A finished make

Is this... organisation? Summer's flakiness appears to be wearing off and I'm finally getting my act together (even reading through some blogs this morning, though I didn't leave comments 'cos you'll be thinking 'Hang on, I wrote this in June'). I hadn't realised it had been quite so long since my last post. Could've sworn I did one at the end of August/start of September, but no.

A redheaded white woman sits on the ground. She is wearing an olive top and navy jeans, with a loose, kimono style top over it all. The top is navy and printed with an Asian-inspired pattern of peonies and chaffinches in turquoise, pink, olive and cream on a navy background.

Anyway, I got things together and finished my chaffinch-print topper. The fabric's a crepe from Fabric Godmother; I probably wouldn't have bought it if it had been in a shop and felt it first – it feels very polyester, if you know what I mean, and a print like this belongs on something silkier, polyester should be loud and 60s/70s. It's a pretty print though, and I do like how floaty the fabric feels. It was made using precisely the same pattern as my beach-pyjama-inspired set from last year, so what could possibly go wrong? 


Somehow, despite the other one being perfect, the arms were slightly too big for the armholes. I attached them anyway, gathering slightly at the sleevehead to fit them. And with the drop shoulder the puffy sleeveheads looked awful. I daresay that's mostly in my mind and most people seeing me in it wouldn't have paid much attention to that, but it needled me every time I looked at the garment. So I ended up removing both sleeves (french seamed, but at least not flat-felled), tightening up the underarm seam a little, then reattaching them. Much better! 

A redheaded white woman looks into the camera, her hands on her head. She is wearing an olive top and navy jeans, with a loose, kimono style top over it all. The top is navy and printed with an Asian-inspired pattern of peonies and chaffinches in turquoise, pink, olive and cream on a navy background.

I'm wearing it in these photos with an olive vest top and navy velvet jeans, but it looks even better with the same top and teal velvet jeans. I'm really tempted to make another in devore velvet with a fringed hem, just to fully embrace the Stevie Nicks feeling. (Stevie has been big on my 2022 clothing inspirations Pinterest board.)

Conference with the vampire

A friend on Twitter always sets herself a word for the year rather than a resolution, so I gave it a go this year, picking CHOICE because I am very bad at making decisions, tending just to go with the flow in an attempt to make everyone happy. This means every so often now I give myself a mental slap and think 'What do you want to do?' and then I do it, and everything else – basically housework and overtime/freelance – can get stuffed. Choosing to spend a Sunday afternoon sewing is a big part of that, as is going to the gym, which I'm currently managing again. And last weekend I chose to attend an online gothic literature conference marking the 150th anniversary of the publication of Carmilla. 

It's been about a quarter of a century since I studied lit – I dropped out of my MPhil in 1997 – and I was worried about feeling out of my depth, but the talks were really easy to follow, and I really enjoyed the Saturday afternoon session on Latin American vampire stories as that was something I knew nothing about. I'd been a little worried that Mr Robot would resent me spending the whole weekend on Zoom calls, but he said I was being silly and I think he enjoyed being able to spend time with his bonsai without me running round with the hoover or armfuls of laundry. It was another reminder that the world doesn't grind to a halt when you set the work aside for a day or two...

Anyway, if gothic literature/film is your sort of thing, Romancing The Gothic have some free talks coming up, open to everyone everywhere (and each with two times, so good for people in different parts of the world). 


  1. Completely understand the crepe feels like polyester thing. Still, what a beautiful print, and the colour is lovely on you.
    Making time for yourself is hard! I always feel consumed with guilt, like the world is going to stop if I'm not doing something on the "to-do" list.

    1. Well, I've quit Twitter - temporarily for now, as I can't bear to see friends fighting over the Royals - and I seem to have so much more time to do things in. Or possibly less on my mind. Either way, it's working well.

      The To-do list is a git. I did start making 'have done' lists as part of getting over burnout - that way I get all the satisfaction of seeing what I've achieved, without beating myself up over everything I haven't.

  2. Oh well done Mim! The kimono/jacket looks fabulous and I love the print. It looks wonderful on you. I am always in awe of people who can make actual garments...

    The goth literature thing sound extremely interesting and what a fab way to spend a weekend afternoon doing things you really enjoy. Long may it last! ( pssst It's a bit of a taste of what retirement might look like!)

    1. I honestly cannot WAIT to retire. Half the reason I go to the gym is because my mother-in-law had a big list of places she wanted to see when she retired, and then her bad back wouldn't let her travel much. So I'm trying to keep myself in good working order so I can enjoy that time.

  3. Love this topper! I hate it when good prints are on cheap fabric - that's the worst. Nothing wrong with taking a day to do what you really WANT to do! I agree w/Vronni - that's what retirement is all about. Good on you for getting to the gym!

  4. I'm very bad at making decisions as well, in fact that's quite an understatement!
    Well done on the kimono-style topper, even if the fabric isn't 100% what you envisioned and you had to re-do the sleeves. It looks gorgeous and that print is absolutely stunning! xxx

  5. That is a lovely print and I bet it looks fabulous with teal jeans! I have a devore kimono with fringe, so I totally get that "Stevie Nicks" vibe you're feeling. Sorry the fabric itself let you down - I hate when that happens, and it's often a deal-breaker for me for keeping a garment.

    Seeing your response to Goody's comment - that's also why I'm trying to keep myself in shape/strong. I want to be able to enjoy my retirement!


Post a Comment

Popular Posts