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Apr 5, 2010

Monday: You're off the hook, kids.

Greetings from DUMBO (Down Under the Manhattan Bridge Overpass) in Brooklyn, where I spent most of Sunday with my old friend Nora and her bf Derek.

Michael and I brought the dogs, and a great time -- as well as delicious whole wheat pancakes -- was had by all.  (Actually, only we had pancakes; the dogs watched.)

So it's Monday again and time to check in and I have a somewhat shocking confession to make:

I didn't sew at all last week.

So I'm hardly in a position to hold anybody else accountable, am I?  Therefore you're all off the hook, peeps.  Consider it your metaphoric snow day.

So what did I get accomplished over the last seven days?

1. I bought some fabric: four yards of blue cotton twill and a vintage flowered sheet.

2. I prepped Simplicity 3873, my 1941 dress pattern, all ironed and sitting atop my ironing board, awaiting next steps.

3. I fulfilled some family commitments -- my brother got engaged! -- saw friends, and generally enjoyed the fine weather.  All were welcome distractions; I needed a break.

4.  I wrote a lot. I think last week was one of my most interesting, blog-content-wise.  If you haven't been here for the last four days or so, take a look.  I especially want to thank all those who left comments, and there were many.  It's what you write that keeps this blog dynamic and creates a sense of community; I couldn't do it without you.

And for the week to come?

1.  I want to finish my 1941 dress.

2. I still want to simplify my scrap stash.

3. I'd like to make myself a pair of pants.

Simple enough, right?  Let's see how it goes...

And how are all of you doing?  I know there's been some impressive progress made.

Look at the lovely dress and pinafore reader Laura recently completed for her niece:

This is so beautifully detailed; I love it.  Great job, Laura!

And if you haven't read about the gingham shirt Bloggette Elizabeth made for her nephew, Thor, you can read about it here.  A renown sewing celebrity even makes an appearance -- and it's not me!

And so, my friends, another week stretches before us, full of possibility.  I'm going to dust of my Singer 15-91 and get to work.

How about you?  What's on your plates this week?


  1. Hey Peter - don't kick yourself! It's good to take a break sometimes, it clears the mind and helps inspiration flow... I look forward to seeing Cathy's new dress!


  2. I'm working on a 1930's lounging outfit in a beautiful blue can never lounge enough in my opinion :-)

  3. A mod-style Burda dress in eyelet for our trip to FLorida in May as well as writing reviews for the two shirts I made this weekend.

  4. Thanks for mention! And don't worry about the "vacation" -- we all need a break sometimes. Remember, this is not a job, but a hobby.

  5. I'm working interstate, so miss my sewing machine terribly. I'm going to buy some wool and crochet some granny squares this week, just to use my hands for something (other than typing and gesticulating wildly at work).

  6. This is a finishing week. :) I'm finishing the 1948 baby layette this week. It just needs ironed and the buttons done. I'm also getting that full sized quilt sandwiched and quilted and hopefully bound. And if I have any time left over, I'm making a crib-sized blue winter quilt. Well, the top at least. I'd like to sandwich it next week.

    And as y'all can see from the picture Peter posted, I did actually complete my goal from last week, but it was a near thing. Just to think--after I finish all my vintage-y baby patterns, I'll be going much faster than I have been simply due to lack of embroidery!

  7. I for one enjoyed your posts last week. Many of the same thoughts I've been thinking and discussing with my teenagers (19 yo daughter/16 yo son). We've been redecorating, so things are quite chaotic here. Nonetheless I hope to finish my spring/summer totebag this week and finish a prayer shawl for my daughter (crochet, not sewing per se). After that I have a file cabinet cover to make for the newly decorated den. By telling you all of this I hope to get motivated to truly get it done! Keep sewing and writing : )

  8. The weather was definitely a worthy sewing distraction! This week I hope to finish taking in a skirt i started ripping, sewing and re-ripping last week. And to flesh out and post my goals for 2010. I know that should have happened in January, latest, but let's not quibble. Goals are goals.

  9. Tonight I'm finishing a gorgeous strapless dress with pleating up one side. I've made it in a yummy summer weight wool flannel in middle grey with the tiniest flecks of darker grey. It's soooo soft and drapes very well.

    PS - It's snowing again. save me!!!

  10. I really want to sew something for myself this week. My serger will be out of commission for 3 MONTHS *gack* so that might limit me a bit. I also want to get several patterns traced and muslins fitted so I can build my TNT patterns.
    As far as my progress, I'm very happy to report that I made 4 pair of pj's and 4 pair of boxers and 1 nightgown last week, not really that exciting but my kids loved them.

  11. For many people, fabric buying is the main sewing accomplishment..

  12. LOL -- you're right, Marie-Christine!

    mom2five: 3 months? Is it being serviced by mice?

