Thursday, 29 December 2011

Bath time

I was all set to enjoy a nice lazy breakfast this morning. This plan was put on hold when I discovered Molly had decided the kitchen floor (!) would make an excellent substitute for her litter box.

Cue mopping of entire kitchen floor.

This would have been the end of my problems if she hadn't also decided to SIT in her own mess and then walk it all over the house.

Cue mopping of hallway floor.

Unfortunately I couldn't get any action shots of the actual bathing. But I can tell you it involved ineffectual grabbing, pathetic yowling and eventual defeat.

She looks hysterical to me because her fur is still only about half grown out from her last hair cut. In fact, she looks very similar to a coat my Other Half just bought.

Molly: "I hate you guys."

"You guys suck."

"I'm way too pissed off to deal with your photographic nonsense."

By the way, that's not another chinchilla behind her. It's just a look-alike cushion.

"Go away."

We've bathed her a few times now, so in case you're wondering, this experience did not result in any permanent mental damage (not that we'd know the difference anyway, I think she's senile).

Tuesday, 27 December 2011

Vintage fabric score

I don't really know how old this fabric is, so if anyone can provide me with an accurate era/decade, feel free. My darling mother lives in a country town and works with a lot of craft groups involving little old ladies and gets to see all their interesting houses and possessions. Quite often they have bundles of fabric which they've kept for decades for no other reason than "just in case" (sound familiar?). A lot of it is donated to sales or collected by fortunate hoarders. This particular piece came from a woman in her 80s who has had it "since she and her sister were girls." This could mean anything from early teens to mid 20's, so I'm placing it at 1930 - 1940.

It's just under a meter wide, but it's over four meters in length! It's a printed cotton and rather stiff and crunchy; I'm hoping it might soften up a bit after I wash it but I doubt it. it's in pristine condition. It's certainly enough to make a dress but I really need to decide on a design worthy of the fabric. I don't usually wear such pink tones but this could be lots of fun.

I'm the wrong shape for 30s designs, so I don't know how retro I can go. With retro patterns I tend to skip straight from 1920s to 1950s because I generally find the '30s and '40s so revolting. And cotton doesn't really scream 1920s at me. Decisions, decisions...

New baubles

AS IF I was going to finish the year without a Christmas-themed post, or at the very least a small amount of showing off my haul. I asked the Christmas Fairy for a new chain this year, as I only have one and it no longer has a clasp. I have to winch open the largest link if I want to change pendants.


Double yay!


I am a lucky duck. Feel free to post envious comments.

Saturday, 24 December 2011

Garden update: part II

The blooms weren't the only ones moving into a new home today. My Other Half's chilli and pepper plants were also relocated.

Look how many we have!

This is Albert, the first born

And there are plenty more on the way

My Other Half, hard at work (see, he's real!)

He also grows cacti and succulents. I love the little carbuncles on the one on the right.

So that could be it for 2011! Unless I manage to get some sewing completed between now and New Years (and I may find myself in desperate need of a new dress all of a sudden, you never know).

Garden update: part I

As promised, here is an update on my garden. You may remember the last time I posted about my blooms, they were about to explode. Well, now they look like this...

I love my petunias and I really hope they don't die

I scored a couple of geraniums from my mother so I have them in pink and red now

She also gave me this Black Night (or Knight) salvia which will look lovely when it finally flowers

Molly: What happened to my dirt box?

With love from yours truly,

The Happy Gardener.

Thursday, 22 December 2011

It's the most wonderful time of the year

The time of year when I have every excuse to dress up like an idiot.

And as tomorrow is the final day of work before Christmas, you can be sure I will be there with bells on. Literally! There will be photos! Yes!

A new friend

As Princess Giselle says, it's always nice to make new friends!

This little madam appeared in my backyard this afternoon

She wasn't sure what to think of me at first

But after some circling and a friendly headbutt, we were on speaking terms

Or so I thought...

I was wrong. It seems we are both going to pretend the other doesn't exist.

Meanwhile, back at the fort...

...Molly makes sure no one steals the Christmas presents.

Tuesday, 20 December 2011

Christmas boots

On ModCloth, the boots look like this;

On me, they look like this!

How awesome are these boots? Now I have something to wear to every Christmas party / function and it won't matter if the rest of my outfit is a sack.

Apologies for the lack of sewing posts lately, I've been working on the garden and haven't had time for any other projects. A garden update will appear soon!

Saturday, 17 December 2011

Half n half dress

I love making these dresses. They are a great way to use up pieces of fabric which aren't quite big enough for an entire dress.

