Thursday, December 06, 2007

Stop! Grammar Time!

We interrupt your regularly scheduled knitting blog to bring you this strictly non-knitting, nerdy post. Just in case you ever use (and trust) MS Office's grammar check, keep this picture in mind.

I wonder what severity cans? It has to be anchovies. After all, anchovies sound gross, and "severity" doesn't exactly leave one with a warm, fuzzy feeling. So it probably has canning parties with other unfriendly words like "discord" and "depreciate," and they can anchovies...

Or are they telling me to write that the severity of the disease fires "double"? Poor "double." Getting canned by MS Office's grammar check. I thought he was doing a pretty good job, myself. Good ol' "double"... but he is always getting into trouble, they say. I guess it was bound to happen.

This brought out the nerdiness in me enough to merit putting up the Hammer "Grammar Time" icon. Which, if you look closely, the background is "netspeak," making it even more awesome. I did not create that icon and I don't know who did... it was on one of those random websites with free icons. So if you made it, thanks, let me know if you want your name up there, and also you are the coolest person ever. Except for me. But that goes without saying. ;-)

* And yes, I know that's not the way to cite in a paper. But it's the way I begin citations all my papers. I have the actual citations on their little page, and I just put the number in till I am done and ready to purdy up all the citations. I'm not sure if it's quicker than doing them as you go (because I don't think I've ever actually tried that), but whatever. Works fine for me.

** And yes, I see the grammatical error in there that MS Word DIDN'T catch. And I fixed it!

*** Oh, by the way, as this post indicates, I'm still alive. I'll have to do a real post later... when I'm not extremely busy doing crap for finals.

Edit: Oh, I guess you can't look closely on the GrammarTime picture because Blogger stretches it out. But the background is netspeak. This image is only 100x100 pixels or something like that, but apparently Blogger says "NO! Ye shall have no photos smaller than 200 cubits" (and by cubits I mean pixels). I wonder if I can fix that.

Edit 2: Yay, fixed!

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Seranno progress and my next project

I am now knitting the back armholes of Serrano. I am doing so well! I have not been perfectly monogamous in my projects but I have mostly worked only on Serrano. (by the way, anyone have any idea why, when typing on my laptop, sometimes the cursor just skips to somewhere else entirely and I end up writing in the wrong sentence? it is like accidental madlibs or something except madlibs are totally awesome and funny and this is annoying). Anyway, I just have to finish the back and sleeves, do some blocking and some finishing, and find a zipper. I plan on doing one of those 2 way zippers instead of hooks and eyes because it's annoying to mess with those things.

I've been swatching for Eunny's Venezia sweater. I loved this to begin with, and after spending a long time deciding on colors and thinking of some modifications, I love it even more now. I am going to knit it in 2 colors only - a bright pink and a light pink - and I also want to add a v-neck, maybe a collar too, and make it into a cardigan similar to an anthropologie design I've been admiring. It's the Jacquard Jacket under Cardigans if my link doesn't work (I can never get links to this site to work). I would really love to hear any advice or ideas about this since I know I will need to add a steek but don't know exactly how to do that (add stitches, yes, but how many? etc) so any help would be sooo appreciated! Also, look at the photo on the model - if you zoom in, the sweater has what looks like a tattoo on the arm! How cool is that?! I am going to do that, too.

Edit: Ok, the link doesn't work. Here's one picture of the jacket:

I need to start sewing again too. I had quit because I felt bad sewing, having projects never turn out right, and then feeling like I wasted time, money, and good fabric. Also I really don't have too much time. But really I am wasting the fabric all the same if I already have it and don't use it. So I am going to try to make a top or something soon.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007


I really hope I am able to get November's Burda WOF magazine. I am obsessed with this dress. I really must have it! Sigh!

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

New IK is up!

And you can find it right here.

What do I think about this issue? I know you won't rest until you know MY opinions. ;-)

It looks pretty darn good to me! I do miss the redhead, though. But I adore the Bettie Paige looking model. Here are the patterns I liked best, along with the ones I may knit (no, they're not always the same thing).

Alicia Tabard (why no bonus photos for this?) - I love it! It makes me think "knitter's Miss America" what with the diagonal cable and all, hehe. I think it's very cute, but I doubt I'll knit it.

Henley Perfected - I think this is my favorite pattern in the issue. I love the lace! I will be tempted to knit it. But I really think the model's expression sucks. She does not look like she is happy wearing that super cute sweater! Maybe she realizes the color isn't the best for her. ;-)

Sweater Girl Pullover - Who won't like this one? It's so classic. I'm betting this one will be popular.

Colette Pullover - Really cute design, and I can't decide if the pattern is Transformers or kitties... but either way, awesome! This looks pretty Anthropologie-esque to me.

Celtic Tote - I love this! A must-knit for me!

Ivy League Vest - I always love Eunny's designs. I love this vest! It's so cute and timeless.

El Sol Pullover - I really love the neckline of this pullover.

Farrow Rib Cardigan - I love the texture on this cardi! A really cute design, too.

Gathered Pullover - Love it! This is a must knit if I see that it looks nice on busty girls (I'm worried about the cables being RIGHT THERE, ya know?). There's that disgruntled model again.

Rosemary's Swing Jacket - I adore this... I really, really wish I had the type of figure that could pull it off. It is so, so cute.

All in all, a great issue!

Btw, things are still going well with Serrano. I've got about 1.5" left to knit before I get to the armhole shaping, I think. That's really good, considering that it's knit in one piece thus far.

Also, I got some samples from Artfibers to swatch. I got some Sylph and some Andromeda. I knit up the Andromeda, and oh my, is this yarn wonderfully soft! And so, so beautifully drapey! GIMME! :-D

Also, it was so cold today! I wore Gretel out, and got a nice compliment. That was cool, and the hat is nice and warm. Yay!

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Thinkin' about new projects

So, of course I have a million wips, but as always, I am thinking about new projects.

One thing I really want is a Twinkle Shopping Tunic, except in fine (fingering or sport at the most) gauge bamboo or some other fine yarn with equal drape. I have no idea how to go about doing that, but I think it would look nice. Nicer, for my body type, than a chunky wool yarn, and a fine gauge bamboo would be a million times more wearable in this climate than chunky wool. Anyone know of a pattern similar to this? I imagine the change in gauge would be far too drastic for the Twinkle pattern to work.

I'm also still thinking about a Tilted Duster, and since the yarn I'm considering for it is at home, I will only think about it till Dec. :-)

I want an Estella, and but for lack of yarn and money for yarn, would be knitting it now.

I also want a Peasant Cap (warning: PDF!), but have the same hindrance as for Estella.

And of course, the Tangled Yoke Cardigan, for which I do have yarn, but am one ball short, sadly (if anyone wants to get rid of a ball of Rowan Felted Tweed in cocoa, lemme know). I really wanted to knit it in rage, but it's pretty lucky that I have even the cocoa color. My LYS never had the rage to begin with, had only the cocoa left, and I got it before the TYC pattern was released (the reason for my being 1 ball short).

