If At First You Don’t Succeed

try try again. My journey back into sewing all started with an unsuccessful trip to the mall. The mass produced garments hanging on the racks, sewn out of low quality fabric, and lacking style and fit did not deserve a visit to the fitting room.  I briskly walked to my car and could not wait to arrive home because tucked away in several storage bins in my attic were options, Swiss cotton, Italian cotton, wool and silk.

It just so happened a pattern drafting Skirts class being offered at Eddie’s Quilting Bee fit my schedule. Skirts The Beginning_1

By implementing Sally-Ann’s instructions in conjunction with Nicole Smith’s, Skirt-A-Day Sewing, I drafted a skirt foundation block using my low hip measurement. Upon the completion of the skirt block, I drafted a two-dart sloper.  At this point, Sally-Ann mentioned, “Sometimes in takes three to eight muslin to reach the final draft.”  My first draft needed alteration.  After taking 2″ off the waist and 1/4″ off below the low hip, I drafted a second sloper.  The second muslin side seams pointed out that my hips tilt forward.  Sigh..Back to the drawing board.  I drafted 3/4″ off the back and added it to the front.  The third muslin did not hang even.  I have one hip higher than the other.  I proceeded to cut and pivot the front by inserting 1/2″ at the low hip measurement, and inserting  1/4″ to the back.  The fourth muslin back did not require any further alterations, but I needed to pivot the front by inserting an additional 1/2″ for a total of 1″.  The fifth muslin front and fourth muslin back are perfect… ten drafts later.  The final copy of the final sloper needs to be mounted on poster board with spray adhesive.  On to the next phase, A-Line Skirt.

Skirts_1

Skirts #3Skirts #2

Happy New Year 2015

Recently, I received an email from WordPress detailing the stats this past year for my blog.  I originally decided to blog about my various creative endeavors with a pair of knitting needles and yarn in order to give the creative side of my life “purpose.”  Not to soon after I started blogging, I began teaching.  From teaching, I was asked to become a part of a design studio/yarn store in my local town.  So you see, stats were not on my radar.  I was hopeful that someone would find my posts interesting, but it did not matter.  I wanted a platform which would enable individuals to “see me” through my stitches.  I’ve tried to maintain a personal distance communicating only one stitch at a time because “words” are many times misinterpreted.

In retrospect, 2014 was a wonderful year.  My husband and I cruised up the Danube River for two weeks.  An experience I will forever hold close to my heart.  One morning, while cruising, I was awakened by a glow filtering through the drapes in our cabin.  I grabbed my camera and captured the sun coming up.  Perhaps we’ll see Istanbul or Paris this year.IMG_3076

I ended the year by making a new acquaintance at Eddies’s Quilting Bee in Sunnyvale, CA.  Sally-Ann Flak, a talented artist, taught a class at The Bee.  I plan on taking a pattern drafting class this month and a Moulage class in February.  Check out a picture of me wearing a scarf and holding another on Eddie’s Quilting Bee Facebook page.  I was able to finish both scarves in Sally-Ann’s class.

To all sticks-a-gogo’s friends, Facebook friends, and my friends in the real world, Happy New Year!

Mod and Marimekko

I learned how to sew before I picked up a crochet hook and a pair of knitting needles. During the 60’s, the clothing industry did not design clothes with the “chubbie” girl in mind. I was fashion conscious and my parents were dollar conscious, so my mother taught me how to sew on her Singer.  Proudly, I modeled my first sewn dress at eight years old. Flashback to the 60’s brings forward the visual memories of Twiggy’s large eyes and long eyelashes, the Mod tunic, psychedelic concert posters, and the peace sign.  A world of bold organic and geometric shapes detailed with color as bold as the design.

On a recent trip to Eddie’s Quilting Bee  http://www.eddiesquiltingbee.com/ in Mt. View, CA, I was drawn to the bold graphic design and color of a bolt of fabric from the collection of Etsuko Furuya.   After selecting a pattern and purchasing the fabric I cruised on down the freeway excited to dust off the cover of my sewing machine and began to sew.

Mod TunicMod Tunic #2

The more I manipulated the fabric, memories of the 60’s emerged.  I was remined of Marimekko (meaning Mary’s frock) of Finland.  Marimekko, a woman-owned company, woman-operated Finnish fabric design house that dominated fashions of the 60’s and 70’s.  The company was founded in 1951 by Armi Ratia, the wife of a failed oilcloth factory owner.  Armi had to have her husband secure a loan for her new venture because during the 60’s it was uncommon for a woman to attempt such a thing.

Jackie Kennedy chose to wear Marimekko for the U.S. Presidential Inauguration in 1960. The following website has an interesting post regarding Jackie Kennedy’s collection of Marimekko. http://irenebrination.typepad.com/irenebrination_notes_on_a/2013/01/spirit-of-a-dress-kennedys-museum.html

Jacqueline Kennedy and Marimekko