Saturday, December 8, 2012

blouson jacket

I sewed a blouson jacket using a synthetic hairy fabric and Kyanite pattern from Tamanegi-kobo.

It was at the end of my fourth lesson of high-heel walking (yes, there is such a class) that this young and beautiful teacher handed me a pile of paper. Then she said "I collected those pictures from fashion magazines and made a scrap notebook for you. I believe these styles would suit you very much."

It happened to me because she had been asked to make some fashion suggestions to other student in the class before and she made these scrap notebooks as inspirational materials not only for the student, but also two other students. (There are only three students and we became good friends to each other). To confess, it was a slightly odd experience for me because I felt as if I was told to give up my current style for the better one. Even so, I honestly appreciated her kindness very much. I knew she did it for helping us. She wasn't too pushy in any ways, and I knew I was not going to take it too seriously either.

That night, knowing those clothes were different from my taste, I hit on an idea. I mean, in the bed I thought; 
"yes, it is too difficult to imagine myself in those clothes in the fashion inspiration notebook she made, because they're so different from the ones I'd choose in the first place... yeah... people see things so differently, right... interesting... mmm. ... wait, is it possible for me to take it as a challenge? Isn't it fun to choose items from the notebook and make them suit me, at least, better? Wouldn't be interesting to translate? Okay. Then I'd choose the biker jacket and see what happens... zzzz"

So I chose the biker jacket pattern Kyanite. I traveled to my favorite fabric shop and got this fake fur jersey in teddy bear-brown, because I thought the furry texture and its frivolousness disguise the stylishness of the jacket and that would suit me better. Matching rib jersey was also ordered quickly. Sewing was done at the speed of light. I wanted to attend the next class in this blouson jacket to show them the consequences I got!

Though I sadly missed our fifth lesson because my careless husband broke his left arm just before the class and I had to deal with the things that his family had to do, I still have another lesson(the last one) in a week. I can tell her what she did is very inspirational to me there. I got a new lovely jacket which I normally wouldn't choose, and I got a new haircut chosen from her inspirational notebook too.

I guess my hair will grow quickly and I will have to have my usual bob hairstyle quite soon anyway. (My hair automatically grows to achieve the bob hairstyle and stay forever like that like Lego dolls.)  Meanwhile, I enjoy my new jacket and the short hair as an unexpected bonus of my life.

Hope you are having exciting days too!


pattern: Kyanite pattern (PDF) from Tamanegi-kobo
fabric: fake fur, polyester jersey, middle weight, very smooth, light brown, warm
140cm wide x 1.5m long

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Tweed short jacket

I sewed a jacket.

The jacket is pretty casual and is like a heavier cardigan. I used an wool tweed, which was a gift from Chigu. When she mentioned that she was happily ready to give away the fabric, that she no longer wished to use, to someone who would really like to use it, I was coincidentally looking for an white tweed for this project. Though I was pretending to be calm as a cucumber typing my keyboard, I know my writing asking her to give me was screaming "me-me-me-me, here, please!" in the way of least modestly.

Anyhow, she kindly sent me the fabric. The jacket was finished quite quickly. Chigu, THANK YOU VERY MUCH, I feel just like I owe you hundreds meters of fabrics!

I used a jacket pattern with dolman sleeves from Annee-Patterns. It has a boxy silhouette, which I thought cute in the coarse tweed fabrics. There are elastic bands installed at hem and sleeve ends, which makes the jacket look casual too.

Today we took a walk in the woods and I took an advantage for photo shooting of the jacket. The red and yellow leaves on the trees were magnificent. I hope you're having a beautiful weather too.


pattern: dolman sleeve jacket (hard copy pattern) from Annee-Patterns
fabric: wool/acrylic tweed, middle weight, a bit coarse, off-white, warm, fluffy
1.5m wide x 1.8m long
white beige cupra lining.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Sewing for others, meeting with friends


Though I am an old quiet lonely micro pipet user in the deserted laboratory room, I occasionally try to contact with other human beings. Actually I think I love other human beings more than I understand I do. Because I am shallow but I don't know what to do when I show my love to those whom I love, I tend to give them something I'd like. My plan is that they will like my "gift" and eventually they will like me as well. It's a completely one-sided primitive game, as you say!

