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Wednesday, August 31, 2005

And Another Vintage Style Towel!


Cathys dutch girl
Originally uploaded by Kitty And Me.
This is so cute! Cathy's towel design comes from a vintage Vogart pattern, #672 Dutch Treat. This is one that I don't have! I love Cathy's color choices. Nice bright happy colors, perfect for recreating the 30's/40's style!

Thanks so much Cathy for allowing me to share your towel with my readers. It's so charming!

To see all of the towels from the Challenge, click here.

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Additions To The Vintage Style Towel Challenge


RobinsTowels2More
Originally uploaded by Kitty And Me.
You may remember that Robin, who joined in on the Vintage Style Towel Challenge, decided to complete the entire set of designs. This morning, she sent me the photos for two more of her towels to share with my readers. Aren't they pretty!

To see all of the towels, click here.

Thank you so much Robin! I'm sure my readers will enjoy seeing these as much as I do!

Monday, August 29, 2005

This Piece Is Complete!


Aqua Block8
Originally uploaded by Kitty And Me.
I finished this last night. I added the spider to the web, I added my mom's initial (A) which is a little hard to see here but shows up well on the actual block and I added my grandmother's initial (M) in the lower right-hand corner.

My silly husband asked me last night if it has to weigh in at a certain amount before I consider it done! Ha, ha, ha!

Anyway, this piece is for my mom for Christmas. This block will be framed.

I'll be starting another block later this week so check back.

Saturday, August 27, 2005

Mother's CQ Block Day 7


Aqua Block7
Originally uploaded by Kitty And Me.
Just a quick little update today as I'm heading over to my mom's for a bit with my vintage transfer collection. She wants to see what interesting things I might have!

Anyway, as you can see, I've added some more stitching to this piece. Some ribbon work on the right side of the paisley, another piece of lace trim, some sequins, oh and the little stars on the black crushed velvet with the angel!

I'm planning on adding my mom's initial, my grandmother's initial and of course, my signature.

More tomorrow!

Friday, August 26, 2005

Mother's Crazy Quilt Block Day 6

As I mentioned in yesterday's post, I took a stitching day. I worked solely on the CQ Block for my mom.

Now, several months ago, my mom gave me a few pieces of jewelry and asked that I someday work them into a block for her. One was an angel pin that she's had for quite a few years, one was a silver necklace that belonged to my grandmother and last was a pair of my grandmother's earrings.

Mom asked me that I not compromise the pieces meaning, please don't cut or remove the chain from the necklace, please don't take the screw backs off of the earrings and please don't remove the pin from the angel.

Ok, the angel pin was no problem. I simply pinned it to the crocheted medallion on the black crushed velvet. I tacked the heart locket down with several stitches so it didn't move around too much. Nice and easy.

The earrings weren't much of a problem either. I had to leave the screw backs on because without them, there was no way to attach them to the piece. The easiest thing to do was to hide the backs amidst some fluffly ribbonwork. I did the gathered ribbon flowers, sewed them on, added some leaves and tucked the earrings in where the two fluffy flowers meet. I added some french knots with another ribbon color and sewed on a few grey pearl beads.

My biggest dilemma, was in what to do with the necklace. Had I planned this block out better, I maybe could have had the chain coming from the angels hand and scalloped it across the block. But I didn't think about it too much before I did the foundation piecing so I had to find an alternative.

I tried everything, thinking maybe I could tuck the chain behind a seam and no matter what, the piece was lost.

While working on another area, I remembered the vintage beaded dress piece that I bought at an an antique shop back in February. I purchased it with the intention of using it on a large wallhanging. I remembered that with this piece, there was an extra little paisley, lose in the back and quite deteriorated.

Vintage Beaded Dress Piece

I pulled it out, layed it on the block and it was perfect! The perfect size and color! I put the necklace around it, leaving the pendant part dangle at the bottom of the paisley and my problem was solved!

But despite my excitement in solving my dilemma, I now had a new challenge! Because this little paisley was literally falling apart, I had to figure out how to stabalize it. I took a square of muslin in an embroidery hoop and carefully stitched the piece to the fabric. I then, 3 by 3, ran my needle through the beads and attached them to the muslin.

At a quilt show in April, I found a bag of circa 1910 silver beads that matched the ones on the dress exactly. They were expensive but I bought them to fill in on the dress piece when I got around to making my wallhanging. Anyway, I pulled them out and used them to complete the silver border around the paisley.

