Friday, May 29, 2009


It's *sew* fun getting goodies in the mail. I have gotten several things recently and wanted to share.

The top row of five fabrics is something I won in a giveaway from Yvonne at Color In Your Life (she owns a great online shop Bunte Fabrics that stocks lovely European and Japanese fabrics for children, Euro patterns, and lots more - plus she's in Washington State). I haven't ordered anything from her yet, but when the need arises, I will definitely buy from her. The fabrics she sent are gorgeous and while I'm not sure what I'm going to make with them yet, you can bet that it will be something adorable and probably for my second cousin's little sweetie who turns one next month.

Then I got a surprise package from an online friend who lives in Canada (hi Abi!). She sent me two magazines - a La Mia Boutique from Nov 2008 and then Patrones Ninos #277.

Lastly, I won Patrones Joven #279 that Marita of Paradise for Me was giving away in a drawing on her blog.

I've gotten to look at a few of the international magazines before, but to have some in my hands that are mine is soooo much fun! What eye candy. Yes the fact I can't read the directions is a bit scary, but it's not enough to sway me from trying. Thanks for the gifts ladies, know they will be loved and cherished by me. :-)

Then of course after getting my own personal Jalie fashion show and the ability to try on Emilie's clothing (thanks Emilie!!!), I had to buy three new Jalie patterns. Here is what I ordered:

I didn't try on the pants (#2909), but Emilie was wearing them and they are adorable! I think I will like them a lot, plus they are cut like the jeans which are amazing. I really liked the new crossover top too. I'm a fan of the old one, but the new one is a little longer and has a cute collar you can use. I was sold after I tried on Emilie's top (which is the green one shown on the pants pattern).

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Disney with Yvonne (finally)

You know how it goes, you have the best of intentions, but life just gets in the way. Last week I decided to buck up and weed the flower beds. What I'm not telling you is that they were really "weed beds" and any sort of plant/shrub was sparse. So my little "weeding" extravaganza turned into a full fledged yard makeover that is still in progress. It has needed to be done for a long time - we moved into our home 8 years ago and my recommendation is put a landscape budget in if you're building a home. We didn't and here we are still working things out plus we still don't have a deck (hopefully this summer, but that is a whole different story that requires engineering and a whole lotta $$).

Anyway, finally here are a few pictures from our recent trip to California. My family had a wonderful time and the icing on the cake for me was finally getting to meet Yvonne. We've been emailing each other for about 3 years now and I knew we'd just get along wonderfully and enjoy each other's company. So our two days in Disneyland were spend with her and her fabulous hubby (whom my family also adored and my boys were constantly grabbing his hand and pulling him along in the direction they wanted to go). The only downfall was we only had two days to spend together. We were all sad when they had to leave for their flight back to Australia, but were so happy for the time we had together. Thank you Yvonne and Robert for sharing your vacation with us - we enjoyed your company more than you'll ever know!

Me & Yvonne

My Darling Hubby & me

Mickey and friends!

Sharing a drink

The entire family on the Pier in San Francisco

I wish I had a few more group pictures to share, but photographing four kids together and having them all looking at the camera is next to impossible.

I started a sewing project last Friday, but of course it was interrupted by *Project Landscape*, so the pattern is still laying on my cutting table. I was really inspired when I saw Christina's blouse at PR weekend. It's such a cute and unique blouse, so I decided that would be my next project. It's #106 from the 3/2009 issue.

During the Pati Palmer seminar at PR weekend, I was inspired to really try to address my fit issues when sewing. So for this top, I have graded down to a 34 (hello Burda, would you start making all things start at a 34 - it's just dumb that not everything starts that small). I had my hubby measure my back width and found my back is 14.25" wide so like Marta shared with me last fall, I need to do about a 1/2" broad back adjustment and that is true with Burda's size chart too. So I made a broad back adjustment and tried on my pattern. I found that I still needed to go out in the hips (I figured I would), so I graded out to a 36 in the hips and also implemented a forward shoulder adjustment. The pattern appears to be fitting well, so I'm going to cut it out in fabric and see where it gets me. Fingers crossed I'm happy with the result.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

PRW Portland 2009

I think it's safe to say, fun was had by all! It was a whirlwind weekend that I wish wouldn't have flown by so fast. I got to reunite with some friends I'd met last year in LA and I got to make lots of new friends this year. It is always so fun to actually get to chat in person with people that dig sewing as much as you do. Well this weekend there were about 50 ladies that did just that and I sincerely hope that everyone who attended had as much fun as I did. If fun is measured by lack of sleep, than I definitely hit the mark (about 10 hours total is all I got!). I came home horse too, a sign that I talked WAY too much (I hope that doesn't deter anyone from coming near me again - it might be obvious I don't get out much! lol).

