Monday, March 29, 2010

#109 Pattern of the Week

Pattern #109, is probably my all time favorite pattern, and has been featured in magazines the most often. The pattern includes a boy or a girl version and comes in sizes newborn - 6 months. You can choose from a Peter Pan collar trimmed with piping, lace, or faggoting, or a simple neckband.

Made sleeveless, the diaper shirt is great for summer and would be suitable for a baby boy of girl. The faggoting around the collar gives the shirt a more tailored look, and just a little embroidery is all that is needed to dress it up.

Featured in Creative Needle Magazine 2007, Suzanne Herbert, made this diaper shirt from fine linen. Tucks were added to the collar, before it was cut out. Suzanne, added a tiny pocket and hand stitched a running stitch in blue, around the bottom hem and pocket.

Also, made by Suzanne Herbert for Creative Needle Magazine 2006, this diaper shirt and cover, were made from linen/cotton batiste. The flowers on the fabric are all hand embroidered.

Featured in Creative Needle Magazine 2003, Shadow Embroidery gave this diaper shirt a more casual look.

The fact that I brought my first baby home from the hospital in a similar shirt and cover that I made nearly 32 years ago, probably has nothing to do with why this pattern is my favorite!


Saturday, March 27, 2010

And the Winner Is!

I had no idea, that today's' drawing would also celebrate my 100th blog post! That is a little frightening to think that I have had things to say 100 times! :) In case you are worried, between my notebook section of "blog ideas" and your comments and questions, I don't think I will run out of ideas anytime soon.

First of all, thank you, to everyone that left a comment for the contest. A total of 60 comments were left, and I have enjoyed reading every single one! I am so glad that this was a random drawing and I didn't have to choose a favorite. Some of your favorite tools were new to me, and I am looking forward to trying them out. Others, were special tools that belonged to a loved one and have a strong personal attachment. Many mentioned little ones playing at your feet or hanging on your chair while you sewed. One of my earliest memories, was playing on the floor with buttons while my Mother sewed. Make sure that your family is involved in your sewing, so that one day they will have that wonderful memory of you!

And now for the drawing.....drum roll please.......the winner is........

lizzie said...
Well it is a tie...the 6 in ruler that goes everywhere I go BUT...also my better not touch my scissors...MY son's girlfriend {now wife} once picked up my scissors..and my SON said..."I think you best put those one touches my Mom's scissors..and if you want her to love you don't touch!!!too funny!!! Thanks Miche'

Lizzie, I laughed out loud when I read your comment! Please email with your full name and address and let me know which pattern or book that you would like for your free gift!


Friday, March 26, 2010

Diaper Cover Details Part 3

Here is a quick look at constructing the diaper cover from pattern #109. Pin and stitch the diaper cover to the lining, leaving the top open. Trim the seam, clip the curves, and turn the cover right side out. Press.

Measure and mark the elastic casing at the leg openings, and stitch according to the pattern directions.

Using a small safety pin, run the elastic through the leg casings, stitching at both ends.

*You will need to run your hand between the cover and lining for this step. Secure both ends of the elastic with a pin until you are ready to stitch.

Secure the elastic by straight stitching over both ends. Be sure to back stitch!

And, here is how it looks! :)

Following the pattern directions, fold down the back top along the fold line, turn under 1/4", and stitch close to the fold line. Run the elastic through the casing and stitch at both ends.

Complete the diaper cover, by stitching the button holes and attaching the buttons. Once you have made your first diaper cover, you will never hesitate again!
* Don't forget to enter the "Random Free Giveaway!"

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Diaper Shirt Details Part 2

Here are some pictures that will help walk you through the steps of applying the bias trim to the diaper shirt. First, follow the direction from the blog "Adapting the Pattern." Next, with right sides together, straight stitch the bias strip to the shirt using a 1/4" seam allowance.

Using a zigzag stitch length of about 3.0 and width of about 3.5, zigzag close to the straight stitching line.

Using the zigzag stitch as your guide, trim away the excess fabric. Press the bias strip away from the shirt.

On the wrong side, turn under the raw edge of the bias strip and pin in place. Using tiny stitches, slip stitch the bias strip in place. This will make your bias strip about 1/4" wide.

This is such an easy technique for diaper shirts and daygowns, that we should all have plenty made up for gifts!

*Don't forget that the "Random Free Giveaway" ends on Friday at midnight! Congratulations, to those of you who are leaving comments for the first time!


Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Baby Duck Diaper Shirt Part 1

Really cute fabric deserves a really cute pattern. I purchased the baby duck fabric from wendyschoesdesigns, and the butterscotch gingham was already in my fabric stash.

The diaper shirt and cover were made using pattern #109. The diaper shirt was adapted using the same technique as the bias trimmed daygown. The shirt is sleeveless and trimmed with gingham.

After the shirt was finished, I decided that it needed a little more color, so I added a small pocket from pattern #118.

* Don't forget to enter the Free Giveaway drawing! Keep those comments coming!


Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Random Free Giveaway!

