Sunday, March 2nd
It’s 5:45 am, and I am up, which is unsurprising these days thanks to our precious baby girl. But, this morning I’m actually excited to get out of bed while it’s still dark. Today I finally get to see what the Sewing and Stitchery Expo is all about.
After a quick shower and an even quicker breakfast, capped on all sides by some not-so-quick tending to the baby girl, we’re off to Puyallup. This morning “we” not only includes baby girl but also includes my husband. As we pack all of baby girl’s things in the car, I can’t help but be so very grateful that he decided to tag along and get a bit of work done while we were at the Expo. I know having him there will make me feel so much better about being away from home for so long with our one-month-old child.
As we pull into the fairgrounds, we’re greeted by masses of people crossing the street from the parking lot into the expo. Even though I should have expected it, I’m still a bit surprised by the gender ratio I see headed that way – it seems like there are hundreds of women for every one man! It’s quite the opposite of my experience in graduate school! But, nonetheless, I have to admit to myself that I thought an event like this would pull all kinds out of the woodwork, resulting in a less extreme gender ratio. But, then again, weren’t most of the teachers and featured guests women?
We are on time for my first class, and I’m eager to get in and see what it’s all about. Baby girl has other plans though, and we’re not out of the car until we go through two diaper changes and a long bout of feeding. The friendly parking attendant seems keen on chatting up my husband while he’s standing in the rain trying to help me change a diaper awkwardly in the car. I hear the attendant telling my husband how he’d typically expect hundreds of more cars by now, but he thinks the weather combined with a bit of expo fatigue has kept many people away. Yet, to me it feels like we’re already parked really far away from the expo entrance, so I’m thankful that some of the area’s sewing enthusiasts decided to sleep in this morning.
Once baby girl is in order, I think we are golden… until I can’t find my expo ticket. As I stand in the rain emptying all of my pockets looking for the pinkish colored slip of paper – with the gate keeper yelling at me to get in, get covered, and get that baby out of the rain – I can’t for the life of me recall where I might have left the ticket. I swear I had it just before we left the car. As my husband starts backtracking, I follow the gate keeper’s advice and get in, get covered, and get my baby out of the rain. And, wouldn’t you know, as soon I’m safely out of the weather and can slow my frantic searching, I see that the missing pink ticket is sitting right at the top of my diaper bag. Crisis averted, just in time to catch my husband before he crosses back over to the parking lot on a wild goose chase.
Entering the expo for the first time is an awesome experience. There are booths filled with fabrics and patterns and machines and notions as far as the eye can see. I do my best to take it all in as I speed walk towards my first class, for which I am now extremely late.
I enter the Strategic Sewing class taught by Nancy Nix-Rice just as she is talking about the benefits of accessorizing the neck. And columns. Inside and outside columns created by pants or skirts and tops or jackets in similar colors that together make a column of color that draws a viewer’s eye up to the face and serves to make the wearer look taller and thinner. I later learn that you’re best served if the color of said column is similar in shade to your face and hair.
The class is loosely structured around Nancy’s new book: Looking Good… Every Day: Style Solutions for Real Women. I learn that her book covers various techniques to flatter and enhance a multitude of different body types, but today we focus more on generalities, sticking mainly to her method for planning twelve garments that can combine to make over 96 outfits. The key to the wardrobe is finding a print fabric that you love and that flatters your face. From it you make a top and a skirt. You pull colors from the print to make ten other pieces, which include two pants in two different neutrals; two skirts in the same two neutrals; four tops in the same two neutrals and two complimentary accent colors; and three over layers in the same two neutrals and one of the two complimentary accent colors. Nancy explains how to pull these twelve pieces together to make outfits that fit and flatter. Interestingly, it’s not a matter of just mixing and matching exactly, there are other little details that she’s learned over the years that make a lot of difference in how the outfits work.
