Tuesday, June 30, 2009

The Cleaning Bug Has Bitten

I am almost finished with my imminent sewing projects. Of course, new ones pop up all the time. But, I could stop now and take a break and be ok. I've cut out towel shorts, a couple of night gowns for Emory because she likes to sleep in dresses and has a bday coming up in the near future. She's also getting another special dress that I'm not blogging about before she gets it. One DD asked if I might make a changing pad to have here at the house for changing the babies' diapers. We usually just lay them on a bed with a towel or something under them. I may get that done before they all come to visit later on in the summer, but I may not.
In the mean time, the bug has bitten. I have been cleaning out and straightening up, throwing away, giving away (this got me in trouble - read my last post! LOL!), moving around, reworking, etc.......
  • First, I cleaned and organized in my laundry/utility room. I'm almost embarrassed to post this photo because it still looks pretty messy. Our cat's litter box and food center are in this room too. I didn't take a photo from that view, but believe me, it's better. Her litter box is on the other side of the dryer so you can't see it until you get all the way in the room. You also can't smell it unless we forget to put the Arm & Hammer litter mixed in with the regular, cheaper stuff. As far as her food goes, she is one weird cat! We have to put her water in a bowl inside a huge plastic container with high sides because she plays with her water. I used to keep it just on a rug, and it was always soaked. Now, she just gets her feet wet and tracks up the house. What's one to do? The shelf with the paper towels is where all of her food, etc... lives now. You can see my art supplies, wrapping supplies, picnic stuff, a plastic bag of rags (my mother used to give a box of rags to new brides, embarrassing! but practical I guess!), and other various and sundry things on those shelves. I was standing in front of my washer and dryer to take this photo so you can't see them. Of course there's the mop, broom, swiffer corner.
  • Second, I cleaned out my small pantry. I took EVERYTHING out and threw away the out-of-date stuff. Embarrassing that I had so much! Then I checked against the list of Emory friendly foods and found that I only had 3 things in my whole pantry that she could have. I went shopping today and got some crackers and cereal that she can have. Otherwise, she would only get to have raisins, peanut butter, and cake when she comes. I'll wait until just before they come to buy fruit, etc... that she can have. It's a while yet. I put all of her things on the bottom shelf which I don't think I got in this photo. It's nice to be able to see all of the things we have. It's awful to not even know what's in the pantry so when you go to the store you buy duplicates of things you already have.

  • Then, I sorted through all of the kids' toys that we have at our house. The big girls made this "castle" a couple of visits ago, and I am keeping it for them. They really have had fun playing in it and adding to it each time. They cut out new windows and add drawings to the walls each time. I moved it into the new play area that I have fixed for them in the basement. That way the big kids can go down stairs to play and make a mess while the little ones who still take naps can be upstairs where it is quieter.

The big kids' area has a shelf with toys, games, art supplies, etc... that they can play with at will. I actually have already added to the art stuff since I took this photo. That doll house is one their GD, my DH, bought at an auction for them.

Next, is the dress-up area. They love, love, love to dress up in their aunts' and mom's old clothes along with stuff that I've added. There are old dance costumes, leotards, feather boas, etc.... Behind this are a couple of bins with shoes, purses, hats, and jewelry with which to beautify themselves while they are here. The poles are hung with ribbon from my DH's grandmother's quilting frame. My GFIL made it for her and it is attached to the ceiling. It can be let down or kept up next to the ceiling so it can be out of the way when not in use. I don't quilt, but I couldn't dare take it down when we moved here. It is part of the spirit of this house! The orange rocker was my mom's when she was very little; like, before she was 2 years old. Of course, it wasn't always orange. She let me paint it when I was in high school and redid my room in yellow, orange, and green. That was in the 60s.

This is the drawer upstairs in our tv cabinet that houses some of the little kids' toys. They have more in a closet, but I didn't get those photographed.

