Thursday, December 30, 2021

A Wee bit of overdue Christmas Sewing...

 Like, you know, a year overdue.

You will remember that The Flute Player got married this summer.  Which doesn't seem to have much to do with Christmas, but her hubby (henceforth called The Jokester, because he is freaking hilarious) being added to the family and all means that he needed a Christmas Stocking.

And, wow,  went to link last year's post about Christmas stockings and discovered I never wrote it.  So this is an overdue post about overdue stockings.  Rewind to a year ago....

So, last year,  we added Grandson number 1 (Guess I'm going to refer to him as The Little Prince) to the family, and of course, he needed a stocking.  I'd already made a stocking for his dad, Prince Charming, back when he joined the family, so I knew what I needed to do...just make the same little applique'd teddy bear in a different color way.    

And, I decided I'd make a stocking for The Flute Player's betrothed as well, and wrap it up and give it to him as a Christmas present.  The Flute Player's stocking was the first one I created, based on the three stockings that her siblings had that we'd purchased in a Christmas pop up shop just before her oldest sibling was born.  Back then, the three stockings were for the Princess, My Sweet Babboo, and me, but we had kinda repurposed mine and my hubby's for the other two kids as they came along.  

 (The Originals, purchased at the pop up shop in 1985) - 

But we had nothing for the Flute Player the year she arrived,  and there was no going back to the shop that popped up eleven years earlier so I used a design from an applique' pattern book I had and made her a little girl mouse stocking:


But now, almost a quarter of a century later,  I needed to make some more.  I had a box of Christmas related fabric somewhere but I couldn't find I snagged some other green and red and dug through some scraps and made up another teddy bear applique'd red stocking and the partner boy mouse applique on green.

However...I discovered when I actually pulled the stored stockings out...I'd used the wrong stocking pattern.  I had made an oversized one for My Sweet Babboo's parents stockings years ago and that, apparently, was the one I used for the new ones.  About 20% bigger than the rest.

No problem...I'll just trace off a new pattern from an older stocking and recut therm, right?

The Little Prince's stocking came out ok...even though the applique looked a little smaller, that really wasn't a problem.

The Jokester's mouse was a wee bit off center on the oversized stocking; I thought I could finagle it when I recut it and get it better centered.

Only somehow I goofed and it ended up MORE off centered.


Devastation.  I did such a good job embroidering that little guy; I was heartsick.  I showed it to The Flute Player, who did her best to tell me, in a nice way, that it wouldn't work.  But I knew it anyway.  For most guys...yeah, they wouldn't even notice.  But The Jokester is a graphic artist/ animator.  He would notice.  And it would bug him.

So I rolled it up and put it away to deal with later because I was out of time and we didn't really NEED it last year.

But I didn't want to deal with it and all I got done over then next 11ish months was to unpick the seam joining the red cuff to the green body. But I did find the missing box of Christmas fabric...including the green canvas that the Flute Player's stocking had been cut from.  

I kinda thought I'd just cut the little mouse guy out and then applique the whole little thing onto the green canvas replacement.  But I put it off and put it off and suddenly it was Dec 18th and I HAD TO FACE IT.

And the green on the off-center stocking was a terrible clash with the green canvas that I was going to make the replacement out of.

So I took a deep breath, dug out the applique' pattern book, and made a whole new guy mousie.

Who isn't as good as the off-centered one but least he's not unbalanced, either, lol.

And they do look kinda cute together.

 Not sure what I'm going to do with the off-center mouse...but I will think of something.

Tuesday, December 07, 2021

Slowly Coming Together...

 I've mentioned once or twice that I'm in the process of moving the sewing space from the nook at the end of the laundry room to one of the recently vacated bedrooms upstairs.

I really wanted to paint and put down something other than pin-eating carpet, but, well, it didn't happen.

I actually bought new machines; hit deals and decided that I've spent too much time dealing with either old or inadequate machines.

They sat in boxes for...a long time...waiting on me to get the space upstairs ready.

Unfortunately, the current Janome sergers have a different footprint than my old faithful lady and they don't fit the old extension table that I've used for about 3 decades.  So I got a new one...less specific.  I thought it would work.

It didn't.

It's too short from shelf to table (about 3/4") and not deep enough front-to-back for the waste tray.  And it's too high.  So disappointing.  It doesn't look like I can get an extension table like my old one anymore.

I got that from Nancy's Notions in, oh, 1990?  My Sweet Babboo thinks he can router it out to fit, but I'm not sure.  It's basically contact-paper-covered flakeboard, so I don't know if it will trim out easily or if it can be restored to a smooth finish if it is.  Currently, I'm using it with the leaf down and the little plastic extension that came with the machine.  Not ideal, but whatcha gonna do?

The old sewing machine table fits the new HD 5000 just fine.

I really intended to get EVERYTHING set before I sewed anything but, well, we had an urgent need for a garment for the Church Christmas production, which was this past weekend.  So I gleaned what sewing supplies I didn't take to church and made a quick skirt.  We had one older girl who was dancing with the younger ones and she was in an adult skirt. But it was wayyyy too big and heavy for dancing.  Would've been fine if she were just walking about, but for dancing...nope.  

I had purchased some rayon/poly blend on sale to make myself a Dickens skirt but I had a different part and didn't get to wear Dickens.  So I used about 3 yards and made a new skirt...a wee bit shorter, with a hem circumference of only 120" instead of 180".  I cut the pieces after dress rehearsal on Thursday and had a new skirt for her by showtime on Friday.

I   used a  strip cut from a manila folder as a template to press up the hem;
It was gathered with good ol' dental floss

Total elapsed sewing time:  Approximately 3 hours.

She was MUCH happier in that skirt and she could move much better.

On a related note, I had some wait time on Tuesday last week so I did a little task on the Wonky Dress...someone donated some lace collars and one of them suited it pretty well.  So I hand tacked it on.

It looks right properly frumpy vintagey housewife now, so I'm donating the dress to the church costume closet, in case we need someone who looks rather like a vintagey housewife, lol.  The pulls and other issues should not be visible from the stage.  It's found a good place to live out a dress up life.

The production had folks in Dickens costumes, in the best approximation we could get of clothes from the 30's, the 50's and the 80's....we've never had so many people wearing so many different costumes before.  But my bit was modern, so while all my friends were posting selfies of themselves looking all cute and costumed...I was, like, 'Look!  I'm actually wearing makeup!' LOL

The run went really well; we were sold out for Sunday's closing show.  I finished the data entry this afternoon and will take tomorrow off.

Maybe I'll even get some more work done on the sewing room set up...