Monday, December 10, 2018

Christmas Vid-mas

Somehow it's turned into an unintended decorating palooza around here...feels like all I've shared recently are decor oriented posts. But this stuff is fun for me to document- I like being able to look back on how our spaces changed (or didn't) over the years. And a Christmas tour has been a tradition on some level since the early days of Bowdenisms. I don't share every year (it'd be pretty redundant sometimes...) I did it up big for our first Christmas in Columbus, but then didn't share another full photo tour until last year (mostly it was more of the same in between there...just amassing more and more trees over time). And if you go way back- I shared what Christmas looked like in the early days: 2008, 2010, 2012).

I sort of flip flop between totally LOVING decorating for Christmas, and not wanting anything to do with it. Back in my retail days I was super scrooge-y, but after setting up 10 jillion trees for work before it was even Labor Day, I wasn't exactly eager to do it all again on a personal level. Since then things have balanced out a little, and I've gotten back into the spirit. A few years I've actually (admittedly) gone a little overboard...I got a little carried away when we first moved in- moving into a new house had me all sorts of inspired, so I dressed this place from top to bottom. Then last year we had our foster girls, so I wanted to make Christmas SO SPECIAL for all of the kids.

This year I've landed back in the middle somewhere. I'm super excited for Christmas, and can't wait to do all the activities, eat all the snacks and make all the crafts, (as you know...Christmas is basically my Halloween) but I don't necessarily feel the pressure to go all out with the decor part of things. That might sound silly coming from someone who has set up 7 trees this year, but "how much is too much?" is pretty subjective. Basically, I'm putting up anything that makes me super happy (trees! Christmas cards! lights! more trees!) and skipping anything that feels like more work than it's worth (greenery...and...um...figurines?)

We normally use Thanksgiving weekend as our decorating time, but it was super early this year and I thought it would be nice to have a bit more of a break between the madness of Halloween and the chaos of Christmas. So I thought I'd wait until December to decorate  But then...about five minutes into Black Friday, I realized three day weekends don't come around often, so if we wanted to get things done, this was probably our time. I still thought we'd wait to get our (real) tree until later in the season. But then...we had a Sunday with no plans and the world's most perfect weather, so we just went for it. ("Get while the getting's good" tends to be my motto with children).

So...that's how I found my house fully (but not FULLY) decorated for Christmas by November 25. Wasn't the plan, exactly, but I'm loving it. We've had Christmas music playing pretty much non-stop since then, and I've already burned some pretty big puddles in my evergreen candles. It's good stuff.

As for the tour- honestly, not a lot has changed since last year, so instead of sharing a bunch of nearly identical photos, I thought it would be fun to do a quick (relatively speaking...nothing is ever actually quick with me) video tour instead. This way you get a sense of the space, some of the "color commentary" on different things, and a couple cameos of my kids being wildly unsupervised 

I give you: The Bowden Home: Christmas, 2018

Sharing Christmas- 2018 from Courtney Bowden on Vimeo.

