Saturday, July 30, 2011




I used this tutorial from Sew Craftilicious. My hand sewing is pretty terrible and also much too visible. I could have taken more care, but chose not too for the sake of time (it's after midnight and I should be sleeping).

Thursday, July 21, 2011

8 Track Memories

My parents came of age in the late 60's and early 70's. My understanding is that there was a LOT of hair around the dinner table at my Mom's place. Mom could sit on hers, uncle #1 had a massive curly Jew-fro and uncle #2 had hair to his shoulders and a big ole 'stache. Ah, those were the days.

Growing up in my house, the music of choice was folk, folk and more folk. Think Simon and Garfunkel, Gordon Lightfoot, Bob Dylan and Peter Paul and Mary. My Dad's 8 track player lived in our spare bedroom (as an aside, we called that room the futon room, because for a long time, aside from the 8 track, that was the only thing in it). Even in the 80's that thing felt like an artifacts from a time gone by. My sister and I spent countless afternoons listening to Peter, Paul and Mommy. Confession: it was a long time before I figured out the right words to the phrase "autumn mist" in Puff the Magic Dragon. You couldn't google lyrics back then.

Last week I ordered two copies of this album, one for me and one for my sister. They arrived today and holy nostalgia! We put Levi in the Jolly Jumper and cranked up the volume.

The very first song on the album is my favourite. I was surprised to realize that I remembered most of the words! I hope Levi likes listening to this album as much as I did.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

WIP Wednesday

Have you noticed that I only manage to post on Wednesdays lately? Yeah, me too. Once again, I blame the baby. Also, I would like to correct an error in last Wednesday's post. I referred to Sara, as SaraH. Since I totally hate when people misspell my middle name (Anne, with an "e" like Anne of Green Gables) I feel compelled make this correction publicly. Sara, sweet lovely woman that she is, did not point out my error. Moving on...

Completed: the Four Square Bag

Pretty good for a newbie right?

My seams don't match up perfectly, which bugs me, but as my sewing instructor said, if I don't point it out, no one will notice. Ooops! Pretend I didn't just point it out, okay? I plan to use this bag as a gift bag, because I didn't put any pockets in it and it's a little busy to use as a purse. I might use it as the gift bag for my "in progress" project (like my segue way?)

In Progress: Sally's Tote

I'm using the Reversible Tote pattern from Lexie Barnes' Sew What! Bags book. Her subtitle states that all the bags in the book are patternless, but they look like patterns to me. Is the fact that there aren't sheets of paper to trace and cut out what makes them non-patterns? Maybe they are tutorials instead.

So far I have washed and ironed the fabric. I hope to cut out my pieces tonight, but my teething child may have other ideas, so if this gets completed by next Wednesday, I'll consider myself successful.

Also In Progress: Pajama Pants

Week three of sewing classes went well. I have completed the seams of the pants and "zig-zagged" the edges of the seams to prevent fraying. Next week I'll add the waist pieces, hem the pant legs and attach the drawstring.

It's been interesting to see what other people in the class have chosen to make. Dresses, pillows, pleated pants (really?!)...despite the teachers instructions to keep it simple. It looks like only three of us will actually complete our projects. We are the three who chose pajama pants or an a-line skirt. We are also the only three people to actually begin sewing. Everyone else is still cutting out their fabric or basting.

Okay, so that's all I've got. What did you work on this week?

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Work in Progress Wednesday: The I Can Sew Edition

First things first, I must share that I bought a sewing machine and I am totally enamored with sewing. So much fun! I bought a Kenmore and so far so good.

Second, I realize that I missed last week's WIP post. No excuse, just a really busy week and with an attention seeking 5 month old, it's hard to find time to update the blog. I did some crafting last Tuesday with the delightful Sarah of Sweet & Crunchy and her lovely daughter. We made egg carton caterpillars which made me anxious for my little one to reach crafting age (we're a long way off!).

And now for this week's projects...

Started and finished: The draw string bag

I made a bag! My first sewing project! Big excitement!

I used a tutorial online which, sadly, I can't find for the life of me. Ah well. My technique wasn't perfect and I ended up with messy seams but overall it's a good first kick at the can and the next one will be cleaner.

In Progress: Scrappy Bag

I'm using the Four Square Bag tutorial by Adelaide Lemonade. I have a ton of pink and green printed fabrics that I've gathered from various home improvement projects and this bag is a good way to use them up. So far, I've cut and seamed half of the outer part of the bag. I hope to finish this bag by the end of the weekend.

In Progress: Pajama Pants

This is the project I'm completing in my sewing course. It's a very simple pattern. Last night we learned how to read a pattern, cut pieces and baste. I have to finish basting my seams for the next session. I have learned that I still haven't mastered cutting in a straight line. If you can do this freehand, I envy you this skill.

To Do: Sally's Tote

My boss is turning 50 and I've decided to make her a tote. I've purchased three coordinating fabrics (a yard each so I'll be able to make several small projects) but haven't yet settled on a tutorial or pattern. Deadline is August 8.

Updates on Other Stuff

My Pin Tuck Tee is stagnating, due to my new sewing obsession. I have knit maybe 10 rows in the last two weeks. I'll get back to it soon.

I did tidy my stash into cute green bins. My knitting stash that is. Problem is I now have a burgeoning fabric and sewing notion stash. As I live in an open concept condo, my crafting seems to have taken over our main living space. My husband is humoring me for the moment. He knows I'm messy but I wonder how long it will be until he wants the dining room table available for breakfast and such.

Nu? What are you working on?

Thursday, July 7, 2011

All Dressed Up and No Place to Sew

There is nothing more annoying than getting all revved up about something, and then hitting an unexpected snag. For example, deciding that tomorrow is going to be a pool day, packing your suits, towels, swim diapers and sunscreen and waking up to rain. Or researching zucchini bread recipes, picking the perfect one, getting the baby to nap, pulling out all the ingredients and finding you are one egg short.

My first sewing class was okay. I learned how to thread my machine, make a bobbin, what all the knobs do, and got a list of what to bring to the next class. Yesterday I took the subway all the way to North York to Fabricland where I muddled about completely overwhelmed, but eventually managed to purchase a pajama pant pattern, fabric and notions. I also bought fabric to make some project bags for my various crafts in progress.

When I got home...well actually when DH got home and took over baby duty, I threaded the machine my friend lent me. I planned to use some of the scrap material she gave me to make a cloth napkin. I was ready to roll. Okay, so first to sew a few stitches and then do the ever important backstitch to secure the seam. SNAG! THE BACKSTITCH FUNCTION DOES NOT WORK! AAARRRRGGGGG!!!!

So here I am, all kitted up and I can't sew! Since the machine isn't mine, I don't want to take it apart to see if I can fiddle it into working (I googled and found a tip that might possibly fix it). And I'm nit going to pay to have it fixed. The pressing decision now is, do I pony up and buy my own machine? And if yes, which one?

P.S. I have four posts in draft but just can't seem to find time to blog. I blame my almost five month old charge. Good thing he's cute.