jeudi 26 février 2015

My adventures with cigarette pants

So, there you have it. My first big sewing project for 2015 is ON!
After some dithering about which pattern I could use, I finally settled on B5895, which I had already made before.
As I wanted to start afresh and correct whatever fit issues I might have had with my first version, I did a first muslin using the untouched pattern. And here it is!

I'd say it looks OK, both back (sorry, no picture of the back - I'm not equipped to take good pictures of my backside on my own!) and front, from the waist down to mid-thighs.
As evidenced on pic nr.2, the side seam is slightly pulled forwards when I get to the pocket area, so maybe I should taper the seam allowance to 1/2 in when I reach the top of the pocket on the side seam, and then gradually go back to 5/8 in.
I also think I should taper to a size 10 from mid-thighs down to the hem, to really get that "cigarette pants" look.
Also, I lengthened the legs a bit too much - I'll have to hack off a few inches as I want them to hit just above my ankles.

dimanche 22 février 2015


Here they owls!

For those of you who may not know it, the pattern is Kate Davies' o w l s.
I used Tassadit's cropped version as an inspiration.
This was my first time knitting bottom-up, and I think next time I knit a bottom-up sweater, I'll make both the body and sleeves longer...sewing the underarms shut did make the body creep up, and my sleeves look more like bracelet or 3/4 length...but I like it this way, and it's not really a problem since I meant to wear it mostly with my Chataigne skirt, which is very high-waisted!
It's not perfect - I did something weird when I picked up my wrapped stitches at the back, and one of my underarms was sewn shut on the right side instead of the wrong side - but it was my first bottom-up project, and my first project involving cables, so I'm quite happy with how it turned out!
My Ravelry notes can be found here, in case you're interested. 

jeudi 5 février 2015

Some Cuisine : Butternut Squash Lasagne

I like butternut squash. And I like butternut squash soup. But sometimes I get a bit bored of it. This is how I came out with this recipe.

Serves 4 :
  • 12 lasagne sheets
  • 1 onion
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1/2 of a small butternut squash
  • 10 slices of coppa or pancetta (or 10 slices of Italian style ham if you can't find coppa or pancetta)
  • 250 g of mozzarella di buffala
  • 50 cl vegetable stock
  • 1 dash of white wine
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • pepper, dried rosemary, dried sage
  • grated parmiggiano or grana padano
  • grated emmenthal

Peel and dice the butternut squash.
Peel the onion and garlic. Shred your slices of coppa. Put all of this in a frying pan with 1 tbsp olive oil until the meat starts to be crispy and the onion soft. Add a dash of white wine. When it's evaporated, sprinkle with sugar to caramelize.
Add the diced butternut, pepper, sage, rosemary, then the vegetable stock. Simmer till the butternut is soft. The water must evaporate, but not too much - you don't want the lasagne to be dry!
Turn the fire off. Drain the mozzarella and dice it. Mix it with the meat, onion and butternut. Add 2 tbsp grated parmiggiano.
Take a deep dish that goes in the oven and start layering the lasagne. Start with enough lasagne sheets to cover the bottom of the dish, then ladle the butternut and coppa mix and spread it evenly. Then, alternate between lasagne sheets and butternut mix until you're out of the filling, ending with lasagne sheets. Sprinkle 2 generous handfuls of grated emmenthal, put in the oven for 20 min at 200°C.
Serve hot.

jeudi 29 janvier 2015

A Hat Full of Sky

I haven't read this novel by Terry Pratchett, but it sounded like a good name for this project, so there you have it.

A twisted selfie, but otherwise you couldn't see the pattern...

It's supposed to be a beret, but seen like that, it looks more like a regular beanie.

This was my first time trying to create a pattern in stranded knitting. It's supposed to be birds, clouds and a sun. I first went for classical sunrays as they would be pictured in a child's drawing, but it looked crappy, so I unraveled it to make something that looks more like a starburst of sorts.
It's a bit wonky and wobbly - I'm afraid I've been tugging at my yarn to much while worknig on the stranded parts. Hope this will be settled when I block it.
What do you think about it? Would you be interested in a diagram?

vendredi 23 janvier 2015


Er...not quite. Not that kind of "stranded".

