Friday, August 13, 2010


I am patiently trying to rest.  Unfortunately as much as I love settling into bed with a good book and whiling the day away drinking tea, the kitchen is two floors down from our bedroom and makes getting tea difficult.  Perhaps tomorrow I will make up a cozy nook on my grandmama's sofa (and yes, we call it grandmama's sofa, though now it is ours, we probably will always refer to it as such).  But I am fidgety as all get out and looking forward to being able to get up and move around.  We did head to Barnes and Noble tonight to look at quilting and sewing books and that about did me in.  I came in and finished "On The Banks Of Plum Creek" and am now watching Anne of Green Gables on youtube.  Neither are helping my desire to be up, cleaning, cooking, and sewing.  

Garret and I are discussing doing all homemade gifts this year, including for each other.  I never did finish the dolls for my niece last winter (and am quite ashamed that they're done, except for the faces and I'm intimidated by the thought of screwing them up after working on them so carefully).  However she's just now to the age of carrying around a doll (she'll be 2 in January), so I figure it's okay.  And when I bought the pattern for the one doll I also bought 2 others for her for later.  I think I will make them this winter and save them for later!  One is a Jane doll meant to be able to have a Jane Austen style look, and I cannot wait for tea parties with my niece and her dolls!
I am wanting to make a quilt by hand.  I'm looking at different sites online as well as books for the simplest way to learn.  I'm considering doing a tiny little one for my niece (with a matching one for her dolls that I can give her next year) as a start.  But eventually my goal is to make a stack of quilts for our home.  Their style is not really quite right for us, but there is no debating their warmth and comfort in the colder months!  We have an old one that is really worn on our bed right now that my great grandmother made.  My maman has a bundle of them at home and each child is getting one.  I've asked for the wedding rings one and am keeping my fingers crossed.  I also have a pink one in my closet that my great grandmother made (I got it because I'm the only girl), and I plan to use some old fashioned whitener to freshen it up and let it dry in the sun.  It's very delicate (hand sewn), but in great condition.  I imagine curling up with a daughter in it.  

I'm also planning to attempt sewing my own curtains.  I figure I will start with a simple cotton panel, but eventually I want to sew silk ones and velvet ones for our sitting room (to switch out between the cold and warm months).  And I also have on the sewing list a new butcher style apron for G.  He has a navy and white striped one we picked up at Tesco's in England, but he really needs at least one more and has asked me to make one (using the old one as a pattern).  

I'm learning to give myself time to learn these new skills.  I didn't learn to cook overnight.  I'm lucky I have the hand sewing skills I do, thanks in large part to a very patient grandmama who used to let me sew on old scraps, teaching me to draw designs with a pencil to embroider.  I know I don't have to be perfect at everything, I am just aiming to eventually do a lot of old fashioned things that will save my family time and money.  But sometimes I can be harsh on myself if I make a mistake or take forever.  I have more patience with others than with myself.  Are there any new skills you are trying to learn? 


  1. I'd love to learn to cook properly and to sew, being more self sufficient is a goal of mine.

    Oh hammer toes - me too! I've blogged about them, we call them "Anderson" toes - inherited from my dad!

  2. Oh handmade dolls and quilts - I swoon! Seriously! I want a homemade doll for my little girl, that would be so lovely. I have no sewing skill though. Currently I am trying to learn a new skill though, InDesign! I really want to make my daughter's baby book digitally and have been collecting and preparing things since before she was born to do it (she's two). I am stumbling through learning the program myself, and with a bit of help from the yearbook teacher at my school (yay for people who know what they are doing!), on naps and at night when I have time so it's taking awhile. I really wish I had two or three days to sit down and make a test book so I could dive right into hers. I want to make at least one before I start hers so I can find errors and such! :)

  3. Kalee, your sewing wish list is so inspiring. Well done. I've made curtains before, it was many years ago and they weren't entirely straight, but I think it was the old house with wonky windows too that was the problem.

    I've made cot quilts for both my nieces and they use them all the time. At my own home I've made cushion covers, a duvet cover, dolls for my nieces, cosmetic bags and have been thinking about an apron. Perfect idea to use the old one for a pattern. I've made (simple) clothing that way too from a favourite old piece.

    I love every word of this post as it covers one of my favourite topics.

  4. Tabitha, I'm glad someone understands! Trying to explain it to people has been difficult. As for the cooking and sewing a few years ago I knew very very little. I just kind of decided I wanted to cook well enough for dinner parties and went from there!

    Kaycee, How fun! Your daughter will appreciate seeing them years from now, and even be able to show her kids (a long, long while from now!).

    Fiona, wow! Your list is inspiring. I really want to make a duvet cover for our bedroom, and am currently looking for tutorials. I love hand sewing, so it takes a bit longer, but I figure I can have it done soon enough (I'm quite quick with a needle and thread, made a doll sitting watching a Jane Austen movie this past winter). Maybe you could do a chic sewing post? :)