stuck in boston without a cord for my camera!

and it is therefore difficult for me to post anything interesting. Blogs are not very interesting without photos (at least mine isn't!) and although I've been taking a wealth of photos, I can't upload them, as I have been in Boston much longer than planned. I am 2/3 of the way through this sweater in Lion Brand Fisherman's Wool, and I'm dying to post pictures, even though I think it's coming out bigger than I wanted and it looks like I might be ripping out the first sleeve and greatly reducing it...

Anyways, hopefully I'll be able to get back to this when I get back to DC!

Although I am plugging away on my sunshine sweater, all I think about is the project queue in my head. It has, of course, changed since a few posts ago. Here's where we're at:

1. Sunshine sweater. Yes, we know.
2. Still on target for the Sunny Tied Quilt; I have almost all the fabric and started stitching some of it up before I left, but am unsure if I like my fabric selection, although I'm still going to go for it. For whatever reason, I immediately thought "cowboys" when I decided to make this quilt, so I found a vintage-inspired barkcloth from Reprodepot that was exactly what I pictured. Then I compiled a bunch of vintage-inspired fabrics from the sale/clearance on Sew, Mama, Sew! We'll see...
3. A canvas/denim shift dress along the likes of this, this, or this.
4. Oh yeah, that baby dress!
5. All kinds of fun stuff from the used and vintage clothes I acquired this week in Boston, between Sew What?!? and the beloved Garment District. I am going to miss that place - I dug around in the $1.50/pound and picked up a couple things upstairs too, and I'm planning on playing around with deconstrucing and adding ruffles, pockets, making scarves, etc., and embroidery as well. I'm still beginner, so I'm trying to get my feet wet and my sewing machine warm.
6. Too many sweaters to count.

I am currently in Springfield, MA and will be going to Webs soon. Dear god.


baby shrug

Debbie Bliss Baby Shrug

I knit this with Rowan Handknit Cotton (334 Delphinium) so that it would be machine washable, but I don't love the feel and the look of 100% cotton yarn. Since knitting is largely about process, I like yarns that feel awesome while I'm knitting, and I don't really find cotton to fulfill this requirement. Like I said before, being persistent about knitting an accurate swatch paid off.
One addition to my "To Do" list in the last post:
5. Learn to knit continental. I've been working on it today and it's slowgoing - it feels so awkward and I constantly feel like I have to crack my knuckles.
I'll be posting pics of the sweater and dress together when the dress is complete!


an american tourister

I'm very excited about my new sewing "basket." I noticed a practically mint-condition American Tourister traveling case in a pile of "junk" my dad had made for an upcoming yard sale. I ogle these things in every vintage store I go in - I LOVE vintage suitcases. I learned that this is the case my grandmother used for trips to Sicily - confirmed by the Italian hotel soaps I found inside. I love it even more! And now it's even more tied to her as I use it for my sewing basket:

I finished the Debbie Bliss Baby Shrug today for a friend's baby due in September - it was a pretty quick knit, I guess being unemployed has its perks. I knit this sweater to match the dress I am going to make for her - a sneak peak of the fabric can be seen in my sewing "basket" above. And a sneak peak of the shrug can be seen below (it's currently blocking) - I was disciplined about knitting a swatch (this is the third, final, and accurate swatch) and it paid off because I knit a complete sweater without ripping it out and starting over AND the dimensions are correct as according to the pattern. Who knew.

Up next:
1. Baby dress (akin to the one pictured in my first post)
2. Sunny Tied Quilt (SO excited, just ordered a boatload of sale fabrics from Sew, Mama, Sew!)
3. Kim Hargreaves' Demi (I realize this is moronic since I can't seem to finish Meredith, but it is really important to me to start yet another complicated sweater so I can see what it will look like and then get frustrated and put it in Time Out. I learned this phrase from SnB DC's Felt 'n Belch group.)
4. Oh, and I want to try embroidery too.


a Great Big Bag

I finally finished this bag, which I thought would be done last Tuesday. I used a tapestry-type fabric I found in the remnants at Osgood's and lined it with a silk pattern that I love from the remnants at G Street (reinforced by a piece of white lining to make a solid background for the semi-sheer silk).

I love huge bags that I can throw everything in; I suppose this is because I don't have a car. It is pretty sturdy, with thick straps and a 4-inch overlap of the tapestry in the lining. Initially I planned on designing it like this bag I made in January:

but along the way I made the base wider and the straps thicker, and I managed to sew in a straight line now too. Finally. This fabric is much thicker and holds it's shape better as well.

Things were going well for the first half, at which point I thought "What if I was able to make this whole thing without using my seam ripper?" No such luck. Aside from other small errors, I made the lining slightly too small, and made the bag slightly taller than I initially calculated. I took it apart, cut the bottom of the lining, and added a panel of lining at the base. Oh, and I made a matching pillow. Well, not so that I have a bag/pillow coordinated set, but so that my mom would stop making fun of my folding chair:

Hopefully the next post will be something knit, but that might mean there is not a next post for a while...


wipe your mouth, please

With these cloth napkins from anthropologie. For some reason this top ended up being a lot harder than it looks, or than it should have been. Maybe I was being too impulsive since I expected it to be easy, but I ended up ripping out stitches repeatedly. I honestly should have been able to do this quicker if I was more careful.
Ultimately this was just two napkins (on sale for $3.95 each!) sewn together, with about a two inch seam at the top, tapering down to slits on the bottom. A hidden zipper is sewn on the left side, and I seemed to struggle with matching the patterns up at the sides, matching the ends of the zipper up properly, and sewing the space below the zipper correctly. The halter is just ribbon reinforced three times at the seam. I considered making the straps cross in the back, but I like the look of the halter.

I should iron things before I photograph them.


getting going

I'm starting this blog to sort of catalog things I've constructed, see if they get better, or if it gives me any other good ideas. And maybe help me make a business out of some of this one day... I'm new to this blogging stuff, so I'm sure there will be many adjustments to this thing for a while. Below (and above!) is a sample to get me going for future projects.