects going at once.  Well with the holiday's coming up this means super overdrive, and a LOT or projects going at once.  I'll be posting a lot of fun holiday items on Facebook in the coming weeks, but I also will be working on more gifts (sorry can't show you them yet) and some non-holiday items too.  This is the beginning of a wall hanging I started a few weeks ago.  I have it all pieced now, just have to find the time to quilt and bind it soon.  It's a super fun Dr. Suess's the Lorax piece that I think would be great for a kid of any age.  Hopefully I'll get that done before the holiday's and posted soon.

That's not all either!  I have a list of about 15 different projects I've yet to begin that I want to do!  Somehow I don't think that I'll be bored over the winter!  I finally got a steady job in Colorado, at least through January, so my crafting time is going to have to be better managed, but I'm hoping to get some great things going for the new year!

Saturday, September 1, 2012

The Muppets Run!!!!

Occasionally someone will "gift" me fabric.  Maybe it's something they've found that they are not going to use, or maybe they saw a patterned fabric in the store that they thought was just my style so they got some for me.  Regardless of how it is acquired, in the past 2 years since I began sewing I have gathered quite the stash of odds and ends fabric.  A short while ago my sister found a fabric in the store that reminded her of me, it was The Muppets and I'm a HUGE fan of all things Muppets!  So she picked some up for me and mailed it to me with one condition...I had to use the fabric for myself, not something to sell.  Well she mailed quite a bit of the fabric, and it's been sitting in my stash waiting for the perfect project to be made with it.  This week I found a project for some of it.

I recently had to get a new phone.  This is not something I enjoy doing since I know that I am locked into keeping that phone for the next two years because of cell phone company contracts and inevitably a newer model of the phone I just got will come out within a month of me getting a new phone.  Sometimes though you can't avoid it, and this was one of those times.  So I ended up bringing myself into the 21st century and finally getting an iPhone. (I know, I'm behind the times!)  I've had an iPod for years, and got an iPad last year, so I'm familiar with Apple's operating system and since I already had apps and music from iTunes it only seemed logical to get the phone too.  I discovered one problem with my iPhone though...the cases and armbands I had for my other Apple products didn't fit it and many retailers want well over $50 for a case and $60 for an armband to use when running!!!  I only paid $50 for the phone (deal of the century I know!) I wasn't going to shell out more than I paid for the phone for the case!  So I decided to make something.

It took some trail and error, but I knew that I wanted to make an easy to use case quilted case that would hold my iPhone, but not trap it in bulky packaging.  I also wanted to make an armband that was easy to use as well for when I was out running, but not have to take a case off in order to use the armband.  After searching online for something to purchase (found case and armband for total of $100 that fit the bill, but not the budget!), or make I didn't find much.  Some tutorials that looked promising were flimsy and made me nervous about putting my shiny new phone in.  Others just seemed so complex for no reason!  Finally I decided to wing it, and make up my own pattern.  This is what I came up with.

Simple armband with some chording material, a D-ring, and hook and loop so it's totally adjustable to any arm size.

The case fits the iPhone snugly so it's not bouncing around in it.

A simple button and piece of elastic close the top of the case so that the phone can't be jolted out.

The chording goes through two buttonholes on the back of the case so that it can be removed if I don't want to use the armband, but still have the phone protected in the quilted case.

The four best parts about this project...
1.  It cost me around $3 to make!  The fabric was free from my sister, and roughly estimated the amount of other materials I used add up to slightly more than $3!!!
2.  I have a large (read as fat!) arm, and many armbands out on the market for iPhones and iPods don't fit my arm.  By making my own armband I was able to make it large enough to fit my arm without any problem!
3.  Because this doesn't scream sports armband I can wear this on the days that I am wearing an outfit that doesn't have a pocket for me to put my phone in.  This is a big thing for me since I always like to have my phone on me, and the "put the phone in your bra" trick many women do can be a little awkward when you get a call and are reaching in your cleavage!
4.  Finally my favorite part about this armband and case...THEY'RE WASHABLE!!!!!!!!!!!  Now if the case gets dirty on a run, or if it begins to smell, I can wash it all!!!!

