Friday, December 31, 2010

The Last Day of the Year

Well, hard to believe (at least for me) but it's the last day of 2010. I really have no idea where the year has gone and when I started to think about it I started to think about all the things that I thought about doing this year and didn't.

Then I smacked myself and told myself to think about all the things I *did* do.
Ahhh, much better.

So, what did I do this year?

I knitted 15 or so scarves (not all pictured) most of which were given away as gifts; my Aunt, my BFF and her daughter L'il Miss C, Family (5), friends (2) and a couple I even saved for myself!

I sewed 5 aprons; one for myself, 1 for Miss C, 2 for L'il Miss C and one for her Mama that matches L'il Miss C's 2nd one.

I made a kimono for Miss S when her class "was" Japan for the Olympics and a psydo 1910's skirt for her when her school celebrated their 100th year.

A torn bag was re-purposed into some new placemats and now everyone has a placemat when we have visitors for dinner.

I made some AWESOME Hallowe'en costumes for the girls and might even get mine done one day.

For myself I made a frugal and kinda ugly pyjama shirt and I learned a new program to show you all.

Not included in the picture (as I haven't taken photos yet) are the three produce bags I just finished, the present bags I made for Christmas (I want a greener Christmas) and the traditional Christmas Eve pyjamas I made for the girls.
Hopefully I get those photographed soon and maybe I'll do an add on.

Happy New Year everyone!


Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas to all celebrating today.
I'm currently working on a post of Christmas sewing but in the meantime I wanted to stop by and wish everyone celebrating today a Merry Christmas.

Here's a picture of one of the odd "presents" that kept appearing under the tree over the last while. Oddly enough it wasn't there this morning >wink<

That's Fitz by the way. The same spot has also held a tabby "present", Zoe and a black and white one named Todd. Aren't we lucky?

Monday, December 13, 2010


Finally I have my quiet house back.
Finally I have some time to do a post
Finally I have done some sewing!

I have been off since the last week of November (yay me) but I have been so busy (at mostly non-sewing stuff) that my blog has been sadly neglected.

The first week I was off I went into a flurry of cleaning and re-organizing. Anyone looking in the window would have thought it was Spring since it looked more like I was spring cleaning than anything else.
Why was a cleaning instead of sewing you ask? (Well, you'd ask if you knew me since you'd know I HATE cleaning!) The answer is ....I really have no idea. I mean I know it started because I was going to have my BFFs daughter L'il Miss C visit with us for a week but seriously, I never clean like that!
It was really like I would rather clean that week than sew! Which is sooooo not me.

So there went week one off and week two was L'il Miss C. I tell you, you forget very quickly how much energy a 4 year old takes. I thought "pshhh I've had 4 year olds in my life...twice! I can handle this!" I\ll never listen to myself again, I know nothing! Nothing!!!

During the week she was here I did manage to finish off the two aprons that were going home with her. Mostly by waiting until my girls were home so they could distract her!
Of course because she was here and we were alone during the best daylight hours I don't have any completed apron pictures for you. But here's a picture of L'il Miss C's before all the ties went on (and all the thread were cut) It gives you the general idea though.

The neck tie will be elastic last L'il Miss C's last apron and the ties will be ...well, ties!

Her momma's apron is pretty much the same although I added some green stripes around the Santa's to make her pocket bigger and her neck tie has a D ring so it's a little more adjustable. 

Tomorrow I will try and post about today's sewing but until then...cute cat picture!
This is Todd and he's my silly boy. He loves to get attention by rolling around and looking cute. Today he tried that on my ironing board and almost fell off! Ah the time when you wish you had a camera. Here's how he looks most mornings while I sit at the computer eating my breakfast and reading my Reader.

Silly boy.


Saturday, November 27, 2010

Random Thoughts

Sometimes when I'm doing something totally different a random thought on another subject will pop into my head.

That's what happened when we were walking the dog this morning. All of a sudden "you should do some pretty stitching in red" popped into my head.

So when we came home, that's what I did!

Hmm I have to say it looks much brighter and pops better in real life but I guess that's life in the winter huh? Anyway, it was a great random thought and it really adds a punch to the aprons and makes that little bit more Christmassy.

Hopefully I'll have one just about done and have more pictures for tomorrow. I need to rush on these a bit because I'm babysitting L'il Miss C in a week or so and since these are for her and her mom...can't really be working on them while she's here. But having them done to send home with her and her Momma would be perfect so...sewing now!

More later. Ta!

Thursday, November 25, 2010


Why shh?

