Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Smocks in the Shop

Only enough fabric and time allowed me to make two toddler smocks, but they are both in the shop this afternoon.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Christmas Greetings!

Earlier this week I "traversed afar" and am home for a few days to visit over Christmas. God was so gracious to give me safe travels, and I made it into the driveway before our snowstorm hit.

Not long after I came home, the sewing room came to life once again as I stormed my fabric bins, patterns, and notions. My sewing machine has been been humming softly as aprons are being produced to fill up the shop.

But meet the newest 1950's inspired design: Margaret. Using three apron styles that I like, I decided to combine them together, and must say am happy with the result. Hopefully you'll enjoy her, as much as I do!

More pictures are up right over here!

I trust all of my sewing friends are doing well, and will have a joyous and very merry Christmas! With that, I'm off to don one of my own aprons and start working on that cookie dough...

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

The Lost Art of Tatting

Over the weekend I ransacked an antique store while on a historical home tour. I picked up several yards of some gorgeous Victorian/Edwardian lace, a darling 1920's/30's girls dress pattern, and was only going to spend $3. Buuut, I came across this pristine 1920's baby gown with tatting around the neckline and sleeves, and then some embroidery on the front yoke. It was severly marked down, and yes ... I grabbed it for "someday." =)

This morning I pulled out my tatting box, and laid out my bookmarks on the new baby gown, and now have them listed in my shop! Take a look to see if anything catches your fancy!

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

The Dotted Pink Tote

This was the last thing I sewed before I left home. It never sold at the craft show, and now I've finally had time to get is listed in the shop.
My next project is to start taking pictures of the new tatted bookmarks that I've done in my limted spare time, so I can add those to my currently empty shop.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Far Above Rubies

"Me? In an antique store? This could be dangerous." said I, as we walked into the basement of a historic building in a historic part of a small town not to far away. Full of the often-seen treasures of dishes, tea cups, farm tools, crocks, knick-knacks, books, and furniture, this basement was loaded with things to look at. That is, if you like things from the past.

It wasn't until I was on the main floor of this shop, waiting for Grandma to finish checking out at the register, that I decided to quickly take a peek upstairs which contained more antique/flea market type stuff. My eye caught this pretty looking book that had a familiar name gracing the front cover.

Though I've never read any of George MacDonalds books, it seems like my literary friends have brought up this name on numerous occasions. After scanning the 1898 book, and justifying the $2.50 price tag, I decided to add another fictional book to my vintage book collection.

A piping hot cup of tea sounds perfect right about now. Would anyone care to join me? =)

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

It's Baaaacccckkk.

The craft show last weekend was a success, but to my horror, I forgot to bring the camera. So no pictures. My apologies if you were counting on them.

So, my etsy shop is back with three aprons left.

Friday, November 06, 2009

Busy Hands

Some of you may remember that last year Grandma and I were apart of a craft fair. We are going again this year, and it is just a couple weeks away. There were just a couple shop items left, and so I have those with me, but I am working on upping my supply of tatted bookmarks.
Above is one in the making. So far I've finished four different designs, and would like to get more done. I'll share pictures and an account of how the fair went. Perhaps if you live in MI, you'd like to stop by?

Friday, October 23, 2009

Another Page of History

When I saw this beauty of a book, I couldn't resist. You all might as well know by now that I have a very great weakness towards old books. Not just random useless books that wouldn't be beneficial in some way, but ones that are classics, ones that are Spiritually encouraging and uplifting, ones that promote femininity and daughterhood/motherhood.
This one is full of good chapters, for example: The Home, The Mother, What is Etiquette?, Dining, Courtship and Marriage, Dress, Letter Writing, Music, Aids to Composition (several languages with basic sayings and phrases), Speeches for Special Occasions, How to Retain Beauty, and several others!

And it is chock full of sweet little poems and illustrations. Dated 1888, I normally wouldn't spend as much as I did on a book (although I suppose considering normal book prices in stores, this would be equal) but considering the just-said, and that I have spent more on patterns, I justified myself. =)
Thanks for letting me share!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Closing up Shop

Yup. You did read that correctly. I'm moving in with my Grandma once again for a season, and I really don't want to take my shop items with me. Grandma said that I'd be more than welcome to bring my sewing machine and serger (as my stay will be extended further than last year), but if I did that, I'd have to take the rest of my sewing room with me which I am NOT going to do! Really now, what is a seamstress to do without fabric and patterns and all the other kit and kaboodle of supplies, and Arabella of course?

Therefore I am greatly reducing prices in hopes of getting everything o.u.t. this weekend. If they don't sell, I'm taking them to my local thrift store. So, take one last peek for awhile.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Should I be happy or sad?