<3 br="br">

Monday, August 6, 2012

Tiny Squares...

So Handmade Heart is in a bit of a lull right now.  I've unfortunately had some people special order things, and then not pay for them.  Frankly as a small business owner, and relying on payment since this is still my only job right now, when someone doesn't pay it affects me a lot!  So I had to create some policies for purchasing, which makes me feel like a bad guy, but when I'm often paying for materials upfront expecting to be compensated after competition and that doesn't happen that leaves me in a bad place.  So what's done is done, please read these policies if you intend to purchase from or commission me.

Now on to the fun stuff!  Right now I only have one special order I need to complete, and it's cards.  I need to get on that, but I've been searching for some inspiration to get me going.  Since I've had some time with the special order board being empty (I don't like this!) I decided to get a head start on making my Holiday gifts for this year.  I'm going to be making a lot of handmade gifts for people this year with things I already have on hand to help keep Holiday costs for me down this year.  In the past I have allowed some costs to get out of control.

The first gift I've begun is going to be for my older sisters boyfriend.  Another blog that I frequent, Cut to Pieces, is having a quilt along I decided to join in on.  The quilt is going to be Super Mario Brothers themed, and since he's a big gamer it seemed perfect for him.  My family is going to chip in and it's going to be a gift from all of us, but I still have to make it!  Yikes!

Everything sounds cool about that right?  Well in theory it was a good idea, now that I've begun, I'm having second thoughts!  The quilt is pieced together with 1.5" x 1.5" blocks so that it looks like all the pixels of the original game.  The problem with that...I have to cut out all the 1.5" blocks, all 3,888 of them!!!!  Once I get that done things should move rather quickly in making it, it's just A LOT of prep work.  So I've been spending my time with the Olympics on in the background, cutting tiny squares.  At least it's moderately mindless.  =)

I also want to begin work on a wall hanging I want to make for a friend having a baby in November.  I found this pattern online and think it's SUPER cute, and that she will love it.  The problem is it isn't a free pattern though, and it's $29.  Personally I think that's a bit steep for a quilt pattern of the size that it is, but it is the designers choice.  I may or may not end up making this particular quilt, but I'd really love to make one with an animal theme rather than the traditional pink for girl, blue for boy, cutesie type of piece.  Mom's not really a cutesie type of woman, lol.  If anyone knows of any alternatives that may be more cost effective for me, please let me know!

So that's been my life right now, prepping gift quilts, and watching the Olympics, lol.  I lead such an exciting life, lol.  =)  <3 br="br">

Wednesday, August 1, 2012


Due to some unfortunate circumstances with multiple customers it has come to my attention that I need to have some set policies in place for the sale of my items, particularly special order items.

Facebook Pre-Made Sales
  • Items placed on Facebook for sale are only for sale through contact with me on Facebook, or through the business email,
  • Items are sold in an "as is" condition and cannot be personalized or changed in any way
  • There are no shipping charges for these items
  • Once the sale is confirmed through Facebook or email contact an invoice will be sent via PayPal to the customers email.  Payment is expected by the due date on the invoice, and if not received by that time the item will be placed back for sale to the general public.
  • Items will not be mailed until payment is fully received!
Special Orders
  • A special order is any item specifically requested by the purchaser that is not currently in an "as is" condition for sale anywhere else Handmade Heart does business.  This includes, items in specific colors, sizes, materials, or personalized.
  • Special orders will require a lot of contact with Handmade Heart either through email, or Facebook to verify the specifics of the project.  Handmade Heart will provide photographs of the project throughout its creation as available to update the buyer on the progress.
  • Special orders will be charged shipping costs, regardless of how you contact Handmade Heart.  Shipping costs vary based on the size of the project and you will be quoted an estimate on this cost.
  • When a customer requests information about a special order an estimate of the cost will be given, this is only an estimate and may change based on availability of materials, and shipping costs.
  • Upon completion final photographs will be sent to you to verify the piece is as expected.  At that time a PayPal invoice will be emailed to you for payment.  If payment is not received by the date on the invoice the piece will be forfeited and placed for sale to the general public.
  • Personalized items such as t-shirt quilts, pieces with names or initials, or pieces with specialized items making sale to the general public more difficult or impossible will require payment before the start of the project!!!
  • Items will not be mailed until payment is fully received!
Etsy Sales
  • All sales on Etsy are subject to their terms and conditions, please refer to their website for more information.
  • All items listed on Etsy are firm prices and will not be changed.

