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Thursday, July 31, 2008

Rain, rain, go away...

It has now been raining for 13 days. Sigh. I'm beginning to feel the need for one of those SAD lamps Chief Celia used in Men in Trees.

I had to cross over the Leith Stream this afternoon.
The normally quiet little stream...
(photo from Wikipedia)


had turned into this...


The first photo has been taken downstream from where I was, but is pretty much how it looks normally from the bridge I was on. The walls are around 4m high so the water had risen a wee bit and somewhere under there is the mid-channel divider.

A few days ago I sadly packed away my sewing machines for a few weeks while I catch up on assignments. :( I can't see myself getting any sewing time until mid-term break at the end of August, so I decided I might as well use my desk upstairs in the warm lounge when I was home alone. I do have to hem some trousers for my BIL next week, but that doesn't count as sewing. I dreamt I was sewing a few nights ago. LOL, if dreams became reality, I'd have a great wardrobe!

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Op-shopping, sewing and repairs

No Not much sewing this week. The pace of life has been hectic with uni started and kids on school hols. Thank goodness they go back tomorrow and we can get back to a normal routine.

Friday, DD1 and I snuck in a girly afternoon with some op-shopping and lunch. It was a nice break and something we don't get to do often enough. However, I think I've created a monster, lol. In one hour (and only one shop), DD1 found 3 tops, 2 jackets and 2 pairs of jeans and is now very keen to go back again. I have to say I'm impressed by how fast an 11 1/2yo can shop those racks and gather a mountain of clothes to try on. ( But, Whew! That's one less child with a clothes crisis)

Thank you to everyone who commented on the twist cardy. It was 4 votes for a higher twist, 3 votes for where it is and 1 for either. This really illustrates how different fabrics behave because I hadn't changed the pattern at all. The fabric just grew in the teal knit. Stabilizing the front edges would have solved this. I'll have to remember not to cut corners next time. (hanging head shamefacedly)
Angie, I posted details on how I did this when I first made it in my Ottobre with a Twist post.

Today I actually got a bit of sewing in. Such an exciting project too. I made a new shower curtain. You're probably wondering why I didn't just buy one. So am I! I used white parka nylon (from Spotlight) and sewed a 'privacy' curtain for the outside of the all glass shower on one side (the side facing the windows). This also has the added advantage of screening the loo in case anyone opens the door when.....well, with 3 kids we really, really need to get a lock on the door, lol. It was an easy task. Just a big rectangle with curtain wire in the top to attach it to two small hooks, and wire in the bottom to act as a weight. The hardest thing was getting the sides straight. (Woohoo, the 2 metres I used tipped my stash stats over to a net loss)

I also got time to fix a RTW t-shirt which was incredibly low-cut. I felt like a 17th century barmaid with everything falling out. :-o I replaced the inadequately teensy inset with a better sized piece, lifting the coverage factor by 6cm! Now, I'll wear it, but goodness knows what the designer was thinking. It explains why there were so many left on the sale rack. :)

Friday, July 11, 2008

Teal Twist Cardigan

Well, I finished the cardy in time to wear out to dinner. Wonders will never cease, lol. Neither of my friends made any rude comments so I figure it's passed muster ;) (Hi J and M!). I'm quite happy with it and I'm going to leave the twist in after all. I am seeking feedback on the twist - DD1 thinks it should be about 5cm/2 inches higher. What do you think?



To make this, I used the morphed Ottobre Tee pattern I created here but left out the inset. I totally forgot about my thought of binding the edge which would have given a nicer finish. It wouldn't have been possible this time anyway, as there wasn't enough fabric left over for bindings, but I'll make a note on the pattern for next time.

Next up is those trousers.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Where did the time go?

Wow! Three weeks holiday just flies past! And I'm already most of a week down back at school. Naturally, the mojo decided to rear it's head the weekend before everything started again and demand some fulfilment. It must be something about deadlines and time stress that leads to a need to add more to the to-do lists.

