Monday, December 28, 2015

Cardinal Quilt, It Is Finished....

The Cardinal Quilt was finished in plenty of time for Christmas.  Here's a pic:

The long-arm quilter did an awesome job making this quilt look good.  All those areas that did't quite want to lay flat do now.  The quilting design is an overall swirl done in gray.  The backing is a cuddle suede and was very easy to work with.

I'm fairly sure that many of these beautiful quilt kits were sold.  I'm fairly sure that there were most likely many frustrated people also.  Here are my lessons learned from this type of quilt kit:

1.  Find the instructions before purchasing and make sure that the directions are fairly good.  Don't follow blindly.
2.  Measure the center panel and make sure it is square (you know I didn't do this).
3.  I don't enjoy the point-on-point squares.  (maybe this is a practice issue)
4.  Measure, measure, measure!

The long-arm quilter said that the majority of the issues that I had making this quilt was that the center panel wasn't the measurement indicated.  It was a little bit smaller in the middle which made it bow just a little bit.  Of course, I wanted the point-on-point squares to be perfect and most likely stretch them in my attempts.  That made a bit of cupping.  The wonders of quilting and washing making all that disappear.

Things I would do differently:

1.  Bias Binding instead of the straight cut.  Hopefully, it will be okay but in the long run I think that the bias binding will last longer.

Happy Sewing!

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Last Bit of Holiday Sewing....

The last couple of weeks have been grueling.  I've been knitting at every opportunity and trying to keep up with the Mystery Quilt.   The knitting is all finished and I will share at a later date.  The Mystery Quilt will be shared later also.  However, I had to do another small holiday project at the sewing machine and it turned out very cute!  Here it is:

Yes, I wanted/needed another apron and decided to make it a holiday one.  This is from a panel which made it really quick and easy.   I didn't follow the directions that came with it and knew that I wanted to line it.  This is the fabric I used for the lining:

This gave the apron a little bit of weight.  I usually make aprons out of a canvas.  We'll see how this one wears.  Well, I suppose it should last for a lone time given that it is seasonal.

Now, it's off to finish up a few last little bits of house cleaning.

Happy Stitching!

Monday, December 14, 2015

McCall's Early Spring Collection

Early spring has sprung at McCall's!  Admittedly, the weather has been spring like in my area.  The spring flowers/bulbs are poking their little heads up through the mulch.

This collection is full of very feminine dresses.  It's a must check out if that is the type of clothing you enjoy.  Here are my picks:

This is M7331.  This is a Nancy Zieman pattern. This pattern looks like every piece is very usable.  A nice cardigan/jacket with a t-shirt.  A pull-on knit pencil skirt that is tapered.  The leggings have a forward side seam with cuffs.  The forward side seam would be a slimming detail. I'm not so sure about the cuffs but I'm sure that can be eliminated.

This is M7324. It is a loose fitting, flowy top and tunic.  I think that the tunic belted with the Nancy Zieman leggings would produce a nice outfit.  What do you think?

This is M7323. Love the asymmetrical details of this top.  The top that the model is wearing is really cute in the stripes.   This top would give you a reason to watch for interesting stripe fabric.

What do you think of the early spring collection?

Happy Stitching!

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Do You Like Pumpkin Pie?....

I love Pumpkin Pie!  Generally, I only make it once or twice a year.  My recipe comes straight out of an early 80s Betty Crocker cookbook.  The pie crust that I make is from the same book.  What do you do if you would like the Pumpkin Pie more often that once or two a year?  Find a recipe without a crust.  Oh yeah!  I found a Pumpkin Pie Pudding:

It is almost perfect!  If you're a pumpkin pie person, you need to hop right over and try this recipe.

I do intend to play with the recipe just a little bit to see if I can get the flavor to be just like my pumpkin pie.  I did make a small change in that I used the same spice combination that is used in the Betty Crocker version of the pumpkin pie.  I'll put the changes on this post if it works out.


Happy Stitching!  (or is it Cooking!)

Monday, November 30, 2015

Holiday Table Runner....

