Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Egyptology robe

Got Youngest's robe done last night, and left it for him at his breakfast spot...he likes it!

It's almost the same size as his brother's with some modifications. This one is padded and lined, a slightly different proportion and more challenging to make, all told. I didn't want to cut any of the panels of Egyptian gods, so had to measure up and piece each of the outer garment pieces. Oldest's robe took about 2 hours to make, this one took about 6. It's worth it, though. He loves it.

Here we go, second last day of school...field trip day. I can't wait to release those tadpoles back into the wild!


Tuesday, June 24, 2008


Ah -

so last night I finished Oldest's robe and left it folded at his spot at the breakfast table. The boys slept out in the tree fort last night, so it was among the first things he saw when he came in this morning.

He loves it! It's non-traditional as far as proportions go, and somewhat modified to withstand the type of wear it will get from our young grasshopper.

It is made to his measurements, and to his proportions. The tie and collar measurement are based on the width of his closed hand - don't you just love the Japanese aesthetic?

All the seams are all a modified flat-felled seam, so that they are strong and lay flat. I also like top stitching (have I mentioned that?), so everything is top stitched to hold it all in place - You know, just in case he's attacked by Ninjas. Hey - it could happen, couldn't it?

Now to do Youngest's robe...

Happy stitching,


Monday, June 23, 2008

the Hanten jacket

I've not run across a better book on Japanese clothing than this one :
Make your Own Japanese Clothes by John Marshall . If you're interested in drafting your own kimonos, yakata, japanese style socks or how to tie an obi, this is the book for you. It has information on how to care for Japanese textiles (such as how to properly fold a Kimono), and many, many ideas of how to modify and modernize the clothes.

Oldest would like a hanten-style jacket that we'll modify a little (okay, a lot). Traditionally, hanten jackets are worn over kimono, are padded, worn without belts, and about 3/4 length. They can be worn both formally and by craftsmen with their family or company emblem on the collar and centre back.

Our hanten's intended use is as a robe, will be unlined and worn with a belt. It will longer, too...

We've measured Oldest and the fabric is in the dryer...I can't wait to get into making this. Oldest can't wait either...


A better picture...

I promised...

A better picture of my skirt, taken by my Oldest.

Happy Monday,

some sewing

With the final sales of shop fabric being done and the last of the website removed from the internet, I've finally gotten around to starting some of the projects I've been putting off.

On Friday last week I got going on a wrap A-line skirt, drafted and made following Bitter Betty's tutorial, found here.

I've been in love with these Jane Sassaman prints for some time and thought they'd make a great, summery reversible wrap skirt...

I followed Bethany's drafting instructions, but did a little improvising on the construction. *note* Bethany's instructions are GREAT!

Once the whole thing was turned right side out, lined up well and ironed, I topstitched all my edges (except the waistband). I like my fabrics to stay put, darn it!

I made my waistband a little narrower, and only used two widths of fabric for the waistband/ties which I made all in one piece, not in three as Bethany did. I liked her effect, but didn't have much time so did my usual trick of making it up as I went along...not always time saving, but in this case, the winds were blowing in my favour!

And here I am with my finished skirt. (Sorry about the dark, blurry photo...I'll try to get a better one at some point)

This may well become my favorite summer skirt.

Off to draft a pattern for Oldest's robe...he wants a traditional Japanese Hanten jacket...I can't wait to sink my teeth into this one!



Friday, June 20, 2008

And the mystery man is....


At first he was so excited about it that he took his own marker to school for his friends to sign it...but last night the itching set in. Not a pretty picture, not a happy fella...

We don't know for sure if his wrist is broken or not, but this is one of those preventative things they do. He may have broken a little bone in his wrist - if so, it would not really show as broken until about 10 days from now, by which time it would be a candidate to cause him problems later down the road. They stabilized his wrist for the 10 days, then he'll get the cast removed and things re-X-rayed (is that even a word?) to see if all is well inside there.

In the meantime, we've got a good conversation piece. Between the new puppy and the big cast, we make friends wherever we go and always have lots to talk about.

here's to hoping to get sewing today,


Thursday, June 19, 2008

What on earth?

