Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Mortem's Tricks or Treats: Handbag Craze

My old bag has lost its luster... I have been looking fervently for something that brings back some pizzazz... and the only bag that piqued my interest was the ribcage purse from Restyle... I'm sure many of you have seen it, but if not, then have a look for yourself here.

I love things with rib cage imagery, but alas... no money has stopped me dead in my tracks once more.
So once again I took a dive into the creative abyss I call my brain...
I needed black, I needed lace, I needed something "gothy"!

So, my lovely readers, I give you a peek  of what I have been conjuring... it's really more of a peak, but anyway...

Now it's not finished! I still need to add that last strip of venetian lace on the top, and secure what looks like a white blob in that picture, but is really a resin replica bat skull.

It's going to be nestled in between the ribbon flowers.
I didn't have to spend a dime on a single item, since most of it was hand me down materials or scraps from other projects... this project made me realize how unorganized I really am. I really had to dig deep to find it all. It's sorta, kinda lined... the inside material is patterned, but it isn't exactly a lining that hides seams (oops!). Next time it will.

But anyway, this was a trial bag to test out my pattern before the real treat... I'll still post pictures of the finished bag! So don't you worry.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Mortem's Tricks or Treats: Two Legged Wardrobe Evolution

*Updated with new photos*

The people who know me, or at least met me more than once will see that I very rarely wear pants/trousers... or whatever two legged clothing pieces; I own one pair of wide leg yoga pants that can easily be worn outside without committing a serious faux pas. In total I have 5, if you count leggings and pj pants; 2 leggings, and 3 pj pants... but you'll never catch me wearing the other two pj's, unless you see me at the mailbox outside of the house.

Anyway, I digress.

Since my simplicity-sew-along had to be postponed due to the lack of funds to purchase the remaining yardage, I decided I'd dive into another long awaited project. Bloomers! Which would mark a very important point in time for my wardrobe; the day I start wearing something other than skirts. <insert shock and awe>.

I'm a bit rusty when it comes to the flat pattern drafting of pants... in fact, flat pattern drafting in general is so rusty in me the gears take much effort to crank. Thankfully, bloomers are a very forgiving and super basic style... my mistakes won't be so profoundly obvious if I make them.

Drafting fitted capris and then widening.

I was not in the mood at all to lay out my satin sheet to cut it in order to make these bloomers... call it feelin' lazy, or not wanting to deal with two hyper inquisitive cats not letting me work on the floor.

No, those aren't stains; the odd blotches are part of it
I dug through my hand-me-down fabric given to me by my husband's colleague and took out the most... interesting (yeah, let's go with that) printed polyester silk fabric.
The picture is the wrongside, it has a slight sheen on the right side; I am not sure why I went with all of this at all, to be honest... the very fact it was a form of silk should have deterred me from even attempting to work with it, but even so I used the right side for the right side. So I guess this rules out boredom, because while I still breezed through it, using cotton or some other sturdier material would've made this exponentially quicker.

Poe is feeling up to the challenge, too

Regardless of how I initially felt about the material, I was quite surprised how well it worked as a bloomer.
It's still not my taste, but I can see them easily worked into a steampunk or carnival ensemble. I would like to sell them; it's all complete, each seam is serged and finished. Made to sit on top of the hip at 32 inches (approx. 81 cm), but can comfortably expand up to about 38 inches (approx. 97 cm). The length is about 18  inches (approx. 46 cm) including the ruffle, and sits at knee length on someone 5 ft tall. I'm selling them cheaper than I would normally, so get them while they are available!
If any of you are interested in them please email me with inquiries at: mari.mortem@gmail.com

Monday, November 12, 2012

Skeleton Closet: Down to the Bone

A couple nights ago we had our first snowfall for the year.
It left me feeling awful nostalgic about the weather back North; remembering how the chill blew through my layers and how it reminded me that my veins flow with warm blood despite what others have insinuated about my essence.

True, the warmth is often impeded by an icy cluster of sharp peaks and a chilled demure, but where my actions lack comfort, the seemingly unabated beating of my heart cradles the core of me; bright with silent optimisms.

I remind myself often that others should be so lucky to have my life; to have a predictable relationship; to know that debt can be handled with no sacrifices to essentials such as food or shelter-- this simple acknowledgement inevitably coerces me into each day.
And yet, its become exponentially difficult to cope with the painful erosion of my quintessence due largely in part by apathy; like watching the mercurial ooze of lava down a mountainside; beautiful but profoundly destructive.

They say a quick remedy to such melancholia is to doll up, and that's exactly what I did today for no other reason than to abate my stubborn gloom.

What I am wearing:
  • Glow in the dark ribcage t-shirt: Wal-mart
  • Suit jacket: Thrifted
  • Skirt: Thrifted
  • Opaque tights
  • Boots: K-mart
  • New prescription sunglasses
  • Bandana: Walmart
  • Scarf: Self-made

Monday, November 5, 2012

Mortem's Tricks or Treats: Blue Minds Need Busy Hands

In a last ditch effort to rid myself of the post Halloween blues, I decided I better get crafting!

A couple weeks ago I began a sew along with a friend choosing to do a most coveted pattern Simplicity had to offer, but had put off posting pictures until today:

I was going straight for the coat. However, I really wasn't feeling it as much as I wanted... hence the tissue paper; I was going to redraft/ redesign it a little differently; adding a hood and making the sleeves belled.

This is the mock up (in hideous mock fabric)

Craft rooms are always messy; this is fact.
I had procrastinated working on it and had been inspired the little chilly air we're receiving using it to produce some wintery items, and didn't notice that in my arrogance I thought maybe I had enough velvet to complete the coat... but no, in shame I hang my head... I clearly underestimated how much was needed!
As a note, if you're going to make this in stretch velvet there are two things you should consider: the pile (the direction of the velvet) and the bias (the way it stretches-- 4 way it doesn't matter a whole ton). In cases such as these I prefer to cut my pieces on single layer, lest either of those factors go awry-- either way, what this means is that you'll need to buy more fabric than what is initially suggested, and whether you like it or not, there will probably be a lot more scraps then what you're used to. I was off by about 2 yards... not sure how I calculated such a gross error-- maybe my mind was tired at the time...

I've been feeling blue, and Halloween and other such gaiety helped marginally; coupled with a savage streak of insomnia, I've not been at my best... though I try to keep that smile beaming.

The other projects of wintery inspiration were that of knitted goods.
My mother sent me my looms bought months ago and never used, and I figured it was as good a time as any to try.

First up was my french knitter:

It seems like such an easy concept to grab, but the night I was using it I was getting mighty frustrated that I wasn't achieving the result I wanted... so I tore out the project in anger, only to discover a happy accident.
In tearing out the little tube I had unwittingly created a nifty necklace. The stretched loops with single beads made for a delicate web-like adornment for myself. Oh and as a bonus you get to have a looksie at those vintage frames I've been waiting for:


Next I decided to see how quickly and how much of a change from needle to loom knitting would do to a final project.

Left is loom knit: right is needle knit
It is exponentially quicker to knit on a loom than it is needle knit; both of the scarves shown are 6'2". I'd like to point out that I am not very prolific when it comes to knitting, so the needle knit scarf took me about a week to complete; working on it once a day in 2-3 hour increments. The way I loom knit was using the common twisted stockinette, yielding an interesting and bulky criss-cross look; it took me 2 days in the same hourly increments.

However, I would still probably use needles because I much prefer the exercise in the use of both hands working, unless I find a comfortable way to work with one peg side of the looms; which I hear can create the same look of said needle knitted stockinette stitching.

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