This photograph has nothing to do with the rest of this post. These plates were given to me by the family of one of my grandmother's best friends when she died. This lady's daughter and my mom were great friends and so were her grand daughter and I. It was such an honor when they wanted me to have these plates. I loved them so much that I decorated my whole kitchen with them as my inspiration. I painted this border all around my kitchen. Most people probably don't have green and purple kitchens! My cabinets are kind of a taupey color and my appliances and counter tops are white ceramic tile.

Monday, June 29, 2009

Slow Down & Take Your Time, So You Don't Waste Your Time!

This has been my motto for a long time, but I don't always remember to adhere to it. I am going to make a BIG sign and put it up in my sewing room. The problem is not always with my sewing, though! You may remember that I made some outdoor chair covers for a lady recently. They were very easy to make, but I wasn't sure on the center casings if the right sides or the wrong sides should be sewn together. So, of course, I did them the wrong way. No problem, she went ahead and paid me anyway, and I brought them home and fixed them. Easy!
  • Then, I put them in a plastic Walmart bag and put them in my car so I could take them to her.
  • Well, the same day I decided to take some shoes and a few clothing items to a charity center between my house and where this lady works. I had those things in Walmart plastic bags, too. You can probably figure out where this story is leading! LOL!
  • Anyhow, I stopped at the charity place which was closed, but that's not a problem because they have outside bins that you can put your stuff in. Now I know you know where this story is leading! Yes, when I got my stuff out of the car, I did not pay attention to what I was doing, and yes, I put her chair covers in the bin along with my give away stuff! ARGGGG! Of course, I didn't realize it at the time.
  • I went on to where this lady works to deliver the chair covers. I also had these towel shorts to deliver to my friend who also works at the same place. (Yes, I know I said I wasn't going to sew simple repetitive things anymore for anyone except for my grands, but these are sooooo simple and I really didn't mind making these. I am planning to make more for my littles.

Back to the story.
  • I got out of my car and looked in the back seat which is where I put the bag with the seat covers along with the things I was taking for charity.
  • Yep, that's when I realized what I had PROBABLY done! Actually I KNEW what I had done at that moment; I was just hoping that MAYBE I had failed to put THAT bag in my car.
  • So, I took in the shorts and told a little fib,( shame, shame, shame on me) that I had left the chair covers at home and that I'd be back.
  • All the while, I'm thinking......
  • can I go buy more fabric and make some more?
  • Or, can I go back to the charity place and hope that my bag hadn't really gone into the bin, maybe, just maybe, the bin was full enough that my bag was just kind of laying on the top, and I could get it back without anyone seeing me get it?
  • Or, if I couldn't get it, who could I call, what could I do? So, I first went back home, knowing full well that it wasn't there. And, I was right, it wasn't.
  • Then, I went back to the charity place, which by the way is on a VERY, BUSY, MAIN highway. I looked in the bin and, nope, I couldn't see anything. My stuff obviously was at the bottom. I found out later that it had been emptied just before I put my stuff in it. I guess that was one lucky thing for me. At least I hadn't put my stuff in just before it was emptied.
  • I called a couple of people who I know who volunteer at this place. NONE of them answered their phones. PANIC!!!!
  • Okay, so I could go buy more fabric and make another set of covers, but then I would have to admit to this lady what I had done because I had already given back her old one that I measured by, etc.... AND remember, she had already paid me.
  • Okay, what to do, what to do? I called the number that was on the bin and got a lady from Alabama; I'm in Tennessee. She didn't really know what to tell me to do, but she said she'd check and call me back. She did. Bless her. But, she wasn't much help. She gave me the number of someone in Chattanooga, more than an hour drive one way.
  • I decided to go by the house of one of our friends who volunteers at this place, maybe he would be in his yard. LUCK WAS WITH ME FINALLY! He was out in his yard. His nephew was there, too. Anyhow, he called someone who had a key who would meet me there in 20 minutes. YEA!!!! I mention the nephew, because this gentleman, his nephew, and his whole family go to our church. I really didn't want my DH to know I had done this, and so far he doesn't. I guess he will if he decides to read my blog, but I don't think he ever does. This nephew almost slipped and told my DH at church yesterday!!!lol
  • But, the good news is that the gentleman he called did meet me in 20minutes,he unlocked the bin where I found my bag of chair covers at the very back. Thank goodness there wasn't much stuff in there at that point!!! I felt so guilty TAKING something from this bin! Who knows who all drove by and recognized my car and saw me getting something OUT of the bin!!!!!! Remember this is a small town.
  • I got them delivered to the lady without her ever knowing about my drama. Of course, she will probably find out, but at least she didn't know what was going on at the time.
  • I'm sure my DH will hear this from someone sometime. Actually, a lady at my church who always knows everything about everybody asked me about it yesterday. She has radar!!
  • I can imagine that my DDs, who do read my blog are thinking, "What's so surprising about this? It's just one more really embarrassing thing our mom has done! What will we do with her when she gets even worse? Yep, she's showing signs, and has been for a long time, of dementia, or insanity, or whatever!"
  • I felt certifiable that day for sure!

