Friday, May 30, 2008


I'm heading into exams over the next 2 weeks but afterwards I have 3 weeks off. Yayyy!! My "in the holidays" list has grown to ginormous proportions. Luckily I didn't specify which holidays I was going to do it all in. ;-)

Anywhoo - whilst clearing the decks a bit and putting the covers on my machines, I unearthed the ever growing UFO pile. I figured I could give one last night to tackling a couple. Any excuse to procrastinate a bit more.

First up was the mesh Ottobre Rose top I started a few weeks ago. It was sitting here waiting for the hem to be done. I'm not entirely happy with it and I obviously need some better support with those floobies at the side! The side seam easing from the fba is also off even with taking the side seams in. What the heck - it'll be fine under a jacket. Or, I could just never lift my arms. Of course then I could never do anything. That appeals. See, there's always a silver lining - sewing mistakes mean you can get a housekeeper! LOL, now to just convince hubby... I still want to make a purple top to go underneath this - in my holidays, lol. (Here it's over a teal top which will not be worn with it normally)

The second top I finished was a version of Simplicity 4076. This had been sitting there about 2 years (just checked - only 1 year so that's not so bad is it?) I'd had ideas of making this sleeveless and had it finished except for the hem. What the heck was I thinking?! Well, ok it didn't look too bad, except for the pasty white arms. A black top would solve that. But I'd used clear elastic to stabilise the armholes and they were too tightly fitted. I decided to unpick the elastic and fix that first. By the time that was done (and it was serged on) I was leaning towards sleeves. I hunted out the remnants of the fabric and managed to squeeze out two long sleeves. It's now finished. I'm not sure what's going on with the wrinkles above the bust (you can see them above the camera). I'm wondering if I'd trimmed the armholes 2 years ago? The jury's out on it.

I've been really slack with regard to comments lately, but I just want to say Thank You to everyone who does stop to say Hi. I do appreciate it. :)

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Baby Blankets

Seeing as Judy and the twins caught us all by surprise, I didn't have any baby presents prepared and on hand. Luckily, I had these embroidered polarfleece pieces in the stash along with some velour which will be lovely and soft on little preemie skin. We're going into winter here so I think a nice cotton velour backed by polar fleece should be toastie warm. Hopefully it won't be too long before they get to use them.

And this is why I have a stash!

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Congratulations Judy!

Yesterday my best friend, Judy Williment, had her twins. A bit early at 33 weeks but all are doing well considering. (And yes, that's decaf, lol)

This is Isabella - 2.42kg (5.3lb)

And Nicholas - 1.78kg (3.9lb)


Saturday, May 24, 2008

A Very Spotty Top

Or how to score Mommy points.....

Yesterday I handed in the last assignment of the semester. As I dropped the last week of my life through the slot I felt like celebrating. Naturally there's only one way to do that - I went shopping! No surprises when I say for fabric, lol. I actually went to Spotlight for a specific piece - some parka nylon to make some quick curtains for the bathroom windows. When you combine dark mornings requiring lights on, the screening shrubs having been cut down over summer and neighbours potentially going past whilst people are having showers....... Some curtains are in order!

I was happily minding my own business walking to the corner I needed, when this fabric screamed out "Look at me! I'd be perfect for (DD2's ) disco tonight! Buy me, buy me, buy me...." (Well, you all know how the refrain goes.) I didn't even hum and ha for long. One metre of spotty fabric had to come home with me. It insisted. :-)

There was only one problem. By the time I got home at 10.40am, I had to be at Judy's around 12.30pm. After school was going to be taken up with basketball and followed by a quick trip home to get everyone changed for the school disco before we raced off. Whatever I made was going to have to be quick.
By 10.50am I had dug out the pattern I wanted. By 10.51am I'd found I didn't have the size I needed traced out yet. By 11.10am I'd cut out the pattern and was pinning....... I finished the hem at 12.30pm.

Here's the result -

I used Kwik Sew 2503 (OOP) which is the bigger version of KS2502.