And now, a couple of notes for posterity- really just for me to look back and fact check myself when I'm setting things up next year:
  • I had to rewire my beloved silver tree after two strands went out (and no amount of replacing fuses was fixing it). It took two trips to the store because I underestimated the number of lights needed (Christmas lights follow the military mantra "two is one and one is none", which just means I've learned to buy twice as many as I think I'll need, and it will always be just barely enough). At Home (the worst name for the BEST store) no longer sells this tree or my other "favorite" (they're all my favorite) gold tree, so I've been trying to be a little more conservative with how much I use them. That is to say, I keep them on only about 18 hours a day instead of my preferred 24.
  • The aforementioned "7 trees" are as follows: Bedrooms: 1-4, Kitchen, Living room (our only live one), and a modern one without lights in the bathroom. That one isn't shown in the tour, but is a lovely little silver number that wiggles and shines whenever the kids mess with it. Which is always.
  • We keep it simple outside, and just do a wreath with white lights on each of our 3 main windows, 1 over garage, plus a red and a green spotlight. But after years of being on the fence on these tacky/awesome light projectors, I've determined I'm totally in the market for a snowflake version, so we'll see if that gets added to the mix in the next few weeks. I did had to rewire one of the wreaths- which I'm nearly sure is the second one in two years. I should probably spring for LED strands so I don't have to keep up this song and dance every year, but to get them to match I'd have to rewire all 4....so...no thanks. 
  • I am trying really really (really) hard not to buy any more decorations, and for the most part I'm staying strong- unless you count the glass food-shaped ornaments that keep finding their way into my cart on regular errands. (New on my kitchen tree: a taco, burger, french fries, popcorn and pizza. Also a flying pig, which isn't edible, but still delicious in her own way). 
  • I'm also rendered completely powerless by Christmas books and tiny priceless-artsy-memory-making-but-will-want-to-throw-away-nearly-immediately-upon-completion crafts. So....those are filling any of the void left by my lack of garland. And then some. (This is technically supposed to be a note to future me, to explain that we're all set, and I need to chillllll, but if I know anything about future me, I know that she's not prone to listening to that kind of fun-killing sensible advice, so...yay books!)
Once I get going here, I kinda can't stop, so I'll force the wrap up here, and just say that if you want to see more...COME OVER! It's a cluttered-up, loved-in, wonderland of beauty and nonsense, and we are so very blessed to have it.

OH- and while we're getting all multi-media with things, here are a few of the playlists and songs we've had on rotation year:

My go-tos: 
Acoustic Christmas (so much goodness. The Oh Hellos. The Civil Wars. Other great bands that start with The) 
Christmas Songs (a pretty standard pop playlist that is picking up where my expired Pandora subscription station left off)
Branches- Songs for Christmas (gimme banjo all day)
A Johnnyswim Christmas (because I don't say #goalz but if I did, they'd earn it) 
What a Glorious Night (One of the songs from our kids' Christmas programs that I just CAN'T STOP SINGING!)
Olaf's Frozen Adventure Soundtrack (I forgot this was a thing and legit squealed in delight when I stumbled upon it again this year)

Some new mixes I found by @BevCooks (full of non-traditional awesomeness)
Twinkline Tinsel and Evergreen Mix
Cookies and Milk and 'You Serious, Clark?' Mix


P.s. For all things merry, check out all of our posts of Christmases past here on the blog, or on Instagram: #bowdenschristmas. And if you're here for the quality film making (sarcasm emoji!)- you can catch up on our other videos on Vimeo.

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Thursday, December 6, 2018

A Little Update for a Big Boy

Well, try as I might...it turns out I couldn't keep my sweet baby from growing up into a (still sweet) little boy. And as much as I didn't love it, it recently became time for me to face the fact that he wasn't going to be a tiny nugget sleeping in a crib forever. Truth be told, he was still happy as a clam in is "fib" (as he calls it), so I wasn't in a hurry to move him, but once he was potty trained it felt like a toddler bed was the right next step. And so off came the bars...and in came the design dilemmas.

You see, nothing is simple with me (I know this...I admit this...I cannot change this...) so updating Miller's bed quickly evolved into a "need" for a complete room overhaul. Home decor tends to have a bit of a domino effect (or maybe a "Give a Mouse a Cookie" effect- a.k.a. how a leaky bathroom in our old house turned into a full kitchen renovation) with me, so one minute I'm changing out his crib wall for a side rail, and then next, Dustin is trying to talk me out of swapping out all the furniture on the second floor.

After a bit of discussion (and some over-dramatic tears over "MY BAYBEEE") we agreed that it didn't actually make much sense to change everything in Miller's nursery to fit his updated needs. The smarter plan would be to move Miller into the other bedroom; it's bigger, has a dresser (vs. a makeshift changing table) and can accommodate a twin bed easier (when the time comes). But I was hesitant over the shift because I was trying to keep the foster room intact...partly because I just love it but also because it had been designed and put together for such a specific purpose. When we transitioned it from the guest room, I did it with intentions and visions of the kiddos who would use it...it felt strange to change that up and plop Miller in there.

