Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Introduction to Shorty's Sutures

Welcome to the Shorty's Sutures Blog where you'll find my notes about projects, podcasts and all things related to hand stitchery!

I would love to know how you found my site. Did you click on the link from the Securityville Blog, or did you find the blog from Ravelry, Etsy or the Shorty's Sutures Podcast? No matter how you found me, I'm glad you're here and I hope you'll offer your feedback when you have a moment.

One of the things I've heard consistently over the years is how we should find what we are passionate about in life and pursue that passion. Over the past two years I've focused on getting back into having hobbies and digging in to what stirs my creativity. It began with sewing and blogging, and transitioned to one of the very first hobbies I ever had, crocheting.

I found a local crochet guild through a church and began making baby caps for premature infants at local hospitals. I later began trying to make accessories like scarves and cowls, and opened up my little Etsy shop. I'm still making some of those things, but as I've broadened my horizons through knowledge shared by so many people I've begun to make garments like shrugs and cardigans.

A lot of what has spurred me to try new techniques and patterns in crochet has been the suggestions and ideas shared in various podcasts that I've listened to over the past two years. I've become a total podcast nerd, listening to one almost every time I'm driving by myself or when I'm home alone. I literally can't get enough of podcasts! So, it occurred to me several months ago that I might want to try and make a podcast myself and hopefully share the insight that's led my creativity to an entirely new level.

That's what led me to the Shorty's Sutures Podcast. I recorded my first episode at the end of May 2011 and would love your feedback. The first episode is mainly an introduction, but the episodes that follow will share knowledge and experience that I'm gaining as I dive deeper into all that crochet has to offer.

Since I'm such a fan of all things handmade I'm sure I will veer from crochet from time to time to hand embroidery, knitting, quilting and general sewing, but I will concentrate most of my podcast efforts on crochet. There is such a wealth of knowledge to be shared through the various stitching techniques and fiber mediums to the many patterns and designers that are producing modern and classic designs for us to play with.

I hope you enjoy the Shorty's Sutures Bog and Podcast. Notes and links that correspond with Episode One are available in the next post.

Happy stitching, my friends!

Friday, May 27, 2011


The weekend is almost here, and big things are in store for ShortysSutures. I can't wait to share my blog transformation with you. Stay tuned....

Have a safe and Happy Memorial Day weekend! (click on the link to read a bit of history about this momentous holiday) And, many, many thanks to all of our armed service men and women throughout America's history who have fought, died and those who continue to serve all of us who revel in our freedom.

Monday, May 23, 2011


I'm amazed that summer is about to begin... school is almost out and things will really start rolling around our house. What's crazy is that I've thought things have been busy during the school year, but the only thing that will most likely change from school year to summer is that my son won't have to report for school during the day.

This is what our agenda is looking like at them moment:  There will be football day camp for a week, we have at least four Scout camp outs planned, most are over the weekends, but one is for an entire week. We are also trying to plan a weekend getaway to see friends in Arkansas. My mom wants The Little Guy to spend a week with her. Then there's the stuff his dad's side of the family will be doing.

How was I ever worried The Little Guy would have time to be bored?  How are we going to make all of this happen financially? I see lots of beans & rice meals in my future over the summer.

I'm really excited for The Little Guy, thought. I hope he has a great summer. Somehow I've got to keep math and reading skills going in there... perhaps I can work that into his daytime routine. How about I create some lesson plans? I know he will just love that! But, honestly it sounds very entertaining to me. Mmwwaaahhhaaahhaaaaa!

For anyone wondering what I've been up to, well don't worry I haven't forgotten my craftiness. I've been crocheting quite a bit. I have even started preparing a podcast on crochet. I've got a few tweaks that I want to do to this blog before I post the first episode, but I'm hoping to bring it all together by the end of this week. I hope you'll tune in and offer your critiques!

Happy Monday to you all!

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Crochet Hook Case

Another crocheted project is finished! This is a hook/needle case that can store crochet hooks and knitting needles, whichever your preference may be. There is even a little pocket for storing your notions.

