Category Archives: sewing

macro Monday

You’ll never guess what this is . . .

. . . so I’ll put it down the bottom of this.

Lots has been happening over here, but not much sewing. With rellies close to some of the California fires (more & more contained every day now), and others receiving Laura’s heavy rains, it’s been eventful.

I shan’t mention what else’s been going on as there’s already too much repetition. Suffice to say just reading headlines is enough to set one back.

Got it glued together and cut out. The pattern, that is. Still debating the fabric . . . but the cutting table got cleared off so it can proceed!

How some ever, Helen (of Helen’s Closet Patterns) just put out a free pattern for joining (or rejoining) her mailing list.

It’s the Luna blouse pattern, and is super fast to whip up.

Depending on the size & fabric width, it can take less than a yard of knit fabric, and looks cool and breezy. Perfect for our hot & humid summers (typically well into October).

Received my first issue of Sewn magazine, a U.S. publication (they ship internationally!), and am thoroughly amazed by all it contained.

my SEWN magazine – LOVE these hats!

The cover story is about a pair of independent Black men who make bespoke unisex hats up in Washington, D.C. I want one soooooooooo bad!!!

Lots still to do so this will be short. Hope everyone is perking up a bit – maybe with cooler weather. Sigh… at least we’ve got lower humidity for of couple days.

 . . . . . Top’s a photo taken of a NEW box of ice cream just delivered from a local store. . . No, I didn’t eat any. 😱

ScrapHappy Saturday, August

Wonder of wonders! For once I’m working with scraps and remembering to get something posted. Am joining up with Kate, Cathy, and other scrap-happy folk.

Back in June I made a pair of stretch denim shorts from leftover denim. As I started wearing them around the apartment and sitting down, I realized they were the exactly perfect length for the hem to fold up whenever I sat down.

I tried ironing. Nope. Then I remembered I still had scrappy strips of the denim in my stash drawer. He-he-hee . . .

Last month I dug said scraps out and measured them all to the same height. Then I sewed the pieces together, and added them to the bottom of the shorts.

Now they’re just above the knee, and I still have enough for a patch pocket or two. Maybe even one large enough for a phone…

Success is sweet! 🤣

August’s Virtual Tea Party

From the top: Spiced Foundation Cake, grapes, and Aldi’s scrummy Garlic & Chive Pita Crackers with Swiss cheese and tomato.

Welcome, Everyone! I’m so delighted to see you! The virtual kettle’s on the boil, and the goodies are all ready. Come in outta the heat and, as the Welsh might say, “fill your boots!”

There are lots of summer berries and grapes in our shops just now, so I’ve got selections of a few favourites, plus some new flavours for you to try.

Goodness! Are we really half way through August? It doesn’t seem possible!

See top photo for slices of Spiced Foundation Cake

There I was yesterday, anticipating greeting you lovely blogdom friends, whilst mixing up my American granny’s Foundation Cake recipe.

I’ve no idea where she got it. It almost reads like an offshoot of the Depression and war-era recipes I’ve served in the past, until you get to the then-expensive or rationed eggs and milk.

Taking time, I measured out everything before getting out the mixer and really doing things thoroughly. The result is a very light cake with a lovely texture. (See top photo)

I added “pumpkin pie” spices (cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, allspice), but no raisins. You might think it would be too much like a Raisin Spice Cake, but to me it’s lighter in flavour.

Blueberries & cream over chocolate cake!

Ripe berries are now in season, so strawberries and blueberries are on offer for today’s tea, along with the lightly spiced Foundation Cake, and chocolatey Wacky Cake, which I made in a loaf pan this time.

The recipe says you can do that, so I lengthened the cooking time and it turned out beautifully. I did the same with the Foundation Cake, so there were the two loaves to slice and sprinkle with fruit and cream, as desired. (Sorry, I didn’t get a piccie.)

Now let me tell you a bit more about grannie… She never talked much about her childhood, and only came to stay with us when widowed. Even then she shared her time between her two sons, so she wasn’t always with us.

The only thing better than strawberries & cream is adding chocolate cake!

As a child, her family traveled westward from the Ozark Mountains by covered wagon, settling in what’s now Oklahoma. (“Indian Territory” was the government’s designation then.) I learned more recently that the boundary between Texas and Oklahoma was very fluid then, which today’s genealogists find very confusing.

Growing up in the heart of the Depression’s Dust Bowl region made for a hard life, and neither dad nor uncle talked much about their experiences. My uncle said sometimes they would shell pecans for a nickel a bucket. If you’ve ever shelled a pecan, you know how hard that it.

Many of our ancestors have known and survived hardships and deprivations over the years.  I hope that remembering them can help bring today’s problems more into perspective.

Meanwhile, go in Peace and Be Safe, Dear Friends. . .

❤️     ❤️     ❤️   ❤️     ❤️     ❤️

I’m joining in with Su’s Virtual Tea Party. Do go over and try one of her tarts – they look amazing!

A virtual invitation!

Celebrating!

Nearly forgot to remind you all that it’s time for our monthly Virtual Tea Party!

And since it is virtual, you can come any time and find the kettle on, and goodies ready to gobble up.

Hope you’ll stop by and start your weekend early on Friday afternoon, or whenever the fancy takes you!

See also Su over at Zimmerbitch, who started the idea back in January. She always has something special fresh from her cooker.

