August 15, 2017

knitting || tongue tied sweater

Apologies about the lighting--it was gloomy the week I took these!
I've completed yet another test knit for the lovely Amy of Poison Grrls! This time it was the Tongue Tied blouse--a super fitted, short sleeve sweater with a unique mesh yoke.

How do I feel about this finished sweater? Let me just say I wish I could have a whole closet full of these instantly! The finished sweater is such a bombshell style when on--it makes me think of Lana Turner or Ava Gardner and the "sweater girl" look of the 1940s. I love this so much. It's a fingering weight sweater, but it went together very quickly! I think in part because it's designed to be worn with negative ease (I knit the 32" bust to fit my 34"/35" measurement) and it's a fairly simple style that it cropped to the waist.

Ava Gardner.
Lana Turner, 1940s.
I used a stash yarn--Knit Picks Hawthorne Speckle in "Jupiter"--for this test knit. I would not normally choose a speckled yarn for a garment, but I surprisingly adore it knit up! Unfortunately, the speckling means the garter stitch triangles on the shoulder and front neckline (it's there, trust me, you just can't see it!) get lost. Boo. But this sweater goes really well with many of my skirts in my closet. Yay!

I think as soon as I get my other sweater off the needles, I will cast on another Tongue Tied! I've already set aside two skeins from my stash for this project--a lovely blue-green tonal. Can't wait to knit it up!

August 8, 2017

life || France vacation

Driving through one of the little villages near Bayeux.
Mondaye Abbey.
Despite living only a couple hours from the German/French border, we honestly have not spent a ton of time in France. I've been to Paris a couple times, and we've done a few day trips (mostly when we have guests) to Strasbourg near the border. But we decided there were some sites we really wanted to see before we leave Europe, and our summer vacation ended up being a week-long road trip through France!

Verdun sur-Muese

We started in Verdun, one of the World War One battlefields. It had been high on our list of historical spots to stop at, and we spent two nights there. It was primarily a front line fought by the French and Germans, site of several destroyed villages, and intensely sad to realize the loss of life. The memorial museum and two forts we visited were very well done, and there were stretches of trenches that had been preserved. We had read it was a good place to stop and get out of the car to hike a bit through the wooded areas to get a better sense of the breadth of this conflict, and it was: there is a lot of places tucked away in the woods that aren't visible driving down the road. The saddest moment was visiting the Douamont Ossuary; a vast cemetery and monument to the fallen.

August 3, 2017

sewing || shorts parade

Stitched up two pairs of shorts from the Wearing History Smooth Sailing pattern recently. Both of these were great nap time projects; I cut them out in the evening and did about 90% of construction during two separate nap times! I've needed new shorts desperately--most of my me-made pairs from the pre-kids days are fading (boo), and finding shorts that I think are flattering in the stores is nearly impossible. 

The first are admittedly my favorite! Green poly crepe I bought in London nearly two years ago. I met up with Charlotte of Tuppence Ha'Penny and we went fabric shopping on Goldhawk Road. This was one of my last purchases that afternoon. I still have more than enough for a pair of full-length slacks, which is going to happen this autumn!

The blue are cotton twill, and wrinkle a bit. I'm also not sure how I feel about the stiffer pleats in the twill--I don't think these are as flattering to my upper thighs as the crepe. I'll still wear them though.

One thing I noticed after I made these is I really need to do a sway back or high hip adjustment to anything that is fitted through my lower back. I got away with not having to make this adjustment 90% of the time in my 20s, but two kids later (and a new decade) and I think in order to have nicely fit clothes, I need to add this to my wheelhouse of adjustments!