I just got back from walking the dog and the one thing I noticed is how quiet it was on the side roads. It's snowing again (again!) and it always seems to make the word quiet.
All I heard was the crunch of the snow, the jingle of Scooby's leash as he snuffled around and the pft of the flakes landing on and sliding off my hood. So quiet and peaceful I had to stop..and nothing.


It's also a shh day because I'm supposed to be at work and I'm not! But don't tell!
My library is closed and I was supposed to go work with another librarian on one of our many extra projects but she says the roads are horrible so....I'm starting my vacation a day early! If the weather clears I'll probably head out while I'm on vacation and we'll work on the project then. It's not like it's urgent and really, spending time with another librarian, especially J who's "TOSO"  (that's The Other Sane One) isn't much like work anyway so it will be a nice day even if some people will think I'm crazy to "work" on a day off.

Now, off to do some vacation type sew! 


Sunday, November 21, 2010

Oh Snap!

As in Cold Snap. Yep, we have actually cold weather here today and there was still snow on the lawn this morning! yuck!

Usually the first snow fall will have the decency to melt and be gone by the time I get up in the morning but not this one, no sir-ie. This one started Thursday at noon (unusual) got worse through the day (unusual) and by the time I got home from work was sticking on the lawn. This is *highly* unusual for the first snowfall of the year. And let's not even mention how *freaking early* this years first snow is!The middle of November? I don't remember the last time that happened and I've been in this town over 30 years!
(Of course, to be honest, if it did happen before I'm pretty sure I would have blocked it out anyway! )

The dog thinks this is great though. For some wacko reason he loves the snow. Loves to snap at it and bite it and devour snowballs thrown for him and roll in it and generally be silly when there's snow on the ground. Friday mornings walk with him led to a frozen face and many laughs on my part and silly doggy grins on his. Doofus dog, we think you're nuts but we love you!

Being cold and blustery did finally get me into the sewing room though and here's what's on the table.
Earlier this year I made L'il Miss C a cute little kitty apron for her birthday. She loved but had 1 little concern later - Momma didn't have an apron like hers. So for Christmas her Mom and I connived a little scheme, looked through Her fabric and I am now working on 2 matching aprons for l'il Miss C and Momma!
The green is for the body of the apron and the Santas will be the pockets. For Mommas apron the bottom pocket will have some green edging to make the pocket bigger and more proportional, L'il Miss C's won't have that as she's pretty tiny.
I'm not sure yet if I'm going to do a top pocket like the kitty apron but I'll decide on that later. No rush, it's not even December yet, right?
So far all I've gotten done is the material pre-washed and ironed and the apron bodies cut out so no exciting pictures. Except for this cute one.

This is Todd and Zoe and yes, they're sitting on my ironing board. Actually they're sitting and washing in my ironing board >sigh< Is it any wonder I have a hard time getting sewing done?


Sunday, November 14, 2010

No Actual Sewing was Accomplished

I had a lovely long weekend this weekend. Thursday was a Stat holiday (Remembrance Day up here in Canada) and then with my usual Friday off I had a 4 day weekend.

A perfect time to do some sewing you'd think, wouldn't you?

Sadly you'd be wrong and so was I. I had great hopes for the weekend but what I wasn't counting on was a cold that started Monday. It wasn't a horrible cold per se but it felt like I had a big bag of fluff stuffed into my head and frankly it didn't leave much room for my brain.

So instead of sewing, which I don't really like to do without my brain, I decided to clean the room I use now for sewing. Until recently this room was Miss C's. When I finally put my foot down and told her to pick one room or the other (the other being the spare room/sewing room in the basement) she picked the basement. So I cleaned out about 1/2 the room and got the major sewing stuff in so I could work and she could have some space.

But it wasn't quite what I wanted. For one thing 1/2 the room really wasn't cutting it plus somehow I had made it so that I couldn't get into the 2nd closet in the room at all! So I decided that this weekend would be a good time to do some rearranging and keep cleaning the rest of the space, and that's what I did.

Now I have the closet I store material and costumes so that I can get to it, I have the ironing board set up so it's I can use it *and* watch DVDs on my computer and I don't have 1/2 the room clogged up with who knows what. I'm much happier with how the work surfaces are all arranged and I even got some ironing done while watching an episode of Mad Men.

Not exactly the sewing weekend I was looking for but a productive weekend just the same.

On a parting note, a cute cat picture (since I don't have any sewing progress to show!) and a visual explanation of why sometimes doing your homework isn't as simple as you would think. Ta!

