Monthly Archives: March 2012

Four times a charm

As I mentioned pre-weekend I’ve been tired and unmotivated lately, so I thought a little slow food would cure me. Not quite LOL.

Perhaps if I’d stuck to something at least relatively familiar, or even refrained from trying a new machine, it would have. But I’m a difficult girl lol and I like challenges.

What I DON’T like is not getting something right the first time… or second… or even third. I’m telling you, my kitchen was a war zone of greasy components, swearing, and three unfortunate batches of broken mayonnaise that never emulsified. YUCK!! I almost gave up…

Almost πŸ™‚

But this is me. I know myself and letting it go would have bothered me internally forever. So I tried one more time and…

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Success! I then took a third and made a buttermilk ranch dressing and turned the rest into a positively delicious herb garlic aioli… YUM!! πŸ™‚

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So… I’m still tired and lethargic but at least I can say I had ONE victory this weekend πŸ™‚

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Slow Food to cure what ails ‘ya

There is a definite trend going on lately; people in creative or productive slumps… and I’m no different, sadly. I don’t know why – feeling tired and lethargic and just plain blah – I WANT to want to, but I can’t seem to bring myself to actually DO lol.

My lovely friend Lavender had a marvelous solution to this, and it’s one I’ve utilized myself in the past, in one way or another: getting back to basics by immersing yourself in the creation of slow food. Her recent forays include the making of cheese, yogourt, and home made mayonnaise. Lovely!! πŸ™‚ She’s been kind enough to post her recipes and processes for the former two here.

Slow food is exactly what it sounds like: the opposite of fast food. It embraces the concept of going back to our basics and making something entirely from scratch that we could easily buy from any corner store. Why? Well for me, I do it because I care about my (and my partner’s) health: about avoiding the amount of salt and preservatives in prepackaged food, and striving to eat as cleanly and as organic as possible, and taking control over the quality of ingredients in the foods we consume.Β For example, I never buy “instant” anything – if I can make it, I will. Aside from making dishes that can be bought pre-made, I also make the components that go into them, such as bread, sauces, dressings, etc. and quite often things like noodles, pizza dough, and even ice cream and sorbet!

There is also the aforementioned (and incredibly powerful) therapeutic value in making things yourself. Something that took all day to make is just inevitably going to be more satisfying than picking something up from a drive thru.

So this weekend I’m going to venture forth and attempt to make my own mayonnaise for the first time. I’m thinking a lovely garlic one or one made with herbs…. or both! πŸ™‚ I’m also thinking of taking the afternoon on Sunday and making some noodles for lasagna (made with my own home made sauce of course)… if you haven’t ever made your own noodles, totally do it! They’re amazing, delicious, and so worthwhile! πŸ™‚


I finally caved

So I may or may not have purchased a little something yesterday…. a pattern I’ve read tons of amazing reviews about, and given that I have a special place in my heart for all things halter + maxi, I finally gave in and got it!!

Jamie Christina's The Mission Maxi

While I was there, I was also captivated by this little number, which I just fell in love with right away, and which I also envisioned my lovely man liking as well:

Jamie Christina Miz Mozelle

As if I didn’t already have enough projects lined up…. does anyone know how to clone time? I need some more…..


Sew Colette: Pastille Dress Final

After a cat stealth attack on my pattern, four bodice muslins (with two sets of adjustments each, so eight in total!!!), some self realization, a lot of hair pulling – or more accurately – thread ripping… a few curse words, a ton of frustration and moments where I thought I’d never get it right…. I finally managed to fit my very first sheath dress, and I tell you this: it was all worth it, every little bit.

This dress cost me a month of my time, at an average of about 4-6 hrs a week, and about $35 in supplies (not including the book). It’s the most time, but definitely not the most money, I’ve ever spent on one garment. Despite the fact the fit is not perfect (I had to come to terms with that or it’d never have gotten done) I felt good in it, cause it’s likely one of the best fitting garments I’ve ever worn. I could never buy a dress that fit me this well…. ever.

I had come to terms with the possibility that the dress may not be wearable, due to my inexperience, because final piece aside, I learned a TON from this project. I learned:

  • my body shape (thank you, croquis)
  • that a full bust adjustment is a MUST for me, and that I’ve been buying pattern sizes at least four sizes too big as a result, and that is why nothing I make ever fits LOL
  • how to do an FBA, and other pattern adjustments on paper
  • never to install another facing ever again without understitching

These are the final adjustments I made on my pattern (there were many previous ones but these are the ones that stuck):

  • 1/2″ FBA on the pattern piece so 1″ total (it would be 3/4″ or 1.5″ for the Big 4, but Colette drafts for a C, so it’s less)
  • took 1″ off front at shoulder seam and 3/4″ off back
  • lengthened bust darts on bodice
  • graded between two sizes for the skirt
  • shortened skirt by 2″ (I’m 5’9″ but for some reason, Colette patterns run long on me)

It is by no means perfect. I have some wrinkles in the back and my armhole facings are awaiting a revamp but for a first go at fitting, it works, and it felt pretty good to actually wear something I made, out on a lovely date with my man πŸ™‚

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Score!!!

I just wanted to share a quick thrill with you all: on a whim I popped into the Sally Ann after work for a little post-stressful-week therapy browse & scored two amazing finds!

First, this book by R.A. Salvatore, one of Fantasy’s greatest writers, for $3.99:

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and about 1.5 meters at about 28″w of this fabric for $2.99, which upon burning a corner of it the second I walked in the door, revealed itself as none other than silk!! (toldja I’d be burning everything… thanks Janene πŸ˜‰

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Woo hoo! good start to the weekend, ‘specially since it’s pouring out there!


Spring Palette 2012

Alrighty-O, so here’s my attempt at being organized… or rather, placing all my organized thoughts into one place! For me that’s hard; I am quite organized but in a chaotic kind of fashion, where only my weird artsy mind can comprehend the twisted tapestry that is my thoughts, lists, goals and ideas. So here is a small glimpse into what I’ve been weaving:

Colours:

Add a little cream and black into the mix and you got the idea πŸ™‚

Here’s my Pinterest mood board, in case anyone wants to see my drool-worthy dream shoes and some of my coveted fabrics LOL.

Some of my winter sewing list will carry over into this palette too, which is nice:

  • Pastille in dark blue stretch cotton sateen (almost done)
  • black dress pants in black linen (my UFO from last year *blushes*)
  • Jasmine in a navy and cream print
  • Truffle dress

And here is the list of things I’d like to make – some have fabrics and/or patterns chosen for them and some do not yet (perhaps a little ambitious, considering this does not include summer, and I’m a sew slewer BAHAHAHA I totally was trying to write SLOW SEWER!!)

  • Taffy blouse in navy blue chiffon with a soft white bubble print
  • babydoll blouse from Chic Simple Sewing
  • cap sleeve blouse from Simple Modern Sewing
  • Clover pants in dark blue stretch cotton sateen (same fabric as my Pastille)
  • Cap sleeved tunic
  • Licorice dress
  • tunic and pants from the vintage Simplicity I bought from Lavender *wink*

I’ll probably add more as time progresses, but I’m starting with this so I don’t explode with too much excitement LOL.

Oh!! Also, a call out to anyone out there who knows where I might find a pattern for a blouse something like this:

I thought the Mystery Charmeuse would look nice in this style, but I don’t quite have the right pattern… thoughts?