It’s been a month of transition at my house. Transition back to school. Transition back into my husband’s business travel. Transition into a new level of engagement in my own job, which has also necessitated travel. As it turns out, I’m not as good at transition as I used to be. This morning finds me reflecting back on a month of obstacles. Isn’t that absurd? It’s so easy for us to focus on what we aren’t able to do instead of really experiencing what we’ve done.
I sat down today to write about obstacles to my blogging. Mainly because I carry masses of guilt on a daily basis. Guilt for what I haven’t done or haven’t done well. I added my blog to this list over the last couple of weeks. I felt guilty because I didn’t do something that I do strictly because I enjoy it. And guess what? The guilt eliminates the enjoyment. That’s an irony I don’t find enjoyable. And I love irony.
So this morning I woke up a little angry. Per the usual, I was angry with myself. So I decided to give into the obstacles. I let myself be interrupted by my kids and chose not to be frustrated by it. I let myself go onto other things when i couldn’t start a load of laundry because I’m out of laundry detergent. I let myself read blogs and link to sites as my whim dictated. I let myself drink a cup of coffee and do nothing. And it was nice. And I don’t feel guilty. I gave into the obstacles, and I was able to cut myself some slack instead of focusing on what isn’t getting done. (I win!)
….And now I’m blogging. (I win again!) And I’m still going to talk about those obstacles, because really, they’re kind of funny.
1. I finished my Tunisian Multi-Garment, but have no photos to blog because I can’t decide the best way to lace it together. I’ve laced and re-laced this garment around 5 times and undo it every time. There’s a strong possibility I’m subconsciously postponing the inevitable because I don’t want my picture taken. Hmmmm.
2. I’ve crocheted what I feel is an adorable scarf. I can’t finish it, however, because I went off pattern and ran out of yarn with only three sides of the final border row to go. I went to the yarn store yesterday and they’re out, so I ordered some. It’s going to take two weeks for the yarn to come in because I went to my local yarn store instead of ordering it online. Why don’t I order it online? Because of guilt! I love the little ladies at my yarn store and I feel obligated to get it from them because of their elderly wonderfulness. Next.
3. I’ve finished a pencil skirt and I think it’s pretty awesome. I’m actually taking license by saying I’ve finished it because I haven’t. I need to add a hook and eye to the waist band. That’s all. I’ve needed to add this hook and I for roughly four weeks. Still haven’t done it. I want to wear it to work. But I can’t because it needs a hook and eye. Could it be that I’m postponing completion on purpose? Probably. You see, I want to blog my sewing triumph, but then…I’d probably need to have my picture taken….
Oh well, I think I’ll deal with one shortcoming at a time…don’t you think? I’m going back here now…Wishing you all a peaceful weekend!….Amy
I completed the first panel of Jennifer Hansen’s Tunisian Multi-Garment!
It was fun. Learning Tunisian has been very gratifying. These pictures were taken after my first quick run at blocking. I still have some perfecting to do with the structure.
I have a sneaky suspicion that I would have been happier with a slightly larger size. I won’t know for certain until I’ve completed the second panel. The sizes were based on bust circumference and I think I would prefer a little more length on what will inevitably be the “torso”. Maybe I’m long-waisted….or maybe my tummy is a little more of an issue than my bust….
The color work is fascinating. Let it be known, however, that it leaves a gazillion ends to be woven. Hence the probable delay in starting the second panel for the garment. I need a little time to forget what a pain those ends were.
All in all, however, I’m extremely pleased! The Craftsy class on Tunisian was a great experience. I’ve signed on for three additional classes since beginning the Tunisian. I’m not sure that the instruction I’m seeing is the same quality that Jennifer Hansen provided in the Tunisian class, but I love the platform and recommend it for anyone who struggles to find classes available in your location or that work with your schedule.
The smell of sunscreen
Permeates the empty rooms
Sounds of distant laughter
I’ve been multi-tasking….burning both ends of the candle, if you will. On the one hand, I am full steam ahead with my Tunisian Crochet class and the Multi Garment.
Simultaneously, I am “go” for my sewing “Do Over”.
It’s like dating two guys when you’re single. You usually spend one date wishing you were on another. Then you feel guilty when you’re on a date with a guy you really like, because the other dude is more responsible and more stable. Usually things fall apart with both of them at about the same time and you wind up with no date…but I digress…
Apparently the sewing “do over” is Mr. Stability. The Tunisian multi-garment is the hotter Mr. Smooth. (This is a bizarre analogy, but let’s go with it.)
The stitch patterns are gorgeous.
Even though I’m using cotton instead of silk, the stitching still promises attractive drape. With the Tunisian, despite being in learning mode, everything is easier.
Sewing, not so much. I’ve finished my first set of pillow covers. I haven’t worked up the enthusiasm to photograph them yet. They’re cute….that’s it. Just cute. I wanted spectacular…wow! But nope, they’re cute. Like I said, the craft equivalent to Mr. Stability. I think I’ll wait and post them when I can add a few more for a grouping.
Until then, back to Mr. Smooth…
Sewing and I have a love/hate relationship. I’ve always been fascinated by it in theory. But it’s always fallen apart in practice. As a kid, my mom put in a good faith effort to teach me to sew. The poor woman finished every item I ever started. Unfailingly, the projects were miserable experiences. The detail…The jargon…The need for constant focus…all of it worked to my weaknesses. Even then, I was a big picture girl-conceptual and broad in my focus. Attention to detail has always been an “opportunity” for me.
