Friday, October 14, 2011

Fall Sewing Craziness

This has been a very busy summer & fall is turning out to be that way too. I finished a sweet baby blanket for a friend's daughter's first birthday. She loved it. Then I'm replacing the lining in 2 pairs of pants for someone that I know from my beauty salon, Neuvo. On top of that I've been making chair bags for our church's kindergarten class & 2 dresses for a St Jude fundraiser that's due November 1st. It seems like I'm constantly sewing & loving every minute of it. I am also still doing alterations for church members & teaching others to sew on Saturday afternoons. Last week, I got my first taste of heirloom sewing by making a puffed pillow & a linen table runner. I took a class with Mary Jane Sprague & Sharie Behrquist, licensed Martha Pullen educators. I learned how to use a wing needle, join lace to lace, lace to entredeaux plus entredeaux to fabric & pintucks. I also learned how to shape lace & bias tape in a figure eight shape without any puckers. I had a wonderful time. Now, my brain is about to explode with the possibilities of projects to make as gifts. Today, I went to lunch with some friends at The Women's Exchange & gathered even more ideas. I have even figured out how to create my own lace as well as make my own entredeaux & lace panels. Oh, I don't even want to go anywhere except to sit at my sewing machines & sew. Unfortunately, I can do that for about 2 hours at a time before I get too tired. However, I've been going to our church's softball games on Thursday nights where I have been scorekeeper this season. I love softball/baseball/basketball & football games if I can go watch the game. Don't care about watching games on television. After the game, the team gathers at Sonic for a late night snack or in some cases, dinner. I sleep in the mornings & am on the go in the afternoons/evenings. Overall, life is very good. So what are you doing this fall?

Saturday, August 27, 2011

No Sewing

Had great plans to sew this month but instead I did a lot of purging, cleaning, sorting, & storing some of my sewing supplies. I did cut out & embroider 18 chair bags for our church's kindergarten dayschool classroom. I had planned to get them sewed up but ended up having to put the project on hold. My hubby had surgery & was at home. I needed to spend my time helping him in & out of the bed, fixing meals, running errands, etc. All of this was very stressful which landed me in the hospital. So here I am, waiting for the doctors to determine what caused my blood pressure to crash last Tuesday, & hopefully I'll be able to go home in a few days. That's one of the challenges of heart disease is that you never know when you're going to crash. Hopefully, it won't be long before I'm able to return to my sewing machines.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

A Little Girl's Dream

I was contacted last week by a friend who asked me to join "The Dream Team" of Women of Style, Spirit, & Success, Inc, a non-profit corp that works with young girls. They needed seamstresses to help with a fundraiser for St Jude Children's Hospital & I was invited to participate. One of St Jude's patients is a 7yr old little girl battling neuroblastoma who dreams of having her own fashion line of clothing. So today, we met at L'Ecole Culinaire cooking school for a tea & met the little designer, her mom & sister. We were given drawings of the designs & now it is up to us to convert those drawings into garments for a fashion show fundraiser for St Jude in September. Here are the drawings that I will be converting into clothing. This will be a fun project & a challenge to my pattern drafting & sewing skills. The pink dress will be a halter dress with sparkles on the front & a full gored skirt. The turquoise & yellow dress will be a dropwaist with a collar, buttoned down the back, short sleeves & pleated skirt. I can use pattern drafting software or a commercial pattern with the details. I will get the models' measurements sometime next week.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Shopping on 4th of July at Hancock Fabrics

Had a great shopping day at Hancock Fabrics. I bought the above patterns, some thread & zippers, 1-1/2 yards of a lovely purple pinwheel rayon challis for a top (Simplicity #2599,view A)& an 18mm rotary cutter. I was pleased to get my ASG discount on all items as well as an additional 15% off of the entire purchase. It was overall a very good shopping day.

Friday, June 10, 2011

Removing Clutter

My family has told me that my sewing supplies, fabrics, projects in the works, etc are out of control. Mostly I ignore these comments but recently, I was reminded that there are others who do not have the financial means to purchase fabrics, supplies, patterns, etc. Grace Place Ministries works with women in prison in teaching them to sew as a creative outlet while serving their time. I have decided to go thru all of the many bins of fabric that I have accumulated as well as my patterns, notions, etc & put together some supplies for Grace Place Ministries. I know that physically that I will not be able to sew everything that I have so this is a way to share my love of sewing with others besides the classes that I teach. My question to you is "do you purge your fabrics, supplies, patterns, etc as you would your closets when they become too full?"

