A blog about my adventures in sewing & crafting

Friday, November 24, 2017

Thanksgiving & Black Friday

For the past 10+ years our family has escaped multi-Thanksgiving dinners and hid at hunt camp in Georgia.  We look forward to a quiet Thanksgiving and we DON'T eat Turkey either. (We had soup!)

Oldest son & his wife are joining us this afternoon so we will have a house full the rest of the weekend. Five people plus 3 dogs in a 288 sq.ft trailer.  Luckily we have a nice front porch and everyone is usually in the woods during the morning and evening hours.

Since there isn't enough room for my sewing I brought patterns to cut.  Cutting patterns is my least favorite part of sewing.  But it passes the time and encourages me to try a new pattern.  I do have great wi-fi here and I did browse through PatternReview.com and stalk many blogs.  I watched a few youtube videos and watched old movies. 

I don't do Black Friday (late Thursday?) shopping either.  I don't like crowds and I don't need a TV.  I didn't even do any online shopping either.  I guess after a year of minimizing my home and remodeling, I didn't NEED anything.

I have so much to be Thankful for:

  • My Faith
  • My Family
  • My little dog (Bojangles)
  • My Health
  • My Sewing

Peace, quiet, Thanksgiving, Coffee!

Hot Coffee, Cold Mornings

From October thru December my life seems like a big blur.  I hate that the holidays come so fast and that there is hardly anytime to enjoy them.  I dread the crowds at the stores and holiday shopping is not my favorite past-time. I wish I could just do all my shopping online!

I hope you all had a Happy Thanksgiving.

Until next time.............


Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Ponte Vedra Beach Mini-Vacation

Dear hubby had a convention to attend near Jacksonville.  I was able to go with him to the Sawgrass Marriott Golf Resort & Spa in Ponte Vedra Beach.

I have never been able to go with him on trips like this because of the kids being young & in school.  But now that they are older it's easier to make arrangements.

Dear Hubby and I have NEVER been away together (alone) in our 25 years of being married!  So I thought the time was right and his work paid for all the rest!

Our "villa" was just beatiful!  Such luxury and being pampered was something I could get used to!
We had a one bedroom luxury style apartment.

Living Room

Living Room



Spa like Bathroom!

I spent about 90% of my time on the porch.  The weather was a perfect 80 degrees the whole time and I had a wonderful view of the water, a golf course, trees, birds and squirrels with plenty of peace and quiet!

Outside porch

 We were treated to dinner one night by a very generous CEO/Owner of a medical company to Ruth's Chris Steak House.  This was the nicest, fanciest restaurant I have ever eaten at.  They are known for the best steakhouse experience.  The Prime steak arrives on sizzling 500 degree plate and offers a dining experience you will long remember.  It did not disappoint!

We ate with 27 other guest and Dear Hubby has a hard time hearing in room with so much noise but he did ok with small talk and once dinner service started all talk halted anyways.  We were served a limited menu but it was delicious!

We started with Shrimp cocktail and blue crab cakes.  I LOVE both but the shrimp were the biggest I had ever seen.  They were the size of chicken tenders.  They tasted like heaven!  The blue crab cakes were good, I thought they were very fishy tasting, I don't eat fresh blue crab very often so maybe that was why the smell was so strong to me.  Dear Hubby didn't eat either since he will only eat seafood fried.

Our salad was a choice of either Caesar or a House salad with a balsamic vinaigrette.  Dear Hubby & I each had a different one but my Caesar was better.

For the main course, we had a choice of stuffed chicken breast, salmon, petite filet or a petite ribeye.  Of course we had the not so small petite 12 oz. ribeye .  The most beautiful piece of meat, served on a sizzling hot 500 degree plate with butter.  We had mashed potatoes and mushrooms served family style for sides but the best was they surprised us with their signature creamed spinach.  The whole table laughed when I clapped with joy when the waiter brought out the creamed spinach.  I make creamed spinach at least once a week at home.  Theirs was very good but I really think I could give that chef a tip or two!

Dinner finished up with cheesecake with fresh berries which I did not eat.  I try my hardest to make good choices with our Keto style diet and I am proud to say that in the last 10+ months I have not cheated.  I've lost close to 50 pounds and I am not going to sabotage myself.  Sticking to my way of eating is now easier after all these months and cheesecakes and sweets no longer tempt me.

