Monday, May 30, 2011

sew weekly sunday: move a rubber tree plant


someone went blind making this.  but look how preeeetteeeeeeee!  the pink and red lines are strands of thick yarn stitched down with metallic thread, the coarsely woven fabric is hand stamped in blue, the base is embroidered and there are several yards of handstitched lace and ric rac, just for kicks.

no, i did not make this. sis-in-law wore it to le park today, which was fortuitous as this week's sew weekly challenge was all about embellishments taking center stage.  she bought it years ago in the village, and now that i understand what went into making it... DUDE.

i wore my completed project.  i have promised not to compare it to the above fabulousness, but let's just say there is not quite as much embellishment.  big ups to the maker of this skirt.  sis-in-law has sworn never to give it away (except to me, of course).


i had high hopes for this challenge.  braided yellow gold trim, twine, and silk.  yeah, silk.  ten bucks a yard.  since i rarely do a muslin, i try to cut wide seam allowances, baste, adjust, all that jazz... but somehow the perfectly adjusted pattern was two inches too slim after i put the tiny for reals stitches in.

it's currently in the ICU.   i'm trying to save it with an exposed zipper.  but it could go at any moment. 

grabbed the man-made you see pictured above next.  this poly-osity has a border print, which i cut away and used for the waistband & bottom panel of a tiered gathered maxi skirt.  should this have been easier than making a silk pinafore?  yes, one would think.  one.  would.  THINK.


it had a nifty fringed selvedge that in my mind was its own embellishment.  lucky that, because after six hours of sewing this shiny shit from east hell, i abandoned my idea of rickracking each of the four tiers. instead i threw some piping in at the waistband and called it done.

SLACKER.

you can't even see the red piping for the flowers, but i'm seriously pleased with it.  it feels like summer in a skirt. i'm pretty sure you can click on the pic to enlarge, should you so desire a closer look.  but, you know, just imagine a five foot chick covered in flowers from le waist down.  the sales ladies at sephora loved it (did you know they call each other cast members now?  what the fa is up with that?).  

did i say sephora?  that must mean i'm buying TRAVEL SIZE!!!  we're flying to the mountain top next week, hence the recent oona-free zone, but soon!  more posts!  more sewing!  more wise ass comments on your blogs as i slurp a cliffhanger and catch up on y'all!  and... a very cool announcement! 




fabric: something flammable. ($5 yd)
pattern: simplicity 4420 from miss magpie shinies. thank you kimberlee!
year: i love the 80s. and so do the cast members at sephora.
notions: invisible zip ($1), piping ($1 yd)
time to complete: six hours
first worn: today
wear again: yeah yeah yeah summer skirt!
total cost: $12.  i gotta get me back to that five dollar sweet spot.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

how to fill a bar cart on the cheap.


so. last week, i returned the silk gown i made for wee pixie.  there was some tugging involved.  some promises extracted about giving it back, should pixie ever grow tired of it.  my dream was that she'd admit boredom with it right there, and respectfully hand it over.  really, how many times can you wear a one of a kind bias cut topstitched green silk evening gown?  maybe i should've offered her money?  name my firstborn after her?

yet, i'm considering taking on sewing for friends again.

am i stupid?  

while the gown left me with a severe case of maker's remorse, i did recently complete another sew-body else challenge that left me walking on air, and it wasn't even a request.  in a fit of spring fever, i up and  offered to make my sis-in-law a dress.  i envisioned something simple, something she could learn to make as i made it, out of cotton, with maybe a fitted waistband.  no first-time-failure polyester-masquerading-as-silk for her, like i did!  it had to end in success, so that the sewing bug would bite her swiftly and surely.  she countered with ideas of what she'd really like: a cotton skirt, and two of my double agent dress (tutorial, i swear, is coming).  okay!  i could see that ending in smiles!  and she could be the guinea pig for my tute!  i pulled out the proper patterns and got her size ready, and on The Day she arrived at my doorstep with the carefully selected oona approved list of supplies.

umm, only, the two yards of four way stretch jersey and one yard of light cotton turned into three yards of Thick. Double Sided.  almost Neoprene material... which she had her heart set on making into a tailored top and pencil skirt.  erm, actually, a REVERSIBLE tailored top and pencil skirt.

confident the day would end in tears, i had a mini heart attack, pushed all prepared patterns to the side, and poured some coffee.  and by some miracle, at the end of the day she had exactly what she wanted.  she was thrilled with the results, i was thrilled that i could do it (it is SO much easier to pin on a warm body that isn't your own), and because she saw and helped with the whole process, she really understood how much work went into it.  and she wore it out the very next day!  i was giddy, i tell you.  GIDDY.  it was so satisfying to sew for someone who really got it.  we're doing it again very soon and i can't wait.

