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I am a mother, a new 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 first book Sew.. the garment-making book of knowledge will be published in May 2018 and is available for pre-order from Amazon


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Sunday, December 16, 2012

Sewing skyscrapers or some of my SWAP top ideas

A few trips ago to see my son in the States I came home from New York and decided I needed to do something to feel close to his day-to-day life.

Logically I ordered in these two pieces of fabric for shirts which have, naturally, city scenes on them. 

This is the kind of nutty stuff you don't let your children know you do.

Maybe somewhere in New York City there is a woman whose kid has moved to the coast walking around in a blouse with sea gulls on it (and people wondering why is that woman wearing that weird shirt - except if she was in New York no one would think anything was at all weird).

I am reminding myself of a woman I know who stalks the webcam aimed at her sons' workplace every morning (they have both moved away to work) to see if she can catch a glimpse of them arriving at work. 

I am glad to say I am not in that place anymore but certainly respect anyone who is. It is a stage, even mothers go through them, but I think so many helicopter parents at school (yes some come along to university) have done a lot to keep me this side of the edge. 

Assuming you broadly define the edge.

Back to fabric.

Here they are, each destined to be one of my tops for the navy half of my SWAP and the black/grey other part of my SWAP:

I completely love both of these prints, which also have a fifties feel that is dear to me since that was the decade in which I was myself launched.

Obviously these are going to require tailored type patterns and I have these picked out, not sure which one for which print:

I have made the bottom one already and am due to try the top pattern too. StyleArc fits me.

I also have this fabric bought in London when the same son was living there. I got it at Liberty in a moment of brain freeze when I actually converted the currency exchange the wrong way, and thought it was half as expensive as it was, where in fact it was twice as expensive, in Canadian dollars, as the price tag, but the way I was working things out I actually spent four times per meter than I realized (thank you Visa statement) if you follow me, although I can't:

I really need to do something with this fabric. It is a cotton lawn and therefore more blouse-like so I will be using my StyleArc Annie pattern which is my TNT blouse:

All of these shirts will be Really Useful (might name my SWAP that) with my basic pants and I think I will enjoy making them simply because I love the fabric.

More tops to follow.


Carolyn (cmarie12) said...

I think Barbara's Really Useful Swap is a great name...you should go with that!

Margy said...

Great fabrics....and totally understandable rationale for choosing them...If I were closer, I'd steal that umbrella print...

badmomgoodmom said...

Please reveal your fabric source for these amazing prints. Do they ship to the US?

In light of what happened in CT, I am rethinking my hands-off parenting attitude and squeezing my little girl to death. (She just turned 12 and hates it when I call her little or girl.)

sheila said...

Looking forward to seeing what you do with that Liberty: Caesar, I think it is called. I have coveted it for years in the blue colourway, even got my hands on it in the Liberty shop in London last month, but baulked at paying £21 per metre which translates horribly into euros.
However, I just know I will cave in eventually and buy it. Just need to find the perfect pattern and will no longer be able to find excuses to resist.

Charlotte said...

Those city scene fabrics are the coolest!

Charlotte said...

Those city scene fabrics are the coolest!