Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Free pattern offer at

With no camera to document my sewing adventures, I feel as if I have nothing to share with you. Guess I'll just share this free pattern offer I stumbled across at

My choice was Vogue 1068 - love the neckline on that dress and top.

You choose the pattern you want (restrictions apply - including all designer patterns) and when you check out you only pay shipping charges. In my case shipping came to $4.

Now would be a a good time to head on over and get yourself that Vogue pattern you've been craving. After all, you can't beat the price! Pin It

Sunday, August 03, 2008

The cost of a cheap vacation...

Abby visits the lake
Originally uploaded by Sharon Sews
I mentioned in my last post how we have been looking for ways to cut back on our expenses. One of the summer casualties was our planned out of town vacations. In their place we choose to stay home and do home improvement projects.

Except for this weekend. We were invited to spend the weekend with one of my sister-in-laws who just happens to own lake front property just a few hours north of the Twin Cities. Whoo! hoo! I had forgotten how much fun playing in the sun and water can be! Especially combined with a gracious hostess who not only fed us but had frozen strawberry daiquiris and margaritas ready for us.

Abby was also invited and we were excited to see how quickly she took to water. After all she is part Black Lab and part Newfoundland - both water dogs.

Well, you can see for yourself how skittish she was. She was unsure about the waves from the boats and the splashing from Laura, my sister-in-laws 100 lb black lab.

Unfortunately, soon after this video was taken the camera was dropped in the lake. Less than three seconds immersed in lake water was all it needed to cease operating.

*Sigh* So much for a cheap vacation...

And Abby? Well, once she realized she could swim we could barely keep her out of the water. In fact at one point we had to keep her from swimming to the middle of the lake where she had spotted some loons. Pin It

Saturday, August 02, 2008

McCall's 4716 Knit Top - a TNT fave

Has anyone else restricted their fabric/pattern/notion purchases because of the economy? I have. There's been very, very few fabric purchases in recent months - and yesterday was the first day any new patterns made their way into my home. That's because Vogue was on sale for $3.99 each and I took the opportunity to purchase the newest Sandra Betzina and Issey Miyake designs. But I gotta tell you I really thought hard about whether or not I should buy them.

Looking for ways to cut back on spending is why we just spent our vacation at home working on low-cost home improvement projects rather than spending a week traveling to a vacation spot.

As part of my fabric diet I've been digging through the stash and rather than tossing those one yard or less pieces I've been looking for ways to use them up. You may recognize this knit fabric from a previous project - the Hotpatterns butterfly top - which I never, ever liked. (I've since handed that one off to someone who will look fantastic when she wears it. ) The leftover fabric was perfect for a summer top using McCalls 4716 (out of print). One of my TNT faves (sewn in May 08, Oct. 07 and Nov. 06.

Rather than make this sleeveless I added a small cap sleeve - perfect for the summer climate.

Speaking of summer climate - this is what I'll be wearing today as we travel to my sister-in-law's lake home for a weekend of fun and relaxation. Abby is coming with us and we hope her first experience in a lake in an enjoyable one. Sophia will be staying home with the house sitter and I'm certain will be eager to welcome us back home tomorrow.

Happy weekend! Pin It

Friday, August 01, 2008

Flashback Friday - 1975 Baby Quilt

I don't quilt.

There, I've said it. I know many, many, many people who do quilt and do so beautifully. But I'm not one of them. Honestly? I just don't have the patience for it, I don't know the "proper" way to do it, and when I have visited local quilt shops they haven't exactly been the most welcoming to someone (me) obviously stumbling around looking lost trying to figure out what I need for a quilt project.

It's not that I've never quilted. Quilting and patchwork was quite popular in the mid-70s when I was in my teen years. I vividly remember spending hours cutting up all of my fabric scraps into small squares, sewing them together to create yardage of patchwork fabric and then sewing a pair of pants using that fabric, which I wore often and proudly. Anyone that smirked or giggled I ignored figuring they were just envious that they weren't as creative as I was. Oh how I wish I had a photo of the pants to share with you.

But I don't.

What I do have is a photo of the second quilt-type project I created. A baby quilt for my firstborn.

When I was pregnant with my daughter I had a rough pregnancy and was instructed to do very minimal work, which meant no heavy lifting or long periods standing on my feet. Fortunately I was able to sew and read - two of my favorite at-home pastimes.

One day as I was browsing through a woman's magazine I came across a pattern for a baby quilt and decided to give it a try. It wasn't a traditional patchwork quilt. Instead it consisted of muslin blocks with a puppy hand-appliquéd on each block.

I happily spent hours and hours and hours working on this quilt. Each piece of the puppy was cut out and sewn onto the muslin block separately using a blanket stitch. The puppy consisted of mostly green calicoes, which I figured was a neutral baby color. A baby blue gingham was used as a corner accent and as the backing. The pink ruffle was added after the birth of my daughter - otherwise I would have left the ruffle off completely.

This is one of the few pieces left from that period of her life. I kept it all these years because I remember sitting on the floor of my tiny apartment, excited for the birth of my baby, patiently cutting out and sewing every puppy.

There was a lot of love that went into each stitch on that quilt. Someday her children will have this treasured baby quilt as their own. Pin It


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