Thursday, May 26, 2011

Here is the proof

If you are here from a linky party you can go here for all the back story.

I did not edit these photos so just bare with me.

Here is the dress, I did finish it on time and a day early. I thought it was all done and I wouldn't have to see it again. They didn't try it on until 9:30 at night and it was still to big. So they were back at my house at 10:20. Pinned, fixed, buttons moved over and I was done at 12:30. I was back up to their house the next morning and it fit perfectly.

So here for your viewing pleasure the five day wedding dress.



Eleven satin buttons, with loops.

I missed the mom seeing the dress for the first time moment, stupid camera.

Here she is my Ashley baby, getting married.

She liked it, she really liked it.
If you couldn't tell by looking at her face she really hates having her picture taken.
In the end I was glad I could do it for her.

Grandma is here from Arizona, so I don't know how often I will be here, hope to be back soon.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Wedding Dress Done

The wedding dress is done.
It was picked up today for the wedding tomorrow.
I was so glad to be done with it I did not get a picture, so here is the pattern.

I tried to copy and paste it, I tried to add a photo, but it doesn't want to play the game.

For those of you who do not want to link over, it is a vintage Vogue pattern #V2962.
It is a halter top dress, and a tea length skirt.
I added four tulle skirts over the top to make it fluffy.
I also made (not in the picture) a long black sash to tie around her waist.

I hope that when she tries it on, it fits and everything is the way she imagined it would be.
When I made the muslin for it, it fit at the waist and was about four inches to big around her chest.
I took in two inches on each side so here is hoping.

If you think that this dress is beautiful (which it is) and you are on your way to Joann's to pick up the pattern a little FYI for you, this is the fullest skirt I have ever made. I even messed it up and lost some of the fullness and still the fullest skirt I have ever made. My industrial serger could not gather it in, and just so you know that is saying something, that thing is powerful. I was once again thankful for my grandmother and all the things she taught me, one of which was how to gather with a string. I am seriously going to have to teach you that one day.

When I get a picture from them, I will post it. Until then I am going to lay down in my bed and eat ice cream.

Then I have to clean my house because Grandma is coming tomorrow.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

What Am I Thinking

When I graduated from High school I knew that college was not for me.
School was a struggle for me and I was glad to have it done and didn't want to torture myself with it anymore. Especially if I had to pay for it and be disappointed with myself all over again.

I started working, I was a nanny and a sweatshop worker. This is why now, I am a mom and why I sew so fast. Today I got a call that I thought might be coming. The little girl I used to nanny for is getting married on Tuesday, yep in SIX days.  I had talked to her mom a couple of weeks ago and she was telling me how tense she was that Lindsey still hadn't found a dress.

This is now where my super speed sewing is going to be tested. I am going fabric shopping in the morning to get the materials for her wedding dress. I think it is kind of funny that the little girl that I made Christmas dresses for is now going to get a wedding dress from me also.

I think it should be pretty easy. Big tulle skirt and a fitted bodice with 3/4 length sleeves and no train. My only hesitation is the fact that I sew little girl dresses and NOT wedding dresses.

I am not a tailor, I do NOT do alterations, (you can ask anyone who has wanted me to hem pants over the years) and I hate dealing with linings especially the ones that you have to hand sew down. I am sure in the end I will be grateful for the experience. I am sure I will love the fact that I was the one that made her dreams come true for her dress. I am sure I will be there fitting a dress to the same body that I use to kiss good night, and be blown away by this full circle moment.

But right now I am tired, I still have one more skirt to make before tomorrow night, when the big girls leave to go to Disneyland with Grandma and Papa.  It is the most important skirt, it is the Cinderella skirt after all. I was hoping to get my spring cleaning done before Grandma brings the girls back. Finish sewing baby sister's summer dresses. Sleep in, enjoy just the little girls, clean the big girls room while they are gone, I am sure they wouldn't notice that everything was gone right. Now my next five days are going to be consumed with dress sewing and trying my hardest NOT to mess it up.

Anyway if you don't hear from me, know that I really wanted to post the Disney skirts, they are really cute and you would have loved them I promise.  But that is going to have to wait until after Tuesday.

