Tuesday, July 16, 2013

I'm Just a Lucky Sew-and-Sew

From the time I learned to sew at the age of 11 until I graduated from high school, I sewed on my mom's Singer.
Mom's machine... still running!
For my HS graduation, my parents bought me a brand new Singer sewing machine from the Singer store in the mall. Do you remember Singer having their own stores? They sold vacuums, sewing machines and fabric, patterns and notions. In fact, at the time, our new little mall had two stores selling fabric. 
There were things that machine did that I still wish for today like winding the bobbin right in the bobbin case, just push the button and press the pedal. So easy! And the buttonhole attachment was the best. You put the button onto the attachment and slid the gauge down to fit and it automatically made a perfect sized buttonhole!
Thanks to Tonya's Sewing Room for this pic.

Looked like this one.

But... it also had its problems, like the tension was never right and big globs of thread would bunch up on the underside of the fabric. It made sewing a nightmare.

So a few years later, with my nearly new Singer for trade and money my grandmother left to me, I went shopping for a new machine. What I bought was a Viking 6690. It was top of the line and the first Viking to be partly computerized.

That machine has sewn everything from my first nephew's baptism outfit to a canvas awning for our deck. From theater costumes to my wedding gown. From hemming jeans to hundreds of yards of bias tape onto aprons. In all these years it required repair only once. When I purchased it, the store owner promised it would last me 35 years. Well, that 35 years is up and the machine is telling me it's tired. It's time for a new machine.  
 After months of researching and shopping around, I finally made it official last Friday. I paid a deposit on a brand new Pfaff Expression 3.2. Yeah!!!

Isn't she pretty? My machine had to be ordered but it should be set up in my sewing room in less than a week. I'm so excited!!! My favorite feature on this machine (and it's on all the new machines) is the light over the needle. It gives my eyes a much better view of what I'm doing. Now to decide what lovely project I'll make to christen my new machine.
Onto something from my past...
My cousin and his wife have a son and a daughter. Their son was married last Spring and their daughter was married last October. By Christmas they were both expecting babies! So this Spring I had two baby shower gifts to come up with. Of course that's the perfect excuse to make quilts.
Thanks to browsing on Pinterest, I had become enamored of I Spy Quilts. Here's the first one I made.

Over  150 different things to spy.

I used a Snowball pattern and a checkerboard border.
And the back... The fabric I wanted to back it with was too narrow so I pieced it.

And the second one.

I like the design of this one better.
They were both fun to make. More than half of the different fabrics were in my stash. My sewing buddy shared some of her cute fabrics with me and I shopped for the rest.
I made a list of about 100 things to spy, had it laminated and tied one onto the corner of each quilt with ribbon. I'm sure the parents will have just as much fun playing with these as their little ones. And speaking of those little ones, I must share a photo of the two baby girls that were born a month apart.
I'm thinking these two will be more like sisters than cousins. Such a sweet new branch on the family tree.

Friday, July 12, 2013

Something Old, Something New

I hope you're all enjoying your Summer

I thought the best way to catch up here is to show something new and something that I meant to post months ago.
Let's start with something old.
Maybe you remember about a year ago, some of us blog buddies decided to swap Blog Banner Triangles. Well, I did make mine and sent them out (not until September, but I did get them sent) and I received lovely triangles for my Friendship Banner. I just never got around to posting the results on here.
Here are the Friendship triangles I sent.

What fun I had making these. I started with gingham fabric. I added a glitter edge to white crepe paper ruffles. I embroidered the rick rack and layered the yo-yos. The part that I spent the most time on was choosing just the right little girl in an apron to match each color.
Here are the Friendship Triangles I received.

Tammy's In Love

Creative Breathing

521 Lake Street

Zetta's Aprons
Even the backs were great on these.
Thanks again to Tammy, Elizabeth, Sandy and Shirley for their lovely swap packages.
Now for something more recent... My son convinced us to make a trip to a Flea Market on Sunday and I had some good luck. For a few years, I been keeping an eye out for vintage tablecloths. I wanted ones that were stained or have small holes or tears so I didn't feel bad cutting them up for aprons, pillows, valances or whatever I could make with them. Also, I hoped the ones with problems wouldn't cost too much. Since we live next door to Brimfield, Massachusetts (huge antique/flea market 3 times a year) we have quite a few year-round and seasonal places to go junking. I've found many vintage tablecloths but even the cutters had price tags that seemed to be too high for me.
Until Sunday. Here's what I brought home.
Four tablecloths in beautiful colors and graphics. The berry cloth, bottom left, has multiple stains and a small hole. The blue and pink rose cloths, on top, have some discoloration on the folds. The gold rose cloth is perfect. I don't think it was ever used. So what was my bargain price?  $2.50 each! Can't wait to run them through the laundry and start playing with ideas to use them (except the gold rose cloth is going onto my dining room table).
Thanks for visiting.
Next time...I bought a new sewing machine today!

Sunday, July 7, 2013

The Reader's Digest Condensed Version

Since my last post, I've missed Valentine's Day, St. Patrick's Day, Easter, Mother's Day, my birthday, Memorial Day, Father's Day and Independence Day! I have been sewing, knitting, crocheting, paper-crafting, Pinning, collecting and swapping. I've been to baby showers, wedding showers and birthday parties. (No graduations this year) I've been helping my parents out as my dad has suffered with health issues for the last 6 months. (He's doing better now) I'm shopping for a new sewing machine and we're trying to plan a week long vacation for later this summer.
Now that you're all caught up, I'll see what photos I have to share. Oh, wait, I'm on the wrong computer! All my pics are on the other computer. Well, rather than saving this post and adding the pictures to it at a later time, (we know how long that can take) I'm just putting this out there to say HI! to all my buddies. I hope you're enjoying your summer and all that comes with it. ♥♥♥