Monday, April 28, 2008

Music Monday

This is a little change from my last installment of Music Monday. Michael Buble is nothing like Gene Simmons. Well, he is a man...they have that in common, but their music...not so much. If you are unfamiliar with Michael, his style leans more to the big band or jazz genre, but he crosses over into the popular segment. His ballad "Home" makes me cry every time I here it. Blake Shelton has covered it (or maybe they both did it at the same time...doesn't's a great song) and while I love Blake Shelton, I prefer Michael Buble's version. He reminds me of Jack Jones. My Mom had several Jack Jones albums that we listened to a lot while I was growing up. I love those old songs. No sewing today...but look out's gonna rain and I have the house to myself...time to get some projects finished!

Sunday, April 27, 2008

No Sew Sunday

Waaa!! Well, it may not be a completely sew free day as I brought some quilt blocks I am working on to work, but all I probably will accomplish there is cutting the flying geese units for the blocks (and ripping out the units I somehow managed to sew the wrong sides together). I must have been tired last night when I was sewing them together. Tomorrow will be a wash as I am working another double boss was talking about getting someone to cover her on Tuesday as well and I just prayed that she didn't ask me. I would have said a big fat NO, of course...4 back to back shifts in a row is insane...3 is pushing it. I need some time to do my thing...I have a big order of hats to start on when they arrive from the vendor and I would like to have some of the projects I have cut out finished before then...the green coat...snicker, snicker, snicker...maybe if I keep bringing it up I will be motivated to finish it. What I did accomplish before work was I got the broccoli, Walla Walla Sweet onions, cranberry beans and cabbage out it the garden. They were crying to be let out of the green house and I think the timing is perfect because they are predicting rain for a couple of days and then the return of the sun. That makes for a good start. I love planting time. The raspberries came out okay despite the craziness of this Spring...only a few leaves got frostbitten. I'm afraid the blossoms on the peach tree are goners, but the pear and apples haven't blossomed yet, so I think they will be okay. My pampas grass that Tom predicted would die last year is almost 4 feet tall and the Wisteria is loving it's new permanent home. We go back and forth about the garden and other things...I guess that's what old married folk do. I need to do alot of work in the back yard...I need some shade tolerant plants that like to be ignored...Hostas? Switching gears here, my Hunny and I talked about what to do with our economic stimulus check that should be coming soon. He suggested new carpet and laminate flooring for the house...I suggested a fishing trip to Alaska...I think we are going with the new carpet...YAY...we will be going to Alaska sometime in the near future, but a little updating to the house would be a good thing. So...whatcha all going to do with your big fat check?

Saturday, April 26, 2008

I Love Yard Sales!

It's a good thing that I work on weekends, because I would probably spend them and all of our money scouring yard sales this time of year. I can only do minimal damage after work because usually I am ready to go home after my shift is over. Once in awhile a yard sale too good to pass up presents itself on my route home and who am I to question fate? This particular yard sale was next door to the fire department. I stopped in to talk to my Hunny (okay, I'll admit I did see the notice about the sale on Craig's List and they advertised sewing items) about dinner and gee, since I'm already here...all the fabric was gone, but there were 3 humungous boxes of vintage patterns. I inquired about the price because nothing was marked and the older gentleman said $1.00 a pattern. I wasn't too excited about that, so I asked what he would accept to take them all, thinking I would offer $20.00. I almost squealed like a pig in slop when he said $20.00! So I carted my treasures home and carefully counted and sorted. 446 patterns!!! Whoo hoo! Some are vintage 60's and 70's...nice stuff...I will post pictures in the near future. I'm tired now, so I am going to head up to bed...the dog's been up there for hours.

How long to let Fine Fabric Age?

I received my fabric indulgence from yesterday. I have already cut out one piece and the other cotton knit has been pre-washed and is awaiting pattern selection. My Hunny posed the question "You're not going to let that age for awhile?" It's true...I have pieces of fabric that I have probably toted around for 20 years...waiting for the the inspiration. I have the most adorable knit print with brightly colored animals that will undoubtably make my granddaughter the cutest outfit. That fabric has been in my stash since I bought it to make my darling 26 year old daughter the cutest outfit when she was like...3 years old. The outfit never got made, but I can't bear to part with the fabric because I still love it. I have the bag of scraps animal/flower cotton prints from the "Hammer pants" era (remember those Sara?) that are destined to be a baby quilt one day. It was the cutest series, with tiger/lilies, snap/dragons, dog/woods, pussy/willows and dandy/lions to name a few of the combinations. I bought yardage of all of them and most were made into clothes for Sara, when Mom couture was still acceptable. Then came the covert thrift shopping missions, or how I deceived my child, but I will leave it at that...Sara can guest blog about that sometime. It's like some pieces of fabric are just sitting there, aging like fine wine...waiting for their time to come. So tell do you age your fabric?

