Saturday, September 2, 2017

Sewing Bee Round 1!!

Well it's Sewing Bee time at Ye Olde Pattern Review!  
This time the first round is to make a "pencil" skirt inspired by a piece of music or a musician.  I have my pattern cut out and basted and will be posting it soon!

Friday, February 24, 2017

A Steampunk Tea

Hi Everyone!
Clearly I am a very sporadic blogger--I have every intention of blogging more regularly seems to get in the way!
Annnnyway, I have entered the Suduko contest on Pattern Review, which consists of making 10 coordinating garments in two months.  I had completed 4 of the 10, when my sweet daughter-in-law Teri, and my little 3 year old granddaughter Emily, recently went to a tea house in Hillsboro.  We have decided to try different tea rooms in the Portland and outlying areas.  Teri is great at sleuthing out new ones and she mentioned that there is a Steampunk Tea House right in my area!  Who knew? Well, with that, the 5th piece of my 10 piece wardrobe went out the window and I was on a mission to make a 3 year old Steampunk going to tea outfit!  I wonder if I have a bit of ADD or was I just seduced by the fact that there is no fitting issues with a toddler garment.  
I looked through my stash and found a black fabric with black and white polka dot ribbon applied on it creating random circles.  I think it may be a Gertie fabric from Joanns. I decided to use it to create steampunk looking skirt.  I used Simplicity 2356 for my pattern, and for the underskirt I dug out a vintage black crinoline that I had bought several years ago at a thrift store that would be perfect for that use.  Next, I made some leggings from a black and white stripe knit that I had bought some time ago--can't remember why, but it was perfect for this ensemble; not that I am any kind of expert on steampunk, but after a visit to Pinterest, this seemed to be the perfect compliment to the skirt.  I used the Johnny Mango Seed legging pattern. I believe this is an out of print pattern, in fact I think the company is no longer in business.
Finally, I was at Target to pick up a couple of things, when I found a pair of suspenders and some punk looking boots to finish the look! 

What a fun project and I can't wait to visit the Clockwork Rose Tea Emporium with my special girls!!  
Steampunk skirt with leggins

Crinoline peeking out 

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Susie Macaroni will be at the Garden Home Christmas Bazaar!

Can Christmas really be just around the corner??  Yikes!  This year has just flown by and as my old friend Eleanor used to say,"It's gettin' cold and gettin' Christmas."    
Last year I visited the totally charming Christmas Bazaar at the Garden Home Community Center--and this year I will be participating.  Yippee!  
I wanted to give you a sneak peak at some of the outfits from Susie Macaroni that I will have at the sale. 

The Garden Home Community Christmas Bazaar will be one day, Saturday, December 3rd from 9 a.m to 4 p.m.  The address is 7475 SW Oleson Road.
They will have a breakfast with Santa from 8-9 a.m.  $3 for children and $5 for adults.  They will be serving all you can eat pancakes.  They will also have photos with Santa!

I will be posting more in the near future--so as they say, "stay tuned"!  
In the meantime, be kind to yourself.

Wednesday, August 10, 2016


I am finally back in the blogosphere!  I can't believe how much time has gone by since my last post.  I have, however, continued to pursue sewing and I recently launched a line of little girls clothing.  As a child my dad called me Susie Macaroni, so SUSIE MACARONI  seemed the perfect name for my line.
The styles are all simple with a little bit of nostalgia from the swinging sixties and the hippie seventies.  The fabrics are all linen, cotton, wool and vintage.  
They are currently in a new shop in Multnomah Village called the Multnomah Marketplace located at 7642 SW Capitol Highway.  Of course, they are also available directly through me.  Take a look at what I've been up to!  
Oh!  And in case your wondering, the cute model is my adorable granddaughter Emily and the mannequins were made by Phil--  
My photography leaves a little to be desired, hopefully in the future I will have more professional photos.

I would love to hear your comments! 
Thanks for reading!!

This cute little flutter top is made from Pendleton cotton and the cropped pants from a lightweight cotton.
Flutter Top/Cropped Pants

Simple jumper dress that can be worn with a t-shirt underneath or as a sundress--yoke made from vintage appliqued dish towels--
Vintage towel/Denim Dress
Denim Dress with Saddle Shoes

A little Blast from the seventies, the Peasant Top.  The yoke is made from vintage dish towels appliqued with these adorable birds--so cute!