After I began crocheting, however, my craft blog obsession led me to all that sewing can produce. The adorable, the beautiful, the intricate, the awesome projects on the web beckoned….and I began to covet. I began to covet the ability to sew. Per my usual mode of operation, I made the decision to learn and immediately began collecting all the accoutrements needed. Especially fabric….stacks of it. That’s what I do-I collect…
Over the last three years, I’ve completed the following:
- One apron
- A handful of cup cozies
- One skirt
- Approximately 25 pair of pajama pants
- Monday’s pillowcase
I enjoyed the curtains and the monkey pillowcase. The others? Not so much. I make so many stupid mistakes! So I’m regrouping. I can do this!
I’m starting over….that’s right, a sewing do-over. First, the basics….pillows! I’m more than tired of the throw pillows in the living room. I’m going to use some of this freaking fabric if it’s the last thing I do!
I’m thinking some combination of these…They make me happy.
I’m also going to look for a class. I won’t let my past define me. That’s right, I call “do over”.
I spent a little quality time with my number one girl yesterday. She’s developed a new obsession with stuffed monkeys. She’s apparently in the middle of some kind of tween self re-branding and the monkey seems to be symbolic and key to her metamorphosis. Anyway, the long and short of it is that she’s proclaimed herself to be a monkey collector and now she’s doing the Vulcan mind-meld on me and lobbying for new and more fabulous monkeys in her life. I’m standing firm. Her room is already a fall-out shelter for stuffed animals. No new monkeys!
So, ever the rock, I asked her, “how about we find a pattern for a monkey? Maybe we can make it?” (Be advised, I carry much mother-guilt over how little time I spend with my craftiest child doing anything that could be characterized as crafting.) So I’m thinking, two birds-one stone. I assuage the mother-guilt aka-the “monkey” on my back . She gets a monkey. She was lukewarm to the idea. None of the free patterns we found on-line really floated her boat. I rejected the amigurumi patterns she liked. I didn’t want to present her with a monkey. I wanted her to participate in making a monkey. Then she presented the solution, “Mom-how about we make a pillowcase like I did with Memaw (her grandmother) that time? Then I can like, draw a monkey on it!” Great idea, angel, but maybe we try doing the monkey in applique? So here is the compromise.
Behold our first applique ever! He’s a cheeky rascal…
He’s just lightly fused with some iron-on strips pending stitching. I think he’s cute. My crafty little diva did a great job picking fabrics, cutting and even doing some of the stitching. She’s awesome! We’ll finish him next weekend and place him in a position of honor and prestige in her sanctum, which is of course, a hot pink, black and zebra striped zone fit for a tween!
Those halcyon days
Fun, sun and listless boredom
The last bell sounds…
So the Craftsy journey continues, and I have to say, I liked the three color Tunisian soooo much better than the single color work. I chose Catania Cotton (yes, shocking I know).
I love these colors!
The three color is easier because each different color strand highlights and accents the architecture of the stitches. You don’t have to figure out where your “vertical bar” is because it’s color coded. Very cool!
So I’m into my next Tunisian project. Titled the “Multigarment”, it’s a two-panel wrap that can be worn as a shawl, sweater, or poncho (love the peekaboo shoulders). Not to be redundant, but also very cool.
Also very ambitious. I’m branching waaayyyy out on this one. I’m using Paton’s Grace-another mercerized cotton (practically identical to Catania-the waaayyy was sarcasm). I’m not sure that the photos do my palette justice. I think it’s going to be pretty….if it ever gets completed. Did I mention it’s very ambitious?
The blue is my “color pop”. Hmmm…still thinking about it…love it in theory, though.
I’m off to stitch!
I had been growing increasingly concerned about Bella. Something was off about her. She was erratic and aggressive, and something just seemed off. Then one day I noticed that she had tremendously large feet…In comparison I mean.
You see, Bella lives with Buffy and they’re about a month apart in age. But Bella was growing fast. Faster than any of the other pullets. And her comb…it was so full and red comparatively. (I know you guys know where this is going.) So Saturday I googled pictures of four-month old gold-laced Wyandotte. Sunday, I texted the breeder pics of my little friend….and Bella officially became Bill.
Sunday afternoon, we took Bella, I mean Bill back from whence she, I mean he came. Unfortunately the breeder had sold all of her Wyandotte and Partridge Rocks. In fact the breeder had nothing in the same age bracket. So I became the proud owner of a roughly 4 week old Rhode Island Red. You’ve got to roll with the punches, right?
Luckily, we just finished an expansion to our coop. In fact Buffy and Bella..I mean Bill, had just moved in. Enter, the guinea pig cage.
Our new Rhode Island Red is now Buffy’s new roommate, but she’s still too little to roam within the coop. She’ll be relegated to the guinea pig cage for a week or two until everyone’s acclimated.
So of our six little darlings, five of them were named after Harry Potter characters. Bella was in fact Bellatrix LaStrange-the whacked out psychotic witch (which actually kind of worked for him). So what did we name our new little Red? Well, here’s a hint. My girl has moved on from the Harry Potter series over the last few months. We’ve moved on to The Hunger Games…