I have a whole kit and kaboodle of apparel on ebay: skirts, vintage inspired things, Prairie, Victorian, and Regency things...

Take a look this way, if you please, my ladies!

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Old Fashionedness

It seems as though many states have been hit with cool, rainy or snowy weather; ours being the latter. It makes for a perfect day of piling quilts on oneself, turning on Bleak House, and attempt to finish handsewing. Lazy perhaps, but I already filled in my time at work today, and so that is my excuse for the aforementioned activities. =)

What are all of you ladies doing today? Working on or finishing up any special projects?

Thursday, October 08, 2009

Shannon's Scalloped Apron

It is often quoted that,
"Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery."

When I saw this fabric a week or so ago at my local thrift store, I knew exactly what I wanted to make with it: one of Shannon's Scalloped Aprons that I have admired for quite awhile. I obviously didn't have the pattern for it, as it is a design of her's. So with some ugly gray polyester fabric that I got for free (don't ask, it's a l.o.n.g story...) I started drawing and cutting. Being fairly pleased with how it looked like, I cut into my fashion fabric.

Even down the bias shoulder straps and ties, scalloped hem (which didn't turn out as "scoopy" as I had wished) and pockets...

I really am a terrible copy-cat-er. I get ideas from movies, or pictures; I get ideas from my online sewing friends; and then attempt to make them. Mind you, they don't always turn out, but every now and then, I'm up to the challenge.

And to make sure that your mind is put at ease, Shannon, I won't be selling this apron (or any others like it!) as I know it is your original design. =) And to my blog readers, if you like this design so much, I suggest you either buy an apron from Shannon's lovely etsy shop, or come up with one yourself. =)


Wednesday, October 07, 2009

Aprons for Autumn

Yesterday I was in the mood to do some sewing on the machine (my hand sewing on the Regency Robe is almost done!) and ended up with a bunch of aprons. Some cute and stylish, and a some long, practical, and "Tasha Tudor-like."

Do take a look!

Monday, October 05, 2009

Bias Tape Makers

Has anyone seen these before? I never knew they existed up until a week or so ago. I was shopping at JoAnn's and ran into Mrs. C, the sewing enthusiast from our church, and she was telling me about these. Imagine my delight when she gave me this yesterday!
With a whole assortment of sewing projects on the table, I can hardly wait to start using these. Hand sewing that Regency Robe is taking a bit of time too. ::sigh:: I'm not doing the whole thing by hand; just obvious or outer seams and then on the inside I'm doing french seams for a neat finish. I could skip that extra sewing, but a serger just doesn't look right on a Regency garment!

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

The Delights of the Season

Has it truly been over a week since I posted last? I guess between working, music practice, and so forth that I haven't been doing much social networking over the past several days, or much less finished up any sewing projects to blog about.

I've been enjoying the delights of the season, especially over the last week or so, as this time last fall I was away. We were saddened to see a small maple tree topple over today, but have to admit that its leaves look oh so festive against white wicker.
Mums shining with the sunlight

I like to think that these mums would prefer to be named Caramel or Candied Apples instead of just plain "mums."

White asters in full bloom

...and a sewing project that uses two kinds of fabrics, vintage rick rack, and raspberry colored bias. I'm currently working on something Regency, and then will sew this up. Any guesses as to what it might be?

The first frost is due tomorrow, and the clouds are already rolling in for some cozy inside weather - perfect for wearing that new corduroy skirt. =) And thanks to everyone who kindly left comments and praises of the skirt in my previous post. They [your comments] are almost like getting a hand written note in the mail. =)

Monday, September 21, 2009

One Day Early

Tomorrow is supposedly the first day of autumn, but I'm inclined to think that it came one day early in our neck of the woods.

After donning my cable sweater, I though it fitting to adventure out into the field where there are thousands of wild asters. I've never seen them bloom before (must have been from all the rain and cooler weather we've had this year).
I picked a little cluster of them, making sure to not pick up the roots with it. After all, I'd like to see more of these next year.
I put them in a little silver vase and added a black-eyed susan for good measure.

They add such a bright spot by our kitchen window. Well, I'm off to fix a pot of tea and enjoy an apple-nut muffin before I head out to the Post Office to mail off all of those totes. A happy day-before-fall to you all!
PS. I do so love my new corduroy skirt! Being a fan of sweaters, I didn't really have the need for a jacket, and I did need another skirt for the cooler months.
PPS. Just so everyone knows, there is a new Gracie apron up in the shop today!

Friday, September 18, 2009

We have some winners!

