infryq: Kitchen scene at dawn, post-processed to appear as if painted (Default)
2017-01-03 03:37 pm

[sticky entry] Sticky: Pinned Post

Everything prior to 2010 has been dumped into private. If you're looking for a particular entry from back then, drop me an email.
infryq: Kitchen scene at dawn, post-processed to appear as if painted (Default)
2017-10-22 10:35 am

It’s most of my wardrobe

Yesterday I finished pattern adjustments for the front bodice and started
on the back. We took a field trip to the new Duluth store over in Robinson;
P rounded out his tshirt collection, and I got another long sleeved
undershirt, a flannel shirt, a heavy cardigan, and a light sweatshirt.
Really lovely store and employees, we’ll definitely go again.

I did the laundry, and tried out another few embroidery stitches.
infryq: Kitchen scene at dawn, post-processed to appear as if painted (Default)
2017-10-21 10:16 am


Yesterday I decided to use a different jumper pattern and modify the
neckline, ironed the pattern pieces and traced the bodice. I’m also moving
the side dart to the shoulder; not sure yet if I want to split to princess
seams for the front. That’s what my existing jumper does.

I started another test embroidery swatch to try out the remaining stitches
I found on I can’t seem to keep the stitches taut
on the four-legged knot but the danish knot is quite attractive after some
infryq: Kitchen scene at dawn, post-processed to appear as if painted (Default)
2017-10-20 10:49 am

My fave vintage jumper pattern turns out to be a wrap dress and I am :(

Yesterday I dug out a bunch of back issues of Cook’s Illustrated to trace
the art on the back covers for embroidery patterns. There are some I’m
going to have to scale up digitally first (herbs!) but so far I have a crab
(dungeness of course), parsnips, and chioggia beets.

I finished the leaves and stems on my roses, finished Taltos (my favorite)
and started Athyra.

[food] Cheese is still out. Hopefully temporary.
infryq: Kitchen scene at dawn, post-processed to appear as if painted (Default)
2017-10-19 10:48 am

Still a few beans in the garden

Yesterday I started putting some leaves and stems on the bullion roses, and
am pleased with the results. I am apparently enjoying our new project at
work, because I worked straight through my usual bus time and had to catch
the next one. P and I met up with a friend who’s in town for the
twice-yearly department conference her job does (she usually works remotely
from Canada). Life seems to be rough all over, and I hope she’ll be okay.

[food] Had a wretched time with lunch and nearly bailed to deal with the
nausea and panic attacks at home, but managed to power through. I was
totally fine by 2. The magnitude of these swings is frustrating.
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2017-10-18 10:25 am

Another bullion rose, this time black and red held together

Yesterday I finished hemming the curtains, and they look great! I had a
good therapy appointment where we decided the alumni women’s fb group
really is amazing, and I should maybe try mindful eating. It seems to have
gone okay at dinner but I worry I’ll end up losing weight again. We’ll see.
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2017-10-17 10:47 am

Our favorite farm saw a frost last night; hope they

Yesterday I blew the morning on the #metoo meme. Writing was cathartic, and
reading was too, but rapidly became overwhelming. There’s a lot of sorrow
and anger out there. Don’t be “sorry to hear that”, be sorry to have
contributed, and renew your dedication to holding your friends accountable
when they spout bullshit. They sure as hell aren’t listening to us.

I missed the bus and walked through Schenley to work for the first time in
two years. Yay bridge! I wasn’t properly dressed for the chill wind, but it
turned out alright. Got a lot done, worked right through a meeting I’d
forgot had changed times, stayed late to finish writing an update on a
github issue, missed the bus home. Took a 61 and walked from the stairs,
was again cold.

