Victoria has been sewing some new creations..

2 Oct

This was one of my favorites to design..When this fabric came it was exciting. I started and Victoria came up with the details on the bodice and sleeves.  She has an eye for detail.

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Here are some peeks at others we have done this fall.  Been incorporating more knits this fall.. Organic knit from Monaluna..with a little lace splashed on..

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Then, a full skirt with lace and a lined lace knit top, identical to the mommy’s top in above photos

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We also did a little Christmas dress..

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It has been so long..6 months..so much has happened..Babies born at church, summer travels, and now home schooling in full swing..

This year I am more intensely a teacher at our school.  More involved sharpening the children’s skills..

Victoria is doing the bulk of the sewing and Olivia the bulk of the book work and customer relations..

But, we all get a chance in the sewing room, and we all have our hand in the design and the decisions..It has been a journey.. We have been at this since my Ezra was 3 months old and in November he will be 7!! That is a long journey.. Not over yet, the girls have the equivalent of a college education in fashion design, garment construction, textiles, merchandising, self-employment, and home economics..

It amazes me what hard work and perseverance can accomplish..

Our family is taking a different direction, and it is good to see how in all labor there is profit..as the Lord says in His word.

Not always monetary, but surely lasting..

Here are a few custom dresses, designed and made for a little mother up in Michigan

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So thankful to God for His precious Son, Jesus Christ, who saves us from our sin and ourselves and gives us gifts and talents to share with others..So thankful for the never ending work of the Holy Spirit in our lives..refining us..and growing us..and giving us the desire to be more like Him..

Always want to give God the honor and credit..So many verses in the Bible are key to my heart..But one stands out today..

I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing…With out Him, we can do nothing..He is the beginning and the end of everything.. John 15:5 in the Bible.

Too much to comprehend, but so beautiful and comforting..

Looking forward to having a little more time to do some more blogging! 🙂

Growing time..

30 Apr

On a cold April morning these men went on a journey..you can see how cold they are with their clenched hands and forced smiles 🙂

P1160997The crew of our family carpentry business..from left to right..laborer/apprentice, part time laborer/apprentice, right hand man, and chief..

P1170001chief, husband, and daddy..taking his eldest sons on a growing trip..

P1170003right hand man..already learned much before the trip, stretched in the areas of customer service, reading plans, ordering materials, getting the truck ready for a 12 hour trip, carrying all their tools needed..

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Crew and support crew..So far they have been gone over a week.. we have been in contact by skype and this mother can see growth in her young men..So many life lessons..I hate to name a few because that would minimize the others..but I will jot a few down..responsibility, sacrifice, man’s provider role, flexibility, cheerfulness, …a weak representation..but a sampling..

They have been privileged to do a job on Nantucket Island, Mass.  This is a great privilege and I am reminded of the truth of God’s word in Proverbs 18:16..a man’s gift maketh a place for him.. And just seeing God’s hand in working out all the details, His ways are truly higher than our ways..

I stand in awe of Him.  The facet of the Lord, I am looking at in this time in my life is His practicality..He made us from dust..He knows our frame..He knows our physical needs..In today’s terms He is rather “crunchy” :-).. But oh, that does not diminish His glory, His power, His majesty, His holiness, His righteousness, oh no..it magnifies it in showing us how complete, total, perfect He is…

knowing all

seeing all

being over all

taking care of all

By His grace and mercy alone we live and move and have our being..may He use us for His glory..may we be content in the places He has set us..  so thankful for the knowledge that He is my Father..

P.S. spring babies at our house 🙂P1170094

Easter Finery

6 Apr

We had the privilege of singing in a sunrise service at a local community church yesterday..It was glorious to wake up get dressed and go sing praises to God and remember the resurrection of His son Jesus!  It was EARLY!!   We were there just before 6:00 a.m.