Vintage Beaded Dress Piece 2

The next step was to trim the muslin around the beading:

Vintage Beaded Dress Piece 3

I folded in the excess fabric and carefully, between the beading, sewed the edge down:

Vintage Beaded Dress Piece 4

This made for a strong foundation and saved the beautiful beading! At this point, I sewed it down onto the quilt but only around the edges leaving the top portion open so that I had a place to tuck the chain into. I then added the silver necklace around the outside of the paisley, tacking it in place where the links were. I pushed the excess chain behind the paisley piece and completed the stitching to hold it in place.

And this is how it looks on the quilt:

Aqua Block6

I'm planning on doing a little ribbon work near the top of the paisley and coming down the right side of it. I hope it works because I feel it needs a little something. But I'm so thrilled that I figured out how to do this without compromising my grandmother's necklace! And I'm so pleased that I was able to save my little beaded paisley from my vintage dress piece!

I'll be stitching on this more later today so check back soon for another update.

Thursday, August 25, 2005

Vintage Style Towel Challenge Photos

Gina asked me if there was a place to view all the towels at once. I put them all in a group in my Flickr album. I hope I did this right!

A Stitching Day

Here's an update of what I did yesterday on this piece. I finally decided on a seam treatment for the brocade at the top. If you're wondering how I managed such perfectly spaced stitches, I'll let you in on my secret: 8.5 count waste canvas! I simply line the blue registration thread up along the edge of the seam, pin it in place (although you can baste it which is probably a little better) and then start stitching, counting your spaces as you go along. Voila! Perfectly spaced stitches!

Aqua Block5

I decided to take a few days off from my work. Working at home is great! I love being able to come and go as I please, work when I want to and take a break when I feel I need it.

I'd like to tie up some loose ends, finish some projects that are almost done, work on some Christmas gifts since I'd like to have all that completed by October 1st. My house is clean, my laundry is done, my yard is watered and my work is done for the week anyway so I'm off to enjoy a stitching day!

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Ginger's Diary

After watching The Aviator yesterday, a movie about the life of Howard Hughs and his role in bringing about commercial air travel, specifically the era of the 20's - late 40's, I decided today to watch Pearl Harbor again. I'm quite fond of that time frame as most of you know and I know many of you are too.

Maybe I chose to watch Pearl Harbor because my mom and I were talking about the 30's/40's era this morning. The quieter times and simpler lifestyles. The movie is still playing at the moment. I can hear it in here. This film reminds me that life was not always perfect in those days. The war years were a hard time for many.

I came in here to look up a website that I found several years back, hoping it was still on the web. It is so I'll post it here. I think you'll find interesting to read.

Ginger's Diary was written by a 17 year old girl living in Hawaii at Hickam Field at the time Pearl Harbor was bombed. I hope you find it as interesting to read and I did.

Update on Crazy Block For My Mom

I didn't spend alot of time on this project yesterday. I decided to watch The Aviator DVD which I bought ages ago but never got around to watching. Because of I've never seen that movie before, I didn't want to keep pausing it to get up for beads, threads and do-dads so I did some tatting and worked on this after the movie and during the Cubs game.

Anyway, I added some beads to the braid and the vintage lace, some ribbon roses to the vine along the black crushed velvet and little crocheted medallion to the center of the black patch. I have a plan for this so stay tuned!

Aqua Block4

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

A New Additon To Our Vintage Style Towel Challenge

We have another towel to see today! This is Laren's towel from a vintage Vogart pattern. You may remember that I stitched this set myself earlier this Summer! Isn't it beautiful? Laren used a few different colors than I did. It's so interesting to see the same pattern worked by two different stitchers!

LarensTowel

Laren is going to do the complete set so be sure to visit her Needle's Excellency Blog for updates. Laren has also acquired a few new vintage Vogart patterns if you're interested in seeing them.

Thank you Laren for joining in on the challenge and for allowing me to share your stitching with my readers. Your towel is beautiful!

Crazy Quilt Block For My Mom

I did some more stitching on this block yesterday. I added the black trim with the red flowers to the bottom right corner and the added the blue braid over the edge of vintage lace. I sewed on a few ribbon flowers on the edge of the black fan stitches as well. Those little flowers are about a 2 - 3 inch piece of picot edged 1/4 in satin ribbon that I hand-dyed myself. They're simply gathered along the edge and then tied off. I had a feather stitch along the edge of the brocade patch at the top but I didn't like the way it looked so this morning, during Simply Quilts, I took it out. I'll have to figure something else out for that seam.