So, recently,
I sewed a cardigan for my husband. I forced him to put it on and then I dragged him out for shooting pictures. Because I'd love it if it happens to me.

He seemed slightly and shyly happy when we were out for shooting those pictures. He's a man of slightest signs, and his gesture said he was pleased with it at least. I was pleased too! I wish the warmth of my love will reach to his heart, before the weather gets too cold.

pattern: men's cardigan from Annee-patterns (PDF), provided as a special give-away pattern for customers in the past
fabric: probably wool/acrylic, jersey, rough, warm, soft, thick. Brown and ecru, wintry color
about 150cm wide x 1.6m long
18mm buttons

Then I asked a friend of mine, Novita, to meet me for lunch.

I love delicious foods. I love chatting with Novita. So, my plan was that it would be nice if I could "give" her a chance to have fun chatting with her friend (me!) over some delicious food. Selfish and one-sided plan, as always. Anyway, she was very kind to come up and we met at Harajyuku in Tokyo. We had great sandwiches, visited a gallery for a small exhibition for handmade rings (the semi-private exhibition by the jewellery artist was really interesting and also inspiring. there are so many talented people out there!), and enjoyed unstoppable conversations for catching us up. She was pleasant as ever and time flew so fast. It was a good day. I hope it was same through her eyes, sincerely.

I know that I've been sewing quite a lot of easy garments these days. It was because I felt like wearing casual clothes. However, thanks to Novita's beautiful and well tailored coat and dress which were even better in 3D world, I now want to try something nice and elaborate. She gave me a ray of inspiration on that day.

And I went to my bed last night thinking I will never know how I can "give" anything to my beloved people. It seemed so difficult. They always give me very precious things in my heart instead of taking anything away from me whatever I try to give.

Thank you for being there, friends.
Let's sew!


Saturday, October 13, 2012

fringed bag

I've been hoping to make this bag for about a year, and finally it was done! It's just another Hatoto bag, but with fringes all over. I used gray-ish silver ECSAINE (aka ultrasuede, alcantara, or artificial suede) which I had bought in Nippori for relatively cheap on the last visit.

I do love my Hatoto bags.

Because the fabric doesn't fray, it was very easy to make strips of fringes. I cut the long sheets in the needed length and widths, and then just sliced them evenly like fringes from one end to another with leaving one lengthwise edge uncut. Fringes were sewn on the body parts before assembling, except thet top row.

Apart from the fringes, the bag is basically same as my other Hatoto bags. The printed cotton canvas inner bag has a big pocket for my keys as always. Actually, there is not much to tell (as always),

except my green ruler.

I got this about 2 months ago and I've been so willing to talk about it to you. This is a "Bias Tape Cutting Ruler" from Clover. (Sorry for the language in the link but I didn't want to put the link to the particular shop other than the manufacturer. I know Clover USA sells same product, but the site contains only one picture of the ruler itself without showing how to use it by diagrams.) I think it is such an invention. It makes cutting tapes so easy! I know it doesn't look charming to your eyes, but I'm proud that I was courageous enough to purchase this pompless-looking plastic. You don't have to buy it, but do believe me, it's that useful.

It has a closed slit in the middle and fabrics can be cut by using the slit and a rotary cutter. It makes cutting strips so very easy! Because the both sides of the line to cut are held by the ruler pretty well, it is even more effective when the fabric is delicate, thin, slippery, or escaping. I found it useful for making fringes also, it was so carefree to cut fringes with leaving one side uncut when this closed slit was used.

I love this tool as much as my Slimflex Expanding Sewing Gauge. I hope you can guess how much I love it from my words.

I'd be happy if any of you are interested in it.
If you have something similar to this gadget in your countries, please leave a comment so that others can appreciate your kindness for the useful info. Thank you!


Pattern: Hatoto bag (PDF pattern can be downloaded here.)
Handles were attached differently from the original.
Fabric: Ecsaine ultrasuede, silver gray,
about 110cm wide x 1.5m long
Cotton canvas for inner bag

Fall is everywhere. We went out for yellow leaves in the woods.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

2012 Autumn skirt


I bought an unique fabric and made a simple skirt in the last weekend. The fabric looked exactly like a fisherman's black net with colorful wool yarns weirdly tangled. Can you see from the picture? Despite of sounding awful in my explanations, it was, in fact, beautiful. It's like a piece of artwork without any theme.

