naughty corner

This pair of red shorts-that-aren’t-short has been periodically tossed into the naughty corner all summer long. Yesterday’s go at it had me yet again trying to get the pockets in.

Firstly, you must realise I’d already sewn up the side seams with basting stitches, and done rather more to the waist than I should have.

Translated that meant I was willing to take out the side seam basting, but not the waist. Not a good choice, as it turned out. But as I deal with heat & humidity induced attitudes toward any activity needing cogent thinking, am cutting meself a break.

I also needed decided to use a contrasting fabric for half each pocket. A decision ripe for disaster under such conditions . . . especially as I’d pieced the blue & white contrast.

Three times I fiddled with those pockets. Getting out the pocket directions and squinting to decipher fading markings on front versus back, checking and rechecking which fabric was where.

I was finally reminded of Hila’s mantra, “done is better than perfect.” That was after realising, yet again, that I’d gotten wrong side of contrasting pocket in wrong place. I’m going to try living with it for a bit.

However, I’ve only put in the one pocket. Hedging my bets?  Final report anon . . . . .

P.S.   Has anybody tried the new Schnittchen Trine Cocoon Dress? Saw it Monday on Curvy Sewing Collective and liked what I saw & read. As always, thoughts & suggestions most appreciated!

P.P.S.  At least that dastardly pocket isn’t upside down. 😲

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prequel to old magazines

 

Yes, there’s a back story to my last post. I was hunting for an article on how to make tassels. In mentally working out a design for this in-process scarf (to match the hat) am thinking the added weight of some tassels will be needed to balance out the completed scarf’s lightness. And one might even appear on the hat – who knows?

Yes, I did find the article. I also rediscovered some knitting photos (below) that I’d used as inspiration for crocheted items. Crocheted whilst living in Chicago, I soon discovered that my version of the yellow-orange hood thingey did not keep out the bitter winds of a Chitown winter – too many holes! So if you get inspired, remember to be practical, too. 😉

I also sorted through lots of fascinating Threads articles, most of which I tossed. I’m beginning to realise I no longer have nor want to dress for a professional office, so all those tailoring & fitting articles are gone, and so is any temptation to return to such styles. (Well, not all the fitting articles got tossed… 😉)

today’s blogdom
Ever wonder how you manage to avoid spam in your blog’s Comments section? A little thingey called Akismet.  No relation to the 1950’s musical, Kismet, it’s a special programme that WordPress built into it’s structure.

{Edited to add: Akismet works only for spam comments on WordPress. It has nothing whatsoever to do with anyone’s personal email accounts.]

“Sooo…?” I hear some Lovely Readers inquire.

Briefly, because the European Union (EU) wanted to protect people’s on-line information they wrote the GDPR, a.k.a. General Data Protection Regulation.

It also applies internationally to companies the size of WordPress (and Facebook, IG, Google, Microsoft, etc). You can easily read about it on the EU site here.

That’s why WordPress has made a built-in announcement. Aren’t they clever?

Referring back to my stats here in the U.S. — Looking at them, I considered some of the dates/months listed on the left of the screen. Then I remembered what was happening (or about to happen) in the news at those times. There were some interesting numbers in months with interesting national activities. . .

Would you believe that in one month I got over 100 spam comments? And didn’t have to see any of them? I hadn’t even realised they were “there” because Akismet automatically put them into the spam folder.

They were all definitely spam. All from one or two sources (strangely “named” blogs) and all similar message.  Veddy, veddy weird.  I am so grateful I didn’t have to delete so many comments.

Sadly, these days we all need to be alert when we’re on-line. Why not take 5 minutes to look at your own Akismet page? It’s simple.

  • Log in and you should see your full Dashboard.
  • On the left side, look for Akismet Stats. It should be under Dashboard.
  • Click and all will be revealed.

Don’t see Akismet Stats?

