Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Wednesday List: six delicious smug lunches

Lately I've been doing this basically quite ridic thing where I smugly take a picture of my lunch and post it on a dedicated Twitter account.

I tried to come up with some reasons but really it's just silliness that allows me to humblebrag about my lunch. Here are some best ones:

Monday, January 12, 2015

Recently finished objects

If there have been any themes to my summer holiday sewing, they have been 

  • NSFW: as in, I've made cool, shapeless garments that aren't formal enough for the office (shapeless is my new favourite shape);


  • fiscal responsibility: I’ve been crafting from my stash, so spending very little. I think this has made me slightly less inclined to make things, but it has meant that I’ve managed to make a dent on my pile of fabric, and have developed some new pattern-making skills.

Tunic dresses

Houndstooth tunic
These were made from a free Japanese pattern that I drafted from instructions. The tunics have that Japanese-pattern aesthetic that I'm really keen on at the mo’.
Striped tunic
I’ve made two versions - one in a striped voile (above), the other in a sort of cotton houndstooth that reminds me of Aertex shirts (top). Both tunics are in variations of navy and white - I’ve been obsessed with sewing things in navy for some time now and I don’t seem to be bored of it yet. 
I’m not entirely convinced of how flattering they are BUT - I wore both tunics incessantly while we were away, and they were gloriously cool and comfortable to wear. Waists! I’m against them.
Tunic at waterfall
Here I am wearing one of my new fave dresses while standing near a beautiful waterfall near Lake Tarawera

80s kimono t-shirts (midriffs ahoy-hoy)

Apple print tshirt
I’ve also made two of these kimono t-shirts - one in a black striped linen and one in an apple print fabric that I think looks kind of Marimekko-esque (above). The apple print is the last of my Berlin fabric, and it brings a little tear to my eye now that it’s all gone.
Stripe tshirt
If this fabric looks familiar - it's because I've also made a dress and an infinity scarf from it. Good mileage!
The pattern is Simplicity 7517. I picked it up at my local St Vincent de Paul's, from memory. If you’re looking for the pattern, the envelope looks like this:
Simplicity 7517

An almost-Japanese riff on a Scout t-shirt

Striped dress
I had an idea that it would be kind of great to have a dress that had a wide t-shirt style bodice and a gathered skirt - and in the absence of a budget for new patterns, I drafted my own using the Scout t-shirt for the bodice.
I’m pretty stoked with how it’s turned out TBH - it’s super comfortable, and while the fabric has a bit more weight to it than I think would be ideal for this style of dress, it is really lovely to wear. Also: navy and white stripes are my boyfriend.
Striped dress bias detail
This the bias binding I used, it feels like a special secret while I’m wearing the frock - and it saved me having to make my own. This came from Japan City - they always seem to have a heap of fun bias.

Wooden yarn bowl

My excuse for my paltry effort at holiday sewing is that the weather has been so beautiful that it's felt almost wrong to sit inside and sew. Instead I’ve been sitting outside in the sun, reading my eBook* and knitting.
Outside knitting has its issues - the biggest being that it’s too easy for the yarn to fly out of its bag and get dirty. Dealing with this very serious problem led me to research yarn bowls, which in turn led me to a Pinterest image of a wooden bowl up-cycled to a yarn bowl, which inspired me to make my own.
Knitting bowl
This is my first woodworking project since technicraft woodwork at Waitangirua Intermediate, aged 12
Given that I had only a handsaw, a drill, a couple of grades of sandpaper, and a patient Shannon at my disposal, I’m feeling pretty good about my attempt. In future I’d like to polish the spiral a bit, and maybe make some tweaks to the curve, but - in the meantime, it’s working like a charm.

Total outlay for all projects

I already had thread, fabric and patterns for all the sewing projects - the only thing I bought was another reel of overlocking thread (about $6).
The bowl cost me $12, and the sandpaper about $20, bringing my holiday projects to a total cost of around $40. Not too spendy!

*eBooks have solved that pesky knitting-and-reading issue of the book not lying flat, and the problems in juggling knitting and book while trying to turn a page. I’m a fan.

Wednesday, January 07, 2015

Tuesday, January 06, 2015

Sunday, January 04, 2015

Sunday Film Fest: The Ancient Worlds - The Spartans

Do you have almost two and a half hours to watch Bettany Hughes being excited about Ancient Sparta, and particularly about the role of women in Spartan culture (cf. to the role of women in Athenian culture of course).

You should MAKE THAT TIME. I have watched this three times now and I can almost look past Bettany Hughes' breathiness it is so good.


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