Facebook Email Pinterest Twitter X Instagram Tiktok Icon YouTube Icon Headphones Icon Favorite Navigation Search Icon Forum Search Icon Main Search Icon Close Icon Video Play Icon Indicator Arrow Icon Close Icon Hamburger/Search Icon Plus Icon Arrow Down Icon Video Guide Icon Article Guide Icon Modal Close Icon Guide Search Icon

Conversational Threads

Dressing the over-fifties

katina | Posted in General Discussion on

This is a very interesting read.  Note her remarks “a demand for good fabrics, attention to detail and good finish. I don’t know whether this is because older women are probably the last generation to know how to work a sewing machine, or whether we can no longer get away with tat, but it is the right thing to focus on.”




  1. User avater
    rodezzy2 | | #1

    Yes, it was interesting.  But the pants on the one lady were too long.  Don't want dress pants that drag the floor.

    But other than that, it was very interesting.

  2. maggiecoops | | #2

    Hi Katina, M & S were known for decades as the middle class middle aged ladies store. Their clothing was a bit pricey, but you knew bras and pants would fit and would probably outlast you. Well maybe that's an exageration, but the M& S label meant quality, style, cut. Then a new chairman decided to alter the ethos, and aimed at the youth market. We are massively overserved with clothing outlets for the young, much of it so shoddy and cheap it wouldn't do service as a duster. But they were young and funky, not smart and chic. M&S dived into that market head first and bombed badly. They are now trying to re-establish themselves with the awesome buying power the 40s and above weild here in England. Unforunately when M&S changed course it put a lot of companies that had supplied them with quality goods, out of business, along with the designers who understood 80% of mature women didnt want to look like mutton dressed as lamb. Companies like Windsmoor, Country Casuals, Jaeger, Betty Barclay, stepped in and captured a share of the market M&S had denied them for so long. I'm afraid the so called new look from them is little more than window dressing , dull and drab. They have an awful lot to do before market they killed off returns to them, and by offering shapeless silhouettes and drab colours they have done nothing to attract back the buying power of the empty nesters.


    1. katina | | #4

      Oh yes, you're absolutely right. I still have a beautifully cut and stitched grey wool flannel pant suit - classic - which I bought ifrom M & S in the late '70s.  A tweed jacket and a black wool blazer from that same period were taken over by my advertising exec daughter and are staples in her wardrobe.  And their knitwear in years gone by - fabulous!  Quality lasts and lasts; these items haven't dated (I wasn't middle-aged then!) and will be worn for many years yet. But it's been a very long time since I've found anything comparable in Marks and Sparks.

    2. starzoe | | #6

      In years past we had M&S (Marks and Spencer) stores in Canada. They closed a decade and half ago and no wonder. Although the quality was there, the clothes were incredibly dowdy and dated. The only thing I ever bought there were sweaters.I live in a city that is "more British than the British" in B.C. and the store was a boon to the wellie and tweed sector; they bought up the biscuits and imported foods as well as the clothing. I haven't heard anyone bewail the loss of M&S but then I don't hang out with that particular crowd.

      1. maggiecoops | | #7

        We don't get the same ranges as the overseas branches, even just across the Irish Sea, M&S in Cork Eire has different choices from my local store.

        The twin set and pearl brigade over here were only a small fraction of the customer base, their tailored ladies clothes were superb, and the underwear was fashionable and sexy, Best of all it fitted no matter what size cup or shape you wanted, not so now, they changed manufacturers taking the contracts out to the far east.  I haven't bought anything from M&S for about 12 or more years, no style, no colour, no interest.

        I have to admit though when I was in New York in 2004 I was dissapointed in the mid price range clothes for anyone larger than the American size 6,  seems the large department stores thought anyone bigger than a size 8 should wear a tent ( I was a UK 14, USA 10 ). I wanted an outfit and had $4000, but what I saw didnt tempt my dollars out of my pocket. I visited a large retail park outside New York, and my friends and I quickly realised we were too old (38 to 61) too curvy, and as one assistant told my size 12 (USA 8) companion, too fussy as she didn't like the cut of a pair of slacks. The crotch just hung making it look as though she was deformed and the hips belled out like jodphurs. So yes she was being fussy, and not because, as the assistant stated to another assistant, we were English.

        1. starzoe | | #8

          I know it is next to impossible to find appropriate garments for the over-50s. What about the over 70s...much worse. I have shopped in Argentina, in Chile, in Iceland, in Norway, as well as Britain and France and the trendy stuff is all over. The stylist mature woman in these places must know where to shop, or maybe she has a little seamstress in the back room, and maybe that little seamstress is herself!

          1. maggiecoops | | #10

            You could be right, but here in Europe we are also more used to the idea of having garments made by seamstresses and tailors. I know I can get clothes tailored for not much more than I would pay for a mid price range garment. One of sons has his shirts made, and old colleague of mine had all her clothes made for her. It has a down side, the stuff lasts so long,  my mother had a costume tailored for me when I was 14, I passed it on to a charity shop in my mid 30s.

          2. katina | | #11

            Starzoe, I think I've posted about these 'little women' in another discussion.  Yes, European ladies of a certain class and means have such a gem who makes up many of their clothes.  And do they guard their names!  Fabric stores here are beautiful - gorgeous fabrics and an enormous range of stunning buttons and trims.  The fashion mags sell like hot cakes; these little women not only sew, they draft the patterns themselves in many instances for their clients from the photographs.  You may recall I was desperately hunting for a handcranked sewing machine?  Well, blow me down, a couple of weeks ago the wife of a young colleague of my husband's took me to her mother's home - her son was to be picked up there - and sitting on the diningroom table was a handcranked Singer.  I was astounded to discover that Mother is just such a seamstress with a handful of clients for whom she sews. She showed me a stunning suit in wool boucle she was working on, complete with Chanel-type braid which she was making by hand.  And all she's ever stitched with is the Singer.  All seams are French, flat-felled, etc.  Handworked buttonholes! She's widowed, lives in a small apartment with her aged and ailing mother. and helps out with her baby grandson.  I don't think she was kidding when she said some of her clients would rather let you take their husbands than give you her name!


    3. denise | | #14

      I don't  know I never ever seem to see any thing that looks like i would like to look.

      in fashion books and when i do i think no bit young looking ( i am  60) siz4 14/16

      I think i could be because the magazine do not portray our age group .

      On another section ( hadn't noticed this chat) I am thinking of making a wrap dress its summer in aust.  A designer made them famous  name??

      I have a piece of lovely silk jersey not clingy the only think I do not like about it is the large pattern design on some of the fabric.  It is black and white. I usually wear my dresses and pencil skirt too my shin bone been thinking lately i should shorten them a bit.  But i do not like healed shoes.

      I also read that its the way you tie a wrap dress, does any one have any ideas on that one,  does any one have one or made one recently.