I think before I get to the TYC, if I can, I will be attemping to knit Venezia by Eunny Jang. I saw a couple of modifications that make me even more in love with this sweater, and all I want is to get everything out of the way and work on it. I'm going to do it in only 2 colors (dark gray + light pink? dark brown + light pink?) and make it with a v-neck instead of a boat neck. The original is lovely, but as I've never done much fair isle, I don't know about managing so many colors, and a v-neck will look better on me, I'm hoping.

Oh, and I want to make that braided scarf that's on the cover of a VK.

Ok, there are a lot more, but those are the main ones.

Regarding Serrano (I know y'all are dying to hear how it's coming along):

I think this sweater is re-teaching me project monogamy. I've been working only on this sweater, and it is going by so much more quickly than I expected because of it! I have hardly even had knitting time, so I haven't gotten much farther than my last update; actually I'm now on the waist increases. But still, thinking on how slowly it normally takes me to finish a sweater, I'm doing very well. :-) Still having a bit of trouble with the whole shaping and keeping the lace pattern looking neat thing, but again, hopefully it won't be obvious to anyone but me. That's all I'm going for here. A sweater that fits well and doesn't look like someone who doesn't know what the heck they're doing made it (although that's pretty much the case - when it comes to lace, I don't really know what I'm doing, even with a stitch pattern as easy as this). I'm surprised at my ability to work on this so devotedly. The pattern is beautiful, but while KP Palette is a nice "workhorse" yarn, it is not very soft, so there's no "OMG I LOVE WORKING WITH THIS YARN OMG!!" like I get with Malabrigo, Swish Superwash, or the Merino Cable I'm using for Rapunzel. And it's black, so there's no "OoOoOo... purdy colorz! Me likey!" that I get with particularly lovely/exciting colorways. And the gauge is small, so there's no "OMG I can't believe I am almost done already!" feeling. But I am still really enjoying this knit. And that is saying something about this pattern!

Oh yeah, also! I have really warmed up to the Gretel hat I knit, and now I am starting to like the way it looks on me! This is great! I think I just needed to get used to the look of a slouchy hat. I had this same reaction to the 2 slouchy hats I knit before (the Pithy hats). I never really gave them a chance, and left them at my mom's, thinking I'd never wear them. Now I wish I had them here, so I could see whether I'd like them as well! When I go home at Christmas, I am going to find out. So thanks, y'all, for the compliments on Gretel. I think y'all are the ones who changed my mind on that matter.

Last thing (I think!): When perusing Louisa Harding books online (love her designs!), I saw this one picture and I really like the model they chose for it. She is really gorgeous, but she doesn't look like a model (imho, and a good thing - I feel some times like modern "model" beauty is the only kind we really appreciate now, seeing this girl as a model reminds me that we don't only appreciate that kind of beauty - although she is very lovely, but maybe you'll get what I mean).

Monday, October 15, 2007

A Ransom Note

From Flickr:

Hey knittin_bayou! About your photos...

You've run into one of the limits of a free account. Your free account will only display the most recent 200 photos you've uploaded. All of your photos beyond 200 will remain hidden from view until you either delete newer photos, or upgrade to a Pro account.

None of your photos have been deleted, and if you upgrade, they'll all come back unharmed.

Doesn't this sound kinda like a ransom note? ;-) So does this mean now that my older pictures can't be seen, even if they are linked?

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Serrano progress

Yeap, I started Serrano, as all my projects were really discouraging me to the point of frustration. Unfortunately, that trend is continuing somewhat into this project as well. I'm past the waist shaping, and have 3 problems. One was with the waist shaping - keeping the pattern while doing the shaping was very hard, and I am not sure I accomplished it too well. It's knit all in one piece, so you have to interrupt the shaping in order to do the decreases, and as I am not a lace knitter, I don't really know how to do this too well. So let's hope it looks ok. Before that, there was even another problem. Very early in the pattern, I apparently accidentally put in some random yarn overs in places they don't belong, and didn't notice it until now. So... yeah. Third problem. One front side of my Serrano has the lace edging extending to the front bands. The other side... not so much. I didn't have room for a final repeat, so there are several stitches between the lace pattern and my front bands. I hope the asymmetry of the lace on the fronts doesn't end up looking poorly. None of this is the fault of the pattern, I'm sure. I've seen lots of lovely Serranos on Ravelry, and no knitters who complained of any pattern problems. So please don't think I am criticizing the pattern! I am certainly not the world's best knitter. In fact, I'd say I'm a pretty poor knitter, as is evidenced by my lack of flawlessly executed FOs. I'm knitting this in black Palette from KnitPicks. It is strange... none of the other colors of Palette I have are scratchy in the least, but this one is rather scratchy and is definitely going to need some conditioner or something. Serrano is going surprisingly quickly for a cardigan with a lace pattern, knit in fingering weight yarn.

Sooo... something else is on my mind. I read a lot of people talking about how they are "process knitters." I'm not sure I understand the idea of this. Process knitter as opposed to... what? I don't want to offend anyone, and maybe I'm mistaking the idea of the terminology, but to me "process knitter" sounds a bit redundant (not sure that's the word I want, but it'll do for now). Why would one knit, if she or he didn't enjoy the knitting process? I mean, have you ever heard anyone say "I hate everything about knitting and it really bores me, but I'm going to knit this sweater"? Or scarf. Or hat. Or whatever. Even if you love gorgeous hand knits, you're not going to stick with knitting if you don't enjoy doing it. I've known plenty of people who were entranced by the idea of being able to knit their own items, and then turned off by the actual knitting of said items. If you don't enjoy knitting, you're not going to want to put hours and hours into a project, no matter how much you want that sweater or hat. If you're knitting, I think it's pretty automatically understood that you must enjoy the process of it, or you wouldn't do it. Am I wrong? :-)

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Finished Object: Gretel

I finished Gretel! Thank goodness, for I needed a finished object. I'm not sure how happy I am with it - the yarn (Malabrigo) couldn't be nicer, the pattern is so well written, and the hat itself is lovely... but I am still unsure of how wearable it is for me. I made the slouchy version, and I'm afraid that it may be TOO slouchy.

These pictures were taken on my camera phone, and seriously suck. Hopefully, better photos to come, when I get batteries for my digital cam and after the hat has finished blocking.

Now I've been struck by the desire to finish the long forgotten Sideways Spencer, but I've lost my place! I have no idea what to do there now and hope I don't have to do anything drastic, like start over. Ugh. I really want to finish one of my sweaters now!

Monday, October 01, 2007


Sorry, once again, I've been a bad blogger. I've just been so disappointed in everything that it is hard to even talk about projects.