So if you have a spare minute could you take a second and say a little prayer for me. I really am going to need all the help I can get. If you are close I will take babysitting, house cleaning and meals.
Just saying.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Jean's Quilt

This is the quilt I am going to enter in to the quilt fesitval.

Amy is hosting a blogger's quilt show this is my official entry.

My husband has two jobs he works in the shipping department of his friends company.
He also works for Carhartt clothing. He installs all their store displays, he builds the pant bins, hanging displays, signs etc. So if you live in the western United States and are shopping for work pants with your husband chances are pretty good that my husband built the pant bins.

He worked with a very nice lady named Jean. She always looked out for him, gave him a heads up when work was coming his way, and would fight for work for him. She became a great friend to us over the years. Corporate decided to change fixture companies, which meant that we would loose Jean, and that she would no longer have a job. It was a really hard time for us. Would the new company still want my husband to do the installing, would the next person help us out like Jean always did. I am sure you all have had similar experiences in your life. Things have worked out well and we are fine, and Jean decided to retire early.

Now this is what my husband will always say to me when he wants me to make a quilt for someone.
"I feel like we should do something for her" Translation can you make a quilt? He has said this to me over the years. When there was someone who helped him with his company, when his sister's friend got her citizenship. This is what he says "we should do something nice for them" then I get to get quilting. 

I had bought a quilting book years ago called laps from fats. It is a collection of quilts that you make out of fat quarters. I found a FQ bundle of Amy butler's midwest modern collection.
This was perfect for Jean because
1- she is from Ohio and
2- her favorite color is sea glass blue.

Here it is...



I had some printable fabric and had Good Looking write her a thank you note.

He wanted the Carhartt logo included in the quilting.
My quilter did two like this

and one like this, she put extra batting behind it so it would pop out.

Can you see the puffy one there.

Here is a closeup of the quilting from the back.

Now something that I didn't quite expect when I made this quilt was the amount of scraps I was going to have. Then what was I going to do with all those scraps. Since they were "designer" scraps I wasn't about to throw them away and it didn't seam right to just throw them in the scrap bin.

Then I learned about the Ticker Tape quilt and I wanted to give it a try.
Since I did have a limited number of scraps I pinned every piece on.
I started in the center and worked my way out. so it is spaced further apart on the edges.


I love how cute and soft the edges get when washed,

and just look at those lovely little squares on the back.

When I started making this my husband asked why I was making it. I said I saw it on a blog and wanted to try it, and he said "you are such a geek" it is true I am. It turned out to be a good idea to make it though. Just as I was finishing it he went to Arizona for a job and it turned out to be the same day as a friends birthday, so he had a gift for her too.

I am now in love with the idea of buying the fabric for one quilt and having enough to make two quilts.
Two for one, baby.

Baby Sadie's Quilt

I am entering quilts to the Bloggers quilt festival, so if you don't want to see this again just keep moving.
If you haven't seen this yet, by all means stay.
I messed it up, I am only allowed to enter one quilt so this one is removed from the party, I thought I would leave it up since I was getting comments on it.
My big brother works for the church and moved to Samoa to manage the church farms in the pacific.
He has two boys, they are about the best two boys you could ever meet. Truly they are going to grow to be great men. The doctors have told them they they shouldn't have anymore children due to health issues. They truly are blessed with the boys, but as any mother will tell you there is nothing like a daughter.
About a month after they arrived they were asked to adopt a baby, a young woman was pregnant and her husband had left. They really didn't know what they were going to do. Months later they were called again saying that this woman was in labor, and did they want the baby.
I could tell you all the details or cut to the chase,
 I think I will cut to the chase.
They got the baby,
 a girl,
they named her after our Grandmother.
Here she is Baby Sadie, seriously isn't she about the cutest thing.
I mean just look at those cheeks, and those lips, ooh I just want to squish her up.

I went to work on a quilt, I found this great collection at the walmart. I know it is hard to believe but it is true, the walmart. I know there are those who will think that I am complete white trash, but oh well I liked it, and I knew my sister in law would love it. It has everything that she likes bright colors and small flowers.

I followed  Care's great instructions. It was quick and easy and I love it. I can't wait to make another one.

