Monday, March 28, 2011

What ho!

I've been having a lovely few days off, getting into a relaxing routine. I've worked at a local street party, representing the library with our wheelbarrow of free books. It was a tad tiring but I had a great time. Lots of regular borrowers came up to say hello and lots of new people were very happy to pick up a book for free. I got a yummy sausage from the St Kilda football club sausage sizzle and picked up some cupcakes from the Nelson Street kinder cake stall. A friend from the street came down with a cup of tea at half time which was very much appreciated. It was a lovely neighbourhood event. Then I trotted off to the bike store where Mr Chairman was building his new winter bike.

I've managed to fit in a few films too. I loved Laurence Olivier's Henry V. I have mixed feelings about Larry, he's such a ham! This was a fabulous wartime morale raiser - no ambiguity about King Hal's motives here! The production is beautiful, modeled on medieval Book of Hours.

I rewatched The Postman Always Rings Twice. Man I love Lana Turner. Plus I realized I have a pattern very similar to her dress (well, it has a keyhole neckline) which I'm now inspired to sew in white fabric for summer.

What else did I watch. Oh! A film based on Gypsy Rose Lee's novel The G String Murders. Lady Burlesque is a ripper. It stars the ever fabulous Barbara Stanwyck and the costumes, closely modelled on Gypsy's own, are lust worthy.

I'm a fan of GRL so I really enjoyed this trip backstage to the world of burlesque.

I've finally got around to watching Powell and Pressburger's A Matter of Life and Death. I haven't seen this film for years (since sneaking in for free to the Tas Uni film society's screening with my mum). They may be my favorite directors, no one does wartime England better. The Technicolor is stunning. And of course I've only a black and white photo to show you!

I was hoping to sneak in 300 (well it is a war film!) but Xena is on. Toodle pip!

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Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Busy as a bee!

Beautiful Ava Gardner on a bike! Doesn't she look happy?

I'm feeling pretty chipper myself, despite the fact that I spent the bulk of the day talking financial stuff (I came a way from a meeting with two pages worth of things to do!) I also trotted out to the Jewish Museum for the afternoon. I thought I'd take up a treat. Did you know Glicks sell biscuits by the kilo? How could I resist? I was feeling pretty Kosher until I had a last minute pang about rocking up in forties clobber. This is something that bothers me every now and again - am I going to upset anyone? (You'd think being friendly with a Rabbi would reassure me!) There was an elderly woman at the reception desk who looked at me very sternly - uh oh. Then she told me I'd done my hair wrong and that I should be able to get a pen through my Victory Roll. So we had a lovely chat and shared some of my biscuits while I waited for my meeting. (And yes, while I waited for people in the library I did sit there sticking a pen through my hair.) Everything was good until I decided to walk home. High heels are all very well for tripping around the library but not for striding around St Kilda. - Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Latest news

Big news at Maison de la Chairman! And no, I'm not talking about our recent spate of underwear thievery! (Apparently this is called snowdropping - bet you didn't know that!) Am somewhat bemused to find that none of MY underwear has been pinched. Probably because it looks like this:

Period perfect passion killers! I would like some Hollywood style frilly, lacy French knickers and have a new lingerie sewing book to help further the cause. I did start making some but ran out of fabric, but that was a pattern that I'd adapted so I don't think that abandoning it is that big a disaster!

Anyway - news:
To quote one of my favorite swing era tunes,'I'm wishing all the boys a big, big bye-bye, 'cause me and my honey are settling down'. My young man has been asking me for some time and I've been dragging my heels. I don't know why. I'd never really imagined getting married. (Except maybe to Lucy Lawless!) I'd rather like to spend the rest of my life with this young man. But a wedding? I dunno. Well it turns out I've changed my mind about weddings. My mum's been counseling me quite frankly that life is short and there's no point in mucking around (ok, she may have expressed it more gracefully, but that's the gist of it). In the light of recent events in Japan, NZ and North Africa, it's important to celebrate happiness while you can (goodness, I sound like a war bride!) Plus mum turned up a ring!

The ring belongs to my Great Aunt Patty, who was a children's author. It arrived at the library in the mail and I popped out from doing the library banking and trotted down to the bike store. 'What do you reckon?' he asked. 'Will I do?' And I'm not really sure now what I said. It's possible that I still haven't said yes yet. But the ring is on and we celebrated by having a cup of tea out the back of the library. Then I had to go finish my cashiering.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Mr Mailman how I love you

More exciting arrivals in the mail, including some that I'd completely forgotten about.