Image above from the Sewing and Stitchery Expo’s website
I chose this class because I was hoping it would help me tackle my second resewlution for 2014: be more conscious of sewing with fabrics and patterns that flatter and fit my lifestyle. When I listen to the lessons, I try to think about how they might apply to my own particular wardrobe. Black is one of Nancy’s no-nos, and I know that my wardrobe is filled with black (note my black sweater, black baby carrier, black bag, and black Converse in the photo above!). But, interestingly, last fall after delving a bit into seasonal color analysis thanks to this post on color by Thewallinna, I had already begun to question whether black was a great color for me. I find it hard to believe black is universally bad, especially when Nancy says not to listen to anyone who says “always” and “never” in regards to fashion, but the idea of minimizing black still resonates with me personally.
I chuckle as Nancy breaks her rule again with another always-and-never situation: hourglass and pear-shaped women should tuck in their shirts, while rectangular women such as me should not. Yet, this again resonates with me. Over and over I try to pull off the skirt-at-the-natural-waist look, and over and over I wonder why it just doesn’t feel like it flatters me the way that it does for so many others. And, lest you think I’m being overly self-critical, though my husband is quick to praise, he often questions my judgement when I try to walk out of the house with my shirt tucked in to a skirt.
My mind wanders as I dream of going through my closet with an eye for garments that I already own that would fit into Nancy’s strategy while also working with my body type and current lifestyle. What prints do I have that I love that could be a basis for one of these mini-wardrobes? What are my neutrals?
Nancy returns back to neck accessories and drawing the eye up. I scribble notes as she further praises scarves, twin-sets, matte jersey dresses, shoulder pads, and three-quarter-length sleeves. Even though I can’t remember the last time I thought of using shoulder pads in anything other than a tailored jacket or the last time I owned a twin set, Nancy does such a great job selling me on both of their merits, as well as the merits of her new book, that I make sure to write down her booth number before heading out of the lecture hall at the end of the class.
I have just a few minutes before my next class. I find my husband and drag him around to a few of the booths, trying to get a better idea of what this expo is really all about. My husband points out a cute crafty pattern in one of the more quilting-focused booths, and I am tempted, but I don’t want to break out my wallet just yet since I know that once it’s out, it’ll stay out!
Before too long I have to make my way back over to the class area for the Couture Finishing Techniques class taught by Lorene Bonewitz of Sew It Up. I again seem to be late though as she’s already discussing needles and stitch length when I enter. She quickly moves to the importance of not only directional sewing but also directional cutting and pressing. We then whiz through turn of cloth and six different kinds of seam finishes. I’m writing as fast as I can while again standing and bouncing at the back of the classroom… …Press only after a collar has been turned so as not to undo the work you put into creating the proper turn of cloth… …Sew first from breakpoint of lapel down with front facing against the feed dogs… …Remove the needles from your serger and then use the blade to trim the seam allowance when making French seams… …Try to find rayon seam binding for Hong Kong seams…
Next we’re on to hems. She discusses many different types of hems, but I try to focus in on her tips for rolled hems. For a serged rolled hem, I note that she suggests that you fuse 1/2″ strips of French tricot something or other along the fabric’s edge, that you use wooly nylon thread, and that you run the edge through the serger a second time without the knife for a more finished look. Or, if you’re making a rolled hem using your machine, I learned that you start by sewing with a short, 1.8 stitch length all around the hem. Then you fold the hem over on that line, press, and trim. Finally, you roll and sew the hem again, using the line as a string and working two to three inches at a time.
We move on to pressing, and I make a mental note to find my pressing cloth, which went missing last summer after the move, and to make sure to let a garment cool before moving it back to the machine. Then I’m frantically scribbling again until the end of the class. When Lorene starts wrapping up, I glance back through my notes and marvel at how much information was packed into less than an hour. I had low expectations since the class only cost $5. I actually even thought I might already know a decent amount of what would be taught, but as I stand at the back of the lecture hall bouncing with my baby girl strapped to my chest, I realize I have quite a bit to learn when it comes to sewing. I’m still very much a novice! Then, to finish the class, there appears to be a raffle. I can’t even believe my fortune when they announce my number as the first of two winners! What a pleasant surprise, and a great end to a great class.