I know that might not make sense to most people...a room is a room, and a nursery is a nursery, right? But that's just not how I see it. Rooms for me are so specific to those who will inhabit them. Even when the occupant is still a bit of an unknown. I don't always have the luxury of planning a full custom bedroom for each of my babies (Piper- absolutely! Fin...ummm...sorry sweetie...) but regardless of scale, in some form or fashion I put my heart into the details of their spaces, and those touches make those rooms so meaningful to me. So Miller's nursery may not have been a perfect vision come to life- but it was his. It was hard for me to wrap my heart around the swaps even though my head knew they made sense.

But sooner than later, my practical side (+Dustin) won out over my sentimental side, and I got on board with the "Trading Spaces" plan. But you know I couldn't just toss him in there and call it done. No no no no no. Sure, by design, the foster room was neutral enough to work for a boy or a girl in a pretty wide age range, but now that it would specifically function for this particular boy, I wanted to make some tweaks to make it more personalized to him.

But before I get 2,000 (more) words deep on the specifics, let me unveil the update.



Ta-da!!
It’s a pretty small space and a little awkwardly shaped, so it's tough to really capture the full vibe in photos...but hopefully you're getting it? The room has already had about four different iterations in as many years, and working with mostly existing pieces made it challenging for it not to feel like a hodge-podge of things that were just cobbled together based on necessity or availability. But after some real uncertain moments (and massive amounts of overthinking things, as always) I really love how it turned out. To me it feels like a kid's room that could have existed in the 1960's. Minimal, but rich...simple and just enough "boy" while still having a bit of sophistication. I love that it can grow with him too...nothing is too juvenile, and it has a lot of potential to add and change things over the years based on his interests or needs.


 
I’m an overthinker for sure, but I’m also a girl of quick action, so once we moved Miller’s bed in there, the rest of the transformation happened in the matter of a week or two. I didn’t want to rush into decisions, but I also didn’t want things to linger on and remain half-done forever (I’ve got enough of those spaces in my house already!) I know that it doesn’t have to be 100% perfect, and no room is ever truly “done” but I wanted to make a few quick changes to get it close enough, so it didn’t feel like he was in hand-me-down limbo. Plus, if we are going to welcome any more foster kids (yes, we’re back “on the list” open to placements…more on that later!) I knew I wouldn’t ever have more time than I do now, so it seemed wise to just go after it while I can!

The vast majority of the space was untouched. We didn't change the paint color, and kept most of the furniture/accessories (including the built-in desk + shelves, obviously). My main goal in the revamp was to make it a little more masculine, which mostly meant we needed to swap out the rug and the artwork for something a little less fluffy and a little less...purple-y. But then as I started to tweak things, the room began to feel less "neutral" and more "stark", so I knew I had to find a way to inject a bit more color and texture.

So that’s where I started, but before I could really plunge into purchasing stuff, I had to determine the theme for the room. I didn’t want an obvious- You Must Really Love P.J. Masks kind of theme (no shade if that's your thing!) but for kids' rooms especially I think it's fun to have at least a loose "tie that binds"...a few common elements that repeat and play off of each other. I debated a few different directions based on Miller's current interests, but also didn't want to hinge everything on his fav de jour (and end up with a You Must Have Really Loved P.J. Masks At One Point type of room). We considered superheroes, animals, Star Wars, travel... before eventually landing on sports. Specifically classic sports, with a mid-century aesthetic, and a retro twist incorporating classic books and toys. You get it? Kinda? I didn’t pull together inspiration in advance, but if I had, it would have included lots of navy blue, washed jersey knits, touches of sleek gold, rich wood tones, and bright- but well worn- graphics. In my head, I wanted a classic “snips and snails and puppy dog tails” kind of feel- with alphabet blocks, trucks, illustrations, balls, and any other “thing that makes boys happy” element piling in to create an easy-to-live-in spot for our little guy.

