Sunday, April 29, 2012

A day late, but I showed up to the Pyjama Party with a giveaway!

I made the above pajama pants out of McCalls 5248, my old favorite. This time I added pockets and posted a tutorial here. The above position is the most common view I have in bed. Yes, my assistant sleeps between my legs and gazes dreamily out the window. OK, mostly she snores and drools, but it is how we sleep. When she is not there I can't sleep and when I am not there she can't sleep. Poor Mr. Thinks He Can.

Here is a sad picture of me modeling my pockets. I'm a week out from losing an organ people! Give me some credit for trying. :-)

Joann's had McCall's patterns on sale this weekend, so I bought an extra copy of this pattern.

I figured I may show up late to the party, but I also brought a cool consolation prize. To enter leave me a comment with a way to reach you. I will choose a winner on May 5 at noon CST. Or as we say in Houston "at high noon on Cinco de Mayo." Viva!

Oh yeah, and what am I reading? The Summer edition of Interweave Stitch Magazine This magazine comes out quarterly and always has at least three projects I want to do. This month featured an article by Gertie on Alfred Shaheen Hawaiian Bombshell dresses.

Friday, April 27, 2012

Sewaholic Knock Out!

I just got a notice in my inbox that Tasia at Sewaholic is coming out with a new dress pattern!

I admit I have never made a Sewaholic Pattern, but the Cambie may be a must-have. I do love Sewaholic patterns, and long for a Renfrew, but my smallest feature is my hips, so I feel like an imposter sewing the patterns because I'm an apple and not a pear. I know, weird complex, this one may just get me over it.

Check out Tasia modeling the A-line version. I am nuts about those sleeves. She mentioned a pre-sale starting soon. It's all very exciting!

Oh, and Gertie's book is finally coming out! It's a money blowing sewing day!

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

My Gallbladder: Did that really just happen?

This has nothing to do with sewing, so if you want to skip, I understand.

I had my gallbladder taken out yesterday. What the heck? Let me tell you how this started. On Sunday I was having severe chest pains. I put up with it for a couple of hours then I just had a feeling I had to go to the Emergency Room. Dear Mr. Thinks He Can did panic a bit, but was such a trooper. I asked him on the way if he thought I might be having a heart attack.

Here is a bit about me: I'm 32 with normal blood pressure, normal cholesterol counts and normal everything. I'm a bit chunky, but I really like to stay on top of any health issues that arise. I didn't think it was a heart attack, but it was all I knew it could be in that area. The pain was really severe and right between my breasts.

At the emergency room they started by doing an echo cardiogram, but that came out all clear. Next they tried giving me some antacids mixed with some kind of numbing agent. That didn't work. They gave me an IV and injected some pain killers and anti nausea medicine. I felt good all over, but nothing stopped the chest pain. They did a chest X-ray and found nothing abnormal. Finally, they ordered a sonogram of my abdomen and found five stones in my gallbladder as well as some inflammation of it.

Apparently one stone was in the top tube of the gallbladder and the pain was from the gallbladder trying to push it out. You can see above that would be the chest area. It turns out a lot of people have stones in their gallbladder, but never have a problem with it. Some of the things that increased my odds were: being female, 30-40 years old, being heavy, and possibly genetics.

Back to the story I was transported by ambulance to a nearby hospital to have my gallbladder removed. Because I am young, they knew it could come out in the next 24 hours. I was finally in the hospital and in a bed at about 10:00 p.m. Sunday evening. The staff at Methodist Hospital in the Houston Medical Center was amazing and explained what was happening to me very well. I spent the night in the hospital getting fluids from the IV as well as morphine. Even that did not stop the pain though! Mr. Thinks He Can went home at my request and got a good night's sleep, well as good a night as my assistant would give him. Apparently she looked for my all night long!

They started my surgery at 8:00 a.m. and it was conducted laparoscopically (can't find a spelling on that). I only have three small incisions along my right side and an incision in my belly button. That one hurts the worst. Amazingly I was discharged from the hospital last night. I can walk around, but I am very uncomfortable. Sleeping last night was hard just because I am sore all over. I am amazed I am doing as well as I am. Yay technology! 

So consider this a Public Service Announcement. I never knew I could have issues with my gallbladder at my age, but I was a prime candidate. Also, chest pains can mean a lot of things, not just a heart attack. If you think something is wrong in your chest, get it checked out! I am lucky I went in as soon as I did because if the stones had gotten out they could have caused complications with my pancreas or other issues. 

You may not see much sewing from me for a few days, and I may have to skip my RTW dress contest entry and top a month challenge this month. But gosh I can't believe I just had an organ removed yesterday! I hope you all are doing well! And a special thanks to Mr. Thinks He Can for his support and my neighbors for the extra dog walks and influx of Jell-O upon my arrival home!

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Estate Sale score!

I woke up this morning compelled to type in sewing on Craigslist. I found an estate for a former fashion model with a sewing machine listed. Where there is a sewing machine there is usually other sewing type things. While this one was not a huge haul, it was pretty good for $15. First of all, the big win...