[food] Overate at dinner pretty severely, and spent the rest of the evening
slowly feeling more and more miserable and breathing very carefully. It’s
been a while since I felt that poorly. Went to sleep propped upright, woke
several times in the night but wasn’t feeling any better until maybe 3am
when I was finally able to lie down properly. We’ll see how today goes.
infryq: Kitchen scene at dawn, post-processed to appear as if painted (Default)
2017-10-16 11:16 am

I should hem the curtains before putting them up in the bathroom

Yesterday we went to the farmers market and got apples, beans, zucchini,
some winter squash, parsnips, parsley, a cucumber, and arugula. I washed
the towels and the sheets with just enough time to line-dry the sheets
before the rain arrived. I steamed and froze the beans (tiny tender ones,
they didn’t say what kind). I finished embroidering the artichoke and
started practicing boullion stitch with some roses. It is not as hard as I
expected! I’ve either gotten better at thread handling or the techniques I
picked up on YouTube for how to anchor the needle really make a difference.
Probably both.
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2017-10-15 10:54 am

P went back out for the closing remarks, but I just listened to the echoes through the window

Yesterday I sewed all the elastic and finished both pairs of underwear. I
did the laundry and hung it on the line. I went through the Moosewood
cookbook and traced a few of her drawings to use as embroidery patterns.

It was bridge party day, and we had C use the house as a home base for his
part of the scavenger hunt. He played a sort of autumn fairy king, complete
with horns, mask, a wreath of leaves, the works. It was pretty excellent.

I did a wander through with P and we met up with L and D, chatted some, got
ice cream, and ogled all the stuff on the bridge. There were unusual
bicycles, a skittles game, a calligrapher, adult-sized bigwheels, a tarot
reader, maypoles, somewhat slap-dash mini golf, a climbing wall, and a
pretty hilarious game of ring toss played with hula hoops and the enormous
obelisk that blocks vehicle access to Pocussett. It was all very grand and
lovely, but also sunny and crowded, so once D had fled and L was taken up
by the scav hunt I went in (with brief stops to chat with a surprising
number of dance folks I haven’t seen in years) and hermited the rest of the

I lyed the washcloths and the bathroom sink, traced an artichoke onto the
next available spot on my embroidery practice cloth, and got through most
of the outlines. I plan to add thread shading and play with holding
multiple colors of thread together to stitch with.
infryq: Kitchen scene at dawn, post-processed to appear as if painted (Default)
2017-10-14 10:18 am

Laundry today, bridge tomorrow

Yesterday I assembly-lined the two pairs of underwear I had cut out,
through to pinning on the waist elastic.

I met with R, a masters student I was worried about, but it sounds like
he’s finding his feet and will be alright.

I finished the last of the Hungarian chain, and now I need something new to
do. I’m thinking of designing a set of towels. I’ve also been going through
an embroidery blog I found and pinning all the stitches I want to try, so
maybe another sampler is in order. The corners on the hilbert curves were a
pain though. Something else.
infryq: Kitchen scene at dawn, post-processed to appear as if painted (Default)
2017-10-13 10:22 am

Everyone is always angry about misbehaving faculty

Yesterday P had a very early morning to get to a 9am job interview (which
went well!), and I had a moderately early morning to get to a 10am staff
meeting, so we were both pretty pooped by the end of the day.

I worked about a quarter of the last hilbert square in a variation on heavy
chain stitch called Hungarian chain stitch, which is easiest to work if you
start the next stitch before pulling the previous one to, then finish by
pulling your threads taut by hand. The two-step procedure for every stitch
takes ages but the results are lovely.
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2017-10-12 10:41 am

Dreamt of copy editing, of all things

Yesterday I finished a pair of underwear, and made notes on stitch settings
so I don’t have to fuss and doubt and wonder again next time.

I finished the Palestrina block of embroidery, so there’s just one left. I
think I’m going to do Hungarian braided chain stitch.
infryq: Kitchen scene at dawn, post-processed to appear as if painted (Default)
2017-10-11 10:48 am

Too much petty and arbitrary gives me a headache

Yesterday I prototyped a few methods for sewing foldover elastic on Bela,
found some I liked, and successfully sewed on a waistband in the round!
Hooray! The leg elastic will be trickier, but I’m getting better at
controlling it all the time.

P drove me in and we picked up bread on the way.

I had a somewhat tricky nausea day but c’est la vie.

