Sunday, 21 November 2010

Nanowrimo is over for me.

My laptop just died.  It was going pretty badly anyway.  I changed my mind about what I was going to write on the first day - then I was ill for over a week, so I fell way behind.  Then I realised that my new idea basically had no plot, so it was really a drag to write.  I managed to get to about 17,000 words.  Now the hard drive has gone on my laptop.  It was kind of old.  I got it in 2004 and it wasn't new then.  My other two 50k+ novels are on that hard drive, and pretty much anything else I've ever written.  But I'm not too sad about it.  They are still in my head.  I could always write them again if I wanted to.

While I was ill I did some smocking.  I started on an unfinished project.  Now I'm not going to be writing for the rest of the month I am going work on some sewing instead.  It's a bishop dress I am working on, so once the smocking is done it just needs a couple of bits of sewing to finish it off.  I have 2-3 other almost done dresses.  I will work on getting them done.

I didn't get any good pictures from Hallowe'en detailing the costumes I made.  This is S - wearing his mask the wrong way round.  The elastic should be on the inside.

 This is E in her girl superhero costume.  The tops on both costumes were very very short.  E wasn't supposed to have red hair either.  We just sprayed it on last minute.  It doesn't really match!

A not very good pic of everyone.  You can't see the capes very well or the boots I made.  E was wearing her own pair of boots over a pair of orange and black striped tights.

Tuesday, 26 October 2010


Hello poor neglected blog.  I was just finishing sewing something and thought of you.

We have been moving.  Hooray!!!  It gave me the chance to look through all my sewing stuff and get rid of things.  I gave away lots of sewing patterns and pattern magazines to the charity shop.  Oh my gosh - I actually gave away some fabric to the charity shop!  Anything too bad I put into textile recycling.  I sold some fabric on ebay - also some half finished projects too.

The new house is great, but my fabric is all stored in the bed room, along with pattern magazines and notions and my sewing machines are crammed into a tiny space on the desk in the study.  Yes we have a study now.  Aren't we posh!  Its not exactly and ideal sewing set up.

A few weeks ago I finished off a few dresses that just needed buttons and button holes.  I also mended a few dresses, where the bodice had come away from the skirt.  They are all going to a friend, since my "little girl" is too old for twirly dresses now :-(  I was working on some pyjamas, and some how managed to break my overlocker, so I've put them aside for now.

Right now I am doing Halloween costumes.  I am making Simplicity 2567 - which is a superhero costume.  I have pretty much almost finished with them both - one boy one and one girl one.  I'm a bit stuck now, because I need some heavy weight double sided interfacing and I haven't been able to find such a thing.  I am going to have to wing it with what I have lying around.

In my last post a few months back, I mentioned I'd read 20 something books.  Well, the total is now 63 books this year.  My reading has slowed down quite a lot.  I am now getting ready to do Nanowrimo.  Without any real planning.  I don't even know what I want to write about yet!

Right now I am filling in a travelling notebook.  It is turning out to be a very creative exercise.  A travelling notebook is basically a notebook that travels round a group of people, then goes back to the original sender.  The one I am filling in is about my country.  I should have it ready to send out in a few days.  I have a few letters I need to get written and sent, and the costumes to finish, then I should be ready to start the ridiculous task of writing a 50,000 word novel in 30 days :-)

Sunday, 13 June 2010

Haven't blogged in a long time

Probably because I haven't sewn in a long time.  I have been reading though.  A lot.  I've read 27 books this year so far.  Novels anyway, that's not counting all the non-fiction books I've read.  I am sewing now though, but what was I thinking....

I am making a mens formal suit.  Burda 7842 for the jacket and Burda 7841 for the trousers.  M has, well possibly has an interview.  (I am confident my creative writing skills on his application form will get him an interview.)  He doesn't have a suit to wear.  Looking at the cheap Asda brand suits depressed me.  They are made out of cheap sort of school uniform polyester.  The tailoring is rubbish, and because he is tall and thin they never fit well.  A better suit would be about £100.  Too much money.  And charity shop is too much of a hit or miss.

