Sunday, June 03, 2018

Moving Right Along

How did it get to be June? I swear it was just the beginning of May only yesterday. Obviously I’m having fun!

I’m still on a mad sewing kick and consequently I have another sewing FO:

I swear this has been one of my fastest pattern-to-garment makes ever! The York Pinafore is a brand new pattern by local indie designer Helen’s Closet.

Helen is modelling here. Isn’t she adorable? I think she has really hit it out of the park with this one. Beginner sewist simple; works with pretty much any fabric you throw at it, particularly the heavy bottom-weight stuff like denim and canvas; doesn’t take much yardage either; flatters a whole range of body types including potatoes like me; and is a truly practical as well as a stylishly modern garment! The instruction booklet has a whole lot of great information in it as well including sizing charts, fitting adjustments, bias binding info and detailed sewing steps. What’s not to love? Thank you, Helen!

The pattern was easy to print out and glue together. It has layers so I just printed it in size L and XL so I could morph between the narrower size at the top and wider at the waist and hip. I took 1/2” out of the bodice area divided between the lengthen/shorten lines and because the fabric was short I also took an inch out of the hem (which I will put back next time if possible). I tried to do my usual shoulder slope adjustments but this time it didn’t work very well. I ended up picking out the shoulder seams 3 times and repinning it until it hung properly. Otherwise the chest area kept folding up. I’m now not sure what exactly I did so the changes haven’t been transferred back to the pattern. The next pinafore will be a new adventure! Heh. I may need to reprint the shoulder pages and frankenstein them onto my pattern. Then I can compare them with the finished pinafore and hopefully get it right this time. At least I fixed it in the end for this one.

For fabric I used a wee remnant of soft but very heavy indigo blue denim that had been lurking in my stash ever since I rescued it from a neighbour’s free box. I was just able to squeeze out the pieces for the shorter View B but ended up with a small back yoke cut crosswise. Works just fine. Also there’s a faded fold line in the kangaroo pocket but that just adds to its jeans flavouring, don’t you think? I haven’t worn jeans in decades because they aren’t comfortable on me but this hangs from the shoulders and is loose in the waist so no restrictions. It’s even better than a skirt on my body because skirts want to ride up unless they are very loose and elastic.

For the bias binding I didn’t use purchased double-fold binding. Instead I cut my own out of a scrap of the blue/brown batik left from making my Batik Alder Shirtdress. I made the strip 1-1/4” wide and used it as a single-fold binding. It was less bulky on my thick denim. All the main seams in the pinafore were proper flat-fell seams and the pocket edges serged before folding under because this stuff frays like the dickens.

Iwill definitely be making more of these pinafores. I want a dress-length one next with the big side pockets. However, there are still quite a few garments already cut out that have first priority.

The weather has been somewhat cooler and cloudier over the last week or so. The garden is still doing very well. The garlic scapes are just starting to develop their curls, the peas are finally starting the flower, the tomato plants in the greenhouse are up to my chest in height and the beans are starting to climb up their poles. The Asian greens are finishing (though I have lots in the fridge!), the arugula and mizuna are bolting but the lettuce is coming on beautifully. I’m giving credit to the good weather we’ve had and all the manure and sea soil we’ve spread for the excellent results. We haven’t had much finished compost this year so the manure (from the Boy Scouts) was a very beneficial substitute.

We walked over to the local farmer’s market yesterday too. I can’t grow strawberries or root vegetables (except garlic and spuds) so there’s still goodies to be bought. We also had a yummy taco from the Brazilian Roots food truck made with gluten-free cassava bread and filled with smoked turkey and other delicious things. It was kind of like a cross between a taco and a pizza in flavour.

And that wasn’t the only yummy thing that happened yesterday. I got some absolutely the freshest beets and made a beet greens side dish for supper. Believe it or not, I’ve never cooked beet greens before. Only eaten the baby leaves in salads or roasted the beet roots. I didn’t used to like cooked greens or beets either come to think of it, but then we cook rather differently now than our parents’ generation did. I think my mom’s philosophy was “boil it until it’s completely dead”! Bleh. For these perfect greens, I chopped the stems and leaves separately in 1” pieces and steamed the stems for 3 or 4 minutes to tenderise them. Then I fried up some garlic (the last of my 2017 harvest) in bacon fat and added the greens and stems and cooked everything until just tender. A splash or two of balsamic vinegar and a little sea salt and pepper grated over and! The leaves from just 4 beets made lots for the two of us but we ate every bite. And I still have another bunch in the fridge. Can you imagine just composting or worse, throwing away all that leafy goodness? Sacrilege.

Oh, and I almost forgot! I got new glasses:

Kind of owl-y huh? In a good way, of course. They remind me of some of the glasses I wore back in the ‘90’s. Heh. The frames are indigo and brown tortoiseshell, made in Italy and very lightweight. I really like that I can see through the lower section of my progressive prescription without interference from the frames. Very important when you do as much close-up work as I do. Unlike some people I can’t afford more than one pair of progressives at a time so I don’t have lots of stylish pairs to switch around. These will be my “look” for a year or two now.

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