Thursday, October 25, 2007

New Old Sewing Machine ----> Inspiration!

Isn't she a beauty? This is my new old Singer sewing machine -- a 301 Singer, circa 1954. The model is the 'big sister' of the famous Singer Featherweight.

I purchased it from a dear friend, who is an experienced Singer sewer and who had this 'extra' machine. No, really! She has two Featherweights, bought this one, and then found another 301 with cabinet. So now this one is mine.

I have named her Ginette. That name is in an old French textbook I thrifted the same week that the machine came to live here.

The gold detailing on the machine is so beautiful.

And so is Daisy, my pretty black cat, who just had to have her picture taken with Ginette.

Here's Daisy again, in my spring tote bag:

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I've already finished two projects with the new machine: a quilted summer bag that was nearly done for a while (stalled after putting in the magnetic snap on that one), and a 'Tiny Happy' bag, made from an old pillowcase with a pattern from Tiny Happy blog. Will post pics of the bags tomorrow.

So pleased to have a substantial machine -- one that does not stall when confronted with a bulky seam. The motor just purrs. It's my new love. (Don't tell Daisy.)

Thursday, October 18, 2007

A Finished Project

Why, yes, I can finish a sewing project -- just not often!

This is a Frenchy Bag, an Amy Butler pattern. The floral fabric is thrifted this summer; the stripey top is from my stash -- got it at a quilt shop a couple of years ago and it has a flannel-y softness to it.

I had to piece the inner portion of the handles because I had very little left of the floral -- kinda like the pieced look of it.

The pattern sewed up very quickly, until I had to install the dreaded magnetic snap. No, they are not hard to do. I just worry myself crazy about messing up the project at such an almost-done point. So it hung here for a good month or more. Finally I realized that if I totally muffed the snap installation, I could just resew the lining.

And the snap install went easy, as did the sewing of the lining and the outer bag.

Then, of course, I had to wait another day until I could muster up the courage to topstitch. What's with that??

Here's the inside of the bag -- the fabric is new and reminds me of Minnie Mouse. The two inner pockets are big and deep, each going the entire width of the bag. I thought they would just gap open all the time, so I added a topstitch seam down the center of each, making four pockets. Works for me.

Time for a new bag/purse project. I bought some great fall fabrics from Superbuzzy and it's almost too late to sew them up for this year. May have to move on to the 'winter line.'

Wednesday, October 17, 2007


Sometimes my thrifted 'finds' find me! This is a quilt top that came to me as a tied quilt with the inner batting all bunched up. Someone washed & dried the quilt, apparently, and it looked like this:

I took off the backing, the little ties, and the batting and now I have a pretty quilt top. The fabrics are an interesting combination of wool (the gray), cotton, and an occasional rayon. The top has some 'issues,' with a few worn spots, but now it can begin a sweet new life as a table covering. Check out that blue fabric with the circles -- love!

The quilt came to me along with these two:

All three came by way of a local senior center, where they were headed for the dustbin, and are considered, at best, 'cutter' quilts. But the lavendar 'Flying Geese' could end up in our bedroom, with a little mending.

And this quilt, which I had temporarily set down on the floor, immediately became our grouchy old cat's favorite snoozing spot. The entire back is that beautiful flowered print on the right -- makes me swoon -- love! This one is a true 'cutter'. If I do cut it up, at least part of it will become kitty's winter-nap throne pillow. It makes him as happy as it makes me.

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Fall crocus

Amazing color for fall -- rosy hues of colchicum -- a bulb that blooms like a giant crocus in the fall. Some years these are blooming as the colored leaves fall around them.

This is the 'Waterlily' colchicum.

The bulb sends up large leaves in the spring, which die back for the summer. Then in the fall these leaf-less blossoms show up -- always surprising me.

Time to plant more bulbs for some spring surprises. (It's fun to be an absent-minded gardener!)

Friday, October 5, 2007

A Walk of Yo-yos

Learning how to do yo-yos this week . . . and I'm also learning that there is no spot in my house with good natural light! So out onto the sidewalk with my favorite stools and my new yo-yos.

These large yo-yos are made using the Clover large-size yo-yo maker.

The small and wee yo-yos on this stool I did the old-fashioned way. I love sewing them up this way, 'all by myself'. Can you see the beginnings of my red-white Christmas garland? and a blue + light blue winter garland?

And see the two flower-shaped yo-yos above? Those are made with the Clover flower-yo-yo maker. I need more practice on those, I think. But I can see the possibilities for yo-yo flower bouquets . . . yo-yo adorned cards . . .

Autumn comes soon . . . perfect time for making more yo-yos, and for finally sewing with these batik pieces that I purchased last year. Here they seem like laundry-day prayer flags.