Saturday, May 18, 2019

Catching Up...

I know it's been quiet here on the blog but I have been sewing. The latest Dover Jacket is finished but no pictures have been taken yet...maybe this weekend. Just haven't been in the mood.

First ~
I was honored when Elizabeth from Elizabeth Made This asked me for a few words to share with Beginner Sewists. So head on over to the blog to read all the wonderful sewing advice shared by some amazing sewists like Sandra Betzina, Joi Mahon and some well-known sewing bloggers.

Second ~
I started working on out-of-print (OOP) Vogue 8208. I made this jacket before ~ years ago. I'm using a blue linen I got from Fabric Mart's brick 'n mortar store during Sew Camp with some blue/white gingham scraps.

This is where I was last weekend...but I've since removed one breast pocket. They just weren't laying right. I did the same thing when I made the jacket the first time so maybe these breast pockets don't play well with my body...or I'm just not skilled enough to get two pockets to lay right on a jacket...whatever! Three works, LOL!

Third ~
In my last post I talked about buying all the fabric.  Well I haven't. I've purchased this piece from Harts Fabric

I've been wanting to try them out because of their Instagram feed. I thought it would match The Hurrying Spring Along Shirt but the background is slightly tan. It would have been used to make sleeves for the shirt but since they don't match I'm back to thinking about donating the shirt unless I come up with another plan.

Fourth ~
My family is attending a Black Tie Event the first weekend in June and I volunteered to make the granddaughters dresses. I wanted them to have something spectacular so this is the fabric I bought this week from Chic Fabrics to make their dresses.

My vacation starts this Thursday (Memorial Day weekend) and I have a week to make their dresses and my own. 10 days should be enough time to get everything done.

Fifth ~
I know there is a contingency of sewists that hate Hobby Lobby and what they stand for and I respect their opinions. However, since I've been out and out discriminated against in JoAnn's because of my skin color and when I wrote to their corporate offices they did no shopping there for me. This puts me between a rock and a hard place to buy patterns. Especially since Simplicity's website SUCKS! So Hobby Lobby for cheap patterns. These are the Simplicity ones I bought in the recent sale...

Now if you're still here and didn't pull out after Hobby Lobby let me say that while I'm a Christian, I'm totally horrified by the Heartbeat Abortion laws that some of the southern states are passing. I honestly believe that Roe v. Wade is going to go away because of that "Making America Great Again" contingency presently running things in America. 

Also, I'm absolutely sure that Affirmative Action is next on the agenda because keeping down women, minorities and poor people is what the 50s in America was all about. Don't at me. This is a conversation I just don't want to have because we've long passed the ability to have civil discourse in this country. I WILL remove comments that are derogatory, negative or come for me. My blog, my thoughts.

Oh one more thing, I know people are having troubles leaving comments here if you don't have a google account. Hey, I can't even leave a comment from my iPad anymore. So I changed the settings to let anyone leave a comment but the amount of Anonymous comments in my moderated section, made me change the settings back. I've looked into Disqus as a comment moderation but when I tried to install it, it didn't work, so know I'm trying to work something out. Cause if you're still following along and want to leave a comment, I'd love to hear from you.

That's it for today. If I get pictures taken of the Dover Jacket this weekend, there will be one more blog post. If I don't, there probably won't be anymore until after the black tie event. always more later!


  1. Sorry something unpleasant happened at Joann's. I live between two Joann's, 40 minutes either way. One ignores shoppers completely and the other is RUDE to everybody. Not sure how they stay in business, but for coupons and pattern sales.

  2. Yes, yes, yes. All that. I spoke to a young person who was very adamant that abortion is wrong and it's okay to have different opinions. It is ABSOLUTELY fantastic to have differing opinions and beliefs. But like I explained to her, it is about taking away a right that has been granted. And once we allow that, it opens up the floodgates. Like the extreme loss of privacy and civil rights in the wake of 9/11, under the guise of making America safer (spoiler alert: FALSE. We are not any "safer"). I sincerely hope that people can look beyond their ***PERSONAL*** belief system and understanding that allowing the government to target any specific demographic has ALWAYS turned out poorly.


    I have 2 casual "not outerwear" jackets that I love but both are blue. One is navy and the other is a light chambray color. Blue is my favorite color, and they do go with almost everything, but I'd like another jacket.