I knew I wanted to keep the collection of square frames (which previously housed my grandmother's antique scarves) so I thought t-shirts would be an easy (and cheap) swap out. And as much as I loved the hanging “pocket watch” of my grandpa’s, that focal wall needed a little bit more color and punch, so I landed on three big frames to house some more graphics. I took a couple trips to Once Upon a Child and bought every t-shirt I thought might have potential (wading through more cocky slogan T’s than I thought could possibly exist. What in the world are we teaching our boys with the “prepare to be humbled” messages we’re emblazing on their neon jerseys? Another topic for another day...). So after a lengthy sorting/sifting/evaluating process, I landed on my top picks.

Again- it was important to me to keep the theme somewhat subtle, so while the art is all sports related, I avoided adding other overtly sporty pieces to the rest of the room. Previously I had beige curtains, which felt nice and soft in a nursery, but weren’t quite right for a little boy’s room, so I brought in some blue options, eventually landing on a printed version.



I tried and tried to get a large rug to work in the space (I fell in love with one from Ikea), but for a variety of (very boring) reasons, it wasn't going to happen. Rooms based around a crib have a lot of floor space, so it feels necessary to fill that up with color and texture, but eventually we'll have a twin bed in here, so that need won’t be as great. I didn’t want to spend a lot of money on a solve that likely won’t be needed later, so I made a compromise on a small ($5!) rug just to ground the space a bit for the time being. When we do upgrade to a twin sized bed, that will cut down on the visible real estate of this way-past-its-prime carpet, and the bedding will have more impact as well. (I've already got plans in the works for a big quilt when we make that transition and I’m so excited about how that will add another layer of pattern and personality to the space.) The twin bed frame we select could make a difference too- I'm thinking something like this daybed...it has a trundle for sleepovers!...but I'm getting a little ahead of myself.


After the art and curtains were in place, I just did a few quick rotations of some décor items, and called it “done”. It’s been a few weeks now, and it’s a little less photogenic, and a little more lived-in, as we’ve added some of his toys (so that he’ll actually like being in the space his mom cares so much about) and necessities like a hamper, etc. (And now, we’ve also decorated his room for Christmas- tour of that coming soon- which is making me fall even more in love with it! Maybe an “evergreen tree” could be a part of the permanent décor?)




Oh- and of course all the switch-ups meant there were a few little tweaks to Miller’s old nursery, to get it ready for a potential new placement. We officially opened our home back up about a month ago, but have only received one call so far. We’re on the list for only one kid at a time now (as much as I have a heart for sibling sets, it’s just not logistically realistic for our family right now) ages 0-2 (to preserve birth order with our other kids). That’s quite a shift from being open to up to 2 kids, ages 0-5, so I’m not shocked that we haven’t been flooded with calls this time...but it is still hard and a little confusing to wait, especially when we know the need is so great. But whenever the time is right, we’ve got a sweet little room prepared..

The changes we made in here are super minor...it's really just swapping some decorations around (removing anything specifically "Miller" oriented, in favor of neutral messages and items). All of the furniture and art stayed as is, but we added the rug.





So there you have the saga and the triumph of my latest decorating adventure. I cared more than I should have (which will likely be my auto-biography subtitle someday) but I'm not sorry in the least (potential sub-subtitle). I now have a boy far less squishy than I'd prefer, but he's got a super duper cute room to keep growing in, and that's a small win in the fight against his ever-increasing lankiness and general grown-up-itude.

