So a quick TTT post is all I have again this week!
I never got around to posting this necklace (left) I made way back when, but I made a similar one as a gift for my MIL. Hope she likes it! November Craft Stash Challenge at it best.
Handmade Holiday Greetings are in the works! I’m trying to use up as much of the paper stash as possible. Haven’t made a dent in it yet!
Oh, and I finally joined Instagram (creativelymotivated). I resisted IG just like I did FB and blogging, but I actually kind of like it. I just have to figure out how I want to use each of them as they are all the same, but different. Throw Pinterest in the mix and I’m all “social media’d” out! I don’t know if I can handle another.
I’m having a moment of crafting ADD. I’ve got planned projects, future projects, projects in my head, projects on paper, stashed projects, unfinished projects, test projects, class projects…*scream* I feel overwhelmed and that means nothing gets done this month. Lately, Pinterest has been adding to the ADD thing. I don’t pin like a mad woman, but I do view what’s trending from time to time. Last month, I saw a photo on Pinterest (don’t all craft stories start this way?) that inspired me to sew a color a colorful printed skirt (McCalls 5???) and crop top based on See and Sew 5939. I tried to plan out what I thought it would look like.
I love prints, but don’t wear them as much and I have a few in the stash that still catch my eye. The fit on the crop top was going well until I added the sleeve so I just gave up on it. However, I’ve completed the skirt!
I even adding a lining. I missed the bus on actually wearing this outside during the few unseasonably warm days we had this month and it’s not going to happen now unless I get a pair of thick tights AND leg warmers. Oooo, leg warmers: that’s a project on my to-do list, of course.
Usually when I feel this way, I’m feeling it in all areas of my life including fitness. My “run for 20 minutes program” was successful, but now it’s time to find new challenge for the colder weather. What’s next? Arms? Legs? Cardio? I need to set some new goals ASAP.
I’m starting books, putting them on hold, and then starting something new. I had the simplest reading goal that I’m not going to make.
I’m all over the place! Excuse me while I take a deep breath and try to clear my mind for a minute.
I think there comes a time in a person’s life where they begin to question their reason for doing something, e.g. a career, following a movement, purpose of life. Sewing and I have had this relationship for a long time. I know where I want to go with it, but trying to work out the time for it all is a challenge. It’s slow work! For me, it’s a frustratingly long process for every stage in the project: the deciding, the cutting, the fitting, the washing and ironing, and the actual construction. I regularly visit other sewing blogs and it seems they are cranking out these projects like a factory. I just want to get something done and I want it done NOW. Yes, friends, I am a product of my generation!
I want it now.
I need it now.
I gotta have it.
Umm, why is this taking so long?
This isn’t done already?
Well, I had to (have to) take a step back from that, ignore the blogs, re-learn, and constantly remind myself that in my world sewing (and everything else in life) takes time. I also have responsibilities and other interests that bring me pleasure, Really, what’s my hurry anyway? It’s not a competition.
Despite the slow work of sewing, I managed to finish a couple of projects: a skirt (will be posted later) and two craft baskets to organize my out of control pattern collection. I’m working on a third that you can see in the background.
Colorful fabric from the stash is put to use in Kwik Sew #107. I’ll be making them until each of those patterns has a basket home.
Of course, I could buy boxes or baskets and it would certainly speed up the organization process, but what would be the fun in that?
September seemed to pass by so quickly however, I managed to squeeze in several simple pairs of earrings. I’ve tried to stay true to my personal challenge in that no new materials would be used (except notions and findings like thread, jump rings, etc.) and all but one pair of these follow the rule of using what I have in the stash instead of stockpiling beads and fabric like I’m waiting for a Craftpocolypse to begin.
Wait…A Craftpocolypse? I like the sound of that!
September also was the month I finished the Fashion Studies class. The instructor was super knowledgable and has further sparked my interest in keeping up with the goings on of the fashion industry. I’ve learned names of designers (and I never keep up names!), turned my nose up at some fast fashion news stories, learned to appreciate the work that goes into clothing and textile manufacturing, and ogled more 2014 runway shows than ever before. That last night, my classmates and I brought in and discussed our final projects (mood board (below), illustration (below), technical drawings and swatches), received a gentle critique of or work, and went on our way! There are only two regrets I have about taking the class:
1. Taking the class for audit. You haven’t a clue of how well (or how bad) you’ve done. Although I’m pretty sure compared to others in that industry I would have a lot more to “show and prove”. On the other hand, learning is ‘spensive!
2. Not trying to “design” a little more. I froze at the thought of drawing collars, draping, layering, texture, dimension, etc. I wanted to avoid a complete illustration disaster so I kept it simple enough for my limited drawing skills.
I was inspired by mathematics, optial illusions, geometry and crisp folds.
Friends are asking me if I have any plans to make these clothes. I’ve entertained the idea, but don’t think I will. At least not yet. Let’s see what happens in the next class: Patternmaking and Construction. Maybe these ideas above are simple enough for me practice what I learn.
I certainly do have craft room/studio envy when I see some of the lovely spaces on the blogs I encounter, but I try not to get caught up in that because I have a pretty decent space to work in and I’m very thankful for that! Let’s take a look!
First, I will introduce you to the latest addition to the space: my cutting table. My husband built this for me after much of my begging, whining, and complaining about how I needed it to save my back. He isn’t entirely happy with the result and wants to do it again (hence why it’s not painted), but I’m just glad I don’t have to go into super hunchback mode just to cut and pin some fabric.