I really enjoyed the experience for Ruth's Chris Steak House and now I can say I've been there and done that.

To keep with my sewing, I did sew a nightgown for the trip:

Satin & Mesh knit nightgown
I used my TNT tank pattern, made it v-neck and sleeveless, empire waist, lace mesh skirt and serged all the seams.  I didn't even hem the bottom.  It's prettier on but that's not to be seen here!

The last night we went out with another group to Clark's Fish Camp.  They are "Rumored to be one of the largest privately owned collections of taxidermy in the country, Clark's menagerie of preserved animals includes lions, tigers, monkeys, bears, giraffes, deer, bobcats, and a flock of birds that gaze eerily at guests in the bar area and dining rooms."

Clark's Fish camp was an experience I can't wait to share with my kids.  This is a must see & eat at place!  We all joked that for a 40 minute drive from the resort this better be worth it and it was!

This restaurant/bar/museum/oddity sits ON the water.  Not near or next to but ON the water.  It was dark when we arrived and I think that helped with the mystery of the place.  It's so full of everything your eyes can't land in one place long.  After walking through the bar of cypress tables and stools the server walks you through a museum of china plates with different fish displayed in rows from the floor to the ceiling.  I'm sure there were over 300 plates.

Clark's Fish Camp-Entry Hallway

Once entering the dining room it's like WOW!

Welcoming Opossum

Dining Area

Dining Room


I'm thinking this is me protecting Dear Hubby................

More amazements


Photo shoot?


This one is alive!

This giraffe was HUGE!
A truly amazing collection

Dear Hubby doesn't like bears, this one was for him!

The bathrooms didn't disappoint either, but I didn't think it was appropriate to take a photo in there!

The food was very good & so many choices.  There was seafood anyway you like it and exotic meats (I don't think so!) This is a definite come again.

I must say for my first mini-vacation is was very nice & such a treat.

But I want to go home and see Girl M & my Bobo and my own bed and my sewing room!

Until next time......


Monday, November 20, 2017

Heather Gray Jersey Knit Combo

Can you really have enough drape neck tops or cardigans? 

Of course not!

This version from a heather jersey knit is more casual.  I had just enough fabric to make a short sleeve version drape necktop with a long sleeve cardigan.

TNT drape neck jersey knit top with short sleeves

Fabric close-up
 I just self-drafted the cardigan from something in my closet.  I didn't add any closure to the cardigan thinking it could just hang open a little.  I really like this combo and the hems do match up even on my lumpy, bumpy body.

Cardigan combo
 This jersey knit fabric was nice to work with, it didn't curl on the cut edges too bad and the stretch gives the top a nice flattering fit.  I did use my knit interfacing method on both the bottom hemline, the center front and on the sleeves.

$17.48 but I think I had a coupon code for a % off.  
 The close line is outside of my sewing room window and everyday I see this squirrel sit on top and look into the window.  I don't know what it wants! 

Peeping Tom
Until next time...............


Friday, November 17, 2017

Black ITY Knit Drape Neck Top

I think I sew up so many of these drape neck knit tops because they flatter my shape and are a true classic.  I have a maxi skirt that I hardly ever wear because I don't have a great top to go with it.

In comes a leftover piece of ITY knit fabric from my stash and out comes a perfect top!

Black ITY Knit Drape Neck Top

Classic wardrobe staple

With my McCall 6844 cardigan
I'm happy to say that I can now wear this skirt more.

Until next time............


Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Pink Black Jersey Knit Drape Neck Top

Is imitation the sincerest form of flattery?

There are a few ladies of our Church that I really like their style.  Both ladies are older than myself by about 20-30 years.  But they always dress so classy.  "Jan" likes to dress in boxy style jackets with blouse and skirt.  I've always admired her jackets and I do own a jacket that I refer to as my "Jan" jacket.  She always had her accessories matching and I always try to compliment her on her outfit.  A few months ago she had on a pink & black chevron? type print drape neck top under a black jacket and with a black skirt.

I knew I had to make a top similar to hers.  Luckily I found a fabric at my usual online shopping place of www.fabricmartfabrics.com that was similar. 

I do love me a drape neck top so the pattern wasn't even an issue on this make.  The fabric was a jersey knit and of course it would be a thin, rolling to the inside when cut, won't stay on grain and the yard of fabric was cut short.  But I went ahead with a sleeveless version and I can't wait to show it off to "Jan".

