Sewing


This one is easy.

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When we moved to Bangkok last August after months of traveling, our closet was depressingly barren and we most certainly did not have anything to wear to work. I’ve never worked anywhere that required me to wear dress pants or ties, the last time I wore anything like that was at church in high school.

Fortunately Bangkok is a haven for all kinds of consumerists and I quickly managed to build up a collection of ties, shirts and pants. When we decided to quit school I was wondering what to do with all those work clothes now hanging in my closet and the answer was simple, re-appropriate them, of course!

This was my first project. I shortened a pair of work pants into knee-length shorts with a broad hem. I was going to use some of the cut-off fabric to insert a decorative pocket, but it did not look right, so instead I just created a fold in the side seams just below the pockets to give them some shape.

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After the summer/winter/ monsoon (pick you season) I’ll work on some other projects, but right now I am preparing for the next big move. More about that to follow soon.

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Before my sister’s last birthday (early December) I promised her a bag made by me. I questioned her on what she was looking for in a bag, made some notes, bought fabric, and started working on some sketches.

And then a lot of bags for other people happened and we were away a lot and the sewing machine ended up gathering a lot of dust and what did not happen was a bag for my sister. When she came visiting us in late April she inquired about the promised bag and I had to sheepishly admit that I still did not make it. Luckily I bought her a shoulder bag from a Red Dzau lady in Sapa, so there was something for her. But she was clearly not impressed by my slowness.

Not long after she left I sat down and cut out all the pieces for her bag, the same design as this one. I was interrupted again for a couple of days in late May and was beginning to wonder if I’d ever finish her bag. But last week, the day before we left for Ko Samet, I sat down in front of my sewing machine and finished the bag in one go. Ready to take with to the island for some pictures

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The bag has a side pocket on the outside, a bigger one inside, shoulder straps, and a reinforced base, just as she requested.

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Now it remains to be seen if I’ll ever get to mailing it. When it comes to my recored with sending anything other than email, she may be lucky to receive it just in time for her next birthday.

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These are two other items I have sewed earlier this here, but only recently came round to sending and now posting.

The bag on the left is another diaper tube with the same features, but different contrasting fabric. I love the pink and brown bulbs and it makes a nice contrast on the inside of the bag for the side pockets.

The other item is not exactly a bag, but tube to store plastic bags in. The first time I encountered these convenient bags was when my mom made one for the kitchen. It hung behind the door and I could keep myself busy for some time pulling out bags at the bottom and stuffing them back at the top again. The fabric for this bag I also picked up ages ago at a little clothing store in Chatuchak market.

I still have lots of fabric waiting to be used, but at the moment I don’t know when that’s going to be. We’ve been very busy with this and that and we’ll be getting even busier this month. My sister is arriving on Sunday and we are going to Cambodia for a week and then later this month Alexander’s parents will come visiting. It’s most certainly an exciting and busy time for us, just sorry my poor sewing machine cannot exactly be part of the fun right now.

It’s been quite some time since I last blogged about my sewing endeavors. Actually, it’s been quite some time since I’ve last done any sewing. Although there was a period of some prolific sewing earlier this year, I never got round to writing about it.

During this time I sewed a beach bag for Alexander’s sister, Genevieve.

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It’s big enough to carry a sarong or medium beach towel and some reading matter along to the beach, plus two smaller inside pockets and one on the outside.

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I never came round to mailing it, so I gave it to her when she came visiting in March. It seemed to come in handy for our beach trip to the Andaman Coast.

A little while ago I mailed a parcel to my friends Gabi and Kevin in Taiwan. I can now reveal to you the contents of the parcel…

It was a diaper tube. They just had a baby and I wanted to give them something to carry all his baby-undergarments in. The bag is tube-shaped and has some inner pockets of the same fun fabric as the lining. I’m not sure if it is at all practical as I have never even looked at a diaper bag before, but I suggested that if that is not the case I am sure they can let little Aidan crawl around in it!

Why, it’s fabric? Six new pieces of fabric!

Early in December Alexander, a co-worker and I went to Chatuchak and I found a fabric store selling variety of beautiful pieces of cloth. I splurged on these three.

I cannot pick a favorite, I love them all and had a hard time not buying more, there were so many lovely pieces.

And then there are the fabric I got from our Christmas guest, Tim. For someone who only knew me through my blog and on Facebook he brought the perfect gift and made an excellent selection.

March is going to be full of flights, both domestic and international, and I think I’ll need a thematic bag to hold my travel documents and in-flight reading. This is just the fabric for such a bag.

Alexander claimed this piece the moment I unfolded it. I’ll have to start thinking what to make for him.

And this one says summer. Wouldn’t you agree?

I do see endless sewing possibilities in the near future!

I think I’ve come through my sewing slum/ bloc/ fear. Thanks to Jess, Lorette, Vegeyum, and Alexander for your words of encouragement and support.

This past week I went crazy and did a couple of alteration tasks for Alexander, shortening the hems of two pairs of pants as well as changing the hemlines and fits of a couple of T-shirt. Now this may sound like nothing, but with limited experience in doing these things it was quite a challenge and if I may say so myself I think I did a fine job.

But that was by far not the biggest thing I’ve done.

I finally finished the bag that scared me into hiding my machine for almost two months. It was supposed to be a present for some friends, but I am not 110% satisfied with the final result and have decided to keep it. It looks like an ideal shopping bag or beach bag. I prefer it to be the latter.

Both Alexander and I like it a lot, so he suggested we share it. It can be reversed, so for all practical purposes we each have a new bag now.

This side on the left is his…

… and the one with the tabloid (thanks Katie) is mine!

And here I am working on a new project I cannot tell you what it is yet, but it’s going very well indeed.

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