The Plan

Stashbusting Sewalong Challenge Button 2015.pngHi All!

Lately, I’ve been having a strong desire to keep things more organized in my life. This also applies to the blog and the sewing plan, for the first time ever. I mean, look what I did to my stash:

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383.5 yards (THREE HUNDRED, EIGHTY-THREE AND A HALF YARDS), all organized by the kind and weight, and duly noted in an actual spreadsheet! My UFO area is still a danger zone, but that will change soon. As one might expect, I am again participating in the Stashbusting Challenge, and this time in a bigger capacity: I will be hosting August! The theme for that month is “Face Your Biggest Fears”, and I will be tackling some neon-green chiffon, and a Burda magazine pattern. I cannot vouch for the success of that operation…

But without further ado, here’s my pledge for 2015:

I, Jagoda of fitnottofit.wordpress.com, am pledging to use at least 5 yards of my stashed fabric per month. Furthermore, I will tackle at least one UFO per month.  

That’s it, nothing unattainable, which should be easy, right?

And here’s my list of TO DOs:

  1. Mabel skirt
  2. Trifecta top
  3. Participate in Mad Men Challenge, if lovely Julia Bobbin hosts it again
  4. Watson bra
  5. Make a coat
  6. Dye some silk and make slips
  7. Make a bag, at least one of them leather (there will be a Stashbusting sew-along later in the year, hosted by Sue of Fadanista.com, walking us through sewing of one of her awesome Japanese bags)
  8. Make slipcovers for my couch and chairs (ouch…)

So that is that! Do you want to participate in the Stashbusting Challenge this year? Head over to Emily’s for all the deets!

My stash and I will see you soon!

 

 

Happy New Year!

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Hi there,

I just wanted to pop in really quick and wish you all the best in 2015!!!  2014 brought me a lot of sadness with a light sprinkling of happiness which blossomed into a serious attitude adjustment. I feel like I’ve been evolving, making peace with things that I cannot change, and using that as a springboard towards things that I want for myself. For a long time I felt like making New Year resolutions was pointless, as I would hardly ever accomplish them. This year though, I will be making many, with crazy abandon, because even if I accomplish only one resolution, at the end of 2015 I will be in a better situation than I was at the end of 2014. Drumroll, please!

1. Continue sewing and stash busting (doh!)

2. Learn to play harmonica!

3. Participate in Popsugar Reading Challenge. I love to read, and I read a lot, but this time I want to get a bit more focused in my choices. Less Facebook, more book.

4. Another crazy challenge: Sketch-a-Day. At one point in my life visual arts were a huge part of it, and now I would like to rekindle this passion. Who knows what comes out of it?

5. Stick to blogging, and be more regular about it. Writing brings me great joy, and I want to do whatever brings me joy. And so…

6. Do whatever brings me joy. Don’t do stuff that make me miserable. Simple enough in theory!

Now, sewing talk. See the sparkly number above? I though it would be appropriate to share this, as New Year Eve is one of those nights that you cannot NOT wear sparklies… It started out about year and a half ago, as a dress which was based on my favourite T-shirt, with sheer, bell-shaped sleeves. Somehow I ended up with a hugely low neckline (I suspect the weight of the fabric might have something to do with it). I tried to salvage the situation by adding this stupid ruffly thing all around the neckline, but there was no use… The dress served as my Hottie cover-up (Hottie is my dress form. I named her Hottie, because I stuffed her boobs to correspond to my size, but I did not stuff her stomach, which resulted in ridiculously hot figure for said dress form).

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See the white peeking through from underneath the neckline? That’s Hottie’s bra… There was no way I would go anywhere in such a dress… In a flash of inspiration, I hacked off the sleeves, hacked off the stupid frill, took off about 1.5″ off the shoulder seams (in the front, and in the back), yadda, yadda, yadda, all finished an hour later! Year and I half in the making, hurray!!!

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I hope you dance like no one/everyone is watching. Let 2015 be the year of fun and hope, and new, crazy challenges! Will you be making any resolutions?

