Friday, January 31, 2014

Jungle January…..by the skin of my teeth



(Click for a little soundtrack to this post)


With 2.5 hours left in January, I think I'll just manage to get this posted in time.  Whew.  It's been a while since I've had the time to sewalong with anybody else, so I consider this a minor victory.

I didn't have much animal print fabric in my stash aside from some scaps and a large piece of beige snake print quilting cotton.  The snake print is great, but the colour is REALLY bad on my skin, and the weight makes it a bit of a challenge to use.  I decided to put it aside and do some scrap busting this time around.  

(Here are a few quick snaps taken in the lab before anyone could walk in on me; hence, the uncomfortable look on my face.)





I made this first item a few weeks ago, and managed to post it to the Flickr group, but wanted to put off blogging until I'd finished everything I'd planned.  This is roughly based on the free obi belt download at Burdastyle, but with a lot of modifications:  I didn't have enough of the print to make a whole belt, so I ended up just using it for the centre front panel.  The remainder is a heavy black cotton (almost canvas) leftover from an old Sew Weekly project.  Come to think of it, this print was also leftover from the Sew Weekly…..I used it to make one of my most-worn and most-complimented skirts (see Sick as a Leopard skirt here).  


I've worn this belt a couple of times already this month, and I like the way it acts as a bit of a waist cincher (in the first photo above, it had come a bit loose.  I tightened it up for the other two photos, which is how I usually wear it).  

Bolstered by this success, I decided to try making a bag.  My one casual handbag was a sample made by my designer cousin Genevieve Savard, and it's a bit too well-loved at this point.  I need to order another one.  If you're reading this Genevieve, I'll take a look at your etsy store soon!  

There are plenty of free bag patterns available online, but I like Novita's because of its simplicity and the fact that it's reversible.  

from Novita's blog 
For whatever reason, my printer wouldn't print the pattern, but it was fairly easy to just eyeball the image on the screen and copy it to tracing paper.  I had a really nice scrap of black wool, and an equally sized piece of poly-cotton giraffe print that worked well together:  classic black bag with a hint of print peeking out.  









Nice size, nice shape, nice topstitching, nice pockets…..


…..ah shit.  

Novita even explicitly says in her instructions to take care of which straps you sew together before you topstitch, but I guess I was sewing on too little sleep.  Again.  I don't have the time or energy to unpick this and resew it before the end of the month, so it's getting posted as is.  

And thus concludes a hastily written, unedited Jungle January blog post.  See you on the round up! 

18 comments:

  1. Nice obi belt and congrats on getting your Jungle January project done! Nice scrap busting.

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    1. I used to sew something every week, but now I need the full month of these sewalongs to get things done! February is #blueFebruary, so that shouldn't be difficult, because about 1/2 of my stash is blue of some sort or other.

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  2. I love obi belts...even if I've never owned. I love yours. And I agree, great scrap busting!

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    1. Thanks Lila! I remember wearing a black leather one back in the early '80s, and I'm on the lookout for some leather scraps or a beat-up old jacket at Village des Valeurs to make one again. If I do, I'll post about it.

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  3. Looks great with pop of animal print on the belt.

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    1. Thanks Annie - it is difficult to find animal print around here that isn't synthetic, so when I picked up this 1.5m of lovely soft cotton, I knew I had to use every little piece!

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  4. Those double handles are a great design feature ;) Love the waist cincher, too.

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    1. Yes, it is sooooo not awkward to use when they are sewn sideways. Sigh. Sleep deprivation….you understand.

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  5. Hey, I've seen bags with handles made like that intentionally. It's a *design choice*. I'm in love with the obi belt. Just enough leopard print and such a great style. I need to get around to making another that isn't just for my robe.

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    1. It will bother me too much to leave it like that ;) Whether I get around to doing it soon is another question though!

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  6. Love the obi belt. And I'm with everyone on the design choice idea. It's very avant-garde.

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    1. Nothing says avant-garde like awkward placement! heheh

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  7. MEOOOOOW! Totally fantastic. I love a good obi belt, and this is one of the best I've seen. Way to rock it and the black dress :)

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    1. Thank you Ms Grand! Now that I know better how to put it together, the next one will be easier to whip up (the Burdastyle download is really only a guideline for the centre portion, without any details of how long to make it or how to turn it, etc.)

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  8. I REALLY like your Obi : ) And what is this about Blue February?

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    1. Thanks Loran! #BlueFebruary is a Sewcialist thing - colour themed months to kick start people's ideas of what to sew next. I think it started with the twitter crowd talking about sewing something red in October, and it blew up from there.
      http://sewcialists.wordpress.com/2014/01/31/blue-february/

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    2. I found it and have a project in the works. Not only THAT but I have a special place to photograph this blue creation at (that isn't IKEA!) that YOU will appreciate : )

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