Sunday, November 29, 2015

FINISHING - Report #2

Well it's been 21 days since my last report. So much has happened in that time, including a second borking of my back (a different part this time). I'm feeling so talented at this back business I just ... can't. Anyway, I'm feeling better every day, although some days have been less than impressive. But occassionally sewing does get done!

Also I've been reading this book by The Minimalists as part of my research into living my life more meaningfully, with less crap. And it's really good. Quotably good. I'm learning a lot about myself and the reasons why I feel so uncomfortable living in a cluttered home and life. So this finishing project has been a perfect "dip of my toe in the water" of minimalism.

Not too much to report on the actually finishing side of things this time - but I have progressed quite a few things too. The first UFO finished is that block from Chester Criswell that I thought I'd lost at the Sydney Quilt Show. I FOUND IT!


And I finished it. Best appliqué of my life, done spectacularly well while sewing under the influence of serious painkillers. Sarah Stubbs is the name of this block. Tick!


A friend and I had booked in do the Suitcase Rummage a couple of months ago. I was a bit touch and go in the days leading up to it as to whether I'd actually make it on the day, but in the end I even felt well enough to sew a few Sunnyboys that were hanging around cut out and ready to sew! We did the Suitcase Rummage, and I made a serious dent in the vintage Pyrex collection and a few other unused things in my house so all up a great day. Yay minimalism!


I also made another project sack for a special request that was very overdue, and managed to work some more on the Final Bags Ever.* Labels? Tick. Batch sewing of handles and tabs? Tick, tick.

And while this wasn't on the UFO list, it was on the essential sewing list. I was attending a wedding - dress code "Elegant Garden Party" (best dress code ever, by the way) - and so I finished that red silk top I wrote about in the last post, and also cut up my old 2011 Christmas frock that was now too big for me, and made it into a skirt.


(Killing myself laughing in this photo because my husband was photobombing while taking forever to walk into the living room (he's had hip surgery - I forgive him for being slower than a snail). Finally he ducked out of view and I could take this photo.)

Now for the "moving slowly, but at least I'm moving" UFOs.


Mary Watkins (from Chester Criswell) is slowly but surely getting there. I reckon if Australia doesn't get bowled out before stumps tonight I might have it close to finished.


The centre section of Anna Brereton is being sewn together! Hallelujah! Long, long way to go on this project, though. And that's OK.

And finally a quilt that a friend and I made for another friend's birthday ... in September. We basted it a couple of months ago, but wrestling a quilt through a sewing machine when you have a back injury is not my idea of smart, or fun. But this morning I started. Just straight lines. I sew 720 inches, and then I stop for a few hours to rest. I'm maybe a quarter done on this. By next update, God willing, it will be finished and back to my friend to bind it.

Hopefully my next update will be quicker than three weeks, and I'll have more to show that is actually finished. This year I've cut right back on the social events I normally get roped into doing leading up to Christmas - so as of 9 pm next Sunday (when my choir has sung its final note at our Christmas concert) it will be nothing but business-as-usual (gardening, housework, working, swimming, the usual friends stuff, and of course sewing in between).

*After more than 8 years making project bags for crocheters/knitters/crafters/storage hoarders, I've decided to finally (!), officially retire. The bags I have cut out are the last bags I will make. I hope to have them all in my online store in the next couple of weeks. I will write a pattern for the project sack, but not before the end of the year. If you want to keep updated on when the bags will go in the store, the best bet is my store's Facebook page.

Sunday, November 8, 2015

FINISHING - Report #1

Two weeks ago I reported that I was determined to finish things that were half-finished or mostly-finished or cut-out-but-not-quite-started.

Two weeks later I have very little to report. Not one to make excuses, I have however been gardening a lot since we got our new vegetable patches. I've started riding to work again in the last couple of weeks which just makes me exhausted and lazy by the time I get home. But riding! YAY! Also back injury rehabilitation takes a lot of spare time - like an hour a day of exercises. Probably gardening is not the best thing for rehabilitation but my physio hasn't complained about it yet!


BUT I do have things to report, even if there are very few of them.


This is Mary Trayner from the Chester Criswell Block of the Month I started a couple of years ago. I think I've made a total of 8 blocks now - and by "think" I mean that I seem to have lost one. I'm sure it's in the spare room somewhere...


It gave me the opportunity to start the next block already prepared with freezer paper - Mary Watkins. She's a bit of fun, mainly because all I can see is the Batman symbol over Gotham City.

IMG_9365  IMG_9361  IMG_9358

I finished three bags for my online store - these were already made and just needed the lining attached and topstitched down. Should have made them much sooner than this - I've already sold two of them. I have more bags cut out and ready to sew up and I'll be making more tonight.


Finally, I finished the skirt, which I am calling The Skirt of Multiple Inappopriate Patterns But I Don't Give a Hoot. The skirt was already made and the lining cut out. All I had to do was sew the lining up, attach it to the skirt, face it, hem both lining and skirt (the skirt all by hand) and add a hook and eye.  Phew! It actually took me longer than I expected but I was so relieved when it was done. Bonus points for really loving it too.

My finishing has to take a bit of a break for the next few days as I now have to make a top to wear with my new skirt (and it's urgent, because not only do I have very few clothes to wear to work, I need this top to wear to a wedding next weekend, along with a skirt I am refashioning from a too-big dress). Once they are both done though, I'll be free to garden to my heart's content finish more things. I must admit it's satisfying to finish UFOs - but it's also frustrating that I ever let it get this desperately bad. I'm on a bit of a minimalist research binge at the moment and I expect there will be some massive changes in this house over the summer.