Shrug for Wedding Dress Part 2

I know it’s been a while, but here’s how the shrug for the wedding dress turned out! Follow the link to the first shrug posting if you missed it.

Step 1. While Roxie was wearing the shirt I sketched pencil lines where we wanted the edges of the shrug to be.  I then took the shirt apart. Rather than ripping out the seams I carefully cut right along the seam line.

Step 2. I taped the shirt parts to a piece of non fusible interfacing and drew in a 5/8″  seam allowance all the way around the shirt pieces.  After quilting and using a scant 1/4″ seam for years I really had to pay attention to using a 5/8″ seam the whole time I was making the dresses and shrug for Roxie.

Step 3. I used the my new pattern pieces to cut out the parts for the shrug and then assembled it. And Hooray! It fit her perfectly!

And since the shrug is completely lined it was possible to make it reversible.  Roxie chose a blue and black lumberjack plaid for the second fabric, since the wedding was plaid themed.

Here are pictures of Roxie and Tom from the wedding. This first one was taken during the ceremony. Roxie is wearing the shrug with the solid teal fabric on the outside, which matched the sash in her dress.

Then, during the reception it didn’t take Roxie long to switch the shrug to the lumberjack plaid side as the happy couple picked up instruments and joined in with the evening’s entertainment.

It turned out to be a chilly evening, so I was really glad that Roxie had the perfect shrug to go over her sleeveless dress. Let me tell you, all my sewing and quilting skills came in handy for this wedding!


Shrug for Wedding Dress

I’m making my daughter Roxie her wedding dress and along with it a shrug.  The dress needed several adjustments to the bodice before it was a good fit but I assumed a jacket or shrug should be able to fit without any alterations. Big mistake.

Plan A was to make the shrug from this pattern

Here is the unfinished attempt from the pattern.  It was too large across the top of the shoulders, too tight across the upper back, and too tight in the armholes.  At this point there was no fixing what had already been stitched and trimmed away. Material was gone and time was running out.

The thought of starting from scratch and altering the existing pattern, making a sample from muslin like I did the wedding dress bodice, buying more material, and making it from the new material was a little overwhelming.

Plan B was to go shopping and buy one. Certainly stores in malls have these, right?  Wrong.  And we didn’t mess around with just any mall we went to The Mall.

As we were going from store to store and striking out every time, the thought came to me that I could take a shirt that fit Roxie just right through the shoulders and arms and make a pattern from the shirt.  I didn’t want a repeat of the last attempt at using a purchased pattern.

Plan C: head to Goodwill and find a shirt with the perfect fit.

Here’s the shirt:

I’m working on making up the new pattern now and things are looking promising! I’ll post soon with the outcome. Ten days until the wedding and I’ve still got the dress and wedding quilt to finish!



Roxie and I were on a road trip to Iowa at the end of June and had time to brainstorm about her upcoming wedding. One of the things we decided on was that the people helping serve food at the picnic/reception for around 200 guests needed aprons. A new tradition Roxie and I have started is to spend my birthday hitting thrift shops – we both love it. June 29th was my birthday and what should I find at one of the first thrift shops we hit in our old hometown but a pattern for aprons! I decided it was perfect. Note – goodwill price tag for 88¢

And I just happen to have mass quantities of this vintage drapery fabric.  This is the sample I made up – it still needs a pocket – maybe out of red lumberjack plaid (Tom’s favorite plaid).  Roxie’s future MIL, Mary has volunteered to make the rest of the aprons, all with the same fabric – thank you Mary!

I know this apron will be a big hit among Roxie’s friends and relatives and they will be signing up to help serve at the reception just to get one of these!  I’m glad I found another use for this vintage fabric – it’s also going on the back of the wedding quit.


Spring Beauty

Here are a few color variations on this block for those of you who might like to see it in something other than the 1800s fabrics that I am working in.

My Spring Beauty test block:

This is what you need to make a Spring Beauty block:

6  dark or medium 5″ squares for the Flying Geese units and the corner triangles

3  dark or medium  5″ inch squares for the block center and the side triangles

20 light  2 1/2″ squares for the connecting corners

1. Make eight Flying Geese units following the instructions from my May 8, 2012 post.

2. Sew the flying geese units into sets of two.

3. To make the center portion of the block trim a 5″ square down to 4 1/2″ square.  Add connecting corners to each corner in the same manner that you did for the flying geese.

4. Cut two 5″ squares in half on the diagonal for the side triangles. Yes, the bias edges will be on the outside edge of the block – I suggest a little spray starch to help stabilize the edges. If I were making several of these blocks and all the side triangles were from the same fabric I would cut 6 7/8″ squares and cut them twice on the diagonal.

5. Arrange the units and triangles from steps 2 through 4 into three rows.  Sew the units into rows and sew the rows together.

6. Cut two 5″ squares in half on the diagonal for the corner triangles. Sew these onto the corners of the block and square the block up to 11 3/4″, leaving 1/4″ seam allowances for the points. This block will finish 11 1/4″.

First sample block from the calendar done – how many I will eventually make?? Who knows – but this sure is fun!



Granbury Quilt Guild

Whew! I’ve spent the last couple of days packing 4 tubs of quilts, boxes of product, and workshop handouts to ship to California. It takes a lot to get this show on the road and I am very thankful for all the extra work the program chairpersons do in hauling me and the quilts around.

This is a full size SUV with the back filled with tubs of quilts and boxes – for the best trunk show ever!  I love being able to share the quilts with everyone and they get shipped ahead via FedEx. I wouldn’t be able to bring this many quilts on a plane and I don’t really trust the airlines with my quilts.  In one year alone my suitcases arrived a day after I did on four different trips (not a good track record) and who needs that kind of stress!?

Look at all the quilts – those are 8 foot tables!

Half-Square-Triangles and Four Patches for this workshop – and yes, 15 different quilts can be worked on – oh the possibilities!

I don’t allow participants to get a whole lot of sewing done during class, especially in this class, since they can sew at home. Instead, I keep interrupting with demos – I have so much to share and we have a limited amount of  time together. My mission is that I want everyone to have as much fun working with 5″ squares as I do, so I need to provide tons of ideas to work with.

A stack of 5″ squares –  the possibilities are endless!

Two patch and half-square-triangle units ready to be sewn into blocks.

Beach Party blocks look great with white or black backgrounds (shown below).

Churn Dash blocks.

Jacob’s Ladder blocks.

Shoo Fly blocks are one of the blocks in the Texas Two Step quilt.

Sunny Lanes.

The strangest part of this job is getting to know and becoming friends with the gals I work closely with (like the program chairpersons and if it’s a home stay, my hostess) and then not seeing them again unless I have a return visit to the guild.  Many times like with the Granbury guild it’s the same person.  Marsha was my hostess for this guild and she put up with me for 4 nights. All my hostesses on this trip were wonderful – one of the days I may surprise someone – especially someone in Texas or another southern state and show up on their doorstep in January or February!

Okay gals let’s see those quilts!