Here is a close up of the quilting.

and her name.

I love her, and can't wait to meet her one day. It is hard when they live in the middle of the ocean.

Eric's Quilt

I am entering quilts to the Bloggers quilt festival, so if you don't want to see this again just keep moving.
If you haven't seen this yet, by all means stay.
I have since removed this quilt from the party, I guess you can only enter one.

Last Year I went to Europe, My brother was stationed in England with the air force. One of the problems I was having was how to get there. My budget for this trip was little, and the fact that an airplane ticket was going to take up almost all of that budget was about to put me over the edge.

We have a family friend who is a flight attendant, he flies for United. My husband thought I was crazy for wanting to call him and ask for a buddy pass. I put on my big girl panties and made the call. I told him that I would love him forever and I might even make him a quilt for his kindness. He said no big deal, made all the arrangements for me, and even helped when I was stuck there with the exploding volcano. I don't think he believed me on the quilt thing, when I got home and asked about colors and things he might like for his quilt he was a little surprised.

I went and it was wonderful, heavenly, fabulous, all the things that you might imagine. We went to London and Amsterdam. Saw the tulips, and the naked ladies in the windows. It was the time of my life and now a year later I miss it. I would love to go back and take Good Looking, his ancestors are from Holland and I think he would like it even if he doesn't think so.

When I came home and started looking for fabrics it was tougher than I would have thought. I didn't want a flowery quilt for the man and didn't want to use just solids either. I was about at my whits end when I saw this post and I was sold, I was a little bit afraid that he might be offended but sent him a link to this sight anyway. He loved it and liked the cowboys the most.  So with out further ado.

Eric's Cowboy Quilt

I used the double Irish chain pattern, I have made it about 20 times and could make it in my sleep.

After cutting up the cowboys on the front I wanted to keep them whole on the back.



Yes I did have my quilter, quilt save a horse.

Ride a cowboy.

It was fun to make it, of course after I was all done I found this pattern.
I could have saved all those cowboys from being chopped up.

I told him if he ever wanted to send me somewhere else I would make him another one, maybe firefighters or police officers, they even have campers.

I guess we will have to wait and see.

Friday, May 13, 2011


All photos are of fabric from swap 1

The rainbow swaps one and two are done!

This is what I have learned from my first swap.

Do not let people be in both swaps.

I thought I was so smart I was going to keep track of everyone through my Gmail contacts.
I listed everyone by their email, what color they wanted, who had emailed me back etc.
then things got crazy. I spent the day checking comments, putting the email into my contacts, sending emails only to have Mr Gmail tell me I was a failure and it didn't go through. Then reread the comment check every letter recontact them, only to see I failed again. There were a few ladies that I had to track down through face book just to make sure it was all right.

In the end it all got confusing, and the ladies I said could be in both swaps, and assigned colors to were lost in the shuffle and were lost in the second swap. Now I have ladies sending me fabric for both swaps and only have space for them in one swap.

So my lesson learned was, only one color allowed per person.

I think that I should have been more clear about postage.

Some ladies I knew by first name only, some by first and last, some only by their email.
For some reason when they sent their self addressed stamped envelope they put down just their last name or a name I didn't even know them by. It may seen silly to you but it was kind of frustrating try to figure out who Jones was, when I didn't have a Jones listed.

Next time let me know who you are, I promise I am not going to stalk you, I just want to check you off my list and make sure you get what I was trying to send you.

Some swaps like you to separate your fabrics into twenty different piles.

I have done this for swaps and it bugs me. I don't know why, maybe I just want to get it in the mail, or maybe I think it looks cuter to have it all in stacks. I don't know, but from now on I am doing it.

Lesson learned, ask ladies to separate into twenty piles, because after separating 4000 squares of fabric twice I don't want to do that again, Just for the record fostermama wins, not only did she separate her fabrics she then hand wrote all her info and taped them to her fabrics.
What does she win you may ask...
The knowledge that she is totally awesome in my mind.

Speaking of separating fabrics...

I have learned that when separating 4000 squares of fabric don't get distracted.