🐢 Silly Saturday 🐢

Making this even sillier, the photos in this article belong to their respected sources, so you’ll need to exercise your imagination to envision a turtle in such a situation, and click on the links to get the details. As for the deets on my latest squidgy package… all will be revealed eventually, as you’ve actually seen it before! 😉

The headline in the Christian Science Monitor started “From Legos to bra clips…”

That, combined with “turtle” and “wheelchair” definitely had me intrigued.

Then I discovered this article, with 2 videos that include diagrams of the “chair” and an update on Lego Turtle’s release back into the wild.

Happy First Weekend in August, Lovelies!

❤️     ❤️     ❤️     ❤️     ❤️

 

macro monday (updated)

Borrowing from 2019 & a restaurant’s freshly watered planter

Hope all you lovelies are surviving our current life’s little adventure, as I’m choosing to call our current state.

As several of you have written, we’re learning a lot of things about ourselves, some good and some perhaps just needed.

Here in our little blogging world, we’re focused on positives and creativity… possibly because most all of us are.

Edited:  Right is the one I meant to post.   I’m blaming it on the heat. 🥵

Save the date: Friday, 17 July

This coming Friday, the 17th,  all of you Lovelies are invited over, across, up or down to my place for tea.

I’ve been experimenting with little tea sandwiches and fillings of the poultry and fruity sort.

And I’ve found a source for whole wheat flour-YIPEE!-so we’re back in production. Not that my white loaves will go to waste. 😉

Hope you all will join me for conversation of all sorts and some nibbles this Friday.

PS/ Do wear light clothing, as we’ve a heat wave forecast: 100℉ or above.  🥵  (I will crank up the air con, but did want to alert you.)

Late for Textile Tuesday 🙈

My piece of DeGama ceedee pumpkin Shewshwe ~ Thank You, Anne!

First off, my apologies to Sandra (Wild Daffodil) for not getting this up Tuesday.

Her Textile Tuesday is the first Tuesday of the month, and all are welcome to join in.

How are you?? I hope you’re all safe and well and bearing up under our worldwide extremities. There’s so much good going on I try to focus on that. It helps put the other junk into perspective.

This is a little long, so you might want to collect your favourite brew and settle in for a bit. Hope you enjoy. 😉

June included Sewing Weekender 2020, online for the first time this year, and available to sewers across the globe.

Close to 2,000 people bought tickets, and over £26,500 (UK) was contributed to charities.

There were numerous videos for us to watch, and a Zoom chat session at the end of both days (Saturday and Sunday).

All-in-all, it was a wonderful experience that is still benefiting many of us!

For my part, I didn’t get much sewing done, and I understand that’s not unusual.  It can be a time for making new friends, learning new techniques, listening to favourite designers or meeting new ones ~ all things sewing!

This is the heavier or the two pieces.

There was also a HUGE virtual goodie bag. How they managed to pull it all  together in such a short time I’ll never know. Mind-boggling. Seriously.

Word is the online version may continue next year, so if you’re interested keep checking English Girl at Home and The Fold Line.

Also in June I finally ordered fabric I’d been wanting since 2018, and am now the proud possessor of two additional pieces of Ankara fabric.

About the weight of quilting cotton fabric.

Yes, I ordered two pieces from AKN Fabrics in New York, each are 6 yards. That’s a lotta fabric!

Both are 100% cotton, with the orange (above)  slightly less weighty than my Shweshwe (top photo), and the red (on left) about the weight of quilting cotton.

Both have almost no differentiation between  right and wrong sides. I decided to wash each (separately) in cold water in my machine, and they came out beautifully.

The Shweshwe that Anne (Compulsive Seamstress) sent me (top photo) is in daily use as a stole when I’m sitting at the computer under an air con vent. It just doesn’t seem to want to be anything else at the moment, so I’m not arguing.

Given all the happenings here in the U.S., I’ve been doing my research to find out more about what’s appropriate usage for this fabric, and what’s not.

In case this gorgeous fabric has also caught your eye, but you’ve not had time to get your questions answered, I’ve made a little list… 😉

Here’s the very instructive video Juliet’s done —

Phew! Still with me?  I’m gonna continue with books I’ve read/am reading and current sewing projects in another post.

Thank you sooo much for sticking with me. I do hope you’ll take another look at Ankara fabrics for your wardrobe, and put some sunshine into your closet!

😘     😘     😘

 

P.S./ Yes, you can also use it for quilts!

(not so) wordless Wednesday 😉

In looking over my spare summer wardrobe before MeMadeMay I remembered a red Renfrew almost never worn.

Neatly-removed sleeves revealed where I’d cut to the seam line when easing in the sleeves.

Mind you, we’d already had several days flirting entirely too closely with 90℉ when this Renfrew came to light. But would I wear it?

NO!

I doubt I’ve worn it more than once or twice since completion several years ago.  😱

Why? It’s a solid medium weight cotton knit and the fit is snug. But in heat & humidity anything even slightly heavy or snug doesn’t get worn. It was forgotten during cooler weather.

Enter some Snug Hug rayon bias tape, stitched to those neatly trimmed seams where short sleeves used to be.

Would that be enough to put this back on the wearable list?

Happily, it was! And it’s been in constant rotation along with some stretch denim shorts made from leftovers of my (2014!) denim winter maxi skirt.

This is why we keep a fabric stash!