As I pack up my expanse of baby things littering the back corner of the lecture hall, I notice two very familiar faces walking towards me. I’m pleasantly surprised to learn that Helena of Gray All Day and Leah of Away I Sew! were also in the class. As we are introducing ourselves and chatting it up, Far of Memoryseed also appears. She, too, was in the class, but she can’t say much more than hello since she has to run off to a fitting session she scheduled with a teacher earlier in the day.
I’m tempted to skip my next class to go tour the expo with Helena and Leah, but like the diligent student that I am, I leave them to their fun and head over to the Sew Instantly Slimming Pants class taught by Kathy Ruddy. She launches right into tricks to get great fitting pants. I note her trick for getting the bagginess out of the under seat area is a different than the method I learned in Kenneth D. King’s Jean-ius class, though I decide it probably removes fabric in mostly the same way. I also note the simple tricks she learned by dissecting a pair of Not Your Daughter’s Jeans. Though the denim they use is very stretchy, the front pockets, which are sewn from side seam all the way to the front, are made of a woven fabric. Kathy explains that the clever design uses the woven to cinch you in at the front, while lifting the back as the woven pulls the stretchy denim forward. I smile from ear to ear when she pulls out an SA Curve Ruler to mark the seam allowances of the pattern she’s drafting at the front of the room. I’ve written about those rulers many times on the blog (most recently here), and I love knowing they’re used by the big names as well!
After this class finishes, I find my husband again, and we talk food as we’re both starving. He runs off to get us something to eat, and I snag another peek at the expo. I notice that most of the women with babies or toddlers are pushing them around in strollers. I laugh at myself for never having even considered a stroller, which would have made touring the expo so much easier, but I know it’s because baby girl has trained me to carry her at all costs.
My break quickly ends, and I run off to my next class, Tailored Jackets Made the Modern Way taught by Nancy Siefert. I realize it’s not only me that’s hungry – baby girl is as well. As I sit on the ground at the back of the hall and secretly nurse baby girl, I still try to take a few notes. I learn that a favorite detail of Nancy’s is the inner cell phone pocket, that sleeve length is set by where the sleeve hits the top of your hand as your hand is pressed flat against a table, and that by modern tailored jacket she means one that uses fusible interfacing to direct its shape. I note that you use heavier fusible interfacing on the front and under-collar, lighter fusible interfacing on the facing and over-collar, and sew-in interfacing for the back stay. I also learn that you should always test fuse your interfacing to your fashion fabric to test its drape and stiffness, and then you can then use that sample to make test buttonholes. And, I learn that before fusing your interfacing to the actual cut fashion fabric, you should check for any distortion since you’ll lock them in once you fuse.
In fact, I learn quite a lot: how to cut and add extra oomph to the under-collar, tips on pressing, how to sew a welt pocket, how to sew the roll line as well as the neckline, how to clip the arm seam, how to ease in the sleeve using a bit of bias self-fabric, and more. I do get bit lost when she’s covering mitered corners and bagged linings though, a bit due to subject overload and a bit due to baby girl.
After the tailored jacket class ends and I inhale the food that my husband brought me, I head off to another class by Nancy Nix-Rice, Sew Skinny. This class starts off very similar to the first by covering shoulder pads and color continuity, but I figure I’m getting to hear a bit of what I probably missed this morning. Then we dive into color and dressing for body types. Since the lessons on color are all relative and seem to be set by what looks best on each individual, it’s hard to take too many notes for what might work for me per se. But, I do try to take a lot of notes on what flatters a rectangular shape: straight, semi-fitted silhouettes; no color break at the waist; long column of color with a small amount of shaping; long jackets that hit at the hip; skinny pants; over-layer tops; untucked shirts; details that give motion… I can’t catch it all, but I think I get the general gist.
