Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Design Question

A while back, Daisy and her hub went on a trip to Philadelphia, then on to upper NY state, business for him, fun for her. She brought back a wonderful wool blanket, which she felted before she brought it to me. Today, I finally cut into that lovely wool felt--just a wee bit, just enough for a flower brooch. It's all ready to stitch together but I can't make up my mind which center I should use. I sure would like some help from y'all; tell me which you prefer, please.

This center is a vintage brooch I picked up when we were in Eureka Springs. I'm leaning toward this.
To show how it looks when attached, this is one I made previously (I bought two brooches just alike in ES).
Again I've use a vintage brooch I bought maybe a year ago. I do like this one, though it looks, I dunno, kinda old lady-ish? (No comment from the peanut gallery!) Plus as I recall I paid about twenty bucks for the brooch so if I use this one, I'll have to price my resulting brooch appropriately.

This is just a plastic flower button. I like the button but the resulting flower seems a bit blandish.
Ditto on this one.

This is a vintage shoe clip, and yes I actually wore them, back when I had a pair of 'em. Somehow over the years, I lost one. I tried it cuz it is sparkly, and I'm a sparkly kinda gal.

A vintage mother of pearl button. I do love it but again I think the resulting flower is blandish.

The two below are rhinestone buttons, but they're a bit too smallish so I'm not sure either of them work.

What do you guys think? If I use the green vintage brooch I'd probably charge about $12. Worth it? Or too much? Too little? With the vintage pearl brooch center, would it be worth the $35 I'd probably ask? (You see, in putting these together I cut holes in the layers down to a certain point to accommodate whichever center I use and each of these pretty much require something different. So I'm stuck until I make a decision.)

I'd appreciate any suggestions and am waiting with bated breath!

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

80's Ladies

We were three little girls from school.
One was pretty, one was smart

And one was a borderline fool.

That's me and Billie and Daisy (LittleSassy) in the '50s. Weren't we the ragamuffins? And serious? We look like we're mad at the world. (Maybe we were.)

Well she's still good lookin'
That woman hadn't slipped a bit.

That's Daisy on the left, me on the right, off for an evening at a dinner theater in the '70s. Do dinner theaters even exist now?

The smart one used her head
She made her fortune.

And me, I cross the border every chance I get.

There was a lot I could get Tom to do before we married. (This was taken in the '60s.)

We were the girls of the 50's.

I'm on the left; Billie's on the right, wild child that she was.

Stoned rock and rollers in the 60's.

And more than our names got changed
As the 70's slipped on by.

Look at those legs on Billie! Doncha hate her.

Now we're 80's ladies.
There ain't been much these ladies ain't tried.

We've been educated.

We got liberated.

And had complicating matters with men.
Oh, we've said "I do"

And we've signed "I don't"
And we've sworn we'd never do that again.

Oh, we burned our bras,

And we burned our dinners

And we burned our candles at both ends.

And we've had some children

Who look just like the way we did back then.

Oh, but we're all grown up now.
All grown up,

But none of us could tell you quite how.

An '80s writing group. I'm the short one on the right.

This song has been on my mind a lot lately. It speaks of my generation more than any I can think of so I thought I'd share it with you.

I hope K.T.'s still rocking somewhere!

Monday, July 27, 2009

Vintage Tea Towel Pillow

I have to admit I'm a sucker for vintage tea towels. I've made other pillows from them such as this one and the one shown here.

For some time, I've had a set of towels I'm particularly fond of. I'd never dare dry dishes with them; they're too beautiful, and in my kitchen, it's either serviceable or not there. So I decided to use one as my next project.

I love the vividness of this fabric. Doesn't it scream Fiestaware?

Instead of machine-stitching the zipper, I wanted to hand-pick one. I first saw this method of zipper insertion on a Sandra Betzina show many years ago, and my dear friend Kathy, who's couture trained and has made hand-picked zippers for her own clothing, says they're very sturdy. So I used a back-stitch over the already machine-stitched hems on the tea towel, a hand-stitch about every three machine stitches. I think it turned out nice for a first effort; it's something I'll definitely do again.

You can see it on Etsy here.

Ta, y'all.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Raggedy Done

Picture me spanking my hands in satisfaction. I've finished her, done all the fiddly bits and here she is in her naked glory!
I know--her heart's in the wrong place! I could say that I did it on purpose--since 1% of the world's population have hearts on the right side--but I'd be bald-faced lyin'. I swear I tried to put it on right--I mean, left. I marked it that way, and then before I started stitching it, I turned it back and forth and upside down trying to make sure I had it right (you know what I mean!) and then danged if I didn't stitch it in the wrong dingdong place! (Actually, I'm always getting my left and right confused. When I'm navigating and I say "turn left" when I mean "turn right", my sis Ginger always says, "Oh, you mean military left.")
Here are Raggedy's clothes after I fiddled with them. I didn't like all the raw edges on the overalls so I used bias binding to cover the hems and the waist. (On this, my sis Billie says I've crossed the line. I'm just not sure which line she means!)

See, the t-shirt looks gathered above, not bulky.Only here that quick little fix I made--elastic thread stitched down at each end and pulled tight through the binding casing--let go, so it's back to kinda bulky again. But I'm done now; it's for a child who probably won't give a dingaling how the doll's sewn.

I also spent some time today rephotographing some items for Etsy--and reworking a couple. Do you see the hand holding up Raggedy above? I bought that a couple of weeks ago from Beadaholique on Etsy, and I think it makes a great display item.

Here it is with one of my felt brooches. Looks good, huh? (The hand, I mean--as a photo element.) This is a brooch I reworked; it used to have a couple of stacked buttons in the center, but I decided it would look better with a bit of bling.

I reworked this one too. It had stacked buttons as well. This time, I went all out on the bling.
And the last one I reworked. Again, I'd used stacked buttons before--I'm just not liking the stacked buttons so much anymore on brooches. The center here is a vintage button I picked up at the thrift store last week. I think it makes a perfect stigma. (Yep, that's what you call the center of a flower, doncha know.)

Time to say so long, y'all. Come back soon, ya hear?

Monday, July 20, 2009

Raggedy Who?

A couple of weeks back, a couple of my cousins visited my hometown and my sister, my SIL, and I drove up to visit with them. They're funny and interesting, and I loved seeing them. One, though, told me about my mother befriending her daughter when she came to visit many years ago--they live in Illinois. And the daughter just had her first child whom she named Grace after my mother.

I've always loved the name, and it fit my mother perfectly. Jeanie's granddaughter is Gracie Jo--how perfect is that? (My niece is Bonnie Grace, another pretty perfect name.)

So--I decided to make a gift for Gracie Jo in memory of my mother. But what? Never having had a child myself, I hadn't a clue. Still don't, actually, but I ran across this post a while back.

Cute, isn't she? I thought I could try her so I bought the pattern and went to work. But...there's not an easy bone in my body. I had to make it hard. I love what I wound up with as far as the doll's concerned.
I'm not happy with the clothing yet. I have a couple of ideas on what I can do to make me happier: where the t-shirt neck buckles I think I'll add some elastic thread to gather it instead and where the raw edge is on the hem--I zigzagged it but it's still a bit raggedy; you know how denim does--I think I'll make a bias of the same fabric I used as a liner on the overall bib and sew that over the raw hem.

Then maybe Gracie Jo'll get her doll--as soon as I get my cuz's address from my sister.

(BTW I've missed being here, missed touching base with those of you who're still interested. I'm hoping I'll be better in the future, but we'll see.)