Washed Away

Life has been somewhat difficult for the last while. For over a week I was pretty much trapped inside with all the doors and windows closed and the HEPA air purifier blasting away. Several days in a row my city beat all other cities in the world (except maybe Portland, Oregon) for polluted air. Yikes! The sky was yellow with an orange sun – when the sun could be seen at all.

Orange sun peeking through smoky tree branches.

I’m super sensitive to smoke and getting worse as I get older. It smelled worse outside than a busy campground on a holiday long weekend! The air temps were quite high too so it was hot in the house without the windows open especially at night even with the fan blowing on us. Ugh. And all we could do was to feel so absolutely sorry for those who lost their homes and businesses and lives in the wildfires. What a horrible year, eh?

Meanwhile, I wasn’t in a very good headspace for creating though I did finish one project. I’m calling this my Popped Collar Vest. Yes, I was too lazy to take photos wearing it myself so you’ll have to make do with these wonky hanger shots! Better than nothing, I say. Bonus: you can actually see the inner bias binding and my nametag!

Popped Collar Vest – front
Popped Collar Vest – back

This is a fairly major hack of Katherine Tilton’s sadly out of print Butterick 5891 which is one of my TNT patterns with not one but two quite different but very wearable and hackable garments in it. After several makes I’ve got both versions fitting just the way I prefer.

B5891 View B from the original pattern

The fabric is a mid-weight denim in a faded black leftover after I cut out a pair of pants for Thom. I had just a little over a metre of 52″ width and managed to squeeze this vest/sleeveless jacket out of it with some fancy Tetris work. I used one front piece and mirrored and lengthened it a lot. The back kept the asymmetrical back seam which left me enough room on the fabric to just cut out the front facings. I skipped the peplum and used the under collar pieces as a collar facing instead. The pockets are the original inseam pieces but used as two patch pockets, basically to cover a large flaw on the front piece. All raw seams were either reverse flat-felled or bias bound with striped bias strips and I used some to make the rouleau loops for the buttons. I didn’t really have any suitable buttons but Thom had some wooden button slices left from another project so I painted them with liquid acrylic and finished with a polymer wax. I don’t know how durable they’ll be but they can always be replaced with something better when I can get back into Dressew. Some day. Soon. Meanwhile it’s been good to use up stash!

I still haven’t sewn the pants for Thom yet but they’re all cut out and ready to go. The pockets are going to be wildly contrasting with the faded black denim (aka dark grey). More on this project when it’s done.

So now the air is fresh again thanks to the rain. The windows are all wide open again and I can breathe! Today was very nice so we were able to get out for a walk which felt really good after all that sitting about indoors reading endless books and perusing Pinterest. Tomorrow I finally get to mask up and go pick up my new glasses! Yeah, it took 3 whole weeks. My optometrist is not fast or cheap but they are good. Anyway I’ll be particularly happy to have my distance sunglasses back for walking. It’s hard to see where my feet are going with progressive lenses. The ground nearby is blurry unless I walk with my head down awkwardly. I use only my distance prescription for my sunglasses which works very well.

Hope everyone is staying well! Wear your mask…blah, blah, blah…

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