After another quick glimpse at the expo, I head to my last class of the day: Sew Like a Pro with Connie Crawford. Connie starts off by sharing her path into fashion design, and I’m nearly knocked off my feet when she gets to the part where she explains that she learned on day one in the industry that you should cut your fashion fabric when it is pinned to a paper backing since the paper backing serves to keep the fabric perfectly in place. Supposedly fabric and paper together won’t dull your shears any more than fabric alone will. Furthermore, she goes on to knock down so many other of my home-sewing truisms. You should not use tracing paper. You should use 1/4″ seam allowances instead of 5/8″. You should not clip into your seam allowances. You can sew over your pins when they are properly inserted into the fabric. You should not use a basting stitch in order to set in a shoulder but instead “crimp” it prior to setting it in. You should not gather anything at all period with a basting stitch but instead use a gathering foot…
I scramble to write down technique after technique, but, as the list goes on and on, baby girl let’s me know that she is finally done with classes. She’s awake, and she’s ready to go home. Leah is also in the class with me, and though I had started off the class hopeful that I would get at least a quick little tour of the expo with her, I realize instead that I’m going to be headed home sooner rather than later.
After the class is over I do catch Leah for a few minutes in the hopes that a bit of walking will help calm baby girl down. We run into Far again and start talking fabric as we head over to the American Sewing Guild booth. Baby girl doesn’t last long though, and after Far leaves, I say my goodbyes as well. It’s been a long but very good day. I know I’ve learned a lot, and I’m hopeful I’ll be able to come back again next year.
My little family packs up and heads out without buying a single thing at the expo. Except for a strawberry shortcake. There just wasn’t enough time to even consider buying the books and notions I was so convinced I needed during the earlier classes. I am not leaving empty handed though. My raffle prize from the Couture Finishing Techniques class was a cute little tailor’s ham. My third, in fact. I think I may need to have a tailor’s ham giveaway here pretty soon… Does anyone out there need a tailor’s ham?!
And, my other big question – what do you think about cutting out your fashion fabric when it’s pinned to paper? If I had any paper large enough, I just might be tempted to try it on the silk blouse that’s currently on my sewing table. Too bad I stopped getting the newspaper years ago… Though, who knows, maybe my shears are rejoicing that the only paper I have around is 8 1/2″ by 11″…
UPDATE: Ever since the birth of baby girl, I hardly have any time to read blogs (you don’t even want to know how many unread posts I have!), so I only now found Sham of Communing with Fabric‘s posts on her trip to the Sew Expo: why she went, her whirlwind day, her meeting with Vogue, and the inspiring garments she saw.
I mentioned a little over a month ago that I was going to the Sewing and Stitchery Expo in Puyallup, Washington. Back then the Sew Expo felt so far away. It’s hard for me to believe the Expo week is already here and that March is already here, but it’s true! (A friend once told me that when you have a newborn, the days are long but the weeks are short.)
I’m really excited to see what this conference is all about. My excitement has to be tempered because I’ll only be there one day – Sunday – since I already feel a bit like a negligent parent bringing a one-month-old baby to a crowded sewing conference. Baby girl likes to be held, so my current plan is to wear her all day. I hope being snuggled up next to me will keep her relatively happy while also limiting her contact with anyone who might be sick.
In the hopes that baby girl doesn’t mind being out all day, I’ve planned a full day of classes and hope to be there until the bitter end. If you’ll also be at the Sew Expo on Sunday, let me know. I’ve already heard from a few of you, and I’m excited we might finally meet! Leah of Away I Sew! mentioned meeting at the American Sewing Guild booth, which I think is a great idea. Unfortunately, I scheduled so many classes that I only have 15 minutes here and 15 minutes there until the end of the day. I’m not opposed to skipping out on a class if there’s a time that works best for many of you. Perhaps you could let me know in the comments? Otherwise, as long as baby girl isn’t screaming at me to get her home, I’ll plan to stop by the ASG booth after my last class ends, just after 3:15 pm. Maybe I’ll see you then?!
Image above from the Sewing and Stitchery Expo’s website.
Well, when I finally found the time between the feedings and the burpings and the changings and the sleepings to turn on my sewing machine, I didn’t use it to make something fun and exciting and new for me or even something cute for the little one. Instead, I used it to make a pillow.
For someone else, no less.
I think it’s a pretty awesome pillow though.
The petals that run down the length of the pillow, simple circles cut out of silk organza, were the motivation behind the project. They once belonged on the skirt of a beautiful wedding dress of a close friend from college.
