Saturday, June 27, 2015

Las Vegas Retreat Projects-Completed!

I was so excited to be able to go to the SAGA Retreat in Las Vegas in February and be able to take classes. I signed up to take the Paper Doll Dress squares with Brenda Shade and looked forward to actually making the two projects -Mother's Rose and Cottontail. I have owned Brenda's book  (Sweet Memories) for a number of years, along with a patterns for square yoke and bishop dresses, but I had just never got around to making even one of the designs.

My finished Mother's Rose Quilt Square
Vegas was my chance! But like all good plans, things changed as I went to Vegas with my right arm in cast up to my elbow as two weeks prior to leaving I fell on black ice and gave my wrist a multiple, unstable fracture- nothing simple for me, oh no! Having my wrist in a cast and very badly swollen and bruised fingers meant there was no fine hand sewing for me! But I decided to pick up a needle and at least thread it ready to smock on the tiny pleated dress skirt from the Mother's Rose kit. Then I got brave and using my right hand to guide the needle into the pleats and my left to pull it out I smocked the five 2 1/2 inch rows. It only took me nearly the whole day, but the smocking was acceptable and at least I was doing something!

My completed Cottontail quilt square
Anyway, after six long weeks in a cast I my wrist and hand were freed and I was able to use sewing as some of my therapy and sew I did. I completed the two projects and loved them. Did I say that I loved them? They are so cute and I am now planning a quilt and have five bishop papaer doll dresses ready to smock and make into squares and plans for several more dress squares. My stash of small fine fabric pieces will have found a use, along with those small pieces of lace.

Bunnies and a Bow!
So now I am getting excited as I am going to the SAGA Retreat in Chicago a month away in July and I have my paper doll dress squares to keep me busy while I wait for my flight. What classes am I taking in Chicago? None. I am going to be with my smocking friends and help out where I am needed and work on my paper doll dress squares. If you are going look out for me and ask me how my projects are going I will be happy to show you!

Did I say I love these little dresses??!

Shadow work bunnies and bows with pinstitched Madeira appliqued hem.
You can see other patterns and designs that Brenda has on her website
Her book, Sweet Memories is now out of print, but can be found on various Internet sale sites.



  1. Beautiful work, Julie! You have me motivated to take mine out and finish it. I found a copy of Brenda's book on after I got back from Vegas--I think I will make a wallhanging. Enjoy Chicago!
    Lynn in Ottawa

  2. I am pleased to have motivated you,Lynn. I am certainly on my way to making a quilt. I hope to have some followup blogs with my progress.

  3. that is a beautiful quilt...and eyes catching