I'm happy to know that this unconventional fabric makes a pretty and wearable skirt almost unexpectedly. It seems there is no conventional problem with the skirt including durability. I'm happy! I know you understand how the fabric is elaborated and different from other plain wintry fabrics because you sew and saw my pics, but I guess no one around me noticed I was wearing a skirt in fishery equipment. It may have smelled in the air though! The skirt looks merely lovely but in fact it is actually funny when watched closely. I like that!

Have you tried something adventurous or playful in your projects these days?

see? no problema!

Wishing you a great day.


Pattern: "9Cavarie" from Annee-patterns
Lengthened by 8cm
My first 9Cavarie can be seen here.
Fabric: woven fabric, embroidered with colored thick yarns on see-through net textured delicate probably acrylic black fabric. Partially felted in a purposeful manner on the wrong side.

Pattern: Pris from Tamanegi-kobo
Chose bigger size for loose fitting.
Fabric: Plain cotton jersey, lavender-gray, stretches modestly, smooth like a peach skin

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Scout Woven Tee

Just a quick note!
I sewed Grainline Studio's Scout Woven Tee pattern with a very delicate silk fabric. This was an experimental sewing, to see how it looks on me when sewed with a flow-y light fabric. I think I like it very much! I'm usually not good at wearing blouses without darts, but I see great potential in this pattern now. I should have done the experiment earlier, I have to say.

By the way, you can be amused by the pocket, which you see on the right front of my tee. I saw the red sample in Grainline blog had a tiny pocket, and I thought it was lovely. I just regret that I wasn't sane enough to put it on the correct place when I was sewing it. I was struggling with the soft fabric and lost my mind. Of course it should have been put on the left. Pocket on the right, this is exactly
 The Offensively Glorious Sign of Handmade.


Have a very nice day!


Sunday, September 9, 2012

Denim pants

I made a pair of cropped pants.

The pattern is 09-2012-110A, from the September issue of Burdastyle magazine. (I bought it from BurdaStyle site as a PDF download pattern, because I love chopping patterns to bits and pieces but never like tracing.) The pattern is for something called "leather pants", but I used it with a heavy denim that was heavy as much as the ones for retailed authentic mens jeans. It contained 2% of PU, but didn't seem stretching more than any non-stretching material at all.

Since the pattern warned me to use the fabrics with a fair stretch, I was worried about the sizing before started, but it was actually OK. I even had to pinch an inch around the thigh to make the pants fit. I think it is a bit difficult to choose the right size for the individual stretch fabrics(leathers) for the pattern, but it doesn't stop me loving this pattern! If you are one of the people who wondered if the sample picture was kinda trying to hide something questionable by making the model keep jumping, I do tell you that they're lovely on a human who is committing other humane activity too. They have a distinctive shape, but not too much. I think they particularly look pretty with tunics/tops with big silhouette.

Today, my husband took me out for hunting a view of Mt Fuji. It was a lovely morning, but I completely forgot to jump for the pictures. It was too bad!


pattern: BurdaStyle 09-2012-110A "Leather pants"
Sewn as instructions suggested except the execution of waistline. Attached a facing instead of applying a peter­sham ribbon on the waistline.
fabric: cotton/PU denim without a noticeable stretch, deep indigo color, raw denim
thick and stiff.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Nearly salvaged

Today let's begin with visualizing that she was frowning and sitting alone on her bed at the end of summer. She sighed and looked at the cardigan that she made a half year ago. It was made from lovely Missoni fabric. You can assume that she could use it lots of times in the last summer, but how many times in fact? The answer was no. No, it's incorrect, the answer was, less than lots of times. She wore it probably 2 times this year, if you really had to count how many times it was. She looked sad because she was aware that she wouldn't any longer love the slightly itchy cardigan for good but it was too difficult to ditch the garment because of her love for the fabric.

After a while, she seemed starting to think about refashioning. Then her face was loosened and now she looked slightly happier. Still, it didn't seem very easy to refashion with those small fabric pieces from such a small cardigan. Oh? Suddenly her face began shining and she was off to her sewing corner.