Sunday, May 29, 2011

A New Top

For our ASG program, I had to find a pattern & fabric to make a top by serger. So off to Hancock Fabrics, I go. There I found a ponteroma knit (polyester/rayon) and Kwik Sew pattern #2900. I chose view C. I made two tops which took about 2 hours on the serger including doing the coverhem. It was a nice easy project for instant gratification to demo at our ASG meeting. Here are the photos of the 2 tops that I made. I can see this becoming a favorite pattern. I didn't really read the directions but here is how I put the top together.
Take front & back pieces & with right sides together, lay your stay tape on the shoulders & serge. Then take the neckband & serge the ends together. Folding in half, line it up with your center back & pin. Then pin the center front & shoulder seams. Stretching gently, serge slowly until the neckband is attached. Then serge your sleeves into the armhole opening leaving the fabric open flat. Then serge your your side seams starting at the bottom of the top & going up to the sleeve end. Next set your machine up for coverstitch, & folding the sleeve hem under securing with Wonder Tape (a double sided fusible), stitch either a 2 needle wide coverhem or a 2 needle narrow coverhem. Then do the bottom of the top using Wonder Tape to hold the hem in place. To finish your top, just use the coverhem to stitch down the neckband seam allowance. Now, you're done.
Happy Sewing!

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Another Machine

This week another sewing machine followed me home. It is a Singer Stylist 834 in need of some TLC. I was at church with my sewing group & when I was leaving one of the staff members told me that she brought me a machine. It was given to her by one of her friends but she didn't want it. The machine is missing a power cord & foot pedal but that can easily be replaced. I have ordered a manual for it & plan to clean it up & get it running again. I love tinkering with old machines & wish that I had more space. After all, I only have 7 machines now including one that belongs to my daughter. I've already given several sewing machines that I fixed up to the United Methodist Neighborhood Group for their Refugee Assistance program. They teach refugees to sew & provide an opportunity for them to have machines to use to make clothing for their families. I really like this little machine & may keep it unless I come across someone who really needs one. Do machines follow you home? If so, what do you do with them? Inquiring minds want to know.

Friday, April 22, 2011

We Made It ...

Back in March before I became so sick, hubby & I celebrated our 40th wedding anniversary. I was a child bride, barely 18, and had so many dreams and plans. Most of them worked out & the ones that didn't, don't matter anymore. My hubby was a seasoned adult at the ripe old age of 28. We had only known each other about 3 months when we became engaged & married 6 months later. Most people said that it wouldn't last as we were polar opposites. However, we proved them wrong. Both of us made a commitment to one another in front of God, family & friends. We took our vows seriously & worked out our issues together. We have had our ups & downs & life has been full of challenges, joys & sorrows. However, we made it & look forward to many more years together. So as the wedding season approaches, please remember why you have chosen to marry. My hubby paid me the greatest compliment not too long ago when he said that if he had to do it all over again, he wouldn't change a thing & marrying me was the best thing that he ever did in his life. I so agree with him.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

A Little More Embroidery

These were a set of bath towels that I received for Christmas from my younger sister. I used Sonia Showalter "Under the Sea" designs for my towels. I really like the way that they turned out.

A Little Bit of Embroidery

During March, I was teaching a beginner sewing class using Simplicity #2447 until I got sick and had to go into the hospital. I spent a week in ICU-Stepdown with congestive heart failure, extreme exhaustion & severe dehydration. I was discharged a little over a week ago and really missed my sewing machines so I have spent my time embroidering towels while I'm recuperating. After all, I cannot drive right now as my blood pressure is too low. Hopefully, I'll regain my strength soon. The towels were Christmas gifts that I wanted to embroider before using them so this was a perfect opportunity. Here are the photos of what I enjoyed doing. I do love my new Ellisimo.

Friday, February 11, 2011

Winter Sewing

On Tuesday evenings, I'm teaching a sewing class called "Return to Sewing". The class is designed for those who want to learn to sew & those who want to brush up on their sewing skills. I'm a firm believer that if no one tells you that you cannot do something, then you will be able to do it. That's why I chose Simplicity pattern #2447 for our project. The pattern incorporates a lot of details like set in sleeves, plackets, yokes, pleats, collar & neckband. I have about 3 students in my class & so far we've taken measurements & cut out the pattern pieces. We will cut fabric at our next session. I love to teach sewing. While I'm not perfect or an expert by any means, I share my passion for needle, thread & fabrics with others. There are no fees for my classes & I ask the students to make a donation to their favorite charity or the church if they are able. My question to you is what do you do to share your love of sewing with others?

Saturday, January 8, 2011

More Christmas 2010 Sewing

Here are a few more items that I sewed for Christmas 2010. I did all of Christmas sewing the week before Christmas & the week afterwards. It sure kept me busy.