April 14, 2010

In Stitches

This fabric. This fabric is blowing my mind. I love it. I love it and I have to have it. But I am at a loss of what to make with it. I know that I want to make a dress but I have no idea what cut to go with. I know that the perfect pattern is out there and I just have to find it. And I have to decide soon because there are only 3 yards left!

Recently I rediscovered the Sartorialist when a friend had it open on her computer and I saw the outfit above. Sometimes I wish I had really bad fashion sense so I could go on a shopping spree with Stacy and Clinton. Since that is highly unlikely, I will keep my eagle eye out for bargains and continue my pursuit of finding the perfect dress patterns.

I've had sandritocat's Etsy site bookmarked for a while. She sells vintage sewing patterns, some dating as early as the 30s! My modern waistline unfortunately doesn't fit most of her patterns but the one above does. It looks a bit more advanced than what I have dealt with, but hey, I taught myself upholstery so maybe I can teach myself some fancy clothing techniques. Can you picture the thin dress in the zigzag pattern? Could be fun.

Updates on the garden are coming~I have sprouts! And they make me very, very happy.

March 19, 2010

Sip, Sit, Draw!

Inspired by the most delicious hot chocolate.

March 15, 2010


Well, hello blog! It's been a while. Here's what I've been up to:

I knitted a pair of handwarmers for my friend Natalia's birthday. She told me her hands were always cold at work. Now she can type in comfort.

I also knitted a pair of socks for a very special guy, but they didn't turn out as well.. next time I make socks for somebody they will not be a surprise.

I have also been perfecting a cookie recipe that my boyfriend's grandmother used to make. These cookies are phenomenal. Make them now.

I am also starting up a garden in my patio. I am going to attempt to grow vegetables in containers. I'll be updating my progress as the year progresses.

There you go. Three months wrapped up in one post!

December 9, 2009

Weaving is Weary

Six weeks ago, I started a loom weaving class. I had been wanting to learn how to use a loom for almost 4 or 5 years, and I found a cute little place near White Rock Lake that offered classes at a reasonable price. I signed up for a five week session which focused on creating a sampler of 12 different weaving patterns that when finished, could be worn as a scarf. Awesome!

So basically the way a loom operates, you have foot pedals that have different strings attached to them. When you step on a pedal, certain threads are lifted so you can pass your weft strings through easily with a device called a shuttle. Then you pull a metal comb (called a rake) towards you to tighten & push the threads into your woven piece. Step on a different pedal, different warp threads are lifted.

What I didn't anticipate was how long it would take to set up the darn thing. First we had to do some maths to figure out how long our warp threads needed to be. These are the threads that are threaded through the loom lengthwise. Then we figured out our weft thread length; the weft is what is woven through the warp threads. Next step was to measure out the warp threads, we needed 72 threads that were 72" long. Luckily they have a nifty doo-dad peg system to (somewhat) quickly do this.

After measuring and cutting the warp threads, we had to weave each string through the loom one at a time. But there are about a million little steps in doing just this part. Here's a summary: First you have to tie the threads to the loom, then you thread each one through this metal comb called a rake. Then you thread them through these metal strings that have a "needle eye" in the middle; the threads go through these eyes. Then you pick up groups of four strings and tie them to the back side of the loom. All the while you have to make sure that you keep your threads in order and do not let them drop or get tangled.

Oh and we are not ready to weave yet, nope. Next step is attaching the foot pedals. This part was frustrating for me because the strings that hold up the pedals were made of a metal chain. So I had to guess which link on the chain was the one that would bring my pedals to the same height. Also, you have to pull the chain up through a hole in the pedal, and of course you can't get a chain to stand up straight on its own, so I had to use a makeshift hook that a previous student had jimmied up. Thankfully, once I got the pedals right I was ready to weave! Yes! Only took me 8 hours worth of classes! And this is typical. Set up is very tedious. But once I was set up, weaving went pretty quickly.

I was determined to finish my project within the 5-week class frame, so I rushed it a little quicker than I would have liked. Apparently I did well anyways though because when I finished, the teacher rang a bell and the advanced students were saying I did well on my edging. Apparently that is a mark of a good weaver.

So now I have a scarf! I still need to soak it in a tub of fabric softener to relax the threads, but I haven't done it yet because I am still recovering from the set-up. I enjoyed learning how to weave, but truthfully, I do not think I will do it ever again unless I can find a loom servant to do all the set-up for me.

December 2, 2009

P-Dub comes to Big D

I met the Pioneer Woman tonight. Pioneer Woman, aka Ree Drummond, lives on a ranch in the middle of nowhere, Oklahoma. She has a blog that features tons of fantastic, fool-proof recipes. And now she has a cookbook. Ree has been touring the US for the past couple months and tonight she came to Dallas. To celebrate, I made Ree's Baked Lemon Pasta. Delish!


My friend and I went to Borders and waited in a very long line (very long). About 800 people showed up, and luckily, we were in the first 200. Most people gave up and left, but we stuck it out! Here we are, sticking it out:

That's Ree in the green circle. At this point, we had waited about an hour and a half. Someone behind us compared it to waiting in line for a ride at Disney World. But with less sweat.

Finally, we meet! She was really sweet, and knew how to pronounce my name (which is no small feat for first-timers). She even knew that Waterford crystal has a series named Maeve. I felt so awesome.

A bonus we weren't expecting: Ree brought everyone shirts!

All in all it was definitely worth the wait. Maybe now that I have met her I can telepathically connect to her mind the next time she has a KitchenAid Mixer giveaway. *hint: I like the cornflower blue one :) What a fun night! I heart PW.