December 28, 2010

Where'd My Mojo Go?

O.k. I have tried twice now to sit down and sew the dress for my daughter but I'm lacking mojo.  I got the pattern cut and the fabric prepped but I can't get any further than that :/  Usually I can kick myself out of a slump but I can't seem to do that this time.  Maybe it's stress, or the after effects of stress?  Maybe it's menopause from my surgery?  Whatever it is, it stole my mojo and I want it back (sniffs, reaches for a tissue). 

December 22, 2010

Vote for My Coat on Sewer's Choice

Here's the link.  Make sure to click on the "sewer's choice" link at the bottom of the screen.

Fabric Choice

Thank You to everyone who dropped by and left your votes.  It came down to #3 and #4 in the end.  The blue is the best choice, a little thinner than I liked but I can just add a second layer, possibly to make the skirt look tiered, with the gold edge acting as the hem.  I want the dress to be a surprise under the tree for Christmas.

Be sure and check out my other recent posts, I want to start a "Design Your Own Purse Pattern" challenge.

December 21, 2010

Vintage Tween Fashion

I want to make this dress for my daughter but I can't decide which fabric, help me out.  There are 4 choices, three are quilting cottons, the blue with gold edging is cotton also (I'm guessing) but it is much thinner and has a nicer hand than the other three.  Drop your votes in the comment box with the number of the fabric you're voting for. 
Fabric 1: blue floral print quilting cotton with the background having a slightly blue tint to it
 Fabric 2: white gingham
 Fabric 3: pink quilting cotton with multi-colored flowers...kinda funky
 Fabric 4: turquoise blue with gold trim on one selvage only.

December 20, 2010

Design Your Own Purse Pattern?

During the spring and summer of this year I began designing my own purse pattern called the "A-Round Town Tote".  Well, I hit a design snag and between that and school and well, life, it got put on the back burner.  I'm needing some motivation to sit down and fix this design flaw so I can bring you guys a cute purse pattern so I figure, why not design your own purse with me?  This is gonna be fun and I will post step by step instructions to complete your own purse pattern.  Don't shy away, if you can trace a plate or square, you're in luck!  Along the way I want to post picutures of your purses!  I need input on the best time to start the challenge, I know the holidays are a busy time for most everybody and I want as many people to have a chance to participate as possible.  Start posting your comments now.

December 19, 2010

The Faded Stitch is Open on Etsy, the link is posted in the upper right hand corner of my blog too!  I will be posting new items throughout the day today, come check them out.

December 17, 2010

Phew, That Semester is Over

Didn't think I was gonna make it through that one but, here it is at a close.  It's been a busy 4 months for me so I'll update you on what I have been up to.  First off, I'm only two semesters away from graduating!  Yay! 

Secondly, I wrote a short story that will be published in my university's literary magazine, the Totem.  It should be out sometime in April 2011. 

Thirdly check out the coat I made from some vintage wool I picked up at an estate sale over the summer. The pattern I used was Simplicity 2508 ( a project runway pattern ).  The patttern got sized up one size and some small style changes made before putting it together.  Cutting the wool made me very nervous because there was just barely enough to make the coat and since it was vintage wool, there was no running to the store for more.  I quilted the back panel with silver thread for extra warmth and then added an embroidery that says, "Home is where you are" onto a yoke that I inserted over the back panel.  I have to admit, I'm proud of this one.

October 17, 2010

Half-way through Another Semester

Fall break is almost over, just a few more hours left.  It was a break I really needed.  A small infection after my surgery had me feeling down for a few days but now it's all cleared up and I am on the mend again.  School has been my air, food and bed lately, aside from the doctor's office.  During the last couple weeks of the summer I changed my major to English.  Finding an acceptable major in school was a struggle for me.  No, I am not interested in teaching at this point in my life unless it is underprivileged students.  So many decisions at this time have had me feeling a bit confused and underwater.  Discovering over the last week that I am a nonconformist helped me explain a few things about myself but still leaves questions.  I am on the job hunt again and this is why these questions about myself are so important right now.  Finding a compatible work place can be as much of a struggle as finding the right major in school.  So many work places now focus on teamwork, teamwork, teamwork.  I am not completely opposed to teamwork but the fact remains that I am most comfortable doing my work on my own.  Another hitch is that I am always questioning policies, procedures and actions.  There are times I want to put my two cents worth in but am not sure how much I can say without losing my job.  I have had some work experiences in the past where I inserted my opinion in the most tactful way possible but got stared at like I sprouted a second head.  I tend to speak out when neccessary and this seems to make me even more of a black sheep.  In short, I can be outspoken with a peppering of blunt honesty.

