Categotry Archives: words


PRE-BIRTHDAY DRESS inspiration and design


It’s almost time to start delaying on this year’s birthday dress!

Every year I gift myself fabric for a new dress, but this year I’ve sweetened the swag by removing any idea that the dress will be ready for my birthday. My professional sewing work is ruled by deadlines (and I have to make 3 other dresses before my birthday), so it’s rare that I get to create without keeping an eye on the clock. Happy belated birthday to me!

I wasn’t even thinking ‘birthday dress’ but when I came across this aqua, orange, and gold lycra at Blue Moon last month, I knew it had to be mine. But now what?

birthday dress 2015

I’m having trouble coming up with a design. I spent an hour coming up with this sketch, and I’m not convinced it’s the best.

birthday dress 2015

There was a break in the print every yard, so that’s all I got. I want to add in another fabric for contrast, and also for length. I feel like the lycra should be at the top of the dress, so that the gold is near my face and not wearing off from the seat of the dress, because of course I will be riding my bike. The fabric is long enough that I could have it be the entire top of the dress, with only 6-8″ border of a contrasting fabric at the bottom.

My original idea had been to match the light aqua, but now I’m considering adding in an entirely new color. Of course my first thought is goldenrod, or some other shade of yellow. Yellow makes me happy, and my last two birthday dresses have been yellow. The yellow fabric in the photo is a scrap of jersey, and I know where to get more. But I’m thinking different fabric, same color. I don’t want the weight of a lined jersey skirt stretching out the lycra top, so I’m thinking woven fabric.

So now onto pattern. Lately I’ve been wearing sheath-style dresses, without a defined waist. I’m not nuts about a bisected dress that looks like a shirt tucked into a skirt, but I could be swayed.

The stretchy fabric tempts me into cutting sleeves, because I wouldn’t really have to worry about ease. Most of my dresses are sleeveless, with a couple short sleeves. Would lycra sleeves be too warm? And what about pit stains?

And then of course, there are those stripes! Am I to just cut the dress on grain, without playing up diagonal lines that match up perfectly? The fabric already has a lot going on, but it’s hard to imagine playing it safe with horizontal stripes.

birthday dress sketches

Here are some inspiration dresses, in no particular order:

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f6e698a301ebbf1412468610b3622b7c Chloe_Cover.3391ac9027101ef2e994c61f97ef332543

And then there’s always the possibility of just making a dope top. Too many possibilities!

Are there any new patterns that you’re excited about? What garment do you imagine when you see that gold spandex? What should the centerpiece of my 28-year-old wardrobe be?! Suggestions welcome.





So this happened. I was doing this:

photo 1

And watching this:

marge knitting

It was like looking into a cartoon mirror.

So secretly, if I ever wanted to be famous, my own standard to really ‘making it’ would be to guest star on the Simpsons. I think ideally it would be as myself, so that I could achieve a form of immortality, but I can also see a lot of appeal in voicing a new character. Who am I kidding? I gotta play me.

I’ve been watching The Simpsons for about 20 years now. It’s one of the few things in my life that I don’t feel jaded about. That and knitting, pure, pure knitting. I’m kinda determined to never sell knitting, because I did that with sewing and I turned it into a job, which honestly trades some of that creativity and excitement for efficiency and tons of practice. I still really enjoy sewing, but it is so not a hobby anymore, and I want to keep knitting as a pure refuge from the whole ‘needle for hire’ lifestyle.

My husband’s been out of town for a few days, and I work from home, so I always get really chatting and confessional when I do get a chance to talk to someone. And yet I still can’t manage to get my act together for some good blogging! There I go again.

You can watch the episode on Hulu  (Pay Pal, season 25, episode 21).


see y’all on the flipside


Well, it’s that time again. I’m off to Burning Man!Burning Man prep, made by Julianne

I don’t know any better way to say it than this: thank you. I have had so many great encounters with new clients and old clients; I’ve been given so many opportunities to deliver work and service that I am truly proud of; I have pushed myself so hard and so long, and while I’m mostly exhausted at this point I also have next month’s rent paid, and am looking forward to my little break.

If you see me at Burning Man, please say hello! Last year I met several blog readers and online customers on the playa, and it’s one of the most unexpected and rewarding experiences I’ve had at Burning Man.


I spend a lot of time on the Sensatron. My camp is Post Nuclear Family and we’re placed around 4:20 & E.  I’ll also be hosting a workshop at the New Orleans CORE project in the Souk. On Wednesday from 2-4, I’ll be teaching how to make fabric necklaces.

See you on the playa!

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