Monday, May 4, 2015

NYC Garment District


I've heard of the "Garment District" or Fasion District in NYC from the popular TV series " Project Runway".  Since my daughter works in the Bridal Industry, NYC became her summer intern project so I became even more familiar with it.  This past weekend I saw it from a personal perspective!
This neighborhood or borough is home to the majority of New York's showrooms and to the many fashion labels of today.  The area is less than 1 square mile and sits between Fifth Avenue and Ninth Avenue and from 34th Street to 42nd Street. (Not as hard to get around NYC as you think....it's just a grid!) You can find numerous shops lining the streets, on multiple floors in various buildings and serves all aspects of the fashion process from design and production to wholesale sellling.  We walked 7th Avenue several times a day to get to our hotel (and the nearest Starbucks!). Vogue Fabrics and  Spechler Vogel with all the familiar batistes, broadcloths, seersuckers, madras and piques that I'm familiar with were only open to wholesalers but just seeing the shop with all the sample boards posted in the window gave a sense of of ownership to the heirloom sewing art!

Mood Fabrics, however, allows retail shopping and is the "go to" place in "the city" for mill ends and cut-rate decorator fabrics, high end silks and wools, vinyl, leather and cottons imported from Italy. 
While I traditionally look for cottons for children's apparel or the perfect bunch of fat quarters, just the thought of fondling fabric of any sort made me giddy!   Dear Husband walked along with me smiling at the sheer delight of me touching all the fabrics to try to decide which to bring home with me.  Three floors of ceiling to floor sewing heaven!  (Maybe even a Project Runway fantasy?)

The Italian cotton reminiscent of Liberty lawn with a fine pastel print along with a turquoise voile caught my eye and felt so smooth as I fingered the fine fibers.  Not high end fashion or sparkly or silky but it called to me.... 


Still in fabric heaven,
Renee

P.S.All tutorials, information and images are the property of Renee Galloway at Ney Ney's Nest and are intended for personal use only.  Feel free to re-blog, pin, share with attribution to Ney Ney's Nest.  For all other purposes, please contact me at reneegalloway@me.com.  Thanks!


Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Spring Has Sprung

Spring has sprung....don't know if that is grammatically correct but I know the birds singing and all the "April showers" have been tremendous here in the south!

Creativity takes many forms....quilting, smocking, sewing, sketching, painting, music....these are a few of mine.  With the change of seasons, I find myself humming more, checking my bird feeders often and watching the flowers, grass and trees burst into all sorts of inspirational color!

(I recently painted this door wreath with a group of ladies at church for a Saturday morning "hen party")

What inspires you?  Is it all the glorious greens? What about the iridescent colors on a hummingbird?  Perhaps the gradient colors in a blooming flower?  

Do you take those spring cues and utilize them in your color palette? Try to audition fabrics for a new quilt?  What about floss colors in a smocking project?  

Spring has sprung.....what about your creativity? 

Springing right along,
Renee

P.S.All tutorials, information and images are the property of Renee Galloway at Ney Ney's Nest and are intended for personal use only.  Feel free to re-blog, pin, share with attribution to Ney Ney's Nest.  For all other purposes, please contact me at reneegalloway@me.com.  Thanks!

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Smocking Blog Posts


We all have moved before....sometimes it takes a while to get everything unpacked and put where it needs to be....
Such is the case with this blog that I moved from my previous web platform.  The content moved but links to the pictures were broken.  I have corrected this issue.

http://neyneysnest.blogspot.com/2013/06/picture-smocking-unraveled-part-2.html

This blog discusses the prep involved BEFORE  actually picture smocking.

Here are others discussing picture smocking:

http://neyneysnest.blogspot.com/2015/03/picture-smocking-tutorial-part-2.html

http://neyneysnest.blogspot.com/2014/04/spring-smock-along-picture-smocking.html

Enjoy the tutorials!

Happy Smocking,
Renee

P.S.All tutorials, information and images are the property of Renee Galloway at Ney Ney's Nest and are intended for personal use only.  Feel free to re-blog, pin, share with attribution to Ney Ney's Nest.  For all other purposes, please contact me at reneegalloway@me.com.  Thanks!