Sources: 
Many of these are listed in the original post about the foster room, but here's the updated list:
Curtains: Hobby Lobby
Rug: Five Below (seriously!)
Crib: Amazon (can't rave about these enough...we have three!)
Toddler bed rail: Amazon (Purchased after a near disastrous crib to bed transition with Piper)
Faux wood frames: Michael's
Storage bench: old Ikea
Baseball art: Homegoods
Ok to wake clock: Amazon
Stuffed friends: Sadly, his favs are discontinued (fear not...I purchased a backup "Blue Jelly" on ebay and it's hiding in his closet in case of emergency), but similar here: Pillow Pet, Jellycat dog, (his Jellycat bunny "Peanut" is still available)
White album frames: Urban Outfitters
Handmade: Globe pillow, quilt 
Vintage/second hand: Suitcases, blocks, dresser, chair, chalkboard, t-shirts turned art
Old target stuff: Lamp, drawer pulls, whale, Grey felt bins, white dog bank, yellow pillow

P.s. If you still can't get enough home-related fun, check out all of our house posts/tours here on the blog, or on Instagram: #houseofbowden
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Monday, November 26, 2018

Ma'am Cave

I've done my fair share of home decor blogging over the years (wanna catch up?)...but one space that tends to stay out of the limelight is our trash heap, dungeon, really-super-duper-long-term-storage-unit, real-life hoarders application, hobby time capsule, collection of unopened moving boxes circa 2014, room that time forgot. 

I mean: basement.

It pretty much goes without saying why I haven't wanted to show off our lower level, as it's been filled with junk for the better part of 4 years. It's actually a really great space, but we haven't been doing it justice...instead we've chosen to just chuck things down the stairs and forget about them indefinitely.
Screenshot from a 2015 video tour... The leaning tower of boxes, steadied by a cobweb-encrusted elliptical machine is a nice touch, no?

But, I am happy to report, that after many, many months of sporadic fits and starts of organization, purging, and rearranging, this spot is finally usable. Nay- LOVELY.  

The main portion of the room has been transformed into a proper living space (including a TV, because: priorities), we've got craft/decor/gift storage galore, a fully stocked bar, and the BEST part: a new sewing station. This means I don't have to lug my sewing machine and supplies upstairs any time I want to whip something up...and this also means the rest of the family doesn't have to find somewhere else to eat for three months while my quilt projects commandeer the dining table. (don't guilt me...makers gotta make!)

For little more than the price of a few new pieces of furniture, and several jillion hours sorting through every photo/card/dental record I have from the last 34 years, this place has been totally transformed. The basement has gone from total embarrassment, to truly one of my favorite places in the house. Yes, it's still a hodge-podge of stuff; and sure, it's one room trying to serve about 8 different functions; and of course, we kept some unused exercise equipment in the mix for old times sake...but all things considered, it's really quite lovely.

But don't take my word for it... Take my....video word for it.
(Is a 9 minute tour of an approximately 300 square foot space too self-indulgent? Probably. But if I cared about such things, I wouldn't have a blog, now would I?)

Here's everything you ever wanted to know-and so much more- about the Bowden's subterranean life: 



PLUS a few (too many) pics for your Pinning pleasure. Jkjkjkjk....but I did want to give you the option for a quick scroll if that's your thing. I'll save you additional lengthy descriptions of it all, and at least acknowledge that I realize any bragging I do is completely silly because we've really just barely reached "adulting" status with this makeover. But dangit, it's been a long time coming, so forgive my inability/refusal to have any chill at all.

IT'S JUST SO FRESH AND SO CLEAN:


























And thus concludes The Beginner's Guide to Basement Organization (subtitle: How to Carelessly Neglect + Revive Your Space To Baseline Livability in Under 60 Months)

But now my question is... what are we going to call this revamped wonderland of loungey/crafty/boozy magic? It's an equal opportunity space for sure (there are Eagles posters, after all...and a whole lotta bourbon I'll never touch...oh- and of course- Dustin's beat lab!) but 90% of the contents are mine (the perils of being the sentimental one of the family), so I'm having fun with a girlie take on the "man cave" concept. Ma'am Cave is my top contender, but Lady Lair and The Femme Den are also solid options. In any case...it's finally ready for it's close up...and some visitors. Stop by and I'll pour you a drink, flip on some Real Housewives, and maybe even hot-glue something!

