January 30, 2013

reflect yourself


there's going to be a high of 57 degrees in new york today.  FIFTY SEVEN DEGREES Y'ALL.  IT'S SPRINGTIME. accordingly, i'm cutting into two crazyface awesomesauce prints for my first crack at tessuti's valerie top.  of course i'm lengthening it to a maxi dress, because you should always do dramatic changes the first time you try out a pattern.  um, duh.

the fabric is from metro textiles, purchased back in the fall with daughter fish, maddie and wanett, a fantastic meetup day that i never blogged about.  it's actually criminal that i didn't blog about it.  the balmy weather, silky fabric and missed hollerin' opportunities have got me thinking about all sorts of criminal activity.  par example: i have close to ten garments made since late summer 2012 that i have yet to blog about.  stuff i'd really like to show you.  disclaimer: some of the garments may be considered criminal to put up on teh interwebs.  depends on your point of view.

why haven't i blogged about these?  i dunno.  looking back through kalkatroona, i clicked through five pages of posts before i found anything other than my monthly MSN makes.  really?!  that can't be right, but there it is. there are three reasons i can think of for this:

1. the one-garment-a-month is taking more time than i thought
2. my other fabric pales in comparison
3. it's just fun at mood, y'all.

they're all true and untrue.  1: my monthly MSN make would probably not take so long if it weren't an MSN make.  something about the network makes me want to step up my game, and actually i think that's a great thing.  the company i get to play with is exceedingly talented, and experienced, and i want my sewing to be on their level (since, as you may already know, I LIKE TO WIN).  2:  i have a lot of cheap fabric in my stash, and it pales.  i'm not talking inexpensive (par example, i just bought four yards of exquisite lavender wool at "it's a material world" for FOUR BUCKS A YARD) i'm talking cheap stuff i don't know the content of, stuff i bought before i walked into a store with aisles and bolts clearly marked.  and i find i'm not as interested in sewing with mystery fabric anymore.  (unless it's really, really pretty.)  3.  well, number three is just true.  i really like the people there.  i have such a good time there, i end up spending money outside of my allowance.  happily.  the only un-fun time i've ever had was when project runway descended, kicked everyone out, and didn't even recognize that THE WINNER OF ALL PROJECT RUNWAY EVER WAS STANDING RIGHT IN THE CHECKOUT LINE. (ahem.  that was pre-msn, by the way, most peeps at mood have no clue who i am, at least not till i yell about it in a loud voice.)  

reasoning aside, i really don't want one garment a month to reflect my sewing life.  to be honest, that's why i gave up "oona does it!".  it was too hard to be told what to sew once a week.  no, i'm sorry, let me rephrase:  it's too hard to drive an eighteen wheeler tractor trailer, or deliver for ups, or deliver a FRIGGIN BABY.  sewing is NOT HARD. sewing is FUN.  being told what to sew is less fun.

that's what i love about MSN.  i'm told to make one garment per month, but i'm given free reign over the thousands of bolts in the store, and what i want to make from it.  but what i've unwittingly not been sharing, in my tunnel vision on making these MSN garments as perfect as i can, are the things i've been making alongside those garments, from mood fabric, and paron's, and chic, and 21st century, and my stash...

cause i make a lot of stuff, yo.  keeps me sane.  on average, i think i make about five pieces a month.  hell, five pieces in a three day weekend if i hit the sweet spot in the cycle.  what about you?  what would you say your output is?  (no right or wrong answer, of course, i think the main thing is, what makes you happy.)

