Sewing Bloggers United for a Meet-up!

On Saturday, I was fortunate enough to attend my very first sewing blogger’s meet-up in Toronto, ON in Canada.  I made Cake Pops for the first time, for everybody.  They were a lot of fun to make, and I’m going to include the recipe at the end of the post.Cake Pops

Gillian from Crafting a Rainbow (who also made everybody colour coordinating name-tags!) and Adrienne from All Style and All Substance instigated (organized) this fantastic event for us, there were 18 of us in total, and I’ve linked to everybody in this post!  We all met up in the Fashion District, at Queen Street West and Spadina Avenue and carried on to visit fabric stores in the area.Sewists at the Blogging MeetupLeft to Right:  Andi from How Unseamly; Kristian from Victory Patterns; Dana from Wardrobe Dysfunction; Adrienne from All Style and All Substance; Sarah from Pattern Vault; Anastasia, sewist.Sewists on Queen StreetFrom Left to Right:  Vicki from Another Sewing Scientist; Sandra, JustSew; Chloe from Button and Needle;  Reethi from Weekend Crafting; Tracey, sewist; Debbie from Sew Debbie; Jagoda, FitNottoFit (in front).

Me, walkng alongside Queen W mural

Yours truly, walking alongside a mural on Queen St. W.

After this, we all met up at Tequila Bookworm, to eat, drink, exchange sewing stashes and be merry.  And we accomplished all of the above, with gusto!All of us around the tableFour people at the front, from left, Gillian from Crafting a Rainbow; Kay from Gently Down the Seam; Cathy from Seraphinalina and Kristin from K-Line.

Many of the attendees wore items that they had sewn themselves and it was such a thrill to see it all in person.

Everybody's Sewing Stashes on the Table

Everybody’s sewing stashes laid out on the table, waiting for the big exchange

Sewing Stuff I Brought

Sewing Stuff I Brought

Cake Pops

And Cake Pops

Vultures Sifting Through Stashes

Vultures Sifting Through Sewing Stashes.  Me, on the right, double-fisted with sewing loot! :)

Stuff I Got

Fabulous Stuff I Got

Thank you to everybody for coming out and making the day so successful.  I had a blast and enjoyed meeting and chatting with all of you!

Recipe for Cake Pops

Ingredients: (makes 20 pops)

  • Cake mix (either make your own cake or use your favourite mix)
  • 1 box instant pudding and pie filling mix
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup milk / almond milk / soy milk
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup Icing (make your own or use your favourite ready-to-use icing)
  • 1 packet flavoring for icing (I used strawberry)
  • 3 bags Candy Melts (cocoa, pink and white)
  • Cake decorating sprinkles (in a variety of coordinating colours)
  • 20 lollipop sticks

Instructions:

  1. In large bowl, combine cake mix, pudding mix, eggs, milk or milk substitute and oil.  Beat with mixer for 2 minutes and pour into a prepared 9 X 13 inch pan.
  2. Bake 30 – 35 minutes at 350 degrees F.
  3. Divide cake in half and use only half for cake pops.  Crumble cooled cake into crumbs with no large pieces remaining.
  4. Add flavour packet to icing, and add 1/2 cup icing slowly to crumbs, combining until mixture forms like a dough.  Form into tablespoon size balls, rolling in your hands until smooth.
  5. Refrigerate cake balls for 2 hours.
  6. IMG_3396Melt Candy Melts in separate small bowls until smooth.  Dip one end of lollipop sticks into candy melts and then insert into the cake balls.
  7. Wait until lollipop stick in cake pops have firmed, then dip cake pops into melted Candy Melts, varying the colours and layers.
  8. While Candy Melt mixture is still wet on cake pops, dip into cake decorating sprinkles.  Wait for Candy Melt mixture to dry on cake pops.
  9. Eat.Cake Pop

Sewing with Cats: Kitty Has Graciously Accepted An Award!

Most of you know, by now, the infamous Kitty, who is my sidekick, my Super Sewing Hero and my friend.  (The term, Super Sewing Hero was coined by blogger, Chris Lucas, and Kitty likes it!!).  He has graciously accepted an award: the much coveted Sewing With Cats Blog Award! Sewing With Cats Blog AwardThis award has generously been bestowed upon him from the exuberant science and cat enthusiast, Cindy, from Cation Designs.  She is a woman after my own heart as I am also a science freak, as education and profession can attest to, and cat lover, as Kitty can attest to.  Kitty had promised Cation Designs that he would dress for the occasion, to which she replied “If Kitty dresses up, it will be the best thing ever!!” (here, in the comments section).

