Friday, July 27, 2018

Mesh Vogue Top and Catching Up (Let's Try Again...)



Try #4. When I originally posted this last Sunday (7/22), I had already replaced each of the 30 photos at least 3 times, but it was still no bueno, so I took the post down until I had time to deal with it. I managed to figure out how to post a single pic again, and it has changed since I last posted. The number of hoops I have to jump through to post a single pic makes it rather time consuming.

Here we go again!


Well, HELLO, Possums! (Yes, I have watched Dame Edna rather recently.)

I hope you know you can follow me on Instagram or Facebook, because I don't want anyone to accuse me of disappearing. I am blogging less—this is true—but it's also true that, in the last 6 months, I've sewn exactly one garment for myself.

At least I'm wearing the heck out of it.

This will be a long-ish, picture-heavy, post. :)

My new sewing machine

My beloved Bernina 930 (my mother's machine from 1985), suffered an extreme failure early last April as I was 1" from the end of the last seam on DD2's bathingsuit. My 930 had been getting cantankerous lately, so I bit the bullet and purchased a gorgeous new machine, a Bernina B740. (I bought it from The Sewing Machine Shop in Walnut Creek, and was very happy with the experience.)

I have never, in my life, paid that much for a machine (at least not unless it carried me around), but she's a beauty. I brought her home, set her in my entryway, and left her to gather dust until the retreat. I had no time or energy for sewing, or learning a new machine.

Girded for Sewing Machine Shopping

Yes, I'm even wearing my scissor socks

Triumphant!

Welcome home! (Now sit and collect dust for awhile...)

I started learning how to use her on the retreat. Thank goodness that Ann Smith was there, because this is very similar to her machine, and she taught me a lot!

Ann, working on a Kantha cloth jacket, using Kantha cloth purchased off the bolt

P.S. I did have my Bernina 930 repaired, by the way. I just can't let it go!



Vogue 9305, a Knit Mesh Top

I first saw Vogue 9305 when it was released in early Spring 2018, I think, and I was smitten. I LOVED this top. LOVED. I ordered the pattern when it was on sale and then, of course, didn't sew it up right away. The one garment I have sewn (and completed) for myself in 2018—I started it at the retreat, and finished at home soon after. (There was quite a bit of hand sewing, of course, the way I like it.)

(P.S. I lie. On the retreat I also sewed a pair of pants. All but the waistband. They are still awaiting the waistband and I know I'll love them, and wear the heck out of them, so there's no excuse.)
Vogue 9305

I used a crinkled knit mesh. I can't remember where I bought it (oh, do I miss my steel-trap memory!), but I think it was from Satin Moon (on Clement Street), just before they closed. Of course, I made a few changes to the pattern:

  • This top is designed for a woven, but I used a knit.
  • The neckline was too high. I asked Ann to draw in a better neckline, so I omitted the back slit.
  • I added width at the bust (but no FBA), that I later removed, and then I removed more.
  • I made the armhole a bit smaller.
  • Of course, I envisioned this as a floaty top, so I left the shoulder seam unsewn from the tip of the shoulder to the bottom edge. I also left the side seams unsewn from the waist to the hem. (Some of my retreat pals thought I was nuts, by the way.)
  • On the side of the front with the drape, where the slit begins, the fabric poked out from my bust, so I made some gathers just under the bust to tame it.
  • When finished, the top was still a bit big, so I took gathers on the sides, right at bust level. I liked the resulting look much better.
  • I hand sewed all outside edges which, of course, I made much longer by not fully sewing all the seams.
  • I recollect that the neckline was supposed to be turned under and stitched. This is a heinous finish. I made a tiny hem with a 1"-wide length of fabric cut on the cross grain.

When I wore this top to the next gathering of my retreat pals, it received many enthusiastic compliments, so maybe I wasn't so crazy, after all. ;) I've worn this a lot. When it's cool, I wear a black tee underneath. Otherwise, I just wear a black tank.

