Monday, December 31, 2012

New ゆかた (浴衣) - Xmas Present a Big Hit!

You may remember I made the Roommate a new yukata (cotton kimono) ゆかた (浴衣) for xmas.  Well, here's a quick update showing the only gift I made this year on the handsome model.  He has not taken it off much since he opened the package xmas morning, so I think that's a good sign.  

He was thoroughly surprised...hadn't missed his old one (which I used to line this new one), and had forgotten about picking out the nigiri sushi fabric, too!  Which means he's the perfect person to make presents for.  ;-)

I lucked out, sort of, in that he was stranded in SFO during Hurricane Sandy & I had 2 days off work, so not only did I have time to get it done, I didn't have to hide what I was working on!  

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Handmade Quilty Xmas

We dug out our Xmas stuff this year (we were in the Galapagos last year), and though we didn't do much decorating (Little Miss Bella appears to be fairly dangerous to trees and ornaments), I got out a couple of items I made when I was quilting a lot (and Mohammed was making my clothes, not me!).

This first was a quilt I saw someplace, but I decided to turn it into a Christmas item, using up some of my red & green & Christmas fabric. 

The second, a table runner, is made using some quilt blocks I really like because you can do so much with them.  The Around the World Quilt I made uses the same quilt block.  I'm still amazed at the amount of xmas fabric I was able to buy in Abu Dhabi!  

Happy Holidays & Best for 2013.  And a 1963 TV clip to get you in the mood!

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

A little project with some Japanese silk

Don't get me wrong, I like Ikea.  But there are some things they do better than others.  Bathmats - YES!  Lights - NO!  All their lights, especially the table lights, only allow very low wattage light bulbs, which means that you need about twelve to get enough light to read.  
Our front room/living room is fairly dark because it just has one main light in the center of the ceiling.  We already replaced what was there with a much better, brighter, light, but still, if you're in the corners, you need more light.  An Ikea floor lamp serves us well behind our love seat (also Ikea!).  But even though we had two cool lime green table lamps on our dining room table, we still couldn't see worth a darn when reading or eating.  

So last weekend we headed over to Lowe's and bought a better lamp with a plain off-white shade.  And then used a piece of kimono silk to recover it, using Momtastic's instructions.  I recommend looking the instructions over before you get started...a flat piece of fabric won't work unless you want pleats.  You have to make a curvy pattern to make it fit the shade smoothly.

The before (use your imagination), an off-white shade.  The after?  See below.  And no comments on the photography, please!  ;-)

Music?!  How about Shine a Light?

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Even more! Can't stop the paper dresses

I'm doing my best to show what's on display at the Hillwood House Museum in the Prêt-à-Papier exhibit, but really, you need to head over there before December 31 & see it yourself!  

Isabelle de Borchgrave, a Belgian artist, creates paper clothing based on historic & modern fashion.  She often doesn't have the real item in front of her, instead she creates based on paintings & photographs.  

Below are a bunch of photos that the Roommate & I took last weekend.  As a reminder, you can always click on the photo to see the original (usually much larger) size.  

Did I mention I was fascinated by the lace?!

One of Empress Josephine's many dresses--classic Empire
waist & extra-long train to indicate her status.
Detail - Josephine's dress
Train from Empress Josephine's dress.

This purse was part of the above ensemble.
In my opinion, 1920s style doesn't look any better in paper!
Mrs. Post was married 4 times--in fact there was
an exhibition of her wedding dresses last fall!
This is one of her wedding dresses, recreated by de Borchgrave.

Saturday, December 8, 2012

More Paper Dresses from Isabelle de Borchgrave

I wanted to share a few more photos the Roommate & I took @ Hillwood House Museum.  The Prêt-à-Papier exhibition, by Isabelle de Borchgrave is on view thru December 2012 and I definitely recommend it if you are interested in fashion, designing, textile art, non-traditional art, or tromp l'oeil.
You'll see a man's & woman's traditional costumes from Provence.  The woman's shoes were part of this piece.  I thought they were fun, but what really impressed me was the lace.  It looked real to me!  I couldn't touch to make 100% sure, but I believe them that it was really paper.  

The man's costume was great, too; I just love the layers of paint built up to resemble fabric.  I think it shows really well here on this green jacket.  

We got a kick out of this throw, too...which is also paper!  But it looked real.  I wanted to pick it up & unfold it to see if she'd only painted the parts that show?  I also wanted to fold it more neatly.  We have plenty of fabrics lying around our house--but we tend to display them differently!  Do you see why I began thinking all the fabrics in the house were made of paper?!  

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Last Quilt Update

A photo to show you the quilt, which is now finished & on our bed.  I had to bind it, which required lots of handwork (and you know I hate that stuff).  I am trying to take a Gertie approach to handwork & think of it as, zen stitching!  

even finished up after our yoga class this morning!  Everybody say, "Ommmmmm!"