Please note that I am more than willing to work with individuals wishing to purchase more than one piece, or payment plans, but these terms MUST be laid out prior to purchase or creation of their project.

ALL sales will be conducted through PayPal, or in person cash sales.  No personal checks will be accepted.  NO EXCEPTIONS!!!!

For those of you who I didn't need to set these policies down in writing for, Thank You!  Unfortunately a few bad apples can ruin things for everyone.  <3 br="br">

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Crazy Daisy Quilt

Well it took a while, mainly waiting time for the longarm quilter to return it, but the Crazy Daisy Quilt that I began back in May is now finished and up for sale on my Facebook page!

The front of the quilt.

The back is a geometric green pattern that can also be found in some of the square on the front.

A detailed look at the quilt.  The actual quilting is a stipple pattern, and I pieced it using a disappearing 9-patch pattern using 2 charm packs.
Now that this quilting project is complete I have begun several others!  I know I may have a small quilting problem, lol.  While Crazy Daisy was away for a month being quilted I began a twin sized quilt using a friendship braid pattern.  I'm now in the process of choosing a layout and adding sashing to it.  This is my progress so far, but I want to add some more fabric to make it a fuller and longer twin quilt.  I'm thinking some yardage of one of the red patterns would look really good with it.  I'll just have to order it, and wait for it to come in before I can do anymore to this project.  I'm also going to be joining an online quilt along where someone posts a pattern and you can make the pattern and create a quilt at the same time as they are.  The theme for this quilt along?  Super Mario Brothers.  This is going to be a Christmas gift, and I think the recipient is going to flip out when he sees it.  He's a video game junkie.  I've also created my first ever paper pieced pattern myself!  A quilting website that I love is having a contest to make a music themed quilt block, so I decided now was as good a time as any to learn how to make my own pattern.  So I made a Book of Mormon Musical quilt block.  I now have grand plans to create a Musical quilt at some point in time, lol.  So many ideas, so little time!!!

The basic layout I'm playing around with.
What the finished quilt from the Super Mario quilt along will look like! (hopefully, lol)

My Book of Mormon Musical quilt block that I made a paper pieced design and pattern for!
 And don't think that I have neglected other forms of crafting!  Although I'm making a lot of quilts lately I have done some crocheting as well.  I had a special order a few weeks ago for a purple hat and scarf that I finished over the weekend and got mailed out, as well as beginning another round ripple afghan that I'll be giving to a friend as a gift since I have never given her anything I've made and she's been dropping hints for some time, lol.  So no picture of the round ripple afghan till it's done and she has it so that it's a surprise, but here is the hat and scarf.

Ignore the "model", lol.
For the record, I really HATE crocheting hats.  I can do them, but they are a real pain in the butt and not my favorite thing to do.  One of the reasons I began crocheting was that it was something that I could do without a lot of other thought.  I could be watching a movie, and making a blanket at the same time.  Able to give attention to the movie and the blanket without too much stress.  Unfortunately hats make me count...every stitch!  So I have to be able to give my undivided attention to the project which means I get frustrated, and bored, quickly.  So I don't make many hats for this reason, lol.

