December 15, 2011

'TWAS THE NIGHT BEFORE CHRISTMAS

I have been thinking about the craziness of the holiday season and trying really hard to focus on the joy of it all, you know, the real important stuff. I am always touched by this poem, it always rings true at Christmas...



‘Twas the Night Before Christmas


‘Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the abode only one creature was stirring, and she was cleaning the commode.

The children were finally sleeping, all snug in their beds, while visions of Playstation 3 and Barbie flipped through their heads.

The dad was snoring in front of the TV, with a half-constructed bicycle on his knee.

So only the mom heard the reindeer hooves clatter, which made her sigh, "Now what’s the matter?"

With toilet bowl brush still clutched in her hand, she descended the stairs and saw the old man.

He was covered with ashes and soot, which fell with a shrug. "Oh, great," muttered the mom, "Now I have to clean the rug."

"Ho-ho-ho!" cried Santa, "I’m glad you’re awake. Your gift was especially difficult to make." "Thanks, Santa, but all I want is some time alone."

"Exactly!" he chuckled, "I’ve made you a clone."

"A clone?" she asked, "What good is that? Run along, Santa, I’ve no time for chit-chat."

The mother’s twin: same hair, same eyes, same double chin. "She’ll cook, she’ll dust, she’ll mop every mess. You’ll relax, take it easy, watch The Young and the Restless."

"Fantastic!" the mom cheered. "My dream come true! I’ll Shop. I’ll read. I’ll sleep a whole night through!"

From the room above, the youngest began to fret. "Mommy?! I scared...and wet." The clone replied, "I’m coming, sweetheart."

"Hey," the mom smiled, "She knows her part." The clone changed the small one, and hummed a tune, as she bundled the child in a blanket cocoon.

"You the best mommy ever. I really love you." The clone smiled and sighed, "I love you too."

The mom frowned and said, "Sorry, Santa, no deal. That’s my child’s love, she’s trying to steal."

Smiling wisely, Santa said, "To me it is clear, only one loving mother is needed here."

The mom kissed her child, and tucked her into bed. "Thank you Santa, for clearing my head. I sometimes forget, it won’t be very long, when they’ll be too old for my cradle-song."

The clock on the mantle began to chime. Santa whispered to the clone, "It works every time."

With the clone by his side, Santa said, "Goodnight. Merry Christmas, Mom, you’ll be all right." _Author Unknown



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Merry Christmas to you - go hug your babies and love on them a little extra today!

December 9, 2011

SANTA PLEASE BRING ME A NEW CAMERA! :)

Ok, so I start this blog and my camera decides to DIE!!!! I cannot believe it! But I am not accepting this as a sign to not go on blogging - I will defeat you, Opposition!

Maybe someone out there knows how to fix it for me - I can offer you free sewing incentives (courtesy of Studio Julie Snow)...a custom-made Apron? Free alterations? Personal embroidery? Sewing lesson?

Anyway, it turns on fine. But when I push the button to take the picture, it flashes for half a second then turns immediately off! I have replace the batteries four times with brand new ones and it's STILL DYING!

Santa actually cannot bring me a new one this year because I am MAXED out on the gift list already. SO - I think maybe I can just "fix it". Of course I need help. But let me refer you to my previous offer...above.

I am even more sad because I have many projects I planned to post that are now completed and will have to wait. ("Why do we depend on electronic gadgets so much?" she said as she sat at her computer and blogged.)

Some projects waiting to be discovered by the camera lens: I have stared creating custom aprons - so cute! My family now has a beautiful set of custom embroidered Christmas stockings (I have wanted to do these for YEARS!), I finally made myself a decent Christmas Party dress!, I did one of those cute Ornament ball wreaths and am very pleased with it. My Banister garland also saw many changes this year.

Boo- I want to share. Ok, I'll call the camera place, I guess. Unless...one of you with skills can trade with me?


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December 5, 2011

SEWING LESSONS ACCOLADE

Wow! I just received an accolade for my sewing lessons: "Great news! Your service listing "Custom Sewing, Alterations & Lessons" is ranked #1 among sewing teachers in Denver.

See it for yourself:
http://www.thumbtack.com/co/denver/sewing-instruction/"

A big thank you to my students and referrals from thumbtack.com!


Sewing Instruction Lessons - Denver, CO preview
Sewing Instruction Lessons - Denver, CO


Sewing Instruction Lessons, Denver, CO

November 22, 2011

REVERSIBLE TABLECLOTHS ~ DOUBLE DUTY

I wanted to have two tablecloths to fit my two 6-ft banquet tables for Halloween and Fall parties/ dinners. You could obviously use this for any holiday or birthday or season. Even same holidays - just different prints to switch it out. Less laundering? Less ironing? No hemming, anyone?