BUT.  we all know that's not how it normally goes.  someone sees something handmade on you, and chirps for one.  "oh, except could you do that ruffle-y thing i saw in marie claire and i'd love pockets and hey wouldn't chiffon be cool?  that wouldn't be hard right?  'kthnxbye!"  so.  i thought it might be a good idea to come up with some ground rules.  (sis-in-law, these are not for you.  you have the run of my sewing mill.)

friend requesting a garment shall heretofore be referred to as "the choosee".

1.  first and foremost, if the choosee should be deemed to have Major Fit Issues, a short beginner's course in sewing a wrap skirt shall be offered instead.

2.  otherwise, the choosee shall pick from patterns designated by oona, and only patterns designated by oona. no grabby hands at a one-off garment on oona's person, or pointing eagerly to something in a shop window. (unless it is a rectangular caftan maxi dress as sold by anthropologie for upwards of three hundred dollars.  i'm not shitting you.  four seams.  true story.)

3.  the choosee shall pay for all fabric, notions, and a pack of schmetz needles in the proper size and type.

3a.  a bottle of alcohol would also be nice.

4.  the choosee shall be given a list of said items, and shall do all shopping.  oona may accompany if time and mood permits, but the choosee should be ready to go it alone.  

5.  the choosee must be there on The Day of sewing.  this ensures three things:
  • any problems with fit can be quickly solved with no guesswork,
  • the choosee will therefore be someone oona actually likes; as otherwise, the choosee would not be invited to kalkatroona, and: 
  • anyone oona actually likes will be sure to bring a bottle of alcohol.
i know there are plenty more rules to be had here, but that's where i'm at.  i thought you might have more to offer.  do you deign to sew for others?  do you have rules?  what would you add?

Monday, May 23, 2011

beauty? ....REST.

oh, hello muffins.  it was an exhausting weekend, was it not?  and a rainy monday to boot.  only one thing to cure that kind of blue.


a little red, a little white, a little tea, a little pj set you salvaged from the train wreck that was last week's sew weekly britannia challenge.  

someone thought she was cute and tried to repeat her two hour dress trick in the precious few minutes of sewing on friday.  but haste makes waste, n'est-ce pas?  that same someone forgot she used stretch jersey on her little two hour diddy, and cut cotton voile and silk out of the very same pattern without adding in the fact that those materials  DO.  NOT.  STRETCH.  

let's just sat that didn't work out.


enter several yards of stretch lace and expensive silk, and my rule britannia pj set was born.  grosgrain's free pattern month aided and abetted, with gertie's half slip tutorial for the bottom, along with my bastardized azalea pattern for the top.  and a little sambuca for the tea.


okay, maybe a lot.

what do you call that panel addition to the side seams (besides last ditch effort)?  are they gussets?  whatever they are, there was no way i was wasting an invisible zip on this, so in they went.

this is the most expensive thing i've sewn to date.  it's a good thing i'll be the only one who ever sees it in real life.  


fabric: cotton voile ($5/yd), silk ($15/yd)
year: now baby
notions: lace, elastic, 3 broken needles ($8)
time to complete: too frigging long.
first worn: this evening
wear again: whatever.
total cost: $28.  also known as highway robbery.




now take my monday blues advice and go get yourself a stiff one.  of either kind.  and be sure to rest those peepers, they're the only ones you've got!

Sunday, May 22, 2011

sew weekly sunday: proof

my feets are KILLIN me.


but i did finish this week's sew weekly theme.  i SWEARS.  before i could accomplish le photo shoot, birthday monsters tried to kill me (read: thirty children, a bouncy house, twenty gallons of rain and not quite enough wine).  

if the barrage of prints piques your interest, come on back tomorrow for show and tell!  