I haven't gotten into card making in a long time!  I know this is disappointing to some people since those were really the first crafts I shared, but I think I just need to do some other things for a while now that I have some other projects to do.  In the winter I crochet a lot, because you often end up with a lot of the bulk of a project sitting in your lap so doing this in 90 degree weather isn't appealing.  I think in the summer I will sew a lot.  It doesn't have the problem crocheting has where you have the bulk of a project in your lap, and I also know it takes some time to have a longarm quilter quilt my pieces and this is often a slow time for them.  I think card making is an any other time project for me.  In the fall I'll begin to make Holiday cards since there will be a demand for them at that time, but there really aren't a lot of card giving holiday's in the summer, lol.  Who knows, I could also just be in a funk.  =)

No "Big Girl" job yet, so Handmade Heart is still my main focus right now.  Be sure to keep up with me on Facebook since most everything gets posted and talked about there first!  I'll be sure to keep posting what I'm up to.  <3

Monday, July 2, 2012

Farmers Markets?

Hey everybody! Sorry things have been a little sparse lately, the fact is that although I love Handmade Heart I can't survive on the income from this business alone.  So I've had a busy couple of weeks interviewing for jobs and dealing with other of life's many stresses!

I have still been crafting though.  I'm currently working on an order of a crocheted hat and scarf made from some amazing yarn!  I've also been working on some other quilted bags for special orders and just for fun.  Apparently purses are the thing right now, and I'm good with that since they are quick projects for the most part.  I'll be post a few that I have made on Facebook for sale, but there are some on my Etsy business page too so be sure to check both places out if you are interested in a handmade, hand quilted purse.

In other new, I personally love farmers markets!  I think they are a great way to get local, fresh items in your community.  Farmers markets don't seem to be a popular around here for fresh produce, I guess that's mainly because of the limited growing season.  The markets tend to have a lot of local artists and premade goods at them though.  This got me thinking, maybe I should think about a booth at one of these markets to sell some of the items that I have made.  Although I don't have a lot, and I don't think I'd sell a lot of afghans or full quilts (frankly who wants that stuff in the summer!) I do think I could sell some cards, purses, and clothing.  What do you guys think?  Should I consider getting a table for a few weeks?  Let me know!

I'll be sure to keep everyone updated about what I'm making/learning, and know that even when I do get a "big girl" job Handmade Heart will still be very important.  <3

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Paper Piecing

I never was one to start slow.  I was always the kid that ran out into the street without looking, or decide to do the 500 piece puzzle when I knew I could only do the 100 piece one.  Needless to say, I don't like "taking it easy" or "going slow till I learn".  I want to dive right in...and have it all work out perfectly too, lol.

This past week I decided to attempt something new to me with quilting, paper piecing.  Paper piecing is when you literally sew your fabric onto a paper pattern to help you create a more accurate theory.  Technically since I'd never done it before I should have begun easy, you know a simple pattern with a few pieces of fabric that made a diamond or something.  Nope I found a website with really amazing patterns and wanted to make one of them.  Of course these amazing patterns also happen to be really advanced too, lol.

This is what I got though, a Mocking Jay, and for anyone who is a fan of The Hunger Games you'll recognize it...hopefully.  It's not perfect, and I really want to improve on the next one that I do, but I think it's really not all that bad for a first try at paper piecing!

Because this is not a pattern that I created, I can't sell it, or any of the other patterns that I make that I get from this website.  I can give them away as gifts though, and as soon as I posted this image on my personal Facebook, I had several friends ask about getting one for their daughter, or themselves.  So now I know what everyone is getting for the holidays this year! lol

I would like to learn how to make my own paper piecing patterns though, it is something that I could see being very helpful for difficult patterns, and even in basic quilting to be sure all the seam lines line up like they are supposed too.  I've read that there is a computer program called Electric Quilt that will help you design paper piecing patterns, but I need to do some more research on it since the program is over $150, and frankly if I'm going to lay down that amount of money this program better do everything for me but buy the fabric!

