Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Indygo Junction Bistro Apron

It's Wedding Season, and my wedding shower gift for the happy couple was a pair of  Indygo Junction Bistro Aprons (along with a waffle iron :-),  floral for her, green for him.

Fabric from JoAnn Fabrics, pattern purchased at the 2016 ASG Detroit Chapter's annual meeting last Fall, when Amy Barickman was the guest speaker.

Love my new labels from Dutch Label Shop!


Thursday, May 11, 2017

Simplicity 1100 - a Jiffy pattern throw-back

     Are you looking for quick, easy and fun to wear dress/swimsuit cover up for this summer?
                      Look no further....Simplicity 1100 might be the pattern for you!

This pattern is a re-issue from one published in 1971, and shows that good design can stand
                   the test of time. What's not to love? Wrap and tie.....ready to go!

My son and daughter-in-law will spending some time at a ocean side resort in Greece this summer, 
                and I thought she might like a little something to take along. For some reason,
                                   this fabric just shouted resort wear to me :-)

The fabric is a drapey rayon from JoAnn Fabrics, perfect for this pattern, and rolls up to next to nothing
         for packing.  I know, it looks a little long....still needs to be hemmed to my DIL's height.  

                                   Best thing of DIL loved it!


Monday, March 13, 2017

McCall's 7505

My daughter asked me to make McCall's 7505 in a jewel-tone purple
for an upcoming wedding that she would be attending.
        I found a great Poly fabric at my local JoAnns Fabric and Crafts:
 very silky and drapey, perfect for this style.

Of course, those trumpet sleeves are the stars of the show, but
 had to be shortened by 2 inches. I took off 1 inch where
the flare meets the sleeve at the elbow, and one more inch
at the sleeve hem.:


                                             Although this pattern does not offer a lining option, it
                                          was easy enough to line this dress with anti-static lining, also
                                                 from my local JoAnn Fabrics and Crafts store.

                                     My daughter loved wearing this dress to her college friend's
                                                      wedding last weekend in Portland, OR.:

and I think she looks fabulous! 

This is a great style, very on-trend at the moment. I think it would look
great shortened to a tunic/top length for the Spring!


Monday, March 6, 2017

American Style and Spirit exhibit at the Henry Ford Musuem

I spent an enjoyable morning last weekend with my sewing buddy Karen as we took in The American Style and Spirit Exhibit at the Henry Ford Museum in Dearborn, MI. A description of the exhibit from the Henry Ford website:

I snapped a few pics of the dresses I found memorable....either in design, choice of fabric or
in the construction details.
The exhibit is not set up chronologically, but rather by events in the women's lives who
most likely wore the outfits.

This amazing silk dress was the kick off, and I'll say it was pretty amazing: I can only imagine some restorative work must have been done on this late 1980's early 1900's dress, but it really could not be seen. 
It appeared to be in pristine condition:

STRIPES! The sleeves were pleated with tiny little pleats, finished with a very narrow
binding. Check out the flirty bow, that ruffle, and the cute little bustle in the back:

Lace never seems to go out of style, but what caught the eye was this gathered silk chiffon at the waist,   
 inset into the seam for detail:  (and of course there was a hat to match!)

This red wool suit is also a timeless design. Look closely at the photo below this one, you'll see
that buttonhole set into the seam. Actually, this construction detail could be found on 
several of  the suits in the collection. Again, the hat!!

Not much to say,  these outfits are just simply stunning. Again, see the pleated sleeve detail on the blush dress, more over sized pleats this time.

During the Depression, the family's shopping was more restrained economically. Sewing some of their own clothes was an answer! This red showstopper was hand sewn on a Singer Featherweight.

Another dress hand sewn by one of the women in the family, a knock off of a designer dress seen in a magazine:

Yes, there were wedding dresses! This rather plain dress had a pretty amazing  gathered train:

                                               This bias cut beauty with the draped cowl neckline
                                                        was worn to the Junior Prom.
                                             If you look closely at the photo in the background you
                                           can see it being worn at the Prom (first girl in from the right):

                                         The dress below was made with a fun fabric, perfect for the
                                     cruise it was worn on! Take a look at the waist detail, so flattering:

Another dress for the cruise ship, this time in 100% linen.
Cruise ship attire sure has changed!:

The seaming detail and those godets at the hem would make
for a fun dress to kick up your heels in! :

                            These days, with much of our clothing being so disposable, it was a treat to
                          see clothing as in investment. Many of these garments were worn by the women
                          in this family over several years, a  testament to the fine fabrics: silk, wool, linen,
                                                        that they were made of.
                         This did come at a cost though, but for this wealthy Midwestern family it
                           appeared that outside of the Depression era money was not an issue.

