Comfortable

When I was madly sewing trying to finish up the bra project, I had a moment when I realised that I was finally feeling for all the dials and levers and changing the feet on my 6-month-old sewing machine without thinking about it! It didn’t feel awkward or new or deliberate anymore. Just Jenny and I working together like she’s an extension of my hands and brain. It’s taken nearly 6 months to get to this point so it’s not like it was instantaneous or anything. I had to unlearn my 40-year-old Pfaff first. I guess it’s like driving a new car – except that I don’t drive. Kind of glad we’re bonded now. I have lots more items for us to to make together!

So now that I’ve crossed bras off my list for the foreseeable future, it’s back to sewing for The Bearded One. Somehow I’m finding it much easier to justify buying fabric for garments for him. Possibly because I have way too much in the fabric stash already for myself! He has been wearing the heck out of nearly everything I’ve made him so obviously he’s Sew-Worthy, right? He says he wants to have a handmade wardrobe too. Awww…isn’t that sweet? OK then. I have patterns and I know how to use them.

We had already recently bought more sweatshirt type fabrics on our last foray to Dressew so today I cut them both out ready to sew:

North Star and Finlayson

The brown fleece-backed knit on the left (it’s a little darker IRL) is for the North Star pullover (below left). I like the fleece side on the inside for warmth but probably will make the inner collar that sits next to his neck with the fuzzy side out and maybe the pocket bindings as well. The strip of batik binding is for the inside neck edge which definitely shows when the top is worn with the zipper partway down. I have a very cool brown zipper with bronze-green teeth for this one too. The other fabric, the navy French terry on the right, is lighter weight and will work well for the Finlayson sweater (below right). The shawl collar is very thick where it attaches at the lower front neck due to the many layers converging so it doesn’t work well with a fabric that’s too thick and heavy. It looks really nice when done though but I’m pretty sure the instructions for upper and lower collars should be reversed. The slightly smaller collar piece should be the one that ends up on the top at the centre front so the larger piece curves over top of it when it’s folded. Am I making any sense? I did let Morgan know my feelings on this way back when but didn’t get a reply. Perhaps either I’m not getting my point across clearly enough or she prefers it the way it’s written in her instructions. I’m still sewing it my way anyhow.

There will be more on these projects soon. I’ve also started assembling the many pages of PDF printouts for the Goldstream Peacoat. This is my entry for the #So50Visible challenge from Instagram’s @SewOver50 group. You are supposed to sew a pattern that features a model who is obviously older. There are prizes for randomly chosen entries! The peacoat can also be tagged with #sewmenswearforeveryone sponsored by @sewcialists so I hope to get a two-fer out of it! I’m still pretty nervous to start this one though. But I’m going to power through. Right now I’m really enjoying piecing the pattern together. It’s the easy part. Heh.

State of the UFOs

The barebones list I made last time was pretty boring, no? Besides the sewing that I’ve already discussed, here’s the rest in clockwise order from top/left:

  • The never-ending Deciduous Pullover. It seems to be stuck on the sleeves. Plus I’m playing “yarn chicken” with the main colour. I need to suck it up and finish the darn thing.
  • Blue Dragon Socks (Shur’tugal by Alice Yu). Love the yarn and the pattern but I can’t read while knitting this because there are many crossed stitches. I’m nearly at the heel turn on both socks now so it should go a little quicker after that.
  • Grey NZ Coopworth yarn on the Louet S-90 wheel. I want enough 2-ply sport weight for a sweater for me. So far there’s only 1 full singles bobbin and this bit. To be fair I have been spinning somewhat more recently (a New Year’s Resolution) so there is hope.
  • NZ Corriedale in Aurelia’s Fernwood colourway on the Louet Victoria wheel. It’s laceweight, or at least it will be when I ply it. No idea what I’m going to make with it since I only have 250g of this in total. A lot for a shawl but not enough for a sweater. I just wanted another spinning project that wasn’t the grey Coopworth.

In other news, we finally got some actual snow!

February is still winter.

That might teach me to feel smug that the first lot managed to mostly miss us, huh? The above was yesterday and there’s a little falling now with perhaps more still to come overnight. We’ll see. I always think it’s hilarious that we West Coasters let 4”/10cm of snow shut the city down. Wimps. The rest of Canada is laughing themselves silly.

So you might have noticed that I’m posting more now that I’ve found a platform that works for me! I’m feeling a lot less frustration. Obviously that was what was holding me back before. Thank you, WordPress. And thank you, my friends, for following me over here! Your participation really means a lot to me. Otherwise I’m just talking to myself. Which of course I do. Heh. But it’s more fun with your company.

