tweed treats

Treats arrived in today’s post! Helen very kindly sent me some lovely samples of the fabric she picked up at Hinnigans in Selkirk. There was a moment of serious rapture when I opened the packages.

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What absolutely beautiful tweed. Thanks Helen! The sepulchral wintry light does not do justice to the quality of the wool or the colours in the fabrics. I am going to follow Helen to Hinnigans — I’m very excited to find some locally produced tweed of such superb quality. As well as picking up some pieces for patchwork bags and other small projects, perhaps I can treat myself to a couple of metres to make something I found in another recent postal arrival:

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Cue further rapture! Thanks Titch! These delicious tomes are from two of the doyennes of Japanese home couture, Machiko Kayaki and Sato Watanabe. Like most Japanese sewing books, they come with paper patterns. I am in a tweedy sort of mood, as the first thing that stood out to me was this:

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Which I intend to attempt without the, um, furry boa…The patterns come with pictorial instructions that are really fantastically clear, even for someone with no knowledge of Japanese. I got a reasonable sense of the stages of construction of this dress just from the diagrams in the book. But where diagrams are not enough, I’ve been helped out by the list of Japanese sewing terms and other information provided on Jennifer’s‘ fantastic blog. You’ll also find some great reviews of Japanese designers and lots of inspiring sewing and quilting on her site.