Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Back in Black

If you are of a certain era, that may leave you with an earworm...... ;)

Really, I'm referring to a closet staple; black pants. In fact a particular pair of black pants that might have been a little responsible for me taking up machine and patterns to restart my sewing journey.

 Years ago (like about 11), I bought a pair of black linen FLAX pants. I love those pants. If there was a fire I might try to save them type love. I am sure everyone has an article of clothing they feel that way about. And it is wonderful to be able to duplicate them. I thank Liesl every time I make pants from this super pattern she made using my old pair. They now have a twin.

I promised finished pics of the floral skulls top and here they are.

 The pockets probably took the longest to match.

 I lined them with scraps of bright orange linen and used the bright yellow linen scraps for a band between the bodice and skirt portion.

 This is again a version using the Scout Tee pattern as a jumping off point. I still have some more ideas for using this pattern but need to get more pattern paper for drafting before those ideas take flight.

There was just enough full width embroidered linen to eek out a top. I had to piece the embroidery onto the sleeves.

 I couldn't resist wanting something to wear out of this lovely fabric. I still have plenty of the plain white portion for pillowcases and will pair them with another linen for hems.

There are two new patterns cut out in fabric waiting their turn. The skull top used black thread and while it was set up in that color I decided to do the pants. Today I'll spend some time with Big Sal and a Sandra Betzina pattern.

Monday Bob looked like this and the roads were a slippery mess.

 Gene opted to wait until yesterday before hauling him down for the spa treatment. I don't know about any other areas but there seems to be a shortage of folks who work on farm equipment around here. Part of it I'm sure has been the economy the last few years. A lot of dealerships have closed their doors and while organic and small farms are plentiful around here, finding someone to work on a well aged Case/IH tractor has not been a walk in the park.

And while we are still visiting black, here is my much loved saddle, all cleaned and conditioned.

 If the Zilco bridle was a good purchase, this Tucker saddle was a great one. Like most horse owners, I have done my fair share of saddle changing. Some fit me and not the horse, some the other way around. I've been through Thornhill, Wintec and Schhumacher. Actually we both loved the Schumacher and I wish to this day I had kept it, but it provided the funds for a secure saddle for Gene to ride in. This saddle has been with me now for 10 plus years and has been a comfortable and safe ride for both of us through many, many mountain miles.

 It fits Dandy just as well as Cooper so when Gene needed a saddle I added a second Tucker. Cooper is short backed, has a good wither and a very round barrel. He needs a saddle with a good wide center channel and a fair amount of rock in it. The Tucker fit him like a glove. Dandy is close in form but with a longer back. We were lucky that we found a saddle that fit both horses well. No shims, no cruppers or breast collars just girth and go. I'm looking forward to spring that's for sure.

Parting shot: Robin "Chunk" Russell.


  1. NOW you're talkin' my colors! I'll take that black/white ensemble! (And Robin doesn't look chunky to me. ;-)

  2. I have 3 saddles - a 50+ year old Passier that fits Tang and me like a glove (but I'm rather protective of it...), a 40+ year old Stubben, that fits Tang, but not me (and I've been unsuccessful trying to find it a new home), and a newer synthetic dressage saddle that I use mostly on the trail because of the deep seat. I remember when I had my young Arab going through saddles like water as he grew and his back changed. It's nice to have some "stability" in the saddle department.

    I love the "Dia de los Muertos" fabric - very fun!!

  3. I can't believe that you matched the pockets on the print fabric!! I'm a little bit OCD and even I wouldn't have gone that far. What a fun top.

    Sorry about your surprise snow....but you do need the moisture, right? Ours is gradually receding. Which is good....keeping the flooding to a minimum.

  4. Michelle, Robin is built like a brick. Often we refer to him as the mini pit. He has that wide head and stance.

    Laura, Nice to have some choices there! Tang is a lucky girl. ;) I would have loved to have found an older Passier to try but most were so worn it wasn't worth the effort. I've heard they are wonderful saddles. This trail saddle has served well and certainly provides a very deep secure seat. The rise in front has proven useful, riding very steep trails, ponying babies and of course, the occasional equine panic mode...

    Valerie, It wasn't all that hard to match...really. Now the top I'm working on now...bad choice using a directional pattern, but it is a first run through... Enjoy the melt!

  5. I really like the idea of making a pattern from well-loved articles. My Mom used to do that, and I had forgotten. I have a well loved pair of linen pants that got ruined by a stain....I'll have to give that a try. Robin is lookin' good!!!!

  6. Excellent matching job on those cute skulls, Theresa! I absolutely love the white linen top. Say hello to all in the menagerie.

  7. I like the mini pit! He is adorable.

    I have no idea what you are talking about with the saddle jargon but I do know what a 3 hour ride on a horse when you have never been on one before will do to you. Maybe it was the saddle and not my, er, lack of conditioning?

    Love the sewing. And the fact that you still blog.

  8. Love the new skull blouse! Sure can see you want Spring to come and come fast! You matched the pockets so well you will have to show everyone that there are actually pockets and show them off!!!! The white blouse certainly is not going to be worn for any messy dinners or horse elegant! So sad seeing equipment covered in snow with no one to give it TLC.I think that way about sewing day will we run out of real good repairmen?