Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Victoria Done!

Last weekend I had a couple of girlfriends over for dinner. Victoria brought a project that was almost 'done', and together we threw it in the washer and dryer to perform the last step, which was 'shrinking' the poncho. We measured it first, then placed it in a mesh bag and threw it into a hot wash, cold rinse, and then the dryer. It was a little scarey!

Here you can see Victoria wearing the finished item. It is made from Touch Me yarn by Meunch Yarns. Check it out!

Victoria says:
This is the most luxurious garment I have ever knitted. OMG. I'm going to do one in black next. 650 grams of Touch Me on size 7 needles. It's a Muench pattern: "Poncho with Cowl Neck". I made the Small/Medium.

I'm going to wash the purple one in cold water then put it in a hot dryer and see what happens.

We'll ask her for photos, yes?

Friday, November 13, 2009

Mood Fabrics and Project Runway

How many of you are watching Project Runway? I must admit that this is the first season where I have watched every show. Thank you to my cable box, for allowing me to record things.

We San Diegans, are fortunate to have Gordana Gehlhausen in our back yard. She has opened a boutique in downtown San Diego, and here you can see her (with me) at an event in her store.
Here is the link to her site

Last weekend, when I was visiting my past students in New York, Genevieve and I made a stop at Mood Fabrics. How fun! Below you can see some shots of Mood. ...
And yes, I did purchase a few pieces of fabric.

Monday, November 9, 2009

New York! The Big Apple

This past weekend, I went to New York (city) to visit two past graduates, Genevieve and June. They moved to New York over a year ago and have been asking me to come visit. So.. use up more United miles, and go to New York? But, of course. It had been many years since my last visit, and it was time to catch up on the museums and theatre.

I'll be filling you in on a few of the fashion things that I did..but first, some images of New York City itself.

The skycrapers of NYC!

Little is more exciting than Times Square at night.

Of course, you can watch people skating at Rockefeller Center.

Here is Bryant Park... the location of the fashion week shows.

Ginger Done!

My friend Ginger sent me an email and some photos, and I am sharing these here. Here is what Ginger had to say.

OK, a "done"! This scarf is a variation on a Japanese stitch pattern that I
learned when I was in Gayle Roehm's Challenging Japanese Stitch Patterns
class at Stitches East this year. The yarn is Noro's Silk Garden Lite. It
was fun to knit and actually went fairly quickly after a few pattern

I'm famous (infamous?) for not finishing projects. I get so many ideas while
I'm working on one thing and as soon as I know that the current project will
work out all right, my mind is off and ready to begin the next new
exploration. You've inspired me to finish some of these abandoned projects
and I'm now going to alternate "dones" with new projects.


Here is a detail...

Friday, November 6, 2009

Done #4: Sweater Jacket

This is a sweater jacket that I machine-knit a few years ago. The pattern is from a book I wrote, called Easy Seven Jackets. The purpose of the book is to teach people how to think outside of the box, using Garment Designer. Each jacket in the book teaches them a new way to think when using the software.

Apparently my gauge was ‘off’, or I simply goofed, but in the end the jacket was much larger than it should have been, and for that reason, it has sat shelved. I finally decided I needed t figure it out.

So… here is how the fixes evolved.
For the sleeves that were six inches too long? I made a fold-back cuff.
For the neckline that stretched? I used a chain crochet stitch to tighten it back up.
For the upper bodice that was too big? I simpy criss-crossed or overlapped the jacket top more.
For the jacket skirt (knit sideways) that was too narrow? Well, I decided to add contrasting wedges along the center front of the garment.

For the two center fronts that were different lengths, because the cast-on was different than the cast-off? Well, I stretch one side like crazy when I added the wedges, so that all would look “intentional”.

In the end? A fun and creative jacket, which I can now wear.
Thanks to Lexi, one of my students, for modeling.

Thursday, November 5, 2009


A few days ago, I heard a quote on the radio. It resonated with me, so here it is.

“There is no growth without change. There is no change without risk”.

