My mother suggested I browse after-Christmas advertisements before purchasing a sewing machine. This worked out great due to a sale at Joann’s Fabrics. It allowed me to buy a Singer Confidence 7467 at half price! Unfortunately my machine has sat in its box over the last year while I attempted to find a beginner’s sewing class.

There were a number of classes being offered around Austin, but I always ran into some sort of issue. Mainly the classes were scheduled for days and times during which I had previous commitments. When I did locate a class I could attend, they were always full by the time I tried to sign up.

Well, my mother surprised me with sewing lessons as a Christmas present. She located a custom bag store in Fort Lauderdale, Sassy BB, which also offers classes. I attended the two part beginner course during which I produced the sweet apron pictured above. Most of her fabrics are feminine in nature due to bags and purses being her primary business. Luckily she had a bit of the fabric used to make shirts for Florida Turnpike tollbooth operators. It is a great way to remember my trip to Florida!

Now that I am back in Texas, I want to put my new skills to use. Joann’s put their novelty printed cotton fabric on sale for 40% off last week. I managed to find some with a skull pattern that looked somewhat manly. Around $14 bought me enough to make two shirts.

I also took home red and black thread. My research said to sew the cut ends of fabric before pre-washing it. This was also an opportunity to see which thread works best on the pattern. Turns out I find both appearances pleasing. The first shirt will take advantage of the red thread’s tendency to blend it better, therefore hiding some of my mistakes. Hopefully that experience will help the second shirt to turn out nice with contrasting black thread.

By the way, I also started up the dinner blog again. I will make every attempt to maintain it on a more regular basis this time.