So I cut two lengths of fabric for each - one for the front (Halloween in theme) and one for the back (Fall in theme). I layered them up to make sure they were squared up and identical in size. Incidentally, I just used 45" wide fabric and used the whole 45" width, because the tables are 30" wide and the overhang would be perfect. I like an overhang of 5"-10" on each side, so that fell within that range nicely. The length was about 2 or 2 1/8 yards each, again matching the overhang range.

(You can obviously adjust the measurements to fit your tables, just do the math with the overhangs in mind, and adjust your cut sizes accordingly).






Then I stitched the pieces, right sides together, at 1/2" seam allowance. I pivot at my corners to keep it clean.






All the way around except...a small section that I leave open so I can turn it inside out.






Then before I turn it inside out, I trim all four of the corners close to the stitching to eliminate that bulk when it's turned.






It's time to turn it inside out. Reach in that hole and grab everything and bring it all out. You will push out your corners last. I use one of these fancy point turners. You can use the bamboo or plastic kind. Do NOT use the tips of scissors (my mom taught me this way - but I don't think they had special point turners - and it worked fine UNTIL I pushed through too many corners with the sharp scissor tips!)






Using the pointed end (no, really?), push it gently into the corner and move it around slightly to make the point pretty and squared.






Then it should look like this on all your corners. Now you would think you would just press it right here like this but I like to do it a special way - because the results are smoother...






Lay it on your ironing board just like the above picture, BUT then pull the top layer toward you a little so that you can see at least a few inches of the bottom layer. Then press that seam so that it lays nice and flat. Avoid that upper folded edge or you will press a crease where you don't want it.






Then when you bring the layers back to line up on top of each other, you get a cleaner press on the edge. Press it now and it will be beautiful!






Remember that hole you left? Now you need to close it up. When you press the edges, it should just turn itself in naturally, flowing with the rest of the pressed edge, turning in the same 1/2" seam allowance.






Now you can do your topstitching. Using your presser foot as your guide (or some other guide you prefer), just set your stitch a little longer, and begin sewing around the edge. It will be about 1/4" - 3/8" from the edge.






Continue this stitch all the way around. You will pass over your opening, and it should catch both layers, closing the hole.






You are finished! Now you just need to give it a final press and it time to set the table.






Isn't it pretty when it's reversible? And so versatile - it's perfect for those of us who cannot make up their minds until the last minute, too. Or those of us who cannot decide between two fabrics and have to buy them both!






I joined the tables together to make a large square and my DD12 set the table - here's the final product in it's debut!


I would love to see any combinations of reversible tablecloths that you decide to create!

November 21, 2011

BLOGGER BUTTON

Working on a Blogger Button - whatcha think?




I'm getting this blogging thing...I hope. Anyone with more experience is welcome to help, offer tips, etc. Love ya!

November 16, 2011

BUSTLES

Ooh - a good bustle can be fun! My experience is that there is no REAL scientific method to creating a beautiful bustle - well, there is SOME method to the madness, but it's harder to calculate. I'd say it falls in the category of draping patterns vs. drafting patterns from slopers. It's more like draping.

The point is, it takes a lot of playing with the hem and train to get it to look just right. Here are a few I have done that I have pictures of...



The purpose of a bustle is to bring the back hem and train up in the back of the dress so that the bride can walk, dance, not drag her dress, etc. These first two dresses are simple bustles. They are bustled "on top" of the dress. Meaning: the maid of honor - or whomever is the bride's helper - can bring the bustle up without having to get under the dress.



There is some type of hook and eye or loop and button nestled in the lace or on a seam that can be easily pulled up and attached. Fluff it out and Voila!



This last dress (above) had a cathedral train (about 10 feet long). It required a different kind of bustle. This is called a French bustle. Basically that means the dress train gets pulled "under", in sections, creating the puffy part on the top. All layers have to be pulled together underneath the dress. Yes, the bride's helpers actually have to lift it up and go under! There is usually a series of coordinating ribbons per layer and per point of contact that have to be manually tied. (It can get hot under there too!)

Then when you come out for air, it has to be fluffed just right. It's a real commitment and you better get all the pictures you want with it all tied up before it gets taken down again!

November 15, 2011

WELCOME!

Hey Everyone! I have officially started inviting people I like to be my followers on this blog. If you are one of these people I am lucky to have in my life, thank you for following me here! Be sure to sign up however works best for you. I will be up and posting stuff shortly. Love you all! Julie

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