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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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Monday, July 28, 2014

Pictures, shorts, sweaters and squirrels

First of thank you for the comments. 

A picture and objective eyes are helpful. I have avoided belts for previously stated reasons but I can see your point. Time to revise the assumptions maybe.

I have a lot of school work to do today (thinking of a how to handle professors post this week in the last of my getting ready for university series) but have some random material to share.

My sons, the varying degrees of hipsters, have discovered weird quilting cotton prints, and with it, their mom the sewer.

I now have four shirts on order  I hope to get started on once the paying job stuff is out of the way.

One guy chose this fabric and wanted some old school drawstring shorts. I can do old school quite well since that is who and what I am. I used this pattern dispensing with the elastic waist and fake tie (I mean really McCalls we are grown-ups here) and made a real drawstring with an elastic piece in the middle for a little bit of spring:

There is a fly zipper in there somewhere and the waistband/casing is continuous at the top if that makes sense. I had a lot of fun sewing this happy fabric.

I also submitted a baby sweater to my daughter, she loved it but she isn't a knitter, even though it is apparent neither am I.

I used a pattern I found on a blog which I realize had a few things I shouldn't have done, like the decreases were knit two togethers in the middle of the sleeves which really showed - although all the other mistakes are entirely my own.

I figure my knitting is at the stage my sewing was when I was about 14.

I am going to need some coaching.

First question is how do you weave in your ends so they don't come poking out later? I would really like to figure this one out.

Finally I have decided to really reduce my extra curricular activities. For example I had a good run with some Burdastyle courses but have bowed out of that, and have a few other things I want to ease out of.

The truth is I need more time for sewing and this means less teaching or writing about sewing.

Except for this blog.

For some reason, and they certainly aren't economic, the blog is more interesting and more fun than some other projects and I want to do more here.

I also want to have time in my life to clear the decks for conversations with people like Miss Scarlett.

Here is a sample from this week:

On all the things little Billy hasn't even experienced yet (obviously a long list, took us a while to compile):

Scarlett: "But it makes me said that there are some things he will never see."

Me (somewhat alarmed by the turn of this conversation) : "Like what?"

 Scarlett: "Like seeing me do cartwheels. I can't do cartwheels."

When washing my hair and pretending to be a hairdresser (this is a favourite thing she does- I like it because I get to hang my head over the bathtub and rest):

Scarlett: "Well Mrs. what kind of hair style would you like? How about a squirrel hair do? I know a lot about squirrels. I saw one once and I have a book on squirrel hair styles at home. (all of this is a fake English accent). I will make it go up and then make it flat. How does that sound?"

And finally the best for last. Miss Daisy had a brief escape earlier in the week and disappeared behind some bushes while I was out. My frantic, and tearful, husband (don't judge a book by its cover, tough guys can be pretty sentimental) called and asked me to rush home and coax her out. He was afraid she would make a break for it.

I was bringing the girls home from swimming lessons in the car and said to them "girls we have an emergency."

Scarlett: "Heidi this is great, you always wanted an emergency." (Heidi is two and agreed with this).


Scarlett: "Babsie should I pray Daisy stays where she is until we get there?"

Me: "Good idea."

Scarlett: "Who is God I forget? Grandma Monica told me."

Me: theological discussion before the light turned.

Scarlett: "Listen God I need you to do something for me. You can do this. You made the first man and the first woman so you can do this for us. This is easier. Tell Daisy to stay in the bushes until Babsie gets there."


Scarlett: "Maybe you better get Norval Brown (my late father) to help you."

A person has to be available for conversations like that.


Janet said...

I love the conversations. Sewing will always be there. But squirrel hairdos and forgetting about who God is….that is another story. Thanks! I am glad the dear puppy was recovered.

Kathie said...

the kids' comments always amaze me. Oh, yes! you MUST be available for those!

Patty said...

tears in my eyes......

Carol in Denver said...

Oh, what treasures you have! Thank you for including us as you savor them.

Anonymous said...

Oh those conversations are precious! Good idea to make yourself available for them. Selfishly, I'm so glad that this blog is one of the things you are going to keep doing!

Anonymous said...

Love it. Miss Scarlet is quite the philosopher.


Constance Ann Morrison said...

Miss Scarlett is a gem! I love the stories and conversations you've shared. And you know we all want photos of a squirrel hair do.

Rose said...

I can't wait to see the squirrel hairdo! The conversations are great!
If you figure out how to weave in your knitting ends so they don't poke out later, please do a blog post. Maybe, I'm in kindergarten with knitting skills.

Anonymous said...

Nice to have one's great grandpa on call for lost dog emergency assistance, too, very wise.

Oh, and I like the colorful dress with the belt, but down here a belt would make a summer dress too hot to stand!


Anonymous said...

Oh, and very hopeful to see you with your squirrel hairdo soon. It sounds wonderful...


Angela said...

Squirrel hairdos cannot wait. These conversations are priceless. I'm glad you are recording them for posterity:)

Barb said...

Just priceless! How do you keep a straight face?

Judi Pinkham said...

Miss Daisy made her "brake for it" when she went to Nova Scotia. She was successful and she's never leaving her forever home!!!

Anonymous said...

One simply could NOT make this stuff up!!!
Profoundly more therapeutic than comedy!
Thanks for sharing!


Anonymous said...

I am so glad you will stick with the blog. I love your thinking, writing and wonderful humor. You always make my day!

Dr. Fun (AKA Sister) said...

Precious and hilarious conversations! My whole blog started as a way to record things my young kids said, then they got older and I started sewing again. Enjoy it while you can!

Sewing Geek said...

You have the best conversations!

Anonymous said...

Little ones... just so gorgeous !

jirons42 said...

I have always wished I had written down some of the wonderful conversations with my kids and grandkids. Your blog post will be a wonderful memory 10 years from now.

Laceflower said...

I'm always flattered to be asked to teach something but I invariably say no because it takes too much time away from actually doing the thing. And I really want to be having fun doing the thing.
The wee ones have a confident, yet oh so skewed view of the world; you must have great facial muscles to keep it straight while conversing with them.
Why was Daisy hiding in the bushes? Belted.

Anonymous said...

Hi - I really enjoy your blog, and your tales of dogs and conversations make it priceless.
Of course, the sewing bits are good too.

Barbara said...

Thanks for sharing the conversations, they are priceless!

I'm glad you're still going to find time to write here, I enjoy your blog, it's a great mix of practical sewing, dogs and children.

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

I think all the joy you missed when your children were young because you're running, running, running trying to keep all the balls in the air - God gives back to you in grandchildren. You're right that conversation couldn't be missed!