    I say it all the time but, Hancock closing really messed me up. I had a horribly discriminatory experience at JoAnn and years passed before I stepped foot in there again. Now, I will 90% of the time pay "more" via Club BMV than step foot in there.

    Can't wait to see the dresses It's always fun to sew up a little fancy :)

  3. Looking as an outsider from downunder I am in disbelief about the laws that are passing in some states in the US, I hope that never happens here. I also find it unbelievable that you should be the subject of racial comments, it is a sad world where this still happens. Sadly Australia is still suffering from racism in some quarters. My only thoughts are that the majority of people are good hearted and I will remain with that thought.
    You are truly an inspiration to me. I look forward to your posts and really enjoy all the items you sew. You always look so stylish.
    Good luck with all the dresses, I'm sure they will be beautiful.

  4. Thank you for the way you made those comments. I feel like they are not debatable: either we defend people's rights to exist, or we don't. So your saying those things matter-of-factly like that is exactly how it should be done.

    Also, Hart's! Their brick and mortar store is in my town! I can rarely afford what they have but I love to window shop there, and buy what I can. The people who work there are very nice.

  5. 4 Comments
    1. I can't wait to see your new jacket. I clicked through to your previous make and loved it
    2. I am oh so excited to see your granddaughters' dresses. The fabric is fabulous. Please let us know if you have (or discover) any useful tricks for what looks like heavily embroidered fabric ..and take lots of pictures so we can all ooh and aah over your granddaughters
    3. For everyone, it is important to know that Roe v Wade was about due process and privacy and can the government make health decisions for you in advance...which has wider applicability than just abortion
    4. Even scarier, while I was reading your blog, I had this clip running in the background (MSNBC clip on youtube) about how the Senate is confirming judges who refuse to say if they agree with Brown v Board...even scarier: some seem to say they believe that separate but equal is possible

    I understand: Your blog and I hope I did not cross the line

    1. Pam - you didn't cross the line at all. I have no problem with conversation about these issues and how scary the greater implications are - the implications that the religious right is not thinking about. The implications that will catch up members of their family and their church but hey as long as abortion is no longer legal that's the important thing right?!

      I told a friend when 45 was elected that black and brown people are no longer safe in America and it is coming to pass. I have so much more to say about all of this but I will stop here.

      And yes, I will take loads of pictures of the granddaughters in their special dresses. They were so excited to see the fabric choices!

  6. I hope we get to see you and your darling granddaughters in your lovely new gowns.

    Thank you for speaking honestly about your experiences and beliefs. We who believe as you do can sometimes get discouraged and dismayed by what is coming out of Washington. It helps to learn that people we admire feel as we do.

  7. Here is what I wonder...are these same white men going to give these women and babies assistance when they need it? Or are they going to stand back and criticize the mothers for not having enough money to raise them? Are they going to make sure that the women in their states have access to affordable birth control? Are they going to make sure that these women have access to affordable child care? I see this as a direct hit toward women in poverty. It's disgraceful. I understand that abortions are not something to be taken lightly. There are other ways to reduce them besides an outright ban. The biggest problem I have with this is that it was a bunch of white men making this decision (once again) for these women. In my opinion, they have no right to do that.

    1. and to continue the thought....are these white male "leaders" going to actively prosecute all the older men who prey on teenage girls for staturtory rape? Will they actively prosecute the men who get a girl pregnant but don't pay child support? Will they devote more resources to stop sex trafficing? Will they go after men who will end up beating the crap out of their pregnant girlfriend/wife in the hopes of inducing miscarriage if abortion becomes illegal? Or will all this stuff continue to be "her problem?"

  8. As a New Zealander I was amazed at what States were able to legislate even before the current regime in the face of Roe v Wade. I hold life precious but there are many reasons why abortion is the right choice for an individual and they should be allowed to exercise their choice.
    After recent events in my home town there is a mindshift that its not enough to personally accept others differences we need to call out people who display prejudice around us, in the face of increasing bigotry around the world.

  9. I look forward to seeing the Dover Jacket, and your granddaughters' dress once it is finished. I love the patterns from your Simplicity haul!! I am working on S8908 right now, though I have only recently cut it out. Congrats on the highlight on Elizabeth Made this blog!!!!

  10. Thank you for speaking honestly about this. I almost never go to JoAnn's but I had no idea that they condone racism. I totally see why you can't shop there. I buy my patterns from BMV on sale. I am horrified by the direction our country has taken, and pessimistic about our democracy.

    I look forward to seeing your post on your granddaughters' dresses!

