Friday, February 20, 2015

how I made graduation stoles

I make these stoles once a year for a group at the University of Michigan. Thought I would jot down my notes to refresh my memory for the next time.


If you need a pattern for your stole, there is one here.

There's another one here - little different design.

I can get 2.5 stoles out of 1 yard of material. I start out cutting strips of material that are 7 inches wide. You need 2 sections for each stole.


Embroider one side keeping closer to the edge, it will cut nicely this way.


This is why because the curve of the neck, you'll want to keep the embroidery closer to one side. You want a wider cut so that you have room for the hoop and to keep the material nice and tight.


Make sure you cut it out so the curve goes towards the right for the logo side. The opposite is true for the name side of the stole.


With right sides together sew the ends together. Then sew 2 sides together (right sides together). I start in the back where the start and end threads will be less noticeable. Set the stitch length down to 2 or 2 1/2 to keep the pulling of the material to a minimal.


Sew down on side. Then stop and go back to the middle and sew down the other side. Stop before getting to the angled cuts. Press open. It's much easier to press the stole open like this - than to work the satin for both sides flat to iron.


Once you press the seam open on the one side, finish sewing - starting at the angle and continuing around. Make sure you make nice sharp turns. This one pulled because my stitch length was too long.


Leave 3 inch gaps on the each end of the stole for turning. I do both end so I can get into the angled end real good to push out a nice sharp point.


Trim close to stitching before turning inside out.


Carefully iron the seams out. Use no steam and a silk setting on your iron.


Then go back over the stole do a trim stitch on the outside. And that's it!

Sunday, February 8, 2015

julia's senior pictures

We just didn't have our act together in time to get a picture of Julia to the school for the yearbook. The deadline was November and we were still getting settled then. When I got my new photography equipment, I had the idea to take her pictures. At least if she couldn't get them into the yearbook, she could print them out and give them to her friends.


Julia is our adorable Swedish foreign exchange student. So when I approached her about getting her picture taken, she was less than enthusiastic.


I told her that besides having nice pictures of the way she looked at 17, it was a big deal to have your pictures made when you are a senior.  I told her that my birthday present would be allowing me take her pictures - with no sass. Meaning, I could take as many pictures as I wanted with no grumbling. She agreed.


Jackie came over and did her hair and makeup and she looked amazing. Her eyes lite up when she saw herself in the mirror.


She loves to do origami. She told me that she sent 1,000 cranes to a sick girl in Japan, believing that she would get a wish. She is always folding paper into some of the cutest little creatures.


She's been studying karate for quite some time and is a avid Xena fan. She is a brown belt and studies karate at a studio here in Saline.


I got down my Xena sword and she was in love.  She kept wanting to be-head my Santa. 


I'm making some props for a Xena pose It's not completed yet - but she's modeling one of the wrist guards. It has the word "Courage" on it, in Japanese.

Next weekend - the big Xena shoot. Can't wait! In the meantime, I'm really proud of how well she adapted to being in front of the camera.

She sure is a sweet heart - and we love having her.