Thursday, May 19, 2011

i did not sew today.

last week, roundabout the time of the earth shatteringly depressing skirt made in ruggy's absence, i thought to myself:  i need to get out more.  see some real live people and stop cursing at my elna pro dc 5 lock.

(the elna actually prefers tough love.)

i got my wish.  i think the last time i was this social of a butterfly was last christmas.  


i've also been thinking:  i need to read more.  that is to say, more of the printed word on paper, just a little something to round out my daily devouring of sewing and style blogs...

so what do i do?  i buy a book on style.  at anthropologie, no less.

anna johnson has apparently mastered "the art of more for less", and in her book "savvy chic", she will tell you how to become your own jedi in 306 pages.  this book screamed at me from the shelves (the sale shelves, no less, what an extremely accommodating start) BUY ME!!! in technicolor hues.  i am admittedly a fan of the technicolor.

but part 1, enticingly entitled Clothes, advises you to build your "chiconomy" wardrobe on neutrals:  brown. cream. honey beige. (because let's be honest, plain beige just sucks).  NO prints.  add splashes of color with solid electric hues in your purse and scarf wear.  but, please, i come from kalkatroona and i am confused: look at the art in these pages...


don't you want this outfit?!  I DO!  the book is filled with gorgeous collages of print and color by emily taff.  it's a chunky little block of oona bait.  so, i was surprised to read the generous helpings of neutral toned advice. 

still, i get that line of thinking.  i do.  as i've mentioned before, nothing in my handmade closet goes together.  so i gave it a go: with anna's rules in mind, i carefully sorted through anthropologie's sale room for the right classic additions to my wardrobe, rather than the cheap trendy additions.  it had to be: something i couldn't make, something well made, and neutrals that went with everything.

here's what i left with:


tres neutral, no?  look, i can't knit a cardigan (i mean, i could, but i would most likely kill someone in the mindnumbingly long and drawn out process).  and the scarf is 100% silk.  so, two out of like eighty six of anna's chiconomy rules ain't bad.

the sweater is actually acid green.  i should lie and say it's more toned down, as in my self timed photo, but no. that there's acid green.  and please note, i was wearing my meeting-mena orange-and-purple dress when i tried the new accessories on.  that's what sealed the deal.

oona: i'm wearing every color in the world right now.

mena: you kind of are.

(mena pauses to consider.)

mena: are those jungle animals?


the next chapter is entiled: Never Wear Stripes In Paris.  wish me luck.

i'm out the door again to my next engagement.  i'll be wearing everything pictured above.  then i've got a date with your blogs.  i'll be wearing rainbow striped pjs.

quick poll!  how many colors do you have on, and how many prints, right this minute??

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

girl power

oh hai!  nice to see you.  what have you been up to?  me?  oh, you know, i made a two hour dress.


YA HEARD ME.  come closer, i got somethin' to show ya.  i won't bite.


check it!  do you believe that action?  i have amazed myself.  admittedly, it doesn't take much. 


actually, now that i look at it, the gathering is a bit off center.  no matter, i am still tres pleased with my pairings.


i also need to fix le back du sway.  but, in the two hours i had to sew yesterday, i was hellbent on creating, as i was meeting the definition of sewing inspiration and newly dubbed queen of speed stitching the very next morn:


mizz mena trott!  she blew into town for a whirlwind trip and we were able to grab some breakfast and do some anthropologie stalking.  i'm sure the good ladies at chelsea market thought we were headcases as we picked at seams and embellishments on every garment, exclaiming i could SO make that every three to four minutes. nevertheless, i came away with a scarf and cardigan, and mena left with a snazzy belt that i'm sure you'll be seeing soon in one of her perfect photo shoots.  c'est tres cute.

mena just finished SEVEN colette patterns in seven days-- actually, six days, as the unexpected trip took a day away, so donning a frock that was already completed was really not an option.  some rising to the occasion was most definitely required.  the mistress of the sew weekly is wearing her crepe pattern that she finished on day five of her self inflicted torture challenge, and it just as gorgeous in real life as she is.  

as for the two hour dress: y'all, i just took the yoke of burdastyle's azalea pattern and changed the neckline to a v neck.  then i placed the bottom edge of the front yoke pattern piece on a big ass sheet of paper, and drew a new pattern for the bottom half.  and it goes a little something like this:


SO EASY MAMA! i thought rather than just hear i made a dress you might like to see how i-do what-i-do when-i-do my-loooooove-to-you.