    1. I don't think the JoAnn's condones racism as a company. I think that there's problems with individual managers and employees, and a complete unwillingness to talk about racism in America. Combine those and you have nasty people allowed to do what they want because the people who could do something about it are "uncomfortable" and 'don't know what to do'. OR, they insist that the culprit "is a nice person" and don't believe it happened.
      That is the exact scenario where "good Christian men" who "do good in the community" get away with beating their wife, raping 13 year olds, paying for their mistresses' abortions while voting against it for others, and stealing from their companies.
      We need to start getting comfortable with being uncomfortable, and DO something about wrongs. Speak up! See something, Say something isn't just for the TSA.
      I better stop right here.

  11. I fervently hope in today’s world there are more that support your views than oppose them, even though my face gets rubbed in it daily that there are plenty of Americans that have a whole different life view than I do. Sigh. Well, I’m another in your court and I’m always heartened to see in comments of threads like this anywhere that I am not alone.
    Those dresses are going to be special. I can’t wait!

  12. I'm like... it's 2019. How is everything going so backwards? I mean, I realize that the standard high school history line of "and then Civil Rights happened and everything got better" grossly oversimplifies the complexities of the history leading to everything going on in this country right now, but, like, how have we regressed so much? From not being able to shop in stores to the insanity of these states laws... I just cannot anymore. Every time I turn on the TV it's total madness. But not paying attention isn't an option either - we can't just ignore this $h*t. I just feel like I don't know what there is to be done anymore.

    On a happier note - your jacket looks like it's going to be awesome, and it should be fun to sew up party dresses for your granddaughters!

  13. Commenting from down under here. There is much about the current USA regime that baffles me. I am concerned that we're heading that way too. I wish the NZ PM's hope that we are kind to everyone, was a universal leadership desire.

    The most challenging and rewarding sew I've done in the last few years were black-tie dresses for my daughter. Your granddaughter's dresses will be delightful. Sending warm thoughts your way.

  14. wanted to write in supportr comments. At this time we have to make a stand and I admire your courage.

  15. Oh, I hope you can safe the Spring shirt. I think about it often and just so admire its loveliness. We are lucky to have options of were to buy our patterns and can choice to support different companies. I look forward to your granddaughter's dresses!

    I actually fear for our country and where we are going. It just keeps getting uglier everyday.

  16. So sorry about JoAnn's. I always enjoy your commentary, though I suppose it helps that I agree.

  17. Good for you girl! I am white short bald heavy. and let me tell you...
    I was raised to believe all God's people are equal. My mother was only white girl in an almost all black school. She went for the great education.
    Keep on sewing it is where we will stand tall and able to be who we are.
    Can not wait to see the grands dresses.
    Hope hope love and peace to you. Maybe we can meet at Fabric Mart someday.

  18. Carolyn, You never know what other people are thinking so it is hard to know why a person acts the way they do. I have biases, we all do, I try to make myself see through my biases to the realness of others.

    I read the blog of advice to new sewists, such great advice from everyone. One in particular said sew the same pattern over and over til you have mastered it. This would definitely give you a TNT pattern by the time you made it 5 times. I jump around too much and need to learn more fitting techniques in order to be happier with my sewing results. Your advice "Don't give up" applies so well too. We all get a wadder now and then.

  19. I am in total agreement with you and want to thank you for not hiding who you are! A lot of people who sew, as far as I have seen when I read blogs, won't give even a little hint about how they feel about 45 and what he is doing. I think it's very odd. The world is crashing down around us all (climate change!!!), and they won't put even a little picture, or even a blurb, on their blog wall to show us what they think about 45 and his policies. It seems like they are afraid of sharing that they think about more than just sewing. Odd. So, thank you for showing us who you are!

  20. 1. So sorry about your negative experience with JoAnn's.
    2. Love the navy and the check. It should make a show stopper of a jacket. Can't wait to see it.
    3. The fabric for the girl's dresses is gorgeous. They're going to be beautiful!

  21. I am so upset by the new abortion laws passed recently. For me it has nothing to do with one's religious beliefs. It has everything to do with ones ability to make a decision about ones body-CHOICE! I am so concerned about this that I did donate some money to Planned Parenthood to keep up the fight for a women's right to choose. I said to my DH that next there will be a move to segregate again and reading a comment above it appears that it is out there. I also said I think there needs to be a bill for eliminating viagra for men if this persist as another form of birth control and their loss of choice!