Time for a free giveaway! What is the occasion? Not a thing. I think that we just all need a little boost right now. And, what is the prize? One free pattern of YOUR choice!

The free giveaway theme is, "What is your favorite sewing tool?" Be creative. I know for many of you this may be your grandmother's pin cushion, your favorite music playing, or your cat nearby. My favorite is pictured above. It is my silver seam ripper from Martha Pullen Co. When I discovered a seam ripper that was in a pretty case, and could be hung from a ribbon, I heard angels sing!!!! No longer, would I be crawling around looking for my seam ripper because it had decided to hide under the couch!

So, here are the rules.

  • Post a comment, on this post only. No e-mails, please. And, you may only post once. Please leave your e-mail address with your post, so that I can contact the winner!

  • Tell us, what is your favorite sewing tool. You can hardly sew without it!

  • Your time to enter will end this Friday night at midnight.

I will draw a name Saturday morning. You can watch Saturday's post to see who the lucky winner is. I will then contact the winner, to find out which pattern (or the embroidery book) you would like. This will also give you time to see which pattern you would like to add to your stash!

For those of you who are "posting shy", it is now time to try something new! I, also, recently began to leave comments, and it is not that hard! :) Good luck!


Monday, March 22, 2010

#108 Pattern of the Week

The pattern of the week is #108! The "Tucked Infant Gown", includes sizes preemie to 12 months, and may be smocked or gathered to the yoke. With two choices of collars or a simple neckband, and three different style sleeves, it is easy to make the gown suitable for a boy or a girl.

Made from peach cotton lawn, the gown pictured above is trimmed with lace and hand embroidery. The tucks on the yoke were eliminated, by using the yoke lining pattern for the yoke. The gown was featured in Sew Beautiful Magazine issue #104. The white dress in the picture is made from pattern #104.

The embroidery design for the gown is included in the magazine.

Featured in Sew Beautiful Magazine issue #112, this gown was made from gold tissue silk. Dusty blue, hand embroidery and smocking, gives this gown an antique look.

The collar is trimmed with blue silk piping and tiny gathered lace. The smocking design can be found in the magazine.

Because only basic construction techniques are required, this gown is great for those new to smocking construction.


Friday, March 19, 2010

Embroidery Design for #122

After many request, I am sharing the embroidery pattern for this little linen outfit. The top is made from pattern #122, and the bloomers are the panties from #123, lengthened by 1 1/2".

The stitches can all be found in the "Heirloom Embroidery Book." I used one strand of DMC floss and used soft vintage colors, that balanced well with the white linen and ecru crocheted edging.

To view a printable version of the embroidery pattern, click here.

*Update: Yes, I have now officially hugged his neck! He said that it has been almost 1 year since he has had a peanut butter and jelly sandwich........lunch is taken care of.


Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Machine Embroidery

After reading Martha's blog this morning, I was inspired to share the embroidered kitchen towels that I did for Christmas presents. The relatives who received these as gifts seemed pleased, and were especially happy with the "Pampered Chef" gift card that was included!

Although I have a new machine that embroideries, I do very little. I like having the option, but I will always be a "handwork girl." For me the secret to successful machine embroidery is having an adult daughter who lives less that an hour away and has the exact same machine. She either comes over and helps me with it, or walks me through the steps over the phone! While I struggle from lack of practise, she does quite a bit and is finding new designs and gift ideas all of the time.

I'm looking forward to this summer, when we will have more time to sew together. Maybe, I will get more comfortable with the machine embroidery!


Tuesday, March 16, 2010

A Burst of Color

I REALLY do like to see how your sewing projects are turning out!

Lynette Marxuach, from Puerto Rico, emailed pictures of two lovely bishop dresses that she has completed. Both dresses were made using pattern #135.

This bishop, is made from a beautiful blue print. Lynette, smocked the dress using one of the free smocking designs on the blog. I love her choice of floss colors!

Also, made from a blue print fabric, Lynette, smocked this bishop with a different smocking design from the blog. Her choice of colors picks up the green as well as the blue in the print, and she added a few more rows of smocking for more coverage. Great job Lynette!

* Family update: No, I have not got to hug his neck yet! My husband is going early tomorrow to Camp Shelby to pick him up. It is 10 hours round trip, and will involve loading all of his stuff in the car and visiting a gun shop, so I decided to let this be a "guy" trip. :) I have also learned from experience, that is best to let them get their stories (good and bad) out of the way without having to censor them for mom!


Sunday, March 14, 2010

#107 Pattern of the Week

The pattern of the week is #104! This little boy's bubble pattern includes sizes 3 - 24 months. A one piece bubble with a two piece look, the bubble can be made with a square collar, pointed collar, or a simple neckband. This bubble, was featured in Sew Beautiful Magazine issue #104, and was made from a pale turquoise Imperial Broadcloth.

Embellished with Bullion stitched bumble bees down the center front of the shirt, this bubble appeared in Sew Beautiful Magazine issue #94.