Aqua Block3

Monday, August 22, 2005

A New Crazy Quilt Block

Well, I was going to start on the Harvest Peacock next, but after sewing up several more blocks on Friday, I decided to do this one instead. This will be a Christmas gift for my mother. She doesn't know anything about weblogs so I think I'm safe in posting about this!

Anyway, here is the block before I started stitching on it:

Aqua Block1

And here is the block after 1 day of stitching. I worked on it most of yesterday afternoon and part way into the evening:

Aqua Block2

The large floral print is a brocade. Geez, I wish the lovely shine of this fabric would show up on the scanner! The light blue is a printed satin, the black is crushed velvet, the aqua is a poly of some type, the blue with the gold is a cotton with metallic on it and the other medium blue is a batik.

On some of my last blocks, I noticed that the needle was pulling my fancy fabrics, snagging them really. I always put a new needle in my machine everytime I sewed so I couldn't figure out what the problem was. My sewing machine is a Singer so I always bought Singer brand needles. Well, I was whining to my mom about this little problem so when she was up at JoAnn's, she bought me a pack of Schmetz needles to try. Wow! What a difference! No more snags! I was pleased to find them at WalMart for under $3.00 a pack! From now on, it's only Schmetz needles for my sewing machine!

Sunday, August 21, 2005

Robin's Vintage Style Towel Challenge


Robins tea towels
Originally uploaded by Kitty And Me.
We have another addition to our Vintage Style Towel Challenge today!

Robin has shared 2 towels with us. These designs are from an Aunt Martha's Iron-on transfer and Robin enhanced the designs with some crayon tinting!

I love the purple fruit with the yellow border! So cheerful and happy looking!

Robin is going to continue on with the rest of the set and she kindly offered to send me photos to share with my readers.

Thank you Robin! I think it's safe to say that we're all looking forward to seeing the rest of the set! These are lovely!

Friday, August 19, 2005

Reproduction Vintage Iron-On Transfers

I've been asked several times now, where I find my cute and charming transfer designs. Well, some of my vintage transfers were given to me. And some of you already know that I find many at Flea Market & Antique Shows as well as Antique shops. I've also purchased a few through Ebay.

A really great source for Iron-On Transfers is PatternBee! Vicki's transfers are reproductions made from her own extensive collection of vintage transfers and they are "iron-on". PatternBee offers over 500 reproduction designs including transfers for baby items, towels, redwork....you won't believe all the great designs there are to choose from!

I have several of Vicki's reproduction patterns. They are packaged beautifully and come with complete and excellent transferring instructions!

VickisTransfers

I met Vicki through her Turkey Feathers Blog, which is absolutely wonderful! Every day is like paging through a lovely Home Arts magazine. Lots of beautiful photos too as Vicki shares her sewing, embroidery, gardening and cooking & baking with her readers.

Vicki and I recently did a fun craft swap. She had found some beautiful vintage cherry fabric which I fell in love with. She kindly offered to swap 1/2 of it with me!

VickisFabric

Scott is currently in the process of refinishing a set of 4 mismatched antique pressback chairs. I'm going to use this to make some seat covers for them.

Also in our swap, Vicki sent me a beautiful vintage style towel that she made as well as a handmade potholder that she did from a vintage kit.

VickisTowel

VickisPotholder

In return, I sent Vicki some various fabrics, some buttons and trims and few other things that I thought she would like.

Anyway, if you're looking for transfers, try PatternBee!

Thursday, August 18, 2005

More Doorknockers!

First, I'd like to thank you all for your lovely compliments on my Autumn Holiday Doorknockers yesterday. I may not reply to every comment, but I do read them and I truly appreciate hearing from my readers!

It seems, that you enjoy seeing photos of my stitching. I don't have any new stitching ready to share with you but I thought I'd scan a few of my doorknockers that I currently have displayed. I think I made all of these last Summer.

Doorknocker1

This is a charming little Vogart pattern bordered with some of my reproduction 30's fabric. This little doorknocker hangs on the knob on my backdoor.

Doorknocker3

Worked in Redwork (also known as Turkeywork), this little kitty comes from my cherished collection of old Workbasket transfers. My mother gave me her entire collection! I'm not even sure why she gave them to me because she still does this type of embroidery. Maybe it's because I was always drooling all over them!

Doorknocker2

Another Redwork design done in green, this also comes from my Workbasket transfers. I think I may have enlarged these patterns a little bit on my computer. Redline transfers such as the Workbasket ones, are hard to see through the lightbox so I usually scan them into my computer and then print them in b/w.

