Sunday, February 27, 2011

glimpses of my weekend

My son and his new bike.

A new project. Capri from Rowan 43. Rowan calmer in a shade that goes by the pretty name of "blush".

Cardigan crush. Current fave is this one in the yummiest caramel colour.

Out for lunch. My daughter's new shoes. She's wearing one of the skirts I sewed for her last year.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

green bag and misc

I had wanted to crochet this bag in green yarn ever since I first saw it in the book. Butterfly cotton does not come in many colours, but I'm so glad that they had this shade of green. I like using Butterfly yarn for making bags because it is sturdy and has a slight sheen.

Besides the colour, I was also drawn to the shell stitch of the pattern. It is a compact stitch that would make a dense fabric, suitable for a bag. The only snag is that the stitch pattern seems to spiral to the right as it goes upwards. You can see the sprial in the picture below. But it's ok, I'm not too disturbed about it :) By the way, in my haste to line the bag, I forgot to block it.

Initially I was going to line the bag with a green fabric, but then I realised that would be too matchy-matchy. So I used fabric leftover from this top instead. I made 2 pockets, one on each side for keeping odds and ends. I'm not sure of the best way of attaching the lining to the bag. As usual, when in doubt, I hand-sewed it with tiny stitches. I hope it will be sturdy enough.

Since I was taking photos, I took one of what I was wearing. I have been trying not to dress matchy-matchy. Matchy-matchy used to be my mantra. Now I'm trying to dress out of my box and think things like beige with turquoise. The good thing about this is that my wardrobe is suddenly way bigger than before, because my options are multiplied and it is kind of fun to experiment with different ways of wearing the same old things.

I also took a close up of the lace cutout on the beige cardigan that I was wearing. Isn't it pretty? You can see from the label that it's from a shop called Stradivarius that opened here in Ion Orchard. Stradivarius is owned by Inditex (a Spanish fashion group) and they've brought in some of my new favourite shops like Zara, Bershka, Pull and Bear and Massimo Dutti.

And before I go, I have to tell you about my latest snack indulgence: Werther's chocolate-covered soft caramel.

By the way, I just realised that my blog has 2 followers. Big "hi" to Kikii and A Frog Named Purl! So I decided to "activate" the followers feature. Feel free to follow my blog! I also realised I have been stumbled upon. I'm not sure what it means but I hope it is good :) And, I love it that I've been hearted!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

I want

I want to sew myself a spring dress after I saw this cute dress. The design is the dress shown in the photo below. I'm using this Japanese print cotton fabric.

I want to finish my crochet bag. I managed to buy another skein of Butterfly cotton to finish the bag. Luckily for me it's the same dyelot, even though I bought my earlier skein something like 2 years ago. Gosh I haven't bought yarn for so long that I have forgotten how expensive it can be. The Butterfly cotton cost me S$18! Need to sew in all the ends, attach the linng and handles.

I want to finish my Noro cardi. The pieces are all seamed up and the sleeve edging is done already. What's left is to crochet 228 sc all around the cardi to set up the first row for the edging.

I'm also craving raisin scones with strawberry jam. I'm looking forward to my next girls' day out with my daughter. We want to try a new cafe and explore a shopping mall that is new to us.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

bag lining repair

My daughter 's cute new bag had a green lining that was so flimsy that it was falling apart before she even used it. In the photo below, you can see how it has already come apart at the zipper seam. I found some leftover black satin to replace the lining.

Before: The old lining below had a zippered pocket. The construction seemed quite simple, so I decided to replicate it.

After: I re-used the the zipper to make the pocket in the new bag lining below. This is the first zippered pocket I have sewn :) It isn't perfectly done but I am happy enough with it.

When I removed the lining, the bag zipper had come off as well. I wasn't sure how to put it back together. So I decided to sew the lining to the bag first. Then re-attach the zipper. I took a closer look at one of my zipper bags and noticed that the raw edge of the zipper is tucked and sewn in. I followed that little trick.

I'm quite pleased with how it back came together. Sewing the zippers wasn't as traumatic as I had imagined and I didn't have to use the zipper foot!

It feels good to be able to fix things like this :)

Tuesday, February 08, 2011

Gong Xi Fa Cai

Gong Xi Fa Cai - wishing you all a properous year! Today is the 6th day of the Chinese New Year. On new year's eve, we had the traditional reunion dinner with my husband's side of the family at our house. Here's a photo of the food at the kid's table. You can catch a glimpse of my youngest niece in the photo below, waiting for the steamboat to cook.

Steamboat is really just a big pot of soup to which we added meat, seafood mushrooms, tofu and vegetables. The food is cooked at the table itself, so it's easy.

On the first day of the new year, we had dinner with my side of the family at my mum's house. We started with "yusheng" (below) which is an auspicious dish eaten only during new year. It is a salad of grated carrots, radish and cucumber topped with raw fish, crispy bits, spices and sauces. We used raw salmon, although I prefer abalone. Before eating, everyone will gather round to toss the ingredients with our chopsticks and utter auspicious wishes for the year. Wishes of good health, good progress in school, promotion at work etc, sort of like a toast galore. And the higher you toss the yusheng, the better the wishes :) The kids love tossing the yusheng and making a huge mess.

My mum will always cook our (my) favourite dishes. Nonya curry chicken with lots of liver and gizzard. She cooks it mildly hot so that the kids can enjoy it too.

A vegetarian dish consisting of different types of mushrooms (button mushrooms, straw mushrooms and abalone mushrooms) and napa cabbage cooked in fermented beancurd. Do you see the strands of black threads that look like hair? It's a dried vegetable called "fa cai" and signifies prosperity. It is an auspicious delicacy eaten at new year.

This last dish is a favourite with the kids. It is fried chicken that has been marinated in kunyit powder, also known as tumeric powder. It is fried with lots of sliced garlic and curry leaves. This dish has to be handled with care during cooking as the tumeric will stain everything yellow, from your fingers, to the plastic utensils and kitchen counter top. Next year I will wear plastic gloves :) to cook this dish.

I also started a bit of knitting during the 4 days of CNY holiday. Can you guess what I'm knitting? haha I'm knitting washcloths!

Love the moss stitch.