I LOVE to sew from retro patterns! Butterick has reissued their Walkaway Dress Pattern from 1952 and it was very easy to make.
Being able to stitch up a dress for your little girl, a costume for your son or a new frock for Easter is a real pleasure. There seems to be a resurgence of sewing afoot and I for one, am SO happy to see this! If you don't know where to begin, but really have a thirst for learning how to sew, check out some of the Craftsy.com classes. They offer many beginner sewing classes online.
You can do it! It might seem a bit intimidating at first but you will get there and in no time, you will be whipping out all sorts of pretty clothes, pillows, curtains...you name it!
If you've been a reader of this little 'ol blog for anytime now, you know that I adore vintage patterns. In fact, I love them so much I have collected over 200 of them.
Marie over at A Stitching Odyssey has started a Vintage Pattern Sewing Pledge and I have committed to join her along with the rest of the gang of rebels girls over there.
What will we do? We pledge to sew up at least 5 of our Vintage Patterns this year and post them to our own blog and/or Marie's Pinterest board.
Do you love to sew vintage too? If so, why not join me and a whole lot of other like minded sewist and see what kinds of wonderful creations we can turn out for 2015.
This quilt pattern is an easier one to piece together. The log cabin quilt block is one of the first I ever made.
This one is for our middle son. He picked out the bright colors and I have to say that it matches his sweet & fun loving personality perfectly!
Have you ever tried to make a quilt block? It was terribly intimidating for me at first, but after you have made several, your confidence builds.
Georgia Bonesteel is a quilter whom I have long admired, in fact, I leaned how to make the log cabin block from watching her show. I was lucky enough to meet her last year. You can see that post below this picture.
Sewing is something that I have been interested in since I was 10 years old. My Girl Scout leader taught us how to sew a running stitch by hand as we made stuffed Christmas ornaments for our parents. From then on, I was hooked and sewed anything I could. Pillows, Barbie doll clothes, hats for my baby cousins, you name it. They were all pretty shabby looking but no matter. That Girl Scout leader opened up a new world for me.
Around the time I got married, I started thinking about a sewing machine and sewing lessons. I remember asking anyone I could think of, if they had a machine that I could use. No one in my circle did or were willing to let my novice hands use it.
Well, my Daddy worked for my Granddaddy for a time, installing burglar alarms. He used to meet the most interesting people and got to know several of them because he was in their home for a week or more, putting in keypads and glass break detectors.
One customer that he met was particularly interesting because she lived in a beautiful cottage near Mynatt Park, in Gatlinburg, Tennessee. She had a pet squirrel who lived in her home and it would sit on her shoulder while she did her household tasks.
While my father was there working one afternoon, she asked him if he knew anyone who needed an old sewing machine. It worked, but she was getting older and just didn’t use it anymore.
Lucky, Lucky Me! I will be forever grateful to my Daddy for accepting that old Singer from the lady with the pet squirrel!
Now, the only experience that had up to that point with a sewing machine was sitting near my great grandmother as she magically whipped out dresses for me on her old Singer. I knew how the machine oil smelled and the smooth sound of the motor, but that is all.
When I got the machine, it had black spool already threaded on it and being way too intimidated to take it off, I left it on and promptly went to the fabric store to purchase pink and beige fabric to make curtains for my newlywed home. I was so proud of those curtains……black thread and all.
Thanks to some wonderful ladies that I worked with, I was able to learn how to thread my machine and wind the bobbin. (This was 1995, so there was no You Tubing it)
Why am I telling you this story? Well, I want to use it to encourage you. If you want to learn a new skill and don’t have the means or the opportunity at the moment, don’t give up!
If someone tells you your work is shoddy, use that information to improve your work. Don’t tell yourself, “I can’t”, especially if someone else is discouraging to you. Find a way and just do it!
In the beginning, I didn’t have a machine or anyone to teach me but I asked for help when I could and read every book I could get my hands on about garment construction and sewing in general. Yes, my work was wonky in the beginning but I learned to slow down and read directions and my abilities improved greatly!
Now, 19 years later...... I can sew anything! Curtains, pillows, quilts, garments for myself and my daughter, an old timey sleeping shirt like Mark McCain wore in the Rifleman (because my son wanted it).
If you are a craftsman or have an interesting skill, be a coach, mentor or an encourager to a young person. You never know how you may affect their lives if you just give a little time or a kind word to them.
This pattern has been sitting in my sewing room for a couple of years now. I'll have to admit that I was afraid of it. The flouncy sleeves and the double breast are two things that I don't have much experience with.
It turned out pretty well and wasn't nearly as intimidating as I thought it would be, once I got started.
Unlike the shirt in the last post, this one took quite a lot longer than an hour to make. In fact, it took a total of 4!
A few weeks ago I saw a demonstration of placemats being made on the show, America Quilts. They used the same colorways. Grey with lots of vibrant colors. I am not usually a lover of grey but those placemats really struck me. First of all because of how the grey allowed the other colors to really shine and second because they reminded me of the 80's.
Ahh, the 1980's, when I was a kid and all was right with the world!
Since I am not a placemat kind of girl, I made pillowslips. What do you think about these colors? Do you love them too? They made a mighty fine place to rest my weary head last night!
I picked up this pattern many years ago at an estate sale. It is from 1954, the same year my Sweet Mama was born.
This is what I came up with. I think I am starting to like these!
These were made several years ago when my daughter was younger. She loved the old poem by Eugene Field called The Duel so I made her a Gingham Dog and Calico Cat.
The gingham dog and the calico cat
Side by side on the table sat;
'T was half-past twelve and (what do you think!)
Nor one nor t'other had slept a wink!
The old Dutch clock and the Chinese plate
Appeared to know as sure as fate
There was going to be a terrible spat.
(I wasn't there; I simply state
What was told to me by the Chinese plate!)
The gingham dog went "bow-wow-wow!"
And the calico cat replied "mee-ow!"
The air was littered, an hour or so,
With bits of gingham and calico,
While the old Dutch clock in the chimney-place
Up with its hands before its face
For it always dreaded a family row!
(Now mind: I'm only telling you
What the old Dutch clock declares is true!)
The Chinese plate looked very blue,
And wailed, "Oh, dear! What shall we do!"
But the gingham dog and the calico cat
Wallowed this way and tumbled that,
Employing every tooth and claw
In the awfullest way you ever saw-
And, oh! How the gingham and calico flew!
(Don't fancy I exaggerate-
I got my news from the Chinese plate!)
Next morning, where the two had sat
They found no trace of dog or cat;
And some folks think unto this day
That burglars stole that pair away!
But the truth about the cat and pup
Is this: They ate each other up!
Now what do you really think of that!
(The old Dutch clock it told me so,
And that is how I came to know.)