Halloween Dreaming


My grandchildren love holiday pillowcases.  This set was made for 4 yo Vivian Rose, who loves cats.  I knew she would appreciate the addition of the witch cat to the Happy Halloween design.   Both designs are from the delightful ADP 89 Patrick Lose Happy Halloween collection.

Though her family pet is an 18 yo Ragdoll cat who does little but sleep the day away, this child has an unusual and firm fixation on felines.  Last year at Thanksgiving, as always, each family member at the table offered thanks for those things for which they were most grateful.  Three year old Vivian said, “Kittens.”  When asked was there anything else, she said, “Cats.”  pressed further, her 3rd and last reply was, “Big cats. More more turkey please.”

Along with the pillowcases, I included a sweet birthday card with three adorable kittens.  The card was modified to read “Happy Birthday Halloween.”

She loved her new pillowcases but I think the cat card pleased her more.

Here she is wearing her signature bedtime fashion, nestled in the pillows and holding her cat card.

The sleepwear is from her future Vivian’s Secret fashion line. And yet I continue to smock and sew heirloom clothes for her, hoping for a change in her personal style choices.


There is so much puckering in the embroidery!  Every time I embroider on polycotton, regardless of how much starch and stabilizer I use, it puckers.  Do you have any suggestions?



8 responses to “Halloween Dreaming

  1. Terry Jane Collins

    Janice, I love the pillowcases! I need to make holiday cases for the little girls after we move and I get my toys out of storage.

    Just one question: Is that a giant-sized pillow?

    Our Hello Kitty girl will be 9 on Thursday. She announced about a year ago that she had enough Kitty stuff. There is hope!

  2. Thanks, Terry. The neat thing about holiday pillowcases is that you can send the same thing to the boys and the girls in the family–even steven. I don’t know what size the pillow is, but I always make cases 30″ x 21″,. Vivi just moved from her little almost on the floor toddler bed into a queen size bed and I didn’t ask her mother what size the pillows are. But if they are too long, Vivi’s paternal grandmother is nearby and could shorten them with one seam at the far end. So the Hello Kitty phase might last just FIVE more years?!#$??% Sigh….so many adorable designs out there but it’s hard to work a cat into many of them! I hope you get settled in soon. You are too creative to not be stitching most of the time.

  3. I love your Halloween pillowcases! The design you chose is so cute, too! Just a thought–have you ever tried Terial Magic on your fabric before you do the embroidery? It might help to eliminate some of the wrinkles.

    I just bought the cutest paisley cat designs from OESD: https://www.embdesignstudio.com/products/designs/brand/oesd/Catitude-by-Ann-Lauer/ Vivian might like these cats!
    Karen (KarenVA, your friend from the MP Forum)

  4. Hi Karen! I’m glad you like Vivi’s pillowcases but you can see that the puckers are significant. I used Terial Magic in a class once, bought a bottle and sat it on a shelf in front of the window. When I went to use it the liquid was brown! Threw that one away and bought another. I thought about using it on the pillowcases but foolishly thought a double layer of tearaway would be adequate. Obviously, it wasn’t so I’ll try that next time. Have you used it on a polycotton? Now, I’m off to check out those OESD cats. Their designs always stitch out perfectly. Thanks for the tips!

  5. One other idea—do you hoop your pillowcases? Sometimes hooping too tautly gives rise to wrinkles. I usually hoop two layers of wss ( with the top layer being sticky wss). I stick the fabric in place and add a basting stitch to secure everything—then do the embroidery. Maybe that might help,too.

  6. Karen, thanks for this great advice! I hoop the case if I remember to extend the length to fit in the frame. Otherwise, I simply starch it heavily and baste it to tearaway. I can’t wait to do my next cases the new Karen Way! Thanks for the tips!

  7. Janice, I love the pillowcases and I love cats also. I’m glad Vivian Rose likes her pillowcases.

  8. Thanks, Betty. She loves the pillowcases, but I wonder how long this cat fixation will go on? Terry Jane Collins (of smocking plate designs fame) said her granddaughter stuck with cats until she was 8! I’m getting a little tired of all these felines, but Vivi is not!

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