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Church Militant “To the Pillbox!”

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Always in search of new ways to artfully cover our heads to show deference to our Lord I have heard the cry “To the pillbox!” Today I would like to show you a link to a tutorial that you can easily follow as I have done to make your own pillbox hat.  Brenda Burton of Humble Bumble B gave an interview on a web program called Thread Bangers (2007)- they have tutorials on all kinds of crafty subjects.  Here is the link.

The first pillboxes I sewed were made of felt.  Recently I have made some using 100% cotton fabrics reinforced with interfacing.  I really like the versatility of this for color and seasonal transcendence. Here is Whistle in her pillbox after church.
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So how does it go together?  I modified the pattern slightly from the tutorial to be smaller for the little girls heads- I think it turned out to be a great size for all heads.  When you watch the video- Mrs. Burton gives an excellent and simple presentation on making the pattern.  I changed the dimensions on the oval to be 6.5 inches and 2.5 inches high.  My band is 9.5 inches long- both are cut on the fold. Here is an example:

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I then cut  the same pieces from the interfacing and iron them on to the wrong side of the fabric.

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Next I sew some 1/2 inch seam binding to the flat edge of the hat band.

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You can use any color you might have in the drawer as this part of the hat will not be seen when you wear it. I am using a serger here.  Not required- but it sure make the hat so nice and neat!  Then I iron the seam binding out flat.

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Fold the hat band right sides together and sew a 5/8″ seam-joining the ends together and then you are ready to pin it to the top of the hat.

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So line up the seam on one end of the oval and start pinning it around.

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I will sew this with the regular machine first and then give it a surged finish.

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Next I fold the seam binding to the inside and pin two short lengths of ribbon to each side so that you can catch a bobby pin that will hold the pillbox on your head.  In Mrs. Burton’s video she puts a hole in the felt-  I think with cotton you could do a couple of small button holes for your bobby pins- but I thought this was easier.

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Top stich around the top edge of the seam binding to finish the hat.

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All that is left is the embellishments.  We picked a selection of buttons to adorn the front of these pillboxes- you can keep them bare and then use a broach or other jewelry and change it up to match your outfits.  An artfully applied flower with a corsage pin can also make a good decoration that you don’t have to commit to.

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Here is Whistle’s finished pillbox.  She picked out the buttons and sewed them on herself.

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Here is Whistle and Bubble together with their custom pillbox hats-these are so feather weight- once you have them pinned on you don’t even remember they are on your head.

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Until you get to church and receive your first complement on your pillbox- and then you remember it is there.

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God Bless!


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Toot Sweets

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Don’t waste your pucker on some all day sucker
And don’t try a toffee or cream
If you seek perfection in sugar confection
Well there’s something new on the scene
A mouth full of cheer
A sweet without peer
A musical morsel supreme!
Toot Sweets!

Lyrics from the movie Chitty Chitty Bang Bang courtesy of ST Lyrics

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Yes Ladies, Toot Sweets!  These are the cutest fascinators ever!  Just the sweetest morsel of fabric confection that sits atop your little sweetie’s brow.

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Here is our Bubble and Whistle wearing their Toot Sweets after church on Sunday.  Squeak is in the middle with her new fall denim bonnet (for another post). They just sit on their head secured with a couple of bobby pins and what an impression they make. Here is a close up of Whistle’s fascinator.

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The base is made exactly the same as the Tutorial on Fascinating that we showed last weekend.  I made a red satin burnt edge flower and gave it a beautiful button that I found at Hobby Lobby (I love that store and we need to support the owners on their stand for Religious Freedom!). I made a yo-yo of brown broadcloth but did not connect the ends.  The tulle fan is a lovely blue.  Everything is sewn on securely and light as a feather.

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Bubble’s Toot Sweet is also made to match her outfit and has all the same elements.

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She has three yo-yo flowers one made of lace with another great Hobby Lobby button- that red sparkly heart. The split end yo-yo is of red broad cloth and the fan is made of red sparkly tulle.

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A third Toot Sweet that I made that day is of the same style.  It has a base that is made of a fabric that I can’t get enough of- we have made skirts of this gorgeous blue and red rose fabric and I am thinking up more things I can make with it- I think a bonnet in this blue would be lovely too.

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No flower for this one- just a vintage metal button from my grandmother’s collection.  It gives it almost a military sensibility.  Or very patriotic I think.  Here is the close up.