Vintage applique towel/cotton Top   
And for Halloween--How about a Little Red Riding Hood costume?  It's  roomy enough to have something warm underneath if the weather should turn chilly!

Back Red Riding Hood Costume
Red Riding Hood Costume
Red Riding Hood Costume Dress

Friday, January 17, 2014


Yippee fellow sewists, I have successfully completed a shirt with the help of Pam Howard's Tailored Shirt Class on Craftsy!  I am really pleased with the result.  It has been an interesting experience from the perspective of someone who has been a sewer for many years.  I had given up on garment sewing many years ago as nothing ever fit.  At that time, I would buy a pattern, pick a size that was closest to my measurements and start cutting and sewing.  Needless to say most often, there were so many fitting issues, that the garment usually ended up in the Goodwill bag and I was left feeling frustrated and inadequate.  In those days, I had never heard of creating a muslin and I suspect if I had I would have thought "that takes way to much time!".  Through this process of taking classes, I realize how valuable a tool a muslin becomes.  Through the muslin, I was able to make adjustments and end up with a pattern I can use over and over to make a classic shirt, not to mention a garment I can actually wear with pride.  

I want to add an unsolicited plug for the Craftsy classes!  I think they are fantastic because once you buy the class you can watch them over and over again and follow along as you sew.  Pam Howard's Tailored Shirt class was really fantastic.  Not only do I have a shirt that looks rtw, but I learned so many valuable sewing tips.  My next project is Angela Wolf's Designer Jeans--again I will follow along with her Craftsy class.  I can't wait to see what I am able to do next!   

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Manic Muslin Monday!

I know, today is Thursday, but I actually took the picture on Monday and am just getting around to blogging about it today.  I decided to reconsider the Vogue shirt pattern I had originally showed you as all the princess seams would be difficult to match using a plaid.  Instead I decided on Kwik Sew"s #3555 shirt pattern which I think will be a better choice with the fabric. I did have to make some adjustments to the muslin which gave me a few fits (no pun intended), I needed smaller in the shoulders and larger in the hip area--hmmmm, sewing may be trying to tell me something!  Regardless, I feel a sense of accomplishment just getting this finished and I hope by next week I will have close to a finished garment to share with you.  See you then! 

Wednesday, January 1, 2014


It's not without a bit of trepidation that I have decided to challenge myself to create a wardrobe without the benefit of running to the store when I need something to wear!  In fact, it will take some advance planning, something that in general does not come naturally to me.  That being said I am excited about taking the plunge and as of this moment I am sitting in front of piles of Vogue, Threads and Burda magazines as well as a stack of patterns trying to decide what I am going to create first. 

Here is what I am thinking so far--
I have signed up for Angela Wolfe's Designer Jeans class on Craftsy.  The pattern should arrive the end of this week, I have the denim purchased, washed and dried, so I am excited to start!  I am a little worried as it has been literally years since I have made a pair of pants, so nothing like jumping in with all fours eh?

Next will be a shirt from the Vogue pattern #8689 that I plan to sew from a Pendleton cotton that I purchased recently.  Here in Portland we are lucky to have a Pendleton outlet store that has beautiful fabrics.  I have already created the muslin so I should be ready to go on that one. 

If I get both of those garments done in January I will be doing backflips. Just keep a mental image of that! 

Here are my fabrics and patterns--Ready, set sew!!

I can't wait to start sewing and to learn from this shared challenge with the rest of you.  The one thing I know, there is always so much to learn.  Happy New Year and Happy Sewing to you all.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Save the Date--Serving Up Style October 2012

Hello Everyone!
I am so excited to announce that said has been selected to participate in the 2012 Serving Up Style event at the Fall Home and Garden Show, October 4th through 7th at the Expo Center.  This is the Northwest's premier table top design competition, and raises money for such a great cause, Molly's Fund whose mission is fighting Lupus, a devastating disease that affects millions around the world.  I have had the privilege of meeting David Szyplinski and Debbie McCabe, creators of Molly's fund and Serving Up Style and they have worked tirelessly to make this an event that is capturing national attention.  HGTV and Houzz will both be at this years event, so you can imagine that we are pretty excited to be chosen as one of 20 designers in this years design competition!  Each designer is invited to create fantastic, whimsical and stunning dining room environments, and you, the visitors to Serving Up Style will have the opportunity to vote on your favorite room design. 

