Friday, February 25, 2011

progress... well, maybe a little

Those last 2 weeks have gone by like a whirlwind, with very little to show for... I had three project days (I'm part of a med-student project where we show 3rd graders lots of fun things about healthy eating and living), my family was here for the weekend and then I lay flat with the cold from hell for 3 days - which means that a lot less than I had hoped for got accomplished.

Still, I got done some things. ..

1. Wardrobe cull: check. I guess I could have been more thorough, but I'm saving that for a time when my teeth don't chatter while I try on clothes in front of the mirror. Swap party and flea market day are planned for May!

2. I started on my Crêpe dress! Ah, the instructions are a dream! (Especially compared to Burda 3477, which is also a curren WIP). Tracing took me a while but I wanted to save the pattern. I sewed up a bodice muslin yesterday and altered the darts a bit. I hope it'll do...

(This is before the altering of the darts. I also suspect I'll have to let out the waist a bit and shorten it by half an inch. I wonder what that'll to do the waist ties...)

3. Burda 3477, a lined Princess seam dress in turquoise wool (and maybe another version in brown/tan plaid), is going to amount to my winter sewing. I know, winter's almost over (I wish!) but the two dresses will probably keep until mid-spring at least. Anyway, I remember now why I've never lined anything yet. Slippery, slippery fabric... also, the instructions are atrocious. My books haven't really helped me out yet. Must google some more. Also: tracing was one hell of a job. Why exactly are the lines green on green?!? But: the pattern was picked up for a dress for my mom and she's another size, so I had to save it.

4. I'm also daydreaming about handmade jewelery involving bangles, buttons, fabric scraps and other things, but that can wait until after my dresses are done. I think.

What are you working on right now?

I hope you have a wonderful weekend and I leave you with a taste of spring (yes, tulips are my favorite flowers...)

Friday, February 11, 2011

ok, so I'm a lazy bug

It's kind of awful, how much I've been lazing around since getting back to Berlin last Sunday... So many things I've been meaning to do, starting with spring cleaning, not to speak of beginning The Big Wardrobe Cull, starting on sewing for the Colette Spring Palette Challenge and on the two wintery dresses I'd like to make before spring starts, finishing my travelling blog posts on my personal blog, or doing anything else mildly constructive. (Oh. I did put together my inspiration pics for the challenge. And I pre-washed some fabric...) Or the wardrobe capsule I'd mentioned I want to make.

I did manage to spend a nice and lazy couple of days with my boyfriend, meet various friends for drinks and dinner and buy presents for my boyfriend's birthday, though, so the time wasn't altogether wasted. :)

I'd better start sewing soon, though, since Me-Made-March is a scant two weeks away and I have only a couple of cold-weather appropriate clothes. Lucky thing I'm going on a family vacation to Portugal for a week! At least some of my summer clothing will see some wear. :)

While we're at it - here are the projects I've put on my immediate to-do list:

The Colette Spring Palette Challenge:

Spring for me is green meadows, blue skies, crisp air and the first colorful flowers. While I love the pastelly inspiration boards of a lot of the other participants, light colors make me look pale and mousy so I went with a more vibrant color scheme.

I'm using the challenge as an excuse to "join" two sewalongs that have actually already concluded: Gertie's Crêpe Sew-along (I'm making it in a red polka dot cotton) and Sunni's Trouser Sew-along (self-drafted sailor-pants in either black or dark blue). I'm also hoping to make a dress that has been on my to-sew list for over a year, a short vintage-inspired number in navy pin dots with a white yoke that I will probably try to draft myself.

I'm also joining Me-Made-March '11:

'I, Alessa from, sign up as a participant of Me-Made-March '11. I endeavour to wear at least two hand-made or refashioned garments or accessories, but preferably more than that, each day for the duration of March 2011'

Which means that there's a whole list of things I'm going to need to sew, probably including sleepwear, lounge-pants, leggins, a couple more warmish tops and a skirt or three. And I'd better plan them out, so I will end up with separates that I can mix&match. Also, since some of them are going to be made of knit fabric, I'm planning on visiting the local sewing café Stitch'n'Bitch, so I can have a crack at using an overlock machine.

Oooh, that's a long to-do list for February/March!

What are your sewing plans for spring?

Saturday, February 5, 2011

back home - almost!

Hello my fellow seamstresses! I've managed to make my way back to Germany and am now enjoying a nice few days at home with my parents (mostly lounging around in lounge pants and hoodies, which reminds me: need to sew comfort garments!). My da turned 55 a couple of days ago, so we had a schnapps tasting in honor of the schnapps birthday (55 being a schnapps number, seeing as it suggests double vision... Ah, I know, Germans and schnapps... ;) and I'm due back home in Berlin on Sunday.

I have enjoyed the rest of my travels a lot, although it would have been lovely had my boyfriend been able to come with me. As it was, he needed to get back home and I travelled Singapore, Tokyo, Hong Kong and Phuket for 2 weeks. It was my first time in Asia, and I loved the cultural differences, even though the hustle bustle of the big cities made me a bit tired... Lucky I got to have a beach holiday for the last 5 days! Now I'm nicely tanned, even though the weak winter sun has already paled my complexion... ;)

I found some lovely pale yellow silk for a slip in Singapore and some black Thai silk for a half slip in Phuket. I also wandered Hong Kong's garment district and scored lots of lovely trims and ribbons and some nice blue border print as well as some denim. What I liked best, though, were the Japanese 100Yen-Shops, were I got cute ribbons and cloth-covered-button-kits! I could have spent thousands of Yen there, alas, I had to think of my back (and the airline's baggage allowance...). Also, I bought the cutest hat in Tokyo! I think I may have to put together a post with all the lovely things I bought during my travels... :)

Now without further ado, some more visual impressions from my journey, before I let you get on with daily life and sewing pretty things... :)

Singapore (and thanks to Adey from The Sew Convert for fabric buying and sight seeing tips!):


Hong Kong:

Phuket Town and Kata Beach - look at that cute little open sewing studio!