Wednesday, August 24, 2016

She's a winner!

Courtney's sewing projects were entered in our local county fair which was held last week. She did very well, and I'm so proud of her!

Remember the Izzy Purse? That was a project she sewed for 4-H. It was judged a couple weeks ago, but she didn't get to find out the results until the time of the fair. She got a blue ribbon on it! Here it is, with a photo that went with it of her cats, Zoey and Izzy (whom the purse was created after).

She wanted you to have a closer look, with the signature 'eye', of course.

Since her emoji pillow was made too late for a 4-H project, she entered it in the Open Class section at the same fair. She also got a blue ribbon on that!

The closer view (and 'eye'):

And one more shot, just because she's goofy like that! :)

She was very proud of her accomplishments, and rightly so. I think she's hooked on sewing now (yay!). In fact, she just may have made another pillow yesterday of her favorite emoji. Guess which one it is... and come back here on Friday to see if your guess was right!

(I definitely think this is becoming a Courtney blog. Ha! I did, however, finish sewing my 3rd bra. More on that later.)

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Sewing with Courtney

Courtney came on Tuesday with her sewing idea already in mind (and could hardly wait for her mom to get out of here so we could begin - ha... poor mom!), so we did a little googling for an image to go by, picked out some fleece and felt, and went to work. I did most of the cutting using a rotary cutter and my circle cutter, which are just too dangerous for little fingers, but she did all the rest. Can you tell what she's making?

If you guessed an emoji pillow, you are correct! Here it is, finished:

And one more pic, because Grandma said so:

It was pretty simple to make, but it took some careful sewing around all those curves. She did a fantastic job at that! She's getting really good at the sewing machine and better all the time at controlling her speed with the foot pedal. She also learned how to do the ladder stitch to close up the hole after she stuffed the pillow, not to mention remembering how to make a perfect knot in her thread. Grandma's delighted with her progress!

If you were expecting to see a Zoey sign, I think you're out of luck. She seems to have nixxed that idea, so Zoey will have to live without her sign. You just might, however, be seeing another emoji or two. Maybe. Unless she gets another big inspiration for a different project. Y'never know with that girl... her mind's wheels are always turning with ideas!

Gee, Courtney's been in the last 3 blog posts now! Before you know it, she'll be taking over the sewing machine, and maybe she can even take over writing blog posts, since I seem to be so lax about it. Y'never know...... ;)

Her Izzy purse got judged this week, but she doesn't get to find out the results until the fair starts next week. So we're all in suspense!

Monday, August 8, 2016

International Cat Day

Since August 8th is International Cat Day (and since I haven't posted in over a week), I thought I should give you an update on my cats. And please, if you're (at least somewhat) local and see one or more you'd love to adopt, let me know! There's definitely an overpopulation around here this year!

First we have Buttercup, whom I've shown you before. She still manages to be a resident of the garage, although usually just at night. She is very much loved by Courtney, of course.

She's grown up a lot! Here she is, as of this morning.

I showed you a couple of Patches' kittens before, too. There turned out to be four, and here they are with Patches. Such a beautiful variety! They're just a couple weeks younger than Buttercup, so actually bigger than this now, too... but they're pretty shy and hard to get photos of.

This little gal is my favorite, even if she does have a mustache. Heheh.

Below is Peachy, one of Patches' from last year. She's such a lovely kitty. She did, however, manage to get herself stuck in a hole in the silage chopper when she was about full term pregnant, and I had quite a time getting her out! It was a tight fit! She really loves me now, though, since I rescued her. :)

Not much variety in her litter of five. Ha.

Both Peachy's (above) and Kelly's (below) had to be relocated because hay bales got moved away exposing their homes. The moms just moved them farther back into the haystack, although Peachy has since moved hers into the machine shed.

Here's Kelly about to make a new nest after feeding them (above)...

... and here are her three stuffed little babies, in a milk coma.