Okay. I have decided to get rid of all of my totes in the shop!
Randomly selected, the winners are:

Homespun Yo-Yo Tote ~ Denise W.

Old Fashioned Blue Shopper ~ Katie M.

Red, White, and Blue Shopper ~ Christy

...and, I have two Red, White, and Blue Shoppers left, so the first two people to e-mail me will receive them.

If you want to send me your addresses, I'll get them shipped out to you! This was alot of fun to do, and hopefully it won't be so long until I have another giveaway.

In the mean time, check out the two new aprons that I added to the shop last night. They're pretty cute, if I do say so myself!

Monday, September 14, 2009

Tote Bag Giveaway!

I'm ready to see the totes that are in shop GO (you guessed it, for the purpose of a whole new batch of 'em in all shapes and styles!) and so this week I'm offering a giveaway of one of the totes listed in my shop.

All you have to do to enter, is leave a comment with your name (first name and last initial, please) and the name of your favorite tote bag that is in the shop.

You can be entered twice, by posting a link over to this post from your blog/LJ/wordpress, etc, and then leave a second comment (please be sure to leave your blog address too)!

I will randomly choose a winner Friday afternoon, and will post the winner shortly thereafter.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

A late evening project

An apron (what else would it be?) using some of that "new" fabric and lace that I got the other day.

It's in the shop tonight...

Monday, September 07, 2009

Vintage Pretties

Today I hit 4 antique stores. Do I like them? Oh yes. =) With it being Labor Day, I figured that today many booths would have fantasic sales, and happily, I was right. I came home with a white wicker rounded plant stand (very early 1900s, in near perfect condition) that I didn't take a picture of, a set of hand embroidered dishcloths and potholder and the largest having the teapot design as shown on the pot holder, not-vintage-but-vintage-looking 2 yards of old fashioned American fabric, Little Women - copyrighted at 1915, a few yards of vintage lace, and a silver butter dish.

Many thanks!

All of your comments and recipes just blew me away last week! They all look fabulous, and can hardly wait to start trying them. We're having fresh pesto over rosemary garlic pasta (thanks to a lady who sells gourmet dried pasta at the local farmers market) tonight, and I thought that having a loaf of Cindy's Zucchini Parmesan Bread would be a wonderful addition to the meal along with local corn on the cob.

Lest you think this is turning into a recipe/homemaking blog, don't worry. It isn't. =) Although from time to time, I hope you don't mind posts like these!

In the mean time, take a look at this great pattern sale going on over at Marie-Madeline Studio!

Wednesday, September 02, 2009

On zucchini overload

I've been given three more zucchini's, the smallest being at least a foot long. Do any of you have recipes that are shareable (ie, ones that aren't secret-coded family recipes) that calls for zucchini? While I do love the zucchini bars, it'd be fun to try something else!

Monday, August 31, 2009

Autumn Sewing

Today I'm in the sewing room working on an old-fashioned blouse out of a lovely vintage calico. Dr. Quinn, Little House on the Prairie, or even Tasha-Tudor inspired. Take your pick.
All I have left is to do the sleeves, and hem it up. Then it will be ready for selling.

Friday, August 28, 2009

a Tasha-Tudor-day

In the last year or so I've heard some "talk" (okay, never mind. I've read online...) of a woman named Tasha Tudor who loved tea, homemade goodies, gardening, books, handcraft, knitting and a great deal of other things. Not to mention, when seeing pictures of her, she was wearing printed cotton dresses and seemed to have an old-fashioned essence about her.

Being a blog reader of Marmee's, I found that today's post was of "a Tasha-Tudor day" and linked to another site and apparently today would have been her birthday and several of those who she inspired, sort of honor her today. Personally since I don't know much about her, her life, and if she was a Christian woman and don't feel like I can really honor or endorse her.

Some Black-Eyed Susan's in one of my beds
But I do find her favorite pastimes to be quite parallel to mine, and it isn't everyday that you come across someone like that. Perhaps out of inspiration, I'll kick off my shoes and put on a cotton skirt, (a soiled black and white work jumper just won't do!) don an apron, make up a delicacy in the kitchen, turn a few more pages in my current reading of Dickens, make some tea, and weed the gardens.

To quote from another blog reader's recent post, "I am hopelessly lost in the wrong era."

Monday, August 24, 2009

Zucchini Bars

In my garden you will not find any zucchini growing, as in most gardens. You wonder why? Most often we are blessed with friends and neighbors who offer us some of their over-abundance of it, and so we've never had a need to grow it.

