Thursday, November 27, 2014

Thursday, November 20, 2014

The Mayhem of Mattress Testing

If anything new comes into our house, it MUST pass an 8 point nose to tail inspection. There is no sneaking anything into this house, ever. I have seen at least 4 dogs sitting in front of the closet waiting to sniff a new pair of shoes. And being terriers, they won't disperse until all is deemed inspected. I bought a new mattress. Just had to be done. Frankly, it is a job worse than buying a car IMHO. In the end I went with a TempurPedic, got a great deal and was done with it no muss no fuss.
But oh my, did the inspection crew have fun with it while I was trying to snap pics of my one measly finished sewing project. Without further ado, I turn this post over to the QC.

Innocent enough and ready for QC testing

Keep your eyes on the sneaking Golden!

No rest for the sneaky here though
Look at me! Look at me! The sun rises behind my ears!!!
Background wrestling.

Oh NO, a stolen Timmy! At this point the camera stopped and the supervisor had to step in. Someone got a little short faced and there were some hurt feelings and ruffled fur that all needed to be smoothed.

30 Minutes later we were all enjoying a short nap as the new mattress passed it's intensive inspection.

Friday, November 14, 2014

Dans le Terrier du Lapin

Loosely translated "Down the rabbit hole", where it seems like I've been hiding the last week or so.  I also like the French translation of that phrase since it has terrier and rabbit all in one and how appropriate is that when you think about it. ;)

But enough of that, lots of fun stuff happening. For the first time in many years, a true complete family Thanksgiving is in the works, small as it is. And I started my holiday shopping early. I had been eyeing stuff all year long, here and there and sprung when the time was right. From now on it's all fill in as most of the important purchases are tucked away awaiting wrapping and tagging.

I had been a lapsed weaving guild member for a few years and finally decided to rejoin the Saturday Handweavers Guild. It's a shorter meeting time than the Rogue Valley Handweavers Guild, closer to home and just a better fit for actually making the meetings, which I did on Saturday of this past week. The bonus is it puts me in the Medford area on Saturday for a quick visit if I want to with my folks. Always nice. I can't begin to tell you how much I enjoy having my parents close by!

Other than the guild meeting there has been little movement on the looms, some but not a lot. I have nothing but home time carved out from now until Sunday afternoon (Patriots vs Colts at the folks), so fiber activities will commence shortly. In the sewing room I did manage to finish up one of the new patterns. The Vogue 1410 dress was completed.

I had to do a lot of shortening to the pattern and while I enjoy the way this one came out, I am not enough in love with the style to revisit it. There would be a ton of work I would want to do with this fit wise if I did another and I don't think the overall look is all that appealing on me.

 It was a fun make though and very comfortable and easy to wear.

The fabric is actually a medium weight cotton, so this can go the distance as far as season spanning and I made the armholes and neck so that I can wear it sleeveless in warmer months. And I added pockets! ;) In process is a baby wale cord tunic, a morph from my Grainline Tee sloper that I use for so many tops. It needs sleeves and hemming so is pretty close to finished.

I also "curated" some new fabrics. Fall fabrics are always my favorites. Interesting textures, fine wools and some great heavier weight cottons and linens. First up is a beautiful printed two sided stretch cotton, we think. It doesn't matter, it was love at first sight. Looks like hints of different weaving patterns to me.

 This will be a simple Lela Tunic by Green Bee. Let the fabric do the work in this comfortable and very wearable style. Next up is a light drapey grey wool crepe fabric

and lastly a perfect cross woven grey linen.

This has a lovely sheen and hand. I bought 3 yards and then went back and bought the rest of the roll. Good grey linen is hard to find and this is a quality and color much better than good. Use some now, save some for later for this will never go out of style. This year at least, the fabrics are a bit more somber. Sandi at Fabric of Vision pulls in all sorts of interesting fine fabrics and this looks like a "basics" year color wise. Lots of amazing fabrics in staple colors, blacks, greys, navy etc. No complaints here and I'm sure to be curating a few more in the weeks to come.

Parting shot: SQUIRREL!

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Ground Work

This seems like a perfect time to give thanks to a very smart trainer, who 14 years ago made it her job to train the owner while she was teaching the horse. The horse was the better student.  While there were many tidbits I learned, her main focus was to make sure I understood how to be aware of my horse and to listen to him, protect and guide him, be the benevolent ruler he wanted and needed. The second was the importance of ground work.  Ground work made us a team long before we had saddle time. I learned about ears,

and tails, his body position in relation to me, what made go and what made whoa.

 He learned about my cues, space and where and how to go if scared or startled. That lesson was the hardest to accomplish and the most important. This weekend, Gene needed to cut down trees in the paddock. I led the horses up to the far end away from the falling timber with a carrot only, no halters as I certainly didn't want to to be tied to a horse who would likely do a bit of spooking and snorting, let alone two. The plan was he was going to yell "Timber" I would put up my hands and step back away effectively leaving their "space" and making my own. Well, the tree made the biggest snap crack sound before he could even yell timber and those two good horses, stepped well back from me before they pranced out, about 12 feet away, tails and noses high and snorted at the downed tree and Gene.  They were more curious to go see the fallen tree.

 Thank you Bridget, I can't begin to count the number of disasters, large and small, good ground skills have averted.  It is the gift that keeps on giving and has made both my horses a pleasure and a joy to be around. Priceless.

On the fiber fronts, just a little weaving but a lot of sewing prep. Sunday morning I went into pattern cutting overdrive.

 I ordered a passel of new patterns and went to work. Three from Vogue, V1410, V9060 and an oldie but goodie  V8430. I downloaded a pattern from a new to me company Jocole, their pull on skinny pant, and also cut some tried and true favorites. The Sewing Workshop Liberty shirt in medium weight linen and Indygo Junctions Retro Raglan done duster length in wool with a silk lining. This will be a winter repeat of my much loved bright red linen duster I made this summer. A long crossover tunic in a baby wale corduroy rounds out the frenzy. I actually ran out of pins!

 All but the corduroy came from stash, some of it has been in there for over a year. Time to clean off the shelves and use some of those precious fabrics I've curated. 4 tubs full of sewing goodness and space for new fabrics on the shelves. What's not to love!

Lastly, it's Election Day, don't forget to vote and then treat yourself if you can to some wonderful little fiber something something.  :)

Parting shots: The Mighty Hunters, Buzz and Juno.