Friday, 10 July 2009

How to bend your boning!

Anybody would think I hadn't been doing any sewing around here - but I have I promise! Nearly all my sewing time has been taken up with Miss L's Dress the last few throes of which have had me nearly weeping over my sewing machine. Note to self: NEVER sew with that kind of silk again. It's like sewing fresh bubblegum. Boo hoo. It's the hem that's had me in hysterics. I've conquered the outer, but now have to tackle the lining hem. I've been putting it off but I know I have to face up to it soon.

Another problem was the boning. It's one thing to shove flexible metal bones into a firm structured and strong garment like a corset which is built for boning, but quite another to sew round the curves of bubblegum. Suffice to say, that if only i'd know how to do this before today:

It's a peice of riglene boning, heated and shaped. I had no idea! I know you won't want to see it in situ, but this is a perfect replica of one of my own curves!! All you do is iron the boning (use paper on top to protect the iron) then quickly shape while it's warm. Keep doing this until you get the required shape. Brilliant!

The red sash which goes with the dress has had me develop a nasty case of obsessive compulsive disorder. I'm sure i've got the cleanest hands in the village, and I"m sure there are still dirty marks on it! However, the colour is such a perfect red and it's dupion silk, much easier to sew that bubblegum silk. I'm very pleased with how it's turned out - despite the dirty marks. (Only joking Miss L!!)...

Many things in The Marmalade House have been causing consternation this week.

Poor old Eggy and Peggy have a nasty case of Red Mite. I've renamed them Pick and Peck as that's all they seem to do at the moment. This weekend, it will be on with the protective chemical suits and in with the disenfectant. I've been spraying them liberally (as per the instructions) and they seem to have perked up a bit. If you've never heard of red mite, read Jane's
cautionary talehorror story here.

It seems that those red mites aren't the only bugs in my garden ... Look what i've discovered in the greenhouse!!

Apologies for the wobbly picture - there was a spider web in my hair! eeek! ... These are EGGS. Cabbage Whites have discovered my secret stash of sprouting brassicas. So after further examination I'm going to have to seek out and destroy all of them before they hatch. This happened to me unawares last year. One day I had cabbage seedlings, the next day I had cabbage seedling stalks.

Have you heard the wasps scratching your fence yet? Listen. They are building their nests. They have been scratch scratch scratching my shed. They eat wood you see. Then they regurgitate it, and make it into paper. Nobody has yet discovered how they do it. They have signalled to me that it's time to keep my sewing room doors firmly SHUT. Humph.

I have a new best friend who's been taking up the rest of my time.

What's fearsome and loathsome about Mr Site I hear you say? Nothing! Nothing at all. I've been having lots of fun with him and I'm VERY impressed with the package - if you buy it from Amazon there's £40 off the Pro version which has search engine optimising tools and a super fandabidozee shopping cart system. Really good value for money and i've heard that he's putting lots of smaller web builders right out of business because what Mr Site does for £99, they do for hundreds ... and hundreds. Trouble is, I now have a rather larger shopping list to contemplate. Mr Site told me so. Jimmy might never get to university at this rate, but on the other hand, the risk might pay off and we'll be able not only to send him to college, but to buy him a round-the-world ticket too. Fingers crossed eh?


  1. That dress looks wonderful! What a lot of painstaking work you have been doing.

    I too came across a scratchy wasp this week - such an odd sound I couldn't for the life of me work out where it was coming from at first. Most wasps seem to be rapidly seen off by our cat around here at the moment!

  2. Beautiful the red do great work....I don't think I've had the honor of meeting those wasps...thank goodness....

  3. Fingers crossed for your first million!!! xxx

  4. Oh the slippery hem story brought back memories of ballet costumes with full circle skirts and fabric that would pinch and buckle - I nearly cried too! the dress does look stunning!

    As to bugs - boo to them! I'm finding them less and less likable as we pick tomoatoes with neat circular holes drilled in them!

  5. Well it might have taken you a long time to make and given you alot of hassle but that dress was well worth the effort.

  6. You will look back on that dress as a huge learning curve!!!(pun intended). My, but isn't it the year for bugs and beasties... no red mite with our chickens yet, but blackfly very much here and another horrible tiny white "thing" that is wiping out our hanging baskets.

  7. Looking good! - hope it fits, I have put on 10lb this week! (just kidding) Thank you so much - cant wait to see the finished article!


  8. Where do you find the time to do everything you do!!! I am sure your new venture will be as successful as all your other projects... after all... look how talented you are!

  9. Ooh, rather you than me with the slippery silk! The dress is going to be stunning when it's finished :)

    I'm going to have to show that red spider mite horror story to Moogsdad as he found a few in our girls' pen last week.


  10. That dress is looking gorgeous, Julia... So sorry there's been so many bumps in the road in so many areas... Hope things will be flowing more harmoniously soon. :o) Those wasps are wretched things...I love most all creatures, but insects, snakes and most creepy things bother me. When I was living back home in the USA, my father had a fence with roses on it...some scratching, boring wasps would dig into the fencing wood and nest in it--it was horrible! ICK! :o( Wishing you happier, pest-free days ((HUGS))