January 24, 2013

boucle sans debacle

pre-script: you may have seen me prancing around in this boucle over at MSN.  as i don't like to be repetitive, you'll see different shots over here in kalkatroona, and some different story bits as well. because i know the top thing on your mind is MORE OONA.  you're welcome.



if you've been keeping up with me, you know this boucle.  i had an affair with it for almost four months before i finally cut into it, petting it, staring longingly at it, sometimes just standing in the middle of the room hugging it, ruggy glancing over, what are you doing?  really what i wanted to do was drape it over a dressform and go crazy, but alas, i left my much beleaguered and mostly useless "uniquely you" on the curb in LA.  her NY styrofoam wasp waisted counterpart also went the way of the dodo in the Great Move Up Down And Over Country of Aught '12. with my hands on a dressform, i have no idea what madness i would have come up with.  probably some sort of gown.




when i first laid eyes on this boucle, all i could think was WIGGLE DRESS WIGGLE DRESS WIGGLE DRESS.  the bolt had three and a quarter yards left on it, and i took it all.  ALL.  it was simply too deliciously bratty not to.  as i pranced around the store with my treasure, happy shoppers stopped me every ten feet: oooh, so pretty!  what are you going to make?  a jacket?  grinning, i would loudly chirp  NO! I'M GOING TO MAKE A WIGGLE DRESS!

like most of the onlookers, my mood man eric looked nervous, but willing to help.  make sure you really press those seams, he guided, flat open and niiiiiiiice and you have got to overlock those edges, maybe interface them, you want this to be tight.




as the weeks turned into months, everyone, and i mean everyone, saw this as a jacket.  carolyn heard "dress" and pronounced me winne the pooh.  christine lent patterns.  meg cautioned against it.  finally, one day as i was sitting on the floor, boucle curled up next to me in my mood bag, i looked up at ruggy and sighed: it should be a jacket.  cue violins.  yes, babe, it should ruggy agreed.  and then i can wear it lots and lots instead of once or twice a season.  in his wisdom, ruggy did not say i and everyone else in the rational world told you so.  he just said yes.  yes you can.

when it came down to it, i couldn't bear to line it and hide one bit of the brilliance of this boucle.  so back to mood i went for a tidbit to hong kong the seams.  josh advised me to pick a fabric that was close to the weight of the boucle, which made me happy, because there are about eighty bolts i'd like to play with on the third floor.  kway greeted me: you still haven't made anything out of that?  eric shook his head: at least you're taking you're time, you got to get it right.  i shocked myself by going for black binding.  kway shocked himself by agreeing with me. as i walked away, bidding him a wish me luck, he replied, naaaaaah, i have faith in you.  faith's better than luck.

unfortunately kway's faith was wrongly placed, the black wool i chose was waaaaay too thick, and wouldja look at this atrocity of cotton i bound the seams with:




THE HORROR. fortunately that led to my decision to line in orange silk.  peep my handstitching!





the pattern, a burda magazine jacket from sept 2008, was chosen after thinking about all the gorgeous things renee makes from those damn volumes.  maybe the years of sewing have sunk in, because this went together in a couple of hours.  i curse the magazines no more.  the dropped shoulders, however, were way too bulky, and emphasized my gorilla paws.  so i came up with this handstitched leather fix (the orangey brown bits are oonamade to keep the closures down when not in use).






and finally, for some closure on this extreeeeeeemely pictured post: i wanted a metal exposed zip, but during our meetup last weekend, peter suggested a simple hook and eye closure to keep the swing of the jacket.  wanett and suzanne helped me pick out a perfect match, and i added three to keep ruggy's cries of BUT OONA IT'S COLD OUTSIDE down to a dull roar.  (however, he's right. it's colder than a witch's ittie bitties out there.  hence the indoor shots.)





to everyone who helped me in some way, i hope i you like the outcome! i still have a good yard and a half left, and this stuff is so soft and wonderful, i think i'm going to make a great big voluptuous pillow out of it. that way i can curl up with it inside and out.




if i ever go outside again.  freeze much?

