The Woodsman

There’s a different sense of being, when one is a Woodsman.

Attention to detail, certainly, but it’s much, much more.  Awareness of surroundings, the slight sounds animals make, the shift in the wind, a different tang in the air.  Becoming one with the environment  on every level.

Fallen trees, dappled shade and lichen came to mind when I saw this cabochon.  It just needed a face to bring it alive.

A brooch with a Montana Butte Jasper cabochon, carved and dyed bone face, bugle beads and seed beads.

Hot Patterns Classix Nouveau Peasant

We all know that sometimes fabric just has to age, like a fine wine.  Other times the fabric is owned by a lazy person, like moi, who couldn’t decide what to do with it.

After a year of it sitting on the cutting table, and having a certain relative enter the sewing room, give it a pat, and exclaim what a lovely print it was, the light bulb finally went off, and I had a “Eureka!” moment.  There was a little over 5 yards of this print, and it’s 60 inches wide, more than enough to stitch up something as a holiday gift, and still have something left over.

The Classix Nouveau Peasant Blouse had already been somewhat fitted to the recipient, so it would be a matter of simple sewing!

Based on the first top (not blogged about) I took out some of the width of the patterns, and also enlarged the neck band by 1/4 inch in width.  This helped the neckline lay closer to the body.  I also block fused interfacing to the neckband fabric before cutting it out.

That’s one of the things about challis – it has a mind of it’s own once it’s cut, and I wanted that neckband to hold it’s shape.  The bulk of the seams were serged, and a baby hem added to the bottom.

The blouse was well received; an unexpected wardrobe addition.

Sandy Treasure

How often does it happen, walking on the beach, letting your mind wander, when a little glint of something catches your eye?

Moving the grains of sand away, buried treasure is unearthed.  A wee bit of sparkle cast up from the water’s depth.

This brooch is once again using the hand dyed silk of Louise Noel, a lovely ombre yellow.  The color reminds me of pristine beaches.  A freshwater pearl focal sets the folded silk off, with small hematite beads scattered about.  Everything is finished with delicate picot edging.

Aunt Phoebe

She was your favorite Aunt, even though you always knew her to be prim and proper.  Everything done just a certain way, making it so.  Slipshod workmanship was not tolerated.  Nor were bad manners.

It wasn’t until she passed away, and the herculean task of clearing out the house fell to you that you discovered what caused that perpetual twinkle in her eye.

Under the eaves, the box of photos.  A very young Aunt Phoebe, cigarette dangling from her lips, astride her motorcycle.*

The colors of this brooch remind me of days long past, a bit musty but with a back story you wouldn’t believe.  The cabochon is rhodochrosite (or something like that, I think).  Dusky grey and peach seed beads complete the piece.

*This image is of Fay Taylour, who was a premier dirt track racer, holding speedway records in Australia, New Zealand and the UK during the 1920s.  She did not compete in women-only events, but open races with her male counterparts.

Kwik Sew 2874: Party Time

I picked up this fabric thinking it would be a nice piece to make into something for the holidays.

Truth be told, I don’t know what I was thinking, as I do not live an embroidered velvet life.  As I thought about what to do with it, I realized as a velvet knit, it could become something simple, and being polyester, didn’t require the care a “true” velvet would.

Enter Kwik Sew 2874, a raglan sleeve top I’ve made many times before.  No fitting or fussing needed.  Even better, I could wear the top outside the hoildays, with jeans!

Cut with a nap layout, sewn on the serger.  I used black ponte for the neckband, rather than try to fold that embroidery.  Everything went together much easier than I expected.  The moral of this sewing?  Fancy doesn’t have to mean difficult!

Falling Leaves

Another beaded brooch using the lovely hand painted silk from silk artist Louise Noel.

The silk flows through an apple jade donut, encircled with seed beads.  A little russet, still some green, it reminds me of leaves turning in the Fall, not yet sure if they want to drop from the tree or hold on for another day.

Can you hear them rustling in the breeze?

Vogue 8859: Sweats!

Hard as it may be to believe, as long as we’ve lived here in the colder climes I have not owned a pair of sweats.  I know… I couldn’t believe it either.

When some lovely fleece-backed bamboo went on sale at I picked up a couple yards. The original plan was to make sweatshirts for Grandmeow, which I did, however this lovely lavender was just my color.  I couldn’t let it go.

There is some stretch to this fabric, but not a whole lot, so I needed to  use a pattern that wasn’t leggings, but also not pants.

Since this pattern had already been fitted, I decided to take a stab at using it.  Voilá!

Sewn with the serger and the cover stitch to hem.  I even put pockets on the back, just because I could!