And after enthusiastic googling, bits of shopping, and some sewing, here you see two handmade camera bags in the recycled fabric. One of them is a test piece and the other is the improved one that is for actual use. Thanks for the complete rehearsal, she got a sturdy and well functioning camera bag, which may not be as good as the manufacturer's ones but is enough good for her camera. She spent so many hours in the local DIY store to find the best urethane sheets and other materials for the project, and things got more interesting day by day. She almost bought one from TAMRAC for disassembling and checking inside of the quality product to make her project perfect, but somehow she could avoid spending more money for mere destruction.

 I assume that she wouldn't dislike too much about the character of this cardigan as an actual defect, if it were a manufacturer's garment. It was just slightly itchy, she confessed to me. However, you have to know that some hobby sewists are short-tempered like this on own handmade. It was a disastrous failure for her to make the favorite fabric into a itchy cardigan for the bare shoulders. She regretted it. She has learnt a lesson too.

 Said that, let's look at the bright sides of this story, allowing her to live in the future. She got a couple of pretty wearings, a lovely camera bag, and some good memories from this experience. Maybe it's not that bad, after all.

Have a really happy day!


fabrics: white heavy dupioni silk for home furnishing, recycled Missoni knit, white nylon fabric, and flower pattern nylon fabric for interior

other materials: urethane sheet/mat, polyester quilt padding, bottom plate for bag, nylon strap, zippers, metal rings, clasps etc.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

twisted top

Hello, dear!

Let's start with the picture below today. This is one of the pictures which I asked my husband to take for the purpose of recording my outfit, outdoor, in a beautiful garden, some days ago. You know what. I think I am so tiny in the picture...
(The reason why the picture itself is tiny here is my intention, not my husband's, by the way.)
I'm guessing almost none of us can see my smile in it.

Yes, he loves scenery and plant pictures but is not keen on portraits, as you probably suspect. sigh.


I shall stop grieving at my tininess in the pictures now. Instead, I tell you that I sewed this strange top in an autumnal color, to celebrate my survival from the summer.
This is basically same as the one I made a year ago (its blog post is here), and this also is a copy of my Yoji Yamamoto's twisted woolen pullover. I used a linen lace knit fabric this time. I'm very happy with my new top.

I had to trim away the vast area of the picture to get it, of course.
At workplace, I got a few compliments on it from my colleagues. I think it was probably because the top was too twisted for them to keep silent about the swirl. They couldn't miss its weirdness. Because this Yoji's design is truly and positively urban style, I think that people felt some stylishness even in my copy version, too.

It's fun to wear very noticeable garments, now and then, isn't it.

Happy sewing to you all!!
Much love,

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

faking, refashioning, summer break costume, and blah blah blah.

I have probably mentioned here that I rarely buy retailed clothes for me. I only supply socks, tights, and some kinds of underwear from the stores but that is all. If I feel like new clothes, I plan to make them. If I don't long for anything new for my closet, I'd stay sitting like the humongous rock of a deserted mountain. My sewing is based on my real life. But at the same time, expectedly, when I seek something for fun, I play using my skill(=sewing) too!

 refashioned, pattern from pumila paper patterns, "lady's basic T-shirt"
 cotton stretch twill, pattern from Tamanegi-kobo, "Evan"
 heavily modified, shortened much.

 I like Jodhpur-style pants very much and I sewed a new pair recently. In case you wonder, I tell you that I don't do horse riding, nor any healthy sporty kind of activities on the earth at all, because I'm an indoor nerd. But I love Jodhpurs and think they're really cool, fashionwise. I remember that Balenciaga's coolest Jodhpurs in fall 2007 stole my heart and ever since I couldn't stop wanting my own wearable pairs of that kind. Since then, I periodically sew another new pair. You can see two of them here(this pair is almost identical to the new one to your eyes, I know!) and here too. All my versions are genuine fake and somehow look funny because they're plain 3-tuck pants with narrowed lower half without clever calculation, though, I love them so much. I guess I'm rather enjoying them including their imperfections. I mean, those imperfect pairs suit me in a good way. I like to be influenced by the trend in fashion, but I also like to pretend that I'm not a typical fashion victim (which is a lie) too. I think that sewing helps me to introduce fashionable elements into my outfit in a good and subtle way, a lot, because my technical issues naturally lead to the point of happy medium. I really hope you know what I mean!