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome from Sewing

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome is most commonly caused by repetitive movements typically used when sewing, typing or using small tools, ie. rotary cutters, seam rippers.  Medical issues such as arthritis, menopause and thyroid conditions can also effect the tiny bones in the wrist that can squeeze the median nerve that runs through this "carpal tunnel" causing numbness, tingling and weakness in the hand and fingers and even cause pain to shoot up the arm and shoulder.
I first noticed tingling fingers after my chemotherapy for breast cancer and attributed it to residual neuropathy from the drugs used in my treatment.  Four years, more symptoms and several new doctors later, I'm recovering from Carpal Tunnel Release surgery as a result of severe Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.


Could I have prevented my condition?

Several precautions can be taken to reduce your risk for carpal tunnel syndrome.
       ~ Take breaks frequently while cutting, sewing by hand or using repetitive movements.
                      Good time to get a cup of java!!! or maybe walk the dog??
       ~Relaxing your hands with a cup of hot tea or coffee releases tension and can soothe strained
         muscles.
       ~ Stretch the fingers open wide.
         Rotate the wrists in clockwise and counter-clockwise circles.
       
         ~Wear wrist braces at night to allow the median nerve to flow freely through the carpal tunnel 
              without impingement.




         ~Practice sitting in ergonomic positions to receive any pressure you may be adding to your
           wrists.
    
  • It's VERY important to invest in a good chair that will allow you to sit comfortably with your shoulders and hips lined up, elbows and wrists in a straight line along with feet and knees being at a 45 degree angle.  Just ask me how I know!!!!
    I recently purchased a new Koala chair from The Sewing Room that has made worlds of difference in how my back, neck and shoulders feel after sewing.
    So anxious to get back to my machine and new (ergonomically correct) rotary cutter!!
    Are there any other stitchers, seamstresses with recommendations for great tools to aid our sewing?  What about sewing furniture or chairs?  Do you have favorite tools?

    Literally in "stitches" (ha-ha),
    Renee
    P.S.All tutorials, information and images are the property of Renee Galloway at Ney Ney's Nest and are intended for personal use only.  Feel free to re-blog, pin, share with attribution to Ney Ney's Nest.  For all other purposes, please contact me at reneegalloway@me.com.  Thanks!

Monday, January 19, 2015

Stitch in the Ditch

The only time it is a good thing to be in a DITCH is when you "stitch in the ditch".  This is a quilting method used to secure a backing fabric to the quilt layers or sandwich without doing anything fancy.  I have used monofilament thread in the top with 60 weight thread in the bobbin to match my quilt back. Using clear thread helps hide the stitch in the ditch and holds the quilt together to allow prettier quilting designs to be showcased.  It's helpful to use a walking foot but not necessary.



For example, I was working on several quilt as you go (QAYG) blocks and used this process to finish up my quilt.  When you QAYG, you actually build the layers one block at a time completely and quilt each one individually, THEN sew them together and add the backing, securing it with the stitch in the ditch method.  
Here are my "rows"with each block numbered with painter's tape.


Since I use my machine embroidery designs to quilt blocks, this method is good for me to be able to put the individual blocks into the embroidery hoop rather than the whole quilt!
This photo is of the "Wedding Wishes" quilt block.



Basically a stitch in the ditch is actually what it sounds like....stitching in the ditch of your seam.
Notes for "stitching in the ditch":
  ~seams need to be pressed open
  ~secures back to front with monofilament thread
  ~allows for quilting one block at a time
  ~helps with handling large quilts on a regular sewing machine

Stay out the the road ditches (especially this time of year) but let your stitches always be in the ditches!

Renee

  P.S.All tutorials, information and images are the property of Renee Galloway at Ney Ney's Nest and are intended for personal use only.  Feel free to re-blog, pin, share with attribution to Ney Ney's Nest.  For all other purposes, please contact me at reneegalloway@me.com.  Thanks!