(stevie wonder, anyone?  yes?)

sorry.  i'm a bit excitable today.  i've met such awesome ladies this week (frabjous marina, if only i had a good picture!  decrepit old iphone camera be damned!), and reconnected with fabulous gals already in my life but far away, and hung with glorious chicks i have the great fortune to see often...  can i just say, as a filly who mostly had male friends growing up: confident, natural, talented, funny, giving, caring, outspoken, kick ass ladies ROCK.  

(you rock too, don.  big ups, baby.)

Monday, May 16, 2011

what all the hot mamas are wearing


oh yeah.  look at all this hotness up in here.  you know you want some a this.

New Mama desired a hooter hider for Child The Second's impending nursing phase, and i couldn't let her spend forty bucks on a rectangle of cloth with a two dollar buckle on it.  how hard could it be to make THAT?  i thought.

six hours later, i was muttering to myself : Child The Second had better be nursing till he's twenty two.

the degree of difficulty may have been my fault, what with the triple topstitched hems, the interfacing, the pockets... eh, you know how it goes.  we brought it to the new parents last night, along with some fried chicken and watermelon (no, i am not kidding, after a stay at le hospital that is the best meal ON THE PLANET.  happiness is a plate of that jazz.  new babies help too).  and the thing actually works!  i highly recommend whipping one up if you've got a mama to sew for.  just don't go OCD on it like i did.  

speaking of obsessed, please to meet the frigging best chalk marker ever.  i picked it up at the FIT bookstore, and i want to hug it and kiss it and call it george.  it's akin to the click pen that got a shout out from my girl emilykate when i was jonesing for kistchy school supplies.

wow, that paragraph was linkalicious.

i may be the last sewist on earth to find out about this, but if you ain't heard about it, get one!  and banish all other marking devices to the back of the drawer.  i cracked it open for this project, and maybe that's another reason why it took six hours.  it makes such gorgeous marks i couldn't stop using it.  and look at all the pretty colors!


mmm.... chalk candy.... makes me happy to look at it. 

(if you hadn't noticed, i'm happy again.  with many thanks to your wonderful comments on my last post, you beautiful peeps, you.)

what's your favorite sewing tool?  i have this feeling i've been missing out on a world of sewing shizzle!

Sunday, May 15, 2011

sew weekly sunday: in which i figure it out in the end.

good lord did i ever suck this challenge.  

since i cheated on the childhood inspiration theme and used my mom, the madre thought i should use my grandmother (paternal) for this week's challenge.  nan! wonderful idea!  i thought.  think again, kid.  and again. and AGAIN:  about what she liked, what made her happy, what her style was; or wasn't, since she never bought herself a thing-- so then what was her style?  what did she want that she couldn't have, how much did she give up, raising four boys completely alone, why didn't you plant flowers for her front porch more often, call her from college more even though she would worry you had left if you paused for more than a second... 

'kay, great.  done thinkin?  now make a pretty frock!


she did raise four beautiful boys alone, one of them being my dad, and she did a bang up friggin job.  my dad is the best.

she didn't always smile in pictures, but she always smiled in life.


she loved the color yellow, though she called it yella.  yella pansies were her favorite flower, she said they had happy faces.  her living room was bright yellow, her bedroom electric blue.

she would take me to The Mall just about every sunday to shop, and send me home with a bag full of clothes. if something fit well and had a good price, we had to buy two.  (for when the first one wore out, naturally.)  i think she liked dressing up a girl after all those boys.


we never lived more than ten blocks apart.  as a kid i would rollerskate fast as i could down the block to meet her when she returned from work at the bakery.  or maybe it was work at the dry cleaners... either way, it was always work, and i was always happy to see her.


she loved jewelry but had little.  what she did have, she rarely wore.  she always tied an inexpensive but bright and colorful scarf around her neck when we went out.  i still hear her saying let's go up the street. everyone in town knew her and smiled when they saw her coming.  

