Friday, April 5, 2019

Sewing ~ Strip Knit Set Up

First of all, please let me apologize to the people who left comments on the post about my breast cancer journey a few months ago Breast Cancer Awareness Month and My Story, This is the Morning and Update ~ Post Surgery. I didn't get an email notification for the comments and didn't know there were comments for the posts. I happened to be poking around and found a bunch of comments and I was so touched by each one of your kind comments. I am so sorry that I didn't reply to them, but I deeply appreciate them. I changed the setting, so now I finally get email notifications.

I can't believe it has been almost 6 months from my mastectomy. I had quite a rough time after the surgery from the reaction to the anesthesia, bleeding problems on both breasts resulting in me going back to surgery the next day, infections and low grade fevers that lingered for a few months. I just didn't feel like writing a post about it during that time. My fever finally went away and the last couple of months I have been sewing a lot more and enjoying my family. But this morning, I am ready to go back in to get the second part of reconstruction surgery. Wish me luck!

In the month of March, I sewed several clothes using the fabrics I already had. It was a very good experience to revisit the fabrics and patterns I already had and complete the projects. I am very much motivated to continue this even though it is April, in fact, I would love to keep going till I use up all my apparel fabrics. I finished this knit set up a couple days ago.

I have been looking for a T-shirt with V-neck in the back, but I never found one with just the right amount of opening. I drafted a pattern and made this one and I. love. it! I found this knit probably a year or two ago and couldn't decide what to do with it, so I stashed it in my closet. I am usually intimidated by knits, but this one is thicker and it was much easier to work with.

Clothing like this is comfortable to wear, you can mix and match with other things, and with the right accessories you could instantly look put together and that is exactly what I love about them. My newest project is also a knit set up with a slightly different design. I didn't have time to take pictures, so I will share it after I recover from the surgery. Stay tuned!

Monday, March 25, 2019

Purple Dress

I have been participating in a sewing challenge called "Sew that pattern now" during the month of March. Emi, Olga and Mijke encouraged people to sew with the patterns and fabrics that have been sitting in your closet or sewing room forever and just get it done. I am totally guilty of having such stacks and I decided to join the fun and knock some projects off my list. It is actually really motivating and fun to go through my stash of fabrics and patterns and finally do some. I made other garments, but this dress is the only one that I took picture of with a real camera and I decided to write a blog post. I promise that later I will upload pictures from my phone and share other clothing I made.

I used linen blend I bought years ago in San Jose. for the longest time, I couldn't decide what to make with it, but I am really happy with how it turned out. The pattern I used is from one of my Japanese sewing books.

I love the pleats and V-neck on this dress and I am thinking about making it with different colors (yes... I have more fabrics in my closet. This is what happens when you shop faster than you sew!).

I was suppose to have surgery done at the end of this month, but last Friday, the doctor's office called and they needed me to reschedule my surgery to the beginning of next month. To be honest, I was pretty annoyed about this at first because that would affect everyone's schedule around here. Also, I thought I wuold be recovering, I didn't plan our Spring Break trip, otherwise we would have been on the road. :( But, now I am thinking I can sew a little bit longer before the surgery and organize my house too. Do you think I can squeeze in some more projects??

Thursday, March 7, 2019

Accidental Baby Quilt

Have you seen the cute fabric line Gretel designed by my sweet friend Amy Smart for Riley Blake designs? I had a chance to work with them and I made a quilt top a few weeks ago. What? the quilt up above? NO. That isn't it. The picture below is the quilt top I made first. For some reasons, my dog always shows up from nowhere when I start taking pictures of my quilt and gets in the pictures. Sorry if you are not a doggy lover. ;) It is not quilted yet, but I love how it turned out. I made it up as I went along, which is great, but because it wasn't planned nor did I follow a pattern, I had some left over blocks. I hate to waste so many blocks, so I started playing with them and kept switching things up to see the design potential... and pieced them together...


and ta-da! This baby quilt was born.

I was so happy how it turned out and got carried away. I hand quilted it, decided to do scalloped edges, and embroidered some red motif on it.

Sometimes you can come up with something fun and unexpected when you go with the flow and just let it happen. My baby sister is pregnant with her first baby and I am crossing my fingers that the baby is a girl, so this aunt can ship this quilt to Japan!

Thursday, February 28, 2019

Top from Japanese Sewing Book


I fell in love with this top when I first saw the cover of this Japanese Sewing Book (I don't think it is translated to English) and it was put it on my "things to sew" list...
When I was visiting a local shop, I found a beautiful shot cotton in a similar color, I immediately thought about the top.

Ok, it is a little bit brighter, but I still like how it turned out. It was a very straight forward and easy to make pattern; I enjoyed making the shirt.

I used left over faux fur from another project I did recently and made this scarf. It is so fun to coordinate the things you made yourself.

