It’s been two months since I did my so-called monthly recap and I nearly forgot to do this one! I’ve had a very busy past couple of months and there was not nearly as much sewing as usual. For most of March, I was getting ready to go on my trip to Japan, working a lot and sewing some things for the trip. My trip to Japan was fantastic (keep reading for a few pictures and info) but I’ve had trouble getting back in the groove since returning in early April. I think it was partly jet lag, partly life stuff (adulting is the worst! ;) and part that I didn't have an immediate goal in front of me.
In March, before my trip, I made the Ebony Pants, Neenah Dress, the Blackwood Cardigan and a Hemlock Tee (unblogged). I already know that the Blackwood Cardigan will be my most worn item. I wear a cardigan almost everyday, especially when I have to go to the office and steel myself against the chilly AC.
My trip to Japan was so incredible. I was there for 10 days and visited Tokyo, Kyoto and Nara. I was fortunate to have a dear old friend who lives in Tokyo and invited me to stay. I have never been to Asia before and it was the most culturally different place I’ve ever been. It was a great experience to be somewhere that has such different cultural norms. There were definitely a few times when I felt like a clumsy, loud American. I loved the bustle of Tokyo and also the beauty of their shrines, which I saw a lot of in Kyoto. In the end, I was ready to come home and get back to my usual activities. It was especially tough to not be able to read or speak the language because I have a gluten intolerance. I mostly ate sashimi and rice which I LOVE and eat regularly at home but after eating it everyday I was very ready to eat other foods. The food issue was really what scared me the most about going to Japan and I’m glad that faced that fear and went anyway. For my next trip I am thinking I’ll go somewhere a little easier. But I do hope to return to Japan one day and see more regions.
I’m sure you’re also wondering about the fabric shopping in Japan. I went to a couple of stores but did not go to the big fabric district. If you are going to Japan, Tilly and Cashmerette both have really great Japan fabric shopping guides. The first fabric store I went to was actually a fabric section of a department store in Asakusa. It was medium sized and had a nice selection of cottons and linens, plus lots of notions. I bought a few precuts there and some elastic. The other store I went to was called Okadaya in Shinjuku. It’s a two-building seven story store packed full of basically everything, including lots of costume fabrics and supplies (think every kind of faux fur).
Just before the trip, my car was rear ended. I was fortunately ok but my car was not. I returned from Japan thinking I’d be able to pick up my freshly repaired car but instead it was deemed a total loss and needed to be replaced. I had been thinking about a new car for months but had recently decided to wait a while a longer. The whole process was stressful and annoying but I now have a new car that I love. Phew! A lot of April was taken up with recovering from jet lag and car shopping. Feeling tired and a little uninspired, I basically stopped sewing. I actually went weeks without sewing a stitch. I haven’t taken such a long break probably in years. I’m hopeful that in May I’ll be able to get back to my routine. Fingers crossed!
Getting back into the swing of sewing has been slow but I have a couple of events coming up that require dresses. First, I have the #SEWTALLANDCREATIVE2017 sewing challenge sponsored by the Tall Guides and Marge Clothing. You can read more about the challenge here and here. I have a plan set for my dress and will be posting it the week of May 20. I’m using a vintage pattern (sneak peek above!) which I haven’t done in ages and ages. I’m hoping the final dress will be beautiful and a touch dramatic. My next big event is my youngest brother’s wedding in August. I’m planning to make the Sophia dress by By Hand London in a textured black cotton from The Fabric Store. I love the lines of this dress and I’m so excited to try it out. Stay tuned for more and thank you for following along on my sewing adventures! xo