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Return to the 70's

I definitely would have worn this dress in the 70's. In fact, I think I did wear a dress like this in the 70's. It's funny how things just come back around. I really need to work on my modeling skills though. To be was the end of my work night and I was really tired. Today has been kind of a lazy day. My Hunny was sick, so I had to use my nursing skills to take care of him. He asked me to pick out some movies at the library, so we watched an action movie with Michael Douglas and Kiefer Sutherland and then the true story "We are Marshall". I like true stories. I did manage to cut out a BWOF wrap top and did some seam ripping. I tried to wear my yoga pants this morning and they were a little looser than I like (I do like my pants to stay up on my hips), so I took the waistband off so I can take them in and I ripped apart a re-make outfit. Yesterday I pulled off all the beads and bling to recycle and now I am going to take the oversized outfit and make it into something I can wear. I like to do that. I used to redesign my Grandma's old dresses as a teenager. It was fun. Work calls tomorrow...night route...I hope it doesn't rain...yeah right! This is Oregon.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Button, Button, who's got the Button?

I spent some quality time perusing my button collection this morning searching for the perfect buttons to finish off my retro-mod dress. The hand stitching was completed last night while we watched the Discovery channel and learned about how automatic transmissions and disk brakes were made among other things on "How it's Made" (my Hunny already knows all this stuff, but it was new information for me) I digress...back to the buttons...After looking at the dress for a few days on Valentine, I felt that some buttons on the bodice band would really finish off the look. I had envisioned something in black with some rhinestones, however I only found 1 button that looked like what I had in my minds eye, so I expanded my search to the other colors in the print. I found some perfect buttons, but not with the required trinity. I looked in my somewhat limited green drawer and there were 3 interesting shaped chartreuse colored buttons that matched the accent color of the print perfectly! I sewed them on and it was just what the dress needed. I wore it to work today (sorry, no pictures yet) with my black boots and I received lots of compliments. It's amazing how people notice when you put some effort into your appearance! I also finished some yoga pants last night...super soft...I think they will be PJ pants...I don't really do yoga. Now for a little whining...I agreed to work 2 extra shifts so I am only getting 1 day off this week. That day is tomorrow and my sweet Baboo is on duty, so you know what that means...SEW PARTY!!! Hopefully I will get some things done before I start working on Vinnie's hat order. I guess I should look on the bright side and consider the extra shifts mean I can buy more fabric!!! Yay!!! Happy days are here again!!!

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Who knocked off Who???

I stopped at Fred Meyer's (a local all-in-one department/grocery store) to pick up some milk and was checking out the spring dresses on my way to the back of the store. They had this Maggy London dress on the rack...almost down to the same print of fabric. How do I know? I cut this particular pattern out last night. (Thank you Marji...this was made possible secondary to her stash reduction project!) The back of this dress is a "V"...turned around the RTW was a "V" as well. It was kind of wierd! I feel very trendy though knowing I will have a now style, made with my choice of fabric. Speaking of fabric, I had a weak moment this morning and ordered some cute stuff from I know I have piles of fabric to work with, but sometimes I go looking and just can't help myself. I only spent like $9.00 total including shipping for 3 yards...I found some killer stuff in the $1.95/yd never know what you will find. They had a cute camo/butterfly knit that I will probably make up as the Maggy London top here. My Hunny loves camo clothing and this way I can be camo and a little feminine too. I also picked up a slinky grey leopard print that will go with my grey grouping. I hope it doesn't look too crazy. Oh well! Tearsa (That's Sew Live) had an interesting entry regarding personal style. I'm not sure what my style would be called. I am working on making pieces that fit together...well, not these 2 fabrics, but teamed individually with a black skirt or pair of pants...I like it!

