Tag Archives: shadow work by machine

Christmas Fawn Daydress

Christmas is just around the calendar corner and it’s rush, rush, rush for me and many of you.  I’ve just finished this Swiss batiste dress for Baby Beatrice.

I’ve written in earlier posts about Baby Bea, our new granddaughter via our church. Neither of her parents’ mothers is living,  so months before she was born they asked me to be her official Nana.  That was a happy day!  And, of course, she is a doll, just now 4 months old, which for me has been at least 120 more happy days.

Her daddy is an avid hunter, especially for deer. Bea’s little daydress is a reminder NOT to shoot Bambi or his antlered  father.

But back to the dress……the pattern is Old Fashioned Baby‘s Baby Daydress.

 

 

Like all of Jeannie B’s patterns, this one is a delight to sew and offers several design options.  I love the Scriptures and embroidery designs she places in the blank space around the pattern pieces.

 

 

 

The shadow work fawn is from Joy Welsh’s Applique for Kids.  It stitches just beautifully with her instructions.  The greenery beneath the fawn was extracted from another design which I cannot recall right now.

 

 

 

The holly at the neckline is another design whose origin I cannot recall.  I need to keep better records of what I embroider.

CHALLENGES

LACE–There were many challenges while making this dress.  First, I was inspired and compelled to use this exquisitely detailed, dark tan galloon lace purchased from Sue Stewart at the facebook group,Smocking Destash. It just looked perfect for a fawn themed dress. Of course,  the pattern calls for insertion and edging, not a galloon.

 

galloon lace with leftover from the roll and whip

 

The edges are really quite straight so it worked for an insertion.  It was pinstitched in place on my Brother Dream Machine with a #100 needle rather than a wing.   That might have damaged the heavy cordonnet which outlines this lovely lace pattern.   At 3/4″ wide, it was twice the 3/8″ suggested for the insertion.  But by placing the extra width to the center of the pattern, it worked just fine.

SLEEVES–To be used as sleeve edging this 3/4″ lace is wider than I like for a baby.   Also it has no pull thread for gathering  My solution was to rotary cut the galloon down to 5/8″.  Next, the raw edge was rolled and whipped over a quilting thread, reducing the width to a generous 3/8″.  Close enough for me.

Because the lace is fairly stiff, I used far less edging than suggested.  It gathered reluctantly and with more bulk than I would have liked.  That cordonnet is heavy.  The rolled, whipped and gathered lace was then joined to a large-holed entredeux.

 

 

Neither of my granddaughter’s would tolerate snug binding sleeves against their arms.  I expect Bea might be the same.  And she has some deliciously chunky arms with those precious fat rolls we love to squeeze.  So if the sleeve opening is wider than suggested.  If it is too big I can weave a narrow silk ribbon through the large entredeux holes.

 

 

 

The sleeves were inserted with the same entredeux as used on the neck and sleeve edge.  This is not a difficult technique and one which I  think adds a great deal to the heirloom look of a  garment.

NECKLINE–This was another challenge.  The pattern called for gathered lace standing up against entredeux.  But. again, this lace is stiff and likely to be scratchy against silky, delicate baby skin. The entredeux was applied so as to fold to the front with the gathered lace lying against the dress instead of the baby’s neck.  But it would not lie down.

The solution to this challenge was to weave strands of the featherstitching thread through the entredeux as well as the dress itself.

 

 

 

That convinced it to cooperate.

Obviously, the hand stitched weaving looks quite messy.  If I had more time I would remove it and use more strands of thread.  But tick tock tick tock.  It is what it is.

BUTTONS–This was an interesting challenge.  I have a tote bag full of MOP buttons-pink, blue, yellow, green dark brown, ecru and white of course.  But I had these single hole button that were just the right color.  But how to attach  a button with just one hole?

 

Neckline lace has been flipped up for better visibility. The lace almost covers the top button.

 

First I tried French knots in a variety thread weights and number of wraps.   All fell through the single hole or were so bulky as to be unsightly.

Then I thought about a bead.  A single red seed bead worked beautifully.  I was so pleased until……….

 

 

 

Oops!  In my enthusiasm I sewed the button on  the inside of the placket.  Oh well, it was just one button, easy enough to fix.

So the dress will be handed over to Baby Bea tomorrow.  Perhaps she will wear it to the children’s Christmas program at church tomorrow evening.

It’s been way too long since I’ve posted but life gets so busy!  We had our two younger grands, 5 yo Vivian Rose and 9 yo Alastair, for 5 fun-filled days, returning them to their parents and other grandmothers on Thanksgiving Day.  It was a delightful time.

Then I was laid low for a week with my winter foe bronchitis,  all the while trying to muster energy to finish up my Christmas project for Brother’s Stitching Sewcial blog.  I’ll tell you about that project as soon as it is posted on the blog.

