Ce n’est qu’un au revoir….

Ladies (gentlemen?!), let’s face the truth: I can’t blog on a regular basis. Every time, weeks and weeks go before I force myself to write something.

I finished a Moneta dress about a month ago, I haven’t find time to model it, though I wore it on several occasions (light is not great in my new apartment and I don’t feel like modeling alone with my tripod in a public space). I already forgot the details and story around it. Same goes for a cardigan (the lovely Baileys Irish cream. I love love it), except I have some nasty stories about the yarn I used.

Honestly, I don’t feel like blogging. I started a few sewing projects and froze them (I still need to finish to work on my Anna dress muslin), or I don’t like the result (this evening, I made the infamous Plantain from Deer and Doe. The shape is great, but I no longer like my fabric :S). I need a break from blogging.

I’ll let things settle down and when I’ll feel like talking about my sewing adventures, I’ll be back.

Take care, try new projects, learn new technics and don’t forget to have fun!

Claire

Small knitting

Oh boy! It’s been 4 months! I had this article in my draft folder for weeks. I’m such a bad bad blogger!

So as you may read now, I am still alive but I’ve been stuck in a tornado for the last 3 months, lots of things happened, lots of change to manage, and let’s face the truth, no time to sew and no desire to blog. But as I checked my board on WordPress, I was surprised to see I still has visitors coming (thank you! It cheered me up), and not all from the random search! So I thought I could pluck up courage and write again. Because I did a few things, I am just too busy and too lazy to model and take pics.

So let’s talk about small knitting projects. Yeah, because my last 2 sewing projects are the little black I sewed for New Year’s Eve and a blouse I will show you maybe next time. So what was I saying? Small knitting projects. I had 2 obsessions in my mind: spoiling my little cousin (it’s a girl! She is now 8 weeks old and she is the cutest baby in the world!) and destashing a bit.

I found some interesting free knitting projects for babies. I bought 2 skeins of Cascade 220 superwash and decided to go for the Cable Raglan Baby Sweater, by Rebecca L Daniels (published in the free Interweave pattern books). It’s simple and yet, a bit sophisticated. I have to say, I like knitting for baby. Like my friend says: it’s instant gratification! :) It doesn’t take weeks to finish!

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IMGP0011I later added some snap-on to close the little cardi.

After the sweater, I had lots of leftover, so I knitted a hat for the baby. I used the Hurricane hat pattern that I modified to get a size that fit a newborn. Because I am too lazy, there is no picture. Yep, I sent the package (late) and didn’t take any picture before. But I got pictures from my cousin [and I won't post them here because that's private] and it fits her daughter! :) And apparently she’s wearing it a lot :)

In my attempt to destash, I also use the leftover from my Ginny’s cardigan (1.5 skeins of Cascade 220 sport. Not my favorite yarn). Back in December-January, I needed a cowl to wear with my asymmetric jacket and to cover my neck, I thought it would a great chance to destash. The good news is I now have a warm cowl to wear with my jacket. The bad news is it took me less yarn than expecting, so I still have 0.5 skein of Navy Cascade 220 sport yarn and no idea what to do with it. What do you do with your yarn remaining?!? I would be curious, because I really don’t know what to do with mine :S

For my cowl, I decided to start from a pattern, the Sea Leg Scarf by Allison Haas, from a Knitscene magazine I bought some time ago. It’s a simple cable scarf that I tweaked a bit.

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IMGP0019The seam. Not really great…IMGP0021

So I have a good news for you! While it really took me weeks or months to finish to write this post, my mojo is back and I am back in business. Today I sewed the Moneta dress from Colette patterns (and I broke my twin needle. Grr) and I have other projects in mind for the upcoming weekends. My only struggle is to find time to model and to post-treat the pictures (but today, I also finally post-treated pictures I took last year in June. There is hope for me! ;)).

See you soon!

2013

2013(Yep, I know, this is not what I usually do. But I loved My Little Pony when I was a kid!)

Yep, this is the end of the year and as many of us have done, it’s time to recap. I could honestly sort my projects in a very detailed way, like a post for every sewing/knitting/failed projects but I don’t feel like. As much as sewing and knitting have an important place in my life and sanity, this would not reflect this year.

I ended 2012 with a very nasty food poisoning, stuck all evening between the bathroom and the bedroom. As I wake up the next day, very weak, litterally empty, I had that amazing feeling that 2013 would be my year. And that I will finally get a job. Don’t ask me why or how, I just felt that way for a few days, I have no idea where this certainty comes from, but that was a great feeling. And fact is, 2013 has been quite a good year. Lots of things happened.

