Coding · Sewing · Weight Loss

Weekend is here, time for friends

Hi there,

This weekend brought beautiful weather and a great opportunity to hang out with some good friends of mine.

We enjoyed the amazing weather with a walk in High Park. That park has to be the best one in Toronto and it was the perfect day. We chatted about everything and just had a generally great time.

Over the past few years, we have worked together on a mental health app aimed at children. We have over 1,000 downloads and are well on our way to more. The app is Strong Minds and it is a great tool for anyone that needs some tools to help them manage their feelings. I did most of the development and one of my friends did practically all the design and drew all the images by hand. The app is gorgeous and I am proud that we have had no crashes for the past 3 months. It was definitely a passion project between the four of us and one that we are all proud of.

In sewing news, I have cut out those pyjamas I mentioned last time. I just received a set of bias tape makers from Amazon and I can now make my meters of 1.5-inch bias tape for the neckline and the straps. Self-bias tape always looks so good but making it is quite tedious.

As to the diet, it’s still going well. I still have more energy despite my seasonal allergies dragging me down a bit. I’m surprised that my food budget isn’t too far out of line, but I haven’t eaten out in the past 2 weeks so that definitely helps things. The recipes are still delicious and the recommendations from the app are definitely getting better. That AI they are hyping definitely is doing something. There is a pair of leggings I made last summer that are fitting better today than when I first made them.

TTYL

Sewing · Weight Loss

Skirt is done, now what…

Hi there,

I finished the skirt! It looks great!

 

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The Pleated Skirt from Knipmode

 

This was overall a fairly straightforward sew, but I totally ignored the instructions for the invisible zip. After the pocket fiasco, I wasn’t too confident in the instructions. It came together well in the end and I am happy with it. I did go up to a size 52 for this one, I remeasured myself in the waist/hip area and that was my size. This would be the largest size I have measured in European sizes.

The next sewing project I am thinking of is pyjamas. I am thinking of doing the Cupid Cami and Tap Pants from Hot Patterns. I have a few choices for fabric. Trying to decide between a rayon challis or a cotton voile. Both would look great in this pattern. The rayon challis has a paisley print in a pink and purple. The cotton voile is a royal blue colour.

A quick update on the diet plan. Still going well on the food plan. Unnatural Vegan did a spot with her criticisms of the meal plan after trying it for 2 days (that’s what I think she said in the video). I don’t quite agree with her assessment. For one, it sounds like she was setting herself up for failure by deliberately choosing recipes that she knew she probably wouldn’t like. She also sounds like quite the picky eater when it comes to texture. I actually own all of her recommended books in the video, and they are very good. I might incorporate some of the recipes from Appetite for Reduction in my meal planning, some of those were very tasty. As an aside, that was one of the first vegan cookbooks (maybe the first?) I ever bought.

I should probably segue into how I am actually doing the meal plan. For starters, when it’s just me I am cooking for, the recipes call for small amounts of veggies (ie, 1/4 apple, 1/2 lemon, 1/4 bunch asparagus). That will add up to a huge expense if I do a different recipe each meal. What I do is I have a bunch of leftovers, I don’t mind eating leftovers for meals. I figure out what number of servings will use the most whole ingredients and scale the recipe up to there, keeping in mind how well the recipe will keep to the next day. Then I use Paprika to enter in all the recipes and plan my meals in the app. The app generates a shopping list that I use to do my shopping. I don’t mind repeats of meals in a meal plan. I don’t get bored that quickly and honestly doing that many new recipes in a  week are overwhelming.

I try to follow roughly what meals are recommended for breakfast, lunch and dinner, but I don’t follow exactly the entire day. I may take one breakfast for one day and pair it with a lunch from a different day, and maybe a dinner from yet another day. This way if one of the meals is a dud I am not stuck with a meal I don’t like. This avoids the Unnatural Vegan’s issue with the meal plan. As to her complaint that the recipes don’t have enough flavour. I figure as long as I am not adding a lot of calories to the meal. Increasing the spices and aromatics should not be an issue, and honestly, I don’t like my food too heavily seasoned anyways, it tastes fresher and cleaner to me without a bunch of extra spice. Although if I am eating Indian food, spices all the way, the more the better.

Well that was a long post. TTYL

Sewing · Weight Loss

1/2 week mark and what’s on my sewing table

Hi There,

Just thought I would check in.

4 days down of the 22 days vegan meal planner and feeling great. I woke up with tons of energy. I have been eating a load more fruits and veggies, maybe my body was missing the nutrients. I have only had 2 out of my 3 usual cups of coffee and I am still feeling awake. Fantastic.

On my sewing table right now is the skirt from the March issue of Knipmode. It’s looking good so far and I can’t wait to show you. The stripes are working well with this pattern. I am about to install the invisible zipper.

The pocket area is weird on this skirt. For one, they have you sewing the pocket bags together before sewing it to the other side. This lead to some very confusing topography. I sewed the side seam with the pocket the wrong way the first time. I got it the right way around for the second side seam. But this one also has the zipper in this same seam. All in all, very confusing. I will be interested to see how the invisible zipper goes in. I might just do some basting so it goes smoothly, otherwise, the seam allowance has a tendency to not be in the right place.

This fabric also frays when you look at it funny. Trying to get in this pocket area to at least serge it off is a challenge. I’ve attached the waistband and fortunately, that went in without too much trouble.

Ah well, wish me luck.

TTYL.

Sewing

Delta Hooded Vest Complete

Hi there,

Since my last post, I have completed another project. The Delta Hooded Vest from HotPatterns in collaboration with Fabric.com.

 

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Modelling my new vest

I thought I would give a review of this pattern.

 

The size range is the usual HotPatterns 6 – 26, I made a 16 although I am a 20 based on my measurements. I find Trudy’s draft on tops runs large, perhaps she just prefers more ease.

The instructions on this were quite clever. I especially like how the corners of the hem were done. You end up wrapping the front facing around the back facing while stitching the side seam. The finish this produced was very neat.

The French terry I used for this made a very cuddly hoodie. It was just the right weight and drape for this. It wasn’t so stiff that the hem corners look awkward. The colour is that peachy-salmon colour that looks so good with my skin tone.

All in all a great pattern from HotPatterns. If I needed another hoodie like this I would make again.

The pyjama pants I am wearing in the photo I also made, they are the 5 out of 4 pyjama pants pattern. I have made this pattern 3 times, twice for myself and once for a gift. It is definitely a TNT pattern for me.

TTYL

Sewing

Thinking about sewing

Hi there,

I’m always thinking ahead to my next project so here is what I am thinking.

First I want to make the Delta Hooded Vest. It’s a free download from Fabric.com. I’m going to make it in a peachy-salmon coloured french terry that I got from the Creativ Festival this spring. It’s oh so soft. This will be the perfect transitional piece for this variable spring weather we get. Looking at the instructions it looks like a straight-forward sew with not too many surprises.

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The peachy french terry. Ooooh soft.

My second make in the near future is a skirt out of the March 2018 issue of Knipmode. I have some beige and white striped linen look polyester to make this out of. The fabric has a beautiful drape to it that I think would look lovely with this pattern. A great Fabricland purchase.

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Drapey linen look stripes.

Beyond that who knows what is next, but it will be nice to see how these turn out.

TTYL