Tag Archives: sewing

Girl Clothes and Pockets

Being back east meant some family time.  I have a big (big) family, scattered around, but the core is still in New Jersey and I miss seeing them more.  Especially the littles, as they grow so darn fast.  Here’s a lovely shot of a just-woken-up-by a newly-minted kindergartener-and-her-brother visiting aunt, plus the goofs goofing around.


In reality, Miss M didn’t want to share me with her brother very much.  After all, when we color together he just wants to grab the crayons and paper.  “Can’t you get him out of here?” She was particularly interested in my ability to make clothing.  It seemed a novel idea to her.  “Aunt Lou, can you make me a dress with pockets?  Because girl clothes have ZERO pockets!”  I agree, and yes, of course I can. We even looked at fabric on-line.  She wanted stars or planets and chose the blue, with the planets second place. I’m sure I can find something like it locally.  If not, there is always Clementine Maine to the rescue!

It was fun to see her think about sleeve length, dress length, and  pocket placement.  “Can you make matching leggings, too?”  This is when I do wish I lived much closer.

Any suggestions on simple dresses (with pockets) patterns gladly accepted.


Hand Sewing is the New Yoga?

I’m suddenly seeing hand stitching and sewing everywhere.  I blame Alabama Chanin, whose name is actually Nathalie, not Alabama, I recently discovered.  A number of my pals, online and otherwise, have fallen down that rabbit hole.  The two Gales are prime examples. One friend even said she wished she were getting married again so she could make an Alabama Chanin wedding dress.

UPDATE – the first post in five months from Mason Dixon is all about Alabama Chanin!

My hand sewing in the past century has been limited to hems, buttons, sweater seams and working on Christmas presents with the present gang.  (An aside, a woman approached me at a party whose daughter is friends with my goddaughter Teresa.  The mom said she learned to embroider from Teresa and thanked me!)  I have had a bag of these needles for several years.

parabola label fullParabola label

They seemed too important to just donate, but I didn’t know what to do with them, so they sat unloved and ignored in their zip lock bag in a drawer.  Eureka!  What hand sewer doesn’t want to make sure she isn’t sewing with “worthless, rotten, brass-headed needles?”  They came along as party favors of a sort, and are now living in new homes.

I haven’t sewn clothes for myself in years.  I nearly got sucked down the fabric rabbit hole when I was in Maine because we went on a field trip to the cutest fabric store I have ever seen, Clementine in Rockland. (Shop owner got some needles, too, of course.)

craft mob

Oooohhh – of course I’m going to sew myself several new dresses.  I need that washi tape.  I found some gadgets including ERASABLE HIGHLIGHTER!!  Then I had to copy all the cool kids and buy a yard of cotton-silk blend to play with in the dye tent.  Cotton and silk take colors in different ways, those in the know tell me, so how fun to test it out.

I bought a beautiful silver-grey, but because I was teaching all day Saturday, didn’t really have time to play with it.   The talented dye mistress of Starcroft Fibers , Jani, took pity on me.  Tied, dyed and stuffed in a mason jar for good measure.  It’s gorgeous.

scarf 1

Now I have to deal with the raw edges. Maybe I’ll use a fabulous Parabola needle.  So, here’s the big question – rolled edge, hand-sewn on a silk scarf.  Stay stitch, or not?