I made a size 8 and lengthened it to the length of a size 14. It's a bit big and is going to fit her for a while longer. I wanted a tunic length and it's not too bad. I also cut the neckband twice as wide as the pattern allowed and overlocked it on rather than binding the neckedge. My original plan was to make a small fabric belt attached at hip length and with a buckle. But I ran out of time and as DD2 wasn't there to find out where her hip length was, and I didn't have a buckle or bead, it was going to be difficult. DD wore this with a pink belt around her hips instead and I also made a quick headband for her to wear as well. In the flashing lights at the disco she looked like a wee moving disco ball, lol. Those spots fluoresce under the lights quite nicely.

Next job - Urgent baby presents for my now not-so-pregnant best friend. :-)

Thursday, May 22, 2008

New Jalies!

The new Jalies are up on Patternreview. And next week some will be winging their way to me! They should arrive around the time my exams finish - great timing. I couldn't blog about this until I broke the news to Judy that Jalie 2787 was also winging it's way over as a present for her. I think she's happy. ;-)

On the way are 2805 - A good basic tee. I can see this getting a lot of use for my 2 DD's.

J 2806 - This one's for me. And maybe DD1.

J 2795- I can just see this on my two DD's . I'm intrigued by the 'Hoddie' title.

and J 2794 - I really liked the top Debbie made so I've decided to give it a go.

And just to make it fun, the stash contest will be running again at Patternreview so I might even get to enter something. :-)

Does anyone else do this? You can't sew, but you keep thinking about sewing so you end up buying fabric and patterns instead. I need to sew something and soon - otherwise I really will be keeping the economy going!

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

I Want Need A Coat

It looks like winter has decided to make it's prescence felt with a vengeance this week and while I have a practical, warm coat, I'd like a 'nice' coat. It seems everywhere I go, coats are calling my name. Today I saw a lovely jacket and I was tempted to buy it but, it was a short jacket, not a coat. Then there was that voice saying "I could make that.... it's only a simple jacket.... that denim jacket pattern I've got at home would do....". (At least I don't say it outloud, lol. Well, I don't think I do...) I also saw a really lovely fabric made into a coat shape. I hesitate to call it a coat with it's unhemmed, overlocked edges. Hmmm, it would look good for all of about 5 minutes, then the fraying and pulls would start.

So, I need to think about making a coat. Although thinking about it isn't the problem. Making it however is another story. :) In my stash I have navy cashmere and a satin lining put aside for a longish coat. I don't know if I'm quite brave enough to tackle that (gulp). Perhaps my first coat should be something that isn't going to involve 5 hours of looking at the fabric, scissors in hand, as I try to get up the courage to cut into it. And then, what style should I have?

In my pattern stash I have this - Burda 8268,

Or what about this? Burda 8160 - View D reminds me so much of my dufflecoat I used to have when I was much (much) younger.

And that was just the first two from my PR pattern catalog. This weekend I'll have to force myself to go through my very extensive pattern collection and narrow down some choices. ;-) Then there'll be fabric choices. I may even be forced to buy some. (wicked laughter) Do you think hubby will go for the line about helping the economy by purchasing?

Friday, May 16, 2008

Oh-oh, more fabric...

Oh dear. I was let loose in Spotlight for my Mother's Day pressie. I didn't buy too much - just some brown Bengaline for trousers and a large remnant of a knit for a top. Pretty restrained I thought. But over the last few days I've been thinking..... and that can be dangerous to the stash figures. Anyway I thought it might be nice to have a jacket as well, so I popped back today and bought another few metres of the Bengaline. I think I have way too much now, at least I hope so. :) As Judy pointed out, I'm not really a suit person but something about it appeals. Besides, it might be handy to have a 'suit' of sorts. One day I'll finish studying and I'll need a job. At the rate I'm sewing this might even be finished by then, lol.

While I was there I also found some chocolate Valencia, the same fabric as my red Ottobre tee. I love this fabric, it is so soft and comfortable. This will be..... well, I'm not sure which exact pattern, but I have it for when inspiration strikes.

Here are the purchases:

From the left, bengaline, the valencia in the middle and my 'remnant' printed knit (I think a Valencia as well).

Two thoughts come to mind:

-For a person who never used to like brown, I have quite a bit in my flat-pack wardrobe

-Why is it that I have less fabric than I had at the beginning of the year but it still won't fit into the cupboard?