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Hallowe'en Recap

Sooooo, long time no post. I know, bad blogger, no cookie. Do I get a reprieve if I say I have pictures??? Thought so!;-)

To start - a picture of our garage.  It's the first thing you see when you come up our driveway so we've always tried to decorate it but this is the first year I've really liked what we did. The edges are spray painted (black) ivy and ...something that I got at the thrift store. The tree is one of those wall decorations you buy for your house (for inside) and the rest is from a MS Hallowe'en decoration set, also the stick on vinyl stuff. <3 that stuff! It looks great, goes up easy and comes down easy too. What's better for Hallowe'en decorations? Nothing!

I think it turned out rather well, what do you think?

Now for a little verbal info on how the Hallowe'en sewing went.
It went pretty well except for the problem with my jacket. I forgot the shoulder pads and didn't have them when I should have, tried to add them later and ....well, let's just say it didn't work. So.....I put it on hold and am currently working on taking out the lining so I can put the should pads in properly. When it's finally all done I'll make sure to post pics I promise.

On to what I did finish. I managed to finish all the bits for the girls. YAY! I didn't get back to the Gryffindor robe to add pockets but that was not in the original plan so it doesn't count as far as I'm concerned.

For Miss C I had a skirt, the robe, and a sweater to make or remake. We re-used a white dress shirt, bought new shoes, socks, and of course the tie and I also bought the Gryffindor partch.
I think it turned out rather well.

 For Miss S I bought the t-shirt, but made the stencil for the design and I added a flannel lining of sorts to her thrifted jean jacket. Doing Annabeth from the Percy Jackson books is probably the easiest costume I've done in years! The jeans were her regular ones and we bought the Yankees ball cap. But for a mostly purchased costume it caused a fair bit of talk at school and was well received. I'm very proud of it. (Mostly because the stencil took me over a week of hard stressful work! )

If you've read the Percy Jackson books you'll know why she's wearing the necklace that she is. She made the beads herself. Did a good job too.
If you haven't read the books I'd recommend you do! They are great books.

Tomorrow I'm going to try and post a bit of a "how to" on how I re-made the sweater. For once I remembered to take some pictures during the process.

Right now though, it's time to walk to dog. Ta!

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Progress but no pics

Hey there!

Just a quick note to say "no, I haven't fallen off the ends of the earth" and "yes, sewing has been done."

I have been sewing like a crazy lately but nothing is at a stage to be photographed yet so no progress pictures.
So far I have gotten the lining in my jacket, but then realized I forgot the shoulder pads and the jacket and lining are cut to include them. Nurtz!
While I waited to buy those I worked on the muslin for Miss C's skirt. It came out pretty well so I sewed the real one up with the adjustments and it is waiting for closures and a hem. I'll probably take that into work so I can sew that on my lunch.
Meanwhile at home this week  I will be working on the Camp Half-Blood t-shirt. Oh! That reminds me, I need to measure Miss S to see how big to make the stencil.

Friday is is ProD day for Miss S so hopefully I can get the skirt and the t-shirt done for the party we're going to on Saturday. There should be pics by then. Keep your fingers crossed!


Monday, October 4, 2010

The scarf you've all been waiting for!

Okay, maybe that's a little dramatic but hey, Miss C comes by her diva-ness naturally, what can I say? LOL

Anyway, here's pictures of Miss S and her new cabeled ! scarf and one of the scarf close up. My first cables!!! Yay!

The yarn is handspun by me and I totally forget where I got it and what it's called but it's probably from my Spin-in last year and could easily be one of Louet's Northern Lights . Maybe the Mulled Wine? It has purple and orange and a rusty kind of colour and was wonderful to spin. 

Since I'm home unplanned today (technical difficulties with Miss S and today's planned all day school hike) I'm hoping to get the lining into my jacket.

If I do that might mean 3 posts in less than a month!!! woo
But of course that's not going to happen if I don't get off this computer. Ta!

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Not enough hours!

I have come to the firm conclusion that there are just not enough hours in the day! I have books to read, blogs to read, costumes to sew, regular stuff to sew, homework to deal with, work to deal with and posts to write.
As you may have guessed from the list, writing blog posts is not the highest on my priority list, I think this is probably because it's the newest thing ion my list and while I love it, and enjoy it (as long as the computer is acting nicely) it's not yet a habit.
So over the next little while I promise to work on a strategy to make it a habit. I promise.

In the meantime I do have some progress to report; sewing progress that is, I doubt you'd want to hear about my reading progress or homework! 