 

PS. More resolutions: get my driver’s licence, do a Tough Mudder, get more active with my kid, lose some weight, sew up a slipcover for my couch, put more effort into making new friends and “maintaining” old ones, meditate/gaze inwards daily… I’m sure more resolutions will be coming up along the way…

Totally weird print…

You know the fabric which is just lovely in every possible way, except the print is so weirdly placed that it’s really difficult to work with? Like this…

IMG_1033…charcoal-grey rayon knit, with the loveliest and most awkwardly spaced pattern. It cost me a pretty penny (even though I bought it on sale), but who could resist this majestic, technicolor lotus blossom? So beautiful and large, positioned so close to the salvage edge, so annoying to work with, due to the scale and placement of the flowers… A year ago I used some of this fabric to make a tunic for work (picture below), and I practically lived in it. You can see how faded the colours are…

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See? The lotus is really huge, and for this top I had to place it off-centre (the side seam is practically one of the salvages), and leave the sleeves plain.  I was left with about 3/4 of a yard (i.e. two lotuses) of this knit, which kept whispering my name every time I entered the sewing  dungeon. So often I held the precious yardage in my arms, loving the feel and look of it, and always having to put it back, not knowing what to do with it. Until one day, Vogue 8925 appeared on my radar, from which I previously made a grey “shlomping around the house” tee (not blogged, because what for?), aka View B. I really wanted to play with colour blocking, and decided that the lotuses will be perfect for the sleeves, and I managed to cut out the side panels out of the precious little that I had left of the plain stuff, and…

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Ta-daaaaaaaaaaaaa! As per alternations, I took off over an inch from both the centre front and CB, to fit my shoulders better (which resulted in me having to cut the neckline a bit bigger), and I added the band on the bottom and on the sleeve cuffs, which tied the whole thing together nicely.

Can I just tell you how much I love this top? I love the colours, I love the blocking effect, and I love how nicely my arms blend with the surroundings. And no, I did NOT plan to have the top match my hair colour EXACTLY… Yet, I remain victorious!

October?

What made me decide to write about my vacation, finally? Well, few days ago I bought a bike, which I was going to ride to my yoga class today. As I was bumping the bike down the stairs off the porch, the chain fell off. Not wanting to dirty my hands, I grabbed a piece of old wood trim that my husband just replaced and left it on the porch. To make a long story short, I did not manage to put the chain back on, but I managed to get a flat tire, due to a nail sticking out of the trim. So I’m not doing yoga today, and have some time on my hands…

I had a great summer with  lots of camping and fun, but my grandmother’s illness and death back in Poland gave July and August a sad tinge. The timing of my trip over the pond worked out in such a way that I stood over her grave exactly a month after she died… But from the beginning:

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London was amazing! Something about it really resonated with me, it felt like I’ve been there before, maybe in my past life? And even though I consider myself a fairly successful transplant to North America, I ofter yearn for European lifestyle, which my London excursion just cemented. Next, off to Wales, with a little detour on the way:

 

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Stonehenge was… it was… impressive? I don’t even know what word I’m looking for. One thing I could not get over was THAT SKY. The clouds always racing across, so huge, pillowy, and overwhelming. And the crows the size of chickens… And why am I pointing to my head while standing in front of the hide? Well, I found out from one of the ladies who was giving a demonstration on Stonehenge builders’ fashion, that every animal has enough brain in their skull to cure their own hide. Yes, apparently brains cure leather, the lady told me so… Off to Wales:

 

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When I grow up, I want to live in Wales and be a sheep farmer, I am in love with that countryside! We spent a few days in Cardiff, and my son was very impressed with The Bay, he just wanted to keep looking at it, as he was lying on the boardwalk looking at the water below… And finally, I got to shop for fabric, yey! Cardiff has a few nice fabric stores, where I fingered many fine Liberty Kona cottons, finally buying…

 

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Yes, FIVE buttons… Off to Poland!

 

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So many friends and family, it was just incredible reconnecting with everybody! And finally I did more damage fabric-wise:

 

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8 meters in total, could have been worse! And now I will leave you with my favourite picture from the whole trip, and a firm reassurance that the next post will be about sewing!

 

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See you soon!

