I know, it’s Wednesday already, but I’m a slow blogger. This is one reason I’m trying out Twitter – to give little updates that are more timely. I’m finding it completely confusing so far, but if you want to follow me you’ll know precisely when the UPS guy delivers new fabrics and other possibly interesting/not interesting tidbits.
Okay, back to Sunday. I wore coloured tights for the first time! (since I was 5) This was a silly personal goal of mine this year, to finally wear a pair of turquoise tights I’ve had for ages. Done.
Then, I had two surprise visitors to the workroom Sunday afternoon. Rosalyn and Michelle bumped into each other near Sanko, picked up some treats and came by the workroom. It was an impromptu sweet treats party!
Michelle also brought along a cute embroidery book for me to look at. I’m posting photos because it’s full of awesome ideas. The book is called Embroidery Animals & Insects (ISBN 9784021904288) I really love the little embroidered felt postage stamps. I need to embroider a quilt label for my double wedding ring quilt and wish it would look like there were adorable hedgehogs crawling around my perfectly formed letters.
You going to detect an ongoing theme this week. This Sunday August 17th is the Kids Trunk Show at the workroom. Plus, there are other crafty activities in Parkdale that day, like the Good Catch Double Dutch Craft Show.
I’m going to be doing a couple profiles this week of some of the participants, so there will be lots of posts to keep you entertained!
It’s my day off today and while I was running some errands in Bloor West Village, I stopped into the Laura Secord to get a cone of Super Kid. I’m not sure exactly what the flavour is meant to be, but I totally love it.
I might as well confess, my favourite Baskin Robbins flavour is Bubble Gum and my favourite popsicle is the Rocket Pop. I guess I’m about 12 years old.
Check out this darling popsicle creation. Too cute!
Over the long weekend, I got to go to out of the city to visit a few plant nurseries. I wanted to go to Richter’s in Goodwood to pick up some different varieties of perennial herbs. Since it is already mid-summer, they didn’t have their full selection, but they still have many things I haven’t seen here in the city. I was able to pick up some Pineapple mint (it actually smells like pineapples!), Mojito mint (this one is straight from Cuba and I can’t wait to try it in my personal version of the Mojito), Kent Beauty oregano (mostly because it looks so pretty), Thai basil and various Thymes. The other thing I got that day was a flat of Ontario strawberries. This was the best $12 I had spent. Having fresh berries morning, noon and night is my idea of heaven. Also, I made Strawberry Balsamic Sherbet, which is really yummy.
I’ve been getting the Richters Herbs catalog for a couple years now. I absolutely love pouring through seed & plant catalogs, circling all the many things I want to grow. The Richters catalog is especially fascinating because they carry pretty much every herb you could think of from Banana Mint to Nutmeg Thyme to Valerian and Stevia. They also list all the medicinal features and the plants that can be used for natural dyeing. I’m started to get very interested in natural dyeing, so I’m planning next year’s garden (at home and at the workroom) to have plants that can be harvested for just that purpose.
My other favourite seed catalog is Seed Savers Exchange. They save & share heirloom seeds in an effort to preserve our garden heritage. They sell over 70 types of tomato seeds alone! I’ve grown their Yellow Pear tomatoes and Black Krim tomatoes with delicious success.
Partly gardening-related: If you’re going to New York this summer, definitely make a stop over to P.S.1 in Long Island City on a Saturday. This year is the ten year anniversary of their weekly Warm Up event. Lots of great music, art and incredible people watching in their outdoor courtyard. This year the space is transformed into an urban farmland. I’m intrigued by the idea of gardening in cardboard tubes. (via Cool Hunting) The Warm Up event started the summer before I moved to New York, so their ten year anniversary is making me feel old and a bit nostalgic.
Dress 2 – ‘V’ Style
Fabric – Yellow Maze fabric from the Alhambra Collection by Art Gallery Quilts
This book was the first Japanese dress book that I ever bought. I don’t remember what the translated title was at the time, but I did a google translation and came up with, “A nice one-piece straight stitch, much more! From 26 different styles”. The ISBN is 4-309-28055-2. There are 26 dresses in this book, each identified by a letter in the alphabet.
Many of the other Japanese dress books seem to come with a sheet with all the patterns, but this one doesn’t have that. The instructions in the back of the book show measurements (in cm) for every dimension of pattern pieces, so this adds another layer of work. The other thing is that it only shows measurements for one size. Perhaps the book discusses how to adjust the sizing, I’ll never know. Luckily, I fit into the one size they illustrate.
The dress is super simple, so it wasn’t difficult to figure out the construction. Plus, the schematics are detailed and well illustrated. The pattern calls for putting in a lining on the skirt, which I didn’t do. It also suggests putting the top together, then putting the skirt together and then attaching them to each other. I changed that and put the front pieces together, then the back pieces together and then attached the two halves to each other. The key detail of the dress is the fact that the button holes are offset from where the buttons are placed, creating a ripple. The little vintage buttons were a gift from my friend Jen and they perfectly match the blue grey dot in the fabric print.
It’s day two of my three day long weekend. I’m planning on trying out a new ice cream recipe using some fresh Ontario strawberries I bought yesterday!
This morning started off with a quick stop off at Kinkos (at Bloor & Spadina) to do some copying. Since it was such a sunny morning, Maisy & I walked down Palmerston to Queen Street and then across to the shop. I couldn’t resist stopping in at Kensington Market Organic Ice Cream even though it was before 11am. Ice cream for breakfast is perfectly acceptable in my world. I got a cone of their cinnamon ice cream, which was super yummy. I think it’s time for me to get out my ice cream maker.
Often times when someone buys the last bit of fabric off the bolt, there is an odd-sized piece left over. People worry they are leaving me with something I won’t be able to sell. What?! Not one bit of fabric goes to waste at the workroom. These odd bits actually go right into my growing collection of fabric. This particular fabric is called Connecting Flowers by Art Gallery Quilts. I’ve been plotting to make something out of this fabric since it arrived, but it keeps selling out. When i was left with .7 metres of this silver grey and yellow treasure last week, I knew just what I was going to do with it.
A while ago, I had read Field Guided’s post on shirring and saw the darling dress she made from some Henry Glass bicycle print fabric. Cute! Then a couple weeks ago Toast ‘n’ Eggs asked me if I could teach her how to do shirring. Now that I’ve done it, I think everyone should! It’s very easy, totally satisfying and the results are impressive.
I thought I would make a wider strap and I like the way they turned out. The straps are 1.5″ wide. I ran the remainder of the fabric through the serger with some silvery embroidery thread to finish the top and bottom edge with a rolled hem. The rolled hem is definitely my favourite finishing technique right now. For the shirring lines, I spaced them 1″ apart and did five of them. All you need to do is hand wind some elastic thread onto your bobbin and use a regular thread up top. I’m addicted. You’ll be seeing more shirring experiments from me for sure. Please try this, it will make you so happy.
A full tutorial for shirring can be found here.