Becoming a ‘Bag’ Lady

Mood: Meh
Audio: Oh the sweet sound zooming through a tunnel and flying down the hoghway because we’re more than an hour late to a birthday party
Snack: N/A
Drink: N/A

These are more pouches than they are bags but the term ‘pouch lady’ doesn’t quite sound right. I made them this morning from some quilted pink gingham fabric and some yellow fabric that I hesitate to call lining sporting 8bit fruits and veggies. I don’t want to call it lining because it feels more like those plastic table cloths than apparel lining. But it’s definitely a woven fabric and I used it as a lining so…lining it is then.

I made them in an effort to get my projects in order to keep the different pieces together. I will be making more of these in future mainly because I still have fabric leftover and, to be frank, I have no other need for quilted pink gingham fabric.

Now for the unflattering pictures. (Seriously prepare yourself.)

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And yes, there are pony beads on the ends of the ribbon drawstrings.

All Linked Up

Mood: Chillin’ like a villain
Audio: Birds rejoicing in 70 degree weather
Snack: Chocolate chip cookies
Drink: N/A

Not that you would have noticed but I’ve been spending a whole buttload of time sewing and drafting to relieve work-related stress in the evenings. But lately I’ve gotten the bug to make an accessory. Something bold, dramatic, and somewhat complicated.

Enter the Collared Epaulets of Doom.

The Collar:

I initially draped the pattern using some medium – heavy weight cotton/poly over my mannequin. Her shoulders are about 3/4s of an inch wider than mine (surprise!) so I figured I was safe despite her haute couture hunch. I pinned darts along the sides and centerfront of her neck to make the upper chest area as flat as possible so I could draw the outline.

Pro tip: It’s so much easier to pin the back (overlapping the selvage edges of course) first, the shoulder darts second, and the center front last.

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Turns out I was only half right about being okay with using her. The result was a great jumping off point but her shoulders were two inches too forward and her neck is more square than my own.

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The remedy was fairly simple: cut the front piece in half to create a pivot point to round out the neckline and shift the shoulder points backwards while maintaining the elegant curve from breastbone to shoulder.

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I was so happy with the resulting pattern that I forgot to take a picture until I had scribbled all over the fabric. But you get the idea.

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Much better don’t you think? (All seams aside and drafted out anyway.)

Be on the lookout for Part 2 where I decorate this thang!

I Might Have A Problem

I can’t pass a fabric store, or a store that  just so happens to have a fabric section, without ‘just checking’ their selection of sheer fabrics. I always walk out of there with something. Last night it was two six yard bundles of sheer fabric, a measuring tape (the thing I had gone in to get originally), and two marking pencils. Two days before that six more yards of silky sheer goodness, some cherry pin dot cotton fabric (oh so retro), and a bit of stretch lace.

I blame this upcoming festival season. (But mostly Pinterest. I mean just look up ‘sheer dress’ and let the inspiration overwhelm you.) Now that I’ll be partaking in it this summer, instead of pouting and wishing I could have gone from a nice air conditioned room, I now have to cone up with a plan of attack against the heat.

Plan A: Sheer fabrics

Something that will flutter and let the breeze through to cool me down. And while sheer fabric made of natural fibers would have been ideal, they aren’t super available nor are they budget friendly (My ticket was expensive enough). And who would wear silk canping? I mean, really? So polyester it is. The most I paid per yard for any of the sheers I’ve hoarded lately is $1.50.

The only premade thing I plan on taking with me clothes-wise may be a pair of shorts. Maybe. Everything else will be tops, dresses, and a shawl or two that I plan on featuring here. So to quote the turn of the millenia: watch this space!

P.S. The lack of pictures in this post is frightening so to make up for it here is a picture of a cute longwool sheep that I made friends with during MD Sheep and Wool Festival last year. Ain’t he just adorable?!
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At last

My rhinestone encrusted bra is finished and it only took a year of off and on glue sessions.

The rhinestones are flat backs in 4-5 different sizes that have been hot glued to the bra itself.

The dude calls it my battle bra because of how stiff it is.

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Keep Calm and Faux Curry [A Recipe]

Mood: A tad bored

Audio: The Co-Optional Lounge Episode 6 – Talisman

Drink: Cola

Snack: N/A [But dinner is on the way!]

Hello, and holy unintended hiatus everyone!