I decided to make one.  I bought discount fabric from Croft Mill.  It's a wool/poly/spandex fabric.  Altogether for fabric, lining, interfacing, zip etc it comes to £57.  Not including the cost of the two patterns, since I can use them again.

I picked the patterns because they were kind of trendy, rather than just a square shaped suit.  BUT... it is a real challenge.  There are french darts (think thats what they're called), welt pockets galore, handsewing... yikes.  It has to be perfect too.

I've cut the trouser pattern, adjusting the length slightly.  I've got all the pieces cut out and all the interfacing and bits and bobs cut.  I've done all the tedious marking, so I am ready to sew this evening.  I decided to do the trousers first, since they are less work than the jacket.  So, wish me luck!  I already have doubters, who are making comments on the fabric, and saying why not just buy one, and just saying that I can't possibly sew a suit.  I think they are imagining a hideous mess.  But it is going to be fine.  (I hope!)

Sunday, 14 February 2010

Actually doing something!

Yes!  I seem to have failed miserably with my sew-one-thing-a-week goal.  I haven't felt very motivated, and I have been quite busy with reading, and preparation stuff for home ed.  But!!!  Last night I actually cut TWO things out!  A pair of pjs for R and a hooded top for him.  I hope to have both of them sewn up in the next few days.  I'm also going to make a top for myself from a Burda magazine I picked up the other day.  I'm going to order an Ottobre magazine that has pyjamas in it.  I like the look of them better than the Kiwk Sew ones I've been making.  Hopefully I'll have some projects to blog about soon!

Friday, 8 January 2010

Shocking News!

My boy has potty trained!!!!! Just when I reached PUL fabric nirvana! Actually he has been potty trained for a good few months now, even at night.... All that fabric looks lovely. What am I supposed to do with it now? I organised it into a rainbow on the shelf - impermeable to cats, who like to sneak in behind the stacks and lie on the flannel, which picks up hairs like crazy!

I have organised my fabric shelves. There seems to be more than ever! I have about 12 yards from a co-op waiting to ship home too... Oops. Oh yeah - and 4 more yards of PUL too! It was ordered about 6 months ago, but it had to be custom milled and laminated. I never thought R would have been potty trained by the time it arrived. I have cleared up the sewing desk too, but M has moved his computer upstairs and his stuff is spreading over my sewing area. I have not done any sewing at all this week. Bit disappointed since I planned to sew at least one evening a week. I am still gathering inspiration though. I'm waiting on two sewing books from amazon.

It has just been so cold recently, I don't fancy crawling about the floor in the draught trying to cut out patterns. I might clear off the table tomorrow and cut there. I'm going to sew something for myself, but I'm really not too sure if the fabrics are going to go together too well.

Friday, 1 January 2010

Goals for 2010

I can't be bothered doing a total of last years projects right now. But I don't think there is much. I had a terrible sewing slump at the beginning of last year. I know I've sewn a few nappies, quite a lot of wipes and some pyjamas.

Usually I just make a goal of sewing more often, but after learning about goal setting from a book about running I have decided to do something different this year. I am setting myself some smaller, more specific goals.
  • Aim to use up 20 yards of stash fabric
  • Keep an ideas book for inspiration
  • Aim to complete at least one project a month (of course more would be better)
  • Make time to sew one evening per week (again, more would be better)
  • Plan my years sewing in advance leaving plenty of time to complete projects
  • Complete 1-2 smocking projects

I have written down a list of things I'd like to make. An apron from the Sew Liberated pattern, a knitting bag for my mum, Halloween costumes, Halloween table runner, autumn cushion covers and wall hanging and Christmas pot holders are what I've got so far. I think it will make fabric buying easier if I know what I am buying for, rather than just buying things thinking "I'm sure I can use this... for something".

I got some money for Christmas and I have bought some sewing books. I got a heirloom sort of sewing one, a book about making pyjamas and a book about making skirts. I don't even wear skirts.... It just looked kind of interesting!

I need to make sure my sewing area stays tidy. It makes it so much easier if I don't have to waste precious time rummaging around for a seam ripper or measuring. That is my goal for the week, and also cutting out some things to sew.