November HeARTs Giving: Week 1 Update

Embellishing these heARTs has been lots of fun. In all this fun, I've slacked on writing my weekly posts, so I'll be catching up in the next few least that is my plan. Read on to learn about my first week's inspiration, process, finishing/tagging process, and a reveal of my first distribution of finished heARTs...

Day 1/30: Artist's Choice

Kicking off #30daysofheARTsGiving with Artist's choice of doodling away with some of my favorite gel pens: Gelly Roll and Uniball Signo pens. The doodle transformation was so much fun that I jumped into pen marking on the second and third heARTs, so you'll see a bit of doodling and/or the backside which was the closest to before photo I could get.

Day 2/30: Bling

Bling on Day 2 of making heARTs!! Today's transformation involved sequins with a bit of hand embroidery!

You can see the flurry of supplies that were pulled out while making these two little hearts. All part of the creative process!

And speaking of messes, keep reading to see how I concealed the backside and all the messy stitches as I jumped around and kept adding more sequins...

Day 3/30: Fibers

“You’ll never find a rainbow if you’re looking down.”
- Charlie Chaplin, English comic actor, filmmaker, and composer

Inspired by a rainbow theme for stitching up a couple of rainbow heARTs today using a rainbow of Wonderfil Eleganza 8wt and some rainbow gradient macrame thread.

Day 4/30: Fused Scraps

"The sun'll come out tomorrow
So you gotta hang on 'til tomorrow
Come what may

Tomorrow, tomorrow
I love ya tomorrow
You're always a day away"
-Songwriters: Martin Charnin / Charles Strouse

A double dose of sunshine today using some of my fused scraps! Do those prints look familiar? They were made for another sunshine themed project earlier this year!

Day 5/30: Bling

"There is no problem in life which glitter can't fix."
-Pinterest, 'The Wanderer'
Adding a bit of bada bling to my heARTs with Power Shine Glitter Sew Much Cosplay and a silver Uniball Signo pen. The roll of fusible Glitter has been in my studio for more than 2 years. The directions were surprisingly easy to follow and I absolutely love the results. I can't wait to play with the other colors of glitter in future projects!! 

Day 6/30: Mark Making

The next morning kicked off with getting my third dose of Pfizer's vaccine against Covid (aka booster shot). This was the first day that younger kids were eligible for their first round of vaccination so the Santa Clara County fairgrounds vaccination site was all decorated for family fun: activity sheet, scavenger hunt, animal decorations, etc. Alas the adults were in a separate line minus the fun-factor!

On my way out I celebrated with a vaccination sticker and photo opportunity. And then I returned the love by leaving several finished heARTs around the parking lot for other attendees to discover and take home.

I was excited to return home to get started on embellishing more heARTs for a future distribution day...

"Don't follow a trend. Follow your heart."
--Krist Novoselic, American Musician
Much of my afternoon/evening included yoga and stretches to move my boosted arm around to minimize any tenderness from the vaccine. These efforts also included some mark-making joy using DecoArt Dazzling Metallic paints and ArtFoamies stamps! I couldn't resist sending out some more love for all the scientists who worked to create safe and effective vaccinations, as well as everyone who was working to create an efficient vaccination clinic set up.

Day 7/30: Fused Scraps

Thankfully my two previous vaccination doses only led to a slightly tender arm at the injection site, but I was not so lucky this time around. Early in morning, my body started to feel the effects of the vaccination working its magic to protect me from serious infection: lethargy, mild fever, minor aches, etc. Most of my day was spent in bed and/or on the couch.

Despite my lethargy, I managed to rally for a short creative session which involved cutting out some blue spirals from fused scraps.
"Blue is bright and gives us hope for the future."
-Didi Conn, American Actress

This quites seemed an especially appropriate connection to the vaccine: Hope for the future! 

Finishing the HeARTs

I thought I would share a bit of my process for finishing the heARTs prior to distribution:

Concealing the Stitching on the Backsides:

A few of the heARTs that involved hand embroidery had pretty messy backs. I thought I took a photo but trust me: they were pretty sloppy as there were starting/ending knots and large stitches as I jumped around from section to section. Fabric was fused onto the backside before trimming all around the edges. Not only did this conceal the backside but it also secured the knots and stitches.

Finishing the Edges:

As all the heARTs were cut out from quilted sandwiches, I needed a way to conceal the raw edges of fabric and batting/felt. Most of the heARTs are 6" or smaller, which is a bit tricky to bind. Instead, I use Tulip puffy paint aka dimensional paint to finish the edges. The fine applicator is perfect for squeezing small amounts of paint all around the edges, taking care to conceal the top, batting, and backing layers. Once all the edges are painted, I carefully place them on top of a small jar to allow them to dry for a few hours. You can watch this short video of the painting process.


Most of these heARTs will be sent out into the world as part of the I Found a Quilted Heart Project (IFAQH) so the final step is to add IFAQH tags. You can download the printable tags from the IFAQH website or write out the same information to attach. I used 10-12" lengths of of DMC embroidery floss which made it possible to hang the hearts in a variety of settings and attach the tags letting the finder know that they are welcome to take the heARTs home with them. 

And here are all 16 heARTs embellished, finished, and tagged during the first week of this 30 Day Project!

I hope you are inspired to embellish one or more heARTs. I'd love seeing everyone's embellished heARTs on Instagram so be sure to share and/or tag with #heARTsGiving