Kathy Barnard, editor of Sew Beautiful Magazine, made this elegant version for her son Aiden. Featured in issue #106, Kathy added her original embroidery design to the front of the shirt.

This white linen version, was made by Carol Harris for Creative Needle Magazine 2001. Carol stitched original Bullion sea horses down the front of the shirt.

Made from blue and white pima cotton, I made this bubble from scraps left over from other projects. The square collar is perfect for Shadow Embroidery, and mock suspenders give the bubble a very boyish look.

The simple sailboat embroidery design is included in the pattern.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Back in the USA!

This blog is to thank everyone for the prayers and kind words, while our son has been in Iraq. I had walked out to the mail box and almost missed his call! I grabbed the phone as he said, "Hey mom, I'm at Camp Shelby." We have been through it before, but that message is still a thrill! We will now be waiting to hear when to pick him up next week.

Are you curious about the picture? Our kids, (this one in particular) discovered "Wallace and Gromit" while in high school, and we all enjoyed the movies. He found the poster online about 15 years ago, and it hung at the foot of our basement stairs. When we downsized last year, and I ruthlessly got rid of half our stuff, this was one of the few things that I couldn't part with. It just reminds me of how much fun we had watching those movies with the kids. A few years ago, I tried to give it to him for his apartment, but he said it says, "home" to him. The poster now has a place of honor in our guestroom. The kids forget it is there and I always wait to hear them burst out laughing when they walk in!

I hope everyone can enjoy, and laugh with your family this weekend!

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Crochet Edging for Blankets

After receiving several e-mails and comments about the crocheted blanket blog, I decided to take it a step farther, and show the steps that I like to use to prepare a blanket edge.

But, first we will start with a story......the picture above proves that 25 years ago, I was a skilled crocheter! With that in mind, about two years ago, I took my newly married daughter, Anna, and we went to a local guild meeting where Cindy, would teach us to crochet in entredeux. I of course, knew how to crochet, but enjoy the meetings, and was looking forward to spending an evening with my daughter, where she could learn a new skill. Cindy, handed out our packet of supplies, I quickly tied my thread to the entredeux, made sure that Anna had hers' right, and prepared to start. Then, as Cindy began the basic instructions, she said, "And, remember, you crochet from right to left." My brain froze! I could not remember how to crochet. I had never thought about which direction we crochet in and I couldn't get started! I sat there a minute, then looked over at Anna, who was crocheting away, and whispered, "I can't get started, and where did you learn to crochet?" After she got me started, I then had to take it all out because I was doing the wrong stitch. Cindy, noticed me pulling mine out and commented that some of us who already knew how to crochet, may want to pull it out and try a new pattern....... little did she know. Fortunately after about 30 minutes, my long lost skill had come back and I remembered the stitches. Anna laughed and consoled me on the way back to her apartment, when I remembered that the last time I had crocheted, I was pregnant with her!!!

Now, to the blanket. I used a large "wing needle", and the stitch and adjustments, pictured above. If your machine does not have the stitch, experiment with similar ones, or try a zigzag stitch. The "wing needle" is important, because it makes holes in the fabric large enough to insert a small crochet hook through it.

I cut out a square of fabric, 36"x 36", rounded off the corners (I used a plate to trace around), and turned under and pressed a scant 1/4" to the wrong side. I played with stitching from the wrong side of the fabric, to see if I got the desired look, and discovered that either would work fine.

I used a contrasting thread, so that it would show in the photos. I would normally use a white thread to match the blanket. For the blanket, I am working on, I am using a #7 crochet hook, and #8 DMC Pearl Cotton thread. If you need a crochet refresher course, there are several helpful websites.

* Update: He is now in Kuwait, waiting for his flight out. He said, that he had forgot how good Kuwait looks, when you are on your way home! :)


Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Did They Read My Mind?

As we finished loading up all of my stuff at the Stitchin' Post, they handed me a gift. Of course, I opened it right away! How did they know?

Out of all the beautiful things in the store, the two items that I kept looking at, and had not purchased, were the hemstitched blankets and kimonos. Also, included in my gift bag, was the pearl cotton thread that I would need for the project!

I could hardly wait to get home, and find my crochet hook. Fortunately for me, this is crochet and not a knitting project!

First, I carefully trimmed the excess fabric away, close to the hemstitching. I then, started a simple crochet pattern, working my stitches into the hemstitched holes. The pattern I am using is 2 single stitches, then 1 single stitch, chain 4, single stitch in the same hole, and continue. You can't get much easier than that!

This is a sample of #122, with entredeux and crocheted edging. The top and bloomers are both made from white linen, with hand embroidery in soft vintage colors. The bloomers are the panties, from pattern #123, which were lengthened 1 1/2", when I cut them out.

I have used the same basic crochet pattern, and crocheted into each entredeux hole.

For those who are word from Iraq. From past experience, that probably means that he did leave yesterday and is on his way back to the states. IF this happened, our next phone call should be in about 48 hours, from Biloxi, MS. He can then let us know what day to go to Camp Shelby to pick him up!



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