I was working on moving all blog posts from individual websites to one site just for all my posts. Well, it seems that somewhere along the line some of my posts were lost in cyber-space. I think I have some of them in digital form on my computer. Over the next few days, I hope to be adding any I find. If not found, I’ll have to recreate them the best I can.

If you have a subject you’d like me to blog about, feel free to leave a comment. No registration required, but all posts and comments are moderated and will be approved, or not, as soon as I am notified there are posts waiting to be moderated. It would be a big help to me if you have an idea for a blog post. I’m new at this and it will take time for me to write then add the posts.

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Nana Jeffries

We called her Nana or Nana Jeffries. She was a few weeks past 75 years old the day I was born and was a part of my life until I was 21. She was a feisty little lady but we all loved her. Very little of the things she made are left for those of my generation. My younger sister got some bits and pieces somewhere and made a lovely framed memory box. There weren’t enough pieces to make one for all four of us. The best I could do was to take a picture of it. I will eventually print it out and frame it but for now, I have it on my computer.

Nana taught me to knit before I started school. I’ve been knitting pretty much the rest of my life (now 66). She also crocheted and tatted. I learned to crochet when I was twenty and tried to tat but could never get the hang of it. I eventually admitted defeat and stopped trying to do something I couldn’t do. I now focus on knitting, crocheting and sewing, all of which I have learned to do well enough to teach my two granddaughters.

The picture with this post is Nana Jeffries framed by a piece of tatting lace she did. The piece that looks like a ladder is more of her tatting. The round piece is a circle crocheted to go in a bedspread or tablecloth that was never finished.

NanaLace3

SEWING

If, like me, you knit, sew or do crochet, you have a large stash. Mind you, I live in a small one bedroom apartment but I have found loads of places to stash the essentials of life: fabric, yarn, ribbons, buttons and other notions suitable for any project I want to make.

If I have the finances to buy any of the above mentioned essentials, I will buy whatever strikes my fancy and worry about where it’s going to be stored until I get around to using it later. Sadly, life interferes and I have to use nearly all of my fixed income for things like food, rent, medical expenses. If I didn’t pay those bills, I’d be on the streets with nowhere to keep the most important of life’s essentials!

I love to sew and do a lot of it. My fabric fills two floor to ceiling metal shelves as well as 15 drawers of smaller pieces of fabric. My laces, ribbons and such fill another five drawers. All fabric and notions are stored in individual zipper plastic bags to keep out the dust and prevent them from getting all jumbled up.

Fabric Stash Shelves

Trims Stash

KNIT AND CROCHET

I knit and crochet. My yarn fills my entire linen closet as well as ten medium sized plastic totes stashed in several places. I have more yarn stored in five shoe box totes New, unused yarn is in the linen closet. Yarns left over from projects are rewound and stored in the totes. Recently I found two ten packs of yarn in matching colors. I don’t know when I bought them or having put them there. Does that mean my stash of yarn is multiplying?

                                      Linen Closet Stash

totes stash

    New Found yarn stash

I submitted an entry into a contest for the best and worst crafting space. At the moment, I would fall in the “worst” category. If I win, I a gift certificate to purchase storage items. That wouldn’t work for me. I have no where to put the storage units. What I need is another room added to my apartment but I doubt the owners would go along with that. It’s a good thing I’ve lived in small spaces all my life because I was forced to learn how to store things and have it look more like a home than a craft store! What currently makes it worse is that I recently moved and have not organized my apartment. Below are the photos submitted to the contest. I didn’t win.

                  

sewing space

Pattern Testing

I was recently asked to join a group of ladies who were going to test a new pattern from LaCartera for a sling bag. First, I printed out the pattern, then taped the pages together correctly and followed that by tracing each piece onto tissue paper. I always have a lot of tissue paper on hand for things like using one size in a multi-sized pattern, making adjustments on a pattern to fit the friend who requested I make it for her. Oh my, did she have a lot of changes to be made to fit her. I was frustrated by the numerous changes I had to make so it would fit her. She later told me it’s the first dress she’d ever worn that fit her perfectly.

