I roared you into the world, my son, named for kings and princes among men, named for family and strength and influence. We heard your name whispered by heaven’s messengers. You are the word for our world – stewardship, guardianship, the one who replaces old with new.

It was a new thing bringing you into the world.

I labored at home, in and out of warm waters, relying on your father for strength. And you came within 18 hours. (Eighteen – chai – the numerical value of the Hebrew word “life”.)

By 1 pm, the midwives were checking. Family was waiting. Nurses were ready. By 1:45 we were talking with doctors in the course of active labor. Then I was on my feet, leaning over a bed, and I felt you come on, and your waters burst. Climbing like an animal, I screamed from my cells, what my DNA produced from a fundamental place. I roared. I wailed. I became what I already was.

Transition. I learned later that when the waters broke, your head shifted down, suddenly locked in, fully committed, and here you came. But we were still a walk – or a run – away, and they were talking, they said a room was now ready. They made the call. I bellowed down my body, and we barreled through the hallways, past staff and elderly onlookers. The doula’s voice rang reassuring in my ears, “I’m still here!”

Then bright lights and a fresh bed, and my knees up and pushing. They said you were “at three” – you were nearly among us. So I roared.

Ten minutes, they told me later. Ten minutes of pushing. I saw you emerging, through glasses unfogged, a sign and a wonder, the embodiment of our determination. You’d come through it so quickly – once, twice, thrice was all I could remember. You were wet and alive on my deflating belly. And you sprayed as you cried, and the midwife caught it, one last fountain of your broken waters.

You were hungry. You were perfect. You were oozing with life. You personified every hard-won grace-growth of family and mothering.

And I was amazed, and your father amazed, and the angels attending stood in celebration and wonder. And Father sang your song, my son, called you by name, named the battles you’ve won. You are His favorite song.

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So it’s no surprise I haven’t written for awhile. There are two main reasons for this:  first, Instagram. Second, life stage.

I still love sewing, quilting, creating, and connecting, but writing blog posts doesn’t make much sense anymore. Instagram, however, is efficient and effective. As I’ve always been a fan of photo-heavy blogs anyway, my “professional” @walkingwithfeathers account has replaced blogging for me. Thankfully, you can look up public accounts online, even without the app. Find me through this link:  https://www.instagram.com/walkingwithfeathers/

As I write, my second child is snoozing on my lap. My two-year-old is out with my husband running errands in the new area of town where we just bought our first house. This is a whole new stage of life! And I’d rather spend my precious few minutes of free time quilting or creating than writing about it.

I will keep this blog up. It’s nice having a landing pad on the internet for a bit of prose or philosophy now and again (birth stories, for example). But my creativity will predominantly be documented over on Instagram.

I’ve enjoyed the blogging community and the growth it has afforded me! I hope to keep connected with y’all, no matter the platform!

Blessings until then!

What does a quilter do when she gets invited to a baby shower just a few weeks away?

She reads the registry and improvises!


My friends chose not to learn their baby’s gender, so my gifts had to be husband-approved for a boy and sweet enough for a girl. These bandana-style bibs are so popular these days that I came up with a simple pattern and sized it on my toddler. I backed them in a flannel shirt, and I made sure they are adjustable without tricky snaps or Velcro.

And the front fabrics match…


A pair of pairs of baby pants! These are based on a pattern from Anna Maria Horner’s book Handmade Beginnings which, thankfully, is often in our local library. My husband suggested a little patch of contrasting fabric which I think turned out quite sweet!

And finally…


I didn’t have time to piece an elaborate kitty softie for the baby, but thankfully I had a panel from the Cotton + Steel line From Porto with Love, which includes a perfect little kitten ready to be sewn and stuffed. Mine I filled with cotton batting scraps and teeny fabric shavings, part of my effort to reduce textile waste.

Baby is due late this summer, and I can’t wait to see if it’s a boy or a girl! Hopefully these gifts will help him or her feel welcome no matter what!

My rodeo-riding cousin married the cowboy of her dreams, and I made a little wedding gift for the occasion!


Their style is very Western-inspired, so I took that as a jumping-off point. I’ve held tight onto my Alison Glass prints for awhile, but the colors and motifs in her original Handcrafted line seemed perfect for the occasion, letting the fabric do the talking. Variegated thread for quilting and a zipper back later and we were done! Blessings to the newlyweds for a long and happy life together!

Reinventing the wheel I am sure I am not, but when on a whim I decided to whip up a breezy maternity skirt, I thought I’d document the process! Bonus:  materials sourced from thrift stores and friends’ cast-asides. Extra bonus:  it didn’t take more than an hour to make, and that includes wrestling a toddler out of every photo!

Materials:

  • XXL men’s dress shirt
  • Tee shirt that would fit you pre-pregnancy (you want a fitted but stretchy waistband)
  • Thread, sewing machine, pins, measuring tape, mirror 

Let’s begin!

