"Recent surveys of Church members have shown a serious erosion in the number of families who have a year’s supply of life’s necessities. Most members plan to do it. Too few have begun . . . It is our sacred duty to care for our families, including our extended families." (President Thomas S. Monson- note: the italicized parts were italicized in his original talk)
Have you ever thought about this duty we have? No one wants to see anyone suffer.
Let's talk skill building…
Last week I talked about the prices of patterns and so I wanted to add some alternatives. In this post there's some oh so good ideas on repurposing t-shirts. I could see how easy it would be to use grown-up t-shirts to make little kid t-shirts. So work on building up those sewing skills!
I, myself, was just going to do this but ran across this great video. The only thing on mine is that I plan to get wider at the bottom as my t-shirts tend to be loose everywhere but at the bottom. Being able to make what you like is wonderful. I like how he uses the tracing wheel to get the neck and armholes. Such a great video! The pic below is of a tracing wheel like the one in the video. I would add that you need to use a stretch stitch. Most machines made in the last thirty-five years should have this stitch read your manual.
https://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=how+to+make+a+pattern+from+a+t+shirt&&view=detail&mid=88C876A60D0014D2389488C876A60D0014D23894&&FORM=VDRVRV - this is so good.
https://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=how+to+make+a+pattern+from+a+t+shirt&&view=detail&mid=DBA82479843C0E0B2CF7DBA82479843C0E0B2CF7&rvsmid=88C876A60D0014D2389488C876A60D0014D23894&FORM=VDQVAP v-neck note from me to you, never sew over pins. Pull them out when you get to them.
https://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=how+to+make+a+pattern+from+a+t+shirt&&view=detail&mid=DBA82479843C0E0B2CF7DBA82479843C0E0B2CF7&rvsmid=88C876A60D0014D2389488C876A60D0014D23894&FORM=VDQVAP - a neat way to change a round neck to a v-neck on t-shirts.
https://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=how+to+make+a+pattern+from+a+t+shirt&&view=detail&mid=DBA82479843C0E0B2CF7DBA82479843C0E0B2CF7&rvsmid=88C876A60D0014D2389488C876A60D0014D23894&FORM=VDQVAP another version on how to make a t-shirt from ready wear.
https://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=how+to+make+a+pattern+from+a+t+shirt&&view=detail&mid=DBA82479843C0E0B2CF7DBA82479843C0E0B2CF7&rvsmid=88C876A60D0014D2389488C876A60D0014D23894&FORM=VDQVAP - four ways to sew knit neckline with a bonus way at the end.
https://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=how+to+make+a+pattern+from+a+t+shirt&&view=detail&mid=DBA82479843C0E0B2CF7DBA82479843C0E0B2CF7&rvsmid=88C876A60D0014D2389488C876A60D0014D23894&FORM=VDQVAP - stretch stitches.
http://thestitchingscientist.com/2013/09/free-vintage-shirt-pattern-and-tutorial.html - this is a free pattern.
I am trying to show you the many ways you can build your skills.
https://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=how+to+sew+half+slips&qpvt=how+to+sew+half+slips&view=detail&mid=D0A44F18FDD25E3919CFD0A44F18FDD25E3919CF&&FORM=VRDGAR - how to make a half slip, you can find slip fabric for less.
https://www.thesprucecrafts.com/panties-undergarments-patterns-2977352 - here are free patterns and a tutorial.
I wanted you to see that you could develop your sewing skills very frugally. I am working on my sewing skills right along with you.
Keep putting in your storage. Remember to have hard copies of recipes just in case your computer goes down.
Don’t forget to store water.
Build your binder with "do it yourself" recipes, i.e. pumpkin pie spice, taco seasoning, enchilada sauce, etc.
This week I dried some baby spinach and put it in a pint jar to use in any soups, salads, breads, pasta, quiche,... anything.
I froze two lasagnas to save cottage cheese that was about to go bad.
I have found the t-shirt I want to make a pattern off of and have fabrics pulled to do some.
There are so many ways to save money. Sewing is one of them. So pull out your sewing machines and dust them off.
Have a lemonade and relax while you read the manual. If you don’t have one you can one get online.
Just keep doing the best you can. Learn more ways to be frugal and share in the comments because we learn from each other.
"Today, I emphasize a most basic principle: home production and storage. Have you ever paused to realize what would happen to your community or nation if transportation were paralyzed or if we had a war or depression? How would you and your neighbors obtain food? How long would the corner grocery store—or supermarket—sustain the needs of the community?" (President Ezra Taft Benson)
I think that as we see so many devastating things on TV happening around the world, we all see how long it takes to get help. Really, we need to get our storage in so we can help not only ourselves but those around us.
With prices rising and wages not rising, it is time to be actively getting in our storage and learning how we can be frugal and building our skills. They all go together, each are important.