It's a chilly morning, in the low 50s, so I'm wearing a black turtleneck underneath

Warmer weather, so no turtleneck

(P.S. More pics of this top in the next section.)


Mother's Day (but really more pics of the top)

I wore this top to celebrate Mother's Day with my eldest. My youngest is meditating on a mountain top for 6 months, so that celebration is delayed.

DD1 and I got our favorite sub sandwiches, and then we headed off to Lands End, where I took pics of her and visa versa, and we talked and talked and talked.

Lands End, overlooking the Pacific Ocean

I love this "Where's Waldo" pic she took of me

Climbing a tree on Mother's Day is a perfect activity

Though a gazebo is more my speed

I wear this top with baggy pants (shown here) and slim leggings and I like it both ways

Closeup of my Sally Bass necklace


Misc

What else have I been up to in the last 7 months? Here's a quick summary.

  • Had some very unpleasant work stress early in the year.
  • That stress is over, but I'm still dealing with regular work stress—there's so much to do! (When my boss suggests that maybe I do less, I hiss at him. I'm feeling challenged and having fun.)
  • I'm leading the writing team for my project, all two of us.
  • I'm driving a website re-design.
  • I'm managing the content schedule, another writer's work, and driving a bunch of other stuff.
  • I'm working on creating more swag. I looove working on team and product swag!
  • I'm planning some trips for late 2018 and 2019.
  • I've been toying with some fabric designs.
  • I started a second version of this same Vogue top, but haven't finished it.
  • I started a new sewing project and I have no idea how it is going to turn out, but I'm excited by it.
  • I've been meeting up with sewing buddies. In fact, today I met up with Ann, Diane, and Patti F.
    me, Diane, Ann, and Patti F

    Ann wearing her Tremont Jacket (a Sewing Workshop pattern), made from an ikat fabric
  • One of my sewing groups, the one I joined back before I was married, is compiling a book of our collective sewing stories. I wrote two stories for the book, then I helped others get theirs written and/or edited. It's a huge project, but it's going to be great when finished.
  • I've been dealing with health-related issues (some rather unpleasant), as well as some depression/anxiety, and the final healing of my damaged finger.
  • My 20-year-old cat disappeared and presumably died.
  • I took two amazing classes on paper and fabric marbling. I am looking forward to doing more of that. One day.
  • I traveled to London, Seattle, and two spring sewing retreats.
  • Gave up my DirecTv satellite service, and binge watched a lot of shows on Netflix and Amazon Prime. (I really enjoy the savings!)
  • Spent a lot of time sleeping.
  • Spent a lot of time thinking. Just thinking.
Enjoying my (two) stacked Juinhui London bracelets and my Sally Bass jet black glass ring

Hopefully you'll see a bit more of me over here. I'm really itching to sew, but my time is even more limited these days. Now that my energy is returning somewhat, it's more feasible.

Have a great week!

53 comments:

  1. Great to see you back, as bright and colourful as ever. Love the knit mesh top, really suits you. Hope you continue to gain strength and recover from your health problems. Felt quite lustful over Ann's Tremont jacket - does copying lack imagination or is it a sign of good taste?! Thanks goodness I have already made my green/pink kantha jacket or I could have seemed a bit creepy.

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    1. Thanks, tpotty28! I know Ann and she's be very honored to inspire you!

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  2. I always love to hear from you and see you and I am very glad to hear that you are doing well. Take it easy on yourself and enjoy.

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    1. Thanks so much, Connie! I think you've been reading my blog forever, so thanks for that, too. :)

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  3. Yay it worked! It's great to see you back. Stay happy and healthy and take care of yourself.

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    1. Eventually! Thanks so much, Jodie!

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  4. Love this post! You have no idea how you add joy to my day when you post on your blog! You inspire me and my sewing. I have so much going on in my sewing room right now! I resent how Life gets in my way of spending more time there.
    I love your garment. Wondering what the fabric is for the next one...

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    1. Awww, belle, thanks for your kind words!