I have been working on a table runner.  I hinted at the project here with a picture of the fabrics.  This is a tumbler project and it's the first that I can remember doing a tumbler pattern.  Here's a picture of the pattern:

This is Tumbler Table Runner by Cottage Creek Quilts.  Here's my version of the pieced top:

I used the Fat Cats Triangle Ruler to cut the tumbler per the directions.  It certainly was very easy using the ruler.  Here's what the ruler looks like:

I did make a pattern template (included in the pattern) with card stock but decided that it would be easier to use the ruler.  Cutting the tumbler with the ruler was quick and easy.  This was my first time using a specialty ruler.  I hope that I can find other uses for it.  Here's the finished table runner:

For the quilting, I used a quilting design from my machine that looked like a large stippling design and a 40wt embroidery thread for the quilting.  I stitched several samples but the actual quilting on the table runner looked much tighter than the samples.  Here's a glance at a sample:

Here's a close up of the quilting on the table runner:

I used the technique for the mitered corners from the Double Fold Binding Technique on youtube by Nancy Zieman.  Joining of the binding is from an older quilting book. I finish attaching the binding by hand.

Yes, I'm doing a happy dance that I actually finished it before the holidays.

Happy Stitching!

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Ready For The Mystery To Begin....

I was beginning to doubt my ability to get every thing ready before the Allietare Mystery Quilt started on Friday.  Somehow, all the fabric has been purchased, washed, and pressed.  Here's the proof:

I even was able to locate the necessary rulers which are on back order in many locations:

Now, I'm just hoping that I can keep up with the weekly events.  I will be out of town during some of this but hopefully I will be able to download the information and play catch-up when I return.

What do you think of my color selections?

Have you ever participated in a mystery quilt before?  More importantly, did you finish the mystery quilt?  I would love to hear about your experiences.

Happy Stitching!

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Seam or Edge Finishes....

My sewing buddy and I have been been having issues with our sergers.  So, this month we decided to revisit seam finishes.  Let me tell you that I do feel extremely spoiled having had a serger for the last 25 years (wow! does that seem like a long time).  I haven't had the need for the majority of seam finishes that I used in my younger sewing days.  Here's the finishes that we practiced with:

1.  Flat Fell - We kinda followed the basic directions for the Flat Fell Foot in the Husqvarna Accessories Book.  The Husqvarna flat fell foot is 9mm foot and really intended for home dec.  My sewing buddy had a generic 6mm flat fell foot.  The 9mm foot stitched a beautiful seam without any additional manipulating of the machine.  The generic 6mm foot stitched a beautiful seam but there was a fair amount of manipulating the machine due to the fact that the foot didn't line up with the needle.  There are many tutorials available on the internet to create the flat fell seam with and without a foot.

2.  French Seam - This is perhaps my favorite seam finish.  All the raw edges are enclosed and it looks beautiful.  Typically, this is used in heirloom sewing today. Children's clothing can benefit from this particular treatment. For a 5/8" seam, I would typically put wrong sides together stitch 1/4" seam, press seam open, then press flat with the right sides together, stitch a 3/8", and call it done,  But this can be manipulated a little more.  If you wanted a flat fell seam look, make sure that the finally seam stitching will be on the outside and then, you can top stitch this into place.  Very easy.  Please realize that the 5/8" seam is an example.  The seam can be produced with smaller seams.

3.  Bound or Hong Kong Finish - This is where things got a little funny.  We both thought that we had binding feet to play with.  I did finally find the 1/2" Husqvarna binding foot but I really thought that I had one in each available size. Using the foot wasn't very successful but using a clover bias binding maker and manually binding the seam edge was okay.  I really think that the having the binding foot would have created a better edge.  I did finally realize that all of my binding feet were attachments for my antique machines.

4.   Edging Foot J - This foot is all about using overcasting stitches.  On my machine, the right zigzag works very well with this.  This is the stitch that I used to finish the remainder of the fabric edges this past weekend.

When we were done playing with these items, we turned our attention to the narrow hemmers.  Are you successful with these feet?  Amazingly, I couldn't find a hemmer that would work on my machine.  My sewing buddy had one hemmer and had been unable to get it to work.  So, I showed her how I used a hemmer.  I always press the whole edge and then press the first couple of inches a second so I can get it started in the machine.  Then, under the foot it goes and I anchor it with the needle and slide the edge into the machine.  I also hold the the item being hemmed up just so the pressed edge is on the inside edge of the foot and the edge that needs to be turned under is hitting the inside of the hemmer.  It stitched perfectly.  My friend was able to repeat the process.