  3. damascusannie | | #3

    Interesting and timely for me as get closer to the big 5-0. I do shop in some of the stores that my daughters shop in, but try to choose wisely when there. I DON'T like most of the US stores geared toward the mature woman: Christopher and Banks, Lane Bryant, etc...It just seems that all the clothing they show is stuck in some sort of mid-1980s time warp. Too many jumpers and dowdy, oversized sweaters. It's the "tent" solution to the more mature figure. If you don't like your body, bury it under six yards of pinwale corduroy. No thank-you! It was really awful when I was looking for a mother-of-the-bride dress a year ago. Why is it that they think all MOBs are in their 60s? I didn't have time to sew the dress I wanted and ended up going with an entirely different look altogether in the end, getting a party dress at one of the stores that my daughters patronize. In a cruel twist of fate, I found almost exactly the dress I'd wanted to make about a month AFTER the wedding.Annie in Wisconsin, USA
    ~~Doodlestein Designs Quilt Patterns
    ~~Finely Finished: Machine quilting worked on a treadle sewing machine.
    See patterns, quilting, and National sewing machines at: http://community.webshots.com/user/damascusannie

    Edited 11/28/2008 1:50 pm by damascusannie

    1. katina | | #5

      oh yes, Annie - the MOB stuff on offer looks like some cruel joke. My late MIL was Italian and a superb seamstress - she'd trained in Milan. She was plump, but all her clothes were beautifully tailored and FITTED; she always wore foundation garments, as they were called then. But we want comfort, so we avoid the closely fitted. It's amazing how pounds can be taken off when the clothes have some shaping.


    2. MaryinColorado | | #9

      I loved Chicos for awhile, but now they are really going for alot of polyester and nylon things.  JJill also seems to have gone shapeless for the most part.  Black and White has some nice things but some are too youngish for my comfort zone.  I like natural fabrics but am allergic to wool so am especially limited in the winter months. 

      For my son's wedding, his wife picked out a bridesmaids dress for me.  I really wanted to make a dress and matching coat, but she had her heart set on the strapless gown with the shrug.  It is beautiful and flattering, but I doubt I'll ever wear it again.  Even if I hem it, it's just more formal than I ever have a use for. 

    3. Ocrafty1 | | #12

      Having passed the big 50 a few yrs. ago, I, too, am frustrated by RTW.  I have my teaching license and we were "taught" in one of my classes to purchase work clothes at Christopher & Banks and similar stores. About half of my classmates were women over 30.  "Teachers should not show their figures; even when they are 'out in public.'" All of the 'mature' teachers shop there, as well as Lane Bryant.  I HATE their clothes.  I lost over 60 lbs. 3 yrs ago and the last thing I want to wear are tents...but I didn't like wearing them as I was going down from a size 16, either.I'm now down to a size 4-6 petite and I wear a size 5 shoe...and a 34DD bra.  I can either find stuff my 30ish daughters would wear, or stuff my mother would.  And try finding shoes in a size 5!  I have to buy shoes that are too big and use double sided tape to keep my feet in them. Anything in a size 5 is in the children's section.  It sounds hilarious, until you try to find a nice pair of dress shoes or heels. RTW needs to consider that we are not in our '20's, but we're not in our '80's either.  We need something stylish that is suitable for our age...not our mothers'. It seems as though they are trying to dress us as they did back in the 50's.  Someone needs to wake them up from their nightmare...and ours!

      I've found that older ladies (60's and up) are willing to pay well to have custom made clothing.  I'm hoping to build my clientel on that group of knowledgable ladies. They know quality when they see it and aren't afraid to pay for something that fits well and will outlast them.


      1. damascusannie | | #13

        Good luck with your business. There is a real need for stylish, age-appropriate clothes for those of us in our middle years.

      2. MaryinColorado | | #15

        This reminded me of when I was in high school and wore a size 4 shoe, at that time all the "sample" shoes were a 4!  I guess that way people had to ask to try on shoes and were less likely to stretch out the wrong size.  Anyway, mother got great prices on them so I had many shoes with matching purses then.  That started the shoe "fetish" that I still have to this day. 

        DSW Shoe Warehouse has a good supply of size 5's here. 

        Good luck building your clientelle!  May you have great success in building your business!!!  Mary

        1. Ocrafty1 | | #32

          LOL, I wish they had samples of shoes now!  The closest city with shoe stores is 25 mi. from here...a normal weekly trek, but not one of them carries adult shoes in a size 5...only kiddie shoes.  I guess the shoe manufacturers don't believe that grown women can have tiny feet... and if we do, then we should just suck it up and wear our granddaughters shoes, LOL.  Too bad there aren't shoemakers...like we are dressmakers.  Wouldn't that be grand!!!!  Where have all the craftsmen/women gone???  Haven't we been talking about that on another discussion????? Guess I'm overlapping..again....


          1. MaryinColorado | | #34

            When I was a little girl, there was an Italian shoemaker in our town.  We didn't have custom made shoes created, but he did beautiful repairs. 

      3. alotofstitches | | #70

        Good luck in your business!  My best clients are "over 50" ladies who want quality garments made from quality fabrics that fits HER body.  It doesn't matter the size, if it fits well and is made well then it looks great.

  4. denise | | #16

    yes everything you mentioned i am a little worried about sometimes clothes look so good on models or others but when i make them and put them on me i am often less than happy.

    very good tip re the tie   thankyou 

    1. starzoe | | #17

      Before you sew a wraparound dress, go to your local department store and try a few on. Sneaky, but fair game.

      1. denise | | #18

        had that in mind mmm,  but i have to resist the urge to comment on the prices.

        1. MaryinColorado | | #19

          To heck with age!  I've been wearing leggings with a turtleneck and oversized long flannel shirts. ( or jumpers, or sweaters and such) black high top Rebocks or knee high boots too.  Very warm and toasty  (Must mention my bottom is always completely covered!). 

          1. denise | | #20

            sounds good to me  mary.  just ordered a  pattern

          2. MaryinColorado | | #21

            What pattern did you order?  

          3. denise | | #23

            if you go to emma one sock and go in to laces  in the inspiration area you will see some  suggestions i got the second mccalls.  I will make my usual calico up first but so i hope i can manage it.

            My daughter would also like it as a summer dress,she would like it for a black dress.

            I have some beautiful wool crepe in black here that my late mother stored away and never used i may try that for her.

             i was thinking more for me next winter in aus. a jumper, shannon gifford does the inspirations area.

          4. MaryinColorado | | #25

            Thanks so much for sharing!  That new inspirations area is excellent, I just took a glance but already see some things I like.  The sweater dress, the jacket, and a top with a ruffled neckline that the ruffle goes over the shoulders.  Too cool!  Mary

          5. denise | | #26

            thats  o.k. mary  i am just trying to work out what i need even though our dollar has slipped and it was nearly parity some months ago, i have promised my self a nice piece of wool from the site.We are not in recession in aust.  the Gov. is sending out $1400 to all card holders this week a bonus to keep stimulating the economy.

            Among other things like home savings grant to first home buyers of 21th.  Lots of new roads and bridges so hopefully we will not go in to recession.

            So will use a little of it in the us. spend the rest here just like our wonderful prime minister wants us to do.

          6. MaryinColorado | | #29

            Your Prime Minister apparantly is much smarter than our officials.  Those are some sound resolutions.  If the US had made more intelligent choices our economy would be in much better shape.  They seem to believe in the trickle down theory which never works!  I am so hopeful that our new administration will turn things back around.  Eight years ago, we had a surplus and now such a deficit, the Republicans still claim the Democratics will tax them.  So stupid!!!!  Some people just don't get that it's not about their Party but about REALITY and issues.  I have neighbors who say the economy will be ruined now, they have their heads buried in the sand, ya think? 

          7. denise | | #30

            mary  i   agree.   I think the big word is confience,  our gov.  is equivelant to your new administration just a different name.  They have only been there one year so very new also.

