Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Big As Life

During the week before Easter when my friend sent me the box of baby clothes I thought I would be altering them to fit my bears and dolls. I never thought about making bears or dolls to fit the clothes. Among the things she sent is a darling hooded sweater that would be ruined if I tried to cut it down. At first I thought it would fit the doll that was my mother’s when she was a child but it isn’t a good fit so I set it aside and altered two of the dresses making four little dresses for the bears that I showed you in my previous post.
Shortly after finishing the quilt for the little cradle and the little pillows and pillow cases and the mattress pad I was left with nothing to sew. That wouldn’t do because I am trying to justify buying the new sewing machine. I thought and thought about what I could sew and nothing came to mind at first and then I remembered the sweater and that’s when I decided to make a pattern for a larger doll so the little sweater could be put to use.
Most of the dolls I make are 12 inches or smaller so I had to start from scratch with the pattern. The doll I made for the sweater is 30 inches tall. She’s a big girl and I’ve named her Mara after a character is a story my friend Linda wrote. The character in her story was named Splendora Maravilla. Those of you who have been paying attention know that I never make just one of anything so Mara has a little sister named Dora who stands 24 inches tall.

Mara is on the left wearing gray and yellow and Dora standing is wearing gray and purple. The dolls they are holding were made by my sister Maggie.

It looks like they've helped themselves to the candy jar.

Both dolls are sculpted from cotton fabric that I’ve dyed to resemble flesh. Their needle sculpted faces have been colored with a combination of oil pastels and water color pencils.

These are the largest dolls I’ve made and I don’t have plans to making any larger than these two unless I move into a house where they can have their own room. As it is I’m pretty sure I’m going to be buying them a little table and chair set and you know how one thing leads to another…

Close-up so you can see the appliques on thier tops and get a closer look at their sweet little faces. 

Here's Mara wearing that cute little sweater I told you about.

I did spend the day yesterday making underwear to match their little outfits and Sunday I went shopping for socks and shoes for the two of them. I love Mara’s fancy Oshkosh shoes. I also like the looks of the eyelet trim on her pants.

We have been getting more sunny days even though night time temperatures are still in the thirties which is a good sign that spring has sprung.
Have a great day and as always, thanks for stopping by.

Thursday, April 11, 2013


Yes, as the title of this post implies, I took the plunge. It was something I had thought of doing for quite some time now but I wasn’t sure I’d do it. I thought about it and then I researched it and then I thought about it some more and then I just threw caution to the wind and went for it.
Perhaps I should start at the beginning.
Over the past few months I’ve been spending quite a bit of time online looking at sewing machines. The one I have been using I’ve had for nearly 40 years and it has been having some serious issues. I didn’t want to part with it as it’s been a good machine and we’ve spent many hours together. It has features that I’ve never seen on any other machine and I like those features. Because I wasn’t finding anything out there with all of the features I wanted I decided that I’d get the old machine repaired. I found a sewing center in my area that does repairs and when I visited them to see if they could fix what is wrong with my machine the woman helping me made a few calls and discovered they could order the parts my machine needed.  Yippee!!
Of course while I was waiting for her to see if they could order the parts I looked around and I found several of the machines I’d been researching online. Even though you’re pretty sure you know all about a machine because you know all of its features and have seen photos of it, seeing the machine sitting there in front of you is so much better. So, now what did I want to do? I’d order the parts and fix my trusty old machine. That’s the only sensible thing to do, right? So, that’s what I did and then I went home and the next couple of days while I waited for the parts to come in I thought about this one machine that I’d seen in the store and online and I knew I had to have it.
Now this is where the PLUNGE comes in. Not only did I get the parts for the old machine I went ahead and bought the Janome that I knew I had to have.
Here’s my new baby…….

I just finished sewing this.....

First time I did any machine quilting. Nothing fancy, just in the ditch but hey, it was my first time.

I made the quilt for this....

It still needs a mattress and a pillow or two. I picked up this darling little cradle at a thrift store last month which of course led to the need for the small quilt.
The week leading up to Easter a dear blogging friend sent me some baby clothes that she thought I might be able to use for the bears. Even though they were for new borns they were a bit large for my little ones but with some alterations I was able to take two of the dresses and turn them into four bear sized dresses.
Here are Bellamine and Wendy modeling their new dresses with the matching hair bows. I was able to keep the smocking and the style is much the same as the original dress.

And here are Clarissa and Beebe wearing their new dresses. Beebe told me that it was about time she appeared on a post.

Now that I have the new machine maybe I can get some clothes made for Olive and Lavanda who have nothing of their own to wear, just the borrowed jammies.
We’ve been having some strange weather so I think spring must have finally arrived. It’s still cold, windy and rainy but the sun has been peeking out from time to time. The cherry trees had blossoms that have been either blown away by the wind or washed away by the rain and the trees now have leaves so yes, I think spring has arrived.
Until next time, enjoy your day and as always thanks for stopping by.