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Rose of Sharon, Bird House, and J&K's dresses

This Rose of Sharon bush has decided to start blooming. I love the big lilac blooms. At night they close up. The white bird house is the one my SIL built for me for my birthday/Mother's Day gift. I love it and think it looks great next to this bush. The other bird house is one my Grand ILs put up when they lived here. This view is from our deck.

As I said in my last post, I had to sandwich white cotton fabric between the layers of the girls' dresses. The first view shows how much you can see through the striped fabric while being held up to the window. The second view is with the white fabric between the others.

It wasn't as evident with the window pane checked fabric, but I went ahead and used the white in between anyway. It gave a little more body. This pattern is supposed to only have one layer of fabric. I just decided that it was very conducive to being reversible, so why not?

These are the two from the front views showing both the original and the reverse sides. As you can see I added ties on the shoulders before I took the striped photo.

I really like the back of this dress better than the front. The back sides wrap around and tie underneath the front. On the pattern (Butterick 5019) there was a button tab sewn on the inside of the front with buttons on the corners of the back, but since I made them reversible, I just did the tie thing.
On Jenna's I used bias binding and almost felt guilty because it was so quick and easy. As a matter of fact, I was thinking that this is a pattern the girls could make themselves with a little help and with just one layer of fabric. I liked that there was only one pattern piece. The front and back were all cut as one piece. There are darts on the shoulders.
On Kellen's I decided to sandwich piping in between the layers ( I treated the white cotton as one with the striped.) I didn't put piping around the neck line. I left it open so I could turn it. I then used narrow bias binding around the neck. As a little extra detail I zigzagged across the piping and bias binding, which is red, with blue thread. I like this look. I would not have done the piping if I had it to do again, though. The binding was so much easier.


This is a close up of the piping with the zigzag detail.

This is how much binding I had left over from two packs after making Jenna's dress. LOL
I used 2+ packs of piping for Kellen's. I usually make my own piping and binding, but was able to match these so well with the purchased kind and since they are just sundresses and made from cotton I decided to buy it. Also, I had to have SOOOOO much, and I felt rushed to finish.


