We buy eggs only half dozens at a time and usually have some laying around in the fridge for quite a while. (I know, eggs are better when fresh; we just don’t eat ebough eggs to always have fresh eggs on hand.) The way I keep track of what kind of eggs, and bought how long ago, is to tear off some of the labeling on the egg carton, write the purchase date on it, and put it in the egg carrier:
This time, I modified the neck line to more scooped both in the front and in the back. I also reduced the shoulder width and made the armhole more scooped.
I trimmed the dress with ivory organza bands at the midriff and at the hem, and added blue lace ribbon to define the edges of the band.
What did I learn from this project? Things will always take longer than I think they would . I was up until the wee hours of Easter Sunday! But, I did get to have a new hot dress for Easter, I did make the early morning Easter service, and I did get a bunch of compliments on the dress, so it was all worth it.
This Threads article has some more interesting tips on working with bias.
Besides a more attractive fit, sleeves cut on the bias fit more comfortably and allow a wider range of movement because fabrics almost always have the most stretch in the bias direction.
Sleeves are not long and large pieces of fabric that can have a bit of weight to them, nor do they have have to support a lot of weight. As such, the extra stretch is not as problematic as is the case with a bias bodice or bias long skirt, where the size and weight of the fabric might result in some distortion in the garment’s shape.
One problem with using a tea ball infuser is that if I have a large amount of spices, it’s challenging to close one half of the ball over the other without spilling some spices since one side has to be flipped over to the other side to close.
Doing so inevitably spills some spices, especially the “smaller” spices like cloves, anise seeds, and coriander seeds.
I came up with a way to minimize spillage.
By having the star anise pieces all on one side and flipping that side over to close the ball:
I can minimize the spillage since the star anise pieces are larger and less likely to fall out. E.g. in the above picture, I’d be flipping the right side over to the left side to close the ball. (You can also see the twine that I used to tie the tea ball to the stock pot’s handle for quick retrieval.)
It’s orecchiette pasta in a light cream sauce, with strips of crispy pig ear. The sauce has a slight acidic tang to it which really played off of the dish’s richness. The piève de resistance, though, was the crispy strips of pig ear: a cross between bacon and chicharrón/pork fat cracklings, but far crunchier and harder than either can ever hope to be. The dish was a revelation!
The black pepper is a very clever touch: Tyson once made me an one-off dish of sliced strawberries, nước mắm (fish sauce), and black pepper. That was amazing not only in taste, but also in the genius of the idea of using black pepper with strawberries.
I can never buy cilantro and flat leaf parsley in small enough quantities. They’re sold in fairly big bunches, but I generally use them only for garnishing, rarely as one of the main ingredients. I always have a large amount left over and cannot use them all before they rot. (I keep them, washed, wrapped in a paper towel in a zip-lock plastic bag, in the vegetables bin in my refrigerator.)
Episode 1 of Season 10 of “Mexico One Plate At A Time” with Rick Bayless has a great recipe for Whole Grilled Fish With Green And Red Adobos. In addition to roasted garlic and serrano chile, the green adobo uses lots of cilantro and flat leaf parsley. He says that the green chile adobo used in that recipe keeps for multiple months in the refrigerator. That’s how I am going to use my surplus cilantro and parsley from now on: make green adobo.
My local sewing meet-up group had a meet-up where we did discharge dyeing. The meet-up’s leader was not an expert in discharge dyeing, but was much more experienced that the rest of the group at the discipline. She also prepared for the meet-up very thoroughly. Every attendee got instructions, materials (gloves, goggles, respirator, bleach, bleach thickener, brushes and toothbrushes and miscellaneous implements with which to apply bleach, various objects for use as stencil). She also had everything set up and ready to go: tables, two buckets each of first rinse water, bleach stop, and final rinse. We got going in no time. It was a lot of fun!
The main thing that I discovered is that it’s fruitless to try to achieve a sharply defined design. Without some sort of resist, such as wax, as used in batik dyeing, the bleach would eventually bleed out and blur any design you have in mind. I supposed the same is true with fabric painting: unless the bleach is actively prevented from spreading, it will.
I decided to divest the dress of its sleeves, which is actually the pattern’s View A:
I think you would agree that View A looks light years better on this Princess Leia!
My remedy for that is to shorten the pleat’s backing (the chevron striped part) so now the lower part of the pleat simply functions as a normal slit. Next time I will be sure to 1. make the pleat wider and 2. test its width beforehand before stitching everything down!
I recently bought Dress Shop, a Windows-based pattern drafting application, by Livingsoft NW. It took quite a big leap of faith since both the Web site and the application look like they were designed in the mid-90s. I will be writing a review of Dress Shop soon.
I started by making a “pegged skirt” i.e. a pencil skirt. The generated pattern looked a little suspect! The top of the back piece’s side seam had way too much curvature to possibly work:
But, I suspended my skepticism and went ahead making the skirt anyway. I was very surprised and impressed by the fit of the skirt. The skirt was a bit loose around the waist, but it was probably due to my not taking that measurement properly. (I’ll cover how I made “fitting slopers” in my review of Dress Shop.)
To spice up the skirt, I used remnants of a black-and-white striped fabric left over from making the Vogue 8900 dress and added slanted welted pockets on the side seams, and used the same fabric as backing for the front kick pleat. I did a chevron pattern in both places. I topstitched with white topstitching thread, using a #14 embroidery needle. The inverted V topstitching secures the top of the kick pleat and is also a design detail.
Originally, the kick pleat’s backing extended all the way down to the hem, but I did not make the pleat wide/deep enough so when I walk, the pleat pulls in a rather unflattering way. I remedied that by shortening the pleat’s backing, which gave the front pleat the look of a slit as well.
For closure, I used an invisible zipper. As an experiment, I positioned the zipper in the front instead of in the back. I am not going to do that again! I kept the waist area simple and just have a facing, no waistband. I lined the skirt but only down to the top of the pleat since I did not want to have to deal with figuring out how to line the kick pleat!
though they can also work with more trendy stuff: