I’m Starting Something New!

Sunflower Dress - Front

Today I listed some new items on my Etsy shop, Handmade at the Lake.  Anyone who knows me knows that while I love to knit, sewing has always been one of my favorite things to do. 

I was first introduced to sewing (as most kids back in the day 🙂 ) during Home Economics class in junior high school.  As I remember, I made pillow cases (Yes.. very challenging!) But that summer, my mom enrolled me in a sewing class at our local Singer Sewing store.  There I really learned a lot about sewing and made a really cute skirt and peplum top. We even had a “fashion show” when the class was over where we modeled our finished items!  Later that summer, I also was enrolled in a “stretch and sew” class where I made several other clothing items.  Even a bathing suit!  I think Mom was trying to give me things to do that summer but she actually gave me much more! She gave me a hobby I still enjoy to this day!

Over the years I took quilting classes, and fabric applique classes too.  I made many sets of curtains, pillows, tablecloths, maternity clothes, holiday dresses for my daughter, and even dance costumes for her whole dance class!

Now that my daughter’s friends are getting married and starting their families, I have started to become interested in sewing baby clothes.  They are just so cute and fun to make! I love the prints and choosing cute color combinations! 

My first items have been listed in my Etsy shop.  They are 4 sizes (3, 6-9, 12, & 18 months) of a darling reversible baby girl’s jumper.  On one side it is a sunflower print and on the other side, a black and white gingham check with a pumpkin applique that is perfect for Fall.

Pumpkin Reverse Side

Next I will be making some cute boy’s overalls! 

I hope everyone has a wonderful week!


So Is This What It’s Like?

New dressesYou would have thought when I semi-retired that my life would have gotten less busy… But NOT SO! Don’t get me wrong! I am loving every minute of it, but I have sure filled in my idle time with lots of other activities. Never a dull moment for this girl!

Originally when I changed to work part-time I thought of the list of things I would do with my “free time”.

  1. Volunteer at my daughter’s school
  2. Knit more
  3. Take up more sewing/quilting
  4. Play the piano
  5. Blog more
  6. Learn more about photography
  7. Spend more time at the lake
  8. Do some major house de-cluttering
  9. Read more

Well, I have found time to do some of each of these things, but not to the level I expected (as evidenced by my blog entries being sporadic at best!)

What I can say, is that I am loving my life!  I may still not have the cleanest house on the block, or find time to knit much more than I did when I was working full-time.  But I have been able to play the piano, which I hadn’t done in 20 years! And my trips to the lake are not as often as I’d like, but I have hauled out the sewing machine and started making use of it!

A few weeks ago one of my daughter’s friends contacted me to ask if I would be willing to help her out with some sewing for her Etsy shop.  She is such a sweet young mother who is so busy with her little one year old daughter and had designed these darling vintage inspired rompers that she was receiving so many orders for, that she couldn’t keep them in her shop.  So I started doing a little bit of that sewing for her, and I can tell you, these rompers are darling!  You can see them by searching hashtag #mellyful on Instagram, or visiting her Etsy shop here.

Also, I have been busy knitting a few sizes of the really cute dress I made for that baby shower earlier this summer.  I am listing them on my Etsy Shop today!

And next up on my knitting needles is a newborn (0-3 months) knit dress, to appear in my shop in about a week or so.

New dress on my needles

 I hope everyone is having a fun summer!

Where is the Summer Going???


Tomorrow is July 1st… and my brother’s birthday! (Happy Birthday to him!).  I really can’t believe that June is over.  We’ve already had our longest day of the year and July 4th weekend is upon us.

The reason it hasn’t felt like we’ve had that much of a summer so far is that the weather has been cooler with lots of rainy weekends.  So I can’t believe July is upon us and I haven’t even gone for a swim yet this year.

If I were searching for a silver lining to all this non-summer weather, I think I could say that the added indoor time has allowed me to try knitting something new.  This past winter when looking through patterns on Ravelry, I came upon a wonderful website called Mary Jane’s Tearoom.  The doll patterns sold here were so wonderful, I became obsessed with the idea of making some of them.

Years ago, when I was growing up, I loved Joan Walsh Anglund dolls and collected several.  The dolls from Mary Jane’s Tearoom patterns, reminded me of those.  I couldn’t wait to try one.

So this summer, one of my projects has been making this adorable doll I call Emmeline. 

Emmaline-4 Emmaline-3 Emmaline-2

The pattern was not that difficult but the results look so professional, I think.  As soon as I purchased the pattern, I got an email from the shop owner telling me that if I had any questions, to not hesitate to email and I would receive help promptly.  Due to the well written and illustrated pattern, I never needed any outside help.  I especially liked the fact that each body part also had measurements when stuffed so I was easily able to tell if the pieces I was making, were stuffed the right amount. I think the finished doll looks very much like the pictures that were on the pattern. 

And I can hardly wait to make another one!  Emmeline will be appearing on my Etsy shop in the next couple of days if anyone is interesting in “adopting” her!

Oh!  And after the nearly tropical grade storm we had last Saturday, we were able to get out on the lake Sunday and enjoy some boating!  Thank goodness!

Lake Days 2 Lake Days

I hope everyone has a wonderful July 4th weekend!

God Bless America!