September 7, 2010

Feeling Better

I'm feeling better this week, but still not completely recovered.  Keep an eye out for a few more patterns that need new homes to get posted this week.  I have gone back over the previous posts and removed patterns that were sold.  All patterns posted are still looking for a place to go.

August 28, 2010

It's School Time Again

Fall semester started on Wednesday.  Was I in class?  No.  Why?  I decided to have to have surgery.  A complete hysterectomy to be exact.  I'm that special kid that always tries to juggle all of the hardest things in life all at one time.  It makes for an interesting time.  Being home from the hospital has been the biggest help.  I hate hospital beds.  All of my nurses and docs were superb but I have trouble being cooped up like that.  Signing off for now.

August 21, 2010

Should I Give Comedy a Try?

After reading a Yahoo headline about some YouTube users making $100,000+ maybe I should.  Is anyone ready for comedy dripping in sarcasm, satire, and cynism?  My humor may be just what what you are looking for.  The down side, I won't be caught on camera.  Yes, I'm camera shy.

August 18, 2010


Polititcs are not my usual commentary fodder, but tonight is special.  U.S. troops pull out of Iraq.  Did you know that according to some research as many as 90% of war verterans will return home with psychological damage, yet the Army says prior to 2005 they made no mistakes in discharging soldiers with supposed "personality disorders".  This discharge nullifies a soldiers claim to medical treatment.  A change in policy after 2007 caused that number of discharges to drop by 75%....hmmm.  

Total loss of life due to the war in Iraq at last count (as stated on MSNBC) is just of 4,400.  That number would populate the town I grew up in almost ten times.

Just food for thought.

My thoughts and condolences go out to all families who have suffered from a war casualty.

August 16, 2010

Rehoming Vintage Patterns

Hi All

Over the next few days I will be posting photos of some of my vintage patterns that need to be rehomed.  I would love to keep them all, but I am out of room.  For patterns you may be interested in, email me.  I will not be asking astronomical prices for these patterns just enough to cover my time and shipping.  I do have a paypal account you can send money to or you can email a USPS money order for payment.  All of the patterns will be shipped through the U.S. Post Office by first class mail.  If you wish to have a delivery confirmation added it will be an extra $1.85 to cover the fee.  I will check my email daily so be assured if you send a message, I will get it!  Have a GREAT DAY, I hope to hear from you soon!

June 23, 2010

More Yo Yo Madness

Yesterday dawned a new age of yo yo madness for me.  I found an online group called Yo Yo Ga Ga.  They are a yahoo sponsored group with almost 600 members.  Joining them takes no more than clicking the "Join" button if you have a yahoo ID and you are signed in.  You can still view the pictures members have posted if you choose not to join.  The pictures on this site are amazing.  Yo Yos are made in every shape and form.  Eye Candy abounds on this site.  If you love yo yos this is one stop you can't miss.  Click on the link above and feast your eyes.

June 22, 2010

Choose the Right Fabrics

Fabrics surround us.  We wear them, sleep on them, sit on them, and even walk on them.  There are so many to choose from.  How do you know what to pick?  It is not as hard as you think (or feel if you are experiencing frustration from a problem project).  You can eliminate the frustration of choosing.

Something to keep in mind before you start.  There are focus fabrics and there are "other" fabrics.  Here is the difference.  Focus fabrics are meant to catch your eye and attract you to a particular piece of decor or clothing.  "Other" fabrics help focus fabrics stand out.  You do not want too many of either one in your project.  Many textile companies produce whole lines of fabric with the same color palette that have varying prints and solids to match.  This makes choosing easier, for many sewist this works great.  It saves time, gas and effort.  Sometimes you do not have a whole line of fabrics to choose from.  Even if this is the case, positive results are possible.

Here are a few easy steps to choose fabric for any project.

1.  Keep it Simple.  Why make this harder than it has to be?

2.  Pick one focus fabric.  Depending on your project, pick a focus fabric that contains as many or few colors as you like.