            I decided on the anni sui on the emma site for a coat. mary have you ever done a course in pattern review  i met a nice mary there too from the u.s.

          8. MaryinColorado | | #33

            I have wondered about those classes on patternreview but haven't jumped in yet.  Were you happy with it?  I've not tried any online classes yet, any recommendations would be appreciated. 

            Hope you will post  a photo when your coat is done.  I'm drooling over those patterns!  Mary

          9. denise | | #39

            yes wonderful  down loads chat lines lovely people i did mine with Shannon.

            The blouse skirt   and the lining of a jacket very good.

            I have become a lot more particular with my sewing for e.g. i did not realize one should always put facing across a shoulder seam to make it hang nice,  now that's just one thing the others where how to put in zips the easy way and a lot more.

            Hope this helps.

            I am going to do the pants class next year.

          10. MaryinColorado | | #48

            Thanks for your input, I feel better about trying it sometime in the future.  Mary

          11. denise | | #41

            Sorry mary as it is summer here the coat probably will not get made till march.

            I really have to do a lot for our baby granddaughter but feeling tired lately have been doing alot this week had the flu,   i also have lupus that makes you tired and it take a few week to get going again i have done so much sewing lately

            I have an amy butler bag cut out and a pinney for our alice.

            Its our  40 w.a. this weekend so off for the weekend compliments of the children so now sewing this week end.  Do you all know is so close to christmas.

          12. MaryinColorado | | #49

            HAPPY ANNIVERSARY!  That's quite a milestone, 40 years together!   I hope you have a wonderful time.  Mary

          13. denise | | #55

            Thankyou looking forward to it just like our honey moon but better now as we know

            each other better  well  one would hope so  wouldnt they.

          14. MaryinColorado | | #56

            Yes, one would hope so!  Hope your day is "magical"!  Mary

          15. Josefly | | #57

            Hope your 40th wedding anniversary is fun. Congratulations.

          16. User avater
            JunkQueen | | #31

            Not meaning to be disrespectful, I do wish we could keep politics out of this forum. We are all entitled to our opinions, and, like religion, politics seems to bring forth very strong ones. Much like the lecture on our ethics. If I am out of line, I do profusely apologize and will put on my clothes and go home..... *smiling*

          17. MaryinColorado | | #35

            Okay okay, I'll try to be good so Santa doesn't put me on his "naughty list".   I'm zipping my lips shut now....Mary

          18. katina | | #37

            You're too cheerful and chirpy for Santa to put on his naughty list!


          19. MaryinColorado | | #38

            Why thank You so much!  It's so kind of you to say that!  Mary

          20. katina | | #40

            Just speaking the truth!

          21. MaryinColorado | | #50

            Yup yup yup!!!  I'm zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzipped!

          22. katina | | #51

            Nah, we don't want you silent!! You're too much fun


          23. MaryinColorado | | #52

            Thanks, you are so kind.  I will try to keep my posts light and upbeat and not about "you know what".  Maybe I need to look for a "social issues forum" too, but then I'd be on the computer all the time instead of sewing and creating! 

            Yesterday I embroidered a cartoon wolf playing basketball and high school letters for DGS's crazyquilt.  Today I'm doing a cartoon skateboarder and a rollerblade.  Then I will make some more quiltblocks and go online to order something to do with hunting and archery (I have lettering in my software that looks like bows and arrows and targets.  Any ideas for short phrases or poems related to archery?)  This is a fun long term project!  Mary

          24. User avater
            JunkQueen | | #53

            I'm sorry if I offended you, Mary, by asking that we not discuss politics on this forum.

          25. MaryinColorado | | #54

            You did not offend me, all is well. 

          26. Josefly | | #58

            "I shot an arrow in the air
            And it came down I know not where" or something like that???

          27. MaryinColorado | | #59

            Yes!  Thank You!

          28. Josefly | | #60

            I was sort of joking... I don't even remember the exact words or who wrote them, do you?

          29. MaryinColorado | | #61

            No, but that's okay, he has a great sense of humor and will appreciate some fun quotes or poems, after all, it is a Crazy Quilt from Gramma!  I have some books that have fables and poems that I need to go through for ideas too.   Since we celebrate our birthdays together on the 4th of July, it will have some fun fireworks and such throughout most of the blocks as a recurring theme.

          30. Josefly | | #62

            What a creative person you are! I love the fireworks idea... he'll never forget your birthday, I'll bet.

          31. katina | | #63

            Here you are - thanks for reminding me of Longfellow (Hiawatha)

            I Shot An Arrow in the Air

            I shot an arrow into the air

            It fell to earth, I know not where

            For so swiftly it flew, the sight

            Could not follow it in it's flight.

            I breathed a song into the air

            It fell to earth, I know not where.

            For who has sight so keen and strong

            That it can follow the flight of song?

            Long, long after in an oak

            I found the arrow still unbroke;

            And the song from beginning to end

            I found again in the heart of a friend.

            H.W. Longfellow

            Now, did anyone write poetry about needlework?


          32. Josefly | | #66

            Oh, good. I hope MaryinColorado sees your message.Poems about sewing? I googled "poetry and sewing" and came up with this one:http://www.aquafemina.com/sewing.htmlEdited 12/6/2008 12:35 pm ET by Josefly

            Edited 12/6/2008 12:35 pm ET by Josefly

          33. katina | | #69

            Thanks for taking the trouble.


          34. User avater
            JunkQueen | | #42

            Now, Mary, there you go again. Santa KNOWS you can't zip your lips! Bwaaahahahahahahaha! Just do the best you can, dear heart. And thank you for your gracious reply.

          35. scrubble4 | | #67

            MaryinColorado:  I enjoy hearing political views but realize this forum sticks strictly to fibre creations.  Go and hang out on CooksTalk.  They have ripping conversations over there on everything from beauty products to politics and everything in between.  They have no qualms about saying what they think.  I tend to hover and learn.  I have learned tons and tons about politics from reading the wide ranging views and occasionally asking a question or two.  They are also amazing in their cooking and baking knowledge.  I love all the Taunton press talks.  Each talk has a different personality.  If you have time sample them all even if you are not particularly skilled in home renovations or furniture construction.  I find it fascinating to listen to people who are passionate about their area.  Scrubble4

          36. MaryinColorado | | #68

            Thanks so much!  I'll check them out.  And here I was trying to stay off the computer and get more sewing done.  So much to do so little attention span, haha 

          37. katina | | #36

            You are absolutely right - very pleasantly put. It's good that we have such strong and diverse opinions, but here we should be all about our needlework, and no, we don't need to be lectured.


          38. User avater
            JunkQueen | | #43

            Thank you, Katina. I am one of the worst offenders on this forum for getting off-topic. I always feel badly about hijacking someone's topic that way. I will promise to do better myself. Santa might forget his way to my house, too, doncha know.

          39. Ceeayche | | #22

            Regarding the leggings, turtleneck, flannet shirt, and boots:  You Go Girl!!!!

          40. MaryinColorado | | #24

            Thanks so much!  I seem to be evolving rather than growing up.  Maybe it's Peter Pan Syndrome?  I just can't imagine myself dressing the part of a "middle aged grandmother" even though I am!  My kids think I'm just an ole hippy sometimes.  ha ha  I hate labels!!!   