I've just finished my Cropped Sweater, and I had started a Gazost turban to warm up my ears now that I got my hair chopped off. Thing is, I misjudged the quantity of wool that would be necessary for this project, and I'm missing one ball of yarn to get it finished. So I find myself...well, stranded, and all the more so because the last ball of yarn I bought for this project was also the last one remaining in my LYS, and I have to wait for them to restock.
Furthermore, the online shop where I like to buy my yarn for bigger projects is also one skein short of Cascade Eco+ (I'd like some to make Kate Davies' Owls Sweater), and I'd rather wait for them to restock so I can order everything I need once and save money on the shipping.

So...What you do when stranded, and no yarn left to knit (to at least finish what you've got going, I mean)?
Well...take some scraps and...try your hand at stranded knitting!
And yes, this is what I did! I had almost half a skein each of blue and ecru Cascade 220 left from my Cropped Sweater, and a little bit less of the yellow I used for my Myrna.
So I grabbed the tutorial I used for my first hat, decided to omit the cables and started drafting a diagram to make a little pattern with birds, clouds and a sun.

Here's how it looks for the moment :

Yeah, I know, it's not looking like much for the moment...but I hope it turns out nice enough in the end, and if it does, maybe I'll share the diagram. How would you like that?

dimanche 18 janvier 2015

Finished : a Cropped Sweater for SSK 2015

Hi everyone, just finished this sweater which I made for the Selfish Sweater Knitalong

When I put it on, I was so happy with it didn't want to take it off. I guess I'll wait till next weekend to block it...
This sweater was made using Andi Satterlund's Cropped Sweater for Winter tutorial.
Nothing much to say about it, apart from the fact that this is really quick to make, fun to knit and totally suitable for beginners! Not to mention that the pattern is free!

Well, now I'll try to think of an answer for an existential question...what to knit next?

vendredi 9 janvier 2015

Sewing musings...What to sew next?

Now that 2014 is over, it's time to think about stuff to sew in 2015...So here are my inspirations. Some of these are just musings, other relate to fabrics/patterns I arleady have and should use.

Things I'm (more or less) sure to make sooner or later :
  • My first order - My sister gave me some dark green linen she'd had for some time, and asked if I could make something for her with it. We decided upon Deer and Doe's Airelle blouse. I'm really happy to get to do this for her!
  • Cigarette pants - I think i'm going to follow Tasha's example and use B5895, which I've already made, and some black corduroy I bought on purpose a few months ago;
  • I haven't got the pattern yet, but I'd love to make a Bronte top with the remnants from my Moneta and Dolores Dress;
  • Taking another shot at Sencha, using another piece of fabric my sis gave me - robin's egg-blue linen. Even though it's not my favorite color (a bit too washed-out for my taste), I think it could look cute if I can find pretty vintage buttons in a contrasting color (would cotton-candy pink or a pale yellow look too girly? Or would it be better with black or white?) and add some matching embroidery around the neckline ;
  • another Picnic blanket skirt ;
  • A Lily with modified skirt (probably a gathered skirt with patch pockets) in watermelon print ;
  • Maybe a Sorbetto to use the remains of dotted swiss and cotton voile from my Hawthorn.
Things I'm dreaming of, but not sure to make immediately :
  • I've been drooling over any patio/southwestern/square dancing dress I see on the web, and I've been thinking about a way to reproduce the look without using a (possibly very expensive, probably hard to find and likely not in my size) vintage pattern. I finally thought, why not use the Anna dress bodice (the V-shaped neckline version seems most obvious to me, but the bateau neckline could work too!) with a tiered skirt? I'm thinking black lightweight cotton (or linen, maybe) with ricrac or pompom trims...
  • Another Anna inspiration : I thought about making it in a blue and green tartan wool fabric. I guess the shorter version would make quite a sweet, office friendly dress...but the longer version could have a sort of a punk-ish edge to it depending on how you style it (I'm thinking boots + leather biker style jacket here). What would you think?
  • Now that I've completed the Hawthorn, I'm less scared of tackling Colette Pattern's Ceylon...but I've yet to find the right fabric for it. How about some black broderie anglaise? or dark green silk crepe?
  • Wearing History Overalls, another try? In a checked wool fabric, perhaps?
Well, that's eleven potential sewing projects, so that shoud be enough to keep me busy for the year to come.
Also, apart from the Bronte top, I'd have all the patterns I need to complete these projects in my stash. And I also already have the fabric for seven of these, so how about a stash-busting year?

Let's see if I can stick to it!