Monthly Archives: August 2011
Do you like my new cardi?
Please excuse the fact that it was a very bright day and also I have managed to chop my feet off in almost every photo.
On Saturday, after a long (and not entirely abusive) life, my computer finally kacked it (that’s the technical term, trust me). There was much swearing and gnashing of teeth but no tears since I’d just backed up the most important stuff the previous day.
Am I psychic? Possibly.
I was thinking about throwing the thing out the window when Husband came in to see what all the fuss was about and promptly left again. Lucky for me (or perhaps more for the computer) he returned, just as I was picking it up, with a set of small screw drivers and other computery thingees (more technical terms, I’m on a role here). After a ridiculously short amount of time plugging, button pushing and screw drivering he had coaxed it back from the brink long enough for me to save the rest of the hard drive. Nerdy husbands are so useful.
So on Sunday I got taken computer shopping because while we could probably scrape together enough items from his nerdy room it really is time I bit the bullet and shouted myself a new computer. Well I said shopping but it was really just browsing and investigating and the purchase will take place next week. After we finished telling sales people to leave us alone for about an hour I got dropped back home and then Husband left to give his sister H a long ago promised driving lesson.
With my room still strewn with previously mentioned computery bits and a PC I dare not turn on without help close at hand I decided I needed a quick sewing pick me up.
After Knitting and I had a few words and decided that just right now we are not getting along I cut the BurdaStyle Esther pattern out of a black and silver/grey striped knit that I got from the Joveeba relocation sale in Perth. I picked up this piece, 152cm wide and 2.20m long, for AUD$16.00. I cut a size 40 but my fabric wasn’t quite long enough for the pattern, however since I had extra width I was able to add a join in the collar piece which ends up at the back of my neck. I chose to do this on a black stripe with the hope of it being less obvious.
Then I decided to try a little experiment: I re-threaded all 4 threads of my overlocker in black and challenged myself to make the whole thing without my sewing machine and started the timer. Give or take I finished the whole thing in about 1 hour 40 minutes and that includes pressing, adjusting the tension on the Bernina, getting a little distracted with making a cup of tea and sending a couple of text messages.
Ok, I admit I did use the Elna just to baste the open edges of the crazy super loooong collar together but as you can see my concession did not include re-threading it to black (the white got chopped off by the overlocker knife anyway!).
But then baby got put back in the corner to keep the side of my PC case company.
So I am quite pleased with my effort and it certainly put a smile on my face when I went to open the door for Husband wearing my new cardi.
The Esther pattern used to be free back in ancient BurdaStyle history but for $2.50 it’s still a steal of a pattern. I will say however that the instructions are rubbish, don’t even bother to read the words, they make no sense whatsoever, just follow the pictures. As a pattern however it simple, quick (even if you do use a sewing machine) and an easy fit. It lends itself to knits and even jersey for a more light weight look, you could mix up the colours on the collar, sleeves and cuffs for a bit of fun, why don’t you go check it out all the other versions online?
Congratulations to Tineke and Natasha who were the winners of my Silly Sewing Mistake giveaway. Because their answers both came in within 2 hours of each other while I was offline (read: outside taking more photos of snow!), and being first time commentors ended up being held for moderation I decided to be a Generous Kiwi and give two Manequim issues away.
Tineke will be enjoying issue 625 and Natasha will love my second spare Manequim issue 624 which is also super amazing. I hope you girls enjoy the goodness that is Manequim and thank you so much for reading
The answer was that, despite checking and checking again, I managed put my buttons on the “wrong” side!
I’ve heard two theories as to why women’s tops button right-over-left and men’s left-over-right. The first is that in ancient times wealthy ladies (who could afford buttoned items which were quite expensive) would have maids to dress them and it is easier to button a shirt up from the outside in that manner if you are right-handed, but men tended to dress themselves. The second is also from ancient times when men wore swords but of course, women didn’t. The majority being right-handed would belt their sword to the left hip, buttons are placed on the opposite side so that as they drew their sword it wouldn’t catch on the overlap. Either way it’s all a bit old fashioned isn’t it and as Natasha pointed out to me in an email, no one will pick my mistake unless they try my blouse on. It does feel a little weird buttoning it up the “wrong” way though
What do you think? Have you heard these anecdotes or have you heard a different one?
It has been absolutely freezing in my sewing room the last two days so yesterday I set myself up in the lounge with a laptop, some machine-less sewing tasks and the fire.
I did a little of this:
…and a little of this:
Here is a sneak peak of my current WIP that is awaiting a last little bit of sewing. There isn’t a lot left to do but it’s way to cold to be whipping off the clothes for the final alterations before completing but hopefully I can share it with you this weekend. The fabric is from Potter’s in Perth, it’s a silk crepe that I picked up off of the “Remnant Table of Endless Inspiration”, I got the 149cm x 1.1m length for $10, bargain.
