counting sheep

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

I'm just sayin.... I LOVE ME SOME RICK RACK!

One of my sewing hero's is April's 1930's sewing. She is just as friendly as can be and like me she loves rick rack too. She posted this yesterday on facebook, its an old instruction piece on using rick rack so now I think I want to see how many different ways I can find to use it. ENJOY!

I finally got a copy of THE APRON BOOK!

This is such an awesome book! I have wanted one for a long time and finally found a copy at Joann's even though I have looked there a dozen times before. There it was on the shelf! YES! Such a fun read and it gave me so many ideas to copy. It shows a lot of ways to use rick rack and binding that I had not thought of.  Plus it has pattern ideas as well.

Well for that last few days I have been trying to finish some Christmas presents that I really want to brag about on here but I don't dare because ya never know who might be peeking! 
I am really getting to enjoy my sewing machine on this short Christmas break from eBay.... Boy am I making a big fat mess~!

Friday, December 10, 2010

String Piecing I think....

I have recently noticed the string quilts. Funny I had never heard that name before now, I think I thought they were scrap quilts, and they are, sort of.... I had some pink and black saved over from a couple different projects so I thought I would give it a whirl. I did get 6 little blocks made. As time goes by I will make more and eventually use a black sash around each block (unless I change my mind). Not sure if it will be a quilt or an item...

First I sewed them in strips...

Then I cut them into 6 inch squares (or was it five?)
Then I cut the squares in half from corner to corner.
Then I cut those in half again right down the middle of the long side.
Then I sewed the funky little blocks together to make these abstract little squares.
Then I pinned them together and put them in the sewing drawer and I will keep adding to them.

Maybe the colors will be added to along the way or more than likely I will add something that will compliment the pink and black until I have enough to make a little something!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

How many sewing machines do you have? they asked....

What machines do I have in the house or within reach you say.... hmmm?

Singer 99 hand crank in a Bentwood case, fun to use for kids (I bought at Countryside Antique Mall on US30

Singer 99-13 in a Bentwood Case (on loan to Ri & Jami for their projects when they can't get to Mamaw's...)ebay purchase

Singer 99 w/ back tack in full cabinet (belongs to Jami, Christmas present 2009)ebay purchase

Singer 66 Red Head in treadle cabinet (fun to use on the porch on hot summer days)bought in Angola from an ebay seller I know Corkyfish This is the machine at the top right of this post, in the drawer was a Swed. Zigzgger complete with case, sewing collectors... you know what thats worth!

Singer 66 Red Head electrified (a work in progress by dear hubby) bought at Calhoun Emp Antique Mall Fort Wayne

A Singer 66 with Lotus Decals i bought on eBay, a work in progress... I think the Lotus decals are the prettiest ones Singer came up with... you see that one at the top right of this posting.

Singer 66-16 without case or cabinet for kids friends to sew

3 Singer 66-16's in full cabinets (our sewing room, 1 mine 1 Ri 1 Eby's Christmas 2009, I want to replace them all with 15-91 for FM skill advancement!) One from Ebay, one from St Vincents DePaul and One was a gift from an ebay customer!

Singer 15-91 in full cabinet (in my Sunny kitchen sewing spot) use sml quilts & general sew quilt pc bought from Corkyfish in Angola- I bought sight unseen and its gorgeous!)

Singer 31-15 in Industrial Table w/ industrial motor (in my dr for FM of large quilts) At Auction in Rome City Indiana from an old Catholic Mission-Nuns used  I have collected all the feet that go with this machine and also purchased a Jukki Industrial free motion foot for it... wowsa!

White Treadle in cabinet (pretty with a coffin top, rarely used)  all attachments, shuttles and long bobbins, needles I could ever use fill the drawers plus a new old stock belt...Shinaberry Auction House for 40$

White embossed Rotary head only (sits on top of layer's cabinet for display) bought in New Haven off of Craiglist

White Treadle head VS #1 (sits on shelf in built in w/ prims display only)

Singer 500A Rocketeer (in upstairs bedroom for sleepy time sewing escapades) bought on Craiglist for 30 dollars, machine cabinet and attachments and it was right around the corner from my house!

Singer from the 90's white plastic everything.. My machine from the past...