  1. Measure your men’s shirt from the bottom of the armhole to the hem. Then hold up the measuring tape to the bottom of your belly. Make sure you’re comfortable with a skirt that length!
  2. Measure your hips around the widest point and compare to the width of the shirt beneath the armholes. Make sure you have several extra inches of shirt width for comfy gathers! Cut off the bottom of the shirt. 
  3. Decide how thick a waistband you want. I wanted mine to ride under my belly, so I opted for about 3.5-4 inches wide. If you want your waistband to cover your belly, adjust accordingly, making sure to include about half an inch for seam allowance. Cut off the bottom of the tee shirt. Adjust the circumference to fit comfortably – still a bit stretchy but tight enough to hold up the skirt. 
  4. With right sides together and cut edges together, pin the heck out of the waistband to the skirt. Stretch the waistband as you go around. Use every pin in your pincushion! Ha! Note:  the bottom hem of the tee shirt will be the top of the waistband. 
  5. Sew using a half inch seam allowance, stretching the waistband as you go. I zigzagged around afterwards just to be thorough – and because my machine doesn’t do fancy stitches for knits (no shame!) 
  6. Turn the waistband up and topstitch the band, catching all layers of the seam beneath and stretching as need be. (This part is optional, but I like the finish.) 
  7. Try on your skirt, adjust the fit if need be, and rejoice in one more way to go pantsless in your summer pregnancy! 

Closing thoughts:  if you are concerned about modesty, you can stitch the placket so the buttons will stay put. Also, I’d recommend doing a better job than I did matching the tee to the shirt! I intend the waistband not to show, so it won’t matter much, but the mismatch limits the style choices, perhaps? On the plus side, I used what I had already, so that’s a win!

Questions? Thoughts? Comments? Thanks for your interest, and happy preggy sewing!

I am so thankful for my community. We are among five families with children around the same age, with new babies coming every so often (our turn is next!) The fun part for me is making gifts for all the littles. Summer means boy birthdays, but this spring we celebrated a little lady. Here’s what I made.


In the spirit of reducing, reusing, and recycling, I rescued one of my husband’s button-downs for a pint-sized apron! I used just a scrap of coordinating floral print to keep it fun, and the Velcro closure ought to make playtime easier.


What’s a princess without a crown? Spring flowers and bright buttons suit this little lady’s declarative personality.

I have my plans for four summer boys, and I am excited to get those going! It’s so fun to put my heart into these little people I love so much!

In a fit of inspiration (which I’ve learned to follow and ride like a surfer), I decided to update my maternity wardrobe with some hand-me-down yardage received from a friend. Chambray, denim, and polycotton are not my go-tos for quilting, so this was a lovely way to use what otherwise would go into the Goodwill-textile waste cycle. Bonus:  I am certain that these garments were produced without child slavery, etc. Extra bonus:  I love them!


Happy little tunic, perfect for popping over a tank top and shorts…


Chambray and lace top modified from an old Simplicity pattern, making the most of some crocheted trim leftover from my wedding dress…


And finally, denim, pleats and vintage ribbon from the same modified pattern!

My rodeo-riding cousin has her wedding on the ranch pretty soon. Now to decide which of these to wear!

I feel like I need to apologize for letting this blog slide. I do have every intention of maintaining it, but as I am realizing, the season of life I am in (i.e. babies and toddlers) leaves only so much headspace for documenting my makes. Instagram, with its immediate feedback and format, is my go-to these days. Nevertheless, I want to capture these bits and pieces of my handwork for posterity! Ha!

This year I found myself in the weeks before Easter in bed sick. Bummer! But I attempted to make the most of it by working on projects I’d pinned (I’ll find the links that inspired me if requested, but I modified everything I made.) The Squish got a knit bunny and crocheted carrot.


My board game-loving, fantasy-genre-reading husband got a crocheted dragon egg “dice bag” which was later stuffed with (American-version) Cadbury eggs. 

And for me – an interchangeable seasonal yarn wreath for the door – just so! A lovely Easter for all – hoping yours was similarly sweet!

In a sad turn of events, I was not able to attend my cousin’s baby shower this weekend, but I had so much fun making presents! These days, given enough time, I scroll through a registry to get a sense of a family’s style and start sewing accordingly. This sweet family favored greys and neutrals, some of my favorites!


I’ve become something of a bib connoisseur since my first child cut a tooth at 4 months. These bibs are based on my favorites, quilted, batted, and backed in soft jersey and including a little loop for a fancy paci clip! Snaps will give them longer life than Velcro, and they reflect the muslin bibs on the registry.

I also made a pair of teething pads to snap onto a carrier, something we couldn’t do without and which were also on the registry. They were simple, though, and I forgot to take a photo!


But this was just for fun. Every little girl needs a bit of frippery, so I went to town on a modified old PurlBee pattern. My grandmother gave me a few handkerchief cotton blouses with the express purpose to cut them up, and I did! Pintucks and lace were repurposed, and my only addition was the satin ribbon trim.

Truth be told, motherhood is hard. I’m hoping that my gifts reflect love and care and that I can continue to encourage my cousin as she enters into this life-changing, lifelong adventure!

It’s simple.


Every baby needs a quilt.


Some babies never grow very big, so their quilts are little.


But they are important, and mommies and daddies will never forget them.


So the mommies and daddies can hold onto the quilts, and love, and remember.

I hate Hate HATE miscarriage. Another sweet friend of mine lost a wanted child. This is the quilt I made for her, just about 18 inches square. (My toddler “helped” with the pictures!)

I want to make more of these. I have many friends who have struggled with losing their babies, and I have seen how powerful it is to validate and acknowledge those little lives – these children are real; they lived; they were loved; they matter; they are missed. There is no expiration date on grief, but the only thing I know to do is say, “I have not gone through what you are experiencing, but I am here with you, and I am hurting with you, too.”

Quilts heal.