Early midlife crisis

I think I might have a problem. I struggle a bit with age appropriate behaviour. Or rather taste. A couple of weeks ago I made a birthday cake for a family member.

IMG_1940(Sadly, I am cheating, the picture is from last year, this year I messed it up and wouldn’t want to show this year’s interpretation of a football online).

“Lovely” you might think. “A football cake for her son”. No, it is a football cake for her husband.

And then I made this skirt, after carefully (translates: spending 20min) choosing fabric combinations:

IMG_3541IMG_3540IMG_3539“Lovely” you might think. “A colourful skirt for her daughter”. No, it is a colourful skirt for herself.

And you know what? I do not regret it. I even want to make another one. They are perfect as I can wear them now and after pregnancy. I do slightly worry about my taste though as I clearly have the taste of a 5 year old.  Except that the real 5 year old is much better at this. This is what she chose for her skirt:

IMG_3568It took her about half an hour back and forth and comparing and I found the combination really bonkers but she was right. It is perfect. Maybe a step too far for me to wear but no need to worry, I am not making a bigger version of it.

IMG_3571This is very similar to my orange bit and it is the one that i used as a lining for my niece’s bag.

IMG_3570This fabric is actually a rather thick cotton, not really suitable for a skirt but it worked. You might see this one again, probably in bag form :)

IMG_3569My daughter insisted on this one when I ordered fabrics a while ago. I was secretly making fun of this choice… until I realised that it reminded me a bit of this one (sorry no picture yet) which I had ordered for myself (in the same order). I guess the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree :)

Oh, and a little update on the taste of the other apple:

Remember, he usually comments all my finished products with a polite “No, thank you.” Well, I realised that I never make things he has asked me for or where he had actually chosen the fabric. This time it was a little bit different. He could chose the fabric and I suggested then a top (as it was a jersey) and he decided on one with a hood.

IMG_3554Lovely, isn’t it. I would have preferred orange sleeves but I didn’t quite have enough orange fabric left. Not even for the hood lining.

Anyway, I proudly (and nervously) presented the finished top and got a…..

“Thank you, can you please put it in my drawer. I will wear it tomorrow”

Which he didn’t.

He did wear it once though. When it had about 35 degrees, with the hood up.

IMG_3556And I was desperate enough to let him. Oh, well, the saga will continue, I haven’t given up just yet :)

 

 

 

 

 

Scrap Sunday: Accept who you are

Yesterday, I was accused of being obsessed by scraps and of only buying fabrics to produce scraps!!!! Can you believe it?! This is obviously not true! At all! If I ever bought new to have scraps than I would obviously just buy remnants like these that otherwise would die a lonely death in a shelf. So really I am not only saving a poor piece of fabric but also supporting the shop owner in her attempt of decluttering. And it has definitely nothing to do with me wanting to have more scraps… but now, thinking of it, I have just tried to save one of these pieces. After complaints from my personal stylist that my maternity T-shirts are all white, black or, even worse, grey, I thought I’ll try to adapt a normal pattern to my recent body shape.

So, I used a pattydoo sleeveless top pattern for the first time and made it a few inches longer and the front a few inches wider around the middle. So far, so good. I think that went reasonably well, still a bit room to stretch. And I am also thinking that it will be fairly easy to just take away all those inches next summer. Otherwise it would have been a bit of a waste because it happens to be a beautiful Hamburger Liebe fabric.IMG_3586

I have also adjusted the top section as I know from previous experience with any bought standard sized pattern that I seem to have unreasonably narrow shoulders. So all necklines will be too wide, shoulder straps will slip down from my weird shoulders and it will just not look like something that was made especially for me. So I also decided – without having used this pattern before – to narrow the neckline and to just take the shoulder straps a bit more in.  Before you are getting all clever and “you shouldn’t alter without knowing the pattern bla bla bla”, I can inform you that actually I was right, in fact, I should have taken them in even more.

So, this is the status quo, I am having mixed feelings of how to proceed:

IMG_3584Well, the picture is actually not great, not sure if you can see all problems. No 1 is that the neckline is still too wide, No 2 is that I haven’t done a great job with the binding, I should have stretched it more and then it would pull things together much better. I have managed to arrange the front okish but as you can see, then it shows at the back

IMG_3585Obviously I could get away with it but I know that every time I wear it, I will be super consciously trying to constantly arrange things. Not really worth it. I am relatively new to this type of shirts and elastic bindings. I wish I would have invested time in research as I think closing the seams before putting in the bindings would be much neater. Not only would I not have the side seam showing on top of the binding but also, I would have seen how it fits and would have been able to make adjustments before finishing the binding.

