Showing posts from January, 2013

A Partial Fail

I've started to put some of those painted and stamped elements from earlier this month into use. My first application has been a partial fail.

This infinity scarf (made from a recycled t shirt) with painted motifs appliqued looks nice and is quite comfortable to wear, but it is a fail in terms of the stiffness of the motifs. The jersey absorbed too much of the fabric paint and therefore the 'hand' of these appliqued elements is much stiffer than the main body of the scarf.

It's not a total fail. It looks OK, the colours are good and it's actually quite nice to wear. I like the obvious hand stitching around the appliqued pieces. It's just that stiffness.


I need to go back to the printing and painting station in the basement and have another go - this time with a lighter approach when working on this kind of fabric.

On the bright side:
One thing is clear here... how much better, more consistent,  my hand sewing has become. I'm inspired to get back to some…

Scary Sewing

Last week I made my first garment of the new year. I'm calling it my Ladder Tunic.

The design and drafting of the pattern went well. The fabric was entirely appropriate. My sewing machine and serger behaved impeccably. I only had to rip out one short bit of sewing. I discovered a wonderful new sewing tool. And I think the final product has worked out very well.
So what was so scary? Well, the design in my head required me to mostly finish this top and then cut it up! WTF?
After doing some texture samples on jersey last month, I knew I wanted to try out some of those techniques on wearables. And the one I wanted to use first was slashing to create a distressed fabric.

I used a self drafted pattern. This is a long, loose tunic with dropped shoulders, an asymmetrical hem and a double neck treatment.

This has a classic "lagenlook" unstructured shape that works with leggings, narrow pants or a long skirt. In case anyone is interested in sewing something like this, Butt…

Alcohol Ink Coasters - for alcoholic drinks of course

This one is short - and hopefully sweet...

You may have seen these – coasters made from ceramic tiles decorated with alcohol inks. They are all over Pinterest and a search with Google Images shows more examples than is comfortable.

I saw the original tutorial here: And I thought it would be a fun little "make" for house gifts around Christmas time. Besides, I had all the alcohol inks left over from updating my kitchen back splash last year.

Well, Christmas came and went and it was well into January before I actually got around to having a go. A quick make? Not for me. They took way longer than I expected. There is a lot of waiting around to see what happens, during which time you get to inhale alcohol fumes. And not the good kind either. And then inevitably you have to wash the ink off the tile when the result is ugly and try again. And wait again. I found these hard to make look good!

And yet t…

Printing and painting my way into 2013

Wow, I've really slipped in the ol' posting department lately. Not a great way to start a new year. A whole month has gone by! Well, I can partly blame Christmas, partly blame having been sick with this month's very popular bronchial bug (cough hack), and partly blame the fact that I have been busy in the basement.

Although I had been hankering to get on with some more garment work, I got pleasantly distracted by a Christmas present - tools for making printing blocks. So I've been carving soft and lino block stamps, setting up a printing space in the basement and generally making a nice mess.

Getting Set Up:

Setting up the printing space was no big deal. Essentially you need a sturdy table covered with some sort of padding (to make it easier to print on fabric) and plastic. I used a couple of towels for the padding and a vinyl Dollarama table cloth, duct taped tightly around my trusty folding table. $2 for these supplies seemed like the right price.

Luckily we have a ki…