By the way, in the picture above, I'm wearing a T-shirt that I refashioned using my DD's old Zara top. She wore it often in the last autumn, but she said it was no longer loved at all at the end of the season. Although the top looked pretty tired, I refashioned it into T-shirt in my size, as the sequin decorated gigantic butterfly seemed intact and pretty. I ripped all seams except the neckline carefully and assembled it to a basic cute T-shirt. I prefer the result very much! yeah... home sewing is powerful, isn't it.
before refashioning
Now let's return to the main subject(if there is any), my husband and I had a short summer break and visited Karuizawa which is one of the most famous posh resorts in Japan while our DD was away for attending a summer school in Boston. We visited there to see a good friend of mine and her husband. We stayed with them and had a happy time! Of course, before going there, I wanted to prepare some new outfit for making the trip even more exciting. I dyed a white linen gauze in very pale blue and sewed it to make a peplum blouse for the special occasion. I paired the blouse with my thai style white pants, and tried to dress like a tourist-ish tourist as much as possible with all my might to entertain my companions. My husband was amused pretty much by my outfit and made fun of me saying that I looked like a Jedi knight, and it was more than OK by me. Who can be safer than being accompanied with a Jedi knight? He needed me to travel with! I know he likes me in that way too.

Sewing is a wonderful ingredient of my life!

 line gauze, pattern from Tamanegi-kobo, "Zirconia"
 omitted front opening, applied side fastener, etc.
 polyester/cotton stretch, pattern from Tamanegi-kobo, "Emerald"
 shortened much.

I hope you're having fun too!

May the force be with you,

Sunday, July 29, 2012


I crocheted a hat recently. I did it in need. These days the sun is shining much more than my skin feels comfortably. So I wanted another big sunshade hat in a cool color. Yay for my DIY spirit, I got a personalized weapon to rescue my feeling from the heat flood.

Wishing you a lovely holiday season,

Crochet hat
pattern: ad-lib, no pattern available
yarn: manila hemp yarn, a stiff and paper-like tape which is made of hemp fiber, 300m(6skeins)
a silk ribbon and a flying squirrel charm for the size adjusting decoration
click to enlarge the squirrel

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

the ribbon dress

I sewed a dress with a cotton lace fabric. The pattern was the same as the one for the dress that I sewed in July. I have nothing special to tell you about it, except the ribbon on the waistline.

I bought this silk ribbon about 7 years ago. At La Droguerie. I was starting sewing my clothes at that time. I dropped by the shop because I wanted to buy some beautiful notions to make my handmade clothes looking better. Not knowing that that I'd never achieve it by just using pretty decorations. I mean, I was thinking something already beautiful, like sequins and ribbons, can help my shabby garments stylish. Maybe I was not very conscious about what I thought, but I had a wrong idea about it unfailingly. Beautiful notions sometime can make the garments even more beautiful, but they would never change the style of the garments. Maybe it can be said that they are a bit similar to facial make-up. They improve things nicer when applied efficiently, but they are not the face itself.

Anyway, this novice sewist was enchanted by the ribbon in the shop. It was very pricy but she didn't mind. She felt that miraculously cool "something" with the ribbon was surely promised. However, miraculously cool anything didn't come, simply because it was silly to buy a very expensive ribbon without any plan but greediness. The ribbon has been neglected since then. What a pathetic story. As it was very pricy, she's been too afraid to use it,

until this day.
She is happy with the dress, and the ending of this story as well.


pattern: Annee-patterns "Charleen" dress (PDF)
fabric: white lace cotton fabric, silk ribbon

Monday, July 16, 2012

a workshop

It's getting hot here! I've been (obviously) slowed down since spring has gone, but I managed to finish some perfectly miscellaneous projects for my husband, daughter, sister, me myself, and others (sounds a lot!), without blogging lately.
In the past few weeks, some of you kindly asked me if I was doing OK since it was so quiet here. Thank you for your interests and I'd love to let you know that I'm doing quite well and living just slowly (^_^). I hope you are doing very well too!!

