Sunday, May 31, 2009

Finishing Projects

Alright, before I start on the frog, I need to finish a penafore for a friend's child. My mother has an embroidery machine and got this design from It is a dragonfly with wings that lift from the dress.

Can you say too cute? This makes me want to sew more fun stuff like this.

I learned how to use my ruffler foot and see a few issues with it.

The next time I use it, I'll have the issues worked out. I used a stretch lightweight denim from Joann fabrics and quilting fabric for the binding and ruffle. I wanted to make this summery enough that she could wear it without a blouse under it but as the cooler months approached, her mother would have the option to put a t-shirt or shirt underneath. No real facings to eliminate the bulk. Both of these photos are different views of the binding and mock facings.

All seams are serged and finished.

I decided to do the double button that was suggested by my mom (thanks) and I've seen done a few times. It turned out to be a cute flower. Now I hope it fits and isn't too big for the little girl:) As Goldilocks said, "It's just right."

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Scottsdale Satchel Completed

The Scottsdale Satchel is done. I ended up getting a Grommet Tool to place the grommets. After many errors, I finally got it down. They weren't very stable so I added a bit of glue to keep them together.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Frog for the little girl

I finished the frog quilt and now have moved on to a stuffed frog. The pattern was intended for storing sewing supplies but I couldn't resist- what girl doesn't need a stuffed frog to drag around? The design is by Java House Quilts.

Update on Scottsdale Satchel

A few things I've learned along the way... If I were to make this again I would definitely cut the fusible fleece 5/8" smaller than outer portion of bag. Sewing through 4 layers plus several layers of fabric is a chore. This is a picture of the piping and how you can sew the piping (2 parts together), decorator fabric, fleece and lining- whew!
I also added a zippered pocket and omitted 1 small pocket. I used a 9 inch zipper and made a pocket approximately 9.5" x 6". I really like to be able to keep things separate.

My positioning for the small pocket was different as well. The pattern instructed a person to place the small pockets on the sides. I was afraid it would distort the shape when they were filled. I also used bias tape to reinforce the small pocket sides and make more of a contrast so they would be easier to see since the lining is darker.

Next I'll add the grommets. I've never done this before so I'll practice first on some scraps. I don't know if it really matters that I don't have a grommet tool- guess we'll see...

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Projects finished and something new

Well, I finished the 2nd baby quilt. It took too much effort for something I had planned to be easy. So, this probably wraps up my quilting for a while.

I just got back from Joann Fabrics and their great Memorial Day sale. Notions were 50% off so I got everything I needed for the next few projects. Here's one that I'm starting today. It's the Scottsdale Satchel by Purse Strings.
(Photo courtesy of

I've heard that designers don't want construction details shared on blogs due to copyright issues. So, I'll just show you where I'm at and the finished product. I love this pattern btw...

The outer fabric came from a store in Overland Park, KS and the lining, piping and contrast fabric came from Harpers Quilts in Old Overland Park. All the working parts are from Joann Fabrics in OP as well.

Lining, piping and contrast is the "fireworks" appearing fabric:

Outer fabric:

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Crotch curve and a too fun time

To all the non-sewists just move right along, this post isn't for you.

With that being said, I was measured today for a well fitting pair of pants. Honestly, it was a little surprising since my measurements are growing. This isn't a great thing since there is no other reason than too much to eat and not enough running. So, I'm hitting the trails a little harder now. Poor Chloe.

It was a fantastic time with the KC Pinheads. I love Sharon's home that she so graciously opened to a bunch of wild and crazy ladies. I took lots of pictures of her coveted sewing room. This has given me new vigor to move to the basement and take this seriously.

Also, the pants pattern I wanted to use is the wrong size due to my MASSIVE thighs! (Photo from VoguePatterns website)

I'm hoping to modify it since I really don't want to buy another one. I don't think I can give up my low waisted pants. I figure as my breasts fall resulting in my waist getting closer to them, I need to create the illusion of length thus sacrificing my leg length. Isn't that what high heels are for anyway to add back the length?