Right now, I'm working on Gretel, and I've picked up the Ella Scarf again, after deciding the darn thing needs to be finished. Gretel I started because I really need a FO now. I'm pretty far along on that. For Ella, I made a deal. I've been trying to get at least 3 medallions done in a week. If I do that, then I'll have it done in a couple of weeks. Of course, nothing is limiting me to 3 medallions, so I could finish sooner.

I worked exclusively on Josephine this weekend, though I didn't get much done as most of the weekend was spent working, preparing for fishing, and then out on the marshes actually fishing. I did not catch anything weird this time, but I did catch two really big redfish, which was awesome. I love to catch redfish because anyone who thinks that fishing is easy in any way has never dealt with a redfish. Anyway, it was a great time.

I've kinda given up sewing right now. I don't know why except that nothing seems to work as I'd like it to, so I haven't felt like messing with it. I figure I'll just ruin more fabric that I really like and paid good money for. So I am in the sewing dumps... let's hope I can get out of that soon.

I've been stalking the Tilted Duster. Please, someone, tell me how unflattering it is going to be on me before I end up trying it and being heartily disappointed. I know there is no way it could look good on me, but it's such a gorgeous design! I thought maybe adding some room in the bust would make the whole thing lie flatter and closer against me, but I would have no idea how to do that. The concept of short row darts continues to elude me.

I need to go to class now.

Monday, September 10, 2007

Dressing for Your Shape? (aka possibly TMI and no pictures, sorry!)

I've been pondering a lot recently about what really looks good on me. Apparently, I'm a pretty poor judge of it myself, considering the opinions of others 'round here.

For those of you who don't know, I am SHORT - 4'10" (not quite a legal "small person," but I'm only an inch over the max). I also would consider myself what some like to call "curvy," I suppose, but I am not sure what that means. I mean, I've seen magazines call Scarlett Johanson curvy, but did you see her in The Prestige (great movie, btw)?? In that corset? She was pretty much a stick with boobs. A very lovely stick, true (I rank her as one of the top 4 most attractive ladies on planet Hollywood), but a stick nonetheless. So, as a disclaimer, when I say I am "curvy," I do not have anything near the figure of Scarlett Johanson. I have boobs, 34" hips, and a little belly (but a 26" waist, except maybe at Thanksgiving). I also have short legs and well, my thighs ain't exactly proportional to my height, and they probably ain't going anywhere, either.

So, let's just say that designers aren't exactly designing for my body type. And I can see why that is - I sure as heck can't ever find things I like on myself, and if I like them, no one else does. All I've found that we can all agree on my looking nice in are button down shirts and pinstripe dress pants, and who wants to wear those all the time?

So anyway, if you're out shopping and you can't find things you like, well it's a bummer, but it's no huge deal - just don't buy it. Or return it if you buy it and get home and wonder what you were on at the store. But what if you're sewing or knitting for yourself? How do you determine whether something is going to flatter you if you can't try it on first? I know you can try on something similar at a store, but what if you can't find anything similar?

Also, which distorts your shape less? A mirror or a camera? Anyone know?

BTW, the pink dress did not go over well in person. Apparently, though it looks pretty good in the photos... not so much IRL (not that I had the nerve to wear it out after the looks I got just trying it on in the house!). At least that's what I hear. So I dunno what steps to take next. I have to admit to a major self-confidence drop recently, and I don't like it one bit. ;-)

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

V8386 "Muslin"

Well, I've finished the muslin for V8386, and now I'm trying to decide whether it's wearable, and whether to use my fabulous Gorgeous Things' print for the real thing. I took a couple of pictures and would love to hear what you think!

So, should I go for it?

Monday, September 03, 2007

Boxes and boxes

Well, ok, only two boxes. And a couple of pillowcases. That's all I have to show today... but it is, I assume, preferable to the complete absence of posting that's been going on around here lately, and also to posting without pictures at all.

So, I know what you're thinking - boxes are boring. Sure, they're good for keeping crap in, but they're boring. Well, I thought so too, until I discovered this wonderful stuff called Mod-Podge (or is it Modge-Podge? I don't know). Now I think boxes are wicked cool (even if saying "wicked cool" isn't wicked cool anymore), or at least can be after applying a gallon of this stuff and some scrapbook paper.

Actually, for these projects I used Mod-Podge (which will be abbreviated as MP if I mention it again), scrapbook paper, paint, ribbon, and fabric. It was mucho fun, although it stank to high heaven!

Here are some pictures:

The first box was a 12"x12" scrapbook paper box from Michael's. Now, in case you don't scrap, most of the scrapbooks I've seen come in a size for 12"x12" sheets of paper. That's right, the sheets of paper are exactly 12"x12". The box? Also exactly 12"x12". Anyone see a problem here? Anyway, I failed to realize this info until after the fact, and it's ok, because I have other crap in the box besides 12"x12" scrapbook paper (considering that I left most of my scrapping stuff at home). But just to let people know, the papers don't really fit. But for a box this pretty, who cares?!

After I finished the box, I wanted to do another. It was such fun! It just so happened that I got a free card organizer from Hallmark - handy, but oh so BLAND. I don't know if you've realized this about me, but I'm not a big fan of neutrals. They are boring! So, so boring. So, when I got this free card organizer that was (what else?) beige and white, ugh!, I thought I'd liven it up a bit. So, I used leftovers from the previous projects to make this:

I finally also accepted that my beloved comforter, the wonderful Van Gogh print, was wearing quite thin. I decided to get a new one. Then, inspired by some throw pillows I'd seen online, I painted pillowcases to match. I was going to do throw pillows, but it just seemed like too much trouble, as I would have had to make them, or make covers for a couple of throw pillows I found. I probably will do one soon, though, if I can ever find fabric paint in the colors I wanted to use for the throw pillow. I used sparkly fabric paint and some cheap beige (ugh, that color again!) pillowcases I found for around $3 (for a set of 2) at Kmart. I think the results were pretty fun, but here, you can judge for yourself!

And on the bed with the new comforter set:

Now, for updates on projects. In knitting, I'm currently still working on Josephine, but it's going slowly. For sewing, I've almost finished the "muslin" for V8386, of which I will have to get opinions before I use my fabulous pink, black, and white print from Gorgeous Things on it. I can't decide if the dress is going to flatter me or not. I thought it would, as I do have a very nice semi-formal dress in a similar style that I think is very flattering on me, but I'm not sure about this one. It will definitely need something under it, too, as the fabric (a cheap pink knit from the $1 fabric table at Walmart) is very thin. But you'll see in a few days.

Also, I updated some of my projects on Ravelry. I now have posted (not very good) photos of most my wips, as well as photos of all my fos (which have been on there for awhile). I do love this site - it is really great at keeping me organized and helping me remember what I'm working on, as well as what I want to do. I wish there was a sewing site like this - PR is really great, but it would be so wonderful to have a feature where I could post my projects I'm working on, as well as pictures of my stash and patterns I want to use them for. Just sublime. But don't think I'm putting down PR at all - I love it, too! I use my "pattern catalog" feature for keeping in mind what I want to do in what fabric, for now, but without fabric pics.

