Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Taylor Swift in Arlington TX

Taylor Swift Concert at Cowboys Stadium, Arlington, TX on October 8, 2011

We wanted to surprise our daughter Anjana with tickets to her favorite singer Taylor Swift’s concert. We bought tickets way back in March but didn’t give them to her until her 10th birthday in August. We were moved to see her literally in tears with joy when she opened the envelope with the tickets.

As D-Day approached, we could see her excitement building up. She was doing her own count down. By then our neighbor told us that she had bought tickets for her two daughters.

We live just a couple of miles from Cowboys Stadium and our neighbors offered to drop us and pick us up and we offered to be their kids’ chaperones! Win-Win, huh? Beat that Jerry!

The girls dressed up in the most shimmering outfits they could lay hands on. I decided to make them stand out with the help of my new found passion – henna tattoos! Of course it was all about Taylor Swift and the two younger ones couldn’t stop showing them off.

The concert itself was a blast as you may have read in the papers. To say that Taylor really rocked would be putting it mildly! Her enthusiasm and energy were contagious. She does have a mesmerizing stage presence. True to her name, she was swift – moving from one stage to another built around the huge stadium.

And she is lovely. Even in extreme close up shots, blown up by the Jumbotron, she appeared flawless. And she gave the audience value for their money by belting out one after the other all of her run away hits. She made it look like the show was over before coming up with a few more. Her grand finale of course was Love Story..she glided through the stadium on a floating stage!
Only after we exited the stadium did we realize it had been raining. The non-stop screaming by the 55,000 plus crowd, mostly teenagers in Taylor look alike dresses and leather boots, completely shut out the noise of the downpour outside.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Theme Park Bag

Like most parents, we also go to theme parks often. And thanks to Texas heat, the kids are always thirsty and so we carry water bottles. Guess who ends up carrying all the bottles? Me, of course! I was having trouble keeping the bottles in place; the weight was pulling the bag and hurting my shoulders. I decided to make a bag for these trips. The outcome was our own unique Theme Park Bag.

Bag size: 16" X 12" I found this medium weight dark color fabric in my stash which was perfect for this project. I used one layer of foam in between the lining and outer fabric that made the bag softer and helped to maintain its shape. I quilted around the design with a decorative seam which gave it a 3D effect to the design on the fabric.

I measured my water bottles and sewed some elastic on the side to hold the bottle intact. I added different size pockets on the front and back inside with Velcro closure.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Earth Day Celebration

Project of the week:
As part of our Earth Day Celebrations, we decided to go green by recycling the students’ winter clothes. The idea was to convert their winter wear into summer attire! Each of them brought their blue jeans for this project. They learned to cut their jeans and sew them into a Capri and Shorts. The kids were really excited to try on their finished products. And they ended up saving a few bucks too!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Simple Skirt

Spring is here and it is time to do a little makeover in the closet. We at Sewing with Sella decided to do some skirts as part of our class project.
I wanted to teach them to make a simple skirt for our first intermediate sewing class project.

These skirts are easy to make once you get the measurements figured out
Measure the student’s waist in inches. Then measure how long she wants the skirt to be from the waist to the bottom hem.
I used a Stretch Cotton Twill fabric with bold big flowers in pink, black, and yellow in combination with a plain pink fabric for the binding.
The intermediate class students learned how to easily cut fabric strips using shape cut ruler (the slotted ruler with tear drop shapes at each end) and rotary cutter with a cutting mat.

The skirts were irresistible so I made one for me too! The girls are loving it. So am I. Turns out now my daughter and I have another Mother Daughter skirt to wear!!!

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

MS Mafia Walk 2011

We had signed up for the 2011 MS Walk as part of the MS Mafia Team from Tarrant County on Saturday, April 2nd. The day was bright and sunny and ideal for the walk. The walk was organized inside Trinity Park in Forth Worth, Texas. The 5 KM walking trail winding along lush green grass was simply breath-taking. It was heartening to see hundreds of supporters show up to raise funds for our fight against Multiple Sclerosis. Kudos to our entire team led by Cydney Grubb who signed up 140 walkers to raise $3,500! Way to go, Team MS Mafia!!! Quite a rewarding way to start off your weekend, wouldn’t you agree?

Friday, April 1, 2011

Dress to Dance Wear

My daughter was participating in her school annual talent show and had chosen a party dress to wear. The dress looked quite pretty but I felt that it was not flashy enough for the stage. I wanted to do something about it.

I decided to add some shine to it by using a sequined fabric. The advantage of this fabric is that it does not fray around the edges -which meant no hemming!!

I prepared several strips of one, two, three inch width. I sewed one inch strip on the neckline. Two inch strip went on the sleeves. I used three inch strip around the bottom edge gathering. One inch strips went around the legs of the tights to match the dress! My daughter simply glittered on the stage as she went through her graceful motions!

This glittering fabric changed the look of the dress from a simple party dress into a nice dance wear. When she was dancing, the little addition to the dress made a big difference on the stage.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Cosmetic Kit

Project of the week: This week the students made a cosmetic kit.

Students selected their fabric and ribbons of their choice to go on the sides of the zipper.

We used a heavy weight fabric as lining to make the bag retain its shape.

Students gained more experience in sewing zippers.

Initially they had a hard time putting the ribbons together on the sides of the zipper.

