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Los Olivos, California, United States
You can reach me at fool4fabric (at) gmail (dot) com

Sunday, April 19, 2015

CHANGES...

This has been a period of changes in my life...I got an email last week that the 
Nagaland portion of our October trip to India had been canceled, due to horrendous monsoon damages to the roads. I was so disappointed, that was the major motivation to take the trip. So...



We have decided to go to Portugal in October...I spent a month ("April in Portugal") there in 1964...loved it and have been wanting to return ever since. We will take a river cruise on the Douro river and spend some time in Lisbon.

The hardest thing, for me, is erasing the travel wardrobe for India out of my
mind, to be replaced with Portugal! India is hot and humid, whereas Portugal's
climate is very similar to California.

Despite having (successful) cataract surgery recently, I was able to spend long and productive hours in my studio.




I made a top and pants from McCalls 6571  in a gray microfiber knit and rayon knit from Marcy Tilton. I last sewed this pattern in July 2012 for a trip to Sicily.

I also bought a RTW light jacket (for INDIA!) which I will wear this summer...




And just yesterday, I finished a kimono-style jacket, Simplicity 1318, in an
unusual and lovely "quilted" silk from Gorgeous Fabrics. I saw this on Ann's
site and had to give it a try.

I thought it might be light and airy, but it is more like a padded Chinese jacket and will be perfect for our cool nights.






I already have further plans for this pattern...it's easy to make and lovely to wear.

On the food front, I made a version of the popular "Pok Pok" chicken wings, made famous by the restaurant of the same name in Portland, Oregon.


They were fabulous! The recipe I used came from this blog where many of my
favorites came from. I will be in Portland and environs later this month.

I'm going back to Visible Women for a visit this afternoon...come over to Patti's
"Not Dead Yet Style" blog and see for yourself!

TTYL

Sunday, March 29, 2015

ANOTHER CATCH UP!

WARNING: LENGTHY POST AND LOTS OF PICTURES!

That's what happens when I let 3 weeks go by between posts...I have been busy and actually have some clothes to show for it!

But first...a few pictures of our redecorated bedroom wing. We finally got the painting we wanted for over the fireplace


It's called Spiral Dance; the artist is Seyburn Zorthian whose wonderful painting
I bought 25 years ago and is over our living room fireplace.



(Remember when the contents of our closets were in the living room?)

Seyburn is a friend of ours; we love her work and are enjoying waking up in the morning to the sight of her Spiral Dance.

A few more pictures of the bedroom



The antique Katagami stencils above our bed were used to stencil family crests on clothing and goods in 19th century Japan.





These are old purses and bags I've collected on our travels; I hung them in the hall so I can see them every day. The color we used in the bedroom wing is very
difficult to photograph...the pictures of the bedroom show a more realistic color
match.

So...on to sewing! I made another pair of Marcy Tilton's Vogue 8929 pants,
although for my 4th pair I changed them enough that she might not recognize them!


The fabric is an abstract print stretch denim from Emma One Sock.



They're very comfortable and the type of pants  I wear most days.

I made another pair of loose harem-y pants from Sandra Betzina's V1355,
using a dreamy Ella Moss rayon challis from Hart's Fabric. This fabric is so perfect for travel to hot climates (India, I'm talking about you!) that I just ordered some more for another shirt.



I'm wearing a batwing tee with them...!


And for my final submission, I made yet another version of B5526...



in a wonderful French Circles and Squares crinkled jacquard from Emma One Sock. I am wearing it here with Eileen Fisher's Slouchy Ankle Pant in Silk Georgette, another supremely comfortable pant.

Well, if you've stayed with me this long, THANK YOU! I'll try not to stockpile
post material again...


TTYL

Sunday, March 8, 2015

SPRING DOTS

Although it's only March 8th, we in California are basking in temperatures in the 70's and 80's...(sorry, friends in frigid places...) Although we have been known to have SNOW in March (very unusual), there is no way I can sew winter-weight
fabrics any more. SO...



This is Vogue 8982  by Marcy Tilton, a pattern that's been in my sights for a while. It has some unusual seaming and begged for the right fabric to try it out.


This is a wonderful stretch denim, also from Marcy; it's black with gray dots, reversing to gray with black dots. I used the reverse side subtly, as piping on the back seam lines, at the wrists, and edging the collar and front. 



I'm very pleased with it...it's a perfect weight, goes with many of my pants, and I'll wear it tomorrow to lunch with a friend who is celebrating her birthday.

I'm joining the Visible Women over at the fortnightly party at Not Dead Yet Style; Patti hosts this gathering place for those of us who choose not to be invisible. Come see!

TTYL

Sunday, March 1, 2015

COCKER SPANIEL VEST...

You've heard of poodle cloth, right?


Well, I just made a Cocker Spaniel Cloth vest...


My friend Patti Ferguson was given some fabrics and she just KNEW that this wool boucle knit had my name on it. Dave took one look at it and said "it looks just like Paddywack!", and indeed it does. He IS my fashion accessory, after all...


