Tinker Verve

creating with spirit & enthusiasm…often with great results


Yesterday I was seven hours from home with a full day and no demands {except this weekend’s Farm Chicks show}…so, being at my friend Lin’s house, I decided that I would plan a day of sewing.

Sewing,  I did!…all day!

My goal was to get everything sewn by machine so I could spend my 7-hour trip home hand sewing!

This is Lin’s sweet machine!

Hopefully my hand-sewing won’t take a full 7 hours but I will get it all finished before I get home!

…kinda like I wouldn’t go to bed last night until all the sewing was done…

June 1, 2010 Posted by | friends, sewing | 3 Comments

market shopper :~: farmgirl style

I’m trying to get as many things done as I can and checked off the {mental} list for my summer shows.

All packed and ready to go…

May 21, 2010 Posted by | farmgirl style, market shopper, sewing | 8 Comments

vintage grain sacks

Recently at a garage sale I ‘scored’ by finding a stack of unused grain sacks ranging in size from small to tiny.

The man I bought them from, who was an ‘older’ gentleman, said they had been in his grandfather’s basement.

They are so old and perfectly preserved.

I can’t bear the idea of cutting these up so I will try to sew them into things, keeping them intact as I go!

I made the one hand bag, using one of the grain sacks as the front pocket.  I like it well enough that I’m hoping to get some more made.

wish me luck on that one

May 19, 2010 Posted by | farmgirl style, sewing, Uncategorized | 5 Comments


#23 to my 1″ Life Sampler is for the year…you guessed it 2000!

I’ve removed the funny blue lines…just not in time for the ‘photo shoot’!

I spent a bit of time at the sewing machine this week to make a couple of aprons with a sweet, cherry theme.

This one combines vintage fabrics with a few new ones.

Here is yet another sweet combination for an apron.

March 31, 2010 Posted by | 1" Life Sampler, aprons, sewing, vintage{y} apron | 1 Comment

Sweet & Sassy!

Block #18 to my 1″ Life Sampler reflects a time in my life that always makes me smile.

There is a memorable day in April of 2005 when I had the opportunity to go to a lovely teahouse in Redmond, WA with two of my girlfriends, Amber and Trisha.  We felt so inspired as we absorbed the environment around us that we became consumed with the idea of starting up our own tea house…which quickly turned to a focus on cupcakes.  This began a different journey of finding and refining the perfect cupcake recipes.  As friends connected with friends, we began making cupcakes at all hours of the day, for a variety of occasions, whenever the need would arise.

I love to dream and I love it when others are willing to dream with me.  We did see that dream fizzle, for a variety of reasons.  I’m glad we didn’t dive in to the expense and commitment of a shop but I don’t regret one day of dreaming the dream.

We just had way too much fun processing our way through that dream.

When Kristine sent me some snippets from her collection of ‘authentic’ prints last week, I immediately saw it as a challenge.  “What can I do with these that will be for ME?”  I have loved making these burlap aprons and I decided that I would make one for me with those prints.  I have a long, green, tiered, silk skirt that will go perfectly with this to wear at  my shows….and I can compliment that with some cute boots!  {oh, ya!}

This one I made with one of the old drapes that I brought home from my grandma’s house recently.

This would make an ugly drape/curtain but fun, linen fabric and it goes well with the burlap.

~the sweet and sassy cupcake girls...Sweet & Sassy...for sure!

Check this post out for a fun give-a-way!  I’ll keep it open for a few more days!

March 23, 2010 Posted by | 1" Life Sampler, friends, sewing, vintage{y} apron | 6 Comments

OH! my…

I used my newly acquired needle-turn applique' skills for this heart

For my 4th block of my 1″ Life Sampler, I’ve skipped ahead to 1982 which was the year that I gave my heart away for the first and last time.  Mr T. and I had been dating {off & on} for 9 months before I realized that I really loved this guy…that was July of 1982.  He asked me to marry him on my 19th birthday, August 13th, 1982.