The final item that we played with was the Husqvarna instructions for The Hand-look Quilt Stitch.  Here's my sample:

Typically with this type of stitching you would use a clear or smoke thread so that the bobbin thread would pop but my sewing buddy was using my spool of nylon and the thread holder, so I just used the thread that was on my machine and changed the bobbin to a dark thread.  You do need a programmable machine to use these techniques.  The first row on the left is the #3 stitch on the instructions. We were both amazed by this stitch.  I'm not sure about it looking like hand quilting but it peeked my interest because it reminds me very much of the stitching on a hand picked zipper.  The second row from the left is the #1 stitch in the instructions.  I really liked the way this looks and it is amazing when using the clear nylon thread.  The third row from the left is the #2 stitch on the instructions.  The final row is a pre-programmed stitch on my machine.  I just selected it and stitched.  It looks okay.  Definitely not my favorite.

Overall, we had a very successful stitching day. Practicing techniques and learning new techniques.

Do you have any seam finishes that you like use outside of the serger?  I would love to hear about them.

Happy Stitching!

Monday, November 23, 2015

Serger: Two Thread Narrow Overlock...

Have you tried the 2-thread narrow overlock stitch?  This weekend I had a lot of 1/4 yard cuts of fabric that needed to be washed.  The stitch that I would normal use is a 3 or 4-thread overlock or whatever stitch was currently set up but I decided to branch out and try something new.  So, I looked up the information on the 2-thread narrow overlock.  Here's what it looks like:

This sample has already been washed and the 2-thread narrow overlock did the job of stopping the fraying very well.  I'm so happy that I decided to step outside my comfort zone and try something "new" to me with my serger.  It's really a shame that I don't try more of the stitches on my machine.

Unfortunately, the experience of stitching so much fabric brought my machine to it's knees.  I only got the edges of about half the fabric stitched when I started having issues with what seemed like the motor seizing.  I played with it a little and then decided that maybe I should just take it in for service.   My machine is is 12 or 13 years old.  I'm truly hoping that it's not the motor.  They always tell you it is dirty when you take it in for service.  Yep, this is going to be very dirty.  I did try cleaning it and giving it a little oil but that did little to help with whatever the problem is.  SIGH!   I guess Tuesday I will make the hour or so drive to take it in for service.  Now, where is that GPS?

Oh, my sewing machine happily finished stitching the edges of the remaining fabric. It just took another 2-3 hours to finish it up.

Happy Stitching!

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Love This Skirt....

I absolutely love this skirt:

This is the Side Wrap Pleat Skirt.  It is nice and long.  It is a perfect boot skirt.  The issue is that there is one skirt left in stock as I write this and it is a little size 6.  I'm looking for a pattern that can be adapted to look similar or even ideas on how to add this pleated wrap to a skirt.

Let me know your ideas or a pattern.  There are just too many pattern companies to keep up with all of them.

Happy Stitching!

Monday, November 9, 2015

Fast Fashion...

This weekend I was reading Clair Kennedy's article "Getting a Perspective on Real Clothing Prices".  It is an interesting read especially if you follow the links.  I wish I could remember the name of the book that I read 2 or 3 years ago directed at Fast Fashion and the cost of it.

What is your take on Fast Fashion?

I would rather have fewer clothes than purchase some of the really cheap clothing that I've been seeing the last 2 to 4 years.  I don't really care for the ultra thin fabrics.  Yes, I fully realize that this is one of the ways that manufacturers use to reduce costs.  It doesn't mean that I need to indulge it.  Although I can see a use for it, but it would as an additional layer under something else.  The other thing that I have seen in the last couple of years is items that barely make it though 3 or 4 washings and I only wash the majority of my clothing on gentle cycle, partial dry in the dryer, and the hang or rack dry.  I purchased a coat a couple of years ago that barely make it through the winter season.  The lining gave out after being worn about 10 or 15 times.  It is discouraging to spend $200-$300 on an item and that happen.  By the way, I actually expect this type of item to last 5 to 10 years not weeks/months.  I still have the coat but have been unable to locate good coat lining to replace the lining.

