Friday, June 26, 2009

For the love of handwork....

I thought that I would share one more pillow with you that I designed this time, except for the stitchery portion, before getting back to strictly machine sewing projects. Again, referring back to the days when the shop was open Toni, the owner, and I loved (like I already stated) anything that involved handwork. Another designer we carried was Kindred Spirits. Their book entitled, Hollyberry Stitches, became a quick favorite to many of our customers. One of the designs, which I used for this pillow, was an easy one for beginners and many loved the whimsical faces found hanging on the tree branch.
I simply completed the handwork, then made four pinwheels, one of my many favorite quilt block designs, grabbed the size pillow form I wanted, and voila out came this pillow. Two of my favorite things combined together to make something very quick and easy into something very rewarding. Look into those stitchery designs that you might have lying around your house or even into those coloring books that you may have purchased for your kids or grandkids. You will be pleasantly surprised by what you might find hidden there! In fact coloring books are great tools to use for applique ideas, handwork design ideas, etc... (You'll never look at coloring books the same way again!) So go to it girls and let that imagination of yours, along with your hands, fly! Off to sew 4 millie.

(Always click on the any of my pictures if you want to see them 'up close and personal'.) Blessings ;-)

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Father's Day

To the men in my life, who I adore as fathers, I want to wish each of you a Happy Father's Day.

First to my dad. Thanks dad for being there for me over the years. You and mom have always been so generous to Jim and I and the kids. How can I ever thank you enough for all that you have done for us? (Jim would probably like to shoot you for getting me my very first Bernina sewing machine, but I love you for doing that for me dad.) Big hugs... and I can't wait until you and mom are finally here with me forever. Thanks for everything dad. I love you. (I just had to use this picture of you and mom)

Next, to my oldest son James. Well son, you were a little slow in getting married, but I know Stef was well worth the wait. You two are perfect for each other. When the two of you had Reilly and Teagan, well.. it just couldn't get any better than that. The Lord richly blessed you with those two girls. Enjoy them son, all too soon the time is gone and you'll wish they were back home with you. You're girls are priceless.... just like you. I love you son.

My son-in-law Randy didn't have a choice in being part of our family because once I met him I just flat out told him that he had to marry one of my girls.... and he did. (Thanks for listening.) I love the fact that you are now the father of four of my grandchildren. Such treasures you have there. I have seen how committed you are to your children and your love for them is precious. Thank you for that son. Hugs and kisses.

To my son-in-law Aaron. I hope you know how much you mean to me. Being the father of my three grandsons, I'm sure, keeps you hopping. But I know that you know that those boys are worth it. You and Nicole have taught them well. They are so respectful and their manners are impeccable. Thank you for that Aaron... and for loving them like you do.

And now to my youngest son John. Watching you with your two children has been my delight. Parenthood kind of changes things doesn't it? I know it did for me. I understood a lot better the fears and the frustrations my own parents must have had while raising my brother and I. With the knowledge that I have now, I sometimes wish that I could go back in time and change some things but obviously that's not how God's plan works. Just keep loving those children of yours son and love their mom and most importantly, love the God that made each one of you. Smooches.

And last, but definitely not least, to the father of my seven children, I wish you a very Happy Father's Day honey. Who would have ever thought that we would have been so blessed. Sometimes don't you just wonder why God entrusted you and me with these great kids of ours? I know I do. Every one of them is a true miracle.. a true gift. But so are you. You have worked so hard our entire married life to make sure that our children had whatever they needed. I never, ever had to worry about you giving up or quitting.. not ever. I think you would go to work and do your job even if you had to crawl to get there. I know how much our children have always meant to you. They mean everything. To you they are what keep you going. You never pursued outside friends or even outside activities because it was your kids that you wanted to be around. They are your very life. Thanks for loving our children the way that you do. They couldn't have a better father than you. I love you honey. And here you are holding grandchild (John's newest.) number 11.

Dresses, dresses.....

