Sunday, November 29, 2009

Christmas Sewing and Crafts

I purchased an e-book from Kimba's blog, A Soft Place to Land and have thoroughly enjoyed it. Here are some projects that I have made so far:

I had this wreath made from years ago, it had a big bow (flat from storage a bit outdated). I decided to do some updated from Kimba's book. I tried the red and green ornaments, I didn't like the green plus I only had two green ones left.

So I used red ornaments instead:

I really like my new wreath.

Next up a pillow from Kimba's book. This is for my oldest daughter, married 5 months and Christmas decorating her home with her new husband for the first time. Exciting times, I can remember doing that 26 years ago. Recently, I purchased her a red and white table runner from Target. The pillow from Kimba's book goes so nicely with the table runner. I used a 20" pillow form and off-white felt.

Very cute pillow and she was thrilled.

The last picture shows some cone trees from Kimba's book, I made 2 sets of three trees. One for college daughter's apartment and this set for a dear friend. This was the only picture I had of these, so it will have to do.

It has been a whirlwind Thanksgiving weekend of family, food, Black Friday shopping, Christmas decorating, and cutting our tree but it has all been wonderful. Sometimes I miss when my kids were little but it sure is easier decorating with teenagers. I can take my time and really get the look I want, plus trips to get more supplies are so much easier!

So check out Kimba's book if you are needing holiday inspiration

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Pillows from P.B Inspiration

Have you seen these in Pottery Barn's catalog?

I heart these pillows and have embroidered all three for me except in blue thread for my bedroom. I need to pick up pillow forms for my set and finish them up over the weekend. I used osnaburg fabric on my pillows and it works out nicely. Here is a link to see this fabric but you can buy it at Wal-Mart and Joann's.

College daughter has her own apartment and this is the first time she is decorating her own place for the holidays. She purchased a blue sofa with 2 chairs in a very contempory print with brighter colors. The traditional reds and greens aren't her first choice for holiday decorating. I had decorator burlap leftover from recovering my window seats. It is perfect for these pillows. The look of burlap without the coarseness. I stitched out Peace and Joy, she really didn't care for Love, so she has one for each chair. For the handstitching look around the edge of the pillow, I used two strands of buttonhole twist. I marked a line with a water soluble marker 2" from the cut edge. Then followed the line with some longer handstitches. Quick and Easy project. The hard part is getting good pictures when it gets dark so quickly and Erin wants to take her pillows back to her apartment!

Here is peace:

Another view without my flash:

Now joy, sitting on my new chair in my bedroom. First its close-up:

Now without the zoom:

I finished my second wreath, now a nice pair on the mirrors. I did get a picture in the daylight for these, they looks so pretty.


Tuesday, November 24, 2009


Our local longarm quilter is having a stocking project for the holidays. Make a stocking, donate it and your name will be put in a drawing for gift certificate.

Meredith was the first one to make a stocking. She used leftover strips from Oh Cherry Oh Honey Bun and came up with this design.

She simply stitched the long strips together and then cut them apart and stitched again to get a piece long enough to cut out the stocking shape. Quilting was straight lines, then cut a back and two lining pieces. She added a loop for hanging with a button to hold it into place. Isn't it cute?

I liked her idea of the Oh Cherry Oh, fabric and went very non-traditional, although I have been seeing quite a bit of pink and blue in the stores. Plus, I thought this might a little girl very happy.

I added piping when I switched direction and rick-rack at the top for a bit of detail. I did some curly-que quilting.

I am linking this with Today's Creative Blog's Get your Craft On party

Also, don't forget about the giveaway I am having, I will draw over the weekend, let's say Sunday.

Monday, November 23, 2009

A Giveaway

Just because:
  • it is a short week
  • the sun is shining brightly
  • Christmas is coming
  • Thanksgiving is a few days away
  • I am making my Black Friday list
  • all your nice comments
  • and many more reasons, too many to list

So leave a comment on this blog post and you could win one of the following. If you have a preference leave that in your comment.