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  5. Have missed your posts so much!! Glad you’re back. Kudos for keeping the old Bernina, so wish I had!

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    1. Aw, thanks, Jane! Yes, my mother, who was my best friend, purchased that old machine when it came out. It was a huge amount of money (at that time), and it's part of me.

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  6. Great post. Love your new dress. And all your bling.

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    1. Thanks, Barbara! Glad that you are also on IG and knew I was still around. ;)

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  7. Your blog posts have been missed - but most important is to take care of you !!

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    1. Thanks, MaryEllen! You are too kind!

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  8. Was just thinking of you the other day. Love and have missed your posts. Looking forward to more updates, and so glad you are feeling better.

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    1. You must have been what called me back, SilverMom. :)

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  9. great post, and what a lovely day at Land's End, great photos. Hope you are feeling better and things resolve on that front. And that Vogue pattern top, I never looked twice at it but now I see the possibilities, a great garment and you should make it again!

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    1. Thanks, Beth! It's funny how that pattern grabbed me instantly - some patterns are like that for me.

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  10. One - I'm glad you're feeling better. Having had some health issues earlier in the year, I understand. Two - life has gotten really busy for you so I understand why sewing has taken a backseat. Three - love the new top! Between you and Keisha (dressmakingdebacles) I'm finding a new appreciation for this pattern so I guess I should add it to my list. Seems like it would be a great winter top. Glad you're somewhat back to sewing and blogging and I will happily wait for blog posts. BTW, how did you get Patti F to be in a picture?! *smile*

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    1. Thanks, Carolyn! I hope your health issues are improving. I love this pattern! Oh, and when I suggested the group photo, Patti F didn't resist, though she did go to the edge. ;) Isn't she cute?!?

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  11. Glad to see your latest post and sorry to hear about your challenges. I always look forward to seeing your latest efforts and their mix in a life full of work and family. My health experiences over the last two years have reminded me that getting over things that cause fatigue and anxiety takes a lot longer than you think it will. Tolerance and patience are helpful practices. Best wishes! Waiting for your next post (patiently).

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    1. That is the truth, Sheila! Thanks for your kind words!

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  12. Always a joy to see your blog, although I keep up on Instagram. Thanks so much for all your efforts to share with us! Hope all will go even more smoothly as you make tracks on your projects--- 😎‼️

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    1. Thanks for following me on IG, Kansas Sky. So you know that I post much more there. So easy to toss out a photo or two with some Deep Thoughts. ;)

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  13. Thanks for persevering and getting this post up. Always good to hear what you have been up to. Sorry to hear you have had health issues. Never easy and particularly with our mental health. Your top is lovely and very versatile. Hope you get to play more on your new machine.

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    1. Thanks, Vicki! It does feel like this post was one of those 48 hour labors, rather than those "the baby slid out of me in the KMart" experiences that one hears about. ;)

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  14. SO glad to see you back on your blog! You have obviously had a busy, busy time along with some personal issues. I hope your health is improving & you feel a little more perky everyday! Your new machine looks fabulous, you'll have to let us know some of its special features. LOVE your top/tunic, this looks like a great pattern, but it's not suited for me as I am WAY too short! Hang in there & keep inspiring us all!

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    1. Hi, Rosalind! You'd have to shorten this pattern, but I'm sure it could be done. I wouldn't do it from the hemline, which just makes it that much trickier. Thanks for your kind thoughts!

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  15. I check every week just in case there is a post. . What a pleasure it is to see what you’ve sewn and done. Your spirit is telling you that you need some thinking time so I glad you listened. You are much loved and missed.

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    1. Pearl, you are too sweet. Sorry that I made you wait so long!

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  16. So glad to hear from you. I am sorry to hear about your depression/anxiety issues, as I suffer from both as well I understand how debilitating they can be. I am also so sorry to hear about your cat, losing a companion animal is so incredibly painful.

    I am jealous of your new Bernina, what a lovely new machine. Did I mention I was jealous?

    Of course your dress/top/tunic is gorgeous and so totally you. Again, glad to hear from you.

