Category Archives: flowers in art



During February, my mom, sisters, and I decided we would all make blankets.

We like to get together and work side by side, but because of scheduling conflicts, each of us worked on our own separate projects alone. Someone started knitting a blanket. Another chose a baby quilt project. I wanted to finish a picnic blanket that was almost complete but got stalled without material for the backing. Foiled in the progress, I started cutting up T-shirts to make a quilt to give my son in celebration of a special achievement.

All I needed were the T-shirt fronts, which featured logos and artwork from memorable places he has attended over the past few years. Most of the T-shirts were in good condition, so as I cut the shirts apart with my rotary cutter, I started stacking the plain backs of the clothes in one pile and the 12 fronts that I needed for the blanket in another.

While working on the project, I realized that I also wanted to do something nice for the fellow moms who have helped my son reach his achievement. They have encouraged and supported him and me for many years.

After positioning the T-shirt fronts, I returned to the leftover material. Admiring how the orange, brown, green and gray fabrics complemented each other, the idea came to me. I could make rose pins out of the discarded fabric and give them to the moms as a show of appreciation.

My niece showed ChatterboxBeach how to make the flower pins several years ago. We sat in my mother’s den cutting fabric from outgrown T-shirts and chatted away. At the end of the day, my niece gave me an orange flower to keep. I pinned the flower on a thin, black jacket that I have worn on many dressy occasions.

The flowers have other uses, too. They can be pinned to a wine bottle cover, placed in front of a picture frame, or added for decoration to a table setting.

rose pin

I got excited about making the roses for the moms and put the quilt on hold. Soon I was tracing patterns, cutting curves, and bringing out the hot glue.

Later in the day, one of my sisters sent an email that she had temporarily abandoned her blanket project to spend her Saturday making T-shirt roses for a client. I was thrilled. Once again, we ended up crafting together on similar projects, even though this time it wasn’t planned. She offered to make a few roses for the moms on my gift list, too. I love having sisters!

March has arrived, and we at ChatterboxBeach continue to work on our blankets. Hopefully, we will all finish soon and have a lovely show-and-tell when we get together to begin a new craft project in March.

–Caroline at ChatterboxBeach




ChatterboxBeach has found a home not only on Etsy, but also in an adorable shop called The Orange Blossom Resale in Hampstead, NC. Our handmade crafts fit right at home among the many vendor booths that feature an eclectic array of home décor, jewelry and fashion items. Located in a strip mall on Highway 17, the store is a convenient drive from Jacksonville, Wilmington and the Crystal Coast and Southern beaches. We love to browse each time we add more items to our booth.
The chef hats, scarves, pillows and dishcloths that we sell on Etsy also are featured in the store. Additional items are also available at The Orange Blossom, include paintings, aprons, pocket books, cup cozies, knitted necklaces, wine bags and mini quilts. ChatterboxBeach hopes to add new products each week.
Let the store owner know your favorite ChatterboxBeach items so we can keep them in stock. Let us know what you are looking for, too. We enjoy tackling new projects together.
Contact us anytime at and stop by The Orange Blossom Resale at 14884 Highway 17, Hampstead NC 28443, (910) 821-1544.
Store hours are:
Tuesday through Saturday: 10 a.m. – 5:30 p.m.
Sunday: 1 to 4 p.m.
Monday: Closed


Eggplanet art 001

Throwing away scraps of fabric hurts the crafter in me.

Every small square of material can lead to an amazing project, and the challenge of making it happen peaks my interest. I’m constantly looking for ways to use my fabric stash wisely to prevent waste and create art.

Recently, leftover scraps from a snack quilt became part of an art piece entitled “Eggplanet.” My imagination transformed images of tomatoes, onions, peppers and pickles into appliqued planets in outer space. Paired with an alien from another scrap and an upside down coffee cup as a flying saucer, a silly universe was born. Leftover tulle and ribbon made a fine comet, and soda can tabs and a bead added a 3-dimensional satellite to the cosmos. I entered the wall-hanging into an art show called “Beauty in the Dark.” The piece was rejected, so I hung it on a wall in my home. Friends see something new in the quilt each time they visit. I like to see their reactions.

Leftover material also can create more than art.

As a novice, I learned how to tie quilts by making blankets for charity from discarded Laura Ashley fabric. My quilters’ group spent many evenings together rotary cutting squares from the donated material. Then we formed an assembly line to sew the squares into strips and blankets. We stretched out on a parish hall floor to tie the quilt layers. The project was win-win. We kept material out of the landfill and provided warmth and comfort to those in need.

Rescuing fabric runs in the family. My sister is especially creative with local finds.

doll dress

A great fan of Lilly Pulitzer fashions, she up-cycles materials from skirts and dresses to make doll clothes with matching headbands. In addition, she recently repurposed pink and green Lilly Pulitzer fabric by covering a bowling pin. The result was a cute décor item great for a bedroom, porch or any special spot.

rose pin

She and our mother also have found uses for rarely-worn T-shirts. My sister turns strips from the castaways into colorful knitted rugs and bathmats. Our mom uses T-shirt scraps to make rose flower pins.

As Earth Day approaches on April 22, we celebrate finding new ways to generate art and crafts from everyday items. A little imagination helps turn useless scraps into useful products.