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This is actually the first of the three I made and as I went along I found that I liked the stitched edge detail that I put on the others better than leaving it seemingly unfinished.  These fascinators where all done in an afternoon- you can follow the tutorial that I put up last week and make your own- or contact us here at Glory Bee and we would love to make one for you. GloryBee@GloryBee.us

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You may be wondering what is all the business about wearing hats- it has been so out of fashion.  As a Catholic I have been digging into my faith tradition and found that prior to the changes in the Church brought about with Vatican II in the 1960’s -women have covered their heads in church for centuries.  In scripture St. Paul tells his Church “I commend you because you remember me in everything and maintain the traditions even as I have delivered them to you.” 1 Corinthians 11:2 Part of that tradition is the relationship of man to his God.  In that same chapter St. Paul says that “The head of every man is Christ, the head of a woman is her husband, and the head of Christ is God.” 1 Corinthians 11:3  He admonished the church to say that “Any man who prays of prophesies with his head covered dishonors his head, but any woman who prays or prophesies with her head unveiled dishonors her head- it is the same as if her head were shaven.” 1 Corinthians 11:4-5 Sounds harsh right? And when I am first chewing this scripture I am thinking whoa!  The book that puts me on this path is Colleen Hammond’s Dressing with Dignity -given to me by a brave dear friend-(her website still has many great articles-but it seems to have not been updated since 12/12).  A whole revelation on feminine dignity and how our culture has gone off the rails in terms of the sexulization of its children and the immodesty of their mothers. I am blown away with the idea- so foreign to everything that my youth and the 80’s espoused- that my desire to be sexy in my dress, my striving to elicit the favorable looks of men could potentially be causing them to sin!  Heaping hot coals on my head!  Jesus tells us not to commit adultery- not even in our minds-and here is our culture encouraging us to wow the men and cause envy in the women. Whoa! and double whoa!

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Now I am deeply examining my conscious.  In my faith journey I have fallen deeply in love with the Lord and I want to be pleasing to Him.  I want Him to see me submitting to His authority.  I want Him to see me at Mass approaching His table with the utmost humility and gratefulness for His sacrifice and the gift of salvation that He has given me. So now I join the Saints and women of thousand of years and I cover my head in the house of the Lord.  But the problem we have today in our church is that I feel like my sign of humility before God is taken of a sign of haughty righteousness by the other members of the church.  When I put a traditional mantilla on my daughter of 8 years old a little friend of hers said with great distain “What is that thing on your head?” My heart broke.  So especially for my girls I am creating new and beautiful ways to cover our heads and show God our humility and show our fellow church goers how fashionable and beautiful humility can be.

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I found a great article that really sums up everything I have tried to explain here in a much more succinct and articulate way – with references it is called Ladies in Lace: Catholic Women and Veiling.   Praise be to God!

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God Bless you.


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Aplets & Cottlets

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Here is my latest sweet treat that I am calling Aplets & Cotlets. Now that I have confirmed the spelling of the famous fruit candy from Liberty Orchards I am thinking I should rename that bonnet- apples and apricots… Wow I didn’t know they left out a ‘p’ in apple that has really got me confused.  Anyway the candy is sweet and so is this new bonnet.  Here is Squeak modeling in the garden and she has discovered the solar light stake nearby the blanket- it would come in handy as we fended off the crawly bugs while taking our pictures…
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This is the first time that I have used flowers that I didn’t make myself on a bonnet.  I pull them all apart- taking the plastic forms out of the centers and then arrange them in a pleasing configuration and applied a really cute button and some pony beads for a wonderful effect.
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The fabric is vintage hand-me-downs from my stepmother’s mom.  Beautifully repurposed here for Squeak. Here is a last picture of this adorable bonnet the perfect color combination for summer.
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God Bless you!


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Morning Musings

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Wondering what my next project will be and considering color combinations.  Here are some of Charlie’s favorite fabrics:

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I love this red with the red and black too…

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I have been creating my bonnets out of scraps of past projects and odds and ends.  A quilting stack is a great way to get color combinations.  I couldn’t help myself yesterday and purchased this one in pinks. I also added to my rick rack collection. It is all wrapped up like a present just for me! I am excited about the possibilities here:

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You know these little bonnets on a baby girl are a gift.  They are a source of so many compliments- a gift to your heart. They instantly take the observer back to a time when girls were dressed like the precious treasures that they really are-which is a gift for your soul.  Mark Twain said, “The clothes make the man.” I believe that is true for men and women. More specifically I think that how a woman is dressed makes a statement about her to the world around her and influences her self image.  That is why I am making a special effort for my little girls to make their clothing say to those looking ‘this girl is a virtuous and innocent treasure of God.’  It is my inmost hope that by wearing modest and beautiful clothing that they will also feel their worth: A treasure of immeasurable value not only to the world around them-but most importantly to their Creator.

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The second part of that quote from Mark Twain is “Naked people have little or no influence on society.” Unfortunately it seems that times have changed and all of the people of influence are at least half naked. It is important that Moms fight the soul damaging influence of the culture and clothe their children with dignity and love-A true gift that keeps on giving.