Monday, July 14, 2014

One Minute. Renewed Perspective.

Just Watch.


Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Sewing Essential - Iron-Off Hot Iron Cleaner

I received this product from Dritz several months ago, but had just bought a new iron, so didn't need it. Well, this weekend while using some fusible fleece, my hot iron apparently came into contact with some of the adhesive. Not ideal.
 Of course, the way I discovered this was with a nice black streak on my son's shirt as I was trying to iron it. Again, not ideal. 

I couldn't get the sticky mess to rub off. Quickly I remembered that I had a tube of this iron cleaner and figured it was the perfect time to give it a try. Truth is, I hadn't read the directions before, so I was expecting it would be somewhat complicated and require some kind of internal cleaning that I would have to repeatedly rinse out, so I was pleasantly surprise at how easy it was to use. 
 Simply set your iron to the cotton setting. Once heated, get a clean towel and squirt a bit of the Iron-Off onto the towel. Iron back and forth over the cream until your iron is clean. For stubborn (or extra sticky) messes on your iron, you may want to repeat. I did. And just look at this towel!!!

EWWWWW!!!! Right!?!?! Where did all that come from anyway???
 Apparently there was a build up of more than I could see from using starch as well. Needless to say, I was very pleased with the result. Look at my iron now! 

Here's a side by side comparison that shows even better the great results. 
I only had to use a small about of the tube as well, so I am equipped whenever another cleaning is needed. This has been added to my handy box of "Sewing Essentials". 

You can check out more of my favorite "Sewing Essentials" on the tab at the top of the blog or simply by clicking HERE.  

Monday, July 7, 2014

Introduction to Teeny Tears....a very special organization

I sew a lot for babies. 
However, I don't think I've ever sewn anything quite so meaningful as this.

 These are Teeny Tears diapers. Teeny Tears is an organization that provides these tiny bereavement gifts for families who have lost their tiny bundles. 

My aunt knows how I love to sew, she also knows my heart. When she sent me a link to Teeny Tears I immediately had to check out it. Upon reading through the website, it was without hesitation that I emailed them to find out how to get started and check on the hospitals nearest me that they have served. I received a very prompt and warm reply from one of the coordinators, and well, this is now a new personal project for me. While I am obviously new to the group, the community of volunteer seamstresses is incredibly talented and encouraging, as you would likely imagine. 

I will be sewing these tiny cloth gifts for our local Children's Hospital. After they are stocked, I hope to gradually reach out to other hospitals in my area to see what need they might have as well. 
To give you an idea of the tiny size of these little diapers, that is a Size #2 Safety Pin and is only 1.5" long.

Sewing these has been a very touching experience for me. There are moments it is overwhelming when I consider that this may very well be the one and only item a mother is ever able to cloth her baby in. And, as she says goodbye to her precious one.
I have never experienced the loss of a child through stillbirth, miscarriage or soon after birth....though I have experienced loss of those I mother through foster care, and this has been one of the most difficult grieving experiences of my life. While not exactly the same, it has provided me with something tangible to help me relate to these mothers and their families. I gently swing between feelings of complete unworthiness to have this privilege, to the overflowing blessing of getting to be a part of this sacred time. 

I am humbled.
I am grateful.
I am full of prayers of comfort and hope for these families.
While this is entirely separate from our Baby Sewing project this quarter, I invite you to learn more. Perhaps there are some of you that would be interested in sewing for Teeny Tears or similar bereavement outreach efforts. You can visit the Teeny Tears website here.  

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

2014 - 3rd Quarter Project Announcement

2014 is truly flying by! 
Don't know if it's our new quarterly schedule or what, but WOW!
Here we are with the kick off of the 3rd Quarter Project!!!

This is going to be another fun and simple to sew project that I hope many can and will participate in! With summer and back to school times falling during the 3rd Quarter, I wanted to be sure that sewing to share would be an easy thing to fit in, and I think we've found the perfect project!

If you know much about me from this blog or otherwise, you know that sewing for children is something very special to me. Using my love of sewing to help support and encourage a family, even more! 

Our family really appreciates living in a community that provides a Crisis Pregnancy Center to help struggling or surprised mothers and fathers prepare for their unexpected bundle. Being a large family, we understand the excitement paired with stresses, uncertainties and general feelings of being overwhelmed that planning for a new baby can bring....and we understand those feeling are all magnified when a pregnancy wasn't planned at the time. We also know full well the blessing a baby is to a family, and if we can be any part of the support and encouragement that shines light and hope on that, well, what a beautiful and encouraging opportunity for us as well! This is part of what makes us so very grateful for the active work and support of the Crisis Pregnancy Center.

Some of the incredible services provided by our local Center include free pregnancy tests, educational classes and training, a 24 hour  helpline, as well as, a care closet that helps provide everything from maternity clothing, baby/toddler clothing, diapers, formula, baby gear and more! All things that can help relieve some of the stress and financial pressure of an unplanned pregnancy.

For the 3rd Quarter Project, we will be making bibs, burpcloths and blankies to donate to our Crisis Pregnancy Center to be provided to the families they serve. I would like to encourage you to look within your own communities for a similar organization to directly support with your sewing this quarter, but will be more than happy to include any donations you'd like to send to go along with ours too. :) As always, if you don't sew and would like to send along store bought items, those are always welcome. Additionally, our family will be participating in the annual Walk For Life and any monetary donations received this month will be donated as part of our sponsor collections for the Center.
For those shipping donation items to me, your donations can be sent here,
Kristy Smith
c/o Echelon Florist
1260 Rocky Hill Road
Knoxville TN 37919

So, I welcome you to jump in a participate with our 3rd Quarter Project any way you feel led! You can find an abundance of Baby Sewing ideas, inspiration, tutorials and patterns on my "Baby Sewing" Pinterest board here. While I have chosen to narrow the focus to bibs, burpcloths & blankets to help simplify, any baby items you'd like to contribute are completely welcome! If you'd like to share photos of your donations to inspire and encourage the rest of us as we consider how best to participate, feel free to do so in our 3rd Quarter Project Donation Album on Flickr here.

I'll also be sharing about a new baby related project that I am humbled and blessed to be a part of. Watch for a special detailed post about that to come soon!

Email me here with any questions.
Thank you all for your continued support and enthusiasm as we care for others through our sewing machines. 
Every Stitch Matters.
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