Sewing: Preschool Sew a Story

I recently finished up teaching a preschool class that I labeled “Sew a Story.” The premise was: we read a few books on a theme and then do a few pre-sewing activities that correlate with the theme. While it ended up being a much bigger class to prep for that I had anticipated, I have to say that it went really well and my little group of preschoolers did awesome (not to mention their awesome parents who stayed and helped!)

Here’s a glimpse into some of the activities we did. I’m hoping to either put together an e-book of activities or a series of posts here sometime in 2017 because so many of the sewing activities that we did are just too fun not to share!

Rainbows: we did some weaving
sew a story

Buttons week:
sew a story

Sew A Story

Gardens: we made some sunflowers and a small flower garden
sew a story

Spiders: we made some webs


It was a 10 week class and we did about 2-3 activities with 2-3 books per class. I’m excited to put the whole curriculum together into some form to share. Check back in the new year!

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Protected: Sewing: Initial Patterns for Flower Hoops

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Embroidery: Christmas is Coming!

I’m honestly still reeling over the fact that it’s November and I know I’m going to blink and it will be Thanksgiving. I went back and forth for the last few months trying to decide if I was going to do any holiday markets or not and finally decided to try the Holiday Shoppe at The Hive again. It’s such a great venue and so well run that why wouldn’t I?

The sale is at The Hive on Central, December 9-11, 2016.

Here’s a peek at a few of the things I’m trying to pull together for the event.

my mini ornament collection for 2016


Mini wreath ornaments (and I’m hoping to work on a set of some a little bit larger – these measure about 2 inches)

And these guys… my own take on the elf on the shelf

I’ve got a few other things up my sleeve that I’m hoping to get together too.


And just a reminder – I’ve got 3 custom portrait spots left for 2016!
custom portrait

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Sewing: School of Sewing Class

This Saturday I am embarking on teaching my second all day School of Sewing class. The class is basically a combination of 3 classes that I’ve taught over the past few years for adults: pattern reading, get to know your sewing machine and a simple sewing 101 for adults. It’s a six hour session where we start out at the very beginning and work our way through so much information and end with making simple elastic skirts.

School of Sewing 2016 spring

I combined information from the excellent book by Shea Henderson called School of Sewing and Abby Glassenberg’s also excellent Get to Know Your Sewing Machine e-book along with my own experience and some help from other blogs online and created this packet that I use for teaching my class.

School of Sewing 2016 Spring

One of my favorite parts of the class it talking through pattern envelopes, different types of fabrics and just general fabric vocabulary.

School of Sewing 2016 spring

I created this interactive activity where each person receives a set of fabric squares and other fabrics making this a hands on activity. There’s nothing like being able to actually touch the different types of something that makes learning a little bit easier. I’ve also found that talking through the different vocabulary of fabric (grainline, selvage, bias etc) is most helpful when students can actually hold the bias and pull it etc.

Interested in working through the packet yourself or even sharing it with your own class? Here’s a schoolofsewingpacket just for you!

And because I have to say it – please don’t copy these and sell them.

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Embroidery: What’s Been On My Hoop Lately

My embroidery work has slowed down a fair amount the last few months – which honestly isn’t a bad thing. It doesn’t pay as well, but it does reduce my stress so maybe it pays in a more relaxed mom. 🙂

Here’s a few things I have been working on:

A set of custom do-live-be-give hoops for a friend

I love how these turned out. We had some snafus with our thread colors, but finally we got it all worked out. These are an 8 inch version based off my smaller 6 inch hoops. She also requested a set of four (versus the original three) so we came up with “give love” which I thing is an awesome addition. I’m hoping to offer these as a pattern in 2017 with both the smaller and larger versions to choose from.


The wreath is made up of a bundle of hand dyed threads and beaded threads from Nells Embroidery which I couched down around the satin stitched and backstitched text. Nell is amazing to work with and is pretty much always my go-to when it comes to bundles of amazing threads.

Custom Portraits
I worked on a couple of custom portraits too – even trying my hand at some little pups!


and some braids with a cool hat:


New Pattern!!
And if you are looking for some holiday sewing I finally got my holiday scroll tree pattern up and in the shop. I’ve been wanting to draft this pattern for years and finally made it happen this year! This is a great pattern for beginners and advanced embroiderers alike. It has 3 types of stitches and is finished off with some fun vintage buttons as ornaments.



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Journal: Dreaming versus Living


My husband and I are dreamers. I think the thing that has brought us together for going on 22 years is that we love nothing more than to sit and talk through all the things we wish we could do. The problem with that is when you’ve spent nearly 22 years talking through the same dreams and yet never really doing anything about them the dreaming part starts to feel more like an escape.


I’ve been pondering the difference between dreaming of things and escaping as I’m reading back through parts of Ecclesiastes. The one thing that continues to jump out at me is the idea of living right here and right now. The writer seems to discourage dreaming or looking forward.  Even pondering too deeply the season that you are in is a negative. These are hard words for a deep dreamer and “muller” of life.

So I saw that there’s nothing better than that a man should rejoice in his work, for that his is lot. Who can bring him to see what will be after him? 3:22

There is so much we don’t know. There is so much that happens in our lives that we cannot even begin to explain – despite how badly we might want to figure it out. But the writer over and again reminds us that it’s worthless almost to keep constantly speculating. He continues to encourage the reader to tend to the “God given callings and joys in our lot.”


This is my life – my struggle – constantly thinking, speculating, meditating, worrying, mulling. My dreaming of what I hope for and long for becomes a means for me to escape from what the Lord is calling me to and the lot that He has placed in my lap.  The things my husband and I constantly go to to talk about are safe things – and because of that those safe things become an escape; a way for us to step out of the struggle of the right now.


I want nothing more than to rest in the season that I’m in; to accept my lot with joy – not just give in. Even when the season makes me feel like I’m sitting on the edge of a precipice, I want to sit there resting in the view.

{photos from Colonial Williamsburg, 2016}

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