Odds and sods

If you are expecting a post about haute couture, look away now. This post is simply reporting a few small activities with which I have been entertaining myself this week.

First up, I’ve been experimenting with embellishing my Japanese bags. I’m hosting a sewalong for these bags in November and I want to play with some variations. I found a device called an “easy pleater” among my mother’s things and thought I’d give it a go. The “not quite so easy pleater” is what it should be called, but I mastered it eventually.

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The pleats require starching prior to pressing, so I ventured into the supermarket (a once a year event for me), to look for starch. To my dismay, starch can only be bought in a pressurised can. I decided to make my own. Piece of cake – just use cornflour and water, mix it together and put it in a spray bottle. The bags finished up looking like this

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I’m also experimenting with fine silks and brocades. This is my first effort. After evening up all the edges I sewed it together with gold thread, which looked fabulous, but it wasn’t strong enough, so the next version will be interfaced first to stop it tearing apart.

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Archie asked me to make him some exercise shirts. These are basically t-shirts without sleeves, and with the edges left raw. I rubbed off one of his existing t-shirts and finished up with a credible first effort. This is a simple design, but there is a surprising amount of fitting to be done. I have more of these planned for the coming week.

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My last experiment was with a hair wrap. Hair wraps are fabulous for drying wet hair. I don’t have enough hair for a towel – they always finish up falling off my head and I feel as though my neck is being tested for strength. Hair wraps are made from microfibre towelling and are a very simple turban shape. I found a microfibre towel in an op shop, and, given that it looked new, I thought it would be just the ticket.

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The hair wrap is this shape. It has a piece of elastic at one end and a button at the other.

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My head goes in the big end and the rest gets twisted round and secured with the elastic and button.

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Long hair would go into the long bit and get twisted round with it. These hair wraps are pretty cheap online, but it’s so much better to make your own. I was going to make a couple more but Archie spotted the towel and spirited it off to add to his gym towel stash. Whatever, it’s no longer in my stash, so I’m happy!

In a nutshell: I’m wearing my 1950s blouse and the Ultimate trousers. Head wrap is made from a microfibre towel, and the bags and t-shirt were stashbusted from scraps.

Fadanista

12 thoughts on “Odds and sods

  1. Hi, I just wanted to pop by to say I love your blog. I’ve been lurking for a while, and should introduce myself. We must be about the same age, but you seem bursting with energy. Maybe it’s all the sunshine, we’re usually a bit short of it in the UK. Love the new use for microfibre towel, but what I really like is your button top. Which are the real buttons? And will the bag sew-along be online? Anyway, all the best, Trish.

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    1. Thanks Trish, and welcome! There is only one button on the button top, the largish green one. The bag sewalong will indeed be online, and I have the pattern all ready to go, but not the instructions yet. I wanted to add a few variations to increase interest and difficulty. I hope you join in!

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  2. Great little projects! Your new japanese bag is awsome. I had never seen hair wrap for wet hair yet. It looks like a turban à la Simone de Beauvoir (though hers were mostly in velvet). Very chic to answer the door, indeed!

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