Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Tales of cloth and thread

Here are the first pair of spring overalls I made for Harlan from brown cotton and some Superbuzzy fabrics. They took a lot longer to make than I estimated and since I'm a beginner seamstress they don't look perfect. When I thought I had completed them and tried them on Harlan they were way too short in the torso so I had to make some additions to the straps at the top. One can't exactly try a pinned muslin practice outfit on a squirmy toddler. Now when I make the next pair I'll elongate the torso so they'll fit a bit better. I do love them though.

Last Saturday we went to the flea market in Chelsea and met up with old friends from Austin Karen and Mike. They live in PA now and buy antiques from auctions to resell full time. They are at the flea market here quite often and they always have to most original items I ever see there. I got some great vintage fabrics and buttons from them:

This one is an old feed sack. It looks like it could Liberty Print, don't you think?

Kitties and hearts:

Two repro fabrics Karen had, and some great bakelite buttons:

They also had some old wooden cheese boxes which I have been scouting ebay for lately. I want to make some dioramas with them. For now they are housing our Homeys and Trailer Trash figurines as well as some Kid Robot toys and an old wind up chicken:

I've also been spending my "free time" over the past week researching cloth diapers as I'm planning to switch over from disposables. During the research process I also discovered that I can get rid of the wipes and keep thin terry Target washcloths in the wipes warmer along with a witch hazel and water solution. For pee pee situations I will just use a spray bottle and dry cloths. Ever since the landlord began letting our garbage pile up in front of our building I have been on a campaign to minimize how much I create. I began saving compost and bringing it to the farmer's market each Saturday. Now with no more diapers there should be considerably less output coming from our apartment. Did I mention that he moved back into the ground floor? He still lets the garbage build up although he puts it out more often than when he was not living here. I've had a couple of run-ins with him since the incident and ignored him, although last week I saw him on the street and just said hello out of instinct. As Joe predicted when the incident occurred, he is acting like nothing happened.

Here's a question for you readers, does living "off the grid" mean no internet, or does it just mean supplying your own water, electric, and fuel etc? To be truley O.T.G. do you have to fully support yourself or can you have a job and pay taxes, have a retirement fund, and invest in the market as long as you supply your own power and water?
Just wondering as I like to fantasize about going O.T.G. but I gots to have my internets and Tivo.


Veronica TM said...

i love the overalls, you did such a great job, jessica! and those fabrics, so beautiful. love the boxes too.
about the diapers, we started with 7th generation and then we switched to regular disposables because we couldn't afford them anymore, i should have done the cloth diapers all along, but now i am thinking of potty training her so i don't know if she will be using diapers for too much longer and the cloth ones are an investment.
i really don't know the details of OTG, but it is very appealing to me, though i also have to have internet access.

Lindellica said...

Did you see the article in the Times about the couple on Fifth Avenue and their two-year old? Eh...

You might want to try G-diapers, I have two of the cloth covers we're not using at the moment, so you could try them and not have to buy the fabric part. They sell the inserts at Whole Foods or online.

Sonya said...

Those overalls are the best - I guess they could be considered the beta version. Love those pockets!

Angelina said...

The overalls are adorable and make me wonder how come I didn't sew clothes for Max while he was little and I could dress him however I wanted?!

No, no muslin pin ups on babies. You'll get them perfect next time and then you'll be whipping these babies out like crazy.

To be off the grid means not depending on anyone else's power (by creating your own), and I think being truly off the grid means not depending on the city for your water and sewer needs. I think you can be off the grid and still be blogging.

Angelina said...

Oh, and what a cute picture of Harlan!

Also, those buttons are amazing. Much jealousy of the friendly kind here at the ranch.

jen said...

what lovely fabric! and you did a fine job on the overalls, the patches are so cute. :)

AnastasiaC said...

i love the overalls - cute playsuit and he sure looks happy!
cute fabrics...the kitty design is adorable!
Im potty traning my youngest although we havnt gotten far yet...

Anonymous said...

i love the overalls, as well as the other sewed items i'm seeing on your blog! sew sew sew while you can still dress harlan as you please.

i think you can be off the grid and still enjoy your tivo/internet, although i think it's challenging (impossible?) to do in nyc because you can't contribute back to the system, such as by solar panels.

oh, and our pediatrician recommends using just plain old paper towels with water.

bitter betty said...

I love the overalls.. And fabrics and buttons have me all starry eyed too

If I went OTG I would definitely have to have solar power for my computer sewing machine and power tools.... and my parents have satellite for their internets and TV.. I would still need internet.

But I am very happy without cable. I guess I only want to get most of the way OTG.

Well water, clean power.. growing my own food, making my own stuff. That is my fantasy.