Just as I finished Jenna's dress this morning my DH, who had been by the church on an errand, called to tell me that an ICON from our church had died this morning. As I posted a few days ago, there were no male role models in my family, but there were several in my life. This man was one of those. He and my mother have known each other all of their lives. They were in church together and in the same class in school. I have lots of photos of them and their friends during their teen aged years. My middle daughter's name is Elizabeth. I named her for this gentleman's wife. This couple sat behind my family in church throughout my life, and they still sat there just a couple of Sundays ago behind my DH. I sit in the choir. I dreaded telling my mother that he had died, but she took it very well. Last week when she was confused she thought she saw this couple and tried to wave at them. I saw his wife at church just last night and asked about him. She said he was doing well, except that his back and legs hurt from sciatica very badly. He was scheduled to have an epidural today to help ease his pain. I went out to their house after helping Mother with her lunch. I took sandwich fixings. They have two daughters and 4 grandchildren and other family members who will be coming in. I need to start keeping the fixings for a cake or something so that when something like this happens I can cook something to take. They will have more food than they will ever be able to eat, though. That's just how people in this small town are. Also, he was very well known by everyone in the town.
There is a blessing; he died in his sleep.
OMG, I just went upstairs and listened to messages on my phone and found out that a lady who has also been in my church all my life died today, too. It was three years ago today that her husband, who was one of the other positive male models in my life, died, along with my mother's absolute best friend in the world who was also a member of my church. I played with all of these folks' children. I went to their homes, spent the night with some of their kids, and on day trips with them, etc..... This town is the classic "It takes a village" kind of town. You must realize that this is a very small town where everyone knows (or at least used to know) everyone else. A lot of people from the north and from Florida have moved here over the years. Don't get me wrong, it is great having new people move in. Progress is a good thing. I love the innovation that has been brought here by new people. I am having so much fun connecting with people from every part of the world through this blog. But, when I was growing up, this was a Mayberry type of town. Our church is also very small, so losing two people in one day and on the same day as three years ago is just too much!

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Some Red, White, and Blue for Little Man

Little Man will be ready fro the 4th or whenever he feels like wear the red, white, and blue. The shirt is a simple short sleeved button up. I made flat felled seams so it would look finished inside and out. The only thing I had to make sure to do on this shirt was match the stripes on the pocket and shoulders.

I cheated a little on the shorts. There is not a zipper. This is the first pair of shorts or pants that I've made him without one.


There are flat felled seams on the shorts, too. You can see a sneak peek of the back pocket. I put the LM design on these that I did on his denim shorts for his birthday. You can see them here.
Here are pictures of the pockets and side seams. It's hard to see the white on white.

Now, for Kellen and Jenna's. I thought I would have them done by now, but I had to go buy solid white cotton to sew in between the two fabrics. You can see through the stripe and see the design of the stars on Jenna's and the window pane plaid on Kellen's. I'm not sure the extra inside fabric will completely eradicate this but it should help. Theirs won't take long. I hope to get them done tomorrow. My sister is coming for the weekend. Her friend is coming down on Saturday. So, I have to make sure the house is presentable. Also, I'm going to the weddings of two of my former students this weekend. One is Friday night and the other is in Knoxville on Saturday afternoon. I've known both of these kids since they were little bitty. One's mom is one of my BFF, as our students wrote in their notes to each other. He is starting work on his Phd. The other swam on the swim team with my girls when they were just little. She is now a teacher, herself.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Moving Day!

No, I'm not moving, but Mother did. She moved to a new room on a different hall. She was waaaayyyy at the end of a loooonnnnggg hallway. Now, she's about halfway down a not-so-long hallway.
  1. She was feeling neglected being in the last room of the old hall. The CNAs would start at the other end and work their way down, so that Mother was always the last one they got to when it was dinner time, activity time, or whatever. Or at least she thought she was. I'm not sure.
  2. Also, the CNAs on her new hall have been there longer and have more experience, and since the hall isn't so long they have fewer residents to care for per CNA.
  3. She's much closer to the nurses' desk and the front door.
  4. She's also much closer to an outside door that we can use when we go visit.
  • When my sciatica is acting up and my bunioned foot decides to throb, it isn't fun walking that LOOOONNNNNGGG hall. This will be much better. I'm also having surgery on my foot in a few weeks and will have a boot up to my knee. This will be much easier!
  • Also, my sister, who has breathing problems was rarely able to walk all the way down to Mother's other room. The CNAs would bring Mother up front to meet her. She'll be able to manage this walk, though.
All of her stuff is moved to the new room. I didn't get the pictures or the bulletin board with photos on the wall, but I'll get to that tomorrow. I brought some stuff home that she didn't need. She was excited to be moving. It was rough on her, though. She was tired.
She was tired partly because they started physical therapy with her again since she was in the hospital. She reentered the nursing home as a skilled patient which means medicare will pay for her to have pt for 100 days. She really needs it. She just sits in her reclining wheel chair or lays in her bed all day. This will be good for her. She wasn't too thrilled.

