Obviously this post was originally written and post in the week of the Newtown shootings. Check out the bottom of this post for something I'm joining in on to help the kids at the school get back to 'normality' in January, and you might want to join in too....
Fabric: 0.25 yd Alexander Henry La Paloma Dove Black & White scrap from stash, pair of black linen curtains from stash $0 (£0)
Pattern: McCall’s 6324.
Notions: zip $0.99 (£0.61), thread.
Time to complete: 12 hours.
First worn: 16th December 2012.
Wear again? Absolutely.
Total Cost: $0.99 (£0.61)
The challenge: “Favourite (remake pattern that was fave of the year)”.
Another Sew Weekly challenge and another week that I just don’t want to be sitting here writing this, or smiling at a camera. For the third time my heart is elsewhere with the families and friends of the victims of a mass shooting in America. I found it hard to go on with the Reality Check challenge after the Aurora cinema shootings. I found it impossible to smile or even look at a camera for the yellow challenge when innocent Sikhs were murdered during their worship in Wisconsin. And after Friday……what can words say that come close to having any meaning. And there have actually been 16 mass shootings in the USA this year. It’s beyond words and makes sewing a frock and writing about its making seem a silly nothingness. I know my condition often makes it hard to have a ‘normal’ person’s perspective but knowing that doesn’t stop the sadness.
I took my 4th grader to school this morning. In the playground was an armed policeman. There for the safety of the kids. There for the safety of the teachers and the school staff. I’ve just received an email to all parents in the school district informing us about existing and planned security measures, including armed responses. We don’t see guns in the UK. One of the biggest cultural differences I’ve had to come to terms with is that guns are totally ingrained in American life. Seeing people walking around with them or wearing them in coffee shops and restaurants is so foreign to me. It makes me impossibly sad. The shootings at Dunblane had such an incredible effect on us in the UK. But here it just happens again and again and again and no-one thinks it can be changed (and there are those who are seriously advocating MORE guns….beyond belief).
I’m sorry. I tried to carry on as usual, especially as no-one’s clear or not if this is the last week of Sew Weekly 2012 and I wanted to finish my posts here on a high (I’ve got 2 more dresses to make that I’ll post on my blog fanbloomingtastic (and here if we can) so that I complete a whole year of weekly sews). But I can’t go on as normal today. Everything is too raw. I’m trying to get back to normal as quickly as possible. Who knows how much time we have with each other, so we need to make this brief time special and filled with love. I have almost no memory of Christmas’s as a child so I’ve always been a huge creator of happy memories for my children….I need to get back to ‘normal’ to make sure that 2012 still has these. Sorry. Anyway, here’s some pics of this week’s make.
This is a dress I made from a pattern I’d used twice before and the two dresses I made (the Spiderman dress for the Red, White & Blue challenge and the red & green madras check dress for Mad for Plaid challenge) are the garments that have had the most consistent and regular wear during the year.
I decided to make some ‘winter’ versions. This black and white version is the one I finished before the news of the Newtown shootings was released. I’d never done a version with a print yoke and plain bottom half, so I used some Alexander Henry La Paloma (the bird of peace) scraps I haven’t been able to find a use for before and a pair of black linen curtains from my stash. I’m making this green tartan version too, but I can’t right now….so if you want to see it finished you’ll need to check it out on my blog next year.
And at some point next Spring, I’m making a pinky purple version from all those odd bits of fabric I’ve got in my stash that I never knew what to do with:
If this is the last post on Sew Weekly this year I want to thank you all for an incredible adventure. You’ve all been amazing. You’ve inspired and encouraged me, you supported me when I thought I couldn’t go on. You helped me stretch myself to do things that were way beyond anything I could imagine at the start of 2012. Thank you Mena for giving us this outlet and opportunity to learn and create. It’s been amazing.
If this isn’t the last post and you get to see my two final dresses of the year, a leopard print one for Christmas and a red & black flocked satin evening dress for New Year’s Eve….then ignore I just said that because I’ll be saying it again, hopefully more eloquently when I’m not so sad in which ever one is the final post.
Be excellent to each other. Love one another. No matter what.
We actually did two photo shoots for this dress.....I fancied doing some outside with some Christmas lights seeing as in Arizona I can still walk about without a coat on in the evenings.....what am I talking about, I'm from the North, I used to go to the disco in Newcastle without a coat on. Hard as nails me. But as you can see they didn't quite work....we should have taken the tripod to cope with wobble on the longer exposure. But this gives you a feel for the dress without a top under it:
To see all of my 51 (actually it's 52 now, nearly caught up telling you about them) Sew Weekly Challenge creations (dresses, tops, skirts, shrugs, hats, a coat and a crown) since the start of 2012 click here.
Next challenge I need to tell you about week 52, a leopard print 60s shift dress ready for Christmas celebrations.
OK, SOMETHING WE CAN DO FOR THE KIDS OF NEWTOWN:
The National PTA is collecting hundreds of thousands of snowflakes and will completely decorate Sandy Hook Elementary, transforming it into a Winter Wonderland before the kids come back to school in January. Make some and send them off to help create a winter wonderland for the sweet children who have been through a lot.
They'd like you to make some, remembering that no two snowflakes are alike and to send them by January 12, 2013 (I suspect the sooner the better though) to
I'm thinking about donating my snowflakes hanging beside me in my office, I can always make more, and just remember how magical Gimbels looks when Buddy the Elf has been decorating it overnight in Elf.....isn't this a lovely way to show our support for the people and children of Newtown?