  • Look here, scroll down to the left for Personal option–it’s free!
  • Click Get started with Personal.
  • On that next screen look down below the blue Continue bar to “Already have a wordpress.com account? Log in now” and follow the prompts.

summer books
Am slowly reading my way through these 4 books, savouring each of their varied perspectives, and enjoying them all very much. The Santa Klaus Murder is different from the other 2 Hay books I’ve read.

She includes a full-page list of characters, as well as the first floor house map. I use them both! The beginning chapters are each written from a different character’s perspective, with the final two-thirds written by the Chief Constable.

sewing?
Uh. . . The weather hasn’t been very propitious, and I’ve managed to stay quite busy indoors attending to rather a lot of maintenance issues. The apartment complex currently has a good crew, quite competent and patient. Those qualities have been needed, as earlier staff was a bit lacking. Changes were made. A-hem.

Twice last week I was told it was a good thing I’d caught a problem early. Once because it saved me from possibly turning on a kitchen sink tap and getting an upward geyser instead of a downward, normal flow. The second issue saved a lot of my fridge food from getting thrown away because of consistently too high temperatures during the defrost cycle.

So it’s been an interesting summer, folks . . . .

old magazines & sanity

my poor photo from my Victoria magazine: Original photo by Toshi Otsuki for Victoria magazine, October 1992.

Periodically I go through my piles of magazines and weed some out. In looking through my old Victoria magazines I decided again to keep the oldest ones, because to me they’re timeless.

I quickly tossed the few copies of the newer version I’d tried to like, after quick thumb-throughs. Then I opened a 1992 issue and was, yet again, totally captured by the prose, the layout, the photography.

That’s just my point of view. Curiously, the older versions of Victoria are still for sale in varying places on-line. Maybe I’m not alone. 😉

My early years were spent in the ambiance of up-state New York—the Peekskill and the Catskill Mountains, the Hudson River, The Legend of Sleepy Hollow and Rip Van Winkle country.

That’s what I opened to in the October 1992 issue—an article on John Burroughs, with photos taken at the John Burroughs Sanctuary in up-state New York.

The photos are superb, taken by Toshi Otsuki, who had a magician’s skill in bringing just the right light to so much of Victoria.

That’s my idea of Autumn!

After sitting through televised news, it’s been wonderful to immerse myself in another world where the colours sooth my spirit, and the words are soulful. Burroughs wrote and spoke of nature as “the primal sanity.”

Hudson River Views
“Our matchless October day—the ripest best fruit of the weather system of our clime . . . The early frosts are over, and the fall heats are past, and the day is like a full-orbed mellow apple just clinging to the bough.”
Burrough’s Journal, October 1883

This charming 8+ minute silent film is “From the American Museum of Natural History Library, Special Collections. Recorded in 1919, this film documents a day in the life of great naturalist John Burroughs, during which he receives three young visitors. Recorded in prizma color.”

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Further references ~

sewing, bread & the creative process

the moon isn’t the only thing with huge craters

Originally this post was titled “whaddya do when the bread don’t rise” but the writing wasn’t ‘rising’ either, so I put photos and post aside.

Serendipitously, whilst chatting with long distance sewing pal Jen the post came to mind again and she persuaded me to fix and post it. So here it is.

progress in slow sewing process

cutting out the shorts

There’s been a bit of progress – I can share a large unlined bag (below), made from leftover red & white cotton for the knee high shorts that are almost done. Plus the green & gold hat I’ve been crocheting is ready to be stitched up & pompommed.

Yeah! Progress in both the sewing and crocheting processes.

Creating something is a process, and I tend to forget sometimes that sharing the steps of that process in a post can be as interesting as a post written upon completion.

Whether it’s baking bread or sewing, the creator gets to choose what to pay attention to and what to work around and what to ignore. And those can be the interesting and valuable bits of the process, the things to share with others in our wonderful sewing community.

