Monday, July 15, 2013

Throw Pillows for the Grandchildren

Locke, my California grandson, turns 10 years old next week.  His Granddaddy and I will be there to celebrate this event with him.  We're giving him an assortment of gifts--boxed sets of The Cosby Show on DVD (a show greatly beloved by his Michigan cousins), two throw pillows to join the one I made him earlier this summer, and a Horned Lizard figurine that I bought several years ago in Fredricksburg, in the hill country in Texas.

One of the pillows has a Southwestern theme, in terms of fabrics and the Horned Lizard in the center.  This image I found online.  I wrote the photographer for permission to use his image for a quilted project, and he readily agreed, saying he was flattered that I wanted to use it this way!  I printed the image in reverse onto a wonderful product called TAP--Transfer Artists Paper.  This is a polymer product that you then iron onto fabric, and the image comes out incredibly crisp and true.

A side note about what we used to call Horny Toads, when I was a child.  We saw them everywhere in Austin, where I grew up!  We'd catch the babies, keep them for a time in a shoe box, and then let them go.  We used to say that we would "hypnotize" them by stroking them between the horns on their heads.  I remember vividly how soft and appealing their little undersides were.  Sadly, these critters are fast becoming extinct or at least they aren't as ubiquitous as they once were.  They aren't a toad at all, but a lizard, as their proper name denotes.

The other pillow features his Uncle Rob's dog Zeno.  Locke is crazy about this dog!  He loves him, he says, more than his own dog.  But Zeno is a dog any little boy would love, being a playful and active Border Collie.  Whereas Rolie, the dog who lives at Locke's house, is a placid and sweet toy poodle, definitely a "lap dog."  I used doggie themed fabric encircling Zeno's TAP image.

I like to give the non-birthday child one small gift, too, and so I made a throw pillow for his sister Lia, as well.  For her, who loves Rolie, the poodle, I transferred images of Rolie, Rolie and Lia, and then I printed off a heart to add to the pillow top.

At present these are just tops--I'll work on the backs of the pillows later, but I wanted to get this post up before time got away with me.

Here are photos of the pillow tops.  As usual, click to enlarge.  Lia's pillow is actually smaller--12" square, whereas the two for Locke will be 16" pillows:

Lia pillow top
Locke's Horned Lizard and Zeno pillow tops

The Horned Lizard close-up

Zeno close-up


  1. Locke will have fun rolling around with Zeno on those 16" pillows and Lia will appreciate the sweet picture of herself and Rolli as her favor. I love the story of Horny Toads and have some bare memory of them. Hooray for birthdays as a chance to indulge those we love in ways we love doing.

    1. Alice, these are really cute! I know they will love them. How true about the "horny 'toads'." They are so rare now. We so one recently--I forget where--and it was an "event."

  2. These are great! You are right...the TAP photos are really crisp. I'm sure that both children will appreciate and love their new pillows.

  3. Zeno has the SWEETEST face! I love him, too. No wonder Lia is attached, as well as Locke... but Rolie looks really fun. Your grandchildren will love cuddling these dog pillows ---and the horny toad --- what a find! These are darling gifts. Lucky grandchildren! ss

  4. Cute as can be, Alice! Lucky grandkids - I know they will love them. I've never used TAP - thanks for sharing. I'll have to give it a try!

  5. Zeno has such appealing eyes, no wonder Locke loves him. Rolie's eyelashes are showing as Lia is kissing or almost kissing her/him. So stylish. All three of the pillows are darling! Lucky kids!