Category Archives: heirloom sewing

Timeless but Expendable Heirlooms

Vivian Rose at nursery school

Blue bishop, 2014–Last week at nursery school, Vivian Rose was cute and comfortable.  She is wearing a bishop dress made 32 years ago for her mother, Rebecca.  True to the adage that any bishop is good for 3 sizes, this size 3 dress fits our 16 month old just fine after the hem was taken up.  And it will fit for a long time.

 

Recently, I’ve changed my thoughts and opinions about the use of heirloom/smocked garments. From this post title, it’s likely you can tell  where I now stand on the issue of packing away my lovingly stitched heirlooms.

With their almost timeless appeal and classic style, they can be worn in any fashion era.  Until recently, my plan for their future was that they be carefully packed away in acid free tissue and then be passed  down to the next baby in the family–whenever that might be.  I felt certain that the style and stitchery would still be appropriate.   Often,  that is exactly what happened, i.e. the Imperial batiste bishop dress shown above and below.

But I hadn’t expected that they would be put in service for everyday use, like at Vivian Rose’s pre-school.  There, painting, bib-free eating, and rough and tumble playground time are daily events.  And no child tumbles more roughly this little dynamo.

 

Vivian Rose's mother, Rebecca, wearing the same dress 32 years ago

Blue bishop 1982–Rebecca, Vivian Rose’s mother,  wearing the same blue bishop dress.

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Gallery of Readers’ Easter Projects

 

Children's Corner Johnny

Julie’s Children’s Corner Johnny–how many French knots do you think there are?

 

It seems like forever since there has been a new post at Janice Ferguson Sews.  Busy, busy, busy is what I’ve been but only some of that busy-ness has been sewing. Sigh….

Now the distractions and other responsibilities are mostly behind me so I can share more sewing projects and chat.  Before the joyous Easter celebrations are even further in our past, I want to share some of the Easter outfit photos I received from our creative and talented readers.

Julie shared these photos and information about the precious, classic Johnny she made for her nephew.  She also smocked a dress for her niece.  I’d love to see that. Continue reading

Alastair’s Hurry-up Easter Suit

A Easter suit

I know this outfit is crooked on the hanger. There was a stiff breeze blowing and I could not keep the shirt hanging properly.

 

We always talk about how busy we are, but I have never let other things make me cut it so close with Easter outfits for the grandchildren.  Just like when my children were small, I was up until after midnight Saturday before Easter.

 

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But I finished all four outfits.

Alastair’s Easter suit was a very satisfying project.  Like few hurry-up projects, it finished up quite nicely, leaving me  generally pleased.   I learned that sometimes surrendering my picky-ness for a rush project is okay.  It is more important to have an  OK outfit done for Easter than an up- to-my-picky-standards outfit done a week later.  This was made in about a day and a half, and those were busy days aside from sewing.

 

goods A suit Continue reading

Easter Bunny Lunch~Casual Garments

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I hope you all had a joyful Easter.  We had a beautiful weekend-long celebration with a houseful of laughing adult children and grandchildren.  Our daughter, Rebecca, her family and our son Ryan’s family were here.  He is a pilot and, sadly, was unable join us.  We’re happy that he loves his work, but we miss him at so many family gatherings.

 

sandwiches

 

Friday night, while taking a break from my sewing, I made more than 100 little raisin bread/cream cheese/jelly sandwiches for Saturday’s Bunny Lunch at church.  My dear, helpful husband sat with me and cut away the crusts from 5 loaves while I spread the filling.  The sandwiches were topped with cream cheese carrots sprinkled with a little orange sugar which pleased the children.

 

tie design from Linnie Pinnie, with single bunny from

Tie design from is Linnie Pinnie, with single bunny extracted from Bernina’s Warm Wishes from Ingrid collection.

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Baby’s Easter Slip & Tips

slip 2

slip for Baby’s Easter bow dress

 

This pink slip was made to be worn under granddaughter Vivian Rose’s white batiste Easter dress.  It create a soft pink shadow effect.

 

dress pink2

 

The slip bodice was monogrammed with white thread. Continue reading

Think Spring Dress

UPDATE:  There have been several inquiries about the sleeve finish so the process is detailed at the end of this post (below the groundhog eating wolf).

It’s been so long since there has been a new post at  Janice Ferguson Sews that  faithful readers might have thought that I was missing in action.  I’ve been tending my dear husband who had knee replacement surgery two weeks ago.  Post-op he spent a week at the same rehab center where I recuperated  from my joint surgeries and gained some valuable insights into life.

