Thursday, April 17, 2014

Li'l Cowboy Vest Tutorial

No little feller or gal wants to be caught out riding the range without a proper vest!
Here is what you need for a quick and easy wild west accessory:
1. 1/2 yd or less appropriate western fabric
2. 1 child's tank or sleeveless tee from Wal-Mart or wherever. 
Choose a color you like, it will be the lining.
(sleeveless is actually a better look, wider at the shoulder, but either works fine!  This  one is kind of a cross between the two...just whatever they have the day you shop is fine!)
3.  pins, scissors, seam ripper and thread in your sewing machine

That's it! Let's get started:  

1.  Disassemble the tank shirt.  Remove any collar or sleeve "banding".  Pick the seams from the shoulders and arm holes.  Measure your young'un from armpit to waist. Measure from arm hole to bottom of shirt, adding an inch or two for seam and growth allowance. Mark. Cut off bottom hem.
Keep in mind this construction process is not an "exact science"...if I can do it, you can too!

2.  Find center of front, along the bottom edge of shirt.  Using a straight edge and pencil, eyeball it best you can and make a mark along center line. Cut the front in half by cutting along line.

3. If there are no side seams, use your straight edge and pencil again to mark lines for the sides. Cut along lines, giving you 3 pieces: 2 front, 1 back. 

4.  Determine a neckline that pleases you.  Mark and cut both front pieces.  I would advise googling vests to see what style suits you.

5.  Next, lay out your 3 pieces on your fabric.  Pin and cut.  Your tee shirt pieces are both your pattern and your lining!

6.  Sew along the neck and arm hole edges and along the bottom and front.  Do not sew the shoulder or side(s). 
7.  Turn pieces right sides out and press.  Top stitch along arm holes, back collar, bottoms, and fronts.

I apologize for not having great pictures for this step, but when turned and top stitched, the pieces will look like this. They will be open, unsewed, at the shoulders and along the sides.

8.  Final step!  Pin the 2 front pieces to the back piece at the shoulders and along the sides.  Sew!
Press seam allowances open and top stitch at shoulders and sides.    

Voila!  Vest complete!

Buckaroo Up, li'l buddies!!!

Need chaps to go with that?

Wednesday, April 16, 2014


that the "dots" are really little "flowers", in the pink fabric, is a plus in my book:)

oh, that my ironing board might look like this always...

Monday, April 14, 2014

Chicken Run....the next relay

Remember these gals?

They've got a couple new friends!

This new pair will be winging their way back to Indiana, but I am hoping to add a new hen to the flock!

win this chicken here!
The newest "relay" of  Avis', @ OhSewTemptingChicken Run is taking place right now over on Textile Dreamer!
All you have to do to win this sweet chunky little (German!) chicken, is leave a comment on her post telling her what you would name the hen and where it would be going to roost!
If you win, you get to make a chicken and give it away on your blog, and so on and so on!
Her giveaway is open through April 19th, so there is still time to be "in the Running"!!!
Good Luck!

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Q2 Finish Along...I'm Still In!

As Spring arrives I foresee less time to sew, but I do have a few projects lined up for those rainy days sure to come!
 My list for the second quarter of the 2014 Finish-Along with The Littlest Thistle:

1.  I made progress on my Voyageur Quilt last quarter, but wasn't able to get it all together.  I have ALL the materials necessary to finish now, so hopefully this is a "gimme" for this go round. However, I am experiencing some trepidation with the prospect of all the straight quilting on this big quilt...I really hope I don't mess it up...time will tell.  And there is always the seam ripper....

2.  Happy Stack/Fly Home Quilt  I started putting this together last quarter, and I am LOVING it!  I made a slight alteration to the block arrangement to accommodate my complete lack of free motion quilting abilities!  
the original Happy Stack!
Fly Home, free downloadable pattern from Art Gallery, by Jeni Baker

 I may end up calling it "Back and Forth", in honor of our many moves in the last several years....

3.  Much like last quarter, something has come up which requires a special hug, in the form of a quilt.  Last quarter it was the Happy Healing Quilt for my Mother-In-Law, which I was able to finish, yay!
This time, a hug for one of my sisters.  I shall call it "Lemonade", because when life hands you lemons, you may just need a quilt instead!  I will use this "pattern" by Anna aka noodlehead, except mine will be smaller.

 I do not have the fabric in hand yet, but these are en route, from Hawthorne Threads :)

                               Amy Butler - Love - Water Bouquet in Midnight
Jennifer Paganelli - Lucky Girl - Maggie in Pink

P & B Textiles House Designer - Color Weave - Color Weave in Silver
Mmmmmm!  I think it will be absolutely delicious!!!

4. In keeping with the spirit of the Finish Along, I will also include a longer standing WIP this quarter.
I would like to finish at least one of the five Dresden Plate Quilts, begun by my Great Grandmother, Gertrude Artherholt, of Iowa :)
There are 20 original blocks, which I have made into 5 separate tops, one for each of my sisters, and myself.  There is an abundance of other pieces and parts with which I will make something for my Mom as well.
But for now, finishing just one would be awesome! But if I somehow finish more than one, I will count it as a separate finish also, Kay?

Good luck and happy sewing to all!!!

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Saturday Something

"Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest."
Matthew 11:28

Monday, March 31, 2014

March Highlights

full river, "ice out"

Ice jams on the Musselshell River were the news of early March. Caused by all the ice of winter breaking up and flowing out, they are an amazing spectacle each year, temporarily flooding lowlands as the water makes it's way around them.  Thankfully, the flooding did not affect our little bend of the river!

my guys, on a bright warm-ish day!


ice feathers? butterfly wings? the patterns of the Creator repeat themselves :)

it was fun for this Mom to spy her kid up a tree again :)  he has always been a tree climber, but the opportunities are a bit limited out here, compared to the midwest.
blusterous winter light

a couple little notecards I made using 4x6 index cards :)

Sandhill cranes are always a highlight!

I could take a picture just about every morning...I never tire of that first brilliance of the day:)

And one final note...have you been aware of the "Modern Madness" taking place over on the Fat Quarterly blog?  It is a fun take on the Basketball mania, where all the fabric lines of 2013 are "bracketed" and voted on each round, by us, until we have a "Champion" collection!  It is time for Round 2 sorry for not posting about this sooner...but there is still plenty of time to root for your favorite collection!!! A few of my favorites are still "in the game" :)

Wednesday, March 26, 2014


 "The Quilt That Wouldn't Be"
"Work (No Longer) In Progress"

In which this rather pleasant,
albeit impulsive,
little stack...
became difficult ...

 then incorrigible...
leading to it's ultimate undoing.

When I finally realized that not "sticking with it" was an option, it really caused me to breathe a sigh of relief...and the seam ripper became a tool of stress relief, instead of the other way around.

Ahhh....Peace restored.