I love this top so much so that I am probably going to make more in the future with different colors. Simple and versatile white or nice and soft muted green...who knows, I will know when I see the perfect fabric for this. :)

Monday, December 31, 2018

Daysi Do Quilt

This the is final post of 2018! I have been working on some hand piecing and EPP through out the year, but I finally finished this quilt!! This is a pattern called "Daisy Do" and designed by Jen Kingwell. This is one of the quilts that took my breath away and I had to make one. When I make scrap quilts, I go through my scraps first, move on to fat quarters and if I have to, then I cut in to bigger pieces. It was so much fun to come up with different combinations of blocks.

I am a hand quilter and usually if I spend so much time hand piecing a quilt, most likely I hand quilt it as well. But, a few years ago, I injured my shoulders and I was supposed to get surgery this year; well, that plan was before I was diagnosed with breast cancer. I felt that I needed to take care of that first and that put my shoulder surgery off. I finished the quilt top a while ago, but wasn't sure if I was going to be able to do hand quilting. I finally decided to ask someone to machine quilt my quilt and I asked my friend Audrey who runs a machine quilt company called the The Quilt Barn with her sister, Emmy. I couldn't be happier with the result!! She did such an amazing job! She even quilted each circle in the middle of the flowers.

The way she quilted really emphasis the design of the quilt top and that was exactly what I wanted. I pieced the backing and with her beautiful machine quilting design, I feel like I have two quilts in one. Thank you so much Emmy!

Last but not least, let me mention my middle son. I wanted to take some pictures of the quilt, but really needed help, he came with me and did above and beyond for the photo shoot. I just wanted to say a big THANK YOU to him too. I know I am blessed with one of the best teens! I didn't use this picture at the very top of the post, even though I really love the look of the quilt hanging from the tree. He climbed up the tree and held the quilt while he was balancing and stabilizing himself on the V shaped tree. I spotted his foot sticking out from the quilt while I was editing the pictures. I thought to myself, "Shoot! Why didn't I see that?" But, this picture is very special because it reminds me of him and how sweet he was to help me out.

Well, everyone, 2018 was quite eventful for me both good and bad but, I am so grateful for all the experiences I went through and love I received. I hope I will be healthier and
able to do more in 2019.

I wish you all the very best and send my love. Happy New Year!!!

Saturday, December 29, 2018

Gray Apron Skirt

I have been wanting to make an apron skirt but no luck finding a pattern that I exactly wanted. I looked through my old Japanese pattern books(I bought 20+ years ago!) and found a couple patterns that I thoguht I can combine some aspects from both of them and create my own and that's what I did.

There are a few things I would change if I decided to make this in a different color, but I like how it turned out. Mr.Tea Rose Home said I look like a "farm girl" from the old movies... ok, maybe a little. :)

Friday, December 21, 2018

Friendship Heart Quilt

Do you ever look back at your past and the choices that you have made and how they have affected the life you live now? I do. Not that frequently, but sometimes an event happens in my life; mostly good things and I start reflecting on and connecting the past choices to now.

This week, I was surprised by one of the most amazing and generous gifts and many emotions flooded my mind. Over 10 years ago, I started blogging. I was kind of testing what this "blogging" this was all about, and started sharing the things I made. There were ups and downs but I kept creating and writing. Over the years I have met so many great people online and in person that I would have otherwise never had a chance to meet.

Amy of Diary of a Quilter organized some quilter/sewer friends to make this heart quilt. She asked them to sew heart blocks and send it to her, she pieced them together and Andy of A Bright Corner quilted it. When they gave me the quilt, she told me that the quilt was made with "many hands", I wasn't sure what that meant. I opened the card, there were names of our dear friends; some of whom I've known for years and some are new friends... they each participated to create this beautiful quilt.

Evy of A Bit of Stitch made this lovely label for the quilt.


I am not sure exactly which block was made by who, but as I was looking at these heart blocks and thinking about those friends; my own heart was bursting with gratitude and I couldn't hold back my tears. I know everyone has their own busy lives, but they were willing to take the time to participate in this and to show love and support for my recovery from my double mastectomy. My recovery was a bit rocky at first with bleeding issues and infections. And now, I still have a low-grade fever everyday, even after over two month from the surgery. I have had some testing done, but the doctors don't know exactly what is causing it. I try to live normal day to day life, but not knowing the cause worries me.


This quilt came just in time for me to feel extra love from my friends even from different parts of the United States. I think there are many kind, genuine, caring people in quilting/sewing community. I am so thankful for each one of them and I want them to know they will always have a special spot in my heart. I wish I could give them a hug in person and tell them how much their kindness and friendship means to me. These are the creative friends who made these heart blocks. I hope you will hop over to visit their delightful site to see their fun projects!

Lindsay of Lindsay Sews
Dana of Made Everyday
Pat of Pat Sloan's Quilters Home
Amanda of Jedi Craft Girl
Bev of Flamingo Toes
Heather of The Sewing Loft
Liz of Simple Simon and Co
Amber of GiGi's Thimble
Holly
Cindy
Babylock Sewing
Riley Blake Designs

I have witnessed many times since the diagnosis of my breast cancer one of my favorite saying "God takes care of people through people". My medical problems are still here and I know I (and my family) has to deal with them, but knowing that I am surrounded by caring friends helps me to be strong and keeps me going.

They are truly Angels.
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