Hooray! A sleeve roll, a pressing ham and a 'Pres Mit'! What does a press mitt do? Who knows? But, it was next to these other bad boys, so I figured it was a find. 

Here is the Pres Mit in action. Maybe I can hold stuff over my hand while I press? That would be handy. By the way, how do you like my new table cloth? I've been doing some home makeover tutorials over at the SewVac blog. My house is looking sharp! And yes, I do still sew, smarty pants.

I also discovered do you say...sleeve press board. You know what I mean!

Sewing paraphernalia here includes some eyelets and an eyelet tool. This is all pretty usable stuff.

Some button fasteners that could come in handy. I'm horrible at buttons, so keeping this in my purse as a public decency protector may be just the thing I need!

I found this book for $2 plus 30% off! It is huge and awesome.

It covers everything from history, tailoring, techniques, etc.

It is copyrighted 1970 and includes a chapter on some famous hot designers such as Pierre Cardin, Givenchy, Yves Saint Laurent, Guy LaRoche, Emanuel Ungaro, Pucci, Valentine and Oscar de la Renta. Man, those guys just keep trucking 42 years later. I bet they have cooler stock photos now though.

There are also pages and pages of full color photos with notions and trims and how to use them. I can't wait to dive into this book!

Saturday, April 14, 2012

A repeat quilt

There was a situation, and it called for a quilt. I wanted something vibrant and fun. I also know the owner loves flowers. So what did I do, I am making Heather French's English Flowers quilt. Again! It's a good thing I love this quilt. This second one is going much quicker. Here is my first one if you need a reminder.

I took this quilt to Tea Time Quilts here in the Houston Heights. They so get me. I gave vague statements like, "Colorful and vibrant like this one, but not exactly." An hour later we were cutting my fabric and talking about how if we could we would turn every fabric in the world into a skirt.

We settled on some of the Hello Luscious line by Moda with a couple of fillers to brighten it up. It sticks with my aqua, red and pink palette I love, but emphasizes the blue a bit more. I was a bit wary, but here is a row put together.

Yummy! I think it is turning out very nicely, and I can't wait to see it all together. In the meantime, I have had a ton of showings of my house, which is on the market. That stops me from really getting into projects. I hate to make a 'huge mess' which is to the average sewist represents a nice project in the works.

Also, here is the baby project coming along for the Sew Vac Outlet blog. From the top going clockwise we have bibs, diaper wipe clutch, changing pad roll, three burp cloths, and underneath a flannel baby blanket. It has turned out nicely. Baby stuff is so cheap and easy to make! It has been good for me too. Many of you know I lost my younger brother back in October. It turns out one of his best friends found out he and his wife were pregnant shortly before he died and asked my brother to be the god father. He accepted and was pretty excited about it. The baby is due in June, and I know he would have a.) wished it were a boy and b.) given the baby a hell of a welcome. He never got the chance. I guess I am doing this for him, and it has been a nice feeling. Haha, he would have hated all this pink! 

P.S. If you can read my blog in heaven, where I am sure access to my blog is a priority, I wish you were here doing this instead. Since you're not you'll just have to deal with the hot pink zebra stripes. You can fight me over it when I get there. It's the thought that counts, Bubba.

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Some projects in review

I have been busy. I mean blogging busy. I am blogging for the Humble Sewing Center, and loving it. It is challenging me to come up with quick projects and tutorials. I feel like my personal blog has been neglected some, so I wanted to share some of the projects I have been making. By the way, coming up with so many ideas is a challenge. I welcome any you might have!

I made a trash can out of a cup and a quilt block for my new (!!!) car. Of course there is a tutorial.

I did a tutorial for a weighted bag for World Autism Awareness Day.

It has been fun. I still haven't found a lining for my RTW dress, but in the mean time I have been having fun testing my own creativity. Please feel free to share any ideas you might have for me for projects!

Sunday, April 1, 2012

RTW contest

I feel like I don't get to blog enough anymore. I have been contributing to the Sew Vac blog pretty regularly, but that leaves me less time to work on my own things. Anyhow, if you miss me you can find me over there more often.

Now to business. I am going to enter Pattern Review's Ready To Wear Contest.

Ready to Wear (RTW) Contest 200px

Here is the plan. I want to knock off  try to create a dress inspired by Nanette Lepore's Balloon Dress. What can I say I am really inspired by her new line!


I have the lace fabric already, but have not been able to find a matching lining fabric. I just went with white, but I may change my mind. Maybe I'll even go with a slip if I can find the right color fabric for that. It is hard to tell how hers is done. The back looks fully lined, but the front neckline definitely is not. Overall I think the dress is pretty simple in design, but there are a few elements I really like. The skirt is tiered for one, and again, I am loving lace right now. I still need a pattern to make a dress, at least for the bodice. I haven't decided which one to use just yet.

Is anyone else out there entering a RTW?