So, do you look at cost per wearing when you purchase items?  Sometimes, things can last a long time.  The cheap tops that are $10 each sometimes only survive to 3 or 4 washings.  That makes the top cost $2.50 to $3.33 per wearing.  A $30 dollar top might last a full season and result in 25 to 30 wearings with the top costing $1 to $1.2.  If you're lucky, it might last longer.

When you make something?  Do you expect it to last through the season or longer?  Does the time it takes to create something make it worth more to us?

Hope I've given you something to thing about?

Happy Stitching!

Friday, November 6, 2015

The Mystery Deepens....

After my work related stuff yesterday, I tried to pick out fabrics for the mystery quilt.  Here's what I've been so far:

Here are the shades of black.  I picked 11 different blacks but one of them doesn't look so black. Against the other shades of black, it looks dark brown.  It's the third one from the bottom.  What do you think?  Here's what I was thinking about replacing it with:

What do you think?  Should I replace the brownish-black with the above fabric?

This is the grey I've chosen.  The picture is a little dark.  It is the top fabric in the first picture of all the blacks where it is completely wash out.  Too light, too dark.  I can't seem to get a good balance today.

Here are the chosen reds.  Again, I'm not so sure about some of them.  The third one from the bottom seems a little too orange and the third one from the top seems a little too pink.  I was thinking about changing one of them out for this fabric:

This has my color card on it.  The little teddy bears will only add a little interest to the quilt.  There may be some other swaps too.  I'm not sure that I'm liking all my other reds.

Here's a couple of golds.  I had much more than this pulled but decided that they were too light.

Here's a few of creams that I pulled.  I haven't decided yet if I'm going to use them all. Some of them seem a little dark.  I discovered that I did pull as many color cards as I thought that I had for the creams.  This may require another run to the home improvement store.   I need a lot as in almost 6 yards of various creamy colors.  

Looks like I will be visiting my favorite local quilt shop for some creams, golds, and reds.  I must not forget my color cards when I go.  

The only other thing I need to get done for the quilt is to order the rulers.  I could probably get by without the rulers but sometimes a tool can really make something easier.  These rulers seem to be pretty basic as hopefully, they will be used for more than just this quilt. 

Anyone else going to do the mystery quilt at Quiltville?

Happy Stitching!

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

It's A Mystery...

Yes, I have decided to join in a winter mystery quilt over at Quiltville.  This is the first time for something like this.  I hoping that it turns out well and I don't feel over whelmed.  Surely, I can get this done over the next 3 or 4 months.  I went to Lowe's today and picked up paint cards to get an idea of the fabric colors.  The creams are a huge variety of colors.  I will be checking the stash to see if there is anything appropriate in there.  I'm sure that I will find something.

So, have you ever done a mystery quilt?  Were you happy with the results? I guess a better question is "Did you finish it?".

I started a new project today outside of the mystery quilt. I shared the fabric selection a few weeks ago. I'm hoping to get it cut out tonight.

Happy Stitching!

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Winter Sewing--6pac style....

The fall 6pac never really happened.  I did start it but got side tracked with other business.  Luckily for me the items that I started fall right into the Winter 6pac.  The winter 6pac is:

1. 2 layering pieces - one neural, one color,
2. 2 tops - one neutral, one color, and
3. 2 bottoms - both neutrals.

Sounds easy, doesn't it?  I have the two bottoms started.  So, I might as well get them finished.

We'll see how the sewing goes.  There is just over 7 weeks till Christmas.  That's means any gifts that I want to ship will need to be completed in about 4 weeks.  EEK!  Time sure seems short.  How is your sewing going?

Happy Stitching!

Monday, November 2, 2015

Table Runner Finished....

Back in April and May, I was working on sewing curves for a table runner using 1/4" Curve Master Presser Foot.  Unfortunately, very little sewing occurred over the summer.  I did get the backing ready which would have been okay had I been hand quilting the table runner but I ended using this project on my sewing buddy's new quilting frame.  This meant that I had to add fabric around the outside edge.  It worked out okay.  My table runner will not be double-sided as was originally intended.  So, here's the finished project:

I think it turned out pretty good.  This is the second time that I have done free motion quilting (FMQ).  I can't say that I really getting better at FMQ but I can say that this could be very addictive.  I didn't enjoy the FMQ so much on the Behemoth but that could be because I didn't have a big surface to work with which makes it hard to move the quilted item around.  My first attempt at FMQ was when we did the Trapunto project in January.  You can read about that here and the finished project is here.  My friend's quilting frame made this really pretty easy.  I think with practice it could be a lot of fun.  We were using a frame that she had built with a Singer model 15 for the stitching.

