Backgammon with Let’s Begin Sewing

Today we have a new guest to the Sew Ready to Play line-up! Today’s guest is Rachel from Let’s Begin Sewing! She is one of my real life quilty friends. We’ve been in the Seattle Modern Quilt Guild together for quite some time and I love what she creates, so I invited her over to play along this year and she agreed! If you haven’t been by her blog, you need to! And be sure to check out all of her amazing quilts.

This year for the first time I am participating in Sew Ready to Play with Louise from I’m Feelin Crafty. She is one of my quilty friends that I actually get to interact with in person.

I am not much into board games, but recently someone gifted me a custom made wooden Backgammon set. It is truly a work of art. Very painfully crafted with neatly polished wooden inlays. I love looking at it more than playing with it. The crisp and clean geometric pattern really gets me. This was the inspiration behind my Backgammon inspired cushion cover.

The cushion cover is foundation pieced. I modified the pattern slightly from the standard Backgammon board design using EQ7. You can download the template here. I limited the color palette to Kona Charcoal and Grass Green by Robert Kaufman. The cushion measures 13″ x 13″ and fits a standard 14″ x 14″ pillow insert.

The quilting is minimal and echoes the paper pieced pattern. For the back I used a zipper flap to cover up the zipper. I used this zipper closure tutorial by Svetlana of Sotak Handmade. It makes up for not having a matching zipper handy 🙂 I used a 12″ zipper for this cushion.

A step really not needed but highly recommended if you plan to wash the cushion cover is to cover up the seams on the inside. I usually bind the seams with home made binding. It does not have to be pretty but goes a long way when washed as it prevents fraying.

Here are some other color options that I considered before settling on this one.

The possibilities are endless.

Leaving off with one last picture, I think it is going to look great on the couch.

Be sure to stop back by for more!

Sept 7th- Debbie from A Quilter’s Table

Sept 9th- Jennifer from Busy Being Jennifer

Sept 11th- Ari from Max California

Sept 16th- Stacey from Boy, Oh Boy, Oh Boy Crafts

Sept 18th- Karly from Paisley Roots

Sept 21st- Louise from I’m Feelin’ Crafty

Sept 23rd- Narelle from Cook, Clean, Craft

Sept 25th- Al from Shaffer Sisters

Sept 28th- Rachel from Let’s Begin Sewing

Sept 30th- Marci from Marci Girl Designs

Salad Spinner Turkeys Tutorial at MAM!

Please join me on the MAM blog today! I’m sharing a super fun and silly project that’s great to do today or even with the whole family while you’re waiting on the real turkey to cook on Thursday!



You can try to make just one… But once the salad spinner is out… Good luck with just one!


I’ll bet you’ll end up with a ‘rafter‘ (a little Turkey Day trivia for ya) of turkeys! Make as many as you want for your Thanksgiving table! How many will you make???

