Community Sing-Along

It’s the last Saturday of Spring Break, I’ve got a dress to finish ASAP, food to make for Easter tomorrow, and potatoes to plant today.  I also need a nap.  I have no time to sing along with Pink Martini in Pioneer Square.  
But guess what I did?  I didn’t work on the dress.  I didn’t get all the food made.  But I did plant potatoes, nap and sing along with Pink Martini in Pioneer Square.
The first 300 people got songbooks.  And very nice songbooks they were, too.  They had words AND piano music.

We had the bonus of having both China Forbes AND Storm Large lead us in song.  Also, the Von Trapps were there (four fresh-faced, college-looking members).  And former Governor Barbara Roberts was up on stage too, singing her heart out.  Members of the Oregon Symphony were there too.  It was a very full stage.

In my haste to leave, I forgot my camera, so these photos are taken with the cell phone.  I was delighted at the earnestness with which this deadlocked-haired youth sang along with the lyrics.  I was simultaneously disturbed because the song we were singing at the time was “I’ve Been Working on the Railroad” which apparently he’d never been exposed to?

In case of rain, local umbrella makers ShedRain gave away free umbrellas.  It was not at all rainy, but at one point everyone put up their umbrella for a photo op.
And we sang!  We sang nearly every song in the songbook.  The songs ranged from classic sing-along songs:  “I’ve Been Working on the Railroad,” “Home on the Range,” “On Top of Old Smoky.”  There were also songs from musicals:  “Edelweiss,” “Summertime,” “A Spoon Full of Sugar.”  And there were great surprises that were incredible sing-alongs:  “The Theme from All in the Family,” “Copacabana,” “The Gambler,” “Nine to Five.” Aside from all that singing we did, we got performances of Pink Martini songs, as well as Sound of Music songs performed by the Von Trapp singers.
At one point, Thomas Lauderdale referred to Edelweiss as one of five songs that everyone knows.  I emailed him, curious to see what he thinks the other four are, but he has not responded.  What five songs do you think everyone knows?

Back is done. New material is bought.

My email update to my friend:

I hit a tragic point in my sewing.  Actually, cutting.   I decided the directions for what to do with the contrast fabric on the front were dumb, essentially they wanted me to fold it over at 5/8″ sew along that line and finish that edge.  But I thought the fabric wasn’t heavy enough and I would have to spend a lot of time ironing everything back into place and I hate to iron.  So I had the grand idea to just double those pattern pieces, fold them over and make a nice finishing stitch along the edge with that perfectly matched thread.  And my idea would have worked too, except I didn’t have enough fabric to double everything, a fact I realized after I had cut out one of each of four pieces, when I needed 2 of each of four pieces. 

So back to Fabric Depot I went yesterday.  And let me tell you, traffic is much worse on Friday at 2:00 than on Saturday at 10:30.  And guess what?  No more of the material in that color.  A nice lady who worked there took my sample and looked all over the place for it, but it was gone, gone, gone.  So I found another piece of material, but it wasn’t the perfect match the last piece had been.  Alas.

I’ve done the whole back of the dress and am quite excited as to how it turned out.  I didn’t work on it today because there was potato planting in the morning and then Pink Martini had a sing-along in Pioneer Square and I couldn’t rightly not go to that, now could I? And then I had to make food for Easter and for the staff meeting.  And I didn’t even get all the food made because I needed 1 cup of coffee for the cupcakes and by the time I realized that, all the coffee shops near me were closed.  So I will get up and make the cupcakes tomorrow.

It’s a good thing I don’t have yoga this next week.  I’m going to need the time to finish my dress.
Here’s the back.  I’ve cleverly pinned it to the muslin so it will hang and make me feel all accomplished.


Here’s the replacement material.  It’s shiner than the other material and not the perfect match the other material was, but it will do.

Postcard from Germany

This is from Astrid and I was thrilled to receive it because it’s the first postcard I’ve gotten with a quote on it. Astrid translates Kafka’s words as “ways arised because someone goes there” and then says, “I hope you understand, I cannot translate it correct.”  I did a bit of googling and found that it’s most often translated in English as “Paths are made by walking.”  Interesting, eh?

