Sunday, October 30, 2016

The Fire Tree



The tree in our front yard is putting on quite a show. It is such a brilliant red colour that when I catch a glimpse of it through the small window in the top of our front door it looks like something is on fire.



I fear the leaves aren't going to be around for much longer though. When I look up at the sides of the mountains they aren't quite as colourful as they were a week ago. And when I hiked Teapot Hill this morning so many leaves have fallen on the trail that, mixed with yesterday's rain, it is actually very slippery.




I've invested in some new Bog boots to help keep my feet dry this fall and winter. They won't work for hiking up and down Teapot, but are perfect for walking the dogs.




After making three Archer shirts I decided I needed to do something a bit simpler. Sort of a sewing palate cleanser. Last year when I was just starting to sew I made Dress No. 2 from 100 Acts of Sewing. So the pattern was sitting in my craft closet, already assembled (this is a huge bonus when you are talking about a pattern that is a pdf), and I had some extra flannel that was never going to become an Archer. This is the result of an easy afternoon spent with my sewing machine.

I think it can take a lot of courage to wear clothes that you've made yourself. Especially if, like me, you are a rookie sewist. (Just in case I miss fixing one, I want you to know my computer auto-corrects sewist to sexist every time I type it.) When you first start sewing the things you make are, due to your limited set of skills, fairly basic. It is only just recently that I've embraced wearing my slow fashion, handmade wardrobe.

Here's the thing. The first time I wore this someone told me they didn't like it. I hadn't asked for their opinion. They just blurted it out. I really don't care what is currently in fashion. It's one of the reasons I've started sewing things for myself. I want to wear what I want to wear, not what the fashion industry wants me to wear. It's only an accident that tunics, flannel and plaids happen to be the in thing at the moment, and that is what I'm wearing. I'm a recent convert to tunics, but I've been wearing flannel and plaids for decades. And I will continue to do so long after they fade from their current fashionable status.  So yes, I get that in one sense this tunic looks like a shapeless bag. But it is the softest, warmest, shapeless bag I've ever worn. I walk the dog, not the runways of fashion shows.



I like to think that I'm pretty comfortable in my own skin, but honesty forces me to admit I was more than a little hurt by the comment. The good news is, it isn't anything some good chocolate and possibly a small yarn purchase can't heal. Next time I hope to be able to show you the cardigan I just finished knitting last night. I just need to be able to find the right buttons. Have a great week!

*Edited to say I realized after I had written this post that the Dress No. 2 pattern wasn't actually a pdf. It came as a paper pattern in an envelope. For anyone who has experienced putting together a pdf pattern, you will know what a treat it is to have an actual printed pattern to deal with.

25 comments:

  1. I think the tunic looks great! I know how you feel, though; I've had a few experiences like that and it can hard to get over. I think you did a terrific job with it and you look so happy wearing it. Focus on that if you can. I love 100 Acts of Sewing, by the way. I haven't made anything yet but I plan to make the same tunic for myself eventually. The fire tree is gorgeous! How lovely. And your boots are awesome. Purple is my favorite color. I feel a little covetous of your tree, tunic and boots. :)

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  2. Very nice. You and I have the same taste in clothes - and boots!
    I think the term is seamstress.

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  3. Those Bog boots are just the right amount of fun and colour to keep you smiling as you walk the dog, who BTW is adorable!
    I always am in awe of people who can sew....your plaid top looks great and I love how you have done the pockets!

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  4. Sewist is a new word to me. I looked it up and it fits you perfectly! You live in such a beautiful area especially in autumn.

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  5. If that was a friend who said they didn't like it, you need to ditch them. I just don't know what gets into people! I think you look lovely :) Also the boots rock!!

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  6. You look amazing Kristie!!! Congrats on your sewing skills.

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  7. You should wear whatever makes you feel you happy. For me wearing items I myself made , makes me happy, so I wear them. Love the pictures, and that tree is amazing.

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  8. Like I said on your IG post, I think it's a fabulous top! Very cute and you are obviously very comfortable wearing it. That someone would offer their unsolicited opinion like that is so incredibly rude and reflects badly on them, not on you.

    But of course I can understand why you're hurt. I remember when I was pregnant with my daughter (she is now almost 9) someone came up to me and criticized my skin. My face was just perpetually red with pregnancy and she went on and on about what she thought the problem was and what I should do about it. I was so self-conscious after that. I mean, it was my FACE. Can't exactly hide it.