January 23, 2013

how we were entertained before tv

 
i love it when i know exactly what ruggy is thinking.
 
the other night, we ventured out to brooklyn (this is huge for a manhattanite, like getting on a commuter flight to another state altogether). an african hair braiding salon was our signpost for an altogether different salon: an evening of classical music. we climbed the stairs to a warm studio, where ethan iverson and matthew guerrieri had decided to sight read beethoven's fifth symphony in its entirety, four handed on a steinway. like you do. ethan's partner in crime, the perfect sarah of the spiral staircase, had whipped up a cocktail dubbed the nutty monk (i would rename it heaven. as i sipped and tried my best not to dissect the author's other perfect cocktail, a mix of vixen/vintage/bombshell, i thought: POLKA DOTS AND CUTOUTS?! MY SEWING PEEPS WOULD DIE. )
 
the soft light in the studio, just enough for the musicians to play by, made us all feel instant friends (the chestnut infused cognac didn't hurt). in my mind, ethan and matthew were going to sit at separate pianos, sort of across from each other, dueling. obviously i have never seen a fourhanded piece. squeezed on one bench, twenty digits crossing and overlapping, they sent arpeggios back and forth like hot potatoes. as the gents played, ruggy would turn to me every so often with a wide, slightly mischievious grin on his face. i knew exactly what he was thinking. this is so fucking cool. i was thinking it right back at him, verbatim.
 
afterwards, matthew read a passage from his book, the first four notes. wait, let me rephrase that. afterwards, matthew DROPPED HIS MAGNIFICENT KNOWLEDGE ON THE ROOM LIKE A CHUCK NORRIS BEATDOWN. seriously. i sat grinning, hoping some of the intelligence washing over me would stick. did you know the opening notes of beethoven's fifth are morse code for V? as in V for Victory? many fingers tapped on cocktail glasses when he dropped that little tidbit. and really, that fact was run of the mill when you compare it to the rest of the talk, it's just the one point that i can type out with certainty over morning coffee. there's also a dude, furier? forier? who apparently was given permission to visit heaven and hell and chat up the residents there. i gotta know more about that.
 
i found myself wishing i'd heard the symphony after the cavernous talk, and luckily ethan felt the same way, as we were treated to a reprise of the first movement. i'd like to try it again, you don't have to listen, ethan offered to the room. yeah, no, i'd really rather not be treated to more of that. i almost rabidly shouted out for the whole shebang again.
 
new york is, at times, too cool to be real.
 

January 21, 2013

up close and personal

i remarked on my last elisalex dress about my neverending use of some magical fabric markers. scientist that she is, miss cation designs did not believe me needed evidence and requested a closeup of the neckline...
 
 
thar she blows, turned under and topstitched. surely this is not the way to do it, but i tried this formula out on a remnant and the weight of the jersey knit fabric held up to my machinations beautifully. you can see the line of white topstitching underneath, colored in like a kid following the lines to her OCD heart's content. what, you need it closer?
 
 
BLAMMO. i'm telling you, if you can find them, get you some zig markers. they were ranted about here.
 
 
 
and from kissing distance, the topstitching disappears completely. she's been washed and worn and all is well, but i'd suggest having a go at it stitch wise on a remnant first if you're using jersey.
 
(hey cation. i scratched your back, now you'll make me a giant squidney squid, right? hot pink, please. 'kthxbye!)

January 20, 2013

i brought my camera this time

(pre script: the collar is interfaced, y'all. the collar is interfaced. the comments were MUCH appreciated and completely fascinating in their split right down the middle.)
 
yesterday, sonja of ginger makes, suzanne of beau baby, wanett of sown brooklyn, and an unsuspecting peter of male pattern boldness descended on mood. four gals and a guy blocked off the boucle area, gabbing about all manner of things, setting up multiple self timed cameras and generally making fools of themselves.
 
 
we were there with the intention of completing a wee sewing dare. our gentleman caller was informed that i would be picking out the fabric for sonja's next mood sewing network creation. this information was presented with raised eyebrows, trepidatious looks, and much cackling (the cackling was me). i pulled out a riot of purples and held it up to sonja. okay you guys tell me if i'm crazy but this color palette is PERFECT for her. eyes carefully and quietly considered the candidate. you're crazy, peter declared.
 