Who is sporting this lovely piece of plaster this new summer season? Ah, tomorrow it will be revealed....

Mom and Dad - Don't worry too much, all is well!


Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Oh, and if you haven't entered this, you should....

A blog giveaway for some lovely jewelry...

Check here. Are these not beautiful?



the arrival....

We've had a new friend enter our lives.

He's a sweetheart, a Cane Corso Mastiff...and he's only 6 Months old.
Don't let his cute face and young age fool you, though - he's a big boy already, and getting bigger!

As you can see, he is really lovely with our boys (well, he is only a boy himself, still)...

We were lucky enough to have him given to us by friends of ours who are moving to a smaller piece of land. We're moving to a larger one (and had some extra room in our hearts for a new family member) - so it's a perfect fit!
Helping him to settle in to our household is taking some adjusting. We already have another dog and a few cats, so we've been trying to help the animal population get along (oh! I just realized our pets now outnumber us!).

And although he is still a puppy, this is one of his favorite things to do:

preferably nestled up against someone's feet.

He's snoozing now, so I'm going to take advantage of this bit of time to get some work done downstairs, in the 'dog free' zone.

Yours, in puppy bliss,


Monday, June 09, 2008

just to let you know

I'm away camping part of this week with my younger son's school class.

This is the fourth year we've done this - every year it has rained. There's something tremendously charming about 30 wet, happy kids.


Saturday, June 07, 2008

News from last weekend - some lovely quilty content

As many of you know, last week I was at the Abbotford quilt show, Quilts in the Valley at Tradex.

It was my last show with my shop, Threads in Motion, which is now in the final stages of closing down. It was a great weekend! I got to spend a little time with some of my quilt show friends from The Secret Workshop, To be Quilting, and others. I finally got a chance to meet Rhonda of Quilt Nut Creations and Quilted Cats Hideaway - We've been corresponding for well over a year, so it was nice to finally meet in person!

The show was busy and fun. Beautifully hung in a great space! The guild had arranged with both the Mission and Abbotsford museum societies to show vintage textiles and quilting/sewing related artifacts...there were countless sewing machines (both those belonging to members' private collections and the museum societies), many lovely quilts, and other related notions, publications, etc. I could have cheerfully spent the whole weekend at that end of the building combing over that display.

The second morning of the show I had a chance to walk around and have a good look at the quilts before things opened. I was really pleased to find a blue ribbon on the above quilt of Lois Brown's! It is a first prize for best in category, Commercially Quilted. How lovely!

Later in the day they announced the winners for the Canadian Quilter's Association ribbons, and Lois's name came over the loudspeaker again! I was thrilled! We got to have our picture taken together in front of her lovely quilt - and she gave me the blue ribbon.

I really can't express what that means to me.

I've been quilting for quite some time now, and this is the first ribbon given to me from a customer. Thanks so much Lois, you touched my heart.

I wish that I hadn't had to close all those beautiful, perfect appliqué stitches into the quilt...Lois is a master at hand appliqué. If you get a chance to see her work, you should take advantage of it!

Happy weekend,


House finished, yesterday at noon

I am tremendously glad of two things.

1) The house is done.

2) I did not have to paint it.


Tuesday, June 03, 2008

More changes

We're getting our current house painted in hopes that it might be a little more attractive to prospective buyers....

I'll keep you posted.



Monday, June 02, 2008

More privy progress....

Not so private privy....

This could use some walls, wouldn't you say?

View from the inside, as it's going together... (photo by youngest)

In it's final glory.

With a roof. Don't you just love this door?



Photos from last week

I thought I'd share some of our beautiful spring weather....
here's some photos of our apple tree in bloom

Aren't these blossoms just gorgeous?

I had some company as I worked, she followed me from tree to tree, wiggling the branches and making it hard to take photos.

This is her in the crab apple tree.

The crab apple has been amazing. It looked like it was all peppermint frosting or fluffy ice-cream.

And our weather last week was phenomenal.

Wouldn't this be a great colour palette for a quilt?