Saturday, October 24, 2015

The Nowhere-To-Hide FINISHING Spring Clean

Once the weather warms up and the days lengthen a little, the reality of my unfinished projects come to light and BOY AM I HORRIFIED (each and every year).

I am a list maker. Every evening at work before I got home I write a list for the next day. I write shopping lists. I plan my meal menu each week. But I don't have a list for the UFOs I want to finish, probably because writing it down would be me facing reality. I came back from a mini-break in Far North Queensland a few days ago and went into my sewing room to sew. But for everything I picked up new that I wanted to sew, I was missing a component (not missing - LOST) and I realised then there were a lot of unfinished, mostly made or cut out projects junking up my sewing room. My sewing room was rebelling against my bad habit of starting, and nothing new was going to get started until I got rid of some of the backlog.

I'm sensing a theme in colour and fabric on my design wall. Sheesh.

(Also if I get some projects finished I might have something to put in the exhibition next year).

I've been pulling out my UFOs (which just makes me anxious) and rediscovered my Anna Brereton quilt by @brigittegiblinquilts started at the Berry Quilt Retreat a couple of years ago. Might be time to do a bit more on it. I quite like my version. #annabrer

So this is a very quiet shhhhhhhhh commitment to myself that I will start finishing things. I've made this commitment before and failed each and every time. I have quilts basted and ready to quilt - and because it is a group quilt someone else is lined up to bind it. I have tops unbasted. And I won't be limited to quilts - I have a lot of clothes cut out that have to be sewn up, and bags for my online store as well.

I think I'm going to make the rest of October "finishing month". My sewing room is chock full of half finished or mostly finished projects - including clothes that have been cut out but not sewn. This quilt was started by @redpepperquilts and then given t

See this quilt? I had seven hexagons left to sew on it.  Seven.  Last night I finished the top. Gosh it felt good to say that. Tomorrow I will baste it.

I shall report back. Pinky swear.

Monday, October 5, 2015

Kirsten Kimono Tee(s)

Well goodness me, I wasn't intending to blog today, but here I am sitting at a computer with some photos off my phone and, well, what's a girl to do when she's a bit chuffed but blog?

You see I haven't sewn any clothes since Frocktails back in June. The reason for that is mostly to do with my last post, but also because I've lost quite a bit of weight over the last few months and sewing anything to fit is pointless when you just have to take it in the following month. Taking things in is a royal pain in the butt, and I hate it. Sometimes it's quicker just to make something from scratch.

While I don't actually notice my weight loss on a day-to-day basis (weird, I know), my friends certainly do and I also notice it in my clothes. In winter I wear cardigans and sweaters to work and it doesn't matter if they are a bit big. However skirts falling down around your knees while you're using the photocopier? Definitely an inappropriate time to notice that your skirt is swimming around your hips rather than skimming your waist. We've had a very sudden change of seasons here in Canberra - from a bitterly cold winter to scorching temperatures in just a matter of weeks. Cardigans are definitely OUT. Blouses are in. And while I can take in all my skirts (painful as it is), my beloved collection of cotton tops for work can't be taken in, and no one needs to see that much bra strap as they slip off my shoulders anyway. Basically - I have nothing to wear. Absolutely nothing.

I've had my eye on the Kirsten Kimono Tee from Maria Denmark for the longest time but always worried how it would got over my hips. The other week I just cut the damn thing out and got over my fears. But no sewjo. It returned with a bang on my day off on Friday. Thank heavens I had stuff already cut out.


I neglected to add the seam allowance to the pattern. Ugh seam allowances. I know this pattern is a freebie but I didn't need to read about the seam allowance needing to be added half way through the length instructions! Regardless I pushed on. If it didn't fit now, it would fit in a month or so.

I constructed the whole thing on the overlocker except for the neck top stitching, and bottom and sleeve hems. All together it took me half an hour to have a very wearable top.  Let me repeat that - HALF AN HOUR.

Kirsten Kimono Tee

And then I went and took in another skirt and sewed up a new skirt except for the lining. Totally winning at Friday, I was.

On Saturday I sent the hip patient off to his hydrotherapy and took the time to put on a thousand loads of washing and cut out as much as I could on the kitchen table. I cut out another Kirsten Kimono Tee and two skirts. The tee I actually added a 1 cm seam allowance as well - except I added it to the neckline which I wasn't supposed to do (damn you freebie instructions and my inability to read them! I didn't add the seam allowances to the sleeves or the bottom - I liked the length the way it was). Half an hour before the AFL grand final started, I sewed that tee up (and wore it all day Sunday and boy did I feel schnazzy in it, even if the neck was a little higher than I would have liked).

Kirsten Kimono Tee

Then the weekend got kinda busy and OMG GO NORTH QUEENSLAND COWBOYS I'M STILL SO EXCITED! But the good news is the overlocker is still threaded with white thread and I intend finishing the unlined skirt in the next couple of days before I lose another 2 kilos and it's all over and back in the adjusting pile again. Like with every other fantastic skirt in my collection.

Skirt sewing

I have so much knit fabric in my stash, and no tops, and this is quick and easy and looks pretty nice on. I have plans for a couple of work t-shirts as well, and then maybe I'll move on to another pretty top, like the StyleArc Skye.

Anyway this little sewing jaunt over the weekend has proven to me I don't need anything complex to make me happy. It just needs to be easy, quick and fit well. Anything else is gravy.