Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Soap Box: Cloth Grocery Bags


This post wasn't going to be a rant. It was going to be a rave...a b-day wish for a friend for whom I made a loverly set of orange gingham grocery bags. I kinda want to keep them....but I did put them in the mail and she should have them on her birthday. :-)


 Okay, let me climb up and get on the ol' soap box. I don't move as fast as I used to.....this might take a sec....

    First off, I am pro cloth grocery bag. I got hooked on them 20 years ago before they were the "in" thing, before they were easy to find and before plastic grocery bags.  And before townships started the legislative nightmare of forcing people to capitulate to an ideal that they may or may not hold dear. just makes my blood boil!  
    Stores and people are being shamed and forced into doing things that are not illegal, not immoral and quite frankly, not the the gov's business. 
    It's not just bag bans popping up all over the place, it's no smoking (fyi, I think smoking is gross but it isn't illegal or immoral); no transfats, no hot coffee, no happy meal toy (SF) unless said meal capitulates to someone else's ideal; having a kid's turkey on whole wheat confiscated and then making them eat the school's chicken nuggets (better? I think not!) The list goes on and on and our rights and choices are being taken away from us with hardly a whimper. Without there being a law enacted even!
    We, naively, believe most of these things are in our best interest, but it's really about who gets the money, who gets the ''air time" and who gets the power. Greed and pride. Sure, someone cared at one time, but then someone else found a way to control people AND make a profit and now it's law, or worse a forced decision that isn't law but you "have" to do it anyway or else.
    Wake up people!!! It's time to let your local, state and federal governments know that you are WAY past their police state activities! You have rights.......and one of them is the freedom to choose.   
    How people spend their time and money will dictate which things come and's the nature of things. The government is overreaching their legal authority and spending countless tax dollars....OUR tax dollars...and time on things they have no bearing on the role of government!
Let's stop the madness!

People should be able to decide if you smoke in their place of business or not!
People should decide what their kid eats for lunch!
Helmets, seat-belts, trans-fats, insurance, marriage......
And doggone it, people should still be able to answer the simple question: paper or plastic?

Don't even get me started on the lack of simple manners and ghetto behavior and the way we dress our young (and getting younger) girls like porn stars and hookers (and not the high paid kind). And the baggy pants thing (prison culture) oy and vay!

Slowly climbing off my soap box...........

Monday, May 28, 2012

A Time for Remeberance and Family

Thanks to all the military men and women and their families for your sacrifice.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Okay, only two more baby pics

At least this week!! And yes, I AM making the ''gramma face", just sayin!

Miss Isabella at 8 hours old

28 hours old and already a fashionista!
Miss Thang avoiding the paparazzi 
( okay, billylights time )

I am afraid there will be more gratuitous baby photos for awhile......yes, I am one of ''those'' g-ma's!

Next post will be sewing, I almost promise! :-)  

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Just call me Granny

My first grand baby....Miss Isabella Elise Florenti....
And I am going to say what every new grandma says: I have the prettiest baby every!!!

She is the first on her mom's side, first on her dad's side....can you say spoiled little princess? ;-)

The new family of three
Stewart, Brandi and Isabella

Me and the princess

Just countin fingers and toes

She likes her fingers

After bath snooze

Get some rest princess, it was a long 3.5 days of labor.

Friday, May 18, 2012

First Muslin: Claire Cami Dress

WWweeeelllllllllll, I knew I needed to do a full bust adjustment (FBA), but I need to make it really full. LOL  For all you sewistas that are experienced with this kinda thing.....feel free to leave me TONS of advice. This is my very first attempt at regrading and cutting and slashing to bring a pattern up to the right size. This one says 44" bust, but I am only at 46" and this feels more than two inches too tight. LOL

 First, the dress pattern. Sew Serendipity's Claire Cami Dress

Now, the muslin:

As you can see, this sucker rides up pretty high and is pretty tight
FBA plus some width is definitely needed. 
Sooooo not loving the sweetheart neckline.That's gotta go bye-bye, just sayin.......

Yep, from this angle it looks like I need to add 3-4 inches to get the front to hang properly.
More added to the front than the back.

Arm holes have gaping which may settle once the top fits properly, but they may need to be re-cut because they actually fit pretty good and I don't want them to get all ginormous after alteration group number one.