well, i NEVER.
 
rather than witness the crime of hue that was about to be forced upon the poor woman, our man decided it was best to meet us later for lunch. the ladies knew they were sonja's only hope. so here's the thing. in my line of work, the costume designer will put you in multiple outfits, take pictures of each, pick their favorites, and put those shots in front of producers for the final decision. and you can always tell by the pictures which ones are the actor's favorites. (at least, you can tell in mine. i like to make faces). so, when we finally decided to choose from a delightful section of silk charmeuse and georgette prints, we got to snapping.
 
i won't tell you which one (or TWO) ended up the winners, but perhaps you can guess by the look on our beautiful model's face?
 

how many ways can i end oona's life


i have no poker face


i'm laughing because thankallthatisholy YOU'RE laughing


do you think they'd throw us out if i ripped this apart with my bare hands?


smiiiiiiiiiile, though your heeaaaaart is breeaaaaaaking....


OONA GREY IS TOTALLY A COLOR DO MY CRAZYEYES NOT CONVINCE YOU?!


i mean, COME ON Y'ALL.

suzanne ROCKED the grey candidate, though a different and delicious print went home with her...
 
 
game face, yo. wanett and i decided we were leaving empty handed, though why we deprived ourselves is a mystery to me. deprivation is wrong, man.
 
phrases like charlotte russe and miami beach were hurled at each other, much to the delight of our mood angel, kendrell. in the end, the decision was 100% a group effort, and unanimous. i threw a little curve ball in at the last minute, but that was accepted. at that point in the day i had infected them broken their will opened their eyes to other possibilities. Y'ALL IT IS GOING TO BE SO COOL.
 
later, we took over one of the many area "pret a mangers" (seriously, there were three we could eyeball from the corner of 39th and broadway). at table, we fondled each other's wares, and peter presented one of those great "which color are you" tomes circa 80s, which, now that i think about it, may have been designed to be a teachable moment harkening back to my first choice for sonja. well played, sir. pret listened to us gab about color and race and gadgets and personal space and reality and birthin' babies for far longer than it took us to finish lunch. suzanne's beau baby even gave us a virtual fashion show. (look out for that one. she has inherited both the fashion sense and wit of her momma.) none of us wanted to leave. luckily there were two other prets within spitting distance for the more harangued customers.
 

LOOK OUT THERE'S A GIANT PHALLUS POINTED AT YOU
 

pret customers were blurred to protect their version of reality.
 
i'll tell ya, it's awesome to live in new york. i've lived many, many places, and if i do say so myself, i'm pretty good at finding the awesome everywhere, but if we're talking sewists hang time, this city is on a very short list of Let's Meet Down The Street. there are so many homespun and visiting peeps i've had the luxury to frolick with over the past months that i haven't even had a chance to brag about yet.
 
and the best thing about it is, sewing related or not, i'd happily spend hours again with all of these beautiful people.
 

January 17, 2013

view 4, avec bands

 
as i strolled into the kitchen the other day, glass of wine in hand, i gazed at my man, working on hour eight of a delicious sauce. same man who makes coffee every morning and puts a little bit on my bedside table so i'll wake up nicely. who orders me to go and do something fun when i'm stressed out.
 
the other night, stressed out and with direct orders, i turned of course to my sewing desk. there were things a plenty i wanted to sew for myself, but tiny problems with each, a missing zipper, a pattern that needed to be graded, blah and blah. it hit me that i might sew for my man, not just for the dare, but because it would be nice. and as i ironed and cut the pattern, i felt better.
 
WHO IS THIS WOMAN.
 
so y'all, quick question, when making a men's shirt, do you interface the upper or lower collar piece? you know what i mean? the pattern always tells you (well, at least the three i've tried) to interface one collar piece, stitch it to the other, turn and press. but surely it must matter which piece ends up interfaced, non?

