Watermelon Smiles!

Is there any better way to welcome summer than with a watermelon and a smile?

will watermellon smile

Our son Will, sure does enjoy his watermelon, it brings a nice big smile to his face!

Over the last couple of weeks we were readying ourselves for our big trip back east (Cape Cod).  Packing a family of 4 and 2 dogs for 7 weeks is not a small task when combined with the “end of school craziness”, graduation parties (next year our oldest graduates) and a “TOP SECRET” sewing project.  I can’t show it now, because it is a gift for someone and she may be a blog reader?!

I can show you this though!

 My LOL dress.  I wore this Liberty of London Cambie dress to a very good friend’s wedding.  Unfortunately with our rush to make it to the event before the bride we didn’t get any pictures of me wearing it. Dog gone it!

lol dress4

I pulled another one of my “I don’t need to read the directions” bits.  At least when it came to the straps.  Why do I do this?  Do any of you have these issues, thinking that just because you have put many sleeves and straps on garments that you THINK you know what you are doing so directions are not needed?!  Well, I did this, and the process of sewing the Cambie dress took me several more hours than it should have.

But let’s focus on the good, shall we?

First of all, you can never go wrong when it comes to Liberty of London fabric.  At around $36.00 a yard, it really is well worth it.  It has a lovely hand  and texture to it.  This particular print Carline Blue is out of print so I purchased it off of etsy (Pins and Needles) in July of last year.  I have been waiting for the perfect dress pattern.   The lightbulb went off over my head when I saw Sewaholics Cambie dress pattern.  I chose the sweetheart neckline and the full skirt option.

lol dress3

lol dress2

I absolutely love the fullness of the skirt and the marriage between the LOL fabric and the Cambie dress pattern was a match made in heaven.  I made the right choice for my coveted 3 yards of LOL.

I did have one slight fitting issue, that I didn’t have time to fix before the wedding.

new lol dress

 Well….. If I am real honest about it, it was a complete oversight.  It went undiscovered until I sat down at the wedding!!!! scandalous!  Note to self, bending and sitting are required activities for all home sewn garments before wearing out in public.  EEEEEEK!  I will be correcting this little fashion malfunction before I wear this beauty again.  Hopefully nobody noticed but my very tall husband.  🙂

So…. for the next several weeks I will be blogging, from Cape Cod, Massachusetts!  Does anyone know of any fabric/sewing events that I should attend on the east coast?

One thing I want to mention before I close this post is stay tuned for a give away.  I have some fun items I have been gathering for my next give away.  You won’t want to miss this one!!!

Enjoy your weekend!  Make it a crafty one!

 images

A Handmade Christmas? Is it even possible?

So here we are at the end of November, and I am just now thinking about A Handmade Christmas!  Wow, procrastinate much?  I have already “bitten off” a lot more than I can probably “chew”.  I am undertaking an 80″ X 60″ quilt for my Mom and Pops.

I started by doing a little research on what I found to be easy on the eyes and just plain easy.  I discovered this beauty on an inspiring blog Quilt Story.  There you will find an easy to follow tutorial done by Megan and Heather.  Gosh, isn’t it pretty?!  I believe mine will be a little bigger than theirs, and also a little different, mostly because as usual, I screwed up!  🙂

I wanted it to be large enough for both my parents to sit together under while watching television, and also if my dad takes a little snooze on the sofa, it will cover him from neck to toes.  There’s nothing worse than having your feet stick out under a blanket just so you can cover your shoulders or covering your feet up and then getting the “cold shoulder”.

Here’s a quick look at what I have done so far:

momandpopsxmas

Three blocks completed, each measuring about 20″, just to give you some reference to the scale of what you are viewing.

There are many resources available to all of us for creating a handmade Christmas.  One thing I discovered the other day is something that came to me on Twitter.  It’s called A Hip Handmade Holiday from Craft Pack.  

A Hip Handmade Holiday - a digital craft book with 18 projects, 9 instructional videos and over 100 downloads

This awesome pdf can be purchased for 10 US dollars.  It consists of 18 craft projects that cost about $10.00 each to make.  I have it, and will be crafting some of the items included in this clever magazine.

Two other great resources that I have talked about before are, Creativebug.com and Craftsy.com.

I am especially enjoying Creativebug at the moment.  I have once again crocheted the one skein scarf, I bought 5 more skeins of yarn today to crochet more scarves!   Creativebug has all sorts of paper workshops for decorative gift wrapping, party decorations and much ,much more.  Really, you have to stop by and check it out.

Here is a picture of the One Skein Scarf.

oneskeinscarf

My last resource, is Etsy.  If I am unable to make it myself, then I will purchase a handmade item made by someone else.  Why not?  I think doing this, for me anyway, will make Christmas seem a little less overwhelming, (since crafting to me is therapy) and I love supporting my fellow artisans!  There are some very talented and creative people on Etsy.

Another Item I stumbled upon on the internet was a paper pieced Christmas Tree.  I saw one similar to the one here I have sewn up.   I just drew up my own rendition of a tree and sewed it up.  Really, it is very easy and I think if I make 2 of these they will work quite nicely for a festive table runner hmmmmm…..this might be a gift after all.  Now I just need to figure out how to paper piece a Santa- I wonder if it is even possible?!

christmas tree paperpiecing

So, as you can all see, I am going to be a little busy, cheap therapy though, eh?  Maybe you also may want to partake in A Handmade Christmas?