Painted Headboard DIY-a Guest Post with Our Lady of Second Helpings

Remember the other day how I mentioned that I was meeting new blogger’s in the Seattle area??? Well, I’ve also met Rose from Our Lady of the Second Helpings, a wonderful food blog! She has tons of great recipes! I really, really want to try the Tomatillo-Apple Guacamole! But low and behold, I find out she’s crafty too! And a great photographer! I’m so happy to welcome her here today to share a DIY headboard with us!
Welcome Rose!
This headboard uses a painting technique that could be applied to many other DIY projects. I have also thought about painting a park bench, table top, or making an indoor/outdoor wall hanging using the same method. The tape stencil and headboard were inspired by various images of repurposed pallet wood. We happened to have a supply of weathered cedar from a portion of fence we took down. The old fence boards have proven to be a valuable material. In addition to this project they have become planter boxes, table tops, garden edges, and a sandbox!
The headboard project was a joint effort between myself and my husband and our son. He is a more precise worker and I am more free form. It was a good match for our individual approaches to being crafty – I designed, he constructed, I decorated, and he installed. We made this for our Queen size bed. The width is similar to the mattress and the height puts the top of the board a little above our pillows when the bed is made. It could be made really tall and have little shelves or wiring built in – we aren’t quite there in our fancy skillz development.
Materials Used:
Fence boards (or pallet boards or other recycled wood material)
Sandpaper (medium and fine grain)
Electric Sander – Recommended
Electric Drill
Wood Screws
Latex Paint
1 & 2 inch paint brushes
Painters Tape
Silver Sharpie
craft knife
1-1/4 inch screws with ribbed plastic anchors (for hollow walls)
To make your headboard:
Measure, cut, smooth: Cut your boards to fit your project. Our headboard is modestly sized at 5 ft x 21-1/2 in or 4 boards high. We added legs so it would rest on the floor rather than putting all the weight on our wall. The legs extend from the top of the boards to the floor. If you aren’t using legs cut short cross pieces to go behind the boards vertically. Use a medium to fine grain sandpaper to smooth the boards, blend in the fresh cuts and bevel (round) the edges if you like that effect.
Assemble: Arrange the boards the way you want them to look when finished with the vertical pieces behind the horizontal boards. Choose wood screws that will go through the horizontal boards and about halfway into the vertical cross piece. Use an electric drill. Begin by making small pilot, or guide, holes with a thin drill bit, everywhere you intend to put a screw. This step should prevent any splitting of the wood when you install the screws. Swap your drill bit for the appropriate screw driver and drive the screws straight into the wood until they are even with the surface.
Base Coat: I created the base coat using a couple of sample pots of various white wall paint. The samples had both yellow and grey undertones providing a more aged appearance. Use any color or colors you choose for your base coat. Make sure your boards are dry and dust free. Grab a dry 1 or 2 inch brush, dab it lightly into one color of paint and begin lightly brushing the paint on the boards. Don’t try and get a uniform coat of paint. Allow the paint to go on heavier in some places and feather light in others. Give the heavier spots a good stiff brushing to blend the edges into the surrounding area. Apply the paint as lightly or heavily as you desire. Between coats buff the boards with fine grain sandpaper. Sand the paint unevenly to maintain a weathered look. Brush or wipe the dust away after sanding.
Create your stencil: Make sure the painted surface is dry and dust-free. Cover the entire board with overlapping strips of painters tape. Use a silver Sharpie or other easy to see, smudge-proof, marker to draw on your design. Shapes that are a little larger in scale will be easier to cut and you will have less chance of paint bleed than a delicate design. If you are a less confident crafter/painter I recommend sticking to large scale images. Google images has a lot of stencil designs you can use for inspiration. Use a craft knife to cut away the area you want to paint your background color. You can remove the stencil and create a relief effect or leave the stencil and paint around it as pictured.
Paint the background: Once the area you want to be your background color have been revealed apply the background paint. Use the same light coating and sanding technique as the base color application. This layer can be minimal or heavy depending on your preference. Once the paint has completely dried remove the remaining tape. Tip – Brush away from the tape edges to prevent paint from collecting under the tape. Add as much or little detail to your image as you desire. I filled in the stencil with a bit more latex wall paint and then sanded the heck out of it to give the finished piece a well worn appearance.
Finish Coat: To give the headboard a uniform sheen and added protection I sprayed the finished project with two coats of a satin finish polyurethane clear coat.
Be sure to check the wall for any electrical wires, plumbing, or other stuff that could be damaged by drilling!
When mounting something heavy, you will want to locate the studs so that you can bolt right into it, but for something reasonably lightweight, you can use plastic ribbed anchors. Drill small holes through the legs of the headboard and into the drywall behind. Re-drill the holes in the drywall to fit the anchors, and press one into each hole. Then screw the legs in place.
We completed this project over about three days. Day 1: sanding and assembling, Day 2: Painting, Day 3: Installing. It can be done faster but we just laid everything out on our patio during a stretch of nice weather and worked on it between other activities.
Thank you Rose! I really appreciate you sharing this with us!
Be sure to check out Rose’s blog, Our Lady of the Second Helpings,  and all her fantastic recipes!