Redwork became popular in the late 1800's. Red thread at that time, called Turkey Red, was one of the only colorfast thread colors available. To read more about Redwork, click here.

It surprises me when I hear of stitchers concerns over red floss colors bleeding when wet. Esp. since red thread was colorfast back in the 1800's. I've never had any DMC thread color bleed, not even the reds.

Oh, and if anyone is interested in trying Redwork, good DMC reds to use are #321, #304, #498 and #816. I've also used #666 and although it's quite bright, I like it!

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

2 Autumn Finishes

I stitched up these two little holiday designs and did the finishing last Friday.

halloween

A cute little jack-o-lantern for Halloween

Thanksgiving

And little turkey design for our American Thanksgiving

If I was using my brain the day I scanned these, I would have scanned them before I stuffed them, you know when they were still flat and easy to fit on the scanner! But I think my brain was on vacation that day and I didn't think of it until I had them finished! These are little doorknockers (pillows that hang on a doorknob). Both are crayon tinted.

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

The Rest Of My New Vintage Transfer Patterns


TransferPattern1
Originally uploaded by Kitty And Me.
This is the last of them! Isn't this cute? I don't play cards, so I doubt I'd make this as a tablecloth, but the designs done in applique and embroidery would make cute tea towels or would be great on an apron! I love this Simplicity pattern from 1946 which is complete and uncut!

Tomorrow, I'll have some stitching to share with you!

Transfer Pattern 2


TransferPattern2
Originally uploaded by Kitty And Me.
Another Superior Pattern with loads of extra loose transfers included in the envelope!

Transfer Pattern 3


TransferPattern3
Originally uploaded by Kitty And Me.
Another pretty pattern by Vogart. I actually already have parts of this pattern. They were in some loose transfers that I purchased through Ebay. I've already stitched the hummingbird and the cardinal. This pattern is complete and since I love bird designs, I was thrilled to find this one uncut.

Transfer Pattern 4


TransferPattern4
Originally uploaded by Kitty And Me.
This pattern by Vogart is just too cute! The transfer is cut but it is complete and I was surprised to find a few extra transfers in this envelope as well!

Transfer Pattern 5


TransferPattern5
Originally uploaded by Kitty And Me.
A cute pattern by Simplicity from 1946. I guess sachets were a big thing back then. I think these would make pretty little ornaments!

Found A Nice Blog Devoted To...

Crazy Quilting! CQ Crazy Blog has some really beautiful CQ stitching. Take a peek if you have some free time!

More Of My New Transfers


TransferPattern6
Originally uploaded by Kitty And Me.
This is an old pattern. It was published by "The Designer Publishing Company Inc." in New York. This design is for a cutwork tabletopper. I've never tried cutwork and I would like to try it but I think I'll try it on something smaller first. I have other vintage cutwork patterns which are a little more simple than this one. These pretty little peacocks could be embroidered with simple outline stitch.

More later...

Transfer Pattern 7


TransferPattern7
Originally uploaded by Kitty And Me.
Such pretty towel designs! I love pretty handmade linens. They fun to stitch and they work up quickly so they make nice little gifts.

Transfer Pattern 8


TransferPattern8
Originally uploaded by Kitty And Me.
I've never been big on the whole "His & Hers" thing. It was really popular back in the 30's - 60's. But for the 25 cents I paid for this complete transfer, I just couldn't leave it there. I don't know if I'll ever stitch it, but it's a nice addition to my collection.

Transfer Pattern 9


TransferPattern9
Originally uploaded by Kitty And Me.
More designs for pillowcases. Back in the old days, you could purchase what was called "pillow tubing" by the yard. It was fabric for pillow cases, woven in a tube and all you had to do was finish the ends.

When I make pillowcases now, I just go to WalMart and buy a pair of white pillowcases already done. Unfortunately, they have a 3 inch hem on them so the design isn't exactly where I want it. They're simple enough to make so one of these days I'll start making my own. You know, when "time" starts growing on a tree out in my backyard!

Transfer Pattern 10


TransferPattern10
Originally uploaded by Kitty And Me.
Another beautiful crinoline lady with a crocheted skirt! Superior Transfers and Walkers Transfers are a little more elusive than Vogart or Aunt Martha's so I was thrilled to find a bunch of them.

Transfer Pattern 11


TransferPattern11
Originally uploaded by Kitty And Me.
I think out of all of my new transers, this one is my favorite. I love anything with fruit on it!

This is the coolest pattern! It has the patterns for working the fruit in applique as well as the patterns for doing simple outline embroidery.

