Monday, September 23, 2013

When I Grow Up I Want To Be........

When I grow up I want to be just like Miss Dot.  I had the immense pleasure of spending a few days with Miss Dot in Richmond Virginia this past month.  Miss Dot is a well know figure in the heirloom sewing world and at just shy of 90 years young is still sewing up a storm.  I could not have been more impressed with anyone.  She is blessed with a quick wit, a gentle spirit, and a major gift with a needle in her hand.


It was my privilege to spend time stitching (please excuse the casual attire!) side by side with this gracious lady.   She can convey more with one arched eyebrow than 1000 words could speak. Clearly I have lots to learn!


Miss Dot was up for the challenge of participating in a three day class to make this corduroy scalloped jacket and matching dress.  May we all be as engaged and willing to try something new when we reach her years.  She was a model student who probably REALLY should have been the teacher.



I also managed to get to Colorado to see some of my grand kids this past month.  They don't think I'm that much fun but can hardly wait for my two teenagers to show up.  This is Hailey modelling a version of  'April in Paris' from AS&E issue #80 with her Aunt Doireann (my youngest daughter) who has spent many years putting up with modelling dresses for me.




Not to forget the boys... My youngest son could not sit down without a niece or nephew landing in his lap and it usually turned into an entire chair full.



My sewing days are long over for these big boys but they are clearly the life of any party.

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Red White and Blue

Happy Canada Day (July 1st) and Happy July 4th

It just sort of worked out that my current project is red, white, and blue.  Two little sailor rompers in a size 1.  



The girl and boy versions have a white linen top and a  1/32" cotton  micro check bottom. The bodice front has a pulled thread grid which was machine stitched with an entredeux stitch and then the red or blue floss was woven through the holes created by the machine.  The sailor collar and sleeve cuff feature a line of hand stitched double feather stitch.  The girl sleeve has some 'puff' at the cap in contrast to the fitted sleeve on the little boy romper.


 
The sewn in shaped belts are piped at top and bottom.  The girl romper has a tie sash in the back and the boy version is more tailored with a lapped button back belt.  These rompers are a bit more complicated to put together than they might appear.  I like everything to line up at the center back and this project presented a few challenges in that department.  




These rompers in sizes 1-3 will be a new class for me in 2014. I think they are a good mix of a 'do-able' project paired with lots of interesting design and construction details. 

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Girls Just WanNa Have Fun


Sew, laugh, eat, sew, laugh, eat, sew, laugh, eat - repeat from beginning for a week!. I have just come home from a sewing retreat with the most fabulous group of friends in the most charming location.  Welcome to Petticoat Junction in Normandy Tennessee.


The Junction is a retreat house which sleeps 15 in 'dormitory' style rooms with a large open sewing space on the upper floor.







This gives you just a little look at the bedrooms.  There was a beautiful dining room where home cooked catered meals appeared as if by magic.  Is there anything better than dinner showing up after a full day of stitching?


A comfortable sitting room was available for watching movies and hanging out at night but I have to admit I don't think any of us stepped a foot in there - too much sew, laugh, eat.........


The entire house was a delight with vintage photos, good books on every shelf, and a screened back porch (complete with daybed) with a swing that was a perfect spot for early morning coffee and stitching.  There was even a little shaded table out in the side yard.







The big open room upstairs had lots of natural light and a terrific 'feel'.  Notice the color coordinated work stations - these girls are serious!




Most afternoons we took a break and walked around the little town.  There was a bit of 'strut' going on with some reliving their high school days.  Others (who shall remain anonymous) felt it necessary to take their sangria for a walk.  If you look closely you may notice someone is still in pajamas - clearly the dress code was a few steps below casual.





The week would not have been complete without a late night trip to a neighboring town for a Walmart run.  There was also a little bit of 'strut' going on there.  It's amazing how much stuff looks appealing when you are with eight sleep deprived women late at night in a Walmart.



As luck would have it Petticoat Junction is right next door to a  lovely local dining spot which served a 'knock your socks off' Sunday buffet (which I learned is really a boo-fay!)  You know you are in the south when the sweet tea is served in Mason Jars.   Clearly no one went hungry.  We were also treated to some live music.





I think it is safe to say a good time was had by all - even the one that slept through being toilet papered to her bed or the 'young one' that kept a good attitude with us 'worrisome' and 'troubled' older women and provided unending tech support.



I would like to send a big shout out THANK YOU to eight really terrific, funny, smart, compassionate, gorgeous women who were the best company I could have ever asked for.  I even got a little bit of my own stitching done - another version of my new dress and jacket.

     



You know the old saying "a picture is worth a thousand words" - this last photo sums up a perfect week.  


Teaching Schedule for 2017

March 22-25
Spiri
t of St Louis SAGA
St. Louis,
Missouri
contact: Diane (diane.brinker@gmail.com)

April 5-9
Children's Corner
Nashville, Tennessee
contact: www.children'scornerstore.com

April 28 - May 2
Chadwick Heirlooms
Richmond, Virginia
contact: www.chadwickheirlooms.com

May 22-26
Birmingham, Alabama
Fiming new vidoes for Classic Sewing magazine

June 8-11
Private class
Fernlake, Tennessee

June 22-24
Huntsville SAGA
Huntsville, Alabama
contact: Abbie (mofam@comcast.net)

June 26-28
Private class
Huntsville, Alabama

July 6-8
Prairie Bell Smockers (SAGA)
Lincoln, Nebraska
contact: Jenny (rev.leej.johnson@gmail.com)

July 18-23
Private class
Becky's Barn
Grinsley, Tennessee

August 7-11
Private class
Wenatchee, Washington

August 21-25
Farmhouse Fabrics
Beech Island, South Carolina
contact: www.farmhousefabrics.com

September 7-9
Low Country Smockers (SAGA)
Charleston, South Carolina
contact: Sallie (sallienold@gmail.com)

September 22-24
Yankee SAGA
Boston, Mass
contact: Kathy (kiodacey@gmail.com)

October 12-15
SAGA Regional
St. Louis Missouri
contact: www.smocking.org

October 16-19
Private class
St. Louis, Missouri

November 7-11
Private class
Medford, Oregan

For teaching information, a current class list, and available dates, contact gaildoane@hotmail.com