Sunday, January 13, 2013

That other hobby that has been stealing my sewing time ...

I've alluded to my new hobby a few times, which in a way, it's not a new hobby at all.   Probably y'all don't remember, but back in 2010 I shared the markers I got for Christmas, and mentioned that I wanted to get back into drawing.  Well, I did some drawing, but it still felt like a struggle and it was soon abandoned.  I tried and gave up a few more times.   I didn't know what I wanted to draw, in part because I didn't know what I could draw.  My ideas just weren't coming out onto the paper right.

A Luscious Lotus.

In November, I stumbled across ATCsForAll.  ATCs is short for "Artist Trading Cards", little baseball-card-sized (2.5 inch by 3.5 inch) artworks that are traded amongst artists.  At ATCsForAll there are a number of ways to trade, but the one that caught my eye was the themed swaps.  A swap host announces their theme in the swap forum on the site, along with the rules for play and the submission deadline.  Typically a swap participant submits 3 or 6 cards, with an optional extra card for the host.    When all the cards are in, the host will return a matching number of cards made by other artists to each participant.

My first ATC from my first swap.

Now this was something I could do.  The theme gave me some focus, plus a deadline (though there is no penalty for dropping out of a swap as long as you inform the host).   The small size of an ATC also helped -- I can still spend hours making one, but it definitely scopes the the undertaking a bit!

One of the cards I'm mailing out tomorrow.

Anyhow, long story short, I joined up and have now participated in a half-dozen swaps, with themes ranging from parakeets to animals wearing winter gear to pink things that are not pink in real life.   And those markers pictured in my post from 2010 are finally getting a workout!  I am not 100 percent happy with every card I make (and sometimes re-do them several times before I'm willing to send them out) but I am making drawings I am proud of, which didn't seem possible just a few months ago.   I think the habit will stick.

Yak rocking some warm woolies.

Since I know my audience here are primarily sewists, I'll not share about drawing and ATCs here regularly unless for some reason this post garners a strong response.  If you want to see more, you can check out my ATC set on Flickr.  And if you want to play too, join ATCsForAll -- as the name suggests, it's for everyone, of all levels of artistic experience, and all mediums (even sewing ... I'm not sure I could sew up anything ATC-sized worth having, though).   I've found it to be a talented, positive, and welcoming group.  If you join or are already a member, look for me there: my username is Lost Cities.

A Vulture does Violence to the letter V --
for the "V, W, X" swap.

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Melty trees

I finally made a Pacific Moon for me!   Just like the ones I make for schmeebot, it has a wider waistband, deep pockets, and is made from Ikea home decor fabric.   I did have to add three inches to the length, but that's the only significant change I made.

The fabric is currently available Ikea stock -- They call it Fjallfly,  but schmeebot and I have dubbed it "Melty Trees".  If you look closely at the print, there are all kinds of zany things tucked in there:  bows on trees, mushrooms, transparent houses, newsprint, lost shoes, hedgehogs ...

Here are the back and side views.  I matched the print on the back seam but did not bother on the sides ... too hard to do that and make sure the parts of the design I like most landed on the skirt!

I think it looks a bit puffy in the ass, and would take an inch or two outta there for my next one. (There will be a next one).   schmeebot says it's perfect as-is, leave well enough alone.  What do you think?

There's nothing new to say about the construction of a Pacific Moon, at least not until I actually make the tutorial.  The yoke fabric's quilting cotton as per usual.  I did line mine, with some gold mystery fabric that came in a Fabric Mart bundle.  Oh how I love those bundles!  I've gotten several over the past year, and they've contained some strange and wonderful treasures (and a few WTFs).  Now to wrap my head around them and sew them up into something. 

As you can see from the above, finished garment photography finally happened, so I will be showing you my Sewaholic Almas soon.   This month does not hold a lot of sewing time for me, but I'm certainly still thinking about it (mainly while driving to and from work ... it's a 25 mile commute).  So maybe I'll share my half-baked ideas, if only so I don't forget them.  And then there's that other hobby I keep mentioning.  So, expect a few more posts from me soon!