I also tried another new to me technique.  I machine stitched the binding.  This involved using this foot:

This is a left edge topstitching foot.  I collect many feet but don't always know what to do with them after getting them.  This was a perfect application.  Here's the table runner on my table:

My living room is a little on the dark side but you can kinda see the table that the table runner is on.  Looks like I have a runner for next spring/summer.  Now, I need to work on additional runners for other seasons.

Happy Stitching!

Saturday, October 31, 2015

Butterick Fall/Winter patterns....

You know I love seeing the new patterns come out with each season.  The Butterick release has some lovely retro designs which I can admire. My true love is an unusual design.   Here are my picks from this release:

This is B6296 and it is a Lisette design.  Yes, it is a pajama pattern but note that the pants/shorts is not your typical pull-on pant.  I love that they have pockets.  I may get this just for the pants.  Who doesn't like a nice lounging pant?

This is B6280.  I love the lines of this dress.  It will not be hopping into my cart though because I'm not sure how it would look on a larger bust.  Maybe a solid color would be okay but why purchase something I don't think will work.

This is B6287.  Love, love, love this top.  It might end up in my cart.  I need to see how I can fit this into my wardrobe.  I really like the long-sleeved cowl in View B but I think that the top would be more versatile if the two were separated so that you could wear different scarves with it.  What do you think?

This is B6292.  View D as shown is very nice.  I have already purchased a coat pattern or this would be in my cart.

This is B6301.  This caught my eye because I like to wear vests as an extra layer in the winter.  Yes, it is in the maternity section but the model is showing the non-maternity version.  If you like hoods, you could always add that to the coat.  Overall, this is a nice little looking little pattern.  It may end up in my cart.  Since it is a princess seam, it would help a bit with the alterations.

What do you think of these picks?

Happy  Sewing!

Friday, October 30, 2015

Cooking...Green Beans and Tomatoes

I am always on the looking for great recipes that work with the items I grow in the garden and this one is a very good one. Not only that, it reminds me of Saturday lunches with my Grandmother who made a similar dish.

Green Beans and Tomatoes...this dish can be cooked right out of the garden and it is worth the effort.  Of course, you can cook it with canned or frozen items.

This is a great way to introduce more tasty veggies into your diet.  

Happy Cooking or Sewing!

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Have You Ever Treadled?....

After cleaning my little Featherweight and getting it running again, I decided that maybe I should try again to get my Grandmother's treadle working.  I have had it in my possession for at least 25 years and it has been mostly used as a decorator piece.  I know a little bit about it's history.  My Grandfather purchased it for my Grandmother in 1939 and they drove all the way to Ft Smith, AR to get it.  In today's world, this would probably be a 2 or 3 hour drive.  However I would imagine that in 1939 this was a minimum of an all day trip and maybe even a two day trip.  So here's the little machine in it's 5 drawn cabinet:

From the serial number on the machine, it was built in 1937.  In this picture, you can see that the belt in missing.  I have ordered a new leather belt for it.  I have run the belt through all the grooves and checked the fit but I haven't made the finally snip yet so I can get it attached.  I will probably wait on that so that I can clean and oil the machine.  Even with all the neglect that I have bestowed on this machine everything is still operational.  The only thing I haven't attempted yet is the winding a bobbin.  Here's a close up of the machine:

The decals on the bed are pretty worn which makes me think this machine has gotten a lot of use.  The finish is more a matte black and not a shiny black.  I do not know if it should be shiny or not.  In this picture you can see that I have already added a new red felt pad for the spool holder.  Maybe I should look for a black felt pad.  I think it would look a little nicer.  Here's a close up of the bobbin area:

This picture really shows the shuttle area.  This machine is very different than machines with a motor.  You can see in the picture the shuttle which is bullet shaped.  This is called an oscillating or vibrating shuttle and the whole unit swings both and forth while you are sewing. I suppose you could say that this is an early top loading bobbin except the whole shuttle and bobbin dropped in.