brother beast and i went to church with her every sunday.  afterwards, we'd walk to town and get cookies and lunchmeat from the deli and make ham salad sandwiches and play at her house.  

that was the real reason for church on sunday.


she had two memorials, one in our town, and one in her hometown.  strangers showed up, crying, for real.  there was a single mom and young college boy there, and i think he was in school because of her help.  i wouldn't doubt it for a minute.

i wore white to her funeral.  i never, ever, saw her in black.    

she'd be proud of the fact that this skirt cost five dollars, and that i didn't abandon ship when the vintage vogue pattern went hella wrong, and that i morphed it into a skirt, and she would like the yella, and the flowers... but i don't think i'll be wearing this again.  it's a very sad skirt, and i think it knows it.  no matter how much ironing i do, the wrinkles won't come out, even though i move the iron in tiny circles just like she taught me to.  every time i look at it i do the breathy soundless sigh that lets ruggy know i'm disturbed.

so that's no good.

maybe it's just sad with me.  maybe it's someone else's skirt. maybe i'll give it away-- nan spent her life giving.  it would be kind of perfect. 


YEAH. 

Friday, May 13, 2011

written last night


it's been an up and down day.  the correct phrase is rollercoaster, but that doesn't fit, as it was intimate happy ups and quiet thoughtful downs.  more of a lilting ferris wheel than say, the topsy turvy arms-free legs-dangling batman coaster at great adventure. 

that's right, i said topsy turvy.

i've been thinking about my grandmother all week long.  the one that i called nan, the one that left before all others did, the one that i wish was still here almost every day.  the only reason i don't wish it daily is that it makes me too sad to think about it.  but she's my inspiration for this week's sew weekly challenge, so there it is.

i was going to finish this challenge today.  i had hours to myself, the house to myself, no obligations... and no sewing mojo. 

mind you, when i awoke this fine sunny morning, the project was 90 percent complete. but when i approach ye olde finish line, i start to think about what i want to write.  and as i needed to write about what made the garment her, it sent me out of wistful thinking straight down Old Memory Lane, with a long convoluted detour on Regret Avenue.  i couldn't sew for thinking about it.

i can't even write it properly.  i feel like a middle schooler writing an essay.  death sucks.

(it doesn't help that ruggy is suddenly out of town for a day and a half.  that's like two weeks to me.)

so. luckily, my dear friend called me out of the blue and announced that he knew i was sitting there cooped up by myself sewing all day and he was getting me out to go ride the carousel with The Child while Pregnant Earth Mama took a nap. 

you can't say no to that, whatever mood you might be in.  i threw on my outdoor fancies and left.

the last time i rode this was my birthday seven years ago, i told him.  were you sober?  he asked.

surprisingly, YES.

The Child loved it.  we all loved it.  i waved goodbye to them in the park and headed grinning to the burdastyle day celebration at purl soho, and had a rocking good time with the most awesome sewing peeps.  on a whim, i bought a little teneriffe lace making kit, although busy-hands crafts are not my kind of thing.

got home.  eyed nan's challenge on the ironing board.  sighed, opened the sampled malbec that my wine guy was so kind to offer me (we are, shall we say, very good customers), and watched some old project runway.

that is, until dear friend called again and said: you're on. 

now i'm at their apartment, watching The Sleeping Child, as they venture out to have their second baby. i've got my lace making kit to pass the time.  lucky, as blogger is in read-only mode right now and i can't pass the time posting this, or reading your blogs-- and god knows i have NO idea how to work their remote control. that thing is from another planet.

life is nice.  there's another one coming into the world very soon.  i wish nan were here to see it.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

vintage vogue very easy


if by "very easy" you mean thirteen pattern pieces (seven of them interfaced) and three yards of fabric.  for a knee length sleeveless summer dress.

WHATEVER, vintage vogue.

what's the most yardage you've ever used on a pattern?  was it worth it?

Monday, May 9, 2011

duplicitous daughter

i lied.  i did not go to the park and gorge on fruit yesterday.  i hopped on the train and surprised kalkatroonan mom, who was in turn lied to by kalkatroonana dad, who said he had to go out and pick up a surprise for her. brother beast came a-callin as well.  mom was in her fabulous color-filled garden, which could indeed be called a small forest.

brooklyn ain't got nothin on my momz.







and you can haz alcohol in this park.

happy momma's day, ma mere.  it was  So.  Much.  FUN!!!