We are busy working on the design concept for our dining room--I have several ideas I'm currently working on with my design team, and I can't wait to share them with you! 

You can visit the following pages on Facebook to learn more about Serving Up Style and Molly's Fund.  Go to the following pages to learn more:  

Stay tuned for more news about Serving Up Style!    

Friday, April 13, 2012

First Friday of the Season!!

We are excited to welcome spring with a very special First Friday event on Friday May 4 from 5 to 9.  We will be welcoming photographer Kim Campbell and her magical series of El Corazon photographs.  El Corazon means heart in spanish.  We also cant wait to show you what is new at said and to help you with your next design project, from paint to furniture!!

I had the lucky experience of taking my granddaughter Lola for a photography session with Kim and I don't know who had more fun, me or Lola!  It was three hours of imagination, dress up and transportation to another world.  Kim captures that imagination in children from ages 5 to 12, when the dream world is still vivid and translates it into the photographs that she you will see at this First Friday event.  We can't wait to share this experience with you.  Go to Kim's blog to see examples of her fantastic work. 

Kim Campbell's Blog

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Beautiful Last Minute Gifts!!

Wishing you all the best the season has to offer. 

Even if you are shopping at the last minute, we still have some unique and special gifts--from Butter of London nail polish at 25% off to beautiful hand crafted ornaments that are guaranteed to become family heirlooms to colorful pillows.  Come and see us today through the 23rd.  

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Holiday Ready!

I wanted to share with you my latest project that will also be featured in About Face magazine!  What you can't see here is that the sofa/chaise faces a beautiful view of the river.  The homeowner is an artist with a great sense of color, so we wanted to use colors that would  be enhanced by her beautiful artwork.

The sophisticated light fixture over the dining room table is custom from Stonegate--I love the square shape.  The sofa/chaise from Bernhardt was a perfect solution for viewing the ever changing river view as well as being able to recline and watch tv or read a book.
This floor includes the living room, dining room and kitchen and the homeowner was happy to report that they had a gathering of 18 people and everyone could move around comfortably, in fact they could have had added a few more guests!  

Happy Holidays!

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Bats At The Beach!!

This post has nothing to do with interior design but does have to do with being friends for over 40 years and the adventures that can happen!  Lest you think the title has to do with two old bats who are friends, NO!!  I am talking about the Real McCoy.  OK, maybe we are two old bats but that is not what this story is about!  

Our adventure started as we headed to the beach on a Thursday evening for a much anticipated girls "Spa Weekend" at my beach cabin in Rockaway.  We left with several bottles of wine, a dinner ready for the first night and some movies in tow.  I had scheduled us for facials and massages in Manzanita on Friday afternoon, and then we planned more wine and dinner.  As you can see, this story involves lots of wine!  Everything was going just as planned, and Friday evening after watching a too long romantic comedy, Just Go With It starring Jennifer Aniston and Adam Sandler, we headed off to bed.  

I was dead to the world when we both awoke to a crashing sound.  It sounded like something had fallen off the wall.  Trying to ignore it, we both tried to go back to sleep, but of course, at that point we started hearing all manner of strange noises.  Little scrapings and scratchings. 

