Sunday, April 22, 2012

What Is On Your Domestic To-Do List?

Well hello my long lost readers! It seems that 2012 has been a rather blog post light year for me. I am currently out of town so there is no sewing going on, and I wasn't able to get pictures of the dress I finished before I left. So, instead I thought we'd discuss our domestic to-do lists. Shall we?

Now, before we get this party started, allow me to elaborate on exactly what I mean by a domestic to-do list. It is no secret that I love all things domestic and "homemakey". I love to cook and adore baking. I have a cookbook collection, containing roughly equal numbers of modern and vintage cookbooks. I have a fabric stash. I can fight off an invading army with nothing more than my hot glue gun and my razor sharp Ginghers. However, there are some domestic talents that are lacking in my arsenal. The domestic talents that I sill wish to learn are on my domestic to-do list. Everyone has one of those, right?

Now, lets talk about what lies on that to-do list. Do you excel at any of the domestic talents that I am currently, but not forevermore, lacking? Do you have your own domestic to-do list?

1. Knitting and Crochet
I must admit, readers,I get a bit jealous when I visit sewing blogs of ladies who can also knit and crochet. I dream of being able to knit a cute vintage inspired sweater or crochet a warm and cozy afghan.I may also be obsessed with the adorable knitted and crocheted slipper patterns that are available on Etsy.  I am determined to conquer both of these and then promptly start hoarding vintage knitting patterns.

2. Quilting
Sure I can sew clothes, but quilting is another story. Quilting takes precision and accuracy. I am not sure I even own a real ruler. Despite that, I truly do have a desire to learn to quilt. While I love the idea of hand quilting an heirloom quality quilt, my first goal is to learn to machine piece and quilt. I love the idea of snuggling up under a warm and toasty quilt that I lovingly pieced together with my own hands. Sure, it may cost more to make a quilt than to buy one, but with quality work the handmade quilt will last a significantly longer time. I want quality in a throw away world.

3. Embroidery
 I want to learn real hand embroidery, not machine embroidery. Yes, sometimes I do gaze lustfully at that $10,000 Bernina when I am sitting at the pattern table at Joanns, but I truly want to embroider by hand. About a year and a half ago I bought a box lot at an auction that included embroidery hoops in every shape and size imaginable. Apparently, and stupidly might I add, I took whatever it was I wanted from the box ( I don't even remember what it was), and then I gave the hoops to the Goodwill. What the heck was I thinking? I need those back! I want to embroider cute little flowers onto dishtowels, pretty little designs onto pillowcases, and most of all I want to embroider an "R" onto the tag area of things that I sew.

4. Tatting
Talk about a lost art! Does anyone still tat* lace anymore? How amazing would it be to sew a beautiful dress and then make your own lace to add some oomph to your dress? I have came across some hand tatted lace in very small quantities at estate sales before, but never in any useable quantities. Do any of you readers tat* lace?
* Not sure if tat is the correct word, but spell check told me "tatt" was incorrect.

5. Upholstery
Okay, maybe this one isn't necessarily something that your average mid century housewife knew how to do, but it is still something I wish to learn nonetheless. I want to be able to rescue unloved vintage furniture that just needs a new lease on life. Doesn't everyone dream of knowing how to make a perfectly tufted button on an armchair? Just think of all the possibilities that Craigslist furniture would pose if you had the knowledge to reupholster anything and everything.

So, dear readers, that is my domestic to-do list. What domestic activities do you wish to tackle? Let's talk about it!


  1. Wow you would be like a black belt in domesticity if you could do all of these things! I sort of learned to sew in 4th grade, but didn't really like it, so I don't feel much need to do that or crochet now. I have also done some hand embroidery, but nothing extensive. I might have some interest in quilting, but I think I would almost always opt for sewing clothes if the option came up. I suppose I *did* promise my mother a quilt at *some point* but, well, at the moment other things are more fun and interesting. It would be fun if you did learn about all of these domestic skills though - I would love to see all of your creations!

  2. Learn to crochet, finish the quilts that my grandmother made, learn to upholster. I can knit and hand embroider.

  3. I have made two quilts, but that was before I learned to make clothes... I am also jealous of all the cute sweaters people are knitting. You know I love estate sales too, so I long for the day when I have a garage where I can fix up awesome furniture! Embroidery and tatting sound like torture to me, too slow. That would be really impressive if you learned to do all of those!

  4. Dear Rebecca,
    I am a beginning level garment maker and I found your blog via sew retro so I have been reading for a little while. ANYWAY, I just started quilting a few weeks ago and trust me, its a lot of fun. Using scraps from your garment making makes it affordable and there is a TON of quilt shops around me with classes or learning from books is possible. Equipment is not expensive, there is usually some on craigslist.
    Also, crocheting I find really fun but I can only knit on a loom. I have no hand coordination with knitting needles.