Tired of ads? Upgrade to paid account and never see ads again!
tudor ensemble 1

Kimiko Sews

A Gentlewoman's Creative Blog

Entries by tag: personal

Return to hand sewing!
handsewing, tailor sewing
It really isn't until your hands are sore that you realize just how much you use them. Especially the off hand, for me my left hand, that was the injured one. I had pinched a nerve, and had to stay off the hand and minimize its use for awhile - over two months now. I have only recently been doing hand exercises to help improve it since the left hand is still weak. The hand still has twinges of soreness, but not the sharp pains I was getting, which is good.

This did mean that the wool short gown had to be put aside, as I couldn't do more than a couple of eyelets at Great Western War before the left hand complained again, and that was in early October. But yesterday I tried another eyelet and was able to continue and finish up the whole set. I am taking breaks to let the hand rest.

I also did something different for me. I had read in Seventeenth-Century Women's Dress Patterns: Book 1 about how eyelets were sewn with one very long thread, linking each eyelet under the fabric. Well, I normally use short lengths of thread, so I tried to see how many eyelets I could do with a whip stitch of linen thread (50/3 Londonderry). I used a length of thread roughly a yard long or a little more. I was able to sew up 5 eyelets spaced 3/4" apart. Not bad! I did a couple of backstitches before and after each eyelet to keep the tension from pulling on already completed eyelets.
5 eyelets, 1 thread.
Read more...Collapse )

Creative Year in Review 2011
Well, I am not a prolific creator of items, be it costumes, scrolls, embroideries or whatever. Mostly it seems I tend to create large items, things that take awhile to work on, and I've a family to tend to first so I can't devote more than a few hours a day to work on anything, if computer time doesn't suck me into its black hole depths.

This is why I will be devoting more specific time to my creative endeavors in 2012, and working on smaller items.

But why not look back and see what I did accomplish, even if some of it is yet to be shared on this blog for various reasons. Read more...Collapse )

Scheduling for the new year
tudor ensemble 1
I'm taking the evening off from housework, and decided to do a little thinking about what I want to possibly work creatively on for 2012.

I've a rather long list of items I've had on my want-to-do plate for awhile, from curtains to regular clothes. I just don't make the time to actually make them, leaving them to blow in the winds of ideas, so to speak. This needs to change. I mean, I've got flannel nightgown from last winter still not done, and I'm cold! It's only the sleeves, so that will get finished this weekend.

So, for 2012, instead of the big ticket items I tend to work on, I'm going to go with (hopefully) simpler items on the docket, while maybe working on one or two larger items over a longer period of time - which will be nice for things that are going to need embroidery on them.

I'm not sure, other than the nightgown, what it is that needs/wants to be worked on next. Once 12th Night is done, I've nothing pressing outside of finishing my nearly done embroidery piece by the end of January. I am thinking I will make a spreadsheet or something simple with the project names and how long I expect to take to work on them, then just do them one at a time. I need to just schedule them into my calendar and quit putting them off to "whenever" since "whenever" just gets shoved later and later. Will this work? I hope so. I know I only answer to myself on this, but... well, no "but" is not going to cut it anymore.

Anyone got ideas on improving scheduling of projects? Or do you do like I do of having some set event you need X by, then work that way hoping to get it all done? Can creative things not for pay really be scheduled in? Should I just try to make one new thing every two weeks? Every week? {sigh}

True Heart's Desire for 2012?
bw gown
From a merchant FB page, asking what is your True Heart's Desire for 2012. This was my answer. "I would have to say to be more creative, and make the time to be more creative." Yes, I could have asked for world peace, or a clean home, or many other things, but this was what came to mind first so I wrote it down. I thought I'd share it here for future reference.

As for what I'm doing now, well, house cleaning, and working on the secret gift project (maybe two) that I'll share in a couple of weeks. I'm hoping the house cleaning will lead to more time being creative with less guilt about being creative, instead of just letting it slide as I've been doing. At least, that is the hope. We shall see what happens in 2012 as it will be a long term project.

So, if you are in the mood to play along, what is Your True Heart's Desire for 2012?

Synchronicity to natural dyeing?
tudor ensemble 1
I think there is no such thing as a coincidence, although I will admit I also don't always follow coincidences which come my way. But this time, I think it is synchronicity.

What am I talking about? Well, as I've mentioned before, I've been pondering getting into natural dyeing, with my own garden of dye plants. I've wanted to do this since I got into spinning my own wool in the 90s, I just didn't have the space for it at my old apartments (too small &/or too shady).

Today, on the SCA Garb mailing list (remember those?) someone by the SCA name of Lady Kimiko (I kid you not) posted about a Japanese book on Japanese historical dyes and weaving. She included a link to a photo showing those color samples from the back of the book.