In the past we have had our run-ins with mice at the cabin, but since getting a varmint control that emits an ear piercing continuous beep we have not experienced any problems for several years!!  But now as we laid in bed, we heard strange scraping sounds.  OK, that was it, I got out of bed, turned on the lights and went to take a look.  Donna stayed in bed while I checked it out.  I turned on all the lights and saw that a picture had fallen in the bathroom.  Hmmm, quite mysterious, as it was leaned up against the wall on a 12" shelf, unlikely that it would just spontaneously fall off a 12" ledge, is it???  I decided to arm myself with a broom as protection against God knows what.  Then in a stroke of genius, I told Donna that I am going to turn on the varmint control.  I opened the closet door, turned on the control, and at that moment a BAT, yes a BAT started flying around in circles in our room!!!  Donna, immediately covered her head with the blankets while I let out several yelps and jumped up and down.  At that point I turned out the lights.  When I turned them back on, no sign of the bat.  I have read Stellaluna, (if you haven't, you should), so I tried to think of this from the bat's point of view, but it wasn't working too well.  At this point I decided to make use of the broom by wacking all the drapes, the dust skirt etc.  Nothing.  Where was he??  Donna got up and got dressed.  Now I decided to check the back side of the drapes, and there he was!!, hanging on the inside of the drapes!!  How do we get it out?  I picked up a wicker garbage can instructing Donna that I could sweep it into the can.  She pointed out that a lid might be helpful to keep it in the can, so she went off to the kitchen to get a lid.  Alright, we were just about ready to execute the plan when I had another brainstorm--what if I OPENED THE WINDOW?  Donna solemnly held the broom handle against the drape to trap the bat in the fabric while I, summoning great courage, opened the window.  We closed the drape and then I gave it a good wack with the broom and voila--the bat was gone into the night!!  This episode started at 2 a.m. and when it was all said and done, it was 4 a.m.!!!  We were certain we wouldn't be able to fall asleep again, but guess what, Donna was up at 8:00 making coffee. We had both fallen asleep.  We had a good laugh over coffee and cinnamon rolls as we discussed our escapade that we can add to our repertoire of over 40 years of giving our husbands and children fodder for amusement.  

Thanks Donna, for our years of friendship and adventures--you're one in a million.    

Friday, June 24, 2011


Can it really be time for fireworks and picnics??  Well I guess it is, the kids are out of school and I see the fireworks stands going up in our neighborhood.  It's time for outdoor entertaining and of course, here in Oregon, not a moment too soon!  Speaking of picnics I want to share with you this great picnic table that we at said can have custom made to your specifications.  The legs are metal and can be just varnished for that industrial look, or painted for a happy colorful look.  The top is re-claimed lumber and I think it is the perfect piece for outdoor gatherings.  I can see a cotton tablecloth and a beautiful vase of flowers along with all the bbq'd chicken, ribs and potato salads.  We can also have benches made to go along with the table. 

I wish you all a fun filled 4th of July!

Friday, January 21, 2011

Let's Get This Party Started!!

Valentines Day is just around the corner and who wouldn't like the most adorable dress to wear for this most romantic of calendar dates?  Even better, what if you made it yourself?  Here at said we have a new book by former Portlander Mary Adams, called The Party Dress Book (or how to sew the best dress in the room).  I loved this book so much, that I was inspired to make a garment for the first time in many years and as you can see it turned out so cute.  I used vintage fabrics that I had had for years, added a crinoline and voila!  The best part is that the patterns are included in the book and Mary's instructions are clear and easy to follow. 

Mary has been sewing all her life and for a short time in the late 1970s sold her designs at the Portland Saturday Market where, believe it or not I had a booth around the same time.  I am sure we must have run into each other at one time or another.  Mary later moved to New York where she still has a shop where she will design a custom dress for you or you can buy a dress off the rack.  You may even run into a celebrity or two as she has designed dresses for the likes of Amy Sedaris and Bernadette Peters. 

We hope you will be inspired to pick up the book and make your own creation.  Stay tuned for events here at said to inspire you to look at fashion and home design in a new and creative way.  See you soon!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

A Beautiful Saint

It's not everyone who has a saint watching over their home but several years ago I had the good fortune to find this sadly beautiful saint in an antique store in Sellwood. I have to tell you I took a double take when I saw her standing there in Spencer's Antiques looking quite out of place. I don't think I have every seen a Santos this old or wonderful in a local antique store. I immediately knew I had to have her. I was told that these Santos were in Churches where worshipers would look up at their exquisitely sad faces as they lit candles and said fervent prayers. Artist Sharon Bronzan told me she thinks my saint is Delores, Our Lady of Sorrows. Her hair is long gone and all that is left of her skirt is the waistband, but none of those things deter from her ethereal beauty.

If you have never seen Sharon Bronzan's art check it out at You will be able to see how she has been inspired by these wonderful Santos. In addition, if you google Sharon Bronzan you can watch her at work in a video from Art Beat that aired August 3, 2006.