Have a great weekend!

Quick and Easy

I started a project about 2 days into my Cape Cod vacation, but got distracted by life and other things.  I purchased this silky green Ikat-ish fabric from the Etsy shop, Shop at Moxie.  It is described as being a vintage fabric from the 50’s, a cotton sateen.  I saw it on Etsy and I just had to have it!!!

Yesterday I decided to finish what I had started.  Jim, the boys and I had a cook-out to go to and I needed “something” to wear.  I continued and finished sewing a skirt from the New Look Pattern 6872.

It is a simple gathered skirt, but with the fabric I chose, I didn’t need something complicated!  This lovely green textile spoke for itself.  The pattern for the skirt consists of 2 waistband pieces and 1 skirt piece cut 2 times for the front and back piece.  Easy Peasey!!

Here is the finished product.

I think it would have been better with some seam pockets.  Well, live and learn, right?!  I always like to have a place to hang my hands.  🙂

I think I will be purchasing a crinoline from the Etsy shop Swank Underpinnings.  This shop owner creates some beautiful slips that would add lots of body to my skirt, thus making my waist seem small!   An illusion, so to speak!

Anyway, I have some really fun sewing projects planned for the next few days.  I will be sewing up a pair of Jennifer Paganelli Tommy Boxer Shorts.  I downloaded the pattern from her Sis Boom Website.  I am swooning over all her beautiful fabrics.  So much so, that I can’t decide which fabrics to order!!!!  You should go on over to Sis Boom and check it out.  I am also working on my first Give-Away.  I would love for you all to participate, and try to win a little something from me.  My way of thanking you!  Stay tuned for more details to come!

As always, have a great day and thanks for visiting!

It’s Not Easy Being Green!

It has been several days since my last post.  I would love to say that I have been a whirling dervish, sewing and creating, but the reality is that I have been down for a few days with what I call a “moving around headache”.   Weird name I know, but I call it this because with every slight movement I make, it causes a sharp acute pain to my head.  Not fun.  So I spent most of my time sleeping. No whirling for me.

Anyway, I had intended to put this little green number up on the Sew Weekly website for the St. Patrick’s/ Green Challenge.  Unfortunately I missed the deadline.  I purchased this pattern a while back off of Etsy.  This is my second attempt at sewing a wiggle dress from this pattern.  My first attempt ended up in the circular file (waste basket).  I had to grade the pattern in order to get it in the neighborhood of my proportions, which I have never done before.  Threads magazine has a really helpful step-by-step tutorial on grading a sewing pattern.

I am unsure if this McCall’s pattern is actually the “best” wiggle dress pattern for my particular shape.  I feel as though it makes me appear a little thick on top and not in a good way, if you know what I mean!

It’s been raining cats and dogs here in Northern California, so here I have an umbrella.  And also just so you know, the hem is pinned up, so I guess this is considered a UFO until it actually is finished!

So this next picture supports my observation of it raining Cats and Dogs.  There’s a dog here!  It fell from the sky!  REALLY!

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No make-up or pretty shoes here,I’m just au naturel.  

I definitely had some fit issues with this pattern.  I was also not crazy about my fabric choice.  This green fabric was something I found on the Joann’s discount shelf without any identifiable information as to it’s fiber content.  It’s silky to the touch, but I am sure that it is  synthetic and not silk.  It was hard to press, and very hard to work with.

          

I guess, I could look at it like a muslin or a toile and chalk it up to ANOTHER learning experience!

Anyway, until next time.

Happy St. Patrick’s Day

Patience and Progress…..

I often find myself to be a person that wants instant results.  All that “Patience is a virtue” crap is something our mothers said to us and it is something that we continue to tell our kids.  When I start a sewing project, I want it done NOW and this would mean skipping the muslin sewing!  definitely not a possibility, because the sewing police will bust into my house and demand to see my muslin for my ill-fitting garment (Muslins help you avoid ill-fitting garments)- which I wouldn’t be able to produce and this would lead to the seamSTRESS pokey and… well you get the picture!  My latest project that I am working on is a quilt.  It is not just any quilt, it is a cathedral quilt.  And it happens to be my first quilt, real quilt that is.  I chose this style, because it reminds me of the quilts I grew up with, handed down from my great-grandmother that my sister now has possession of.  
The colored fabric for the quilt was purchased off of Etsy from a shop called Swell Goods.  Fitting don’t you think?  Each vintage fat quarter came neatly pressed, folded, bundled and at one time was a bed sheet.  I just love it when you order something off of Etsy and when it arrives it’s packaged in a very special way!
Well, this is a sewing project that is going to take a lot of patience, which I intend to be pushing to the limit and at this point with nearly a week behind me I have enough done to use for a table runner.  My intent is to have enough rows done by June to blanket an actual human.  
 So as I continue to sew this massive undertaking, I will pick up other projects along the way to alleviate the boredom associated with sewing square, after square, after….. You get it…
Stay tuned for further developments!