Tuesday, March 29, 2011

A little time, and JJ

 The JJ blouse, that is.

With a little extra time tonight, I got started on a blouse similar to one that's been rolling around in my head for the past year or so.  This pattern is called the JJ blouse, and it is available here.

I've blogged about BurdaStyle before, and about just how dangerous it can be to wander around in their free pattern section!  I'm not exactly sure how I ran across this blouse, but it was probably in a Flickr pool or something.  Regardless of how we found each other, this pattern has been crying out for me to make it for ages now!  I love the unabashed femininity of it.

There was a bit of a lull in my afternoon, so I hunted through my fabric boxes and found 1.5M of this lovely older Jinny Beyer fabric from 'way back when I had the shop.  Most of the fabric I have is in relatively small pieces, as I was a quilter for so long.  Back in those days I never bought terribly much of any one thing unless it was for borders or backgrounds, or backing in a quilt.

I was a little worried that the cotton fabric would have far too much stiffness and the ruffles would be completely unruly, but things seem to be working out just fine.  The fabric has enough body that it's easy to work with, but enough give that the ruffles don't stand straight out like fins or something.

Obviously this is not one of the heavier cottons I used to love for quilting.  In fact, now that I think about it, I can remember kvetching with customers that my beloved Jinny Beyer had gone to a new, lower thread count stock to have her patterns printed on!  Funny, eh?  Tonight I was glad for that lower thread count.

Things have a way of working out, I guess.

Now my head is a-buzz with ideas for variations on this pattern...maybe pleats instead of ruffles, maybe different fabrics for all of the different pieces (that would certainly be more useful for using up some of the stash...), a redrafted bodice, some sewn in elastic to nip in the waist a little more.....

Or maybe I should just concentrate on finishing this one...


My progress tonight got me to the point of finished the fronts and back.  Soon, sleeves!!


Sunday, March 06, 2011

Sunday, Sunday

Monday last week I fell at skating and chipped a little bone from my hip, necessitating a bit of time off work. The week has been very quiet, punctuated with brief interludes of going out for brief errands.

Anyone who knows me knows that I'm terrible at sitting still.

I spent the first few days reading Shantaram - well worth it if you've not picked it up yet!

It took until Friday for me to come up with a list of things that could be comfortably done from the couch in the odd, not-sitting-not-lying-down posture that was most comfortable...and now I'm in the thick of chipping away at the list.  The first thing on it is something that has been languishing in the background of my life since I sold my shop - my pantograph patterns!  Over the past few years I've been working on ideas, jotting down little scribbles and doodles here and there, photographing various things as references, etc., but not really just sitting down and banging out a few patterns.  During the last few days I've been able to do just that!  It's so exciting to be messing around in my sketchbook for this purpose.  (oh, and for those keeping track of my New Year's resolution...I'm almost caught up on my Illustration Friday challenges, the last few have just not been fit to blog).

Today was my first day out walking in the neighbourhood since my fall...it is the perfect day for it, too...sunny and warm!  Spring is certainly in the air here in Krestova, though the snow is still very deep.  As you can see in the picture at right, the snow piles along our driveway are 5 feet high in places (the ones at the back of the house by the parking lot are substantially higher). The sun is out, things are dripping into puddles, and the neighbourhood is waking up from Winter. I really love living here where each season is so distinct, with its own character and colours.

Our school district has one more week of instructional days, then the two week Spring Break begins.  

I returned from my walk to discover that my family is not interested in waiting for full spring to come...bring on the epic deck backgammon battles!! Chess and Risk are next!

(ooh, look at the snow piles in the background)

Come on Spring.  We're ready.