Thursday, February 24, 2011

Vintage Singer Dressmaking Book and Free Sewing Printables

I am in the process of doing a MAJOR decluttering of my house, and yesterday I found a book that I forgot that I bought a few weeks ago at a thrift shop.  It is a Singer Sewing Machine Dressmaking Course from 1961 - the year I was born.  The illustrations are cute!  Some of the things that the hostess stresses crack me up --- like -- "You must always keep your sewing room nice and tidy at all times".  Oh my, if she could only see my sewing rooms!  Alas, that was the 60's.  However, I still need to get things organized and under control! 

A note about these pages from the book.  Blogger would not let me upload them after I spent an hour struggling with my stupid scanner trying to get them saved into my computer.  I'm not trying to violate any copyright laws here.  Please do not download the photos I took of the pages from this book.  There will be other free downloads for you at the end of this post. 

So, without further adieu, here are a few pages from the book.  Now remember,  mind your manners girls, and, as she tells you in the book, make sure that you always wear the proper undergarments, including the all-important "slip", especially when you are taking measurements for your sewing garments.  (I doubt that the slips of the 1960"s sucked in much of the female population's "unwanted" proportions  --  what would she have said if Spanx had been invented back then?)

So, there you have it.  I just thought the illustrations were cute.  I think that many of the sewing lessons in this book can still be applied today, so I'm going to take a closer look at it. Oh, by the way, guess who bought herself a swanky new sewing machine for her birthday?  I'll be "unveiling" it to you folks soon.  BUT - So far, I've been afraid to touch it -- I'm such a nerd!  

Here are some sewing-related downloads for you.

Okay Ladies and Gentlemen out there -- "Keep Calm and Sew Something"!
(But wear your slip and clean up after yourselves!)  
Most of all ----
Be Well and Happy.


Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Happy Birthday To Me!

 Today is my 50th birthday.  I'm not embarrassed to admit this, I think that 50 is just a number, and considering all of the serious health problems that I have had during the past 10 years, frankly, I am happy to have reached my 50th birthday.  For weeks, I have been telling people that one of the things that I wanted for my birthday was a big snowstorm - like 25"!  Everyone was ready to strangle me!  Ha Ha.  My hopes were running low last week when the thermometer hit 68 degrees.  However, the Snow Fairy bestowed 8" of the lovely white stuff on me last night, just in time for my birthday.  This even gave me a chance to wear my new sweater that I bought at Macy's with some birthday money for the whopping price of $7!  I love a birthday bargain.  Here are some winter wonderland photos from my yard.  I wanted to do a nature walk in the woods, but I will have to do that tomorrow.  First, a pretty poem.

                 Winter Storm
Outside the trees are wearing ermine capes,
The eaves are flaunting icicle drapes,
And cascades of diamonds spill
From rocky ledges on the hill.
Red berries glisten in the snow.
The wind-chill factor is ten below.
A winter storm came in last night
And blanketed our world in white.
There's a crackling fire, an easy chair,
And firewood stacked up to there;
A catalogue of plants and seeds
From which to choose Spring garden needs;
A book to read, a pot of tea,
And food enough for you and me.
Welcome to my hearth and home.
Never mind the winter storm...
          Willette Caudle McGuire

Here is one of my Garden Chairs.

My Holly bushes still have a few berries for the birds!

Our lovely evergreens provide shelter for birds and deer alike.

The busiest birdhouse in the neighborhood gets a winter rest!

Grazing Deer.

My vintage wool gloves came in handy today.

It was dark by the time I got home from my thrift shop adventures today, so I fashioned a nighttime snow celebration.  This is my yummy cake from the famous Bethel Bakery in Bethel Park, PA.  They make the most awesome cakes and pastries!  As I typed this post, I ate it and thoroughly enjoyed it!

Here's the full view.

I fashioned the "50" from some of my pink vintage earrings - pretty in pink!

All in all, I think that 50 is going to be a "fabulous" year!
Until next time - Be Well and Happy!


Sunday, February 20, 2011

John James Audubon

I was absolutely thrilled a couple of weeks ago to find a huge beautiful old hard bound book --- John James Audubon's "The Birds of North America"  for only $3.00 at Goodwill!  I came home and poured through the pages, examining his drawings with true admiration for his incredible skills and attention to detail that could only come  from a lifetime of devotion to the study of birds as well as a God-given talent for illustration.

The book "Bright Wings" contains a poem which is a tribute to Audubon, and I now share it with you --

        John James Audubon

  Some men live for warlike deeds,
  Some for women's words.
  John James Audubon
  Lived to look at birds.

  Pretty birds and funny birds,
  All our native fowl
  From the little cedar waxwing
  To the Great Horned Owl.

  Let the wind blow hot or cold,
  Let it rain or snow,
  Everywhere the birds went,
  Audubon would go.

  Scrambling through a wilderness,
  Floating down a stream,
  All around America
  In a feathered dream.

  Thirty years of traveling,
  Pockets often bare,
  (Lucy Bakewell Audubon
  Patched them up with care).

  Followed grebe and meadowlark,
  Saw them sing and splash.
  (Lucy Bakewell Audubon
  Somehow raised the cash).

  Drew them all the way they lived
  In their habitats.
  (Lucy Bakewell Audubon
  Sometimes wondered "Cats"?)

  Colored them and printed them
  In a giant book.
  "Birds of North America"--
  All the world said,  "Look!"

  Gave him medals and degrees,
  Called him noble names,
  --Lucy Bakewell Audubon
  Kissed her queer John James.

            --Stephen Vincent Benet

Cedar Waxwing

Great Horned Owl



Doesn't the Meadowlark just make you think of Spring?  It's Beautiful.  So many birds today.
Be well and Happy.  Sing like the Spring Meadowlark!