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Studio Living | Custom Waterproof Mattress Cover

View Part One here | This is Part Two | Part Three is coming


After making the custom foam and covers for their mattresses, next up was making custom, waterproof mattress covers. If you have, or have had little kids, you know they do all kinds of awesome things with bodily fluids, or really any fluids they can get a hold of. And so parents all over get those mattresses protected any way they can.

I used a twin-size waterproof mattress cover from Ikea for this project. It has terry cloth on the top and a waterproof fabric on the bottom. This is nice because it is both soft and quiet when the kids are on the mattresses (many waterproof covers are noisy, crinkly, hot plastic messes.)

Word to the wise, I had to go back and buy a second twin-sized cover because I needed more fabric. Noob mistake, I should have really measured everything out and bought a queen-sized one to start with.

Yep, definitely not going to be enough fabric there for all three cushions in their room.

First I worked on the two larger cushions (Lyra was my trusty sidekick for this entire project.)

And then I did the center cushion's waterproof cover:

I re-sewed the original Ikea tag on just to be fancy.

Nice and form-fitting, even before I finish seams and add elastic.

Hello lovely!

We get a hug of approval from Lyra:

All three are now ready for the custom sheets, but that will will wait for another post.



Studio Living | Custom Mattresses for bedroom in a closet

This is Part One | View Part Two here | Part Three is coming


Cora and Lyra fast asleep on their custom mattresses I made for the closet of our studio that we have turned into their bedroom.

Each side of the closet has a notch cut out; like on a boat, each notch is a different size. I'm so used to nothing ever being symmetrical like on all my boat projects, that I just grinned when I realized I'd be dealing with more of the same.

I bought 4" foam from Joann's as opposed to the super high-density stuff I normally use for marine or home applications. The girls are so light that I knew they'd be able to sleep comfortably on the density you can get at Joann's (a bonus that helped with our budget).

Then I measured and chopped out the notches on each side and used a Sharpie on the foam so I knew which girl's mattress I was working on.

I waited until home-dec-weight fabric was on sale at Joann's and then used a coupon on top of the sale to get some lovely fabric to act as cushion covers. I wasn't worried about the bold colors showing through their sheets because I knew I'd also be making a waterproof mattress cover that would hide the bright stripes or patterns on the bottom layer.

This is Cora's finished cushion. I've got two more posts yet to come to show you how I made the waterproof mattress covers for all three cushions in their room and another post on how I made custom sheets for the cushions too.

A sneak peek to show you what I mean. This is the center cushion viewed from the bottm. You can see both the waterproof mattress cover and the custom sheets I made covering the mattress.

I leave you with this short video I made for a fellow seamstress who asked me a question about zipper placement on some cushions she was working on. I show you this very quick video not so you too can pontificate on the placements of zippers on cushions, but because it explains my thinking on how I used scraps of fabric and didn't worry too much about pattern placement on the bottom layer of their entire bedding scheme. 



Getting Crafty | Custom Animal Pillow for Lyra

Lyra has the most expressive face. I don't know what she was scowling about, but even her scowly faces make me giggle.

When I saw this fabric I knew it was time to make Lyra her own special pillow. She loves animals and the noise they make. Her favorite book is Brown Bear and her favorite thing is hearing her whole family voice the sounds each animal makes in it.

"Lyra, I made this for you. It is your special pillow."

She took about one second to realize what that meant and then she claimed it for her own by:

And then hugging it:

After losing all the special things I made for the girls on Rebel Heart, it is nice to start making special things anew.

And she always includes her pillow in their playtime.

When Lyra gets excited, she does this leg kick thing. I'm gonna say she gets that from me :)

That's my girl!


Front view: 

Side view:

Back view:

This is her 'thanks, mom' face <3

What fun things have you made today?


Cora and her original songs | I Am a Pirate Lady

Cora has a knack for making up lovely songs. Songs with original lyrics that are catchy and endearing. She even throws in sophisticated stuff like choruses and refrains.

I give you an impromptu Cora song, with Lyra cheesing it up. I've transcribed the song below the video (some of the words are made up, she likes to talk in made up languages):


I Am a Pirate Lady, by Cora Kaufman
We are pirates of a pirate show
Pirate show is fun to be seen 
We are on the pirate ship together as a family
We have a pirate baby 
Who can talk and sleep all day!
She can everywhere she can see
Cere ne me querdiambere!!
You will never take some, we see
We can jump in the water with divers
We can get up on our boat, wet
We can dry ourselves off with water
And then we can rinse off ourselves with towels
We have all kinds of things to tell you
We are a beautiful flamily in the day
Can you tell us in (interrupted)
I am a beautiful girl in the world
I am a pirate lady
She's a pirate lady too
I like the wind in the morning
Lyra's turning it but it always comes out of her butt (lol)
I love hanging out with my sister all week
I just love doing this all week
On the shore
(I'll sing my song all the way over there).
On my boat
But I don't want to leave my boat, so I just stand.
I love hanging out with my sister all week.
We just have to come out here all week.



#kidsonboats | Rebel Heart Strong t-shirts for TOML-Foundation

It took me awhile, but I was finally able to set up a site to make Rebel Heart Strong and #kidsonboats t-shirts online. 

{ Shop Rebel Heart Strong and directly support TOML-Foundation. }

All of the proceeds from sales of these t-shirts go directly to TOML-Foundation. None of the funds are handled by us. The proceeds are sent directly to TOML-Foundation's PayPal account: info@thatothersmaylive.org

The #kidsonboats hash tag is in reference to the outpouring of support we were shown during and after the rescue. If you go to Twitter and type in #kidsonboats, you'll see what I mean.

A day before we stepped ashore in San Diego again, the sailing community published this YouTube video, in solidarity, showing the multitude of children and families who live on boats and sail with their kids:

Eric and I have been focused on ways to give back to the airmen who helped our daughter. One of the Pararescuemen suggested supporting That Others May Live Foundation (TOML-F), which is a non-profit charitable organization that directly supports the families of USAF rescue personnel who are injured or killed in the line of duty.

So many of our friends rallied behind the 'Keep Calm' phraseology during the ordeal that I wanted to give a nod to that as well. And wear it with pride. So the store has Keep Calm and Rebel Heart Strong in different formats, all with sailboats instead of the classic crowns.

And for the ladies, there are options that will actually fit you. I know all too well what it's like to 'buy a t-shirt' when all they have are men’s sizes. No thanks.

And lots of kids’ options too.

The best part about the site we are using is that if you pick anything in the shop, you can customize it to your heart's content. Change the size, shape, color, style, etc, but if you start at our site through the customization process, funds will still go directly to TOML-Foundation when you purchase. That's a win in my book. You get exactly what you want, and they get donations.

I have met a lot of women, and teenagers, in my travels who have told me that people assume they don't know how to sail. Here's a design with you in mind. 

#kidsonboats - Take your kids sailing!

What you buy could help men like these, and their families. So Keep Calm, and buy a t-shirt, a mug, a tote-bag; you get the picture.


For the guys.

My favorite pairing.

Shop Rebel Heart Strong

or donate directly at

That Others May Live

Their charity tax ID is #88-0487308. The TOML- Foundation has all of their tax documents and audits on their website for total transparency. Also of note, they have extremely low overhead - 5% according to their recent filings.


{Looking for other sites that offer fantastic products and donate directly to That Others May Live Foundation?

Check out this toy sailboat from Small Life Studio and these stationary sets from Quinn and Lane Designs.}