Sunday, September 30, 2007

Did Some Sewing this Weekend

I was finally able to make some progress on my fall wardrobe over the weekend. I actually cut out two skirts and two tops. One of the tops is an empire waist wrap top. I wanted the "wrap" to fit smoothly across my bust so I decided to drape the top on my dressform.

After draping the top I laid out the muslin to make my pattern.

I even eeked out enough time to prepared dinner for my husband and myself. We had grilled shrimp and pasta, roasted sweet potatoes and a vegetable medley (corn, broccoli and spinach).

Here is the top so far. I think it's coming along pretty well.

Monday's Meditation (today really is Monday, but I started this post yesterday, that why it says Sunday in the heading)

We are in a very interesting study series at our church. The topic is anger. Last week we mostly talked about controling our anger. This Sunday we looked at some of the things that anger God. One of the things really hit home for me.

Then Moses heard the people weep throughout their families, every man in the door of his tent: and the anger of the LORD was kindled greatly; Moses also was displeased. Numbers 11:10

If you read the entire chapter you will discover the people's weeping was really complaining. I think we (I) sometimes complain to the Lord more than we (I) praise him. To know that complaining actually makes God angry, makes me want to guard my thoughts even more.

Learning to be content,

Monday, September 24, 2007

Sewing Still On Hold

Unfortunately, I still haven't gotten any sewing done. I am still working on my crochet skirt. Yes, I have decided that it will be a skirt rather than a dress because my enthusiasm is starting to wain. I'm ready to move on to another project. So I have only a few more squares to complete before I start connecting them together. Then I will begin making my family's hats, scarves, socks and maybe gloves for the winter.

Monday's Meditation

"Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath।"
Ephesians 4 :26

This is a pretty well known verse of scripture, but I think it is often misquoted and misunderstood. Many married people will say it means "if" we get angry at our spouse we should make sure we have resolved the matter before we go to bed at night. I'm sure this approach can be very beneficial for a marriage, however this verse is saying more than that.

First, notice we are being told to "be angry" and to "not sin". We need to be angry at the same things that anger our Lord. However, we are not to sin. Scripture tells us that the Lord is angry with the wicked everyday; yet we also know that he allows the sun to shine on the just as well as the unjust. So we should never cease being angry at sin, but we should never allow it to cause us to sin. Stay encouraged.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Happy Birthday To Me!!!

I noticed on two blogs that I enjoy reading, each mentioned that yesterday was their birthday (Happy Birthday Erica B.'s D.I.Y. Style and StacySews). So I thought I would share with you that today happens to be my birthday (it's even noted on PR's home page as "tcusic"- I feel so special). Today is also the first day of fall.

I would love to be able to say that for my birthday, I completed my entire fall/winter 2007 wardrobe. Actually, I could say that but it would be a total lie, a huge untruth, a gross exaggeration of reality.... In other words, I have not gotten much sewing done.

I did however, pack up my summer clothes and put them away. Yeah, yeah, I know, I am just procrastinating.

Speaking of fall/winter wardrobe, I have found another outfit I would like to sew. It's what Mandy Moore is wearing on the cover of Lucky magazine.

For the skirt I would either draft my on knock-off or use the skirt from V2951. I would only need to smooth out the pleats in the front, widen the waistband/yoke and lengthen the skirt.

For the top, I think M5336 with some modifications would be a good choice. I'm not sure what I will do about the short sweater. Maybe I will hand knit one.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Thankful Thursday

I thought it might be a good idea to call Thursdays "Thankful Thursday". Whenever I post on Thursdays, I will list a few things that I am thankful for. This is just a way for me to remind myself to be grateful. Maybe if I make a concentrated effort to show gratitude for what I have, I will be less likely to be whiney. Sometimes I find myself being whiney and complaining, even though I am so richly and wonderfully blessed.

I am thankful for:

The fact that the top I'm making doesn't require very much altering/adjustments. I have only done the muslin so far, I will make the real top in a green, silk paisley print. I will post a photo this weekend.

