Saturday, November 17, 2018


Wee care gowns
Our smocking group makes wee care gowns and donates them to the local hospital. 
Here are a few I have made.
 I will be making many more.
Sad that they are needed.
Blessed to be able to make them.
When my granddaughter was little
and saw the dresses. I explained
why they were so small.
she called them the dresses for
the hospital babies.

We still call them dresses
for the hospital

Tuesday, November 13, 2018


Keep it simple

You have made the quilt or place mats and time has come to do the binding.
The binding is never to difficult until it comes time to join that binding.
Usually, that involves a bump, where you have joined, since binding on the bias seems all but impossible.

You long for a smooth, invisible join
 Well, it is very easy to do.

Your first step will be to over lap the binding, the same amount as the width of your binding.

Mine is two inches.  so I cut the binding at two inches past the beginning end of the binding.

Your next step is to sew the two together.
think of this step as if you are joining binding 
that is not sewn on to something.

I say this, because this was the step that was confusing me.
Some instruction had me turning and twisting
yet, it is just a simple sew together of the ends.

Just be sure to leave enough length of your binding when starting out so you have the space to work.  

Friday, November 9, 2018


So many shops are closing

I must admit, I do enjoy shopping from home, on my computer.    So I am part of the problem the shop owners are facing, I get that.  At the same time , I miss the personal friendship from the little shops.

So much inspiration came from the shop.

Inspiration table

Right when you walked in the door.  The table was always filled with everything you wanted to make.  Things you didn't know you wanted to make.

I spotted this!!  I had to have it!! so I signed up for class.

They helped me pick my fabrics.
Step by step my project came to life.

So sad the shops are closing.  Yes, we can buy on line, but we can never get the friendship back.


Tuesday, November 6, 2018

Encouraging to learn picture smocking.

Hope to encourage 

I haven't been able to make it to some of the smocking meetings.  I have been able to meet with Mary Jane and get her started on teaching picture smocking.

I thought I would share one of the plates that Mary Jane will encourage the students to make.

The crayons is a great way to learn stacking

The Santa's,  have more color changes but easy for a beginner.

The candy canes go pretty quick.

I hope by showing you some pictures it helps you get an idea of the picture smocking.

Wednesday, October 31, 2018

Another super simple project

Re-post:  This is basically done the same way as the t-shirt, only using sweat shirt fleece.   I did many of these,even in adult sizes.

I am asked all the time, what is a simple project I can do as a beginner.   The pillowcase is a great place to start as it is simple straight sewing.  You only need so many pillowcases and you so want to wear something you made, so here you go-- How about a sweatshirt?  
This is a great project as it is easy, quick and if you do machine embroidery, it is a blank canvas.  You also get the color sweatshirt you want.

I am using Kwiksew pattern 3328, this one is sized for kids, I do keep the kids in sweatshirts. 
I start by tracing the pattern size I am going to use onto freezer paper, I love freezer paper for tracing patterns.

For this sweatshirt, I used scaps left over from another sweatshirt, the fabric is 60" wide which gives you lots of fabric. You only need one yard to make a shirt.  The ribbing is from Joann fabric, I found they have very nice ribbing.

You will see you lay the front and the back along the fold.

Then I cut out the sleeves, as you can see I had just enough scrap to get the two sleeves.

Now all that is left to be cut out is the ribbing.  I used blue as I knew I could never match the red from the shirt. Another choice would be to use white ribbing or if you are doing machine embroidery on the front, match the color of ribbing to a color in the design.

Ok, you are ready to head for the sewing machine, everything is cut out and ready, no muss no fuss.

Now you are off to the sewing machine, if you also have a serger thread the serger in matching color, if you don't have a serger don't worry you can still sew a sweatshirt, and any knit as far as that goes.

First we will sew the shoulder seams, and quarter the neck edge. Sew the ribbibng together and quarter the ribbing.

Now, this seems like it would be hard to do but it is so simple. You will pin the ribbing in matching the quarter marks.  Then stitch from pin to pin stretching your ribbing I usually sew the first line of stiching on the sewing machine and then serge to finish off the neck edge.  Look your sweat shirt is starting to look like a sweatshirt.

Now, you will sew in the sleeves, you are working flat so no setting in any sleeves.   The next step you will do will be to sew up the sides seams and the sleeve seams all in one. You can serger the seam or sew on a regular sewing machine. The cuff and the bottom band will be sewn just like you did the neck ribbing, sew the ends together, quarter the shirt and the ribbing and sew in place.

