Thursday, March 29, 2012


A work in progress...
I love doing stitch samplers but finishing them doesn't go fast for me because I still need to master some of the stitches and because I am easily distracted by other projects. I thought I would show you the most recent one I have been working on. It is cake by Rebecca Rinquist of Drop Cloth. How do you feel about metallic embroidery thread? I used some here and it is a little rough and hard to keep the threads from splitting. Any tricks for keeping that from happening?

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

jane cardigan

This summer cardigan was knit last week for Ms. S from Debbie Bliss Organic Cotton Fair Trade Collection in a really nice shade of red. I have had the pattern in my Ravelry queue for a while and was excited to get going on it.

The cardigan calls for dk wool but I went with a fingering weight cotton because I wanted it to be cool for the upcoming season. Since this feels more loftier then your regular fingering weight when I swatched I only had to go down one needle size from a 6 to a 5 and it was perfect fit. The eyelets in the middle can have ribbon woven through in a criss cross fashion or you can just leave them open. I chose to use two of the holes to make a bow.

This cotton is very soft and it has a pretty halo to it. She likes it too.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

the age of brass and steam kerchief

This kerchief or small shawl was knit quickly a few weeks ago and was a very enjoyable simple project. I used Quince and Co. Chickadee in Spruce since I had it on hand.

I plan to give this as a gift though I am tempted to keep it for myself. I would knit this pattern again but, next time in a hand dyed with more drape and a bit bigger I think.

Friday, March 23, 2012

orange and pink sundress - far far away dress #3

Her favorite colors are orange and pink and when I saw this Heather Ross voile print in my cabinet I knew I had to make another one of these sundresses. I have made two before one for each summer and she can still wear the one from two years ago.

The directions are from Heather Ross's Weekend Sewing but also here on Martha Stewart

I've since shortened the dress a little since the photo was taken for freer movement.

Have a nice weekend.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

school skirt

Notebook paper and arithmetic problems. I would rather practice handwriting then do complicated math any day.

S learned to write her name a few months ago and loves to practice her letters. Somedays she asks me to spell out all the names of the kids in her classes and then she will write them all down sometimes making them cards which she passes out in the hallway.

I saw this design concept on another website sometime last year and clocked it away in my memory to try.
The skirt is made from half a yard sewn at the selvedge at 1/2" seam allowance and it is a simple elastic waist.
I wrote her name in pencil and then traced with embroidery thread on the notebook paper.
The pintucks in the skirt were fun to make.
I'd like to get a solid red and black tee for her to wear with this.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

green gingham shorts

Yesterday, it really was shorts weather.

Time for dirty knees and jumping off the rock in the yard or rather 'Misty Mountain' as the kids call it. The make up the best games.

Every Spring it never fails I fall head over heels for green and pastels and bright colors and even neon this year. It must be that we are programmed to incorporate what happens in nature into our everyday lives.

New shorts with pockets. Puppet show shorts pattern by Oliver + S in green gingham cotton lawn.

She is into fashion shows now. I wonder where she gets this idea? :)
I think we will have a S fashion show week here on the blog since she modeled a few other items for me yesterday.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

roses and daisies dress

Vintage fabric purchased on last years summer vacation. A bow at the neckline and french seams.
A dress that I have made several times I know it by memory now which is good since I don't remember where the directions first came from.

A simple pullover style but made fancy with that bow.

She wanted to wear sandals with her tights today but, I said 'no.' It's not quite sandal weather yet. Soon, maybe?

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

swingset skirt

Spring fever has hit and I have been sewing away new clothes for Ms. S.
I have a small pile growing by the day.

This skirt is part of the Oliver + S swingset skirt and tunic pattern and I have made it several times in the past. I never tire of this cute skirt and the fit on it is great. I didn't have enough of the Liberty of London peacock print to make up a top so this will be worn with soft cotton tees.

