swapbutton SWAP progress for the weekend continued on Sunday with some work on the Hong Kong finish for the jacket.

A Hong Kong finish is enclosing the seams of  a garment with bias strips. You sew them to the seam allowance, fold them over, and hand-sew them down on the other side. I was very tempted to do my jacket with the paisley fabric which is the print for my SWAP. This, I felt, would add a certain je ne sais quoi to it, even though mostly no one would see it. I have a store-bought jacket in blue corduroy with the seams finished in a striped shirting, and I like the contrast.

However, this jacket makes a suit with my gray skirt, and I used lace hem facing for that skirt, so I decided hem facing  with only slight regret to use lace for the seam finishing as well. I am also facing the hems with it. I am using a narrow lace, so it will not be as evident as it is on the skirt, but it will match.

My tailoring book points out, correctly I am sure, that it is faster and less trouble just to line the jacket.

When I was picking up a package of hem facing this afternoon, I saw a beautiful dove-gray wool flannel which I am now, in my unrealistic flush of success on this jacket, contemplating using for another jacket. I’ll line that one. Supposing I actually make one, that is.

hong kong finish This has not been pressed, but it does, as it is designed to do, make it possible for the wearer to toss the jacket backward over her chair without showing any messy seams.


There have been some interesting comments here lately. I know that I often read your blogs without reading the comments, so I wanted to mention a couple of them. Simplespirit mentioned Artchix for a source of images for microscope slides. They have a number of vintage image collections sized for slides, as well as other interesting stuff and some snazzy examples, as well as directions for non-soldered slide jewelry. While at their site, I noticed that they called their images “collage sheets” and I googled that.

Suffice it to say that there is no need to envy people with cool collections of ephemera any more. I’ve put links to a bunch of them in the past couple of paragraphs, and here is a link to Somerset Studio, an amazing paper arts resource which Ozark mentioned. They also have collections of collage images.

We made tag art collages for favors for my daughter’s wedding. It was very satisfying to collect images from fan family scrapbooks for the purpose, but also very tedious to scan and print them all, and of course limited. We had no Danish matchbook covers at all. For less sentimental undertakings, having the option of ordering some sheets of images is very handy.

Ozarque also told me about Craftzine.com, which has a number of cool links. It would be easy to spend a lot of time just clicking around there, and they seem to change it every day, so a person who was hoping to get some housework done might want to avoid it, The rest of us, however, can go and enjoy it.

I tried out this project from one of their links. cheesy cover Clicking on the words “this project” will take you to the directions, but they are … hmm .. filled with mystery.

The basic idea is simple: you take the tackiest cover you can find from an old paperback book and — in fifteen minutes, according to the instructions — you make it into a wallet. There are detailed instructions for installing the snap fastener and for measuring and folding the book cover, but the author seems to run out of steam there.

We are told to sew together the edges, but not what edges to sew. We are told that Step 5 will create pockets, but no pockets are in evidence and they are never specified. wallet

I invested $1.00 at a used bookstore and got a couple of truly cheesy books, tore off the covers, and laminated them. The directions suggest covering with vinyl, but laminating seems better.

I cut and folded as instructed, and then I stared at the directions, puzzled. I tried following them, and ended up with a tiny little envelope suitable for holding an ATM card.

Then I tried using a piece of fabric to make a pocket. This will hold money, as you see on the right.

I could not find the snap fasteners described, and the medium isn’t suited to sewn-on fastenings, so I just folded it and tucked it under the edge of the computer so you can see closed wallet the effect when it is closed.

I have no idea what the author had in mind, but I may keep experimenting. I like the idea of using those campy book cover images.

Another interesting comment was from Stephane0305. She asked whether I rushed through my naps for the sake of efficiency. Actually, I am not good at napping, or going back to sleep once I wake up, or even going to sleep at all, and I think it is because I get bored easily. I will keep this in mind and make more of an effort at napping before I give up.

That wasn’t the comment of hers that I meant to talk about, though. I was going to mention that she questioned the historicity of Jesus. I don’t try to change people’s minds about religion, but it’s worth mentioning that we don’t have just one source for historical references to Jesus — we just have most of them collected and treat it as a single book. By contrast, we have exactly one reference for Hannibal’s going over the Alps with elephants, but most of us believe that. Just something to consider. If you find this an interesting topic, there is a discussion of it here which links to a list of the early non-Christian references to Jesus and so forth.

ktc dishcloth



buttontworeadingKTC I finished the Time Traveler’s Wife’s dishcloth, and here it is, sitting appropriately out of place amid the books when it ought to be in the kitchen, cleaning. So should I for that matter.

One final random note to finish this random post: yesterday I arrived in the choir room to find not one single second soprano. Quite a lot of folks were missing from the choir, actually, and one of the altos who had shown up was almost too hoarse to sing, from having shouted so much at the football game the day before. Around here, a football game is often followed by a day when lots of people walk around speaking only in hoarse whispers. #1 son had gone to the high school game and also watched the college game with his brother, so he had almost no voice at all. This may be the reason.

Anyway, there were only a couple of sopranos, and the alto section consisted of me, the one with laryngitis, and a third who hadn’t rehearsed the anthem at all, so we just marched in and sang the piece without one of the parts. It was a beautiful arrangement of this rather sappy Victorian hymn, and the chords would have been pretty stunning if they hadn’t been missing one of the notes every time. The choir director took it in stride, but I hope we get to sing the piece again sometime with all the parts present.