First is the Gryffindor robe. It is now nearly complete and 100% wearable. It will be complete when it has a button closure and the pockets Miss C asked for. ;-)
Here is Miss C showing off her new robe. Note that while she's not the tallest person in a room she is at least 5'4" and I took 9.5 inches off the length of this pattern! Yes, that's right I said 9.5 inches!!!!
As you can see it's a darn good thing I did take the length out or she would have not been able to wear this.

Sleeve lining and facings are all in Gryffindor burgandy a la the 3rd movie. So is the hood, but we forgot to get a good pic of that. 
The good news is that this robe will now become a family "dress up" staple as it's large enough to even fit me!
Pardon my lack of head here but Miss C took a lovely picture of me making a face. LOL Trust me, you didn't want to see this without the cropping!

I've also finished the cabled scarf that Miss S then turned and proclaimed was hers. I have to admit except for the purple in the yarn, the colours really are more her. I'll try and get pictures of that tomorrow The weather forecast for tomorrow isn't the best but at least I can do better than inside lighting then.

My Butterick jacket is almost done. I've have been stealing away for 10 and 20 minute little burst to work on it, even taking the minute the computer takes to start up to do a little something as I'm feeling the crunch for Hallowe'en sewing. It is October after all.
The outer shell and lining are both done as of today so all I have to do is get them together. I'm going to read over (and over) the instructions to do a bag lining from Threads and see if I can wrap my head around it and make it work.

That's my plan for the coming week with hopefully Miss C's skirt too.I shall keep you all posted.

As a last shot here's a picture of our garage getting decorated for Hallowe'en. It's a work in progress but I thought it would be interesting to show.

These are part of a Martha Stewart package of Hallowe'en vinyl wall cling things. Sorry, it's getting late and I need to go to bed but I've been fighting with blogspot's new photo editor. I think I have it figured out but now I'm really brain tired. If I wasn't I'd be spelling things correctly and not have to back space and I'd link to a page with the decorations on it. Maybe tomorrow. On that note....


Thursday, September 16, 2010

I cabeled!

First off, let me tell you a little about myself to set the scene. I love just about any craft and I've tried tons. I have a ton more on my "to try someday" list, but generally I'm a dabbler. That means that I don't really spend a lot of time on any one thing so I'm good at a fair number but not great at much of anything. In a lot of crafts I would say I'm above a beginner, but not by much; like knitting.
I know how to knit, I can knit and purl with no problem and I even know some of the terminology but I've never knit a sweater, I've never made full sized socks (did some mini ones once for Christmas) and I've never done anything fancy. (Unless you count the simple lace scarf I made a couple of weeks ago but I wouldn't!)

That being said, I love to try new things and I love to have something to do with my hands while I watch TV (it keeps me from snacking and I've lost 20 lbs doing crafting instead of eating!) so last week I picked up Creative Knitting's new Accessorize with Style. It has lots of easy looking patterns for some cute stuff so I thought I'd give it a try.

As I was reading through the magazine I noticed they had two patterns for scarves (I love to make scarves!) with cables and the patterns were labeled "easy". What?!?!? Cables can be easy? Surely not! I love cables but I've never even thought of making something with cables because they're hard....aren't they?

So I read the pattern and ...well it looked easy. I could even visualize myself doing it.  Last night I tried it out with some yarn I spun last year and sure enough; all these years of being scared of cables was silly, they're really not that hard! So far I've got a whooping 2 cross overs done and I'm sure to make some mistakes but I have to say; I'm liking knitting cables.

[little update - before I got a chance to finish this post, get a picture taken and get it posted I discovered ....I'm addicted to cables! See?]

(I kind of made up my own pattern to play with so my scarf will not look like the one in the magazine but I give full credit to Creative Knitting for getting me over my fear of cables!)


Saturday, September 11, 2010

Decision Time

Alrighty! I've made a decision folks and the winner is..............

I've chosen to go with the shorter jacket paired with (I hope) a long skirt. I think this look offers more versatility and I really want to use the new purple wool I got a little while ago. I'm not sure if I'd have enough for the long robe in the purple so it's plan A. It's also the design most people preferred.

If I like the look of the jacket I may well go on to do the long robe in the future. To be honest I was also seeing that in a velvet or a velveteen, not a wool so I don't think making it from the wool would have made me happy.
Plus, wearing the long robe would be a lot like just wearing my old cape that I've worn for years and that is soooooo last year! LOL

Now all I need to do is figure out a top. Hmmmmm Anyone know of a place to buy t-shirt type material with Hallowe'en motifs?


Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Mt Baker

On the 3rd my girls and I along with my BFF and her daughter went on the long drive (up a scary road!) to Artist's Point to see Mt Baker.

L'il Miss C is only 4 years old and was going through a bad case of "are we there yet"s on the drive. Soon to told her to watch for snow and that would tell her if we were close. The squeal from her when she spotted the first snow was delightful.

Here are some gorgeous pictures the elder Miss C took. Ta!

Monday, September 6, 2010

The good and the bad news

The good news is that the Howarts robe is done! (well unless I add the pockets that C wants added. I told her after everything else was done I'd think about it. I hate seam ripping!)

The bad news is that the weather is cold and dreary here and due to stay that way for the week. So no pictures. Hopefully the weather will clear up for the weekend.

In other news the jacket and skirt combo seem to be winning the great design debate. Now if only I can actually get it sewn in time for Hallowe'en.

That's it for today - I still have a pair of jeans that need to be hemmed for the start of school and that's tomorrow. I don't know which is harder to take - start of school or the end of my summer sewing break....definitely the end of my sewing break for me!! LOL


Sunday, September 5, 2010

I couldn't resist.

Okay, I know I said I wouldn't be working on my costume until the girls' were done but......I couldn't help myself!

Here are the two concept designs I came up with. Both are based off of Butterick's Retro 1948 jacket pattern #B5144

In the design on the left I would keep the coat the original length and make a black skirt with a godet at the centre back for some visual interest. Since the jacket will be in a wool, I think I'd make the skirt is something shinier.

The design to the right would be the jacket extended to the floor in the back and just be a basic robe.

For material I'm looking at a lovely wool I bought recently for the jacket with black velveteen for the collar and cuffs.

Oh and in case you're wondering what's up with the hat - I already have that hat in it has a veil in the front. It's my favorite hat so far! 

Feel free to comment folks! Now I'm off to finish some hand sewing on the Hogwarts robe.


Saturday, September 4, 2010

Hallowe'en Progress

I know, I know! It's barely September and here I am talking about Hallowe'en, crazy huh? But I have a confession to make....I'm a costume crazy/snob. I LOVE making my kids wonderful artistic cool Hallowe'en costumes. I think I realized how crazy I was the year I took time off work and made C a Sleeping Beauty costume that took something insane like 5 metres of material. To this day I regret giving that away.
The good news is I made S another one ..3? years ago and we still have that. My girls made me swear to never give that one away. I have promised to never give away another costume although I have loaned out a couple. But I implicitly trust the grandma I loaned it too so it's not a problem (Plus I know where she lives Mwahahahahah)

Anyway, the rule in our house is that Hallowe'en costumes have to be decided on by August because they're usually a bit elaborate and I DO NOT sew quickly! Nope, not at all. I'm hoping that might change with my sewing room out of the basement (C and I traded space...sort of - long story) but we shall see.
This year we have gone for a rather literary Hallowe'en (yes that's right, I plan on a costume for myself this year!).
C and I are going as a Hogwart's student (C) and a witch with style (which is what makes it Harry Potter-ish). I have a collection of witch hats and I usually wear one of those with an old cape that I have (made in high school....and that's a LONG time ago!) but I'm getting tired of something that simple and I wanted to step it up.
S is going to go as Annabeth from the Percy Jackson and the Olympians books. She's a fiend for them! The nice thing about her costume is that it's not very fancy and most of it will be purchased rather than made. Hopefully that will leave me enough time to up my witch look.

So for C it will be a Hogwart's robe (make) , a white dress shirt (already have), a sweater with Gryffindor colours (re-fashion), A skirt (make) and socks or tight with Mary Jane shoes (buy - she needs nice shoes anyway).

S's costume will be the fast and easy one this year; jeans (have), Jean jacket (bought at thrift store), orange t-shirt (bought ages ago) with Camp Half-Blood logo (will stencil that on), Yankees hat (bought in WA yesterday), a necklace with special beads (S is making that). Basically all I have to do it figure out the design and stencil on the camp logo. Sweeeeet!

For mine - well, I'm going to wait on that for a bit before I share it with you just in case I run out of time.

