Thursday, December 27, 2007
Sunday, December 23, 2007
Each December, I vowed to make Christmas a calm and peaceful experience. I had cut back on nonessential obligations - extensive card writing, endless baking, decorating, and even overspending. Yet still, I found myself exhausted, unable to appreciate the precious family moments, and of course, the true meaning of Christmas. My son, Nicholas, was in kindergarten that year. It was an exciting season for a six year old. For weeks, he'd been memorizing songs for his school's "Winter Pageant." I did not have the heart to tell him I'd be working the night of the production. Unwilling to miss his shining moment, I spoke with his teacher. She assured me there'd be a dress rehearsal the morning of the presentation. All parents unable to attend that evening were welcome to come then. Fortunately, Nicholas seemed happy with the compromise. So, the morning of the dress rehearsal, I filed in ten minutes early, found a seat on the cafeteria floor and sat down. Around the room, I saw several other parents quietly scampering to their seats. As I waited, the students were led into the room. Each class, accompanied by their teacher, sat cross-legged on the floor. Then, each group, one by one, rose to perform their song. Because the public school system had long stopped referring to the holiday as "Christmas," I didn't expect anything other than fun, commercial entertainment - songs of reindeer, Santa Claus, snowflakes and good cheer. So, when my son's class rose to sing, "Christmas Love," I was surprised and delighted by the title. Nicholas was aglow, as were all of his classmates, adorned in fuzzy mittens, red sweaters, and bright snowcaps upon their heads. Those in the front row- center stage - held up large letters, one by one, to spell out the title of the song. As the class would sing "C is for Christmas," a child would hold up the letter C. Then, "H is for Happy," and on and on, until each child holding up his portion had presented the complete message, "Christmas Love." The performance was going smoothly, until suddenly, we noticed her; a small, quiet, girl in the front row holding the letter "M" upside down - totally unaware her letter "M" appeared as a "W". The audience of 1st through 6th graders snickered at this little one's mistake. But she had no idea they were laughing at her, so she stood tall, proudly holding her "W". Although many teachers tried to shush the children, the laughter continued until the last letter was raised, and we all saw it together. A hush came over the audience and eyes began to widen. In that instant, we understood - the reason we were there, why we celebrated the holiday in the first place, why even in the chaos, there was a purpose for our festivities. For when the last letter was held high, the message read loud and clear: "CHRISTWAS LOVE"
May your Christmas be filled with Love, Laughter, Family and Friends.
Saturday, December 22, 2007
Sunday, December 16, 2007
Saturday, December 15, 2007
Merry Christmas Lisa!
Wednesday, December 12, 2007
There are no photos of the #1 top - the brown one. It is nice - Really! If you do not yet have this pattern - stop here and order it NOW! I know there are a myriad of reviews for this top, but wanted to add my 2cents (Canadian).
Pattern Description: Close-fitting, pullover, wrap top with gathered waistline detail and sleeve variations
Pattern Sizing: XS to XL. I made a Small and tapered to Medium at the hip.
Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it? OMgoodness - yes! I actually hugged myself I loved it so much!
Were the instructions easy to follow? Easy as pie! I actually used them as I wanted to know if they made sense. They did!
What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern? I love that it fit me right out of the envelope. The neckline hugs just as it should and is low but not too low.
I can see that a few more situps are in order - get thyself to the gym more often Connie- but I think a medium would have ended up too large in the bust area. A note to the very tiny people here- I am not a small boned person and I used a small- I think even the XS may be too large for my daughters who wear a RTW 4. I have the feeling that I am going to find out though!
Fabric Used: I've made this top 3 times now.
#1 was a luscious thin chocolate brown knit that I either got from EOS or Wazoodle. I think it was EOS. I wish my fabric stash was organized! (in fact I really should just make that a priority as I just discovered that I have 2 identical green linen pieces of fabric - both purchased recently for pants- I do not remember buying EITHER!)
