Simplicity 2491 vintage sewing pattern

simplicity 2491
My middle daughter told me Friday that she did not have a dress for her concert performance for Tuesday.  She is a tween and nothing ever fits her when we go to the store to look for dresses so we figured we had to sew it just like last time.  Going through my patterns. I found out that her measurements put her all over the board on what size clothes she could fit.  Meaning no pattern would fit her well either.  So we found a vintage pattern , simplicity 2491 view 2, in my collection that was a little loose in the chest area but too tight in the waist we figured if we dropped the front darts it would fit her as her waist has yet to start to get smaller should start happening in the next 6 months. Because of this no little girl patterns fit her and not teen to adult patterns fit her either.  I figured the waist measurement would not matter in a loose dress like this ie 3 inches too big at the bust.  Also it being about 3 inches loose  would give her ease of movement plus growing room.

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20-21 days old

4 girls 20 days old
4 girls
old enoughsitting in ceramic tea cupThey have made it to the weened stage and drink  from a water bottle.  Now the kids are back in charge of their pets thank heaven.  There are 4 girls and 3 boys all the girls have homes 3 stay with my children and one is going to a friend.  The 3 boys no one seems to want they are pretty cute my children wanted certain ones of them but hoped them to be girls as they didn’t want more babies either.  We are going to keep them till Friday and if still no one wants them we will take them to the pet store.  All are healthy and active.  You shouldn’t hear any more about hamsters as my children are taking care of them and not me I can get back to other projects fiber related.
3 boys 20 days old
3 boys

Update May 6th

1 of the boys went to school where he has a new mate and is quiet happy with his surroundings the smallest one the dark gray one.  The other two went to a person in the neighborhood.  Which I now wish we had not done:  one was eaten by their cat the second day they had him ( if we had known they had a cat we would not have given it to them).  We asked if we could have the other one back to save it from the same fate but they said no that they still wanted him and asked if we had more they could have.  Um… no we don’t and in our heads we are saying even if we did it wouldn’t have gone to that home again.  In hind sight we now know they have had a hamster before that met the same fate.  It was very hard on my children to hear of this as we had worked so hard to save them after their mama died.    We are pretty certain with that track record the other one will not live long either.  The children in that home sort of bragged about it( One ran up to my children yelling about how it died and was eaten then the next did the same thing no remorse or sadness in them)  so it made it all the worse for my little girls whom these are their first pets other than pragmatists.   My kids had to work hard to prove they could have pets and be responsible for them.  I guess not so for the other home.  I hope if the other meets this fate they will not tell my children about it.

>Going a little dotty


new project in the works

I have a new project I need to work on. Had to go shopping for the supplies today weird concept as I usually don’t go out and just buy supplies for a project.  I usually start a project with what I already have and add to it with a little bit of new.  But not this time everything had to be new.  I think I have only every made two quilts this way before my first quilt, which my grandmother paid for the supplies,  and my wedding quilt that I gave to my husband as our wedding gift.   Since I knew what I needed it was a quick run in grab what I need and leave.  Not the way I usually want to be when I am at a quilt store but some times it is just that way.

Supplies on list

  •  fabric (polka dots) red 6 at 1/2 yard 2 at 3/4 yard
  • fabric (polka dots) green 6 at 1/2 yard 2 at 3/4 yard
  • fabric (polka dots) yellow 1 fat quarter
  • fabric (polka dots)  brown 1 fat quarter and 1@ 5 inches wide long and skinny quarter yard
  • fabric (polka dots) white 2 1/2 yards
  • 1 package milliners needles
  • 2 new thimbles
  • 3 hand quilting threads red, green, white

>Black Red White…Apple core…life


apple core

So I haven’t posted much lately because my back has been out and I haven’t been doing many, if any, projects because it hurt to sit. All I have been doing is using a heat pad and working, which keeps re-throwing my back out. It will be OK; this happens often and I am used to it, but it sure is annoying. Today I left work early because it was slow and a non-floral holiday so there was no reason for three of us to be there. On the way home I got a call from my older sister telling me my stepfather had a stroke and a brain aneurysm on Sunday and that they might have to operate. If they can’t fix it, then he will more than likely die in less than three months. If that happens, my children will very much miss their Grandpa Smith. I have to say my back is nothing compared to that bit of news. So, if you have a small prayer you can spare, say one for my step- dad. I am here trying to clear my thoughts, and so I started on this, something I’ve wanted to do for at least 20 years, a black, red and white apple core quilt (my three favorite colors).

