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I’m so crafty…

16 Jul

…even my digital devices are hand-stitched.

So, okay, I haven’t cross-stitched since I was probably…twelve years old. Maybe thirteen. But this was still a totally fun little project.

Ingredients

1 plastic cross-stitch iPhone cover (I got mine from “Connect Design”, here.)

1 free download cross-stitch pattern (this one is from here).**

1 small assortment DMC embroidery flosses (mine from the delightful Rittenhouse Needlepoint).

1 needle (included with plastic iPhone cover, above)

1 scissors

Time required: several nice long episodes of some television series of your choice. (I watched The Grand because I’m a big sucker for British period dramas.)

If you weren’t the kind of nerdy kid who did cross-stitch for fun, you can find a good intro tutorial online right here at the Purl Soho blog, who is the original poster of cross-stitch phone covers.

**some other really cool free cross stitch patterns that are both vintage and awesome can be found on the University of Arizona’s “digital archive of documents related to cross stitch“–god, how I love the internet!

Sewing poem

22 Apr

Delightful internet find of the day: Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Pattern, by sewing blogger Erin of “Dress a Day”, after Wallace Stevens’ Thirteen ways of looking at a Blackbird.

Creativity in words as well as in fashion and design…it’s almost too much.

(Quilt detail from Andrea Zuill)

Pants, Pants, and more Pants

21 Feb

I don’t wear pants very often.

It’s not a rule, per se, or a thing that I do, intentionally, wearing only skirts (although I’m a great fan and admirer of the No Pants! blog.)

I just figured out a while ago that in all photos of me taken anywhere, I prefer the way I look in skirts and dresses to pants, and since then, I’ve tried out various theories, in the following progression of thought:
1) Pants are particularly difficult to fit on MY body, and I just need to find the right styles and stick to those.

(and I drew this little sketch to illustrate it.)
2) I’m actually not really sure how to fit pants, and many of the ones I buy simply don’t fit very well, and I just squeeze myself into them, not knowing the difference, having quite likely spent my entire life thus far in ill-fitting pants.

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Chintz is in?!

15 Feb

I never thought I’d say that, much less with such delight.

One of my favorite online retailers, Shabby Apple, has presented a “Mad Hatter, vintage-inspired collection.”

And they’ve named the pieces after lines from the  poem Jabberwocky.

My favorite choices are the dresses “Frabjous Day”  and “Calloo Callay!”

The real joy is that these are all fairly simple patterns, and can be easily reinterpreted in a more quiet printed fabric, for those of us tempted , but not yet entirely convinced, by the return of vivid floral chintz prints.

Handmade Suitcase Challenge, on the way home!

1 Feb

Last hotel-room outfit update, for this little trip. (Off again, next week, though.)

When I packed, I thought this outfit was the most boring of the batch, but it turns out to be my very favorite of the week.

“Wear the Shift” shift dress, made by me.

“Que Sera” cotton cardigan, made by me.

-Bowtie Pendant, made by Cheri Lewis, of San Francisco.

I like that even though it’s all neutral colors, the textures play well together and the patterns keep it from being boring.

Houndstooth fabric against patterned tights and lacy knit cardigan, even the scalloped pattern on the bowtie necklace adds something similar, yet different. I will totally wear this again, and am happy that my mini-challenge led to new wardrobe discoveries.

Fun Fashion Accessories

31 Jan

Here’s something I’ve never thought of wearing before: Spats!

These are from Lux Legs, and I know they’re a little “out there”. But in my opinion, there’s a lot to like. The whole idea of spats is retro and/or steampunk, but I think some of these choices transcend that costume character and could be worn as a fun fashion element away from the theme park or con. I also like the way they change the silhouette of a shoe, and give the impression of ankle, calf, or knee-high boots, but without the investment or commitment of boots.  I wonder if spats wouldn’t be a fun sewing project, to play with this line and shape on legwear.

Fun Fashion Illustration

9 Jan

One of my many favorite Etsy shops is Matou En Peluche, illustrations of fashion, and cats, and birds, and other lovely things. I think they’re elegant and often portray a good amount of fashion detail in their spare and elegant lines. I have a few of these prints in my sewing room as inspiration and decoration.