Confessed that I'm living lazily these days, I went out for attending a workshop for sewing wallets on the day before yesterday. I am an indoor kind of person and my favorite way of killing time is to sew alone giggling stupidly by myself, but in fact I really love to socialize with like-minded people as well (who don't?!)

I got a new partner, whose name was Husqvarna
When I heard about the cool workshop, I instantly thought it would be nice if I could be around as a help in the room. As the organizer Miho who is from Tamanegi-kobo is the one of my closest friends and also as the seats in the workshop seemed highly popular, I imagined that I could be just there and get some coffee for them when they needed. However I luckily ended up sitting in front of a sewing machine and listening to the instructor as one of participants after a cancellation. There were 8 more fantastic like-minded people and we spent a very happy day with cutting, sewing, pressing, listening, basting, ripping, yelling, smiling, chatting and asking questions all the time. We all could finish own projects before too late and got home with smiling faces (I know how we got home because we now have twitter, don't we?).

they are not ours. they are all Naomi's samples for examples!

Miho the Tamanegi in white&black, Naomi the brilliant teacher in her bright yellow cardigan

Brilliant, and a devoted patchwork artist/instructor, Naomi was so good at teaching, indeed, and we learned a lot from her at the workshop. The workshop was primarily planned for an opportunity to get together, for the people who usually sew clothes (Miho is the owner of Tamanegi-kobo that is a pattern shop for clothing). Thanks to Miho's wonderful plan, we got together and learned how to sew a wallet, and that was very nice! For the bonus, we also learned so much useful tips that could improve own garment sewing, from wallet sewing in the workshop. Tips learned face to face are inevitably clear and very efficient. I certainly love them and I'd love to take my future chances too!

everything was ready, so cleverly.

In the workshop, the materials were already set for each attendant as a kit and things were going so smoothly. Because I sat on the chair after a cancellation, I had no choice about the fabrics and notions for my wallet but I admit my one is much more than cute and very me. During the course, I sometime yelled(oops) at the sewing machine because it was so different from my Bernina and also very difficult to "drive". Every time I saw my fingers moving in the air to look for the non-existing lever of the presser foot, I laughed at myself and thought that my action in sewing had become so automatic. To find it was fun. Though I yelled at it to make it even funnier. I did do my best in every step and tried to be very serious as always I do in every workshop, but I had some stitches like footsteps of a drunk person. Never mind. It's all due to another closest friend Chigu, who is also the cutest. She was sitting in front of me. She constantly tried to cheer me up to the sky until I burst out laughing. Yes, she is probably the kindest friend too.

All the time, I deadly love her by my side. but... maybe not in front of me.

me in progress
and my new wallet with 2 large pockets plus 8 small ones. of course it's unikko.

I hope I'll have more posts in a short time.
Happy sewing to you all!

Much love,

Of course I went out  for coffee for people who wanted!

Tuesday, June 12, 2012


So I sewed a blouse. The inspiration was this beautiful sleeveless blouse from Anthropologie, and I considered what I could do this time.

Instead of concluding that I should place an order for it, I picked up a summery cotton with a cheerful print, printed out Fluorite dress pattern, made a front opening with narrow plackets, attached a pair of ruffles, and cut it in blouse length. And there you see,


You may say that I stole the design, and I'd reply yes and also continue that it was an interesting project. Yes it was interesting, and what is interesting more to me is that now I start to guess that I am much happier in my blouse than I'd be happy in the Anthropologie's by which I was inspired. (I hope that you know that I don't mean that mine is nicer than the one from Anthropologie in any meaning.) I'm telling you that the blouse grows into almost exactly what I personally wished, while the all processes of my sewing.

Although it was only partly, size, design, fit, material, and style, I could control on it because I made it. And for that reason, it turned out to be a lovely blouse which was no longer a substitution for something, to me. I can not be very sure if it is good to copy designs from retailed clothes, but for me, simply looking at those beautiful clothes in the magazines and such is indispensable process of my clothing. It doesn't need anything to be similar or different. I just love the spur. I hope I'm enough understandable. I know my story is even vaguer today. I apologize for that. Talk to you soon!!


pattern: Fluorite dress pattern from Tamanegi-kobo (PDF pattern)
applied a set of front plackets, with ruffles. made it into a blouse.
fabric: cotton voile, thin, light, crisp, dry. not so sheer.