3.  Use the color scales printed on the selvages.  Most fabrics have them.  If your fabric does not have a scale, do not give up.

4.  Take your focus fabric (or a sample with the color scale printed on it) with you to the store.

5.  Handle the fabrics at the store.  Take the bolts off the shelf; lay your sample next to the bolt.

6.  Pick fabrics that are solids or function as solids to begin with.  Slowly add prints if you have picked some.  If you are picking prints as well to go with your focus fabric, pick prints of different sizes. 

7.   Make an organized pile of the bolts you are looking at. 

8.  Move the fabric around, take fabrics away, add another color you think might work.  This process can take some time so do not rush yourself.

9.  Follow your pattern suggestions.  Try to follow the fabric suggestions on the back of the pattern as closely as possible.  This ensures the correct wear, hang or shaping of the fabric.

10.  Trust your eyes.  You have to be happy with your choices, not someone else.

Do not let that beautiful fabric you have waste in the basement.  Go dig it out and put it to use.  Wow your family and friends with your newest creation.

June 21, 2010

Nine Patch Quit

Mrs. Kay Buffington's Nine Patch Quilt pattern is great for beginners. I used it to make this quilt. The first rows were together in less than a day. Instant gratification is always good in my book; this pattern delivers that and a beautiful quilt.

The quilt measures 92" x 92". I am still trying to decide why I chose a queen size quilt for my first quilting project. The end result justifies the wildness of the action. I cannot help but smile when this quilt comes off the shelf.

June 18, 2010

Yo-Yo Give Away Winner

Drum roll please......
The picture of the drawing taking place didn't want to load correctly.
The winner is Ashley!  Send me an email so your new yo-yos can get to their new home.

June 15, 2010

Circle Tote Purse Design

A few weeks ago, I really wanted a new purse. Of course, all of you fellow sewists know that the first thing you do is head to your stash. Midway through my stash was some periwinkle blue cotton with an unusual texture. It had been floating around for about two years. I decided to put it to use. Now, which pattern will I use? I could not find any in my stash that I wanted to make using the periwinkle fabric. After pacing and thinking for a couple of days over how which design to go with, I made a decision. I would make my own purse pattern.

This process took me two days and another two days to cut and sew together. All the while, I was crossing my fingers that the pieces would go together the way they needed to. It worked for the most part. I still have some bugs to work out but I am happy with the results. The picture above is what I am calling my prototype bag. It was the test bag. Now all I need to do is find somewhere to print the pattern pieces so I can share the bag pattern with all of you.

The finished bag measures 23 1/2" wide x 15" tall x 4" deep. It featured an inside pocket, magnetic snap closure, pleated or pin tucked body (your choice which one), and hidden pockets behind the pleated sections. You are not stuck making just the tote. There will be a smaller shoulder bag option along with a clutch option included in the pattern. I am doing my best to write the instructions clearly, so that even a beginning sewist can make this bag!

The flower attachment I made with Janome's Tattered Flowers Tutorial. I used safety pins to attach the flowers. I like being able to change the flowers to different colors for added fun.

June 13, 2010

Yo-Yo Give Away

I'm fueling the madness.  This week I'm giving away 20 handmade yo-yos.  This will be a random drawing with random yo-yos as the prize.  Leave a comment at the bottom of the post to be entered in the drawing.  Entries will be taken until midnight (12 A.M.) on Thursday night, June 17, 2009.  I will announce the winner on Friday.

June 11, 2010

Yo-Yo Madness Continues

My yo-yo pile continues to grow. Some of them got put to use yesterday. I made a new pincushion for myself. My old pincushion was about 6 years old and had eaten numerous needles over the years. Once the yo-yo pincushion was finished I gutted the old one in search of my long lost needles. There were 25 needle floating around in there!

Both the yo-yo's and the pincushion were made with inspiration from tutorials I found online.
Heather Bailey has a great tutorial on making yo-yo's by hand. This is my new favorite hand stitching hobby.
The pincushion tutorial can be found at CraftyPod. This site is really worth checking out. She has lots of tutorials and inspirational ideas.

