Tag Archives: sewing

A little delay and so not right for the season

I still owe you pictures of my coat Zsazsa by susalabim. I made it back in May I think when it was really not the weather for a coat. And it is still not. Never mind. I do not own anything to wear it with anyway. But it looks amazing on my dress form.

Susalabim is a fantastic designer for lillestoff. Obviously I had already bought at least one of her fabrics without knowing it and it is actually through the pattern for this coat that I discovered not only Susalabim as a designer but also lillestoff as supplier for organic fabrics.

The coat can be made out of one fabric but Susalabim uses it to show off her designs as a patchwork coat – ideal to use up left overs. So ideal for me one would think. Except that I was really intrigued by the fabrics she had used in her video – jaquard, something I haven’t used so far. So I actually had to order small portions of different fabrics to fake a pile of left over jaquards. They were all so beautiful. I spent ages in arranging them and sending pictures to my dear colour and style expert back in London. Apart from her totally wrong and unjustified advice that orange elephants would be too childish she helped me a lot. As usual.  But enough talking.

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Initially I had in mind to only use a 2 or 3 fabrics for the sleeves and to have larger blocks. But as those fabrics were so nice, I didn’t want to waste any of it and used the small bits too. But I underestimated how much they would shrink in the washing. So actually I couldn’t cut the sleeves properly and had to do real patchwork in two places:

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I love having the seams on the outside. It is so venturous and makes it cool and trend-setting.

However my banned from chocolate for life and boring 7 year old finds it wrong and embarrassing.

So what do you think? Are you boring or setting venturous trends? 🙂

I’ll take this coat to RUMS for now and wait for more appropriate weather to be a cool trend-setter.

 

 

Modern urbanisation: turning parking space into living space

Don’t worry this has not suddenly turned into a blog about architecture and area planning. Although this might be interesting, too. As long as it is an expert talking about it, not me. This one is still about knitting and sewing. Not that I would be an expert in these fields either. But aaanyway.

It is probably not wise to start with the highlight of today’s topic rather than building up tension but I do know for a fact that some of my readers get quickly bored and never make it to the end of my in-depth analysis of things. So let’s jump right in.

This parking site has recently been transformed:IMG_5744

into this beautiful home  (still without a roof in this picture) surrounded by a moat:

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to be completed with either a golden roof for a beautiful castle…

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or a dark roof full of spider webs, cracks and bats (yes, these are bats, no weird letter “M”s) for a witch house, dangerous castle or whatever you want to imagine.

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The attentive readers amongst you (for all the others: no need to look away in embarrassment, I am ignoring you anyway), this is not really a transformation as clearly it is a totally brand new development which happens to have the same shape as the afore-mentioned parking space.

It is finally time to reveal the long-awaited portable magic play mat:

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Rather by accident, I must admit, the pocket looks very castle-y but unfortunately it is not as deep as the pocket of the original car play carpet.

But lets unfold the secret inner life of boring spotty bag (trying to rebuilt tension here):

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So there is a deep looking cercle in the centre, made of bricks, could be a tower or a well in the middle of the wood, depending on the story you are developing.

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and a deep dark cave, possibly home of a dragon, a gnome or a captured prince (trying to break up stereotypes)

But enough teasing. Lets have a look at the carpet in its full glory:

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So, we have different areas, a dark wood at the top, a dragon forest in the right top corner (I know, they are dinosaurs! Could you please make a little effort and switch on your imagination?!), a wolf wood, a park with magical looking birds in cages, a pink unicorn forest (I know, they are not unicorns. You are starting to bore me with your negativity), a pond (the BLUE bit of course. I mean seriously!), a bed of lollipop flowers (on request. I’ll leave it to you to guess which ones are the lollipops, but I’d try those round lollipop shaped flowers if I were you), a few other lawns with magic looking flowers and plants and a big meadow with cute little magic people, possibly fairies and elves living in there. There is also a silver / breadcrumbs trail leading from the house to one of the lawns/forests or vice versa. Who knows. Up to you.

I meant to have more dangerous, dark looking areas but strangely (and I really can’t explain this at all), I do not seem to own many dark or dangerous looking fabrics. Apart from an endless variety of dinosaur fabrics. Nevertheless, I am more than pleased with the result, I have to say.

As you can see, similar to the car play carpet, there are poppers everywhere to stick on magic items.

We have…

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… a magic key,

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… a magic ring,

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…. a magic wand (clearly! But you can also pretend it is a log or whatever else),

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… a treasure chest

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… with real silk lining – would you expect anything less?

