Thursday, March 31, 2011

It's Time Again!

The boys of summer are back!

The clydesdales started the day.

Will he stay or will he go?

Either way, play ball!!!!!

Sunday, March 27, 2011

It is Springtime

It is springtime even if the white stuff outside says differently. I finally succumbed to the "snow on the deck" photo op. This is after a good bit of melting this morning. They are forecasting more snow for this evening. If I thought Mother Nature was hiding like the Wizard of Oz, I'd yank her curtain away from her. Enough! I am thankful for the bright sunshine today though.

So in honor of the fact that it is spring and I am choosing to ignore the outside scenery for the rest of the day. I give you baby ducks.

Not these,

These baby ducks. "Ducks in a Row" by Ellen McCarn. I love this plate. Besides "Andrew's Pull Toy" by Terry Jane, it is it my favorite little duck plate. Picture smocking several identical motifs can be tricky. Sometimes it is hard to tell they are supposed to look the same. I like the center and the far right ones the best. The second from the left, looks like he may have had a frontal lobotomy. Oh well.


The pattern used here is Allan's Bubble by Creative Needle. Creative Needle first published this pattern in 1989. It is one of my all time faves. As a matter of fact, this bubble was made in 1991. I made it for my godson Mitri, when he was a year old. It is made from Imperial microcheck and lined with Imperial batiste. It has buttons large enough to land aircraft on, and the buttonholes you could wrap around a small elephant. We won't even talk about the fact that this famously "soft" fabric has no interfacing behind those buttonholes.


It may have not been perfect but he was still adorable in it. He would have been 21 soon. We still miss him dearly.


It is just as adorable on our fair haired, blue eyed princess. Paired with a purchased blouse from Bessie Mary, it is ready to go for another generation. I did let the buttons down about a half inch. At eight and half months old she is taller than he was at a year.

Creative Needle released this pattern several years ago as a reprint from the magazine. It is still available from many heirloom retailers. My daughter has one made from red broadcloth almost ready to go. The reprint comes in a long pant version as well. Try it, you'll love it.

I hope spring is behaving better in your neck of the woods.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Easter stitching

 First posted here

It is that time of year again. I saw a Facebook post the other day that stated the four seasons of the year were, Summer, Fall, Winter and Easter. So true if you sew. So I went surfing looking for inspiration. NONE of these projects are mine. I love this first picture. She looks a lot like our princess except for the dark hair and eyelashes.

First posted here

I love Papo d'Anjo. So classic and fresh. Never overdone.

First posted here

How many of us born in the 50's have Easter photos that look just like this? I know I do. Many of my early Easter dresses came from Tiny Town, a children's shop still in business today.

First posted here

Does anything say Easter better than pastel colors and baskets? This adorable dress is done by a favorite fellow blogger, LA Sewista. Love it.

First posted here

How cute is this sister/brother picture? You might as well look as cute going, as you did coming!

First posted here

I may have posted this link before, not only is it a gorgeous dress but it is a gorgeous photo as well. This pattern has to be Martha Pullen's best seller of all time. The Heirloom Party Dress. I know I have made it more than once, as many, many others have as well.

The dress pattern was first offered in the book French Hand Sewing by Machine years ago. I loaned my copy to someone and never got it back. I wonder if they have thought of reprinting this book with a new cover?

 First posted here

And we can't forget the boys.  Smocked

First posted here

and unsmocked. Just this picture is beautiful. He is a gorgeous child.

First posted here

This is a great blog post about a classic Easter dress. I may have to visit the Women's Exchange here to see if they still carry a version of this dress. I love this dress and have a pattern for a similar one waiting for princess to be a bit older. Sounds like a nice girls day, lunch and shopping at the Women's Exchange.

I hope this has gotten your creative juices flowing. I do have a bishop pleated. Also "planned" is a dressier Easter dress. We will see how much gets done.

Sunday, March 20, 2011


Springtime!! Oh how we never thought you would come.

"Everything is new in the spring.... Springs themselves are always so new, too.  No spring is ever just like any other spring.  It always has something of its own to be its own peculiar sweetness."  
                                                    Anne of Green Gables

 Welcome spring. I for one am so glad you are here.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Crazy busy


Don't I wish I had found my mind. I am fine, thanks for checking on me faithful reader. Life is crazy busy right now. I haven't had a chance to touch a needle in days. Hopefully tomorrow. Of course I have said that everyday this week.

I'm beginning to feel like a little red haired girl.

Have you gotten your latest issue of Australian Smocking and Embroidery? Issue #94. Mine came just in time to add a few things to my "want to do" list.

First posted at Country Bumpkin

Like this little number. Love this!!!! It is appropriately called "Sweetie Pie." I think it would be adorable in seersucker. So perhaps, tomorrow...........

Monday, March 14, 2011

Dark days

Ol' man winter just needs to go to bed! Enough already. We had over 2" of white stuff again today. I am so over it. I haven't had a chance to get to my sewing room in three days, so coupled with the snowy gray days, it makes me grumpy.

Now I am fully aware my troubles are tiny compared to so many right now. That doesn't seem to make me less grumpy. Maybe that is contributing to my grumpy mood.