During said friend’s wedding reception reverie, I noticed a petal here and a petal there on the floor. I guess all the dancing was too much for some of them! Thankfully, there were so many on the skirt that it would have taken weeks of dancing before their disappearance would have been noticeable. It occurred to me that something could be made from the fallen petals, a little wedding keepsake if you will, so I started collecting them. I tried to be subtle about picking them up, but others noticed nonetheless. I expected them to give me crazy looks, but instead they joined in. It became a game of sorts – who could get to the dropped petal first, who could find the most.
The thing is, at the time I had no idea what I was going to do with them. Should I add them to a garment, something reminiscent of the wedding dress? Should I add them to a bag, something she could carry and use? Or, should I add them to something for the house, something she would see on a daily basis?
When I came across this pin, I knew my search for what to do with these petals was over. I knew the petals would eventually become a ruffle border on a pillow. Only now I had to find the perfect fabric for the pillow itself.
When I made my husband’s recent ivory button-up shirt, I had way more of the striped accent fabric than I needed for the shirt. Mood‘s minimal order is a half a yard, and after the shirt was complete, it felt like I still had a whole half a yard left! Not enough for a garment of its own, but plenty for a pillow! I got to thinking that the neutral gray-and-ivory stripes might look pretty good with the petals. And, the stripes would help me make sure my ruffle border was perfectly straight.
To begin, I cut out two 18″ by 18″ squares of fabric from the striped fabric. Next, I identified an ivory stripe about a third of the way across one of the squares and marked it with a pin. I then hand sewed 40 or so of the petals down that entire ivory stripe, spacing them approximately a half an inch apart. I also hand sewed 40 or so additional petals to the right and left of the first row in order to give the ruffle border the same random, petals-everywhere feeling that the dress had.
After the petals were all sewn in place, I machine sewed the two squares of fabric together, being careful not to catch any of the petals while doing so. I also tried to match the stripes along the seams. As you can see above, I did okay, particularly when I was further away from the petals. I left a small hole on one side so I could turn the pillow right sides out and stuff it full of polyfill. A final bit of hand sewing closed it up and finished it off.
Now I just have to find the time to make the trip to the post office. I hope she likes it!
Before I disappear again into the land of new-mom, I figured I’d share another photo of my baby girl. I know I’m biased, but I think she’s pretty cute.
Ladies and gentlemen, I’m pleased to announce that my husband and I welcomed a darling daughter into the world last week. Yes, despite the fact that the vote was for a boy by a small majority, 14 to 11, she turned out to be a little girl! I guess I’ll be needing to finish that quilt sooner rather than later after all!
Our little family is doing well. Our daughter is super healthy, and labor and delivery went pretty much as well as I could have hoped. That’s not to say labor wasn’t hard, but I felt well prepared and well cared for thanks to a fabulous set of midwives and nurses and a wonderful eight-week baby class that my husband and I took leading up to the birth. And, likely thanks to the power of hormones, by the end of the day she was born, I’d pretty much already forgotten how hard labor truly was.
Now that she’s here, I get to start testing the waters around my first resewlution: keep sewing once the little one arrives.
- Keep sewing once the little one arrives.
- Be more conscious of sewing with fabrics and patterns that flatter and fit my lifestyle.
Move to my own dot com.
- Get better connected with the Seattle sewing community.
I can’t imagine any sewing will be going on for the next little bit, but I am hoping I might be able to follow Nicole of Nicole at Home‘s advice about getting the little one used to the whirr of the sewing machine sooner rather than later. I think the Ziggi Sew-Along being co-hosted Sew Maris and Stacy Sews might be the perfect make-sure-I’m-back-to-sewing-by-then goal. The end of February sounds attainable, and I already have the pattern and fabric ready to go since the StyleARC Ziggi jacket was on my Spring to-sew list thanks to Shams of Communing with Fabric (see her version here). We’ll see how things go, but it’s nice to at least have a goal.
Okay, well, back to doting on my newborn! Happy sewing to the rest of you!
