garb · hand sewing · sewing

Day 2

Today was spent celebrating Father’s Day with B and El but I managed to squeeze in 10 minutes of craftiness to knock out the second sleeve of my new smock.  So here are my sleeves all pressed and stacked super neatly.  I’m not sure which part I’ll start next.  I might just swallow the frog, so to speak, and work on the body of the garment.

Smock sleeves
Look how neat!

Father’s Day was awesome.  We went to see a movie, ate lunch out and spent the rest of the afternoon in junk food induced comas.  (Also did some laundry).  Not a half bad way to spend a Sunday afternoon.

Now I’m off to eat a light dinner and practice some dances for next week’s ballroom lesson.

A&S · hand sewing · sewing · Uncategorized

The Hand Sewing Tale

I love hand sewing.  I love the connection I feel to past seamstresses when I sit down in a quiet place and work.  It’s meditative.  Why I don’t do this more often is a mystery.  I suppose I was feeling uninspired; using the time old argument of ‘not enough time.’

Then I attended a workshop by The Modern Maker.

I had the distinct pleasure of taking his workshop on the construction of female doublets. Eight hours spent learning hand sewing techniques, garment adjustments and story time from Spanish tailoring books.  If you have the good fortune to learn from Matthew, do so. He is an amazing teacher and a wealth of knowledge.

More than the technical skills, I left feeling inspired so I decided to start by sewing a women’s shirt by hand.

I’m hemming all the edges by hand then plan on joining the pieces together with a fagoting stitch.  IMG_0325

Today I finished the first sleeve.  There’s no logic as to why I started with the sleeve; just seemed the thing to do.  I’m using a running stitch to on the little hems.

I’m also tracking the time on the production of the garment.  I’m interested to see how long it takes.

The other thing I’ve decided to do is join the 100 days of A&S challenge.  Not all of my projects will be historical in nature, but I’m excited to share even the small bits of what I’m working on and having a reason to get back into the habit of writing on a regular basis.

Today is Day One!


sewing · tote bag

A break

I like making things.  Just because, really.  So, while I’m still plugging away at other things, I took a break and finished one piece and made something completely new just because I had some cute fabric in my stash.

 This first bit is, obviously, a shirt.  I love sewing for my daughter and she picked out this fabric ages ago.  I’d cut all of it out, but hadn’t stitched it up yet.  Then came the great sewing room clean out and, in an effort to get my act together, I decided I’d finish things I’d started.  This is on of those things.  My sweetie loves it!  It’s super light weight and very comfy in the heat.

 Yesterday, I made this bag.  I don’t know…it’s just seemed like the right thing to do.  I’ve had this scrap of Fancy Nancy fabric forever and, combined with some pink lining, I think it looks pretty cute.  The straps are a bit shorter than I’d like, mostly because I ran out of fabric, but I’m please with it.  It has an exterior and interior pocket for holding pens, small notebooks or a phone.

Though I might not like the length of the straps, looks like it’s a good fit for my baby!  She got a kick out of the Fancy Nancy-ness of it all.  It does look pretty cute on her, if I do say so myself.  🙂

IRCC 3 · sewing


Taking a break is a good thing and I took full advantage of it this long weekend…and then some.  My anniversary was Saturday so my sweetie took some extra time off and our little family sort of hid from the world.  It’s the best kind of hiding one can do, in my opinion.

The bodice is progressing!  Do I have pictures?  No.  But I do have the whole sizing thing down the way I like it, it’s cut out and boning has been applied.  I’m well on my way to having the kirtle put together though I’m afraid that, at this pace, I won’t be completing the IRCC 3 challenge in time.  No matter, I’m pressing on!!

I’m also distracting you with my shiny new cutting table.  My birthday is in June so I decided to celebrate early.  Isn’t that a cunning table?  The side you can’t see has six shelves as well and holds my measuring stuff, scissors, current projects, etc..  At the time I took this picture, I was still debating what to store in the front, but it’s got lots of stuff there now and all my scraps have been moved to a better place.  Eventually I’ll paint the sewing room but right now the whole re-org is making me pretty happy.

I hope all of you had a wonderful long weekend, (if you had one to enjoy).  If not, I hope your summer is off to a grand start.  Now that I’m caught up on loafing about, I’ll have more pictures to show plus this cool flower thing I started making.  It’s cool.  Trust me.  It really is.  🙂

IRCC 3 · sewing


 I’m frustrated.  My bodice pattern is giving me fits, so I’m distracting you with this cute sock monkey.  Look at that little guy!  Isn’t he cute?  He should learn to drape and measure and all that other sewing stuff ’cause then he’d be way more useful.

Ball o’ Bodice

Lest anyone think that folks who costume just blink and out comes something pretty, let me take that false notion away from you right now.  Seriously.  I mean, when you look at other blogs, all the super talented folks out there sharing their beautiful finished garments, don’t you find yourself wondering if they just sneeze that stuff out?  Do they struggle?  Do they throw their toile across the room, jump on it when hits the floor and swear, “I’m done, people!!!”  I’m pretty sure they do.

I’m not saying I’m in the category of folks who sneeze out pretty.  Far from it.  I am, however, in that group that jumps up and down and swears.  A lot.  See that ball o’ bodice up there?  That’s the first attempt at correcting what was a pretty decent pattern I made ages ago.  The second attempt is sitting on LSP as I type.  I did it with lots of coffee in my system and hugs from Sock Monkey.  I’m going to walk away for a bit, then hit it again this afternoon armed with pencils, pins and maybe a bit of booze.  Okay.  Not the pencils.  I like pens better.  😉

garb · sewing

All things Flemish

This weekend, we’re planning to day-trip an event.  The event is Fools War.  Last year, we camped and, though we had a really great time, we were feeling pretty lazy this year, so we decided to just make a day of it.  It’s worked out pretty well because instead of prepping things for camping, I’m finishing up a dress for myself and some much needed pants for my sweetie.

This is my second stab at a Flemish style gown.  The first had a purple over-gown, (which was recycled from an Italian style gown) and this same gold kirtle.  This green gown is the most recent attempt.  I’ve tweaked the pattern a bit.  I’m still not happy with it but it will do well enough for something to wear while I watch fighting, knit, or do something else list-side.  All I have left to do is hem it and sew on the rings for lacing.  I’ll get some photos at the event.  I’m pretty sure I look better in it than LSP does.  🙂

A couple more details on the outer gown.  I did not line the skirt.  This is meant to be worn in warm weather so I decided to keep it as light as possible.  I also didn’t line the sleeves.  (The whole ensemble is made of linen.)   In place of lining, I used french seaming on the skirt and a flat-fell seam on the sleeves.  I finished the top of the sleeve by making my own bias tape.  The seam on the sleeve is done by hand as is the hem at the wrist.

I’m really pleased with the sleeves and can’t wait to share the whole outfit with all of you.

Outside of the sleeve.
Inside of the sleeve.

Promise Kept

It doesn’t look like much, but I finished both undergarments by 4:30 pm this afternoon…well before midnight.  I’m feeling pretty full of myself right about now!  A dress as old as that one deserves new undergarments.  I know for a fact it’s well over a decade old but just how far past I’m not sure.  I’m all about recycling, though, and this isn’t a bad thing to recycle.  I’ll try to get pictures of me in it tomorrow when I’m all blinged out. 😉