Monday, March 12, 2012

working in the greenhouse

I officially became a member of the garden club in town a few months ago. I had been going to the meetings on and off for a few years and it really is a stellar club. Now that I am 'in' I get to do volunteer work. Every May we have a plant sale and in March they have potting up parties in the greenhouse.

On Saturday morning I headed to the greenhouse near town hall. I potted up a few different plants- astilbe and many varieties of coleus. It was a lot of fun working there and chatting with the ladies and gents while keeping warm ( it was rather chilly on Saturday morning) and getting my hands in the dirt.

I kind of want to go back right now. It's such a nice place to be. I hope to rent space in one of the three houses to start up seeds next year. I missed out this season.

Friday, March 9, 2012

upholstery class part 1

After expressing interest in upholstery and seeing that there was a class at the adult school in town my husband signed me up as an early birthday gift.

I have now been to 2/10 classes and have managed to completely pull apart the footstool and start to put it together.
I can not believe how many tacks I have pulled out of this little piece of furniture. I do not lie when I guess it would about 300-400 tacks. I am now using my magnetic tack hammer and staple lifter with some level of experience. My teacher Johnny informed me I was baby'ing my piece and told me to lift the tacks assembly line style. He is a quiet, nice older man and called us all experts from the get-go so you see he has a sense of humor.

current state of stool

before shot



ripping apart in first class- photo taken with iPhone.

At the first class he showed us all the tools and told us what we needed to buy. Many of the students had already been to previous classes there and were just ripping their pieces apart. I thought here goes and borrowed a few of the teachers tools and just started pulling it apart. It felt empowering (ha) because I really don't use tools other then a hammer and a screwdriver very occasionally.

The pictures show the stool as I've had it for about 8 years, some of the ripping apart, staples and my poor hands which are already abused from winter and my handcrafting and a few of the upholstery tools. It looks like a rat chewed on the side of this piece

The footstool is from the Elephant's Trunk flea market in CT. I was only there once but, it was a pretty good flea market. I really miss going to them and hope I get to a few this year.

I am fretting over fabric decisions. Dare I say this will be the hardest part for me?

What I had to purchase-

Upholstery Kit
webbing (shown)
1 yard of burlap
roll of cotton
1" foam rubber
4 yards of double welting cord
fabric 1 1/2 yards- still deciding

I am hoping if all goes well with this piece I will be able to start a chair during the course.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

raspberry wool tunic/dress

A knit dress (or tunic) in a very pretty shade of red like a berry stain with a bit of pink in it. The yarn is from a Sheep and Wool festival a few years back and it is a plant dyed merino wool. It had no tag so I was unsure of the yardage which is why it came out a little shorter then I wanted. This is not a problem because she sits criss cross apple sauce at school and this also makes it easier for active play which as we know four year olds are very good at.

The dress is one I have knit for her before. This is the third now and I like it very much. It fits a long time and just becomes a top. A very simple knit with a fast result and one I know she likes to wear over a cotton tee and leggings.

Here are the other two I've made.

black and white

A friend (Hi Kim) asked for some photos of the powder room put back together and since you asked so nicely....

I really love old black and white photos and have put up some group shots that I have. I would like to add more as I find ones I like. The first two are part of one photo depicting an outing for a hosiery factory my Grandmother worked at in Irvington, NJ and the children of some of the workers. Then there is part of a large photo of women perhaps that were part of a club at college? The last one is the teen beauty princesses with very long hair.

We put back the shelf and the mirror that we inherited with the house but, I have not put back the curtain yet that I made a few months back. I like it but, am not sure I want to put it back just yet.

Monday, March 5, 2012

carousel ride

We were in Brooklyn on Saturday for a photographer appointment and it was the perfect opportunity to go to Jane's Carousel. We had a really nice day stopping in at Jacques Torres, Almondine Bakery and Pomme. We ate macarons and chocolate, sipped coffee and wandered around Dumbo and later Carroll Gardens where I browsed yarn and later went out for Middle Eastern food.

And, these are the views from the Carousel.