The weekend started out with a day long seminar by Pati Palmer in which the topics of sewing jackets and fit were covered. She is a very informative and fun speaker to listen to. She swears she's never worked a day in her life, that is how much she loves her *job* (it's not a job to her). That evening we all ate dinner at the Old Spaghetti Factory - you could tell everyone was having a great time by the noise level in the room. After dinner we had a little contest with the ugly fabric we brought - everyone ended up being a winner, my prize was a book by Kenneth King.

On Saturday, the day started bright and early at 8am. We all boarded a big yellow school bus and traveled to Fabric Depot, downtown to Josephine's & the Button Emporium, and then finally to Mill End (my personal favorite in the tour). That evening we enjoyed a nice pizza dinner at the hotel and then showed off our favorite fabric purchase, mine was some Burberry coating I got at Mill End.

Then on Sunday, a small group met in the restaurant at the Monarch Hotel for a yummy brunch and one last gab session before we all parted ways.

Here are pictures I took (and a few I snagged from Flickr). I didn't really take that many, but so many cameras were flashing all the time that I figured the event was surely covered (you know the celebrity status we all have on PR is just like being in the limelight! LOL).

My roomies Cindy and Leslie

Me and Jacqui (we live only about 2.5 hours away - yay!)

Me & Deepika being "movie stars" at Fabric Depot

Jacqui & Deepika

Nancy, Me, & Cindy Lou

Jacqui & Emilie (from Jalie)

Cindy Lou, Nancy, Deepika, & Cidell

Leslie, Cindy Lou, & Cidell

Look, everyone is wearing a Jalie top!

Me & Emilie

The conference Friday during a break

Me & Jacqui

Cindy & Christina chatting it up

Cidell & Emilie

Brunch at the Monarch

Me & Deepika

Cindy shopping for patterns at Joann's

Me, Cindy Lou, Mary, Jacqui

Me & Mary Fran

Me, Cindy, & Laura (back)
Jacqui, Cindy Lou, Nancy, Leslie, & Jennifer (front)
Me with all my Jalie garments (it was part of a contest and I brought 17 items). My prize, $20 to spend at Jalie - yippee, thank you Emilie & Jalie!!!!!

I will add one more highlight for me of the trip. I really enjoyed meeting Emilie from Jalie. She is so darn sweet and absolutely adorable! It was so fun to talk with her about the company (her mom and aunt started the company in the early 80's, but now it's just her and her mom working together running the company). I've really come to adore Jalie patterns over the past few years. I've had great experience with the fit and the directions are wonderful - very RTW results in my opinion. And the coolest part was that she brought a whole bunch of Jalie garments and she let us try them on!!!! I was so excited! I got to try on the new jeans pattern and so much more. It was fun to see her enthusiasm about the company. My fingers are crossed that Fabric Depot will start carrying their patterns. But because I hate waiting for anything, I ordered a few I had to have now (all from the new collection - the jeans, pants, & crossover shirt).

Next year the weekend is in Philly - hopefully I can attend, these events are too much fun to miss! Thanks for making it such a great weekend ladies, I wish it happened more than just once per year.

Here are a few more pics I'd like to share. Below is a ham holder that my dear roomie Cindy bought for me. Thank you Cindy (tho you probably wanted to wack Leslie & me with it since we wanted to stay up so late! lol)!!! I know I will use it in good health and will always think of you when I use it. It's even made in the USA!!!

Here is my lovely Burberry fabric. I can thank Leslie for the inspiration because she brought along a gorgeous trench she made using the black fabric. She even let us all try it on. It was a gorgeous coat and totally worthy of the Burberry fabric.

3 yds each of both black & red Burberry (thanks to my sis too, she gave me a little $$ for babysitting my nephews so she bought most of it!)

Here is the rest of my loot ~ The Kenneth King book I won in the ugly fabric contest, then I purchased the jacket book and elastics, and the box was a goodie we all got from (we also got seam rippers from too, but that didn't make it into the picture).