Spring is such a beautiful time to remember God’s faithfulness, His creation, His life giving power!  Grass is greening. Buds are ready to burst and the air is warming..We are thankful for His faithfulness to us in many ways..one being the coming of spring each year…..
P1160905The girls..they made the dresses..and Olivia made the crocheted flowers for their belts and their hair..
P1160910 The boys..men..plus our Choir director..Darius McBride..P1160908The girls and I we also made my dress last year..and Olivia helped me to crochet my little flower..

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Our family..

I pray He makes us more aware and more thankful in every aspect of  our lives..  In Him we live and move and have our being..

He is the author and finisher of our faith..He alone is worthy to be praised, honored, and glorified..

A vacation..a retreat..a story..

6 Mar

This past January the Lord blessed our family with a vacation..I flew down to Florida with a friend and they followed on the weekend..We were able to be away from all the work at our house..with 2 family businesses and a little farmette.

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We got to stay with my friend for a week, visit with my sister in law, and then a very dear retired couple offered us their condo for a few days..

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It was so needed, our family had not been on vacation for 7 years!

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Many of us were blessed with rest and relaxation..

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but I wanted to record God’s blessing to me..

For many years, I have wanted to go on a retreat and just be alone with God..with finances and responsibilities that just has not been possible.

This was a retreat in a different kind of way..

The Lord allowed me to meet 2 very dear ladies..that both spoke into my life and were a source of reconnecting with some of my dormant heart desires..they both have very close walks with the Lord, and my walk has been a busy walk the last 7 years..

Another way He drew near was through the girl’s art teacher from Florida, who we got to visit with for a couple hours..a loving, peaceful, adoptive soul..She drew me in to the most ministering hug!!! God knows our every need..As a mama I get lots of hugs, but they are different..This hug was from my Father, my Daddy..and she touched me in the deep places of my heart with love and acceptance..no strings..no expectations..

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Of course there was sun and warmth in the weather but God is my most urgent need..without Him life is empty and meaningless..I just wanted to Thank Him and to reminisce as the days are long and cold and my heart grows weary in the daily tasks and struggles..P1150684

The other night as I was awake in the middle of the night He reminded me with this verse in Galatians chapter 6 verse 9..  And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.

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He is with those that seek Him, that call on Him, that NEED Him..Those who put their trust in Him will not be ashamed..

He is my Daddy and I am asking Him to teach me to trust Him more..

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When I re-read Galatians as I write this I am moved to record that without Jesus’s sacrifice I could not say God is my Daddy..Oh Thank you Jesus for dying for me and making me able to call your Father, my Father..Thank you for adopting me..Thank you for accepting me..Thank you for promising that if I am not weary in well doing..I will reap if I faint not..Thank you for ALL your promises…..Thank you for hope…

The last custom sewing for 2014..

18 Dec

 

A quick addendum to yesterday’s post..Victoria finished up our last custom accessories for our mama in Mass. DSC_0441 The white top is just a white version of our Lacey top on our website..P1140695 This little red pleated dress is what she sent for us to match..she asked for white.. we love the versatility of white..P1140699 These pants have 3 ruffles..the middle ruffle is stretch lace..I designed these and Victoria made them happen..A mother’s respect for her brave daughter..I confess most of my life I have been afraid of knit..the older machines on which I learned to sew..just messed up knit!..Hence knit-phobia set in 🙂  But our newer, machines and Victoria’s courage in the face of the – her mother got on..Is amazing!.. She has pioneered, for our family, and I am going to conquer this phobia..with her help! :-)…

Oh, and did I mention that my sewing speed is speeding?  And knit does take a great measure of patience??  Godly virtue that I don’t possess and He may use learning to sew knits in teaching me this fruit of the Spirit..

Merry Christmas..We have got to get some sewing done for our selves now 🙂

Custom Sewing and reflection…

17 Dec

Almost 6 years ago..I started a sewing business..Over the last 27 years well, more..I have sewn here and there for family, friends and an occasional wedding..But in February 2009, I began making dresses to sell on e-bay..then etsy..then our own dedicated website..

