Sunday, September 7, 2008

Fiber Play!

Working on a Christening gown can be pretty intense as much sewing can be. Sometimes you need to just go and play with fibers, threads, and color. Today was that day and it was glorious.

I spent one hour this morning with my green tea and smocking away on the gown, very enjoyable. Next came household chores then time for more sewing. I really, really felt a need to just play, and that I did! I walked in the sewing room, looked around, and decided to renew my relationship with my felter. I pulled out all the yummy rovings I have accumulated over the last year and just started playing, placing fibers and colors on a piece of orange cashmere from the stash. That, and the fact that it was a chilly Autumn day, made me reach for the "fall" colors. Place and play, play and place. I decided my play will turn into a bag. I went to the felter first to make autumn leaves and that was fun. But the real fun happened when I just started putting together the fibers for the background. Two hours later, I was happy, and I had the front and back of my next bag, all ready for Fall.

I used some Angelina fibers on this. They don't embed in the base fabric for some reason. I had to layer a really thin wisp of fibers on top to secure down the angelina. I also used some of my curly haired Cotswald rovings and those were a nice counterpoint on the surface. So all in all it was great fun putting this bag together. Next I will do some free motion stitching with the sewing machine to add some more dimension to the surface, maybe even some beads too. So this is far from being done. The bag will have a zipper closing, a lining, and more surface embellishment.


Since not everyone goes back to check comments on a post they have already commented on, I thought I would respond to a few questions.

A while back another dear blogger asked if I was able to read comments on old posts. Yes, I can. I have any comments to the blog sent to my email account and that way I don't miss the comments to those older posts. So if you are commenting on a garment I made months ago, I will get your comment and will be able to respond accordingly. Now if only I could remember who you were, dear blogger. (:(

Next was a question from Sherrill, of Sherrill's Sewing Saga.
Sherrill asked if I really counted all those tiny pleats. Yes, I do, and I came up with 240 for the Christening gown. The pleats will be superimposed with embroidery/smocking stitches. Each stitch on each row needs to follow a pattern and also line up with the next row. So an off count is just disaster. It means that any stitching must be ripped out and started over. If you have ever done needlepoint or counted crosstitch, you know where this is coming from.

I do my counting by using large headed pins and I put one in a "valley" every ten pleats. Then I recount to make sure it is ten and go on to the next ten pleats. When all the pleats are counted, I do the math and come up with the exact CF and CB. This way the smocking design is lined up perfectly. This is important to maintain the integrity of the design. It also will help me have a flow of stitches at the opening placket. Yes, this is fussy work, but that is why they call it heirloom. These garments are meant to be passed on and worn by the next generation. Just think how wonderful it would have been to have your own christening gown to pass on to your grandchildren.


I am so doggone excited! Today DH cut down two trees and dug a trench. All that work was done so we could get satellite internet! YAHOO! We had broadband for many years thru Comcast, but upon moving to the Adirondacks, the land of no cell towers or fiber optics, we lost that capability. Now, arrives satellite high speed to the boonies! We hope to have everything installed by the end of the week. This will mean a new e-mail account and other aggravations but oh, so worth it. So please bear with me. I will post the new email as soon as I have it. I can't wait to zip thru all those new pattern reviews posted on PR, watch sewing videos, visit youtube, etc..... Did I say I was excited?.....................Bunny


  1. I love seeing your creativity. And congratulations about your new Internet capabilities: that's great!

  2. I have "play time" to every once in a while, especially if I'm working on a very fussy, very long project. I need that bit of time to explore and create without having to following the prescribed formula for the project for what seems like the hundreth time! Your leaves are really lovely.

  3. Thanks, so much, both of you. I am very excited about my computer sitch.

    I think creative people just have this need to play. When I think about it, I know it stems from a childhood where play was consummate, for my parents and my sibs. I was really encouraged with my creativity as were the sibs too. Glad you liked the leaves, Summerset.

  4. Bunny, thank you for the explanation. I think cross stitch is magic. Nothing on the canvas, yet someone can just start with a needle and come up with something beautiful. Your work is awesome!

  5. Beautiful, beautiful... makes me a little less sad summer is ending, and those gorgeous fall colors are on their way! How did we ever survive before the internet??

  6. Oh Bunny...this felted bag in autumn colors is going to be yummylicious! I am so inspired by your creative ideas & your wonderful attention to detail as well. I'm excited to see it finished.
    Congrats too on having your Starry, Starry Night bag selected to travel the country so thousands of other sewistas can appreciate it.


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