Monday, February 22, 2010

February is National Smocking Month

I would like to brag a bit, if I may, please?
My sweet &
very talented friend, Sara Norris is a new blogger
and is having her first give-away.

She is the owner of the custom made heirloom
clothing shop called
Sarah Norris Limited & the blog of the same name


This woman makes the most
GORGEOUSheirloom clothing imaginable.
She has been a contributor & a featured artist on the cover of
Sew Beautiful magazine.

Since February is National Smocking Month,
to promote the art of smocking,
Sara is giving away a pleated bonnet, finished and ready to smock.
This is the perfect starter project if you've ever wanted to learn to smock.

Click HERE if you would like to be included in the drawing.

Below is a picture of my first smocking project....that's right...a bonnet.

Don't look too closely, as there are lots of mistakes but I learned so much with this little project.
I've gone on to do several more bonnets & many dresses since &
now I feel antsy if I don't have a smocking item to work on in the evenings.

One of the most difficult & yet rewarding outfits I made
for my granddaughter was
the party dress "Coco", by Connie Moses which was featured in
Australian Smocking & Embroidery.
(Issue #85)

It was a true labor of love, working with brown floss on
brown polka dot twill.
Very difficult to see & my fingers ached by the time
I finished the smocking.

It has a very full circle skirt with a wide satin band
which twirls beautifully!

I must thank my smocking friends from my weekly
"Smock & Talk" group,
Nicole & Suzanne, who were invaluablein helping me finish this dress.
It turned out so nice that I had professional photos
taken of my granddaughter Ms. C. in it.

One of these photos is in this month's issue #90 of the
Australian Smocking & Embroidery magazine.
Since I haven't gotten my copy yet, I don't know which one!!

I'm showing you this dress to convince you that if I can learn to smock

Thanks for visiting.



  1. Rett
    thanks so much for the great blog!!!!
    I just love that dress and Caroline is a doll in it . You did a great job on the dress as well as that precious bonnet!!!
    I didn't know the dress was going to be in AS&E!!! How wonderful!!! Just got my notice that my issue had been mailed so i can't wait to see!!!
    Got you entered into the drawing.
    Thanks again for your kind words!!

  2. Your granddaughter is adorable, Rett, and looks so lovely in the dress grandma made for. Taking professional photos was a wonderful idea. The pictures will be treasures forever.

    I can appreciate the work and skill that went into your projects. When my daughters were little I made smocked dresses for them, real treasures for me. I can see them clear as day wearing their tiny dresses.

  3. Rhett,
    The dress is gorgeous! I love brown and pink together and your grandaughter is beautiful! She looks so girly :)
    I smocked when my daughters were young and hopefully one day I will have grandchildren. I have so many issues of Sew Beautiful magazine! Old and new issues. Congratulations on being published in AS&E!

  4. Oh, not published, Donna...just shown as an example along with many others of dresses made from their patterns.

  5. Your granddaughter is darling and I love, love, love the dress. I had my daughter in smocked Polly Flinder's dresses until she was old enough to beg me to stop! I don't think there is anything sweeter.


  6. Your first little smocking project, the bonnet, is just too cute! My daughter wore those when she was a baby. And the dress you made for your granddaughter is gorgeous! You are sooo talented!

  7. What a great way to celebrate National Smocking Month. Truthfully, I didn't know there was such a month, but I think it is a great idea. Think we can get some PR on Oprah?

    You know I love that dress and Miss C. is just gorgeous in her professinal photos and Rhettamade dress. What are you smocking now, Rett? I have missed seeing your projects.

  8. Bunny, I'm in the middle of making the "Angel" dress from issue #89 of AS&E. Beading & smocking is complete, bows for sleeves are done, back bodice is its on to construction. Wish me luck!

    Thanks everybody for your sweet words of appreciation & encouragement. Your comments truly mean the world to me.

  9. Rett, I received my AS&E today and when I opened the package and took it out, it fell open to page 9. There was Caroline looking so gorgeous in her beautiful dress!! I was soooo excited. You did a wonderful job on the dress. Congratulations on Caroline's pic in AS&E.

  10. Ohhhh, Rett!!!! Caroline is absolutely adorable and so is the dress!!! Great job, you should be very proud of yourself!

  11. Rett, you are amazing! I know how much heartfelt love goes into these beautiful pieces of art. I hope Caroline's mother saves these heirlooms. The pink and brown is wonderful, but the darling model steals the show. Caroline is the cutest little thing. I can just imagine how much fun the two of you have together.
    I'm off to your friend's site. I may just have to take up a new hobby and smock something for Miss Annabelle. Congratulations on having a photo selected for AS&E. I hope I can find a copy on the newsstand.

  12. Oh wow! I didn't know that I knew a celebrity! Getting a pic in AS&E isn't easy......congratulations honey! You truly deserve it with that gorgeous dress that put all those holes in your fingers. Little Miss C doesn't really know how lucky she is to have you for a are a treasure!

  13. The work is fantastic... especially to someone who can's sew a stitch!!! Beautiful photos and what a great send-off for a friend!

  14. Hi Rhett! Beautiful little bonnet! And I love that cute dress...not to mention the cutie wearing it! Happy week!...Debbie

  15. The dress is beautiful and the granddaughter is gorgeous. I love the AS&E books too. My two granddaughters pictures were in one with their Madeline dresses from Issue 54 a few issues back.

    I smocked for my youngest daughter and am now smocking for both her daughters and another granddaughter.

  16. Hi Rett,
    Gorgeous! Both the dress and your dear gdau! You did a wonderful job!
    Hop over to Gollums...we won the Irish coffee glasses..yes, WE did! :)

  17. RETTA!!!!! Congratulations!!!! I just got my AS&E and saw Caroline's photo first thing. Even before I saw the name, I knew who she was! What a doll baby and that dress is just so perfect! You did such a lovely job!

    Happy Smocking!

  18. Caroline, who I also a.k.a. "Sweet Pea" is just as beautiful as ever in that darling smocked dress! I mentioned your blog on my blog, so hopefully you will get some traffic over here - I am really enjoying all aspects of your blog from sewing to your yummy table-scapes!

  19. The brown polka dot smocked dress is wonderful!!!! I love everything about it. I also smock and sew for my grands. I just posted today about a bishop that I'm making for one of my grands for Easter. I live in TN over in the SE part.

  20. I stumbled upon your Blog & knew I need to come back frequently. LOVE the dress & your granddaughter is darling.
    Beckie in Brentwood, TN

  21. Rett, I got my AS&E today! The picture is the one with Caroline sitting demurely with her hands folded-so sweet! Congratulations! I am so happy for you!

  22. I have always loved anything smocked! I had two daughters but never learned to smock :-(

    The hat is precious and the polka dot dress is adorable, as is Caroline!


  23. Rett, all the photos are wonderful, but the ones of your granddaughter are gorgeous. I also am envious of the smocking you done on that bonnet. It's lovely and looks quite old-fashioned. I hope you are having a fabulous day.


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