- I remember, not that long ago
- Saying, well we will see you the end of the summer
- When things are back to normal
- I think we all are pondering life more these days
- The only folks I am losing patience with
- Are those who are pressing on and expect you to too
- What part of a global pandemic aren't you getting?
- But it is good that we are doing what other generations did
- Considered that life is fragile
- And should be lived with some thought
- More than anything I am finding I want to read more
- Of the old philosophers for instance
- Of course so far I am only reading quotes on Pinterest
- But that's a start
- Seneca had things to say I can tell you
- Overall though
- This is what I am thinking myself
- Sickness and death are part of life not some kind of mistake
- Almost everybody before us knew that
- It's part of the deal
- So it's important to
- No matter what you are faced with
- To find what learning you could be doing from it or in it
- This is what I have got so far
- A fabric stockpile is a good thing
- If you are ever going to be holed up for long
- You'll need it
- Canadians get this anyway I think
- We are always braced for The Big Storm
- That's why we have chest freezers
- And figure a furnace, heat pump, pellet stove and generator in the garage should just about do it
- Friends are a good thing
- Possible the most important good thing
- If you ever doubted that this big storm came to remind you
- Never before in my life have I so deeply enjoyed the company of other people
- Been so thrilled by new friendships
- Fascinated by the conversation of people in the neighbourhood
- Daisy and I meet
- A retired policeman who had both hips done
- And grandmothers, like me, running summer day camps
- Dusting off the picture books, filling the wading pools with the hose
- Making vintage lunches for kids who say is it healthy
- Which reminds me of a grievance
- Why does A&W have a grandpa burger, a mama burger
- A papa burger, a teen burger and a baby burger
- But no grandma burger?
- There are pictures of grandma doing the cooking
- But no burger of her own
- 4,000 years of human history summed up right there
- I had to order an uncle burger
- Yes the uncle got one
- An uncle
- Those guys arrive late and leave before the dishes
- Who do I talk to about this?
- Back to friends
- There is something that you let out when you talk to a friend that you are not supposed to be holding in
- If we all lived as if the most important thing in the world was other people
- Pretty much any problem I can think of right now would be solved
- And you know what?
- I am glad Seneca took the time
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- I am a mother, a grandmother, and a teacher. But whatever happens in my life, I keep sewing. I have worked as a political communicator and now as a teacher in my formal life. I have also written extensively on sewing. I have been a frequent contributor and contributing editor of Threads magazine and the Australian magazine Dressmaking with Stitches. My book Sew.. the garment-making book of knowledge was published in May 2018 and is available for pre-order from Amazon
Wednesday, August 12, 2020
Sunday, August 2, 2020
Thursday, July 23, 2020
- This week I finished the manuscript on my next book
- Publishers aren't keen on revealing that you are writing a new book
- Since it will be about a year until it is out for sale
- For six months I have been sewing and writing every day on this project
- This has cut into my blogging time so much
- And I think you should know why
- So I would appreciate it if we kept this info between us
- But we're friends
- And I thought you should know the why
- Writing this one was hard
- I put in all my best ideas
- But thought that there would be more than a few readers who would think
- That's not the proper way to do it, is she nuts
- But you can only write what you have to write
- Nuts or not
- It's what you've got
- It was extremely strange to write a sewing book in the middle of a global pandemic
- The fabric stores were closed so I cut up coats and scrounged for materials
- You'll see
- These are such strange times
- Here in Nova Scotia we remain Covid free
- The premier said stay the blazes home and we did
- We are in our own little world right now, living normally
- With the understanding that if a case comes in we will slam shut again
- When you are small and have a tiny border you can do that
- And when you more or less know or are related to everyone
- You aren't going to let them down
- It isn't that hard
- However I am cut off
- From my son and his family in California
- I never thought I would have a child I couldn't get to
- So just so you know I don't have any patience for those who won't do what they need to do and are prolonging this
- You are part of a community
- We all are
- That is our learning opportunity here
- As we used to say when I taught
- Now I am not sample sewing
- I am going to sew for myself
- Stay tuned on that one
- I have been knitting though
- Learning continental because it is faster
- I think it is important to live richly
- What are we waiting for?