But sadly, there was one that got away. I'd had my eyes on this for a while but missed out to some other lucky girl. Needless to say, it was the embroidery that captured my heart. But now I've a picture of it I'm sure I can replicate it at some stage. No, I don't actually know how to embroider, but it's on my list of things to learn this year.

I've also picked up some trimmings. I think I'll turn these first ones into corsages, with some brooch fixings from my jewelry making sister. Eventually, I aim to try my hand at making a fascinator - perfect for afternoon teas at the gallery!

I know I haven't been very chatty lately. I've been busy researching war time cooking in preparation for my Silver Screen Supper recipe test. I'll be trying out Veronica Lake's recipe for spiced beef. More on that soon! I've read a few books on deception in war time - one of my favorite topics - but got a bit side tracked by a book on Pozieres. I confess to not knowing terribly much about the First World War beyond Gallipoli, that trench warfare was ghastly and the recognition of shell shock. The author is coming to talk at the St Kilda Library just before Anzac Day so I thought I should familiarize myself with it first. It's very engaging so far but does remind me why I rarely read books on campaigns: I'm hopeless at remembering all the commanders and their respective positions and battalions. I keep having to flick backwards and forwards to understand what is happening. (Completely my fault, not the author's!) Looking forward to the talk, which is almost booked out. Yay!

No sewing at this stage because I can't afford any material just yet.

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Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Bon voyage!

This weekend was a bit sad as it was a farewell to my dear friend, Donna, who is moving to sunny Queensland. We had a lovely time at the Soo family farewell party and the weather cooperated by letting us get in a final ride together on Beach Road. I'm very sad that she's going and I'll miss her very much. We've had such fun together. Ridden for miles and miles, got sunburnt, eaten lots of yum cha (the joys of a post ride appetite!), been baking queens and pretty much photographed every meal we've eaten together. She's been there for me with a cup of tea when my bipolar mind has strayed and we've celebrated a wedding and her new role as a mother. I'm going to miss being there as little Gus grows up. And of course her lovely husband, and riding partner, Ray. This is sad. I hope I'm conveying what a great friend she is!

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Friday, March 11, 2011

A good day

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Monday, March 7, 2011

Me made March

Rumpled as usual! This is cotton drill and I'll freely admit I chose it because of the colour. I bought it online, my favourite kind of shopping! But probably not the best way to choose fabric if you're still learning. Wikipedia said it was used for military uniforms so I figured you couldn't get more 40s than that. Now I know that there must be platoons of rumpled soldiers out there because it is very very creasy. It does feel nice to wear though. And of course it's a little roomy. But I realized that the pattern is size 18 1/2! No wonder it's a bit roomy. Though no excuse for not tailoring it properly! I'm so scared I'll get fat that I'm really reluctant to take things in. Must be bolder! People were very nice about it but I really struggled to stop myself pointing out all the faults. It was surprising how hard it was!

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Last hurrah of summer

Just when you thought it was all over, along comes summer...

I had a pleasantly domestic weekend. I did loads of laundry, cleaned the bathroom, did some ironing. Then I took a picnic rug into the garden and lay out there reading with some of the cats. Lovely! Sunday was more of the same, and also featured what is possibly the last ride for the Chairman / Soo partnership. The Soo family is moving north to Brisbane in about a week. So sad.

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Thursday, March 3, 2011

And even more mail!

Two more parcels today!

All from Patterns From the Past on my friend Etsy.

From Unknown Seller on Etsy. I really don't remember...

A bit summery aren't they! I'm hoping some of them will be alright with a cardi. I was inspired by blogger She's in Fashion to make myself a wincy slip so I could keep wearing cotton frocks in colder weather. I was sure I had an unused flannelette sheet to use but it seems I took it to the Salvos. Bother.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

In the mail

Exciting things come in the post! Mr Mailman delivered two parcels today. My mum sent me a care package of Mor Basil and Grape hand cream, all tucked up with lavender from her garden and a sweet note saying how much she loved and missed me.

Then this pattern arrived. Though I'm starting to worry about my ability to fit things properly, given the evidence in yesterday's outfit post. Today I wore a new skirt - not a complete success. The muslin I made was too big so I took it in. Then it was too snug. So I took the middle road on the real thing. And it's still too big! Sigh. I could unpick it and take it in but waistbands are my bete noir so I'm not super keen on heading down that path. Still, not bad for six months sewing experience. No photo because I was in a rush to get changed for my boxing class.

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RIP Jane Russell

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Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Outfit post

Here I am looking a bit rumpled!

This is a shirt made by ME! Not so sure about the fit now I can see it properly. And goodness, doesn't my hair need cutting! Posted using BlogPress from my iPad