More or less.
Thursday, October 23, 2014
More or less.
Monday, October 20, 2014
The outskirts of Hearne, Texas, if you were the nose gunner.
I came home feeling I need to sew more 1940's dresses.
We went on a road trip on Saturday but I did get some sewing done on Sunday evening.
The skirt is attached, and I got the buttonholes sewn. I have to finish the pocket seams still, and do the sleeves and buttons. I have a test sleeve to baste today. I had to piece the fabric but I should have enough.
Friday, October 17, 2014
Friday, October 10, 2014
I'm still working on the blue striped version of 4948, but I started the Marcus Brothers Cocheco Mills blue print one on a whim. I have barely three yards, though, and I had hoped to make at least short sleeves on it. I think I can get whole sleeves if I piece them vertically. I made the front facings and the pockets out of plain navy to save yardage.
I'm going with plain gold-tone buttons. I had to order more because Joann's stopped carrying them, and I had to order them directly through Blumenthal Lansing's online shop because apparently plain gold buttons with holes instead of shanks are insanely rare.
I'm shooting for long bishop sleeves, but we'll see if I can scrounge enough fabric to make that happen.
Oh, wow--I had no idea it had been that long.
I've been headache-inducingly busy at work, and that horrible head cold I caught on the plane is taking its dear sweet time to go away; I'm in pretty good shape except for a slight cough, and if that doesn't go away, I'll have to cave in and go to the doctor. Ugh.
I spent this weekend running errands but finally sat down on Sunday and made an apron. I got this awful cotton-poly fabric from great-aunt Marian, but somehow it makes a good apron.
One of the interns at work missed a chance a year or so ago to go to Wales, and I promised her Welsh cakes. They're kind of in between a biscuit and a pancake. The recipe I had was too buttery, but they were still good:
This past weekend was the Trinity Lutheran Quilt Show. I made them four charity blocks and donated a bag of scraps.
And I saw the blood moon. This is from my phone. My real camera pix, oddly, were even worse.
Monday, September 29, 2014
Predictably, I got no sewing done at all this weekend. I did get a bunch of cleaning done, though, and laundry, and some cooking.
This, folks, is how you cornbread.
Texas Cooking's "Grandma's Buttermilk Cornbread". This is the real thing: No flour, no sugar. It will clean your teeth as you eat.
I did it right, melting a spoonful of Crisco in the pan--that's a vintage Wagner, by the way--while I mixed the batter. You can smell it insta-baking when you pour it in.
Flipped right out:
And then back (onto a Fiesta cake plate):
Of course, if you have cornbread, you need peas to go with it:
1 cup dry peas
3 cups broth, more or less
1 onion, coarsely chopped
1/4-1/2 pound ham, diced
water as needed
small amount of oil
Soften onion in a little bit of oil. Add ham and broth and cook a few minutes, then add peas. Cover and cook until done. Keep an eye on the liquid level--the peas need to cook before the liquid can be cooked down. You probably won't need any salt because of the ham, but pepper to taste.
Serve hot over split cornbread. Top with chopped tomatoes, onion, diced jalapeños, etc.
Friday, September 26, 2014
The fabric will be brown sprigged calico with green trim. Brown calico because being a veterinary assistant taught me that drab brown patterned fabrics can hide any stain, and green trim because why not?
So I think that's going to be my weekend project.
Thursday, September 25, 2014
All measurements are approximate. I eyeballed all of it except for things like "1 large onion", which are by definition discreet units.
1 large onion, coarsely chopped
1 pound ground beef (turkey, whatever)
garlic to taste (I needed 5 cloves, plus, but mine are frozen. Fresh probably needs fewer.)
1 can rinsed/2 cups pre-cooked chickpeas
1-2 zucchini and/or yellow squash, quartered and sliced about 1/2 inch thick
1 1/2 cups pre-cooked bulgur, rice, or barley
cumin (I needed about a tablespoon, but mine is probably stale)
chili powder (teaspoon or more)
salt and pepper to taste
2 cups or so chicken or vegetable broth (I think I started with a 2-cup baggie and added some water. How much liquid you need is up to you)
Generous shot of lemon or lime juice
Optional: 1/4 cup white wine (I used Rex Goliath pinot grigio, which is honestly very good for a $5 wine)
Optional: Garlic salt (1/2 teaspoon, or to taste. Probably not necessary if your garlic is fresher than mine)
Optional garnish: Cheese. This was feta but cotija, Monterey Jack, etc., would do just as well.
Cook onion in a little oil until softened and translucent. Add meat and brown, crumbling as it cooks. Drain. Chill drippings while you cook the other things, then skim and add the juice back to the pot later, minus the fat.
Pre-cook zucchini if you want. I just added it to the broth but the texture might be better if it were seared a little first. Add zucchini and precooked grains later so they don't get too soggy. If you're using it, be sure to add the wine early enough that it has time to cook in so it won't just taste like a slug of raw alcohol in your soup.
Serve with cheese garnish if you wish, and maybe some bread. That's half a storebought bolillo and more of the pinot in the picture.
This would be fine as a vegetarian soup with more chickpeas and maybe some extra vegetables in place of the meat. I think it needs some spinach or kale or something in it next time.
Wednesday, September 24, 2014
Okay, that's pretty much the extent of my Welsh. I'm back. I had a great time but it's wonderful to be home, in my own bed, with washcloths and top sheets and other New World innovations. I'm picking up Mispickel tonight, and we'll see how long it takes her to forgive me.
