Tuesday, February 12, 2008

staying busy

I've been working on headcoverings this week. I played with one yesterday and got it all finished before deciding I really didn't like it. I'll have to tweak that pattern so it doesn't make the wearer look like The Flying Nun when they have it on. Fortunately I have a lot of scrap and leftover fabric so I'm not wasting good stuff with my experimentation.

I also made a new jumper and I really like it. The last time I used this pattern, I gathered the skirt instead of doing the pleats the pattern called for. This time I used the pleats and found out very quickly that it is much more flattering and makes me look a bit smaller and not so round.

We had to cull a hen two nights ago. She was at the bottom of the pecking order and obviously ticked someone off. I went in to check on them and found blood spots all over the place. They'd been pecking at her head and neck and she didn't look too good, though she wasn't as bad as she could have been. Hens being hens, if I'd have left her there overnight she'd have been dead in the morning. I got hubby and we went to the garage and did what we had to do. I was able to clean the carcass this time and pluck most of the feathers so on Wednesday we'll have a nice roast chicken for supper. If I catch the head hen being mean like that to one more of her housemates she's next on the list. I don't need mean birds.

We definitely need more birds this spring. I just put 2 dozen fresh eggs in the outside fridge today and a new local customer showed up and bought both of them. I had emptied the fridge last week to take the eggs to the feed store owner and now I'm out again. 15 (now 14) birds just aren't enough. Once I get the new chicks next month and they start laying we'll have 25 pullets producing eggs. That should be enough. Where we are now I won't even have to go to the farmer's market to sell eggs this summer...I won't have enough to take!

Later today I want to make some more of the triangle headcoverings, assembly line style by color, so I can list them on Etsy and see what happens. I have plenty of fat quarters picked out and after I go to the post office and check the mail I'll have enough lace for them as well. I'm making some with lace and some without. I'll see which sells best, and also have the option on my Etsy page for people to contact me about specific preferences.

I'd like to get on a regular sleep schedule again. This staying up most of the night thing really throws off my routine.

I guess that's it for now. I'm going to try and take some pics of my headcoverings so I'll have them to post on Etsy and I'll put them here, too.

Friday, February 1, 2008

Beginning again

Sometime in the summer of 2007, God laid on my heart that it was time to stop messing around and get serious about dressing in a modest fashion. It happened almost overnight. I put away the shorts and tank tops and switched to jumpers and dresses and skirts.

I don't want to sound like it was easy because at the time our vehicle didn't have air conditioning and since I owned mostly t-shirts of cotton knit I got very hot if I went places in the daytime. I had to start thinking of ways to stay cool and dress the way I felt I was being led to dress.

I made a few short-sleeved dresses from a modest pattern and those along with the skirts and a denim dress got me through to the fall.

This winter I've worn skirts, jumpers, dresses, and haven't worn pants one day. I do put long johns under the dresses, especially since we live in a weird climate and I go outside every day to care for our chickens and see to the bird feeders and such.

I've found my favorite all-around cool weather shoes to be Birkenstock clogs I got from ebay for less than $50. In the summer, my Birkenstock sandals only leave my feet when I slip on my Birkies, made of rubber, to go do chicken stuff and other dirty chores. I have tennies for cold cold days and boots for snow, but I far prefer the Birkenstocks for the comfort factor. I need to find boots that fit me better.

Just a week ago God put on my heart to start covering. Three days ago I made my first two headcoverings, simple but adequate, and I will go on from here.

The first two are a dusty blue color. One has cream lace and one has white. I have 4 white ones cut out already. I use single-fold bias tape for the long edge and the ties.

I have ideas for more coverings and may even offer a few on Etsy or another place to see if people would be interested in purchasing simple, practical headcoverings. I also made a plain cotton half slip and a flannel half slip for winter, and I could sell those as well, made to fit the waist size of the person buying them. The flannel slip is nice when it's really cold and I have to go out and the longjohn leggings are just not cutting it.

I would really like to find a place that sells 3x thick cotton tights. It's very difficult. I see microfiber ones, and nylon ones, and lycra ones, and thin cotton ones, and fancy patterned ones. What I and a lot of other large ladies are looking for is a manufacturer willing to make simple thick winter-weather style cotton tights in even just a few basic colors...white, cream, navy, brown and black would be perfectly acceptable. We don't need a lot, just enough.

Since warmer weather will be approaching, I am looking to make a few more lightweight dresses to get me through the heat of the Missouri summer without compromising my convictions.

I am also going to be playing with my slip pattern as I'd like to make a full-length one as well as a half slip.

Add to that the headcoverings, household work, family time, and chickens, and I will be quite occupied for the upcoming months.

I truly wish I could find something to do that would enable me to get off disability but it would have to be something I could do here on a sporadic basis as my pain level and associated symptoms allow. In the meantime, I can always experiment and see what I come up with.

It certainly is something to look forward to.