I have a class coming up at Cozy Quilt Shop where I will be teaching the little girl's dress pattern, "Adorable You". I have made this dress several times now, along with others made from Kari Mecca's wonderful book, "Sewing With Whimsey." I tend to use the brighter colors in these dresses because I know how much my own granddaughters love bright colors. ( I have also had the privilege of selling my 'brighter' colored dresses to photographers in Kansas. It seems that working with vibrant colors, along with the right lighting, brings out so much more in their photographs). This should prove to be another fun class and I am looking forward to it. By the way, for those of you who have purchased Kari's book, whether it be from the shop, Kari's online store, or even from Martha Pullen's, Kari now has a dvd to accompany the book. Check it out and enjoy. Again... gone to Sew 4 Millie

This is the sample dress that I made for Cozy's. Daniela has great fabric in the shop and this fabric with shoes on was just perfect. The gals at the shop felt it needed a little purse to match so a picture is included of the matching purse.

In yet another color!

Another sample of " Spring Fling" from Kari's book.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Happy Birthday Beks!!

Today is my youngest daughter's birthday. She was number five for me with identical twin brothers following 18 months later. The three of them were like having our own "Three Musketeers"! They did everything together. Living out in the country like we do they explored, to them, the whole wide world out side these doors. In the summer, the three of them lived in their little bathing suits; Beks, in her favorite favorite little purple and turquoise one, and the boys in their little red ones, remember? The picture of Beks with her long beautiful hair and in that cute, little bathing suit will be a part of my favorite memories forever and ever. Now she's all grown up with a home of her own, working hard, as usual (just like her dad), and has managed to get even more beautiful than ever. Have a happy birthday Beks. I love you Beks, mom

I love this picture of you!

A couple of favorite pictures I have of you and your sister when we were in New York. (I still can't believe how the two of you liked riding that subway system!! And look where you work today.... public transit!)

With that man of yours who always makes you smile. I love him for that.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009


Yesterday I shared the view from my sewing room looking from the inside out, today I'll show you the view looking from the outside in. Our house, no doubt, needs a lot of work as we have lived here for 30 years and have raised our 7 children here..... along with a variety of animals. Lots of important events have taken place in this house of ours, but as they say, a house never really becomes a home until love is found there.... and I found lots of it!

Our home in the fall.

Our home in the winter.

Our home in the spring.(I know, I know, the lights are still up. My husband doesn't believe in ever taking them down.)

And out back with the kids playing near the horseshoe pit.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Sewing room....

I love looking into rooms where people escape to and let their creative juices flow. I thought I would share a few pictures of the room that I call "home" and where I let my own creative juices take hold. I spend an awful lot of time in this room of mine and have the joy of creating a lot of fun projects in it. As I have already shared, I am definitely a Bernina gal. I have enjoyed these machines very much over the years and doubt that I will ever change now.

Where I sit each day and sew on my Bernina 730 while enjoying the view.

To the left of me is where the chicken my mom made sits on top of an old Singer hand crank sewing machine. It still works!

I love the fireplace in the winter. I know, I know.... I'm a wimp!

To my right is my Bernina 440, my computer, my copy machine and my many books. (One does need their books!)

I left out several shots, but at least you get a partial idea of my room.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Computer bag

I decided some months back to design a computer bag for classes.  I wanted it to hold not only my laptop, but all of the other paraphernalia I use when taking or teaching classes.  In other words, it had to have a lot of pockets.  Not only pockets mind you, but pockets with zippers and/or velcro in order to keep everything safe and secure.  This is the design that I finally came up with.  I used only good quality home dec fabric inside and out but also placed duck canvas, along with warn ad natural, in between those fabrics.  Needless to say, this is one sturdy bag. However, when you are carrying around an expensive laptop with all of your other gear and tools that you may need, it is imperative to have a sturdy bag.   I have also provided a couple of pictures  of other totes that my daughter and I sell.  When getting certified as a teacher back in Alabama, this tote pattern was one of the many projects that we worked on.  I loved it because it had so many pockets on the inside.  How I miss those times going back to Martha Pullen schools.  Good times.  (Just a note, there is a huge sale going on at Martha's right now.  You might want to check it out!)  Need to get going as I am sewing 4 millie.