In any case, I'll be making a few more Mocking Jay pieces and making them into bags for friends to practice my paper piecing skills.  I'll eventually move on to other patterns though, the website has a whole line of Sesame Street patterns and you know I'm making that quilt for my future children, or nieces, or nephews, or a friends child, okay let's face it the next kid that comes in my life somehow.  =)


Thursday, May 24, 2012

Back with a Vengence!

So I've been a little busy!  Unpacking, organizing, and (finally!!) CRAFTING!!!!!  Okay I cannot convey the depth of my joy as I pulled Veronica (my sewing machine) out of her box and turned her on for the first time in over SEVEN months!!!  I've been a sewing fool ever since then!  Yes I still have a few boxes that need to be unpacked still, and I need to get things in their homes still, but I had to craft for a little while, I mean it has been SEVEN months!!!  I never thought that it would have taken this long to get everything out of storage and set up in a new place again.  Well things happen.

My mom came and visited last week, which was lots of fun, but it also stalled the progress of things a bit.  I'm still trying to get things organized.  Even got a new work table to help, but the fact is that I have a lot more crafty stuff than I thought I did!  I've run across a lot of things I already had made, but didn't sell before I moved.  So be sure to go over to my Facebook page where I'm selling some of them there before I put them up for sale over on Etsy.  There is a load of cute stuff, and I'm finishing more and more every day!

So here is a taste of the things I've found, and a few of the things that I have made recently.  Enjoy and look for a lot more happening soon! <3

Quilted Purse

12-Month Crocheted Baby Pullover

Crocheted Baby Ripple Afghan

Crocheted Baby Color Block Afghan

Baby Sling

Crocheted Car Seat Blanket

Crocheted Hooded Toddler/Baby Afghan

Crocheted Granny Square Scarf

Quilted Purse

Crocheted Round Ripple Afghan

Crocheted Scrappy Granny Afghan

Crocheted Scrappy Granny Afghan

Crocheted Adult Shrug

Quilt Top

Simple Baby Quilt

Tuesday, April 17, 2012


Yes I admit it, I'm a failure for not posting updates in ages! Forgive me!  The good news is that I now have a Facebook page to showcase my crafts, and post items before they go on sale at etsy!  The bad news, I still don't have my craft stuff yet. :-(

It's been a long tough road dealing with movers, and finding out financially how much moving was really going to cost me compared to what I had originally been told.  Beside the point though.  I am for sure getting my stuff delivered the first week of May, so this means craft stuff!!!!!  This and a bed again, make me very excited!!!

I promise when I get it, I will post all kinds of things! Cards, quilts, scrapbook layouts, clothing, paintings, just about everything!  Although I haven't been able to make these items, I have been able to make yarn crafts!  Here are a few examples of what I've been able to make the past few months.  Some are even for sale over on my Facebook page, so be sure to "Like" the page on the information bar on the left of the screen and head over to the page and see what's still there.

Thanks again for all your support guys and gals, and I promise once my stuff arrives there will be so many posts you'll hate me, lol.  <3

12-Month Baby Pullover

Hooded Baby Afghan

Baby Ruffle Afghan

Baby Afghan

Child's Car Seat Blanket

Granny Square Scarf

Pretty Petals Baby Afghan

Friday, February 17, 2012

I Get My Craft Stuff Back!!!!

I get my craft stuff back soon!!!!!  I'm moving to Denver, Colorado March 2nd.  I don't have a job or place to live yet, but I'm going to make it work since I know I am supposed to be there.  All this is great, but the big thing is, I get my craft stuff back and out of storage!!!!!  This might make me more happy than actually moving there, lol.  It will take me a little while to get settled, and to get my studio set up again.  Once I do though, look out!

In the mean time, if you are on Facebook be sure to check out my page and "like" it.  I'm posting my crafts there before I post them to Etsy at a reduced rate, and no shipping.  Right now it's only crocheting since that's what I've had available to me here, but once my studio is set up again I'll be sure to post all the different crafts that I do!  Visit

Can't wait to start posing all kinds of things again soon!!!! =)