Friday, November 20, 2009

New Wreath

I have been seeing these wreath designs throughout blogland and they started with Eddie Ross Today, with the help of college daughter, Erin, we went shopping for round ornaments and ribbon. I wanted to hang my wreath on the two mirrors above my bed. The colors in my bedroom are blues, browns and creams. So I went with a blue and silver theme of ornaments. Here is one of the finished ones, I have to buy more ornaments for the second one.

From the side:

Erin made one for her apartment, using these blue, silvers and added small hot pink ornaments with polka dots. She just left and took this wreath with her, I will have to get a picture later, it is darling.

We also, made one for a friend for a Christmas present, in reds, greens and golds. Another winner and this is so simple.

The ornaments were purchase at Wal-Mart and they are shatterproof. Similar to this product but the ones we bought had an assortment of colors and sizes.

We did some more crafting together but I need sunshine to photograph this next project. It sure was fun, crafting and creating with her.

Added this to:

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Simplicity 3684

Description: Misses blouses with some front variations, two collar styles and several sleeve styles

Sizing: 8 to 24 with B,C, D cup sizes. I made a 12 per the finished garment measurements on the pattern piece. Next time, I would keep the 12 sizing until the hips and grade that down to a 10.

Instructions: They are very good instructions with nice tips and hints from Threads scattered throughout. I didn’t refer to them very much, I have made several blouses and taken an online course with Shannon Gifford at Pattern Review. I did refer to my printouts from that class to construct the blouse, especially with the collar.

I went to Pam's blog for some shirtmaking information and wish I had done that earlier on. Check out her blog for some magnificent tutorials. She is the queen of shirtmaking! The interfacing for this blouse came from Pam, too.

Likes/Dislikes: I wanted a very traditional blouse with great fit and style. This pattern fit the bill. You can have any variation of sleeves, cuffs and yokes with this pattern. Add lace and detailing for even more options. I really like the darts in the back for a great fitted blouse.

Absolutely no dislikes.

Changes: I combined a couple of views, the body of D and the sleeves of A and the length and hem of C. I added 1” to the body of the blouse and 1-1/2” to the sleeves. That was just the right amount, I had been only adding 1” to the sleeves and they were just a bit too short. You know, that bit that drives you crazy. That ½” isn’t much but it is the right amount and makes all the difference. The wearbility factor, as Carolyn stated on my blog comments one time.

Fabric: A wonderful package from Brigitte . I was the first one to figure out what pattern she was using from BWOF and as a result, received all these wondeful fabrics and notions
So the cream sateen cotton for the blouse and Brigitte included the fabulous buttons. Looks perfect for dressing up and dressing down and for the upcoming holiday season.

Conclusion: A great fitting blouse with many options to make this pattern uniquely yours.
Here is the blouse:

Beautiful buttons

The back:

Now a few Christmas items and then to the wool fabric from Brigitte for a pea coat for me!
Thank you, Brigitte, the fabric was a dream to sew.

Monday, November 16, 2009

New Look 6829

Description: Misses tunic top or dress with empire waist, crossover or button up bodice front, bias skirt, and sleeve variations

Sizing: 10 to 22

Instructions: The instructions were good, easy to follow.

Likes/Dislikes: I liked the variations on a empire waist top.

Changes: I used a knit fabric instead of the suggested fabric types, which were wovens (cotton, poplin, silk, etc). With the knit in mind, I decided on a size 10 from the finished garment measurements. If I made this in a woven, fabric, I think a size 10 would be the best.

Other changes:

I made view B with the exception of the sleeves. I didn’t want to add a button cuff, so I added 1-1/2” to the sleeve length and just used an elastic casing for the bottom of the sleeve. I needed to add another inch to have my sleeves long enough, but they are cute pulled up.