I have so many pictures to process I hardly know where to begin. I only had sporadic Internet access so I uploaded the iPhone pix as I went, but there are still many to be uploaded from the camera.
Blaenarfon Iron Works (South Wales): Historic iron works with worker housing restored to represent various eras from 1790 to 1967.
Tintern (Southeast Wales): The Abbey, of course.
Blue stone outcrops: Source of the stone for Stonehenge.
Tre'r Ceiri: 2,000-year-old hill fort near Nan Gwrtheyrn.
St. Beuno's Church, Clynnog Fawr.
Aberdaron: Pre-Gothic church on the Llyn Peninsula.
Penarth Fawr: 15-century farmhouse.
St. Cybi's Well, Llangybi: "Llangybi" means "Area of Cybi", and the fact that we found the well despite spotty signage by realizing that the town name meant that was my crowning achievement in reading Welsh. (I don't read Welsh.) My mother met someone whose grandmother lived in the caretaker's cottage.
Dolbadarn Castle, Llanberis: 13th century.
Llanberis Pass and Mount Snowdon/Yr Wyddfa: 3500 feet. Okay, not exactly Everest, but a good hike.
Porthmadog and the Ffestiniog Railway.
Bardsey Island: Seals!
Nant Gwrtheyrn: Former mining settlement.
Aber Falls: Hobbitses.
Anglesey Island/Ynys Mon:
Tacla Taid ("Grandpa's Attic", more or less) Transport Museum, Anglesey.
Tuesday, September 2, 2014
Finished the purple Frankendress this weekend!
My mother says I need to dress more provocatively. I wish I were joking.
Started another Butterick 4948 adaptation--this one in blue striped bedsheet with buttons down the front. It will have short sleeves and . . . I'm not sure what kind of neckline. Maybe a flat collar.
Rather useless pic.
Tuesday, August 26, 2014
Thursday, August 21, 2014
Frankendress 2014-01 Butterick 1983 4948 and Lecien Chatter Tailors 2000's 2402: Part III Sleeve rough draft
Wednesday, August 20, 2014
Since that didn't fly, I went ahead and started the buttonbands last night, so at least I could get ahead on some handwork until I was ready for the sleeves.
Not much to see here. They'll be topstitched by machine, but I'm turning and doing the inner edge with a ladder stitch first:
Will look more or less like so when they're done:
Monday, August 18, 2014
The following project has no point.
Well, I guess the point is to produce a dress, but the entire thing is being conducted so haphazardly that . . . I don't know. Sewing by the seat of my pants.
I have no idea where I got this fabric, probably either from Sheila in Louisiana or at the antique mall. I never find this much yardage at Goodwill or garage sales. I think it's an old VIP print
I wanted a loosely fitted bodice so I took the bodice from 4948 . . .
. . . shortened it, and added darts.
I'm sure this didn't actually make sense but the pattern pieces were already on hand.
I borrowed the skirt from Lecien Chatter Tailors 2402 (2000's? It might be dated but it's mostly in Japanese so I have no idea):
The skirt is somewhere between a semicircle and a rectangle. A gently-flared pseudo-rectangle, really. Nothing special about this except the pattern was nearby and it was slightly faster than eyeballing it myself.
I may also borrow the sleeves from this, or at least the idea of the sleeves. They're 3/4 length and gathered a little bit into narrow bands.
I already borrowed the bound neckline idea:
It has side-seam pockets and it will have a button band all the way down the front, with pearlescent off-white 3/4-inch buttons. It should be just below the knee (about the same length as the 4948 flapper dresses; not so long).
(The waistline is a bit raised, and the button band will make the whole thing wider. It's not as tall and skinny as it seems here.)
The wearable muslin:
The bust darts are way too low--I overcorrected--but I still love this dress. Ridiculously comfortable. Really easy to make.
Friday, August 15, 2014
Yeah, the neckline is too big. The fit is good but I'd still like it bigger. I'm going to finish this one with the frogged yarn from the failed black sweater, and then do another, starting with a small neckline. Also, four stitches is nowhere near enough to pick up across the underarm; I did eight and there were still gaps.
Tuesday, August 12, 2014
Can I choose buttons, or can I choose buttons?
I spent my lunch break marking the skirt and running a gathering thread through it, so I hope I'll have a dress, if not finished, at least almost in one piece soon.
Monday, August 11, 2014
Again, not much to see. I've just started the ribbing around the bottom. That will leave the sleeves and the neckline. I think the neckline is going to be too big--when I make this again, I'll probably cast on for a small and then keep increasing to a medium, or whatever.
(The back of the sweater.)
I found, once I started wearing it, that I had way overcorrected the bust darts on the blue 4948, and they were far too low. No big deal; it's only a casual dress. I retraced the pattern this weekend and lowered them half an inch.
Of course, once I got started, all kinds of fabrics started begging to be made into summer flapper dresses. I found this awesome Richloom pinks (the flower, not the color) print at Joann's (coupon, baby!):
I decided to go with bright red binding on the neck and armscyes, and I found light turquoise buttons with white rims for the front placket. I don't have the skirt attached yet so there isn't a picture, but I shortened the bodice two inches--it should it at the high hip now.
I'd like to get the buttonholes done tonight and at least get started on the skirt. I'm thinking of doing bias stripes on the skirt, too. It might be overkill but . . . whatever. Part of me wants to do a scalloped skirt edge but maybe that's definitely overkill?