Thursday, March 8, 2012

Monday, March 5, 2012

Sew and Sew

I've been sewing for years - it's not a chore, more of an enjoyable hobby.  like so many home dressmakers I am a fabric addict (or is that fabricaholic?)

Can't resist those lovely lengths of cloth even if it means overweight suitcases on trips home from foreign parts.  And of course I love to have something different to work with.  Quilting is not my thing - I prefer making garments and the challenge of getting things to fit and that look good no matter what shape the body they are going on to.
Here are some of the results.

As you can see - these are all garments for me.  Most of the work I have done over the last few years has been for other people - friends, family and grandchildren.  I negelected to take pictures of these - I will have to do better as it is lovely to have a record of some of my favourite projects.
And then of course there were the fancy dress costumes -  Santa Claus, Minnihaha, Puss in boots, a fierce leopard for our grandson,  various pirates and a range of medieval costumes (male and female) for our local medieval market.

Silk Taffeta jacket made to wear with a long black skirt for Ness's wedding in Helensville 1998.

A wedding dress for a friend was fun to do.  We did have a debate about the length of split in the skirt and she won.    She was right - if I had legs like that I'd want to show them off too!

Wrap around skirt and top made for The wedding of Carrie and Mike in Thailand 2004.  Cool and comfortable thank goodness.  April in Thailand was scorching but what a fantastic celebration.

The trip to Thailand started a love affair with beautiful Thai silk and Chinese silk.  I was asked to choose the appropriate fabric for a friend's wedding dress while I was away.  She wanted fabric the colour of a Waitarere beach sunset.  We went for bronze,orange and pink and she looked wonderful.

 I made this red and gold jacket with black velvet lapels just for fun - and I still love it.

One of the lengths of silk I carried back became this shirt.  (We bought a new suitcase so that the 9kg of silk didn't get squashed into my original bag.

My lovely new sewing machine was clever enough to embelish the shoulder and back with Chinese dragons.

Stil enjoying an oriental influence my husband and I both have waitcoats made of this lovely blue and gold silk.

 He also has two more - a gold one and a black one.  He had to go out to buy the appropriate bow ties to match and looks very dapper indeed!

This lovely silk velvet with sparkly lilac lilies looks fantastic at night time.  We bought the fabric in Hong Kong 2009 where we celebrated my birthday and Chinese New Year all in one week.

2010 and 'The Frock' is back in fashion.  After a fashion parade fund raiser for work I wanted a dress like this.  The shop had sold out of my size - so what is a woman to do?  Just had to pull out the old shirt waist patterns and make it for myself!

You can never have too many shirts - although when ever I wear this one I feel like asking our customers if they would like "fries with that?" every time I issue their library books.  - It always feels a bit KFC to me!

My husband told me I looked like a piece of Wedgewood when I made this one.  The pattern is an old one I bought in 1982 - and whenever I wear it people want to know where I bought it.

Lovely cool Pakistani cotton.  (No - I haven't been there).  Cowboy shirt style which is fun and comfortable to wear.  Once again - an old pattern - this time really old - 1975.  But what can change about a cowboy shirt?

This weekend - a light cotton dress for summer - I'm still hoping we get one  - but I fear it is a vain hope.  This little pink number might just have to wait for next summer for it's first outing.  At least its a simple style that won't date

Thursday, February 16, 2012

This wee chap is no longer with us.  Sadly Fitzroy was run over on the road on Valentines day shortly after his first birthday

Fitz at one year old - loved sitting by the fire on cold nights.

Fortunately we still have his brother, Kipling who keeps us well entertained.

Like all cats Kipling loves to be in on everything - enen trips to the library

and of course he is THE BOSS!

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Summer holidays

Just back from the quintessential Kiwi summer holiday. Camping (well Glamping, my son calls it because we do it in comfort) at a lovely Northland beach with children and grandchildren. What a way to recharge batteries. No internet access, no cell phone reception, just sun, (and a bit of rain) sand, kids, music and good food. Bliss!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Keeping a blog

Being given the job to keep the Te Takere blog up to date has made me more aware of how useful a blog can be. When there is a definate point to the exercise it makes sense! So if you want to keep up with building progress for our new FANTASTIC community centre and library check out for regular updates. We are really excited about it and want to share!

Friday, December 9, 2011

the Te Takere blog

The next challenge was to set up another blog to record building progress for our new Horowhenua Community and Cultural centre which will also incorporate our library and a youth centre. All a very exciting concept. If you want keep up with progress see or visit the Te Takere website at