I was in a Salvation Army store while waiting for the fabric store to open. I was going to look through sale patterns for a blouse that I want to make, or something close that I can switch it to what I wanted. I looked through that tub of patterns hoping to find something and wouldn’t have to go to the other store to search for it. I did not find that blouse but found many good patterns in my size. They were 19 cents! Most had not been used.
So this week another set of patterns were on sale. Since I had no luck last week finding the pattern I wanted, I thought I would look at the patterns that were on sale. I found one that was very close and would work….$1.99 on sale. It wasn’t all that long ago that they were a dollar on sale. I wandered around to look at fabric, I wasn’t going to buy any I just wanted to see what there was and oh my goodness the prices were sooooo high! I got the pattern and left.
I noticed the non-sale price was $19.99. Incredible. Does anyone ever pay that price I wonder??? Add the price of the fabric I saw and we are easily talking forty dollars and after that you still have to sew it...wow. It makes me glad that I saved my patterns over the years and picked up patterns and fabric at yard sales and was blessed to be thought of by kind people downsizing. A BIG thank you to them!
It makes me think that a lot of people won’t learn the sewing skills that are needed. That is why I suggest refashioning your clothes. Take something you like and carefully take it apart. Draw around on paper and then you will have the pattern. Sew it back together. Now if you know how to sew, you can draw each piece without taking it apart. Go to yard sales and look for things to refashion or big pieces that can be used for fabric. Always be on the look out for fabric and notions.
I know I have mentioned this before but worth doing again... with the patterns I found at the Salvation Army, I needed to put them into my system, which is…
I take out the contents of the pattern package and put it in a brown envelope. I put the number in the top right corner of the envelope and if it's simplicity or another kind (now I am working on my patterns for me or grown up section, I have a children’s binder too).
Then I put the pattern envelope into a page protector.
I then file the brown envelope with the pattern inside in order of the numbers in the right hand upper corner.
Then I put the page protector with the pattern envelope inside it into a binder. This way I can flip through and decide what I want to make. For me this works well. It is a bit of work but it pays off if you keep it up.
You may have a better way but this has worked for me. Feel free to share your ways, we all learn from each other! If I were to donate, I would pull out the brown envelope and stick it in its page protector.
I plan to further my sewing skills.
I suggest that you mothers with kids still at home get together and form clothing swaps to bless each other.
Also, find free patterns on the internet.
Also, get working on those mending skills - this helps so much!
https://sewdifferent.co.uk/2-hour-top/ - here is a free pattern. Now I need more length so I could draw a line a couple of inches under the arms straight across and cut a piece of paper and add length where needed and then just tape on the paper.
To the cut line on each side….. You could also insert that fabric and yet another version you can make the back longer. So make your pattern what you want.
https://sewdifferent.co.uk/how-to-make-your-own-bias-binding/ and learn to make the bias trim.
http://www.awilson.co.uk/cherry-blossom-dress-without-a-pattern/ - good one to learn on.
http://thestitchingscientist.com/2015/05/how-to-make-a-simple-bag-in-5-minutes.html I plan to make this bag for gifts using fabric I have.
On to knitting...
http://tincanknits.com/pattern-SC-flaxlight.html - this is a great pattern for those who know how to knit.
This brings me to a project I am working on (pictured at the top). I have three binders so far. One is called "do it yourself." This will be recipes that are like an enchilada sauce recipe that I tried and liked a couple weeks ago. That will go in along with my taco seasoning mix and other things that I can do myself like BBQ sauce. So they are all together and I will save money making them myself.
Then I will make one binder that I will put the knitting swatches in that I learn.
The last binder I will do the same with sewing. In this blog post I have the bias binding site that I linked above, so I will make a swatch of that technique and put it in the binder for reference.
I know it sounds like busy work and yes, it kind of is, but I will be building three useful binders. You could add anything like crochet or whatever you are working on.
https://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=knitting+technique&view=detail&mid=5316AD7F0D1C4AE3D9CB5316AD7F0D1C4AE3D9CB&FORM=VIRE so do a little knitted swatch and put in the binder.
I feel that the time is now and not to put off until later to get things in and learned.
Keep putting in storage and supplies and learn skills to become more frugal. Make a binder on frugal ideas.
"More than ever before, we need to learn and apply the principles of economic self-reliance. We do not know when the crisis involving sickness or unemployment may affect our own circumstances. We do know that the Lord has decreed global calamities for the future and has warned and forewarned us to be prepared." (President Ezra Taft Benson)
"Too often we bask in our comfortable complacency and rationalize that the ravages of war, economic disaster, famine, and earthquake cannot happen here. Those who believe this are either not acquainted with the revelations of the Lord, or they do not believe them. Those who smugly think these calamities will not happen, that they somehow will be set aside because of the righteousness of the Saints, are deceived and will rue the day they harbored such a delusion." (President Ezra Taft Benson)
I hear this a lot…nothing can happen here and not in this day. Anyone’s life can change in a second. I know things are hard and will get harder. If you can do a little then do a little. If you can learn a little, then learn a little but do not put it off.