I really want to make a pair of peacock feather earrings. Any tips on how to go about doing so? I am dying for some, but how would you attach the peacock feathers to the earring hook thingys?

As this is really a hobby journal for me, and reading is a great hobby of mine, I'll talk a little about that, too. I just finished reading The Demon Under the Microscope today. This book has had me captivated, and is part of the reason progress on all my projects has been slow, even on a geologic time scale. It's a non-fiction book about the discovery and short reign of sulfa drugs, and it was just great. It took me much longer than most books do to read, but I enjoyed every minute of it. I give it an A++++!! I've not had much time for pleasure reading (yes, this is what I read for pleasure, along with many other things) any way, since I've had to read for class so much, but I think the next book on my list will be The Secret Life of Germs. I'm wary of this one, hoping it's not just another book that tells you to scrub everything and never let a bacterium into your house. Overzealous cleaning is as bad as no cleaning at all. I also have some Tolkien I haven't yet read, and am sorely tempted to wait until after reading one or two of those to start on Germs. Another couple of books I just finished are The Idiot Girls' Action-Adventure Club: True Tales from a Magnificent and Clumsy Life and We Thought You Would Be Prettier: True Tales of the Dorkiest Girl Alive. Both very funny books, although I have to argue that Laurie Notaro cannot be "dorkiest girl alive," as I hold that title at present. ;-) I hope to get my hands on her other books. Yes, I know I'm reading them out of order, but the books are kinda random in themselves, so I don't think it matters too much.

Assuming anyone still even reads this thing, I'm very sorry I haven't been keeping up with your blogs, or mine either, for that matter. I'm just so busy getting into the swing of things with grad school. I can't promise I'll do better, but I hope to at least post more often, and I'll try to catch up to my blog reads now and then.

Now I think I will dub this post "officially longest post ever!!"

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

I'm still here

Sorry, y'all. I haven't dropped off of the earth or anything, so I have no excuse for going so long without a post. I've been doing semi-crafty things and I've been knitting a little. I've been working and reading a lot, watching some movies and spending time with my family and friends, and thinking a lot about sewing but not doing it at all. I didn't even start on the dress in time for my friend's wedding, but I have a couple of days I don't have much planned (today and tomorrow), and I am going to try to finish the dress then. I'm getting ready to start school again on the 20th. I've some cute things to show, but haven't taken any pictures, so once I get on that, I'll post my projects and talk about them. Whee!

Sunday, July 22, 2007

FO: BWOF Wrap Skirt 3-2007

I've had this one done for awhile, but yes, am just now getting around to posting it. It's the wrap skirt from the March 2007 Burda World of Fashion (THE reason I wanted this issue to begin with). As usual, pictures here, details on the PR review. The lilac skirt isn't quite finished. It still needs a zipper. And I don't have any tops that I like with either skirt, so I will have to find or make something that will look nice. I've worn the turquoise skirt a couple of times with the top in the pictures and it goes ok, but I'm not satisfied, though I did get compliments (oh joy! hehe).

The usual disclaimer about the more awful than usual photos. These pictures couldn't have turned out worse if I'd purposely tried to make myself look ugly and overweight in them. And I'm not a junkie; the band-aid is from the blood test I'd had that day (everything turned out fine).

Now, on to other things. I haven't been totally lazy. I've been decoupaging boxes with Mod-podge, scrapbook paper, and ribbon. I did a scrapbook paper box (which turned out to barely hold the 12" scrapbook paper pages I like, since it's apparently exactly 12" itself, what were they thinking? the paper gets stuck) and a card organizer. I LOVE how they turned out, and will post about them soon, when I find my mysteriously missing digital camera (where's Nancy Drew when ya need her)?

Speaking of Nancy Drew, I saw the movie and loved it. Go see it just for the great clothes! Also, the movie itself was cute and I loved how Nancy didn't change to fit in - an important message, I think. Especially if you've got it all together as she does! ;-) One of the dresses I fell absolutely in love with (ok, I fell in love with all of them, but one of them I really want to make), so I've been on a pattern hunt. Here are a couple of pics of it (the best I could find, though I couldn't find any of the bottom). It appears to be A-line with princess seams, a square-ish neckline, and an empire waist. Pattern suggestions, anyone?

I also saw Transformers, and, while it offered no fashion inspiration, it was a great movie (then again, I'm a Transformers fan, so I could be biased).

Sorry I haven't updated more recently. There just hasn't been that much to post about. I've been reading C. S. Lewis, Anne McCaffery, and Wicked, and I have a huge reading list to finish. I've got plenty of great fabrics to work on, but not lots of time to work. Especially since I've been trying to get lots of reading in, working, and still trying to get some knitting accomplished, too. But a friend I've known since elementary is getting married in early August, and I want to have the Vogue 8386 dress done in time to wear to the wedding (if I like it and decide it's appropriate when complete). I've got to get past some major fear that, for some reason, this dress isn't going to turn out well for me. I am not sure why I feel so certain there's going to be a problem, but yeah. I've read all the PR reviews on the dress, and I think all of them recommend the dress, but I'm still getting warning signs. Regardless, I'm cutting out for a muslin today. I gotta get started on the thing if I'm going to have it done in time for the wedding.

On the knitting front, I stopped working on Rapunzel. For now. I think it's coming out way too large, and it seems the only way to fix it is going to be redoing it. Fortunately, I was still on the back, but I was nearly finished with it. All that SEED STITCH, too, ugh! And it's not going to be a matter of changing needles or yarns, because my gauge was spot on. No, I'll have to figure out how to size the pattern down, I guess. Argh! So I'm working on Josephine from IK, instead. Some yarn has gone missing for a Chez Plum project I intended to start instead, so I had no choice. I can't figure out where it went! Maybe it's with the camera. And I don't have much yarn here to choose from. :-( But I am loving Josie, in a lovely lilac Microspun (yes I know it will probably pill and won't block). It's soft and really pretty, and since the lace pattern is simple, it will be ok.

Monday, July 02, 2007

An interruption

As you may know, I try to keep my personal life and my personal views/beliefs separate from my crafting blog. But this is one of those topics that are so very important that I am even posting it here, and I certainly hope no one will take offense (you never know what is going to offend people these days).

In the July issue of National Geographic, there was an excellent article on malaria. It's posted online here, and I think everyone should read it. It is so, so very important for us to find a vaccine, and to continue funding research for treatments of the disease, as well as to donate money towards helping the victims.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

FO: Butterick 5046 (Garnethill knockoff)

Butterick 5046 is finished! I like it. I think it came out pretty well, and looks very like the inspiration dress.

As usual, I will talk briefly about my experience making this dress, but save most of the details for the PR review.

This dress is rated "very easy" or some such wording. It is very easy, but, in the words of Burda, "more time consuming." This dress took me a lot longer than it should have, probably, and it wasn't all due to procrastination! The interfacing stuff took forever. Then with all the smocking I added (which I didn't know how to do to begin with), it took forever. Or at least felt like it.