Olivia and Victoria helped with little things like turning things inside out..running elastic and packaging.. Today, 6 years later, they are almost exclusively sewing and running a business that has grown each year..The Lord has given them a college education in the last 6 years..they have no written degrees but the amount of experience they have is astonishing..at least to me!!

In those 6 years we have designed, and sold our designs..but much of our work has been custom..people with idea’s coming to us and we have been able to make them a reality..That is very fun..it can also be stressful because we care so much that they get what they want..what they are envisioning..

Below are some photo’s of our latest custom order..A mama in Massachusetts has a precious daughter who she wants to keep covered and warm..her description was mod and modest :-).. The thing that is fun about this mama is she doesn’t have financial limitations..so she sent us 4 dresses and instructed us to make pants and a top to accent them..

The 4th dress’s pants and top are currently being sewn up..Her main instruction to me was “Chrissi, I want you and the girls to have fun”…this was freeing..as designing is so fun..

For one dress I got silk dupioni..a lovely fabric and we designed a little top and triple ruffle pants..I wanted the ruffles to show NO stitching..they turned out beautiful.. the top also showed minimal stitching..

P1140668 this was a great lesson in fine stitching for the girls…

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 Red dress is not our creation..just ivory, silk dupioni accessories..

P1140670 This dress was the inspiration for the silk dupioni..it was to be worn at a wedding..

P1140665 These pants are made from a jaquard in gold tones..They were to go with the dress below which was more of an every day dress..our customer’s mother-in-law made the little red dress..she is from Pakistan..The way everything came together was so fun!

P1140661 It was relaxing to go outside the box of having to get orders done to being creative and blessing someone..Victoria made hairbows out of the gold jaquard to match this outfit..the mama was surprised..

As I reflect on these things it is a cause of gratefulness to the LORD for His faithfulness..He promises that if we are faithful in the little things  we will be faithful in much..My adult daughters and I are learning faithfulness in integrity in business and craftsmanship..Not so spiritual..but yet profoundly spiritual..

We are learning that you never arrive..we are always in a place to learn and grow..and that is a great lesson in humility..For our family..humility is a virtue..It is what our Savior has called us to.  The realization that He is the giver of gifts..We want Him to be glorified, we want his love to flow through our hearts and minds and fingers and to reach others, those who know Him and those who we hope will know Him someday…Jesus is the only one who makes our life worth living..He is our all in all..And He has provided this place for us and we are thankful..

Have a Blessed Christmas and Holiday season…do take time to reflect on His gifts to us..

Chrissi, Olivia, and Victoria….

Creations from Olivia and Victoria

13 Nov

 

The girls, Victoria and Olivia gave me a sabbatical in September and October to enable me to concentrate on the younger children’s schooling..They endeavored to take the brunt of the business responsibilities..and they did a beautiful job!  I am back at the business but the pressure is definitely lessened as the girl’s, actually ladies, but they will always be my girls :-), have stepped up..I wanted to share some of their latest creations..logoDSC_6847 This is the Betsy Dress..and Grand knit ruffles..Designed by Victoria and I ..  mostly Victoria..

logoDSC_6838 This photo is precious! I wish we lived near our photographer!  She is in Wisconsin..She does a fabulous job!

logoDSC_7286 This is our Savannah tunic top/dress actually a Burda pattern and a couple of our favorite Moda Fabrics.. And the Grape Grand Corduroy Ruffles..We only had a few yards of this corduroy but thought it would make such nice winter pants..Olivia stitched the Savannah and the Cords..

DSC_7274 The yellow shoes are so cute!

 

shirtDSC_6860And last but not least the white ruffled top, Victoria made..it is a nice top for any time!!  I might have her make me one!

I am thankful for the sabbatical and the time to refocus and remember the blessings and priorities in my life…there is a time and a season for everything..