                            As a home sewist, my take away was to pay more attention to the
                           details on those garments I sew that are more investment-type pieces,
                              which may be more classic in design,  made with the best fabrics.

                           If you are in the Dearborn, MI area, this exhibit runs through April 2, 2017.


Monday, February 27, 2017

The Professional Tote

The February project on my  2017 UFO Challenge at list was  The Professional Tote by Laura Martell at The Creative Thimble:

And I'm happy to say this project is FINISHED!

 Two outer pockets on the front, one zips closed:

                                   One large pocket on the back will easily accommodate a magazine
                                                                            or file folders:

This pattern is several years old, and I've had the supplies for it for a few years. Again, sewing
down my stash is a goal this year, and I've had this fabric percolating for just the right project :-)

Before starting, I did my due diligence and read many reviews and posts by others who have 
made this bag. That sure helped! For that reason, I decided to use
for the outer bag  as well as the handle straps, and  the Pellon 71F fusible
(which is similar to the DecorBond called for
in the pattern) for the inner structure/support. 

Hats off to Ms. Martell: the step-by-step directions are very clear, with many photos
illustrating those steps. 

Here are some interior photos of my bag: there are lots of pockets!
I did use headliner fabric here for the center pocket to cushion my tablet/laptop/Kindle.

Note the key fob attached to this set of pockets:

Another set of pockets, this one has a flap with a Velcro closure:

One of my favorite features with this bag is the travel strap! It is made
to measure to fit over your luggage, and I love it! Also, note the side pockets for
an umbrella and water bottle:

Although this is quite an involved project, it is not difficult. I was able to sew it with 
ease on my Juki sewing machine, but I'm afraid a more light weight machine would 
make it more of a challenge.
My bag is a sturdy, almost luggage-like bag, but one I will use a lot.
I'm very pleased with it, and look forward to making it again.

Thursday, February 16, 2017


I am participating in the 2017 UFO Challenge at, with my own  list of 12 numbered UFO projects.
The number drawn for January was #6, and this wall hanging was the one!

As is usual for my UFO's the fabric and pattern for this Harlequin wall hanging were purchased MANY years ago, and the top pieced but never quilted. 
Thanks to the encouragement of my quilting buddy Karen, who has her own UFO list (smile!), and THE LIST as I will now refer to it, 
this project is now completed and hanging in a treatment room at my husband's dental office.

Gotta say, I love those vibrant colors and large scale Kaffe Fassett prints! But I'd have to say my favorite is the black and white striped binding.....just the right amount of punch to balance those bold prints.

Sunday, January 8, 2017

HotPatterns 1210: the Fast & Fabulous Draped Blouse

My first make in this New Year is HotPatterns 1210: the Fast & Fabulous Draped Blouse. 

When shopping over the holidays, I saw this style everywhere! 
This was a fun and fast project. 

I like it! I used a drapey rayon knit from my stash, which was a great choice for this style.
Designer Trudy always has an interesting technique or two up her sleeve, looking 
a step or two ahead when writing her instructions. I love the French seam at the front hem, & the back pleat
..... and the neckline went together like a charm. 

I like this relaxed look, but I might consider going down a size next time.

Happy New Year!


Wednesday, September 21, 2016

T-shirt Quilt-Let's Cheer!

A friend of a friend of a friend contacted me a few months back about the possibility of finishing a T-shirt quilt. The quilt had been started several years ago for her daughter by the daughter's Grandma, but Grandma had passed away before she could finish.
Of course I would help!
This quilter had already fused the T-shirt blocks, and purchased the fabric for the sashing, cornerstones, and borders, along with the batting. My contribution was the purple pin dot fabric for the backing which I thought was a nice compliment to the fun, bright quilt front!

Love my new Juki for machine quilting!!!!

I like to use a meander stitch in the quilt blocks, but to keep it fun and interesting (for both me and the recipient!) I like to isolate a motif in each block if able.
This can best be seen by looking at the back of the quilt:

Both my client and her daughter were pleased with the finished product, and so happy to have Grandma's work to remember her by.