I finished the coral stitch hilbert curve and started another in Palestrina
stitch, which is another knot-based outline stitch.

I finished the third and apparently final book in the Howl’s Moving Castle
series by Diana Wynne Jones. The Audible reader is great, the protagonists
are fascinating, and the puzzles in the plot are lovely. Downsides are the
antagonists are woefully flat and there are occasional jarringly
antifeminist moments. I still wish there were more books in the series. I
started her other series, Cristomanci, and the first book is just wretched.
I do not want to hang out with any of these characters. I will probably
return it and find something else. For now, I’ve switched to catching up on
infryq: Kitchen scene at dawn, post-processed to appear as if painted (Default)
2017-10-10 10:20 am

Picked a carrot! And some beans

Yesterday I pulled swapped sewing machines and pulled out the underwear
pieces I’d stashed from August. Bela does much better work with stretch
thread in the bobbin, though she doesn’t let you change the needle position
on stretch stitches afaict and I did get the seam allowance caught in the
feed dogs once or twice so it’s not a perfect solution. Still can’t seem to
make it work to sew narrow elastic on in the round. The two-step method
where you topstitch with zigzag does work on her though so nice plus there.

I divided my embroidery square in quarters before remembering what I was
doing, so I’ve planned a sort of hybrid hilbert curve thing. Finding the
more interesting embroidery stitches online is tricky; everyone wants to
list the same 15 basic ones. I may make a trip to the library to see if
they have anything more in-depth.
infryq: Kitchen scene at dawn, post-processed to appear as if painted (Default)
2017-10-09 10:35 am

And coral stitch

Yesterday we went to the farmers market and got apples, beans, okra,
zucchini, a tomato, cucumber, and parsley. I did poorly with the unrefined
coconut oil that morning so we stopped at the grocery store for the refined
stuff, and also picked up more seltzer, yogurt, soup was on sale, and a
packet of tea biscuits for my floormate at work who’s been nostalgic for
them but hasn’t figured out where to look for them yet (in the kosher
section, or sometimes the international aisle).

It threatened rain all day so P did the laundry. I froze half the beans,
and he prepped a small bucket of prickly pears from the teaching garden.

I cut out another pair of leggings, and I think I can get at least one more
full pair and maybe some bike shorts out of the remnants.

I finished the filled-stripes embroidery sampler with a sort of fishtail
braid thing and some waves. I’ve started another that’s a perfect square,
but I haven’t decided whether to make it a filled grid or a space-filling
curve so I can play with line stitches. There are some neat chain stitch
variations I want to try.
infryq: Kitchen scene at dawn, post-processed to appear as if painted (Default)
2017-10-08 10:43 am

Whatever I sew next can’t be black

Yesterday we went to Costco and stocked up on paper products and
detergents. They were sadly out of pecans so I got macadamia nuts instead.

We stopped by the Braddock clay studio to pick up some more fired work. I
met one of the many other Katies plus a sleek and fluffy but very nervous
dog named Raymond. I stared at the wall of glazes but there were no good
options for eggplants.

I finished the leggings after sewing the yoke on backwards again and having
to unpick it. The right way round, they are excellent! I haven’t decided
yet whether to make another pair. Three sets will get me through the worst
of my period but maybe another would be good for just because. I could do
another cactus one.

I filled two stripes on my embroidery project, one with snugly packed
daisies and another with chain stitch.

I’ve put together a cart on Cleaners Supply with thread and threw in some
water soluble pens for actually tracing embroidery patterns instead of just
winging it. I also put a larger cutting mat, some more blades, and
scissors in there so it’s got a bit expensive and I decided to sleep on it.
It’s all stuff I’ve been annoyed by not having though, plus it’s a new
month so technically my craft budget will support it. I will probably throw
in some more thread for free shipping and pull the trigger.
infryq: Kitchen scene at dawn, post-processed to appear as if painted (Default)
2017-10-07 10:16 am

Brain gremlins are getting feisty

Yesterday I unpicked the leggings yoke I’d sewn up wrong and redid it
correctly. This time I’ve sewn a simple tube instead of hamhotting it,
which will make it easier to fully encase the waist seam.