Finally, An Intro Of Sorts

Hello, my lovelies! I’m really happy that a number of my old followers have been able to join us over here on the new blog. Whew! Thanks for coming! But for any new people out there, welcome! I would like this to be a warm and welcoming place for everyone regardless of shape, size, colour, race, creed, gender, sexuality, nationality or politics. If at any time you feel uncomfortable with anything I post, I hope you will let me know. We are all learning and I would appreciate an opportunity to apologise rather than be ignorant of an offence. Let us all work to create the world we want to live in!

So, who is this damselfly person anyway? In today’s parlance I’m a West Coast Canadian, white, female, cis-gender, heterosexual, senior, introvert, married with 2 adult married children and 3 grandchildren. In other words, a granny who is rather obsessed with all things textile, my garden, and the occasional foray off into the hinterlands in our vintage VW Westfalia. Does that about cover it? Snicker…not hardly! But it’s the best I can do without writing an entire memoir. And boring the heck out of everyone, including me.

You will notice that I don’t separate my crafts, gardening and our travels into separate blogs. I don’t really understand why others compartmentalize like that. My life is all one big adventure! If you aren’t interested in some of my babbling I fully expect you to scroll on. Maybe you’ll enjoy the next post better. Or not. But just so you are warned that I can flit all over the place – even in a single post.

For example, today I have a finished project! Or four. I finally completed the last of the Ingrid bras:

3 Light Copper bras
The odd one!

OK, before you tell me that’s a lot of rather boring bras, let me remind you that I’ve been experimenting with how many I can get out of a reasonable order from Bra-makers Supply. I discovered that .5 M of duoplex, .25 M of power net, .25 M of cut and sew foam, 3 M 3/4” firm band elastic, 4 M 3/8” firm band elastic, 3 M 3/8” fold-over elastic, 4 3X3 hook & eyes and 4 slider & ring sets equals 4 bras. There will be extra power net and a lot of extra foam but those are the minimum pieces you can get. Of course if you wear a different bra size than I do, your needs will be different! Mine is a 4.25” BCD/32” band and I’m really good at squeezing pattern pieces together while still keeping the grainlines (aka DOGS) correct.

Now you’re wondering why the last bra is different. I only ordered 3 sets of findings instead of 4 not knowing I could manage to cut one more. Also why not? After I saw a inspirational photo on Bra-makers’ blog, I decided to try a cross-back strap to keep the straps situated in farther for more cut-away sleeveless tops. It’s made from a spare piece of underbust elastic instead of strap elastic but who cares? Unfortunately I need help doing up this bra! Can’t get into it by myself. Sigh. Not that the Bearded One minds helping! Ahem. But I don’t think I’ll be making more of this style right away. Besides, now I have a whole bra collection including the ones I made earlier. Three that are a little small but wearable and maybe half-a-dozen better ones? I lost count! Damselfly’s Bra Factory is now closed for business. We will now go onto other things. Was that a collective sigh of relief I heard?

Goodbye and Hello


I’m doing my best Maneki Neko and beckoning my old followers over here.

Hold on to your hats! It’s for reals now! I’m now officially ensconced here on this shiny new blog leaving the old Damselfly’s Delights to fossilize back on Blogger. If you’re a new reader and are curious or a previous reader and want to get back there for some reason, just click on the Old Blog link in the menu up top. There are nearly 14 years worth of posts on there: some good, some not-so and some just me nattering on. I’m not planning to take them down but I’m unhappy with the way things are going – or not going – on Blogger. There are plans to integrate it with Google+. Meh. Whatevs, as the young people say. I’m here now so out with the old and in with the new! Let’s see where this one will take us, shall we?

I have plans to post an introduction for those who are new to me and my obsessions…er, interests, but that might take a little time to produce. There’s kind of a lot to say! Meanwhile I have a current projects list, which is probably more for me than maybe of interest to others. Might give you a clue to my main focus on textiles. Anyhow, I’d like to add this to every post from now on but we’ll see how that goes.

Currently working on:

  • Sewing: 4 Bras Light Copper (pattern Pin-Up Girls Ingrid). Status: 50%
  • Knitting: Deciduous Pullover (pattern self-designed). Status: 75%
  • Knitting: Blue Dragon Socks (pattern “Shur-tugal by Alice Yu). Status: 35%
  • Spinning: Coopworth, Grey (2/ply sweater-quantity). Status: 1 out of 6 bobbins singles.
  • Spinning: Corriedale, Fernwood (250g from Aurelia). Status: .5 bobbin singles.

Still Learning

My new blog is going to take some tweaking to get it the way I want. Some things are easy and some things are definitely not. I hope the old brain is up for this! But you have to start somewhere, right?

From the garden yesterday

The weather had forecast cold and perhaps some snow coming so I picked these bites from the veggie garden.

Snowdrops & snowdrops

So the weather was correct and it did snow. And hail. Glad I tucked the more vulnerable pots into the greenhouse. Now the sun is out!