>Handquilted quilt all done


This is not a normal post because I usually don’t post on Sunday. So this is not normal, but it is such a special item to me and my daughter that I just had to share on the day it was completed (plus I will post later, too, the next day in the 12 days; might as well make a day of it).

more quilting
handquilting on daughters quilt

My oldest daughter made a quilt top when she was in first grade, 6 years old. Then placed it on my best quilt frame and every now and again she worked on quilting it. I worked on it some to encourage her to quilt it (so she could have her quilt and I could have my frame). This quilt was even on the frame a year and a half ago when we moved, so we had to be careful not to hurt it in the move. Her quilt was the first quilt placed on the frame, so I have never been able to use it for my own quilts. Sunday morning at 1:37 am she finished it! I got up at 4:30 am and bound it. By the time she woke up at 6:30 am, she realized she was sleeping under her finished quilt. Can I just say we are both excited to have it done. It was a major first quilt; I tried to get her to do a doll or baby quilt, but she wanted one she could sleep under, and now she can. All the colors got picked when she was 6, so I hope she still likes her color combinations. If not, oh well, that is how it is. For a first project, I think she did a great job. Now, at 11, she has her own quilt to sleep under. The top and backing are all cotton; the batting is wool. I figured it was better to start her with good material because quilting through polyester is a pain and very discouraging and wool is so easy she would like it more and it is a warmer quilt. This will fit her twin bed.

quilt made by my daughter

The blocks are quilted with hearts and the boarder has celtic knot work and hearts.

>Start of Cathedral Windows Quilt

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472 blocks (9 1/2 inches square), I’m not sure how many I will need for the actual quilt. It is somewhere around 600 and 700, so this won’t be enough for it but it is a good start. Now I need to start the other pieces of fabric that will fit inside of these once they are folded. This stack represents 6 hours of cutting fabric. I can’t believe how much it weighs, and I have yet to cut the color pieces that go into the quilt.

Since it took 6 hours to do 2 blocks (which are sets of 4 squares), I have been doing some math — that would be 3 hours per block set. Also, I still have to cut the filler blocks which, because they will be from scraps, will take about 10 times longer than the white which was from yardage, so 60 hours there. So take 472 squares /4 squares per block=118 blocks *3 hours per set of blocks = 354 hours + 60 hours color squares + 6 hours yardage squares = 420 hours minimum to make this, and probably 7 times that to do it by hand instead of machine (354 * 7 + 66 = 2544 hours) .

If I worked on it 4 hours a day, every day (which is impossible because I have a family and job), it would take an estimated 15 weeks by machine and about 91 weeks by hand, or more. I think this is the definition of insanity, and I guess I like that type of insanity, sort of. There is no way I can take on any project for that long of a time, so I expect this will go into hibernation and out of it, several times.

I am hoping that assembly line techniques like chain sewing and things of that sort speed this up a ton; I will keep you informed.

As I get farther into this, I will post a tutorial.

>Fabric storage

>I was reading this post on bura ellen which led me to this post on the happy zombie which is all about straightening up fabric stashes. I thought some of my readers might like these tips, so I thought I would pass them along to you all. Follow the two links above to find out more.

>Are you a member of SABLE


“SABLE – Stash Accumulation Beyond Life Expectancy”

I have heard about this on several blogs, and I always get a good laugh at it. I think I must be a member because my stash never seems to get smaller, only larger. I think I fit this group as a fabric member, embroidery floss member, buttons, notions, yarn, crochet thread, book, and sewing thread plus way too many more to mention in one list. What items make you a member of this group?

st. patrick's day

>Old sweaters/ Conference Saturday project


start of sweater afghan

So, what to do while listening to conference on Saturday Morning and afternoon. Get rid of the pile of old sweaters sittings at the foot of my bed that I have been meaning to tear apart for awhile. So, as you now know, I had a bunch of old sweaters (cotton rayon blend); these all had some sort of embroidery. Not really my style any more, and most didn’t fit well, either. So what to do with them?

