Monday, July 30, 2007

Brown/Aqua Skirt

I finished the second skirt in my Spring Line (yeah, I know it's July) this weekend. I used New Look 6596 again, this time adding a ruffle on the bottom. The fabrics are leftover from this bag, and I had only 8.5 usable inches left of the stripe! I cut 3 2.5" strips, stitched them together and hemmed one edge. Then I put 2 rows of gathering stitches on the other edge (I use a medium length stitch, about 3.0). I divided the strip and my skirt into eighths and pulled the gathers to fit. The skirt is lined in aqua.

Monday, July 23, 2007

Harry Potter

Friday night Caleb, Calvin, and I went to a Borders near us to get the final book. I hadn't planned on going (thinking to go on Saturday instead), but they wanted to go to the party. It was fun! We saw lots of people in costumes (there was a guy fantastically dressed as Mad Eye Moody. He should have won the costume contest, but Bellatrix Lestrange did instead). It was really crowded, but we got home at 12:45 am tired and happy with 2 copies of Book 7.

I've decided I'm re-reading the whole series before starting the last book. I hope it won't be too hard to stay away from any spoilers, and I should be able to blow through at least the first few books pretty quickly (I'm almost done with Book 1, started last night). Caleb is still finishing up Book 6.

We also went to see Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix last night. It was wonderful, though Caleb did comment on how much of the book had been cut (he just finished reading it last week).

Friday, July 20, 2007


I went to State Fair judging today, after my dentist appointment. Judging started at 10:00 this morning, and I got there around 10:30. I missed watching 2 of my entries get judged, but found out results from some of the ladies there.

Class 3 -- fabric baptismal outfit: my nephew's christening gown. First place! I missed watching this one, so I don't know what the judge said about it. (darnit! I really wanted to know what they thought)

Class 31 -- one piece garment of stretch fabric: Vogue 8379, pictured in the post below. First place! They judged this one after lunch, and I came back late, so I missed watching this one too. However, one of the ladies said that the judge loved it and had nothing but praise for it.

Class 33 -- serged item of clothing, using serging as main construction method: Jalie 2449. First place! Finally I got to watch judging, and the judge liked how I used a twin needle for hemming, and that my serging was even on the spandex fabric. Someone else had entered a Jalie 2449 too.

Class 40 -- woman's two piece sport outfit: (this skirt, and this top. First place! The judge (different one) liked the twin needle hemming, my even gathers and band, and the hong kong finish on the skirt waistband.

Class 54 -- purse: I decided to enter the In Town drawstring bag I made in February (second from the left in this post). Third place! The judge thought it was cute, thought it could be reversed, and her only criticism was that it could be a bit fussy to open and close.

I am glad I went to watch. The judges were very strict on finishing, and repeatedly talked about using correct needle size for your fabric. They also always checked to see if collar edges matched exactly, if center fronts were equal, and if pockets were equal. The judges explained really well why they placed each garment as they did, and also gave tips for improving. It was also really long, and after lunch they started judging the classes out of order, which got a bunch of people mad. It was also a bit sad to see so few entries in most of the categories. Four places are awarded in each class, and rarely were there more than even three entries (except for purses -- there were eight entered).

I drop off 2 jars of jam on the 28th, but I won't stay for judging. I'll have to wait until we go to the fair to find out how those do.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Entries Finished!

I finished the wrap dress. Hopefully it'll place. All my entries are done, clean, and pressed, and I'm about to leave to drop them off. Judging is Friday, and I hope to go watch after my dentist appointment.

I think this dress looks a bit bumblebee-ish. We'll see how I like it once I actually wear it a bit. I love the pattern, and will write a review and more details once I get it back. (fabric is from Canvasbacks)

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Out of Town Visitors

My mother-in-law and step-FIL came to visit last Tuesday, and we have been busy!

We attended an orchestra concert.

We had two birthdays to celebrate (my MIL's and Beth's).
We played croquet.

We went to the Boerner Botanical Gardens.

We worked on our sun room.

We had a wonderful visit.

Now to get cracking on my sewing -- State Fair entries are due tomorrow, and I'm halfway through Vogue 8379! Hopefully I'll get it done and give everything else a final press tomorrow morning.

Saturday, July 07, 2007

Lots of Gardening

This is why there has been no sewing going on -- we've been working on the yard! Last Friday (the 29th) we had 6 yards of shredded hardwood mulch and an Autumn Blaze maple tree delivered. We then spent the weekend planting, weeding, and laying mulch. This is what the backyard along our neighbor's fence used to look like (this was taken 4 years ago):

This is what it looks like now:
Most of the plants have come from friends and my mom thinning out their gardens. I somehow also managed to get it so that it's been pretty much blooming since April/May. :) That was a nice accident.
I took some close ups of the flowers blooming right now:

We also have some milkweed and have been having fun checking on the caterpillars:

Now I'll be focusing on the other side of the yard.

Thursday, July 05, 2007

Happy Fourth

We had a nice Fourth of July holiday, only now I'm all mixed up and keep thinking that today is Saturday. :)

Peter and Julie came up on the third, and we had planned to ride bikes downtown to watch the Big Bang fireworks, but it rained. We stayed home and played Trivial Pursuit instead.

Yesterday morning we walked up to Klode Park and watched the Whitefish Bay Fourth of July Parade. It was fun, and quite the parade! I'd never watched it before, and it closed with a bagpipe band (is that what you call a bunch of bagpipers? a band? corps? I have no idea).

Connor slept through the first part, even through all the sirens from the fire trucks and police cars.

We decided that Calvin would be really good at cheerleading. He has the strength and the balance.

Later on in the afternoon we went over to Luther's house to celebrate his daughter's first birthday. David drew a lion on the sidewalk for Connor.

Luther's father-in-law built this AWESOME tricycle for Elijah (Luther's son). It rocks! Connor loved it. Calvin and Elijah also played on it a lot, giving each other rides.

Little Pablo had fun too, and I had fun playing with him.

Last night we walked down to the beach and watched the fireworks. A nice ending to a nice holiday.

My mother-in-law comes to visit on Tuesday. Summer is so busy and goes by too fast!