Friday, November 29, 2013

Napkins...

Spoiler Alert!  If you are a relative of mine and you rarely read my blog (you know who you are)...this is not the time to begin reading on a regular basis! 

While sewing napkins the other day, I decided that I should make more to give as Christmas gifts.  So.  I pulled fabric from the 'hmmmm' pile and started cutting and sewing.  Do you have one of those piles?  You know...fabric that just really doesn't fit with anything else you have or would have, but you don't want to get rid of it...but what will you ever use it for?  I made 14 napkins...some for Kaylynn and the rest for Joyce's young grandkids.   Everyday cloth napkins.   

                 

And, I made these...


I ventured out today, but just to pick up a few groceries.  I am not brave enough to face the crowds on this day.  Are you?  Did you get some great bargains?




"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.". Jeremiah 29:11

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Hard Day...

I am doing a lot of this...
pinning mitered corners


Tag is doing this...

my helper (?)


and just previously, he was doing this...
hanging out with his snowman...


He's having a hard day...poor thing.  ~grin~




"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.". Jeremiah 29:11

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

A Good Day of Sewing...

If you follow me on Facebook, you'll know that yesterday was a good day of sewing for me.  I cut fabric to make 9 items - Christmas gifts - and finished all 9!  I am sure that is a first for me..finishing all that I have on my list.  ~grin~

I used 3 fabrics, and made an apron, more Kleenex cozies, and more napkins.  None of them are difficult or awfully time-consuming.  In fact, I was trying to figure out how much time it actually took me to make them.  I'm guessing an hour for the 4 napkins, about half an hour for the 4 Kleenex cozies and no more than two and one-half hours for the apron.  

Here they all are together...
 

And, separately.

More Kleenex cozies for sister Joyce.  I am now half done with the dozen I plan to make for her.  

More napkins...it's interesting how these two fabrics looked kind of blah until I was finished...and now I think they are perfect fabrics for napkins!  ~grin~


There are several ways to make napkins, and believe me, I've tried them all.  What works best for me is a single layer of cotton or linen with mitered corners.  

The apron.  Since I did not show any photos of the one I made on Sunday, I made sure I had photos of this one for your perusal.  The very first thing I made when I took sewing classes in high school was an apron.  The lessons I learned from Miss Roach have stayed with me all these years.  The old adage...do it right.  I may not be the best sewist in the world, but I do my best.  
front
back
apron tie detail
hem detail

Thus far today, I have done nothing...except look at fabric and cut for 4 more napkins.   But, that's okay.  I think today is a knitting day. 

I need to get to Hobby Lobby one day soon.  

Hope you are having a great day!




"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.". Jeremiah 29:11

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Working It...(the list)

Spoiler Alert!  If you are a relative of mine and you rarely read my blog (you know who you are)...this is not the time to begin reading on a regular basis!   

So yeah...I am working away on the gifts.  

I told you yesterday that I had come up with a new list...well, I am enjoying myself far more, so I think I decided upon some winners!  

I love cloth napkins.  For two reasons.

1.)  Christmas with my Gram was always special.  A wonderful day for many reasons...church, gifts, relatives, food...and because Gram brought out her good china, along with the linen tablecloths and napkins to dress the tables.  She made everything look so special.  I now have - and use - those tablecloths and napkins. 

2.)  When my sons were very young (well over 30 years ago), I decided that they needed to know there was more to the world than boys and men and rough and tough.  So, every Saturday, we had candlelight dinner...what we ate - spaghetti or steaks on the grill - wasn't the issue.  The issue was to learn how to sit at the table with grace and manners.  I made some cloth napkins to go with my fall-themed Corelle dinnerware.  It was time for the boys to learn to use something other than their shirt sleeves.  Okay, they never actually did that.  I just wanted them to know there was more than...well, whatever they thought there was.
  
Since that time, I've always had cloth napkins.  Didn't know I was being 'green' back then.  Just knew that it made sense to me to use something reusable.  

So.  Yesterday an apron.  Today cloth napkins.  Are you sensing a theme here?  ~grin~

And,  keeping with my vow to not purchase fabric, I am using fabric I have here...so if there is only one napkin...that's because it's for one person and I had enough for one napkin.  Two napkins...2 people.  Well, there may occasionally be a set of 4 napkins.  We shall see what I come up with...and see what I put with these to complete the gifts.


And, honestly?  It takes me longer to decide on which fabric to use than it does to make these napkins!
 
one is the loneliest number...

two can be as bad as one...
And, then...a few of these.  Sister Joyce has once again requested some Kleenex tissue cozies.  I'll probably make her a dozen.  That will put the total number I have made of these over 100...using this tutorial...

I never seem to have my camera when Tag is doing something - anything - other than laying around.  So, I took my camera out when pottying him, and got a shot of him.  Course, this is the one time he wasn't looking at me.  ohwell...at least I've proven to you that he can walk. ~grin~

 Many more gifts to sew...but probably not tonight. 


