Sunday, November 29, 2009

Not quite a finished skirt..........

....but I did make a start on it and pin fitted it over the weekend! The problem was that I had already cut out the facings, yet when I tried it on I realised I really didn't need the front darts, they were far too long for my shape anyway. Not a problem, except that the facings were then too small as they allowed for me taking in some fabric with the darts!! This skirt seems a lot smaller than the last one, even though I have lost some weight since I made it. I think it might be partly due to the very heavy denim I have cut this one out of - the last one was a very soft (too soft) denim. I also seem to remember I didn't take the full seam allowances last time. But, never fear, I haven't lost enthusiasm for it and I will be finishing it this week.

I did get a lot of sewing done though. Despite owning a quilt shop I am ashamed to admit that it has been an age since I actually sat and made a quilt! I wanted something quick for instant gratification and I found this 'Charisma' jelly roll in my stash. I chose two very simple patterns and was raring to go on Friday afternoon. I started sewing about 4pm and actually got this completed, apart from the top and bottom borders, by the time I went to bed - about 11.30 I think?! Obviously there were lots of 'rest stops' for sustenance :-) I also spent about an hour and a half on my skirt, overlocked the edges and started putting in the zip.

This design is called Chinese Coin, great for showing off some lovely fabrics.

Robyn and I had to open up the shop on Saturday morning and then had something on in the afternoon, so it was almost 5pm by the time I got back to Isobel's on Saturday. I put the borders on the quilt above and made a start on the next one on my list, Stepping Stones. I used the teal blue fabric from the quilt borders above as my accent square, the other fabric in this one is a Loni Rossi fabric and it is quite stunning. A coral background with a metallic pink over the top - I am not usually a pink kind of girl but I love this fabric!

I had a few issues with the instructions for this quilt, I couldn't understand why they had me cut 40 strip sets for the 2 wide seminole bands and then only use 36 of them? So, I decided to use the extra strip sets and make my bands longer, I had plenty of sashing fabric so it wouldn't be a problem. It wasn't a problem until I realised that the reason for only using 36 of them was because when it came to making the 3 narrow bands, there were only enough strip sets to make each one 18 pieces long!!! I had already added in the extras on the wide bands and didn't really want to unpick them, but then I remembered that I still had two strips leftover from the jelly roll that I can use to make 4 more small strip sets so I can make the narrow bands longer. I couldn't do any more as the leftover strips were in the classroom at the shop so I decided to call it a day.

I have made a lot of quilts from the Strip Club Patterns designed by Daniela Stout and always found them full of information and easy to follow - I just wish she had explained why they had you cut 40 strips when you weren't going to use them all!

Still, after a few choice words I was very pleased with what I came away with. I have made two of the wide bands and three of the narrow ones. Once I have inserted the extra strips into the narrow bands it won't take me long to sash them together and put on borders. I am so happy with these quilts - and they are just for me! For a change :-)

Photos of the finished quilt will follow when it is done. Also the skirt which I hope to finish this week to wear at the weekend. Our local quilt guild are having one of their regional days on Saturday and we have been invited along as merchants. If the sun is shining I plan to wear my new green sandals :-)

This last photo is totally unrelated to the weekend. Sheila of Ephemera has just had her first tattoo and I commented about the matching tattoo's my Mum and I have. When my parents came over to visit us at Christmas last year I asked my Mum (sure she wont mind you all knowing she is 63 years young) if she wanted to have a tattoo done with me. We decided on a small heart on our left thumbs, somewhere we would see it all the time and think of each other. We both love them and she has said that when she comes back she wants another one! She isn't sure what or where though :-) I told Sheila they were addictive!

Phew, sorry for the long rambling post! It seems to be either feast or famine here on my blog doesn't it?? LoL, thanks for reading :-))

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy colours, roll on summer.

A little while ago Heather left a comment on one of my posts with a phrase she had read - 'act and then get motivated'. I used that advice on that occasion and it worked, so I am going to use it again :-)

Tonight my DH is at a meeting so I dragged my backside off the couch, where I could easily have spent the evening with my book and the tv, and cut out a Hot Patterns Metropolitan Superfly Skirt. I used some dark inky blue denim that I have a roll of - at least 15 metres!! I bought it for $9, that was the whole roll for $9, not per metre!! Anyway, back to the skirt. Very simple, four pieces, front and back darts, top stitching and a fly front zip.
One of the things I love about this pattern is that it has a contrast bias cut hem facing - I love the fact that I can have a totally different fabric that only shows in small glimpses when I sit or walk. I used this emerald and white stripe cotton that I also have a roll of - not sure how much but at least 6 metres (and this one cost me $3!!) I love emerald green but it isn't a colour I have ever worn - well that is about to change........... much do I love these sandals?? I bought them when the summer styles first came into the shops - not something I normally do because I am usually worried I will see something I like better later on, then I wait and don't find anything I like as much and, as often as not, the original ones have sold out!!! Not this time! These were coming home with me for sure. I have had them out of the box and tried them on at various times since I brought them home, but I haven't worn them yet - still too cold for me to get my toes out Lol!