There you go, you just made a sweatshirt!!

Yes, it needs to be pressed.

Monday, October 29, 2018


Making a t-shirt

One of the easiest projects I have ever made. Yet it was the one I thought was going to be impossible. 

I love Kwik-Sew patterns

This is so vintage.
 Basically all the patterns are pretty much the same.  The newest patterns have a drop shoulder that I really like.

There is a front, a back and sleeves and that is all there is:  Pretty darn easy.

But what if you misplace the neckline pattern, then what?
That is pretty simple also, measure the neckline of the shirt. Then figure out 2/3 of that measurement for the length,  I go about 5 inches for the width.

I like my neckband to finish about 4" wide.
When you have the length, sew the neckband together to form a circle.  Divide the shirt and neckband in quarters.
Match your quarter marks,  on the neckband to the quarter marks on the shirt.  I usually place my neckband seam in the back.

Sew, matching pins, it will require a bit of stretching between pins but that is what you want.  When you finish that seam, press and do a top stitch.

Just like that you have a t-shirt.

Friday, October 26, 2018


 I have gotten away from garment sewing, but just for a little while.  I have several projects planned.  I thought it would be fun to do some random projects.  

My last est is this tea cozy. 
Very fun project.

My daughter loves tea, so this just might go to her.

I followed the instructions from:

I think the instructions are very well done, with lots of pictures.

 They have you quilt your own fabric. This is a good time to use that guide foot that came with your machine.

 The fabric combinations you can chose are endless.  You could even make it from a solid color and do some machine applique. Which I think will be my next project.

 Once you have the pattern, your imagination will kick into over drive and you will dream of all sorts of ideas.

 I just had to share my very old tape maker with you. I have seen the pretty new ones but, I think this was one of the first ones made😉.
It works, so I will keep using it.

That sums up how I made the tea cozy.  I hope I have inspired you to try some fun sewing.

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Fun things

I made these pillows last year for the kids for Christmas.  They were so much fun to make:

Design from

 These were for teen girls and they love them.  The picture always shows wrinkles I don't see until I take a picture.

These are the ones I made for the little people.

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Did you get in on the fad?

Not sure if calling it a fad is the right word.  All of the sudden, these fabric bowls were the hot new thing.  Everyone seemed to have come up with a tutorial, or a pattern for making these.

If made with all cotton fabric, thread and padding, they are supposed to be safe in the microwave, for a limited amount of time.

Actually, I was going to pass.  Then a request from my granddaughter and it was time to make the bowls. I went ahead and bought a pattern, even though there are several free tutorials on line.

I just made a set of these for my son.  They are pretty quick, and certainly a stash buster.

This is the set that went to my granddaughter.  She uses them when he heats food for Madi, my great granddaughter.

How about you?  did you make any of the bowls?  I hear they are still at this years bazzars.


Monday, October 15, 2018

Back to the machine

Headed back to the sewing machine and the world of creativity that I love. 

This will be short!   Just a way to get back into doing what I enjoy.  Life I can throw curve balls and you either learn to hit them or walk away.

My last project:   The popular fabric bowls.

Until tomorrow!!

Saturday, April 14, 2018

Lining a Top

 As I re enter the sewing room. I am going through ideas that make sewing so much easier for me.  Don't be afraid to change the pattern directions.  You might want to write on the pattern that changes were made, so the next time you use the pattern you will remember the changes.

I started summer sewing, Ya for me!!  The top I started to make for Zoe is McCall's M5573.  Reading the instruction sheet, the first thing I see I will change is the way the top is lined.  Now they have instructions to sew the lining together, then sew the top together. Sew the lining in leaving the shoulders unsewn.  Then you are supposed to sew the top and slip stitch the lining UGH!!  This method has never worked out for me. So I will show you my method to having a lining neat on the inside.

This is the method I was trying to explain.  Now lets do it a better way.

Sew the shoulder seams of both the fashion fabric and the lining. Then lay the pieces right side together and stitch up the front, around the neck edge and sew the armhole. You will be leaving the side seams open at this point.

Now, trim and clip your seams. I like to use pinking shears so I trim and clip all in one operation.

Hard  to get a good picture for you. You will reach up the open back and pull the front through the shoulder.
You can see where one side has been turned. Repeat for the other side.

There, you now have the lining turned. Remember the side seams are still open, so we will finish those next.

Meet fabric to fabric and lining to lining and sew in one continuous seam. Finish seam, press and you have a nice neat lined top.

Finished-- You can use this method anytime the back or front is two pieces, which is most of the time.