 

Here, Oonapalooza NEVER ends…

So, I missed Oonapalooza… Even though I was so stoked when it was first announced, I just couldn’t wait to celebrate the wonder that is Oona, in global unity with other sewcialists. But what can I say? I had ridiculously busy summer so far, and the dog ate my homework, and blah blah blah. But it does not matter, you know why? That’s right, the title says it all.IMG_1301

This skirt was conceived in April. See, waaaaaaaay before Oonapalooza was announced. Because the hotness that is Oona is seared deep into my brain. I bought this fabric when there was still some snow on the ground. I desperately wanted to drape myself in some serious colour, hence the idea of a maxi circle skirt. I drafted the circle part, and to my horror I discovered that I was seriously short on fabric. At least 4 inches (10cm) in the waist (the waistband is the waistband of the hight-waisted pencil skirt from Gertie’s book).  Two weeks ago I happened to accidentally fall into a Fabricland, where they had this fabric on special. I cut that extra wedge that I needed, inserted the zipper (horror!), and discovered that now the band was too large… By about 4 inches… WTF? How??? I inserted a wide elastic into the back portion of the waistband. I feel like a toddler, but hey, it works…

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So, by now you’re probably all dazzled by the lovely colours of the skirt, and the awesomeness of the greenery in the background. All the tomatoes, and swiss chard, my forget-me-nots, and the clematis, am I right? And you probably wonder how in this world can I maintain all that so effortlessly, right? Well, check out my ride, a huge help in my agricultural efforts.

 

IMG_1310And this is how I roll…

Liebster Award Nomination

Helloooo Lovelies, I have to say I am downright floored by all the love I’ve been getting for my rendition of the Bombshell swimsuit. And I am aware that it’s not just about the swimsuit, it is because I, in all my “glory”, modelled the suit for you. There were NO negative comments, no trolling or body shaming (and I have to say, I was expecting some), which makes me think that women REALLY want to see real bodies out there. So let’s get out there ladies, let’s be real, let’s be all that we are. Let’s not be defined by a number on a scale, the size tag in your pants, or number of dimples on your butt, or by number on the cake. Throw out your scale, drop your pants, sit your butt down, and eat your cake, darn it!!! And feel good about it!

IMG_2636But seriously, positive feedback is great, especially when given by somebody who is well-accomplished and admired, one of my personal sewing heroes. Somebody like Sue of Fadanista.com, who nominated me for Liebster Award. What did I get nominated for? My sense of fun and hair… OK, thanks Sue!

So the award works like a chain letter (which I ALWAYS break, but I couldn’t this time, since I respect Sue too much), you answer the questions posted by the nominator, then you nominate 3 other bloggers with readership of less than 1,000 (or 3,000, there are different rules out there). The nominator asks the nominees 10 questions, and chain goes on… The goal is to spread the blog love, of course!

Sue’s questions are in italics, my answers in regulars:

  1. What do you want to make but feel too apprehensive to start? The idea of sewing a winter coat gives me anxiety attacks. I tried for TWO winters, every year it’s the same, I prep fabric, lay out pattern pieces, and run away… Maybe this year…
  2. Apart from your sewing machine/s, what is your most used sewing tool? The serger, unless that counts as a sewing machine?
  3. What is the next skill you want to acquire? Play harmonica and ride a longboard. Not at the same time.
  4. All time favourite pattern? Easy: Vogue 8849. Easy too work with, simple to alter, great to hack!
  5. Fave era for clothes and sewing? I’d have to say 50s in terms of practicality, but in my heart of hearts I want to say Rococco or Baroque. I’ve never attempted to sew anything historical, but it’s difficult not to have a cow while looking at those tremendous creations, either in museum, or even looking at pictures of old masters. At least once I’d like to have a chance to dress up in a costume like that…