Sources: 
Practically everything in this space was already built in by the previous owner, or a second-hand or Homegoods-type find that I've been rotating in different spaces in my house for years so I don't have many shareable links (I know, I KNOW you're wondering things like- where I did I get that super-unique, super-glued ceramic tray that will never again match its partner? But alas- you have to find that in the Target bargain bin and then drop it in your driveway ten minutes later to get that custom shattered look YOURSELF. I can only help so much, here people!) But here are a couple of new-ish specifics:

  • Large Storage Cabinets: Ikea...I can't remember what item, specifically, but I think it might be the barest-bones version of the Pax wardrobe, with doors we painted white, and shelves made from particle board.
  • Sleeper Sofa: Ikea Friheten. Love it so much...can't beat it for the price. Highly recommend.
  • Bar Shelving: Ikea Ekby Jarpen shelves and Ekby Bjarnum brackets. In typical Ikea fashion, this required two trips and a return, just to get all the correct + compatible pieces, but it ended up working out perfectly. (if you're curious- it's the 7.5" deep versions, not the 11", and they have to be the 1" thick version to fit in the brackets. DO NOT ASK ME HOW I KNOW ALL THIS.)
  • Expandable console table: Holly & Martin This is everything I've ever dreamed of and more and has LITERALLY CHANGED MY LIFE AND THE LIVES OF THOSE AROUND ME. There are no words dramatic enough for how much I adore this table, and honestly, I showed great restraint in not just filming nine straight minutes of me making heart eyes at it. It is simple and perfect, and everyone deserves to feel this way about something even just once in their life. When you find your equivalent of an expandable-sewing-table level love, I urge you to latch on and never let go.
P.s. If you still can't get enough home-related fun, check out all of our house posts/tours here on the blog, or on Instagram: #houseofbowden. Or if you just love the sound of my voice (with occasional cameos in our crazy-fragmented mirror) you can catch up on our videos on Vimeo.

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Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Sew, baby!

Well, I haven't been doing a lot of blogging lately, but that doesn't mean things haven't been busy around here. I've actually got a pretty big update to share, and it's all about making babies... 

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BABY QUILTS!

yaaaaaaaaaaay!



The last quilt I made was a BIG endeavor, so after that one I took a BIG break. But then my sister got pregnant, and I knew I had to come out of semi-retirement to wrap that little bundle up properly. 

With every quilt I do (you can see them all on the blog, or via #bowdenismsews) I aim to try something new. And this time I tried.... KEEPING IT SO SIMPLE. That is basically the opposite of all of my instincts, so it was ironically, pretty hard. I am much more adept at being overly ambitious, complicating every detail, going about it all the most difficult way imaginable, and getting myself in WAY over my head with visions that don't match my skill level. 

But not this time! I had an adorable pin as inspiration...and that was it! I was off to the races. 
Yes, I spent at least an hour at JOANN torturing my mom/shopping assistant with endless hemming and hawing over fabric selection, but that's to be expected, right? She found the adorable backing fabric, and I settled on the two purple florals to serve as my "gingham" squares. 

But before I blather on too much (more) about the details of it all....let's just look at her for a minute: 




:overenthusiastic singing: 
Isn't she lovvvvvvely....made from love.



I started this quilt about a week before my sister's baby shower, so time was of the essence. The good news is...simple means fast (well...fast-ish...I'm still no speed demon with these things). I followed SuzyQuilt's chain piecing tutorial, which made sewing the squares together quick and easy. 

I've never made a quilt with a one-piece back before, but I thought it was a good fit for this quilt top (keep it classic, and classy). Plus my new niece's room has a woodland animal theme so featuring this little forest scene felt perfect. 