Supper is almost finished. We're taking it over to the ILs next door tonight. I don't do much cooking so this was a pleasant change for me.
Sewing will get done tomorrow, I hope.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Towel Shorts and 2 of the 4th outfits

Towel Shorts!! Our two oldest grand daughters swim on a swim team. Jenna swam last year, and was the youngest on the team at only 5 years old. Kellen decided she wanted to swim this year, too. So, at only 6 and 9 years old, they are on the team. Go Gators!! You have no idea how hard it was to type that! Being a huge University of Tennessee fan one of our biggest rivalries is the Florida Gators (no offense intended toward my Florida friends, that's just how it is in the SEC!)

But, the grands' team is called the Gators, so again I say, "Go Gators!"
It seems that most of the other swimmers are wearing these towel shorts this year in the team colors, green and white. So, rather than pay $25+ for a pair my daughter asked me to make some for her
girls. I was able to get all three (of course, Riley needs some, too!) pair from just two towels. I taped the front and back of the pattern pieces together and cut one whole side at a time. I was able to get Kellen's and Jenna's from the ends of the towels and Riley's from one of the sides. There's actually enough left to make one more small pair. Emory may just have to have some, too. These have a draw string waist. These took almost no time at all. My cat, Vanilla, is checking them out. I don't think she was very appreciative since they didn't smell like fish, chicken, or turkey. These are packed and ready to go in the mail since the first swim meet is soon.


Here are Riley and Emory's 4th of july summer sunsuits. For Emory's I made bloomers because she isn't quite 2 yet, and bloomers are sooooo cute! Riley is 3 1/2, and, "Bloomers are panties, and your panties aren't supposed to show." So, Riley is getting shorts with ruffles (Yes, Faye, real ruffles!) around the bottom.
For Emory's I started with right sides together and sewed in piping with a cording foot, then turned it right side out. For
Riley's I started with wrong sides together and edged them with single fold bias binding. For Emory's I did use the binding on the neck edges. The ties are also binding sewn shut. For the butterfly shoulders and pockets I used the piping on Emory's and binding on Riley's.
Emory's is reversible with the blue Mary Englebreight fabric and red and white star fabric. Rileys' is reversible with both red and blue Mary Englebreight fabric. I love this fabric.






My mom is adjusting to being back at the nursing home. My ILs are alone during the day this week. One SIL is coming at night, then going to work and back here at night. My DH made sure they had lunch today, and has taken them for therapy now. I was prepared to do this myself, but my DH got through work in time to go himself. I'll go help Mother eat dinner, and then we'll make sure that the ILs have dinner, as well.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Addition to last post

This being Father's Day reminded me of one of the most important reasons that Mary (from my last post) was and still is such a great friend. She shared her Dad with me. He was a wonderful male role model. He worked with young people. He let me work for him in his insurance office when I was in college, even though I could barely type, etc..... After school when we were in junior high we walked to town everyday. We always stopped by his office so Mary could get some money. Then, we went to the drug store soda fountain and ate Reese's Peanut Butter Cups and drank cherry colas. "Everybody" went there after school. So much fun!!! Her dad took us to dog runs. I never was really sure what this was, but I got to ride my first horse when we went to one. He was at all of our basketball games and cheered me on (the few times I got on the court) just as much as he did Mary. He was always very supportive of me and all of Mary's friends.
In my family there were no men role models. My grandfather died when I was in the 3rd grade. My uncle from next door died when I was in the 5th grade, but he had not been around much for a long time before that because he was sick and in the hospital a lot.
My "father" was not around much after I was 7 years old, and when he was, it wasn't usually very pleasant. Do you think maybe this is why I stayed out of church today instead of the excuse that I was tired from my mom's hospital stay this week?