Well we had a bit of excitment here in Wellington yesterday afternoon/evening!
I mean, it snowed the other day, well not really, just in the hills and a little bit on our car when we were driving but I wouldn’t say anything turned white for very long, but tonight it really DID snow! So of course we had to go outside and get quite wet and cold but we got some neat photos. If you’re a little confused let me explain that it doesn’t normally snow in Wellington. Husband and I have been talking about trying snow boarding this season, I wish we’d bought boards, I could have had my first go down our driveway! But perhaps that’s a good thing, there isn’t exactly a soft landing at the bottom.
Right, back to sewing. I think I may have finished* mucking around with my new blog theme. I can’t justify buying a domain or paying for the flash super-customise-able software and if I did that I’d probably have to give up one of my magazine subscriptions and that’s about as likely to happen as me using up my entire fabric hoard. Still, I think with a little kiwi ingenuity (kiwi readers are smiling and thinking about no. 8 wire) I’ve done ok and I’m pretty proud of the new look. I have a revised header now as well, a background and these neat little menu page things on the right to reduce the clutter. On top of all that I got my pages all fixed up (which was what finally pushed me over the “hrm, shall I have a go at my blog design or not?” edge) see them up the top there? Why don’t you click on over and see what you can learn?
So let’s celebrate shall we? With all the excitement and stress of moving countries I managed to completely miss one exciting event and successfully forget another. The first was my blogging birthday, which I was quite excited about, and the second was my 30th birthday, which I was not so excited about. Actually that’s not entirely true. I love birthdays, just not the idea of hitting such a milestone. But I’ve been 30 now for almost 3 months and nothing bad has happened, I still feel how I felt when I was 29, which is how I felt when I was 28, and 27, and 26 so I guess I’ll cope
This year I wanted to start a new birthday tradition of making a birthday dress each year. Some of the wonderful sewing bloggers that I follow do this and I really like the concept. I started thinking about it 2 months before it was thwarted by my life getting stuffed into some boxes. The plan was to start it in May each year, ready for my birthday in June.
I have plenty of pretty dresses in my “to sew list”. So, what would make a good (if a little belated, ok, a lot belated) birthday dress project?
First up is the everyone-else-has-made-it-but-me Vogue 8280 (aka Rouland Mouret Galaxy Dress) and I even bought fabric for it from Tessuti online and made up a Photoshop image to get me all excited. Also in my queue from Colette Patterns is the Parfait and Rooibos patterns and Simplicity’s 2724 ever since I saw Sunni’s Naughty Secretary Dress version.
My last mega-pattern purchase included Buttericks 5455, because who doesn’t love piping AND pockets? And several Vogues including 1190, 1161 and 1174, the last two because of Tasia’s amazing versions seen here and here.
For all of these dresses I could easily find an appropriate fabric in my stash so I’d still like to start this year but it may end up being a “Welcome Back Summer” or perhaps a Christmas dress instead. Life is busy at the moment so Christmas is an easy goal. Keep your eyes open, a dress labelled “birthday” might appear in a post sometime soon
Now back to my blogoversary…it’s been a fun year and I’ve learnt a lot about my sewing. I’m not going to go over it all since I covered most of my last year in my new years post, but I’ve discovered a heap of new online and offline sewing friends with all their delicious inspirational blogs and knowledge and I’m really glad I started blogging.
So to celebrate just a wee bit and to make my blog feel all grown up I’m going to do a little giveaway. I’ve got something super amazing too, it’s a spare copy of one of my favourite Manequim issues!
Isn’t that a really cool prize?! If you haven’t seen this incredible issue then take a look at my post here, you’ll have to scroll down a bit past the Patrones review. But you’re not going to get it easily, you’ll have to work for it Here’s how:
In my Patrones blouse post I mentioned a few mistakes I made during the sans-instruction construction process, like having to un-pick my topstitching to sew the neck facings. I also have no idea if I finished the arm holes correctly but they work anyway. There was one other mistake, something that I didn’t mention in my post let alone spot until I was all but finished and it embarrasses me that I made it. It’s an elementary super basic mistake that only another seamstress would probably notice. It doesn’t affect me wearing the blouse and indeed I wear this blouse all the time regardless but I know the mistake is there. It’s something technical, maybe even a little old fashioned and I notice it every time I put this blouse on.
Did you spot it?
It’s most visible on the finished item images. The first reader (and this excludes the two sewing friends I have disclosed this sewing secret to, you know who you are) to tell me what my silly little beginner mistake was in the comments on this post will win the super amazing Manequim issue above.
Then we can all giggle (and learn) from my mistake.
Now I think you chickies are all really smart so I’ll give you a week and then I’ll give up a clue if no-one gets. If you are the winner I will contact you for postage details and then let everyone know how lucky you are.
*That is a complete lie, I’ll probably tweak and re-tweak it forever and ever ad infinitum until I decide change it drastically again