i laugh at life



...and yet I don't at the same time. I think it's funny and I know it's not. I believe there's a plan and that things don't just happen, but then life never ceases to surprise me. One minute I am so very happy because life is good and maybe I noticed a pretty flower on the side of the road or I learned how to knit a new stitch. Maybe it's because I met a random friend at the coffee shop just when I thought meeting kindred spirits never happened anymore. Maybe it's because I got a pretty substantial order that I thought I wouldn't get, or that unexpected smile I received or just seeing people being happy. There are so many times in life when you think all is lost, when you're depressed and all you want to do is dwell on the bad. But isn't it funny how those horrible times pass and all of a sudden you find joy in life again? When just those simple pleasures in life are sometimes the greatest of all? Yes, I am amazed at life. I still laugh at it. Because when you look at the big picture; when you think about what you stress over and worry about, it's all very funny.

hair + knitting


I've decided for the second time that I really do dislike most hairstylists. Got that antsy feeling again and had to go get a haircut. I got it trimmed and what I really wanted was some bangs, but not super short bangs. Just enough to have a change without compromising the length of my hair, which I am still trying to grow out. argggg....What I got wasn't really much different from what I originally had and I felt like I had to pull teeth in order for her to understand what I wanted. I really don't know of any good hairstylists around here, so I decided to go to Supercuts, or was it Cost Cutters? Really doesn't make a difference. Both places suck. Every hairstylist I've gone to, whether they charge $30 or $40 for a haircut or only $14, they never really grasp what it is I want. So I end up having to do my own fixes when I get home. She did trim it up and that's what I wanted, but I asked for longish bangs and she didn't really give me much at all. I still came out with hair that looks just plain blah. But it's good I got someone to help out, because it's so hard to cut my back hair myself. I ended up cutting my bangs a bit to frame my face and it also gives me that look I'm going for...whatever that is. I think this should last me hopefully at least six months before I need something else done to it. Seems like a long time, but it's short compared to the years I used to go without getting haircuts. And besides, I sorta like that jagged "messy" look. Think natural. :) It's the look NO hairstylist I've found can understand. All they want to do is blow dry your hair out straight as a board and then add blonde highlights. There is NO way I'm getting my hair highlighted. I think it looks tacky and cheap. So I've got at least six months to find a place who really understands hair. Too bad I don't live in Canada or else I'd check out Pome. Anyone out there know of a good hairstylist like this in Cedar Rapids, Iowa City or even the Des Moines area?

Knitted Mariposa 2

In other news I'm getting excited about knitting again. I tend to take a break when it gets warm out, but now that the weather is *slightly* changing, I'm really getting into it. I've got a ton of projects planned and purchased a bunch of wool yarn. Right now I'm mostly planning to make some mid 19th century garments, but I'm also looking forward to starting on a few modern things. I just recently got that Twinkle's Big City Knits book, which looks fabulous. Can't wait to get started on a few of those sweaters. I really like this sweater I found on flickr which is from the Twinkle book. And I especially love it in the grey color she chose to make it in. The tuxedo jacket would be cool to make as well, only I can't decide which one to make first. I LOVE these knitted stockings I found on a random blog. I believe the pattern is from Rowan magazine #40 and get this, they're called "Anna Socks." So yeah...totally me! Only by the time I actually made them it would be summer again.

it's morning already


It's three in the morning, no... half past three in the morning, and I cannot sleep. I was just looking at pictures of breakfasts...you know those cool pictures on flickr that people will post on their blogs for not any real reason at all. But I love looking at those kinds of pictures. They inspire me. Well, they inspire me to eat breakfast (and somehow they really inspire me to be more organized...), even though I'm not really a breakfast eating type of person, most of the time. I tend to just have my coffee and maybe a bowl of cereal or a toasted English muffin, but generally if I have a cup of coffee in the morning, that's all I need. Although every now and then I get this urge to make breakfast. And I was sorely tempted to start making a batch of waffles or possibly some coffee cake or really anything, but by the time I had that finished it would be too late, or rather too early. And well, baking at 3:30 in the morning just doesn't work very well for me. Besides, after typing this I'm starting to get sleepy again. I don't normally stay up this late, so I'm not sure why I'm hanging 'round.