Sunday, May 8, 2011

sew weekly sunday: she's gone completely batty

i don't remember many books from my childhood.  i have this awesome gene where i pretty much completely forget any media after finishing it.  i just remember if i liked it, making it possible to take it in again and again for the first time.  it's tres convenient.

actually, as a kid, i do remember drawing pictures of drinks.  drinks made with alcohol.  one drink per page, in a very pretty glass, in very vibrant hues, olive or umbrella or what have you included.


telling?

so there aren't many reads from my formative years that stuck in my mind.  but i love the kiddie books.  they are happy and bright and the best ones are kinda loud.  there are several in my current collection.  my favorite was a gift from ruggy.


stellaluna is a wee fruit bat who goes through quite an ordeal (losing her momma! eating bugs! learning to fly!). author/illustrator janell cannon's love for bats, bugs and other misunderstood creatures inspired her to create award winning programs for kids at public libraries, and now she's got a series of beautiful books.  (there's one on snakes too, i've got it.  i'm hoping for one on spiders.)  

for this week's sew weekly challenge, stellaluna was my inspiration.  naturally, i wanted to make a batwing dress. i flew to my favorite 5 buck a yard jersey shop and searched for something blue, wanting to get the whole night sky thing in.  no blue, but they had this sparkly stuff, and it looked too much like batwings to pass up.


stellaluna is not so good with her wings at first, so instead of a true batwing i used the free twister dress pattern from apfelbluete at burdastyle. and seriously, including printing and taping and cutting and sewing, this dress took thirty minutes to make.


that is, until i decided i had a little too much derriere for the slim fitted skirt, opened up the side seam and went to drapey town.  i pieced the remnants together (i'd only bought one yard of the stuff) and created some width on one hip.  then i made a sort or panel that tapered into the sleeve area... hard to get a good shot of this stuff, but i alternated sides of the material and used the curled edges...


and then of course no bat inspired dress is complete without a little extended bones.  i really wanted there to be like eighty of these curled pieces swooping down the back, so i may grab another yard next time i'm at le chic.


but for now, i'm off to the park to eat fruit.  i've loved your comments on the last couple posts and will holler at you soon!  speaking of hollering, HAPPY MOMMA'S DAY, ALL MY MOMMAS IN THE BATHOUSE!

fabric: stretch jersey with some very man made sparkly stuff thrown in ($5)
patterns: twister dress
year: 2011
notions: none!
time to complete: at first, 30 minutes. i added 3 more hours of work, because i'm bats.
first worn: today
wear again: yes, with big thin gold hoops and brown leather sandals on a warm summer night.
total cost: five buckaroos!

Saturday, May 7, 2011

there's a mouse in my house


the poetic and WAY-more-colorful-than-me mokosha has bestowed upon me the adorable blog award.  thanks lovely lady!  but as the award itself is black, and well, i like color, i'm showing you this mindblowingly adorable pincushion instead.  mister mouse arrived courtesy of sew weekly's month of giveaways, from etsy seller jerry at lifepieces.  i smile every time i see him.  jerry has many little creatures atop stickable cushions, go see!

1. what inspires you to name your posts?
good question, that.  i like the title to have something to do with the post, natch, but i also like to make it something punchy (a la: suck it beangirl).  it's usually the last thing i do.  as i type right now, this post doesn't have a title.

2. describe yourself in four words.
at the moment: brazen.  skippy.  opinionated.  bratty.  

3. favorite quote:
it is easier to ask for forgiveness than permission.

mull that over.  it's TRUE.  that said, i'm not much on asking for either.  (see: bratty.)

i think i'm supposed to award like 10 blogs.  but mokosha awarded 2, so i'm gonna give myself permission to pass this along to all y'all that wants it!

see how that quote works out for me?  it comes in quite handy.  (the brattiness also helps.)

