I made…another dress!

I’ve made it to the part of the summer where my kid has camp every day at the science center (where they have very good masking and safety policies, which I keep reminding myself) and my spouse is working on campus while she’s at camp, which means that every day, for about 7 straight hours, I have the house TO MYSELF! It is gloriously quiet, and such a relief to let go of the stress I was feeling about keeping my kid from interrupting my spouse once Zoom school wasn’t keeping her busy. And it’s just really great to be able to exist in my house without a constant audience – if I want to take a break from working (on class prep, and on the final edits for a paper that’s going to be published soon) and go sew, I can just go sew, you know?

Demeter Dress!

So now I have a new dress! It’s another Demeter Dress, this time in a very “me” color of Alison Glass’s “Mariner Cloth”, which has a delightful nubbly texture – the stripes are actually a thick bundle of lighter colored threads that are woven into the cloth at regular intervals, and I *love* running my fingers over them!

Demeter Dress - darts.

Because of the nubbly texture of the fabric, I wasn’t sure it would make a very good bias facing, so I used a regular cotton fabric for that in a color that almost matches the light stripes. I think it looks pretty cool, even though nobody’s going to see it unless I show it to them!

Demeter Dress - bias binding

I’ve also been trying to spend part of the day listening to podcasts and knitting, because that’s a really important way for me to “recharge” and given the level of burnout I’m experiencing from the past 16+ months, I definitely need to recharge. Here’s (part of) what I accomplished while listening to Ezra Klein’s interview with Eve Ewing (it was a great interview – highly recommend!):

Future Sleepy Kitten

What you’re seeing are the legs and arms of a future Sleepy Kitten, which is a pattern my daughter fell in love with when she saw it in Making magazine. I’m using the called-for yarn, Barrett Wool Company’s Wisconsin Woolen Spun Worsted, because I wanted to try it (I’m all about finding new great woolen-spun yarns!) and I liked the idea of supporting a business that is local to my family, if not to me specifically. I got it in kit form last year and am finally getting around to knitting it. The yarn (much like the pattern) is *delightful*!

I’ve got a couple other projects on the needles, but I’ll give those their own post sometime. I’m trying to find a balance between the prep work that I know I need to do and the resting and recharging that I also desperately need to do, and it’s hard. Especially since the prep work all has to take place in what is effectively an information vacuum – I know I’m going to be required to teach in person, but I don’t actually know if the international students who typically make up the majority of my classes will be able to be here in person, so I might be teaching in person to like, 3 students while the others are all Zooming in or participating asynchronously and basically I have to prep for every possibility, which is…not great. And I’m doing it without ANY knowledge of what my kid’s school/bus schedule is going to look like. This is the second summer in a row of trying to plan for fall in the absence of information and that kind of planning is really, brutally difficult and stressful for me. I’m someone who really likes when I know what to expect, where, if I’m really honest, by “really likes” I actually mean “only functions well” and that’s just…not in the cards. (It never was, truly, but at least it FELT like it was.)

But hey, I sewed another dress! And that means that since the start of COVID, I have sewn myself one jumper (the York Pinafore), 4 Cleo Skirts, and 2 Demeter Dresses – I have enough handsewn garments to make through an entire week without repeats! Wearing things that I’ve made makes me feel good, and that used to be something I could only do during the colder months with my handknits, but now that I’m learning to sew, I can get that good feeling year-round!


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