**captions under cloth napkin photos are lyrics from "One" by Three Dog Night.



 "For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.". Jeremiah 29:11

Saturday, November 23, 2013

On My List...

I have a finish!  Wasn't sure I would, as I got a very late start to my sewing today.  I am so happy to have finished something that was on my gift-giving list.  woo-hoo! 

I had started a simple project a few weeks ago and just was not happy with how it was turning out, so I stopped working on it.  I did not start anything else, though...I started having second thoughts about the projects on my list for Christmas gifts.  I pretty much decided against making most of what I had planned.  Course, then I had to come up with new ideas...which was not fun...and seemed to be a very long process for some reason. 

I got it all figured out, though.  whew.  Now I will be able to move forward.  

So.  Here it is...an apron.  It doesn't much look like an apron, does it.  But, it is!  I got it all ironed and folded to box up and got the big bow tied the way I wanted it and now I don't want to unfold it.  ~grin~  It's a half apron...one that is gathered with a waistband and long ties.  I'll show you all the details on the next one I make.  Promise. 


I should be having finishes to show you on a regular basis over the next month.  That'll be fun, hey? 



"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.". Jeremiah 29:11

Monday, November 18, 2013

Button, Button...

I took some time this morning to play with Naomi Janome.  I've had her for 4 years and have never made a buttonhole.  Not that I had occasion to make one...quilts don't often have buttonholes, ya know?

Naomi didn't let me down...it was easy peasy!  Just attach the buttonhole foot, insert the button you're making the buttonhole for and GO! 

I made 3 different types...the ones I will likely use...

square

rounded

keyhole

The thread I used is a 60 wt. polyester...not one I would typically use.  A thicker thread will make for a much better looking buttonhole...more filled in. 


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

The muscle strain in my forearm is much better, though I still need to be careful when picking up heavy objects...and when doing something like I did to strain it in the first place...OUCH!  Thank you so much for your well wishes and inquiries.

Have a great week!




"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.". Jeremiah 29:11

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Break...

I need to take a break, so there won't be anything going on here for a bit.  I have a forearm muscle strain.  It happened yesterday...hurt like the dickens!  It's better today, though.  Rest, rest, rest it.  Luckily, it's my left arm and not my right...else I'd be completely helpless. 

In the meantime, this is what I had been working on this week whilst watching television...



I lost one of my scarves last year, so decided to make myself a new one...it's merino wool...so soft and warm!!  A new pattern, but an easy one. 


"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.". Jeremiah 29:11

Saturday, November 9, 2013

I say, What?...

I have come to the conclusion that one of the major advantages of retirement is also the biggest disadvantage.

Yup, the fact that there is always tomorrow.  

The advantage of not doing something today is that I can always do it tomorrow.

The disadvantage of not doing something today is that I can always do it tomorrow.

But, what if tomorrow never comes?  Not really 'what if tomorrow never comes',  but rather, 'what if I never think this is the tomorrow that I will/can do it'?  Whatever 'it' is.  

I am the Queen of Procrastination.

 
Here's the deal...

I have a long list of things to do.  Yet, with no urgency involved in getting things done...with having all day every day, rather than only the hours after work and the weekends, I tend to put things off and sometimes just plain don't get at them.

Back in August, after a month of being retired, I instituted a daily schedule...a routine, of sorts.  That's all fine and good.  When I follow it, things get done.

But, what if something upsets the apple cart.  Or, what if I don't feel like doing things in that order that day...I would rather not do 'that', but would rather do 'this'.
 
I guess I need to feel some sort of urgency.   

Take, for example, making Christmas gifts.

Two weeks ago, I decided what I wanted to make for each person on my list.  I gathered some of the fabric needed and made a note of what fabrics I might need to buy.  A good start, I thought.  Well, that's all I did.  I have too much other stuff to do.

Yes, but did I do that other stuff?  Um....no.  Well, perhaps some of it, but I certainly did not put my nose to the grindstone.  Not.  At.  All.

So, I now have set deadlines for myself.  Let us see how that works, shall we?  Now, mind you, I still need to be making doll clothes,  doll quilts, carry cots, and other items for my business.

How to deal with that?  Separating what needs to get done.  I think a good plan is to work on my business sewing during the week and devote my weekends to gift-making.  I think my focus and concentration will improve with that in mind.

So.  The first project for this weekend involves these squares.

I am going to make a set of coasters for my Aunt Bev.  Perhaps 4.  Perhaps more.  We shall see how much fun I'm having.  The coasters match a table runner that I made for her a few years ago.  See it here.
I will not go to bed tonight until they are done.  I have several hours, so I should be able to get them done. If I apply myself. Which, may I say, I really must do.

~sigh~

The life of a retiree.


On another note...I finished a doll outfit.  This one is not for Aubrey (and Aubrey was her name), but will be placed for sale in my Etsy shop sometime this next week. 

Did you notice the itty-bitty cross stitches on the sleeve edges?  Just an extra little touch...


Okay, I must go and get started.  I have deadlines to meet, after all.  ~grin~

I hope you're getting done what you want/need to!