Friday, May 6, 2011

holy haberdashery

speaking of matching... yesterday evening, i went through my closet and put all the stuff i've made on the top rack, and all the RTW stuff on the bottom rack.  and then immediately grabbed ruggy to show him because i could not believe my eyes.


say WHAT?!

over at the burdastyle blog today, they're talking about personal style.  which i thought was interesting, because when i gazed at the cacophony of cloth here last night, i realized NOTHING goes together.  i have no idea what my "look" would be called.  (colorblind does come to mind.)  urbandon commented that "if most of what you have in your wardrobe is similar then you have a look.  simple as that."


good point.  i'm screwed.  or i'm technicolor.  or maybe i'm a sarah jessica parker sort of gal.  oh yes, please.  i'd join her fashion schizo gang any day.

but holy crap!  i seriously can't believe that rack.  the shelves are also filled with only handmade goodies. that crochetish stipey thing on the bottom of the pile is one of the first things i ever made.


i invite you to play along.  it's extremely eye opening.  holy haberdashery, let's see the insides of those closets! (and let a girl know if you do, i don't want to miss it...)

Thursday, May 5, 2011

godsakes, not the paisley.

do you know what i've found helps me immensely in my sewing?  tequila.


no, no, actually, this is a much more recent development than my love for the beverage alcoholic.  i've found that when i'm stumped on a project, if i take a break and work on a UFO, i finish said UFO, and i get an ahah! moment on what i took a break on!  that's a win WIN, baby!

(this revelation came to me during my three day birthdaycation last year, when i was working on no less than three projects at all times while ruggy poured wine for me.  i wore something new out every night.)


i'm five minutes away from finishing my sew weekly challenge, but of course i made a very simple one-seam pattern freaking Einstein Harder than it needed to be and i was stumped.  so i drug out this here little number. this is the bottom half seulement to that simplicity pattern i showed y'all last week.  you guys, the project runway patterns rock.  you get like ten patterns for the price of one.  find them on sale?  that's a win WIN, baby.  

the fabric for this came in great big flowered square panels, surrounded by a paisley border, surrounded by white.  i loved this print so much i was afraid to do anything to it.  so i cut away the white, sewed what was left together and made a cape.

so not a good idea.


(yeeeaaahhhh purple invisible topstitched zip!)

i ripped it up one day and embarked on this skirt.  only at first, it was a mini skirt.  umm, i was in a phase, a micro mini phase in the middle of winter, no less; i really don't know what that was about.  having snapped out of it, i realized i would not ever never wear the skirt in its hoochie mama condition, so into the bag it went.

however, i had my scraps.  i ALWAYS have my scraps.  and i had plans, BIG plans, i tell ya, to use the floral scraps to extend the bottom of the skirt.  not, i repeat, NOT the paisley scraps.  they were deemed unusable, since i had already used that pattern for the waistband.  too matchy.

then we celebrated our friend's birthday with a big ass surprise fancy dinner and i used up the flower scraps to make a temporary table runner.  she loves flowers.  and purple.  she was so in love with it, she immediately exclaimed, oh my god and i get to KEEP this?!  so all plans for seam ripper and extra skirtage flew out the window.

but today, stumped by the sparkly thing on the ironing board (oh yes, i cut into the burnt gold stuff), and going for my UFO break, i thought, why not use the matchy paisley scraps?  what's the worst that could happen? so it'll be an occasional wear, as least it'll be finished.


YOU GUYS I LOVE THIS FRIGGIN SKIRT SO MUCH IT HURTS.

(ruggy walks into the apartment to find oona jumping around the living room, singing along with ben folds at the top of her lungs.)

ruggy:  what's goin on?

oona:  I MADE A SKIRT!  and i had to take pictures!

ruggy:  oh.

oona:  do you LIKE it?  it's my most favorite skirt EVER!

ruggy:  it's kind of hard to tell, what with the yellow shirt.

oona:  .

ruggy:   but i love it!  seriously, babe!  the yellow just gets in my way!  it doesn't match!

ah, matching.  my roadblock in the first place.  we just never went for matching in kalkatroona.  possibly because we drink too much and our judgement is impaired.  matter of fact, parental kalkatroonans left a voicemail about grabbing a marguerita just as i was wishing for a reason to wear this out tonight.  i missed the message.  

that's a lose LOSE, baby.

but as it is cinco de mayo-nnaise, i'm off to imbibe anyways.


you didn't think i'd forgotten, did you?

cheers, peeps!  in lieu of raising a glass, share some drunken sewing tips with me if you got em!