 The back isn't too bad. Because the front is VERY undersized, it pulls the back forward. The upper back fits really well, the lower back could use another inch of ease since this will be a pull over. 
At least that is the direction I'm leaning toward.
I like where the waist band is located on my back, I don't want to lower it if I can avoid it.
This means I may have to dart in more than one place in the front. 
One at the side bust and one at the side waist that it can be eaten up in the seam allowance so I can keep the side seams the same length.
Making the waist a little wider is a piece of cake for this kind of dress. LOL Although, there is enough built in ease, that I may not have to add much, if any to the skirt part.

Like I said at the beginning, any and all input is more than welcomed cuz I am one apprehensive little sewista!

Off to read through my fitting books and blog land.  Wish me luck!!

 The adjustments that need to be made. I need and fba and a total of 4" added in the width.
Getting rid of sweetheart neckline, it's just too dang high to work as a sweetheart.
Now, who's coming to my house to help me do this?? I'll cook!! Seriously! ;-)

Monday, May 14, 2012

Tomorrow is the Big Day!!

Tomorrow is big the day!!!        You can do it!
It only took me a few minutes, even with all the picture taking for my post!
Won't you join me?  Prizes are involved and not just from me!

Okay, here I gooooooo
My purse...over flowing

Top view....not too scary...yet

I done went and did it. I dumped out the entire contents.
How did all of that fit? Seriously! That is three weeks worth of junk....only three weeks!

Sorted into piles

Wha? This is from my son's phone. 
It came with this blank when he got it and he just put his old sim card in it. 
Why do I still have it?

Ear plugs and a safety mask for cpr

I don't even remember eating anywhere that gave out plastic forks...hahahaha

Fabric sample for thread matching purposes.
Can you guess the fabric? C'mon......I know you can. 
Yes, that is a lime green jump drive/

$3.71 in change that was on the bottom of my purse. 
I can see a Mac's Lounge Mini-meal in my future. 

Time to put everything back. 
Feminine protection products and some odds and ends in a little bag.

My nook...Ghastlie, isn't it? he he he

All back in my purse.

Now, prize time!
I am offering Kathi Lipp's Book. "The Get Yourself Organized Project" 
and 4 inspirational book marks to one lucky reader!

How to get it? 
  1. Just post a picture of your dumped out purse on facebook or your blog
  2. Comment here with a link to your picture (today or tomorrow's post)
  3. Make sure and leave your contact info
  4. Wait impatiently until Friday, May 19 for me to visit the random number generator and post the winner!
That isn't the only thing you can win!!!!
Visit Kathi's blog for a chance to win some serious awesomeness! The rest of the deets tomorrow!

So stay tuned in! Same blog channel, same distracted diva!

What's on my sewing table

Okay, it's really my dining-room table with a big ol' cutting mat on top of it. LOL
I am sewing for

I used an old, torn, bed sheet as my muslin. I hate wasting fabric so this feels better than something I have to ''waste."  I know it isn't really waste when you are trying to get your fitting skills from non-existent to proficient, but still, ya know?

The Claire Cami Dress: traced, pinned and ready for the scissors.

See, it really does take up the whole table.
Yes, I have two fitting books out and I emptied two pincushions because I am pinner extraordinaire!

What's on your table? Hope it's something fun!

Friday, May 11, 2012

Some Days, you just gotta love your mailman!

Today was one of those days! Loving this new line - Homespun Chic by Melody Ross for Blend Fabric. I've been told I am the Queen of novelty prints....I can't help myself! te he he

 I have no plans for it at the momenteeto, but I haven't made myself a good novelty print dress or shirt in awhile. I don't need much for a grocery bag, so maybe one of those. 
I love the herringbone/swirly gingham prints......maybe one of those will be an accent print on the dress I started today. (claire cami dress by serendipity patterns)

Hopefully my mailman brings the rest of my ghastlies order....S O O N! Talk about your novelty print.......♥

Any love in your mailboxes?

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

I Jumped on the Fad Bandwagon........ME!

