Dress Patterns

I am in the midst of a few projects, and I just couldn't resist spending some of my birthday money on new dress patterns for myself.

I got these two:

New Look 6587

I really like the 1950s style of this one, especially the top, yellow with vertical stripes version.
I think I was inspired by this dress I bought myself on Etsy:


Then, I have been wanting a simple knit jersey wrap dress, and I thought New Look 6674 would be a good fit for my needs (the lower, red version).

Obviously, I am planning on making a solid color, probably gray or some other neutral shade. I just want to live in comfy dresses.

My husband got me some cowboy boots for my birthday, so I had to get a dress to match! Ha. I went to Opitz Outlet and scored a cute shirt dress that is perfect (even if it *is* Tommy Hilfiger! ha). I just spent way too long trying to find it online and I can't. Well, I will just have to take a photo for you when I wear it tonight! Date night!

I hope you had a great holiday - hard to believe 2012 is days away!


true stories

Clara singing Away in a Manger at her preschool concert. She was very *very* into it. Some things happened to me this week. Let me tell you about them.

A telemarketer wanted to drop by to "go over any questions" I might have had about his life insurance policies. I might have accidentally agreed that he could come over, but not until after 8pm because that was when Ben would be home (thinking telemarketer guy would not come so late). He said he would be over at 9pm and then hung up. He never even left me his contact info, so I couldn't call and cancel. Instead, I hid in the basement with the lights off when he was scheduled to come over. Oh, and I turned a smallish sheer tablecloth into a curtain for my front door so he couldn't peer inside.

Normally I am a straightforward person, but I showed my rare passive-aggressive side with that guy. Sorry, dude.

Sitting and chatting with my husband one evening and he looks at my sweater and laughs. "For a minute there I thought you took my blue sweater and cut it down the middle!" Uh...yeah. I totally did.

And I am not even a little bit sorry. I love it.

My divinity candy never set up so I could pipe it into cute little candies. It was like gook (you know, that corn starch slime stuff that kids love). I turned it into a divinity chocolate bark kind of thing. And it is delicious.

Four days until Christmas. We have parties on the 23rd, 24th, and 25th, not to mention Ben has church services twice on the 24th and on the morning of the 25th (joys of being a church music guy). And then my birthday is the 26th. Busy, busy, busy. I am trying to embrace it all because some day I will long for the days of parties with all our families. Right?? Have a great holiday!


Market Skirt

I wish there was a bell or alarm or something that told me when my bobbin was out of thread. Because often, I keep sewing, clueless, and don't find out until I think I am done. Ahem.

I made a skirt for myself. It's the Lisette Market Skirt. Buttery Kona cotton. I like the pleats. I wish I had made it a bit longer, though. Now I'm onto the shirt to go with it.

This project taught me how to use twill tape as a waistband. How to install a side zipper. How to pleat a skirt.



Oh, my, I think my knitting groove has arrived.

A hat for a dear friend in Tennessee, with my dear friend Gilda's pattern.

Another cabled mini scarf for a friend (with an amazingly cute etsy shop! oh yeah, you'd better believe we swapped goods). I made it a wee bit narrower (details are on Ravelry, if you're interested). I think I like it most of all.

A couple newborn hats that were custom orders. First, a baby World War II Watch Cap. Adorable! And soo itty bitty.

Second, a baby bear hat. This is such a super fast pattern and so satisfying. I decided to crochet the snout instead of knit it. (Yes, balloons are modeling my hats. I no longer have newborn-sized heads around!)

I also started a little something for myself. I love this yarn color - I was wishing and hoping that it was called "Curry," but alas, it is just plain old "Yellow." It will remain Curry in my heart.

Isn't this little pile of fabric so cute and sparkly? It is turning into something, like, totally radical, dude. I have a poem I wrote in third grade called "Dood." I think I thought that was how it was spelled. Ha! My book of childhood poems is awesome to look back on. I was sooo deep, Dood.

I digress. Sometimes people ask me how I manage to make things with three smallish children underfoot. Well, it's not rocket science, but there is a formula. Food + floor + children = free time for mommy. You're welcome.

And isn't this the cutest thing ever?? Too bad our snow is gone now. December without snow is just wrong.


december things

It's all about Christmas cookies around here. Also, this week I am cutting sugar out of my diet. Ha. I just like to make things hard on myself.

Royal icing.

Clara and Oliver were REALLY into the sprinkles this year.

Half done. These are the Norwegian sugar cookies, and in my family we roll them REALLY thin and then after they are baked, you outline them with icing and sprinkles. And that's that. Yum.

I also already made the chocolate covered cherries, caramels, buckeyes and Russian teacakes, but no photos. Next is the gingerbread for house-building on Christmas day (our little tradition). I'll make the house pieces now and freeze them until the 25th. I have enough royal icing for then, too.

I finally finished embroidering the names on the stockings I made last year. No more stocking making for me! We don't have a mantle, so they just hang on the wall, thanks to 3M.

A little homemade looking, but oh well. Good enough for me.

I have been growing my green onions, thanks to a Pinterest pin I saw. Did you know you can plunk your onion whites in a jar of water and they will grow, almost overnight? I have trimmed these dozens of times and they keep on growing. I just replace the water every couple days.

Today I am making beef jerky. My mom compiled my grandma's recipes a couple years ago and I am having fun trying different recipes. The jerky is in the oven right now. I'll let you know how they turn out.

I have also been knitting, but they are gifts, so I'm not telling.


more dollies

I am enjoying moderate success with my Etsy shop (what very little I have listed in it) and a little shop in South Minneapolis called Mother Earth Gardens. They asked me to bring some dolls for them to sell and - guess what - they sold out and asked for more! So I made a new batch this weekend and thought I would take a photo of the tools I use to paint the faces. Are you ready for this highly technical confession? I use:
  • Tulip fabric paint in black, rose and red
  • two wooden skewers (eyes and mouth)
  • back of a kid paint brush (cheeks)

Obviously, I am reallllly professional. Ha.
Here they are, ready to go:

And sometimes, there is a mishap.

Poor One-Eyed Suzy. She will be well cared for by my kids.


Christmas Baking

I jazzed up my nativity scene a bit - my awesome neighbor found the shelter at Target and got it for me (thanks, Angie!). I made little felt crowns for my Wise Men and made a manger for Baby Jesus. Glued some lace wings on my Angel. I felt like my Shepherd needed some sheep - but they kind of ended up scary looking. I might have to redo them.

I just got in the mood to bake, and made my list of goodies for the month.

1. Norwegian sugar cookies (grandma's recipe!)
2. Russian tea cakes
3. dark chocolate cherry cookies
4. gingerbread (for a house - we build one on Christmas day)
5. divinity
6. caramels
7. chocolate-covered cherries (for the neighbors)
8. bullseyes

What are you making this year?