Source: Textiles No. 2 Arts and Crafts of Japan
By: Tomoyuki Yamanobb

Ok, so when someone posts about Japanese dyeing, with my own name stamped onto the post... well, I am taking it as a synchronous event directed at me (it was a random post to the group, not me, but it just fits too well). Whang, get it in your head, this is what you keep ignoring, but really want to do, right??!!

After all, I now have space for a garden that we are letting go to waste since the kids won't each most of what we grow, and we can't seem to grow very well the few fruits (melons & corn) they will eat. Why not try a natural dye garden as well as the few items we do want to grow to eat.

And my plan is to dye silks, threads mostly for embroidery, and maybe attempt small pieces of silk fabrics as well, possibly in shibori (I've got the books, need to read them). I'd also like to do more wool dyeing, as there are period dye formulas on wool I'd like to attempt - and have read insight into a replacement for alum that would be very period (Anglo-Saxon wood-ash water, of all simple things). But I am not a knitter and not really into crochet anymore - but maybe I can sell the yarn or something. I don't know yet - I just want to explore for a bit.

I think it is also time I attend Baroness Flavia's workshops in dyeing, which I can start at GWW this October. And it may mean attending her workshop in the spring and not doing CoCo next year - I shall see what happens. I will also need a dye icon.

Thank you, Chindora!
embroidery blackwork
I wanted to thank chindora for sending me a beautiful piece of blue silk, that will be used for the background of my heraldic diamond. The color goes well with the background color.

Not only that, but she sent it to me inside a beautiful card from the Plymouth Plantation with a close-up shot of the "Peapod with Golden Peas" with a worm motif from the Plymouth Jacket. It nearly shimmers with shiny gold and silk goodness. I will be putting this card up for me to see regularly.

Thank you again, chindora. I am in your debt.

ArtEvDaMo Days 11-30
embroidery blackwork
Well... that was a bust of a month, creation wise.

I did get the Damask furred frock finished, for the most part. It still needs closures, the sleeves ended up a couple of inches too short, and the fur trim on the sleeve slashes didn't get put on. But it is fixable. But I won't be working on it for awhile, since I've got no other plans for it until early spring, if then. And I've not seen pics of me in it, nor have I taken any. {yes, bad me}

So, that was finished on the night before Kearney Park faire, so that was the 13th. The 2 days of faire where I made nothing... then hit with two different illnesses pretty much back to back, one of which was a flu, so there went creating anything other than occasional small workings on the blackwork partlet.

So, the partlet now has the right front completed, and I've started into the left front side. I've not taken any photos recently as my camera is sucking up batteries and need replacing. I am getting bored with it, frankly, so I need to find something else to work on... and have yet to come up with any specific goal or project that is really calling on me to do. I must ponder this, as I need some inspiration in order to get going on anything.

I do have a new chart to play with, some soap ingredients that needs to be made up into soap for gifting, lavender buds waiting to be made into sachets, lots of embroidery linens of various sizes gifted to me, sewing projects I could do including curtains which would only take a few days for the 3-6 sets, a scroll or two to draw up... and all I want to do is hibernate. Actually, I need to clean first, purge things I no longer have interest in, and make more room to move around in my sewing room.

So, the month of creativity... was a bust. But who knows what tomorrow might bring, eh?

It's Here!
tudor ensemble 1
{crossposted from my main blog}

The Tudor Lady's Wardrobe pattern arrived in the mail today, with my name on the front cover. Woohooo!

I know what I am reading today. :-D

It's DONE!!! Oh Yeah.
tudor ensemble 1
Reposted from my main blog. Sorry for the double post to those who read both.

The Tudor Lady's Wardrobe Pattern is DONE. We'll start shipping tomorrow.

Many thanks to each and every one of you for all your patience and support.


Margo and Doug

Oh yeah! Now I am doing a happy dance, figuratively, since my right leg is not doing well.

And for those who might not know by now, I helped Margo with the research on both Tudor pattern sets. This means I need to update the men's clothing info while Margo takes a break, as she will be working on that one next.

First Post Intro
tudor ensemble 1
Hello all,

This is just a simple post to say hello, and to explain why I have a new blog. My old blog, sstormwatch, will remain, but it will have all of my personal day-to-day stuff in it. I will not be posting about my sewing or other crafts, other than as a pointer to this blog. It may even become Friends Only, but not quite yet.

In this blog, it will be about my sewing, and my illumination, embroidery, crafts, millinery, and other activities. So, yes, it will be more than just sewing, but sewing is my main focus. This blog will be a part of my own web site. I will eventually move my older posts to this blog, if it pertains to my activities here.

Please remember that this is a public blog. I encourage questions and comments, but do remember your manners, as who knows who will be reading this, or what age they may be. I hope to have more child friendly activities here, as I share what I am doing with and for my own children in sewing escapades.

So, Welcome!

You are viewing kimikosews