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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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Friday, April 11, 2014

And here we are

First off, before I say or do anything else, I have to tell you how very much the comments you all left after I lost Rascal helped me. 

It was tough. 

Of course you never really know if you did the right thing or the smart thing - is there anything else I could have done I ask myself -  but he was very sick, and I did know I did the kind thing.

However after you lose someone, yes that includes animals you care about, not feeling alone really helps.

And you helped me.

I am now in Florida for our annual two months of remote working, golf, knitting, sewing, online ordering of things without shipping charges and duty, shopping for the little girls and new baby, beach walking, canning, and husband cooking eating.

I have decided it is time I just cheered up.

I caught sight of my face in the mirror the other day it and seemed to me that I had a sort of grim look on that face.

You have to watch that sort of thing.

I have a theory I thought up all by myself that the expression you have had most often in your life is the one your face freezes at when you get older. Think about it. Old ladies with bitter faces or interested ones, or old men whose faces are stuck at bully or guileless. 

I am not letting mine get stuck on grim. Particularly if part of that is because of a guy who himself was never either introspective or discouraged. 


It is really good to be here in Florida after all of that and having spent the last winter down the deep shaft of another unscheduled Ice Age. 

I hate to be one to talk about the weather, it's pretty ageing in itself, but really this last one was nuts. We had three snow days at school, and my workplace never likes to cancel classes until noon when everyone is in there, and the sort of day after day light grey skies that never changed at all so you finally got to thinking that maybe the sky got frozen stiff like that, like a face,  and couldn't get unstuck and show blue anymore.

The trip down was good, with me getting nostalgic over tiny dusty strips of grass along side the edges of gas stations where Mr. R peed on previous trips, and we had one really nice night staying with my son's girlfriend's parents in Maryland. They have a nice calm house with a nice calm dog and it was one of those visits where it becomes clear to me why their kid has turned out so well.

I am unwinding now from a busy winter term and will be posting about various random projects but before I do that I will finish up my shots and comments on the batch of T shirts I made before I left, for whatever reason I did that.

The pattern was a dolman no brainer now out of print, very much like this current Simplicity:

BTW you remember Simplicity don't you? That would be the pattern company that has put Canada under a trade embargo, probably for sharing Justin Bieber with the rest of the world, and no longer lets us buy patterns here. 

I got my revenge today with a 99 cent sale at Hobby Lobby where they let me buy without checking my passport or anything.

Anyway in working with a similar pattern from the past, as in the bottom of my junky pattern drawers, I made these little numbers, photographed on my dummy as my husband at the time of the photo shoots was trying to get himself flown home from the North Pole to golf in Florida.

Here we go:

like this one a lot because it is made of a heavy interlock and because I had the presence of mind to cut the neckband on the bias. If you think this looks wrinkled like it had just come out of the laundry hamper where it was waiting for a wash, that is because that is exactly where it came from. No airbrushing going on here.

got this fabric at a place that sells knits for kids clothes but I realized that when I made this up and had added some ribbing, because the actual single knit didn't have enough body for the cuffs and neckline, that it actually looks like a kid's top. A PJ top even. When I wear this I am very comfortable and start whining that I want to watch one more show before bed.

he top I messed up the neckline with and did a semi save with a cross over V after the original had been surgically removed with chicken scissors.

What that looks like.

Another childlike knit top. If it looks a bit crooked here that is not because I didn't match the stripes, but because the top half of the dressform fell off the bottom half and I did a lousy job putting her back together again.

And where does a sewer go from here?


Nakisha said...

I love your fabric choices! Wearing those should make you smile!!!

Jacq C said...

I think 'no airbrushing here' is a great motto to live by! Enjoy the sun x

SewRuthie said...

Good tops! Sorry to hear about Mr Rascal. I agree you did the kind thing.

annie said...

Great shirts. They look good on the form but I'd rather see you. Ask OH for one of those remote things for your camera for your birthday if he's going to be gone for months at a time. Or just order it yourself while you are in Fla.

kittiesx3 said...

Glad to see you post again, and I agree with you re the frozen face bit. I'm with you on the mission to ensure mine freezes in an interesting and approachable expression.

Tracey said...

Welcome back to sunny Florida! I know you will enjoy thawing out after your awful winter. As a full-time Florida resident I wish it weren't quite so warm so early in the year but I'll take it over freezing temps any time!

Love your blog, your wardrobe your humor and your outlook on life!

celkalee said...

So glad you made it to the warm and wonderful safely and can use this time to shake of all the miserable Winter scars. Loss is always an opportunity to find our new center. I have had way too much experience in that arena recently but I am getting there, you will too. Have a great two months. Oh, by the way, I so admire your color initiatives! I am still in black!

ElleC said...

The Simplicity embargo could also be in part because of Celine Dion as well as Justin Bieber, and really who could blame them? However, our contribution to late night talk show humor, aka Rob Ford should make up for it.

Nice pattern choice, one to go on the shopping list if I ever cross the border again. I love your new tops.

Mary said...

ah, I can see you are feeling better. Love all the tops, and as always, enjoy your posts.

Carolyn (Diary of a Sewing Fanatic) said...

I can tell you're feeling better by this hilarious post. BTW you should buy as many of those Simplicity patterns that you can find and take them back across the border with you. Maybe even purchase a few for your friends!!!

Laceflower said...

As one who does a lot of shopping online from the states I envy you your Florida stay. Oh yes, also for the weather.

a little sewing said...

It is hard for me to even imagine how winter was in Canada this year. Our Maryland winter was pretty intense. I know what you mean about weather talk! When I was young I swore I would never get so focused on the winter when I was old. Since I actually like winter best, it wasn't too hard for me, and of course, a winter Maryland just isn't in the same league as a Canadian winter, no matter how bad it gets. I was OK with the cold and the snow, but I really felt sorry for everyone around me who was so very miserable. And, I am glad you are hanging in there after losing Mr. R. It will still take more time, I am sure. I still miss my little Archie and it has been at least 6 months. Pets are so special.

Tracy King said...

I love all of these and wish I could raid your closet :)

Jane M said...

Warmth, blue skies and cozy sewing projects are good for an aching heart. I so understand about feeling sentimental about Rascal's "special places." We just came back from FL and it was even a little heart wrenching for me to see places that he had "enjoyed" for more than a dozen years on our travels back and forth. Hope you have a fabulous time.

Gail said...

Really versatile pattern. My personal favourite is the black and white stripes.

Anna Christina said...

What a great pattern. I think we all need to look like a kid now and then. Kids are usually happy and carefree.

Anonymous said...

Glad to see you back.
Love the tops.
Love the fabrics.
Ria H.

Lynn Barnes said...

Do you know the children's picture book, "When the Wind Changed" by Ruth Park? A little boy likes to make faces, and his parents warn him that his face may freeze that way "when the wind changes." And then, it does. Hilarity ensues. It's a real snorter, even if I am a 55-year-old woman with no little children about the place.