So first up and my plan for this week I've had off, if the Hogwarts robe. I started with Simplicity 5840. Now this isn't the perfect pattern but it's pretty darn close. The first change is to make the yoke into a front and back shoulder part. Pretty easy to do; cut along the shoulder line, add seam allowances to the shoulder and take away the seam allowances where it joins the body. I didn't take any pictures of that but if anyone asks me; I can recreate it.
Then it was on to take out some length. Now I don't know who they intended this pattern for but C is over 5'4" and after taking out 9.5's only just up to her ankle bone! If I had left that 9.5 inches in....well, I'm sure you can all do the math. LOL
Here's how the pattern looked when I evenly took out the inches.
See, the trick to taking out that much length is to make lots of small adjustments. If you just took it off the bottom the robe would be shorter but it wouldn't be as wide on the bottom either. And you usually don't want that.
Of course once you've done that you can see that you get a really rough edge. To fix that you draw a line from the top edge just before the changes to the bottom edge.
Then you fold over on the line and tape it. Voila! A smooth cutting/sewing edge.

After this adjustment was done next came some pattern creation. C wanted her robe to look like the ones first seen in Prisoner of Azkaban. that means with the hood and sleeves lined with colour and with a coloured facing. In her case with a red/burgundy to match Gryffindor. The hood and sleeves are easy but the facing pattern had to be drafted by me.
To start, take the front and trace off the edges - front, shoulder, armhole (more for reference) and neck, and mark the bottom as well.

 Then measure out from those lines how wide you want the facing to be. I chose 6" so it would be nice and wide. Join all your marks and make a smooth line.
Since 6" ended up coming out very close to the armhole line I decided to extend the facing out that far.

Make sure your lines are nice and smooth for easy sewing and voila! you have a whole new pattern piece you didn't have before.

After all that (it actually only took about 10 minutes) came cutting out and let me tell you this pattern is a bear to cut. For one thing it has a huge bottom edge so you have to fold your fabric in half width-wise instead of length wise. That means that the fabric is now wider than my cutting table. Ack!

But it got done, regular sewing then ensued and as of almost completed Hogwarts robe! One big heavy WARM Hogwarts robe; it's interlined with flannel; October is not usually all that warm around here.

Today I have to finish up the tacking down of the facing and sewing on the Gryfinndor patch.
Tomorrow....hopefully pictures!


Friday, August 13, 2010

Already a good weekend!

So here it is only Friday and it's already a good weekend for me. Why?

First, my wearable muslin t-shirt (dress) is finished! That means I can finally take that colour off the machine and get working on something else! Namely the real t-shirt and a ton of Hallowe'en projects.

Second, I heard from my BFF (who is coming up for a visit this weekend) that the tie for C's costume is in and BFF will bring it with her today. Yay! That's one thing off the loooong Hallowe'en list AND it gets me the colour that I need to use for the lining of the Hogwarts robe.

Third, I won some purple (I LOVE purple) wool fabric on eBay and it should be shipping soon. I might use it for *my* robe for Hwe'en, not sure yet as the pattern for that isn't done yet so I don't know how much material I need.
I don't really care, if I get to use it for the robe; cool. If not...well it's purple and I'll make something else! Maybe the coat my robe pattern was originally designed for. I'm taking Butterick 5144 a Retro pattern and making it longer so the back touches the floor. So if 5 isn't enough for the robe maybe I need a new fall coat...?

Fourth, I won a prize! Sarah over at Rhinestones and Telephones  had a draw and I won a pattern! I've never won anything from a blog give-away before so I'm really thrilled! And she's a fellow Canuck! Yay!!!

Well, time to go cut out the t-shirt and get working on that, new pictures soon, I promise!


Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Bonus day off

Today I took an extra day off to extend the holiday weekend we had in BC. Well, in reality I took it because I had a dentist appointment but I'm trying to forget that part. LOL
Going to the dentist is one of my LEAST favorite things.Not because of my dentist; he's great! It's because of a bunch of deep-seated childhood issues with dentists. Fortunately Dr U understands it's not him I hate and still works on me.

That wasn't the bonus part though the bonus was making sure I knew how to deal with my appointment so it didn't ruin my day. So here we have Rules to deal with the Dentist;

1) Take the day off. That way you don't have to get right back to work and pretend it's all okay when you really feel like crud.

2) Take painkillers before you go. I always feel like my face has been used for a hammer throw target (even just for a cleaning!) so this is an important step for me.

3) Book your appointment early, then come home and go back to bed!

I think #3 was the secret to today's success. By the time I woke up almost all of the freezing was out and I felt like a human being again. Human enough to even go out and do a little Hallowe'en thrifting. Now I have a man's pullover to remake into a Hogwart's cardigan. Hmmmm

On top of that I also got some sewing done. My working muslin is almost done. Maybe tomorrow? And then I will take some pictures too. But right now C wants to go buy some iTunes with her card so....