So while I have been quiet, I do continue to pray for those is such desperate need. I hope you will join me in praying for those lost, hurting and displaced by recent events around the world.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

And Lent begins

The cross that is
at the heart
of our faith
is a cross
that leads
to resurrection.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Getting ready for summer

Baby's "entourage" keeps expanding. Her admirers are far and wide. Another stitching friend made this adorable summer set. Don't you love it? So crisp and breezy looking for summer.

The smock plate is "Fire Quackers" by Little Memories. Baby's Mommy didn't want the plate to read 4th of July so she asked that the colors be changed. It was a great decision. While it will work for the 4th, it is not limited to just patriotic wear. Judy did pleat the center section a bit wider than called for to accommodate the pleats needed for the center motif. I love the piping with the rick rack on the collar.

The top is Carol by Children's Corner, shortened and made sleeveless. The long pants are also by Children's Corner, Lettie. Judy did say she made the pants a tad more narrow than called for in the pattern. They are perfect.

The bloomers are Hallie from Bonnie Blue. They are perfect for a cloth diaper baby. A wonderful fresh outfit for summer.

First posted at BessieMary

I think we may need to get this pattern. That little top is adorable.

Judy does beautiful custom work as well. If your sewing time is limited, contact her at Sew Neat and she can get you what you need. She also offers ready to smock if you want to do the fun part but not the construction. I can attest that her work is impeccable. Stop by and visit her website.

Parting shot: Not only is the outfit adorable, it is even cuter on!

Sunday, March 6, 2011

New Baby Pink

Second baby girl gift, check! This baby is a bit younger. The post of the sherbet bishop is for a baby that is 5 months old. This baby just turned a month old. So my curve is getting better. I have made this pattern before for our baby's coming home dress. I love this pattern. It is Emma's Smocked Dress by Old Fashioned Baby. It is quick to smock and put together. It goes together like a dream. I smocked it using the plate included in the pattern, except I omitted the last row of smocking, simply because I decided I was done when I got to that point. No other thought process involved. I also simplified the embroidery design, it too is included in the pattern.


I used Imperial batiste for this dress. This mommy has two children under 18 months now. She doesn't have time to iron. As much as I loved the fabric I used before, this little dress is just as sweet in a simple fabric as well. I also lined and interfaced the yoke. Batiste is a very lightweight fabric. I wanted it to have a little bit more substance. I interfaced it with German interfacing.

I have said it before, the back of this dress just makes my heart melt. I don't know why but it does.

There is cotton lace at the sleeves and neck edge. One thing I did differently this time was I didn't gather the lace under the sleeve. I like to concentrate my gathers on a puffed sleeve towards the center, so that the gathers at the bottom of the sleeve are directly below the gathers in the sleeve head. This will make your sleeve puff nicely. When I whipped the lace on by hand it made sense to me to only gather it where the sleeve is gathered. I don't know why, but it made sense to me at the time. We will see how it wears.

Of course, it needs a slip. The slip is also Imperial batiste. Trimmed with flat lace at the bottom. I used a trick Jeannie taught in the last class I took from her. Even if you are attaching flat lace, still gather it up a tad and then flatten it back out. Just that teeny bit of easing will make the lace lie flat without cupping yet it doesn't look gathered at all. Thank you Jeannie.

I finished the slip with a shell stitch hem and a tiny bit of embroidery. The pattern calls for two buttons at the shoulders. No time, just one for now. It works.

I hope everyone has something pink in their life. I love pink. Maybe that is why God blessed me with three girls and a granddaughter. I love boys too, but I love pink.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

It doesn't take much

First posted by Corset Laced

It doesn't take much to tickle my funnybone some days. This was one of those days I guess. This picture just did it for me. I laughed right out loud. Yet, there is so much I love about this picture. I lurve the hot pink mannequins and I think the car is very cool. Still, I laughed.

Friday, March 4, 2011

The Colors of Sherbet

That is what these colors remind me of; cool, creamy sherbet. This is the bishop talked about in this post.

Excuse my shadowy pictures. Dark and dreary day here, so there is no natural light to take pictures with. This little bishop is made using Children's Corner Bishop pattern and smocked with Woodland Fairy from Australian Smocking and Embroidery Issue #49. Again the fabric is Skip Dent from Bessie Mary. As I stated in the previous post about this dress, I used overdyed flosses. I like how it turned out. I piped it with pale pink.

I used aqua buttons also from Bessie Mary down the back. I have been asked about how I choose to close the backs of my bishops. I ALWAYS button them down the back. I like the way it looks and it is a bazillion times quicker and easier, for me, than a continuous placket inserted into the back. Besides if you did the continuous placket you wouldn't see those cute aqua buttons. It also makes it easier to dress baby when you can flop her on her tummy and button the dress.

For the hem, I used two strands of floss and ran a running stitch for a sweet hint of color at the hem.

I have the other baby girl gift finished as well. I will post it in a day or so. Off to wrap this one and then I have two baby boy gifts to make.

I hope your days are filled with stitching too, faithful reader.
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