Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Autumn finally feels like Autumn

It's nearly winter here in South Aus and we are finally experiencing some real Autumn weather. Summer seemed to go on and on and on and now lovely cool weather.
Our morning walks are so exhilarating.

We are never sure when the best time is to prune out in the garden as the weather is so changeable. Back in May the roses stopped flowering so we pruned them and now some are  in bud again.The Hibiscus are looking beautiful and seem to be enjoying the cooler weather,so won't be pruning them for a while.

Just a few pics of the garden

The Iresine is so beautiful all year. It is climbing up the fuchsia.We just take cuttings from it and plant around other parts of the garden

Hollihocks coming back into bloom
 I bought this sun loving Impatiens so can't wait to see it next Summer if it does survive in the sun as the last one I bought didn't, just have to watch it.

The two double Hibiscus are just too pretty to prune yet. Our big white single had to be pulled out as it was pushing the others over,so we have replaced it with a beautiful single sort of reddy pink with yellow tips but it's too small yet.

See the tomato plants coming up in a cluster. I buried some scraps around the garden and have them coming up all over the place but it's too late for them now. Will have to dig them into the ground I think.

The pansies are a new addition as are the Violas and so pretty

A new bush we planted in a pot to hide the shed a little. I love the soft foliage and it has pretty mauve  flowers too eventually. Its called Strobilanthes Goldfussia.

Rocky all cosy in his new jumper.

Keep warm if you are in my part of the World and enjoy your Summer in the North. I hope all those awful floods we are seeing on the news in USA are going to clear soon and hope everyone stays safe 
xx jeanette ann 

Monday, May 28, 2018

Tutorial 2 how to smock baby wave

I'm sure after reading my last post you will now have completed your first row of smocking, being a cable row. I will now attempt to show you how to complete your smocking piece with a sweet little baby wave. This is ideal for embroidering baby dresses.

Starting in the centre of your pleats as before take your needle into the left pleat as you did on the cable row leaving half of your thread to complete the left hand side of smocking. Complete an up cable.

Keeping your thread above the needle push your needle through the next pleat but on the row below. Keeping the thread below the needle complete a down cable. Now keeping your thread below the needle until you have taken your next stitch on the line above then thread above the needle to make an up cable as photos below

Complete this method to the end of your row then fasten off at the back. Turn your work upside down and complete the other side to match.

On the next row complete a mirror image of this row and so on until you have completed your piece of smocking, remembering not to smock on the last holding row

To finally prepare your dress front smocked piece, untie the pleating thread knots but don't pull the threads out. Stretch out your smocking to fit your bodice of the dress with enough each end to cut armholes later. You should have a  blocking guide in the pattern of your choice. Place on the ironing board and pin in place to match the blocking guide. Steam with the iron without touching the fabric. Leave over night to dry.
Complete your dress as per pattern instructions.

I hope I explained everything easily. Any questions please email me
xx jeanetteann 

Friday, May 25, 2018

Tutorial 1 How to smock a baby dress

Hi everyone
Today I am going to share with you how I smock a baby dress. I will be sharing over a few weeks so you don't get too confused and it will give you time to practice each stage a step at a time.

Whichever pattern you choose,allow at least 3 times the width of fabric for the front skirt of the dress to the size needed to attach to the bodice.This will allow for the fullness needed to pull up the pleats for the smocking.

I use a Super Amanda smocking pleater, but there are a few different ones available on the market.
I find using a pleater is far quicker than the old
way of picking up dots, but that's still ok if you don't have a pleater. I also only pleat half spaces as I find it keeps my smocking neater.

Once you have pleated your fabric,pull up the threads to form little pleats. Keep them quite close together but not too close.

On the back of the pleated fabric unpick the threads at either end for two pleats to
 allow for the seams. Tie them of in pairs loosely as you will need to pull the threads out later.

 You are now ready to smock. You will smock on the right side of the fabric,so turn your fabric over.
 We are going to start off with a cable row. We don't smock on the top or bottom row of threads as
these are holding rows. So starting at the centre of your pleats (an equal number of pleats either side of starting point) Thread your needle with only 2 strands of thread. I use DMC 6 strand thread and pull out 1 at a time making sure the same ends come together.
I usually smock white on white but so you can see my smocking better I'm using a colour.

