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Christening Gown

Pretty Christening Gown made from the Pretty Borders Embrodered Imperial Voile - shown over a pink batiste slip - the bodice is lined with white batiste and has some pretty lace fancy work.
Click on the pictures to see a larger view 







Baby Buella's Christmas Dress -

What Grammy doesn't LOOOVE sewing that special Christmas Dress for her GrandBaby???
In spite of working long hours out of town, traveling back and forth and all the other stresses and strains of life I wouldn't've missed making this dress for ANYTHING!!  Christmas Eve her Daddy and I tagged-teamed her wiggly little self into the dress and even got the bow tied!

He set her down and she started checking everything out -
Aunty snapping pictures the whole time - and then she spread her skirt out and **BEAMED**!!
That smile was better than a pot of gold!!

 visit the Sewing School for Fabric and Pattern Details and Block Construction Instructions for the dress front

KWIK & KEWT - Christmas Dresses

These two little cuties are my neighbors, they're both 3 years old and are BFFs!! They LOVE their new Christmas jumpers - I LOVE their bright red shoes!!











 The Big Polka Dots Fabric is Sold Out and I can't get anymore but there are several other prints to pick from - I paired these Pretty Christmas Prints with Imperial MicroChex for the Ties & Yoke. The Pattern is Smanath Caffee's Handmade Dress Miss Molly which is my all-time favorite of all her patterns!

These little dresses with Christmas Tree Pockets are a favorite!
The Pocket Applique pattern and directions are FREE in The Sewing School

                             3 Fairy-Flower Girl Dresses

My youngest daughter – Chicago Daughter – was married in July 2010. She pretty much gave me carte blanche for making her flower girl dresses, the only request was that they be bright colors – light pink, dark pink and orange!  I started making these way back in March struggling to get them done thru hand surgery, wearing a cast for 6 weeks, getting a house ready to sell, packing to move and moving myself 1,000 miles across country, then having to clean up the damage and mess of multiple break-ins and major vandalism to the house I was moving into!  But the dresses were finished in time for delivery to the little girls BEFORE the wedding!!









 I thought the big, fat, over-sized bows in the  back would give the idea of Fairy Wings without looking too goofy, I LOVE how they came out and they were super-easy!


 *Note: If you click on the picture you can see an enlarged view - then just click on the 'Back' arrow of your borwser to come back to the page.







  I thought flouncing the organza would add some hem interest and also another touch of *bling*!  I like it but I can see I need to adjust the flounces on the dark pink and orange dresses - just a few stitches to complete.


To be economical I used Joann Fabric’s Casa Satin with the matching Casa Organza overlay for the 2 Pink dresses. For the Orange I had to go to a different brand of satin and that’s a whole ‘nother story in itself! Of course I used my go-to Chery Williams Basic Yoke Pattern.

I pleated the organza and satin together and then smocked a simple trellis pattern with little glass seed beads to add sparkle.  The Orange would NOT go thru the pleater so I hand-pleated it using the Knott Dots that were supposed to coordinate with pleating machine pleats – another NOT! The hand pleated smocking didn’t even come close to the machine-pleated smocking and I had a few hours of sheer panic when I realized the smocked skirt section didn’t come close to fitting the yoke.  I took the pleating threads out and s-t-r-e-t-c-h-e-d the smocked piece, pinning it to the ironing board, spritzed it with water and pressed it with the hottest iron it could take. 

I left it there overnight and thankfully the thing did not spring back to shape!  With that extra bit I could fudge the yoke and armhole cuts into the smocked skirt section and construct the dress and it even fits the little girl!  WHEW!!  It doesn’t look as nice as the pink dresses but as I’ve often heard Judith Adams say ‘it’s on a moving child, no one will notice!’ and if it’s good enough for her it’s good enough for me – besides, the weddings in 2 weeks!!!

Ellie Inspired from Fine Stitchery

Pocket o' Posies from Ellie Inspired

Here it is!  The Project we've been working on for about a month now!!  A cross-country effort that launched a new business, a 'new' machine stitching and embroidery technique and two new Machine Embroidery Design sets! 

The pattern is the first from Ellie Inspired and the

Machine Embroidery Designs are from SusanB Designs - klik on the links!

Above is the Bloomer top and shorty bottoms with hand embroidery and hand smocking

Below is the same top with Machine Embroidery and Faux Smocking and

Below that is the sweet Sundress from the same Pocket o’ Posies pattern

Hopefully if you click on the center pictures you will get an enlarged view


A little more than a month ago I got an email from Laura Johnson commenting that I didn’t have very many pictures of completed garments, would I be interested in having her sew some samples for me?  YES!!  and before I could hardly blink she had completed **5** different adorable outfits – some using her OWN PATTERNS!!!  And that launched Laura's NEW PATTERN LINE!!  Ellie Inspired  Each pattern is available for instant download or as a printed version and comes with very detailed directions and lots of illustrations as well as style options - her next pattern is already in the works. 

Laura had used her own cutie-patootie embroidery designs and the little wheels in my head started turning – my cyber-friend SusanB had done an incredible job of digitizing some design ideas I’d had a year or so ago and I drew her into the scheme.  She jumped at the challenge and did an amazing job recreating the delicate handwork daisies and scrolls in Machine Embroidery – Susan’s French knots even have dimples in the middle!!!  She has broken the designs into 2 different sets so you can purchase *just* what you want or the whole works – check out Claire’s Spring Flowers and Ellie’s Easter Dress at Designs Mall.