It seems like ever since I started sewing, I’ve had a ton of friends having babies. And, because I was introduced very early on in my sewing career to the Cotton Ginny’s Animal Blankets and Ball pattern through the sewing classes that came with the purchase of my machine, nearly every single one of those friends got one of these blankets. I started with the pattern’s bear, elephant, and hippo blankets, making many, many multiples of those, and then I ventured out into cats, giraffes, unicorns, and dogs. One year I counted eleven blankets made. But, it’s been awhile since I made one of these baby blankets – well over a year, in fact. My friends kept having babies, but the focus of my sewing changed to almost exclusive garment sewing (with a small craft binge here or there) after joining MSN. Yet, these blankets take almost no time to make, so I’ve really had no excuse!
I figured it was time to break out the minky again and make one for my impending arrival. The animal of choice this time around was a dragon. A green dragon. Green felt neutral, and whether I have a boy or a girl, I hope they’ll grow up to think dragons are pretty cool.
I mean, look at that face!
I used the same head and ear pattern pieces for the dragon as I used for the giraffes, only I added a seam down the center of the back head piece. I also added a seam down the center of the back blanket piece. Those extra seams allowed me to easily add dragon ridges and wings, all drafted on the fly. And, I can tell you that that wooden point turner that came with the quilting kit I bought for $6 for the July Block of the Month Dresden plate class came in super handy as I turned ridge spike after ridge spike. Also, would you believe these wings are my first ever scallops? Somehow I got by without making anything with a scallop a few years ago when it felt like scalloped hems and necklines were all the rage in the sewing blogging world.
The tail was also drafted on the fly and was mostly based on the yardage of minky I had on hand.
Now all that is needed is a bit of patience. The dragon’s happily waiting, and I’m trying… But, seriously, come on, baby!
Last week I introduced my desire to get started on my new year’s sewing resolutions, or “resewlutions” if you will, right away before I’d lost that new year, clean slate feeling (and before the impending arrival of the little one, which I’m sure is going to slow things down around here!). I was so impressed how many of you commented on that post saying you had also already made progress on your own sewing resolutions. Bravo!
So, how am I doing one more week into the new year? Again, my resewlutions were to…
- Keep sewing once the little one arrives.
- Be more conscious of sewing with fabrics and patterns that flatter and fit my lifestyle.
Move to my own dot com.
- Get better connected with the Seattle sewing community.
My post last week crossed number 3 off the list: move to my own dot com. Thanks to those of you who commented to say everything was working just the same in your blog readers. I ended up contacting Bloglovin’ about it anyway just to be safe, and of course that’s when things got messy. Sorry if a whole slew of my old posts popped back into your reader over there!
Anyway, today I want to talk about my efforts towards number 4: get better connected with the Seattle sewing community.
I got a lot out of taking advantage of the wonderful Bay Area Sewing community (see all my Bay Area sewists meet up posts here), and I want to do the same here in Seattle. This past summer I got started on the right foot with two fitting meet ups (mentioned here and here), but then a doctor’s appointment prevented me from making it to a museum meet up, and things slowed way down from there. Honestly, my good intentions to try to keep the momentum from the summer going in somewhat monthly meet ups were over taken by my ever expanding belly. I did manage to make it out to District Fabric with Maris of Sew Maris and to meet up with the Seattle Sewing Guild Meet Up group one weekend in the fall.
To get things started on the right foot this year, I’ve now created a whole page dedicated to sewing in Seattle. I’ve included the blogs, sewing and knitting groups, sewing conferences, sewing classes, and fabric and knitting shops that I’ve heard of in the area. I’m sure it’s no where near exhaustive since I’m really only just getting to know my way around here, but I actually can’t believe how long the list is already: twenty-three blogs, five crafty meet-up groups, nine fabric stores, and more… If you’re familiar with the area and see things I’ve missed, I’d love your input as well. Send me an email or leave a comment on that page.
Or, if you’re also proud to be sewing in Seattle, what about showing it off with a button on your blog? I made one for all of us, though I’m not sure whether the slogan I’ve chosen, “Home of the world’s largest needle”, is in fact true. But, I saw something similar in an art shop near my house, and I couldn’t help but think it was pretty clever and adopt it for our little community!
