December Miscellany

Hi all! Sorry I haven’t been  very good at updates, but between Christmas markets (I’ll try to get some pictures), a huge sewing project and end of year tests and evals, my brain hasn’t been good for much this month!  First things first, (and again, sorry to those of you on facebook who have seen this already), here’s my December book of hours photomanip!

Here are my deviant art sources, thanks guys! My exceptional sources:model (it's me) and candy apple buttons: both originals taken by meRabbit fur: link by Arctic-stock and link by resurrection-stockholly: link by cyborgsuzystockbackground: link by ~AlzirrSwanheartStocktexture: link by DyingBeautyStockpheasant: link by aussiegal7bells: link by Holy-Winmistletoe: link by marlene-stockpine cone: link ~radioPoohblue jay: link by =Ayelie-stockpine twigs: link ~AthenaStock

from Portrait of a Lady

AMONG the smoke and fog of a December afternoon
You have the scene arrange itself—as it will seem to do—
With “I have saved this afternoon for you”;
And four wax candles in the darkened room,
Four rings of light upon the ceiling overhead,
An atmosphere of Juliet’s tomb
Prepared for all the things to be said, or left unsaid.
We have been, let us say, to hear the latest Pole
Transmit the Preludes, through his hair and fingertips.
“So intimate, this Chopin, that I think his soul
Should be resurrected only among friends
Some two or three, who will not touch the bloom
That is rubbed and questioned in the concert room.”
—And so the conversation slips
Among velleities and carefully caught regrets
Through attenuated tones of violins
Mingled with remote cornets
And begins.
—T.S. Eliot

In other news, it’s goddamn cold, which means it’s time to mull booze!  Most people know Glühwein, but not many people have tried mulled ale.  It’s much better than it sounds 🙂 has several AMAZING Lambswool (mulled ale with roasted apples) recipes here

and here’s another 16th century version called Caudle, from The Good Housewife’s Jewel:

“Take two handfuls or more of great oatmeal and beat it in stone mortar, well. Then put it into a quart of ale, and set it on the fire and stir it. SEason it with cloves, mace, and sugar, beaten, and let it boil till it be enough. Then serve it forth upon sops.”

And if you’re stuck inside and bored, Fable 3 is AWESOME.  I was so disappointed by the second part I almost didn’t get the third, and thank god I did!

stay warm!



Art, ties, and video games: Part 1

Sorry it’s been so long since I updated this blog!  Things have been really busy lately.  First off, I’m planning on going on a walking pilgrimage in summer from Cologne to Santiago (next year is step one of three). You can read more about it on the blog I made for it .

In other news, I just got two new handpainted vintage ties.  The description says they’re from the 40’s, but I’ll bet the red one is from the 3o’s, as it has EXACTLY the same birds on it as two pins I have, which are definitely from that decade.  I love the early 30’s women in skirts, jackets and ties look, and have been meaning to get some for ages now.  I’ve got some patterns for suits that feature a tie in my Swedish pattern magazines, so that will be another project 🙂 Anyhow, some of you have asked for pictures, so here they are with modern clothing.

it's a little wrinkly. I'll iron it later 🙂

This and that

I finally had enough ripe strawberries to do something with yesterday!  Strawberries, toasted oats and lemon yogurt for breakfast!  Also, my hokkaido pumpkin plant is now as tall as I am and looks about ready to start opening its flowers, and my green sausage tomato plant has a bunch of little tomatoes.

Also, I’ve finally resized and cut out the 1930’s vest pattern and chosen the fabric, hopefully I’ll get it cut out this week.  On sunny days like we’ve been having I’m more about gardening than sewing, but I really need to get it done.  Here’s the fabric I’ll be using for it:

apparently i subconsciously think i’m a crazy person, sleep-gasms, and the want ad i’m thinking of putting on craig’s list (via Confessions of a 20-Something Female)

I just stumbled across this blog today and wanted to share. This chick ROCKS!

I'm not really much of a dream person. I mean, I've never been the type to have a dream and then go in search of it's "deeper meaning" the next morning. Also: I don't sleep much as it is so when I do actually sleep, it's like coma status and dreams are the last thing my brain is focused on. Except that lately I've had a ton of them and I'm waking up constantly because of it and then I'm all, 'OHMYGODBRAIN just let me sleeeeeeep!' And my brain is … Read More

via Confessions of a 20-Something Female

It’s Alive!

Here are some more pics of the garden from yesterday.  My chamomile plant is HUGE this year!

What’s edible now: two types of mustard greens, nasturtium greens, alfalfa, pea greens, chamomile, hyssop, lovage, tarragon, gold oregano, marjoram, rue, roses

What’s just about ready: strawberries

What’s flowering:  blueberries, green sausage tomato (lots!), mr. stripey tomato, pink accordion tomato.

Also, one of the white cucumber seeds I planted ages ago has finally decided to get off its lazy a%$ and sprout!

chamomile and strawberries

Sewing Vintage: 1936

Friday I finally found my motivation and decided to do something with the ever growing pile of fabric in my closet!  I chose a pattern from a German sewing magazine from 1936 called Praktische Damen und Kinder Mode.  These old German and Swiss fashion journals are my absolute favorite.  They usually show about 30 different fashions and include a massive pattern sheet for all of them, in all different sizes. If you are a vintage sewer, you need a few of these!  I haven’t found anything similar that includes patterns from any other country, but hopefully they’re out there 🙂  The only drawback is that the instructions are minimal, so if you are a new sewer, some of the complicated patterns can be difficult to navigate.  To use these, you need tracing paper, and just need to find the numbers specified and trace out the lines indicated for those pattern pieces you need.  Once you get the hang of it, it’s pretty simple.  I finished this whole thing in one weekend, and I love it so much I might have to make another one!

the blouse

the magazine

the pieces


First, trace out the pieces you need, in this case # 1-7

then lay out the pattern pieces on your fabric. This picture shows the actual color of the fabric

Sew the front and back pieces together, leaving enough unsewn in the back to fit your head through. Then attach the sleeves leaving the top part open (the yoke fits into these places). Afterwards, lay the yoke bits over top. you should have extending triangle areas that you need to set into the sleeves.

getting the yoke on right is easier if you put the blouse on and pin it while you're wearing it.

then bind the sleeves up with a ribbon, pleating it to fit into the ribbon. I left the ends longer so the ties hang down, but you could also just have it as a normal band (with none hanging down)

I used a vintage button and made a tie to close the back at the neck, but you could just as easily use a zipper or a button and buttonhole. I then added a small zipper on the side for fit.

a finished sleeve. you can also see how light the cotton I used is. You really need a flowing fabric for this blouse to work.

Finished! The waist ended up being too short, so I added another strip at the bottom. The other pictures made the fabric look grey, this is the actual color.

and voila!  It really is the perfect project for a cold, rainy weekend.  I can’t wait to wear it!

Part the second

First of all, I just wanted to say how much fun the internations party was! Of course I used the event as an excuse to go vintage 🙂

The dress is original 30’s/40’s, and I used Superkawaiimama’s barrel roll tuturial for roll.

In other news, my 20’s wine glasses have landed, and they’re incredible!

My 20’s bowl impulse buy also arrived, and it matches the wine glasses perfectly! It’s bigger than I thought it would be, but I think it will make a nice fruit or soup bowl?

I’m trying to find vintage plates and bowls for eating, but haven’t found a single thing! Serving plates and bowls, cutlery, cups, everything else but actual dishes for eating. Is there some black market where they’re all being traded?! Anyone know where I can find some?

Have a great Saturday! Here’s some Lola Albright to play you off