  13. I took inspiration from you, Peter, and went to Goodwill last week where I purchased an old curtain with a chintz pattern of sorts on it. Yesterday, I made a pencil skirt out of it and even underlined it with some silk organza I had laying around (helps reduce wrinkling). Whenever I underline in organza, it's always tedious. But I am ALWAYS really glad I did it.

  14. I finished my niece's dress last week (it was being sewed right up to when we got in the car!) but I did finish it. Well, actually it is too big for her, so I will have to tweak it. But I still consider it an accomplishment. We won't talk about the fact that she didn't like it, because she's four — what does she know ;) ( I will admit it wasn't nearly as cool of a present as a glow in the dark Princess wand)

    I will get back to work on my shirtwaist dress this week. And no watching television at night after work!

  15. Whew! I didn't sew anything either. Between kid birthday and parent visit and long weekend and Easter - it kind of all got away with me. Today I'm trying to figure out the FBA on the McCall's fitting pattern. Wish me luck.

  16. I didn't finish anything last week either, or really start anything for real. Finally making progress on the flower girl dresses. The MOB dress is another story. I've made muslins for 2 different patterns, and still not happy. I have a good feeling about pattern #3 though. Since the wedding is exactly 2 months away, I better get busy!

  17. Happy Monday, Peter! I got my 1936 Singer 99 back from the sewing machine repair shop last Friday, and set it up. I bought a Griest button hole maker on Ebay, and it makes beautiful buttonholes. What I like best is that you can just keep going over the same buttonhole until it looks like you want it to! I rubbed off a jeans pattern and cut out two pairs. The pockets are on front and back and the zipper is in; so just have to put fronts and backs together, add the waistband, and hem. Hopefully I can get that done next weekend. -- San Antonio Sue

  18. Peter, I think mice would probably have my serger ready quicker! The problem is that my little boy broke off the back cover that keeps the moving parts hidden, I've sewn with it that way for months with no problem but as he's gotten older and become more inquisitive he's started "fixing" things! He does it so well that he "fixed" a spring that holds the needle threader up so now it just flops down in the way of the other parts. The repair guy told me that these aren't standard parts and have to come from Japan so the wait will be three months. Lovely. I hope he's being honest but I can't imagine why he wouldn't be, my machine is there taking up space and they're not getting paid until it's done so I don't see a benefit in lying to me. The bright side of this is that the spring is only 82 cents and the cover is just a few dollars so the repair bill shouldn't be that expensive. The wait is pretty painful though :(

  19. Still working on my perfect spring dress. Now it's not even capitalized because I'm beginning to loathe the dern thing. Aaaaccck. I've sewn alot of other things. Sheesh. What more do you want from me? I'm sewn out. I kind of want to take a break. I don't know. We'll see.

  20. Sometimes you just have to take a break so you can come back with GUSTO!

    I was really gusto-ey over the weekend. I finished a pair of ripstop cotton capri cargo pants (for working out/kayaking) and am nearrrrly done with my FIRST button-up short-sleeved skirt. I'm not letting the darn buttonholes freak me out this time! Next will be my bright yellow raincoat…

  21. I'm finishing up a printed floral version of Vogue 1161 (after running out of notions to complete the project, boo...)
    It's OK to not sew for a while. Kinda like dating, sometimes you need a little time apart so that you REALLY appreciate your next moment together! :)

  22. Peter, I hardly sewed last week myself. My goal for this week is to figure out what my sewing goals are. I have no idea what I'm working on next!

  23. Sorry this isn't sewing related but your oxymoron; 'delicious whole wheat pancakes' caught my eye. I made them once and only once! I may as well have taken my Aunt Jemima syrup out to the back forty and grazed!
    They were that gross!
    (Happy Sewing anyway!!!)

  24. All I did was sew last week, you can see the finished Easter dress for my oldest on my blog. I have started a summer dress for her, but have been taking my time, since laundry, etc. beckons...

  25. Laura, I think the trick is blueberries -- LOTS of blueberries!

  26. First off, we love you too, Peter.

    Second the weekends are my prime sewing time. This past one, I spent 21 hours restoring my computer after getting hit by The Mother of all malware.

    And I got it from a craft blog.

    Tried to sew while doing the tech thing but was too distracted.

    So I busted out some sewing books to try to get my wee little brain to "get" how to sew.

    I still make stupid mistakes. My pants that I should have been able to bust out in no time flat are still a WIP. And a too big WIP since the whole eating vegan working out regularly thing is having the desired effect. Should have probably noted that before I got well into the sewing. See? Stupid mistake.

    Seriously love your blog. Makes my brain work and your awesome attitude inspires me to keep on sewing. And you and Michael are just the cutest together!

  27. Sounds like a fun day! I really need to finish up a few baby blankets this upcoming weekend and even more importantly, I need some new basic skirts. That is high on the priority list.

  28. Having periodic breaks from sewing is what keeps me from sewing burn out. The break allows me to come back to a project with renewed vigor. In my opinion, a break is necessary to continue sewing with pleasure. Anytime a hobby feels like work, is it still a hobby?


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