I picked up this perfectly, aged piece of bark cloth at the thrift store yesterday.  For a split second I thought, “Do I really want this?  It is kind of ugly!”  When I got it home, I could only say, “OH, my!”

It is perfect!

I love it!

It goes especially well with my new burlap.

I’m so glad I bought it!

Look at that glorious texture.

I wish there had been more…

March 9, 2010 Posted by | 1" Life Sampler, aprons, sewing | 2 Comments

I finished my needle-turn appliqué that I started on Saturday.

I was worried about layering the red on red but I love how it turned out.

This really is the way to make a quilt…hand pieced, hand quilted and 16″x16″…very doable.  I have so many unfinished quilts.  I just get overwhelmed by the BIG picture of constructing a quilt.  One of my unfinished quilts only needs the binding put on.

I need to get to that…I’ll add it to the list.

My mom’s birthday was this week.  She is fun to make charms for because, quite honestly, she is probably my greatest supporter…right up there with Mr T, but if they were in a competition for that title she would probably win.

she tends to wear a charm each time she leaves her house…Mr T doesn’t

Here we are…1963.  I am the wee babe-in-arms.  I’ve always wondered where I get my extreme widow’s peak from…this picture tells it all.

(my mom is 20 in that picture)

March 4, 2010 Posted by | family, sewing, soldered charms | 3 Comments

Always something new to learn…

My mom and I took a needle-turn appliqué class on Saturday.

I really love the opportunity to learn new things.  It’s easier to bypass these opportunities than it is to jump in and sign up.  My mom and I seem to be encouraging each other to ‘jump in’ and it’s been a fun thing for us to share some common interests  (this also includes the painting lessons).

I think my favorite part about learning needle-turn appliqué is that I really never thought I could do this.  I have to say though that with some good instruction, an OTT lamp and reading glasses, I’m pleasantly surprised at how easy it is.  My struggle isn’t with the stitches it’s with keeping my pieces in place as I work with it.

I take comfort in knowing that I can only improve…

Each morning I look at our pond to see if the ice is melting.  I seems to recede each day but with our nights dipping into the teens it’s not diminishing fast enough…

…so for today, I will just enjoy a bit of blue sky and sunshine!

March 1, 2010 Posted by | my neck of the woods!, sewing | Leave a comment

feed sack~:~shopping bag

Here is a much more chic feed sack:turned shopping bagThe last one wasn’t such a great hit but I think that this one hits the mark.

Generally, when I assemble anything…from bags to aprons…I will only use items from my stash.  I never ‘go shopping’ for just the right elements…I make sure that I have what I need right here.

One exception to this might be a custom order where the customer provides the main ingredient…those are more challenging for me, but I love doing them!

The canvas handle is from some yardage that I picked up at Goodwill.  The small, red corduroy handles came from a bag of scraps at a thrift store.  The red and white gingham was previously used for the tables at my son’s rehearsal dinner. The feed sacks were passed on to me by my true-blue-farm-girl-cousin Heidi who we are always keeping an eye out for a splendid true-blue-farm-boy…for only splendid will do!

I love Washington and I really LOVE Eastern Washington so I simply had to save the strip on the bag that said ‘Spokane, Washington’.  I sewed it onto the canvas handle.

It’s just too much fun!!!

Sometimes, as you know, I tickle myself!

February 27, 2010 Posted by | farmgirl style, market shopper, sewing | 17 Comments

country girl shopping bag

Here are a couple of shopping bags for the true, blue hick country girl.

Any time I see one of these woven, plastic bags that has been cast aside I grab it and set it aside for the day that I may want to turn it into a shopping bag.  Since Mr T. loves to completely spoil the deer during the winter months, we had a couple of these Deer Corn bags hanging around.

We’ve also had a few wild turkeys nibbling on the corn here and there.

I have a few more bags to work on that will be even cuter…

February 25, 2010 Posted by | farmgirl style, market shopper, sewing | 5 Comments