Greetings and salutations,
Sorry for the radio silence my dear readers. Life has been a bit crazy recently.
On the work side, we went from having a GM ( + sales), and two sales staff for Australia, NZ, and the Pacific Islands. Down to no GM, and just me doing sales of Australia, NZ and Pacific Islands.... So there's been that. Working stupid hours with crazy pressure. It's been stressful. I was working long hours and then going home to work some more to just get through the workload. Not much time for fun or blogging. I am now training another sales staff member, and we are looking to have a new GM in October. There is a dim and distant light at the end of the tunnel. But it feels a long way away.
On the personal side, I've started doing the choreography for a community theatre group's show of The Producers. It's a lot of fun but absorbing most of my time. I do love meeting new people and and creating dance. It opens in late August. Should be a blast!
The other day, I did get around to finishing my Jan Sweater (version. II) and a thick black corduroy Simplicity 3688 (lost count of how many I've made - perhaps 4 or 5? As I type this now, I am wearing a new grey wool version). It's a great winter skirt. Hope to blog about that one soon.
Black cord is basically impossible to photograph. Simplicity 3688 is a 6 gored skirt with a side zip. I should put one pocket in the side but I never do. The edges are zigzagged which is my usual go-to seam finish. The look of seam binding is gorgeous but most of the time it's too much effort. Perpetually lazy sewist - that's me!
This Jan is made in the next size up from my first one. I wanted it to be a little more 30s blousey. It's not as loose as I thought it would be, but I like it nonetheless. The purple colour is so vibrant, just like the last few pictures of it on my body form. The yarn is Luxury 4ply from Bendigo Woollen Mills. The colour is 'Lavender'. It's gorgeous yarn to knit with. Nice and smooth, not splity, soft to touch, easy care. 200g balls with 720m / ball! This top used one and a smidge balls. By smidge I mean, the neckline ribbing on the back and yarn to sew the seams came from the second ball.
My little 'made by m' labels give me such joy. I was only using them on items I had gifted to people. Then I started stitching them into slash neck tops to easily identify the front and back. And now I stitch them onto everything! They make me so happy.
Sorry about the radio silence. It has been crazy busy! Christmas rush and all that. I have been occupied by knitting and sewing, but only a few sewing projects are done. That said, most of them are wearable. We are coming into our busy season at work which runs until March/April. Not too sure how often I will be able to get on the blog machine. I do hope to keep it up. I find it a lovely way of keeping track of what I've made and how far I have come.
On to the sews! First up, my Tilly & The Buttons Mimi Blouse (with very limited make-up). I just finished sewing on the buttons and had to take a snap for mum. So excited I couldn't even clean our room. It's a bit tight through my man shoulders, probably could to with a pattern adjustment. The fabric is a mystery stiff woven poly-something gifted to me by one of my wonderful adult jazz and ballet students. It has a green and white stripe. Turns out, I made a school uniform blouse. Safe to say I haven't worn this one yet.
Next up, a black silk Kimono Top by Salme Patterns. Took 2 half days to make . That's printing and assembling the PDF, tracing off my size, adding seam allowances, cutting out, sewing and finishing. Wore it on a 35 degree Celsius day and it served me well! I paired it with wide leg camel-coloured chiffon palazzo pants bought years ago. The silk was $14.99 / m from a little fabric store in Marrickville. What a win! I was aiming for 30s style, but most people said I look very 1970s Charlie's Angels. I suppose that s the power of era accurate hairstyles...
I'm particularly proud of this next one. Tuesday started, Friday finished, Saturday worn. Talk about cutting it fine! Wore it to the races for the birthday of a good mate of mine. I also made the felt pillbox hat. This was another 36 degree day. Yay for Australian Spring!
This was the first time I had ever frankenpatterned - joining two or more patterns to create a hopefully successful monster. New Look 6000 + Ultimate Pencil Skirt by Sew Over It. I folded down the top of the skirt to the waistline (at the widest point of the darts) then placed that on the marked waistline of the dress. I had to fold in the skirt of New Look 6000 as it is straight and bulky, but I didn't have to move the darts thorough the middle.
The whole ensembleh was planned with gloves (see picture below)... but when it was 11.30am and already well over 30 degrees, ain't nobody got time for that. Proudest moment from the day - I did not get sunburnt! I wore it with black back seam stockings by Sweet Pins. Once you start wearing back seam stockings, there is no turning back.
Lastly, a completed project from an afternoon of sewing - The Gable Top by Jennifer Lauren Handmade. It's made from a deep purple cotton spandex from my local Spotlight. Ladies, seriously, get your hands on this pattern. It is also one of the only patterns that is long enough for my torso. Huzzah! I made it in the short sleeves, but I have plans for the long sleeve and the 3/4 sleeve hack (on her blog). It's fast and easy to make, even for first-time-knit seamstresses. I already have plans for a fleet of these with the short sleeve for work. The fabric has been pre-washed is is drying on the line as we speak. I have a pink-strawberry-Neapolitan-ice-cream colour, a sunny yellow, apple green and classic noir (see the matching thread below).
What a long ad picture heavy post! Thanks for sticking it out. Hope to see you soon with more sewing and knitting adventures.
I love the A Stitch in Time books by Susan Crawford. They are a gorgeous collection of vintage patterns that have been written out with different sizes, as well as updates on yarn and yarn substitutions. If I could make one of every single pattern, I would! The time and effort that has gone into these books is off the chart.
It's great that the books walk through the decades and describe style lines and trends of the time. It's a great resource for knitters. The 30s patterns are all divine. So are the 40s ones. And the 50s... The whole thing is a delight.
I have styled the Jan Sweater a couple of different ways, but this so far has to be my favourite. It was paired with my Simplicity 3688 black skirt made from some polyester blend. It's been blogged about earlier. It's actually a very handy black skirt for work. Pearls are from eBay, marked as Avon. The yarn for Jan was a Debbie Bliss yarn that my wonderful mother found at a little yarn shop where she lives, and for a steal!
Link to my Ravelry page here for my notes and thoughts.
Knitter. Home seamstress. Dance Teacher.