Life is indeed a stitch!
Berryhill Heirlooms and Susie Gay present techniques, heirloom sewing, hand embroidery and other musings that you will enjoy and appreciate. Come and join in the fun with Susie, a Home Economist, and savor a little rest from your hectic day...and yes, it's a Degree she uses every day!

Sunday, July 23, 2017

The Smocked Coin Purse

Remember that project I got together before some traveling? The Smocked Coin Purse? It's finished!
Smocking it on the plane took no time at all: one side from Norfolk to Atlanta, and the other side coming home from San Antonio to Atlanta.
Yesterday I added the bullion rose, forget-me-nots and leaves in coordinating floss colors below the smocking. Today I stitched it all together. Here are some of the steps. 

Both smocked sides are stitched around the outside perimeters of the pattern piece then trimmed up to the first stitching (photo on the right).

Below is after both outsides were stitched together, then the lining was attached. I used a rust colored fabric for the lining. Pressing on the sleeve board was most helpful!
 I chose this little purse frame from a local craft/decorating store. It looks a lot like the one used in the instructions.
Then it was time to sew the beads on which hold the fabric to the frame. The blue threads over the frame are the temporary whipped stitches to hold it all together. Makes it much easier to sew those beads on!
It's so cute and takes such little amount of fabric. I think our SAGA Chapter is going to use this SAGA Stitches program (Program 8) in the Fall as a group project. They would make good stocking stuffers!!

Friday, July 21, 2017

How to Make Dresses the Modern Singer Way

Since I have a collection of various vintage and antique sewing items, I had collected a few of the Singer Sewing books. I checked if any of them were the same as the Singer Sewing Library that I purchased in Boerne, TX. And of course, I had two: the Dresses one and the Children's Clothing one. What immediately struck me was the difference in the covers of the Dresses one. Hmmmm....

They modernized it! Must have realized the antebellum lady was not really modern after all.
And Singer got real smart on this edition...Advertising. In the booklet center on four consecutive pages. Love this part about Singer offering "The Singer Home Sewing Course" that was FREE.  500 Singer Shops were offering this service. They taught "how to select an appropriate design and material, and how to cut, assemble, fit and finish your dress to the last distinctive detail".
The next page displayed the books for purchase in the library.
Then the following page has a picture of "Your Sewing Headquarters": a very early 1930's design with wood beams, chandeliers, wood sewing tables and chairs. The ad mentions their products: Singer Oil, Needles, Motor Lubricant (remember we used to oil our machines ourselves 30 or so years ago....) and Guaranteed Repairs.

The last advertisement page is "An Invitation" to "know the full enjoyment of making lovely curtains and draperies for your home, as well as clothes for yourself and the children, make them on a Singer Electric. It will be a surprising new experience. Both hands are free, both feet at ease. Merely press the speed control, gently or firmly, and sew at any speed".

Boy, have we sewists come a long way!!!! Makes me appreciate my "old" Pfaff sewing machines.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Boerne, TX

A couple of weeks ago I went to Boerne, TX which is right outside San Antonio, for a family wedding. It was a whirlwind trip and so much fun to see family and experience a real Texas wedding: boots, smoked brisket barbecue, Texas road house, hot weather, starry nights and all. While there I was able to shop in Boerne, a really lovely Texas town. It has all the right historic houses I love, neat shops, antique stores and good restaurants! 

Whenever I get to shop and explore new places I always look for old baby clothes and sewing items to add to my collections. I struck "gold" right away with this little gem: "The Singer Sewing Library". The complete case with four little Singer sewing books tucked away inside!
Book #1 in the Singer Sewing Library is  "Short Cuts to Home Sewing".
Book #2 is "How to Make Dresses the Modern Singer Way". But I sure don't understand how the lovely antebellum lady on the front cover is an example of the "Modern" Singer Way....
Book #3 is "How to Make Children's Clothes The Modern Singer Way". 
And Book #4 is "How to Make Draperies, Slip Covers, Cushions and other Home Furnishings".

Each one of the books, purchased separately, originally cost 25 cents! Copyrights extend from 1927 up to 1934. The books were available at your local Singer Shop or from the Singer Representative that would come to your that's an idea!