Starting on the row below the holding row in the centre, take your needle horizontally through the left pleat and pull through so that your thread is only halfway. We keep half of the thread to smock the other side of the row. Match up the ends of thread to make sure you are only using half for this side.

Now with the thread above the needle take your needle through the right hand pleat and pull through. You can give it a little tug to make it sit neatly. You have now completed your first stitch, and up cable.

The next stitch will be a down cable, so the thread will be below the needle. Push the needle through the next pleat right to left and pull through.Still with the thread below the needle pull through the next pleat to complete your second stitch. Continue right along to the end of the row in this manner,an up then down cable as the photo.
Remember an up cable thread up a down cable thread down. At the end of the row, take your thread to the back of your work and make 2 little stitches to finish off.

Turn your work upside down and complete other side to match,making sure your first stitch is opposite to the last one on your left which on mine was a down cable so this stitch will be an up cable.

This is baby wave stitch I will show you next post

You have now completed your first row of smocking a cable stitch.
I always start my smocking with a cable row as it gives me a nice guide for when I attach the piping to the bodice.

Our next smocking row will be a baby wave but I'll show you that in the next post so it doesn't confuse.
Practice Practice Practice LOL Any questions please email or comment below.

Happy smocking untill next post
xx jeanette ann

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

A little snippet of where i live.

Hi dear friends. Our morning walk today in the brisk Autumn air was lacking any sunshine.
I still managed to get some nice photos of the river and some really interesting ones of the old flour mill which is home to some interesting Aboriginal art on occassions. I love the old brickwork and rusty iron. It is such a shame when modern slab townhouses get built nearby.


I think this sculptor recognising the Aboriginal people of our area is so keeping with the Heritage.

We passed a group of children sitting on the grass with their teachers enjoying fruit for morning tea.
We quite often see them being taught the history of the area.

These trees are beautiful and give off welcome shade in Summer on the edge of the river with the Birkenhead bridge in the background
The boat in the pic belongs to the Fisheries Dept and is used for training purposes. The building on the right is the Tafe college.
I so love living in this historic area. We can walk around the historic Port or along the river or down to the beach at Semaphore.
Well that's a snippet of where I live. I hope you enjoyed it.
I like to visit your blogs and see where you live in the World.
Blogging makes the World so much smaller so we can share our life with others don't you think
Until next time
xx jeanette ann
Oh and I must add my daughters blog address. She has only just started and is doing so well

Monday, May 21, 2018

Sewing,Gardening,Rocky and cake decorating

Hi everyone. Hope you had a lovely weekend as I did. I have finally found the time to get back into regular blogging. I so miss it.
I have been so busy in my sewing room. I have been trying to create a nice little stock of little smocked dresses and rompers.
It is my first love,creating these pretties. I must show you a few pics of what I've made. If anyone would like to see how I make them, please comment and let me know and I'll post a tutorial on the process.

I really love my garden too and try to spend a few hours a week out there weather permitting.
It was Mothers day here a few weeks ago and apart from some lovely gifts of flowers and plants and lovely smellies, I received $30in Bunnings vouchers and along with $20 voucher my hubby had left from his birthday, I had a lovely time shopping for some more winter flowers for the garden.
One of my favourites is Violas and pansies. Love their little smiley faces and they love the cooler weather. My pots are all full now so can't wait for them to spread their little heads and feet.
I also bought a new Rosemary bush as my last one became pot bound and I had to break the pot to get it out. I might add it died. I planted this one into the garden so it can spread its little roots as far as it likes.

Our little doggy Rocky is now 11 years old and becoming more and more clingy. I can't move without he is behind me or up on my lap. I wouldn't have him any other way though,he' gorgeous.

I have been busy also with lots of birthdays the last couple of months. It seems to be I'm the family cake maker. Sooooo I try with my friend to come up with different ideas each time. We get together on Mondays and play with icing and such.
"These are a few we made recently

 Well that's all I have for now, So pleased to be back. Happy blogging and have a nice week.
xx jeanette ann. Hope to visit you all soon.

Marzipan fruit