Mon petit Pied à Terre.

..Or.. how to snazify your shoe rack!

Yesterday when the Crafty Ladies went on an epic lunching and thrift-store shopping jaunt, I found this fabulous wood frame for $2.99. It was coveted by all of the CL, but ended up in my basket! I had no idea that it would end up above my shoe rack, or say “Pied à Terre.” Generally, my craft creations start with one thing in mind (a cool frame/wreath for the front door) and end up completely different (inside decor.. for my shoes?!)pied before and after

After I had “distressed” the frame enough with some light sanding, I thought about what it should frame! My first inclination, (of course) was to make some kind of little bunting with burlap, something spring-y that might carry through to summer. But then I spotted a bag-o-scrapbooking stuff that my mother-in-law gave me yesterday. I was super excited when I looked in one of the packages to find chip-board letters! Hooray! But then came the disappointment… there were missing letters! Certainly not more than one “e” and while “j” and “x” were included, there was a missing “b”!

When life gives you only one “e” – you make another!

pied letter trauma

I was determined to make this work, however. I really liked the pattern and the colours. So I tried a number of different combinations: Welcome Friends (nope) Bienvenue (nope) Come on In (do I really want the FedEx guy to come in?) Pied à Terre (which roughly translates to a little piece of the Earth — normally meant in reference to a smaller vacation home or cottage: I have a comfortable little pied à terre in Normandy.) I liked this little phrase (probably because I am a French teacher, a francophile and just signed up to do grad school in French learning!) I realised that no matter what phrase I chose, I would need to make a few vowels. When I dug further into this package, I realised that there were stickers with letters, and that I could use the back of the chipboard letter tiles to create more letters. Phew! Crisis averted!

Tired crafter makes multiple mistakes

pied tile placemet

As I mentioned, we had had an epic day of lunching, shopping and non-stop gabbing, so after coming home and putting the children to bed, I was a wee bit tired. That’s when I start to make mistakes!

Oops #1: I didn’t do a “final lay out” to make sure it all fit the way I wanted to. I had decided that I wanted



* a *


With the asterix as the swirly brads that were included in the package. Because I always start in the middle of a project, I put the “a” and brads first, plum in the middle of the paper. Well, if you notice, above, the “a” is actually 3/4 of the way down. No “Notre” space! ARGH!

Ooops #2: I was concentrating so much on spacing, starting from the middle and working my way to the edge, I didn’t realise that I had misspelled PIED! –> PEID. oh mon dieu! It was my husband, who is slowly remembering his highschool French when he is stuck on homework (spelling duty) with our grade 2-er, who noticed the error.

Ooops #3: The final boo-boo was not cutting the cardboard properly, then gluing all the layers together so that they wouldn’t shift when placed in the frame. The whole thing is slightly off center, but it isn’t noticeable when you look at the overall piece. Perhaps certain crafty ladies will notice, however, so better to just come clean, admit my mistakes, and hope that the readership will not make the same ones!

One Door, One Wall, This Wall, That Wall!

When I finished, I realised that hanging a framed “picture” on my door would block a ton of the light that comes through my door window, and I really like the way the panes of glass are etched. I started to walk around with this piece and hold it up on this wall and that. I liked it in our bedroom, but I wasn’t ready to start changing the decor around to make it fit.

Then I thought that it could go above the chair in our foyer. So I took ALL of the spring decor down, and put it up. But it still wasn’t quite right. I also thought about the area rug there, and the colours just didn’t match up. Then I thought about the words, and thought about the ugliness that is our downstairs narrow hallway/shoe storage. “Pied” meaning “foot” .. shoe… If the shoe fits..!

pied hanging dilemma

It has found a very happy home, there above our shoe racks. I will see it multiple times daily, and enjoy it every time!



One thought on “Mon petit Pied à Terre.

  1. Cute! I love the humorous recount of your process:) Craftin’ after such a long busy day is bound to meet with some challenges… good thing you were well equipped to solve all of them. Looks adorable, great project:)

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