Thursday, July 15, 2010

A gift for a friend

Hello everyone!

These past few days I have been little by little finishing up this project for a friends birthday. I was quite suprised and please how it turned out. I thought the fabric might be a little boring on its own and then I found the perfect cranberry bias tape for the pockets on this lovely apron. The fabric was a donation from my sisters stash of fabric and the bias tape and thread were both free from friends. So this project did not cost me much except my time. I am planning on sewing up another one of this pattern for myself! But I sadly need some fabric. I just don't have any fabric that will suit, all my 20 peices I own are destined for a certain project. So I want to go and see what I can find online or at Joann. The pattern is Simplicity 4692 view A. It also has a matching childs size option. How fun! maybe someday I can sew that up for someone too.

My sister and I and our parents are leaving for West VA tomorrow, so I may not be posting until August. Unless I have some time while I am on vacation to post! I might suprise you all! :) See you all soon and have a lovely thursday!
God bless,


Monday, July 12, 2010

A civil war dress complete!

Hello everyone!
I recently finished my first civil war dress that I sewed on my own. My purple dress was my first dress, but I had loads of sewing help. Bethany my sister who has the blog Diary of a seam stress did assist me in telling me the steps and how to sew this new dress, but I did the actual sewing, etc. on my own. Do go and read her blog! It has loads of info on civil war clothing and sewing. Praise God for Lord willing being able to sew on my own. My goal is to someday be able to sew my clothing without her assistance. I am so thankful for her help and the Lord giving me a friend and sister to help me learn this wonderful skill.

I am sorry the dress is not on me or the dress form. My dresses are actually too small to fit on our dress form. My figure is a lot smaller and differently shaped with a corset and even lots of my modern clothing is too small for the dress form. So pictures of it hanging up will have to do for now.

I would have put it on, but I was in a time crunch. When I wear it Lord willing at our next event in October I will try and get pictures of it on me, but for now this will have to suffice.
The matching buttons on the cuffs. I was blessed to find rose buttons to match the blue roses.

The sleeves are called Bishop sleeves and they were one of the most common sleeves on ladies dresses in the american civil war.

The gauging as it is called above that was the longest part of the process of sewing the dress. Most dresses during the civil war had gauging instead of pleating for the technique of sewing the skirt to the bodice. In silk or wool dresses it was more typical to pleat the skirt to the bodice. Now this does not mean that I do not have a pleated cotten dress. I do! and that is ok too as that was before my sister and I found out that it was more common to gauge. We are learning constantly!

The bodice was the best part in my opinion! I loved putting the matching buttons on and Bethany helped me iron and steam the bodice gathers well.

If you are wondering my sister and I did not use store bought patterns for this dress or any other dresses you have seen in pictures from the civil war era that we wear at events. A good friend of ours draped the patterns for us for our bodices. But my sister and I have drafted our own sleeves and skirts. I beleive the bodice is the hardest part to draft/drape properly. We are so grateful for our friend stiring us in the right direction for period correct bodices and helping us out!

I found these buttons after finding the fabric in two different places. I found the buttons at Abrahams Lady in Gettysburg, PA. You may say well I can't just go to PA! Well they also have a website here. They do not sell everything you need for sewing, but they do sell some great notions and accessories as well as some clothing. I would recommend highly sewing your own clothing, as some of their apparel is not exactly period correct. If you buy clothing from any seller it will most definately not fit you well or be exactly the right shape. So I recommend sewing or getting a friend to custom sew you a gown.

And lastly here is the lining or as they called it in the civil war the kick plate. This fabric helps your dress to not get so worn or stained. You can hand wash that instead of the hem of the dress. on the bottom that helps the fabric from getting worn very fast. Also I put hem tape, which helps to have your dress last longer and not wear as quickly.
The one thing this dress is lacking would be a collar. Most civil war dresses had a collar that was removable on the dress when worn. If not, they would put a hankerchief around their neck to prevent sweat stains getting on the dress fabric.
That way the stains could be bleached out of the collar with an item called blueing. It did not bleach the white fabric like our modern bleach, it made the white look bluer, tricking the eye that the garment was pure white. This is my little
knowledge of period laundry techniques I had read about in books on laundry and at the sewing academy.