Let’s get back to the pattern test. The first thing I had to do was choose the fabric I would use. Considering the size of my stash of fabric, that was no easy chore. I finally decided on an eyelet fabric for the outside of the bag and a royal blue for the lining.

dsc02294

 

Snag 1

What I’m going to share next has no bearing on the pattern. The pattern is perfect. The problem was me. I have several health issues that I’ve learned to live with. Sadly the day I started the test bag, two of them flared up at the same time (a first since being diagnosed) with the result that I was unable to stay focused on the instructions or what I was doing. The list of mistakes I made, to me, seemed endless. No problems pinning the pattern pieces to the fabric beyond cutting one when I needed two or two when I needed one. As I said, I was having serious trouble staying focused. Those were easy fixes. The second one when I needed one, went in the scraps bag. The second one when I needed two was simply cut out a second time.

Snag 2

I had no problems with the flap. That was done during a focusable period. Then there was the pocket. Well, first I sewed it in the wrong place leaving the zipper between the lining and the outside of the bag. Okay, after much thinking and figuring and sketching out fixes, I decided to take it apart and start over. This time I got the zipper so it was usable though my pocket was a bit smaller than it should have been. I was delighted to have gotten the pocket installed so it worked correctly. That is until I was reading through the pattern to make notes to give to the designer for whom we were testing the pattern. As I’m reading through the pattern instructions, I realize that the zippered pocket was supposed to be on the outside of the back of the bag. Mine was nicely installed on the inside of the front of the bag! I told you, I had trouble focusing! Okay, the pocket’s in the wrong place but that’s where I prefer zippered pockets on bags or purses I use. I left it that way. Mostly because I didn’t want to take anything else apart and start over. The bag will work as it is for someone.

Snag 3

Another thing I noticed too late was that somehow some of my lining fabric had gotten scorched. My old faithful iron had to be replaced after 40 years of service. I have not had the new one long enough to know how to use it so it does what I want when I want it, instead of what it wanted to do. Still, not much of a problem, at least not enough to undo the lining and start over again. Nope, not happening. Hey, I wasn’t getting paid for doing this nor was I going to be graded on it so one take apart was my limit on this project. Luckily, most of the scorching wound up behind the pocket.

Snag 4

The next problem I had was with all the pins needed to do the final round of stitching the lining to the bag. I kept getting poked in the most uncomfortable places. One pin went deep enough into my finger to draw blood. I was getting ready to test my blood sugar. Instead of deliberately sticking myself, I used the blood drawn by the helpful pin. Why waste a good pin stick?!

Finishing Touches

Now the sling bag is all sewn. Time to check for stray threads. I found a few on the purse but most of it was on me or the carpet. Carpet is not good for a seamstress. Those threads don’t always disappear when the vacuum goes over them and dropped pins can hide very well in the carpet. I keep close watch on my pins and as soon as I know one has dropped I grab my telescoping magnet and pick them up. However, and I haven’t a clue how or when except for the lack of ability to focus, several pins got away from me. Thankfully, I found them with my eyes before my feet found them!

It’s done and it was fun in spite of all the mistakes I made. The pattern was nearly perfect and the only things wrong with it were letters that didn’t get typed or a missing word or two. I’ve submitted my evaluation and posted the photos so the designer could see them.

Finished sling bag:

testpatt1 testpatt2

Looking pretty good in spite of all the troubles I encountered in the process.

SiteGround Hosting Services

WordPress is an award-winning web software, used by millions of webmasters worldwide for building their website or blog. SiteGround is proud to host this particular WordPress installation and provide users with multiple resources to facilitate the management of their WP websites:

Expert WordPress Hosting

SiteGround provides superior WordPress hosting focused on speed, security and customer service. They take care of WordPress sites security with unique server-level customizations, WP auto-updates, and daily backups. We make them faster by regularly upgrading our hardware, offering free CDN with Railgun and developing our SuperCacher that speeds sites up to 100 times! And last but not least, we provide real WordPress help 24/7!

WordPress tutorial and knowledgebase articles

WordPress is considered an easy to work with software. Yet, if you are a beginner you might need some help, or you might be looking for tweaks that do not come naturally even to more advanced users. SiteGround WordPress tutorial includes installation and theme change instructions, management of WordPress plugins, manual upgrade and backup creation, and more.

Free WordPress themes

Our experts not only develop various solutions for WordPress sites, but also create unique designs that you could download for free. SiteGround WordPress themes are easy to customize for the particular use of the webmaster.

Questions

If you have any questions about this hosting service, feel free to ask. I’ll answer if I can or give a link to the knowledge base on the subject. Some things I can tell you now are there is seldom (if ever) any down time. Their fees for services are reasonable and once you have an account with them, you can have as many websites on the account as you want. I currently have three domains and one sub-domain hosted with them.