Feb 29, 2012

Modcloth CBC Dress??

What Canadian would see this dress and NOT think of the CBC's logo? I saw it while browsing Modcloth.com. Unfortunately for those fans of the Queen's Radio Station, the Mod Future Dress is out of stock. 

Feb 27, 2012

My Minoru (I wanna Make Another Two)

You know what I love most about Tasia of Sewaholic's Minoru Jacket pattern? That I didn't have to make a single change to it, and it fit me perfectly. On a hunch and a prayer, I cut and sewed my bright orange version of her all new pattern without testing it first with a muslin. I'm cheap and hate when things don't work (ie, I cry a lot) so I often test a pattern in something disposable before I make it for real, for real.

But Tasia (who is from my neck of the woods: Vancouver, B.C.!) writes proudly about being a pear-shaped gal, so I figured the cut of this coat would actually work with my figure. And it did, beautifully. (In a Size 8, incidentally):

Inspired by Julia Bobbins super cute version (it's one of my faves), I lined my hood with this great print I found at Metro Textile Corp (the pattern doesn't direct you to line the hood, but I think it's much nicer that way, and is easy enough to do). I was hoping to find a geometric print that would contrast the bright orange denim (purchased at AK Fabric Inc. on 39th Street for $9/yard). Kashi told me this blue-on-gray printed cotton was from a designer....though he couldn't remember which one, so he may have been blowing smoke up my booty. (If anyone can identify it, comment below!) I still have a yard and a half left, so I may make a matching spring dress. The zippers were from SIL Thread on 38th Street. They will custom cut them for you there, which is essential when you are using a separating zipper. I chose a navy and nickel zip for the contrast.
Do not adjust your monitors: this coat IS actually that bright

What are those? Spears?

There are just a couple changes I would make when I make this again (and I do think I will make it again; this coat nets me three or four compliments every time I wear it out. My husband is always like, "Did you pay those people to come compliment you?").

1. I will add pockets to the outside of the jacket because every time I wear it, I find myself absentmindedly trying to put my Metrocard, Blackberry or keys into an invisible pocket, like some odd hip-brushing tic. Or I should just carry a purse when I run to pick my kid up at preschool? Nah. Pockets. Like these ones by Miss Jackson. Seriously, look at her version. It rocks. I love the placket with buttons.

2. I will use a longer zipper. The pattern calls for a 27-inch separating zipper, but it falls a few inches short of the bottom hem. I actually find it kind of hard to zip in a way that is too hard to try to explain, but just trust me. A 29-inch zip would work better, I think.

I prefer wearing this jacket zipped to chest level. The collar becomes very stove-pipeish when you zip it all the way. But with the hood on, you're really protected from the rain and wind. Tasia should know about that. Vancouver is mad rainy. See me peep out:

Not my fave way to wear this coat, but still my best photo

Aren't my husband's photos good this time? He actually had to learn how to use a DSLR for school (FYI to the one reader I have who also enjoys his blog:  his continued absence from online writing is due to the fact he started advertising school and each day is about five hours too short now). Anyway, he knows his camera settings now, and we barely even fought for this five-minute photo shoot in front of our building before he ran off to school today.

In closing: Minoru = great first jacket pattern. Especially for the proudly pear-shaped gal. Make it!

Feb 26, 2012

To kvetch or not to kvetch

Readers, have you given up on me? My apologies for the hiatus, but my husband went back to school at the beginning of January just as my (paid) workload spiked. He's gone 16 hours some days, so there's been a lot of slack to pull up around here. And too many balls in the air makes Suzie something something, so I had to ignore my blog (and everyone else's too, lest I get too distracted and fail to meet my 1,200-word-a-day quota.)

Anyway, I am up at 6:30 a.m. on a Sunday so I can fit in writing here while my family sleeps. Now, I wish I were the type of person about whom others would say, "And she NEVER once complained...." but I'm unfortunately totally not. In fact, I envy my Jewish friends and neighbours most for the fact that they have words to sum up the two things I find myself doing frequently: kvetching and schlepping. And man, do I ever hate schlepping (and do I ever kvetch about it). But if you live in New York, and particularly, if you live in New York with a kid, do you ever spend a lot of time schlepping.

So I wish I could squeeze out my first blog post in months without complaining, but that's not who I am. And if you're back here reading this after giving me up for dead, then you probably love me anyway. (And know that I love listening to your complaints too. So if you need to get something off your chest, please leave it in the comments below, and I promise to read it, nod heartily and say to my screen: "You're SO right! Uggs DO make everyone look like they have fallen arches!")

Kids really are the worst. They somehow simultaneously ignore every word you say while shouting out demands and then berating you when you don't fulfill them to their exacting preference. It's emotional abuse, spending 12 hours a day with a preschooler. Akin to working with Anna Wintour, I believe. Kids drive you to drink.

Husbands really are the worst too. They take out the vacuum to clean up because they invited their cousin over on a day you have to work from home, and then leave the vacuum in the middle of the living room floor for days....and days....until it's a week later and everything needs to be vacuumed again anyway, so you just do it and put the damn thing away, which means you totally lost this game of Vacuum Chicken. Husbands drive you to drink.

Lucky for me the only word my kid can read is her own name, and my husband never looks at my blog, so I don't have to worry about either of them reading what I have to say about them.

Did you come back here to read about sewing? I have sewn a few things in the time since I last wrote: a couple jersey tunic tops, which have been in heavy rotation. I still can't think of how to write about them in any useful way. Also: Sewaholic's Minoru jacket, which I love and have worn on several occasions because it's been eerily warm in New York this winter. I have no pictures of it yet though, because my husband is gone 16 hours a day and I have no one to help me by taking photos. Also, he takes our camera to school, so even if someone stopped by (and NO ONE ever stops by because I still haven't made friends in our new neighbourhood) there would be nothing to shoot pics with. I kvetch.

I have to sew a shirt for my daughter's BFF for her birthday, but I can't get downtown to the Garment District to buy fabric. My kid suddenly hates riding the subway (I don't blame her; from where we live now, it's a serious schlep to get anywhere). So I can't drag her with me by promising a ride on the Bryant Park carousel anymore. That used to work. Now she just looks at me like "been there, done that" and starts screeching in a way that makes my blood pressure rise instantly. Kids not only drive you to drink, they also drive you to kvetch.


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