Friday, November 30, 2012

Catching My Breath with Sewing

I don't know what you do when life is hectic, stressful and full of decisions.  Me, I just want to sew something.....anything.  Thank heavens I've been able to find the time to do just that during this past month.
Mr. Lucky and I packed up the car, the dogs and headed down the road to our FL condo a little over three weeks ago.  Since then it's a frenzy of cleaning, grocery re-stocking, and now the start of the process of putting our place on the market this year.  Yup, it's been a wonderful ten years but we're older, poorer and ready to live in one place and that's going to be Baltimore.  We're still young enough to love the vibe of city and suburuban life although maybe we re-think that decision in five or ten years.  In the meantime, we're re-painting, getting a contractor to do some delayed projects, moving stuff (lots of fabric and patterns and craft supplies is what makes up that "stuff") into a storage unit, de-cluttering and generally stressing out over selling a place when we haven't done that in 28 years!!  I'll fill you in on our saga over the next months but first let me share my sewing projects.  Because sewing and reading are what I turn to when all of life overwhelms me some days....and my dear friends are tired of listening to me ramble.  

I was able to cut and sew two simple tried and true dress patterns over the course of a few evenings.  The first one is Simplicity 3678 with view C's scoop neck.  I really like the neckline on this version and think it deserves to become a tunic top sometime in the future. I was missing my northern sewing friends and thinking about them (especially as I was loading up fabric to take to the ASG chapter meeting for their fund raising sale) when I decided to add a touch of faux leather to this dress.  Very last minute I added a thin band of brown Ultra suede light from a scrap I had been given years ago.  It has enough stretch than I can still pull it over my head and bodice since there's no zipper in this knit dress.  Nothing too out there but makes me smile knowing that I added that little detail because of their inspiration.
Simplicity 3678 View C
McCalls 6201 with lucky in the background
The second dress is another TNT, MCCalls 6201, a sheath dress that I can sew rather easily since it too doesn't need a zipper when sewn up in a stretch woven.  I've had this wild pink leopard print I think since the first year we came here and I was shopping the local WalMart fabric tables.  Rather Florida, don't you think?  I was always going to make pants out of it and now that I have the Elle pant working for me, that was my first idea.  But you know what, it's one of those inexpensive stretch wovens that will not hold up over time....and won't like being a pair of slim pants that get stretched and don't recover well.  So it too became a simple unlined dress and I'll get a season or two of wear from it.
And when I get heart palpitations and minor panic attacks at 2 am (I know, I know, nothing life threatening whatsoever but clearly something is going on in my unconscious), here's what I do to distract me late at night....find some engrossing books.  These two hit the spot this month.

From Amazon:

New York Times bestseller and a moving Civil War novel about a young midwife who dreams of becoming a surgeon
Fans of Caleb’s Crossing by Geraldine Brooks, Cold Mountainby Charles Frazier, and The Postmistress by Sarah Blake will love this New York Times bestselling tale of the Civil War. Mary Sutter is a brilliant young midwife who dreams of becoming a surgeon. Eager to run away from recent heartbreak, Mary travels to Washington, D.C., to help tend the legions of Civil War wounded. Under the guidance of two surgeons, who both fall unwittingly in love with her, and resisting her mother's pleas to return home to help with the difficult birth of her twin sister's baby, Mary pursues her medical career against all odds. Rich with historical detail-including cameo appearances by Abraham Lincoln and Dorothea Dix, among others-My Name Is Mary Sutter is certain to be recognized as one of the great novels about the Civil War.

I'm not usually a historical novel reader but this year I have been enjoying several tremendously.  This was engrossing and compelling reading and so impressive for a first novel.  I highly recommend it.
Now for something totally silly and light:
A dear friend and dog lover had recommended this one a year or so ago when I was raving once again about "The Art of Racing in the Rain."  This is no where as serious as that book but is a light detective story narrated by the dog side kick, Chet.  Sort of like a Janet Evanovich story with a dog narrating it.  Wonderful escapism.
It's good to be back blogging and sharing projects and opinions with kindred souls.  Hope that your sewing projects provide you with what you need much as mine have been doing.


  1. Sorry to hear you are leaving FL, I know it must be a hard decision. Now you can just vacation here. I am on the West Coast of FL and love it.
    You need to sew all those goodies before you leave!
    Good luck in your new venture.

    1. We do love the west coast of FL and maybe down the road we get to return. Thank you for your god wishes.

  2. Those are both super dresses. Sewing soothes. Well, most of the time, anyway. Life changes and we know when we have to let go and move on. Best luck selling your home in FL.

    1. "letting go and moving on" is a lesson in so many areas of life, isn't it? yes, like with an unsuccessful sewing pattern, it's time to let go and enjoy what's next.

  3. Glad you have sewing to help with the stressful times! Good luck selling your Florida home! Your dresses are very cute.

    1. I do love knowing that I have a hobby and positive people in my life to ameliorate the stres and anxiety that can arise easily. Thanks for the good wishes. We're working hard to make our place as sellable as possible and then just accepting the results.

  4. I love historical novels and dog stories, so thanks for the suggestions! Good luck selling your condo. I know it's a lot of stress. Someday when I'm in Baltimore maybe we can get together with some of the other ladies from around there. I had lunch with BeeBee recently and have also met Robin there.

    1. Oh, Carole, I hope we do get together in Baltimore sometime. You've been through changes in recent years so I appreciate your understanding and good wishes.


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