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

40th Birthday

On June 13th I'm turning 40. Honestly, I never thought I'd make it to this age because it seemed so "old". Well, I'm nearing that point and knock-on-wood, healthy. This week has been hard and I've been reconsidering my career. Being a dentist makes one an easy target for many things. The comments regarding "I hate the dentist" or as brash as "I hate you" tends to wear on a person after some time. My patients are my first priority and I will go through Hell to make sure they are happy and comfortable but it is often lost on the ignorant. This is what has made me dream of winning the lottery and spending my time treating people who appreciate the hard work it takes to care for them. Yes, I did select this career and as I was so appropriately told by someone this week "it must go with the territory" I do not look forward to or welcome meanness.

So, if I win the lottery, I'm going open a free clinic and only see the people who love me. Selfish- you betcha. Until you go through the daily grind of dealing with people who have gotten themselves into a bad situation and want to blame anyone but themselves, it is better left calling me cynical. Just a little vent to help me finish out a week of 12 hr days and continuous on-call nights for little more than self-satisfaction- sigh...

My life insurance is paid for by the way;) I plan to hit 86 and call it day at that point, so if anyone is feeling sorry for me, don't be; I'm going to be a florist in my next career so I can smell the flowers on a daily basis and enjoy the beauty of a world I could only dream of being able to create.

Baby Quilt #2

Who knew Rayon thread breaks so often? Well I'm free handing the stitching on the quilt and about every 3 inches the stupid thread breaks. If I didn't love the variegated look so much I'll pull it all out and use good plain polyester thread.

The quilt is for a little girl and in accordance to my trend that I've been doing for babies- make it different. So, this little girl has frogs, flowers, worms and turtles to keep her company. I just hope the parents aren't giving her all the princess and girly things because this will really shock them;)

This is where I stopped last night because you guessed it, the thread broke. I was done re-threading the machine for the umpteenth time. I'll include pictures of the final product when I get the urge to re-thread the machine.

Ok, I finally relented and kept re-threading until I was done. Can't tell you how many times I did it but hopefully the thread will wear better than it did running through the needle. The other border was switched to my TNT thread and I'm finishing it with a pale green border. BTW, I'm still learning so bear with the disorganization of all of this.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

CoverPro 1000

I've taken it out of the box but the instructions are missing. Janome has the manual online- even more convenient for me. I downloaded it under specifications and am ready to start using it.

There's a really long thread on PR that many people have contributed. I think I need a binder and I haven't even taken it out for a test-run. I'll post more as I work through the kinks and learn out to keep it from raveling away.

Saturday, May 9, 2009

New Baby Quilt

It must be in the water- good thing my husband doesn't drink it;) Babies galore! I am making another quilt for our neighbors' baby girl. I was corrected by a PR member that it's not a baby blanket but a quilt- thanks for educating a dumb Okie:). Enough of the pink stuff- I'm into bright colors and frogs. This one will definitely be a little tomboy-ish. Don't worry, it's also got purple and coral as accent colors. It will be a simple quilt with a main piece, borders, blocks and binding (3 b's). Hopefully I'll finish it this weekend.

Oh, yeah, did I mention I got a Janome Coverstitch 1000? I have coveted this machine for many years and got the deal of a lifetime. It was less than $480 with over $100 of free stuff- sewing feet, DVD, thread- lots of thread, magnifying glass (cuz I'm getting older- 40 this year!). I'll attach photos tomorrow- lighting isn't good in the office so the colors won't be right.

Off to sew a little before going to bed. (BTW, my husband doesn't know yet- hee, hee)

Thursday, May 7, 2009

What got in the way of finishing the dress

Someone had a baby so I felt compelled to make something... Yep, I stopped another outfit and it immediately became an UFO. (Sigh) Well, I did manage to finish a self-designed quilt for the wee one. These are mid process. I used a print from Michael Miller as the inspiration and quilted with cotton batting. It sewed like a dream and ended up being a nice light weight but definitely useable.
This is the top and turned back backing. Really, the colors blend nicely.

A close-up of the fabrics and border.

This is the laid out quilt prior to finishing and quilting.

A green and tan border with the paisley background: a little fuchsia for the little girl.
More pics of the finished product.

I used a triple stitch to attach the border fabric.

For a little whimsey, I roughly outlined the flowers on each corner- each is different.