Thursday, December 31, 2009

Happy Blogiversary to Me...

A New Year means it's my blogiversary. Looking back over the past two years worth of posts shows how life has changed. I've gone from working part-time to studying at university full-time, finally graduated, and my kids have grown so much. Sewing has been put on the backburner more than I'd like as I concentrate on studying. Some days all I want to do is sew, others I'm too tired to do more than look through magazines. Hopefully this year I can squeeze out a bit more sewing time. 'Cos I'm going to be so much more organised this year. Snort, yeah right! :)

A new year also means time for a new stash stats counter. I don't really make New Year's resolutions (well, not ones I keep anyway), but this time I've decided I really must do better on the whole buying vs sewing thing. In the last two years I've added 55.35 metres to my fabric stash. Whoops. Obviously this is proof that I don't actually have to be working in a fabric shop to add fabric. I swear I just drive by and the stuff jumps into my car and follows me home. Honest. No? Funny, DH didn't believe it either.

Happy New Year Everyone!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

I own how many?!!

I've been in a "kinda wanna do some sewing but really can't be bothered" funk for the last couple of days. (Curse those foreign cold/fluey bugs that my brothers bought from overseas.)
Given that the sewing mojo seems only too keen to go on vacation at the most inopportune times, I thought I better engage in something sewing-related to try to keep the mojo interested. So I decided I'd be practical at the same time and organise all the patterns that had been stuffed into any available spot pulled out and stored for future use and actually file them. You know, with the other patterns, not just in the nearest available spot. Having done that, I felt it was only right to get really carried away and enter them into my Patternreview catalogue. Besides, it meant I could stay sitting down and given the case of the dizzies I had at the time, that was probably a good idea.

The catalogue feature on Patternreview is great. Very useful. Admittedly, perhaps more useful if I took a printout with me when I went to Spotlight, but it lets me know I've bought two of the same pattern as soon as I enter my new purchases in. It even gives me a total of the number of patterns in my stash. Much like the actual count of fabric metreage I own, this is a number that should not be displayed anywhere my DH could see. But I'll take a risk (in the knowledge that he rarely reads my blog) and whisper...


Yes, that was (gulp) 536 patterns I own. Not counting the Ottobre, Burda or Topkids magazines, cos how on earth would I count those? There's absolutely no way I'd be adding them in on a count per magazine. Even just taking each magazine as 1 pattern would push the count up drastically.

Would you believe I was relieved at that number?! Cos folks, I honestly thought I owned more than that. Now I'm left wondering if there is a pattern blackhole somewhere in my lounge just waiting to spit out a box of patterns when I'm not looking.

Next sewing project - cricket trousers for my DS - and I even have a pattern I should be able to use... :)

Saturday, December 26, 2009

A little bit Grinchy

Christmas shopping tends to bring out one of two sides to me. Some years, I'm giddy with excitement and relish the hustle and bustle of scores of like-minded shoppers chasing a bargain and that elusive perfect gift. Others, I'm not.

Christmas Eve eve was a "not" sort of day. Having been lulled into a false sense of security by the civilised shopping pace in town only a few days before, I ventured back into town again on the 23rd. Apparently, everybody gets paid on the Weds before Christmas because they were all in town. If I hadn't known Judy was at home, I'd have said the entire local population was there. But I didn't start out in a state of Grinchiness. I swear I was relatively upbeat when the woman in the blue station-wagon stole my parking space. The one I'd been sitting waiting for with the indicators flashing while I held up traffic for several minutes. The perfect spot outside the store I needed to go to. But I let it go. Obviously.

When I got to my second stop, queued, then waited again for the "other salesperson who could help me", only to be told that they couldn't do what I wanted because they'd run out of paper, I politely asked if there was another store that offered the same service and left. I didn't even mutter when I got to the next store and saw the long line. Although I may have sighed heavily.

Meanwhile, the day kept getting hotter and somewhere between the photo kiosk and the supermarket, the Grinch made an appearance. Obviously I wasn't giving this much forethought. Because, how could it be any more perfect for a trip to the central supermarket than with bored, tired and hot children in pre-xmas crowds? First came the muttering at the driver who walked away from their car in the queue to enter the mall carpark. Perhaps I missed the memo, but I'm pretty sure that in front of the carpark entry barrier is not a valid parking space. A trip around the block to the second entrance and it was our turn to experience the true joy of the panicked Christmas shopper frantically filling their trolleys with food. It seems the fact that the supermarket is closed for an entire day (Gasp!) necessitates frantic food-gathering worthy of a Y2K scare. I muttered, I griped and I snarked and I made it out with the essentials we really did need now. Like toothpaste. And chocolate. I think I managed to come out still relatively sane, but I wouldn't swear to it.

Luckily Christmas looked up from there. I finished all the baking and present creating after the shopping, plus we had our annual tour around the city admiring all the Christmas lights, which meant Christmas Eve was a bit more relaxed. All I had to do was handsew my Mum's new oven gloves closed, take her to an appointment and take the kids to the children's Christmas Eve Mass.

Christmas Day, the kids actually slept in and didn't wake us until after 7am. A result of letting them stay up late 2 nights in a row. :) We had a fabulous day with my sister and her husband who seem to be vying for favourite rellie status as they spoilt the kids terribly. Everybody overate as usual which relieved me of the need to make dinner for them. There was just one dampener on the day - we're all missing our family Santa.

RIP Dad.

Thank you

Thank you all so much for the kind comments. My father was a wonderfully kind and generous man who I'm proud to have called Dad. We all miss him terribly.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Some sewing to show at last!

Wow. It's been a while since I posted. Christmas is nearly here and life is busy, busy, busy.

I finished the Burda shirt dress finally and it has been worn a lot, so I guess it passed muster. The sleeves are normally folded up when DD wears it. DD also hasn't decided on where she wants the belt loops set, as she has worn the belt at both waist and hip level. They will probably never get done. :)

After the shirtdress was out of the way, I turned my attention to a project for the junior classes at school. In the past, I have made quick calico stockings for the 5 and 6 year olds to decorate and fill as gifts for their parents. Usually I take the easy way out and straight stitch everything and turn through, with absolutely no inside finishing. This time, I decided to overlock/serge the edges instead. All those curves were interesting, to say the least. Thank goodness for Debbie's tip on serging inside corners. After the time put in, 60 stockings didn't seem to make a very impressive pile.

The next project up was a tee-shirt for my DS. The kid is growing like a weed and I think he's just passed his father in height. He passed me ages ago, lol. The way he always seems to sprout up in spring and summer, I wouldn't be surprised to find out he is part plant.

I went for the Kwik Sew 3299 pattern that has positive reviews on Pattern Review. By his measurements, DS should have been an XS which would have required sizing down. However, after comparing 2 tees he already owned, I made a Medium. I know he likes a baggy fit, but I think next time I'll go down a size to Small.

For this trial I used a piece of the fabric I bought off Trademe. It's 100% cotton rugby knit with not a lot of stretch, so it was probably lucky this tee is a loose fit. The lack of recovery meant I unpicked the self-neckband and replaced it with a ribbing band. DS aims to put an iron-on print on the front once he finds "THE" picture he wants. Excuse the fold lines down the center - at least they're proof that for once he'd put his clothes in the drawers folded, lol.

And just because I said "other people's sons put their arms out" ....

Blogging might be a trifle quiet for a while. Or busier, depending on how I cope. We lost my father last Sunday to post-surgery complications. As you can guess, things have been hectic and we're all devastated, especially Mum. There is a lot to sort out which will keep me busy.

Anyway, Have a Merry Christmas Everyone!