I also added 1” to the body of the garment, a typical adjustment for me. Also, the pattern called for the skirt part of the top/dress/tunic to be cut on the bias. Once again with the knit, I used a straight of grain to cut the skirt part. Good thing, as I had no fabric leftover!

Fabric: Retro-knit from Joann’s fabric. The fabric and pattern were purchased when I met Gwen at Joann's.

Conclusion: A cute top, very quick to make and interesting details. I would like to try view C, with buttons or snaps. I am not crazy about my print in this top and I think a solid would show the lines and shape of this top better.

You can see the details of this pattern with the line drawing:

Not a great picture but it gives you an idea of the fit:

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Last Purse

at least for awhile.

I made this one with a charm pack and 1 yard of the polka dot fabric. This line is called Authentic by Sweetwater and manufactured by Moda. Take a look at blog for some neat gift ideas. I really like this fabric and this bag might be for college daughter. Her major is math education, so the numbers on the fabric would be perfect and it is a huge bag, great for carrying books.

Garment sewing did take place today. I finished a New Look top and started a Simplicity blouse. I need some clothes for me, especially for the upcoming holiday season.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Veteran's Day

Sunday, November 08, 2009

Sewing, Pictures and Painting

We will start with the sewing part of the title:

From this burlap home dec fabric to update a couple of window seats.

Here is the before:

I ordered 2 yards of this fabric, only enough for one window seat. The additional 2 yards came in this week, so I need to recover the second seat. Then pillows, it is always something, right?

The after:

Now to the picture part of the title:

Geometry homework for the twins. First, they have to make bridges from Popsicle sticks or tongue depressors. They can only use 30 sticks, at least 8" in length and it has to be able to hold the Geometry book without breaking. They called their civil engineer oldest sister, her advice, "Triangles are strong, remember that." We purchased 200 tongue depressors and they each made a test bridge. It held 8 books and the glue popped. The second and final bridges are in progress. I think we might have another engineer in the making, Kaitlyn really enjoyed this project. A second part of the homework, pictures. They had to go out and take pictures of bridges and towers, then print out 3 pictures, highlighting the geometric shapes.

This was fun to explore the country gravel roads for old bridges and other structures this weekend. Here is a couple of their pictures.

Now the Painting:

No sewing this past week. Mike and I have been painting the basement family room and the stairway down to the basement. We painted old paneling, so primer, then 2 coats of paint. Replaced a couple of old lights and then stained the concrete on the unfinished side of the basement. This was a test, as I want to stain the family room floor, too. Mike is thinking it looks pretty good. I agree but I am getting tired of the brush in my hand! I just put the second coat of sealer on the stain. Mike is going to re-do the stairs, with stained oak treds. The basement looks so much better and brighter. Hopefully we will be all done this week, then I can sew again. I am so ready to get back to my machines.

Sunday, November 01, 2009


I had every intention of starting my wool pea coat, started to organize all my supplies. I had one key missing supply, interfacing! I placed an order with Pam of Sew Exciting and it came on Saturday. I am back in the fashion sewing business.

In the meantime, I had time plenty of time to sew this week and here is what I accomplished:

A variation of a Jelly Roll Bag pattern. I really like the colors of this bag, so soft. I added the applique embroidery with my machine.

Close-up of the embroidery:

Used a bit more of the same fabric grouping:

I have a quilt book with a variation of this bag. I used it as a jumping off point, and made this one, it is very, very big:


used the scraps from my quilt:

I was to teach a class with the Bungalow Bag pattern, so I made the bag again. The class only had one student, so I didn't have the class but I am very pleased with this purse.

Also on the sewing front:

I hemmed the twins' orchestra dresses tonight, not a fun project. Recovered a window seat cushion, sewed binding on a quilt and cut out a knit top.
I don't think I will have time to sew this week, we are going to do some painting in the family room, work on the stairs and flooring. This project really needs to be done and Mike has some great ideas for the room, so I am very anxious to start.