Archives

Personal Projects Update

Okay, so a while back I posted a list of personal sewing projects that I wanted to complete… someday. And then, a slightly more recent while back, I posted an update. And now, here is an update to the update! So, here is the list, less the things that were completed as of the last update:

  • Jacket to wear over (completed!) corset – I have blueish purple silk dupioni for this, and superb inspiration for the style. UPDATE: Not even remotely started. Continue to think about it from time to time, mainly when I open the fabric cabinet and drool over dupioni.
  • Alterations to a dress I made a few years ago but now hate, to turn it into a simple skirt (with pockets!) to complete the above ensemble. UPDATE: I have actually spent about five minutes thinking about this one – does that count? Pretty much decided not to ever do this. Would rather start from scratch and make a new skirt because I just know so much more about all relevant sewing techniques now. However, may still do this only because I will never find this fabric again and I love it.
  • Corset for Julia that she has been begging me to make for the last two years. UPDATE: Uh uh. Not done. Reasonably certain I have not even thought about it since I posted the last update… sorry love!

20140401-091636.jpg

  • New pajama pants. Mine all have holes. (Lots of them, in unfortunate places.) I have awesome Flinstones-esque dark teal with black tiger stripe fabric. They will be so much fun to wear. UPDATE: Not at all done. But the growing number and size of holes in my pajama pants has moved this to the top of the priority list. DONE DONE DONE DONE DONE! Aren’t they amazing/terrible?? I love them. I have a whole coordinating pajama outfit now.
  • The aforementioned Great T-Shirt Project of 2010. You guys, in 2010 we bought 30 pounds of jersey so that we could both expand our sad, sad collection of ill-fitting t-shirts. (I have a long torso, so basically every t-shirt ever manufactured shows an inch or two of stomach, which I’d prefer stayed out of sight and warm.) UPDATE: Let’s jut admit there is no way this will happen before 2013 2014.
  • I have silky, stretchy, clingy, shiny teal fabric for a drape-y dress shirt. UPDATE: I still have it! It’s still folded neatly among all the other pretty things in our fabric stash… untouched.
  • I am determined to never purchase jeans again and start making my own, because there are no pants in the universe that fit me properly. (And the ones I have are dangerously close to being to worn to wear in public.) UPDATE: I still believe this firmly. It may even happen soon-ish. SO DONE! And working on a second pair! And on patterns, generally, so custom jeans can be offered to YOU! Pictures will be forthcoming when I write a whole post about them!
  • On that note, I need some dressier-than-jeans but not as fancy as wedding attire to wear to my clients’ rehearsals. As well as some more wedding attire to wear to their weddings. I know I’m getting sick of my same two outfits, and if you started looking at photos of me on fancy occasions, you’d be sick of them too. UPDATE: Zero progress. I have bought some fabrics and imagined some ideas.
  • I also have two pairs of corduroy pants in progress that need finishing. UPDATE: These remain untouched, but now that I have a functional jeans pattern, there is a decent chance of the pair I didn’t start cutting yet getting made soon.
  • And cranberry corduroy for a winter skirt. UPDATE: I thought about it last week because fall is here and this would be a great time to wear it. You know, if it had been designed/sewn already. I did this a while ago! Maybe a year? And I have been wearing it all the time. I will probably make another one or two in different fabrics.
  • Make my own swimsuit for the summer! (Long torso is a big problem in this department as well.) UPDATE: Maybe next this year.

And there you have it. I have crossed one personal project off the list since May, and that pretty much only happened because I had a really good deadline.

 

Where The Hell Have We Been?

Who knew that October was going to be a crazy busy chaotic month of madness? We sure didn’t. Julia was without a show to do, and our calendar held one wedding dress and one mother-of-the-bride dress (same wedding!) and I had two day-of-coordination gigs (one in Michigan, one in Chicago), plus my usual 45-hour/week nannying job. This seemed completely reasonable when I looked at the calendar in September.

It still seemed possible when we added two wedding dress alterations. And two more day-of-coordination spots in November (which yes, require work in October, because it’s really far more than just a day-of service.) October was even achievable when we booked two more alterations for bridesmaids. And when we added a corset (which is really cool – it’s for a man to do an impression of Cher, and the design is based on her costume from the Turn Back Time video – can’t wait to tell you about it… someday) that we donated as an auction prize to About Face Theatre’s annual fundraiser. As well as when Julia got a show, because that was just four nights a week, leaving her daytimes free.

But then, a fantastic and terrible thing happened. Julia got offered a job stage managing a month-long run of Route 66’s A Twist of Water. In New York City. Starting October 28th. With rehearsals the week prior in Chicago. And then? Then doable, booming-business awesomeness started to look a little bit impossible.

And I honestly don’t think I’m lying if I tell you that we will probably spend MORE time with each other while she’s in NYC than in the entire month of October, because I am going to visit, and I’m not going to work at all for five whole days while I’m there. For real, I am turning the auto-responder on my email and everything.

So, if you’ve missed this blog having any actual posts, or you’re still bummed that I cancelled my birthday party to sew things (true story), or you haven’t seen me around the twitters lately… I hope you understand that it’s just been impossible to do anything but work for the last month and a half. The next few weeks aren’t looking good either, but I tell you what – I am free on Thanksgiving (Day only, I have a wedding the day after), so if you are interested in hanging with a sleep-deprived crazy person who has no intention of getting out of her pajamas all day, you know where to find me.

Personal Projects Update

Okay, so a while back I posted a list of personal sewing projects that I wanted to complete… someday. Since I can’t think of anything better to blog about today – I got some good ideas from my twitter pals, which I promise I’ll use, but they are more effort than I have willpower for at present – I thought I’d update you. Maybe I’ll try to do this monthly, so that there’s a snowball’s chance in hell of any of these things actually getting done.

