recent & future sewing projects

man, my “blogging schedule” has me writing two posts per week & yet, i have still somehow fallen behind. let’s see if i can get my shit together & do a writing blitz & catch up a little. i mean, it’s not like i don’t have anything going on.

in fact, there’s so much going on these days that it’s difficult to carve out some time to write. in any format. i’ve barely written in my journal since the beginning of april. i haven’t worked on my zine since june. not only is ramona older, alert for more of the day, in need of more supervision, & generally more fun & engaging to hang out with, but i also have all these new interests i want to pursue. mainly sewing.

jared & i have a friend who is due to have her second baby in december, & another friend who is due with her first in january. i am planning to make each of them a baby quilt. plus i need to finish a quilt for ramona, i’m making a nice winter quilt for jared & myself, & i have another secret gift quilt in the works. i just LOVE making quilts & i swear, if i could sit & work on quilts for twelve hours a day, i would. but unfortunately, i do still need to sleep & eat, & i do have a baby that needs occasional mothering.

i am also still into making skirts. i made another last week:


this isn’t a great photo of it because it’s hard to see the details. i didn’t know jared was taking the picture. but the print is mix tapes & it features three double-sided ruffles. this was my first time making ruffles. oh my god. it was so much work. i had to hem both sides of the ruffle fabric & then hand-gathered every bit of it–with mixed success. some parts are really ruffly. other parts are pretty flat. but you know. i’m learning. maybe there’s an easier way to do it. i’m definitely getting better/faster at other parts of making the skirt, like hemming & installing invisible zippers & such forth.

i closed my ill-conceived etsy shop though. the skirts i make are just so detailed & labor-intensive, & honestly, they cost more than $50 to make once you factor in labor & everything. if i really wanted a skirt to cover its costs, including fabric, thread, notions, & labor (at, say, $10 an hour), i’d have to charge more like $90. & no one is going to spend $90 on a skirt. even $50 is a lot to ask. & i just want to do other things. so i’m going to keep making skirts for myself, because it’s fun, & maybe i will make the occasional custom skirt for people who ask (& pay me), but i’m not going to just offer.

the other weird thing about this skirt is that i used the exact same pattern as i used for my other skirts (they’re all basic A-lines, but with different details, like pleats or pockets or whatever), but it turned out WAY too big. i had to take it in about eight inches & it’s still too big. i have to pin the waist with a diaper pin to make it fit right. i must have somehow mis-cut the fabric, but the weird thing i that both the skirt & the lining were too big. so maybe i’ve lost weight? (not that i think i seriously lost like ten inches off my waist without noticing. i don’t know what happened.) i think i need to redraft the pattern.

i think next month i’m going to be make a three-tiered skirt out of this cool fabric:


with ruffle hems made out of newspaper print fabric. i’m hoping ruffle hems will be a little easier than ruffles because they’re not double-sided, but i’ll find out the hard way.

& here are the quilt blocks i’ve made for jared’s & my quilt:


i’m excited to see how they look all sewn together. i really busted my hump to make sure all the directional prints were facing the right way. but before i start quilting it, i really think i need a better craft chair. i have to lift my arms to reach the table with my current chair & it kills my shoulders.

Published by Ciara

Ciara Xyerra wrote zines for the better part of two decades. She has a brilliant & adorable preschooler named Ramona & sews as much as she possibly can. She lives in Lawrence, Kansas with her boyfriend. She enjoys catching up on "The New Yorker", meatball subs, keeping it cranky, intersectional post-third wave feminism, dinosaurs, & monsters. If you have nothing nice to say, she recommends that you come sit here by her, so you can say not-nice things together.

2 thoughts on “recent & future sewing projects

    1. i wish the newspaper fabric was purple (my favorite color), but i’m coming around on the blue. there’s also red, but i never wear red.

      didn’t you wear a skirt or a dress when you got married? that’s, like, a huge day, documented forever in photographs. if you wore a skirt/dress then, you can wear a skirt/dress any time you want! although, i can relate. i didn’t really wear skirts/dresses for a long time, less because of self-consciousness than because it seemed “easier” to just wear jeans. mainly because you don’t have to worry so much about chub rub with jeans. i didn’t want to go to all the effort of wearing tights & stuff with skirts. i still like jeans, obviously–who doesn’t? but i also like that a skirt can be a statement item in itself, so all you have to do to complete the outfit is throw on a basic black tee & some shoes & you look kind of polished.

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