This is my sad tale of woe, My friend DJ brought over all her fabrics for the second swap, we worked together separating the colors making our cute rainbows, something happened when we got to pink.
I can't remember if I was saying goodbye to a friend that was over, or if I was called away to be the mom, but at some point I put down a stack of pink fabric. I pointed it out to DJ when she was leaving, but it was late, and when I went down the next morning I totally forgot about this stack of pink fabric.
I finished my all my separating, put all the piles in their happy little bags, started filling up SASE, put all the SASE  into a big shopping bag to take them to the post office. Got baby sister ready to go to the post office, ran back down stairs to get my paper that said who was who, and that is when I saw it...
The small stack of pink fabric.

Now what to do I could just forget it and not worry about.
I mean were ladies really going to go through their stack of fabric to make sure that they got 200 squares and then were they really going to be upset that they only got 199. There might be the one who sent in the pink fabric and wonder what happened to the one with the pink leaves and gold sparkles. After saying a few choice words at my self and then asking myself could I screw this up anymore. I decided to put one lone pink square into one Ziploc bag and tape it to the outside of every SASE.

So if you are in the second group feel free to pull out the razor blade and free that poor neglected pink square out of it's Ziploc prison and let it rejoin it's friends in the world of the rainbow squares. 

Lesson learned, don't get distracted when surrounded by 4000 little pieces of fabric.

Canadians are nice eh.

Shipping to Canada a whole other story.
Just so you know it costs, $11.95 to ship a small priority box over the boarder, $10 Canadian equals
$10.06 US. You have to fill out a customs slip to send fabric over the boarder. I was asked what was the monetary value of my contents, I told the man it's about 2 1/2 yards total of fabric and he said, oh so like five dollars. Whatever obviously he does not buy fabric.

All in all it has been an adventure.
I have learned a lot.
One of the best things I learned, was that crafty people are really nice.
With every mistake I made everyone was kind and understanding, and although I am seriously rethinking my decision to host this craziness again, it has been fun.
It was fun to watch Lala run to the mailbox everyday. I really liked seeing everyone's fabric choices, and super fun to see all the different colorways of Joann's fat quarters.
I really hope that you had fun. Sorry that the fabrics are going out late, and for those few that I messed up I am so very sorry about it still.
Now that it is done I am hoping to get some sleep.

With all lessons learned, I am going to attempt this again in the fall, with fall colors so wish me luck.

Because if you have learned anything about me today, you know I am going to need it.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Big Flower Tutorial

 You said yes please, so here you go.

I first made these flowers when I made my wedding dress.
Instead of the big butt bow (that was very popular in the early nineties) I had three of these flowers.

I made them again for the big girl flower girl dresses, for my sisters wedding.

So here you go are you ready.

I used organza from Joann's Casa collection, it is my favorite.
It is 60" wide. I am sure you can use what ever you want,
but the wider the fabric, the fatter your flower is going to be.

You need to make a bias seam

I was not very smart and sewed on the line and now have a gray line on the middle of my flower :(
Don't do what I did, use the line as a guide and sew 1/4" away from the line.

Fold in half and baste it together

Make sure that your seam is not twisted, and laying flat.

I totally cheated,
I have an industrial serger,
 it is my happy place,
it gathers while I sew.
I know you are jealous and you totally should be.
If I were you without this piece of heaven in your sewing room, I would first finish the edge either with your cute little home serger, or with a zig zag stitch on your sewing machine.
Then gather it up with you favorite gathering method,
you want it to be tightly gathered.
You might want to gather it twice,
gather, and then gather the gathers if that makes sense, because it totally makes sense to me.
It helps down the road to have it gathered super tight.

This is the most confusing part and should have taken another picture of me sewing this part.
Put your strip under your sewing foot starting at the folded edge.
Back tack a few stitches sew to the gathering, pull the threads back to the top.
Repeat every two to three inches down the entire length of the strip.
Back tack
sew to the gathering
pull the threads back to the top

This is why you don't cut your thread

You need it to gather

Your cute petal

It is possible that you don't have to tie the ends but I don't dare.
I don't want to risk gathering all the petals and then having them come undone.

See there in the upper left hand corner, there is the gray pencil line.

Now it is going to bug you that you know it is there, huh.

There you go let me know how it turns out for you.
I can't wait to see other peoples version.