Well God bless! If you have any questions about civil living history and sewing please do ask. I may not have an answer, but my sister or other friends might.

In Christ,


Writing and sewing high lights

Hello everyone!

Some delights of my day yesterday were some things I have not gotten to do as of late very often. I wrote a few letters to dear friends. I wrote to a friend far away and to my great aunt and some more thank you notes to friends. This little pretty thing has been handy! A wonderful, dear friend of mine made this letter writing case for me for my birthday a few months ago. I was delighted to receive it in the mail and its been used constantly ever since! Its perfect, a place for all the cards/stationary and your pen and paper! how wonderful! She did a great jog sewing this little loverly.
The button even has a violin and some music notes on it. She knows my taste! I love music!

These lovely note cards I have been using so much as of late for long letters to friends. They are called Bookish missives and they are from Small Meadow Press. She desings lovely cards and papers. Her website is in my favorites on my side bar on this blog. Do have a glance at her site!
All the lovely cards! And no they are not too pretty to use as the creator of these papers always says to me when I have chatted with her at our local homeschool convention. :)

All the letters ready to be sent out and my new journals from friends. What lovely friends I have to give me a supply of journals to quench my thirst for writing all the happenings in my life, my struggles, my triumphs through Christ, and my prayer requests and praises.

I have also been sewing away another set of cushions redone for my dear mother. I posted a while back here of a set I did for the dining room. Now I am doing 4 recovers for the kitchen chairs. They are too big for our chairs, so Bethany and I have been resizing them and recovering them. I am hopefully going to finish them by thursday. That is my goal anyway. Bethany and I are leaving friday to visit the Needs. I posted about our visit with them here last february.

The fabric below is the new fabric that will match our kitchen much better. My mother chose it and loves it! So Lord willing they will be black and white cushions by thursday.
Have a lovely day!
In Christ,

Friday, July 9, 2010

Of baking, painting, music, and after graduation

Hello everyone!

Well I thought I would post more pictures of my life right now. We have been getting a lot of zucchini from our garden, hence I decided to leap into baking zuchini muffins. Lots of people at our church have new babies and they would be able to eat these muffins for breakfast. I also made chocolate chip cookies. The muffins are made with whole grain wheat flour, but the cookies are made with the good old white flour. I made about 12 dozen chocolate chip cookies along with my sister and moms help and 8 dozen muffins on my own. You may asK why on earth I made so many of them! Well I am bringing all the cooKies to church on sunday for all of the congregation to eat while we have lunch during the business meeting. We always have fellowship over a meal after church. So I am bring cooKies. I used Sue gregg's recipe from her Soups and Muffins cookbook for the muffins. I used the regular nestle tolehouse recipe for the cooKies. And yes I am not the perfect baKer so I put a picture of them in their normal state, deformed and all. ;)

Zuchini below from our garden, I forgot to get a picture before I cut into them, but I had three, one is already grated here. The one on the right was huge! I was able to get 2 dozen muffins from it!

Grating, yes yesterday I was all in grey, boring I know, you just can't see my favorite red striped skirt underneath my homemade apron. I made the apron from Mrs. Chancey's edwardian apron pattern last summer. I love it! I need to sew up another one, this one is faded, has holes in it, and I need some more fabric! Something brighter. :)

The recipe below, I did use whole wheat soft white flour that I ground in our whisper mill. This time last year I would have been scared out of my whits to even try the mill! Now I can use it on my own without being scared I will break the machine or poof flour everywhere!

And the finished product Zuchini muffins ready to eat! My mom and sister ate some and we shall see if dad will eat them tomorrow.