In these busy days full of places to go, people to see and technology that keeps you connected at all times no matter where you are, I like to reflect on this simple form of connection from times past.

Take care.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

let's try twitter........

Please pardon our dust as we try to connect the blog to small feat, it seems.


I am sooo happy! I just got Miss Sue signed up for Networked Blogs so this blog links directly to Facebook! One less thing to do...

Friday, September 10, 2010

0 Calorie Cupcakes!

Flower Angel

Cupcake Angel
Hi there readers--
yes, believe it or not, it is me blogging 2 days in one week! Well, I am feeling particularly inspired and wanted to show you some of the new things here at said.

You know how we like to bring our friends cake on their birthday, but then it turns out they have given up sugar and they have the will power of Joan of Arc and we end up eating cake for two, even though we said we were going to save the extra cake for for our husband, but end up eating it in the car? You know who you are.
Well here is the perfect solution. These adorable cupcakes complete with a candle and the willpower angel are the best no calorie gift you can give. It turns out you can have your cake and not eat it! Who wouldn't love to get or give these little sweets.
Also by the same artist from Corvallis, Oregon, are these for lack of a better word, Flower Frogs, but these are actually Flower Angels! You can put tiny little flowers and leaves in them and nestle them on the nightstand by your bed--or in the bathroom or guest bedroom. They are sure to bring a smile to any ones face! These would make great gifts too. It is not too early to start thinking about the holidays. Yikes!
Have a great week, and stop in and see me sometime!


Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Worth the Wait!

Hello again readers--

Can it really be September and my last post was in July??? I must be having fun, because time is flying by! Our family room is nearing the home stretch and we are very happy with the results. Our sofa was finally delivered and we now have a place to sit and watch tv or lie down and read. The sofa is extra long making it comfy for two people even if one of those people might be lying down. Guess which people that might be? Anyway, let me tell you the details. The sofa is from Hickory Chair, and I have to tell you it is so comfortable. It has 4 back cushions, 2 seat cushions and is just the right firmness. The rug is from Designers Guild in, of course, my favorite color of chartruese green and features a great geometric design that I felt was a nice foil to the vintage pieces that we have. The coffee table is from the 70's--a large burled piece of wood with an organic shaped piece of glass on top. I love this table! The chairs are from a consignment store, leather with oversized tacks adding a smooth texture. I wanted to show you the new flat screen tv and media center, but the photo was poor so I will post it next time.

On the far side of the room, I have a desk from Hickory White--different company from the sofa company with art books to peruse or to sit with a laptop and have a view of the back yard as we work. Above the desk, family photos. Finally, the adorable drawing with the saying "be a dear to our forst friends" was a contest winner painted by my son Marv when he was in the 3rd grade! He is still an artist today.

We still have a few things to do. I am having roman shades made for the window and drapes for the door--but it feels great to be this far. Let me know what you think! I would love to hear from you.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010


Here are all my tans and beige!
Here is my final answer!

You know how we designers always say "it's only paint!?" Well I am here to tell you that when it is your paint, it feels like a really big decision. I have been in the process of selecting paint colors for my entire downstairs. (remember my flood?!) That consists of family room, bathroom, hallway, laundry room and sewing room. I had paint chips every which way and even though it is only paint, I like many of you felt overwhelmed at first. Just like many of you I had various shades of tans, creams and beige and then I thought--What am I doing? I don't like these, I like bolder colors. So I started over again, allowing myself to look at non-traditional colors for family rooms starting with blue grays and moving into--gasp--purple-y colors!

Those of you who know me, know that I used to say that I hate purple--what I didn't realize is that there are only some shades of purple I don't care for. The name of my new family room wall paint is Lavender Blue! The lesson here is to always keep an open mind when it comes to design. Most of us will say "I don't like this or that" and we won't allow ourselves to consider something we think we don't like. Through my years in design, I have learned to look at the room as a whole, and not as individual parts. If the room works as a whole, then it is a success. Above are the tan paint swatches as well as the blues/lavendars. If you are in the process of picking paint--be brave! Be sure to buy the little containers now available at many paint stores so you can test your choices and then go for it! Happy painting.