This year my friend Amber shared a recipe with a bunch of her friends online, per request, of a tastey cake-like bar using zucchini. I could hardly wait to try it out, and this morning I was able to put it together. This afternoon I sampled it, and it is delectable! One of my picky brothers also agreed by saying, "Mmmm! It does taste good!"

~ Amber's Zucchini Bars
3 eggs
1 c. white sugar
1 c. brown sugar
1 c. oil
2 c. shedded zucchini
2 c. flour
3 t. cinnamon
1 t. salt
2 t. baking soda
1 t. baking power
Slightly beat eggs. Add sugars and oil; mix well. Add, alternately: zucchini and dry ingredients. Mix well. Bake in greased cookie sheet at 350* for 30 minutes.
8 oz. cream cheese
2 c. powdered sugar
1/2 c. butter, softened
1 t. vanilla
Mix well and spread on cooled zucchini bars. Sprinkle chopped nuts on top.

Ginnies in Bright Color

Over the weekend I added two new aprons. Perhaps you saw them already?
I just loved the fabrics of both!
And this week if I can find the time with working everyday, I have a bright, colorful, and really "far out" or outlandish print that I'll be making into a Gracie. That will take place after I finish an apron for myself, as the two that I have are getting to the point of falling apart. I'm trying out a new pattern, so that's been fun.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Delicious Blue

After work, my older sister and I were finally able to visit JoAnn's. Believe it or not, I haven't been to JoAnn's for well over a month, and while I didn't quite look like I'd been released from prison, I found myself ooing and ahhing at several bolts of fabric.

I decided to pick up some corduroy yardage of a favorite color: stone blue, slate blue, medium blue; whatever you wish to call it, that caught my eye. Especially since it was 50% off. Though it could change, it will probably be made into a jacket or skirt for this winter. ::sigh:: I do so love the feel, drape, and warmth that a corduroy skirt gives!
Happily, I was able to get a few Simplicity patterns as well. They were on sale for $1 each, and I wanted to snatch them at their cheapest. After seeing some of Laura's recent baby sewing projects, #2900 was one on my list to pick up, but they were out. Hopefully they will be restocked, and not be on the out-of-print list!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Goodbye, Miss Rose

The time has come for me to say farewell ...
... and also to this gorgeous (never worn) Edwardian Butterfly Comb

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Patterns for Sale

I've recently gone through my pattern containers (yes, I have so many that I have containers!) finding some that I know I won't use and some that I more than likely won't use. Anyhow, I have them in lots, so if you're curious...

Take a peek!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

of Apron Lovers & Corn

What does one have to do with the other?

Well, quite alot actually. Today is the day that we "put up" corn, and I mean LOTS of it! Of course with 7 children still at home, all who love corn, we freeze quite a bit of it. And it is really quite easy:

Go to your local farmer who has corn (taste test it first; you know, buy some and have corn on the cob. If it's a hit, you know that it would be safe to buy several bushels). That is to say, of course, if you don't grow your own.

Recruit as many in the family as you can, by setting up chairs in the garage or on the porch. Sit yourselves down for a couple of hours while you share stories or verses in the Bible, sing songs, listen to music, and husk and desilk every cob of corn.

Grab the largest bowl(s) you can find and start cutting the corn off the cob. Or you can use a creamer (which I'm using in the picture below) and cream it off. We actually like to use both. It gives it a wonderful consistency. Despite popular belief, you don't have to blanch your corn before freezing, as it takes away flavor from the corn. Oh, and you're already going to cook it when you pull it out of your freezer, so what's the point in cooking a vegetable twice? [yuck!]

Grab some freezer bags, and start filling them with the amount that you think your family would consume in a meal. While closing, be sure that there is no excess air inside, as it will later turn to ice. Lay flat in the freezer. This will save you alot of freezer space later on for other things.

To cook in the winter: add a little water to cover the bottom of a sauce pan with anywhere from 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon of salt (depending on the amount in the bag). Once boiling, add the frozen corn, and cook thoroughly & enjoy!

So where do aprons come in? Simply this: they are perfect for wearing while husking, cutting, and cooking corn. They also add some happy smiles. =)

Friday, August 07, 2009

Circles 'n Swirls

or is that Swirls 'n Circles?
Either way, little "Molly Grace" is in the shop.

Wednesday, August 05, 2009

Gracie just got smaller!

Last week I was delighted to find a lovely vintage "Gracie" apron, and it obviously found it's way into my possession. =) It also has a unique pocket design on the apron too.
Upon trying it on, I saw that is didn't fit me as well as my first Gracie, and when my very slim sister tried it on, ta-da! it fits her like a gem. So I now have two sizes! I think I'm going to take this one apart as the binding is very worn, make a copy of it (yes, for smaller sizes to be added to the shop), upscale the pattern to a large/extra large now that I have two different sizes to go by, and then re-bind the original for Molly to have.