I think the style of this dress is very cute. I remember seeing this pattern when it first came out and thinking it was adorable. Seeing the similar Garnethill dress sealed the deal. I loved it, but could I wear it? I hope I can pull it off well. It's not the type of dress or a color I would normally wear (oh wait... I don't normally wear dresses), but change is good, right? As I wrote on the review, I think the long version of this dress would be in danger of looking matronly, and I hated the thing before I added the sleeves - it looked very unbalanced. This probably wouldn't be a problem for a different figure type, but for mine it was bad. It made me look like I had huge hips and boobs, and no shoulders at all - and I don't think I have narrow shoulders. At least, I think I look like a linebacker in puffy sleeves. My dress hits a little above, almost right at, my knees. I don't have access to a full length mirror right now, so that is subject to change if I end up thinking it looks bad once I can see my legs.

Anyway, here are the pics! I took them with the self timer, and they aren't very good, but they are the best ones I got out of the short photo session I did.

Hopefully this one shows the smocking a little.

Oh, and in one of the pictures on the Garnethill website, the model wearing the pink version of this dress is wearing a green cami underneath. How cute! I am thinking of trying a very pale pink cami under my dress instead of the white.

And finally, the inspiration dress is priced at $98. My cost, including fabric, notions, and pattern at regular price (well, the "40% off" price, ~ $10), was around $25. Yay!

Thursday, June 21, 2007

FO (?): Simplicity 4076: Wrap Top

So I finished this about a week ago, but have been hesitating on calling it "finished" because it's a little too tight. I mean, it's pretty tight, and I like to wear my clothes fitted, but I think this one might be too much, if ya know what I mean. I've decided to wear it a couple of times and see what I think. I left big seam allowances, so I can make it looser if I'd like. I love the fabric, and it was only $1.99. I love this pattern - it's so easy, and the results are great! Link to the review at PR is here.

As usual, the quality of these pictures is poor. I had to take them in the mirror with no flash, so I apologize for the blurriness!

Also, I've been meaning to post these for a bit, but had been too lazy to upload pictures from my camera until tonight. I didn't use a mirror for these but had to turn off the flash, and I haven't figured out how to get a clear picture of small objects yet, so I apologize for the quality of these pics as well! These are earrings I received from Susan of Sulu-design! The black ones I had ordered for graduation, but they never arrived, so she kindly sent me another pair and two extra pairs, all of which I LOVE. The pink and black are just perfect to match the fabric I got to make the Vogue dress for. I really appreciate the great service and beautiful earrings, thank you so much, Susan! I didn't get to wear the graduation earrings for graduation, but I've gotten a lot of wear out of them since then!

She's got some more great designs in her Etsy shop. I particularly like these three pairs.

Saturday, June 16, 2007

I got nothin'

Yeah, so I haven't even the linen yet for the Butterick dress. But I hope to get to it today, and then I hope to work on it a little next week. It's rated as easy, so hopefully it won't take me TOO long to get it finished.

I've knit maybe 3 rows on Rapunzel. Whoop-dee-doo. I'm really sorry to be updating without ANY interesting progress to discuss! It's not completely out of laziness; I have been working, too.

And I'm SO SAD! I missed out on this amazing fabric. I didn't find the link until it was sold out, and now I wish I hadn't seen it at all! WAAAH! Ha. It's the same stuff that is in the new Burda, and I'd admired it then. Maybe it will magically pop up again somewhere... if it does, please let me know! :-)

I want to get Fitted Knits. I'm dying to make the drop stitch lace tank. Gorgeous! And maybe airy enough to wear it in the summer, if I do the drop stitch pattern on front and back.

Monday, June 11, 2007

Vote or die! ;-)

No, this isn't a political rant. I shall always try to keep those to a minimum, since that's not what this blog is intended for. Actually, this "issue" is rather on topic. Garnstudio's Drops Designs is having a vote for the new patterns they will release. I thought those of you who didn't know about this already might want to get your vote in. My personal favorite is the red cropped cardigan near the bottom of the page, z-284_278. It's SO Delphine-esque and I MUST HAVE IT! It even has that cable I particularly adore. So if you vote, please include that one in your vote!

Also, the new Knitty is out, and I just love Marnie's Chapeau Marnier hat. Now I must get my hands on a skein of Lorna's Laces sock weight in periwinkle, asap! This is one of the cutest hats I've seen, and my favorite thing in this issue. Gorgeous!

Also, check out this vintage dress pattern. The number looks to be M4425, and it's apparently from the 50s. I am on the hunt now. I want to find this pattern, or something very similar! :-D

Isn't this jacket from Burda June fabulous?

Sunday, June 10, 2007

New project: Butterick 5046

Rapunzel is going well, but right now I am S-L-O-W-L-Y wading through an ocean of seed stitch, so I really don't have anything interesting to report! I'm so sorry, y'all. I only brought 2 projects, and need to get yarn for the third (a test knit), but haven't been able to yet. So yet AGAIN, I've nothing interesting to say about my knitting on my KNITTING blog. Argh! I can say that I'm a little worried - the back of Rapunzel is looking kinda large. :-(

So, remember the Garnethill dress I posted about last time? Well, check out Butterick 5046. Very similar, no? A few details are different - the obvious length and lack of cap sleeves, and the Butterick pattern doesn't have gathering on the shoulders or a bias strip on the edges, but aside from that, it's the same dress. So I got this pattern and some beautiful linen... it's between a deep turquoise and a deep jade. Sometimes I see the green more and sometimes the blue stands out more. I really love the color! So, I'm cutting this one out next. I need a break from working with knits! I really like them, and they are easy to sew... but annoying as all get out to cut. Well, better than chiffon. But more annoying than a woven, because if you're not careful, you'll stretch the fabric and cut your piece too small. I "finished" the wrap version of S4076, but I feel it's kinda tight so I think I'm going to need to loosen it up (fortunately I left enough hem allowance to do so).

I'm going to shorten it to the length of the Garnethill dress, or maybe even right above the knee - I'm short and it seems that's the best length for me. In the tissue fitting, the shoulders were too wide by quite a bit... can I just use that extra space for a gather, or will it not work because there's no curve? I'm also wondering how to add the cap sleeves. I really can't afford to buy more patterns to add shoulder gathering and cap sleeves from them right now, but I definitely don't know how to draft my own! Any hints? There is a sleeve in the pattern, but it's definitely not a cap sleeve.

I also picked up, at Hancock's, the pattern I never received from eBay, Vogue 8386! I filed a non-receipt claim with Paypal, so hopefully I can get the money back on that. But yeah, so I will be using the pink/black/white flowers for this dress! I'm pretty nervous about this one because I don't want to ruin that wonderful fabric, so I'm going to wait until after the linen dress and the "Stacy Shirt" (made of the same gorgeous chain link fabric she used!) to give the dress a try.