I don't know what I was thinking.....I have:
  • 8 gazillion patterns (only a slight exaggeration, I assure you)
  • an ability to alter said patterns (altho I haven't done much and I am kind've a scardy cat to waste fabric for practice) 
  • people who do this kinda thing for a living who are more than happy to help
  • people who know how to do this kinda of thing and are happy to help
  •  youtube and a myriad of other sources to choose from 
  • blogs, blogs and more blogs
 So why oh why did I buy another pattern? At full price, mind you. I looked through my cache of patterns.......nothing like it. I was surprised......a simple pattern like that and I have NOTHING even close!  Shocked, I was, shocked. Right about now you're asking yourself, "Self, what is all the fuss about? What pattern is she talking about? That girl be crazy."

Well, here it is......The pattern all of blog-land is all a twitter about.......The Darlings Ranges Dress.

I've seen it on skinny chicks and big chicks and it looks great on both!
I especially love the sleeveless versions.

You can read about the sew along here and look at some finished dresses too! I ♥ this dress. I have always liked a good jumper....always! Of course, this will have to be graded up to fit a booblicious, curvy woman, such as myself.....and that task is daunting, but I gotta start somewhere. 
Once I master the art of fitting myself, my sewing world will never be the same! Project runway, forgettaboutit.....project me looking fab....yeah buddy!


 I have this pattern. It's the closest thing to the Darling Ranges pattern in all of my stash. I've been wanting to make it, but a side zip, really? I was just going to carry the buttons allllll the way down. Again, avoiding alterations and having fun with other sewing.

I have this pattern out and ready to work on. It, too, needs some grading. Probably need to add some darts and do a FBA too.. So many really cute patterns end their sizes at 16 (pattern 16, not real world 16) and a B cup. Well, a real world 16 would be great, but that B cup......that is sooooo not workin for me. LOL 


Do you find that when you get the ''women's'' sizes, they think you have the shoulders of a linebacker WITH his shoulder pads on, perky boobs with darts that end really close to your chin, and armholes that go to your bellybutton? Patterns or store bought, do they use real, full sized gals for a fitting? Sure doesn't seem like it. One of the many reasons I sew. :-)

Well, I have to wait for my DR pattern to come in before I can play around with it.

I have plenty on my table right now:
  • A baby quilt that needs quilting and binding
  • the claire cami dress (see above)
  • a baby quilt to make for my soon to be granddaughter (this month probably)
  • graduation stuff for the dot
  • wedded bliss for the man/child in 2 months and then his college grad in Dec.
  • Crafty Chicas Weekend in Long Beach at the end of July
  • mother's day, wow this weekend already
  • lunch, I'm starving :-)

What's on your table?

Saturday, May 5, 2012

Prom Adventure in Hemming

The Dot's (short for daughter) good friend is height challenged. Even in nose-bleed high heels, she needed 3" taken off her dress. This is how I mark my hems so I can serger (in this case, a rolled hem) a straight line.

First off, I had her put on her shoes and I marked the length. All that money for a dress and that was one uneven hem, let me tell you!

I go to my sewing machine and set it on a medium length basting stitch and I loosen the tension a bit so the extra fine fabric doesn't get all puckery.  I use post-its or tape to mark how deep I want the hem and then I sew a line of stitching to mark my place.

I hang it up and see if it's even. I'll mark any corrections with pins or chalk at this point.
Looks pretty good to me!  Wow, it looks like more than 3 inches too. gulp!

 Set my trusty ol' serger for a 3 thread rolled hem and made sure 
I kept the row of stitching just to the right of the cutter.

Who ever invented a serger was a genius! That rolled hem is so nice. 
I can even imagine how long it would've taken me to hand sew a rolled hem.

That's the pile of satin and chiffon that came off the dress.

Ta-daaaaaaa.....even steven

Do you have some fun tricks that help you? Share!! After all...knowledge is power!!

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Vintage Sewing Surprise!

My hubs does a little yard work for an older couple. Well, Ms. Betty is going through her stuff and thinning it out. (don't get me started on the stash of vintage aprons that the hubs found out she gave away before she knew I sewed..sniff, sniff) She sent a couple of books my of which is a treasure!! It has everything in it....seriously...ev-ry-thing!

This is the 1957 publication.

Tons of info...tons

Free '57? Awesome!!

High end sewing



Home Dec


Details from the Zipper and notions booklet. 
No date, but probably about the same time since it was stuck into the singer book.

How fun is this!!! I can't wait to compare it to some books that I already have. I am betting that other than dated pictures, it is still more than relevant!!

Do you have a favorite sewing reference book? Your go-to resource? can never, ever have enough knowledge!!