    I am truly sorry to read about what happened to you at JoAnn's. Especially when the corporate office did not respond to your complaint. The only store in my area is HObby Lobby and I did purchase some fabric and patterns months ago.

    And finally I am glad you were asked to contribute to the sewing for beginners and that you have a lot of sewing plans.

  22. I find the staff at Joann's indifferent at best, and often surly. I loved Hancock Fabric when they were here, but that was long ago. So I'm sad that they weren't looking at the color of your money, but it serves them right for being a nasty place to shop.

    I hate breast pockets on jackets and shirts for me, so I wouldn't have tried them on your Dover jacket. I like your accents for the navy fabric.

    I attend Hobby Lobby's pattern sales, too. My feeling is that if you're willing to put your money where your mouth is, and close on Sunday because you believe everyone should have the opportunity to go to church, good for you. If I choose not to give you my money because of that, that's my right.

    And your granddaughters' formal dresses are going to be spectacular! I'm looking forward to those pictures.

  23. So much thoughts and feels reading this post:

    That fabric you got from Hart's is lovely <3 I used to see it in person, in my local fabric store.

    The abortion laws that have been getting passed...make me sick, helpless, and scared. I'm especially angry and disgusted that the AL bill was passed as a ploy in getting Roe V Wade overturned. That they'd make legislation not for the benefit or well being of their residents, but as a power play, should be illegal and is absolutely revolting. I hope it never goes into effect, and that women's bodies are not caught in the tangled web of a game that has nothing to do with them, but everything to do with power hungry politicians grabbing for more power - but I fear for the worst.

    Yay for giving your thoughts to new sewers! When I was a new sewer, I subscribed to your blog because every post had words of wisdom. I'm glad more people will be exposed to you, and hope they find their way here to your home on the web.

    Ah, nothing like getting the cold shoulder when you go to fabric shop. I've not had bad experiences at chains because I never shop at chains - they're thin on the ground here in Boston. But independent stores are not really better; many staff/owners refuse to believe black people sew and spend money on fabric, and provide service accordingly. It's maddening. And offensive, frankly.

    Anyway, looking forward to whatever you decide to share next :)

  24. I'm so sorry you had a bad experience at JoAnn's. For me, it's either Hobby Lobby or JoAnn's, or shop online. I do see POC in my JoAnn's and have not seen anyone getting badly treated, but then again, I am white, so maybe I don't see everything. I agree with what you say about politics. I hope we can all come through this and get to a better place for everybody. Vote! Vote! Vote!

  25. Granddaughters' dresses will be gorgeous. I want to know what you are making for yourself. I worked for Joanns- they are bad! Never again. Lately, they refuse to put out the new patterns when there is a sale, so you have to keep coming back to get the new stuff- when it's not new anymore. I'm not falling for that. I will find someplace to shop online rather than going there.

    As for politics, we are cooked if things don't change and the electorate doesn't smarten up. They have stacked the deck with judges,federal, state and Supreme Court, so it doesn't much matter who gets elected. They will bring a court case and win that way. And in 2020, someone needs to run for Senate and take back the majority. The Senate can block anything a new president wants to do. So some of these candidates need to drop out of the race for president and run for Senate.Work for change instead of grabbing publicity.

  26. Your granddaughters are going to be so thrilled with their dresses. Pretty girls in pretty dresses.

    I avoid Hobby Lobby but totally understand why you need to shop there. I don't like shopping at Joann's because I hate that whole coupon business model. Overcharge for everything unless someone has the right coupon. Unfortunately, the last independent fabric store anywhere near here closed years ago. It was wonderful. So I'm forced to go to Joann's.

    For corporate Joann's not to respond to your complaint of how you were treated is unconscionable but sadly consistent with their general treatment of customers. I'm sorry you experienced that.

    And I totally support you speaking up with your POV. I know we all want to avoid politics today but we cannot sit in silence at what is going on.

  27. Hi, I've not been to Hobby Lobby since they made anti Semitic remarks years ago and just their whole attitude really.

    I have to admit that Joann's attitude baffles me. I visit once in a while if I need something in a pinch.

    Like a few others, I so miss Hancock Fabrics.

    Never managing to hit pattern sales anywhere, I always have to wait until McCalls has a patterns across the board sale.

    I always enjoy what you are up too because I'm so slow when it comes to getting anything finished.