Finally, another pattern I'd been coveting since it came out, and got awhile back at a sale, was Simplicity 3797. I'm enamored of the dress view! I had some cotton that might work, but I'd originally planned it for other projects. What do y'all think? Should I use this for the dress or for the projects for which it was planned (a blouse and a skirt, not to be worn together)? I've also thought of making this dress in pink, just as shown. This, by the way, is the reason I chose the teal/jade linen for the GH dress instead of going for pink - I figure that although I can't see how, it probably IS possible to own too many pink dresses.

And, I finished another book, The Hot Zone by Richard Preston. It's non-fiction, but presents itself very much like a fictional novel. It was very good! I am extremely interested in viruses, so I expected to like it, but I think someone who isn't necessarily interested in microbiology would enjoy it as well... especially if you like thrillers, or Michael Crichton (though, of course, his sci-fi IS fictional!).

I started The Last Unicorn by Peter S. Beagle. I own this dvd, and have always wanted to read the book. So far, it is, of course, better than the dvd. :-)

As an aside, I am not in any way affiliated with Amazon. It's just the first site I could think of where I knew I'd be able to find these books. Buy them from anywhere you like, or borrow them from the library. :-)

Edited to add: Stacy, I am all about a Vogue dress sew along, but you may not want to wait for me to get to mine - it may be a week or two. I want this dress to turn out as RTW looking as I can get it (well, expensive, well-made RTW looking... not cheap, badly made RTW!). That's a general goal for every project, but this one in particular! So I want to get a couple of other projects done, because I'm using a different sewing machine and learning how to work it. It is quite different from mine and, while nicer, is harder for me to control the speed (a big thing for me, since I still have to go more slowly to keep a straightish seam).

Atajev, thanks for the advice about using a cap sleeve from another pattern. I DO have one pattern here (aside from the knit tops I just made) that has cap sleeves, but it is Simplicity. I'll cut it out and see if they match.

Also, I forgot to mention this. Yesterday we went fishing and I caught an eel. That was neat, but I didn't think to bring a camera on this little adventure, so I don't have a picture. I now have a pretty good list going of weird things I've caught when fishing: 2 stingrays, a shark, a sheepshead (and if you don't think that's weird, check out its crazy teeth!), and now an eel (link is not to my photo, but it looked like that except it was green and fatter, with a pointy nose). Wonder what strange creature will hop on my line next!

Sunday, June 03, 2007

Oh no!

Evidently, I will not be getting my Vogue 8386 dress pattern from eBay. It looks more and more like I've been screwed over on that one. This is my first transaction in which I paid but didn't get my item. I've emailed the seller several times (at least 3) without receiving a reply, and the seller has 7 bad feedback comments within the past couple of weeks. I am VERY disappointed... I guess I'm going to have to file a report with eBay and Paypal to get my money back, and I wanted this pattern so badly! I really wanted to work on this dress soon. ARGH! And it figures the Vogue sale would pass, and there is no where around here that sells patterns... there is a store about 40 min away, I think (I don't know the area too well yet), but it will do me no good if I can't get over there during a sale... and I'll probably be working that weekend. And I also feel bad, because what if something bad happened to this person, and that's why they haven't sent the things out, and here I am whining about a sewing pattern! :-(

In good news, I actually worked on Rapunzel some last night and got to the armhole shaping. It feels good to be knitting again after my hiatius.

Thank you all for the great comments on my recent projects! I am going to be doing some more knitting and some sewing, so I will have more to update about... but not the dress! So disappointing.

Speaking of dresses, there was a Garnethill catalog in the mail, and I fell in love with this dress. I really want to copy it, anyone have pattern suggestions? It's linen.

Also, I have a book recommendation for you! I am calling it a recommendation rather than a review, as I am neither a writer nor a critic, just an avid reader. I just finished The Life of Pi by Yann Martel. I loved it! It is about a boy who ends up stranded on a lifeboat with a tiger and three other animals. It is charming and a well thought out story. It is not "action-packed;" it is more of a thinking type of book, yet there is still some exciting action in it, certainly enough to make you fear for the main character's life many times, and it is a very original story. Pi is such a real character, too... so well developed. I highly recommend it! :-)

Thursday, May 31, 2007

Sewing FO: Simplicity 4076

You may wonder why I am making two separate posts in a row instead of just putting all of my fos together in one big post. I thought it would be easier to keep up with if I do a separate entry per fo instead of just lumping them all together as I've been doing.

Anyway, I also made Simplicity 4076 just a couple of days ago. What a great pattern this was! So easy, and I am really happy with the two tops I got out of it. That's right, two! The muslin actually turned out wearable, and that never happens for me! I think this top looks very RTW, even with my less-than-stellar finishing. I was very careful with the finishing, as I've finally grasped the "it's your hobby, what's your hurry" frame of mind, but still I am not great at it yet, so although it's improved, it's by no means perfect. But I've worn one of the tops already, and I am extremely pleased!

Here's the link to the review on PR.

Sewing FO: Simplicity 4118

I finally had an opportunity to post some pictures of my recent sewing fos. I finished Simplicity 4118, on which I've been working for quite a while.

The fabric used is a cotton Amy Butler print. I love this fabric SO MUCH! I don't know how I feel about it for this dress, though... but I hope to get more and make a fabulous bag! I had to do ALOT of work to get this dress to even look ok on me, but I still don't know if I will be getting much wear out of it. Anyway, here's the dress.

Here is the link to my review of the pattern on PR if you'd like to read more about it!

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

I Won!

I can't believe I forgot to mention that I won one of Bonnie Marie's contests! I get free yarn! And a free pattern, too! Yaaaay! And it's one I've never tried (always exciting), and in a color I love!

Tomorrow or the next day I am going to post some pattern reviews on PR and some pictures and details here, too. I am SO EXCITED about one of the things I just finished!

Marji commented on the post with the dress election, saying "I'm thinking the first pattern you put up. I love wrap dresses, but I'm really thinking that the Vogue dress is going to be v wearable as a day dress too in that fabric, and probably a little more flattering on you. I'm cutting that one out in a large print and in a white cotton in the next day or two, so you can see what they look like if you want to wait."

Thanks, everyone, for your opinions on the matter! The first pattern was the one I was leaning toward initially, but I haven't gotten mine yet! I've been waiting a couple of weeks for it. So, then for a couple of days, I thought I'd go ahead and make the wrap dress instead of waiting for the pattern, but last night I started reconsidering because I do have plenty of other projects to keep me busy while I wait for the pattern. But really, I think the first dress in this fabric would be so fun, and with a cami underneath and a cute pair of flats, I thought it would be great for daytime wear, too. Also, I can't always picture how well something will look in a particular fabric, but this I can, and I really think it's going to be great! And I think Marji definitely has a point about the first one being more flattering on me since I've yet to find a wrap dress I love in RTW, but have tried on dresses similar to the Vogue pattern and liked them except for their having no room for my bust (a problem I can fix). So I think I'm going with #1 after all! But I will make a wrap dress... I'm sure there are lots of other great fabrics out there to be found! In fact, I can think of a couple offhand. Then again, I can always find more wonderful fabrics and yarn than I have money for! I think it's a gift... or a curse?