January 14, 2013

ice cream man: the adult version


 
mid morning sunday, there was the clang of a bell outside our building, like an old schoolhouse call, or maybe a dinner bell on the ranch, something that sounded like the 1941's best ice cream truck in the world. i ran to the window. NO WAY, i breathed, as a black and white beauty rolled by, emblazoned with words in cursive: Mike's Sharpening.
 
this sent me into a mini frenzy, bouncing between desk and sofa and cat like a pinball. ruggy! i yelled. should i go get my scissors sharpened? ruggy raised his eyebrows. if you put some pants on.
 
a second glance out the window confirmed that mike and his truck were moving on down the road. SCREW IT, i said, grabbed my shears and threw on my floor length down coat.
 
mike had paused halfway down the block, allowing new yorkers to let their curiousity get the best of them. normally rageful traffic paused, and let me dart out into the street with delight. the back of mike's truck was open: well hello, how are you today. HI I'M FINE THIS IS THE COOLEST THING EVER. mike, to his credit, did not turn the lunatic lady in tony the tiger pajama pants and pink puffy moon boots away. are these worth sharpening? i cut through two metal pins with them... mike eyed them. i eyed his left thumb, which was heavily bandaged to roughly the size of a snowball. i counted this as a good sign. yes dear, these are good scissors. i handed over my bit up ginghers, and, sparks flying, mike restored them to their original brilliance in five minutes. this beauty entertained me as mike and apprentice did their work...
 
 
is she the sweetest or WHAT. now be careful with these, the handle will be hot, mike instructed. i gleefully handed over a fiver, skipped back up the block, and cackled as my ginghers sliced like butter through a leather remnant. the transformation was so good, i ran right back out with my replacement ginghers and an eight inch chef's knife. by this time mike had attracted a little crowd. a doorman from down the block held a pair of orange handled fiskars with great tenderness. neighbors scurried out of buildings with entire butcher's blocks. a jogger struck up a conversation with me. does he come here all the time? she queried hopefully. nope! only like every three months he said! and there's no number on his truck or anything, he doesn't even tweet! i got so excited when i saw him, i ran out here in my PAJAMAS!
 
two minutes into ranting at her i realized i hadn't brushed my teeth yet.
 
 
the fact that anyone would strike up a conversation with a woman wearing frosted flakes, HOLDING AN EIGHT INCH KNIFE, only speaks to the wonderment that mike's truck caused. suddenly hyper aware of my coffee breath, i held in my sigh of relief as mike handed me my wares. now be careful when you're doing dishes, this'll cut ya!
 
is that what happened to his thumb?
 
i've heard of this sort of thing, but never in manhattan. at least not present day manhattan. and i missed out on sharpening my mundial thread clippers! mike, you beautiful man, i'll be waiting for you. and this time my teeth will be brushed.
 

January 12, 2013

aaaaaaaaCHOO!

so, i did squeeze a couple of garments in before baby new year started screaming its wee jolly head off. this playful technicolor thing stowed away in my suitcase, and i had my heart set on shooting it in powder. on the day after christmas, in the land of ruggy’s birth, it snowed. and snowed, and snowed. i bid the fireplace and egg nog making adieu, jumped into my second version of by hand london’s elisalex dress, and ran outside to play.

i lost track of how many times i almost bit it. holiday trip to the ER, anyone?



it seemed the perfect backdrop for betsey johnson’s technicolor print, from mood. as usual i was in the jersey aisle there, and i fell in love and snagged a yard of this beauty. the weight is perfection, the colors are edible. my intention was to make more leggings. BIG SURPRISE. however, when i pulled out my ginghers, the bright happy flowers screamed OONA! Are you really going to use us for ANOTHER pair of leggings? COME ON WOMAN! CAN YOU MAKE NOTHING ELSE?!