The yo-yo's were hand stitched to the pincushion base after the base was stuffed and closed up. All of my yo-yo's measured about 3" across. The yo-yo's on the side I stitched together side-by-side with a 1/4" seam on the machine to fit the circumference of the pincushion base. I folded the tops and bottoms down while pinning them in place to hand stitch. Hand stitching is something I enjoy but is hard for me to get started doing. The level of satisfaction I get from hand stitching is greater than that of sewing with a machine. My machine still gets good use though!

I will be accepting emails all summer showing your yo-yo projects. Get 'em down here so we can all see 'em.

Here is a sample pillow I made this week. It's made from a nature panel set Mrs. Patti sells at Common Threads Quilt Shoppe. Let me know what you think.

June 10, 2010

Pinwheel Plus

Pretty pinwheels with charm squares. There is a very helpful tutorial online to make pinwheels with a pack of charm squares. The completed table topper measures 28" x 28". It's very busy. I think the pinwheel applique I did down the center helps to pull the whole thing together. The buttons were found buttons from a yard sale last weekend.

Here's the link to the pinwheel tutorial.

The charm squares came from RJR fabrics. This was from their Charlotte fabric line. Unfortunately it seems to be an older line of fabric. I finished the back with a Robert Kaufman fabric. One and a half yards was more than enough to finish the table topper and binding. I used some of the scraps to make a new pincushion that you will see in an upcoming post.

May 26, 2010

As Promised

Eye Candy! This was one of my first quilting projects. It's a lap size that I squeezed out of some scraps around the house using a nine patch pattern. I didn't actually quilt this, I was too chicken at that point to try quilting anything, I tied it instead. It has a poly batting and is perfect for the couch on cool days. So sorry for the fuzzy pics, I'm planning on upgrading the camera by the fall to a digital slr to get clearer shots.

This is just a basic whip stitch, it's all I knew at the time. I've since learned how to make an invisible stitch. I've heard some call it a castle stitch but as of now it's the nameless invisible stitch for me.

It's Summer Yo-Yo Madness. I have no clue what I'll be doing with these yet but production goes on. I'm currently enrolled in an internet class and this is what I do in the mornings while sitting in the sun trying to not look like a ghost. Here's a challenge. Make a small project out of yo-yo's using scraps that you can display somewhere in your house to give it a more summery feel. Email me pictures and I'll post them here! I want to see what you are working on..

May 24, 2010

I Dropped Off the Face of the Earth

No, kidding, I'm still here, thank the Maker. My sewing has taken a new turn since December and I've learned to quilt. Rather, I've learned to piece in it's most basic forms. My blog has been all but abandoned during this time, I apologize to you guys for that (gasp, I said it, "you guys" instead of "ya'll") School has taken a front seat to most everything else. This would include my sewing lessons that I've been taking at random as I scrape up the money for a class here and there. I have to say, I do catch on quick but I need to focus on becoming a master of one of my trades instead of a jack of all of them. I'm a bit ADD (attention deficit disorder) when it comes to the things I like to do, my sewing has remained the one constant in all of this. Like they say, it's cheaper than therapy. If I hadn't had my sewing machine some Psychologist would be a rich person by now.

We have finally settled in to our little corner of Erie here (it only took us 10 months to do it). I have found a few good places to attend the occasional sewing/quilting class and continue to watch the upcoming classes. Three of my favorite shops in the area are Yaple's, Super Stitch, and a new shop on 38th Street called Common Threads Quilting Shoppe. The owner of Common Threads is Mrs. Patti Wessler and she is wonderful as a teacher. I would suggest her to anyone in the area looking for a good shopping experience. She's still fairly new (she only opened in December) but, she is always getting new things in. She has helped fuel my quilting obsession. I'm posting her link here Common Threads.

Super Stitch in Northeast, PA is awesome! Rick and Anne go the extra mile for you. I went in originally looking for a Bernina but Anne steered me towards my Janome 6600P which I am in total love with. I've named her Camille.

There are still a lot of things that I have to learn but continue to plug away at it. I will get some pictures posted soon of some of my latest creations because I know how barren The Faded Stitch looks at the moment. It desperately needs a more personal touch. I invite everyone to comment on the projects I will be posting and would like to hear about what you have going lately. It seems you guys are shy, I've not gotten one email in response to the blog, hit me up! I wanna hear from you guys ( I did it again). Bring your friends over and drink some coffee and post away! Hope to hear from you guys soon!