Saturday, December 31, 2011

Gift in action

Fun to see on DGD3.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011


For some time now, I've wanted to try out some of the more off-beat feet that go with my 1956 Singer Featherweight. Since reading some of David Coffin's shirt-making book, I have aspired to use the narrow hemmer. This one is supposed to produce a 1/8 inch double-folded hem.

Well, let me just say, BLEEHHHHH!

But I digress. The best advice I've found online is this:

  1. Press the beginning of the hem into place and start by simply top-stitching, bypassing the hemmer mechanism completely.
  2. Then after an inch or so, stop with the needle down and begin to fiddle with the fabric about to feed under the needle, twisting it until it falls into the little groove of the spiral or corkscrew.
  3. Then begin to sew, holding the fabric slightly aloft, aligning the left raw edge with the left mark on the foot, and the fold matched up with the right mark on the foot.
This creates a nice fold and a lovely straight stitch but the stitch is to the left of the fold, not on the fold.

So sorry for this truly boring post. But I wondered. Do any of you have advice?

Never mind. That particular little foot does not go with that particular little machine. Mama's 1950 Singer uses it though, and it makes satisfactory narrow hem.

On to the Nikko jacket!

Monday, December 26, 2011

Lone Star

Lone Star Quilt for DH.
I think he likes it. I hope so. He's standing on his tiptoes - it really is long enough for his 6 foot frame.
A reminder of our Texas roots.
Our 27th year married begins today. A nice thought.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Midwinter shibori

Fresh cranberries. Still drying.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Right for Now

Just a few more gifts I will enjoy making, still in my head, about to transfer to my hands. Here are two that are right for today. The bag based on a free pattern here.

Saturday, December 17, 2011


When I was in high school, I took a job over the Christmas holidays at Titche's Department Store in Dallas Texas, as a gift-wrapper. I absolutely loved it. All those special little do-dads to add to the top of a package, double-sided tape so the construction was hidden, and fun stuff to wrap.

I still like it, in small doses. Now I recycle old Christmas cards, use pattern tissue from patterns that were never meant to be, and cut out shapes with construction paper.

December brings with it memories, in this case a fond memory.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Not Right Yet

It seemed like a good idea. It is not. This picture has convinced me. The white pique underskirt just looks weird. Like a hospital gown under a dress. Not adorable and sweet like its intended owner. Thoughts...

  • Remove the underskirt completely. Then it's just a tunic with leggings.
  • Cut the underskirt shorter than the overskirt and then it's a petticoat.
  • Cut it off, add lace and let the lace show a little? Too much?
  • What else?
Note to self: enjoy the design process too ;) Often it's good to set it aside and wait on the finishing work.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Sewing Small - One Ensemble Completed

Finished ensemble for DGD1. Finished the jumper yesterday and today, the acid green (yes!) leggings and t-shirt. Oh to be young enough to wear acid green leggings and look cute. And she will.

And I miss her.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Puttin' on the Ritz

This is a close as we get. DH and I went to the Fox Theater which gave me an opportunity to test out my new dress-up outfit last week.

  • High Five Jacket from Shapes - interesting sheer fabric of unknown content
  • Hearts A Flutter Shell from Cutting Line Designs - black silk crepe
  • Plaza Pants from the Sewing Workshop - black silk crepe

I have always loved playing dress-up.

Sewing in the Small

'Tis the season for me to become overly ambitious about making gifts for my loved ones.

This little jumper is for DGD1. Corduroy from the big box store, but I really, really like the print. And she likes peace signs. My little hippie GD. Quilt cotton piping and nice blouse fabric to line the bodice. Still needs some hand-sewing to attach the lining properly.

Now this little ensemble needs acid green t-shirt and leggings underneath. Non?

Thursday, December 1, 2011

More Sashiko

The older I get, the more I need to have needle and thread in my hands. Sashiko is a technique that allows me to do just that. I should add more to garments I make.

gift card bag - how silly!

party purse inside

Sashiko with wrapped thread technique (Spirit Cloth)
In the meantime, it is that gift-giving time of year, that time of year when I vicariously design and construct oh so many hand-made gifts. A few actually come into being. Here are two.