Now the armhole binding is locked with a overlocker seam and the neckline is also blocked by a shoulder seam. If I want to open things and do it better, it will get really complicated.  I am considering to pull the straps up and add a new seam, that could actually work fairly well, it just might get a bit thick at the shoulder seam.

The only other option would be to dismantle to whole thing and I am not sure if I fancy that. I do however like the idea of my patterned not so boring maternity top and would make another one. Not sure if I should make something with sleeves though as I am currently staring into torrential rain.

Well, I guess there would be one other option, which would also sort out all future pattern problems…. plastic surgery to broaden my shoulders.

Oh, and if you think that buying a huge piece of remnants is cheating on Scrap Sunday, I would like to point out that we have been busy making fabric mosaics for the end of term cards:

IMG_3581I still think this is actually the best way to use up scraps. Except that you are only using tiny bits so it is really something for people who want to super efficiently use up every single square inch of their fabrics.

 

 

Scrap Sunday: Personalised mismatch

It might not quite be Sunday anymore where this post gets written but that is the beauty of the www. It is still Sunday somewhere. And it really isn’t my fault. I couldn’t publish this earlier as I hadn’t handed it over yet.

Anyway, I finally made a bag for a very good friend. She didn’t get anything for her birthday this year as no one over the age of 10 did because I had been so busy with other things. So I thought, now that I have more time again, I will make her a little present for her doula “graduation”.

IMG_3561I have tried to chose fabrics in colours that she would like. Not easy as I only seem to own very bright colours (in case you haven’t noticed yet) and she loves subtle green-turquoisey colours. Seriously, this is the best I could do.

For the inside I took a different approach. I wanted to create a more personal feeling and was looking for a calendula theme in my stash. Initially I was thinking of the fabric of the dress I made last year.

IMG_2098sI think those flowers would have been perfect calendulas (not from a scientific point of view) but also far too big for the inside of a rather small bag.

So this is what I chose.IMG_3562

It really really doesn’t go at all with the outside fabrics but as I said, it was for personal reasons. Not sure, if she understood that these are meant to be calendulas but she will now :)

And then, as matching the fabrics didn’t matter anymore I looked for another souvenir type of fabric and decided on the strawberry fabric that will remind her of my children.

IMG_3563Mega mismatch mission completed :)

 

 

 

 

Learning from mistakes

With the end of the (school) year being so near and the associated imminent closure of our nursery, I am getting quite nostalgic. To avoid being depressed I thought I’ll turn this rummaging in the past into something positive by looking at the things that went terribly wrong (don’t get too excited, nothing to gossip, I am just talking about craft projects, the actual purpose of this blog) in order to learn something from it.

This is actually a random selection, I guess there would be many more but I haven’t always taken pictures.

What is wrong with these things? I am glad you’re asking. I was thinking hard and long about it. They haven’t been worn EVER. Or just a few times in some cases. And what they actually have in common: They were all made for the same person. Who will always try on things happily whilst I am making them but just politely says: No thank you! when they are finished. Have I learned from it? No, I haven’t.

I have just stupidly made a beautiful jacket using a klimperklein pattern. Or rather e-book with lots of step by step instructions.

You might think that this is a really nice jacket and that anybody would love to wear it. Well, you’re wrong. “No, thank you. Maybe I’ll wear it tomorrow!” Still polite but making me hope for another opportunity which won’t really happen is actually rather cruel. Do I sound bitter? No, don’t worry. I am totally over it. Really. And let’s face it, there is another very important thing that all these things have in common. It was always me choosing the particular project and even fabric. Not once I had actually been asked to make all this useless stuff. So I guess, the only person to blame is myself.

So lets quickly look at the bright sight. The e-book is amazing, it offers lots of choices, different pockets, with or without lining,….

I have in fact made already a second one, same concept but different fabric and size. And this one actually gets worn a lot (fabric chosen by the jacket owner)

We’ll see if I have learned anything, next project will be something made of a fabric bought on request. I’ll keep you posted.

PS: I just got a picture of the birthday boy. He liked the pick and mix shirt so much, he did not want to take it off at night and slept in it :)