they are, as you can see, flowers of an outspoken variety.

my last network make came out okay (despite my best efforts to shoot myself in the foot) so i decided to give BHL’s pattern another go, this time giving this beautifully drafted pattern the respect it so rightfully deserves. i sewed up the princess seamed bodice exactly as intended, and it’s a perfect fit. HEY LOOKIT THAT OONA. SOMEONE KNOWS MORE THAN YOU DO. this version got the half circle skirt treatment and short sleeves, i think it really makes it a different dress altogether. and holy haberdashery, this sews up so quickly i want to make seventeen of them, so it’s nice to know it’s easy to throw new curves into it.

the only adjustment i needed was my PDA (posture du dancer adjustment. i am a pretty, pretty ballerina, with an upper back straight as channing tatum. oh yes. i assure ruggy of this fact constantly.) just an inch or so out of high center back and i was twirling around the room.

the neck edges are serged, turned under, and topstitched. no rippling, no unsightly cling on le derriere, i love this fabric!! i used my magical fabric markers to color each little topstitched thread on the neckline to match the flowers. yep. i'm telling you, it's the next best thing to invisible thread. and now that i think about it, i suppose i could’ve cut the back bodice out on the fold since there’s no need for a zipper with this lovely stretch...

alrighty! no chance to test that thought out, as i’m saying goodbye to the jersey aisle! i have several new year's resolutions, and one of them is to use a different and delectable fabric for each MSN make. i mean, there are corners of floors i haven’t even stepped foot in yet. in 2013, mood shall be like a garden of fabrics full of every flower imaginable…and i feel a seasonal allergy to jersey coming on.

January 8, 2013

who gave gillian a blog anyway

oh right, probably her overly generous ipad gifting man. WHATEVER MR. CRAFTY RAINBOW. GO PLAY WITH YOUR LEGOS, YOU CAUSE TOO MUCH TROUBLE.

while i sat innocently on the couch with my gentleman ruggy, enjoying manhattans over college football, this tomfoolery about sewing dares was going on behind my back:



oh gee whiz, thanks ladies, really there is nothing this lioness is afeared of.  good call, @Sewbusylizzy.  the depth of my brilliance and bravery often gives me pause, truly i amaze myself, is there nothing i cannot do?




WHATEVER.

@Sownbrooklyn practically dared herself to make a super heroine dress in order to entice me into accepting the challenge. drinking cap on, i returned the parry by daring the despicable mastermind @GillianCrafts to make a maxi dress out of that gorgeous liberty stash that mysteriously never appeared as her christmas dress, and @GingerMakes, oh glory, i dared and she bit...




MY FINGERS CURL WITH EVIL GLEE WHEN I THINK ABOUT IT.

@TanitIsis, that bastion of sewing for others, caught wind of the dare and casually joined the tweets...



oh, that's so awesome your hubby needs such minor alterations! mine has sloping shoulders and a wide neck that is not physically possible on his slim athletic build! THANKS FOR THE LOANER ISIS. you'll be getting a dare soon, my friend.  those damn toiles are still laying in a pile on my bedroom chaise. (yes, i have a chaise. two, to be exact.) i seriously spent the better part of december in shirt toiles. doesn't that count for something? does the damn thing actually have to be wearable? minor detail.  trivial, really.

i just asked ruggy what's the word i'm looking for here?  he said  "par for the course".

he is so cruising for a bruising.

you know what? I'VE ALREADY BOUGHT THE FABRIC FOR FOUR SHIRTS. one ended up a dress, one ended up a blouse, again, details. but upon reflection, it is entirely possible that without this dare, the remaining yardage stands a very good chance of ending up on the female half of this kalkatroonaan equation. so, thanks, ladies. you have set me on a track where losing is a possibility. AND I LIKE TO WIN.

(and furthermore, if you want to hear an unwitting Oona Of Christmas Past discussing this very topic with the dulcet toned DaughterFish, hop on over to her joint for an episode of Thread Cult taped at mood: sewing for your sweetie.  i'll be using what we found that day for this very dare...)