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    1. Hi ElleC!! Yes, I know many many folks who suffer from depression/anxiety and it's not often obvious. I'm the type that can be in the hospital suffering from smashed bones, and I'm laughing. Oh wait, I did that in Japan. ;) Yes, I love my lovely Bernina! The folks at The Sewing Machine shop were SO helpful in getting me on a 12-month payment plan. (Is 12 too short? Do you want more?) LOLOL

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  17. Sounds like you have joined your daughter in meditating, even if you are not on a mountaintop. Meditation can help us find our way like no other method can. Thanks for making your readers part of your very busy life.

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    1. LOL. Good point! You know, she calls me every so often (when she can get her hands on the one land line shared by over 100 people, as internet and cell phones won't work where she is). It's interesting to hear how her own thoughts are changing, morphing, developing.

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  18. So happy to see you here in Blogland. Your new top (duster?) is phenomenal and you are looking quite lovely! Keep going on the path you have set for yourself and enjoy that cool machine.

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    1. Thanks, Mary! I wouldn't call it a duster as it pops on over the head. It is fun to wear something so swishy!

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  19. I'm glad to see your fun photos and to hear that you still have sewing on your mind at least, even if you can't get to it right now. Just imagine all the awesome creativeness that is brewing during this time that you are spending on other things :)Best wishes for improvement in your health and for doing all the things you enjoy.

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    1. It's DEFINITELY on my mind, Karen! All the time! And thanks! :)

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  20. What can I say besides yay Shams! On all fronts. Great saga and be well. Hugs.

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    1. Thanks, Wendy! You've seen this top more than most! ;)

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  21. So glad to see another one of your beautiful creations! Be kind to yourself and I hope you find blogging more to be possible and not stressful. I’ve missed your posts.

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    1. Thanks, Nursebennett! If I got nothing from my posts, I wouldn't do them. :)

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  22. Like all your other sewing friends, I was happy to see you blog again. Thanks for sharing the photos of you and your daughter. You have re-entered the sewing world full blast with your top..quite q top it is! Losing a pet is emotionally draining and teaches us what love really is. Glad your health has improved. I look forward to all your new adventures and creations.

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    1. Thanks, Fran! Yeah, I wish DD2 could have joined us, but she and I talk quite a bit on the phone.

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  23. Glad to see you post again. I don't "do" other places, so this is it. Sorry about the problems you've been having, but glad things are better. Great photos.

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    1. Thanks, glorm! I sure haven't seen you in ages. ;)

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  24. Hi Shams -- you look like you are having a lot of fun. Love the top. Sorry about the stress/health issues. Hope that is resolved soon. But most everything les sounds good. xoxo from your non-sewing pal

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  25. Great to have you back and a pleasant surprise--I had almost given up checking. I too loved 9305 when it came out in the spring but have not succumbed yet. Tho I may, now that I have seen the early fall offerings. Frumpsville, ruffles, and all those giant sleeves to drag thru the soup. Really, Vogue? in 2018?? Esp the one with ruffled eyelet trim around the big round collar. Time to delve into the PATTERN stash. Hope your health issues continue to improve, and may you soon find another kitty to love for 20 years!

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  26. I enjoyed the newsy update. The mother/daughter photos are lovely...and the Waldo-esque pic made me look twice.

    I do hope that any and every niggling health issue is resolved favourably. AND soon!

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    1. PS Shams, I've nominated you for the Mystery Blogger Award. The details are on my blog. Please don't feel any pressure to participate if you'd rather not. xo

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  27. Always a pleasure to read your blog Shams and admire your photos.
    Take good care of yourself

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  28. For some reason I didn't get a notice that you'd posted, drat. Late to the game, but as always, I love your post, your pics, your sewing. Thanks for sharing!

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  29. I have this wonderful tunic almost on my table. You always pick the best fabrics. It looks wonderful.
    I also bought a Bernina 740 at the end of May. I love it and I've never spent this much money for a machine that doesn't carry me around either.

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