  5. gailete | | #27

    Perhaps it is because I'm disabled with some health issues, but seeing that article with a 50+ woman wearing a jumpsuit was a laugh. I don't know many/any 50+ women that would want to deal with getting in and out of it every time they have to head for the bathroom, especially a public one!

    I have been making my own clothes now as it is too hard to go shopping, nor do I have money to buy clothes that will just fall apart and can't afford the clothes that shouldn't. I'm working hard at increasing my sewing skills so that my clothes won't have that homemade look. I tend to wear skirts and tops most of the time and to many people who are used to most women in our area wearing jeans, I tend to look 'dressed up', not that I would look dressed up if you plunked me down into a large metropolitan city. Thankfully I live in a rural area and so can wear what I like and don't have to think about what might be fashionable, not that anyone seems to be designing fashions for the over 50 crowd.

    1. katina | | #28

      Clothes shopping is truly a nightmare, I agree.  It never occurred to me before, but maybe that's why I make my basic pieces and accessorize with interesting bags and shoes.  Shoes fit, or they don't; they're in your price range or they're not.  You don't have to look at your body every which way in the mirrors and wonder if taking the shoulders, etc in would make the garment work for you, etc.  Ditto bags.  I love knitting and we have enough cold weather that I can indulge myself by making more than I really need.  Mind you, I do give much of it away.  Knitting gives you all kinds of opportunity to play with style, pattern stitch, colour.  The yarns are so fabulous that just a simple scarf adds much to your wardrobe.

      Great that you wear what you like!


      Edited 12/3/2008 1:19 am ET by Katina

      1. denise | | #44

        i just love knitting too  but my thumb is getting less and less enthusiastic as the arthritis has set in i hand surgery on my left hand  but very very reluctant to have it on  my right hand.

        Have you ever looked at the french knitting books i knit for my grand children now and just love them. 

        I am knitting in bamboo at the moment i have used 8 ply now 4 it is so beautiful to knit with.  I love trying different yarns.  I can never just sit in front of the t.v,


        1. katina | | #45

          Hello down there!

          The arthritis is a real drag - so sorry. I'm with you on avoiding any further surgery. Is it possible to alter/modify your knitting style? that might help.

          Best wishes


          1. denise | | #46

            i wear a hand brace to bed these days  i am just getting over the flu i have lupus and so it takes me some time to get rid of bugs.  But the rest has done my hand good.

            So i suppose i just use it to much,  i bought an icing gun a few weeks ago because i cannot use the bag to decorate the Christmas cake ( english fruit) and i think it actually make it worse i have waited all these years to get one.  But any way my daughter is going to use it for the Christmas biscuits which should be nice.

            Off the subject again, my left hand surgery was not good it was fused and does not move very well can you imagine not being able to use it i think i would sink in to depression, My husband often says well only knit for an hour every night tried that end up going to bed. O well do you know katina  should not moan about these things as there is so many people who cannot do anything because of a problem. So its great to do what we can is it.

          2. katina | | #47

            Best so stay as cheerful as you can, though I do sympathise. I find that sewing, knitting - producing something worthwhile that pleases me - is a great morale booster. Your hubby's right - even a tiny bit at a time will get something accomplished.


          3. gailete | | #64

            I  have Rheumatoid arthritis and occassionally joke that the only joints not affected are those little bones in my ears. Anyhow, with having it in my hands and wrists, etc. it impacts my sewing plus everything else. I have found something that helps at night. I have two small rice bags that I can shape a bit to to keep each wrist in anatomical alignment during the night. When the wrist are really sore, I heat them up and that soothing heat helps, but otherwise I use them as a prop to keep each wrist from flexing into positions that end up being painful by morning. This has really helped. They are 6 1/2" quilted squares sewn together filled with rice and then slip stitched closed.

            Just a thought, in case it may help one of you ladies with the sore wrists.


          4. Josefly | | #65

            My mother suffered for decades with rheumatoid arthritis, and so I'm familiar with it. A physical therapist suggested to her that ice would be more helpful than heat, to alleviate the feverish joint pain, and we tried it. Since RA is an inflammatory disease, it makes sense that cold works better than heat to reduce inflammation. It sounds awful, most of us would cringe at the idea of ice on that kind of pain, and it wasn't comfortable while the ice packs were on her hands, but it did to reduce the inflammation and pain for quite a while afterward. I now use one of those gel-packs on my hands and wrists when they ache, and it does help, if you can tolerate the ten minutes or so of discomfort.The idea of the rice packs to hold your wrists in alignment is a very good one. My mom had to have custom braces made to use at night, to accomplish the same thing. The rice packs could also be chilled in the freezer - but who wants to go to bed with something cold?

            Edited 12/6/2008 12:21 pm ET by Josefly

          5. gailete | | #71

            Ice packs do help too although now that winter is here, it is the last thing I want to go to bed with! We've had several feet of snow already. Many times I use rice bag ice packs, we have several stuffed in the freezer as sometimes it is the only way to bring the pain down. I've been having problems all weekend, I think I'm going into a flare. I tried to get everything done so that Saturday I could sew--HA! I spent most of it in bed, Sunday I was finally able to at least LOOK at sewing magazines but not well enough to actually do any of it. Then I read something today and realized I have 2 weeks to finish this project for hubby. I haven't done any decorating or baking and if I keep feeling this way, nothing but his present will get done. At least the kids are away from home at this point so no one cares if we get a tree up. The work for decorating involves not only the putting up but taking down and currently I'm physically phht!

            The good thing about running into 'obstacles' in my sewing is I'm working on a creative project, fancy throw pillows, and the more time I have to think about what I'm doing, and looking at old machine embroidery magazines, I'm getting some more ideas for what I'd like to do. I have the first top done except for quilting it but I think I will do all the quilting at once as it is hard sometimes to get that stippling motion going.



          6. Josefly | | #72

            I'm so sorry your RA is hurting so much now, and that you can't work on the projects you've planned. I hope it isn't a flare-up, but take care of yourself. Is the medical advice the same as it was 8 years ago - that when you're hurting/inflamed, you really should do nothing to stress your joints? I'm glad you can use the inactive time to consider embellishments to the pillows you're working on. Pillows are great canvases for your creative ideas, yes? Isn't that one of the nicest things about sewing - that while doing a project you get so many ideas for similar ones?

          7. gailete | | #80

            Yes, when you are flared up you need to rest those joints and I do. When sitting in my regular spot, I'm propped by about 5 different pillows! I even have to have one on my lap to hold my books, but that is more to get my reading material in line with the old bifocals! One of the interesting things is they are really promoting exercise as a means to help with one article I read talking about a woman that basically was working out 8 hours a day! If I could be in constant motion 8 hours a day, the doctor would have never seen me in her office in the first place. I finally had to quit getting the Arthritis Today magazine as it was just too despressing. They always featured someone who apparently had mild RA and was up to so many activities. Even their website had woman talking about how much tennis they could play in a week!! I wlk with a cane and would be thrilled to be able to walk a mile much less play tennis. Sorry got off on a tangent. I'm doing better today and hope to get back to sewing later this afternoon.

            I did have a one of the hand waxers. It felt really good, but for the 20 minutes I had it on my hands I was bored silly. I couldn't do anything with my hands wrapped up! I don't take to sitting very well unless I have a book to read or a project to stitch. I can't even watch TV without a book to read at the same time. But boy my hands felt wonderful as they were very nice and smooth. I found I could get the same therapeutic affect by holding various rice bags, which allowed me to still flip pages in a book.

