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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, November 9, 2012

The TNTs march on, this time in lace

A while ago I shared with you my discovery of the London Jacket as a nice well-drafted Chanel type jacket without all the heartache.

You know the one I decided was going to be my go-to collarless jacket after having spent about 15 years and $1500 on other patterns.

Well all fired up with this thought, I went looking in my sewing room for something different to try next in this pattern.

I am not generally a saver of remnants. 

Let's face it my chances of ever crazy quilting a scrap quilt out of garment fabrics are slim to none. I am sure those ladies who used to do that weren't online, didn't have paying jobs, and probably were exploiting someone in the kitchen.

Besides if it doesn't have a centre front I am not really interested in sewing it.

That said there are a few left overs from past projects I just can't bear to throw away. 

Sort of like that last few inches in the champagne bottle that turns up when you are doing the dishes. I mean it's champagne, do you pour it down the sink before you toss the bottle into the recycling?


So I have been holding onto most of a yard of sand-washed silk (remember that stuff?) and some weird but really wonderful heavy wool crepe with a sort of beefy bounce to it, not enough to make anything, and a random yard of lace that I bought from Fabricmart because I thought I needed a lace skirt. It was described as having a "felt- like texture" which I understood to mean it was not thin and polyester looking like a bridesmaid's dress and in fact was nice and substantial and suitable for a classy skirt, where in fact it was just felt-like therefore capable of adding inches to my lower half.

Well back to the TNT.

I used the lace for the sleeves and front of the jacket.

I used the wool crepe stuff for the back and to underline the front.

I used the sand-washed silk for facings.

And here it is:

Usual disclaimer.

Photographically this blog isn't exactly Vogue. Or even National Geographic. Maybe in particular not National Geographic.

In fact it would be fair to say that if my very nice husband and I ever have issues it is during one of our photoshoots.

He claims for example that my head is always blurred because I don't stop moving, by which he means talking.

I think it is the lens.

Anyway in the interest of world peace we shot this in the kitchen which he has been laboriously tiling with stainless steel tiles. Which look great but of course call for new stainless steel appliances. Which is something I am not going to be mentioning so close to a photoshoot.

I'm stalling.

The classic range hood shot with an attempt to hide now inappropriate white stove, a tactic that went unnoticed.

Felt-like lace close-up

The sleeve view, felt-like is perfect
I love, love this jacket. The lace is pedestrian enough that I don't have to hold this for New Year's Eve or similar events and it fits.

Also it cost me zero owing to the International Bilateral Agreement on pre-existing fabric which states that if you already have the fabric and pattern then it can be considered free owing to the statute of limitations on Visa records.

I am going to be re-using this pattern a lot.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Flypaper thoughts

  • Where did my week go?
  • Oh now I remember, I spent it with Wolf Blitzer.
  • More or less worn out with the US election.
  • And I was only an observer. 
  • Big reality check for a lot of folks.
  • Generally a good thing.
  • Also dealing with November student melt-down.
  • Pajamas in class and late night emails.
  • "Do I put quotation marks around quotations?"
  • "Do you want research for this research paper?"
  • "I am failing your course but I love it. Do you think I should study?"
  • Sometimes there is too much instant in instant messaging.
  • Trying to find a dress pattern for my mother.
  • 85 and she wants something new to wear when she tutors at the elementary school.
  • Don't quite make patterns for that kind of old lady.
  • She will kill me for the old part.
  • Have two jackets to show you.
  • Maybe tomorrow.
  • On a roll.
  • Off to NYC next week.
  • Have solved problem of how to carry home fabric.
  • Am only going to buy silk or very expensive - that should restrict volume.
  • Making a list of how much I need for my new TNTs
  • Tend to get carried away.
  • Last time bought 5 yards for one Chanel jacket.
  • 60"
  • Linton tweed
  • And I am a real Chanel drop-out.
  • Make me an offer.
  • How did Christmas end up being next month?
  • Am I going to be ready?
  • For what year?
  • Forward.