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Sewing Updates

I have been one poor correspondent of late...Dear Sewing's what I have been doing. I am making good progress on the green retro print dress, despite having to take the sleeves off and the zipper half out to fit the bodice more to my liking. It should be finished this week barring any other emergencies. I have been picking up all sorts of sewing jobs, that really cut into my new Spring wardrobe sew time. I appreciate my customers, but geez people, I'm going to be running around in rags if I can't get my sewing done! Prioritize Mary! Okay...I'll work on my stuff (hehehe!) I have been aquiring fabric and patterns too this week. I scored some nice yardage and patterns from Marji's give-away, plus I bought 3 older BWOF magazines off ebay that have several items worth tracing IMMEDIATELY. I picked up a bag of fabric at Goodwill yesterday for $1.50. There were 4 different fabrics...a gorgeous blue and white stretch poly that says Maggie London all over it; a black with shimmery green stripes that depend on the light to show that I see as a great party dress for this Christmas; a khaki colored linen that will become a nice safari type dress or jacket and then a bright madras plaid that at first I was thinking...uh...placemats, but after looking at it for awhile, it might make a nice summer skirt. I will have to stew on that a little before I decide on that. I also scored on Jo-Ann's daffodil dash sale. All the Red Tag fabrics were 50% off...I had been feeling rather uninspired by Jo-Ann's recently, but I think it matters which store you go to. I have 4 that I sometimes frequent and I usually have the best luck in Oregon City. It's a nice big store (but not a SuperStore) and they have a pretty good selection. I picked up a blue/green plaid that I am going to recut the lining for the green coat...I think the plain green lining was boring me and was one of the roadblocks to working on it. (Sounds like a good excuse) I purchased a nice paisley jersey print in tans and browns and a nice cocoa knit. Then there was the fabulous navy with white polka dot poplin with a hint of stretch that screamed retro to me. The manager of this particular Jo-Ann's is a man and he was at the cutting table while my fabric was being cut...he remarked "someone must be making a costume..." I was not amused...I will have to wear my fabulous dress in there when it gets done...(Right after the green coat...LOL) Sew many clothes to make...Sew little time!

Sunday, April 13, 2008

And the Bozo Award for the week goes to....

Mary!!! Some days it's difficult to keep it all together! I was so excited for the birthday party of my little man. Somehow in my mind I thought it was yesterday. I shopped like a mad fiend after work to get his birthday present. Annie said Travis set a moratorium on toys, but I had to stick a few fun things in the bag ( only turn one once!!!) I dutifly bought diapers and wipes as requested and got him a cute pair of camo shorts and a top to match. Tied the bag together with a helium filled Pooh balloon and wore a nice outfit to work so I could jet to the party when I returned home. When I got home I found my honey sitting at the table eating lunch with jeans and a tank top on...not your usual party wear. I commented that I did not see anybody at the pizza parlor on my way home. Tom said "I'm not go alone" I was flabbergasted!!! He couldn't contain himself anymore and blurted out "The party is next week" Evidently Travis called shortly before I got home and asked "What are you doing?" Then the cat was out of the bag. When Trav came over later he thanked me for coming to the birthday party...I either need new glasses or I was just so enamored over the cute picture Annie put on the invite that I messed up the date. Oh well, I spread chicken manure in the garden beds and fired up the tiller to mix it all up. Still too early to plant (darn it), but the beds are ready. The afternoon was not a total loss and I am ready for next weekend's party.

On to Music Monday...I know it is technically Sunday, but I am working a double shift tomorrow and there will be no time for blog posting. This Monday's selection is KISS, specifically Gene Simmons. I was a teenager in the 70's, which was a great time for music evolution in my humble opinion. The great thing about KISS is they are this hard rocking fetish type band with their wild clothes and make up, singing party anthems like "I want to Rock and Roll All Night (and party everyday)" and then turning around and singing a love ballad like "Beth" And then there's the tongue. Who doesn't envision Gene Simmons' tongue when they think of KISS? Well, probably someone who doesn't care for KISS, but this is my Music Monday. Gene has kept his following alive with the A&E reality show "Gene Simmons' Family Jewels"...Entertaining stuff. I don't know how much of this is made for TV titillation vs. real life in the Simmons' household, but I find it amusing, so I watch when I can...