You can find the pattern free on Ravelry if you'd like to give it a whirl. I found the schematic easy to follow, which I wasn't expecting 'easy' since the pattern was originally in Japanese. The version you can link to has been translated to English, but you must follow the pattern diagram in order to read the pattern since the crochet stitches aren't written out.

If you need help with understanding what the symbols mean in the diagram go here.

The hardest part for me was sewing the interior portion of the case, then hand stitching it to the crocheted exterior. As you can see by my irregular whip stitches, it was hard for me to keep a consistent sized stitch going. I think all of the difficulty is mostly due to my choice of fabric, which was pretty thick. I chose a thicker fabric, almost comparable to canvas, so that the case would be a bit on the tougher side. I tote my hooks around a lot and was afraid if I made it too delicate the case wouldn't last very long. If you pick a soft cotton or more pliable fabric it will probably be a lot easier to attach to the crocheted piece.

If you're looking for a new project you may want to consider this one. I highly recommend it!

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Thirteen Years Worth of Memories

Yesterday my little boy became a teenager. I look at him and can't help but see a changing person. His jaw is stronger, his shoulders are more broad, his voice is deepening.

And, while I stare at him, not hearing the story he's telling me because I'm thinking back in time, the memories start to flood my thoughts...
  1. The day he was born: it was 12:18 p.m. and my life changed forever in so many positive and dramatic ways.
  2. I remember how he used to nuzzle his face against me when he was hungry, the sounds he made as he nursed
  3. I remember how he used to rub his ears when he was tired
  4. The vacuum was a favorite plaything, he called it a vah-tah
  5. Each time I would try to video him he would hold my legs, look up with outstretched arms and say, "Hold you"
  6. A favorite book was Brown Bear Brown Bear, What Do You See? by Eric Carle
  7. He loved going to the lake and floating around in his life jacket
  8. We would dance together
  9. He's been consistent with telling me how much he dislikes school every year so far
  10. He likes to be private while I try to get him to be an open book like me
  11. His first best friend was a boy named Darren, but he called him Darren Buddy
  12. He's always loved being outdoors
  13. He's growing up so fast!
Where has the time gone? Life is passing us by so fast. Each day has a challenging feeling that we need to get so many things accomplished, tend to all the necessities before the sun goes down and then we have to prepare to begin again when the alarm goes off.

My note to my son... I'm so proud of you. I can't believe you're 13. I can't believe that God gifted you to me. I'm so grateful to be your mom, and to have the privilege of watching you grow each day. Thank you for all that you share with me, for all that you do for yourself, and thank you for the incredibly amazing person you are. I am truly blessed to have you in my life. I love you, Little Guy!

Monday, May 2, 2011

Handmade Mother's Day

I like to give my mom a little something handmade each year for Mother's Day. Sometimes I've made something she's loved, and other times I can tell she isn't very thrilled. So, I always make sure to have a small back up gift in case the handmade one doesn't flip her lid.

This year I think she'll really like what I've created. It's safe for me to go ahead and post about it because she never remembers how to get to my blog. So, take a peek and tell me what you think...
Here is a link to the muslin ruffled pillow tutorial that I found online before Christmas. I actually started making this pillow as a Christmas gift, but I ran out of time. If you check out the link you'll notice that I modified the end result just a smidge, but it was for good reason.

You see the strip of fabric squares in the center? There is a very sweet little story behind adding those in. You see, my great-granny (Mom's granny) used those bits of fabric to make clothing a long, long time ago. Granny taught me how to sew on her machine using those very squares. Granny gave me the blocks we had created together years ago, and they've just been languishing in my craft stash.

This year I decided to put some of the vintage fabric squares to good use. All of those squares in the center, including the muslin, are from the ones my great-granny taught me to sew with. My mom will recognize them when she sees the pillow for the first time.

The little flower embellishment I made from some organza scraps and buttons that I had from some brooches I made last year.

I'm really excited with how it came together. I can't wait for her to open it this weekend!