So I have been spending time with him, running errands and doing his many, many household chores.  Whew!  That man does more around here than I ever realized!  He’s my grocery shopper, gardener, pool boy, morning feral cat feeder, garbage hauler, very best friend, and more.  I have really missed him.

At last, he’s back home, stepping lightly with his gentleman’s cane and walking the fast track to a complete recovery.

 

That's not really him.  And it's not really me.

That’s not really him. And it’s not really me.

 

And I’m back too, with a finished project to share with you.

This cheerful little dress just makes me grin.   Looking at it reminds me of our Florida springtime with raspberry pink azaleas, white dogwoods and the bright turquois waters of nearby Blue Springs.  The fabric says spring to me.

 

think spring dress all recol Continue reading

Another Precious Child…

precious corner 2X

Our congregation is celebrating the birth of yet another precious baby.  Due to some complications, little Laura Jane came into the world a month before her due date.  At just over 4 lbs., this pocket sized preemie spent her first ten days in the hospital.

Two weeks later and now at home, Laura Jane weighs 5 lbs. 8 oz.  Hurrah!

As a deacon of our church, one of my responsibilities is to welcome new babies with a gift, hence, this blanket.  I love my job, but wish we had more newborns!

The delicate pink color of the ready made 100% cotton flannel blanket is much like the blush color of sweet baby cheeks.  The flannel’s heavy but luxurious texture made the embroidery process a real delight.

The text was arranged in Brother’s PE-Design.  The little angel cherubs are from Petite Designs, Brother’s card #20, one of my most often used collections. The corner embroidery nestled perfectly in my Brother Quattro 8×8 hoop.

 

bib corner Continue reading

First Birthday Dress~Finished

first birthday dress for Minnie fan

first birthday dress for Minnie fan

 

Our precious granddaughter Vivian Rose recently celebrated her first birthday with family and friends at a party in her own back yard.

 

Cousins Laurel and Alastair

Cousins Laurel and Alastair

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Christmas Baby Doll for Baby

 

4 1/2" baby doll

4 1/2″ baby doll

 

For Christmas, one of 11 month old Vivian Rose’s gifts was this porcelain baby doll.  Nestled in a tiny wicker Moses-in-the-bulrushes style basket, the Dream Baby doll antique reproduction was tucked in looking like a classic heirloom clothed infant.

Just 4 1/2″ long, she seemed to be just the right start for our grandbaby’s doll collection.  Of course, it will be some time before she is allowed to handle this tiny treasure.  But it’s not too early to begin collecting. Continue reading

Free Brother MCS Design & Pink Baby Blanket

Swiss flannel daygown, bonnet and blanket for baby's homecoming

Swiss flannel daygown, bonnet and blanket for baby’s homecoming

NOTE:  The free design can only be used on Brother machines with the My Custom Stitch feature.  You must download the design and then import it to your machine via memory stick or floppy drive.  It cannot be opened on a computer or accessed any way other than through a Brother model which offers this feature.

It has been busy, busy, busy around here.  I’ve embroidered and framed more scripture verses for church, sewn a denim gored skirt for 9 yo Laurel from a fabulous pattern,   embroidered my son’s hiking back pack, altered his “thunderware” (YIKES!) and done a variety of other “utility” sewing projects.

 

This photo has been edited/darkened to better show detail.

This photo has been edited/darkened to better show detail.

While  trying to get some blogging done, I came across the forgotten post below in my draft folder.  Since two earlier post on Brother’s  My Custom Stitch  feature,  Heart Swag Baby Shawl  and  T-Bonnet ,    there have been several inquiries asking about the zig zag feather stitch I created.  So once again, I am offering it to readers.  It can be saved to a memory stick or floppy disk or whatever device you use to transfer information to your sewing machine.  It is not a .pes hooped embroidery design.  This is done on the sewing side of the machine.

Swiss flannel bonnet, blanket and daygown for baby's homecoming

close up of zig zag feather stitch, worked with 30 wt. cotton thread

This  soft pink set was made for granddaughter Vivian Rose’s homecoming in January.  But she was a smaller newborn than our other three grandchildren so the size I chose was too big for her.  Now, 8 months later, the gown has been worn and outgrown.

 

This shows the feather stitch with greater contrast to better show detail.

This shows the feather stitch with greater contrast to better show detail.

Read on about this useful stitch and post your request for it in a comment.~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Continue reading