Friday, August 15, 2014

Links of the Week

Harry is helping and wants you to know that he is not in the way

If you sell your work, or are thinking about selling your work, this discussion of pricing is pretty interesting.

These GIFs from the Smithsonian made a nice antidote to the events of this week.

I learned a few things from this podcast about making a living as an artist . 

Here's a picture of a deer eating my hostas and daylilies:

This article about how oldest sons are given more food and attention in India made me inexpressibly sad. This is a quantifiable demonstration of the patriarchy in action. I'm not picking on India here; there are ample examples of this tendency to funnel resources to sons in Western Culture as well. Just think of Primogeniture in England, Henry VIII and countless other examples.

I think all of this calls for another cat picture:

David's Portrait of Napoleon, improved with Ginger Cat. Link below for artist.
Harry recommends this blog with four paws UP.
Have a great week!

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Wearing the Pants

Dr Mary Walker, picture courtesy Library of Congress
Sitting Bull's Daughter in leggings  

Women working in the canning factory, during WWI, picture courtesy Library of Congress
Amazon Warrior in Pants picture courtesy Wikipedia

My essay on the right to wear pants is up today on The Toast. Did you now that it used to be illegal for women to wear pants? Did you know that in many places it still is? Find out more here.
Published today on

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Wax Print Dress In the News

Photo of Dr. Biden and Vice President Biden from the Washington Post
Don't you love this wax print dress? Dr. Biden had it made when she was in Africa. Read all about it here.

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

In Progress: Hawaiian Shirts

  Mr. Hunting Creek loves the shirts I make for him. He gets lots of compliments and comments and he always brags that I made it custom for him. He has been asking for more shirts, and I agreed BUT he had to help me cut them out. I have both MS and arthritis, and my hands get very tired of cutting. He then said these magic words: 
 " Why don't you teach me how?  I can cut everything for you. Then you can just sew".

Like Buddy the Elf, I have favorite things and non-favorite things:

Favorite Things about Sewing
Actual Sewing of Things
Collecting Beautiful Fabrics to Make Beautiful Things
Collecting Patterns
Finishing Things, see above

Non-Favorite Things About Sewing
Winding Bobbins
Cutting Things Out
Stress, or working on a deadline

He selected McCalls 4079, which is a great pattern with many variations and good instructions.(It is OOP but there are several other options that you could try, including Colette's Negroni and this one.)
 I have made it before, so it has already been adjusted. He then was escorted to the shirt fabric shelf and selected two tropically
themed fabrics, one of which I had purchased in the state of Hawaii, so you cannot get more authentic than that.
  I always, always buy a yard extra for shirt purposes, after an unfortunate experience with accidentally slicing something and having not enough fabric to cut another piece, leading to some very creative problem -solving that I would prefer not to repeat.(I use extra shirting scrap pieces for pocket linings, shirt collar bands, inside yokes and cuffs and boxer shorts and other uses.) The extra fabric allows me to match patterns without stress, and stress is one of those Non-Favorite sewing things that I'd like to avoid. This is supposed to be fun, after all

 Men's casual shirts are pretty easy compared to women's blouses, but I have a small quibble with the pattern envelope above. I have never ever made a shirt in three hours. Also, why on earth would you want to do that?  Today I will  wind two bobbins (because nothing is so annoying as running out of thread while topstitching) cut out the interfacing for the collars and make the collars, since that is the fussiest part, so I like to do that first.
  Tomorrow I'll sew the yokes to the front and back. Then attach the collar, sew on the sleeves, sew the side seams, hem sleeves. Thursday mark buttonholes, and sew buttonholes. Sew on buttons. Then hem. Hemming after buttons and buttonholes is something I learned to do after a sad experience where the fronts were ever so slightly off and I noticed it and then could not not notice it so the shirt had to be rehemmed. Ripping out and redoing hems is another NON FAVORITE thing, so we like to prevent that from even happening.
He wants it by Saturday. Did I mention that I hate deadlines?

Saturday, August 2, 2014

Clearance Sale

We're having a SALE on selected patterns, including Indygo Junction, Christmas Patterns, Amy Butler Patterns , selected quilt patterns and more. We have to clear stock and make room for new Fall and Winter Patterns, so take advantage now and save. 
As always we offer FREE SHIPPING if you buy three or more patterns!