Oh and another thing from my life, the to-do list! I write one everyday! I love checking off what I have gotten accomplished.

I did some room redecorating as well. I love these hanging hooks, I even color coordinated the colors. Blue, gray, and purple, I thought went well together. The hat is my civil war reproduction hat that I wear at summer civil war events. I just wore it to Gettysburg last weekend. I put the trim on myself and lined the inside of the hat. A engenius lady hand wove this hat for me. My parents were wonderful and bought it for me last year for my birthday. I even wear it in the garden here at home. :)

My old dresser and my new wall hanging. Love it!

My cat Felix enjoys keeping me company in my room when I am doing my devotions in the morning. Yes, I am reading Morning and Evening by Spurgeon, as well as C.S. Lewis's Screwtape letters. I read them off and on, I am not a great reader I confess. My stac
k may be tall, but I do not read them all that quickly. I only really read in the morning devotions and my Bible and before I go to bed the rest of my pile of reading.

I thought you all could guess what the above picture is of! I will give you a hint, my sister and I painted this last week before we went to the living history event in Gettysburg. It was something to put inside of our tent. Can you guess? More pictures of the finished product coming soon.

I thought you all might love seeing my high school diploma. Yes I am truly, really graduated. :)

My sister and I bought this at Colonial williamsburg when we went earlier in June and I have been immersing myself in colonial. We hope to do colonial living history this coming September Lord willing. You will find out at my sisters blog if we do do it or not. She is doing lots of research.

Lastly, here is another video as requested of myself singing another song, " Come Holy Spirit Dove Divine". An old hymn I love and it was challenge for me to sing, but the Lord helped me to memorize and learn it well. Enjoy and have a great friday!

In Christ,

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Hello everyone!

My family and I just arrived home from our first reenactment weekend of the summer. It was in Gettysburg, PA celebrating our countrys independance. It was a 4 day event and we had a lovely time. We are tired and exhausted and trying to get all the laundry and dishes sanitary again and done. :) I do not have pictures yet from the event, but my friend Lindsey will be sending them to me shortly. When I get them I will be sharing with you all how we live in the living history camping and doing dishes, while having to get our own water in buckets, cooking over an open fire, and all that jazz. It was lovely! We were even asked by some reporters from England about our Telegraph, domestic, and Pinkerton detective agency group and why we love to do what we do! They will be posting an article about us in their english home magazine next year. The lovely ladies said they would also send me the pictures they took of myself, and my sister, and parents and friends while we went about our tasks. They were very interested in our living history and our modern lives as well. They were a little shocked I believe when I said I had never been to a bar or club and loved going to a living history event better than that. They asked also why we thought a reenactment was better and I said this, " I feel safer at a living history event, especially because I have my dad, and the other fathers and men to protect me. I also feel loved and respected by all the family and friends around me. Men also are chivalrous and respect me and do not want to take advantage of me. At a living history event I can have more fun and be mentored by older women and men. It is a productive activity and its fun and I don't have to worry." That is not exactly what she wrote down. But that was basically what I told her to answer her question. I beleive these two women really saw something different in my sister, mother, and I are our friends. They saw the love of Christ, not a love of this world. Praise the Lord!

I also wanted to share with you a video of my sister and I playing together. We had a recital in our home, as my mother is a piano teacher in June. My sister is playing the harp and I am the one singing. We love doing music together. The peice is called " The Water is Wide" and it is a celtic tune. Enjoy! and I will post pictures as soon as I can from the event.

Now I am off to do some laundry, baking some granola Lord willing for the first time, and picking some of our squash and zuchini that is in the garden. Then I have to buckle down and finish up some school studies for my worldviews course and study to get my drivers permit. Then I have told myself I may read to my hearts content and practice piano and maybe finish my first civil war dress that I have sewn by myself. We shall see how it turns out. I will post pictures soon.

In Christ,