Sunday, January 28, 2007

A message

For these few days, Brian and I have been away from Palembang, leaving at the last minute for a family commitment. I will only be back to crafting next week or so.

On Thursday, we managed to attend a Sounds of Peace concert I saw being advertised on the papers on the plane back. It featured singing bowls which Brian and I were huged at. The concert wasn't to what I'd expected. Nevertheless, it was a beautiful experience and one which we very much needed from the distractions currently going on in our lives.

On the way out of the concert hall, the organisers were giving out handmade bookmarks with different messages to the attendees. I got one, that I feel was really meant for me.

A message I'd been playing over in my head

message, originally uploaded by leow_fiona.

when I woke up in the mornings and when my mind was restless.

Sunday, January 21, 2007

judged a book by its cover

ISBN4-309-28019-6, originally uploaded by leow_fiona.

In my previous post, I mentioned using a pattern from this book for the smock I made. It's a pity I could not load more pics of the book's content on this post. It's my only book on clothes-making so far and the reason why I chose this from the store's bookshelf months ago was because of its cover. Well, more like it's because of the dress the model was wearing on the cover.

I love the high neck collar and the drop shoulder sleeves, the grey of the fabric and the many buttons in a row. Plus, it's a knee length dress (!) and has tie-back strings (the only fault I find in this dress. Aren't tie-backs for little girls' dresses and maternity wear?). Still, I find it very chic and I think being able to reproduce it will be the ultimate.

Saturday, January 20, 2007

It's a smock top making day.

white linen smock, originally uploaded by leow_fiona.

Before I picked up sewing, I used to think that homemade clothes are limited to pyjamas and wear-at-home shorts. Clothes to be worn out (of home) have to bought and should I want something special that fits to my size, I go to the seamstress. and So.... my mindset has changed!

Eversince I discovered the craft-blogworld, I have known of crafters capable of making beautiful clothing for themselves and their children. I was thoroughly inspired and I still am. Keeping in mind of all the pretty clothes that I had seen, especially Melissa's brown smock, I told myself I would try making something that I WILL wear out one day.

So smock-inspired, I looked through my books and aha, I have one which I think will be in my next post (becos I just can't load two pics in one post right now, sigh.). There is a dress pattern I could use from the Japanese craft book. The dress wasn't exactly my style but I could use the instructions for the top half.

After many days of hesitation, I finally looked through my fabric box today and found the white linen which is the best I could use for clothing. Initially, the smock was a little loose and that explains the adjustment in the front and the two green buttons. I guess this smock should go well with my dark blue denim jeans and a grey cardigan, the two which I so often don nowadays.

Thursday, January 18, 2007

quilt in progress

quilt patches, originally uploaded by leow_fiona.

when the sewing machine needs a rest

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

sewing pattern portfolio

sewing pattern portfolio, originally uploaded by leow_fiona.

Whenever I want to sew a particular something that I see from one of my books or a vintage pattern, I don't have the heart to cut the pattern up from the original envelope. So what I'll do is to take the tracing paper, use a marker and trace the pattern on it and then cut it up. The file comes in handy then for keeping the different patterns in separate sheets and for easy future reference.

On the cover of my file, I have some paper stuff like a brochure, a bookmark made by a friend, a postcard, a tabasco cut-out from its box and a childhood photo taken with my beloved aunt.

Saturday, January 13, 2007

yellow-button pouches

yellow-button pouches, originally uploaded by leow_fiona.

The two pouches were made sometime back from the leftover fabric which Melissa gave. I added batting to it and its size is suitable for a small digital camera.

Just the other day I read that a blogger, Amy has written a book Bend-the-Rules Sewing. Well, I'm really excited about it and want to order it soon and since it'll only be released in a few months, there's enough time to save for it! I'd never bought a book from the internet before and thinking which shipping address to give is a little headachy problem.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

lop-sided ears geek

eyeglass & case, originally uploaded by leow_fiona.

The other day I went to fit a new pair of spectacles, I realised after so many years of wearing them, my left ear is a little lower than my right. The shop's salesman had to adjust the plastic frame to keep it from looking too slant on my face. I find it a little ticklish that I only know this about myself now.

I've had metal frames for my last few pairs of spectacles. This is a change and I like the colour. I think I'm officially a geek who comes complete with the looks. Ha ha!

Beside the eyeglass (I like the quaint term, although mine has plastic lens!) is an owl eyeglass case I made sometime back. There are 3 of them and for the SIP stall which honestly, I have a feeling will not work out at all.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Finally, but thru flickr

If you have not already know, I have had some issues with uploading my photos to blogger directly from my computer. I did managed to upload some photos today but through flickr. I'm new to it, just signed up today. Will I have to use it all the time now that I'm puzzled with what was going on at Blogger? I'll just have try, wait and see.

chair cushion, originally uploaded by leow_fiona.

Does the quilt cushion look right at on my red swivel chair? I'm not too sure yet. I stitched on the batting and back fabric today after machine stitching the triangle patches together yesterday. Actually I had this set of triangle patches for a while. Got them from Sylvia, Brian's cousin when I visited her and family on my first trip to Jakarta. I'm inspired by the way she decorates her home with many of her handicraft. The previous trip in December we visited her in her home, her daughter had a pink with butterflies quilt for a blanket. It made me feel so cosy and warm in the heart.

I've been making things like bags and toys. Maybe it's time I start thinking of making things I can use or see around the house.

Saturday, January 06, 2007

Disappointment. Re-think expectations?

About a month ago, we are fortunate to get broadband at home and soon after uploading pictures were a breeze. Until recently, my patience is put to test again. I had been trying to upload the pictures for my previous post without success.

I had a few craft done and setting up this blog for the purpose of logging them up, I feel frustrated that my blogging could not keep up with my sewing. Perhaps I should take a long 'sabbath' from my bloglife considering the unneccessary stress of not knowing what was going on in the air, staring at the monitor waiting and wasting hours away.

Til the forces are here, I shall be back.

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Old typewriter. New beginnings.

Some random thoughts and a new resolution today.

Just before the 28 dec when Brian and I left for Jakarta, I had meant to blog my resolution. Because of timing and the quake in Taiwan(?), blogger had difficulty welcoming me because of bad internet connection. So I'd to leave the new year's entry until today when we returned.

An old typewriter still in use.

typewriter at Panaco, originally uploaded by leow_fiona.

It's in the older shop of my father-in-law's. I took a picture of it when the shop's closed for the December holidays. Typewriters (in use) were a rare sight from where I came from.

Nothing crafty to show. (Random thoughts, eh?) Do fabric and buttons count?

fabric & buttons, originally uploaded by leow_fiona.

I got these in Jakarta. Brian's cousin and family were kind and sweet to take note of my interest/hobby and brought me to a part of town where there are textile shops all around. I got hold of 4 different fabric and some old new buttons.

Okay, my year 2007 resolution.

I guess declaring just one will do. One that is achievable and one that I can really work on. Of course there are some hopes for the new year. But they're hopes and too personal to declare on the internet?

So here goes..

To speak fluent conversational bahasa Indonesia.

I need a teacher. Getting hold of a language teacher and really attending lessons are some practical steps. Being able to speak the language is especially critical to me now because I feel I'm slowly and dangerously alienating myself from the local people. When I know of some locals who speak English, I went "Oh! you speak English?" Acting like a fool. Complete idiot I am. Not nice. Then there were awkward silence after the greetings if they don't. So not nice.