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….um… a bottle of magic potion (not my finest work, I have to admit. And I did get told off for this one)

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… a magic book. Clearly my favourite. If not the only one out of the set I really like.

I guess my main problem with these “props” is their inconsistency. The treasure chest is really 3D, the book is beautifully “drawn”, similar to all the decoration on the house, the bottle is just nonsense, all the others are much more simple. I guess they should all look a bit like the book. With embroidery as a main feature. Even if then the treasure chest would lose its main feature. What do you think? Which one is your favourite?

Also, would you prefer playing on the car carpet or on the magic one?

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In any case, after a very slow start I really enjoyed the project, especially the free hand machine embroidery. Remember when I did that 3 hours course at Tilly and the buttons back in London? I really want to explore this technique even more and finally invest in a proper embroidery foot for my machine. Plus, I have realised that I have to take the “using up my fabric scraps” project a little bit more seriously.

But it is almost May, time to focus on Me Made May, so the scraps will have to wait.

 

 

 

 

Scrap Sunday: The upcycling bag

For this one we need to start way back, a couple of years ago ….

Once upon a time…. don’t worry, it won’t get that bad.

Anyway, years ago, I have made a small shoulder bag for my daughter’s best friend. As I quite liked it I made a few more for other friends.

I never actually saw the little girl using her bag. It was always her mother carrying it with this very insisting and slightly scary glare in her eyes… until I made her her own. And one for my equally glaring daughter.

My friend seemed happy. But not only did she continue carrying her daughter’s bag around, she also kept telling me “casually”  that her other daughter really liked those bags and that the poor child was interested in placing an order and paying real money for it.

Around the same time she gave me her daughters old rain coat with the words that maybe I could use it for one of my sewing projects. After years and years of heavy hint dropping I finally gave in and made my first proper upcycling project. A bag made out of an old rain coat. Apologies for not taking a picture of the original rain coat but here is the bag:

I chose a London themed lining as it was supposed to be a bag for a young lady so it needed to be cool rather than the usual childish stuff. I am extremely pleased with the result, think it really looks cool. I am not sure what the girl thinks. Probably she never got it, instead there will be a blond woman running through London carrying three bags and glaring at other people who dare carrying nice bags. If you ever see her, don’t look her straight in the eyes, slowly move backwards and keep your bag tightly.

Oh, and just for the record, I also made another one for my niece who asked for  one for her birthday a few weeks ago.

I suppose my niece liked it… Thinking of it, I haven’t handed it over myself, maybe she never got it and there is a glaring lady with 4 bags running through London…

 

Help: I just made a leopard print skirt for myself and I am planning to wear it

It looks like I am having some sort of midlife crisis. I suddenly decided that I am one of these women who can totally wear leopard skin outfits. I guess I got inspired by two very fashionable people.

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So, I took my pattydoo Carol dress pattern and used just the skirt part of it. And the left overs of the leopard jumpers. I intended to use only the navy one but I could not match the pattern. The thing with big patterns is that one should really match them at seams. When I started sewing, I just tried to cut out as economically as possible. In a first step I realised it would make sense to match stripes at side seams or to place bigger motives in a sensible, symetric, way even if it means that you are loosing a bit of fabric. This time I took it rather seriously and made sure that the front pieces were perfectly matched. (well, I did my best). On the side seams it wasn’t possible as I didn’t want to loose the A-line. Or 5kg. And unfortunately, I didn’t even try to match the waist band. I was already so pleased with my skirt that I got carried away and cut before thinking. Anyway, my perfectly wearable and age appropriate (mentally “5”) leopard (or whatever wild animal it might be, I am not a zoologist) print skirt:

Note: I had to compromise on the picture quality as otherwise this would be far too compromising 🙂

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And obviously I need to now make a top that can be worn with leopard skin skirts. Strangely I haven’t had anything matching in my wardrobe just yet.

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I wish I would have had more of the dotty fabric, I would have wanted it for one whole side panel, possibly instead of the fuchsia one.

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almost perfect match:

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This side turned out even better:

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Leopard skin aside, I would really want to use the Carol dress pattern again. After all, the trial dress fitted well, winter is kind of overish, fabric sits in the cupboard since months. I am ready to go. Just need to speak to the baby, sorry toddler, about dress preventing breastfeeding routine. Easy.

And now, I’ll join the other ladies on RUMS to see what they have been up to.