Sunday, May 11, 2008


Last weekend was our family day and Mother's Day. We had a lovely day out at the Tropical Forest/Butterfly House. Unfortunately, I forgot the camera so no personal photos. I'll just have to go again so I can get some to share. :)

There are 3 levels, all kept at a very tropical (30 degrees Celsius) temperature and about 80% humidity. The paths wind around, and going under the waterfall was pretty cool. There were butterflies everywhere including landing on us. The girls were in the supposedly 'right' colours of pink and reds but the butterflies seemed more attracted by hubby's cream and green shirt. One of the helpers said it could be because the butterflies are attracted to sweat. (snort, lol)

This is the glass swing bridge. It's certainly interesting going over that! There are also turtles, goldfish ponds, tarantulas (in cages, thank goodness!) and although we didn't see it, they often have a giant moth with a 30cm wingspan. I think I'm very glad we didn't see that! The butterflies have pretty short lifespans so they are constantly hatching and releasing new ones. Apparently they are about to release a load of geckos as well to help the finches keep the ant population down. It was a great day out.

I did get a little bit of sewing done on Mother's Day. I nearly finished the mesh tee. Unfortunately the fba that worked so well in the brown tee didn't this time. The mesh seemed to grow a bit so I have to take the sides in. Still, taking the sides in is better than letting them out. :) Like everything else, it's sitting on the sewing desk waiting for my attention.

Last night I was complaining about how my glasses were sitting. DD2 asked what was wrong so I answered "Well, either my head has got bigger, or my glasses are wonky."
DD2: "Maybe your head has got bigger cos your brain is growing with all the study you're doing."
That's all I need - another fitting issue, lol.

Friday, May 9, 2008

I've been tagged twice!

Vicki (aka HongKongShopper) and Jemima bean tagged me for this:
1. Pick up the nearest book.
2. Turn to page 123
3. Find the fifth sentence
4. Post the next three sentences.
5. Tag five people and acknowledge who tagged you.

Well, if I'd responded to this yesterday, you'd have had an excerpt from Discourse as Data and been subjected to Coding schemes. (Shudder)
But, today is today, so instead the featured book is Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice. The nominated lines fall in Mr Collin's self-congratulatory speech when he finds they are to dine with Lady Catherine the next day.

"I confess," said he, "that I should not have been at all surprised by her Ladyship's asking us on Sunday to drink tea and spend the evenings at Rosings. I rather expected , from my knowledge of her affability, that it would happen. But who could have foreseen such an attention as this? "

Hmm, who to tag.....

Charity who has an incredibly generous heart and has done the 100 skirts Project.

Paula who's always there with a supportive comment

Kat who has made the most awesome red bag. One day I'm going to take time to sit down with the leaf tutorial.
Pyrose who is making the cutest swimsuits for her children.

Sherril who inspires me to get sewing for myself (one seam at a time ;) )

So, what are you reading?

Saturday, May 3, 2008

Goodness, it's the weekend already

Where has the week gone? Well, ok, I know where my week went. Somewhere in there I watched Mel Gibson in Hamlet (research can be such a chore sometimes don'tcha know, lol) and managed to get totally sleep deprived turning out an assignment. My DSis checked it via email to make that I hadn't written anything horrendously stupid and then I drove through the hail to deliver it. Something strange is going on when I'm reading blogs from the other side of the world talking about snow storms and a week later we're getting snow on the hills. Where's all that global warming? (asked facetiously)

After that amazing dedication (it was cold outside people!! I even needed my coat!) I took the evening off. I managed to catch up on all the posts on Bloglines, which took me a couple of hours - you're all so good about posting, (looking very shamefaced here) then I sewed! Two whole seams. On a neck-binding. Not great progress then, lol. But I did do some of the mending in the way first which has cleared the desk a bit.

The project underway, just, is the Ottobre Rose top with the v-neck and with long sleeves. I'm using a printed mesh which won't be the warmest, but will hopefully be ok with a nice long sleeve knit top underneath. And a coat over the top. And a scarf...

The stitching on the V is straight (honest!), but the print adds an offcenter splotch which makes it look like I've gone majorly wonky. Oh well.

I'm taking next weekend off. We're planning on a family day with the kids on the Saturday then it's a sewing day for me on Mother's Day. Woohoo!!! This top might even get finished.