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    I mean, c’mon… Tell me you wouldn’t want to dress up like this, at least once… Check out this informative blog:http://historyofeuropeanfashion.wordpress.com/2012/05/14/rococo-ruh-koh-koh-florid-or-excessively-elaborate/
  6. What other creative pursuits do you have? Gardening, colouring my hair, blogging, taking pics of insects.
  7. Where would you really like to shop for fabric? Well, NYC, of course! I also would like to visit one of those huuuuuuuuuge markets somewhere exotic, like Istambul, or somewhere in India. One of those places that sell everything AND fabrics, and everything is so different than what we have here, in North America!
  8. Where do you mostly buy your fabric and notions? Generally I buy my fabrics locally, either in the “fashion district” here in Toronto, or in a local Fabricland. I also gorge on fabrics at an annual Textile Museum sale, this last May I purchased about 30 meters of different treasures there… Still feeling guilty about cheating on my stash busting group like that…
  9. What stops you from doing more sewing? Oh, you know, family, work, sleeping, sunshine, creative frustrations, lack of focus, too many choices in fabric and patterns…
  10. What place is top of your bucket list? Australia and New Zealand. I have this longing to go there, always have had it… And maybe while I’m there I can have a cup of tea with Sue?
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    Sue? Tea? Here? Image source:http://beauty-places.com/ayers-rock/

    Whew! OK, now my turn for nominating:

Sandra from Just Sew, for being one of the nicest Toronto sewcialists, as well as a tremendous sewist. She doesn’t tend to post pics of her creations (why? why? why???), so take my word for it, she is excellent!

Next, Sarah-Jane from Wearable Miscellany. She is fearlessly starting to sew, but she’s also an accomplished jewellery maker. I secretly hope that she eventually will create a fusion between clothes and jewellery, nudge, nudge!!!

Elle of Elle C Sews. I love her projects, her dyeing, and her entertaining writing. Maybe this little award nomination will encourage her to post more often?

So now my questions:

  1. What’s your latest make?
  2. If you were to paint your entire house one colour, what would it be?
  3. What’s your favourite beverage? Alcoholic, of course…
  4. Where do you get your inspiration to sew?
  5. Favourite pattern, and why???
  6. Knits or wovens, and why?
  7. What are three skills that you would like to master in the next 10 years?
  8. Stones or Beatles?
  9. If you could meet one fictional or deceased person, who would you like to meet? And what would you like to do with them?
  10. What is one thing that you totally and absolutely do not have any desire to sew, and why?

All right, it’s off to you peeps!

 

Bombshell Much?

QUICK, I must write this post QUICK, before I lose the nerve to post the pictures!

The Bombshell Swimsuit, oh how do I love thee? Even on a day when one is seen by the offspring in the nude, and the child roars with glee “mommy, your boobies look like great, big sausages”. One counteracts this feeling of “WTF, seriously?” by tightening the halter straps even more, in an attempt to give oneself more support. It works, although it slightly feels like one might get decapitated by said straps. But seriously, I love sausages.IMG_1209

This is the first EVER swimsuit that I’ve ever made. I found the process as intimidating as making a coat (last two winters I was trying to make a coat. I would lay out the fabric, the pattern pieces, start hyperventilating, and walk away), but I followed  Heather’s of Closet Case Files Bombshell Sewalong every step of the way, which really, really helped.

I will consider this version a wearable muslin, since now that I wore it a few times there are a few things I’d like to change, due to my specific “figure needs”. Fist, lengthen the “bodice” in the front only, to get more ruching, especially over the stomach. Secondly, experiment with different bra cup inserts, to help with the support situation. I also need to either drop or lift the backline, since the point at which it hits me across the back is a bit unflattering. But hey, I went swimming in a PUBLIC SWIMMING POOL in this swimming suit  yesterday, the boobs stayed put where they needed to be, there were no malfunctions of any kind, I felt way more put together and confident than I do in any other swimsuit. And all of that with my bikini lines, ehem, ungroomed. Who woodda thunk?

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I already cut out and started sewing another version, this time in black. So far so crap, on my very first seam I screwed up, and in the process of ripping out the stitches I made runs in the lining, like in pantyhose! Gah, I will have to recut the lining, or go without the lining, will laziness prevail this time?

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Anyhoo, hope you like my lettuces and tomatoes. And radishes too. And in the next episode I will tell you how Sue nominated me for the Liebchen Award.

Happy summer all!