Have a great weekend!




"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.". Jeremiah 29:11

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Wordless Wednesday...


OH!  That was yesterday!  

oops!  Here, I'd been waiting for it cuz I had something to show you but not much to say about it.  Well, I suppose I can do that, anyway.  Show you what I have to show you.  It's no big deal...just something I made for Aubrey (and Aubrey was her name).

Here it is...


Since it's not Wednesday, I don't need to remain wordless.  Right?  So...this hat.  Just something I made 3 of before I got the right size.  If I had made a gauge, I would have only had to make one.  Course, then there is the time spent making the gauge.  Do you make a gauge when you knit?  I really never have.  Me Mum thinks that is appalling.     


Do you wonder why, when I type Aubrey's name, it is always followed with (and Aubrey was her name)?  Yeah...that's just something that happens automatically.  I LOVE that song...and typing her name just makes me sing it and, consequently, type it out!  

Today is Thursday.  And, I am thankful for that, as I have nowhere to go.  What that translates into is that I don't need to watch the clock at all.  I think I am going to set up a sewing assembly line.  First, collect fabric.  Then, I'll start with tops and bottoms (to include pantaloons, pants, and skirts) and nightgowns.  

What are you doing today?  




"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.". Jeremiah 29:11

Monday, November 4, 2013

A Good Monday Afternoon!



Yes, it was! 

I finished this outfit.


Lucky Aubrey (and Aubrey was her name)!!!

This is my second success!

Finally!

Many start-overs and discards
came before these last two outfits.

Trying to find my style.

I don't necessarily like to putz much.

But, I do like those extra little touches.

Details.
For instance...
double row of stitching on hems.
No particular reason...
I just like the way it looks.


Aubrey (and Aubrey was her name)
is very much in love with her new hat.
 
 It is a pattern from Fabs at Fig and Me.
(if you have time, you really should take a look at her blog...
she makes amazing dolls and clothes and more!)


My big night of television is tonight.
I guess I should figure out what's
for supper before then, hey?


"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.". Jeremiah 29:11

A Good Monday Morning!


It is Monday morning.  I must say, it is rather nice to wake up without a groan on Monday mornings...has something to do with the fact that I don't need to go to work. 

Because I am retired.  I may have mentioned that before.  ~grin~ 

It has been a productive Monday morning.  

I finished knitting the larger size hat I showed in my last post.  I added stitches and rows, so it is a better fit...doesn't need to be stretched to cover the head.

And, here is a peek at the blouse I'm working on...

I am very happy with how my neck edge turned out.  I cut a bias strip and sewed it on with Naomi Janome and then turned it over and hand stitched it on the inside.  Same as the other top I made.  I think it looks very...well...finished.  ~grin~



OH!  And, see the hat ties?  I made them my way this time...much easier.  The crochet hook is not (yet) my friend.  I think these work just as well. 

Time to go potty Curly Sue (friend's dog that I visit every day around this time) and then it's lunchtime!  More sewing to follow before the big night of television.

Hope you are having a good Monday, too!



"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.". Jeremiah 29:11

Saturday, November 2, 2013

It's All In The Details...


I am so happy to show you this outfit.  I finished it just now...and I am so pleased that it turned out just as I had pictured it in my head.  This is my first creation...well, not really my creation.  The pattern was given in the book, "Making Waldorf Dolls"...and I added to it.  To suit my need for more...to satisfy my creative brain...to find what works for me...my style.  To fill in the details.

A simple top with raglan sleeves...modified to have a neckline edge with a bias strip...tucks rather than elastic around the neckline.  Tucks on the sleeves...top-stitched for more detail...a double line of sewing on the hem.  Pants shortened to be pantaloons with elastic around the leg edges...with the same tucks...and the same top-stitching.  All seams serged by Serger Sue.






I know it is soon to be winter, but I had this fabric that I wanted to use for Aubrey (and Aubrey was her name). 

And, the distraction I mentioned in this morning's post?  This hat...



Isn't it fun??  It is not quite done, though.  I need to weave in a few ends and make the tie for the other side.  It is a pattern by Fabs at Fig and Me.  Future hats will be a bit larger.  If Aubrey had a big head of hair as so many of the Waldorf dolls seem to, this hat would not fit.     

And, that's all I have for today.  Tomorrow is my day to do some sewing on Christmas gifts.




"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.". Jeremiah 29:11

A Chilly Kind of Day...

I know.
I was going to show you
the finished doll outfit.
Sorry, I got distracted.

But, it was a fun distraction!
Wait til you see.

In the meantime...
chili is in the crockpot.
 A perfect day for it...
damp, dreary, and, well...
chilly.

Today is me Mum's birthday...
Happy 83rd birthday, Mum!
I sent her some much wanted
face cloths in a special (small) size.
Aunt Bev (l) and me Mum (r).

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
More later.
I have lots to say...
At least 2 posts worth.

Plus, I will show you what
I have finished.

Promise.



"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.". Jeremiah 29:11

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