#2 was a cool geometric print from EOS
#3 a lovely graphic knit from Metro Textiles in NYC. This must be my personal best in the "NYC purchase to garment" category! I have Christine Jonsons wrap dress cut out in this fabric already as well!
Pattern Alterations or any design changes you made: #1 In order to make the neckline a bit more interesting, I added some elastic with a very pretty picot edge. As well as looking "pretty" it helped to keep the neckline tight. I turned the neck edge under and hand basted (I do like hand basting) then topstitched the elastic on with 2 rows of stitching. I am embarrassed to say that I looked at my new coverstitch machine while I used my sewing machine to sew the elastic on- I am still not as confident with it as I should be mainly because I would rather sew than practice - bad Connie - practice makes perfect. I make the excuse that I wanted to get something actually SEWN, as there has not been much time for that lately.
#3 I trimmed the neck edge with some black very very narrow fold over elastic. I got this last year in NYC at MJ Trims (I think!) I serged the edge first, then hand basted both sides on individually. Very finickity but well worth it in the end. Oh I almost forgot to mention that I coverstitched this baby - Yeah finally made friends with the machine! Looking closer I can see that my grain line was off a bit- I was pretty careful so I may check the grain line on the pattern piece next time.
Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others? Oh yes! I love, love, love this pattern! Easy and looks good too!
It took about 2 hours from start to finish. Did I mention that I think this pattern is wonderful?
Conclusion: Fast, easy to put together and looks fantastic on so many body types! This was just the pattern I needed to shoot me out of my sewing slump!
Saturday, December 08, 2007
So she sat there. Decorative but not horribly funtional. I did make Mike a nice pair of boxers. They only cost $1000.00 if you figure it our using dollar cost averaging! Then I roll hemmed a dress. Okay the underwear then only cost $500.00!
I roll hemmed 20 6 feet long table runners for the wedding. Boxer cost - $250.00
"Darn it all" I said to myself this morning. Actually I said "damm", but..well you know! "I am going to conquer this thing today!" I am mechanically inclined. I drive and can fix(well sometimes!) a combine for goddness sakes! This little glorified sewing machine was NOT going to continue its life in this house as a drape horse for fabric any longer!
So I reintroduced myself politely. I read a few blogs and some PatternReview threads on coverstitch machines. Since this lady was going to have dedicated Coverstitch usage, I read the manual. Cover to cover. Three times. All I got for my troubles was a snarly mess. So I started over URGGHH
The second best advice I read said that one should thread using different colours to properly analyze the problem. Well Eureka! I was always assuming that the bottom looper was the culprit, when actually the left needle path was not threaded perfectly! I had not "flossed" the thread in the tension disc.
Then it ws accessory time. I had the "M" foot and the hemmer guide. I found this great website from the UK that has a myriad of videos pertaining to Pfaff feet and other accessories. That made it a cinch!
Ahhhh now we are friends. Soon to be best of friends I am sure!
Friday, December 07, 2007
But what? I keep on getting sidetracked and start new projects that are "so cute" and "oh I need to make that"
Frinstance? Our Santa Clause Parade is the 14th of December and I "offered" to make Elf costumes for 2 of the Council members...
Lauren wants a coat...so I decided I need one too...
A friend is having a Christmas party on Saturday and I wanted to craft up some ornaments as a hostess gift for her...
And all of the blogs that I have been reading lately have been going on and on about the most adorable aprons...Connie you don't wear aprons! Yes, but I WOULD if I had those cute aprons...I might even be tempted to make all of those delicious holiday cookies and squares and pies....
Aprons like these...
So what's a girl to do? Finger shop and wait by the mailbox for these fabrics...
Maybe I should sew whilst I am waiting for that Tonic Living order. Or I will be naked under those aprons! And it is cold out beside that mailbox!
Check out my newest fav CD- Ann Murray and friends- I love Ann!