- I have moved the crystal into the ordinary glasses cupboard
- I have been growing herbs and cooking Greek food because it uses herbs
- I have been treading water for whole afternoons and catching small boys barrelling off the water slide
- And landing with a belly flop
- I have realized that I made a mistake with my sewing
- I have been caught up on making the next thing
- And home now
- I am wearing what I have in the closet and appreciating it
- Maybe all the focus on making the new
- Has taken the enjoyment out of appreciating what we already have
- Seems like that is a mistake
- And another learning opportunity
- My husband is one of those older guys who loves apps
- Right now he is renting his tools through something called Good Neighbour
- He is a good neighbour and apparently 4% of all the rental tools in the greater metropolitan area are in my garage
- I did not know that
- I don't go into the garage
- It is the kind of place that you feel if you went in you might not find your way out
- Sort of like the Amazon jungle but with weird devices instead of trees
- Sometimes the kids have me lift the garage door for a look
- They stand outside, quiet
- And say "wow that's a lot of junk"
- And now it seems that there are things in there that other men want
- Mysterious things that are left on the front step when they are done
- My husband realizes that this funny extra income will allow him to buy more tools, off book
- I have fabric he has things that plug in
- Or screw together to help you screw more things together
- He is a super renter
- I didn't know that power washers came in two strengths
- One that cleans the deck and one that removes it
- But that's another story
- We rent both
- So I guess I wanted to tell you where I've been and that I am back
- Strange times or not
- But I am here
- And this is where that place is
- The anthem of my culture is in my head right now
- The right song for these wrong times
- It will be OK
- I promise
Tuesday, June 30, 2020
Saturday, June 27, 2020
I am going to try and catch up some of my sewing projects with you. One of the things I have been doing this last week is to sew for my daughter. She needs something cool for work to wear under her lab coats.
She loved the shorter version of the Jalie 4017 skirt but I was stumped for a nice tank pattern that would hide her bra straps. I finally dug out my older Jalie 3246 maxi dress pattern and it was perfect shortened to a tank. I think that because this pattern has to open up for a bit more ease at the waist and hip, being a dress, it has just the right amount of skim in those areas but still is fitted around the neck and shoulders.
Katrina really liked this combination and if I ever get off the golf course this weekend I will be making her another top and skirt.
This will make it the fifth tank top I made for her this week. I had decided to conquer by coverhem binding process as part of this project. I had even bought a generic type binding attachment (my Juki 1500 doesn't have one from the manufacturer for this machine). However after struggling with that for most of a day I put that little unit where it belonged, in the bottom of the garbage can. I just couldn't get the right degree of stretch with the binding and my hands couldn't get in close enough for control.
I was disappointed with myself, since all of Facebook seems to get these binders to work. Then I remembered that the right way to do anything in sewing is your own way so I set out to figure out what worked for me.
Here is what I decided to do.
I did all my seams and attaching the first pass of binding on my serger. I used just a 3-thread and a long (4) stitch length to attach the strips of binding and shoulders to reduce bulk and switched to 4 threads for the side seams.
I used flat construction and hand tacked the seams to one side at one shoulder and the underarms to finish.
Here was the construction order:
1. Sew one shoulder seam, 3 thread serged.
2. Right side of 1" (2.5cm) binding to the wrong side of the neckline and along the armhole of the shoulder side that had been stitched. I just stretched the binding slightly by feel as I serged.
3. Fold the bindings to the right side and tuck the raw edge under. Pin and coverhem down, using the two left needles and keeping the edge of the binding nestled into the inner edge of the foot.
Here is what the binding looks like from the wrong side:
4. Sew the remaining shoulder seam, 3 thread serger, right up through the binding.
5. Apply the binding in two steps as above along the remaining armhole.
6. Serge the side seams, 4 threads, up through the binding.
7. Switch the coverhem to a wide hem, left and right needles the middle needle removed, and hem.
8. Tack the binding down to one side at the top of each side seam and along one shoulder seam. I threaded the serger tail back under the loopers of the seams before I did this. I was all surprisingly neat. Next one I should post a picture of that.
Not a bad little work outfit and fun to do.