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A Heartfelt Gift for a Special Friend, Diana McClun

I’ve know for several months (or should I say years?) that this past month would mark a landmark birthday for my dear friend, Diana McClun (see a follow-up post here.) Wanting to give her something extra special, I spent time thinking about all the wonderful years we have shared writing, teaching, designing, traveling and just being good friends. During these moments of reflection I began jotting down all the words that make her special to me. And, in one of those quiet moments, I had a brainstorm. Diana loves hearts and has quite an extensive collection of all things heart-related. She’s also an avid collector of fabric and scarves with words printed on them.

Inspiration-J:  Hearts from Diana McClun's Collection

I decided to take these two Diana-beloved themes and combine them into a gift:  fabric designed just for her. I forwarded my word list to my daughter Molly and asked her to put them into a design program, varying the sizes and fonts for each word. Then, I urged her to add hearts of various sizes and drop them randomly between the words. The next step was turning the design into fabric.  Of course, Spoonflower, the online site for DIY fabric, wallpaper, decals, and gift wrap was a natural fit. (Jennifer wrote about Spoonflower here.) Since neither Molly or I have ever done any fabric designing, I solicited the help of our friend Carol van Zandt to take a peek at the design and to make sure it was properly formatted for printing. Here are two variations Carol worked on before we made the decision on the final design.

Carol added her magic touch and then off to Spoonflower with our design. A few weeks later, a lovely piece of fabric arrived on my doorstep. Can you see the phrase “Diana is” hidden among the words? If you have ever aspired to designing fabric, may be a fun place to try your hand. There are teams of helpers available as well as Tips and Video Tutorials.


Since the fabric arrived just days before Diana’s birthday, I decided to give her a yard and then I divided the remaining yardage among three other friends. We are all working on a project for her that will incorporate the fabric. I have invited Diana to join us during the final design stages so we can all enjoy a sewing play date. We are excited and anxious to see how this group project develops–you can be sure I will keep you posted! Now, back to making bridesmaids robes! Be sure to check back on Friday for an update of projects taking place at “Wedding Central” in our family home–things are hopping! Take care everyone and happy creating.

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