As for sewing...the green retro dress is in progress. I have the bodice draped on Valentine. I hope to finish it this week so I can wear it to Hayden's birthday party...take 2!

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

What not to do with a serger...

This is for you, my darling daughter, because the best lessons come from what not to do...Sara and I had our mother/daughter sewathon on Sunday. We ate sinful cinnamon streusel muffins with our coffee and watched Psycho (Sara thinks Anthony Perkins is hot...correction...WAS hot) which my daughter had never seen before, Cinderella, because who doesn't love a good love story and Ferris Bueller's Day Off, because life is short and you have to slow down and smell the roses sometimes. Okay, that was the entertainment...or was it??? Sara made a wonderful cushion for Lola, as described in a previous post. Next up she chose a wonderful yoga pant. This was her first ride on a serger, and what a cadillac my new Evolve was to learn on. She was doing fabulous...sewing up those seams like the best of us. She tried them on and decided she wanted them to ride a little lower than the pattern, so we measured and graded it down so it would be just perfect when the wrapover waist band was applied. I helped her pin on the waistband and walked her through the process and let her go. I tried not to hover and make her nervous, so I went across the hall to my bedroom to try on a blouse I was altering. Something didn't sound quite right. "Is everything all right in there?" I cautiously ask. "No, I'm stuck" WHAT??? I return to the scene to find the front of her pants wadded tightly in the throat plate. I tried to gently remove the fabric...nope...not budging. I finally had to cut it out and use my trusty hemostat to tease out the wad of thread that had balled up under the plate. I was afraid that there would be problems...but I saddled her back up and the serger roared off again like nothing had happened. I gained a greater respect for Babylock that day. Sara's rationale was that she thought it was like going over a thick seam with a regular just get through it and on you go...doesn't quite work like that unfortunately. The funny thing was, we lost about an inch off the waistband with the trim job. Her low rise was a little lower than anticipated. She said Bryce complained that she never wears "girlfriend clothes" since they got married...she just wears sweats and comfy clothes (well...YEAH???) I couldn't wait for him to get a load of these sweats!!! No pictures please...I'm running a clean blog here!!! In happy first Burda came in the mail...I'm so happy!

Monday, April 7, 2008

Music Monday and Lola, my Grandkitty

First is a picture of Lola, my grandkitty. The kids adopted her from a rescue organization and she has come a long way since then. She was pimped out at an early age and had a batch of kittens before she was rescued and spayed. She was a real fraidy cat when the kids brought her home and she can still skitter into hiding when someone comes to visit, but she loves her parents. Sara made her a new pad to lay on (one of yesterday's sewing projects) I will discuss what we learned on sewing Sunday at a later date because today is Music Monday!!! Yay!!! I was reminded of that when I was reading Tearsa's blog earlier and saw her picture "under my umbrella" all know the rest of the song, don't you? If you don't, you really should pick up Rihanna's CD "Good girl gone Bad" because it is a great listen. I have been rocking it in the car, in my sewing studio and on my ipod on the treadmill for a while now and I adore her music. I love the tune "Shut up and Drive" (Remember the post "Shut up and Sew"...guess where I knocked off that idea!!!). Also "Please don't stop the Music" brings back the rhythm of Michael Jackson...not that I am a fan of all the trouble he has had over the years, but I do like his music. So there you have it...Music Monday! I will post more about what's been stitching in the studio and What Not to Do with a serger when I have more time. Until then...keep on rockin!

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Let's Get Sewing...

Yesterday was a no sew day (and you know that is like a day without sunshine!). Seems like tasks come in waves. I have been helping my boss with computer stuff...I am her IT person (and that's a pretty scary thing...let me tell ya!) I think I have her squared away for the moment. Tom brought home his new playtoy...Lil Blue...Hayden's daddy gave Tom his old Toyota pickup since we help out with babysitting (Shoot, I feel like we should pay them for the pleasure)...anyway, a new fuel pump later, Lil' Blue is running...just another thing for Tom to tinker with. We all have our hobbies. Tom is working today, so tonight I plan to spend some quality in the studio. I picked out some Mary Engelbreit fabric from the stash for making aprons tomorrow with Sara and I have a couple of shirts to embroider for a customer. Everybody wants things right now...we are an impatient society, which reminds me...where is my April BWOF!!! :)

Friday, April 4, 2008

Flashback Friday

Homecoming 1976...I was 16, going on 17...well, you know the rest of the song...Doesn't my honey look happy? I searched everywhere for the dress because I didn't have time to make one (my honey lived in Chehalis and it was a last minute decision to come up for the event) I had to work that night, so I missed most of the game, but the dance was heavenly and we went out to dinner afterward in Everett with my BF Shelley and her husband John...yeah, that's right...husband...we look so young!

