Jeans Makeover

Tuesday I stopped at Frenchy’s (a Maritime thrift store specializing in used clothing) to pick up a couple of pairs of jeans in stretch denim. I tried on several pairs – size 10 fit my waist and the top hip region, but were way to big through the bum and thighs – perfect for what I intended to do with them.

At $4.75 for a pair of jeans I can experiment to my heart’s content! I wanted to see if the dart/seam in the centre back of the pants would give me the fit I’d achieved in SF.

I started by lifting the back pockets:

Then I tried the jeans on putting a pin at the spot of the greatest depth for the dart, another pin to mark the point where the top of the dart ends, and another at the knee.

Next I turned the jeans inside out, used a fabric marking pen to identify the position of the pins. Now to locate the grain line in the back panel (I started at the hem, folding and pinning the back in half, aligning the side and inseams and marking the fold all the way to the mid-hip in back. Once I had the centre back I marked the dart/seam and stitched from the top of the dart (under the pocket) to the knee and continued with a narrow seam to the hem on both legs.

I tried on the jeans to see whether I’d removed enough of the excess fabric – pretty good fit. So I pressed the seam, pinned and restitched the pockets in place. 

I measured the inseam (a good length for me is 27″), added 1 1/4″ for the hem, cut the legs, serged the hem edge, folded, pressed, and stitched the hem.

Not bad huh? Took me about an hour and a half.

Theatre de la Mode, Fashion Dolls: Survival of Haute Couture

Ann Williamson Design today blogged about the Maryhill Spring Tea — Maryhill is an art museum about 2 hours east of Portland OR, on the hills of the Columbia River. Among the various collections is one of note to anybody interested in fashion / haute couture: Theatre de la Mode — an amazing collection of 27″ wire frame dolls clothed in designer garments from just after World War II. Paris was still the centre of fashion but without the supplies to do runway shows, the designers, in conjunction with other artists and designers, created this amazing display to showcase their collections.

Evening wear:

Day Clothes:

And accessories (these shoes are to scale: ~ 2.5″ in length) constructed with amazing accuracy

If you’re ever in the Portland area, it’s worth the side trip to see this collection!

Ornithogalum Continued

This was the Ornithogalum a month ago – here it is today:

It continued blooming while I was away (cared for by my next door neighbour) and I’m guessing it will last a few more weeks! Amazing.

It’s a bulb so I’ll try to keep the foliage going for a bit before letting the plant die back. If I’m lucky, the bulbs will survive till next fall when I’ll replant them and see if I can encourage them to bloom.

Vicki’s Jewellery Shop

I mentioned yesterday I’d never seen so much “stuff” in one small shop as I had yesterday in Vicki’s shop.
Karen and I were back there today because Karen needed a small gift for her next door neighbour’s seven year old daughter’s first communion on Sunday. I just had to take pictures:

We’re not talking cheap costume accessories. These pieces are real jewellery – a lot of it from estate sales, but even the contemporary and costume pieces are upscale. This is the kind of place you’d go to find something to wear with a particular outfit or a necklace to go with a pair of earrings you already have.

I didn’t buy anything today, just took the opportunity to schmooze more widely than I had yesterday. Lots of interesting pieces, even if much of it isn’t my taste.

New Necklace


I was shopping with my friend Karen this morning – she needed a gift for another friend of hers having a 70th birthday. I had tagged along as company – with no intention of buying anything! 

I regret I didn’t get a photo of the shop itself – I don’t think I have ever seen so much “stuff” in such a small space – much of it didn’t interest me. But there was a small “manikin” with a display of necklaces by Israeli artists and they fascinated me. 

The one I bought was created by Ayala Bar. I just loved the colours and symmetry of the piece. I didn’t even bother to have it wrapped. Paid for it and wore it for the rest of the day.

A souvenir of the San Francisco/Toronto trip.

New “Faces”

While walking the streets of San Francisco, I came across some “faces”.

The first has a long drooping moustache: 

 The second looks rather like a Chinese dragon:

Can you see them? 

I wasn’t looking too hard this trip or I’m sure I’d have found lots more!

Two Photos

I’m not usually one for taking photos from plane windows (because I prefer an aisle seat to a window seat) but today because I had a window seat I got two images worth sharing.

Leaving San Francisco – I couldn’t resist trying to capture the deep blue of the clear sky with the fog over the bay.
  Arriving in Toronto I was amazed by the extent of the ice along the shore of Lake Ontario (and the frost on the window itself)!