The fact the sewing isn't fattening. When I think about it, many of the things in life that I enjoy are very fattening. So I am thankful that I can sew all I want and not gain an ounce.

Living in a country where I am free to practice and live out my beliefs. I am glad that this holds true for every citizen in this country. Even though we don't all believe the same thing, we can all openly express what we do believe.

I thank God for each and every day, but I seem to thank him more for Fridays. So thank God tomorrow is Friday.

Have a productive and wonderful weekend everyone.

Monday, September 17, 2007

Making Progress - Sort Of

I didn't exactly do everything on my list for this past week, but I did get some things done. I started working on my muslins for the wardrobe pieces in McCall's 5194 (earlier post). I hope to have the top and skirt put together in just a couple more days.

I mentioned earlier that I am working on a crocheted dress or skirt. If the work moves along fairly quickly, it will be a dress, if it's slow and I begin to get bored, it will probably be a skirt. Here is a single square and a group of squares abutting each other (click on the image for close-up view).

Once I "block" the pieces they will be perfectly squared and there won't be any spaces between them. I will sew them all together then crochet a border/hem and a waistband. I am still trying to decide what color to use for the lining. I think I am leaning toward a dark brown.

I also did a "practice" bag like the one in the current (and unfortunately the last) issue of Sew Stylish magazine. I did this one in a faux suede cloth, but the next one I will do in a gorgeous soft real hide/suede. I am also contemplating embroidering a design on the next one.

Monday's Meditation

"And David fled from Naioth in Ramah, and came and said before Jonathan, What have I done? what is mine iniquity? and what is my sin before thy father, that he seeketh my life?" I Samuel 20:1

There are so many things that we can learn from the life and experiences of King David. One of the things in this particular passage that comes to mind is the fact that you don't have to do anything to cause someone to seek your life. For one thing, the enemy of our soul is after us all the time - his duty is to kill, steal and destroy.

Simply being a follower of Christ and doing what is right according to the scriptures will automatically cause some to be at odds with you and some may even want to see you eliminated. They might wish for you to relocate to another state, to be transferred to a different work location, or even to be take your membership to another church. But don't be discourgage, continue to show love and compassion and remember that God is for you - and he is more than the whole world against you. Your job is to do those things that becometh a believer.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007


Of course today marks the sixth anniversary of a tragedy. I know this is primarily a sewing blog, but I would be remiss if I didn't acknowledge the fact that six years ago life changed for people all over the globe, not just in this country. Though it was the precious lives of nearly 3,000 Americans that were taken that day, I believe people all over the world were greatly impacted by this tragedy. While there is nothing any of us can do to change what happened, there are things that each of us can do to affect what happens next.

We can commit ourselves to loving the people close to us wholeheartedly. We can remember to be grateful for all that we have and not complain about the things we don't have. We can pray. Pray that this nation will turn its heart to God. Pray that those who seek to harm us, will be consumed by the love of the Lord. Pray that God continues to bless America. And let's not just do this on 9/11 but let's remember to do it everyday.

To now talk about sewing might seem a bit trite, but isn't that what we have had to do as a nation? We must go on living and not let the enemy rob us of enjoying the life God has given us.

I think I have found the perfect fabrics for a good part of my fall/winter collection (that's what us designers call it - a "collection"). My plan is primarily going to consist of neutral colors like black, brown, navy, grey and cream/tan with a few splashes of accent colors like red, aubergine (purpley), pumpkin and yellow. Sounds kinda busy doesn't it?
Take a look at what I have pulled from my stash so far. Did I mention that I have a rather extensive stash?

Green Silks and Brocade Navy Wool Suit with Purple Silks and Grey Satin
Classic White Shirt

Red and Yellow/Gold Tans/Creams and Blue Accent

Monday, September 10, 2007

Okay - Plan B

Another weekend has flown by, and I have not completed on single garment. Alright, alright, I have not sewn a single stitch. However, on the plus side of things, I spend the majority of the weekend with my mother (remember, she's recovering from heart surgery) and I am happy to report that she's doing very well. We are just so thankful to the Lord for how he is restoring her.

