28 November 2007

skirt #5

After I got to work this morning I realised that I wasn't wearing any makeup, sad but true. I'm not the type to "never leave the house without her face done" as I'm happier without it, but presentation is very important to me and I don't like people to see how red my nose is - especially in summer. So I just do the basics, good bit of foundation and some eye makeup. The strange thing about this morning was how self conscious I was, and glad not very many people would see me like this. As I said - sad.....

So here's skirt #5 amid hemming the lining. Have I mentioned how much I love my trusty old Bernina?
Have I also mentioned how much I love my husband? Ant had to do a business trip up the North-West coast on Tuesday, catching up with some of his customers etc. That night when we had just sat down to tea he asked me "do you love me?". Of course I replied that I always love him. He then reached over to the seat next to him and lifted up the green toile type fabric as seen above, a whole 2.8 metres of it! Then last night he presented me with the 2 tickings - about 2 metres each. He had stopped into Ulverstone and noticed Jan's Discount Fabrics, she goes to Melbourne regularly and buys ends of rolls. Yes, I love him very much.

23 November 2007

tunic love

Here's me enjoying a posing moment on the Italian lawn (and no I haven't roller skated on it yet - too many loose stones!), resplendent in my new top . I'll be making a couple more but without that style of pocket (pregnant look). I do enjoy the convenience of a pocket so in future I'll just have one in the side seam or in a contrasting colour/pattern as a quirky patch pocket. I was also a bit lazy this time by machining the hem rather than hand sewing and was so glad I did, as you can't even notice the machine stitching anyway.

So back to reality and a return to skirt #5, I cut out the sash tie for the waist and once that's attached it will only need hemming. Must hassle the Travelling Teacosy* for some more work. In the meantime work will begin on B Mum's birthday present, so I must latch onto one of the ideas floating around my head.

Have a good weekend everyone. We'll be back to Bruny again.......

21 November 2007

the garden's still being neglected

Although Ant's just gone to the nursery (Allan's) for some vegetable seedlings which I intend to plant tonight, in amongst Ant's parents coming to tea. We might all get into the garden together and have some family bonding time, wouldn't be difficult as I've already weeded the veggie patches.So here's the tunic top mid construction and which I'm actually wearing right now (finished of course!). It was a Simplicity pattern 3744, I used shortest length dress and the little cap sleeves. One thing I really love about it is that you have 3 different choices for the front panels with regards to cup sizes - B, C or D. About time somebody did this, and it's sooo comfy! I'll get Ant to take a photo tonight.
After the scorcher on Tuesday (30 degrees c - very unseasonal for a Tasmanian spring), I opened one of the sewing room windows on Wednesday to take advantage of the cooler breeze. Gracie approved this.Here's the prototype bag I sent to Shannon. I decided to tie the straps together rather than a button, it seemed to sit better this way. Shannon has to let me know if it works well and what improvements may be needed (you hear!)

16 November 2007

jeez I'm slack

I have quite a few photos to post but the problem is that I write these entries at work (ssh, no I don't!!) but the photos are on the computer at home, and home time is pretty full-on at the moment with virtually all weekends at Bruny. The garden wants lots and lots of attention too and I spent an afternoon in the front yard this week completely weeding it and tidying up all the straw mulch that the birds scatter everywhere. The vegie patch still hasn't been planted (ugh!) and the sprinkler system up the back needs re-mastering, especially since I went over some of it with the whipper-snipper ....... the grass was so tall I had no idea what was underneath.

So I'm still sewing of a morning don't get me wrong, otherwise I'd go mad. Shannon's bag is made and I do hope she likes it and doesn't mind that it's a simplified version of the first one I made for her (don't worry Shan, it just means that there's not the extra pockets - just one inside). I've been experimenting with a new bag design and I think I'll send her one of these to trial, so all should be in the mail on Monday.

Car dramas at the moment. After receiving my tax refund, the nicest I've had in a very long time, I decided that the best use for it is to finally have the clutch and gear box done in my little red wagon. I took it to the repairer on Tuesday and received a phone call on Wednesday morning to say that it's worse than expected and will cost about another $1,000, this means that my tax cheque won't be enough. Tas Driveline has a very good reputation and don't screw people around so I know they'll do a good job, the problem with clutches and gear boxes is that you don't know how bad it is until it's been pulled apart. It's just that I was expecting to have about $500 change from the cheque and I was going to use some of it on a new printer/scanner - you know, a treat for me?

Even bike dramas too. Riding home from work on Tuesday my peddles went clunkety clunk as the shaft between them came loose. The good news is that it only cost $25 to repair. The bad news is that Geards have a sale and they had a lovely silver coloured women's mountain bike for $380. Oh my.