Transfer Pattern 12


TransferPattern12
Originally uploaded by Kitty And Me.
An old Aunt Martha's design for a baby quilt. I don't have any babies in life but wouldn't one of these be cute on a towel, maybe crayon tinted for Easter?

Monday, August 15, 2005

Some Of My Transfers from Yesterday's Shopping


TransferPattern13
Originally uploaded by Kitty And Me.
Sure wish I knew how to crochet! My mom said she would show me as I already know the basics but do I need the ability to do one more thing? Oh, but this is just so pretty!

Most of the transfers are complete but a few are cut. Which I don't mind at all! I'm happy to have them. These old transfer patterns are one of my weaknesses!

TransferPattern14


TransferPattern14
Originally uploaded by Kitty And Me.

TransferPattern15


TransferPattern15
Originally uploaded by Kitty And Me.

TransferPattern16


TransferPattern16
Originally uploaded by Kitty And Me.

TransferPattern17


TransferPattern17
Originally uploaded by Kitty And Me.

TransferPattern18


TransferPattern18
Originally uploaded by Kitty And Me.
Many of these envelopes had extra transfers in them like this Alice Brooks design #7463 for embroidery and crochet.

Sunday, August 14, 2005

Apron Patterns

Scott and I just got back from our favorite Flea Market and Antique Show just over the border in Elkhorn, Wisconsin. We walked 1/2 the market and I was starting to get discouraged. Until that point, we had found a whole lot of nothin! And then suddenly, as if something magical happened, patterns started showing up! Apron patterns and iron-on transfers galore! I couldn't believe all the great stuff we found! Which of course, I'll share with you over the next few days.

I'll start with these cute vintage apron patterns:

ApronPattern1

I'm not sure what year this McCalls pattern is from. The back of the envelope is missing. The pattern is complete but cut and there's a newspaper clipping inside dated 1957.

ApronPattern2

This pattern was a send away design. It didn't come with an envelope and there is no copyright date on it. The pattern is cut but is complete.

ApronPattern3

Another send away pattern without an envelop or copyright date.

ApronPattern4

Again, a send away pattern but this one has an envelope. I guess they weren't too worried about copyrights back then as again, there is no date on this one. It came from "Everywoman's Pattern Service" in New York City.

ApronPattern5

Last but not least, another mail away pattern for 2 aprons. I really wish these were dated. There's no postmark on any of the envelopes. This one was never cut! It came from the "The Pattern Bureau Fashion Service" in New York City.

There's one more pattern in the batch but it doesn't have a photo so it's a "mystery" pattern! Guess I'll have to make it to see what it looks like!

I paid only $2.00 for all of these patterns!

Thursday, August 11, 2005

Yes, some more Chicken Scratch


BlackChickenScratchHeart
Originally uploaded by Kitty And Me.
I did this piece a couple of weeks ago for a friend who's birthday is today! My intention was to make it look masculine so I did the reverse on purpose using black perle cotton and going around the black squares instead of doing white on white.

Because I was trying to make it look manly, I added the blue ribbon flowers and suddenly, it didn't look manly at all but rather funeralish! Ok, so what I could do to make it happier?

Well, I first added the pink french knots done with some #3 Perle Cotton that I hand dyed myself. That gave it some life. Then I added the leaves and the little grey flowers but it still needed something. So, I added the white beads to the Chicken Scratch part and then it looked like polka dots and I was finally happy with it!

Of course, now it doesn't look manly at all but it's kind of cool looking. And thankfully, my friend Chris likes whatever I send him and doesn't care that it has my feminine touches to it.

Speaking of Chicken Scratch, you must visit Linda at Chloe's Place to see what she's doing with Chicken Scratch and Crazy Quilting! Wow!

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Mom's Apron Challenge

My mom does alot of sewing. She likes to make traditional patchwork quilts. Several weeks back, she was in between projects and just wasn't sure what she wanted to do next. So, I offered her a challenge which I knew would be no problem for her to do!

I suggested that she make a vintage style apron. The aprons my mom currently uses are quite worn out and since she has been talking about making a few new ones, I thought this would be a fun and quick project for her.

This is what my mom did:

MomsApron1

IT's so pretty! I think she used a vintage pattern (which I'm sure wasn't vintage when she bought it). And she did transfer design with some crayon tinting.

Here's a closeup of her stitching:

MomsApron2

I don't think the transfer design is vintage, not sure where mom found this pattern, but I love the apron she made for herself!
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