This project also helped them to handle and sew slippery fabrics.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Dress out of Sari

I used my georgette sari again to make these dresses. This time I used the same material but sewed it in different styles. I made a kid’s style dress for my daughter.
The thing that makes georgette fabric distinctive is its crinkly crepe-light texture, which feels slightly rough and dull, but gives the finished article a bouncy, flowing look.
The most challenging part of sewing silk georgette material might be the cutting part.

Although I have sewn with slippery fabrics such as chiffon, I prefer to sew 100% cotton fabric because of the way cotton handles while being sewn.
There is a challenge in creating matching mother & daughter clothes. While it might seem superficial and easy, there’s more to it than what catches the eye.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Fitting attire for my Man

My husband volunteers in our Temple kitchen where they prepare lunch for about 1500 devotees
every Sunday. When he asked me to make him an apron to wear while cooking, my first thought was ‘Go denim’! I embroidered his Initial at the center. To make it place appropriate, I decided to add a religious touch to it and came up with a design that says OM (the sound of god in Sanskrit language) on both pockets.

The only problem is that several other volunteers are pestering him to make one for them too! Too bad it is a volunteer set up, otherwise I could have turned the apron into my niche product.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Kite Festival

We went to the Kite Festival at Arlington River Legacy Park on Saturday, March 12, 2011
It was indeed a perfect day for flying kites. The skies were clear, absolutely no cloud in sight. Although there was not a lot of wind, no one seemed to be bothered about it. Everyone was busy getting their kites up or trying to keep them flying high. The park was alive with colors - on the ground as well as in the sky. It was like spring had set in a week earlier.

Of course the City of Arlington always takes care of the kids. There were stations for face-painting and hair coloring. They even had counselors guiding children to make their own kites. And as usual the Arlington Fire Department’s truck was huge draw. Kids were swarming all over the fire truck and parents were snapping away pictures.
It was a fun filled day for adults and kids alike! You can see more pictures here

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Pencil Pouch

Project of the week: Pencil Pouch

This week the students made a pencil pouch with zipper. At first they were intimidated by the zipper not sure how to sew it on to fabric. I showed them how to do it in a few simple steps. They followed my simplified steps and did it.

Guess what? They now think inserting zipper is not such a big deal anymore!

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Computer Bag

I love sewing my own purses and bags!

There's nothing better than having the perfect purse because you customized it for yourself. Plus, there's the undeniable thrill of using a cute fabric to sew a completely unique purse.

This computer bag is more or less like a sleeve. It can hold just the laptop, no accessories. I don’t like to carry all the accessories with it when travelling. I just carry the computer through the security line at airports. It is so much easier to handle, and less weight on your shoulder. I am a huge fan of paisley design. So I used that embroidery design with a monogram of my initial in the middle to add a personal touch. Used a nice black and white clock print fabric for the lining which reminds me that ‘time is precious’. There is a layer of foam in between to protect the laptop.

I also made a matching bag for my external memory card and thumb drives.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Child Measurement Chart

How many times have you been sewing something for a child when the directions say to cut a piece of elastic to the length of the child’s waist and you have to wait till the child comes from school.
I found this chart from Owly Baby Just do all of your measuring and record the numbers on the handy chart, and the next time you need to know any of her measurements you can just look it up. You can update this every year, they grow fast!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Purple Dress

One of my favorite concepts is making identical dresses for mother and daughter. My mother used to make them for her and myself when I was a kid. Now I am having fun making them for my daughter and myself.

The dress shown here is a 1960s inspired design in floral print. They come in handy for any casual occasion. Going to the beach, running errands, going to the park or even going out to a nice dinner just slip on some heels and off you go! Paves way for fun moments. What a great way for a mother and a daughter to bond through matching clothes. Besides, it definitely garners attention!

Friday, February 18, 2011

Clutch Purse

Project of the week: This week the students made a little zippered purse. The kids customized their purses the way they wanted. Of course they had a bonus waiting for them – yes, they got to play with the embroidery machine again!
This purse would make a nice gift. Slip in a gift card and it would be a great way to say thank you to their teacher or a special way to say Happy Mother's Day to mom.

A customized purse is perfect because you created it yourself to fit your needs. Plus, there's the undeniable thrill of using a cute fabric to sew a completely unique purse.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Cushion Cover with Peace Sign

Project of the week: Peazzz Pillow

My students and I always discuss our project in detail before getting started. February is all about love and since they all like the Peace sign, we decided to make an appliqué of the peace sign on a love print fabric. The kids picked the fabric from my stash which was perfect for the project.

I made a peace sign pattern on my computer, printed it and then pasted it on a leather board and made the pattern.

The girls used that pattern and cut their peace sign appliqué. We chose a dark material for their cover so as to get a contrast effect. They picked purple which was perfect. Each kid chose a different seam to sew the Peace appliqué on the pillow case and matched this seam to the back closure as well. The result? A gorgeous pillow case!

image of the backside of a cushion cover

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Tacky Ties

Project of the week:

The kids had lots of fun making their own tacky ties for Tacky Tie day at their school. The ties were created out of colorful fabric which gave them a cool tacky look.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Mom & Daughter Dress

Wearing matching mom daughter dresses would be getting in on the 1930's style of dressing fun.

I used to wear sari in India. When we moved to the U S, I brought a lot of them with me. I converted some of them into matching dresses for me and my daughter. It was so much fun sewing these dresses.

I think Mother daughter matching clothes and ensembles is a perfect picture of understanding and love between the two. What do you think ? I can’t wait to see your comments.

Sunday, January 30, 2011


Project of the week:
Cotton fabric wallet. Ideal for ID cards, Library card and of course their allowance. They were surprised at how much this fabric wallet can hold.