            Yesterday I got my last 9 issues of Threads magazines in the mail, so now I have ALL the issues. I am so thrilled as in the last couple weeks I tracked down 22 different issues that I needed. I'm trying not to read them all in one big gulp, but go slowly. What I have seen of the magazines for 1995 is that the info is still important and current, and I love those pictures of vintage garments on the back that they used to have and I hope they return to them. Even the ads are great as I'm seeing some books advertised that I would like to track down. I love Threads and I have learned so much from reading them. I know some people complain when they do beginner type articles, but some of us NEED to learn to do things the right way as when you stumble about teaching yourself how to sew with minimal help, there are so many things still to learn. My sewing skills are definitely improving.

            The last two skirts I made were in corduroy off of an OOP simplicity pattern. Just because I read an article in Threads about how the grain line will run depending on how you lay it out--if you need to de-empnsize things like tummies, I laid the pattern out two ways. One skirt had the center front cutting line laid on the fold instead of cutting it and the other I cut as the lay out showed. The difference is great as the one cut with the center front on the fold lays much smoother over my tummy and looks much better. That is the sort of things that we over 50's have to think about since everything seems to be sliding (my MIL with huge hips, would need to cut the pattern the other way I would think). Now if someone could tell me what to do about asymmetrical boobs when one is obviously not on the same horizontal line as the other nor the same size!


          8. MaryinColorado | | #81

            The Easter Seals Pool here was a great help to me.  I haven't been in a long time.  The water is actually warm enough to enjoy!!!  Very few people go and I haven't seen anyone in great shape there.  We all kind of creak in but walk out.  They also have lifts for those who need them.  It starts shallow and goes deeper.  They have some float boards and other equipment that I haven't used.  Some just walk around in the water, some exercise, etc.  Haven't seen any bicinis there either! 

            I found out about it through my rheumatologist and had to have a note on a prescription pad from the doc. to be allowed to use their pool. 

            I just waxed my hands and feet.  You're right, it is boring to just sit and wait, but if you use the booties and mitts you can carefully move around and watch tv for 15 minutes. 

            I'm looking for a heated mattress pad, have you seen them anywhere?  I switched to a smaller bed and the heating pad keeps falling on the floor.  Mary

          9. miatamomma | | #82

            Mary--We have a heated mattress pad that is wonderful.  I think the brand name is Perfect Fit.  I bought it at Bed and Bath.  I keep a regular mattress pad on top of the electric one so that it doesn't have to be laundered as often.  I really don't know how warm it would be without the extra pad but I am sure quite warm.  Probably not as hot as a heating pad but it certainly makes the bed warm to crawl into if you turn it on for awhile before you go to bed.  If you can't locate it with that name and are still interested, let me know and I will check the name on it.


          10. MaryinColorado | | #85

            Thanks, I like the idea of putting it under the mattress pad too! Mary

          11. starzoe | | #86

            Some electric heaters for beds particularly tell you not to put it under any bedding as they would present a fire hazard. Ordinary electric blankets usually have a label stating that.

            Edited 12/12/2008 12:49 pm ET by starzoe

          12. gailete | | #87

            I want one of those! I've seen them in the stores, but with a King sized bed they are a bit prohitive in price. I do use a heating pad even though they say not to lay on one or sleep on one, but I use it year round to help keep my back muscles relaxed. If I don't I get such spasms my back is literally arching off the bed--not conducive to sleep obviously. Every time I wake up during the night, I turn the heating pad back on as it has a timer that turns itself off. I think one of those mattress size ones would be great.

            It is funny how some body parts respond better to heat and others to cold. I get major muscle pain in my legs and compression socks (my hubbies old tube socks with the feet cut out) and ice (rice) packs help numb the pain down. Awful to have these aches and pains, but so nice to know other people have them and have ideas for dealing with it. Some things are so simple and give so much relief. I found in the past few months that giving myself an injection of my RA med is making me feel better than swallowing the pills did, as the Dr. and I realize I hadn't been absorbing the meds correctly. For the first time in 7 years I had 3 whole weeks of feeling well after never having more than a day or two. In between flares I'm doing so much better, which has given me much more sewing time :) and a generally much happier outlook on life.


          13. sewelegant | | #88

            To all of you, really, who have arthritis in common... I have been reading all the input with interest.  I have had arthritis that prompted me to seek help since my forties and because the blood work did not jive with RA I did not see a rheumatologist. But, so be it, when I look at the Mayo Clinic arthritis site, I can associate my symptoms with the RA much more than OA.  I thought for awhile that all the activity I demanded from my hands was why I was losing the use of them! (OA?)  My doctor feels I have a combination (?!)  As a nurse who loved orthopedics I saw a lot of arthritis and the deformities it produces so I was thankful I just had the pain as I could live with the pain by taking something in the AM and again at bedtime, faithfully, every day because if I wasn't hurting and skipped the dose it would appear later and be harder than ever to control; so I take the meds and feel the side effects will just have to be dealt with when they occur.  I have tried all the remedies and found out they didn't really work for me and the best thing I do for myself is go swimming (tread water, actually) for a half hour two to three times a week.  It has kept me mobile and the only time I need a cane is for stairs or if I am out for an extended length of time.  It has really helped strengthen my arms and legs too.  The ice treatment leaves me "cold" so have never tried it, but have to admit my flare ups are not frequent.  I feel every change in the barometric pressure though so that's probably why the pain is a constant.  Several years ago I bought a feather quilt at one of those linen outlet stores and cannot believe the difference that has made in the comfort of my bed.  I turn on the electric blanket before getting into bed and turn it off before I go to sleep and that comforter keeps the bed warm and toasty all night with just my body heat, sometimes it gets too warm.  My point is:  if you have not purchased a feather comforter because of the cost (my reason) check out Linens and Things or a like store.  I got a king size lighter weight one for about 125 dollars and the way it keeps the bed (and me) warm makes it worth every penny. 

          14. MaryinColorado | | #89

            Dear Santa:

            I have been a very good girl.  Here are some ideas for things I would love to find under my tree:  I would like 1 heated mattress pad, one down comforter, one duvet cover, battery operated heat socks, a heated slankey for watching tv, a light up giant remote so I can work the buttons even in the dark,  a years supply of B vitamins, glucosamine, aspirin, and Aleve, a year's gift certificate for a certified neuromuscular massage therapist, a whirlpool bathtub with safety handles, a robot housemaid like the Jetsons have, a heated poolhouse with heated pool, a handsome poolman, some funny movies, Red Skelton DVD's, CD's, an exercise physiologist, a dance instructor that specializes in those with arthritis, a moderate barometric preassure, warm days and nights preferably in the high seventies to eighties, sweet caring friends to share my days, love, laughter, and peace on earth.  The last entry is the most important. 

            Please send along the same items to all my friends here at Gatherings that would benefit from them. 

            Your good antique little girl, Mary

          15. Gloriasews | | #93

            Oh, Mary, I LOVE your letter to Santa!!!  What a wish list!  I can certainly relate to that & I couldn't have worded it better.  Yes, you've been a very good girl - you deserve everything on the list.  Good luck!  (Wouldn't you be surprised if, by some miracle, it came true)?  Maybe your fairies will help! :)


          16. MaryinColorado | | #94

            So sweet of you!  Thank You!  I'm thrilled with my lightweight down comforter and duvet cover!  It's just as close to perfect as can be for me.  I had fun writing my list for Santa.  As long as I have my fairies and muse, and can create sometimes (even when it's just in my head or on paper) I am a happy woman.  When I am physically comfortable, life is bliss!