So, without further ado, here is Kitty accepting his well deserved (his words) award. Kitty Accepting His Award Wardrobe Change 3What, you wanted him to wear a tuxedo?!  How ridiculous would that be?? A cat in a tuxedo!  And, he also took the time out for a wardrobe change during the awards ceremony.  Because that’s just the kind of Kitty he is.  Kitty Accepting His AwardGood Kitty.

One of the questions from Cation Designs that I’m to answer when accepting this award is as follows:Kitty Accepting His Award 2

  • Question (Cation Designs):  Are you ever afraid to post too many pictures of your helpful feline assistant on your blog, for fear of being labeled a crazy cat lady?  
  • Answer (Gjeometry):  Apparently not. 
Kittty Accepting His Award Wardrobe Change 2

“Help Me”

I obtained Kitty from an animal shelter, as I did all my pets (I had another cat and a dog, both my firsts and both of whom have now passed on. –WE MISS YOU!–).  And, when the time is right, I look forward to having another homeless pet adopt me, hopefully in the near future.  But, for now, It’s Kitty and I, teamed up to wreak havoc on fabric everywhere.

Thank you, Cation Designs, for such an honour.

Kitty Ironing

Kitty Ironing

Kitty Cutting Fabric

Kitty Cutting Fabric

Kitty Sewing

Kitty Sewing

Kitty Resting Up After All That Hard Work

Kitty Resting Up After All That Hard Work

And now that his momma knows how to sew, he can look forward to wardrobe highlights such as this:  Matching Mom and Kitty Outfits by the lovely and talented Cherry Pix.  After viewing her gorgeous renfrew tops, scroll down to the bottom of the post.  You’ll thank me.  :)

You Spilled Blueberries and Batwings All Over my Knit Tops!

Still continuing on with the fun of sewing knits.  I made the T-shirt pattern from the Craftsy Sewing With Knits course.  It actually started out as stark white jersey fabric.  Whiter than white can be white. White fabricAnd I thought, “it’s too white”.  So, I decided to dye it.  In the interest of environmental and health safety, I wanted to use something natural.  I have dyed things with tea before, and they came out a lovely sepia tone.  But wanted this one to be more colourful.  Have you ever been to somebody’s house and everything is completely white?  I mean, everything, furniture, pillows, curtains, rugs.  Not only does being there make one REALLY nervous, but, what are the two things you pray they don’t serve you?  Blueberry juice and red wine!!  So, those were the winners for the dyeing process.dyeing with blueberry and wine  I sewed up the T-Shirt first, then let it soak for about half an hour in the offending-to-white liquids.  Et, voila!!  It came out a subtle purple-grey tone.  I made the XXS, as I did with the fleece hoodie, but this one was not as roomy.  I would make the XS next time.  Knit Tee For the next knit top, I drafted my own pattern with instructions from the book, Downtown DIY Sewing by Alice Chadwick.  It included a body, cuffs, waistband and interfaced neck facing.Pattern DraftingI used gridded pattern paper.  I could only find paper with the grid in inches and my rulers are in metric, but not a big problem.  The grid makes it so much easier to measure and draft, and I highly recommend it!  And this was the end result:Dolman  Sleeve Knit TopIt is a printed jersey and was my first time using a directional pattern, stripes and a geometric floral band, and it lined up out quite well.  The pattern is a dolman / batwing sleeve style, remember those?  Dolman  Sleeve Knit Top 3I was having a twitter conversation with Charlotte from Seamripped and she was working on her own project and asked if the batwing look will come back in style.  I said “yes!” and have since found a lot of sites with batwing / dolman sleeve fashions that look quite stylish.  I like this shirt as it is a dressed up version of casual.  A bit like a fancier, more interesting sweatshirt, with all the comfort maintained.  Dolman  Sleeve Knit Top 2Update:  I have since worn this top and the neck facing would periodically turn toward the outside.  So, I followed some advice to stitch along the shoulder seams, stitching in the ditch, and through the neck facing.  I did this using a triple stretch stitch and it is really helping to hold the neck facing inside the top.