Monday, February 18, 2013

Too Many Hobbies!

Every few years, I get really excited about quilting.  There are two unfinished projects stored in my apartment, neither of which has progressed far enough to begin the actual quilting process.

The main reason is that I am obsessed with making a completely hand-sewn quilt.  So all of that piecing takes quite a bit of time!  

After a while, my fingertips are too sore to continue.  (I never managed to learn how to use a thimble – if I put one on a finger, I end up using another finger, which defeats the whole purpose of the sewing tool!)

I did manage to finish one quilt, many, many years ago.  My little dollhouse family needed a quilt!  But I just bound the edges and skipped the quilting all together, now that I look at it.

Dollhouse People: A Doll Family You Can Make was my absolute favorite library book when I was a child.  I must have checked it out forty times.  It was out of print at the time, and still seems to be so.  This is a real shame, as it is an amazing way to learn how to sew.  Basic hand stitches are included along with patterns and instructions on how to alter the patterns.  I clearly remember the suggestion to use a spoon to “iron” open the tiny seam allowances.  I may not have had access to an iron, but I certainly could get my hands on a spoon!  Unfortunately, the copy at the library disappeared a few years later - I sure hope that whoever took it really appreciated it.

Does anyone else remember this lovely book?

While the piecing is embarrassingly uneven, I did place my finished quilt in a shadow box a few years ago along with my Dollhouse Family as a reminder of how far my sewing has come.

And perhaps I will manage to learn some hand quilting this year! 


  1. Oh gosh I remember this book! I'd completely forgotten about it, thank you so much for the memory jog! I too checked it out of the school library. Not knowing the first thing about sewing, and seemingly not 'getting' the fact that it could teach me, I simply gazed at the pictures and wished and dreamed I could make the dolls. Or, more likely that my Mother would make them for me.

    She always made us the most beautiful lined Barbie doll clothes and even furniture from household items.

    I think this book may have been the reason I wanted to be a doll maker when I 'grew up'. And now I am. I better scour ebay for this treasure!

  2. I had never heard of this book (I would have loved it!) but it is available through amazon - and I just added it to my wish list. I have granddaughters that would love this.

  3. Isn't it amazing how meaningful children's books can forever be in our lives? I so enjoyed reading about this childhood inspiration for you.

  4. I would've loved that book as well... my favorites to check out were historic costume books.

    I love all of the purple calicos in the quilt pictured at the top! That looks like it will be one cozy quilt.

  5. The title of this post made me smile ear-to-ear, as I sometimes feel like I have too many hobbies (or perhaps - and I prefer this explanation a whole lot more - too little time) as well.

    Your dollhouse characters are so wonderfully sweet. I've always been drawn to hand sewing (perhaps that why I love doing cross stitch and embroidery so much), and would love to make something from this book, too. I'll be checking to see if our wee little local library has it the next time I'm there. Thanks for the inspiration!

    ♥ Jessica

  6. About your thimble: I'd been sewing for fifty years without a thimble, and was utterly convinced I could never learn to use one. Then I took up quilting; after far too many punctures of my fingers, I decided to use the darned thing until it was easy. One quilt later, mission accomplished.

  7. I would always check that book out of the library. I was obsessed with sewing even as a kid! :)

  8. AH! I did have that book! (Well, my mom does) I used to pour over it all the time...I finally made the dolls when I was probably in middle school (and too old to play with them!) but never really finished all their accessories...It fit my obession with not only sewing but also mini things!