Three sentence movie reviews: Paper Heart

This is a quasi-documentary, in that it’s filmed in a documentary style, but you can’t believe anything you see presented as fact. However, that does not make it one whit less delightful as we travel the country with Charlyne Yi hearing people talk about love and watch her own views on love undergo a metamorphosis when one charming gentleman by the name of Michael Cera enters the picture. Overall, this is 88 minutes of delight (possibly propelled by the fact I love Michael Cera, but also due to the general whimsical nature of the movie) and I recommend it heartily.

Cost:  free from library (yet another, “why not?” that turned out well)
Where watched: at home with Kelly, my “I’m on break, big salad and a movie” companion.

More sewing. And my sewing baskets.

Here’s an update I sent my friend at this point:
I’ve made all the adjustments to the pattern based on measurements and ease and what have you.  I’ve cut everything out in the muslin (well, half of it I cut out in an old sheet, because I didn’t have enough muslin) and sewn everything together.  Matt wasn’t around to sew me in, but I tried on what I had and discovered that, holy cats, it wasn’t as if I measured anything at all.  According to measurements I needed a 44/48/46 bust/waist/hips, but the whole torso is very tight, the waist is rather loose (although that might be in comparison to the bodice), and the hips seem a bit loose, though it’s hard to tell with the zipper seam not done.

So I’ve just retraced the bodice in 46, but I think I’ll bump it up to 48.  I need to move a bit more than that 44 was going to give me and the 46 isn’t that much bigger.

The sad tale of the whole matter is that I didn’t print the sleeve pattern when I printed everything else and it’s not available on the site anymore, for unknown reasons.  I did save it on the school computer, which meant going back down there yesterday, only to find my “new” monitor had died.  I replaced it with the one from the stand-up computer and printed out the sleeve pattern.  Did I then go that extra step and SEND MYSELF THE PDF FILE OF THE SLEEVE PATTERN?  No, I did not.  And now, needing to make a new sleeve pattern in a bigger size, can I simply dig the rest of the sleeve pattern out of the recycle bin and tape it all back together?  Well, I can, but it will be a more involved process since I so efficiently emptied my overflowing bins into the big bin.  Oy vey.

I’m glad I did make the muslin (and I’ll make another one in 48 before cutting into that fabric) because the directions are really awful and now that I’ve made the whole thing I have an idea of what they are trying to get across.  Don’t even get me started about the term “plackett” which is used often and refers to: the contrasting color in the bodice, in the skirt and also the waistband.  Those are six different pattern pieces, all of which are numbered.  Why they do not refer to the numbers is beyond me.  I also completely messed up one half of the collar, so I’ve got that out of my system.  And it’s been years since I set in a sleeve!  I prepped both of them, but realized that just putting in one would give me a good enough idea.
So, yeah.  At this point I’m happy I didn’t just start right in on the real fabric.  Here’s the too-tight bodice.


And we’re off again in muslin/old sheet land.
Also today, I cleaned out my sewing baskets.  I have two; one was my mothers, and one my grandmother’s.  This was a fishing tackle box, until my grandmother added the quilted lining for my mom.  It’s my usual sewing/mending basket.
In it I keep basic sewing supplies: pins, needles, basic thread, beeswax, measuring tape, marking items etc.
This sewing basket was one of the few things I asked for when my grandmother died.  It’s the one I drag out when I’m officially sewing something. It has a lot of sewing extras.  Here’s a look all the way to the bottom.  That tin on the right once held lip gloss, but now it holds all my bobbins.
It has a plastic divider that also holds things.
Isn’t it cheery and fun?
Here’s my favorite thing in the box.  My grandmother’s name was Helen.
Okay, muslin take two.
Better fit this time!

The Whipping Man

I received a free ticket to this play (thanks Michael!) and am so glad I got to go.  Though the first act had a leg amputation which caused me to nearly pass out/throw up* this play’s setting and themes (Jewish slave holder at the end of the Civil War, freedom, Passover) were intriguing. The plot twists were handy (That was me who gasped aloud when the big reveal near the end happened) and for a play that dealt with such serious topics, it was frequently funny.  Gavin Gregory, Carter Hudson and Christopher Livingston were all tops in their roles as young slaveholder (Carter Hudson) and freed slaves (Gregory and Livingston).  Also, the set was fabulous, and I wish my camera could do more with low-light settings.

*Really.  I was deep breathing while trying to figure out where, exactly, would be the best place for me to puke.  It took a good 10 minutes into the second act to regain equilibrium.