  1. First, salvage all the buttons; lots of good MOP (mother of pearl) buttons on these sweaters to be saved, and a few cool beads. After you pillage the buttons and such, what next?
  2. Cut as many 9 1/2 inch squares as you can, save short sleeves (I have another project for them in mind) and the large scraps (same project).
  3. Cut white 100% cotton fabric squares, also 9 1/2 inches square. (I have not done this step, yet). I plan to back with cotton fabric to help prevent the wavy look I have seen on other such afghans. Don’t know if this will work, but I will give it a try. I plan on using 1/2 inch seam allowance. Bigger than normal, but I am hoping this will help with some raveling that may happen.
  4. When all are sewn together with a bat and a back, I want to tie the front to the back with crow feet quilting. A sort of quick quilting-tie with an embroidery look.
  5. Bind edges; I am thinking old silk from same pile of clothes to get rid of, or old-fashioned satin blanket binding. There are also jeans in this stack to add to my jean braided rug.

I think it will be cute and if not, it will still useful.

>Thinking Valentine’s


thinking Valentine's already

I was a florist for many years, it is how I put myself through collage and what I did for the first few years of our marriage as employment. I also sort of grew up in a flower shop as my Vavo owns one and I lived with her when I was a child. So many days as a child was spent playing in an empty box of flowers with paper dolls or making dolls from broken off flower heads. Don’t ask; it was fun at the time. I liked Valentine’s Day at that point in my life; it was fun watching all the people come to my Vavo’s shop and get pretty things she made.

As a teenager working in flower shops, I really hatted the holiday. I never seemed to have boyfriend over that holiday or, if I did, he felt he had to get me something, not because he wanted to but because he figured he had to because of a holiday. The other type of boyfriend was the one who figured you worked in a flower shop so you never want to see a flower again; aren’t you sick of them yet. To say the least, I hated that day.

Now that I am grown, don’t work in flower shops anymore (for 11 years, that is), and I am finally having fun with this day again. I still don’t expect things on this day because I have never liked people feeling pressured to get me something, so no worries there. I guess it is different now because I usually get Valentine’s made by my daughters because they want to and they love me. I know this because they make me Valentines all year long, not just on V’s Day.

I have actually had fun with this holiday since having kids and a husband, not in that order. I am not worried that the man in my life will feel guilty if he does or doesn’t get me something; he knows I am good either way. I always felt this was a florist’s holiday; a way to make money. I think it was just crazy for them to go insane for 4 weeks to prep, and no sleep for the last two to make and deliver, then crash for 3 days. Not really seeing relatives and friends as you are working 20 hour shifts; just not worth it, to me. Insanity, for short.

OK, I am not totally on board with this holiday, yet, but I do like it now. I have fun making stuff for it and sharing time with my family. Oh wait, that is the originally meaning of the holiday, the part I like (the love part, not the guilt part which I dislike). Yes, I seem to be ranting, but this holiday always does that to me. The holiday of love was always a holiday of stress when I was younger. Now it is a holiday of love for me, and I feel sorry for all those who are still in the holiday of stress and guilt mode.

About the photo above

On to the fun of decorating. I have always liked decorating for holidays. My Christmas decorations are still up. I like putting holidays up, but dread taking them down, sad I won’t get to see them for another year. So I usually swing to the next holiday as soon as I can, in this case it is Valentine’s Day. Isn’t this cool fabric? I am thinking heart yoyos, but I bet you could guess that from the photo. This will probably become garlands, pins and ornaments for the day. Fun crafting time, that is always good.

So I hope those of you who love this holiday have fun with it and those who dislike it find something fun to do and those, like me, who enjoy the sentiment but not the stress, relax with your families and friends.

In case anyone wants to know, the above fabric is Moda’s 2008 Valentine’s Day line.

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