Because that table is so huge in this small room I had to move my bookshelf to a different spot. Yeah, that’s quite a collection. Even Debbie strikes a pose for the photo!
Just a simple table is where I get my sewing and crafting done.
Beading and Yarn corner, my stone age tv and stand that houses paper and card supplies.
Embellishment corner with some jewelry waiting for its photo shoot.
At work this week I thought it was time to stop procrastinating and get around to destroying all of my old 3.5″ diskettes. I don’t have a clue what’s on them and even if I wanted to know, there is no way I’m going to chase down a computer with a drive.
The conversation in my head went like this:
Regular Me: “Finally getting rid of these old diskettes. Cross that off the to do list!”
Hoarder Me: “No! What are you doing!? Keep these! You’ll find a drive one day.”
Environmentally Conscious Me: “Oh, dear! What a waste of all this plastic and metal. Recycle it!”
Crafty Me: “Hold on, I have an idea.”
Hoarder Me: “Yeah, listen to the craft idea and keep something.”
And these were born!
Most people probably won’t even recognize this metal piece as the center of a disk. I salvaged quite a few of them to see what sort of fun I could have transforming then into something new. The easiest choice was a pair of earrings. I wanted to do a little more with then than just throw the discs on ear wire so I dipped into the bead stash and pulled out a few faceted beads, aluminum discs, and chain. I also could not resist measuring them. From the top of the ear wire to the bottom of the disk they are exactly 3.5″ in length! How perfect!
I feel like I haven’t been in the blog world in such a long time! I had a week without any crafting because I was living it up on my very first cruise!
Lots of eating, sleeping, relaxing, occasional drinking, games, and fun, fun, fun! Even still I missed my sewing machine just a bit. I had big plans to sew up a little dress for an upcoming wedding, but the time just got away from me. So, nothing finished to see here!
I did start my next knitting project on the ship, but only managed to complete half of what you see above. Those late afternoon naps got in the way of my knitting. Winter is coming and I’m ready to get into the grove of making hats, scarves, and the first sweater for my husband. Little does he know, he will be subject to being measured and fit on a regular basis.
In other randomness…the world of fashion is abuzz with September issues, New York Fashion Week, and other fabulousness and here is what caught my eye in the latest Vogue:
Knitting in a Chanel ad? See, knitting is COOL and FASHIONABLE!
September Vogue also brought to my attention the Fall 2013 Christian Wijnants collection. This is a must have:
It’s hard to see in a photo of this size, but the tension is varied on this knit dress. And beginner knitters think varying tension is a mistake!
Also, there were so many great NYFW collections (DVF, Zac Posen) it just makes me want to pick up a pen and sketch out a few things and then I remember I cannot draw! Anyway, as much as I had a great time getting away, its good to get back to the hobbies I love so much.
This year I’ve decided to challenge myself in ways that I have never imagined or put off at one time or another and that includes signing up for a continuing education classes in fashion design. It’s not on the level on a full-fledged undergraduate degree, but the class so far has challenged me, it’s been interesting and fun!
Some of our class assignments involve discussions of current fashion articles which has led me to browse TONS of fashion news sites and blogs in the past month. Between the informative fashion business news sites and the 80 zillion “what I wore today” blogs there are many places with tons of advice on what you should and should not wear for your particular body type. I mostly think this is a load of bull! I am of a mind that if you find something that’s fits well regardless of your shape you should wear it with pride. Why hide assets that you do like? Not all women want to minimize a large bust or full hips, some short women happen to like long dresses (and look good in them!), and I’ve seen some full-figured women rocking a wild all over print. If you have the confidence to pull off the look and are comfortable in the clothes and skin, why not go for it?! What do you think about dressing for a body type?
On another note, speaking of both “fit” and “classes”, I completed a Craftsy class on Fitting your Knits. The class project sweater (Mesilla) in the photo isn’t my favorite knit pattern that I’ve seen around, but I wanted to go through the steps for the class sake. The fit of this sweater, while not perfect, is better than others I’ve made in the past. Most times I’m so excited I just want to jump in and start knitting I would barely remember to check the gauge (amateur mistake!). The body fits well, but there are too many stitches in the front raglan area.
The math for fitting knits isn’t difficult at all! You just have to know your measurements, gauge, and the pattern’s measurements and gauge. I’m not sure I really needed the class for all that, but it did get me to think more about fitting my knits properly for all future projects.
So if I get nothing else done I can say I completed my Craft Stash Challenge for this month.
Some years ago I went nuts over t-shirts and purchased a heap of them with the idea to cut and redesign. Before I even got started I lost interest in it. Then I bought black tees in every size to make silk screened tees with the LOST logo. I read up on how to do it and decided that I wasn’t ready to invest in the time and materials at that moment. No matter because after seeing that finale I would be using that shirt to clean the toilet.
So they have sat, waiting for action or donation and I thought why not wing it and transform it into something different. No measuring, just cut, pin fit, and sew. I mean, it’s only a t-shirt.
This was not my first choice for color combo, but I had to work with what I had. I was not to buy another shirt to add to the collection! These colors together totally remind me of the neon colored surf wear that was popular in the 80s and 90s: Rude Dog, T and C. I didn’t live anywhere near a beach, but I remember seeing some of that gear.
Overall, I wish I did something to stabilize the neckline to avoid stretching it out. NOW, What am I going to do with the rest of those unsexy tees?