The skirt is a slightly thick, 2-way stretch which is soft and brushed on the inside. It needs no hemming, which I LOVE. It's super stretchy and comfortable and presents no problems when walking around or leaping onto trams (in a dignified manner as always).

I have previously made this style with a strawberry-print top half, and one with a sweetheart neckline in bright turquoise. Both with the same black skirts. This particular dress needs a couple of small edits before I can wear it in public. The zip needs to be re-done, as I had a rather small seam allowance and it's not quite holding in places. I also need to take in the side seams. I thought I'd make the skirt tight and the bodice a bit loose, aiming for a blouse-tucked-into-skirt look. It failed. It just looks baggy.

Bodice from New Look 6557, skirt from Vogue 8555. I find this pencil skirt works best in stretch fabrics. It has double darts on both sides, front and back. I tried it in a cotton and the darts just made a weird bowl-shape around my stomach. REALLY attractive. A stretch fabric seems to smooth it out.

New jewels

I have had this beautiful set of Samantha Wills jewellery on lay-by for ages. I finally picked it up this week as my Christmas present to myself.

There was a ring as well but I already have about a billion rings, so I went with the bangle. It's pretty difficult for me to find bangles and bracelets that fit because I have small wrists, so I'm very pleased with this one.

The necklace is reversible! I think the chain could be slightly longer though. And yes, every single piece of jewellery comes in a little gorgeous box!

Now all I need is a special occasion so I can wear them! Why, I do believe Christmas is coming...

Sunday, 11 December 2011

A world of my own

Sewing projects have been put on hold this week. It's been hot. Too hot for this little dame. And there is nothing joyous about being swathed in fabric when it's hot. Luckily (for all of us), the heat is abating and the creativity should be flowing at warp speed as usual very soon.

When I'm operating at 100% (ie, whenever it's not hot) this is where it all takes place;

The Sewing Corner.

The Chair. Generally covered in past/current projects or shop-bought items in need of alteration or repair.

The Shelves. Stocked with fabric I've bought because "I'll use it one day."

The Walls. Peppered with images to remind me every day that I am glamorous, female, capable, beautiful, girly, feminine, pretty, intelligent, desirable and worth 48 million dollars. Marilyn Monroe and Dita von Teese are heavily featured. Updated weekly.

The Sewing Cabinet. Inherited from my mother, and equipped with enough drawers and bench space to accommodate all those bits and pieces (not to mention billions of buttons) we all acquire over the years.

The Box. Generally stuffed with, well, stuff that won't fit on the shelves.

There is also an entire room to go with this corner of wonderousness but this is basically the hub of it all.

Tuesday, 6 December 2011

Anyone for a picnic?

I feel like I should be at a picnic or on a farm when I wear this dress.

I don't know why I didn't think to bring a bale of hay to the photo shoot!

The dress is made with the same combination of patterns as the black & red dress. The only difference is the neckline. I added a very - VERY - subtle sweetheart shape. It's too subtle to really see though.

The red things are actually cherries, in case you're wondering.

Photos courtesy of Lou over at Miss Tallulah Porkchop.

Monday, 5 December 2011

What would you do with this fabric?

When I saw this fabric I had a small aneurysm. It's purple. And snakeskin. Purple snakeskin! Eeeee!

What to do, what to do? My first thought was "maxi dress!" and then, "But what kind of maxi dress?" Lately I gravitate towards a strappy style but I want to give this fabric the style it deserves. Sleeves? Short sleeves? Or long? Then I moved onto caftan style, er, things, but they're basically a cape with billowy sleeves, right? Kind of boring for this slinky silky stuff.

My Other Half advises an above-knee dress with a fitted bodice and straight skirt would be best. But this is very slippery slinky fabric. I don't think it would hold with a structured style. It needs to flow and drape. NEEDS TO.

So I'm back to maxi dresses without a single idea of what I should really do. Oh, help.

Friday, 2 December 2011

Goaty baby!

There should have been a sewing post here, but the dress I was working on this week failed. Well, it didn't fail as such, but it was the wrong fabric for the style of dress, or vice versa.

On the plus side, I get an unexpected trip to Lincraft tomorrow. Yay!

In the meantime, here is a picture of my cousins' new baby goat. Her name is Flora.

Flora is the daughter of Valentina

I think Flora looks somewhat like Molly. Aloof, and aware of how gorgeous she is. And very much aware that she is the subject of a photo shoot.

Naturally Valentina doesn't want her baby growing up too fast. She keeps a close eye.