So, I got some goodies in the mail yesterday. I can't tell you how much packages make me happy. Something about opening a "gift" (even if I already know what it is) that makes me smile. It's like Christmas time, almost monthly over here. Sometimes I just order dumb ish, just to have something to open hahahaaa Like.. a hot water bottle which I've yet to receive : | You can never have enough of those around. Seriously. No, really.
Anyway... my package consisted of 2 books (who would've guessed!):
"How to Use, Adapt, and Design Sewing Patterns" and "The Intentional Spinner" which arrived right on time!
First, how appropriate right, since I'm doing the whole make myself a pattern thing. I have drawers filled to the rim with old commercial patterns that need modifying and the special "me" touch added to them. This book (although I just skimmed it for the first time last night), is FULL of great info. I'm getting all riled up just thinking about it! *goose bumps*
Included in the book is a complete set of scaled pattern blocks sized 6-18 (image below) with instructions on how to scale them up full size. If you don't want to torture yourself the way I am (see previous post), this is the way to go!
But a little disclaimer here: Don't get too excited about the whole size 6-18 thing. If you didn't know, I'm gonna tell you now, that these sizes aren't the 6-18 most of us think about. They are standardized sizes that the "industry" uses/has used and do not necessarily line up with today's modern woman. But the cool thing about this book is that it teaches you step-by-step how to adapt your patterns! Loves it :D Eat that fashion industry!
Other things I really love so far are the sections on "Advanced Pattern Alterations" - to achieve the "perfect" fit, the tips on "padding out a dress form" for those that have forms, and the first sections of the book that discuss basically everything you need to know (or more than you thought you'd care to know) about "commercial patterns." Basically this book is comprehensive, has easy to understand instructions, and is full of visuals (my kind of book). Yay visuals! It looks like this book is going to be a terrific addition to my collection. Definitely a book that will receive heavy usage in the next months. It's already 'tabbed' up the wazoo. Special shout out to Threads magazine for the heads up :)
Second, the latter... *sigh*
Ok, it should come as no surprise that... *sigh*... I've officially been "bitten" by the spinning bug. I tried to resist it as long as I could; even calling spinning "stupid" at one point because, in all honesty, why the hell would I need to spin my own yarn, when I could just insert the quantity needed and then click "add to cart" and check out? I'll wait the 7-14 business days impatiently, totally not a problem. I love packages, remember? And then... a group of enablers, aka my knitting group, just had to keep bringing their beautiful spinning wheels, fiber and spun objects in to knit night to tempt me. A few of these mean ladies even let me test their wheels! Appalling, I know.
Spinning was something I had flirted with at one point when I really got a hold on knitting (so like, 2 wks ago hahaaa). But honestly, I flirt with a lot of "somethings" that don't always turn into regular habits on my schedule. I mean, soapmaking, crocheting ... both of these aren't things that I regularly feel inclined to do. They are kind of, when the moment hits me, or out of necessity type things. Like, making soap will soon be a "necessity" because being funky is not an option ;) [Quick side salad regarding soapmaking: I made enough soap to last the past 2 yrs, including having gifted many bars the first year! I haven't purchased any soap since 2008. How kool with a 'k' is that? But I'm almost out, so you already know what that means. Another unnecessarily wordy, boring blog on soapmaking j/k! ]
What was I talking about?
Oh yes, so at that point... it was pretty much a wrap. It was so relaxing and refreshing, actually. I mean, the hum of the wheel, the smooth treadling, that gentle breeze you are given while you are spinning, and the even cooler bobbin of yarn that you end up with (not me, but folks that know what they are doing) when you've spun for an ample amount of time. I know it sounds like I've gone off the deep end (again), but I swear this was like sunshine on a cloudy day. And last, to actually knit up an item from hand spun yarn *sigh* I'm gone. I've attempted using a drop spindle. I'm too impatient for that mess, but cute idea. If I'm gonna do this, I want my yarn NOW!
So to make this post longer than it needs to be (as usual) I said all the above to say that this books is fantastic so far! Comprehensive, great visuals, and small enough for me to read in bed and not worry about knocking myself out with it if I doze off in between sections. What? Don't act like you haven't done this before. I am enjoying reading about all the different types of fibers and how they perform (fashion textiles flashback), the breakdown of spinning techniques and a fun section on novelty yarns which I'm on the fence about. I mean, novelty yarn would be interesting to try, but I wouldn't knit with it. I'm just being real. So, per usual, I have no idea what I'm doing (I figure it out as I go) and this book is right on time to give me a quick crash course on what the hell I'm getting ready to get myself into.
This breakthrough, or breakdown (ha!), is also coinciding with me turning the big *gasp* 3-0 in the next couple months. No, I'm not having a 1/3 life crisis (or 1/4 if you really think I'll be around til the age of 120)! Relax. Crises are totally overrated and such a waste of energy. But, 30 is like, a re-birthing period [or feel free to insert something prophetic here]. It's a time to leave behind those damn 20's that set many of us back figuratively, mentally and financially [I've just finished selling off and donating all that "what the hell was I thinking" stuff], and move on to better things like really living life to its fullest and enjoying those simple pleasures in life, or some junk ;)
I already have a decent amount of fiber to get me started so all I need now is the wheel. I've managed to get my list down to 3 solid wheels that fit my criteria (and you know I'm picky as hell, so this was a challenge), but I am also planning on testing a few more wheels in a shop for good measure before I make the big leap.
The big reveal is scheduled soon, so stay posted for that blog.