I managed to fit in some cutting out and then even managed to eke out a simple project to take most of a week (I'm following the 'one seam at a time' rule, Sherril - literally!). As a guide to you all - don't sew when you are really tired and trying to rush. I should have known better. Repeat after me - a twist cardigan should have the twist put in before having the shoulder seams sewn. Ahem. Insanity Stubbornness even led me to unpick said shoulder seam before I went to bed. I did, however, have the sense not to put the fabric near the sewing machine again that night. I now only need to hem the cardy but I'm also going to add some clear elastic to pull in the back neck (and hopefully the shoulders) a bit. Last night I was looking at it and thinking of taking out the twist and redoing the front edge as a normal cardy front. Hubby disagrees. He likes the twist. Sheesh! This would be about the only twist he's ever liked. The previous version. So, I will delay the decision by doing the elastic first before I have to decide. ;)

I also have a pair of trousers cut out from Vogue 7608, a Sandra Betzina jeans pattern. I've used a brown bengaline instead of denim, which means I'm either in for a pleasant surprise, or a pair of gardening trousers that won't show the dirt too much. :)

Off to do another seam on the cardy. I might even get it finished to wear out with friends tomorrow. (ROFLOL)

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Comments

Thanks everybody for the birthday wishes. Hugs right back at ya! 40 (gulp!) doesn't feel that bad, except for this vague nagging suspicion that I just don't feel grown-up enough, lol. It did however remind me to book the appointment at the hairdresser to cover up those 'natural highlights' that have become quite numerous.

My DD lives in her new Hello Kitty dressing gown as much as possible. She loves it and like Sherril, I think she'd be heartbroken if it wore out too soon.

Kat - I'll swap you the cold and the ice for a heatwave anytime!

Sherril -I didn't have the Baileys yesterday but I did have to have some chocolate to 'help', lol. This morning I was so nervous but luckily not much ice today, thank goodness!

Sherril and Rhoto - It's very tempting! But I don't know if it would be fair to inflict my pasty, untanned legs on the other patrons at the water park (and I'd have to shave them! There are some advantages to winter, lol). Floating on an inner tube sounds fun on a hot day though. I'll be thinking of that come Saturday as there's more snow forecast this weekend....

Sharon - Patternreview is great, isn't it? The SewingDownUnder thread is a bunch of very chatty Australians and New Zealanders and anyone else who wants to visit. It's located under the Regional Communities section. Or, if you look under the Active topics it's usually in the first page or two. :)

Jalie and Photos

Last night I was grumbling about net services etc and not being able to post the photo of my Jalie top. Then Hubby made a very good point - why is it I hate having my photo taken because I hate photos of myself, yet I'll happily splash photos of myself over pattern reviews and my blog? Weird, huh? I couldn't come up with a proper answer. The best I could do was that it was perhaps because in those photos the focus will be on the outfit. I hope. :)

Talking of photos... Not the smoothest segue but here it is - Jalie 2682:


Sorry, it is an absolutely awful photo, taken at night. The biggest problem with poly interlock is the static cling factor. Within a few moments this was sticking to me. Wearable perhaps - under a jacket, lol. Oh, and it still needs hemming.


Yesterday I made a quick dress for DD2 to wear for Medieval Feast day at school today. They were told they could just wear their party dresses but my poor deprived child doesn't have one of those that fits either, lol. I used a Topkids magazine pattern (Topkids 45, #9) and widened the sleeves a bit. I managed to squeeze the whole thing out of 2.0m of 112cm wide fabric. To do so I had to take out some of the sleeve flare I'd just put in and slide one of the back skirt pieces a smidgen off grain. That's another piece of fabric out of the stash, yayy!



We also made a Princess cone style hat and hung ribbons off the back. All in all, I felt quite productive getting that done, lol. When she got to school all the little girls were oohing and aaahing and she was beaming from ear to ear, so I think she's happy with it. :)

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

I hate ice!

First off - I'm ok.

Let's just say that at 9.30 am the back of my van got ahead of the front of my van for a brief time. :( I don't know who was more scared, me, or the guy on the other side of the road. Luckily he pulled right over as I slid down the hill because I was using the center of the road! I hadn't even touched the brakes. It was simply a huge sheet of black ice which the council hadn't gritted because it was a late freeze (the ice actually got worse when the temp dropped at 9am!). I had to pull over and calm down before I could finish the very slow drive home and it took me about an hour to calm down fully.

Much more of this and I'm coming to visit Sherril for the summer!