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Therapeutic Sewing


I have done a little sewing this week while my mom has been in the hospital. During the times that my brother stayed with her, I came home, and since I can't nap during the daytime no matter how hard I try, I did a little therapeutic sewing. I only did some simple, but fun things. For one, I made this apron for my friend. This was on that list that I posted about, oh so long ago. I think this was the last thing on that original list that I hadn't done. Anyway, last week, I went to an antique store and found this pillowcase to make this apron. I sewed binding along the sides using a feather stitch. Then I pleated it at the top, cut out a scoop for the neckline, and sewed a wide binding across it. I unfolded the binding and clean finished the edges for the tie around the neck. I pressed the tucks all the way down fanning them out slightly. Then I unfolded some more of the binding. I sewed it to the pillowcase at waist level. Again, I unfolded and clean finished the binding for the tie.



Below is a close up of the embroidery and the hand made lace that was on the pillowcase when I bought it.

This is for my friend who has been my friend since we were in 7th grade. Mary and I learned to put on make up together, after a very embarrassing letter to Dear Abby was found in the library where she and I composed it. We were writing to complain that our parents wouldn't let us wear makeup. Anyway, we signed it with just our initials, but we went to a small high school, and everyone knew we were friends so it wasn't hard to figure out who had written this letter. I'm blushing still!
This is the friend whose nose I broke playing basketball. We played before girls played full court, by the way. Anyway, I was a guard, and she was a forward. She was going up for a layup, and I didn't let her get it. Lol. I'm not sure she thought it was funny. Well, at the time I didn't either. I guess I still don't.
There are many stories I could tell, but I won't tell them all here. Let's just say that this is one of the dear friends who is still my dear friend after all these years.

I've done a little tiny bit of other sewing which I will blog about another day.



Update

Thank you to all who have wished my mother well. She seems better. The infection seems to be under control. Her sodium levels are still too low. I was hoping she'd go back to the nursing home today, and she might, but I doubt it. I stayed Wednesday and last night. My brother stayed Thursday night. We're both pretty tired, but we'll be ok. So many have much worse that they've been through. My prayers are still going out to those of you with sick ones and who have recently lost loved ones.
I'm going to try to sew a little today. My brother relieved me this morning and I came home (about a 45 min. drive) and took a shower, so I feel somewhat refreshed.
My daughter's daughters swim on a swim team. Apparently the new thing for swimmers is to wear towel shorts. They cost $25+ through the catalogue, so I'm going to make some for my DGDs.
I still have their red, white, and blue outfits to do. I had Emory's almost finished before this all happened with my mom.
My FIL is doing pretty well from his knee replacement. He now has carpal tunnel in both hands and is having difficulty with that!

TAG: She's in the ambulance on her way back to the nursing home as I type this. Gotta go get her some dinner since it's already past dinner time at the nursing home.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Mother

I spent last night at the hospital with my mother. Her UTI got out of control. The meds were not working and had to be changed. She's much better this morning. My brother is with her. I came home for a rest.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Summertime Sewing

So, I guess I'm not the only one who makes clothing for children from tea towels, etc.... I haven't read this yet, but when I got my Sew Beautiful magazine out of my mail box the first thing I noticed on the cover was "simple heirloom outfits from linen towels" ! I should have sent my photos to Martha Pullen!! LOL! Oh well, it's good to know that others like my idea, too.