I had been playing with an easy faux-smocking technique and was eager to try out Laura’s pattern and Susan’s Machine Embroidery designs.  I love to smock, I love the look and the functionality as well as the stitching itself but I get emails all the time from girls who don’t know how to smock or don’t have a pleater or consider 'HAND' a 4-letter word so they can’t create a smocked garment.  Even the Machine Embroidery ‘smocking’ designs still require pleated fabric.  I think it came out supa-cute!  It's fun and easy to do entirely on the machine and creates a pretty texture and while it only vaguely resembles smocking I’m going to call it Faux Smocking

Detailed instructions are in the Sewing School. 

There will be kits available for creating Ellie Inspired outfits of your own – and we’re already planning new designs and outfits!  Maybe even some new coordinating Machine Embroidery designs!

Easter Dresses from Ellie Inspired

Have you ever seen a more *perfect* Easter dress?  GORGEOUS!!  It absolutely took my breath away!  From Imperial Dotted Swiss, white fabric with pink embroidered dots, pretty lace and cheer fabric fancy band and a pink Barbara's Best Batiste petticoat underneath, original silk ribbon embroidery design.  Klik on the center photo for a large view. 



Cool and Crisp as a Spring Breeze!  The fresh green Imperial MicroChex makes this classic Bishop sing *Spring!*  Pretty white daisies, silk ribbon woven thru the smocking and cute daisy buttons up the back!  Available as a kit complete with trims and daisy buttons! From Chery Williams Bishop Pattern.





What can I say?  What is sweeter than two little girls playing with their dollies?!  All dressed up in pretty new dresses Fine Stitchery fabrics!






 YES!  This is a pillowcase dress!  Pattern and directions are FREE from Sew Beautiful   from Fine Stitchery Satin Batiste, Italian Organdy collar, pink silk ribbons and lace, yoke pattern is from Chery Williams Basic Yoke Dress.



I loooove Baby Bonnets!  What a lovely, memorable and yet easy to make gift! 

I have 2 Bonnet Kits ready and at least 2 more COMING SOON!  And eventually matching booties, too!

These are all easy to construct - REALLY! -  come with all required materials except basic sewing supplies such as needle and thread. 

Full instructions complete with illustrations and line drawings as well as pattern are included with every kit.


 Frilly Lingerie Envelope from Handkerchief Linen - could also be filled with a form and become a darling feminine Boudoir Cushion! 

Available as a Kit with everything needed to complete the project including pattern, project directions and Heirloom Instructions for French Lace Insertion and joining gathered Fench Lace to fabric and finishing with machine pin stitch! 

Nightgown & Sundress

A Nightgown for everybody – little girls to ladies and also adorable for a Sundress for little girls.  Chicago Daughter may never speak to me again!!!  But hey, it’s her own fault – I made that nightgown for her and she THREW IT AWAY!!!!  At least her sister Photo-Shopped her a new face to conceal her identify!  LOL!! 

It can be Smocked (left view) or Elastic (right view) - your choice!  The checked sundress is $1 per yard fabric from WalMart and is Counter-Changed smocked.

Both gowns are made from Embroidered Batiste  and the 'pattern' and directions is yours to download for FREE in the Sewing School.  How pretty woudl one of these little gowns be in the gorgeous Pale Pink Embroidered Batiste?!!

Cupcakes & Cookies

 How CUTE are these?!?  And they're Supa-Easy-Peasy to make! 

AND a TOTAL Scrap Craft - meaning with a few exceptions you're using up bits and pieces of things you already have around the house!

Go to the Sewing School to download the Pattern and Directions.

The Cupcakes are Pincushions and the Cookies are Pincushion MAGNETS!


 I hope you will find Ideas and Inspiration from some of my projects!

New Easter Dress for Baby!  I started this Baby Bishop last Fall because I wanted to do something with my favorite Satin Batiste and I had just brought this yummy variegated floss home from SAGA Market.  I had the Mill Hill Seed Beads left over from a MaggieB class and thought they went well with the floss.  Not sure how I'd like those beads with a real baby, tho? 

The smocking plate is from a recent SAGA News, slightly modified.  If I can make this work right you can klik on the close-up picture and see it enlarged.

And I LOOOOVE doing this hem - I think it adds *just* enough interest to the hem without detracting from the smocking or overwhelming the baby.  It's supa-easy, too!

GENEVIEVE - Little Miss Pouty-Face models Sue Pennington's Pattern: Genevieve from Sew Beautiful #111.  I made this dress out of Martha's Best Batiste but when I finished all the handwork I was WISHING I had used Nelona!


EXCELLENT Twirl Factor makes even Miss Pouty-Face smile!



Bunny Twins - More Barbara's Best Batiste!  This time with Shadow Work Bunnies on Pin-tucked Bubbles for a Perfect Pair - and gender-neutral, too. 

Basket Top with Hand Embroidery done on Linen Blend Fabric

How cute are these Jammies?  Made from Ivory Imperial Batiste and loaded with embroidered laces and ribbons now a kit in your choice of colors!  How cute would these be peeking out from under a pretty smocked dress?

What's Next???  Keep an eye on this page as more Projects and Patterns are added!

Easter Dress & Jon-Jon












My little Second Cousins are just 2 years apart, I wanted to make them cutie Brother-Sister outfits while they were still small enough for them to be sweet.  My cousin - their Dad - would not tolerate anything too frilly for his only son!  So I thought these were a good compromise - enough smocking and lace for the dress to be girly but the Jon-Jon is plain enough to be 'manly'!!  Both are Chery Williams patterns.











The little Brown Bunnies are hand-embroidered in outline stitch with fluffy white tails in Turkish work.   I worked them in the Dentist's office during a root canal, during lunch hours, during meetings, and every other possible spare minute to get them done in time! 

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