    Take care- Terri

  28. I miss Hancock Fabrics. They had no idea what they stocked, and the bins were a treasure trove of beloved fabrics.

    I'm sad to hear about Joann's but not surprised now that I think about it. And I would like to thank you for this post regarding that. [[[I don't always think about it.]]] As a woman in America, I understand what it's like to not get what I want because I didn't bring the right gender, but I get a pass because at least I'm white (profanity redacted).

    Thank you, sweetie. Thank you for wisdom, your honesty, and your heart.

  29. So enjoy you sharing your thoughts. Sorry you have to shop at Hobby Lobby, I would too if in your position.
    Love reading your blog and that you share your experiences, not just what you sew, but who you are. Hugs and God Bless,
    Lorrie Graham, Albany, NY

  30. Thank you for telling us about your experience at Joann’s. I think that it’s important to get the word out. Corporate should have responded with an apology and proof of action. Shopping at Joann’s is variable for me. Sometimes I just leave in disgust but lately I have been lucky with the service but I am pale. About a year ago I had a good experience: the woman selling Viking products at Joann’s thanked me for wearing a safety pin. (The safety pin is a form of activism) That was in California. I’m sorry about Hobby Lobby but you have to shop at the best place available to you. Again, bravo for spreading the word. If we don’t speak up about racist treatment nothing will get better for sure. My Muslim friends were egged in the face through the open windows of their car but I couldn’t convince them to call the police. But it’s disheartening to need to keep reporting these incidents. We all need to work hard to save our country and be eternally vigilant. Thank you for the good reminder.
    I love your blog, it inspires me on many levels.
    Hart’s Fabrics has a store sale on Super Bowl Sunday.

  31. Don't feel one bit guilty about shopping at Hobby Lobby. I disagree with the political leanings of the leadership at Chik-Fil-A, but darnit, they make a heck of a good chicken sandwich so I still eat there.

    Please share photos of the granddaughter dresses. I only have boys so I enjoy sewing vicariously through sewists with girls in their lives. :)

  32. can't wait to see those gorgeous dresses! And never feel you can't express your opinions!

  33. I love that jacket pattern! I need to find something similar. I think the Folkwear Australian Bush jacket might be an alternative.

    I have become a huge political shopper. NO Hobby Lobby EVER!!! And no ChickFil-A, and no Walmart, blah blah blah... The list is getting really long what with giant corporate conglomerate ownership and all. (I'm down to one type of frozen dinner at the grocery now). I have to admit though that I am very lucky in that if I want to shop, I can shop locally very easily as there are a lot of choices, and I have no problem shopping online. I have more independent restaurants locally than I could eat at breakfast lunch and dinner for a year. So I'm not sure it's a huge statement to not go to the offensive places. Besides, if you're buying $1 patterns there, well, they're not making any money off it, so that's something. I'd boycott JoAnns in support, but how much of a statement is it when I haven't been there in over a year already? I am angry on your behalf that you were treated in such a way. No one should be.

    I can't wait to see your darling little ones in those dresses. They'll feel like princesses for sure.

    After hearing all the crazy on the news daily and seeing horrible narrow-minded ignorant posts on FB, it's wonderful to read your blog. Gives me hope. I have to avoid getting too involved in the politics, besides donating money and voting. Gives me anxiety and a strong wish to go all Danerys Targaeryn and burn it all down. Probably not the best thing to do. Good thing I don't have a dragon!

  34. Another New Zealander here and a long time reader of your blog Carolyn. I love seeing what you sew and watching the projects evolve. Your shirt series is a favourite and has inspired me to persist with my fitting problems when I have the spare time (difficult here as a teacher with the demands of our job - striking today for better conditions and pay).

    The happenings in America sadden me, my family moved from Nebraska 4 generations ago but we all still feel an attachment. I wish strength for all those brave enough to fight what is happening.

  35. Hi to my favorite sewist! :) I looked for a link to email you, but I was super excited to see you quoted in an article today!!!

    I wanted to share the link just in case you had not seen it. :)

  36. I’m with you 100%. I am a New Yorker living in rural Wisconsin. While I love the tranquility there are just not a lot of choices when it comes to brick and mortar fabric shops. JoAnns is a must while Hobby Lobby is a never. And that one cost me. When I think of the generations of women that walk through those doors, literally - mama, daughter and grandma in tow. They wouldn’t have a business if it weren’t for women and birth control. What woman would have time for a hobby with 20+ kids and no job outside of the home.


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