          17. Gloriasews | | #95

            Yes, physical comfort makes all the difference in the world!  I think we slow down just frm the aches & pains, as it becomes too uncomfortable to keep doing things, eh?  You've got an admirable outlook, you happy woman, you!


          18. MaryinColorado | | #96

            Thank you for your kind words, you are so sweet.  I'm going to bed early tonight since I stayed up till 3 am last night/this morning.   I went to the Chocolate Moose quilting store today and got a different 2nd fabric for the pillows.  The owner loved my moose embroidery and offered to buy one.  I told her to buy the 40 wt. Rayon embroidery thread of her choice and give me a piece of fabric she wants it on and I will embroider it for free.  That surprised her, then she said she will do something nice for me too.  Not necessary, she is a wonderful lady and always so helpful.   She's going to help me learn to make applique scenic quilts like she has up in the store.  Hers are beautiful with animals and mountains and waterfall and all just incredible.  She said I can put some things in her store to sell if I want to.  Her fabric is more expensive, but I love supporting small businesses, especially ones like hers.  You get more than just a piece of fabric

          19. Gloriasews | | #97

            That was a great exchange you made with your quilt store, eh?  Wow!  There you go, if you can sell your stuff there.  That must have made your day!  You sure don't mind paying more if you receive such great service - both of you benefit.  She'll be happy with your embroidery, & ou'll love making a landscape quilt!  Of course, you'll have to buy a whole new kind of fabric design, which I'm starting to accumulate, but they're fun.  Also, you should check the library for Nancy Zeiman's Landscape Quilts - quite a good book!  Have a wonderful Christmas & keep warm.


          20. MaryinColorado | | #98

            What kind of landscape quilts have you made?  Can you send me photos to my email address?  I'm still trying to work out depth with the light/dark thing.  Tell me about your experience please?

            I've only been making quilts for about a year now.  Each one is a different technique and style.  I've always wanted to make landscape quilts!  I watched Nancy Zeiman's instructional videos online and saw them on her tv show. 

            I've been saving fabrics for this for about 2 years though as it's been on my "todo" list.  I'm going to start with a McKenna Ryan (http://www.pineneedles.com) Northwoods pattern first with the help from  Gerry at the Chocolate Moose shop.  That lady has made alot of beautiful quilts!  She is so sweet too and easy to talk with.  I love going to her shop and it's even close to home.  In the back of my mind I'm daydreaming about starting a little home based business related to sewing and machine embroidery. 

            I have Ellen Anne Eddy's book, Thread Magic.  I also saw her quilts at a quilt museum in Golden, Co. and just missed meeting her in person.  http://www.ellenanneeddy.com I think.  She really inspires me. 

            Eventually I want to make a "magic kingdom" wall quilt for my sewing room.  It will haves castles, fairies, dragons, and also some of the "critters" like Ellen Eddy does, etc. about 86" x 86".  I will use all the techniques I've been practicing through the years.  I also want to use Angelina and Tinzel fibers on it like Bonnie Lynn McCaffery teaches.  I have some of her books too.  It will be 3 Dimensional.  http://www.bonniemccaffery.com

            I'm also signed up for a class in February to learn Betty Cotton's Cotton Theory quilting where you do all the layers at once. 

            I'm so thrilled to be inspired again.  I had given up on fitting myself for clothing after years of making art to wear and one of a kind outfits.  I still dabble and want to make some more of Kayla Kennington's patterns. 

            Sorry, I'm rattling on and on.....Mary

          21. Sancin | | #99

            What McKenna Ryan project are you going to do Mary? I have one set aside - will start when I catch up on a few other things, but would love to swap info and tips with you. Anyone else here done one of these phenomenal applique quilts by McKenna?

          22. MaryinColorado | | #100

            I haven't decided yet as there are so many that I like.  Gerry said that they aren't difficult and she will help me chose the fabrics, which I think might be really important.  I like the "At Home In The Woods"  and "Calling Me Home"  "Petals of My Heart"  series quilts but if I make one block at a time would be really upset if they sell out before I get them all. 

            The individual quilts are quite large so there's wall space to consider.  Which one are you starting with?  It would be fun to work on one the same time as you and compare notes.  When were you planning to start?  Guess I better make a decision and buy the pattern! 

          23. MaryinColorado | | #101

            Hey, I'm moving this thread over to Quilting to see if anyone else is interested in landscape quilting.  Hope you don't mind, maybe we will get alot of ideas or even a lttle quilting bee going.  Mary

          24. Gloriasews | | #102

            Oh, Mary, I haven't been photographing anything I've been making!  Now that I have a digital camera, I will start.  You are, indeed, very inspired!  How wonderful!  I found the Nancy Zieman landscaping quilt book very inspirational - & very easy to follow & well illustrated with close-ups, so do try to get it from your library (or put it on your wish list).  You must think 'perspective' when you're working on landscape quilts - larger, darker objects in the foreground, & paler, small subjects in the background - & balance.  Many can be 3-D, with texturizing the foreground (rocks, trees, flowers, or you can quilt the animals so that they stand out, etc.) - wherever your imagination takes you.  Your magic kingdom wallhanging will be a huge undertaking & should be beautiful.

            Yes, don't give up sewing clothing completely - as you still have some Kayla Kennington things to make.  Happy sewing!


          25. User avater
            rodezzy2 | | #103

            Gloriasews, what are you doing up this time in the morning, or what time is it in your part of Canada? 

          26. Gloriasews | | #104

            Oh, Rodezzy, someone is always asking me that!  ha ha   It's 11:45 PM here (& very cold here, too), so not too late, although I have lots to do tomorrow, so I'd best hit the sack.  I thought I'd just peek into these Threads to see what I've been missing the past couple of days, as I haven't had time to keep up lately.  What are you doing up this late?  You need your beauty sleep to get all that stuff done that you have planned :)


          27. User avater
            rodezzy2 | | #105

            I slept most of Monday.  I had the grands this weekend.  Playing with them is rough on the old gal, but fun.  Good night or morning.

            Edited 12/23/2008 2:54 am ET by rodezzy2

          28. Gloriasews | | #106

            Oh - then you're all rested up!  Then I will go to bed, as it's past midnight here!


          29. MaryinColorado | | #109

            Maybe we can start a "nightowl" thread to chat on when we are up late!  Our members "down under" might like it too since it's their daytime! 

          30. User avater
            rodezzy2 | | #110

            That could work for me while I'm on vacation.  I didn't go to sleep until 3:00 a.m.

          31. MaryinColorado | | #111

            If I can't sleep tonight, I'll get online.  Do you IM too? 

            I ordered a CD from Ellen Anne Eddy's website yesterday.  Can't wait to see it!  Mary

          32. JeanM | | #112

            The words "nightowl", "chat", and "IM" perked up my ears!  I usually am up until 2 AM (Pacific time), love to chat about sewing or anything else, and IM.  Private chat rooms can be set up in AIM or Yahoo.

            Think we could exchange screennames we have at these places?  Then if someone is awake late (or can't sleep) and we see someone online,  we can communicate?  I'd love to do this.  Anyone else?  I used to be in a regular chat room which has faded over the years, but it certainly was a lot of fun.