So, here is the list:

  • Corset for me (to hopefully finish in the next two weeks so I can wear it to Kinzie‘s wedding!) – I have an Asian-style embroidered brocade kind of fabric for this, and it’s beautiful. Also I’m hoping to recreate/modify a Victorian-style corset with this project. UPDATE: DONE! And I even finished in time to wear it at the wedding. Because I stayed up all night finishing it in my hotel room. Haha. Here’s what it looks like:

Dancing at Kinzie & Donnie’s Wedding!
Photo by Wasabi Photography – http://wasabiphotography.com/

  • Jacket to wear over said corset in case it is cold – I have blueish purple silk dupioni for this, and superb inspiration for the style. UPDATE: Totally not done. But here’s the inspiration photo for the style I plan to try:

I love the big buttons and pleat-like details.
Anthropologie jacket; Photo and styling via Already Pretty – http://www.alreadypretty.com


  • Alterations to a dress I made a few years ago but now hate, to turn it into a simple skirt (with pockets!) to complete the above ensemble. UPDATE: I have actually spent about five minutes thinking about this one – does that count? (Especially if those thoughts make me wonder if it’s actually even possible to make this particular transformation)
  • Corset for Julia that she has been begging me to make for the last two years. UPDATE: Not even started, but Julia did find some gorgeous fabric yesterday:
  • New pajama pants. Mine all have holes. (Lots of them, in unfortunate places.) I have awesome Flinstones-esque dark teal with black tiger stripe fabric. They will be so much fun to wear. UPDATE: Not at all done. But the growing number and size of holes in my pajama pants has moved this to the top of the priority list.
  • The aforementioned Great T-Shirt Project of 2010. You guys, in 2010 we bought 30 pounds of jersey so that we could both expand our sad, sad collection of ill-fitting t-shirts. (I have a long torso, so basically every t-shirt ever manufactured shows an inch or two of stomach, which I’d prefer stayed out of sight and warm.) UPDATE: Let’s jut admit there is no way this will happen before 2013.
  • I have silky, stretchy, clingy, shiny teal fabric for a drape-y dress shirt. UPDATE: I still have it! It’s still folded neatly among all the other pretty things in our fabric stash…
  • I am determined to never purchase jeans again and start making my own, because there are no pants in the universe that fit me properly. (And the ones I have are dangerously close to being to worn to wear in public.) UPDATE: I still believe this firmly. It may even happen soon-ish.
  • On that note, I need some dressier-than-jeans but not as fancy as wedding attire to wear to my clients’ rehearsals. As well as some more wedding attire to wear to their weddings. I know I’m getting sick of my same two outfits, and if you started looking at photos of me on fancy occasions, you’d be sick of them too. UPDATE: Zero progress.
  • I also have two pairs of corduroy pants in progress that need finishing. UPDATE: Haven’t touched them.
  • And cranberry corduroy for a winter skirt. UPDATE: I thought about it last week because fall is here and this would be a great time to wear it. You know, if it had been designed/sewn already.
  • Make my own swimsuit for the summer! (Long torso is a big problem in this department as well.) UPDATE: I bought a new swimsuit. I like it, but not as much as the fantasy ones I’ve designed for myself in my head. Maybe next year.

And there you have it. I have crossed one personal project off the list since May, and that pretty much only happened because I had a really good deadline.

Making Time

It has gotten crazy around here. Last week, I was prepping for an out-of-town wedding, working on a corset pattern, working my usual 12-hour shifts at the day job, and having to grocery shop afterwards to come home and make dinner alone because Julia was in tech for a show. Then I skipped town and worked all weekend, Julia stayed home and worked all weekend, and then we basically repeated that this week, except sub prepping for going out-of-town with catching up from being out-of-town, and sub being in tech for running a show and starting rehearsals for another show and making mockups for two different dresses and we both had terrible weeks. I cancelled my own damn birthday party because I was too stressed out thinking about losing the work time on Saturday to making cake and party food.

You can see why we both got super cranky today about having zero time for each other.

Julia said today, “I need a wife, not just a business partner.” And she is absolutely right. We both need each other; we especially need each other when we are overworked and stressed out. I am pretty sure we may have even promised something along those lines.

Us, on our very first trip away together, in 2006. Six years later, this remains our only trip away alone together, except for our legal marriage/honeymoon jaunt to Boston. I think we should get out of town more often…

I’ve probably talked about this before. Maybe I haven’t, I don’t know. You know who has? Christy. She talks about it a lot, and she is wise:

“The thing about maintaining a happy relationship is that you can’t choose to focus on it just one day every few months. Like those crazy crash diets that never work – you can’t just decide to not eat for a day and expect that you’ll keep the weight off for the rest of your life. No… you need to make lifestyle changes, eat healthier, and work on it day in and day out. Relationships are just the same.”

So what did she do? She literally took out her calendar and wrote a day off into every week. And I’m going to go ahead and steal her smart plans. (Thanks, Christy!)

From now on, we are designating one day a week as a No-Crafty-Broads-Work day (if you’re wondering, it seems to be falling on Sundays for the foreseeable future.) And somewhere in the week, probably on that same day but possibly not, we are scheduling Date Night. With a strict no computers, no cell phones rule. During which we might do things like actually seeing a movie in the movie theater. So, if you’re calling/texting/emailing and we’re not responding immediately like we usually do… be patient for at least 24 hours, ok? We’ll be snuggling until then.

Yeah, we really did carve our names into a tree trunk.