Expect to hear a little about Rapunzel or the Butterfly dress soon!

Monday, May 28, 2007

Decisions, decisions

I've actually finished sewing 3 items in my queue, and I am very happy with one, pretty happy with one, and undecided about the third. I'll post pictures and info later.

Moving on to my next project, I want to use the embroidered cotton voile next. I just cannot decide on a pattern for it! I'm going to list some options, and I'd love opinions on them.

I have been thinking of a blouse because I'd get the most wear out of one. I have enough for a skirt, but I've just made one and have fabric and patterns for 2 or 3 more. And I don't wear skirts that often. I may have enough for a dress, but I don't wear dresses often either (although if I had any I just loved I would probably wear them more!). I love dresses in themselves, and the idea of dresses, but have a hard time finding ones I'm happy with.

So, here are some patterns I'm considering. Let's have yet another vote, please! Y'all always have such great suggestions, and often bring up points I hadn't considered! :-D

These are in no particular order of preference.

1. The blouse from Simplicity 4047. Likes: Very unique, retro, shaped nicely, love the style, several good reviews on PR. Dislikes: May not be flattering to someone more busty (like myself), looks a bit complicated to make up, is my fabric too busy for the pattern?

2. New Look 6356. Likes: Simple, so won't detract from the pattern, Vneck is usually flattering on me, rated easy. Dislikes: No reviews on PR, no actual picture of this made up, it seems to have a lot of ease. Also kinda boring.

3. Burda WOF 05/07 # 111. Likes: Unique, love the drawstrings, really love the style. Dislikes: no review, has a collar (which might give me trouble), Burda's instructions suck, has long sleeves (but that may not be hard to fix), have to trace the pattern.

4. From the same issue of Burda as above, #116. Likes: Love button-downs!!, simple but flattering style. Dislikes: again, the things I am not crazy about with Burda in general - that of having to trace patterns and that Burda's instructions could be better. Also, no review and I don't know about the blouse with this particular fabric.

5. From BWOF 03/07, dress 109. Likes: Love the flounce, the shirtdressy-ness of it, and the puffed sleeves. Dislikes: I have yet to find a shirtdress that looks good on me, and usually am not too crazy about puffed sleeves on me either. Also, it's a dress.
But I still think that this would look so cute in the fabric!

6. From BWOF 05/06, this aforementioned blouse. Likes: I think this blouse is totally cute, and I think the fabric would work well for it. Dislikes: the bottom of the blouse is pretty loose, I think.

7. This dress, M5374. Likes: really like the shape and style of this. Dislikes: not sure if the fabric is heavy enough for it.

OR... I could just save it for this blouse from the June 2007 BWOF. I love this top and plan to buy this issue, but that would mean waiting! :-(

I'm hoping by tomorrow to have decided on a pattern. I decided to wait about the dress from the black, pink, and white fabric until probably next week or so... I've been working with some knit fabric, and I want to get good and used to it before I cut into that lovely stuff! But, I'm almost sure I will be making the wrap dress and waiting on the party dress, mainly due to the fact that the wrap dress pattern is here now, and I'm still waiting on the party dress pattern to come in the mail, and if it doesn't come in the next 2 days, I won't be here to get it. I still love the idea of the party dress in this fabric, so if I don't get around to the dress before I come back here, then I might reconsider.

Also, I finally got Simplicity 3797! I have really wanted this pattern, so was glad to get it on sale! I just love the dress and can't wait to find a great fabric for it. :-D

Friday, May 25, 2007

Graduate! :-D

Well, I'd hoped to have more to post about (some FO or something), but I didn't want to wait too long to post, and I am having no luck with the wips right now!

I graduated from La Tech Uni with a bachelor's in Biology on May 19, yay!

I'll have to post a picture of me in the dress later, but they are all on a disk and I'm too lazy to put them on the computer right now!

I haven't picked up a knitting needle in about 2 weeks. I have been TRYING to sew, but I seriously suck. I don't know if I just haven't done it enough or what, but even going as slowly as I can, I still can't get seams anywhere NEAR straight, which is a very bad thing when you're trying to make this skirt. Then also, the thread I used didn't have enough contrast, and the only other threads I had that would have worked colorwise aren't heavy enough, so now I have to buy a new thread. So I put it aside. And I just don't know how it's going to look on me when it's done (assuming it GETS done). ARGH!

Then I started on a muslin for this top, and that was a hellish experience. Even after asking at PR about working with chiffon, it was ridiculously difficult to cut and my pieces didn't end up the right sizes or anything. I'm very scared of cutting my good fabric now... it wasn't terribly expensive but it's so pretty and I don't want to ruin it!

Then I learned that my zig-zag foot (I think... the all purpose foot is how I think of it) is GONE. What a disaster!! I'd planned on making a few knit tops and a knit dress, which I cannot do without a zig-zag foot! So now that is delayed until I can get to the sewing machine repair shop to purchase the part.

I do have some linen to use for a skirt, but after the way things have been going, I just don't know. Sometimes I don't think I'll ever get the hang of sewing and have a finished garment that I like well enough to wear IN the house, much less out of it!

I did find a GORGEOUS red knit at Walmart for $1 yd. It's going to be my "muslin" fabric, but dare I hope it comes out wearable? As inexpensive as it was, I'll be a little disappointed if it all goes to waste. And I found some other fabric, white, on the dollar table, but I'm not sure what it was... perhaps someone can give me some suggestions? I think it was peachskin because there was some black which was not on the dollar table that seemed pretty similar, marked as peachskin. Anyway, one side of it feels kinda sueded (I have a scrap of sueded rayon and it feels similar to that, except the rayon feels a little nicer and the other stuff isn't stretchy). It's really soft, and the other side of it feels and looks like the wrong side of a satin fabric. It has no stretch, too. I don't know if it is poly... the bolt was just marked unknown content. But it is really nice, although I have no idea what it's good for. I just got some of it because I liked it so much! I also got some embroidered cotton voile from Gorgeous Things (and boy is that a perfect name!). I don't know what to use it for. There are a couple of tops I was considering from BWOF, such as this one, but I might have just enough for a dress, or a skirt, what do you think I should do with it?

But really, sewing is going so poorly for me. I don't know how much more time and money I can afford to waste making things that never turn out, but it's not much. With knitting, at least you can reuse the yarn if it doesn't work, but with sewing, what's done is done. I don't want to give up, especially since I've wanted to sew my whole life, but it is expensive and especially so when nothing works.