Friday, July 31, 2009

Meet Gloria

If you ever browse through the archives of aprons that I've posted about, you will have probably seen Gloria a few times. She's definately a 50s gal -- easy, and stylishly cute.
This one is in the shop tonight.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Summer in the Black & White

When I bought the fabric online, I had absolutely no clue that the print would be so ... so monstrous! If you're a fan of black and white stuff, you'll be happy to know that I resisted the great temptation to add some color to it. =)
You don't have to ask, because it's in the shop!

And a big thankyou for all of your kind notes and comments in my previous post. I'm not giving up on sewing entirely (that would be impossible, I think!) but due to higher desires, it will definitely not be on the list of priorities. As I'm able, I'll try to keep this updated to some extent. =) You have no idea how thankful I am for all of your encouragement and support!

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

10 Dollar Totes

While this week's work schedule isn't that much different than last week (you would have not wanted to see me last weekend!) I have been able to get in the sewing room a little bit more. Thanks to some brilliant readers out there, I'll be able to get those sashes attached to the 1912 dress and hopefully listed on ebay soon. Or perhaps a reader would like to save me the trouble of doing so, and purchase it directly?

This afternoon I pulled out a prairie blouse that I've had cut out for awhile, and start pieceing the brown calico together. The inspiration to make it came from recently watching the Dr. Quinn series that they did back in the 90's. Our local libraries have most, if not all of the seasons so we've been having fun watching several episodes. Anyhoo...

What was I making this post for? Oh yes! I marked down all the totes in the shop down to $10 each. Considering the amount of yardage, time put into them, AND that they are reversible, that't not to bad. Here's what I've got.

Monday, July 20, 2009


So. After examining my inspiration a bit closer, it appears the the "swim dress" had two sashes and a both of silky look texture.
Two instead of picking up chiffon, I picked up two kinds of polyester silky-like fabrics.
My question now is, how do I attach it to the dress?

Should I sew the sash to the side seams and then pretty close to the zipper? How do I obtain it without seeing a bunch of sewn-down seams everywhere?

Any suggestions?

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Gracie Aprons in the Shop

You may have noticed that I have a couple of new Gracie Aprons in the shop. One bound in a royal blue and the other in a sweet pink.

Take a look, if you please...

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

My to-do list

  • Go to the local family-owned business to buy thread
  • Pick up some dark pink chiffon to finish Titanic dress
  • Sew up the peach fabric that has been sitting on my table for months
  • Sort through patterns to sell
  • Fish through stashed fabric to either use or sell

Somehow between working over twenty hours this week and music lessons, I hope to tackle this list or at least part of it. Having a list to go by should be helpful.

Monday, July 13, 2009

The Seamstress' Block?

According to Wikipedia, a writer's block where it is a condition, associated with writing as a profession, in which an author loses the ability to produce new work. The condition varies widely in intensity. It can be trivial, a temporary difficulty in dealing with the task in hand. At the other extreme, some "blocked" writers have been unable to work for years on end, and some have even abandoned their careers.

I suppose the same could be true for a seamstress. I haven't been in the sewing room for over a week partly because of the lack of inspiration to sew, partly because my schedule has been far to busy to include sewing into it, and partly because I don't have the thread that I need to sew a couple projects. So there you have it, and now know why I seemed to have abandoned my blog! Hopefully the "fog will lift" as I will need to sew as much as I can before fall gets here.

Monday, July 06, 2009

A Plaid Shirt for Summer

Using one of the fabrics that I got from Paradise, this weekend I pulled out my favorite Simplicity 4499 and started cutting. I love using patterns that I don't have to alter or change when I'm in a hurry. The high-quality cotton was a breeze to work with too, and comfortable to wear which I am glad for. The green and blue shades remind me of Michigan.

Was I in a hurry to make this? Well, not exactly, but I have a few shirts for work and some for dressy occasions, but not much to mention about that would be labeled under "everyday" that I wouldn't be embarrassed to wear in public. I made it cap-sleeve style and instead of pleating them into the armcycle, I lightly gathered them. The buttons came off of one of Daddy's old work shirts. They've been in my button tin for years (and I have many more!) and I decided that I would use those. Here's hoping that they don't look like they came from a guy's shirt.

One of my sister's agreed to take these pictures, but before doing so, I said that I should iron my skirt first. She said, "Oh, no one will pay attention to it."

So make sure you don't look at it. =)