Sunday, March 12, 2017

Graduate Scarves

I have written about making graduation scarves (Scarves of Pride ) for the graduates of Women's Empowerment ("WE") 8 week job readiness training.  WE holds about 4 to 5 sessions a year, and I've been making their scarves for maybe two years. It's just another way to use my sewing talents for good.

This March graduating class will the the first class to hold their ceremony in the B Street Theater in downtown Sacramento.  It's a great venue for such an auspicious occasion, so I thought I might make something special this time.  The graduates always choose their colors, and this class chose Gold and Burgundy. I immediately thought of the USC Trojans and decided perhaps a touch of femininity might be in order, lest we look like football fans.

Serging the edges of this Poly charmeuse is the easy part...I used a beautiful shiny gold thread and set my Imagine on a narrow rolled hem setting.


The fabric is not as drapey as a silk (way too expensive), so I thought I might pleat it, so that it would lay flat around the neck. A hand made flower in burgundy fabrics will be attached.

I've made "silk" flowers before and they are not that hard, just time consuming.  All you need is several sized squares and a candle. Using Polyester fabric is important as it melts. Silk would catch fire and burn.

Watch your fingers!!


I chose gold beads (6) to hold the layers (4) together.


They are sewn on to the pleated scarf, about 18 inched from the bottom of one side.


Finished!



I hope the graduates feel special. It's always a pleasure to attend the ceremony, even if it is a three-hankie event.  Their stories are incredible and their accomplishment is profound. 

I love being a part of this awesome organization. 
Read all about it on the web at http://www.womens-empowerment.org/


Laurel.  Giving Back.


Friday, March 10, 2017

My first ever Trunk Show!!

My favorite fabric store Stonemountain and Daughter Fabric is scheduling an event featuring all the garments that I've sewn for the Suzan, aka FabricLady. We have enjoyed a 3+ year collaboration, sewing, blogging, wardrobe planning and a special friendship. Others on her team will be joining in the fun and I can't say how thrilled that I am to be a part of this special day.

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If you live in the area, I hope that you will come by.  Suzan's blog has a huge following and I am a contributor. Actually, it's part of the reason that I've let Laurel's Quill flounder for the past few years. My process is simple: sew, take photos, write about it.  It's not a job, even though I'm busy with it at least 3 or 4 days a week on average.  It's that our collaboration hits all my creative buttons, not to mention it's great to be a part of watching Stonemountain's garment fabric side flourish.

Meanwhile, you know how I am - got an event? Make an outfit!!! We have been concentrating on the Independent pattern designers for the last year, so I try to stick with them even in my own wardrobe.
I chose three simple patterns from 100 Acts of Sewing and three coordinating fabrics to make a casual layered look.


And would ya check out those shoes?? I got them yesterday just to match my outfit!  Love pointy toes!!

The tops are simple so adding pockets is a creative way to jazz them up...



You get the idea.  The fabrics are soft and they will transition into Spring (even Summer) very nicely. I still have several outfits to whip up before the event, so I better get this studio cleaned up from yesterday's melee.  Funny, but I sew the same way I cook: messy, messy messy.  But who wants to be stifled by wiping down the counters during Beef Wellington prep or picking up scraps and pins while sewing a Dior?


Oh and about that Beef Wellington? Incredible!!























Oh MY!!!!!


Laurel. Sewist and Cook...sorta.

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Catching up

My oh my, how my blog has suffered over the past year.  I've been in a cocoon of sorts, just not inspired to write too much.  Is that considered "writer's block"? But even as I haven't written or posted, I've certainly been busy with the usual Laurel "things" - sewing, volunteering, knitting, eating, drinking and hunkering down by the fireplace. 

Writing is sometimes easy, and sometimes it's elusive.  Over the past year I had fleeting thoughts of a blog post, but they left without so much as a nod. I've been on a mission in the last few months to do a little less and just "Be" a little more.  In periods of quiet introspection, I wanted this, my final year in the 60's, to be one of consequence. Approaching 70 is tough. But there is a certain peace that is suppose to come at my age, an acceptance of yourself and a ceasing of dragging yourself down with negativity, etc.

I all but gave up on Facebook this year, following only a few family members.  I only check it once a day usually, which is considerably less than the 20-30 times a day that became my habit. I would have ditched it all together, but for my collaboration with Suzan and my own Laurel's Quill page. Looking for approval (still?) after 70 years is a tad negative (did I really mean pathetic, LOL!) in and of itself. And I must admit the election cycle last Fall with all it's memes, negativity, bashing, etc. did me in.

These days, I am concentrating on what I love to do most...

Reading, knitting, etc. in my cozy little corner in the Hacienda...if the urge to drop off hits me, then slumber away, little grasshopper...


Creating fabulousness for me and Suzan in my She-Cave Studio...
 

Starting to draw and paint again...
 

Started knitting again...notice how I've got a theme of "relaxation" going here...


 Keep the sewing machine humming along with Me-Made clothes...






 Trying to be more stylish and yet be comfortable in my age..



Finish stuff I started forever ago...
 






Get back to entertaining (I love to set a pretty table) once in a while...dinner guests this weekend...Beef Wellington, huh!


Find my natural hair color...it's been red for so long, people believe I am a redhead...my sweet daughter Amy the hairdresser says "you're grayer than you think, Mom".  Bring it on!!


Keep eating healthier...gave up caffeine for the umpteenth time...
 

And yes, working out.  When you have to heave yourself out of the front seat of your car, it's time...
 

Do more Girlfriend things...
 

And, most importantly, feed my soul through my collaboration with Suzan (aka FabricLady)
with who I have been working with for almost 4 years. Now, she keeps up HER blog (I am a contributor), so if you really want to know what I'm doing, just go there. LOL!
 

I spent a couple of hours yesterday in my Corner Chair, looking at photo albums of our trips through the years and old blog posts.  I used to write so much, but these days I'm a poster of my life on Instagram. I love photography and the spontaneity of it all. I've tried Medium as a vehicle for writing, but perhaps I should just give this old blog a jump start and try it back on for size.

we'll see...

Laurel. Age is just a number.
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