Thursday, December 31, 2015


The nasty storm may have delayed our trip home by a couple of days, but it was delightful to come home to a lovely blanket of fluffy white snow.

Sunday, December 27, 2015

Happy Feet

Mackinac is having a little baby boom. One baby was born a couple of weeks ago, and two more (twins) are due soon. So, of course, I've been making jammies - specifically Peek-a-Boo Pattern's Happy Feet Pajamas

They are so stinkin' cute. In the newborn size they are adorably tiny. (I haven't had little ones that small for such a long time. Sigh...) And they were so easy to make; each leg / foot is only three pieces, so they sewed up really fast. The top has raglan sleeves, so there were no armscye (arm holes) to ease and sew. The hardest part of the whole thing was sewing on those little cuffs, but once I got the hang of it, they went quickly. I think each set took less than an hour and a half.  

I made deer set because the little guy's dad is a hunter. I remembered my husband's frustration when our kids were born. He was kind of forgotten in the whirlwind of showers and presents, so I wanted to make sure this dad to felt remembered. As for the sock monkey fleece, it was just too adorable not to buy!

I love that this pattern includes all the sizes from newborn up to size 12. Now that the baby jammies are done, I can get to work on bigger PJs for my kiddos. After making those little newborn feet, my daughter's feet seem gigantic! 

I did receive this pattern for free, but the opinions expressed above are my own.

Friday, December 25, 2015

Learning to Sew

Merry Christmas! 

My students worked so hard this December to make these cute decorations for their parents, but I couldn't post about it or it would've spoiled the surprise. 

I was very impressed at their effort and attention to detail. For most of them, it was one of the first times they've ever picked up a needle, but now all 18 of them know how to tell the difference between the right and wrong side of fabric; sew a running stitch, back stitch and a slip stitch; turn something right side out and press; and how to sew on a button. Not to mention that they all know the difference between thread and string. Now, whether or not they remember it all is another story, but if nothing else, they've all had a good introduction to sewing by hand. 

If you'd like the pattern to make a little snowman for yourself, you can purchase the pattern here. (Although the original pattern is designed to hang on the wall and is 12 snowballs tall.)

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Thank You

Recently the teachers, staff  and families of the Island
school were invited to dinner at Fire Hall.
The catered dinner was delicious, and 

it  was great to get to know some of the new guys.

Of course, the kids were thrilled to
"explore" the Fire Hall.

Thanks MIFD - for dinner and everything you do!

Saturday, December 19, 2015

Everything Tote

Sometimes I just need to make something for myself...

So I pulled my copy of this book from the shelf and got started. (I bought it a few years ago when my friend Maggie and I did a Sew Along.) I did however, make one change - I added in the zip top.

I travel back and forth from the Island to the mainland often, and a bag that closes is much more useful to me than one with an open top. If I make another one though, I'll make the top a couple of inches wider. It's a bit on the narrow side... 

Saturday, December 12, 2015

Ask and You Shall Receive

Recently I happened to casually mention to my husband that I wanted a dress form. Two days later he surprised me with this  beauty. OK, maybe she's not a beauty yet, but when I look at her I see oodles of possibilities.

He was shutting off the water in one of the buildings on the island and there she was in the back of a storage room filled with junk. The building had recently sold, and after after making inquiries my husband was told, "It's yours if you want it." 

She was made by the Grand Rapids Dress Form Company, but we're not sure when she was made or whether she was for displaying clothing in a store or for sewing. True, she's going to need a little TLC to bring her back up to snuff, but it looks like she's complete - minus a wing nut or two.

She's currently stashed in the corner of my sewing room, patiently waiting for summer when I'll  have the time to give her the attention she deserves.  With some cleaning, new fabric covers and padding in a few places, I should have a usable dress form.

I think I'm going to call her Madge...

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Funny for the Day

Today I started a sewing project with my 4th, 5th & 6th grade class of 14 boys and five girls. As we were hand sewing a Christmas ornament one of the boys complained that he keep poking himself. I explained to him, "Pokes are a part of sewing. When you hand sew often,  you can actually build up calluses on your fingers from repeatedly sticking them with the needle."

"Really?" He asked. I assured him that it was true; when I was hand quilting every day I did indeed have a sewing callous on one of my fingers.  

My 5th grader looked over at his friend and said, "Dude! Get to work. We need these calluses so we can grip the football better!" 

They were two of my hardest workers for the rest of the morning...

Monday, December 7, 2015

The Bicycle Dress

When it comes to sewing for my daughter, she's kind of a tough nut. She's a little on the finicky side when it comes to clothes. No, that's not quite accurate either. To be truthful  she's so  incredibly picky when it comes to what she will and will not wear, that some days it drives me crazy. And, she has an opinion about every article of clothing she comes into contact with. She likes knits. She likes leggings. She likes loose. (She prefers to be naked, but we've drawn that line at her bedroom door on that one.) Give her a fitted shirt or a pair of denim pants and you'll be lucky if all you get is the stink eye. Really.

That said, I was a little nervous about making this dress. It wasn't a knit or even remotely stretchy, but I loved the fabric so much. When I saw it at Joann's it called to me, "Wouldn't I make the prefect dress for a little Mackinac Island girl?" So, of course, it had to come home with me - along with McCall's M7111

I loved it and I had to make it. I am so glad it did, because she actually likes it. (Though she'll never wear that blue jean jacket again; "It's too stiff!") And the dress is so stinkin' cute that I can't help but smile when I see her in it. In fact, I think she needs another one. Perhaps the next one should have horses on it. Or Pokemon. She'd love that...