As I get older it takes me way longer to do things and funds are not always available. So I do the things that I suggest you do… When I go in a store I pick up one thing for storage. I am cooking from scratch, learning new skills and advancing my learning in areas like sewing and using what I have.
A huge skill is learning to be content. Life is so much happier when you are content. Only misery comes from wanting so much and thinking you will never be happy till you have it. Enjoy what you do have.
I took a class at church once and they suggested we learn all the things your sewing machine can do or learn all your stove features, so I always wanted to do all the things offered on my sewing machines.
Above is my workhorse machine. It has different stitches and a series of stretch stitches. Read the manuals on your sewing machine and learn them all.
See all those stitches on the right? Much to learn on my sewing machines. I did a sample binder to see how the stitches looked and any info on them.
Refurbishing a treadle and learning their feet attachments.
The more we learn, the more we know. So one way to be content is to learn with what we already have.
I know for some if you can afford classes, take them and learn. For people who are like me who have no funds to do that, learn by reading and by watching computer tutorials. For me, I use it all. Books are huge for me but sometimes I need to see something done and watching it on the computer totally helps. So what I am saying is that even with a lack of funds we can still learn. Nothing is stopping us from learning.
Did you know how many different ways there are to make bread?
There are so many things to learn about spinning...
Weaving has a language all its own...
A tidbit - weaving, spinning and bobbin lace and the sewing machine all have bobbins, not a one of them is alike.
Another tidbit, weaving and tatting both have shuttles.
So what I am saying is for you to learn your skills and don’t let funds be an excuse not to learn.
Keep working on your skill building and your storage, do the best that you can.
"I wish to urge again the importance of self-reliance on the part of every individual Church member and family. None of us knows when a catastrophe might strike. Sickness, injury, unemployment may affect any of us. We have a great welfare program with facilities for such things as grain storage in various areas. It is important that we do this. But the best place to have some food set aside is within our homes, together with a little money in savings. The best welfare program is our own welfare program. Five or six cans of wheat in the home are better than a bushel in the welfare granary." (President Gordon B. Hinckley)
Building your personalized storage assures that you get what you want and what you are used to eating.
Don’t forget to stock up on first-aid items, toilet paper and feminine products, deodorant, toothpaste, etc. Even toothbrushes, hair brushes, look inside your bathroom and write out a list of everything you use.
I like to store ingredients like spices. For example: chili powder can be for soups like chili and veggie chili or can be seasoning in goulash or in making fajita seasoning or taco seasoning.
So I like storing ingredients that make many things.
Cooking from scratch saves us so much money.
http://tipnut.com/baking-mixes-seasonings/ - this is one of my favorite sites
If you store the ingredients, you can make sweetened condensed milk or taco seasoning without running to the store.
I had one can left of enchilada sauce with a plan to make my own sauce after that. But on this one morning I was making enchiladas, I opened the can and turned and the lid caught my shirt and fell on the floor. What a mess!! But I quickly used this recipe…https://www.livingonadime.com/enchilada-sauce/
I was worried it might be too different but when cooked, I taste tested the sauce and it was perfect! It was just like the one that I spilled. I will never buy it from a store again! But remember I was in the middle of making enchiladas, I would have had to run to the store but because I store ingredients along with my food storage it saved the day.
https://iambaker.net/homemade-yellow-cake-mix/ - making your own mixes helps to stretch time and money…scroll down in the link for other items, even funfetti cake!
https://iambaker.net/chocolate-mug-cake-1-minute/ - okay, if you don't take any other recipe away from this you need this one!! It is our favorite! We like making three... one chocolate, one cherry chip or strawberry, and last but not least, our favorite which is lemon. Heat is here, in the mid nineties, and this is a great one minute in microwave dessert that would be good to teach your kids or make for family night, everyone picks their toppings.
http://sugarbananas.com/homemade-nesquik this is a lot cheaper than its counterpart and goes right along with what I was saying about ingredient storage. The baking cocoa in my storage could make this or cake or brownies or hot cocoa mix, so store ingredients too!
How are you coming on your skills??
Come with me to the sewing room…
I found this clapper at a yard sale a year ago for a quarter. I saw an ad online for people to come in and buy one and the price was $49.99. Well I saved a lot. The pincushion I made with embroidery floss and crocheting a granny square. See how good it is to build those skills?
It is time to make some dresses for myself so here is my dress in progress...
I have been looking for a top pattern that I would want but haven't found anything even close yet. I want short sleeves and gathered at a high waist but it looks like I will build my sewing skills to make my own pattern.
Keep building your storage and your skills.