Friday, June 24, 2016

Peony Vest posted on threadWEAR 301

I am super excited to see one of my versions of the Peony vest from The Sewing Workshop in their latest post to threadWEAR301, their blog. They titled it Evolving Peony with Hand Stitch.

I started this as a blank canvas over a year ago and blogged about it here. Then I began adding seed stitch which is a lovely zen sort of practice, for me. I also blogged about the collar I added here.

This is really a great basic vest. Revisiting my denim version makes me want to make another one. Maybe now is the time to make one Alabama Chanin style. A recent edition of TSW's Sew Confident used their organic knit for a Peony and the sewist added lovely hand-stitch.

Oh.My.Goodness. Look what I just discovered on a previous threadWEAR post:

Peony vests from an Arkansas TSW workshop

I have more travel coming up. I think the Peony vest is going with me.

What about you? Do you have favorite travel projects or hand projects?

Thursday, June 23, 2016


It is hot summer time where I live so it is time for Super Simple Sewing.

And this is about as simple as it gets. The top is the tank from Sewing Workshop's MixIt pattern, a pattern full of TNT's. The tank is the simplest. The bust darts have been rotated into the hem and released. It fits through the shoulders and upper chest and skims the rest. Just right.

The pants are also from TSW, the Hudson pants, yet another TNT. For summer, I decided I would enjoy shorter pants, not shorts, but as close to shorts as I should wear anymore. I removed 8 inches from the hem which also eliminated the darts that make these pants cute and funky. That is fine. I just wanted simple pants.

The fabric for both pieces is a Michael Kaufman Brussels Washer (a blend of linen and rayon). Both are also shot pieces with red (or blue) weft and cream warp. Or maybe the other way around. I purchased it from Twill Fabric and Yarn in downtown Nashua NH, a very sweet shop.

Each piece  has a pretty selvage, I think, so I cut the pants crosswise in order to use that for the hem. I wonder if I have enough of the navy blue left over for a small bag like Mary's?

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Workshop Wonder

There is nothing like a good workshop to revive your creative spirit. Last week we at Fiber Art Fusion held our long-awaited workshop with the one and only Susan Brubaker Knapp. If you are at all into quilt art, then you may know that she is the host of Quilting Arts on PBS. She is also a frequent contributor to Quilting Arts magazine. She has an article in the current one, sitting on my bed-side table.

Susan is the best kind of teacher - enthusiastic, patient, intelligent, accomplished, and seemingly free of ego.

The two-day workshop is titled Whole Cloth Painting. We started with a photograph of our choosing. Susan was happy to review these via email so that we each chose wisely. It was such fun to see what everyone selected. Here is my whole cloth painting (left) at the end of day 1, and my photo (right):

The picture was taken by my son, titled Cold Morning. If you look closely, you can see ice crystals along the edge of the leaf.

Painting anything is a stretch for me. Like others in the class, I felt a little hopeless at times. But I know that frustrating moment is when I am on the verge of something wonderful.

By the end of day 2 I was hooked. I came straight home and painted into the evening.  Here (on the right) is the current state of the piece:

I have an idea of what I will do next. Hope it works.

Susan and me
Thanks to Susan and my fellow travelers for a delightful workshop!

And what a great space we rented from SEFAA here in the Atlanta area. We got to break in the glorious new sink!

Monday, June 20, 2016


Title: Alien

Size: 18.5 inches wide by 17.5 inches high

Materials: machine quilted background in  cotton with wool batting. edge finished with facings. creatures are hand-embroidered. do not know how that odd one got in. marches to a different drummer. be not afraid.

not scary

Monday, May 30, 2016

Memorial Day

A few days ago, I was explaining to my grandchildren why we have a holiday in the US called Memorial Day. As you probably know, it is the day when we remember service women and men who have died in service to the United States. We had a little discussion about what all that means. I found it a little challenging to explain but they seemed satisfied with my explanation.

And then I forgot all about it.

But evidently something of it stayed in my subconscious. When I finished this version of the Sewing Workshop Hudson top, I knew it needed something else, so of course I added sashiko. Do you see the little remnants of that thought in the sashiko? Yes, it is subtle, but definitely there!

The Hudson shirt is a great pull-on shirt. The pattern envelope includes some funky pants with darts at the ankle. I have made each piece many times.

For summer I like breathable, loose garments. The Hudson top, omitting the cowl collar, is just right. This one is made from a clear red linen. Isn't linen just the best for summer? This linen is one of those good soft ones, purchased at Gail K in Atlanta. I did not even iron it before wearing it today. I like that soft wrinkled look.

I made the Urban pants also out of the red linen, but together it is just too much. I'll wear the pants with other tops.

Here's to all who have made that ultimate sacrifice to protect their communities and countries. Your courage goes beyond anything I have personally experienced. And thanks to those of you who have lost loved ones in such service.

Friday, May 27, 2016

The Evolving Vogue 9081

When Vogue 9081 first came out, I thought, finally, a dress I will love. I always think that, especially when summer days are fast approaching. They always look so cool and comfortable.

Vogue 9081
I liked Vogue 9081 so much, that I made two of them.

I have worn the black one a number of times but every time I put the orange on, I take it off again. I look too much like a speed cone with legs.

Next I dipped it in black walnuts. The color is better but still I do not wear it. Last night I removed the lower panels. Then I added a piece of bias print for the hem tape. I have it on now and I like it so much better as a tunic with pants. I do not know why. I just do. I might even make it a third time now!

Slimmer pants would be even better.
I am holding another bag made from Noodlehead's Open Wide Pouch tutorial.

It is such fun to whip up one of these. The fabric is from a remnant of cotton canvas DD purchased at Ikea. I added a small piece of printed cotton, and a piece of ribbon. And, of course, sashiko.

This one is in honor of today's MMM16 theme - polka dot parade.

Thursday, May 26, 2016


It is not exactly rare that I make a traditional quilt, but it is not something I want to do often. I like little art quilts, little quilted bags, and of course quilted clothing. But traditional quilts are not my forte.

I finished this top maybe a year or more ago. When I showed it to my 7 year old grandson, he was unimpressed. It contained a few blocks made from Lightning McQueen (Lightnin' da' queen) fabric. Didn't I know that he was too old for that sort of thing? I was bored with it anyway so I just folded it up and put it into the dark recesses of my stash closet.

It resurfaced during a spring clean-out of the closet. The offending pieces were still there. After carefully removing almost all of them, I inserted some new blocks, lighter than the others. It is a much better quilt now.

Texas, our Texas
Next I basted it, quilted it, bound it. Lastly I added a bit of embroidery.

Lightnin's BFF
It is now a gift for my brother. Father of three girls, he probably does not know Lightnin' anyway.