          33. MaryinColorado | | #113

            Great idea!  If you start a chatroom, let me know!  You can choose to "reply via email" instead of posting here and I will send you my email address privately.  Mary

          34. JeanM | | #115

            It's done.

          35. User avater
            rodezzy2 | | #117

            I don't IM, because I don't know what that is. 

          36. JeanM | | #118

            If you don't know what it is, then how do you know that you don't do it?  LOL (Just being silly).

            IM= Instant Messaging.  It's like posting or e-mail, only immediate.  IMs are between 2 persons.  For more, a chat room can be opened.



          37. User avater
            rodezzy2 | | #119

            Oh yea, I've done that at work with our company email.  I'll have to check and see if I have it.  Does Yahoo have that?

          38. JeanM | | #120

            Yes, they do.  It's Yahoo Messenger and I think they are at version 9, but I think you can still download 8.  If you have Vista, think there are special proceedures for version 9 (unless they have changed that).  I don't read that part too carefully 'cause it doesn't apply to me.  I read, but then again didn't pay too much attention, that if you use the Web version (and not sure what that is), then you cannot chat, so you will want to download it while in Yahoo (or maybe even with your Yahoo account open). 

            If anyone has more info, don't hesitate to correct me on any of this.

          39. User avater
            rodezzy2 | | #121

            I have Vista and I bought a web cam.  But I didn't even take it out of the box.  The more I thought about it, the more I wished I hadn't bought it.  I don't want to dress up to answer my email.  giggle.  For real though, I don't.  You don't want to see me now.  And don't want you to.  Actually, I'm happier without IM and Web cam. 

          40. JeanM | | #122

            You don't have to turn on your web cam, nor your microphone, in order to IM.

          41. User avater
            rodezzy2 | | #123

            Oh I know that, but I'm satisfied with doing it the way I'm doing it. 

          42. maggiecoops | | #129

            Hi Rodezzy, I know from the other threads you are building up to a sort out and clear up, now don't you include your web cam. I've had one for 5 years and it is brilliant. I can natter to my family in Australia, I use the microphone to talk with friends in Germany, Norway, France, Egypt and Turkey, and when my good friend EV is in a US time zone that overlaps with mine I can chatter live to her as well. So much cheaper and easier than international phone calls, and I do it through Yahoo, for FREE. If my daughter is feeling a bit down she'll go online, sign in to Yahoo, and send me an invite to view her web cam, so we sit nattering until  she feels cheerful again. She likes to see me as she can't visit often because of the awful hours she works at school. (She's a deputy head of a large school)  I love the  freedom the Internet has given me, I can "go" anywhere, meet new folks, chat live to relations friends and acquaintances, and I can join forums. Well I was able to join this one and meet you, and all the other wonderful ladies. Just how cool is that, my grandmother and mother would be horrified at the thought of meeting so many strangers, but god bless them they were part of the "don't talk to strangers, foreigners or neighbours" We are so lucky.

          43. MaryinColorado | | #107

            Thank You for your suggestions and help!  I have tried laying out mountain shapes without success.  Now I believe the problem was as you mentioned the depth wouldn't work due to the misuse of darks and lights.  I need to study this further.  I was focusing on trying to create flow and movement and totally missed out on the lighting issue.  Thanks for clearing that up.  So much to learn and I love learning!

            Do you mean like trapunto, I should put a little stuffing or batting under the animals, etc.? 

            I am feeling so much more enthusiastic about new projects and about future possibilities in my life.  It really made a difference to add quilting to my life!  he he  It really is fun!


          44. Gloriasews | | #126

            Glad I was of help.  Yes, stuff the foreground rocks & animals like trapunto - it would make them stand out & look like they had substance - like 3D.  Again, they would also have to be balanced  as to size with their backgrounds, so they look like they belong in their natural settings.


          45. MaryinColorado | | #127

            I can't wait to get started on this! It makes me want to put aside the crazy quilt and just get going on learning to do the landscape quilts.  The machine embroideries are slowing me down as well as having the 3 grandkids here during winter break and the holiday fun and baking.  Can't wait to get into a routine of sewing every day so I can move on to this new adventure.

            I have a pattern for Designer Dragonflies by Debora Konchinsky that I'm going to do to practice some of the techniques I haven't done in awhile, like the applique.  I have some fabric I can use for it. 

            I didn't get a camera from Santa, guess I was on his naughty list, boo hoo. 

          46. Gloriasews | | #128

            Be grateful that you didn't get a lump of coal! :)  I'm glad you were able to order Nancy Zieman's Landscape Quilts from the library.  I hope you enjoy it & are even more inspired.  It's an easy read, so you'll understand more when you're finished. You'll be able to get back to sewing in a couple of days & all will return to normal again, which will be nice.  Good luck with the dragonflies.


          47. MaryinColorado | | #108

            Congratulations on your new digital camera!  I look forward to seeing your creations!  Hope Santa brings me one. 

            I will ask our library to have Nancy's book sent over, our small town library doesn't have many sewing related books. 

          48. Sancin | | #90

            sewelegant- Your history could be mine, including being a nurse. I prefer the coming term degenerative joint disease to osteoarthritis as many younger physicians refer to OA as wear and tear and lecture on how we are at fault for wearing and tearing! They seem to forget it can also be primary and it can be hereditary, as it is in my case. AND it is inflammatory (tho not systemic as in RA). Any where there is degeneration of joints there are irritating bits and pieces irritating the joint and the muscles. Having said that, I also have fibromyalgia which is disorder that reacts most to barometric changes. The combination of FM (originally diagnosed by old name of fibrocytis) and OA gives the symptoms of RA that you see on self diagnosis sites. On the other hand, my mother was considered to have OA d/t no blood work indicating RA but when she had joint replacements she was found to have RA joints. Fact is that is nothing can be done to cure us, tho SOME RA people can have significant remissions. We have to self manage as much as we can, as well as count on adequate chemical pain and inflammatory aids and alternate therapies. I, for one, have to move or I seize up. Still some days, weeks, months ......!

            Edited 12/12/2008 8:45 pm ET by Sancin

          49. gailete | | #91

            According to my Rheumatologist, 25% of people with RA do not have a positive sed rate. I am one of those. But because I responded to plaquanil she consideres me to have RA along with my OA. I have had both knees rep[laced already and they are in line for a redo within a year or two (and I'm only 53). We nurses ran our fool legs off. My last 3 years of active nursing was at a jail with concrete floors.

            I have found the worst barometric changes to be when a hurricane is coming in (mind you I live in PA). When Katrina came through I was in agony and then when Rita slammed through a few weeks later same thing. Even without seeing or hearing a wether report, I can usually predict hurricanes. Winters I dread due to the changes. So far though I'm doing pretty good this time as I started injecting my Methotrexate instead of taking the pills and it seems to hold me steadier.

            I loved that Christmas list! And those that think they may have RA, the sooner you seek treatment, the better as they have so many drugs out that help prevent the bony changes that you can't see in the beginning. We have a therapeutic pool nearby that I would use although they use bromain in the water instead of chlorine and I'm allergic to it. But it is what got me back walking after my last knee, until we realized why I was itching myself raw everyday after therapy.

            So nice to know there are people here that can understand. Anywhere else that I have asked for advise about how they accomplish a sewing task easier, it has been like the tennis playing arthritis ladies, they just don't understand that some days you just can't pick things up or use your scissors or whatever.