Sorry this was such a long post, but hopefully all the pictures make it worth the length it was. If you've never been to a PR Weekend, you must go if you have the opportunity. Everyone is so friendly and you're sure to have a good great time! Next up, Disneyland photos with the world famous, totally adorable and equally as sweet Yvonne!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Pattern Review ~ Jalie 2795

Oh my gosh, PRW Portland was soooo fun, I can't wait to share it with you. I need to finish getting my pictures uploaded and then onto the blog so hopefully tomorrow I'll have a post about that. For now, I'd like to share the Jalie hoodie I made myself for our Disneyland trip (which has been nearly a month ago).

Pattern Description: zip front jacket with or without a hood

Pattern Sizing: girls size 2 to ladies size 22 ~ I made my usual "R"

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it? Yes, very much so.

Were the instructions easy to follow? Yes! Jalie always has such great instructions. I've never been stumped. They are short and direct and also they come with wonderful illustrations that go along with the instructions.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern? Well I more than like this garment, I LOVE this garment. This is my new favorite thing to wear! I'm always cold and my old hoodies from Old Navy were yucky so I gave to the kids to play outside in and decided to make myself a new one. I love the length on it too. My old hoodies were a bit on the short side (maybe they'd shrunk up after all these years). This hoodie has nice long sleeves and body - not overly long, but they provide great coverage.

Fabric Used: gray sweatshirt from JOS group (it's supposed to be from the Polo company)

Pattern Alterations or any design changes you made: None needed!

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others? Oh my gosh, I'm totally sewing this again over and over. I know a girl probably only needs so many hoodies, but it's really quite chilly where I live for about 9 months of the year so having something nice to pop on around the house or for running out when it's not the middle of the winter is very much necessary. My sister was freaking out when she saw it and loves it too. Actually all my kids even thought it looked cool and my daughter made mention that she might like one (which is rare lately in the 'tween state she's in). I also got lots of great compliments at the Portland PR weekend - thanks ladies! :-)

I would totally recommend this pattern. It's really not hard. The hardest part for me was getting the zipper aligned properly. I used some Wonder Tape and had to realign the zipper a few times to get it to line up with the pocket stitching and the hem band. No biggie at all. Seriously, get this pattern if you like hoodies! :-)

Conclusion: If this is any testament, I wore it every day during our recent 10-day trip to California (even VonneVo thought it was pretty spiffy when we met up - miss you girl, wish you didn't live so far away!!!!).

Monday, May 11, 2009

Terribly Neglected

I know I have a few readers, so I want to apologize for my absence. I'm alive and well, but it's been two months since my last post - sorry!

To bring anyone who cares up to speed, the lovely cold I got for my birthday turned into an ear infection with a nearly ruptured ear drum. That took to the end of March for me to feel well again - what a drag. Then that followed with my children having spring break. Shortly after they went back to school, we decided on a whim to go to Disneyland so I could meet my friend Yvonne and her hubby. (For those of you that are on PR, that would be Vonnevo from Australia.) She was just as lovely as I knew she'd be and our families hit it off well. We got to spent two days together, but that time went by WAY too fast. My kids adored them and the boys were constantly grabbing her hubby's hand wanting to hold it throughout the park. They were sad when it was time for them to leave and fly home. I'll post pictures of the trip later because they are still on my camera. We were gone for 10 days and drove home going up the coast of California spending some time in San Francisco and Sacramento as well. We just got home last Sunday the 3rd so while doing truckloads of laundry, I feverishly worked on the biography book and weekend agenda for the Portland Pattern Review weekend that is this coming weekend. Oh and my nephews are coming early Wednesday as my sister has to be away from home for her business (so 2 full days/1 night). I am seriously strung out in too many different directions and honestly can't wait until Friday. I think once I'm out the door to the PR weekend all my worries will be flushed away and I will be able to relax. I just feel like my life has been non-stop for quite some time and I like more of a relaxed life than I've been having.

So that is my ramble. Hopefully I'll have some lovely sewn things to show off soon. I did make a great Jalie hoodie right before our Disneyland trip that I'm totally lovin' as well as a few other goodies for myself and the kids. Next week I'll also share my PR weekend fun and some pics from our Disneyland trip so you can all see the beautiful Yvonne.

I hope all you moms had a very Happy Mother's Day. I did and my youngest even remembered it was Mother's Day. I saw he was awake in his room and he looked up from his pillow at me and said "Happy Mother's Day Mommy". Talk about melt my heart that a 4.5 year old remembered it was Mother's Day - what a sweetie. I got lovely handmade gifts and cards the kids made at school, what could be better?

P.S. I can't forget we also celebrated two of my boys turning one year older too. This year's cakes weren't as exciting as last years, but they were just as yummy. Happy Birthday Jack & Will, how can you already be another year older???