January 4, 2013

13 is the new black

whoah.  hello hello and happy new year!  as usual the changing of the guard kicked me in the ass, in the most delightful way possible, with ten of our dearest friends, thirteen bottles of booze, and five screaming children.  good odds.  best new year's ever.  i fervently hope y'all had one as good as we did.

in between the boozing and family and prizing, i did manage to sneak one final project in before '13 came rolling through: a toile of a blazer.  THAT'S RIGHT I SAID TOILE.  i'm getting into the toile thing.  not the muslin thing. everything sounds better in french.  i suppose you could call it a new year's resolution... but i wouldn't.  just whisper in the language of love to me and hope it sticks.  don't worry, i won't be taking a practice run at everything... just the hairy stuff.

that said, 2012 produced some whoah nellies that could've used a toile.  and some that benefited from lack of toile.  but some that no amount of toiling could fix.  really there's no rhyme or reason to it, so i thought i might mark up '12s roundup with a little oui or non (oui for outfits that got a toile.  non for outfits that didn't, but that doesn't necessarily mean i don't count them a win. i don't know, i really haven't had enough coffee but i have some unexpected time off so let's just make like steve winwood and roll with it baby).


ah, sunny LA. working clockwise from upper left: polka dot keeper, floral top keeper, green silk needs work, orange cotton keeper.


salsa dress keeper, spandex maxi skirt bit the dust in a schizophrenic washing machine, mini A line skirt and two minute tank top currently spending quality time together in probation.


no idea where i'll where it again but i love my promaballoona dress (from christine hayne's delicious derby dress pattern!), still crushing on my tubular gold studded maxi dress, floral chiffon peekaboo dress' fate will be decided by my summer bod.  outlook is grim.


although i love all of these dresses, they ALL could have benefited from some toiles. it turns out my high waist looks better when the pattern waist sits about an inch below it.  whoda thunk.  these makes were all part of so zo's me made may, and the last stripey one was blogged alone here.


actually, the third one in this bunch had been toiled many times, as it was my like seventeenth rendition of pattern runway's gathered sundress, but i guess that bottle of gin got to me. and i couldn't pass up the chance to type HELL NON.  skirt, orange ooner, and teeny tank are all in the trash bin or on different bodies altogether.


the bowie shirt is a keeper, the lace remnant dress keeperoo (but needs work) and an unblogged maxi dress made of cotton sparkly jersey is a shameful keeper. i tore through this dress the day after promaballoona, on my actual birthday. it's had many outings, usually paired with several necklaces to hide its gaping neckline.  for some reason i decided not to wear my usual handful of ropes with it when meeting some of the best sewists i have the good fortune to know.  holy hell, i thought all through dinner, i look like amateur night.


and the mood sewing network begins! the only toile here actually bit me in the ass.  again, clockwise: anna sui maxi dress keeper (and probably my favorite of the year), purple space alien dress needs work, victory patterns nicola dress keeper, flannel lycra dress keeper.


oh hells yeah the leggings and sweatshirt are keepers.  you can barely keep me out of them.  feather skirt keeper, but needs a makeover on the guts.  by hand london elisalex dress keeper, and also can be called a toile as i've made two more since.  LOVE that pattern, y'all.

it seems my exercise in french has proved pointless.  i have no idea if a toile helps or hurts me.  it's possible that my usual method of toiling as i go works better for me... but i'd like to be more careful in my decisions along the way.  and i'm building a base of go to patterns that i can barrel through when i feel the need for speed.

my first make of 2013 is a mix of both methods: a top made from a go to pattern, a maxi skirt from a first timer, tout le monde in shocking black velvet flocked metallic gold.  it's calling to me, quite loudly as would be expected from such yardage, as i end this wrapup.  2013 IS SO ON Y'ALL.