WIP Report

Music Box Dress #4

Here she is, my usually willing model wearing her latest new dress, a Music Box Jumper in baby rib corduroy. Note to self: must take more better pictures of projects. I’m particularly unwilling to step into the model role myself, but have done a bit of sewing for myself, so you see the conflict. At any rate – it’s been a good sewing month for me in part because I’ve stepped away from the incessant work sewing. For me, a lot of the joy in sewing comes in experimenting, learning, and exploring. A lot of that hasn’t been happening since I started sewing for markets, so I’ve been working on bringing it back. The true list of things I’d like to sew would startle myself and the world, so I’ll keep that to myself for now. In the meantime, here’s an overview of my April sewing.

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Garden Time

Nursery for baby plants

Ready for beans!

Apple Blossems

Pea Progress

Tulips galore

It’s gone a bit cool the past few days. No late April snow, thank goodness, but the winter coats have come back out. The sun came back out yesterday and our sky is blue with sheep’s wool clouds, according to Peanut. He watched the clouds all the way to school this morning. It is a treat to have a little boy who can be genuinely transfixed by beauty in nature. His mother is a bit impatient with nature. It turns out that seeds need time to germinate. They need time to grow. The garden needs time and heat to really explode with green. It’s coming. I can’t wait!

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Anya cross body bag

Anya cross body bag

Anya cross body bag

Anya cross body bag

I took some bag pictures last week to get ready for posting this bag on Etsy. It is my favorite bag. Well, it’s a new, lined and better version of my favorite bag, which I made in 2009 and still use every summer. It’s a soft, squishy pile now, but my favorite. It’s linen, a combination of new and a vintage British home furnishings fabric I found way back when and have been hoarding! Anya’s gotten some design adjustments for production. The pockets are properly put together and the handle is as well. Neither has raw edges. I miss the rough look, but this is a sturdier bag. The interfacings are different as well, so it has some body and the handle is sturdier. It’s really neat to see how much I’ve learned about construction techniques just over the past few months. This one will go up in my Etsy store in the next week or so. If you’re interested in buying it before then, email me, and we’ll work it out!

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Slowing down, moving faster

Cloth by Cassandra Ellis

Music Box Jumper progress

There’s a pattern emerging as I continue to participate in markets. The week before market is a mad dash of staying up late and sewing at every available moment. The week after is one of moving slower, but also finding some kind of non-work sewing project to stay up late about. All my plans to take pictures and write fabulous blog posts are put aside to reflect and recharge. So much has happened this past month that I can hardly wrap my head around it. I’m a bit overwhelmed by trying to figure out what to work on first. This week, doing something entirely different felt like a good way to cope, and hopefully a good way to get a bit of perspective.

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Biking to market

View from the cargo bike

Cargo bike

I was prepared for lots of new experiences when I started this business, but never did I think biking myself and all my gear to the market would be one of them! Luckily, the fates intervened an on Sunday morning I pedaled myself up from our house to downtown Nijmegen with a full load. Getting started on the bike was a bit shakey, in part because of the size but also because this bike required handlebar steering. Leaning to the side would probably only have landed me on the pavement (which didn’t happen, thank you very much). It was, in fact, a pretty awesome experience. Cargo bikes are very popular in the Netherlands and often function the way Americans would have a second, smaller car. Between the good biking infrastructure, the price of gas (currently around 8.40 USD a gallon), and the social norm of biking, it’s a choice that makes a lot of sense!

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Making: small and sweet

Mini-tote party

Wrist strap, key fob

In Dutch, there’s a phrase “klein maar fijn.” It refers to things that are small, but oh so nice. This has been a week of klein maar fijn sewing. Little wrist straps using my scraps and mini-totes to do some workshop marketing. If you follow Earth Apple Studio on Facebook, you’ve been treated to my making and mini-tote tour. It’s all in preparation for de Linden Market this coming Sunday (6 April) and workshops at Studio Jurk starting on 14 April!

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