Pink Black Jersey Knit Drape Neck Top

Loving this top!

With Black ponte knit slim skirt

With Ponte knit jacket & skirt

$4.00 top!
I think this top will be a wardrobe staple and I will get a lot of wears out of it!

Until next time.................


Monday, November 13, 2017

Navy Blue Jersey Knit Half Circle Skirt

There are so many different types of jersey knit fabrics.  I found this navy blue jersey knit with spandex in my fabric stash and thought that it would be perfect to make a half circle skirt.  The fabric has a nice wight to it and the stretch is perfect.  I used my TNT circle skirt pattern, two seams and added an elastic fold over waistband.

I have been using Pellon EK130 knit iron-on interfacing for years on both knits and wovens.  It's light and doesn't affect the drape of fabric.  I cut the interfacing in 1/2" strips.  I ironed the strips onto the hem of the skirt, turned up the hem and sewed.  It made the hem crisp and neat and sewing so much easier then when I used the Steam-a-seam 2 and didn't gunk up my needle.

I really like how this navy skirt turned out and can't wait for cooler weather to wear it with boots and a sweater.

Navy Blue Jersey Knit Half Circle Skirt

Skirt Hem

With blue stripe jersey knit cardigan

With blue white broken chain drape neck ITY knit top

With green sweater cardigan

Good news about my foot, between all the wonderful advise of my fellow sewers and my continual "hippy" doctoring, my foot is starting to feel much better.  I wear a compression style sock during the night, do foot stretches in the morning before I get out of bed, wear good shoes ALL the time, rub on some essential oils, started some foot stretching exercises on my pool deck stairs, tennis ball rubs on my foot and just being mindful when my foot feels tired and/or sore.  Hopefully in another month or or so I can update that my foot is healed.

I'm off to sew up something wonderful...............

Until next time...............


Friday, November 10, 2017

Tan Princess Seam Peplum Ponte Knit Top

I've been looking at a peplum style top.  Being a busty, lumpy, curvy girl I didn't want the top to accentuate my hips.  I used my TNT Simplicity 7243 princess seam sheath dress as a base.  I shortened the length and added a little width at the bottom hem of the side front and side back pieces.

I only had enough fabric for a short sleeve version.  I'm not a big fan of solid tops since I fear a cold room or just that my bra seam shows.......

Tan Princess Seam Peplum Ponte Knit Top

Back View

With Fall Paisley Skirt

With Plaid sharkbite hem skirt

With Navy Ponte Knit Slim Skirt
I hope to be brave enough to wear this top.  I like the navy ponte knit slim skirt the best.  Maybe a nice scarf too.

Until next time..............


Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Plum Black Heathered Jersey Knit Skirt

Of course I had to sew up a skirt to go with my maroon and gray striped top. I used my TNT yoga skirt pattern and omitted the yoga style waistband and added 1/2" to the waistband of the skirt.  I then serged 1/2" elastic to the waistband and turned inside and zig-zag stitched down.  Easy!

A tip I learned from Nancy Zieman the other day was to cut strips of knit interfacing ( I cut 1/2" strips) ironed them along the hem of the skirt, turned up the hem and did a zig-zag stitch there too.  Helps to keep the hem crisp, gives you a fold-line and doesn't gum up my machine needle like Steam-a-Seam 2 tape does.

Plum Black Heathered Jersey knit skirt

Plum Black Heathered Jersey knit skirt

1-1/2 yard skirt $3.00!
I think a navy blue version may be next on the sewing table!!!!

Until nest time............


Monday, November 6, 2017

Maroon Gray Striped Jersey Knit Cap Sleeve Top

I sewed up a TNT pattern that USED to fit me.  I really like this cap sleeve knit top.  I've sewn it up many times, just not recently.  It's too big above the bust and the neckline is wonky.  But I'm going to wear it anyways.

I like this pattern because the sleeves are already in the pattern.  But I think it may also alter the fit.

Maroon Gray Striped Jersey Knit Cap Sleeve Top
 This TNT pattern only takes 1 yard of fabric so I have 1/2 yard leftover to make Girl M. a pair of shorts.

$4.00 top
I'm thinking a skirt will be on the cutting table next.

Until next time.................