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Dogs (and Cats) on Thursday

Jo and Fig try to pretend they don't like each other. I beg to differ. Jo always comes to get me when Figgy is at the sliding glass door asking to come in. More and more I am catching them sleeping together, as seen in this picture. I didn't quite catch the moment because they both jumped up when I got the camera. You can see by his expression Fig is not amused by my spy techniques. Let's keep private things private, he says! As for sewing, today was a good day. I finished Kim's jumper and it turned out really nice. I took a picture, but it didn't look too impressive in the picture, so I probably won't post it. Maybe I will get a picture of Kim in it. I spent a couple hours in the garden pulling thistles and weeds in preparation for the garden. I am going to put some water retention crystals in the beds (you know the ones we made "cool ties" with) to help keep the plants hydrated. My raspberries are running. There are several babies shooting up, but I'm not going to move them until Mother Nature settles down and quits freezing us at night. I made a couple loaves of sourdough french bread to go with the lasagne I made last night. So dinners in the bag, Baby!!! Now I can go trace off some BWOF patterns out of the March issue...Impatiently waiting for April (the first issue in my subscription I hope!)

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Big Dump Truck o' Patterns

My morning started with this little guy coming for a visit. He decided he needed to work out on the treadmill. I tried to get some cute pictures, but it's hard to do when they are as quick as this little man! He went home after noon and so I took a trip to a little thrift store in town that is only open twice a week. They had a couple boxes of patterns that were FREE! I brought home 22 (and gave them a donation). I also picked up a dump truck for Hayden for a buck!!! He will love to play with it.
Some of the patterns were true vintage from the 60's and some were newer. I got a gorgeous Maggie London dress pattern...I love Maggie London.
I did manage to get some sewing done...I did 3 embroidery samples for a potential client and finished some edges on Kim's dress. After dinner at the Fire Station, I made a lasagne for tomorrow night. The first hummingbird of the season came knocking at the window this afternoon, so I whipped up some hummer food and hung the feeders. I love watching those birds. Maybe tomorrow I can snap a photo of them.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Booty Call

Made you look!!! It really should be called "Looty Haul". I finally received my order from Fabric Mart after >2 weeks. I was getting impatient since I ordered from after I placed the order with Fabric Mart and that came early last week. I even got so worried I emailed them to find out when it shipped, thinking my precious fabric had been hijacked! I was all prepared to talk smack about them, but when I opened the box and saw the generous cuts, I couldn't stay mad. I got in on some of the 3 yards for $5.00 stuff, not expecting too much, but was pleasantly surprised. I had to jet over to Trendy Fabrics for some lining fabric and of course I couldn't waste the 99 cent first order shipping on just $8.00 worth of lining fabric, could I? Now I need to get cutting! First off the table will have to be a denim jumper for my friend Kim. She asked me to duplicate her favorite jumper that is about to die a while back and in my vintage pattern ebay frenzy I scored a pattern that is a dead ringer for her beloved dress. Her birthday is fast approaching, so I want to surprise her with the dress and the custom dog harness bag she requested before everything went south in my life. Next will have to be the green retro flower print, but I haven't decided what to do with it yet. My intentions were the Burda wrap top #116, but they gave me such a generous cut (I ordered 2 yards and it is more like 2 1/2) I am considering a dress. Also I need to prepare for Sewing Sunday with Sara. I picked out a simple yoga pant pattern and an apron pattern to make and plan to put together a little take home project for her to do at home. Maybe a little wristlet purse too...we'll have to see how it goes. Here is a picture of my looty haul:

I also want to say thank you to Brooke...I was reading your blog the other day and saw myself in your blog roll. I feel like I have arrived in blogville!

Project Dress a Girl

For the past couple of years, I have made dresses for Project Dress a Girl Around the World, in part thanks to the campaign launched by Mari...