Janome (bought new for Ri's 10th birthday)

Jamone (bought new for Jami's 10th birthday)

1952 White brand 15 clone( belongs to EBy, her 1st machine) looks like a 57 Ch

Necchi BU in beautiful condition but I have not got to sew on it yet! lol

Elna (not sure which model) have not tried it yet, I bought it at an auction

Retro Brother that is pink and brown, have not had a chance to try it yet but will!

Probably at least 25 in the work room, most Singer but some others as well, Necchi, Pfaff, 15 clones and the like, for resale on ebay hubby is working on those.

Probably at least 10 in the little barn- part machines mostly Singer

Probably at least 10 or 12 in the Garage waiting for a check up... one really nice Singer Treadle complete with great Spinx decals. A great 201-2 and others... and a St Lewis Blind Stitch machine... lol

I love it...I love it not...I love it?

I am the proud owner of a Singer 500A with the flame knob... I have just about every attachment there is for it including the coveted "Big Foot" free motion foot and even a monogrammer.  However... hmmm... well... I just can't warm up to her for some reason. Is it the color? Maybe... Is it the fact that it sounds so different from my Singer 15-91? Maybe... Is it the cabinet its in? I just know yall! It sews a pretty stitch, it does a lot of fancy stitches, its easy to thread, easy to operate and it looks like its a cousin to a spaceship from the 50's so that makes it cool... right?  This one has really got me weireded out. I just don't feel like the same woman when I am using it. I feel so different in my heart and mind when my machine is black with gold lettering and you can make it sound like a rain stick when you are pedaling along. I am a black Singer freak I guess with a black bobbin fettish... I'm just sayin...
I this lady is trying to hide her true feelings...

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Poor Little Busy Me...boohoo...

It stinks when you can't sit down and do what you want but at least some of my work is fun. I am talking about all the vintage textiles and sewing machines and notions that I get to handle on a daily basis for paul-mart on eBay. This week I listed 5 vintage quilt tops, two Singer sewing machines and a Pfaff, all vintage and fun to check out. Also a raggedy cutter pillow top in a basket pattern of yo yo's. It is fragile but it would look awesome in a picture frame. One of the quilt tops is done in black and white fabrics which are popular these days too. Anyway I hope I get to sew some come Thursday or I will just fall apart for sure! lol

Sunday, December 5, 2010

an intolerable day!

This day will be over in just a few, I am so glad. All my listings took way longer than expected, one ebay problem after another. I need Calgon to take me away from all this... (showing my age)... Its such a long and involved boring gory hairy story I will just LET IT GOOOOOOOOOO... I think I will turn on the rain sound and go to my happy place. If you ever just want to listen to a rain storm to go to sleep just put your laptop close and your sound up and log on to this site.      poor little cold sewing machine...   GOODNIGHT ALL!

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Today was busy!

Well we were supposed to go to an antique open house Christmas event in Markle but it was too slick for me and hubby and puddin, my pt cruiser... so we shopped in town instead. Then in the afternoon just as we arrived back home we had incomming sewing machines, a Singer 99-13, cute as a button with great decals and a cabinet, another great Singer 201-2, great machine for leather artists. A vintage 237 Fashion Mate, the best one of that model with all metal gears and cast iron body popped in a retro case made its way in later. One needs a wire job but that looks like all the major work except for the clean down and making them jump through the sewing hoops... lot of work this week.  BUT... just a little while ago I did manage to get one of those bag holders cut out, I am really wanting to finish it bad! lo I will try to squeeze in some pictures of it Sunday.

 So for tonight lets look at this great quilt..
It comes from West TN where I was born and its so unusual. Its a snake quilt and I want to make one, yep its covered in cotton mouth water moccasins... it says true south just about as best as any southern quilt can!  Notice how the snakes are pieced!

Friday, December 3, 2010

While I was racking up 1.99 patterns at Hancock...

I got another bright idea... I was making aprons for a reason, to keep from screwing up my clothes while cleaning up vintage sewing machines to list on the bay... but I don't always want to have an apron hanging around my neck ... then in the pattern book I saw it, THE most cutest scrub top. I am a retired nurse and I know how comfortable they can be! Why not make some of these too for my work? I can use sewing theme fabric and it will be like "I am all that" whilst working down in the sewing catacombs of the basement! Yeah, that's the ticket! So...I found this cute fabric and soon I will be looking like a real pro, the dog will be sooooo impressed! as will the FedEx guy...
 check out the vintage price on the bias tape! lol

Old Singer apron book sold for 29 cents way back when...

