Monday, June 8, 2015

Many ways to play the fool

On April fool's day I made a decision that I was going to spend a year sewing from stash.  My stash is getting large and overwhelming, and every time I enter the sewing room there are mummerings and sighings of forgotten love and unfulfilled potential.

Forward 2 months and I have purchased 25 more metres of fabric, which just goes to show that trying to go on a fabric diet is about as successful as any other restrictive regime I have ever been on.  The minute I say "can't, won't" then the perfect piece of fabric comes to tempt me, saying, "can, will, must."

What has been successful though, is making the decision to sew up any new fabric before it hits stash.   So far I have used up 3 pieces of fabric this way. The cushions for our bedroom and the raincoat, below.

Ottobre 05-2013-18 

The raincoat is actually a test garment, from cotton twill, to see if this pattern from Ottobre might be suitable as a replacement raincoat for the gore-tex raincoat that mysteriously disappeared from our house last year. True story: when we left on holiday it was on the coat rack. When we came back it was gone. How flattering is it to think someone broke in and the only thing they stole was my homemade raincoat.  Or at least that's how I like to think of it, the reality is its disappearance is a complete mystery.

I am sorry to say that this will not function as a replacement raincoat. I love the casual fun of this pattern but it won't make a very good raincoat. It's too short, the sleeves can not be set without gathering threads and these would puncture the gore-tex and it's a bit bulky overall for a stiff water proof fabric.

Since the pattern called for binding to neaten the raw edges of the facings I decided to liven it up with a pop of colour. I have been assiduously avoiding pops of colour in the decorating scheme for our house: every where you look in interior magazines you see bland and cliched rooms enlivened by a pop of colour. It has to be the cheapest trick in the book and to me it spanks of laziness, like you couldn't create interest or wit any other way than to add a bold pillow or throw.

inside: facings bound by a "pop' of lime green and the lining fabric, a vintage rayon 

Having said that, I must put up my hand and confess to one little bit of decorating shame: I purchased the art work above our bed  because I knew it would match the bedroom colour scheme. It's a nice piece and I like it very much, so not too big a crime but it just goes to show, none of us is completely immune from the easy charms of a tried and true trick.

The homemaker's triumvirate: chairs upholstered by me, curtains sewn by me, pillows sewn by me and not a pop of colour in sight.


  1. I really like your pop of colour on your jacket lining, although I agree it is to be heartily mocked in design magazines. The jacket looks great and I'll have to take your word for it that it wouldn't work in goretex as I have no experience in sewing it. As it is, it's a cool jacket. Your room looks lovely and cosy with all of your homemaker handiwork. Those robots are incredibly classy, too (winks).

  2. I love the jacket too and cant imagine it being only a test garment. You will be able to wear it on unrainy days. Marg

  3. How bizarre that your handmade rain coat disappeared whilst you were on holiday!! Your new jacket looks amazing to me and I'm sorry to hear it won't work as a raincoat. Your bedroom is amazingly tidy. Mine is not so clutter free. Yes, I am jealous!