I think a plain white t-shirt will be good with this outfit - and the purple ring you can just see in the pic. I just love green and purple, it makes me happy :-)
This weekend I am away for another sewing weekend at Isobel's. I have got two strip quilts cut out, but I am very tempted to take my skirt! Lots of people there to help with fit and hem length - I might just pick up a zip tomorrow and make sure I have everything I need in case I feel the urge. There are a couple of us in our small sewing group who make garments, and it is my choice what I work on, just have to decide if I want to take my overlocker with me and all the extras I will need - doing patchwork requires less 'stuff'! Then again I would love a skirt to wear next week.
I will let you know what I decide - I may well stay up all night and do both :-)

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Sigh,I want to sew something..........

......but my mojo has disappeared! Have you seen it?? If you have please give it a good kick back in my general direction, I will be looking out for it!

Not sure why I am having this unmotivated moment - well, more than one moment actually! I don't know what to sew or where to start. Whenever my day off rolls around I am determined to get into my sewing room at some stage during the day - but it never happens! I am getting to the stage that I am annoyed at myself for not feeling like sewing - because I really want to make some clothes!! How can I have the desire to make new clothes yet not the desire to actually sew!?!

I know I need to start off with something very simple that will go together quickly. A long term project is not what I need at the moment. I have got some lovely fabrics sitting there but I am not sure if I want to make them up yet - I have joined the gym and know my size and shape will be changing over the next few months, maybe that is at the heart of my lack of motivation to actually sew?!

Maybe the trick is to choose some of the fabrics that have been there a while already, and make up a few simple garments for early summer - I am getting desperately short of clothes for this transitional time of year, especially as we are having strange weather! I need some basics to see me through the next couple of months.

Any ideas anyone? Got any motivational tips for me - or know of where I can look to find my mojo? Is there a lost mojo department anywhere? Should I post in the 'lost and found'? I wouldn't know how to describe it, but I sure miss it right now! Lol.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Forgive me, it has been two seeks since my last post!!

Apologies, I can't quite believe it has been that long since I last posted! Time flies! There has been a lot going on lately, both at the shop and at home. On the home front, our eldest son (21) has moved down to Wellington! He has been planning it for months and he finally left on Wednesday. He has a job as a builders labourer (a first for him, he has worked in retail and as a teacher aide - tools and building materials will be a new experience :-)) that he starts very soon and then he plans to apply for uni to start in March. He will do a BA for 3 years and then a year of teacher training to be a primary teacher.

I have loved having him back home for past year or so and will miss him being around (he is my style consultant too!!) but I am so excited for him. He is more than ready to start living his life and being totally independant. As long as he is happy and doing well, then I am happy!

This photo was taken at his 21st birthday meal with our youngest son, their girlfriends and my nephew. Liam is the one with the bunny ears :-)

We have been spending a lot of time in the garden at the weekends too, my DH is enjoying growing veggies - I think he is hooked! Neither of us thought we would ever enjoy gardening but it seems we were wrong :-) I need to try to find a good balance between spending time outside and spending time in my sewing room! I want some new clothes to wear this summer as well as some home grown veggies on my plate.

On the sewing front - nothing! I am thoroughly annoyed with myself! I have got so many things I want to make but can't seem to find any motivation at all. I did cut out a cardi-wrap in this teal blue which I will make for my Mum for Xmas. I love mine and think she will enjoy wearing it. I am going to make my Dad a pair of cotton pj pants for lounging around in - I will use a Kiwiana cotton fabric which he will love!

I have got a few things planned for my day off tomorrow but I would like to get into my sewing room at some stage. I was hoarding three large bags of fabric that I knew I would never use, last week I took them to the Hospice shop and now I feel so much better! I was originally going to sell the fabric on Trademe but it was blocking my creative flow!! Every time I walked in my room it was there, mocking me, staring at me, taunting me - as fabric does!?! Now it is gone.

Work wise we have had our local quilt show which took place over Labour weekend. It is always good to see what the local guild has been working on and seeing new faces too. We sponsor a challenge and this year the theme was 'Recycle', the finished item had to contain something recycled and the winning piece was very cleverly done and was a person with a coathanger head and cardboard clothes labels for arms and legs! I forgot to take a photo though! How silly of me. The quilt show makes for a long weekend as we work there on our stand, it is fine if it is busy but the quiet times can get a bit boring!

My latest BWOF (Burda World of Fashion - now Burda Style but it will always be BWOF to me!) has just arrived so that will hopefully provide some inspiration. Unfortunately it is the September issue and we are coming into summer but I will still enjoy reading it and making 'pie in the sky' plans!