As I was looking for something today in the basement sewing catacombs I ran across this little booklet on making aprons. I thought you might like to see it. It sold back then for a whole 29 cents... wonder how much the fabric was? Maybe I will find that out...

My name is Gwen and I am a boboholic...

I have bobbins that jingle jangle jingle out the wazoolio... and I am not kidding. About six years ago when I first became involved with the selling of vintage sewing items I began to accumulate bobbins for my many sewing machines. You may not know this but there is a major difference between a class 66 bobbin of the 1940's compared to the metal class 66 bobbins you can buy new today. The 40's bobbins were heavier and when you hold them in the palm of your hand its like magic! lol AND if I find one in the lot that happens to be black well... well...BINGO! That means I found a war time black out bobbin, I love em!  It's an illness I know... But I can't help myself, if I see em, I gotta have em! I have stacks and stacks and /i need each and everyone of them...:-o

In my kitchen I have a sewing spot (I have others..) where my beloved Singer 15-91 proudly sits in front of double windows. I open up the shutters and all this wonderful light filters in and I can actually see really well to sew (I have to wear reading glasses to use the remote on the TV...). In this particular spot I have my machine in a big cabinet that may be from the 60's, huge library type extensions on the table and a nice set of 4 deep drawers. It even has a pull up piece in the back that holds thread spools. I bought this cabinet from the man I list for on eBay, Paul. One of the fringe benefits for being his Lister is that if it don't sell he will sell to you for a great price! I LOVE THAT! Paul is one of the reasons I have so much fun stuff. That's my connection for bias tape, trims, rick rack and thread by the bushel basket load and I am not kidding! He has several Lister's but I only do the domestics like sewing-quilts-machines and such. If you are a sewer this is an awesome job to have! He is the seller paul-mart on eBay.

I wonder does anyone else have this illness? the photo shows a few of my class 15 bobbins, more on this story later... the other photos show the drawer contents of the kitchen sewing spot..

Ok... so today I went to Hancocks...

Well as I drug myself out of bed today (bad back) it kind of felt a little better so I thought to myself I MUST GO TO HANCOCKS THE McCALLS ARE ON SALE FOR A DOLLAR NINETY NINE! lol But they limit you to buying only 10... but I really couldn't even find 10 that I wanted. But I did find a cute little apron related pattern for those hangie bags you keep your grocery bags in. I don't like the way they did theirs so I'm gonna give mine a little funk by making the apron part in a 1930's 40's style and unlike this designer my rick rack will be put on different, I like only the points of the trim to stick out. I found some cute cherry fabrics there to use, can't wait to get started on these!

Oh yes! and they had these big pincushions on sale for half price and you know I had to have one of these! well...there was storage in the bottom for my quilting safety pins...

It was fun being there today, sitting comfortably and pouring over the pattern books....

Thursday, December 2, 2010

OMG did you know about the naughty apron people!

While I was out in cyberspace looking for way cool aprons to make for my little jolly self  I ran across some very naughty apron people. I didn't really check much of their stuff out (no pun intended) but you know there is an apron fetish out there ! What in the world goes through people's minds? Why would you think of an innocent apron in that kind of way? honestly... now come on... Somebody better get a hold on this internet and take a look at what some of these people are up too! garsh.... I mean... I'm just sayin....sheesh...  Sorry, I won't be posting pictures on this one! lol

My apron can hold two women at once...

Well its big and that is a fact.  I should have measured instead of eyeballing it... its even on both sides it just looks like the woman that could wear it might not be able to walk anymore! lol  Anyhow in the morning I have to get back to quilting for sure but I have not given up on aprons, I still need a few more.

I was thinking tonight about my Mother and her quilting frame that was drawn to the ceiling when not in use.  It has always been a hard thing to explain to those that are not familiar with Southern ways so I found a picture of one while surfing for those interested in such things . Actually the whole deal was rather festive looking and brought a little color to our humble home...

I found the patterns today... now what!

OK... this afternoon I found the stash of apron patterns I have been hoarding for years. Not sure why but they were in with the scrap booking supplies. I won't even get in to talking about my scrap booking supplies as I hang my head in embarrassment... Anyway I went through everyone of them and they  are either sized up to a large or a 22 which I consider a 22 a mere chubet!  However a new pal from my apron group turned me towards etsy, there they have big fat apron patterns! YES! Now to find money, maybe I will go back and look in the scrap booking supplies.... hmmm. Wait! was I really a 22 years ago? I bet I was!

