Welcome to Rake and Make!

Five years ago, when I first bought my house and was trying to figure out what I was going to do with the intimidating grassy area in my front yard, I took the Comprehensive Organic Gardeners class at Seattle Tilth. The COG class provided me with a great foundation of knowledge to utilize that big grassy area in a productive way, by getting rid of the grass and growing delicious and chemical-free vegetables! It also left me with resources for when I need advice, such as the invaluable Garden Hotline.

I started small and have been learning gradually. The first year, I started with one raised bed. The next year, I bought a couple of feed troughs, so I would have more space to plant in. The year after that, my boyfriend Matt made me two more raised beds. Last year, he built me three cold frames. As the garden got bigger, the lawn got smaller. From Spring through Fall, I have lots of yummy veggies to eat and hardly any lawn to mow!

 I also took the the City Chickens class. I have had these beauties for almost 5 years now!

On to my fifth gardening season! This year, I am starting this blog. This is the perfect time too, as I am just now starting to plan my garden for the year. This way, I can share my entire gardening season with you from start to finish. What I write about will be my experiences, such as garden planning, seed starting, planting and transplanting, pest management, harvesting, cooking, fall and winter gardening, and canning and preserving.

There will be some posts about sewing too. For years, I had an old crappy sewing machine that would eat thread and had a peddle that made sparks. I could get it to work long enough to mend a thing or two, but I steered clear of more complicated projects for fear of frustration… and fire. Then, under the Christmas tree last year was a shiny new machine that runs like a top. I already knew how to operate a sewing machine, but pretty much everything else was foreign to me, so I took a Basic Pattern Reading class and the Sewing Basics 2 class from the West Seattle Fabric Company to get me started on my way to my ultimate goal which is making clothes (dresses in particular). As I make things, and learn and progress in the process, I will post pictures and either how I made it or what book or pattern the project came from.

my new sewing table

I would also like to hear from you about your experiences. You may have experience in areas that I do not, or may be learning something new as well. So please comment!

You can follow me on Twitter via the link below. You can also subscribe in the sidebar if you would like to get new posts by email.

Thanks for reading and I look forward to hearing from you!


13 thoughts on “Welcome to Rake and Make!

  1. Can’t wait to add our cedar fence, trellis and HOPS to the front garden… Maybe this spring?!!! Love the blog… Keep posting!

  2. Congrats on the new blog, Lily – and the great looking garden. I passed this along to Laura, and I’m looking forward to seeing (and hopefully getting a chance to sample) some of the amazing produce!

  3. Lilly you are my idol! You are doing everything I’ve always wanted to do but never knew how and are too lazy to learn. Love the blog. Can’t wait to see the fantastic things you come up with! Love you

  4. Lilly! This is awesome! I wish I would have known we had so much in common when I still lived in Seattle, but I’m stoked to check out your projects on this here blog. I just scored a serger myself and am diving back into sewing this year (I used to make most of my own clothes back in high school)… if you ever need to use a serger, plan a day trip to Oly and you can come check out my garden, too. Cheers to a fabulous growing season!


    1. Hey Cosmic!
      Thanks for checking out the blog! I just got a serger too. I barely know how to use it yet though. When I bought it the lady at the store showed me how to do one kind of basic finished edge, so I have just been using it like that. I haven’t messed around with any of the settings yet. I have had the ladies at the store thread it for me twice now (the store is right by my house). It came with a free class, and I still need to take that, so I can learn how to use it properly. The saleslady also said that sergers are good for sewing knits, so I really want to take the beginning knitwear class at Made Sewing Studio. There’s one next month where they teach you how to make a swimsuit. I may just have to take that. Do you know how to sew knits? If not, you should come down and take it with me!

  5. I’ve been sewing for years but I’m a fresh baby to gardening. Maybe we can swap tips!

    And I’m showing my daughter your chickens in the morning. She might be obsessed with them.

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