One of my favourite hobbies is sewing,
but I do enjoy a variety of interests.
You can read about them below.



When I was a little girl, my Mother sometimes sewed on a Singer sewing machine. It wasn't the old-fashioned kind with a foot treadle, but a "modern" one which she had purchased in the 1950's with her hard earned money. I wanted to sew on it so badly, but I wasn't allowed to touch it until I was older. That day finally arrived! One hot summer in 1972 she pulled it out of its special box, and taught me how to sew. I was 12 years old. I experimented with a strip of cloth, until my seams were straight. Then I designed a dress for my Skipper doll. I made up my own pattern. It turned out quite well, and that was the start of a life-long love of sewing! I haven't stopped yet, although I now use a Pfaff machine, quite different from my Mother's old Singer. I also own a Pfaff serger, and one day I'd love to purchase an embroidery machine.



Another hobby is needlecraft. I really enjoy doing things with a needle and thread in my hands, not just in the machine. I like to work on stamped cross-stitch designs and embroidery. In January 1998 I finally completed a set of embroidered tea-towels given to me by my Mom, along with my first sewing basket, when I was twelve years old!  Sometimes I am a little slow. In the spring of 2000, I finished the "Home Sweet Home" cross stitch kit I had purchased years ago, and I had it professionally pressed, matted and framed. I hung it in the living room, by the fireplace, and it looks quite impressive! Currently I'm learning how to smock. I also enjoy designing doll clothes for Chatty Cathy, and selling them on Ebay under the Ebay ID name of "House of Houben". My current doll to sew for is Bleuette. I have a BLOG with pictures of my Bleuette dolls and their clothes. All my Bleuettes are reproductions, made by wonderful doll artists. Bleuette's patterns date from 1905 - 1960!

Click here to see my Home Sweet Home project.

Click here to see me in my sewing corner.



My favorite pastime is reading. I enjoy collecting old books from the late 1800's and early 1900's. In the late 1970's when I began this, the prices were reasonable. Now the books are becoming difficult to find, and are very expensive! But I have discovered the Internet; you can find anything your heart desires on it!

I enjoy collecting china, (Blue Willow, Royal Albert) tea-pots, linens, dolls (especially Chatty Cathy) miniatures, angels, and books. I really am learning to control myself lately; I am running out of room! Another favorite hobby is shopping! I enjoy window browsing; just acquiring ideas on how to make my home more attractive. 

Another favourite hobby is writing. Actually, for over 40 years I've kept a journal. However, I've turned serious, and I took a writing course from the "Institute for Children's Literature." I began the course in August 2000, and graduated in May 2003.  It was very interesting and challenging.
Please visit my writing endeavors page to see links to my published articles.

A newer hobby is stamping, card making, and scrap booking. It's addictive and expensive! My teacher for th 3 years has been a wonderful woman named Susan Farrant. She has boundless energy and it is so much fun to learn new techniques at her monthly classes. Susan has a neat BLOG with great ideas! Check it out!

I also enjoy playing the piano. I purchased my "Story and Clark" piano in 1993. It's so relaxing to sit down and produce a beautiful sonata or a simple hymn arrangement at the end of a hectic day. My husband enjoys it when I play, but it usually puts him to sleep!


Copyright L. H. Houben

If you would like to see my sewing projects,
please Click Here.