Shop or sew? that is the question...

Today I did not really know if I wanted to shop or sew, shopping won out for awhile. I went to Joann's but didn't find much. Was disapointed to find out that most of their apron patterns stop at about size 22... I gues they think larger women don't need aprons? hmmm...  So now I am back home and looking for some old apron patterns I had years ago that I never made.  I did get some fabric last night when I made a run to Walmart. Usually I don't buy the dollar a yard stuff but they had some decent stuff so I bought a few yards for aprons.

What is it about aprons anyway? Why now? I mean we live in a time when about any style goes. Is it because we are searching for yesterday? Is that why I like antiques and primitives and candle tarts that smell like Mother is alive and well and baking in my kitchen... Did my Mother feel this way, way back when? hmmm...

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

My husband's hands...

Years ago when he had that head full of blond hair that would make old JB look like a bozo and his face had no wrinkles and his tummy didn't bulge (only a little) he was a site to behold. But when I look at him now I don't see what others may see. I still see a gorgeous man.  One thing or two I guess I should say that I have always admired about this man is his hands.  They are real man hands for sure, scarred from tools, calloused from hard work. Now when he is very close to retirement his hands seem to work harder than ever. We sort of fell into vintage sewing machine repair. I can't say how many he has repaired, took apart, rigged, oiled, lubricated and changed parts. His little basement shop sometimes sounds like  he is building mini race cars when I can here him reving a motor on an old Singer 15 or 201... He has learned a lot and I know he enjoys it but I enjoy just watching him use his hands... this picture is one of my very favorites... I love you dear hubby, to me you will always be a hunk.

I did get my apron made! yeah me!

I kinda wish it would have been a little bigger but its fine. The next one I make I think I will alter the pattern to be a couple inches bigger in the tummy area! lol But I just love this perrywinkle blue calico and the contrasting pocket fabric is from my new stash pile from I love that place, their prices are incredible and the fabric is so nice! Anyway here are a few pictures to show what I did to make this retro apron. wooohoooo!

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

rickity rackity!

I am almost embarresed at how much rick rack I have collected through my wheelings and dealings. Its like it has a spell on me or something. The other day I got it all out and organized it. In the morning I hope to make an apron and actually use some of it!

not too proud...

My dear hubby is always looking out for me and never too proud to trash pick...bless his heart. The other day he brought home just the ticket! An old wooden doughnut cart, the best thing ever for fabric stash!

I guess I did get a few things done....

After I got used to the idea that the kids were back in school and my play time with them was over I started back quilting. I finished my nephew, Matthew's quilt in red white and blue. He and his Mother are new to America and since Daddy (My little brother) is American even though Matthew was born before they moved here he was born an American. I thought Matthew definitely deserved his own "AMERICAN" quilt.

Then there was Hubby's quilt. His first one, all finished in black and white. He says his quilt has the special power to put him to sleep... he is too cute with his quilt.

Now I am working on my niece's quilt. I gave Layla a sneak peek on facebook and I think she will like it!
Anyhow the good thing is the slump is over and the machines are running again!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Summer vacation has a bittersweet end...

Alas, school starts Monday for my three little gals... No time to sew until Christmas break. I have enjoyed watching them as well as listening to them talk and laugh during our hours of sewing. Today we took 7 baby quilts, 10 bibs, 6 baby blankets and 160 diapers for donation to the Women's Care Center. The lady really made over their quilts and was impressed that they could sew and would spend their summer doing such a thing. Me too... I am impressed as well.  The Three Amigo's, two years of quilt making under their belts already.

I hope next summer they will wan't to carry on our tradition. But I know someday some handsome young men will slow their sewing time down... But I won't think about that today... bitterseet...

Sunday, August 1, 2010

They Have Been At It Again!!!

 Our summer is reving up for the finish and School will be back in session towards the end of this month. My little gals have been busy sewing this and that. We will have seven baby quilts to give to the Women's Care Center soon.  Bags have been made for back to school and even a little dress to wear to Church. Its been fun but we are not through yet. I can't wait to see what they are able to produce before school starts. I am a proud Mamaw for sure!