    I've been too busy to find long enough periods of time to sit down and sew. I miss it. Your plaid tunic is inspiring me to get back to it...maybe that helps balance the negativity you experienced?

    ;)

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  9. A lovely top, beautiful colour and suits you. I was brought up if you have nothing nice to say, say nothing. I am also in love with your cute little dog, what a sweetheart.

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  10. I tried on what I thought was a green tartan dress last week and discovered it was actually a tunic. It would definitely have had a place in my wardrobe but I needed a new dress to wear to an event. I would never dream of criticizing someone's clothes. It's their business what they wear. Your wellies are very cheerful. I bought some good hiking boots yesterday and just need to take them out for a long walk one day.

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  11. Well I think that person is very rude, not to mention has no taste. I think the tunic looks fabulous and I'd have no problem wearing hand made clothes at all if they looked like that. I do wish I could sew myself, it's something I keep saying I'm going to learn to do but I still haven't got round to it.

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  12. I love your Bog Boots, and your tunic. I don't follow the fashions at all, and don't think I ever had. I like comfort and plaid shirts. I'm 73 and wear what suits me. My neighbour across the road had a fire tree and it was beautiful, but now it is naked and it doesn't seem to care about that at all. :) Great post.

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  13. I bought that pattern, but haven't sewn it yet. Looks great and comfy.

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  14. Your tree is beautiful! Love your new boots too!

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  15. Love your boots! Your tunic is fabulous, too. I particularly like the pockets cut on the bias, it is a detail that stands out and makes an already special garment even more special. I like tunics because I can hide my big derriere. Well, not really of course, it is still there, the derriere, but I like to think it less obviously big.... I have no fashion sense at all but don't care. My daughter goes clothes shopping with my friends because I am apparently really hopeless. The fire tree outside my office is starting to drop its glorious 'flames', such a shame. x

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  16. Some people have no sense at all, why would they say something like that! I love your boots, they're so cute. I like your tunic, it does look warm and comfortable. I think it's great that you're sewing your own clothes.
    And what a gorgeous tree you have, the leaves have just started to turn here, I'm hoping for a long Autumn

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  17. I love your tunic! Of course, I've also been wearing flannel and plaid all my life and I wear what is comfortable in ALL situations much to the horror of my mother who thought she raised me better. ;) Thus I too, often get rude comments like you received. And I use to let it hurt me but I'm coming to the realization that those comments are never about me...rather they are about the insecurity of the person saying them. Seems you are handling it quite well with humor -- always the best comeback in my opinion.

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  18. Your tunic is nice and that tree is stunning ♥

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  19. The tunic looks great on you. At the Spinning and weaving guild I go to people regularly wear items that they have spun from raw fleece and then woven or knitted themselves. Not all of these finished products flatter the wearers, but no one would dream of saying so to their faces. One keen spinner was so disappointed when her favourite yarn did not look good as a wearable garment that she spun another batch because she preferred it as skeins of yarn.

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  20. Seriously? That was a mean thing to say because I think it is fabulous. I am a true lover of tunics, they hide my hips and belly. I wear them to work because I am on the floor all the time so they cover me up. Yours is brilliant! I would buy it if I saw it in the store. Wear it with pride!

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  21. With maturity, we wear what we like, we do what we like, we ignore what we don't like..... :) You knit, you sew, you write books! Pretty darned impressive, I say!

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  22. What a wonderful fall tunic! I too like to wear what suits me, and not worry about current fashion. It looks like your tunic could be worn with leggings or tights too. I had not heard of 100 Acts of Sewing, so thank you for the introduction.

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  23. First, your sewing is terrific. I would hardly call you a newbie at this -- those jeans you made! Archers! Those aren't easy projects. Then the person who said this ... we call that verbal diarrhea around here. Some people just can't hold it back. I've learned to respond by saying nothing and giving them a blank look in response. At that point, it usually dawns on them they've been incredibly rude.

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  24. I think your tunic looks wonderful, and you should wear what you want to and feel comfortable in rather than what fashion dictates. My wardrobe has dresses and skirts I rarely wear as they are practicable for dog walking! Your description of looking through the window at the fiery colours reminded me of our previous home which had a similar tree in the front garden. Fergus is enjoying sitting on all those leaves ! Sarah x

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  25. I actually like the plaid and I love the way the pattern is set at a diagonal for the pockets. I admire your sewing abilities, alas, I have none. And whoever rudely offered their opinion without being asked needs a lesson in manners. :o)

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