Yesterday, I stopped at a fabric store that's not far from me that is family owned. I've mentioned this place before. It is a rare occasion that I don't find what I'm looking for there, no matter how weird. I have found fabric to make a tin man costume, several mermaid costumes, turtle costumes, etc...... But, they have normal stuff, too. I bought these two transportation print fabrics to use in the future for something for our Little Man. I don't know what I'll make yet, but something will come up sometime.

Another thing that they have is a BARRELL full of buttons!! I mean a BIG barrel right in the middle of the store. There is a coffee mug laying on top of all the buttons. You can buy a cup full for $1.00. I bought 3 cup fulls. I haven't really had a chance to see the treasures I got, but I do love buttons and I'm sure I will find some great ones.

Next, I bought 3 panels of a pre-printed doll dress pattern. They are all the same. I have only made one thing from one of these pre-printed patterns before, and have never really thought about doing it again, until I saw this fabric. This will fit the American Girl Dolls that 3 of my grand daughters have. I think these will be cute.

One of the CNAs at the nursing home was wearing these pants to her scrub outfit that the nursing home issued her when she started working there. The inseam on one leg was completely raveling all the way down. And.... the upper-inner legs were pretty thread bare. I told her that I would fix the seam. I didn't realize they were so thread bare. I hope she doesn't mind that I took it upon myself to reinforce that area.


A lady asked me to make two chair covers for her outside pvc pipe chairs. They are just two straight rectangles with a casing at each end and one in the middle. I think I've written about this before. Anyway, I finished these. There weren't many fabrics to choose from for outdoors at our Walmart, but I thought this was ok. She said she didn't care what colors, etc.... This lady works at the place where I go to get my hair cut and my nails done. (Yes, I go every two weeks to have my nails done. I started doing that after my girls had all graduated from college. I decided it was my turn to do something for myself, and besides my real nails are AWFUL! Sometimes I feel guilty about indulging myself this way, but not too often.)

Below are the 4th of July "summer" outfits that I have cut out for my grands. First, is Little Man's. He's getting a red, white, and blue striped shirt and white shorts.

The girls' outfits will be reversible. Kellen and Jenna are getting the dress with the tie back. This actually is only one pattern piece. The front and back are attached. There is a dart at the shoulder! The front wraps around and ties in the back. I was amazed and happy to see this. How easy can it get! Rather than binding the edges, I'm going to sew two fabrics together. Both have the same red, white, and blue stripe as Little Man's shirt. Kellen's has a window-pane red and white patterned fabric for the reverse side. Jenna's has red with white stars. I will either edge these with rick rack or piping.

Riley and Emory are getting little sun suits. Riley's will be a little longer so the bloomers won't show so much. After all, she is 3 1/2, such a big girl. Emory's will be like the pattern shows. I am using this adorable Mary Englebreit fabric that says, "Best friends," and "just between us", etc.... It has cute little girls doing cute little girl friend kinds of things. It reminds me of my reading book in first grade. Some of you will remember, Dick, Jane, May, and Jip! LOL! Anyway, Riley's is reversible using the blue and the red of this fabric. Emory's is the blue of this fabric and a red with white stars for the reverse side, (you can see a little bit of the star fabric in the center of the photo. These two will be edged with piping. I've already started Emory's.

I didn't know what fabric I was going to use for whom when I bought it. I really wasn't sure of the patterns I was going to use. Therefore, everyone's is somewhat different, but coordinating. I hope to get all 5 of them in one photo in these outfits later on in the summer when we are all getting together. Yea!!! I can't wait!

Whoa!!!!! Our power just went off and back on in seconds. I just knew that I would have lost this post and have to start over, but it was still here!

Monday, June 15, 2009

Delivered and Paid!!