As my mom gets stronger and stronger I will be able to devote more of my "spare" time to sewing/knitting/crocheting/crafting/creating.

As today's title indicates, I am moving on to Plan B. Plan A was to complete my Fall/Winter Wardrobe storyboard. Then I would organize, arrange and schedule my sewing in a logical sequence. Then I would carefully go through all the fabric in my stash. But I've no time for that now - I must now proceed to sewing. The temperature here (Chicago, IL) dropped significantly over the weekend and I am just itching to get my mitts on some fall fabrics.

Even though at last count I had over 700 patterns in my arsenal, I have to go to Hobby Lobby after work and after preparing dinner for my parents but before going home (I have one very patient husband) to pick up the McCall's pattern below (click in the box). McCall's patterns are .99 this week at Hobby Lobby. Need I say more?

So here's the new plan:

9/10 - 9/15 - cut out a muslin for the jacket, skirt, top and pants this week. Find appropriate fabric in my stash.

9/17 - 9/22 - take care of fitting issues for all four pieces and complete the top since it will probably be the easiest to fit and to construct (yeah, I know I could have simply said "sew" but "construct" sounds like I'm really working hard and not just being a big ole slow poke).

9/24 - 9/29 - complete the skirt and pants. Start on the jacket.

Notice I don't include Sundays in my sewing schedule. That's because I'm in worship services most of the day and spending time with my family the rest of the day. So I don't even anticipate getting any sewing done on Sundays. If all goes as planned, I will have just about 25% of my entire fall/winter wardrobe completed by the first week of October. I think that's a pretty good for such a late start.

One last thing, it's not sewing related, but interesting nonetheless. I thought it would be a good thing to include a short snippet of the previous Sunday's message each Monday.

Monday's Meditation

He staggered not at the promise of God through unbelief; but was strong in faith, giving glory to God. Romans 4:20

God had made Abraham an incredible promise, and Abraham never stopped believing in what God had said he would do. We should practice that same attitude when we look through the scriptures and see all of the many promises God has made to all his children. Stay encouraged.

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

A Little Disappointed

I am at the end of a five-day weekend. I had great plans and high hopes of getting a lot of stuff done. But I will be back to work tomorrow and I failed to accomplish anything on my sewing/crafting list. I was, however, able to spend a great deal of time with my parents and take care of my mom.

I worked on the clutch style handbag in the current issue of Sew Stylish magazine (page 33). It has to be the simplest design I have ever seen, but I can't get the pieces to come together. After working on it for about four hours today, it's still not together. I must be experiencing some sort of mental block.

I have managed to complete a total of nine squares for my crocheted dress (or skirt, depending on how long I am able to stay focused). Yes, that's right, I have completed nine squares - only about a million more to go.

I intend to post some photos of my progress this weekend. This is assuming that there will actually be some progress by week's end. I can dream.

Sunday, September 2, 2007

Finally Starting to Blog

Today is my first attempt at blogging. Unfortunately, I don't have any photos to post right now, but I thought if I put it out here in writing I would be forced to get myself going. I am working on several things right now.

First, I am playing nurse to my mother who recently had open-heart surgery which resulted in five (5) bypasses. She is recuperating at home and doing quite well. Thank the Lord. This has prompted my entire family (more about them in the uncoming days and weeks) to change its eating habits.

In terms of sewing/crafting, I am working on a planned (make that a "well- planned") fall wardrobe. The color scheme will be grey, black, navy, brown and cream along with some bold accent colors. I am also working on whittling down my UFO pile. Then there's the crochet dress or skirt (depends on how much stamina I have) that I'm working on.

Now that I have put it in writing here, I have to get cracking on cranking out these projects.

Thank you for looking and photos are soon to come.