I used an out of print Burda pattern, 8296, View A




The wrong side of the boucle knit was attractive, so I reversed the facing on the lapels so that I could wear it open if I choose...


With our current schizophrenic weather, it provides a warm layer for those half-hour segments of the day when it's cold outside.

Besides spending time in the studio, I tried a new recipe which immediately took
on 5-star status...


Epicurious. YUM!

I found this the other day while fashion-surfing...

an excellent reason for sewing my own clothes...$250 for sweatpants?

The lovely Judith of the Style Crone blog is hosting her monthly Hat Attack
party, so I reached into my closet and pulled out this:


It's a handsome hat from the Fulani tribe which I bought many moons ago
in Mali, in West Africa. I love items of clothing which can be wall decorations as well as being
worn!

Here's a picture of my little guy having a nap on his tempurpedic pillow...



TTYL...

Sunday, February 22, 2015

GEORGE WASHINGTON'S BIRTHDAY!

I grew up calling February 22 "George Birthington's Washday" and thinking it so funny...obviously, this was before "Presidents' Day".

I finally got to work in my studio and made a wonderful, lightweight coat. It might even be called a raincoat, except we never get any rain...

Both the pattern and the fabric for this coat came from Marcy Tilton...V8934 and

I've had my eye on this pattern since it came out, so when I found this yummy pewter crinkle, I knew the combo would be pleasing.




The pattern has darts at the bottom to bring the silhouette in a little. I'm very
happy with it...the weight is perfect for my kind of climate.



I added snaps to the front and used some buttons I had made some time ago for a different top...


and it goes perfectly with a pair of Aerosoles I've had and loved for a long time.



I'll bet you didn't know I belong to a Bean Club...Rancho Gordo's Bean Club, to be specific. They sell the most wonderful heritage beans, and I get a delicious assortment every three months. I made this bean dish last week and I think it's going to be a TNT recipe (tried and true, just like a pattern!)


The dish is called "Spicy Beans and Wilted Greens" and the recipe is from Epicurious, linked above. I had turned my friend Willie on to this source for beans and she sent me a Valentine in thanks...


She's so clever!

I am absolutely thrilled to have been chosen as "Star Blogger" for the newest issue of Vogue Pattern Magazine, April/May 2015. If you subscribe, it's on pages 12 and 13. If you don't, here's a glimpse of the column...



It's amazing what has happened to the world of sewing with the internet and blogs!

I am linking up again with Visible Monday on Patti's site, Not Dead Yet Style.
Come on over a little later today and admire all the visible women!

TTYL...

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Food, Friends, Family, Fun and Fabric

I'm sure I could have come up with more "F" words if I'd thought about it a little longer...

The fun, friends and family all came together in one fabulous (see, there's another one!) day last week. A group of women I've been involved with for at least 25 years meets monthly on the first Monday of the month with some sort of adventurous program. This month, we met at a beautiful local vineyard and winery, Andrew Murray Vineyards, which is owned by the daughter and son-in-law of one of our members. 



The reason this meeting was so special is that we were asked to bring our daughters and/or daughters-in-law. Since the group has been together for so long, we all know each other's families, and were delighted to reconnect with all the younger women. Some of them were in school together and hadn't seen each other for 20+ years.




That's Maggie on the right, Mindy on the left...

We were treated to a wine and cheese pairing, the cheese coming from a relatively new local cheese shop. There were 4 wines paired with 4 different cheeses, both being explained to us by the winemaker and the cheese maker, respectively.


Our "program" for the pairings...


That's Andrew, telling us about the wine.

This was particularly happy for me, as Maggie decided to come up from Los Angeles for the event...I picked her up at the charming Santa Barbara train station 
on Sunday afternoon...





and there she is, just off the train. We had dinner together (Salmon with Furitake) and left Monday morning for our adventure.



10 of us sat in this charming room (the others kept closing our door...we must have been the noisy ones!)


Here I am with my long-time friend Wendy, who helped me through Maggie's adolescence!


and more of the women, with one DIL



finishing off the day with a wonderful lunch. (No, we didn't eat the succulents...)


I have been cooking up a storm...


clock-wise, from top left...Salmon with Blood Orange Salsa, Salmon with Furikake, Stir-Fried Pork with Baby Bok Choy, Brussel Sprout Hash with a
Fried Egg on top, and, in the middle, a streamlined Vietnamese Beef Pho.
YUM

And, though I haven't got any actual sewing done, I've been planning and dreaming, which is lots of fun, and, of course, adding to my fabric stash...


A beautiful striped linen and a wonderful Japanese cotton, both hanging after washing, both from Marcy Tilton.



And here, a pile o' fabrics waiting to be chosen for my next project... I am, after all, a FOOL FOR FABRIC...

And I am heading over to Patti's Not Dead Yet Style where there is a Visible Monday going on...

TTYL