Tag Archives: tartan

Hello World!

26 Sep

Alphitomancy is back!

Hello everyone! After a month in ‘holiday mode’, Alphitomancy is ready to come back into the light (or at least into the grey-white cloud cover) and rejoin the world.

I’ve moved north-north-north-north-and-to-the-west-a-bit to Reading, England. I’ve been in the UK for almost a month now, travelling around the place to say hello to family, go on honeymoon and set up the flat in Reading. Whew! What a month!

I’ve been to England many times before, but always as a tourist. My first impressions of residing in England are: forms, licenses, and having to say “Oh, I think that’s what we call…” because everything is slightly different. Also, apologising for not understanding a process or system and explaining that I’m Australian. Once those things stopped clouding my vision, I was able to see all the wonderful new things that are in my life now:

  • I’m in berry heaven! Raspberries for ¬£2 a punnet, blackberries, redcurrant tarts… It’s wonderful!
  • Cheese is so much cheaper here than in Australia, and so much stinkier!
  • People are really friendly, and will chat to you about anything.

We went even more north to Scotland for our honeymoon. If you haven’t been, put it on your list and make sure you write ‘Highlands’ next to it. It’s so worth going.

Just get to the fabric already.

Alright. In Beauly, which is west of Inverness in the Highlands, there is a fantastic shop that you absolutely must go into if you’re in the area. It’s called Campbell & Co, and is a family-run business founded in 1858 and run by the current family generation of brothers and sisters all above the age of 60. They are just gorgeous together, and I guarantee you have never seen more elegant ladies in tartan and tweed and wool.

The shop is stacked floor to ceiling with tweed bolts, and they have furniture custom-made to accommodate bolts of fabric,  huge cutting tables and the biggest, sharpest scissors I have ever seen!

Family-run business in Beauly, Scotland. Definitely worth a visit!

Family-run business in Beauly, Scotland. Definitely worth a visit!

Tweed bolts stacked to the ceiling

Tweed bolts stacked to the ceiling

They also make the clothing up for you, if you want.

Alphitomancy is back online

Alphitomancy will be brought back online on Etsy very shortly. New items will be appearing, inspired by my recent travels and my new surroundings! I’m so excited to get back to work.

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The Home-Made Bride’s Jacket

11 Aug

MOD TARTAN

In Edinburgh last year, I bought the most beautiful black and white tartan from Edinburgh Fabrics. If you’re in Edinburgh, you should stop by. Even if you don’t make clothes, the shop is amazing!

Wool black and white tartan

Wool black and white tartan

I wrote a post a couple of months ago about this wool tartan, which I’ve called ‘mod tartan’, and said that I was going to use v2934. I knew that it was going to be very cold on my wedding day, and that I would need something to wear over my wedding dress if needed. It turned out that I really did need it, because the maximum temperature was 7 degrees celsius, with a windchill of -5!

The cat, inspecting the wedding dress fabrics

The cat, inspecting the wedding dress fabrics

I laundered it in Softly, and laid it out for cutting. To match the lines across the front panels, I cut it single thickness. Then, when unpinning the paper, I moved a few pins to the other side, flipped it over to show the material side up and placed that over the rest of the fabric to line up all the lines. When I couldn’t tell where the fabric stopped and the already-cut piece began, I removed the cut fabric and pinned the pattern piece there. Whew! Just explaining that was hard. It was easier in real life.

The actual jacket didn’t take long to make – it’s a very simple jacket. The armscye is basically at the waist, and it looks rather like a stingray when in pieces. I didn’t put any interfacing in it because I wanted extra drape.

I lined it in navy blue silk satin, to tie in with the wedding dress.

Navy blue silk satin lining

Navy blue silk satin lining

It took a bit of pressing, and positioning of the lining before hand-sewing it.

Before frog clasps

Before frog clasps

I decided I wanted frog clasps to fasten it – my then-fiance (now husband!) is a frog ecologist, so the name really appealed to me! They also happened to look really good. I used a charcoal coloured clasp.

The end result is that I have a jacket that I absolutely love, that I can wear again and again to remember my lovely wedding day. It’s a very flattering pattern, and looks surprisingly good with jeans.

Windy, cold day!

Windy, cold day!

Good result!

Good result!

 

 

Image

Mod tartan

8 Jun

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I love love love this wool tartan! I think it’s a bit stylish, and maybe even a little mod? I bought it in Edinburgh last year on holiday, and have kept it, waiting and looking and hoping for just the right pattern.

I think I’ve found that pattern!

I’m going to use it to make a coat to wear over my wedding dress. It’s a vintage Vogue pattern from the 1950s, v2934. It’s got dolman sleeves, and sits around the waist line. I’m so excited!

I love the chequered mod look, I drew upon it for my mod style button ring. The ring is my most popular creation, and now comes in two sizes of tops.

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