Sunday, August 1, 2010

Results of Make and Mend Month

Last week Shelley at New Vintage Lady posted that due to some supplies for her M&M finally still in the mail and a few requests from folks that she was going to extend Make and Mend July.

While I totally understand her decision it makes me kind of sad because I actually finished it! I don't usually finish challenges like this. I'm thinking that being off for about 2 1/2 weeks of that helped ;-)

So I'm going to post my final results anyway. The theme to M&M was to use what you had, specifically
*Use fabric you already have for any new project.
*Alter a current pattern for a new garment.
*Repair/Mend 3 things from your ‘fix’ pile.
*Repurpose at least one piece of fabric.
*Make something for someone else.
Here's how I did; 
Use a fabric you already have for any new project; C's apron The patterned material in C's Apron is probably 10 years old or so and was bought for either her or her sister when they were little. Probably to make a cute dress out of. 
I think this will get more use! 
 Of course the advantage to this project is that is also fufiled Make something for someone else
I just hope that's allowed! >grin<
Next up... Repurpose at least one piece of fabric 
These cute place mats started out as a Marshall's bag that then get ripped. Rather than throw the bag place mats! I have plans to make some more from this source; the fabric is great and how do you complain about 2 place mats for 1$?!?!?
Repair/Mend 3 things from your ‘fix’ pile. I don't  have many pictures of this one but I did complete all three. 
The first was a tank top for C - that got the elastic lace repaired so it no longer has a purple safety pin holding it all together. 
2nd was a tank top of mine, bought 2 or 3 years ago. It had that bulge out at the arm pit that's supposed to be chest room on a plus sized figure. Yeah, that never worked, it just looked like this big gaping mess under my arm that delighted in showing my bra to the world. 
Third was fixing up the new dress for C that we had bought in May. It was a great dress with some lovely styling but WAY too long for a teenager. So, 3 inches off and a hem later....
Alter a current pattern for a new garment. 
This was my last thing and I still haven't finished the garment but I'm getting there. It is coming along nicely and my alterations were just the thing. 
First I added an inch to the front side seam (since my front is bigger than my back - to get things to fit without the back being huge usually means the side seams skew to my front) tapering down from the arm hole so hopefully the sleeve wouldn't need to be adjusted. Then I added some to the front as a FBA. 
I have never actually made a FBA even though my B has been F for quite a while. LOL 

I have made another modification since then and still have to shorten it for a t-shirt but all and I I'm really happy with these changes and I have to thank Shelley for pushing me to them. 
Oh! The pattern I'm using is Simplicity 3697
I'm not sure when I bought it but it's been in my stash a while! Another thing to thank her for. 

So that's the end of my M&M for July. Since M&M has been extended to August I'm going to continue working on things (especially the mend part!) but soon it will be time to start working on Hallowe'en costumes. Yay! My favorite sewing time of the year. 

I promise to finish my 3697 t-shirt though first....with pictures, of course!


Sunday, July 25, 2010

Back on-line again. Yay!

First I forgot my camera in Seattle 2 weekends ago. So my BFF drove up the next weekend and brought my camera to me (and my cell phone and the magazine I was reading). That was last weekend.
She and L'il Miss C left around 4 pm on Sunday and when I went to check email and blogs etc....I had no internet! Still no posting!

I also had fuzzy TV and no Vonage phone. :-( Fortunately I had spent the early part of Sunday dropping the girls off at camp so there was no one at home to listen to whine about no TV. >grin< Monday I phoned the cable company and after almost 1/2 hour on hold they agreed, there was a problem in the area.
Turns out that problem, wasn't *my* problem. I finally got through again on Thursday when they told me the problem in my area had been fixed and said they'd send a tech out to look at my problem on Saturday. Oh yippee.

But, it's over it's fixed and we only had one night and the early part of a morning with kids at home (whining about the TV) before it was dealt with. Now if they'd only change their 20 note on hold song, I'd love my cable company again. lol

In the meantime I know what people want and it's not to listen to my excuses it's to see pictures!

First off we have L'il Miss C in her new apron. She was thrilled with it and now can cook with Momma! She'll also wear it to eat strawberries and keep her clothes clean! LOL

Next is C in her new re-done dress. We bought this a little while ago but knew we'd have to shorten it because it was too long on her. So, as part of my Make and Mend July, here you have a newly wearable dress - 4 inches shorter and much more appropriate for a typical teen.