Meanwhile, happy stitching to all.  I have 2 Christmas dresses and many, many gifts to embroider before the big day.  I hope to finish before Santa comes down the chimney or he will have to help me finish!  Frankly, his sewing skills seem a bit questionable.

 

 

Required disclaimer:  I am a paid sewing consultant for Brother sewing machine company.

Hinshaw Shadow Work Collection for Sale!

shadow embroidery by machine from Suzanne Hinshaw's Charming Embellishments collection

shadow embroidery by machine from Suzanne Hinshaw’s Charming Embellishments design collection

 

Heads up, Ladies!  Jan just shared a link to an Ebay auction of Suzanne Hinshaw’s Charming Embellishments    shadow work by machine embroidery collection.  The opening bid is $100.

The description reads:  Wow – hard to find Suzanne Hinshaw’s Shadow work by machine. Charming embellishments. New in package, I opened it to photo for listing. It states that it is for Husqvarna Viking machines. Not sure if the format works on other machines. Stated on floppy disk Hus/.Shv format Designer One.

This great package includes the floppy disk, book, and placement guides. It has 25 shadow work by machine designs. Cherries, poppies, Happy Birthday and Holiday Christmas and Hanukkah. Copyright 2000.

Free Priority shipping for winning bidder.

But around 2003 at Martha Pullen’s School of Art Fashion in Huntsville, I helped Suzanne in her booth at the teacher selling night.    The price of each collection was $125.

Designs from this set were used on a Christmas collar for my granddaughter.  Several of the other designs were used for more projects.

If you’ve been looking for any Hinshaw designs, this is one opportunity.  But be cautious.  I won the Ebay auction for the only collection I do not have, her Ladies and Babies collection.   It was a plagerized copy that soneone had color sorted so it wouldn’t work.  A full refund was given.

The fact that this set comes with the book and templates makes it seem legitimate.

So there you have it. I know nothing more about this auction than the description I have copied and pasted so you won’t find Janice Ferguson’s Good Sewing Stamp of Approval.   I hope one of you ends up with this great Hinshaw collection.

Thanks, Jan, for letting us know about this.

 

 

 

Driven

R suit

5 year-old Robert’s Easter suit

 

NEWS FLASH!!!!   I beat the clock!  Robert’s shirt was finished by 1 p.m.  Saturday! I sewed on buttons at the hairdresser’s, I hemmed while waiting  at the airport  for my brother, I whipped neck bias while watching  for Uncle Richard to arrive. I am done!  Bring on the bunny!

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2 year-old Alastair's Easter suit

2 year-old Alastair’s Easter suit

 

Blue pearl buttons from Farmhouse Fabrics add color to the back.

Blue pearl buttons from Farmhouse Fabrics add color to the back.

 

I’m driven, determined to beat the countdown to Easter morning.   Alastair’s suit, shown here, and Laurel’s dress are finished, but one thing or another has roadblocked my efforts to finish Robert’s outfit.  I have been way behind schedule with unexpected and time consuming life complications, but thought I could catch up.

Two days ago, we had Robert and Laurel overnight.  Their mother has been sick all week and our son has been out of town on business.  So Shelly has been struggling at home alone.  Her mother has helped out a great deal and we had them Wednesday  overnight.  It may not take a village to raise a child, but two sets of nearby grandparents surely makes the task a lot easier.  Continue reading

Satisfaction~Sewing for Boys

Alasair's Easter outfit, under construction

Alastair’s Easter outfit, under construction

 

Anyone can go to Strasburg Children www.strasburgchildren.com  and buy gorgeous heirloom clothing.  Their collection of smocked and heirloom sewn apparel for little ones is unrivaled.  But even in Strasburg’s oasis of classic beauty in the world wide desert of classic children’s clothing , the selections for girls far outnumber those for boys.  That’s a realistic reflection of the market.

I could buy their lovely outfits for my two grandsons and they would look so classically handsome.  But that would not satisfy my urge to create unique garments just for them. I want to do it myself.  I want to bring life to my personal, unique vision of beautiful children’s clothing for my unique and beautiful grandchildren.  And I don’t recall ever seeing train duds in the Strasburg catalogue.

So I sew.  The satisfaction of sewing for the boys is even greater than sewing for granddaughter Laurel. The challenge to design classic attire for little guys is greater, given the constraints of practicality, comfort and local standards of acceptability.

 

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shadow work by embroidery machine design from Suzanne Hinshaw’s Teddies and Toys

 

  For Easter, once again I am coordinating outfits for all three grandchildren- almost 7 year old Laurel, 5 1/2 year old Robert Charles, and just 2 year old Alastair.  This year, the only unifying component is the color blue.

Laurel’s dress and petticoat are standard heirloom, Swiss batiste, heirloom laces, embroidery.  To look presentable, it requires starch, my beloved 1946 Betty Crocker football iron (would you like to hear about it?),  a puff iron, a ham, and about 20 minutes on the ironing board.   Continue reading