<a href="http://sew-well.com/seattle/"><img alt="Sewing in Seattle" src="http://sewwell.files.wordpress.com/2013/11/seattle.jpg" width="300" height="300" /></a>
Hopefully the html text above will post as text that you can copy and use. If not, you can always right click and download the image to your own computer, and then when you upload it to your own blog, link the image to http://sew-well.com/seattle/. You can adjust the size of the button as needed by simply changing the pixel values in between the quotation marks after width and height, like I’ve done below. (UPDATE:
I’m not sure all of the quotation marks are coming through… I need to learn more WordPress.com-approved html! I finally got the html code working correctly!)
<a href="http://sew-well.com/seattle/"><img alt="Sewing in Seattle" src="http://sewwell.files.wordpress.com/2013/11/seattle.jpg" width="250" height="250" /></a>
<a href="http://sew-well.com/seattle/"><img alt="Sewing in Seattle" src="http://sewwell.files.wordpress.com/2013/11/seattle.jpg" width="200" height="200" /></a>
<a href="http://sew-well.com/seattle/"><img alt="Sewing in Seattle" src="http://sewwell.files.wordpress.com/2013/11/seattle.jpg" width="150" height="150" /></a>
I personally enjoy knowing where bloggers are from, and I also like the idea of the world knowing that the Seattle sewing blogging community is a force to be reckoned with!
Another way that I’m getting involved is by going to the Sewing and Stitchery Expo this year in Puyallup. Since the little one will be so young, I only signed up to go one day, but I’m hoping to make the most of it. I’ve registered for a full day of classes on Sunday since my husband can also join me that day if I need help with the baby. It’s the last day, so that might mean the vendors are all tired and ready to go home, but I’m still excited to see what a sewing conference is all about and to learn what I can from the classes. If you also plan to be there on Sunday, let me know!
I’d also love to head down to Puyallup Saturday night for the American Sewing Guild After-Expo Banquet, but I don’t want to over extend myself. I’ve heard from some of you that you might also be going, but I imagine I’ll have to wait a little bit to figure out whether two big events are possible that weekend. I’ll let you know if my maybe becomes a definite yes.
Now, who else has made even the tiniest bit more progress on their resewlutions?! I’m especially curious to hear more from those of you who’ve also made exploring your personal style a goal for the year (pretty much my number 2 listed above, which I’m thinking a lot about even if I’m not currently making any actual progress on it). It seems like a common theme this year, and I’ve been excited to see some of the big sewing bloggers announce things like The Wardrobe Architect and The Twelve Pattern Challenge. I think 2014 is going to be a fun year to watch the sewing blogging community grow into its own!
Well, the newborn hat is finished! The funny thing is that I could have finished it ages ago. I’m such a beginner at knitting that I read, “use a 3 needle bind off to close the top of the hat with right sides together,” in the instructions for the Pixy Newborn Hat and thought it meant I needed to use a size 3 needle. And, with everything that’s going on right now in preparation for the little one’s impending arrival, I just wasn’t making the time to go out and buy size 3 knitting needles. Finally, I thought I’d just google “3 needle bind off” to at least see what the method was in the hopes that I might finally get motivated enough to finish the hat. And, of course, I found out that the three-needle bind off is the name of a technique that uses three needles, not size 3 needles. So, this whole time I’ve had everything I’ve needed to finish this little hat, only I didn’t realize it!
Here’s the video I watched to learn the three-needle bind off technique:
All that was left was to weave in the loose end, and I’ll admit I just made up how to do it at the time. In the future I promise to look up how to properly weave in the end!
Finally, I used a crochet needle to add a few extra long strands at the top corners, which I braided to approximately the same length and tied off with a few extra pieces of yarn for tassels. One thing I was wondering – instead of weaving in the loose end from the body of knitting, could I have just worked the end into one of the braided tassels?
And, with that, I can proudly show off my first finished knitting project! This little hat is also my first finished project of 2014. Who would have thought my first finished project of 2014 would be knitting?!
Now if only I had a little head to put in that hat…