No pictures tonight! I delivered all of the sundresses, bonnets, shorts, shirts, and the romper to all of my clients today! They were all very happy!! I got to see the one I made for my school friend's niece on the little doll!! It was a perfect fit and the colors were great on her. Her's was the last one I made. Best of all is that everyone has already paid me!!!! Yea!!! My friend from school actually paid me extra!
I stopped and bought fabric for my grands today. I took the afternoon off and sat in front of the tv for about 2 hours. What did I watch? I couldn't tell you, because I dozed more than I watched.
My mom is better today. Thank goodness. They didn't get her started on an antibiotic till last night. I was a little upset with them, but they finally did get things taken care of and she's ok.
My brother is coming to visit her tomorrow so I may stay home all day and sew for my little ones. I am making such simple little outfits that I should finish in no more than 2 days.
ZZZ....zzzzz.....zzzzz............ I'm tired and going to bed early tonight..............zzzzzz...zz...z.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

My Favorite Of All!


I think it may be my favorite because it's my last! The first was really my favorite, since it was for my grand daughter. But, I do like these colors. My school friend who wanted this one for her niece didn't want a hat so it's just a dress and bloomers.


Now, for the process.
First, I sewed the back seam, leaving a couple of inches for a back opening. I simply clean finished the opening. (Pattern directions) Then, the pattern had me sew the top couple of inches of the sides with the wrong sides together, zigzag, and press, turn the rest of the seam with right sides together and stitch as usual. This was so, when the top tier was sewn to the underarm and turned, there wouldn't be a raw seam showing or irritating little armpits.
I learned very quickly that I needed to mark the lines with a water soluble marker for the tiers to be sewn on, so they would be straight. I learned this after having to take one partly apart and redoing it.

The tiers are actually circles with a doughnut hole (doughnut hole, hum... where have I heard that term lately? Oh yeah, when talking to my Mother's insurance people. She seemed ok today, but I still had them check her out.)in the center. The top one is cut through for a back opening. The most frustrating part of this dress style was clean finishing circles! It was easy on the part that was bias cut, around the front and the back, but on the sides where it was cut on the grain, it was hard going around a curve without puckers. Oh, well, I learned to take my time and get it right the first time around! LOL! Around, get it, that was a play on words. I just kill me with my humor. Ha Ha! Don't think I'd make it on prime time comedy hour!
Then I sewed each tier upside down on the dress, then zigzagged each one so there would not be raveling. I learned after the first few of these dresses that I should sew the bottom tier on first, rather than the top one, as the pattern directions suggest. I found that if I did the top one that each previous one was more in the way of the next one while I was sewing. And.... I found that I could make sure that the one above covered the right amount of the one below it. Does any of this make sense?

The top tier was sewn under the arms with the right side of the tier stitched to the wrong side of the dress. I trimmed all of my seams and zigzagged them as it shows in the photo below. Then the top tier is turned right side out and then the yoke is attached.

The yoke front and back were, of course, constructed separately, as usual. The pattern did not call for interfacing, but I added it anyway. I mean there's a button and button hole on the back. Anyway, once the front and back were constructed leaving the outside of the arm band unsewn about halfway up, the shoulders were connected. The opening for turning is on the outside of the arm band. This was different for me, but I liked it. To finish, there was a button hole and button, as I said, and then the hand whip stitching to sew down the facing and close up the arm band opening.
Look at that arthritic knuckle on my thumb!! The other one is worse!




The bonnet was not supposed to be lined, but I didn't want to look into an unfinished hat, so I made it hard on myself. The brim was easy. I zigzagged around the scallops of the smaller piece to the larger one. Then I sewed the right sides of the larger piece around the scallops and tuned it. To line the sides of the bonnet, I sandwiched the brim inside the two side pieces with interfacing lining one of them. The pattern did not call for interfacing except in the brim, but I added it anyway. Now, for the back of the bonnet. First I pinned one of the back horse shoe pieces with the interfacing to the sides. Then I squished the whole hat together so I could sandwich the sides into the two backs. After stitching this and turning it right side out, I cut a bias cut piece of one of the fabrics to bind the bottom of the sides and back. Then, I just added ribbon ties.

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