Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Creating with Fabric and Yarn

In addition to the cooking that I did at Dad's house last week, I had a lot of fun with my sewing machine and my crochet hooks.

First, I cut out and sewed two new blouses, and I cut out pieces to sew a six-gored skirt and a princess-line dress. I would have loved to have finished the skirt and dress, too, but I also wanted to take time to just visit with my Dad, who has been a widower since 2003 when my mother died.

I used my mother's sewing machine for the blouses, and I was so pleased that it still works so well. She let me use her machine when she was first teaching me to sew. I think she would have been really pleased to know that it was still being used. I set up the machine on the back porch of Dad's house so that I could keep my husband company while he was painting the deck. Even just the sound of that machine brought back memories.

The blouses I made were from McCall's pattern #5050. I don't have a digital camera yet, so I can't show a photo of my actual blouse here, but I've copied the image from the pattern company's website for you to see.

I did make some adjustments to the pattern, inspired by Tracy. I lengthened the sleeves of the short-sleeved version of the blouse so that they would come down to my elbows with the elastic casing. And I moved the casing that is currently just under the bust line down to my waist, because it looked more flattering there on me. In fact, I'm wearing it at work today over a pair of slim-fitting jeans. Again, I wish that I could post a photo of the actual blouse. Hopefully, when I finish the skirt and dress, I'll have my film developed so that I can scan a printed picture to post.

I also finished the pumpkin-colored poncho that I'm planning to give to my sister for Christmas this year. And I started a new crochet project for myself using a pattern in a book that I found in the library.

I can't endorse the book, unfortunately, because the author, though extremely gifted and creative, chose to use a lot of coarseness in the way that she presented her material. Unfortunately, like a lot of the world these days, she must have thought that she needed to be crass to make crochet seem more trendy and hip...I don't think that would have been necessary. Her designs really stand on their own. And though I'll never make some of them because they don't appeal to me, I love her pattern for the Sweet Pea Shawl, also shown above. The author's name is Debbie Stoller, if you're interested in giving it a try sometime. Her instructions are very clear and easy to understand.


USAincognito said...

I like the looks of that shawl in that last picture. Glad you can sew and do all that stuff!! I have no patience and no skills for it! lol. ;)

Karen said...

Thanks, Shorty! I hope that my shawl will look as nice as the photo that I posted. I'm using red wool yarn, so the look will be a little different. I try to use what I have on hand since I inherited so many crafting supplies from my mother. So I'm always looking for patterns to use the yarn and fabric that I already have in my stash. :-)