I also finished C's apron while I was computer less. This covers 2 things from Make and Mend July; the patterned material is from the stash (use fabric you already own) AND (obviously) it's for someone else.

I love two-fers!

Here's the back of it, where you can see the covered buttons there.
I added 8 covered buttons (2 large, 6 small) for some visual interest. C loved the idea and I had fun making the buttons. I can see more of those in my future!

I managed to sneak in my last Make and Mend July this week too.
It's just for a simple t-shirt but it's one of the first things (beside and apron!) that I have made for myself in a while and it's not straight out of the package....which never really fits and I wonder why i do it? But that's for another post I think. This is enough for today.


Thursday, July 15, 2010

Bias Binding is not my friend

Not that I don't like bias binding, I do! I just can't seem to ever get it on easily and this apron in the works is all bound with bias binding.

Which basically is all I've done today. Well, that and watch The Aviator and drive kids around. LOL

For me, sewing bias binding goes like this; pin the heck out of it, sew it on, then look for all the spots where I didn't catch the material in the binding, unpick a whole bunch of sewing so I can go back and sew all that back in, tie a whole mess of knots, do the sewing, tie more notes. Whew! No wonder I'm tired, LOL

It's done now though and all I need to do is the button and snap for the back closure and some more embellishment we decided on (after I get some more supplies tomorrow) and the apron will be done! Just in time for my camera to come back home.

So hopefully, pictures tomorrow.

And if anyone has any hints on how to sew bias binding on without driving yourself bonkers...I'm all ears! 


Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Big C's apron progress

I love nice coolish summer days, where it's sunny and nice to walk the dog but still cool enough to sew.

It was so nice today that even around my appointments and dog walking etc I managed to get C's apron to the point that I need to head back to the fabric store! All the pieces are sewn together and we've decided we don't like the wider bias binding that I bought, so I'm off to the store tomorrow.

I also discovered that I *could* have made the apron the smaller size like I suspected so instead of ties, the back (which overlaps closed), is going to have a snap closure and (hopefully) a big button covered in the print fabric. I just have to find some make your own button things or figure something out. With any luck the apron will be finished before the weekend when my BFF and L'il Miss C are coming up here to visit and will be bringing my camera with them!

The bonus is that this will count to my Make and Mend July as my "make something for someone else". Yay!

On that same topic; before we left last weekend I shortened C's new dress so it's more "her" and got it hemmed (including some done while waiting in line at the border, LOL) in time for the b'day party on Saturday. That's another one off my M&M July list! Wohoo!!!


Monday, July 12, 2010

Weekend Away

Well, we just got home from a quick weekend away where L'il Miss C got her little apron but sadly I have no pictures.

Why, you ask?

Oh, it's not that I forgot the camera, or that I was too busy to take pictures, oh no, it's because I left the camera in Seattle! Dang it.
It's already been found though (not hard since I left it on BFFs dining-room table) so now we're just trying to figure out how to get it back home to me.


Monday, July 5, 2010

Once upon a time

There was a pretty Marshall's bag that came home with me from Seattle.
I didn't really need another bag but I kind of collect them and this one had such a pretty design on the front and back; black and white flowers. The bag also had lovely pale green sides, almost the colour of my bedroom walls. How could I resist such a pretty bag.

Then one day the bag went to school with C to carry wet swim things in (the reusable bags are *great* for that, especially ones with plastic type coatings) and got shoved into her tiny locker.
There the poor bag got ripped :-(

When the bag came home I discovered the damage and thought "well darn, there goes a pretty bag".
For a moment I thought about repairing the damage but frankly the material is a little flimsy and I didn't then the repair would hold well. But....I didn't really want to throw it out, the pattern was too pretty. So it sat.

Until the past weekend when we went on a bit of a cleaning splurge (not my favorite thing to do. Not even in the top 100!) and I found it again. On the way to the garbage with it I noticed that S had not only cleaned off the dining room table, she had set it too, with my place mats from Korea. (Okay, I admit it, I was cleaning because we were going to have guests) The table looked lovely but there were only 3 place mats (the 4th is already in use on my silverware chest) and we needed 5.

As I stood there looking at the table and holding the poor Marshall's bag I got an idea!

Today 2 beautiful  place mats were born and a large percentage of a ruined Marshall's bag will not become garbage! YAY!!!

I'm even thinking of making some matching coasters from the scraps.

To end today; a picture of Zoe sleeping in the loft bed. I spotted her because she was snoring!