Unfortunately, I only have one bobbin for the shuttle.  I've been looking for more but they are really hard to locate.  There are new bobbins available but they are a little bit shorter than the bobbins that came with the machine and sometimes the bobbin winder will not work with them.  It really depends on the machine.

My goal is to get this machine cleaned up and oil, get the belt on, replace the missing piece of felt on the bobbin area  (if you look closely, you can see the black hole just at the bottom of the shuttle), and see if I can figure out the art of treadling.  In the past when I tried to treadle, I could get the machine to make four stitches forward and then, it would go four stitches backwards.  Not exactly what I was wanting to do.  The manual actually gives a little bit of information on how to get the treadling process going.  So, I'm going to give it a try.

If anyone has any information on maintenance on the treadle base, I would love to directed to the source.  I'm sure with all the metal parts that something is suppose to be oiled or greased but none of the manuals that I have acknowledge maintenance on this part of the machine.

Happy Stitching!

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Wardrobe Updates For Fall and Winter...

The weather is cooling down and the need to warmer clothes is here.  I have pulled out part of the clothing that I set aside at the end of the season last year.  The posts about these purchases/items made can be found here, here, and here.  There was only a couple of  duds and that was the knit top in the first entry with the perfect colors and bad fit, and a black/gray top that I made.  So far, I have added four items to the list:

Grey Cabled Sweater from Kohl's.  I sized up a little bit on the sweater so I could wear it with layers.  I have a rose colored tank that looks nice under it and there is also a pink/gray striped shirt.

A black pair of knit pants by Lee.  These are really very comfortable.  This will give me a second pair of casual black pants.  I hope it isn't too much black.  Is that possible?

A Teal Knotted Sweater from Christopher and Banks.  The teal color is leaning more toward the blue side this year and I really love it.  It is hard to resist purchasing everything in this color.

A teal plaid shirt from Christopher and Banks.  This is the perfect shade of teal.  

I purchased one pair of new shoes so far and they are very comfortable.  Meet Janey Mae by Clarks. They are a little on the expensive side but I usually get a couple of years out of the shoes.

I don't know if I'll be purchasing much else besides accessories.  I know I need some rose/pink stuff but that will only be tops of some kind or maybe a scarf.  I would like a couple more skirts.   Hopefully, I can make those.  The only two things I know that I would like to get is a new coat and a new pair of snow boots.  Both of those items will be hard to locate.  I guess I should start looking now.  The last couple of times that I have purchased a coat, I have had to just settle for this is probably good enough.  The last coat was an expensive dud.  It lasted about two seasons before falling apart.

I feel like my winter wardrobe is in pretty good shape.  I will say that following the concept that I started with last year has been fairly liberating.  I have resisted items because they were not in my color scheme.

Happy Stitching!

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Time Flies When Your Sewing....

Yes, folks, I've been sewing.  Not necessarily as much as I would like to because the project pile continues to grow faster than the output.  Fortunately, it is only patterns that are being purchased and not much in the way of fabric.

Patterns.  Why are they so tempting?  I did pretty good in the spring stitching up some of the patterns that I purchased but that hasn't happened with the new stuff for fall and winter.  I purchased all of the new Silhouettes, and three of the new Vogues (V9156, V9155, V9150).  Thankfully, nothing in the McCall's Winter Catalog was interesting enough to me to purchase.

Sewing.  Oh, I have been sewing.  I have finished the quilt top that I talked about in early August.  I ordered the backing, waited a week for it to show up, and have it washed.  Now, I just need to find an afternoon where I can straighten the fabric, cut it, and stitch it back together to create the correct length/width needed for the quilt.  Here's a glimpse at my next quilting type project:

What do you think of the fabric selections?  I'm hoping to get this little piece of home dec done before Thanksgiving.  I may be running out of time.  I'll share the remaining projects when you as they are completed.  So much to do, so little time.

Knitting.  Oh, yes, the knitting group has started up again for fall. I have completed the knitting of the earwarmer/headband that I started last spring.  Now, I'm starting on matching fingerless gloves. I'm hoping to have those finished before Thanksgiving.