Both design and life can become challenging, so know that taking risks is good.

All things for a reason.


Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Done #3: The Finished/Unfinished Top

This is a project that had been in the works for quite some time. Several years ago, I wrote an article for Knit N' Style magazine, detailing how to create the garment you see below. Thanks to my student Stephanie for modeling.

Since the article only showed the front of the garment, I never actually knit the back piece. So... in my current "getting things done" mode, I decided to finish this project.

The design consists of a T-shirt type top, sewn out of illusion knit. Onto this base, I stitched a knit sweater piece that was knit too small (on purpose). I joke around, that this is what you do if you don't knit a proper gauge... you find a creative way to use the piece.

Garment Designer software was used to create both the sewn and knit patterns. If you want to see the entire process, including the inspiration garment from Denmark, go to my website and check it out.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Courteney Fox: Done!

Courteney Fox is a student of mine at Mesa College. Many of my students are aware of the "Done" projects I am working on, and some of them have jumped on the band wagon to finish up projects of their own. Below you can see one of Courteney's projects. This is called the Miss Royalty Coat.

Courteney is a blogger here as well, so go check out her site.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Project: Alter-Ego Figure

In February, I am going to be teaching a workshop in New Zealand. I decided I wanted to involve sublimation printing in the project, and so I had to come up with something that fiber artists would enjoy. Put on the thinking cap.. and voila.. a project, building what I call an alter-ego figure (doll).

What is an alter-ego figure? Well, she is the other side of you. If you are tired.. she is full of energy. If you are a bit shy, she is not. If you are stuck in a rut, she moves forward. She is everything you need her to be, and more. She is your guardian angel.

Here are the steps...

I began by rounding up the usual cast of characters.. two girlfriends who I do creative projects with...Victoria and Lisa

Then.. the prep work
I asked each of them to send me digital image which had a good 'face'. I then used Photoshop to select the portions I wanted,and then, dropped the face into a 'body' I had drawn. Once I had the basic body/face ready, I printed the image on sublimation paper using a printer at the college.

Next, a little sewing..
I took the printouts and sublimated them onto fabric. In case you are wondering, sublimation is the process of going from solid (ink on paper) to gas, (transfer of ink), to solid (ink on fabric).
I then cut out the figures, and stitched the two layers together on my Brother sewing machine, leaving the bottom open for stuffing.

The girls arrived.. and away we went. We stuffed our figures, all the while bestowing good thoughts and magical charms on our alter ego dolls.
Using fabrics, beads, and anything you want... we dressed our girls.. and made them 'pretty'.

Here you can see the results of a few hours of fun..

Avast... Ye Mateys! The Celebrities Commune

Hallowe'en... How fun. I am pleased to say, I have never grown up, completely. I love to entertain, and most years I host a Hallowe'en party, always with a theme. This year, the theme was.. Come Dressed as a Favorite Celebrity. The good news is, my friends generally get into the groove with me, and that is what makes such a good mix; friends getting together, good food, good drink, and lots of laughs.

Here I am in pirate garb, but I want you to know that it was all fashion/designer wear, from my Anna Sui silk vest and Italian pant/skirt, to the leather boots, and Bisou Bisou blouse.
Oh yes, check out Twiggy below. She is wearing my dress from highschool years.. I tell my students.. you think you own short! I think not... this dress even had matching underwear.

I would like you to meet various folks who attended the soirée last evening.

Dolly Parton, and Darlene (from the Micky Mouse Club)

Sonny and Cher, Harrison Ford, and Zorro

Twiggy and the Sixties Dude of unidentified personna.

Elvira and Elphaba

Betty Davis, Vampy Vixen, Wench Piratess

arhhhhh... yet more pirates... we were overrun... avast..

Johnny Depp and his sidekick, the dog from Pirates of the Carribean... note the keys on the ring

Mary Poppins and her western 'friend' (didn't know she had one, did you!)

The Witches of Reflection (my street)

The entire pirate crew...

One is never too old to be a kid. Dress-up time it was.