I had so much fun making this little piece. It was nice to do a simple pattern. Usually I love the planning part of the process, but it was honestly relaxing to just sew. I didn't have to agonize over measurements,or double check everything was working out how I imagined. There was no troubleshooting or forced improvising. I just sat down each night at my machine, popped my ear buds in, and stitched and podcast-binged my heart out. And of course it didn't all turn out perfectly (don't zoom in too closely where all of the corners meet up..or don't, quite...) and I still had my fair share of stitching re-do's and tension issues (mechanical, not emotional) but when all was said and done...I was proud of my hard work and in love with what I made. (Hey...it IS just like having a baby!)

So you know what had to happen next, right? Yep, Violet needed a little quilted sister. Meet Rose.




Practically twins! 

This one was for a friend of mine...I used the same adorable backing fabric but paired it with a pink/red liberty floral top. After finishing up the first one (and learning a thing or two), this version went even a little bit faster. That wasn't necessarily my goal, but is such a satisfying feeling to whip these up from scratch in just a few days. (If that's how pregnancy worked I'd have a lot fewer baby quilts, and a lot more babies). 

I did my own quilting on all of these (baby quits are small enough to be easily managed on my home machine), and I kept that simple too- just doing straight lines on either side of all of the seams. (I use the word "straight" loosely, of course). 

I love how simple they are..but so snuggly, soft, and pretty. (You know...just like babies!)



And now that I had two little lady quilts....you know what I had to do next...


Yep, give them a little brother. 


Isn't he the handsomest?!

This one was a birthday gift for my best friend's one year old. I coulda, woulda, shoulda made him a baby quilt for his actual birth, but sometimes sewing + life just doesn't work out like that. So I poured my love into it now, and tried to make my fabric choices extra-manly to please the sweet little guy he's becoming. I don't think he'll mind the delay...especially when he's all cozied up and sleeping.

(that stuffed globe is a project I did before Piper was born- or around that time at least, my brain is a little foggy that far back. Would you believe I've had the pieces for 2 more of these cut out and ready all these years, and I just haven't gotten to it? That someday pile just keeps growing...)

I tried something different for this one, still using the gingham pattern, but mixing in different fabrics. I chose about 3 fabrics for the dark blue (using the backer fabric for some of it, to bring it all together), 2 fabrics for the white (one plain, one with tiny white dots) and a big mix of things for the grey. It was extra special to me that I got to use some scraps I had from previous quilts, so his has pieces in common with my kids' quilts.


I chose a pop color for the binding (coordinated with the detail on the backer fabric) to keep it from being too serious.  (I always use Cluck Cluck Sew's machine binding tutorial) I was a little nervous about that choice, but when it all came together I was smitten.


And did you see that little sneak detail in the corner...


Aw, yeah...I'm legit now, baby. Real deal personalized tags!! My girl Carrie from Mission Market Co. answered my late night "Can we make these?!" texts with some professional level beauty!
They are better than I even dreamed, and now I want to make 10,000 more quilts just to be able to add these little labels. (Seriously, Carrie is next level with all things lettering/craft related...and she does custom orders for just about anything you can imagine.)



So there is the story of The Bowden Triplets. I crafted them with my whole heart, and now my beloved babies are off to their forever homes...The good news is I think making someone a quilt translates to a lifetime right to free snuggles, so I think my efforts are going to be well rewarded.

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(Psst: If you're into the details, each quilt is 8 squares wide and 11 squares long, and uses 24 squares of the dark color, 44 squares of the medium color and 20 squares of the white. My squares were cut to 4.5", and I used .25" seam allowances, so they were all finished at 4". It ends up around 32" x 44". This works perfectly with precut batting (around 34" x 45"). I wasn't too strict on my math when I was buying fabric, so I ended up with more than I needed, so I don't have a yardage guide to share...if you think it through just a little you should end up in a better spot than I did. The backer piece can just be cut to around 48" though, which gives you a tiny bit to play with, and very little waste. You'll need about 4.5 yds of binding- I used two 3yd packs of double fold bias tape. All supplies are from JOANN). 
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