Where did I go? It’s not that interesting but if you must know: a full time job. See, didn’t I say it was uninteresting? And what exactly have i been doing in the meantime [besides, you know, not updating my blog regularly]? Well that’s another post for another time. So instead of apologizing for getting picture happy, I’ll apologize instead for no picture whatsoever to accompany the following recipe. I decided to write this up after the dinner was made and then devoured like the genius I am. But, if you’re familiar with curry at all, you’ll know that it’s not the most photogenic dish.

On to the ingredients:

– 1 lb of any meat of your choice cubed [the usual at my house is a pork steak or two cut into bite size pieces with the bones saved for crockpot stock later in the week]

– 1 and 1/2 yellow onions sliced into 1/4″ slices

–  2 medium potatoes cubed

– 1 tbsp of grated ginger [plus the juice]

– 1 tblsp of minced garlic

– 6 young shanghai bok choy pulled apart, washed, and torn in half [or left whole if you want]

– 1 large and sweet tomato de-seeded and torn into bite size pieces

– 1 to 2 tbsp of curry powder [feel free to substitute with your own blend of authentic Indian spices if you have them]

– 1/2  to 1 tbsp of sriracha

– 1/2 tbsp of tomato ketchup

– salt and pepper to taste

– sesame oil [Vegetable oil is also acceptable]

– 1/2 quart of water

– 1/2 to 1 cup of cornstarch or flour [I used a mix of all purpose flour and rice flour last night and it turned out great]

1. In a plastic bowl or on a cookie  tray, coat meat evenly with flour or cornstarch. At the same time, heat enough sesame oil to coat the bottom of a large saucepan. Heat until fragrant.

2. Add the meat, onions, potatoes, garlic, ginger, bok choy, and tomato into the saucepan. Sprinkle on the curry powder evenly as well as  the salt, pepper, srirachia, and ketchup. Let sit for about 2 minutes before adding enough water to barely cover everything. Cover.

3. Stir and let simmer [or boil in my case] until meat is cooked, potatoes are tender, and sauce is thick. Stir occasionally while preparing the rice and any side dishes. [Or if you have a nonstick: lower the heat and stir more frequently]

4. Serve over jasmine rice with  yogurt and freshly sliced cucumbers. Enjoy!

From sloper to skirt

Mood: Pleased
Audio: N / A
Drink: Lukewarm oolong tea [it will get a healthy dose of hot water soon,  don’t worry.]
Snack: N / A

I present to you my new skirt!

[Oh and please ignore the strawberry jam stain. Success made me peckish.]

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The pattern needs to be tweaked a bit to take out the extra bit of space in the front and to make the pleats stand out a bit more. But as it is, it’s the perfect work/errand skirt.

Skirt Sloper (Complete)

Mood: Anxious
Audio: My Curse by Killswitch Engage
Drink: Water
Snack: N / A

Boom! A skirt sloper. As (somewhat) promised. Now I can get on with my plan to make more skirts than is actually necessary.

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[Enjoy my mismatched socks.]

I took a peak into my stash again and found several panels of mesh fabric just like this one:

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I completely forgot what I had planned to do with them and now I’m at a complete loss as to what to use them for. So I’m wondering, dear readers, if you have any ideas.

The Facts:
– There are 6 identical panels

– Each panel is 59″ x 36″

– The fabric is very lightweight and drapes like a dream. It is also sheer.

Mission Accomplished (Sorta)

Mood: In denial that I’m up this late
Audio: N/A [But I  do have SHINee’s song ‘Dream Girl’ stuck in my brain]
Drink: N / A [What I wouldn’t do for some water though.]
Snack: N / A

Well, while I’m putzing around on my phone at damn near 3 in the morning, I figured I would do something semi-constructive.

Yesterday, I said that my goal was to buckle down and get myself somewhat organized. The result?

A pathetic excuse for a project list and this:

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An untested pattern for a v-neck dress with pleats starting at the shoulder. Of course it’s pin inspired and nothing close to what I had in mind for the day. But as I was feeling a bit insecure about pattern drafting from scratch, so modifying a tried and true bodice pattern seemed like the best and most obvious ways to go.

Tomorrow, if I get the chance, I want tackle my-lack-of-a-good-fitted-skirt-pattern problem. A lot of my ideas are riding on this very thing so I should probably suck it up and put my big girl panties on.

But at least I accomplished a thing!
Be proud of me!
[Please?]