I hope to inspire and entertain you with a lot of sewing and a little of everything else!

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Something's Fishy

My Mom loves fingertip towels. You can be sure there will always be a fresh one by the sink. Since she bought me my sewing machine, I like to make little treats for her. However, fingertip towels are hard to find! I bought some plain white ones on ebay and I make her one every so often.
Well, my Mom had a favorite towel that she had purchased already embroidered with fish. It had suffered fading from being washed too many times and met its demise when some flooring guys dried their varnished hands on it (see the brown stains?).
I had told my Mom I could digitize it for her and I finally got to it. I only have certain thread colors and I didn't have the exact ones to match, but I made a brighter version.
I think it turned out pretty cute. Now, when this one gets faded or stained, I can just keep making new ones!

Monday, February 23, 2015

Smocking Inspiration from a Century Ago!

I was excited to find an inexpensive original edition of Helena Buehler's 1916 Simplified Smocking!

The cover is done in color- very pretty!

Here are some little girl's dresses with touches of smocking. My favorite is the lower right with the shaped panel of smocking.

Rompers- my favorite baby clothes! I love the one with the shaped yoke and the sailboat. It reminds me of the Drew & Erin's bubble I made Andy when he was a baby.

Here are some long baby coats and little girl coats. They are so pretty, but wouldn't work too well in today's carseats, would they? They would be lovely for a winter Christening, though.

The back cover has these pretty photos.

There are several pages of Helena Buehler's designs. I think these were for sale at the time.

Can you believe this book is from 100 years ago!!??

Monday, February 16, 2015

FLIP this Pattern: Strawberry Sunsuit: FREE for ALL!

My friends Ashley and Emily at Frances Suzanne came up with a fun twist to their FLIP this Pattern series. This month, they are featuring patterns that are FREE. I love to offer freebies to my readers and I have done 2 FREE patterns for you! The one I am sharing today is a FLIP of my Timmy & Mary Sunsuit.

 This pattern is available in sizes 6 months to 3. I made a size 3 for my niece Ella. It is a quick and easy sunsuit, with one pattern piece for the front and the back.
It is lined and has ties on the shoulders, so no buttons or zippers to fuss with!

My "FLIP" was to make the basic sunsuit a little fancier! I added a machine embroidery to the front. It is from Britt Designs.

I used a red poly/cotton gingham to line the suit and for the ruffles on the back. The strawberry fabric is cotton pique. I chose to use poly/cotton for the ruffles because it will come out of the dryer ready-to-wear. Who wants to iron all those ruffles?

The last thing I "flipped" was to add elastic to the legs. The original pattern has the 50s style open legs. It is very simple to stitch a casing and add elastic for a bubble shape.

Can't you just see Ella picking strawberries in this little suit?

If you want the FREE Timmy & Mary Sunsuit Pattern, just join my Mommy's Apron Strings Patterns Group! Click the link or on the photos on my sidebar. I also periodically offer free machine embroidery designs and there's the Ella Kathryn Bonnet, as well!

I would have liked to show you modeled pictures on Ella. They would have been so much cuter! However, we have had snowstorms and blizzards every few days and we are having one right now. This is my living room window. I showed you the floor, so you could see how deep our snow is! We are supposed to get another foot tonight! You Southern Sewing Gals probably could let your little girl wear this in February, but in New England, we are just dreaming of Strawberry Fields!

Here's a picture of Ella in the sunsuit when she was 6 months old! This shows you the unflipped version.

Thanks Ashley and Emily for sharing my sunsuit on FLIP this Pattern: FREE for All!!

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Quilt Team, part 1

My Quilt Guild always has a fun challenge going on. Right now, we have a couple of things in the works. One of them is to join a "Quilt Team" of 3-6 people. Each team will work on a lap-size quilt to be raffled as a fund-raiser for our Guild. We have about 8-10 teams, so will be able to raffle that many quilts. It is nicer than one large quilt, because we should end up with a variety to appeal to everyone. My team's theme is "Scrappy". We chose a pattern called "Sandcastle".
Google Image Result for http://scoobagirl.typepad.com/photos/uncategorized/2008/01/20/100_3371.jpgThis is a picture I found online that is similar. We have 6 people in our group and each of us has to make 25 blocks. I was able to make all of my blocks from scraps. Honestly, I could make a bunch more without cutting into big pieces of fabric!
 Here are all of my blocks, laid together. We are going to mix them all up before we stitch any together. The strips in between the 4-patches are muslin.
Here's a close-up. Almost all of these fabrics are from other projects I made: a 40s dress for me, a challenge dress on Ellie Inspired, several quilts, a Kit Kittredge dress for Rosie, my Mom's clothespin bag, etc. I have some more fabrics I would like to include and I think we'll need more squares, so I will probably get the chance!
I have several challenge projects going on right now! One of them is participation in "Flip this Pattern" at Frances Suzanne. This month is featuring free patterns and I will be sharing a cute version of my free sunsuit pattern on Monday (16th). Come back to check it out!