In 2013, thanks to a wonderful organization, I gained back my confidence and kept believing there is a workplace that will fit me and my unusual professional background. I met a handful of people who believed in me and pushed me in that direction.
I made a few friends. I finally took some American accent pronunciation class and I no longer need to repeat myself when I ask for half (20 years to learn the ‘l’ is silent. I can’t believe it!) a yard of fabric.
One of my close friends moved to the Bay Area and now lives 2 miles away from my place while we’ve always been living in very different places and countries. I spent the morning with her at the DMV, I am her lucky star, she finally got her driving license (after several attempts).
A couple of friends got married, it was a very beautiful wedding, the kind that makes you think how lucky they are to have such great friends and family. My cousin is expecting a baby for next April, the very first baby in my family, and I want to spoil that kid very badly!
Bad things happened too, unfortunately. My neighbour was murdered, it still upsets me. And one of my friends had her cancer returned. These unfortunate events made me realize how everyday moment is so important and helped me to put things into perspective.
I finally got back to work and though this is not my dreamjob and it’s temporary, I am thankful for that major change and feel really lucky. For the first time in my life, I work for a woman, a contractor (just like me), and I like it. It feels great to have a boss who knows what it is to be in my shoes!
In 2013, I also survived the Death Valley. I found out I like eating Brussels sprouts. I went back to the gym and became a gym junkie. I discovered Bloglovin (I guess it’s never too late to discover the magic of Internet!) and started using Kollabora. I got my Green Card. I watched all the new seasons of Doctor Who. And I still want a cat badly.

kitty1How can you resist this cutie?

That’s for my very personal 2013 recap. Now let’s have a look at my crafts.
I am very proud to say I made lots of progress and now my clothes don’t look like there are handmade. I mean they don’t have these unequal finitions, fit issues, weird choice of colour/fabric. My recent projects look like they could have come from a store. But it still takes me a long time to create them. I am definitely a slow sewist (sewing French seams takes much longer than finishing with a serger, and I still need to alter to fit my body…)
My knitting skills have increased too. I completed a lace project without any major issue! Yay for me! I feel like I could learn so much more, I want to go more technical, more challenging. I just bought a book to create your own pattern, let’s see if I can creat anything out of it.

I sewed 17 projects, including 1 jacket, 1 skirt, 5 dresses but 4 have fitting issues :S (the one I am wearing tonight hasn’t been photographed yet), 4 t-shirt (Renfrews!), 4 tops, 0 pants/shorts and 1 vest for Mr Hubby. I also finished 1 handbag project started a long time ago.
I knitted 1 pair of socks (for Mr Hubby, sigh), 3 cardigans (including 1 for Mr Hubby), 2 vests/tanks, 1 beret, 1 stole, 1 cowl and 1 baby cardigan (no pictures taken yet for the last two).

My favorite projects were:
- my asymmetric jacket! Of course, this is one of my last project, so it comes first in the list! I wear it all the times, it’s perfect!

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- The Ginny’s cardigan (another very recent project!). Same as the jacket, I am wearing it a lot (anyway, it’s so cold at my workplace that it’s either the Parcel sweater or this cardigan!). I am just a bit disappointed by the quality of the wool (Cascade 220 sport).

IMGP9786- even though I didn’t wear it much this year (that’s what happen when you are always 6 months behind any trend), I look forward to warmer days to wear my Datura blouse. IMGP8968- another project I didn’t wear much (too late in the season) but I look forward to wear it again is the cable back shell vest. Sure, I hated knitting it but it’s very nice to wear.IMGP8984- in 2013, I also sew and knit for Mr Hubby! I am very proud of the vest he wore for the wedding of his friend. I have some fabric remaining and I am thinking about sewing a vest for me too :)like a sir

Now, on my not-so-great list…
I am very frustrated with my versions of the Cambie dress and Belladone dress. Major fitting issues. Huge lesson learnt. Now I need to find time to correct my mistakes and re-do it correctly.
I made several bad choices for my knitting projects. I picked the wrong wool for the Saturn cardigan (grr), the Chicane cardigan and for the Seashell tank (and my modifications were a bit funky for this last one). But hey, you live and learn!

Overall, 2013 has been a good year, and I look forward to see what 2014 will bring. More awesome projects, more people, more challenges, more adventures!
Wishing you all the best for this Happy New Year! :)

Claire