In knitting news, I signed up to be a test knitter for Ysolda's Snow White pattern, but I don't think I was selected (I haven't gotten an email or anything). I figured I wouldn't, because she'd sent the email out that morning and I didn't check till the evening, and there seem to be a lot of knitters who knit my size (34"), so I figured that spot would be gone. Oh well. I really love the design, though. It's so elegant!

Also, I got a Ravelry account. If you aren't on the waiting list yet, sign up! I had to wait at least a couple of weeks for my invite, but it was SO WORTH IT. This site has everything a knitter could need! And it's only in Beta. I can only imagine how powerful a tool it will be when it's released to the public. I'm organizing my projects and my stash, finding new patterns and knitters with similar knitting interests as mine, there are discussion forums, links to awesome new knit sites (at least ones I haven't run across yet), and the list goes on. I really love it, and I'd read some skeptics who said that sites like this never last because people quit using them, but I have to disagree! Look at Pattern Review! I can easily see Ravelry becoming the knitting equivalent of PR. I just hope it stays free!

Anyway, I am going to get back to Rapunzel and the Butterfly dress and everything else soon. I just NEED to get some sewing done, I need to complete something that doesn't suck and look homemade in that really, really bad way, both for practical purposes (I need summer clothes!), for self-esteem purposes (you CAN do this, Crystal!), and so I'll know I haven't wasted a lot of time and money on fabric and patterns. :-)

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Opinions needed

I've been packing, so I have not knit or sewn a stitch. But I've been THINKING about knitting and sewing a lot!

I got some of this fabric and want to use it for one of two dresses, but I can't decide which.

Dress 1 is more of a party dress, but I think (?) it could be causal, too. Which is needed, because I don't attend many parties. I think it would look great in this fabric.

Dress 2 is a wrap dress, aka the wear anywhere dress, and I think it would be gorgeous in this fabric, too.

But I want to use the fabric for whichever style the print will go better with. What do y'all think? I am pretty bad at imagining how things are going to look, so I'd love some opinions/advice!

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Project planning

Whoops, I forgot earlier to post something I've been meaning to link to for days. I put a new set of photos up on flickr. These are pictures of fabrics I have already, with the patterns I am planning/considering using them on. I'd love to hear what you think of my choices!

For the fabrics that are posted twice, I have to choose which project to use it for. The only exception is the pink plaid, of which I have 2 cuts... it should be enough for me to do both projects.

I'll be adding to this as I get new fabrics for new projects... but that probably won't be soon. I need to get some of these out of the way!

Graduation Earrings!

Here are my special order earrings, designed by Susan of Sulu-designs. Aren't they gorgeous and just perfect for the dress?!

She ships for free, too, just in case you wander over there and see something you must have! ;-)

Edited to add: Photo taken by her, not me. She is a fantastic photographer, I'm not! haha.

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Graduation Dress

You know how you see a dress you just LOVE on the hanger, and then you try it on and are disappointed?

That didn't happen with this dress!!

I didn't make my graduation dress, but I love it so much I wanted to show it off anyway! It is from Ann Taylor Loft.

Isn't it lovely?!

Decisions, decisions... which shoes to wear?

A close-up of the shoes in the running.

Which necklace to wear? I'm leaning toward the black, but I just don't know for sure. It's a choker style and I usually like necklaces to be a little longer than that. I really need to find the one I'd planned to wear... but it has unfortunately disappeared for the time being. Hopefully I'll find it by the 19th!

Monday, May 07, 2007

Fused Glass

Remember the class I took last summer in fusing glass? I didn't think so. Haha. Anyway, it was such fun, and I've wanted to do it again since. I finally got my hands on a microwave kiln (sooo neat!), so now I can make more jewelry! But, I know I need other things for fused glass jewelry making... the things I am aware of needing are: glass cutters and pliers, a drill with a teeny-tiny bit, and a grinder. And, of course, the glass. Anything else I need? Anyone know how much this stuff is going to cost me? I know the drill and the grinder are going to be expensive, and I have no idea when I'll be able to get one unless you know of a great deal somewhere! :-)

By the way, if you're interested in one of these microwave kilns, I found them here.

I'm almost to the sleeve shaping on Rapunzel. A very long car trip will do that for ya.

Finals and graduation soon. Yikes! I'll probably be scarce for awhile.

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

No time for creativity

I'm swamped. I have less than 2 weeks left in the quarter and lots left to do. So I haven't been knitting or sewing at all. I did a few rows on Rapunzel that will have to be ripped because I messed up the moss stitch pattern.

But I am going to have a break, and during that time I HOPE to get lots of sewing done. I am going to focus on sewing because I have hardly any summer clothes. I have a hard time finding things I like in RTW, and I hate the quality of the clothes I can afford. I went to a store in our mall called Rave, and caught a good sale - everything in the store was 40% off! I even found 5 or 6 tops I loved on me! So I got them... only to discover the most expensive one (a knit top that was my favorite purchase) was literally falling apart at the seams. I had it exchanged, and the new one is better, but I'm still going to reinforce the seams just in case. So, after that, I am even more disgusted at how much money you have to spend to buy clothing that doesn't fall apart! Not to mention the whole sweatshop thing. It's one of the reasons I've always wanted to sew.

Anyway, so I found some really great deals on fabric recently, and got some with the hopes of sewing on my break. Unfortunately, I just can't afford to do a SWAP right now (timewise or moneywise), but I have picked out some fabrics (that I just LOVE) that will go well with things I have already, along with a couple that will add some much needed color and variation.

To make my blog less boring, I'll post pics of the fabrics and the patterns I plan to use them with. And also, I'm taking a short study break so I may as well do this.

This is a polyester/lyrca blend. I love the color and the print, and figure that since I'll buy polyester RTW without a second thought, I may as well do the same for fabric. It was really, really inexpensive. I really wish I could find a picture of the pattern I'm planning to use: it's from Burda WOF 8/2006, #104. I can't bring their archive site up right now, so I'll try to post a pic later (wonder what's up with the site?). I'm going to make the top short sleeved instead of long (hopefully that won't be too hard). Edit: Burda is back up, so I was able to get a picture. Here's the top I'll be making with this and the below fabric.

This is a rayon/lyrca blend. I think it's just beautiful! I'll probably use it to make the same top as above, also with short sleeves.

This is a lightweight denim that I'll be using for this Burda WOF denim skirt. LOVE this skirt so much, I just hope it will look great on me! And omg, those shoes... where can I get them? I adore them.

This is SILK chiffon! I love silk so much. Not that I ever wear it, because I am such a klutz, but the fabric was such a great deal that I couldn't pass it up for this chiffon blouse (I will wear a camisole under mine).

This is a pink plaid cotton shirting with 3% lyrca. I already have some of this for a button shirt (haven't decided on a pattern yet), but I got some more to make the modeled view of this skirt. I hardly have any skirts, so I really wanted to make a couple to wear this summer.

I'll probably be making these in order of what looks easiest to hardest. Here's to hoping I can get back into the sewing thing!