Lately I've been enjoying the warm summer month of August. I don't get outside too often, which is a shame, because I really do enjoy the outdoors. Last week I did a bit of lake swimming, which partly consisted of me jumping into a lake at night with my friend while avoiding a certain annoyance one always finds at parties. And after we jumped in, I was hooked. I mean that I love lake swimming now so much better than swimming in a pool. Come to think of it, it's been years and years since I've gone swimming in an actual pool. The last time I was swimming was during a canoe trip several years ago. Still, I tend to hate swimming due to the fact that one has to wear a bathing suit in order to be immersed in water. I haven't worn a suit in years and I honestly don't know if the one I have even fits. I'm sure it does, but I don't really want to see what I look like in it. I'm probably way too vain, but I hate what I look like in those things. So I've decided if I want to continue this trend of lake swimming, I had better make myself a new suit. The real reason for all this is that I want to use the 1930s bathing suit pattern I purchased on eBay a few years ago. Yeah, I'm sly like that. But honestly, I really have no idea when I'll find the time. I'm hoping I can squeeze in enough time before summer is totally over and the warm weather turns crisp. I suppose my tank top and shorts will have to suffice until I buy myself some time. And now I better get my little self to bed. And thus ends a terribly pointless entry.

Good. morning.

sewing = individuality = cool


Yesterday I finished making a pair of Built-By-Wendy jeans and I must say I am very pleased with the way they turned out. I don't believe I've ever actually made myself a pair of jeans (and I've been sewing since I was like three years old), but after completing these, I have a feeling I'm going to be making many more. The first time you use a new pattern, it always takes a little longer to figure it out. Not to mention I'm always wanting to change something, but it's hard to do that when you have to figure out which pattern pieces are for what and why they have you do certain steps. I tend to skip steps and not follow directions very well, which makes me irritated when I work on patterns because in order to figure out why they have you do certain things, you have to read through the directions in detail. I don't like to have to do that. I know, I'm lazy. But I've found with some patterns, they make you do a lot of extra steps that are totally unnecessary. I'm the type of person who gets a lot more out of the illustrations than I do the actual instructions. So if the illustrations are sucky, then that means I actually have to READ the instructions. Horrors! Okay, enough of this blabbing on about pattern instructions...

Not only did I make my first pair of pants, I made my first Built-By-Wendy pattern that everyone and their sister Sally are raving about. Seriously, it's like the biggest thing these days since sliced bread. For once, you can find hip patterns at the fabric store. With cool pattern covers to boot. AND she's written a book, Sew U. (I mentioned in an earlier post that I purchased this book for my friend, but I plan to go through it first myself. hehehe.) Finally, patterns that will get the younger crowd interested in sewing. Because it's FUN to make yourself clothing that will not only FIT, but clothing you have practically designed. You know what that encourages? Individuality. That's something a lot of people lack these days. But all of a sudden, things like sewing and knitting are becoming popular and now you don't have to be 80 years old to carry a knitting bag with you everywhere or be seen at the coffee shop hemming a skirt. Of course it all depends on where you live. I almost always get stares when I do my sewing or knitting in a public place, but that's becoming more rare these days. For the most part, I usually meet a lot of interesting people who are curious about what I'm making.

Here's a picture of the pants I made. I cut them off a little shorter than the pattern (view B). I was originally going for the bermuda type shorts, but I've found I don't look all that hot in those so instead I made them hit past the knee instead of above it. I don't even wear shorts anymore because my legs are so pasty white. (It's another one of those individual things that I've grown to live with and I don't feel so bad anymore about it. Because that's ME.)

:: built-by-wendy cut-offs ::
first pair of home-made jeans

:: built-by-wendy #3850 ::
built-by-wendy pattern #3850