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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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Saturday, September 10, 2016

Flypaper thoughts, the I should be doing something else edition

  • Before we go any further read this from Tim Gunn
  • If you read it already this week, isn't he right?
  • And this is another reason why we sew
  • Have almost finished making an imitation suede pantsuit
  • Haven't worn a pantsuit since the last century
  • And that's not just me
  • That Jalie pants pattern is the bomb 
  • Cut one size smaller because the fabric stretches
  • Really enjoying my niece in the basement
  • Smell of garlic cooking at 11:00 p.m.
  • Sound of washing machine at 3:00 a.m.
  • Love having a kid in the house again
  • It's the right background noise
  • Miss Heidi's first week at big school
  • "Get me a book"
  • "See I don't know one word, they didn't teach me to read"
  • Her big sister was asked "How was school?"
  • "I went, I am home."
  • She's learning the ropes
  • I am fermenting pickles in the spare room closet
  • They should have taught me to do this in school
  • The front of my house has been attacked by grape vines
  • Think we are moving way past possibly the jelly possibilities
  • On to vineyard scale
  • How do you think Sewing on the Edge would look on a label?
  • I can see small feet crushing grapes in the bathtub
  • Why is it just when you decide to cut out sugar someone brings home a variety pack of squares?
  • Me who can't be left alone in a house with chocolate chips in the cupboard
  • Is there such a thing as grape squares?
  • What tops go with a pant suit?
  • Where do you wear a pant suit?
  • Nice fabric though
  • New idea for career counselling
  • Decide what clothes you want to wear to work and find a job that matches
  • I can hear the loons flying over my house
  • What are they telling me?
  • Maybe that I should go put in the washing
  • And hem those sleeves on my jacket
  • Read that big trees actually send out favourable vibes to their little trees
  • I had suspected as much
  • I am doing that for my sister in my basement
  • Never underestimate the connections


LWS said...

Tim Gunn is in the mark, and much of what he says the plus-size woman needs also applies to women over fifty (or, in my case, over sixty). I am a size ten, but I also want well cut clothes that skim the body. Revealing cuts and fabrics, pastels, prints, ruffles and other "girly" details are also inappropriate for me. The baggy designs offered by Eileen fisher and other designers seem to be the only alternative and I don't like those either. A sixty-something who wants to look stylish, current and occasionally professional is pretty much up the creek these days,along with her plus size sisters.

Which is why I am back at the sewing machine after a twenty year break.

I don't chime in often, but I am a faithful reader of your blog, which has become a favorite among the twenty or so that I read, I look forward to the combination of humor and solid information (from a seasoned expert and not a kid who has more enthusiasm than knowledge). I am a visual learner, but I liked the podcast too.

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

Tim Gunn is so on point with his article. I've found very little inspiration in the collections and September fashion magazines this year. They don't cater to me and I think I've finally gotten to the point where I don't care. AGAIN another reason why I'm so thrilled that I sew!

Sally King said...

Loved this. Especially the connection part. And the grapes. And the brilliant grandkids. Whole thing!

Laceflower said...

I'm glad to see that someone as respected as Tim is has voiced this area of neglect in fashion and in retail, but I cringe at every reading of the words, "plus size", I find that demeaning and derogatory when it's really the normal size of most of the population. I've always been on the larger size and coped by sewing my own clothes but now the population has surpassed me in size as I've stayed the same, which I find rather funny. Money speaks and attitudes can change as we've seen with smoking and transgender issues in a very short period of time, maybe we can hope to see regular size women's clothing needs being met by fashion entrepreneurs.

BarbaraShowell said...

Love and identify with lots of your flypaper thoughts, as usual. I am, as usual, fashion confused and wondering what a "pantsuit" looks like now. I'll have to go browse. Whatever it is, I'd probably wear a button down or a tshirt with it.

Kay said...

Yes, Tim Gunn is right about 'plus size' fashion, but even he brings his own biases. Not all larger women want to hide their bodies in plain, dark clothing, and shouldn't have to. And yes, I sew so that I can wear clothes that are comfortable without being shapeless or pulling in the wrong, unflattering places.

Fermented pickles! I don't like cucumber pickles (I don't like cucumbers), but I love pickled jalapenos. I started making fermented pickled peppers last summer. I made 12 quarts, which I finished last month. I have 4 quarts of this year's crop in the fridge, with 3 more quarts ready for the fridge in a day or two. Do you know if there is a way to preserve fermented pickles without refrigeration and without killing the fermentation bacteria? They do fill up the refrigerator!

Marianne said...

Haha, usually I agree with you but I'm not sure Tim Gunn is right. I find such a tone of entitlement in those who feel excluded by clothing manufacturers. Maybe because I've been excluded my whole life, not being of a size and shape to fit into RTW. Is it the designer's fault that her clothing doesn't fit me? I don't think so. If she is earning a living designing for petite size 6, who am I to tell her she must also design for me?

I think fit in general has deteriorated, but that is a different issue.

If there are clothing buyers who notice a gap in the market, what a great opportunity for one or more of them to step in to fill that gap! Lots of money to be made for some enterprising soul.

Marianne said...

On a less cranky note, I love the idea of big trees sending out positive vibes to little trees. Beautiful. And nieces in the basement, also wonderful. My niece has a 2 day old baby that I long to hold, but unfortunately she lives 2000 km away. Family is so precious.

Bunny said...

When you mentioned "sewing on the edge" being put on a label I had visions of your silhouette in black on a tiny white satin ribbon. You were teetering at the end of a very straight horizontal line with needle and thread in hand and those hands waving in the air. Had to tell ya.

Bunny said...

Oh, and where do you wear a pant suit? In the White House, of course!

SuzieB said...

I agree with Tim Gunn's opinion that the Ashley Nell Tipton Project Runway final collection was a hot mess. Actually it seemed demeaning to larger-sized women - or any sized women, really. Sort of the "turn women into clowns" approach to fashion.

Don't know about his Lane Bryant advice though. In my experience, their size 14 fit model has huge arms and a very large neck.

Also, I agree with LWS's comments above. Retail clothing's target market seems very young & often smaller sizes go hand-in-hand with younger age consumers. According to the ads I see, I'm a target market only for adult incontinence products and bone-strengthening pharmaceuticals.

Re: the pantsuit - Bunny nailed it above - You should run for public office.