            One thing I have learned is to use my rotary cutter to cut out fabric for clothes. For years even though I used the rotary cutter for quilting I never thought of using it for cutting out fashion fabric till I saw an old Threads issue with a woman (who had arthritis) using one so I tried it. I have a bit of trouble going around curves, but it is so much faster. Plus my hubby gave me a pile of weights that I use instead of pinning fabric, so what used to take me a long time goes really fast now and without killing my hands like cutting out with scissors. What other things do you ladies do to help make your sewing life easier?


          50. Sancin | | #92

            Mary, I also love the Christmas list. I would add an accupuncture certificate, as I find it wonderful.I am going to start a new theme discussion as I think sewelegant is onto something asking for advise from others, but lots would also like to continue talking about dressing the over - fifties - an theme that deserves it's own discussion. If anyone knows how to move arthritis discussion to the new discussion I start please do so.I can't believe how close to Christmas it is!! Merry Christmas to all.

          51. Josefly | | #83

            Ooooh, I'm envious of you with your old issues of Threads. I have only been subscribing since late 1999, and have read a lot here about the older issues. I'd love to see them, but I haven't sought the old issues out - small house, limited storage, too much stuff now. But it sounds like you're having a good time with those mags. That's an interesting article about the effect on different figure types of style lines. I can use all the help like that that I can get!

          52. Sancin | | #84

            I have extensive degeneration in my fingers and wrist (and everywhere). I purchased a pair of cross warp elastic gloves at a medical supply house. The tips of the fingers are open so can wear them when doing things but I usually just wear them at night .. along with my taking my joint juice and an analgesic. The gloves are lined with a thin layer of bright red flannel which keeps my hands warm and the elastic gently massages my hands as I move. Still, as some of you know, there are some days..... I have thought a heated bed underpad would be nice based past experiences with electric blankets which seem to have a more penetrating heat than my down duvet. I have considered a wax bath so thanks for the info here. As it has turned very cold tonight I will dream of the warm underpad! And shudder thinking of cold on my hands. I find that cold is very good for my upper back but heat is better for my lower back - go figure.

          53. MaryinColorado | | #73

            I was considering joint replacement in my thumbs several years ago.  I was given a home waxing machine by Remington.  I dip my hands eight times each, letting the wax dry a bit in between dips.  This has relieved my pain a great deal, especially in the winter months. It has also somehow helped with flexibility, now I can even hold a coffee cup on "bad"days.   The lavender wax is also very relaxing aromatherapy. 

            It also softens and smooths the skin of my hands and feet, which is what it's original purpose is.  My daughter in law told me it was recomended to her by her physical therapist.  It works for her too.

            God bless you!  I am going through much of the same thing with Christmas plans.  It's so frustrating!!! 

            I also spend the "down" time in creative musings for embellishment, machine embroidery, design planning.  http://www.bonniemccaffery.com has DigiBobbe which is fun to do.  You can do reverse bobbin work in the hoop or manually with her instructions on her website.  I bought the digibobbe designs and a seperate bobbin case for my Designer I to adjust as needed while in a baggie so I don't lose the little screw.  It's white so doesn't get mixed up with the standard black bobbin case.

            Do you have a serger?  I have lots of ideas for creative serging if you're interested. 

            Take care!  Before we know it, this season will be replaced by Spring!!!

            Yesterday is History, Tomorrow is a Mystery, Today is a gift, that's why we call it the "present".  Eleanore Roosevelt                   Mary

          54. User avater
            ThreadKoe | | #74

            The spa/salon where I work have several clients who come in for regular manicures just for the massages and heat treatments for pain management.  The nice nails are actually secondary, tee hee.  Same for the pedicures.  I just had my feet done, and the heat sure aided my sore and aching knees and legs.  Thought that all the hairwashing would bother my hands, but actually, all the warm water has limbered them up!  tee hee   Cathy

          55. MaryinColorado | | #75

            I haven't been using my hot waxer since getting Zoey!  That puppy is a bundle of joy, but always up to mischief with her curiosity.  She's looking for cords to chew on now.  I'm glad that the warm suds are feeling good!  I love the scented lavender wax.  Maybe I'll put her in her pen so I can have a "dip", it would feel so good!  Mary

          56. User avater
            ThreadKoe | | #76

            A nice quick fix if you have a microwave oven is this:

            Mix a few drops of essential oils in a cup of warm water.  Use lavander or eucalyptus.  Take a hand towel, and roll it up loosely.  Pour the water over the towel until it is moist.  Squeeze the water through the towel until it is evenly damp, but not wet.  Then place on a plate and microwave on high for about one minute.  BE CAREFUL  it will be HOT!  Use tongs or a fork to shake the towel out.  Wrap the towel around the hands.  It will cool quickly, but feels wonderful.  You can reheat the towel again if you want, as long as it is damp.  This is great if you put hand cream on first, as it helps it soak in better.  It is also a great quick fix for sore and cold feet!     Enjoy   Cathy

          57. MaryinColorado | | #77

            Oooooooh, thank you!  Excellent tip!  I need to go buy some more lavender oil.  I will share it with others too.

            I plugged in the waxer, now I'm looking for the little mitts and booties to put on after the plastic to hold the heat in.  I'm looking forward to this little luxury that soothes so well. It finally occurred to me that I can shut the door or put her in her pen for purely selfish reasons once in a while!  he he I gave myself "permission".  Mary

          58. User avater
            ThreadKoe | | #78

            Harumph! :(  Darling since when does one need to give oneself permission to look after yourself?????  tee hee   Take your break and enjoy your little pleasure my friend!  I am sure you will feel like a million dollars after.   Cathy

          59. MaryinColorado | | #79

            Yes Maam!!!  he he he 

  6. Deborah15 | | #114

    I live in Chicago in the US, and have found Talbots (and now Talbots Women) to have stylish, colorful, well made and well fitting clothing for the 40 - 60 year old woman.  Their catalogs are excellent, and I especially like that the colors match for several years.  I'll buy a sweater and it will look great with slacks from several years ago.

    1. JeanM | | #116

      I rarely order clothes from a catalog and haven't done so in years, but I will look for a place to order a catalog from them.  I am so far behind in sewing that I need outside help LOL, and I hate to go to stores and shop.

    2. Sancin | | #124

      I like Talbots as well, but have only bought a few things in the store when visiting Toronto. I received an email recently with all sorts of stores that are closing recommending not ordering from them and Talbots was one of them. Supposedly closing all stores.

      1. KharminJ | | #125

        That email is *almost* a hoax. Some of the listed companies are indeed closing some-to-many of their stores, or reorganizing in some way, but I don't think many are actually going away completely... Talbot's is apparently closing their Men's and Kid's-specific stores, but opening them was probably a misguided expansion decision in the first place.~~~~~~Gift cards for "Specific Store" are always a bit dicey, anyway, because there's no assurance that the recipient will find exactly what they want there. My SIL received a nice-sized gc from Carson's, but couldn't find either of the items she really wanted this week... if it had been a generic debit (Visa, AmEx, etc), it would have been more immediately useful for her. Just sayin' ...


This post is archived.

Threads Insider

Get instant access to hundreds of videos, tutorials, projects, and more.

Start Your Free Trial

Already an Insider? Log in

Conversational Threads

Recent Posts and Replies

  • |
  • |
  • |
  • |
  • |
  • |

Threads Insider Exclusives

View All
View All