2 Bigs + 4 Littles under 1 Midsize Roof = Life As We Know It
Random header image... Refresh for more!

Category — Sewing Life

Easter Dress-up

Last year, Kennah and I made super fancy matching Easter dresses for her and her baby doll, Mary (click here to take a look back). We wanted to continue the tradition this year, but we didn’t have time to make anything elaborate. So we were amazed and grateful when a neat opportunity came along for us to not only carry on our tradition, but also to participate in an upcoming project at our place of worship, Grace Community Church in Tempe, Arizona. Two weeks from now, Grace will host an event called Dress a Girl Around the World. Kennah and I will gather with a whole bunch of other girls both big and small to sew dresses for an organization called Hope 4 Women International, which delivers handmade dresses to impoverished girls in almost 40 countries worldwide. Our goal is to make 200 “pillowcase dresses” (so called because they can be made with a pillowcase and just a few other supplies) in just two hours! After exploring the organization’s website (click here to view it), Kennah and I were inspired to make some of these simple dresses for her and Mary to wear on Easter (we didn’t use actual pillowcases, but selected our own fabric and sewed it into pillowcase shapes before making the dresses), as well as a matching one for an unknown girl whom we’ve been calling “our friend around the world.” Maybe someday we’ll find out the name of the girl who receives the twin to Kennah’s dress, but even if we don’t, we’ll know that another little girl somewhere, as Kennah puts it, “has at least one dress, and we match.” 🙂

April 24, 2011   2 Comments

Costumed Cuties—Halloween 2010

Kellen as a Union soldier—complete with a Dad-made musket.

Kerrick (a k a Mysterioso the magician).

Kennah (the cutest Raggedy Ann ever in a costume I made 12 years ago for her cousin).

Keillor as a super-cute superhero.

November 1, 2010   3 Comments

Timeline: Happy Easter!

Goodwin children (from left: Brenda, Nora, Sonya and Kenneth); Safford, Arizona; 1974.

Goodwin children (from left: Brenda, Nora, Sonya and Kenneth); Safford, Arizona; 1974.

Hemmings children (from left: Keillor, Kerrick, Kennah and Kellen); Tempe, Arizona; 2010.

Hemmings children (from left: Keillor, Kerrick, Kennah and Kellen); Tempe, Arizona; 2010.

I thought it would be fun to show my sisters and I wearing the coordinating Easter dresses my mom made for us when we were young, and then show Kennah wearing the dress I made for her this year. (My brother and my sons had to settle for store-bought attire in these photos, but I’ve promised my boys that I’ll try to at least give their Easter shirts some mom-made attention next year.) 🙂 Here are a few more fun shots of Kennah (and her baby doll, Mary) wearing their matching dresses. (I don’t know how my mom made three whole dresses for her daughters several years in a row! It was all I could manage to put together one dress—plus a quarter-size replica—in the weeks leading up to today!) 🙂

Kennah in her "sparkly pink butterfly" confection—because it reminds me of cotton candy—of an Easter dress.

Kennah in her "sparkly pink butterfly" confection—because it reminds me of cotton candy—of an Easter dress.

Perfect match: Kennah and Mary.

Perfect match: Kennah and Mary.

April 4, 2010   7 Comments

Timeline: Kennah’s Easter Dress

March 17, 2010; 10:12 a.m.

March 17, 2010; 10:12 a.m.

March 20, 2010; 4:27 p.m.

March 20, 2010; 4:27 p.m.

March 21, 2010   6 Comments

Stocking Feat

Keillor, the youngest member of our family, has gone without a Christmas stocking his entire life. Luckily, he’s only 2, so it hasn’t been all that long, and I think the risk of emotional scarring is minimal. Still, I figured he might notice this year if he didn’t have one. I know what you’re thinking: “So what’s the big deal? Get the kid a stocking!” And, of course, if it was as easy as that, I’d have done it long ago. But no. I couldn’t just run out and grab a fuzzy felt little number and scrawl his name across the cuff at the top with colored glitter glue. I had to create one that matched the handmade, lined, double-sided flannel stockings with cross-stitched personalization that the rest of the us hang each year.

It wasn’t that I didn’t want to make the stocking. In fact, I had cut out all the pieces awhile back. Instead, it was a matter of finding those pieces—as well as the time to sew it together. Finding things has been a challenge in the midst of our as-yet-unfinished remodeling project that began more than a year ago. And finding time? Well, let’s just say there’s nothing like a deadline to get my adrenalin pumping. 🙂 Shawn located the bag of half-done craft projects that I had strategically—but forgetfully—placed on the top shelf of a bedroom closet. (Whew!) Two nights ago, I sewed the stocking together. And last night I cross-stitched Keillor’s name on one side. (The other side might have to wait until after Christmas, but hey, at least Santa will know which one is his!)

I started with this. . .

I started with this. . .

. . . and finished with this.

. . .and finished with this.

And here's the full line-up.

And here's the full line-up.

In the process of working to check this task off of my to-do list, I rediscovered my love of sewing—something I once did a whole lot of, but that I haven’t had much time for in recent years. The plaid fabric I used in our stockings was actually left over from a Christmas shirt I made 13 years ago for my nephew (who is now 20). My sister passed the shirt back to me for my boys to wear, and I still have it for Keillor to try on in a couple of years. That same year, I made a Christmas dress and pinafore for my niece (who is now 16). Miraculously, I found the dress a few weeks ago (in the same closet where the stocking pieces were tucked away!) and was able to get it ready for Kennah to wear to church on Sunday. It fit her perfectly, and she loved spinning around to make the extra-gathered skirts flare out.

Kennah’s Christmas dress: still life. . .

Kennah’s Christmas dress: still life. . .

. . . and not-so-still life.

. . .and not-so-still life.

I’m hopeful that in the new year, I might be able to sit down at the sewing machine now and then. Maybe Santa could leave that wonderful gift called “spare time” in my stocking tonight. . . .;-)

December 24, 2009   2 Comments