My biggest surprise was just last week when Autumn brought me her baby! I hadn't even known she was pregnant... she certainly didn't show it! But I guess with just one, it wasn't so hard to keep the secret.

He's just the cutest, sweetest little guy, and he wasn't terribly wild at all. He's very furry!

He's also very photogenic, and I can hardly stop taking pictures of him!

He lived on the deck steps for a day or so, but then mama moved him to the lilac bushes, a much better choice.

So there you have 'some' of the outside cats/kittens. There's also a long-haired kitten about the size of Patches' that appeared out of nowhere and decided to stay. She's a bit camera-shy (and people-shy) as yet, though. Rainbow, Buttercup's mom, has already had a second litter this year. *sigh* I don't know where they are so haven't seen them yet. Knowing her, she'll be dragging them to the garage soon. Aargh. There could also be other litters, too, that I don't know about.

Of course I still have my two goofs in the house. They get pretty bored when I'm at the computer for too long.

So that's the latest cat update. Happy ICD!

I'm sewing again - another "For Women Only" - bra #3. I tweaked the pattern again in several places, so I hope I've got the perfect fit this time. I hope.

Friday, July 29, 2016

Crafting with Courtney - the Izzy sign

When Courtney was here on Tuesday, she decided she wanted to have a little more sewing practice. I'd bought a kit a long time ago with various craft projects in it, and the time seemed to be right for getting it out. Most of the sewing projects were hand sewing, but I thought they'd work just as well on the machine, so we picked one out and she went to work. 

She first did some designing, then she sewed on applique pieces. She did so well at the machine that I even left her alone with it for a bit to go upstairs and make myself a cup of tea. She remembered how to thread it from the few weeks ago that she'd made the Izzy purse, so she was able to change thread colors all by herself. And except for getting her started at the beginning, she did it all by herself!

After that, there was some hand sewing. Here she is, happily getting started at that.

She learned how to tie a nice neat knot in her thread, then she sewed on some buttons and tied them off on the back, with barely any help from me.

She had a furry "assistant" who just had to be near.....

..... even though she seemed rather bored with the whole process. At least she was content to let Courtney do all the work.

After the sewing, there came the decorating decisions.

Last was the gluing.

Voilà! The completed project! Izzy's her cat, but can you figure out her design theme?

Of course there had to be the signature 'eye' photo.

The glue was not dry yet under the clear butterflies, but we were hoping it would dry clear, and sure enough, it did. Here's a photo she took herself at home and sent me to show me how it looked when the glue had dried.

She also wanted you to have one more picture for size reference.

Pretty cool, huh? I am SO proud of her! She's well on her way to becoming a great sewer (seamstress? sewist?) someday! She's a fast learner, and she's so careful and does such a beautiful job. She also has some lovely design ideas (did you figure out that theme yet?) and is creative in many ways.

Next time (in 2 weeks, because she goes to Bible camp next week) she'll make a sign for her other cat, Zoey. A girl has to be fair, y'know. :)

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

The wait is over

I know some of you have been waiting patiently for the Port & Sort Tote pattern by LiEr of ikatbag blog to be available for purchase. I'm happy to tell you that the time is now! Head on over to her latest blog post to read about it, see more photos and find out where to buy it.

I'll tell you, it's a huge job to write a good pattern, and it always takes longer than one thinks it's going to. But it's finally ready, and it's been tested, scrubbed and scoured, rewritten with more photos added to make it as understandable and workable as possible, and now it's finally DONE! If you want a unique little bag that can hold any number of various goodies, yet store flat when not in use, this is the one. Here's another shot of mine, loaded up and ready to go.

You can read more details about my tote and its little companion collapsible insert in my blog post here. One little tip that I hadn't included in that post is that when making the template for the bag body, I simply printed it twice, cut out the two templates and taped them together, as opposed to LiEr's method mentioned in the pattern. Either way works just fine.

Happy sewing of your own Port & Sort Totes! Again, LiEr's blog post is here.