Okay I'm home now so here's some photos.
I've made this 'divided skirt' or cullottes before in black. It was high waisted and I added braces to complete the look. They've been great and perfect for the bike but a bit of a pain when one needs the toilet as there's so much to undo. So I've made this version (not high waisted) in a dull beige cotton from Spotlight which is quite heavy, almost a canvas. They were christened today in more ways than one -
I need a chain guard ......

Here's the new bag I'll send to Shannon, still in progress of course -
The pointy bits will become the strap and will be joined and finished off with a button. It was inspired by this which I saw a photo of in a Japanese craft book
Bit like a papoose isn't it? This one used two square upholstery fabric samples which are 65cm (25.5") square, cut diagonally (that's why the trees are upside down on one side!) then re-pieced as you can see in the smaller one. What I've used for the smaller one is half of two samples so in theory I should get two bags. They're unlined also but could easily be lined. Another naff thing is that if I don't completely stich up the cross over sections I have an instant pocket, I'll keep you posted .......

07 November 2007

went shopping

F Mum loved her quilt and I'm so glad the bag and badge worked well, fully blogged by Lonnie Girl as most would probably realise by now.

Fabric shopping was the order of the day in Melbourne on Monday. Two metres each of a black and brown linen and some vintage cotton found at the pokey little fabric shop at the top end of Bourke St. This shop is amazing and not especially in a good way. Fabric is stacked from floor to ceiling and a lot have varying degrees of water damage, which also explains the reason why the place smells very musty. It didn't help either whilst looking through the linens I discovered a silverfish, I'm sure there's a lot more where they came from!

So I have this tunic pattern in a Japanese craft book (found on Ebay) and thought this would look lovely in a nice breezey linen, but first I would try it on some left over fabric (brown printed cotton with 5% spandex stretch) that I wouldn't be upset about if it didn't work. I finished it tonight and it's okay except that it's pretty shapeless so it does the same old thing with me where my boobs push the shape out at the front and therefore hides my waist. So yes, it needs more shaping which means more tailoring and inserting a zip. Actually, buttons on the shoulder or down the side seam would be cute. I'm also not that keen on the neck shape but I do like that little split bit, so I think I'll have to go out and find the right pattern after all. As for the dummy run, I'm thinking it will make a good summer gardening top.

This is the entrance to a block of flats a couple of doors down from Ant's auntie's apartment in Melbourne where we always stay (bless you Jane!). I'm so loving that wrought iron design, very 1920's art deco. I dunno it just does something to me and makes me want to find more - for what, who knows ....... yet! I've been promising myself for some time now to go around Launceston with my camera as there's so much wrought iron still in it's original condition, however it's more Victorian. We'll see what we can come up with!

"Tomorrow is a new day with no mistakes in it". I love that quote from Anne of Green Gables, and the way Marilla puts a "yet" on the end of it. Skirt #5 for Tara is in full swing so I must get that finished as well as Shannon's bag for her birthday. I realised that I didn't get a photo of skirt #4, as I finished it whilst out at Exton and didn't think to take one even though I had my camera with me (another blonde moment..). Anyways, must go to bed, sleep is calling and I like that.

01 November 2007

book review

The book I ended up having to buy through American Ebay finally came yesterday (I'm sorry that it was faster and cheaper than ordering it through Fullers). Bend the Rules Sewing by Amy Karol. Yes I know I've been harping on about the angry chicken blog but it was the breath of fresh air I needed and I just wanted to share some chicken love with everyone else. So I'm also sorry to those who thought of buying this for my birthday/Christmas, I couldn't wait till then. But if you want other ideas then send Ant a line, as he's started to build a little list, bless him.

Back to the review. This book is aimed at the beginner but also to the more experienced who want to approach our sewing from a different perspective, you might call it lateral sewing but I suppose we can all get bogged down with our sewing routines no matter what creative gems we can come up with. Does that make sense? Amy tries to encourage beginners not to give up just because what you made wasn't what you envisaged, whether by multiple mistakes or it just didn't work. This doesn't mean it's crap and if you're prepared to take the time to either make corrections or adapt the piece then you can come away with something usable.

There's lots of things to make too. From totes and aprons to tea cozies and coasters, even a lap quilt. I love the apron made from a groovy tea towel, so simple and it looks great. Amy also has a flikr group where anyone can contribute photos of what they've made from the book, brilliant idea.

Basic instructions and patterns at the back with the % you need to enlarge them on the photocopier also makes this a very user friendly book. Now, let's see what I can come up with .....

Oh and here's the quilt for F Mum. I posted it on my APQ blog but I want to record it on this one also.