Sewing with less stress Front

Sewing with less stress Front
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Sewing with less stress back cover
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About me

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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



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Friday, October 28, 2011

Back in business


The house situation is not much improved yet, and there have been a few events - like the time today when a demolition 2X4 flew across the room and hit me in the leg. Big bruises and sitting on the bed with ice and complaints that only some online fabric shopping would make up for the duress ...etc.

As a result my dear husband put together my sewing room for me which now is the only really organized space in the house and all that really that matters.

And tomorrow I am going AWOL and joining a sewing guild splinter group at a local church basement to sew for the whole day.

Let's talk about that Black Tie Bingo. 

It is a charity event where people get dressed up and are handed daubers and a bunch of people who have never been in a Bingo Hall in their lives laugh nervously and try to figure out their cards. I am going as an invitee at a table bought by the local gaming agency ( think State Lottery Corp. if you are in the US) because I know some folks who now work there. It is actually the only serious table at these events - that's one table where you don't have to explain the odds or the rules of the game to anyone.

Now what to wear. I have more or less given up on whipping together one of those nifty Vogue patterns due to present conditions, so I am reverting to Plan B.

Plan B is my standard wool crepe Little Black Dress, except I refuse to wear it as a standard issue. I can tell you right now that if there are going to be 400 women at this event 398 will be wearing black dresses with pearls, and the other two are new hires in club outfits.

And I have a general rule about dress-up clothes and this is it.

Never spend more sewing time than the event itself.

Two hour cocktail party - two hour unlined dress.

Six hour wedding - six hour rendition of a TNT in fancier fabric.

You get my drift.

Now factor in no time to sew at all.

I figure that what I should do is some kind of poncho thing or a trendy whatever to disguise the same-old-LBD.

This is my pattern, I am ashamed to say I bought a pattern for this as I could have figured it out. If I wasn't out of time and recently under water.

I have bought a sort of chiffon with little sparkly eyelashes on it in dots ( if I wasn't tired I would show you) and tomorrow I will see if works at the sew-in day.

I showed the fabric to Miss Scarlett, who was over here this afternoon, and she looked at it and said " I like your bug material Babs. Are you going to have a beautiful bug face for your party?'

She was under the impression that this was a Hallowe'en costume.

But then again she is only two.

But now I am worried. The girls at the sewing guild splinter group with give it to me straight I know.

If all else fails I can wear it for the Trick or Treaters. We usually have hundreds and hundreds of kids. Our street is a long one on a hill and I swear parents from all over the city bring their children to the bottom of our street, drop them off, and then wait at the top of the hill.

More later, with pictures I hope.

What sort of eye shadow does a beautiful bug wear?

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

My internet has been soggy

I feel bad about not posting, something I really enjoy, but conditions have not been ideal around here.

I told you were were gutting/replacing the kitchen, which turned into tearing out most of the ground floor. Well that involved moving everything downstairs.

And then  downstairs went under water.

Along the way we lost internet too - so I have been a person without a sewing room, without internet, and with all her patterns more or less like an old newspaper someone left out in the rain.

I am not complaining (and to those of you who were nice enough to pm me, I haven't been able to get back to you, but will now try to) and in fact I am OK about all of this. Since I am fairly used to chaos, having caused a lot of it my own self in this life I am sure.

The thing is though that when things get too much I generally regroup by going down to my sewing room to look things over  - and well that option is not available to me now.

Here are the pictures:

Birthday flowers from my daughter- so much appreciated in all the mess

When the water is rising you just throw things to high ground - not an ideal work environment at present.

The emergency drainage hole that was put into my sewing room floor, after the floor was taken out in a huge rush and thrown out the window. Noticed DH posted a comment taking issue with my description that this was just a hole in the floor - apparently it is much more than that. He didn't want my readers to think he breaks concrete floors for any other than strategic reasons.

This used to be my downstairs bathroom floor - the water was shooting up this drain like a geyser. 

Enough about me.

On the sewing front I will be making Miss Scarlett her "beautiful pink dog suit" tomorrow night after work on the kitchen counter. 

She needs a lift. 

She has adjusted to the new baby sister very well if you don't count the only wearing one yellow rubber boot and a diaper to eat dinner, the "DON"T LOOK AT ME" comments and the fact she has developed a lisp from trying to talk with a soother in her mouth "JUST LIKE A BABY" even though she never had one when she actually was a baby.

Oh, to be a mother of a two year old again - not sure if all my stories that my daughter, Miss Scarlett's mother, and her brothers, were far, far worse are all that helpful. Grandmothers think things like the boot and the soother are hilarious particularly if they can go home to their nice orderly quiet home to sew.

That is if they had a nice quiet orderly home with an intact sewing room in it.

One last thing.

I have an invite to a black tie thing next week - and I can see my box of fancy fabric - but I can't get at it. I would have to climb over the dehumidifier and two shop vacs to get it and if I slipped I would fall down  the Useful Hole in the Floor. I have fabric in there that has been waiting years for a chance to play Black Tie Bingo (OK it sounded classier before I told you about the Bingo part).

Maybe next year.

But don't for a minute think I am not sewing up marvelous things in my head.