Garden.  I'm sorry.  I have failed to keep up with my garden totals.  I lost part of the information from August when I had to purchase a new laptop and failed to transfer the gardening file across.  Just know that I had many, many pounds of squash, tomatoes, and peppers.  We are still harvesting lettuce, tomatillos, peppers,  and all sorts of greens.  I have planted garlic for next years garden.  Even though it was very hot this past which caused our lettuce crop to fail in a big way, we have the largest squash crop that we have ever had.

Monthly sewing get together.  My sewing buddy has a new quilting frame and we are planning on trying it at the end of the month.  I have a table runner that I made to try the free motion quilting with.  It won't be a disaster if the quilting isn't perfect.

Happy Stitching!

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Vogue Winter/Holiday Patterns.....

So many new patterns!  I haven't even had the opportunity to sew any of the last group.  I guess that means I need to spend more time stitching!

At first glance, I didn't think there was much that was interesting to me but upon closer inspection there was several patterns.

This is V1469.  Isn't this a great silhouette?  I really like this dress.  I love dresses with interesting lines. This would give the allusion of an iron glass figure and be very slimming. Notice, that this one even has pockets.

This is V9156.  Who doesn't love a nice coat?  Love the asymmetric collar not so crazy about the double-breasted front.  I am going to give this one some thought thought because the Version A/B uses snaps rather than the buttons.  I would really like making a coat.  The last coat that I purchased barely lasted a season and for the amount spent I could have made 3 or 4 or 5 coats.  Any one know where you can get really good coat linings?

This is V9155.  Love the View C of this pattern.  This pattern will most definitely be added to the stash.

This is V9150.  I really like the look of View C.  Again, this is a little interest with the seaming and the hang of the skirt.  It is a little more fitted than I would normally go for but I think this will definitely be on the consider list.  Made in a knit, it could be a nice work day dress or church going dress.

This is V9151.  I really like the View B which is illustrated. This view would be very slimming.  I'm going to put this one on the to be considered list.  It really should be made from a light weight fabric and probably have a camisole with it.

Well, that's it for this go around.  I picked out far more patterns that I would ever have time to create or really even need but I can dream.

What do you think of the coming season's Vogue patterns?

Happy Stitching!

Monday, September 21, 2015

Playing with Texture Magic.....

The fall season is almost upon us so my sewing buddy and I got together to play with creating Texture.

Texture Magic and Stitch & Steam by Bosal. The two materials look identical.  The Bosal product is suppose to shrink a little more than the Texture Magic.  Most of the playing was with Texture Magic.  I used Bohemeth.   Here's the first thing that I did:

I'm hoping you can see the stitches here.  My first play piece was done with a serpentine stitch and I stitched left to right, and top to bottom.  This took a lot of time to stitch out.

The result is a fairly even distribution of texturing.  This was the Texture Magic.

This sample used a 4-step zigzag stitch with distance between the rows of stitching being the width of the presser foot.  The stitching is from left to right. This resulted in very dense bubbly fabric.  It was much tighter than first sample.  This sample was created with the Texture Magic.

This sample is created identically to the one with the yellow pin in it except the Stitch & Steam was used.  I was a little surprised and I don't know if I did something incorrectly but I expected this to shrink more than it did.

This is the two samples together.  The Texture Magic Sample is the top one with the yellow pin.  You can see that the Texture Magic shrunk more than the Stitch & Steam.  I'm pretty sure that the Stitch & Steam was suppose to shrink more than the Texture Magic.

This sample is using the Texture Magic and a scallop stitch. The stitches are a presser foot apart.  This resulted in a loose wavy material.  Reminded me a little of rapids in the water.

On this sample, I used a heirloom stitch on my machine with the texture magic and used the presser foot for spacing the rows.  This sample reminds me of smocking.  Obviously, there wouldn't be any stretch associated with this.  I can see this being used as a yoke on a little dress.

On this sample, I used the Texture Magic with a straight stitch and did a spiral.  This was fun and I may do another one simple but use a serpentine and see if it looks different.  I love the big poof in the middle with texture going around.

This was a fun notion to play with.  I am still going to play with the Stitch & Steam some more.  I had purchased a yard of it and I have lots of scrap fabric.

I'm not sure what our next sewing session will entail.  My sewing buddy is in the process of building a long arm quilting frame.  I don't know how it is going to turn out but I do plan on having some projects to play with it.  I may end up letting my friend to the quilting on some of my projects for practice.