Unbelievably productive day at work. I kept finishing tasks and looking at
the clock going “well that didn’t take long”. I’m slowly reloading all my
JavaScript knowledge from deep storage. Writing UIs is nice because
everything you do is a visible frobbable artifact.

I finished up my second satin stitch sample and started work on a new
patch. I’ve done up a square and I think it’s going to be stripes of
space-filling stitches.
infryq: Kitchen scene at dawn, post-processed to appear as if painted (Default)
2017-10-06 10:24 am

I dreamed we kept our laundry machines in a kiln room

Yesterday I designed a foldover waistband with a pocket, cut it out, and
promptly sewed the pieces together upside down and backwards.

After dinner I worked on a couple variations of satin stitch, which is
going to take some practice.

The new curtains for the nest arrived, and they are even lovelier than I
expected, with some painterly watercolor details that didn’t show up online.

P put together my new sewing chair, and so far I’ve only nearly fallen off
once (expecting it to have a knee rest that isn’t there).

Food wise: I was dodgy with cheese for a moment but it seems to be back. I
also skipped the legumes yesterday, which was probably wise although it did
make for disappointingly watery meals. Okra can only do so much. I may make
another batch of dal this morning and see how it goes.
infryq: Kitchen scene at dawn, post-processed to appear as if painted (Default)
2017-10-04 10:38 am


Yesterday I ordered a new sewing chair. It’s a wheeled stool, so it will
slide under the table when I need to be standing for cutting etc. It was
Overstock, so I also threw in some curtains for the nest.

I finished the round of French knots over feather stitch in my embroidery
project, and added a round of stem stitch.

The news from Catalonia, Puerto Rico, and Las Vegas is all pretty awful. I
don’t normally talk about that kind of thing here, but I’ve been dropping
things, and easily frustrated, and confused at being amorphously angry
until I remember it’s not actually that amorphous at all.
infryq: Kitchen scene at dawn, post-processed to appear as if painted (Default)
2017-10-03 10:18 am

Dreamed about making wine in my grandparents basement, and misidentified elder flowers as violets

Yesterday I played with stretch stitches, and determined that while Bela
has more options, until I can order a second spool pin for the thread
cartridge so I can try a twin needle on her, I’ll be using the old
mechanical machine for knits, at least for seam assembly. I still have to
try her out on attaching elastic so that might be better (tbh it would be
surprising if it were worse).

My period came, and I promptly dropped my menstrual cup on the floor. Then
it bounced under the radiator. So that was a pretty inauspicious start to
the day.

I had some good meetings at work. Our new research project involves a lot
of design brainstorming and I love it.

I came home exhausted and spent an hour on embroidery before dinner. This
round is feather stitch dotted with French knot flowers, which I saw on a
YouTube video the other day. Embroidery YouTube is full of really great
videos in Tamil with (oddly?) English stitch names.

Some nausea with dinner, though that’s pretty typical for bleeding day 1.
infryq: Kitchen scene at dawn, post-processed to appear as if painted (Default)
2017-10-02 10:33 am

Watered the garden, picked a carrot and a pepper

Yesterday I slept in! It was nice. We went to the market and got apples,
romano beans, red okra, zucchini, red peppers, chard, parsley, winter
squash, more false-hots, and raisin buns. C was there, so we got to chat a
bunch, and P arranged to go over after putting the vegetables away to
assist with the NEW SHED she planned to put up. Very exciting.

While P was out I deep-cleaned the crisper drawers in the fridge, down to
bleach because grosssss.

I washed, chopped, steamed, and froze the beans. I haven’t measured them
yet but I expect it’s four quarts or more. I may not get enough in before
the end of the season at this rate, but it will be more than last year, and
that’s good enough.

Did the laundry and the dish towels, worked on some embroidery, finished
reading Seraphina and started the sequel. They’re lovely books, a little
romantic but sufficiently irreverent and nerdy and sly to make up for it.