Friend Jen and I made a bargain: I’d revisit my belaboured post and she’d write about the latest bits in her process. (I hope she lists those patterns!)

Which reminds me… over the weekend I finally faced up to a black duster I started last summer. You know, the one that’s been lying on my cutting table for at least 6 weeks. I just don’t like the cotton gauze fabric. There’s not a thing wrong with it, I simply decided at some point that it was not “me.” E-vah!

So I’ve given myself permission to Let It Go. Even though it’s almost done. What a relief ! ! ! And you’ll never guess: Jen knows someone who might like it for a project.

What about that bread? I kept it. That weird end piece was eaten in bits with bites of cheese. The normal part I sliced, toasted and enjoyed.

Realisation? Most parts of the creative process are useful, but sometimes later rather than sooner. Plus, its’ value can extend beyond just yourself.

What you think isn’t worth writing about might be just the spark a Lovely Reader needs to move their own process forward.

s-l-o-w knitting & sewing in summer heat!

knitting
Have become fascinated with this autumn yarn as it slowly evolves into different colours.

sewing
The shorts-that-aren’t (short, that is) are cut out and might even have a seam or two sewn by the time you read this. Took a gamble with the top of the pocket bags and made them from  blue cotton, left from last year’s shorts. Necessity was the mother of this, as there wasn’t quite enough of the red fabric. Using perennial fav B5432, with length added to use up the fabric.

Somewhere between photo program and WordPress I’ve photos of another cotton fabric cut out for a new toaster cover. (So mundane, but oh so looking forward to!)  Whilst making up the bed just now realised the remainder of that fabric might make a nice little table cover… Never know when inspiration may strike!

nigella’s on our telly
We’re seeing Nigella Lawson’s latest series, At My Table, over here on our PBS stations. In last  week’s episode (No. 4) she admitted – and showed herself using – her “sewing shears” to cut chives. Well! You should have seen the scissors – maybe 6 inches – and definitely not for fabric.  A small needlepoint’s tangle of threads would be more like it.

Clearly, the lady needs a good session with Sewing Bee peeps. I can see it now, can’t you? Nigella Brings Biscuits to Bee!

latest British library crime classics
Just finished reading Mystery in White by J. Jefferson Farjeon, which was very pleasant indeed. As Martin Edwards wrote in the Introduction, “For all the chill of the Christmas-time snow… there are repeated clues to Farjeon’s amiable personality in the good humour that shines through from start to finish.”

“Welcome back to the loving family,” she exclaimed. “I haven’t quite (Farjeon’s emphasis) given up my idea of a happy Christmas, David, but Peace and Goodwill have got to get a move on!”

Christmas or no, wouldn’t more Peace and Goodwill be lovely right about now?

Am awaiting Hay’s last and some say best book, not quite in the mail it seems… Don’cha hate it when you see a notice saying “we’ve shipped your books,” and when you click to see the anticipated delivery date the books are still at the bookseller’s?!

Thanks to Sandra at Wild Daffodil for recommending this week’s 15-Minute Drama, “Ground Control.” Several surprises at the end, what?!  (This is only available for a month, so listen now if you’re interested.)

other media
Friday’s Woman’s Hour (just before the Drama) included Aussie author Kathy Lette saying things like “women are each other’s human Wonder Bras—uplifting, supportive and making each other look bigger and better.”  Must say I hadn’t made that connection . . . . .

Friday night was also the “current” (as in what’s finally made it across the Atlantic) episode of The Great British Bake Off.

After Mary & Paul, there was a new program, The Food Flirts. Ever heard of The Brass Sisters? I hadn’t.

“Meet the Brass Sisters a.k.a. THE FOOD FLIRTS! Two passionate food explorers of a certain age on a mission to tackle their culinary bucket list…one bite at a time!”

“… We believe that a cookie is like a secret kiss between the giver and the recipient, and that chocolate is a necessary indulgence.”

With a good chocoholic attitude, what’s not to like?