Archive for January, 2009


Free floral bag

January 20, 2009

I love bags. My mother refers to me as a bag lady although I know my bag collection is nowhere near as full as many people’s. I enjoy making dfferent bags for different purposes and this time I wanted to copy my travel bag which has served me well through the yearsmunster-statue-red-circle





I bought it in Germany in 2004nara-flags-red-circle




 and here it is in Nara, Japan in 2008

I enjoy the size of it as well as the number of pockets both zippered and not zippered. It’s great as a carry on an as a satchel for day trips, but its age is starting to show. I’ve already had to do some basic repairs and I never really liked the orange lining.


I realized that some fabric that was given to me two summers ago would be perfect for a copy of this bag. In the end, I don’t think I will entirely replace the old one with this one but it’s nice to have and I’m already using it a lot.



 I changed the angle of the front pocket zipper and chose the zippers from my mother’s old stash of zippers that she pulled out of old projects. I decided it would be cute if they contrasted rather than blended with the fabric. I embroidered the daisies on myself as well and I lined it with green fabric left over from a quilt I made last year.

I really like how it turned out…and it was free!!


Moving the stash

January 14, 2009

While I have managed to do a bit of sewing over the last 10 days, I’ve mostly spent the time job hunting and organizing my sewing supplies which have been languishing in my parents’ attic for the last few months while my husband and I were in Tokyo on our honeymoon. I have now moved into my new (temporary) sewing room which is actually my childhood bedroom in my parents place. With a big south window, it’s the nicest of the places I’ve sewn in and used to be my mother’s sewing room before I was born.

Once my grandmother went home after Christmas I rummaged through the freezing attic and retrieved my stash which I keep in boxes for easy moving since I haven’t lived in the same place for longer than a year since 2004.


Now, while I’m still young enough that I might actually be able to make a dent in this stash, my family still looks at me with trepidation when I say things like “I just found the most amazing fabric store” so I do need to make an effort and when better to sew than when one is unemployed… also, I need some winter office work clothing.

So, I rummaged through the stash and dug out my ready-and-waiting projects (those involving a pattern/plan of some sort and dedicated fabric) and hung them in the closet (ooh closets) with the pattern and notions in a plastic bag over the hanger which is a variation of a trick I used when I was wardrobe manager/ costume designer for my highschool drama department.organized1

These are the projects I hope to get done before we move on to our next home which will hopefully be in March when we have those ever elusive jobs.

1. A coat for my husband based on one worn in an anime he enjoys. I drafted the pattern last summer by draping fabric on him and altering where necessary so now it’s time to put the real thing together.

2. A black silk suit for interviews and work. I plan to challenge myself with V1053 which will involve doing my first real Full Bust Adjustment. I bought the fabric from Fabricmart while I was in Japan and had it delivered to my parents’ place only to discover that I, personally, had to sign for it. The ladies at the post office were nice and held it for a month for me so I could get home and sign for it.

3. Black dress pants. I bought some black suiting in Tokyo and plan to make V1051

4. The blouses. I find I have a shortage of professional looking blouses in my life so I plan to make B4395 and M5233 out of white cotton and V7906 out of some purple silk I bought in India and have been afraid to touch lest I botch it…now is the time to be brave.

5. Then I have a dress and blouse that I bought at Village des Valeurs in Montreal and want to reconstruct into something that will fit

6. I found a pattern to work with for making tunics out of some salwar kameez fabric I was given so that’s on the list

7. I’ve had fabric to make a sundress for two years now. It is time.


So that’s my sewing plan for the next few weeks. I hope I make some inroads…and find a job as well.

The rest of my stash is still in the boxes, each piece waiting for inspiration to hit me.


A Jet Lagged New Year

January 3, 2009

It seems somehow appropriate to start off a sewing blog called Nomadic Stitches by announcing that I’m still somewhat jet-lagged. My husband and I returned to Canada from Japan last Monday and we’re still rearranging our internal clocks back to Eastern Standard Time.

I’ve been sewing for much of my life – one of my earliest projects was to create clothing for my sock pig modelled after the pigs in the Jillian Jiggs books by Phoebe Gilman. I then designed costumes for school plays in highschool and into university all the while trying to improve my sewing skills and increase the percentage of my home sewn wardrobe.

Over the past few years I’ve been a dedicated lurker in the online costuming and sewing community so I decided that this year I would start contributing to the knowledgebase instead of just benefitting from it.

I hope to get started as soon as my body re-establishes which way is up.

Stay tuned!